“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case
Colleges In Virginia
Image by Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library
Shown here is a photograph from the "Unlocking the Diary" exhibit ,on display from December 3, 2010-March 31, 2011 in the third floor rotunda gallery inside Swem Library at the College of William and Mary.

The diaries in our exhibit span the 19th and 20th centuries, and our discussion of the diary brings us into the present day. Our first case, “What Counts?,” introduces you to the range of forms and styles of the diary. “Life in Transition,” our second case, demonstrates how the diary has been used throughout the life cycle by both women and men. “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” looks specifically at diaries written by 19th-century Virginia women and our final case, “DiaTribe,” features diaries written by William & Mary students, from the first years of female enrollment at the College to the present day.

This exhibit was curated by students in Prof. Jennifer Putzi’s “Gender and the American Diary” class (WMST 490/ENGL 475) and the Special Collections Research Center staff. All of the diaries and artifacts featured in the exhibit are from the SCRC collections. Student Curators: Kaitlyn Adkins, Greg Benson, Kimberly Clark, Caitlin Finchum, Greg Glazier, Katelin Hill, Shaunna Jardines, Katherine Perkins, Cassie Adair, Ryan Morris, Kali Murphy, Taysha Pye, Sta’sean Ridley, Casey Sears, and Errin Tom; Exhibit design and installation: Chandi Singer, Burger Archives Assistant.

"Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia" Case

The diarists in this case represent a variety of experiences, yet are united by the geographical locality of their female authors. Spanning from Gloucester County to Winchester, these diarists wrote with a diversity of intention. Laura Lee, for instance, used her diary to construct a story of her life during the Civil War, perhaps wishing to preserve what she deemed significant events for future generations. Others, such as Jane Gay Robertson and Sally Lyons Taliferro, were less concerned with narrative, but rather allowed the journal’s daily structure to reflect the routines of their lives—documenting the passage of days and years. Cloe Tyler Whittle Green writes in her diary for more than sixty years, adjusting its shape and content to suit the changing life she lives. It is our hope that after viewing “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia,” you will have a more meaningful understanding of 19th-century women and their diaries in our state.

Diary of Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Diary of Sally Lyons Taliferro, 1859.
Loving daughter, Devoted wife, Tender mother, True friend. These are the words forever engraved on Sally Lyons Taliaferro’s tombstone. And while these designated titles may be dotingly accurate, it is important to remember that she was also a diarist. The short entries scribbled in pencil paint a portrait of Sally in terms of her daily activities. From domestic responsibilities on the Dunham Massie Plantation in Gloucester County, Virginia, to Sunday morning service at St. James, Sally’s diary is an account of the days through her eyes.

Diary of Laura Lee, March 11, 1862-April 4, 1864.
A staunch Confederate, Laura Lee kept a journal titled “A History of Our Captivity” to record her experiences of the Civil War. Winchester was hotly occupied territory and Lee witnessed firsthand the horrors of battle and demoralizing occupation of her hometown by Union forces. Her journal was often the only space where she could safely express her devotion to her cause, and the fierce optimism in her entries reflects the characteristic tenacity of the Southern Confederate.

Diary of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green, October 1, 1863-March 7, 1865.
The diaries of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green begin in 1861 when she was seventeen years old and continue through 1924, shortly before her death. Her diary is most notable for her description of life in the South during the Civil War and has been used by scholars to study the war as it was experienced by elite Southern white women.

Portraits of:

John Hipkins Bernard, 1792-1854.
Watercolor, undated
John Hipkins Bernard was the son of William Bernard and Fannie Hipkins Bernard. Bernard inherited “Rose Hill”, Caroline County, Virginia from his grandfather and renamed it “Gay Mont” in honor of his wife, Jane Gay Robertson Bernard.
Mss. Artifact collection. 65R54

Jane Gay Robertson Bernard, 1795-1852.
Reproduction of oil painting, undated.
Portrait is held in private collection.

Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Jane Gay Robertson Diary Transcription:

Fauquier Wht Sulphur Aug 1840

Arrived here Wednesday the 12 so far find the place dull and but little attraction reckon I must be losing my relish for such places I soon get very tired of the Ballroom go and sit a while in the Parlour with the old ladies then retire to my room for and take an hour as quiet reading as if at home where I should enjoy myself so much more usually I have pass’d my time at such places very pleasantly, but this season it is a perfect drag- and I hardly know how I shall get through 3 weeks- Sept 10 3 weeks have pass’d since writing the above part of the time we have had delightful society and a good deal of Enjoyment and had Mr. B been with me I should have liked it very much but I am getting very tired of the 2 month trips [illegible] from the home without him and the other children. Yet I will not [murmur] for how much has there been for me to be thankful for all have been well so well both here and at home and dear Gay too happily through her troubles that I ought to feel nothing but gratitude but I feel the want and the absence of near and dearer friends than these by whom I have been surrounded it only the home circle that can supply the heart, the mind, at a place of this sort becomes idle and dissipated, and I feel too clearly that I am no longer as young and as vibrant as I have been. Father turn my heart to thee and make me grateful for thy undeserved blessings.

Cloe Tyler Whittle Green Diary Transcription:

Thursday Night, October 1st, 1863 Norfolk

This morning, after a confinement of ten days I proceeded down to Lizzie Williams, with the assistance of Father’s arm. I felt very faintly when I reached there but after a while recovered from it. I asked Lizzie if she knew how Mr. Henry Talbot and Lizzie Wright carried on she said she learned they were to be married next week. I told her that Lizzie had sent me a message the other day, asking me to come down there that evening as she had something to tell me but that I had been prevented by my sickness from going. We were so curious to know what it was that I intended to try and get there before Father came for me; before I was able to do this however Patience came for me saying that Miss Mary Walker and Miss Bettie Poindexter had come to see me & so I started off home, as soon as Lizzie, who was so kind as to offer to come with me cd get ready. While Lizzie was getting ready Mrs. Williams came in and told me some very interesting facts about her son Carter’s interest in religion and his own words before the battle in which he was wounded that Religion took up more of his time & thoughts than any one was aware of.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Sunday, Mar 23rd.
All was quiet this morning, and we hoped would continue so. I went with Mary to Mr. Graham’s church, and when we came out we heard the firing had commenced about eleven, and it continued till two, then ceased till about four and then continued incessantly until dark. It was more distant than yesterday, supposed to be four miles from town towards Neill’s farm. Netsy and I went up to see Neel, and called at Mrs. Sherrard’s on our way home. There was the greatest confusion on the street, and they told us at Mr. Sherrard’s that Jackson was in the fight, and that one of his aides, Mr. Jenkin, had been captured and brought to town. We would not believe it, as we had heard two days ago, that they were 40 miles from here, and we heard that Ashby had been reinforced y militia. We went to the prayer meeting at Mr. William’s after tea, and on our return heard again the same tale, that our little army had been driven back, and were retreating in confusion, but we had had so much experience of the falsehood and fabrications of the Yankees that we doubt everything they say.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Monday, Mar 24th.
O, this day of horrors! We were roused this morning by Mrs. Barton rushing into our room in a frantic state, telling us to wake up, and nerve ourselves to hear the worst—that Jackson had been defeated, and driven back, with fearful loss, that the town was filled with the wounded and dying, the jail and churches with prisoners, and that she was just sending out for Tom Marshall’s dead body. We were so stunned at first that we could not remember how excitable Mrs. Barton is, and how apt to believe the worst….

Sally Lyons Taliaferro Diary Transcriptions:

March, Sunday, 20, 1859.
Mild & bright, but very windy – Thermometer 54. Ware Church Sunday –

Monday, 21.
Damp & cloudy. Planted Irish potatoes. Part out [gladiolus?] Roots. A visit to Miss E.

Tuesday 22.
Mild & bright Ther. 59. Had my flower garden spaded – Sowed carrots & salsify – Planted onions. Paid a visit to Mrs. Dabney –

March, Wednesday, 23, 1859.
Bright but cool – delightful Ther. 54 – Went to Church – an excellent lecture from Mr. Mann. Mr. T. gone to Middlesex – Sowed Beets & Parsnips

Thursday, 24.
Rain & cloudy – Rain from 12 [o’clock?] Ther. 54. Bedded my Dahlia roots to make them sprout.

