Stereoviews on Plain Orange Mounts

[North Wing Parlor]

History

Many of these stereoviews came to me as a group. They had once belonged to Mary Ellis 1855 and she gifted them to someone else ("Faith S.") in 1911, according to her inscriptions on the back. (It sounds as if Faith had a husband named Philip, and a daughter Philippa, so it shouldn't be too hard to track her down.)

Updated February 17, 2003: Philippa Smith Brown contacted me after finding my website and her name on this page. Her mother was Faith Stacy Smith 1926, and she and her brother Philip grew up at 89 College Street. While they were still children, they became friends with Mary Ellis, running errands for her and listening to stories of her travels around the world. Philippa, too, grew up on 89 College Street in her grandfather Frank Stacy's home, surrounded by and immersed in college history and happenings.

Philippa and I had a wonderful chat by phone. I'm so glad she unravelled the mystery of the inscriptions on the back of these stereoviews for me - I couldn't figure out how Faith could get stereoviews from Miss Ellis in 1911, and still be alive in 1981! In fact, Faith lived to be 95 years old, and died in 1998. Philip lived to be 100!

The Images

All cards are available with both front and back scans, and comments about what is written on the front or back, either by the user or by the publisher, are included below.

North Wing Parlor
front A parlor scene.
back In ancient writing: A set of unclear initials ("N. V. P."?) In pencil: "My room at the Sem - North Wing Parlor - after I left Sept 1867 - July 1872 M. Ellis" and at the bottom: "Faith"

North Wing Parlor
front Duplicate view, but I kept it because it's in better condition. Inscription on the reverse: "South-wing Parlor in old Seminary Building -" but the writer was mistaken. This is definitely the north wing parlor. The south wing parlor had a different floor pattern and wallpaper.

View of the Cast-Room in the Museum
front A view of skeletons in the natural history museum, which occupied a whole floor of Williston Hall. The large skeleton is facing left. Plain back.

View of the Cast-Room in the Museum
front A view of fossils in the natural history museum. The large skeleton is now facing front, so we can see what was on the wall behind it.
back "Museum in Williston Hall / Room of Casts - Megatherium"

View of the Cast-Room in the Museum
front A view of skeletons in the natural history museum. The large skeleton is now photographed from behind, so we can see what was on the wall in front of it. Plain back. This photo was used in the July 1896 issue of Demorest's Family Magazine, in an article about Mount Holyoke.

The 1875 Church
front View of the brick chuch built to replace the third meetinghouse, which burned down in 1875. It also was destroyed by fire in 1894, and the current First Congregational Church stands in its place. Plain back.

Lab Room
front Pillared room with laboratory tables. This looks similar to another interior shot I've seen of the Seminary building, so I'm guessing it's a view in there. Inscription on the back, in very faint ancient writing: "Lab Room"

Front Hall
front Stairwell view. The arches are similar to window shapes in Williston Hall, so I'm guessing it's a view in there. Inscription on the back, in very faint ancient writing: "Front Hall"

Lecture Room
front A view of a lecture hall from the professor's point of view.
back Inscription: "Lecture room Williston Hall South Hadley Mass. 1876"

Stereoview of the Seminary and 1870 Library
front The seminary and the library built in 1870. An unusual view from the rear of the buildings, with the connector between the two buildings clearly visible. Again, very similar to another stereoview I have in my collection that has been identified. Plain back.

Williston/Seminary View
front Williston Hall to the left, the back of the Seminary building on the right.
back "Mary Ellis gave me this 1911/Miss Shattuck in shawl (no hat)/Rear N. E. view of Seminary, front entrance to former Williston Hall/Old Black Walnut tree, right hand corner f.s." The black walnut and Williston Hall were both destroyed in 1917, which means this inscription was written sometime after that.

Art Museum
front An interior view of the art museum, lit by windows above, with chairs around the perimeter. I don't know what building this would have been in.
back In very faded ancient writing: "Art gallery" In more recent writing: "Note: Bierstadts' Hetch-Hetchy Canon painting - still in present Art Gallery (1981) fs"

Dining Hall in the Seminary Building
front Plain orange mount. Inscription on plain lavender back: "Dining Hall So Hadley" and "Bliss"

1870 Library Interior
front Women reading in the 1870 library. Lavender back.

1870 Library Interior
front Women reading in the 1870 library. Lavender back. Inscription on the back: "Concord Library" - clearly misidentified.

1870 Library Interior
front Women reading in the 1870 library. Lavender back. Inscription on back: "Library. Mt. Hol. Sem."

Mary Lyon's Grave
front Mary Lyon's grave.
back Inscription: "Tomb of Mary Lyon. So. Hadley Mass" "Inscription on oppo. side of tomb. 'There is nothing in the universe that I fear but that I shall not know all my duty, or shall fail to do it' M. Lyon." Lavender back.

Pump House and Bridge
front Pump house and bridge; two women stand on the bridge; Prospect Hill visible in the background.
back Inscription: "Wheel house east of Seminary which raises water for house. Bridge stands east & west." Lavender back.

