Summary Information

Repository
George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine 04011
Creator
Smith, Nora Archibald, 1859-1934
Title
Nora Archibald Smith family papers
ID
M271
Date [inclusive]
1867-1937, undated
Extent
1.2 linear feet
Language
Abstract
Material documenting Smith family life in California, the sisters' (Kate Wiggin and Nora A. Smith) involvement in the kindergarten movement, their involvement in publishing, and family affairs in Maine.

Preferred Citation

Nora Archibald Smith Family Papers, George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine


Biographical/Historical Note

Nora Archibald Smith (1859-1934), the younger sister of Kate Douglas Wiggin, was born in Philadelphia and subsequently lived in San Francisco, Santa Barbara, New York City, and Hollis, Maine. She was awarded an A.B. from Santa Barbara College in 1877 and received a certificate from the California Kindergarten Training School in 1881. Throughout her adult life Smith was active in the kindergarten movement, serving as superintendent of the Silver Street Kindergarten (San Francisco), the first free kindergarten west of the Rockies, and authoring numerous books and articles, some with Kate Douglas Wiggin, on the benefits and social importance of kindergarten education. Smith was also a children's author writing either individually or with Wiggin, and she authored a biography of her sister, "Kate Douglas Wiggin As Her Sister Knew Her" (1925). Smith died in Portland, Maine, on February 1, 1934.


Scope and Content

Material documenting Smith family life in California, the sisters' (Kate Wiggin and Nora A. Smith) involvement in the kindergarten movement, their involvement in publishing, and family affairs in Maine. The correspondence, chiefly of Nora Smith and Kate Wiggin, dates primarily from the late 1800's. Writings consist mainly of holograph drafts, but include some typed manuscripts and proofs, notably those for the story and play adaptation of The Old Peabody Pew. There are also family photographs, including two tintypes and two Bachrach portraits. Miscellaneous printed matter includes news clippings, school programs, offprints, certificates, and a bound volume devoted to stitchery and needlework. A related collection is the Kate Douglas Wiggin Collection.


Administrative Information

Publication Information

 George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine 04011

3000 College Station
Brunswick, Maine, 04011
(207) 725-3288
scaref@bowdoin.edu

Provenance

Gift; Andy Shepard; 2005.


Collection Inventory

 M271.1 Correspondence, 1867-1934, n.d.   9.0 folders

Series Description:

Smith's correspondence, 1867-1934, n.d., much of it with her mother, Helen Elizabeth Smith, and her sister, Kate Douglas Wiggin. Includes letters from Smith's literary agent and publishers regarding both her own writings and those of Kate Douglas Wiggin, and correspondence from readers about Smith's books. Also includes telegrams concerning Smith's death.

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

Access Restrictions:

No restrictions.

Box Folder
1 1

1867-1879 

1 2

1889-1894 

1 3

1897, n.d. "Scotch letters" 

1 4

1899-1914 

1 5

1922-1925 

1 6

1926 

1 7

1928-1934 

1 8

1934 Telegrams concerning Smith's death 

1 9

n.d. 


 M271.2 Writings, 1871-1933, n.d.   8.0 folders

Series Description:

Consists primarily of holographs of Smith's poems, stories, songs, and ideas for future works. Also includes two annotated and abridged copies of the Kate Douglas Wiggin play The Old Peabody Pew.

Access Restrictions

No restrictions.

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

Box Folder
1 10

1871-1933 

Volume
1

Poems and ideas for stories and poems, 1905-1912 

Drawer Map-case
D10

Kate Douglas Wiggin as Her Sister Knew Her, 1925-1926, n.d. 

Box Folder
1 11

"Admirals All" backgound material, n.d. 

Drawer Map-case
D10

"Admirals All" clippings 

Box Folder
1 12

"A Kindergarten Picnic" background material, n.d. 

1 13

Writings, n.d. 

1 14

Writings, n.d. 

1 15

Writings, n.d. 


 M271.3 Kindergarten Movement, 1877-1927, n.d.   4.0 folders

Series Description:

Clippings and printed material documenting Smith and Kate Douglas Wiggin's involvement in the kindergarten movement, including material published in Mexico. Also included are Smith's diploma and other items relating to the California Kindergarten Training School, as well as Wiggins' diploma from the Pacific Kindergarten Normal School.

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

Access Restrictions:

No restrictions.

Box Folder
1 16

1877-1912, n.d., Certificates and printed material 

1 17

1877-1912, n.d., Certificates and printed material 

Drawer Map-case
D10

n.d, Clippings 

Volume
1

California Kindergarten Training School class lists, bylaws, blank diplomas, and clippings, n.d. 

Box Folder
1 18

Material published in Mexico, n.d. 


 M271.4 Santa Barbara College, 1874-1877   2.0 folders

Series Description:

Commencement programs, a course catalog, clippings, and other miscellaneous material pertaining to Santa Barbara College.

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

Access Restrictions:

No restrictions.

Box Folder
1 19

1874-1877, n.d., Printed material, clippings, and songs 

Drawer Map-case
D10

1874, n.d. Clippings 


 M271.5 Mexico Materials, 1896-1898, n.d.   2.0 folders

Series Description:

Includes correspondence from Ignacio Bonillas, articles and songs concerning Mexico, and an offprint about Sonora, "El Estado de Sonora, Mexico: Sus Industrias, Commerciales, and Mineras y Manufactureras." (1897)

Arrangement:

Original order.

Access Restrictions:

No restrictions.

Box Folder
1 20

Mexico materials, n.d. 

1 21

Mexico materials, n.d. 


 M271.6 Miscellaneous Clippings and Materials, 1899-1937   2.0 folders

Series Description:

Notable items include an obituary for Nora Archibald Smith, the menu to a "Jungle Dinner" hosted by Rudyard Kipling, and several articles about Smith.

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

Access Restrictions:

No restrictions.

Box Folder
1 22

1899-1937, n.d., Newsclippings, menu, and miscellaneous printed material 

Volume
1

Knitting patterns 


 M271.7 Images, n.d.   13.0 folders

Series Description:

Photographs, including tintypes of Nora Archibald Smith and Kate Douglas Wiggin, photographs of the Smith and Wiggin families, and images of Quillcote, Kate Douglas Wiggin's house in Saco, Maine. Also includes cast photographs from a production of The Old Peabody Pew.

Arrangement:

Arranged alphabetically.

Access Restrictions:

No restrictions.

Box Folder
1 23

"Fair" photographs 

1 24

Family photographs 

1 25

Miscellaneous images 

Drawer Map-case
D10

Miscellaneous images 

Box Folder
1 26

"The Old Peabody Pew" 

1 27

Quillcote 

Drawer Map-case
D10

Quillcote 

Box Folder
1 28

Smith, Nora Archibald 

1 29

Smith, Nora Archibald 

Drawer Map-case
D10

Smith, Nora Archibald 

Box Folder
1 30

Wiggin, Kate Douglas 

1 31

Wiggin, Kate Douglas tintypes 

Drawer Map-case
D10

Wiggin, Kate Douglas