Friday, 25.
Damp & rainy Ther. 64. Spent the day at White Marsh – The garden beautiful. A very pleasant day –

March, Saturday, 26, 1859.
Clear & cold – Ther. 47. Planted third crop of peas – First crop 8 inches high. Mrs. R. spent the day & night. Mr. J. [whined?] at night.

Sunday, 27.
Mild & a little cloudy – Ther. 63. Went to Ware Church. Very good sermon from Mr. Mann.

Monday, 28.
Cloudy Ther. 59. Bedded Sweet Potatoes – planted Cucumbers & [illegible]. Small dinner party to Hally Lee. Met sister, Fanny & Mary.

From the Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William and Mary. See swem.wm.edu/scrc/ for further information and assistance.

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case
Colleges In Virginia
Image by Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library
Shown here is a photograph from the "Unlocking the Diary" exhibit ,on display from December 3, 2010-March 31, 2011 in the third floor rotunda gallery inside Swem Library at the College of William and Mary.

The diaries in our exhibit span the 19th and 20th centuries, and our discussion of the diary brings us into the present day. Our first case, “What Counts?,” introduces you to the range of forms and styles of the diary. “Life in Transition,” our second case, demonstrates how the diary has been used throughout the life cycle by both women and men. “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” looks specifically at diaries written by 19th-century Virginia women and our final case, “DiaTribe,” features diaries written by William & Mary students, from the first years of female enrollment at the College to the present day.

This exhibit was curated by students in Prof. Jennifer Putzi’s “Gender and the American Diary” class (WMST 490/ENGL 475) and the Special Collections Research Center staff. All of the diaries and artifacts featured in the exhibit are from the SCRC collections. Student Curators: Kaitlyn Adkins, Greg Benson, Kimberly Clark, Caitlin Finchum, Greg Glazier, Katelin Hill, Shaunna Jardines, Katherine Perkins, Cassie Adair, Ryan Morris, Kali Murphy, Taysha Pye, Sta’sean Ridley, Casey Sears, and Errin Tom; Exhibit design and installation: Chandi Singer, Burger Archives Assistant.

"Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia" Case

The diarists in this case represent a variety of experiences, yet are united by the geographical locality of their female authors. Spanning from Gloucester County to Winchester, these diarists wrote with a diversity of intention. Laura Lee, for instance, used her diary to construct a story of her life during the Civil War, perhaps wishing to preserve what she deemed significant events for future generations. Others, such as Jane Gay Robertson and Sally Lyons Taliferro, were less concerned with narrative, but rather allowed the journal’s daily structure to reflect the routines of their lives—documenting the passage of days and years. Cloe Tyler Whittle Green writes in her diary for more than sixty years, adjusting its shape and content to suit the changing life she lives. It is our hope that after viewing “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia,” you will have a more meaningful understanding of 19th-century women and their diaries in our state.

Diary of Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Diary of Sally Lyons Taliferro, 1859.
Loving daughter, Devoted wife, Tender mother, True friend. These are the words forever engraved on Sally Lyons Taliaferro’s tombstone. And while these designated titles may be dotingly accurate, it is important to remember that she was also a diarist. The short entries scribbled in pencil paint a portrait of Sally in terms of her daily activities. From domestic responsibilities on the Dunham Massie Plantation in Gloucester County, Virginia, to Sunday morning service at St. James, Sally’s diary is an account of the days through her eyes.

Diary of Laura Lee, March 11, 1862-April 4, 1864.
A staunch Confederate, Laura Lee kept a journal titled “A History of Our Captivity” to record her experiences of the Civil War. Winchester was hotly occupied territory and Lee witnessed firsthand the horrors of battle and demoralizing occupation of her hometown by Union forces. Her journal was often the only space where she could safely express her devotion to her cause, and the fierce optimism in her entries reflects the characteristic tenacity of the Southern Confederate.

Diary of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green, October 1, 1863-March 7, 1865.
The diaries of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green begin in 1861 when she was seventeen years old and continue through 1924, shortly before her death. Her diary is most notable for her description of life in the South during the Civil War and has been used by scholars to study the war as it was experienced by elite Southern white women.

Portraits of:

John Hipkins Bernard, 1792-1854.
Watercolor, undated
John Hipkins Bernard was the son of William Bernard and Fannie Hipkins Bernard. Bernard inherited “Rose Hill”, Caroline County, Virginia from his grandfather and renamed it “Gay Mont” in honor of his wife, Jane Gay Robertson Bernard.
Mss. Artifact collection. 65R54

Jane Gay Robertson Bernard, 1795-1852.
Reproduction of oil painting, undated.
Portrait is held in private collection.

Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Jane Gay Robertson Diary Transcription:

Fauquier Wht Sulphur Aug 1840

Arrived here Wednesday the 12 so far find the place dull and but little attraction reckon I must be losing my relish for such places I soon get very tired of the Ballroom go and sit a while in the Parlour with the old ladies then retire to my room for and take an hour as quiet reading as if at home where I should enjoy myself so much more usually I have pass’d my time at such places very pleasantly, but this season it is a perfect drag- and I hardly know how I shall get through 3 weeks- Sept 10 3 weeks have pass’d since writing the above part of the time we have had delightful society and a good deal of Enjoyment and had Mr. B been with me I should have liked it very much but I am getting very tired of the 2 month trips [illegible] from the home without him and the other children. Yet I will not [murmur] for how much has there been for me to be thankful for all have been well so well both here and at home and dear Gay too happily through her troubles that I ought to feel nothing but gratitude but I feel the want and the absence of near and dearer friends than these by whom I have been surrounded it only the home circle that can supply the heart, the mind, at a place of this sort becomes idle and dissipated, and I feel too clearly that I am no longer as young and as vibrant as I have been. Father turn my heart to thee and make me grateful for thy undeserved blessings.

Cloe Tyler Whittle Green Diary Transcription:

Thursday Night, October 1st, 1863 Norfolk

This morning, after a confinement of ten days I proceeded down to Lizzie Williams, with the assistance of Father’s arm. I felt very faintly when I reached there but after a while recovered from it. I asked Lizzie if she knew how Mr. Henry Talbot and Lizzie Wright carried on she said she learned they were to be married next week. I told her that Lizzie had sent me a message the other day, asking me to come down there that evening as she had something to tell me but that I had been prevented by my sickness from going. We were so curious to know what it was that I intended to try and get there before Father came for me; before I was able to do this however Patience came for me saying that Miss Mary Walker and Miss Bettie Poindexter had come to see me & so I started off home, as soon as Lizzie, who was so kind as to offer to come with me cd get ready. While Lizzie was getting ready Mrs. Williams came in and told me some very interesting facts about her son Carter’s interest in religion and his own words before the battle in which he was wounded that Religion took up more of his time & thoughts than any one was aware of.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Sunday, Mar 23rd.
All was quiet this morning, and we hoped would continue so. I went with Mary to Mr. Graham’s church, and when we came out we heard the firing had commenced about eleven, and it continued till two, then ceased till about four and then continued incessantly until dark. It was more distant than yesterday, supposed to be four miles from town towards Neill’s farm. Netsy and I went up to see Neel, and called at Mrs. Sherrard’s on our way home. There was the greatest confusion on the street, and they told us at Mr. Sherrard’s that Jackson was in the fight, and that one of his aides, Mr. Jenkin, had been captured and brought to town. We would not believe it, as we had heard two days ago, that they were 40 miles from here, and we heard that Ashby had been reinforced y militia. We went to the prayer meeting at Mr. William’s after tea, and on our return heard again the same tale, that our little army had been driven back, and were retreating in confusion, but we had had so much experience of the falsehood and fabrications of the Yankees that we doubt everything they say.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Monday, Mar 24th.
O, this day of horrors! We were roused this morning by Mrs. Barton rushing into our room in a frantic state, telling us to wake up, and nerve ourselves to hear the worst—that Jackson had been defeated, and driven back, with fearful loss, that the town was filled with the wounded and dying, the jail and churches with prisoners, and that she was just sending out for Tom Marshall’s dead body. We were so stunned at first that we could not remember how excitable Mrs. Barton is, and how apt to believe the worst….

Sally Lyons Taliaferro Diary Transcriptions:

March, Sunday, 20, 1859.
Mild & bright, but very windy – Thermometer 54. Ware Church Sunday –

Monday, 21.
Damp & cloudy. Planted Irish potatoes. Part out [gladiolus?] Roots. A visit to Miss E.

