An Online Companion to the Riddle of the Labyrinth

In The Riddle of the Labyrinth (Ecco Press), author Margalit Fox gives us an inside look at the life of Alice E. Kober through first-hand sources. This was in part possible through “the newly opened archive of her papers at the University of Texas” at the Program in Aegean Scripts and Prehistory, where her letters, manuscripts, and notes are carefully stored. In the summer of 2012, Zachary Fischer, a graduate student in the School of Information at the University of Texas at Austin, digitized Kober’s archived correspondence and made it available on the University of Texas Digital Repository.

With the publication of the book and the publicly-accessible documents, I have compiled a selection of letters as a companion to The Riddle of the Labyrinth so that readers and visitors can experience and see for themselves Kober’s words preserved in ink from over sixty years ago. The selections below are not comprehensive and visitors are encouraged to search the collection for themselves: the PDFs have had OCR applied and so one can search for typed phrases in the original documents.

The page numbers on the left refer to the page numbers in Fox’s book.
p.92: Kober’s 1947 letter to a colleague on Hrozny:

p.93: Kober’s 1942 letter where she says she cannot tear herself from Linear B:

p.107: Kober’s 1947 letter on 78 times 77 times 15 minutes to do all the signs:

p.111: A letter from 1944 from a former student thanking Kober:

p.131: The first letter from Sundwall to Kober:

p.142: Kober’s 1947 letter to Daniel describing her success in England:

p.157: Kober’s 1947 letter describing her discovery of QE as “and”:

p.158: Forbes writes to Kober and signs off on Lepidoptera:

p.170: Kober’s 1948 letter to Daniel with her ???? for Ventris:

We hope to be able to digitize more of Kober’s files as well as other documents from the Ventris and Bennett archives here in PASP over this summer.

Please feel free to leave a comment below!