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Patricia W. & J. Douglas Perry Library
The Papers of Wallace Dreyer
Wallace Earl Dreyer was born March 5, 1923 and raised in Marlin, Texas, where he participated in the photography club at his high school. Dreyer’s parents were Bruno G. Dreyer (1898-1975) and Louise Bertha Hoting Dreyer (1877-1971), who married in 1921 in Giddings, Texas. Dreyer had two siblings, a brother, James Lee Dreyer (1926-1932) and a half-sister, Virginia Hoting (b. 1924), who was his father’s illegitimate daughter from an affair with Bertha Hoting Dreyer’s sister. Dreyer attended the University of Texas and graduated in 1943, and also served in the Armed Forces Infantry from 1941 to 1942. During his military service, Dreyer fought in the Battle of Bastogne in Europe during World War II and also participated in the liberation of camps in Germany. He obtained his x-ray technician certification at Torbett Clinic and Hospital in 1951. In 1960, while he was an Associate Professor at Student Memorial Union at Texas A&M College, he married Evelyn Gay Turner (b. July 31, 1915), a teacher at Baylor University, who was a fellow artist. The Dreyers moved to New York, where they operated an art gallery and sold their paintings. Dreyer was a contemporary photographer as well as a painter; he favored discarded items as his subjects. His wife was a sculptor as well as a painter. Both taught in the Art Department of Old Dominion University beginning in 1966. Wallace was an adjunct assistant professor and director of the photography program. Evelyn Gay was an Assistant Professor of Art. Both retired in 1980. Wallace Dreyer died in Norfolk, Virginia on March 13, 1993 and his wife, Evelyn Gay Dreyer died in Waco, Texas on February 26, 1995.
Scope and Contents
The papers of Wallace Dreyer date from 1907 through 1992. The collection contains professional as well as personal photographs, professional and personal correspondence, a high school year book, newspapers clippings, newspaper advertisements for his art gallery business, certificates pertaining to his elementary school education and x-ray technician certification, x-ray technician employment, and his capture of enemy photographic equipment that he was allowed to keep.
Organization of the Collection
The collection is organized into professional and personal correspondence. The photographs are further organized by alphabetized subject, while any correspondence is organized in chronological order.
Series I. Professional: This series relates to the professional achievements and correspondence of Wallace Dreyer. Items in this series include his professional photographs, letters from art galleries in which he had his work exhibited, newspaper articles on awards received, and sketchbooks. Date range: 1907 - 1993.
Series II. Personal: This series relates to the personal life of Wallace Dreyer. Items in this series include correspondence, holiday cards, sympathy cards, and an obituary. Date range: 1962-1992.
Gift of Melanie Mathewes, Executive Director of the Hermitage Museum & Gardens, 2009.
Open to researchers without restrictions. Questions on literary property rights should be directed to the Special Collections Librarian.
9 Hollinger Document Cases
[Identification of item], Box [number], Folder [number and title],The Papers of Wallace Dreyer, Special Collections and University Archives, Patricia W. and J. Douglas Perry Library, Old Dominion University Libraries, Norfolk, Virginia 23529.