Things are being rearranged in the archives these days. As new collections come in to be processed, some boxes from the workspace in the basement are moved upstairs, which means that other boxes already on the upstairs shelves have to be moved out to the Library Service Center. I don’t really like this very much, incidentally, since I’m lazy and now will have to relearn where things are located. A happier result of all this commotion is that some things have bubbled up to the surface that I might never have looked at otherwise.
One of these things is a small scrapbook that belonged to Joan Wilson, the daughter of Rice’s first physics professor H.A. Wilson. There isn’t much Rice-related material in it, as it mainly covers the years she attended St. Mary’s College (now a high school) in Raleigh, North Carolina. I did discover, though, tucked away in a two small sleeves, a couple photos of the Wilson family at home. This is pretty good–we don’t have many pictures of H.A. Wilson and I found two more nice ones in one day.
The pictures are completely unidentified. Apart from Professor Wilson and his wife, I don’t really know who anyone is, not even Joan (although I believe she is the young woman standing on the left in the photo above). I’m also a bit adrift about dating these pictures. They’re quite outside my usual experience. I do know that the Wilsons moved in to that house in 1945. (In what has to be an upset it’s still standing, between two much newer behemoths.)
Anyone have any thoughts?
One more thing in the scrapbook made me laugh:
Honor or not, I opened it. Nothing incendiary in there.
Bonus: As I looked through the scrapbook, it dawned on me that I had seen a photo of Joan Wilson in a different collection in the Woodson. Here’s a beautiful portrait of her done by Vera Prasilova Scott, the wife of Rice physicist Arthur Scott and a stunning portrait photographer.