"Scraps" Folder

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Watching the Sick 1-2 

transcription 1, transcription 2 >

H bMS Am 1118.95, Box 9


Drafts, fragments, and typescripts of Susan Dickinson's memoir "Society at Amherst Fifty Years Ago" are found in five folders of H Box 9. The earliest versions of the text, largely handwritten, are found in the "Scraps," "Old Amherst," and the first "Society..." folders. The second and third "Society..." folders contain typescripts (along with some handwritten fragments and notes) of the text. Though neither of these two typescripts is complete, the one found in the second folder is the latest version, as it adopts the handwritten corrections made to the typescript found in the third folder. The integrity of the composition of the folders, however, may be question, as the cover sheet fragment from folder 3 has a more finished appearance than the cover sheet fragment of folder 2.

Handwritten notes and corrections made to the typescripts were penned by both Susan and her daughter Martha Dickinson Bianchi. Additionally, a handwritten page describing a cattle show marred by rain, found in the second folder, is in Bianchi's hand. As the narrator describes an event of 1853, it was probably not authored by Bianchi, who was born in 1866; thus, it seems likely that Susan, by then in her seventies or eighties, dictated to her daughter the anecdote for possible inclusion into the text. Bianchi's notes in the margins of the typescripts suggest that she participated as well in the editing of the text, either before or after Susan's death in 1913.

Susan does not refer in any version of this text to its title as "Old Amherst." While it is possible that she may have changed the title at some point, it seems more likely that the labelling of the folder with the title "Old Amherst" is due to Bianchi's note on the verso of the last page: "Original draft of Dolly's / Old Amherst."


other drafts in:

"Scraps" Folder


"Old Amherst" Folder

"Society" Folder 2


"Society" Folder 3