HARRISON, EMILY STEWART, 1874-1973.
Emily Stewart Harrison papers, 1829-1979

Emory University

Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library

Atlanta, GA 30322

404-727-6887

rose.library@emory.edu

Permanent link: http://pid.emory.edu/ark:/25593/8zdmx


Descriptive Summary

Creator: Harrison, Emily Stewart, 1874-1973.
Title: Emily Stewart Harrison papers, 1829-1979
Call Number:Manuscript Collection No. 556
Extent: 19.5 linear feet (35 boxes), 2 oversized papers boxes and 1 oversized papers folder (OP), 2 extraoversized papers (XOP), and AV Masters: .25 linear feet (1 box)
Abstract:Papers of Atlanta journalist, educator Emily Stewart Harrison. The collection contains personal and business correspondence, writings, printed material, legal and financial records, photographs and an audiocassette tape related to Emily and the Harrison family.
Language:Materials entirely in English.

Administrative Information

Restrictions on Access

Special restrictions apply: Use copies have not been made for audiovisual material in this collection. Researchers must contact the Rose Library at least two weeks in advance for access to these items. Collection restrictions, copyright limitations, or technical complications may hinder the Rose Library's ability to provide access to audiovisual material.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

All requests subject to limitations noted in departmental policies on reproduction.

Related Materials in This Repository

The History Class of 1884, the Every Saturday Club collection, the Asa Griggs Candler papers, the Druid Hills Civic Association records, the William Crooks Pauley papers, and the Raoul family papers.

Source

Gift, 1967 with subsequent additions.

Custodial History

In May 1976 Eleonore Raoul Greene, an activist in the woman suffrage movement in Georgia and in the nation and the first woman graduate of Emory University's Lamar School of Law, gave her papers to Robert W. Woodruff Library. After being processed these papers were titled the Raoul Family Papers. Among the papers that were transferred from Mrs. Greene's home on Lullwater Road in Atlanta in 1976 were a number of materials relating to Emily Harrison, whose sister, Courtenay, had married Eleonore Raoul's brother, Loring. These materials were separately accessioned June 29, 1977 as the Emily Stewart Harrison Papers.

Citation

[after identification of item(s)], Emily Stewart Harrison papers, Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library, Emory University.


Collection Description

Biographical Note

Atlanta journalist and educator Emily Stewart Harrison (1874-1973), was born and reared in Atlanta, Georgia. Her father, Z.D. Harrison, served for many years as Clerk of the Georgia Supreme Court, and her mother, Laura Hendree Harrison, participated in Atlanta's cultural and educational life. Emily Harrison graduated from Washington Seminary in Atlanta (ca. 1890). She toured and studied in Europe for several months and attended college classes in Boston before beginning her career in journalism and teaching. After almost twenty years in these professions (1894-1913), she returned to school to earn an undergraduate degree from the University of Chicago (1915) and graduate degrees from the University of Georgia (1918) and Columbia University's Teachers College (1923) where she studied under John Dewey.

She began her professional career as a journalist editing the Southern Educational Journal (1894-1901) and the woman's department of the Atlanta Daily News (1901/1902). Turning from journalism to teaching in 1902, she joined the faculty of the State Normal School in Athens, Georgia. After nine, somewhat turbulent, years there, she left to chair the English Department at Shorter College in Rome, Georgia (1911-1913). Poor health forced her resignation from Shorter. Thereafter she returned to active teaching only briefly. Instead she pursued her own education and became involved with various progressive educational efforts.

Growing up in a family active in public life, Harrison became acquainted early in her career with ideas about educational reform that were current in the progressive movement. She was convinced that new kinds of schools should be based on philosopher John Dewey's theories that children learn by doing rather than by memorizing. After receiving her undergraduate degree, she involved herself with various progressive schools around the country and worked actively with two such institutions (Tallulah Falls Industrial School in Georgia and the Out-of-Door School in Florida). She also renewed her interest in journalism as a way to advance progressive theories. She contributed regularly to various newspapers about educational affairs and frequently asked newspaper executives to establish educational or women's departments under her direction.

For a brief period, Emily Harrison was interested in working with the American Red Cross. Her sister Fanneal (b. 1882), an avowed social and political reformer, spent several years during and after World War I with the Red Cross in Austria, Czechoslovakia, Poland and France. The Red Cross did not hire Emily Harrison, but she did join her sister in Czechoslovakia for several months in 1921.

Harrison's interest in progressive education focused on three specific institutions. In 1924 when Fanneal had returned from Europe, she and Emily founded and operated the progressive Out-of-Door School in Sarasota, Florida. After a short time, Emily withdrew from active participation at the school and returned to Atlanta to care for her aging parents.

