Acc. 2009.492: Volume of copies of outgoing correspondence of Stephen P. Middleton of Norristown, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania for the years 1886-1892. The front cover is labeled 'Copy 1886-1892' and the first page is titled "Time Account of Stephen P. Middleton of Norristown, Montgomery County, Pennsylvania, wrote October 18th, 1886."
The first 3 pages were begun in 1880-1881 as an account of time worked and earnings, but starting on page 4 the author copied his outgoing letters. Letters are both of a private and professional nature and often concern Middleton's search for work. He is also interested in competitive ice skating and is looking for someone to support him in his athletic ambitions. In other places he talks about working in a sawmill and brickyard and toward the end to the volume he is looking for work as machinist or engineer.
On the last page, on February 24, 1891 Middleton writes: "It surprises me that I was ever so overcome by misery vc [?] as to write such nonsense as I have written in this book. Wild ravings of one unfortunate brought low by misery. No principle in acting or writing." Some of the copied letters have comments written across the filled-in pages, e.g. "Foolish weakness", "Nonsense" or "Returned" Received". etc.
There is an alphabetical index of recipients in the back of the volume as well as a clipping about competitive skating.
Acc. 2009.518: In this Diary, 1890-1893 Stephen P. Middleton, who is living with his parents and siblings, describes his various jobs, being out of work, as well as social activities. He is very active in sports. Also included are YMCA sports programs.
For a more detailed description and excerpts, both provided by the seller, please see folder links below.
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Stephen P. Middleton Letter Book and Diary, Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library, College of William and Mary. https://scrcguides.libraries.wm.edu/repositories/2/resources/2506 Accessed October 28, 2020.