A Guide to the Sue R. Preston Diary, 1907 Preston, Sue R., Diary Ms2008-034

A Guide to the Sue R. Preston Diary, 1907

A Collection in
Special Collections
Collection Number Ms2008-034


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Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

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© 2008 By Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. All rights reserved.

Processed by: Emily K. Bibby, Special Collections Staff

Repository
Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va.
Collection Number
Ms2008-034
Title
Sue R. Preston Diary 1907
Physical Characteristics
1 container; 0.1 cu. ft.
Collector
Dealer
Language
English
Abstract
Diary of Sue R. Preston, a young middle-class woman of Detroit, Michigan and later nurse-in-training at Sarah Leigh Hospital in Norfolk, Virginia, dated January 7, 1907 to October 13, 1907. Describes her daily activities in Detroit, including shopping, reading, watching her favorite stage personalities at the Temple Theatre, and following the famous Thaw Murder Trial. Enclosed are numerous newspaper clippings that pertain to the trial and theater gossip.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

Collection is open to research.

Use Restrictions

Permission to publish material from the Sue R. Preston Diary must be obtained from Special Collections, Virginia Tech.

Preferred Citation

Researchers wishing to cite this collection should include the following information: Sue R. Preston Diary, Ms2008-034 - Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va.

Acquisition Information

The Sue R. Preston Diary was purchased by Special Collections in 1994.


Biographical Information

Sue R. Preston was a middle-class woman born around 1885. She spent much of her youth in Detroit, Michigan, where she lived with her parents and sister, Mary. In late 1907, she enrolled as a nurse-in-training at Sarah Leigh Hospital in Norfolk, Virginia, the forerunner to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital. Following her graduation from nursing school, she continued to to work at Sarah Leigh Hospital and was employed there as late as 1930.

Scope and Content

The diary of Sue R. Preston, kept between January 7 and October 13, 1907, primarily documents the day-to-day activities of a young, middle-class woman, her family, and friends, living in Detroit, Michigan. Preston describes shopping, reading, household activities, and going to church and to the theater. She names many of the popular stage personalities, melodramas, music, and novels of the day. Descriptions include personal sightings of actresses such as Gertrude Coghlan and Julia Sanderson as they enter and exit the Temple Theater. She also repeatedly mentions the Thaw Murder Trial, the "Trial of the Century," and at one point echoes public sentiment when she writes that she hopes Harry K. Thaw will be judged innocent. Enclosed are numerous newspaper clippings of the trial, including several photographs and drawings of Evelyn Nesbit. Also featured are gossip columns reporting marriages between actresses and society millionaires and picturing a variety of famous stage personalities such as Ethel Barrymore, Bessie Wynn, and Valerie Bergere.

Beginning in October 1907, Preston's diary entries document her first few days as a nurse-in-training at Sarah Leigh Hospital in Norfolk, Virginia, the forerunner to Sentara Norfolk General Hospital.

Contents List

Folder 1
Sue R. Preston Diary, 1907