Collections: S

Shutesbury (Mass.)

Shutesbury (Mass.) 250th Anniversary Collection

1961-2014
1 box 0.5 linear feet
Call no.: MS 957

The town of Shutesbury was founded as “Roadtown” in 1735 and was incorporated as a town in the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1761. The town celebrated its 250th Anniversary in 2011 and planned a year’s worth of events, lectures, and celebrations.

This collection comprises the flyers and notes for several of these events and includes commemorative albums and town histories. A perfect example of a small New England town, these materials are a snapshot of the history of Shutesbury and a celebration of the town’s legacy.

Subjects

Shutesbury (Mass.)--History.Shutesbury 250th Anniversary Steering Committee.

Types of material

Correspondence.Flyers.
Sidney Monthly Meeting (Society of Friends)

Sidney Monthly Meeting (Society of Friends) Records

1791-1915
1 vol., 1 folder 0.2 linear feet
Call no.: MS 902 S536

Quaker meeting for worship began in Sidney, Maine, in 1795, under the care of Vassalboro Monthly Meeting and advanced to preparative meeting status in 1800, before finally being set off as a monthly meeting in 1802. One of a number of meetings established in the Kennebec River Valley in the decades after the American Revolution, Sidney became the parent of worship groups in several nearby towns at the turn of the nineteenth century, the most successful of which was the one in Fairfield, which was set off from Sidney as a monthly meeting in 1911. Sidney was laid down to Winthrop Monthly Meeting in 1932.

The records for Sidney Monthly Meeting held in SCUA consist of a single volume each of minutes from the Women’s meeting (1791-1809) and from Ministry and Counsel (1907-1915). The bulk of the records for the meeting are held in the collections of the Maine Historical Society.

Gift of New England Yearly Meeting of Friends, April 2016

Subjects

Quakers--MaineSidney (Me.)--Religious life and customsSociety of Friends--Maine

Contributors

New England Yearly Meeting of Friends

Types of material

Minutes (Administrative records)
Siggins, Betsy, 1939-

Betsy Siggins Papers

1958-2018
6 boxes 6 linear feet
Call no.: MS 1022
Depiction of Betsy Siggins, ca.1959. Photo by Alan Klein
Betsy Siggins, ca.1959. Photo by Alan Klein

A key figure in the New England folk revival of the 1960s, Betsy Siggins (nee Minot) entered Boston University in the fall 1958 just at the music was taking off. Along with her college friend Joan Baez, she soon left school for the lure of the bohemian musical scene in Cambridge. At the age of 20, Betsy married the banjo player for the Charles River Valley Boys, Bob Siggins, who was also a founding member of Club 47, the most important venue for folk music in the region. For musicians from Baez and Bob Dylan to Jim Kweskin, Eric Von Schmidt, and Jim Rooney Club 47 was a career launching pad and despite the segregation of the era, it was a place where white northern audiences first encountered African American and blues musicians. Siggins worked full time at Club 47, filling a variety of jobs from office work to waitress to art gallery manager, eventually becoming program officer, arranging the schedules for musicians booked by Rooney or Byron Linardos. After Club 47 closed in 1968, Siggins went on to work for a succession of not for profit organizations, including the Smithsonian Festival of American Folklife and for programs for the homeless and poor.

The Siggins Collection contains important materials on Club 47 and its successor, Club Passim, including business records, ephemera, clippings, and some remarkable scrapbooks featuring performers such Joan Baez, Bob Dylan, and Richard Farina. The collection contains dozens of photographs (many taken by Charlie Frizzell), showing Siggins, her friends, and musicians at home, at Club 47, and at folk festivals in Newport, Brandeis, and Monterey. Of particular note in the collection is a remarkable series of 27 reel to reel tapes of performances at Club 47 featuring John Hammond, Doc Watson, Bill Monroe, Eric Von Schmidt, Jim Rooney, Jeff and Maria Muldaur, Jackie Washington, the Charles River Valley Boys, Joan Baez, and others. Additional material on Siggins and the Minot family was retained by the Cambridge Historical Society.

