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Martha R. Whitmore Diaries, ca.1937-1962
6 vols. (0.25 linear feet)
Collection number: MS 807

Abstract:
Shortly after graduating from college in 1920, Martha Richardson married Philip F. Whitmore, a market gardener from Sunderland, Mass., and 1915 graduate of Massachusetts Agricultural College. As a housewife and mother of three, Martha supported Philip, who became a Trustee of his alma mater and a representative in the State House (1950-1962). Philip Whitmore died in 1962, with Martha following nineteenth years later.

This small collection includes six scattered diaries of Martha Whitmore, kept somewhat irregularly during the years 1937, 1947, 1950, 1953, 1957, and 1962. Largely personal in nature, they are centered on home and family life, husband and children, and Martha's love of nature, but they include occasional references to Philip Whitmore's political activities and the University of Massachusetts.

Terms of Access and Use:

The collection is open for research.

Special Collections and University Archives, University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries

Biographical Note
Phil Whitmore and grandchildren, July 1960
Phil Whitmore and grandchildren, July 1960

Martha Hubbard Richardson was born on Aug. 26, 1897, the daughter of Mary "Mollie" Morse Richardson and Dr. William S. Richarson of Marlboro, Mass. Following in her mother's footsteps, Richardson entered Wellesley College and excelled, graduating with honors in the class of 1920. That October, she married Philip Ferry Whitmore in the college's Shakespearean Society House, settling soon thereafter in his hometown of Sunderland. The couple raised three children: Mary (1921-2013), wife of Frank McClintock and a 1942 graduate of Wellesley; Carolyn (1924-2013),wife of G. David Shilling; and William R. (Bill) Whitmore.

Philip (1892-1962), Martha's husband, was a graduate of the Massachusetts Agricultural College (1915) and successful market gardener, but is remembered as a major contributor to the growth and development of his alma mater. From the time of his graduation to his death, he serving the university in several capacities, including as class president, instructor in dairying, President of the Alumni Association (1927-1928), and Trustee (1929-1962). Whitmore was also an influential politician in western Massachusetts, serving as Sunderland town moderator for 38 years and for twelve years, as a Republican State Representative (1950-1962). During the protracted political struggle over fiscal autonomy for the university in the late 1950s and early 1960s, Whitmore emerged as a key supporter for the university and for the so-called Freedom Bill that allowed UMass to hire faculty and set salaries without interference from the legislature. Whitmore Hall, the central administration building at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, was named in his honor.

Philip Whitemore died in June 1962, while Martha died in Waltham, Mass., on June 5, 1981. She is interred in the North Sunderland Cemetery.

Scope and contents of the collection

This small collection includes six scattered diaries of Martha Whitmore, kept somewhat irregularly during the years 1937, 1947, 1950, 1953, 1957, and 1962. Largely personal in nature, they are centered on home and family life, husband and children, and Martha's love of nature, but they include occasional references to Philip Whitmore's political activities and the University of Massachusetts. A photograph of Philip and two of his grandchildren is laid into the diary for 1962, with an additional photo of Philip and granddaughter Martha laid into the diary for 1953.


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

The collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation

Cite as: Martha R. Whitmore Diaries (MS 807). Special Collections and University Archives, UMass Amherst Libraries.

History of the Collection

Acquired from Eugene Povirk, Jan. 2014.

Processing Information

Processed by I. Eliot Wentworth, Jan. 2014.


Additional Information
Contact Information
Special Collections and University Archives
W.E.B. Du Bois Library
University of Massachusetts Amherst
Amherst, MA 01003-9275

Phone: (413) 545-2780
Fax: (413) 577-1399
Link to SCUA
Language
English


Search Terms
The following terms represent persons, organizations, and topics documented in this collection. Use these headings to search for additional materials on this web site, in the Five College Library Catalog, or in other library catalogs and databases.

Subjects
  • Sunderland (Mass.)--History
  • University of Massachusetts at Amherst--Trustees
  • Whitmore, Philip F.

Genre terms
  • Diaries
  • Photographs


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