Rare Book & Manuscript Library

American College for Girls records, 1880s-1979

Series VI: Records of the Office of the Trustees, New York

The New York Office of the Near East College Association served as the link between the college and its supporters in the United States. For many years, beginning in the 1920s, the office was headed by Albert Staub. These records are comprised of the two major sub-series: one the correspondence with ACG's President, Kathryn Adams, and the other, the correspondence with Dean Eleanor Burns.

ACG's inadequate endowment meant that fundraising continued to be a major concern for Adams and this is reflected in the records. The Near East College Association raised money but it was apportioned among several colleges.

In 1924, ACG organized a Social Service Center and Adams reports on the significance of its work. The assistance the center provided to village residents was important as outreach for the college as well as providing useful experience for those students interested in social work as a career.

In 1928, Adams reported that Mrs. Charles A. Lindbergh, mother of the famous pilot, had joined the faculty as a visiting Professor of Chemistry, while Alice Morrow, sister of Dwight Morrow, U.S. Ambassador to Mexico, agreed to act as hostess for visiting dignitaries. It was hoped and expected that Mrs. Lindbergh would afterward use her influence on behalf of the college. Unfortunately, she was not happy there and Adams later wrote that "a tremendous load has been taken from me," when Mrs. Lindbergh left (January 14, 1929). Miss Morrow, on the other hand, remained and was supportive of the college. Adams's letters are informative. She reports on activities of the alumnae and on the visits of dignitaries to Istanbul.

There is a folder of correspondence from Dr. Marion Talbot, who served as acting president of ACG during 1931 and 1932. Her letters discuss the difficulties the college was experiencing, due in part to the impact of the worldwide economic crisis. In addition, there are several folders of correspondence from Dr. Virginia Gildersleeve, dean of Barnard College, who served as a trustee of ACG for many years.

The correspondence of Burns reflects her responsibilities for recruitment of faculty as well as the procurement and awarding of scholarships. Moreover, she discusses in detail specific problems that arose between the college and the Turkish Minister of Education. Many of her letters refer to attached enclosures such as translations of articles from the Turkish press, but these are not filed with the correspondence and may have been lost.

There is an exchange of correspondence between Staub and Mary Patrick covering the years 1922-23, the last of Patrick's years as president. The next correspondence is dated 1933-1935, which includes the years of Patrick's retirement, but that is hardly an accurate description for she remained active in fundraising and continued a lively interest in the affairs of the college.

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Box 28 Folder 1 Correspondence to Staub and Olmstead from Peet, 1926-1942

Box 28 Folder 2-4 Correspondence Staub/Laurence Moore/Burns, 1924-1926

Box 29 Folder 5-9 Correspondence Staub/Burns, 1927-1930

Box 29 Folder 10 Correspondence to Talbot from Staub, 1931

Box 29 Folder 11-17 Correspondence Staub/Burns, 1931-1932

Box 30 Folder 18-21 Correspondence Staub/Burns, 1933-1948.

Box 31 Folder 32-46 Correspondence Staub/Adams, 1924-1931

Box 31 Folder 47 Correspondence to Staub from Talbot, 1931-1932

Box 31 Folder 48-49 Correspondence Staub/Virginia Gildersleeve, 1926-1950

Box 32 Folder 50-52 Correspondence Hardy/Gildersleeve, 1951-1962