57 microfilms (1449 theses)
The Ella Curtis family correspondence is made up of 71 letters, predominantly incoming to Ellen "Ella" Curtis from her sisters Elizabeth "Lizzie" Plimpton and Ada Curtis Bridge; father Henry B. Curtis; and other friends and family members. The correspondence covers a wide range of topics, such as Lizzie's life in an apartment complex in New York City in the 1850s; Ada's letters from New York City and East Wareham, Massachusetts, pertinent to childbirth, child rearing, depression, and her alcoholic abusive husband; and other letters related to life in Ohio, love, marriage, sisterly advice, and additional subject matter.
Ella Curtis sent 13 letters to her friends and sisters between January 7, 1852, and October 25, 1858. She wrote the bulk of them from Mount Vernon, Ohio, with introspective passages on her hopes and dreams for the present and future. Two letters to "Jim" in 1856 read like love letters.
Elizabeth "Lizzie" Curtis Plimpton wrote 16 letters to her sister Ella between June 13, 1852, and February 1860, including several undated. She sent many of her letters from London Terrace, a New York City apartment complex that provided low-cost housing for white-collar workers. Her information-filled letters reflect on her friends, family, children, life in the apartment, games, clothing and fashion, city life, sisterly sentiments, lost loves, trips to the opera, military parades, and other aspects of everyday life.
Ada Curtis / Ada Curtis Bridge sent her sister Ella eight letters, dating from November 3, 1857-July 22, 1861, New York City and East Wareham, Massachusetts. Her letters begin during the later stages of her pregnancy with Emma Bridge, having engaged a nurse who had worked as a wet nurse and seamstress. Her letters continue with discussions of physical health problems, acquiring dresses and sewing clothing for her daughter, and gossip about friends and family. By 1859, she settled in East Wareham and continued to discuss her fatigue, child rearing, reminiscences about girlhood, deep depression, loneliness, self-criticism, her husband Louis's "cross and ugly" behavior, reaffirmations that her husband loves her (albeit with "a very very selfish love"), and the support she received from God. In 1860, she began to confide in her sister about Louis's mentally abusive actions toward her, and, when unable to have an effect, toward their daughter Emma. She related the deep anguish she felt at witnessing the abuse of her child. Louis would be "affectionate and reasonable" in the morning, but in the evening would be "entirely a changed being." As time progressed, she finally revealed that Louis was a heavy drinker or an alcoholic, whose abusive behavior stemmed from drunkenness (see especially February 2, 1860, and July 22, 1861), and that she lived in humiliation and terror.
Thirty incoming letters to Ella Curtis, November 14, 1849-May 13, 1861, include five from her father Henry B. Curtis, three signed "J.C.D." (almost certainly Ella's future husband Joseph C. Devin), two from Jno. E. Hamilton, and many other writers. The letters from her father largely hailed from Mount Vernon, Ohio, 1852-1857, and described affairs at home, a train journey to Philadelphia, and a lengthy description of an art raffle at the Cosmopolitan Art Association at Norman Hall in Sandusky (February 29, 1856). His letter of June 23, 1857, was written on illustrated, printed Mount Vernon Female Seminary stationery. J.C.D.'s letters, dated in 1859, from Medina, Newark, and Mt. Gilead, Ohio, provide his thoughts on marriage and his legal work on several trials. On May 4, 1859, he offered a vivid description of an off-hours social scene of lawyers at a hotel in Mt. Gilead. Jno. E. Hamilton's two letters, dated 1856, profusely apologize for his "inappropriate" and "disgraceful" behavior to her while he was a student at Kenyon College. The collection also contains four miscellaneous Curtis family letters.
The Francis Wickham diary contains approximately 75 pages of entries, covering August 23-October 5, 1796, while Wickham served with the British Royal Navy in Martinique. In his diary, Wickham wrote articulately about the climate, plant and animal life, habits of the British sailors, places he visited, and the ubiquity of illness among the sailors.
In early entries, Wickham showed a particular interest in Martinique's wildlife and climate. He described birds and speculated about their migrations (August 24, 1796), discussed fruits, reptiles, and insects, and in several entries, expressed sadness at the high mortality rate for the British in Martinique, which he attributed to the "vile" climate (September 20, 1796). He also frequently commented on the habits of the British sailors, including their tendency toward melancholy (August 27, 1796), the "riot and debauchery" in which they participated, and their love of "accursed grog" (September 4, 1796).
In later entries, Wickham wrote more frequently about travel and political events. On September 10, 1796, he described a trip to Lamantine, a small town in eastern Martinique, where he visited a market and was offended by several Frenchmen playing billiards on a Sunday. He also noted his surprise about a visit from Sir Hyde Parker, Jr., and gave accounts of several political developments, such as Admiral Joseph de Richery's escape from Cadiz, Spain, and the activities of privateers, whom he called "perfect desperadoes each arm'd with a brace of pistols and cutlass" (September 14, 1796). In late September, he expressed anxiety that he and others would be stationed in a more dangerous climate, and gave an account of magical powers used by a local woman after the poisoning of several slaves (September 23, 1796). In early October, he described his trip to Fort Royal and St. Pierre, Martinique, and a play he attended called "Two Misers." Wickham's last entry in the volume on October 5, 1796, is lengthy; it describes an upcoming exchange of prisoners with the French, as well as the annoyance Wickham and other sailors felt in the presence of Admiral Parker, who had been "order'd from this station."
16 linear feet — 1 oversize folder
The records of the Ohio Council on Alcohol Problems have been arranged into the following series: Correspondence; Miscellaneous printed material, press releases, etc.; Financial and other materials; Newspaper clippings; Dramatic productions; Quiz Contest; Chronological files; Miscellaneous; and Photographs.
0.7 linear feet
The Washtenaw Council on Alcoholism records consist of reports, minutes, newsletters, printed materials, correspondence, and slides dating from 1966 to 1988. The files are arranged alphabetically by topic and chronologically within each folder. The History file provides useful background information about the organization. Also included are various reports and minutes that record the concerns and plans of the organization. The "Slides" folders contain visual images pertaining to the programs the WCA offers to the public.