Transferred from Cambridge Historical Society, April 2018

Subjects

Club 47 (Cambridge, Mass.)Dylan, Bob, 1941-Folk music--New England
Simon, Peter, 1947-2018

Peter Simon Collection

ca. 1945-2016
10 boxes 20 linear feet
Call no.: PH 009
Depiction of Peter Simon in mirror photographing Jennie Blackton at the Bitter End Cafe, 1968
Peter Simon in mirror photographing Jennie Blackton at the Bitter End Cafe, 1968

Peter Simon’s life and work as a photojournalist follows the quintessential arc of the counterculture, baby boom generation. The son of Richard Simon, founder of Simon and Schuster, Peter grew up in the New York City suburb of Riverdale and attended Boston University, graduating in 1969. While a student at BU, he began documenting the political turmoil in the US when he became photo editor for the radical student newspaper, the BU News, and later as a press photographer for the Cambridge Phoenix. In 1970, Simon left Boston to form Tree Frog Farm, a back-to-the-land commune in Guilford, Vermont, and after leaving there in 1972, he immersed himself in the New Age, forming a close relationship with spiritual leader Ram Dass. Among the most constant threads connecting his work throughout these changes was music. Simon’s sisters, Carly, Lucy, and Joanna have all been involved in music, and through a partnership with longtime friend Stephen Davis and his association with Rolling Stone magazine, Simon enjoyed unique access to many of the most important musicians of his generation. He spent time on the road with the Grateful Dead; went backstage and at home with Led Zeppelin, Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, and many others. His early forays into the world of reggae with Bob Marley and other Jamaican recording artists resulted in one of his nine books, Reggae Bloodlines. Simon’s other photographic interests are as wide-ranging as his background. A visitor to Martha’s Vineyard since the 1950s and a resident since 1974, his work reflects the changes and cultural richness of that island; his family’s friendship with Jackie Robinson has driven his lifelong documentation of baseball, and he is in high demand for portraits, weddings, and other work for hire.

The Peter Simon Collection houses the original negatives for Simon’s complete body of work as a photo journalist and also includes many photographs taken by his father Richard, an avid amateur photographer, which documents the Simon family and life in Riverdale and Stamford, Connecticut, where the family had a summer home.

Subjects

Boston (Mass.)--PhotographsCommunal living--VermontCounterculture--United States--20th centuryMartha's Vineyard (Mass.)--PhotographsMusicians--PhotographsSimon, Carly--PhotographsVietnam War, 1961-1975--Protest movements

Contributors

Simon, Richard L. (Richard Leo), 1899-1960

Types of material

Photographs
Sirius Community

Sirius Community Collection

1979-2003
2 boxes 3 linear feet
Call no.: MS 835

Founded in September 1978, Sirius is an intentional community in Shutesbury, Mass., built on four foundational pillars: spiritual, ecological, communitarian, and educational. Established by former members of the Scottish Findhorn Community, Sirius is rooted in a non-sectarian spirituality and practices consensus in the community governance process and in their shared vision of an ecologically sustainable future.

The Sirius collection contains a nearly complete run of the commune newsletter along with a selection of fliers and brochures about the community, and a small number of newsclippings and photographs.

Subjects

Communal living--MassachusettsSustainability

Types of material

Newsletters
Sisson, Charles

Charles Sisson Diary

1864 Feb.-1865 June
1 vol. 0.1 linear feet
Call no.: MS 1083

At the time of the American Civil War, Charles Sisson attended the Friends Boarding School in Providence, R.I. An active member of the Society of Friends, Sisson was apparently a dedicated student and avid member of the literary society. After graduation, he pursued an enormously successful career in the textile industry, becoming a founder of the Hope Webbing Company in 1883, one of the nation’s largest narrow-fabric manufacturers.

Kept by teenaged Charles Sisson, this diary includes regular entries describing a student’s daily life at the Friends Boarding School in Providence R.I. In addition to occasional details on coursework, Sisson describes his social activities in some depth, and often with some humor. With rare exceptions, the larger currents of the Civil War served as little more than a backdrop, although the future of liberated slaves appeared as a topic for debate at the Lyceum, and marching was taken up as an activity by the students.

Gift of I. Eliot Wentworth, June 2019

Subjects

High school students--Rhode Island--ProvidenceMoses Brown SchoolProvidence (R.I.)--History--19th centuryQuakers--Rhode Island

Types of material

Diaries
Siteman, Stephen

Stephen Siteman Papers

1942-1998
9 boxes 4.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 503

A member of the Post War World Council, an ardent pacifist, and anti-imperialist, Stephen Siteman was a long-time member of the Socialist Party of America, serving for seventeen years as secretary to the party’s leader Norman Thomas. In his late teens, Siteman was imprisoned as a conscientious objector during World War II. Although he was later pardoned, his time as a prisoner led him into active involvement in prison reform and the peace movement.

During his long involvement in the Socialist Party, Siteman collected a large quantity of material relating to important socialist issues, including Socialist Reform, the peace movement, conscientious objection, and prison reform. The collection also includes a small selection of Siteman’s personal correspondence with Frank Zeidler, former Socialist mayor of Milwaukee, and the novelist Mark Harris.

