Letter dated November 19, 1931 from Dr. Prof. Sigmund Freud to Professor Morris Pepper.
Morris Robert Pepper was born in Denver, Colorado on August 31, 1906 to Jacob and Rosie Pepper, Jewish immigrants from Russia. His sister Mary Pepper, born in 1903, later married Philip Segal, son of Sol and Susie Freud Segal. The Pepper family moved to Fort Collins, Colorado and Morris Pepper graduated from Colorado State college in 1929 with the college’s first degree in mathematics. He then studied psychology at the University of Kentucky for one year and went to the University of Missouri, where he received a Master of Arts degree in abnormal psychology. He also studied and taught psychology at the University of North Carolina in Greensboro. Morris Pepper had a distinguished career as a psychologist and hypnotist in New York and Colorado. He used hypnotism to help people lose weight and stop smoking.
Mary Pepper Segal asked her brother to write Dr. Sigmund Freud on behalf of her mother-in-law, whose maiden name was Freud. Morris Pepper complied, and Dr. Sigmund Freud wrote back saying that he and Susie Freud Segal were probably not related. Dr. Freud provides some family history in the letter he wrote: “my grandfather was Salomon Freud, he died shortly before I was born and left me his name which the official register got changed into Sigmund.” (Dr. Freud should have been called Salomon Sigmund Freud.) Would he have followed a different path with the first name of Salomon instead of Sigmund?
This letter is part of the Beck Biographical Materials collection. For more information, visit the Beck Archives Archives Corner webpage.
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