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Elizabeth Dickerson Papers, 1917-1987 (Bulk: 1917-1919)
1 box (.25 linear ft.)
Collection number: MS 601

Abstract:
Physical education teacher. The Elizabeth Dickerson Papers are primarily related to her work in Russia on behalf of the YWCA of the U.S.A. Overseas Committee, 1917-19. Materials from this period include correspondence, travel papers, and memorabilia. There are also texts of speeches Dickerson gave in the 1950s-70s about her experiences in Russia. Other materials include a "Grange Booster" speech from 1955, and an autobiographical speech given on the occasion of the 60th Anniversary of the University Club in Seattle, a diary of a one month camping trip on Mt. Hood in August and September of 1917, and some general biographical materials.

Terms of Access and Use:

Restrictions on access:

The papers are open to research according to the regulations of the Sophia Smith Collection without any additional restrictions.

Restrictions on use:

Copyright ownership of Elizabeth Dickerson's writings is unknown. Copyright to materials authored by persons other than Elizabeth Dickerson may be owned by those individuals or their heirs or assigns. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights. Permission to publish reproductions or quotations beyond "fair use" must also be obtained from the Sophia Smith Collection as owners of the physical property.

Sophia Smith Collection
Smith College
Northampton, MA

Biographical Note

Elizabeth Dickerson was born April 26, 1886 in Woodville (now Shoreham), New York.

A 1907 graduate of the Boston Normal School of Gymnastics, she undertook additional study in summer programs at Chicago (1909) and Columbia Universities (1911); and at Wellesley College, 1913-14.

Dickerson taught physical education at Bryn Mawr, 1907-08, and was Director of Physical Education at Milwaukee-Downer College, 1908-14. In 1914 she was appointed as the first Director of Physical Education and Hygiene at the Seattle YWCA.

Dickerson took a two-year leave of absence from that work in 1917 when the National Board of the YWCA recruited her to help organize a YWCA in Russia. Arriving in Moscow during the October Revolution, Dickerson was sent on to Petrograd, then evacuated to Vladivostok. She stayed on the eastern front until 1919. Dickerson and her colleagues helped Russian women establish a YWCA in Petrograd [Leningrad] and participated in the establishment of a Hostess House in Archangel. They also staffed a sort of traveling YWCA on a boat on the Volga River. In each place the boat docked, it sponsored lectures on modern techniques in agriculture.

Upon her return to the U.S., Dickerson resumed work at the Seattle YWCA, 1919-21. The difficult conditions in Russia compromised her health, prompting her to follow a growing interest in beekeeping. With a partner, Nell Pearce, she established the Pearce and Dickerson Bee Farm, Inc. in Woodinville, Washington in 1921. In addition to the honey-producing operation, the partners opened a retail store where they also sold home-made native berry jams and pickles. Dickerson continued in the business after Pearce's death in 1946 and served as the President of the Washington State Beekeepers Association. She was an avid "mountaineer," traveler, and gardener; and was active in her church, garden club, the Women's University Club, and the Orthopedic Association. She retired from the business in 1961 and moved to Bay View Manor in Seattle, Washington.

Elizabeth Dickerson died in 1987.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Elizabeth Dickerson Papers consist of .25 linear ft. and are primarily related to her work in Russia on behalf of the YWCA of the U.S.A. Overseas Committee, 1917-19. Materials from this period include correspondence, travel papers, and memorabilia. There are also texts of speeches Dickerson gave in the 1950s-70s about her experiences in Russia.

Other materials include a "Grange Booster" speech from 1955, an autobiographical speech given on the occasion of the 60th Anniversary of the University Club in Seattle, a diary of a one month camping trip on Mt. Hood in August and September of 1917, and some general biographical materials.


Information on Use
Terms of Access and Use
Restrictions on access:

The papers are open to research according to the regulations of the Sophia Smith Collection without any additional restrictions.

Restrictions on use:

Copyright ownership of Elizabeth Dickerson's writings is unknown. Copyright to materials authored by persons other than Elizabeth Dickerson may be owned by those individuals or their heirs or assigns. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights. Permission to publish reproductions or quotations beyond "fair use" must also be obtained from the Sophia Smith Collection as owners of the physical property.

Preferred Citation

Please use the following format when citing materials from this collection:

Elizabeth Dickerson Papers, Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College, Northampton, Mass.

History of the Collection

The Elizabeth Dickerson Papers came to the Sophia Smith Collection with the Records of the YWCA of the U.S.A. in 2002. The YWCA received them from Elizabeth Dickerson in 1984.

Processing Information

Processed by Maida Goodwin, 2008


Additional Information
Contact Information
Sophia Smith Collection
Smith College
Northampton, MA 01063

Phone: (413) 585-2970
Fax: (413) 585-2886

Email Reference Form: http://www.smith.edu/libraries/libs/ssc/emailform.html
URL: http://www.smith.edu/libraries/libs/ssc/

Language
English