Tuesday 22.
Mild & bright Ther. 59. Had my flower garden spaded – Sowed carrots & salsify – Planted onions. Paid a visit to Mrs. Dabney –

March, Wednesday, 23, 1859.
Bright but cool – delightful Ther. 54 – Went to Church – an excellent lecture from Mr. Mann. Mr. T. gone to Middlesex – Sowed Beets & Parsnips

Thursday, 24.
Rain & cloudy – Rain from 12 [o’clock?] Ther. 54. Bedded my Dahlia roots to make them sprout.

Friday, 25.
Damp & rainy Ther. 64. Spent the day at White Marsh – The garden beautiful. A very pleasant day –

March, Saturday, 26, 1859.
Clear & cold – Ther. 47. Planted third crop of peas – First crop 8 inches high. Mrs. R. spent the day & night. Mr. J. [whined?] at night.

Sunday, 27.
Mild & a little cloudy – Ther. 63. Went to Ware Church. Very good sermon from Mr. Mann.

Monday, 28.
Cloudy Ther. 59. Bedded Sweet Potatoes – planted Cucumbers & [illegible]. Small dinner party to Hally Lee. Met sister, Fanny & Mary.

From the Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William and Mary. See swem.wm.edu/scrc/ for further information and assistance.

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case
Colleges In Virginia
Image by Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library
Shown here is a photograph from the "Unlocking the Diary" exhibit ,on display from December 3, 2010-March 31, 2011 in the third floor rotunda gallery inside Swem Library at the College of William and Mary.

The diaries in our exhibit span the 19th and 20th centuries, and our discussion of the diary brings us into the present day. Our first case, “What Counts?,” introduces you to the range of forms and styles of the diary. “Life in Transition,” our second case, demonstrates how the diary has been used throughout the life cycle by both women and men. “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” looks specifically at diaries written by 19th-century Virginia women and our final case, “DiaTribe,” features diaries written by William & Mary students, from the first years of female enrollment at the College to the present day.

This exhibit was curated by students in Prof. Jennifer Putzi’s “Gender and the American Diary” class (WMST 490/ENGL 475) and the Special Collections Research Center staff. All of the diaries and artifacts featured in the exhibit are from the SCRC collections. Student Curators: Kaitlyn Adkins, Greg Benson, Kimberly Clark, Caitlin Finchum, Greg Glazier, Katelin Hill, Shaunna Jardines, Katherine Perkins, Cassie Adair, Ryan Morris, Kali Murphy, Taysha Pye, Sta’sean Ridley, Casey Sears, and Errin Tom; Exhibit design and installation: Chandi Singer, Burger Archives Assistant.

"Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia" Case

The diarists in this case represent a variety of experiences, yet are united by the geographical locality of their female authors. Spanning from Gloucester County to Winchester, these diarists wrote with a diversity of intention. Laura Lee, for instance, used her diary to construct a story of her life during the Civil War, perhaps wishing to preserve what she deemed significant events for future generations. Others, such as Jane Gay Robertson and Sally Lyons Taliferro, were less concerned with narrative, but rather allowed the journal’s daily structure to reflect the routines of their lives—documenting the passage of days and years. Cloe Tyler Whittle Green writes in her diary for more than sixty years, adjusting its shape and content to suit the changing life she lives. It is our hope that after viewing “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia,” you will have a more meaningful understanding of 19th-century women and their diaries in our state.

Diary of Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Diary of Sally Lyons Taliferro, 1859.
Loving daughter, Devoted wife, Tender mother, True friend. These are the words forever engraved on Sally Lyons Taliaferro’s tombstone. And while these designated titles may be dotingly accurate, it is important to remember that she was also a diarist. The short entries scribbled in pencil paint a portrait of Sally in terms of her daily activities. From domestic responsibilities on the Dunham Massie Plantation in Gloucester County, Virginia, to Sunday morning service at St. James, Sally’s diary is an account of the days through her eyes.

Diary of Laura Lee, March 11, 1862-April 4, 1864.
A staunch Confederate, Laura Lee kept a journal titled “A History of Our Captivity” to record her experiences of the Civil War. Winchester was hotly occupied territory and Lee witnessed firsthand the horrors of battle and demoralizing occupation of her hometown by Union forces. Her journal was often the only space where she could safely express her devotion to her cause, and the fierce optimism in her entries reflects the characteristic tenacity of the Southern Confederate.

Diary of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green, October 1, 1863-March 7, 1865.
The diaries of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green begin in 1861 when she was seventeen years old and continue through 1924, shortly before her death. Her diary is most notable for her description of life in the South during the Civil War and has been used by scholars to study the war as it was experienced by elite Southern white women.

Portraits of:

John Hipkins Bernard, 1792-1854.
Watercolor, undated
John Hipkins Bernard was the son of William Bernard and Fannie Hipkins Bernard. Bernard inherited “Rose Hill”, Caroline County, Virginia from his grandfather and renamed it “Gay Mont” in honor of his wife, Jane Gay Robertson Bernard.
Mss. Artifact collection. 65R54

Jane Gay Robertson Bernard, 1795-1852.
Reproduction of oil painting, undated.
Portrait is held in private collection.

Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Jane Gay Robertson Diary Transcription:

Fauquier Wht Sulphur Aug 1840

Arrived here Wednesday the 12 so far find the place dull and but little attraction reckon I must be losing my relish for such places I soon get very tired of the Ballroom go and sit a while in the Parlour with the old ladies then retire to my room for and take an hour as quiet reading as if at home where I should enjoy myself so much more usually I have pass’d my time at such places very pleasantly, but this season it is a perfect drag- and I hardly know how I shall get through 3 weeks- Sept 10 3 weeks have pass’d since writing the above part of the time we have had delightful society and a good deal of Enjoyment and had Mr. B been with me I should have liked it very much but I am getting very tired of the 2 month trips [illegible] from the home without him and the other children. Yet I will not [murmur] for how much has there been for me to be thankful for all have been well so well both here and at home and dear Gay too happily through her troubles that I ought to feel nothing but gratitude but I feel the want and the absence of near and dearer friends than these by whom I have been surrounded it only the home circle that can supply the heart, the mind, at a place of this sort becomes idle and dissipated, and I feel too clearly that I am no longer as young and as vibrant as I have been. Father turn my heart to thee and make me grateful for thy undeserved blessings.

Cloe Tyler Whittle Green Diary Transcription:

Thursday Night, October 1st, 1863 Norfolk

This morning, after a confinement of ten days I proceeded down to Lizzie Williams, with the assistance of Father’s arm. I felt very faintly when I reached there but after a while recovered from it. I asked Lizzie if she knew how Mr. Henry Talbot and Lizzie Wright carried on she said she learned they were to be married next week. I told her that Lizzie had sent me a message the other day, asking me to come down there that evening as she had something to tell me but that I had been prevented by my sickness from going. We were so curious to know what it was that I intended to try and get there before Father came for me; before I was able to do this however Patience came for me saying that Miss Mary Walker and Miss Bettie Poindexter had come to see me & so I started off home, as soon as Lizzie, who was so kind as to offer to come with me cd get ready. While Lizzie was getting ready Mrs. Williams came in and told me some very interesting facts about her son Carter’s interest in religion and his own words before the battle in which he was wounded that Religion took up more of his time & thoughts than any one was aware of.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Sunday, Mar 23rd.
All was quiet this morning, and we hoped would continue so. I went with Mary to Mr. Graham’s church, and when we came out we heard the firing had commenced about eleven, and it continued till two, then ceased till about four and then continued incessantly until dark. It was more distant than yesterday, supposed to be four miles from town towards Neill’s farm. Netsy and I went up to see Neel, and called at Mrs. Sherrard’s on our way home. There was the greatest confusion on the street, and they told us at Mr. Sherrard’s that Jackson was in the fight, and that one of his aides, Mr. Jenkin, had been captured and brought to town. We would not believe it, as we had heard two days ago, that they were 40 miles from here, and we heard that Ashby had been reinforced y militia. We went to the prayer meeting at Mr. William’s after tea, and on our return heard again the same tale, that our little army had been driven back, and were retreating in confusion, but we had had so much experience of the falsehood and fabrications of the Yankees that we doubt everything they say.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Monday, Mar 24th.
O, this day of horrors! We were roused this morning by Mrs. Barton rushing into our room in a frantic state, telling us to wake up, and nerve ourselves to hear the worst—that Jackson had been defeated, and driven back, with fearful loss, that the town was filled with the wounded and dying, the jail and churches with prisoners, and that she was just sending out for Tom Marshall’s dead body. We were so stunned at first that we could not remember how excitable Mrs. Barton is, and how apt to believe the worst….

