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Ethel M. and Nancy E. Reed papers
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Administrative Information
  • Scope and Contents of the Collection
  • Organization and Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Ethel M. and Nancy E. Reed Papers
    Dates: 1811-1975
    Collection number: H.Mss.0705
    Creator: Reed, Ethel M., 1883-1968
    Creator: Reed, Nancy E., 1923-1994
    Extent: 5 linear feet (3 shoeboxes, 4 document boxes, 1 oversized box)
    Repository: Claremont Colleges. Library. Special Collections, Honnold/Mudd Library. Claremont, CA 91711.
    Abstract: This collection is comprised of the writings, artwork, and memorabilia of Ethel M. Reed and her adopted daughter, Nancy E. Reed. These two women lived in Claremont, California for most of the twentieth century. Ethel was a homemaker and Nancy worked as a chemist. In addition, Ethel wrote diaries for most of her life and wrote an unpublished account of her childhood in Claremont, and Nancy drew, painted, wrote and illustrated short picture books, and created scrapbooks. Nancy's scrapbooks include photographs of her time in France and pictures of the people she knew and places she visited. The family documents in this collection include school certificates and property deeds.
    Physical location: Please consult repository.
    Language of materials: Most materials are in English; a small amount of material is in French.

    Administrative Information


    This collection is open for research.

    Publication Rights

    All requests for permission to reproduce or to publish must be submitted in writing to Special Collections.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Ethel M. and Nancy E. Reed Papers (H.Mss.0705), Special Collections, Honnold/Mudd Library, Claremont University Consortium.

    Provenance/Source of Acquisition

    Gift of Steven Koblik, executor of Reed estate, 1985.


    No additions to the collection are anticipated.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Tamara Savage in Spring 2015 in the Claremont Center for Engagement with Primary Sources (CCEPS), with assistance from Lisa Crane. Overall, the collection is in good condition. Some very old pieces are fragile and brittle. Photographs and scrapbook pages were placed in mylar sleeves. These materials have been sorted by creator, and then by medium (folders of pencil sketches, pen drawing, pastel drawings, etc.). The loose photographs have largely maintained their original grouping and notations.


    Ethel M. Reed was born in New York on November 11, 1883 and moved to Claremont, California in 1885. She lived there until her death on July 11, 1968. She was a homemaker, never married, and was involved in the community and the Claremont Colleges.
    Ethel's adopted daughter, Nancy E. Reed, was born January 8, 1923, attended Pomona College and graduated in 1944 with a degree in chemistry. She worked for the War Department during World War II and as a development chemist for Aerojet-General in Azusa, California. She traveled to France as a visiting scholar from 1946 to 1949. She died on December 2, 1994 in Claremont.

    Scope and Contents of the Collection

    The collection is comprised of papers from Ethel M. Reed and daughter, Nancy E. Reed.
    Ethel's papers contain her writings and family documents. The bulk of her writings are diaries which span 1893-1968 and record daily activities as well as an unpublished manuscript that is an account of her childhood in California. The family documents include school certificates and degrees, property deeds, and obituaries. Some of the family documents and photographs included in this collection date back to the Civil War and even earlier.
    Nancy's papers contain her artwork and photographic materials including travel photographs from a trip to France in the late 1940s and several scrapbooks compiled by Nancy containing many pictures (although many of them undated) that span multiple decades and depict her life in Claremont. Nancy's artwork includes pencil sketches, pen drawings, pastels, and paintings. She also wrote and illustrated short picture books, some of which are included in the collection.

    Organization and Arrangement

    This collection has been arranged in the following series:
    • Series 1: Ethel M. Reed papers, 1811-1968
    • Subseries 1.1: Ethel's writings, 1893-1968
    • Subseries 1.2: Family documents, 1811-1968
    • Series 2: Nancy E. Reed papers, circa 1860-1975
    • Subseries 2.1: Nancy's artwork, 1944-circa 1975
    • Subseries 2.2: Photographic materials, circa 1860-1975

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library’s online public access catalog.

    Subjects and Indexing Terms

    Claremont (Calif.)
    Daily life
    Women's writings

    Genre and Form of Materials

    Drawings and graphics
    Legal instruments