View on Stony Brook
front View on Stony Brook, foot of Mt. Holyoke Seminary grounds.

The 1875 Church
front View of the brick chuch built to replace the third meetinghouse, which burned down in 1875. It also was destroyed by fire in 1894, and the current First Congregational Church stands in its place.
back "New Church So. Hadley"

The pre-1875 Church
front View of the third meetinghouse church, which burned down in 1875. Inscription on the reverse: "Old Church, So. Hadley, Mass. burned, Jan. 1875. Mrs. Wilcox."

Seminary Lecture Room
front View of pews in a school room.
back Pencil inscription: "Lecture Room. Mt. Holyoke Seminary" Also marked "Mt. Holyoke Seminary" in modern handwriting, most probably a dealer.

Seminary Classroom
front View of 22 students seated in long wooden benches in a classroom. Inscription on reverse: "Sem. Hall, Mt. Hol. Sem. / Florence Parker #1 - standing 1-2-3-4-5-6"

Seminary Classroom
front View of 22 students seated in long wooden benches in a classroom. A plaque on the wall has the class of 1874's motto on it. Inscription on reverse: "View of Sem. Hall fr. platform"

Seminary Gymnasium
front View of 20 students standing in rows with hand weights. Two instructors are behind them. Inscription on reverse: "Gymnasium, Mt. Hol. Sem."

Seminary Gymnasium
front View of about 17 students in a ring in the Seminary Building's gymnasium. An instructor appears in the back at an organ or piano. Perhaps a dance class?
back Pencil inscription: "Gymnasium Hall Mt. Holyoke Fem Sem." Ink inscription: "Presented to M. A. Capen by Florence Capen."

Williston Hall
front View of Williston Hall. Inscription on the reverse: "Williston Hall built in 1876 burned in 1917"

North Wing Parlor
front View of the north wing parlor that is from a different angle than the view above. Inscription on the reverse: "The north wing parlor at the Sem. South Hadley Mass."

View from east and rear
front View from the now-wooded area behind Prospect Hall. Inscription on the reverse: "Mount Holyoke Female Seminary, South Hadley, Mass. View from the east & rear."

View from Prospect Hill
front View from the now-wooded area behind Prospect Hall. Inscription on the reverse: "Mt. H. Sem. from Prospect Hill."

Bridge
front Stone bridge; I am not sure where this is. I don't think it's the old stone arch bridge on Park Street. Plain lavender back.

Pump House and Bridge
front Pump house and bridge; two women stand on the bridge, one on the left bank. Plain lavender back.

Pump House and Bridge
front Pump house and bridge; two women sit on the right bank; Bolton farm visible in the background. Plain lavender back.

Women under a Tree
front Large tree with twenty-two women seated and standing under it. Plain lavender back.

Prospect Hill
front Five women seated on Prospect Hill, overlooking lower lake. Plain lavender back.

Seminary Building and 1870 Library
front Library on the left, Seminary building on the right. Inscription on plain lavender back: "Mt Holyoke Sem. So Hadley"


These next few are on slightly smaller mounts. They are only 3 1/4" high, rather than 3 7/8" high.

Pump House and Bridge
front Two women and a man, standing on the old wooden bridge next to the pump house. Bolton farm and fence visible in the background where Willits stands today.
back A. E. Alden, A. J. Alden, photographers, Springfield, Mass. "Views from Stereoscopic size to largest made. Residences, Churches, Public Buildings, Mills, Streets, and all prominent points of interest. Orders solicited."

Prospecting on Mt Holyoke
front "Prospecting on Mt. Holyoke" Seven women, two girls, and a man enjoying a clear day on the mountain.
back "Views in the Connecticut Valley. F. H. Putnam & Co., Publishers, East Hampton, Massachusetts."

Seminary Building
front A view from the north looking south. It appears the 1870 library has not been built yet.
back A. E. Alden, A. J. Alden, photographers, Springfield, Mass. "Views from Stereoscopic size to largest made. Residences, Churches, Public Buildings, Mills, Streets, and all prominent points of interest. Orders solicited."

Class of 1869
front An unidentified view, but I have a similar stereoview in my collection that has this identified as the class of 1869 on the Seminary steps.
back A. E. Alden, A. J. Alden, photographers, Springfield, Mass. "Views from Stereoscopic size to largest made. Residences, Churches, Public Buildings, Mills, Streets, and all prominent points of interest. Orders solicited."

Old Mill and Dam
front I believe this is the waterfall at Upper Lake.
back A. E. Alden, A. J. Alden, photographers, Springfield, Mass. "Views from Stereoscopic size to largest made. Residences, Churches, Public Buildings, Mills, Streets, and all prominent points of interest. Orders solicited."

Titan's Pass
front Man in horse-drawn carriage, looking back over his shoulder at the camera. "No. 228 Titan's Pass, on road from Hockanum to So. Hadley." Printed on the reverse: "Views in the Connecticut Valley. F. H. Putnam & Co., Publishers, East Hampton, ... Massachusetts."