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Collection of Diaries (1813-1910)

Identifier: Collection of Diaries (1813-1910)

Scope and Contents

This collection contains 23 diaries and journals, composed by twelve people; eighteen diaries from the 19th century, and five from the 20th century. Creators range in age from nine to adulthood. The diary of Milo Leon Norton includes poetry dated 1907, and the diary of Miss Parkinson (?) includes some financial records from 1897. The earliest diary originates in 1813, written by an anonymous member of church clergy. Also included is an album by an anonymous female creator from the McLean Asylum in Somerville, Massachusetts (1857). The diaries of Nellie Francis Reed (1876-1883), and Miss Parkinson(?) recall daily life, health, and relationships with friends and family, while the diaries of Helen Isabel Moorhouse (b. 1876) recalls her time spent as a musician in-residence at the Banff Spring Hotel in Alberta, Canada with several other women in 1907. Also included in the collection are several manuscript diaries of George William Mason (b. 1859), spanning 1869-1876, that of which recall his childhood activities, school, church, and life on his parents’ farm in Agawam, Massachusetts, as well as a diary by Dana W. Barton, from Croydon, Sullivan County, New Hampshire, spanning 1880-1881, dealing with life working for a farmer.


  • 1813 - 1910


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open to the public and must be used in the John M.K. Davis Reading Room of the Watkinson Library, Trinity College Library, Hartford, Connecticut. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws when using this collection.

Conditions Governing Use

Digital surrogates may be provided in accordance with the duplication policy of the Watkinson Library.

Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs unless otherwise specified. It is the researcher's responsibility to secure permission to publish materials from the appropriate copyright holder.

Archival materials may contain sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal and/or state right to privacy laws or other regulations. While we make a good faith effort to identify and remove such materials, some may be missed during our processing. If a researcher finds sensitive personal information (e.g. social security numbers) in a collection, please bring it to the attention of the reading room staff.

Biographical / Historical

This collection of diaries was compiled from a variety of creators, ranging from early 20th century musicians to early 19th century ministers. Notably, there are diaries written by school children: Ethelinda Deering Fry, George William Mason (b. 1859), and George E. Moulthrop. It also contains diaries and journals by women from the late 19th century to the early 20th: Elizabeth S. Burling; a graduate of Vassar College describing travels in Europe from 1875-1878, Helen Isabel Moorhouse (b. 1876), Miss Parkinson (?), and Nellie Francis Reed. The collection contains several diaries written by anonymous, unidentified individuals, as well as diaries from farm workers such as those of Dana W. Barton.


2 Cubic Feet (6 flat boxes and one bound journal.)

Language of Materials



The diaries were arranged alphabetically by last name, with unidentified diaries listed under "Anonymous."

Guide to the Collection of Diaries (1813-1910)
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • 2020-01-07: Arrangement Note - revised by Eric C. Stoykovich

Repository Details

Part of the Watkinson Library - Archival Collections Repository

Trinity College Library
300 Summit St.
Hartford Connecticut 06106