Sally Lyons Taliaferro Diary Transcriptions:

March, Sunday, 20, 1859.
Mild & bright, but very windy – Thermometer 54. Ware Church Sunday –

Monday, 21.
Damp & cloudy. Planted Irish potatoes. Part out [gladiolus?] Roots. A visit to Miss E.

Tuesday 22.
Mild & bright Ther. 59. Had my flower garden spaded – Sowed carrots & salsify – Planted onions. Paid a visit to Mrs. Dabney –

March, Wednesday, 23, 1859.
Bright but cool – delightful Ther. 54 – Went to Church – an excellent lecture from Mr. Mann. Mr. T. gone to Middlesex – Sowed Beets & Parsnips

Thursday, 24.
Rain & cloudy – Rain from 12 [o’clock?] Ther. 54. Bedded my Dahlia roots to make them sprout.

Friday, 25.
Damp & rainy Ther. 64. Spent the day at White Marsh – The garden beautiful. A very pleasant day –

March, Saturday, 26, 1859.
Clear & cold – Ther. 47. Planted third crop of peas – First crop 8 inches high. Mrs. R. spent the day & night. Mr. J. [whined?] at night.

Sunday, 27.
Mild & a little cloudy – Ther. 63. Went to Ware Church. Very good sermon from Mr. Mann.

Monday, 28.
Cloudy Ther. 59. Bedded Sweet Potatoes – planted Cucumbers & [illegible]. Small dinner party to Hally Lee. Met sister, Fanny & Mary.

From the Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William and Mary. See swem.wm.edu/scrc/ for further information and assistance.

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case
Colleges In Virginia
Image by Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library
Shown here is a photograph from the "Unlocking the Diary" exhibit ,on display from December 3, 2010-March 31, 2011 in the third floor rotunda gallery inside Swem Library at the College of William and Mary.

The diaries in our exhibit span the 19th and 20th centuries, and our discussion of the diary brings us into the present day. Our first case, “What Counts?,” introduces you to the range of forms and styles of the diary. “Life in Transition,” our second case, demonstrates how the diary has been used throughout the life cycle by both women and men. “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” looks specifically at diaries written by 19th-century Virginia women and our final case, “DiaTribe,” features diaries written by William & Mary students, from the first years of female enrollment at the College to the present day.

This exhibit was curated by students in Prof. Jennifer Putzi’s “Gender and the American Diary” class (WMST 490/ENGL 475) and the Special Collections Research Center staff. All of the diaries and artifacts featured in the exhibit are from the SCRC collections. Student Curators: Kaitlyn Adkins, Greg Benson, Kimberly Clark, Caitlin Finchum, Greg Glazier, Katelin Hill, Shaunna Jardines, Katherine Perkins, Cassie Adair, Ryan Morris, Kali Murphy, Taysha Pye, Sta’sean Ridley, Casey Sears, and Errin Tom; Exhibit design and installation: Chandi Singer, Burger Archives Assistant.

"Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia" Case

The diarists in this case represent a variety of experiences, yet are united by the geographical locality of their female authors. Spanning from Gloucester County to Winchester, these diarists wrote with a diversity of intention. Laura Lee, for instance, used her diary to construct a story of her life during the Civil War, perhaps wishing to preserve what she deemed significant events for future generations. Others, such as Jane Gay Robertson and Sally Lyons Taliferro, were less concerned with narrative, but rather allowed the journal’s daily structure to reflect the routines of their lives—documenting the passage of days and years. Cloe Tyler Whittle Green writes in her diary for more than sixty years, adjusting its shape and content to suit the changing life she lives. It is our hope that after viewing “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia,” you will have a more meaningful understanding of 19th-century women and their diaries in our state.

Diary of Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Diary of Sally Lyons Taliferro, 1859.
Loving daughter, Devoted wife, Tender mother, True friend. These are the words forever engraved on Sally Lyons Taliaferro’s tombstone. And while these designated titles may be dotingly accurate, it is important to remember that she was also a diarist. The short entries scribbled in pencil paint a portrait of Sally in terms of her daily activities. From domestic responsibilities on the Dunham Massie Plantation in Gloucester County, Virginia, to Sunday morning service at St. James, Sally’s diary is an account of the days through her eyes.

Diary of Laura Lee, March 11, 1862-April 4, 1864.
A staunch Confederate, Laura Lee kept a journal titled “A History of Our Captivity” to record her experiences of the Civil War. Winchester was hotly occupied territory and Lee witnessed firsthand the horrors of battle and demoralizing occupation of her hometown by Union forces. Her journal was often the only space where she could safely express her devotion to her cause, and the fierce optimism in her entries reflects the characteristic tenacity of the Southern Confederate.

Diary of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green, October 1, 1863-March 7, 1865.
The diaries of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green begin in 1861 when she was seventeen years old and continue through 1924, shortly before her death. Her diary is most notable for her description of life in the South during the Civil War and has been used by scholars to study the war as it was experienced by elite Southern white women.

Portraits of:

John Hipkins Bernard, 1792-1854.
Watercolor, undated
John Hipkins Bernard was the son of William Bernard and Fannie Hipkins Bernard. Bernard inherited “Rose Hill”, Caroline County, Virginia from his grandfather and renamed it “Gay Mont” in honor of his wife, Jane Gay Robertson Bernard.
Mss. Artifact collection. 65R54

Jane Gay Robertson Bernard, 1795-1852.
Reproduction of oil painting, undated.
Portrait is held in private collection.

Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Jane Gay Robertson Diary Transcription:

Fauquier Wht Sulphur Aug 1840

Arrived here Wednesday the 12 so far find the place dull and but little attraction reckon I must be losing my relish for such places I soon get very tired of the Ballroom go and sit a while in the Parlour with the old ladies then retire to my room for and take an hour as quiet reading as if at home where I should enjoy myself so much more usually I have pass’d my time at such places very pleasantly, but this season it is a perfect drag- and I hardly know how I shall get through 3 weeks- Sept 10 3 weeks have pass’d since writing the above part of the time we have had delightful society and a good deal of Enjoyment and had Mr. B been with me I should have liked it very much but I am getting very tired of the 2 month trips [illegible] from the home without him and the other children. Yet I will not [murmur] for how much has there been for me to be thankful for all have been well so well both here and at home and dear Gay too happily through her troubles that I ought to feel nothing but gratitude but I feel the want and the absence of near and dearer friends than these by whom I have been surrounded it only the home circle that can supply the heart, the mind, at a place of this sort becomes idle and dissipated, and I feel too clearly that I am no longer as young and as vibrant as I have been. Father turn my heart to thee and make me grateful for thy undeserved blessings.

Cloe Tyler Whittle Green Diary Transcription:

Thursday Night, October 1st, 1863 Norfolk

This morning, after a confinement of ten days I proceeded down to Lizzie Williams, with the assistance of Father’s arm. I felt very faintly when I reached there but after a while recovered from it. I asked Lizzie if she knew how Mr. Henry Talbot and Lizzie Wright carried on she said she learned they were to be married next week. I told her that Lizzie had sent me a message the other day, asking me to come down there that evening as she had something to tell me but that I had been prevented by my sickness from going. We were so curious to know what it was that I intended to try and get there before Father came for me; before I was able to do this however Patience came for me saying that Miss Mary Walker and Miss Bettie Poindexter had come to see me & so I started off home, as soon as Lizzie, who was so kind as to offer to come with me cd get ready. While Lizzie was getting ready Mrs. Williams came in and told me some very interesting facts about her son Carter’s interest in religion and his own words before the battle in which he was wounded that Religion took up more of his time & thoughts than any one was aware of.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Sunday, Mar 23rd.
All was quiet this morning, and we hoped would continue so. I went with Mary to Mr. Graham’s church, and when we came out we heard the firing had commenced about eleven, and it continued till two, then ceased till about four and then continued incessantly until dark. It was more distant than yesterday, supposed to be four miles from town towards Neill’s farm. Netsy and I went up to see Neel, and called at Mrs. Sherrard’s on our way home. There was the greatest confusion on the street, and they told us at Mr. Sherrard’s that Jackson was in the fight, and that one of his aides, Mr. Jenkin, had been captured and brought to town. We would not believe it, as we had heard two days ago, that they were 40 miles from here, and we heard that Ashby had been reinforced y militia. We went to the prayer meeting at Mr. William’s after tea, and on our return heard again the same tale, that our little army had been driven back, and were retreating in confusion, but we had had so much experience of the falsehood and fabrications of the Yankees that we doubt everything they say.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Monday, Mar 24th.
O, this day of horrors! We were roused this morning by Mrs. Barton rushing into our room in a frantic state, telling us to wake up, and nerve ourselves to hear the worst—that Jackson had been defeated, and driven back, with fearful loss, that the town was filled with the wounded and dying, the jail and churches with prisoners, and that she was just sending out for Tom Marshall’s dead body. We were so stunned at first that we could not remember how excitable Mrs. Barton is, and how apt to believe the worst….