The second focus of Harrison's educational efforts was her plan to establish a "school in the woods" at Fernbank, her family's estate near Atlanta. Even as a young girl Harrison dedicated herself to the preservation of this 65-70 acre piece of virgin forest. Later as an educator, she planned to bring her love for Fernbank together with her educational theories in a school she would found there.

Through membership in women's organizations, particularly the Georgia Federation of Women's Clubs, Harrison involved herself with a third educational institution that was based on progressive ideas. The Tallulah Falls Industrial School in Tallulah Falls, Georgia, was founded (1909) and supported by the Georgia Federation. Many Atlanta women, including Emily Harrison, spent a great deal of time at the school working with the children and their families.

Harrison's mother died in 1931 and her father in 1935. The 1938 establishment of Fernbank, Inc., (a non-profit corporation founded to purchase and hold the land) had ensured the preservation of the Harrison property, but it also made the building of a progressive school there less possible. After that date Harrison abandoned her plans for a Fernbank School. In 1942 and 1943, she wrote many schools across the country, offering to teach English and the practical arts of cooking and gardening. During the following years she continued to live at Fernbank and took an active interest in what Fernbank, Inc., planned for the property. She diedSeptember 3, 1973 at age 99. She is buried in Westview Cemetery in Atlanta.

Atlanta journalist and educator Emily Stewart Harrison (1874-1973), was born and reared in Atlanta, Georgia. Her father, Z.D. Harrison, served for many years as Clerk of the Georgia Supreme Court, and her mother, Laura Hendree Harrison, participated in Atlanta's cultural and educational life. Emily Harrison graduated from Washington Seminary in Atlanta (ca. 1890). She toured and studied in Europe for several months and attended college classes in Boston before beginning her career in journalism and teaching. After almost twenty years in these professions (1894-1913), she returned to school to earn an undergraduate degree from the University of Chicago (1915) and graduate degrees from the University of Georgia (1918) and Columbia University's Teachers College (1923) where she studied under John Dewey.

She began her professional career as a journalist editing the Southern Educational Journal (1894-1901) and the woman's department of the Atlanta Daily News (1901/1902). Turning from journalism to teaching in 1902, she joined the faculty of the State Normal School in Athens, Georgia. After nine, somewhat turbulent, years there, she left to chair the English Department at Shorter College in Rome, Georgia (1911-1913). Poor health forced her resignation from Shorter. Thereafter she returned to active teaching only briefly. Instead she pursued her own education and became involved with various progressive educational efforts.

Growing up in a family active in public life, Harrison became acquainted early in her career with ideas about educational reform that were current in the progressive movement. She was convinced that new kinds of schools should be based on philosopher John Dewey's theories that children learn by doing rather than by memorizing. After receiving her undergraduate degree, she involved herself with various progressive schools around the country and worked actively with two such institutions (Tallulah Falls Industrial School in Georgia and the Out-of-Door School in Florida). She also renewed her interest in journalism as a way to advance progressive theories. She contributed regularly to various newspapers about educational affairs and frequently asked newspaper executives to establish educational or women's departments under her direction.

For a brief period, Emily Harrison was interested in working with the American Red Cross. Her sister Fanneal (b. 1882), an avowed social and political reformer, spent several years during and after World War I with the Red Cross in Austria, Czechoslovakia, Poland and France. The Red Cross did not hire Emily Harrison, but she did join her sister in Czechoslovakia for several months in 1921.

Harrison's interest in progressive education focused on three specific institutions. In 1924 when Fanneal had returned from Europe, she and Emily founded and operated the progressive Out-of-Door School in Sarasota, Florida. After a short time, Emily withdrew from active participation at the school and returned to Atlanta to care for her aging parents.

The second focus of Harrison's educational efforts was her plan to establish a "school in the woods" at Fernbank, her family's estate near Atlanta. Even as a young girl Harrison dedicated herself to the preservation of this 65-70 acre piece of virgin forest. Later as an educator, she planned to bring her love for Fernbank together with her educational theories in a school she would found there.

Through membership in women's organizations, particularly the Georgia Federation of Women's Clubs, Harrison involved herself with a third educational institution that was based on progressive ideas. The Tallulah Falls Industrial School in Tallulah Falls, Georgia, was founded (1909) and supported by the Georgia Federation. Many Atlanta women, including Emily Harrison, spent a great deal of time at the school working with the children and their families.

Harrison's mother died in 1931 and her father in 1935. The 1938 establishment of Fernbank, Inc., (a non-profit corporation founded to purchase and hold the land) had ensured the preservation of the Harrison property, but it also made the building of a progressive school there less possible. After that date Harrison abandoned her plans for a Fernbank School. In 1942 and 1943, she wrote many schools across the country, offering to teach English and the practical arts of cooking and gardening. During the following years she continued to live at Fernbank and took an active interest in what Fernbank, Inc., planned for the property. She diedSeptember 3, 1973 at age 99. She is buried in Westview Cemetery in Atlanta.

