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Mamie E. Jenkins Papers, 1898-1947

Manuscript Collection #31

Descriptive Summary Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Title: Mamie E. Jenkins Papers
Creator: Jenkins, Mamie E.
Repository: ECU Manuscript Collection
Languages: English
Abstract: Papers (1898-19476, undated) including correspondence, newspapers, notes, programs, etc. compiled by a teacher in the English Department of East Carolina Teachers Training School.
Extent: 1.3 Cubic feet, consisting of correspondence, letters of recommendation, notes, programs, receipts, newspapers, East Carolina University materials, publications, manuscript drafts, and miscellaneous.

Administrative Information Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Accessions Information

November, 1, 1967, ca. 700 items; Papers (1898-1946, undated) of Miss Mamie E. Jenkins, consisting of correspondence, newspapers, notes, programs, and miscellaneous items. Given by Mr. Wendell W. Smiley, Greenville, N.C.

April 8, 1981, 380 items; Papers (1905-1947, undated), including correspondence, ECU materials, publications, manuscript drafts, and miscellaneous. Gift of John Oden, Bath, N.C.

Access Restrictions

No restrictions

Copyright Notice

Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

Preferred Citation

Mamie E. Jenkins Papers (#31), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.

Acquisition Information

  • Gift of Mr. Wendell W. Smiley
  • Gift of John Oden

Processing Information

  • Processed by D. Lennon

  • Encoded by Apex Data Services

Biographical / Historical Note Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Miss Mamie E. Jenkins (1875-1957) taught in the English Department at East Carolina Teachers College for thirty-six years. She was one of the first three faculty members to be selected for service at East Carolina Teachers Training School. Jenkins served from 1909, when the school opened, until 1946. One of the first four women to receive a baccalaureate degree from Trinity College (Duke University), Miss Jenkins subsequently was awarded a master's degree by Columbia University and did graduate work at the University of Wisconsin and other leading schools. Before coming to Greenville, she taught in the public schools of Durham and Wilmington, N.C., and at Martha Washington College in Virginia and Granada College in Mississippi. During her years of service at East Carolina, she was deeply involved in the development of the institution. She edited the Training School Quarterly (1914-1922), served as a faculty advisor for the school newspaper Teco Echo for fourteen years, and directed the college news agency for eighteen years. Miss Jenkins was a member of Phi Beta Kappa, Delta Kappa Gamma, and the A.A.U.W. The faculty-alumni building on the East Carolina campus was named in her honor.

Description Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Papers include letters of recommendation from such notable educators as William Ivey Cranford, Joseph Gregoire de Roulhac Hamilton, Charles Knapp, Edwin Mims, and William W. Flowers.

The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence from Miss Jenkins's relatives, specifically her brothers, George (Baltimore and New York) and John Wilbur (New York and Washington, D.C.)., and her sisters, Fredericka Peace Jenkins (Harlan, Kentucky, andNorth Carolina) and Fannie Burt Jenkins (Raleigh, North Carolina). The letters reflect the problems of various family members prior to, during, and following the Depression of 1929 and the effects that the coming of the Roosevelt administration had upon the nation. References are made also to the presidential election of 1932 and to the nature of political patronage in the Roosevelt administration (1930s and 1940s). Complaints of the shortage of goods owing to rationing during World War II also is described in the correspondence. The letters of Fredericka Peace Jenkins describe life in Harlan Kentucky, and discuss the great coal strike which occurred there when labor unions attempted to unionize the mines prior to World War II (1931).

Additional correspondence includes letters from East Carolina Teachers College President Robert H. Wright and Jenkins's students, former students, and friends. Letters of particular interest discuss Russian prisoners in Japan during the Russo-Japanese War, the patriotism of the Japanese, and the readjustment problems of Japanese returning to Japan after living in the United States (Feb. 5, 1905); the life of a teacher at Fleming School in Pitt County, N.C. (Nov. 12, 1922); and a Japanese relocation camp in Colorado during World War II (Feb. 10, 1943). The correspondence also includes references to the possibility of East Carolina Teachers College joining the university system (July 1, 1944) and to the trial of Dr. Leon Meadows, president of the college, on charges of misappropriation of funds (Aug. 26, 1944).

The East Carolina material includes memorials written on the death of Robert H. Wright, bulletins and programs concerning entertainment events at the college, a description of English courses offered, a list of men graduates of the college, and an essay on the teacher's responsibility of encouraging scholarship. Publications of the college consist of a booklet concerning the career of Robert H. Wright, a bulletin describing the school's music program, and the Alumni Association Bulletin (Dec. 1944).

Miss Jenkins's personal papers include essays and articles discussing women in the South, the suffragist movement, orphans in North Carolina, and reflections about a household slave.

Miscellaneous material includes receipts; post cards, including a view of St. Thomas Church at Bath, N.C.; and a periodical, The Clarion (British Honduras, June 10, 1909). Other miscellaneous material consists of school notebooks, a book of familiar quotes, a financial notebook, and a book of poetry.

Subject Headings Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Container List Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Online access to this finding aid is supported with funds created through the federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). These funds come through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services which is administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources. This grant is part of the North Carolina ECHO, Exploring Cultural Heritage Online, Digitization Grant Program.

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This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Special Collections Division, J.Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University. The materials described here are physically available in our reading room. None of the original documents in this collection are digitally available online at this time.
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