Sally Lyons Taliaferro Diary Transcriptions:

March, Sunday, 20, 1859.
Mild & bright, but very windy – Thermometer 54. Ware Church Sunday –

Monday, 21.
Damp & cloudy. Planted Irish potatoes. Part out [gladiolus?] Roots. A visit to Miss E.

Tuesday 22.
Mild & bright Ther. 59. Had my flower garden spaded – Sowed carrots & salsify – Planted onions. Paid a visit to Mrs. Dabney –

March, Wednesday, 23, 1859.
Bright but cool – delightful Ther. 54 – Went to Church – an excellent lecture from Mr. Mann. Mr. T. gone to Middlesex – Sowed Beets & Parsnips

Thursday, 24.
Rain & cloudy – Rain from 12 [o’clock?] Ther. 54. Bedded my Dahlia roots to make them sprout.

Friday, 25.
Damp & rainy Ther. 64. Spent the day at White Marsh – The garden beautiful. A very pleasant day –

March, Saturday, 26, 1859.
Clear & cold – Ther. 47. Planted third crop of peas – First crop 8 inches high. Mrs. R. spent the day & night. Mr. J. [whined?] at night.

Sunday, 27.
Mild & a little cloudy – Ther. 63. Went to Ware Church. Very good sermon from Mr. Mann.

Monday, 28.
Cloudy Ther. 59. Bedded Sweet Potatoes – planted Cucumbers & [illegible]. Small dinner party to Hally Lee. Met sister, Fanny & Mary.

From the Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William and Mary. See swem.wm.edu/scrc/ for further information and assistance.

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case
Colleges In Virginia
Image by Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library
Shown here is a photograph from the "Unlocking the Diary" exhibit ,on display from December 3, 2010-March 31, 2011 in the third floor rotunda gallery inside Swem Library at the College of William and Mary.

The diaries in our exhibit span the 19th and 20th centuries, and our discussion of the diary brings us into the present day. Our first case, “What Counts?,” introduces you to the range of forms and styles of the diary. “Life in Transition,” our second case, demonstrates how the diary has been used throughout the life cycle by both women and men. “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” looks specifically at diaries written by 19th-century Virginia women and our final case, “DiaTribe,” features diaries written by William & Mary students, from the first years of female enrollment at the College to the present day.

This exhibit was curated by students in Prof. Jennifer Putzi’s “Gender and the American Diary” class (WMST 490/ENGL 475) and the Special Collections Research Center staff. All of the diaries and artifacts featured in the exhibit are from the SCRC collections. Student Curators: Kaitlyn Adkins, Greg Benson, Kimberly Clark, Caitlin Finchum, Greg Glazier, Katelin Hill, Shaunna Jardines, Katherine Perkins, Cassie Adair, Ryan Morris, Kali Murphy, Taysha Pye, Sta’sean Ridley, Casey Sears, and Errin Tom; Exhibit design and installation: Chandi Singer, Burger Archives Assistant.

"Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia" Case

The diarists in this case represent a variety of experiences, yet are united by the geographical locality of their female authors. Spanning from Gloucester County to Winchester, these diarists wrote with a diversity of intention. Laura Lee, for instance, used her diary to construct a story of her life during the Civil War, perhaps wishing to preserve what she deemed significant events for future generations. Others, such as Jane Gay Robertson and Sally Lyons Taliferro, were less concerned with narrative, but rather allowed the journal’s daily structure to reflect the routines of their lives—documenting the passage of days and years. Cloe Tyler Whittle Green writes in her diary for more than sixty years, adjusting its shape and content to suit the changing life she lives. It is our hope that after viewing “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia,” you will have a more meaningful understanding of 19th-century women and their diaries in our state.

Diary of Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Diary of Sally Lyons Taliferro, 1859.
Loving daughter, Devoted wife, Tender mother, True friend. These are the words forever engraved on Sally Lyons Taliaferro’s tombstone. And while these designated titles may be dotingly accurate, it is important to remember that she was also a diarist. The short entries scribbled in pencil paint a portrait of Sally in terms of her daily activities. From domestic responsibilities on the Dunham Massie Plantation in Gloucester County, Virginia, to Sunday morning service at St. James, Sally’s diary is an account of the days through her eyes.

Diary of Laura Lee, March 11, 1862-April 4, 1864.
A staunch Confederate, Laura Lee kept a journal titled “A History of Our Captivity” to record her experiences of the Civil War. Winchester was hotly occupied territory and Lee witnessed firsthand the horrors of battle and demoralizing occupation of her hometown by Union forces. Her journal was often the only space where she could safely express her devotion to her cause, and the fierce optimism in her entries reflects the characteristic tenacity of the Southern Confederate.

Diary of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green, October 1, 1863-March 7, 1865.
The diaries of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green begin in 1861 when she was seventeen years old and continue through 1924, shortly before her death. Her diary is most notable for her description of life in the South during the Civil War and has been used by scholars to study the war as it was experienced by elite Southern white women.

Portraits of:

John Hipkins Bernard, 1792-1854.
Watercolor, undated
John Hipkins Bernard was the son of William Bernard and Fannie Hipkins Bernard. Bernard inherited “Rose Hill”, Caroline County, Virginia from his grandfather and renamed it “Gay Mont” in honor of his wife, Jane Gay Robertson Bernard.
Mss. Artifact collection. 65R54

Jane Gay Robertson Bernard, 1795-1852.
Reproduction of oil painting, undated.
Portrait is held in private collection.

Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Jane Gay Robertson Diary Transcription:

Fauquier Wht Sulphur Aug 1840

Arrived here Wednesday the 12 so far find the place dull and but little attraction reckon I must be losing my relish for such places I soon get very tired of the Ballroom go and sit a while in the Parlour with the old ladies then retire to my room for and take an hour as quiet reading as if at home where I should enjoy myself so much more usually I have pass’d my time at such places very pleasantly, but this season it is a perfect drag- and I hardly know how I shall get through 3 weeks- Sept 10 3 weeks have pass’d since writing the above part of the time we have had delightful society and a good deal of Enjoyment and had Mr. B been with me I should have liked it very much but I am getting very tired of the 2 month trips [illegible] from the home without him and the other children. Yet I will not [murmur] for how much has there been for me to be thankful for all have been well so well both here and at home and dear Gay too happily through her troubles that I ought to feel nothing but gratitude but I feel the want and the absence of near and dearer friends than these by whom I have been surrounded it only the home circle that can supply the heart, the mind, at a place of this sort becomes idle and dissipated, and I feel too clearly that I am no longer as young and as vibrant as I have been. Father turn my heart to thee and make me grateful for thy undeserved blessings.