Scope and Content Note

The collection contains papers of Emily Stewart Harrison from 1874-1973. The papers include personal and business correspondence, writings, printed material, legal and financial records, photographs and an audiocassette tape.

Series 1, Personal Papers (1900-1941), contains a few business and medical records as well as some material pertaining to Harrison's religious beliefs. More information about her personal life and activities can be gleaned from Series 2, Correspondence (1863-1943), which accounts for one-third of the collection's bulk. The Harrison letters, particularly those dated 1863-1920 produce as much information about the Harrison family as they do about Emily herself. Besides documenting the personal and family life of Emily Harrison, the correspondence series also holds a great deal of information about her main interests and activities, some of which are also reflected in the Series 4, 5 and 6 concerning her travels in Europe, her interest in progressive education, and her dedication to the preservation of her family's estate, known as Fernbank.

Series 3, Writings (1887-1940), contains articles and stories in both printed and manuscript form. Emily Harrison spent most of her life studying and teaching English as well as reporting in newspapers and professional journals. While the contents of this series must be only a fraction of her total writings, the items held include school compositions, journals she kept while traveling, and papers she prepared for study groups to which she belonged.

Harrison led a group of schoolgirls on a European tour in 1908-1909. A few printed items of memorabilia as well as a journal, itineraries, and expense accounts pertaining to the trip are located in Series 4, European Travel (1908-1909).

Series 5, Education (1898-1943), is second only to the correspondence series in quantity and quality of material. It contains correspondence, writings, and printed material that document Harrison's interest and activity in the field of progressive education. Harrison corresponded with a number of educators across the country. Some of this correspondence is located in this series, while other similar items are in Series 2, Correspondence. A few articles and notes concerning educational topics are also located in this series. Printed material, however, accounts for the bulk of Series 5 and includes pamphlets and journal articles; material having to do with various professional organizations; and clippings and brochures about a large number of individual progressive schools. Material about schools in Atlanta and Georgia, as well as some information about camps, is included in the series.

Also located in Series 5 are materials that document Harrison's plans to establish a school on her family's estate near Atlanta as well as her participation in the operation of the Out-of-Door School in Florida and the Tallulah Falls Industrial School in north Georgia. The items concerning Fernbank offer information about the kind of school Harrison wanted, some of the ways she approached the project, and the campaign she led to prevent the estate's dismemberment after her father's death. The material concerning the Out-of-Door School and the Tallulah Falls School is less extensive, consisting primarily of printed materials. [See Series 2 for related correspondence and Series 8 for photographs of leading educators at a 1924 National Education Association meeting and for photographs of Fernbank, the Out-of-Door School, and Tallulah Falls School.]

tSeries 6, Czechoslovakia (1921-1927), holds the material Harrison collected during the time she worked with her sister, Fanneal, and the American Junior Red Cross in Czechoslovakia. Containing a small number of letters, the series pertains primarily to the production of a Red Cross periodical in Czech (Mesicnik Dorastu Cerveneho Krize or Junior Red Cross Monthly). Additionally, Harrison collected a large number of printed items about Czechoslovakia, including guidebooks, maps and several children's books, all of which are located in this series. [See also Series 8 for photographs of Czechoslovakia and its people.] ext

Series 7, Harrison Family Papers (1829-1960), is a collected series containing the papers of Harrison family members. Among these are some papers belonging to her father, Z.D. Harrison, that relate to his long tenure as Clerk to the Georgia Supreme Court but which also cover his extensive service in the Atlanta and Georgia Diocese of the Protestant Episcopal Church. A few papers belonging to Emily's aunt and uncle, Emily Hendree [Stewart] Park and Robert Emory Park are included and pertain to some of the couple's activities and to Mrs. Park's work with the Georgia Federation of Women's Clubs. A few pieces of writing by Fanneal Harrison are also located in Series 7 as are the business records of a more distant relative, James M. Ball. Some legal papers belonging to Z.D. Harrison's friend, Judge Richard H. Clark, complete the series.

Series 8, Photographs (1860-1943), contains the large number of photographs included in the Emily Harrison papers. They provide information in four different areas of her life: personal and family photographs; pictures taken or collected when she traveled; items that illustrated her interest in education (including photographs of Fernbank, the Out-of-Door School, and the Tallulah Falls School); and photographs, sketches, and engravings depicting Czechoslovakia, its people and folk arts.

Arrangement Note

Organized into eight series: (1) Personal papers, (2) Correspondence, (3) Writings, (4) European travel, (5) Education, (6) Czechoslovakia, (7) Harrison family papers, and (8) Photographs


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Description of Series

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