In January 2013, the Schlesinger Library received a grant from the National Historic Publications and Records Commission to digitize its archival collections of the Blackwell family. The holdings contain close to 120,000 pages spread over five collections and spanning almost 200 years (1784–1981).
The Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America documents the lives of women of the past and present for the future and furthers the Radcliffe Institute's commitment to women, gender, and society.
From Our Collections
October 15, 2014 to March 20, 2015
This exhibition features diaries, letters, and firsthand accounts from four years of Civil War that offer intimate glimpses into the lives of men and women affected by the strife. The words were written in parlors, hospitals, and schoolrooms; around campfires and on tossing ships; to and from mothers, brothers, and sweethearts, teachers, soldiers, and sailors.
A new collection of papers of a Civil War heroine has arrived just in time to coincide with the opening of the Schlesinger Library’s exhibit, What They Wrote, What They Saved: The Personal Civil War. Known as the "Angel of the Shenandoah," Jessie Hainning Rupert (1831–1909) was born in Scotland and moved with her family to Ohio in the 1830s.
How do "ordinary women" describe their lives, construct identity, experience, and participate in mass media and culture? How can historians learn about the lived experience of most women, whose lives are outside of the public eye? One approach is to examine letters written to trusted magazines.