Cloe Tyler Whittle Green Diary Transcription:

Thursday Night, October 1st, 1863 Norfolk

This morning, after a confinement of ten days I proceeded down to Lizzie Williams, with the assistance of Father’s arm. I felt very faintly when I reached there but after a while recovered from it. I asked Lizzie if she knew how Mr. Henry Talbot and Lizzie Wright carried on she said she learned they were to be married next week. I told her that Lizzie had sent me a message the other day, asking me to come down there that evening as she had something to tell me but that I had been prevented by my sickness from going. We were so curious to know what it was that I intended to try and get there before Father came for me; before I was able to do this however Patience came for me saying that Miss Mary Walker and Miss Bettie Poindexter had come to see me & so I started off home, as soon as Lizzie, who was so kind as to offer to come with me cd get ready. While Lizzie was getting ready Mrs. Williams came in and told me some very interesting facts about her son Carter’s interest in religion and his own words before the battle in which he was wounded that Religion took up more of his time & thoughts than any one was aware of.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Sunday, Mar 23rd.
All was quiet this morning, and we hoped would continue so. I went with Mary to Mr. Graham’s church, and when we came out we heard the firing had commenced about eleven, and it continued till two, then ceased till about four and then continued incessantly until dark. It was more distant than yesterday, supposed to be four miles from town towards Neill’s farm. Netsy and I went up to see Neel, and called at Mrs. Sherrard’s on our way home. There was the greatest confusion on the street, and they told us at Mr. Sherrard’s that Jackson was in the fight, and that one of his aides, Mr. Jenkin, had been captured and brought to town. We would not believe it, as we had heard two days ago, that they were 40 miles from here, and we heard that Ashby had been reinforced y militia. We went to the prayer meeting at Mr. William’s after tea, and on our return heard again the same tale, that our little army had been driven back, and were retreating in confusion, but we had had so much experience of the falsehood and fabrications of the Yankees that we doubt everything they say.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Monday, Mar 24th.
O, this day of horrors! We were roused this morning by Mrs. Barton rushing into our room in a frantic state, telling us to wake up, and nerve ourselves to hear the worst—that Jackson had been defeated, and driven back, with fearful loss, that the town was filled with the wounded and dying, the jail and churches with prisoners, and that she was just sending out for Tom Marshall’s dead body. We were so stunned at first that we could not remember how excitable Mrs. Barton is, and how apt to believe the worst….

Sally Lyons Taliaferro Diary Transcriptions:

March, Sunday, 20, 1859.
Mild & bright, but very windy – Thermometer 54. Ware Church Sunday –

Monday, 21.
Damp & cloudy. Planted Irish potatoes. Part out [gladiolus?] Roots. A visit to Miss E.

Tuesday 22.
Mild & bright Ther. 59. Had my flower garden spaded – Sowed carrots & salsify – Planted onions. Paid a visit to Mrs. Dabney –

March, Wednesday, 23, 1859.
Bright but cool – delightful Ther. 54 – Went to Church – an excellent lecture from Mr. Mann. Mr. T. gone to Middlesex – Sowed Beets & Parsnips

Thursday, 24.
Rain & cloudy – Rain from 12 [o’clock?] Ther. 54. Bedded my Dahlia roots to make them sprout.

Friday, 25.
Damp & rainy Ther. 64. Spent the day at White Marsh – The garden beautiful. A very pleasant day –

March, Saturday, 26, 1859.
Clear & cold – Ther. 47. Planted third crop of peas – First crop 8 inches high. Mrs. R. spent the day & night. Mr. J. [whined?] at night.

Sunday, 27.
Mild & a little cloudy – Ther. 63. Went to Ware Church. Very good sermon from Mr. Mann.

Monday, 28.
Cloudy Ther. 59. Bedded Sweet Potatoes – planted Cucumbers & [illegible]. Small dinner party to Hally Lee. Met sister, Fanny & Mary.

From the Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William and Mary. See swem.wm.edu/scrc/ for further information and assistance.

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case

“Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” Case
Colleges In Virginia
Image by Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library
Shown here is a photograph from the "Unlocking the Diary" exhibit ,on display from December 3, 2010-March 31, 2011 in the third floor rotunda gallery inside Swem Library at the College of William and Mary.

The diaries in our exhibit span the 19th and 20th centuries, and our discussion of the diary brings us into the present day. Our first case, “What Counts?,” introduces you to the range of forms and styles of the diary. “Life in Transition,” our second case, demonstrates how the diary has been used throughout the life cycle by both women and men. “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia” looks specifically at diaries written by 19th-century Virginia women and our final case, “DiaTribe,” features diaries written by William & Mary students, from the first years of female enrollment at the College to the present day.

This exhibit was curated by students in Prof. Jennifer Putzi’s “Gender and the American Diary” class (WMST 490/ENGL 475) and the Special Collections Research Center staff. All of the diaries and artifacts featured in the exhibit are from the SCRC collections. Student Curators: Kaitlyn Adkins, Greg Benson, Kimberly Clark, Caitlin Finchum, Greg Glazier, Katelin Hill, Shaunna Jardines, Katherine Perkins, Cassie Adair, Ryan Morris, Kali Murphy, Taysha Pye, Sta’sean Ridley, Casey Sears, and Errin Tom; Exhibit design and installation: Chandi Singer, Burger Archives Assistant.

"Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia" Case

The diarists in this case represent a variety of experiences, yet are united by the geographical locality of their female authors. Spanning from Gloucester County to Winchester, these diarists wrote with a diversity of intention. Laura Lee, for instance, used her diary to construct a story of her life during the Civil War, perhaps wishing to preserve what she deemed significant events for future generations. Others, such as Jane Gay Robertson and Sally Lyons Taliferro, were less concerned with narrative, but rather allowed the journal’s daily structure to reflect the routines of their lives—documenting the passage of days and years. Cloe Tyler Whittle Green writes in her diary for more than sixty years, adjusting its shape and content to suit the changing life she lives. It is our hope that after viewing “Through Their Eyes: Diarists in Virginia,” you will have a more meaningful understanding of 19th-century women and their diaries in our state.

Diary of Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Diary of Sally Lyons Taliferro, 1859.
Loving daughter, Devoted wife, Tender mother, True friend. These are the words forever engraved on Sally Lyons Taliaferro’s tombstone. And while these designated titles may be dotingly accurate, it is important to remember that she was also a diarist. The short entries scribbled in pencil paint a portrait of Sally in terms of her daily activities. From domestic responsibilities on the Dunham Massie Plantation in Gloucester County, Virginia, to Sunday morning service at St. James, Sally’s diary is an account of the days through her eyes.

Diary of Laura Lee, March 11, 1862-April 4, 1864.
A staunch Confederate, Laura Lee kept a journal titled “A History of Our Captivity” to record her experiences of the Civil War. Winchester was hotly occupied territory and Lee witnessed firsthand the horrors of battle and demoralizing occupation of her hometown by Union forces. Her journal was often the only space where she could safely express her devotion to her cause, and the fierce optimism in her entries reflects the characteristic tenacity of the Southern Confederate.

Diary of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green, October 1, 1863-March 7, 1865.
The diaries of Cloe Tyler Whittle Green begin in 1861 when she was seventeen years old and continue through 1924, shortly before her death. Her diary is most notable for her description of life in the South during the Civil War and has been used by scholars to study the war as it was experienced by elite Southern white women.

Portraits of:

John Hipkins Bernard, 1792-1854.
Watercolor, undated
John Hipkins Bernard was the son of William Bernard and Fannie Hipkins Bernard. Bernard inherited “Rose Hill”, Caroline County, Virginia from his grandfather and renamed it “Gay Mont” in honor of his wife, Jane Gay Robertson Bernard.
Mss. Artifact collection. 65R54

Jane Gay Robertson Bernard, 1795-1852.
Reproduction of oil painting, undated.
Portrait is held in private collection.

Jane Gay Robertson, 1825-1840.
Jane Gay Robertson was most importantly a wife and a mother. She was also a woman of means who lived and entertained at “Gaymont” in Caroline County, Virginia. Her diary, written sporadically throughout her life, emphasizes daily life as well as the struggle for strength and faith after the death of a child.

Jane Gay Robertson Diary Transcription:

Fauquier Wht Sulphur Aug 1840

Arrived here Wednesday the 12 so far find the place dull and but little attraction reckon I must be losing my relish for such places I soon get very tired of the Ballroom go and sit a while in the Parlour with the old ladies then retire to my room for and take an hour as quiet reading as if at home where I should enjoy myself so much more usually I have pass’d my time at such places very pleasantly, but this season it is a perfect drag- and I hardly know how I shall get through 3 weeks- Sept 10 3 weeks have pass’d since writing the above part of the time we have had delightful society and a good deal of Enjoyment and had Mr. B been with me I should have liked it very much but I am getting very tired of the 2 month trips [illegible] from the home without him and the other children. Yet I will not [murmur] for how much has there been for me to be thankful for all have been well so well both here and at home and dear Gay too happily through her troubles that I ought to feel nothing but gratitude but I feel the want and the absence of near and dearer friends than these by whom I have been surrounded it only the home circle that can supply the heart, the mind, at a place of this sort becomes idle and dissipated, and I feel too clearly that I am no longer as young and as vibrant as I have been. Father turn my heart to thee and make me grateful for thy undeserved blessings.

