Lilly Library Manuscript Collections


The Depréaux mss., ca. 1940–2004, consist primarily of a diary written by Marie–Louise (Brent) Depréaux in Paris during the German occupation. The diary is written in the form of a letter to her two sisters and describes in some detail the living conditions in Paris from 1940 until the city's liberation in 1944. Marie Louise Brent was born in Columbus, Ohio, probably in the late 1890s. After her father's death her mother moved the family to Germany where Marie Louise grew up. Showing artistic talent she went to study in Paris and worked there for the American Red Cross during World War I. Following the War she continued to study sculpting, met and married Albert Depréaux and the two of them went to live in the Fondation Thiers in the rue Bugeaud, Paris. It is in this location that she writes the diary. Accompanying the manuscript are two snapshots dating probably from the time of the diary and showing her garden described in her journal and an interior photograph of her at a writing desk.

Also present are a faded photograph of Marie–Louise taken in Paris in 1956 when her cousin Carol Tomasic was visiting her there and a computer disk: "Madame Depréaux's Diary, Paris 1940–1944, edited by Emily Macomber and Carol Tomasic." Emily Macomber's Introduction and Carol Tomasic's sort of post script, both written in 2004, have been printed out and are in the folder with the disk.

Acquired: 2005

Collection size: 7 items

For more information about this collection and any related materials contact the Public Services Department, Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405. Call (812) 855-2452 or send an email using our Ask a Question form.