Summary Information

Repository
George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine 04011
Creator
Jewett, Sarah Orne, 1849-1909
Title
Sarah Orne Jewett papers
ID
M238
Date [inclusive]
1876-1905, undated
Extent
36.0 folders 36 folders 4 volumes
Language
Abstract
The collection contains correspondence, writings and photographs. The bulk of the correspondence is from Sarah Orne Jewett to family members including her cousins, Alice and Charles; there are also letters from Jewett to the administration of Bowdoin College.

Preferred Citation

Sarah Orne Jewett papers, George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine


Biographical/Historical Note

Sarah Orne Jewett (1849-1909) grew up in South Berwick, Maine, where she lived all of her life. She studied at Berwick Academy, but her schooling was frequently interrupted due to a delicate disposition. Instead, much of her knowledge came from tutors, immersion in the family library and the long trips she took with her father, Dr. Theodore Herman Jewett (Bowdoin 1834), to visit his patients around Maine. Dr. Jewett taught at Bowdoin College (1867-1869) and was president of the Medical Society of Maine (1877-1878). After his death in 1878, Sarah Orne Jewett developed a close friendship with Annie Adams Fields, with whom she traveled to the West Indies. Later the two women went to Europe, where they met with Alfred Lord Tennyson and Henry James.

Jewett never married, instead focusing her efforts and energies on her writing. She is considered by many to be the prominent voice of a bygone New England sentimentality. Often her stories were first published in the Century, Harper's or Atlantic Monthly. Some of her best-known novels include The Country of the Pointed Firs and A Country Doctor.

In 1901, Sarah Orne Jewett became the first woman to receive an honorary degree from Bowdoin. She spent the last decade of her life as a semi-invalid after a fall from a carriage caused severe back problems.


Scope and Content

The collection contains correspondence, writings and photographs. The bulk of the correspondence is from Sarah Orne Jewett to family members including her cousins, Alice and Charles; there are also letters from Jewett to the administration of Bowdoin College. The writings include two bound holograph manuscripts, "A Dark Night" and "A Village Patriot" as well as a photocopy of a handwritten verse, "Discontent," written in 1876. Also included are four photographs of Jewett.


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

Access Restrictions

No restrictions.


Collection Inventory

 M238.1 Correspondence, 1877-1905, n.d. 

Series Description:

This series contains letters from Sarah Orne Jewett to various family members. The bulk of the correspondence is to her cousins Alice and Charles. Also included are letters from Jewett to the administration of Bowdoin College.

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

Box Folder
1 1

A.l.s., Sarah to "My dear Charlie," South Berwick (ME). 9 May, 1877. [4p.] 

1 2

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Cousin Alice," South Berwick (ME). 10 October, 1877. [4p.] 

1 3

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Charlie," South Berwick (ME). 16 October, 1877. [6p.] 

1 4

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Charlie," South Berwick (ME). 23 December, 1877. [3p.] 

1 5

A.l.s., Sarah to "My dear Charley," South Berwick (ME). 14 May, 1878. [4p.] 

1 6

Sarah to "Dear Mr. Abbott," South Berwick (ME). 20 Jan 1881. [2p.] - photocopy; original in Lyman Abbott Autograph Collection (M1.8) 

1 7

Sarah to "Dear Dr. Abbott," South Berwick (ME). 8 Feb 1881. [2p.] - photocopy and typescript; original in Lyman Abbott Autograph Collection (M1.8) 

1 8

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Mr. Gilman," 148 Charles Street, Boston (MA). 29 March, 1887. [3p.] 

1 9

Sarah to "My Dear Miss Robinson," South Berwick (ME). 13 Oct 1890. [2p.] - photocopy; original in Annie Lawrence Edmands autograph book (M54) 

1 10

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Cousin Charles," 148 Charles Street, Boston (MA). 6 March, 1894. [4p.] 

1 11

A.l.s., Sarah to the Trustees and Overseers of Bowdoin College, South Berwick (ME). 22 May 1894. [1p.] 

1 12

A.n.s., Sarah to ?, [n.p.] March, 1895. [2p.] 

1 13

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Lizzie," South Berwick (ME). 22 April, 1899. [4p.] 

1 14

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Cousin Alice," Pride's Crossing, Beverly (MA). 31 July, 1899. [4p.] 

1 15

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dearest Cousin Alice," Athens (ME). 31 March, 1900. [5p.] 

1 16

TsCopy of Sarah to "Dearest Billy," Athens (ME). 23 April, 1900. [1p.] 

1 17

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Cousin Alice," 148 Charles Street, Boston (MA). 6 February 1901. [4p.] 

1 18

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Cousin Alice," Pride's Crossing, Beverly (MA). 10 July 1901. [4p.] 

1 19

A.l.s., Sarah to "My Dear President Hyde," 148 Charles Street, Boston (MA). 15 December, 1901(?). [4p.] 

1 20

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Cousin Alice," Pride's Crossing, Beverly (MA). 12 July 1902. [4p.] 

1 21

A.l.s., Sarah to "My Dear Lizzie," Poland Spring House, South Portland (ME). 22 September, 1905. [4p.] 

1 22

A.l.s., Sarah to "Dear Cousin Alice," South Berwick (ME). Thursday evening [n.d.] [2p.] 

1 23

A.n.s., Sarah to "Dear Lizzie and Mary," Manchester. Sunday [n.d.] [2p.] 

1 24

A.n.s., Sarah to "Dearest Lizzie and Mary," South Berwick (ME). Friday [n.d.] [2p.] 


 M238.2 Images, 1901, 1903, n.d. 

Series Description:

This series contains four different images of Jewett. She is the focus of each of the rather formal photographs.

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

Box Folder
1 25

Sarah Orne Jewett holding a doll, 1901 

1 26

Sarah Orne Jewett dressed in graduation regalia, 1903 (2 copies) 

1 27

Sarah Orne Jewett reading a book, n.d. (2 copies) 

1 28

Sarah Orne Jewett standing in the doorway of the Jewett House in South Berwick, Maine, n.d. 


 M238.3 Writings, 1876,[1895?,1896?] 

Series Description:

This series contains two bound manuscripts, "A Dark Night," [1895?] and "A Village Patriot," [1896?]. Bound with "A Village Patriot" is a manuscript by Richard Henry Stoddard, "New Year's Day Half a Century Ago." Also included in the series is a photocopy of a two page handwritten verse by Jewett titled "Discontent," dated 1876. The original verse is in the Lyman Abbott Autograph Collection (M1.8).

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

Box Folder
1 29

1876 verse, "Discontent," [2p.] - photocopy; original in Lyman Abbott Autograph Collection (M1.8) 

Volume
1

[1895?] AMS, "A Dark Night, By S.O. Jewett, 8000 + words." Volume inscribed "To Herbert F. Gunnison from his friend Irving Bacheller", with a Herbert Foster Gunnison bookplate 

2

[1896?] AMS, "A Village Patriot," by Sarah Orne Jewett bound with an AMS [189-?] by Richard Henry Stoddard, "Old New Years" or "New Year's Day Half a Century Ago." Volume has a Herbert Foster Gunnison bookplate