Cloe Tyler Whittle Green Diary Transcription:

Thursday Night, October 1st, 1863 Norfolk

This morning, after a confinement of ten days I proceeded down to Lizzie Williams, with the assistance of Father’s arm. I felt very faintly when I reached there but after a while recovered from it. I asked Lizzie if she knew how Mr. Henry Talbot and Lizzie Wright carried on she said she learned they were to be married next week. I told her that Lizzie had sent me a message the other day, asking me to come down there that evening as she had something to tell me but that I had been prevented by my sickness from going. We were so curious to know what it was that I intended to try and get there before Father came for me; before I was able to do this however Patience came for me saying that Miss Mary Walker and Miss Bettie Poindexter had come to see me & so I started off home, as soon as Lizzie, who was so kind as to offer to come with me cd get ready. While Lizzie was getting ready Mrs. Williams came in and told me some very interesting facts about her son Carter’s interest in religion and his own words before the battle in which he was wounded that Religion took up more of his time & thoughts than any one was aware of.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Sunday, Mar 23rd.
All was quiet this morning, and we hoped would continue so. I went with Mary to Mr. Graham’s church, and when we came out we heard the firing had commenced about eleven, and it continued till two, then ceased till about four and then continued incessantly until dark. It was more distant than yesterday, supposed to be four miles from town towards Neill’s farm. Netsy and I went up to see Neel, and called at Mrs. Sherrard’s on our way home. There was the greatest confusion on the street, and they told us at Mr. Sherrard’s that Jackson was in the fight, and that one of his aides, Mr. Jenkin, had been captured and brought to town. We would not believe it, as we had heard two days ago, that they were 40 miles from here, and we heard that Ashby had been reinforced y militia. We went to the prayer meeting at Mr. William’s after tea, and on our return heard again the same tale, that our little army had been driven back, and were retreating in confusion, but we had had so much experience of the falsehood and fabrications of the Yankees that we doubt everything they say.

Laura Lee Diary Transcription:

Monday, Mar 24th.
O, this day of horrors! We were roused this morning by Mrs. Barton rushing into our room in a frantic state, telling us to wake up, and nerve ourselves to hear the worst—that Jackson had been defeated, and driven back, with fearful loss, that the town was filled with the wounded and dying, the jail and churches with prisoners, and that she was just sending out for Tom Marshall’s dead body. We were so stunned at first that we could not remember how excitable Mrs. Barton is, and how apt to believe the worst….

Sally Lyons Taliaferro Diary Transcriptions:

March, Sunday, 20, 1859.
Mild & bright, but very windy – Thermometer 54. Ware Church Sunday –

Monday, 21.
Damp & cloudy. Planted Irish potatoes. Part out [gladiolus?] Roots. A visit to Miss E.

Tuesday 22.
Mild & bright Ther. 59. Had my flower garden spaded – Sowed carrots & salsify – Planted onions. Paid a visit to Mrs. Dabney –

March, Wednesday, 23, 1859.
Bright but cool – delightful Ther. 54 – Went to Church – an excellent lecture from Mr. Mann. Mr. T. gone to Middlesex – Sowed Beets & Parsnips

Thursday, 24.
Rain & cloudy – Rain from 12 [o’clock?] Ther. 54. Bedded my Dahlia roots to make them sprout.

Friday, 25.
Damp & rainy Ther. 64. Spent the day at White Marsh – The garden beautiful. A very pleasant day –

March, Saturday, 26, 1859.
Clear & cold – Ther. 47. Planted third crop of peas – First crop 8 inches high. Mrs. R. spent the day & night. Mr. J. [whined?] at night.

Sunday, 27.
Mild & a little cloudy – Ther. 63. Went to Ware Church. Very good sermon from Mr. Mann.

Monday, 28.
Cloudy Ther. 59. Bedded Sweet Potatoes – planted Cucumbers & [illegible]. Small dinner party to Hally Lee. Met sister, Fanny & Mary.

From the Special Collections Research Center, Earl Gregg Swem Library at the College of William and Mary. See swem.wm.edu/scrc/ for further information and assistance.

ONC Programs and Their effect on the Safety Net Community

6/18/2010 – The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) authorized the creation and Federal funding of many important health information technology (HIT) programs. Currently, the Office of the National Coordinator for Healthcare Information Technology (ONC), directed by Dr. David Blumenthal is responsible for the coordination of many of these programs including the Regional Extensions Centers, the State Health Information Exchanges, and workforce and education training grant programs. These HIT programs provide Federal support and funding for new and existing healthcare providers and networks to help them and the healthcare community become meaningful users of electronic health records and HIT. These ONC grant programs and presenters include: The Regional Extension Center Programs; The State Health Information Exchanges (HIE) Programs; and Workforce and Education Development Programs. Presenters include Matt Kendal, the Office Provider Support and Adoption; Kerry Branick, Public Health Analyst, Office of State & Community Programs; and Chitra Moha the Director, Community College Workforce Division, Office of Provider Adoption Support. Embedded at: www.hrsa.gov
Video Rating: 5 / 5

Coalminer C.K. Parker, His Wife and 14-Year-Old Daughter Outside Their Home at Claypool Hill near Richlands, Virginia 04/1974

Coalminer C.K. Parker, His Wife and 14-Year-Old Daughter Outside Their Home at Claypool Hill near Richlands, Virginia 04/1974
Colleges In Virginia
Image by The U.S. National Archives
Original Caption: Coalminer C.K. Parker, His Wife and 14-Year-Old Daughter Outside Their Home at Claypool Hill near Richlands, Virginia. He Works for the Virginia-Pocahontas Coal Company as an Electrician His Father Was a Federal Coalmine Inspector in Virginia, and Her Father and Grandfather Were Miners in West Virginia. Parker Drives 18 Miles to Work, and Is Typical of the Miners in the Area Who Commute to Work. The Parkers Feel the Image of the Miner in a Cabin Is Wrong 04/1974

U.S. National Archives’ Local Identifier: 412-DA-13904

Photographer: Corn, Jack, 1929-

Subjects:
Richlands (Tazewell county, Virginia, United States) inhabited place
Environmental Protection Agency
Project DOCUMERICA

Persistent URL: arcweb.archives.gov/arc/action/ExternalIdSearch?id=556356

Repository: Still Picture Records Section, Special Media Archives Services Division (NWCS-S), National Archives at College Park, 8601 Adelphi Road, College Park, MD, 20740-6001.

For information about ordering reproductions of photographs held by the Still Picture Unit, visit: www.archives.gov/research/order/still-pictures.html

Reproductions may be ordered via an independent vendor. NARA maintains a list of vendors at www.archives.gov/research/order/vendors-photos-maps-dc.html

Access Restrictions: Unrestricted
Use Restrictions: Unrestricted

THE CHRISTMAS TALE OF A LIBERAL AND OTHERS OF THEIR ILK

THE CHRISTMAS TALE OF A LIBERAL AND OTHERS OF THEIR ILK
Virginia Homes For Sale
Image by SS&SS
By Jeffrey Lord on 12.21.10 @ 6:08AM

Requiem: Hymn or dirge for repose of the dead.
— Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary

Christmas, 1985.

Tom Wicker was upset.

The longtime New York Times political reporter turned columnist, an icon of liberal journalism in the day, was furious with President Ronald Reagan and his conservative administration. So he sat himself down during the Christmas season and penned a column titled "Requiem at Christmas."

That would be requiem, as in a hymn for the dead.

The subject of Wicker’s fury is worth a look this Christmas, twenty-five years later. His tirade was delivered as Reagan and the conservative movement were riding a wave of public popularity just a year after Reagan’s 49-state re-election over former Vice President Walter Mondale.