Subjects

Conscientious objectorsDemocratic Socialists of AmericaPacifists--United StatesPeace movements--United StatesPrison reformersPrisons--United StatesSocialists--United StatesThomas, Norman, 1884-1968War Resisters League of AmericaWorld War, 1939-1945

Contributors

Harris, Mark, 1922-2007Siteman, StephenZeidler, Frank P
Skinner, Kenneth G.

Kenneth G. Skinner Collection

ca.1908-1928
1 box 0.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 1027
Depiction of Spiritualist Church and Lucy Parker's house, ca.1908
Spiritualist Church and Lucy Parker's house, ca.1908

Granted in 1737 and incorporated in 1754, Greenwich, Mass., was the first town in the Swift River Valley settled by Europeans. Sitting astride the East and Middle branches of the Swift River and forming the eastern boundary of Hampshire County, Greenwich was primarily an agricultural town with light manufacturing and, beginning in the later nineteenth century, an active tourist trade. The town’s population peaked at over 1,100 early in the nineteenth century, declining slowly thereafter.

The photographic postcards in this collection all relate to the Quabbin town of Greenwich and were originally housed in an album of uncertain provenance. Primarily “real photo” postcards and dating between approximately 1908 and 1928, they were labeled by a knowledgeable, but unknown person at a later date to identify the houses, roads, stores, and views. Unlike many of the commercial postcards of the day, they present a very down-to-earth view of the town, its rocky fields, mills, houses and stores, and its summer hotels.

Subjects

Dwellings--Massachusetts--Greenwich--PhotographsGeneral stores--Massachusetts--Greenwich--PhotographsGreenwich (Mass.)--PhotographsQuabbin Reservoir Region (Mass.)--PhotographsSwift River Valley (Mass.)--Photographs

Types of material

Photographic postcardsPhotographs
Slade Family

Slade Family Papers

1776-1892 Bulk: 1838-1845
1 box 0.5 linear feet
Call no.: MS 934
Depiction of Caroline Talbert
Caroline Talbert

The children of a textile investor, Mary and David Slade were students at the Friends’ Boarding School in Providence, R.I., during the late 1830s. Both died tragically of consumption at a young age, David at 24 and Mary at 28.

The Slade family papers consist largely of the personal correspondence of the ill-starred David and Mary Slade, dating from and just after their time as students at the Friends’ Boarding School in Providence, R.I. Written primarily by schoolmates and friends, with a few letters from David and Mary themselves, the letters include some fine examples of the intimacy of young people, with their sights set on their schooling or beginning to make their life.

Gift of New England Yearly Meeting of Friends, 2016

Subjects

Friends' Boarding School (Providence, R.I.)Moses Brown SchoolQuakers--Massachusetts--19th centuryStudents--Rhode Island--19th centuryWomen--Education--19th century

Contributors

Fry, John E.Slade, David, 1819-1844Slade, Mary, 1821-1850Stevens, Emily D.Wing, Rebecca A.

Types of material

CorrespondenceDiariesExercise books
Sleeveless Theatre Company

Sleeveless Theater Company Records

1989-1996
1 box 1.5 linear feet
Call no.: MS 1087
Depiction of Channer, Nugent, Halpin and Futtner (from left), ca.1992. Photo by K.D.Halpin
Channer, Nugent, Halpin and Futtner (from left), ca.1992. Photo by K.D.Halpin

The Sleeveless Theatre Company was an innovative political theater company with a strong feminist slant. Founded in 1989 by UMass Amherst alumnae Lisa Channer, Maureen Futtner, K. D. Halpin, and Kate Nugent, and Smith alumna, Terianne Falcone, Sleeveless was an actor-centered, highly collaborative ensemble company that wielded humor in staging original, socially- and politically-charged theater. Based in Northampton, Mass., the company toured nationally and internationally, presenting sometimes controversial works on themes ranging from reproductive rights to the Gulf War. As they evolved, they refined their mission to focus on telling stories about the lives and perspectives of women, but under the strains of growing within their collaborative model, they made the decision to disband in 1997.

In addition to minutes for the company’s formative years (1989-1992), the records of Sleeveless Theater Company include a small selection of production notes, background research, fliers, reviews and newsclippings, and a handful of publicity photos. Among the plays represtened are Womb for Rent (1989), War: The Comedy (1991), The F Word (1992), Emily Unplugged (1995), and Mill America (1996).

Gift of Lisa Channer, Maureen Futtner, K. D. Halpin, and Kate Nugent, June 2019 (2019-093).

Subjects

Feminist theater--Massachusetts--NorthamptonTheatrical companies--Massachusetts--Northampton

Types of material

Fliers (Printed matter)Photographs