Letters in the Newcomb Archives

Several of JLN’s letters were found in the Vault located in Newcomb Hall in 1988 when the Newcomb Archives was created. They may have been part of the donation of various items by JLN to the College in the late nineteenth century, or included in a donation by the recipients. Regardless, she must have felt pleased to have “Sophie’s College” as a home to her daughter’s last belongings: a fur muff and hat, books, school work, and travel mementos. JLN also gave Sophie’s dark curls, clipped from her head at death.

Sometime during the mid-twentieth century, portions of this donation were transferred to University Archives, items such as JLN’s scrapbook. But others, likely deemed only sentimental, were not wanted. Thus the College retained these letters and Sophie’s curls, among other material. Such archival wanderings and retentions are not unusual and form an interesting history in themselves. In addition, in her book collection as well as in other letters are a number of clippings that JLN retained that could be studied. For this reason, we have included the poem here, with the letters. She certainly wrote other poems, one in a letter to Gavino Gutierrez preserved in the court case letters.

Click on the listings below to see the materials, or for location of originals see the finding aid for the JLN collection in Newcomb Archives:

To Daniel Lord, Jr., October 1, 1872

To Newcomb students, Dec. 11, 1888

To Mrs. W., January 1, 1891*

To Mrs. W., January 23, 1891*

Undated poem by JLN

An asterisk identifies letters that had been previously transcribed, the location of the originals unknown.