Asher, Anthony L., Papers Anthony L. Asher Papers, 1921-1923 Ms.1988.078

Anthony L. Asher Papers, 1921-1923 Ms.1988.078


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Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech

Special Collections and University Archives, University Libraries (0434)
560 Drillfield Drive
Newman Library, Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061
specref@vt.edu
URL: http://spec.lib.vt.edu

John M. Jackson

Repository
Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech
Identification
Ms.1988.078
Title
Anthony L. Asher Papers1921-1923
Quantity
0.1 Cubic Feet, 1 folder
Creator
Asher, Anthony L.
Language
The materials in the collection are in English.
Abstract
Papers of Anthony L. Asher, who served as a U. S. Army explosives instructor staff officer in France during World War I and later organized and commanded Company K, 150th Infantry, West Virginia National Guard during the West Virginia mine wars. Includes correspondence relating to Company K, 150th Infantry, West Virginia National Guard (and to military charges brought against Asher for theft and unauthorized absence) and photographs.

Administrative Information

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use

The copyright status of this collection is unknown. Copyright restrictions may apply. Contact Special Collections and University Archives for assistance in determining the use of these materials.

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Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open to research.

Preferred Citation

Researchers wishing to cite this collection should include the following information: [identification of item], [box], [folder], Anthony L. Asher Papers, Ms1988-078, Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Va.

Source of Acquisition

The Anthony L. Asher Papers were purchased by Special Collections and University Archives in 1988.

Processing Information

The processing and description of the Anthony L. Asher Papers commenced and was completed in April, 2021.


Biographical Note

Anthony Leon Asher, son of schoolteachers Anthony W. and Sarah Davis Bird Asher, was born in Mason County, West Virginia, on August 11, 1892. By 1917, Asher was working for the West Virginia Sand and Gravel Company in Charleston, where he had been hired as a local salesman but was promoted several times, eventually becoming assistant to the general manager. In May, 1917, he enlisted in the U. S. Army. After training at Fort Benjamin Harrison, Indiana, he was commissioned a first lieutenant of infantry and ordered to France in August. Asher underwent additional instruction in France and Belgium and became an instructor in explosives. He was honorably discharged in September, 1919. During the West Virginia mine wars, Asher volunteered his services in McDowell County in September, 1921, and organized a company of volunteers for the Battle of Blair Mountain. Commissioned a captain, Asher organized Company K, 150th Infantry, West Virginia National Guard and was placed in its command. On January 18, 1922, he married and moved with his wife to Roanoke, Virginia. The 1930 census describes Asher as a 37-year-old building supply salesman, living in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, with wife Mary, a Wisconsin native. By 1935, the Ashers were living in Pasadena, California, with Anthony Asher listed as owner and manager of a cement business. Anthony Leon Asher died on June 4, 1942, and was buried in Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Glendale, California.

Scope and Content

This collection contains the papers of Anthony L. Asher, who served as an explosives instructor in France during World War I, then as captain in the West Virginia National Guard during the West Virginia mine wars. The collection includes several communications from the period of the mine wars, including a character reference for Asher from the sheriff of McDowell County, West Virginia, noting Asher's service on the firing line; orders from Asher, commanding Company K, 150th Infantry, providing Lieut. Fred A. Smith with instructions for company drill in Welch, West Virginia; and an exchange of letters between Asher and C. W. Atkinson, of the Pocahontas Fuel Company, regarding the sudden departure of several members of the 150th Infantry, apparently due to fear of an anticipated battle on April 1, 1922. Much of the remaining correspondence relates to military charges brought against Asher for theft and an unauthorized absence. The collection also includes a short typescript item written by Asher, briefly describing his war service and his activities during the mine wars. Also included is a letter from a spurned lover and a letter from his wife. Also in the collection are several snapshot photographs, none identified, including two photos of soldiers, likely with the West Virginia National Guard, standing at attention; four photos of nurses; and a photo of Virginia's Natural Bridge.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

  • Coal Strike, W. Va., 1920-1921
  • Coal mines and mining
  • Local/Regional History and Appalachian South
  • Strikes and lockouts -- Coal mining -- West Virginia

Rights Statement for Archival Description

The guide to the Anthony L. Asher Papers by Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech, is licensed under a CC0 (https://creativecommons.org/share-your-work/public-domain/cc0/).

Container List

Papers, 1921-1923. 1, folder