Item MSS 043 - Ethel Berner Babbitt Collection

Identity elements

Reference code

US MBE MSS 043

Name and location of repository

Level of description

Item

Title

Ethel Berner Babbitt Collection

Date(s)

  • 1916 - 1952 (Creation)

Extent

2 boxes, 1.45 linear feet

Name of creator

Biographical history

Ethel Berner Babbitt (1898-1974) grew up in Hazleton, Pennsylvania, and attended Emerson College for oratory studies, where she served as a sophomore class officer and worked on the yearbook editing team of the Emersonian before graduating in 1920. After graduation, Berner married Charles Babbitt of Nashua, New Hampshire, an ophthalmologist who owned a business fitting and grinding lenses for eyeglasses. In Nashua, Ethel Babbitt organized an amateur theatre group called the Nashua Players, which performed throughout the mid-1930s and into the 1940s. The Babbitts had two daughters, Ethel Jean and Carol “Cay” Babbitt. They kept a summer farm called Elmcroft, overlooking the Starr King range of the White Mountains from Jefferson, New Hampshire, in exchange for Ethel’s care of the home’s elderly resident.

Content and structure elements

Scope and content

The Ethel Berner Babbitt Collection consists of materials related to the life of Emerson College alumna Ethel Berner Babbitt, including schoolbooks, photograph albums, scrapbooks, manuscripts, and written personal correspondence.

System of arrangement

Materials of this collection have been arranged into three series, ordered to roughly reflect the chronology of Babbitt's life beginning with her time at Emerson College in the late 1910s up through the early 1940s.

Series 01 contains five annotated plays by William Shakespeare, which Babbitt used during her theatre studies.

Series 02 consists of a World War I scrapbook of news clippings constructed while she was a student at Emerson, as well as a photograph album created for her sorority reunion in 1952.

Series 03 contains letters and objects Babbitt saved from her personal correspondence from acquaintances "Helen H." and former Emerson classmate Ethel May Duncan. While the majority of the documents were handwritten letters encased in the original postmarked envelopes, additional non-textual materials sometimes accompanied the letters, and have been divided into their own subseries.

Conditions of access and use elements

Conditions governing access

The collection is open to researchers. No materials may be taken out of or borrowed from the Emerson College Archives & Special Collections.

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Technical access

Conditions governing reproduction

The status of copyright in this collection is governed by the Copyright Law of the United States (Title 17, U.S.C). This collection is for research purposes only. No portions of the materials may be performed or reproduced as written. Researchers are required to seek permission from the copyright holder to reproduce and/or publish materials under copyright. These are non-circulating materials.

Languages of the material

  • English
  • German

Scripts of the material

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Finding aids

Acquisition and appraisal elements

Custodial history

Materials were donated by the creator's granddaughter.

Accruals

Contains materials from three separate accessions: 2014-003, 1985-024, 2017-003.

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