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Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford papers

 Collection
Identifier: MRBC-MS-00252

Scope and Contents

The Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford Collection consists of .5 linear feet of letters, manuscript poems and print materials related to Harriet Prescott Spofford. Also included in the collection are letters and literary manuscripts of Richard Smith Spofford.

SERIES I. LETTERS: This series contains letters written by Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford to various individuals. It is arranged in chronological order.

SERIES II. WRITINGS: This series contains a number of manuscripts of Spofford's poems.

SERIES III. PRINT MATERIALS: This series contains some printed advertisements.

SERIES IV. RICHARD SMITH SPOFFORD: This series contains letters and manuscripts by Richard Smith Spofford, husband of Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford, as well as print materials.

Dates

  • 1862-1920

Creator

Language of Materials

English

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open to research according to the regulations of the Mortimer Rare Book Room.

Conditions Governing Access

Until we move into New Neilson in early 2021, collections are stored in multiple locations and may take up to 48 hours to retrieve. Researchers are strongly encouraged to contact Special Collections (specialcollections@smith.edu) at least a week in advance of any planned visits so that boxes may be retrieved for them in a timely manner.

Conditions Governing Use

The Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford Collection is the physical property of the Mortimer Rare Book Room, Smith College. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors of the works or their legal representatives.

Biographical / Historical

Harriet Elizabeth Prescott was born in Calais, Maine, on April 3, 1835. She moved with her parents to Newburyport, Massachusetts, in 1849 where she attended the Putnam Free School. She also attended the Pinkerton Academy in Derry, New Hampshire (1853-1855). When her parents became infirm and the family's finances problematic, Prescott started to write. With encouragement from Thomas W. S. Higginson, her stories appeared in the Boston newspapers and later in the Atlantic Monthly. Her first novel, Sir Rohan's Ghost, appeared anonymously in 1860. Other novels followed and her work (poems, essays, stories and travel writings) appeared in the Atlantic, Scribner's, Century and other leading magazines of the day.

In 1865 she married Richard Smith Spofford, Jr. (1833-1888), a Boston lawyer and sometime author. They resided on Deer Island, Amesbury, Massachusetts. Harriet Spofford continued to write and travel. It is at the Deer Island home that she died on August 14, 1921.

Extent

1 boxes (.5 linear feet)

Overview

Author, Poet. Letters, manuscript poems and print materials related to Harriet Prescott Spofford. Also included in the collection are letters and literary manuscripts of Richard Smith Spofford.

Arrangement

This collection is organized into four series:
  1. SERIES I. LETTERS
  2. SERIES II. WRITINGS
  3. SERIES III. PRINT MATERIALS
  4. SERIES IV. RICHARD SMITH SPOFFORD

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford Collection was initially created from gifts by John Lancaster in memory of Ruth Mortimer (Smith College Class of 1953) in 1994-1995, and is added to with purchases by the Mortimer Rare Book Room.

Additions to the Collection

Collection is added to periodically with purchases by the Mortimer Rare Book Room.

Related Material

Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford Papers, 1860-1917. Special Collections Dept., University of Virginia Library, Charlottesville, Va.

Anna Hempstead Branch Papers, 1780-1937. Mortimer Rare Book Room, Smith College Libraries, Northampton, Mass.

Processing Information

Processed by Melvin Carlson, Jr., 2007
Title
Harriet Elizabeth Prescott Spofford papers
Subtitle
Finding Aid
Author
Melvin Carlson, Jr.
Date
2007
Description rules
dacs
Language of description
Finding aid written in English.

Revision Statements

  • 07/26/2017: This resource was modified by the ArchivesSpace Preprocessor developed by the Harvard Library (https://github.com/harvard-library/archivesspace-preprocessor)

Repository Details

Part of the Mortimer Rare Book Collection Repository

Contact:
Young Library
4 Tyler Drive
Northampton MA 01063