Why is this important enough to take another look? Because this tale of a supposed political Scrooge and the Christmas Past of 1985 provides a glimpse of Christmas Future for conservatives in 2011.

Wicker, you see, was waxing eloquent about a pond at his rural retreat in historic Rappahannock County, Virginia. There, some twenty years earlier during the height of Lyndon Johnson’s Great Society, the columnist built his pond on his own property. Perhaps understandably for a man who had spent his life as a liberal wordsmith, Wicker saw this moment of pond-building as "perhaps the single most constructive act of my life."

He also paid for the construction of the pond himself. Good man. A liberal who believes in private sector job creation.

But wait! Paid for it all himself? Then why in the world was Tom Wicker so furious at Ronald Reagan and conservatives?

What was this business of a "Requiem at Christmas"?

Well, there was actually more than a pond involved, you see. First, the government of the Commonwealth of Virginia arrived to stock Wicker’s pond "with large mouth bass, bluegills and channel catfish," the latter, Mr. Wicker assures us, "to establish a natural cycle" in his new private pond. But there was something else. There was also a dam. And instead of hiring a private sector contractor to design his dam, Mr. Wicker went somewhere else. Guesses, anyone?

That’s right. Instead of pumping his New York Times earnings into this task, Mr. Wicker turned to — you. You as in the taxpayers funding the federal government of the United States circa 1965. Specifically, in Wicker’s words, he turned to "Eddie Woods, the district agent for the Federal Soil Conservation Service, (who) designed the dam so well that the water eventually rose precisely to the little red flags he had set out to predict the shoreline of what he called a ‘water impoundment.’"

Said Wicker as his fury rose to what might be called the liberal anger impoundment shoreline of the Times print pond: "That’s only an infinitesimal incident in the annals of one of the Federal services dedicated to the American earth and to those who work and cherish it." Indeed, indeed. "Infinitesimal" is precisely the word for whatever federal tax dollars were spent on his pond. Then, without missing a beat or evidencing a solitary thread of irony, Wicker moves his readers from the pond-designing Federal Soil Conservation Service to another agency in the U.S. Department of Agriculture: the Agricultural Extension Service.

There, he fingers Scrooge. Otherwise known as President Ronald Reagan.

While we are left to ponder the fact that good ole Eddie Woods of the Federal Soil Conservation Service was spending his time designing Wicker’s private dam on Wicker’s private property, Wicker sharply points out: "Now Ronald Reagan wants to kill the Extension Service to save money; if the service is needed his aides say, let the states pay for it."

At this point, Wicker’s outrage at this horrifying bit of Dickensian Scroogery from the Reagan White House explodes.

"What effrontery!" he splutters. The nerve of Reagan. Trying to cut back the federal government by suggesting that if a service is so valuable to a state that state should pay for the service and leave the American taxpayer in other states alone.

On a roll, Wicker moves to another outrageous Reagan idea: privatizing the Federal Housing Administration. What a wretched, foolish idea snaps Mr. Wicker. Why, the whole reason for the FHA, a New Deal program from 1934, was that private institutions "failed to make housing loans available to low and middle-income people…in the first place." Translation: mortgages were not given to those who could not afford them.

Imagine that. Way back there in 1985 Mr. Wicker simply can’t imagine what could possibly go wrong with forcing the government’s way into the private housing market and making sure people who can’t afford mortgages get them from the federal government. The very idea of getting rid of such a program made Wicker’s bile rise. As with an unrelated Agriculture Department program, this concept of getting rid of government programs is absurd on its face to Wicker and the Times. Wicker scorns Reagan, saying the President and his conservative policy advisers "in their mania for privatization and profit think they can make a buck on the sale, thus reducing the deficit."

Move ahead to 2008, August, specifically. Mr. Wicker is now presumably enjoying his retirement at the ripe-young age of 82. Which is to say one month before the subprime mortgage crisis explodes in the middle of the presidential campaign. Over in the pages of Forbes magazine, reporters Joshua Zumbrun and Maurna Desmond are waving something that might be recognized as a larger version of "the little red flags" planted by a government agent to predict the shoreline of Wicker’s now 23-year old government designed pond. This red flag is financial in nature and is being waved to alert readers that, well, a tidal wave is surging toward America’s financial shoreline. Says Forbes:

Watch your wallet.

Heralded as a savior in reversing the mortgage market’s woes, risks to the agency could cost taxpayers dearly, says one mortgage expert, as Washington morphs the FHA from a helping hand for low-income home buyers into a back door bailout for the imploding mortgage industry.…

"Nobody is talking is talking about it, but in three years the FHA bailout is going to cost taxpayers at least 0 billion dollars," said Guy Cecala, a mortgage industry insider and publisher of Inside Mortgage Finance. "Everybody on Capitol Hill recognizes that there will be significant costs, but they’re trying to keep the housing spigot open even if it will bring in some bad water down the road."

Ahhh yes. Red flags and bad water. Says the publication Mortgage Loan.com later after the tidal wave has crashed ashore and started financially pulling Americans financially underwater en masse:

"The FHA has committed and tapped 0 billion to ramp up the Hope for Homeowners program."

Which is to say Forbes underestimated things.

Mr. Wicker’s philosophy, in short, more or less had its way with America. There was no requiem for liberal government spending in spite of Wicker’s protestations and snappy column title. The significance of the Reagan presidency — and later the Gingrich Congress — was to red flag the shoreline of financial consequences for the endless parade of tax-and-spend politicians of all stripes who swarmed Washington after 1932. This disaster, decades in the making, would take decades to resolve. Reagan’s administration as the president himself came to realize was merely step one — recognition of the problem and beginning to apply the brakes. There were politicians — of both parties — utterly heedless of the obvious fact that even the highest taxes (if you were a liberal) or the most advanced free market policies (if you were a conservative) could not keep pace if the reality was unceasing, massive spending on everything from today’s Obamacare to the pittance that was Tom Wicker’s Great Society-era government designed dam.

This Christmas, as economies in places like Greece, Ireland, and Portugal struggle because they listened to and were run by the ideas of their own Tom Wickers, the holiday for millions really is going to be downright Dickensian.

But — thankfully — this is America. A country which has a magnificent heritage of self-reliance that, reports to the contrary, is not dead yet. There are millions of Americans who now realize the direct, very stark connection between their joblessness, the almost eighty years of so-called government "services" like designing dams for the rural retreat of a well-to-do New York Times columnist — and the federal deficit. Not to mention the role played by all those subprime mortgages
Twenty-five Christmases later, Tom Wicker’s dam is symbolic of exactly what is dragging down the American economy.

Too much government. Too much government. Too much government. Not enough money. Not enough money. Not enough money.

There are only two ways out of this mess that has been some 80-years in the making. First is economic growth — putting an end to the politics of class warfare and envy that liberals like New York’s Congressman Anthony Weiner employ to keep their own middle-class constituents economically under-water for political benefit.

And …. cutting spending. Dealing straight-up with not just the tax code but health care costs, entitlements and discretionary spending like that responsible for designing Tom Wicker’s dam. Incoming House Budget Committee chairman Paul Ryan’s Roadmap for America’s Future, discussed here, along with repealing Obamacare, will be and should be one of the first items on the agenda of House Republicans when they take over the majority in January.

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, cited on MSNBC by Joe "No Labels" Scarborough, has made the point in a recent CBS 60 minutes interview. Says Christie: "The day of reckoning has arrived…the credit card has maxed out…it’s over. It’s over."

Yes, it is.

But when the Mother of All Budget Battles arrives in March (the expiration date for the just passed "Continuing Resolution" that freezes spending at the modest (??!!) current level of .1 trillion) expect House Republicans, GOP Senators, and every conservative from presidential candidates to talk radio hosts to you to be called, in so many words, Scrooge.

What you’re really hearing, in the inevitable fashion so bluntly described by Governor Christie, is at last — is it possible? — a genuine requiem for limitless government spending.

At which point it will do well to remember that twenty-five Christmases ago one columnist in the New York Times crystallized the argument nicely in a fashion he could not foresee.

How did we get to this day of reckoning of which Governor Christie speaks? How could this country and a number of its states possibly be edging to bankruptcy?

By borrowing the money to pay for Tom Wicker’s dam.

And a lot more besides.

Merry Christmas.

spectator.org/archives/2010/12/21/requiem-for-a-columnist…