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Guide to the Parsons Family Papers
1824-1956 (Bulk 1889-1939)
  MS 481

New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
Phone: (212) 873-3400

@ 2011 New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Maurita Baldock

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit on November 02, 2011
Description is in English.

Scope and Content Note

The Parsons Family Papers consists of correspondence between family members and a small amount of family memorabilia. The material largely documents the travels of Mary Parsons, the eldest daughter of John E. Parsons, and her reactions to her trips abroad. Nearly all of the collection is personal or family related, and there is no material relating to the career of attorney John E. Parsons or his congressman son, Herbert. The collection is mostly correspondence from Mary Parsons to other family members. Her letters record her travels, her daily life at home in New York City or Lenox, and familial relations. The collection also contains letters to Mary Parsons and Constance Parsons Hare, as well as general correspondence among the Parsons family. One folder of correspondence contains letters dated 1824 from Bowes Reed McIlvaine to Catherine Dumesnil (the parents of Mary Dumesnil McIlvaine) shortly before their wedding. The collection also contains memorabilia from the Parsons family.

List of Places From Which Mary Parsons Writes:
1889 Bremenhaven, Bremen, Southampton, Berlin, Dresden, Bad-Kissengen, Bad-Bruckenau, Wurzburg, Bayern, Frankfurt, Salzburg
1893 London, Paris
1894 Paris, Champagne, Paris, Cannes
1895 Rome, Florence, Naples, Cairo, Perugia, Milan, Siena, Lucerne, London
1896 New York City
1901 Paris, Tirol, Cortina, Bayreuth, Baden, the Black Forest, Paris
1906 Versailles
1908 Lenox
1909 Pointe-au-Pic, Lenox
1910 Gloucester, Loches, Amboise, Venice, Bologna, Como, Lenox
1923 Kyoto, Hong Kong
1924-1926 New York City and Lenox
1927 Rome, Lenox
1929 Paris, Amsterdam
1932-1939 New York City and Lenox


The correspondence in the collection is arranged by family member and then chronologically. The memorabilia is grouped by type of material.

The papers are organized into the following series:

  1. Series I: Correspondence
  2. Series II: Memorabilia