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Nancy B. Schmitt scrapbooks and research on Malvern (Pa.) history


Held at: Malvern Historical Commission [Contact Us]Borough of Malvern, 1 East First Avenue, Suite 3, Malvern, PA, 19355

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Malvern Historical Commission. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

Nancy Blackstone Schmitt (1940-2013) was a Malvern resident, author, and community activist.

Nancy was born on April 28, 1940 in Madison, Wisconsin. She attended Waukesha (South) High School in Waukesha, Wisconsin. She went on to attend Bucknell University, Temple University, and Immaculata College (now University) in Pennsylvania.

Nancy worked as a reporter and photographer for the Suburban Advertiser in Malvern, Chester County, Pennsylvania from 1975 to 1984. She was responsible for municipal and school district news, as well as feature stores, obituaries, wedding and birth announcements, and theater reviews. She also served as the photographer for high school sports. From 1983 to 1986, Nancy wrote and photographed for the Malvern Business and Professional Association bimonthly newsletter. Nancy also worked as the Information and Community Relations Specialist for the Great Valley School District.

Nancy was active in a variety of community organizations. She served on the Malvern Park and Recreation Board in the late 1970s; was a member, treasurer, and president of the Great Valley Board of School Directors, 1979-1988; was a founding member and chairperson of the Malvern Historical Commission, 1983-1992; served the East Whiteland Township Volunteer Fire Association from 1992 to 2002 as an auxiliary member and as the association historian, treasurer, vice president, and president; was a member of the West Whiteland Township Historical Commission from 2004 to 2007; served as a judge for the Barley Sheaf Players for several seasons, including many one-act play festivals; was a lifetime member of the Paoli Memorial Association; served as a consultant to the Malvern Historical Commission from 2005 until 2013; and was a member of the Wordwrights writers' group in Exton from 2004 to 2013.

Schmitt was the researcher and author of Malvern Treasures, the editor of A Century in Malvern, 1989, and the author of Malvern Items, 1870-2006. Her work also appeared in a national anthology, When a Lifemate Dies, and in the January-February 2011 issue of Writers' Journal.

Nancy passed away on November 22, 2013 in West Chester, Pennsylvania.


Cook, Bonnie L. "Nancy B. Schmitt, 73, Writer." Philadelphia Inquirer (Philadelphia, PA), December 3, 2013. Accessed on May 1, 2016.

This collection consists of Nancy B. Schmitt's research for various books she wrote and edited on Malvern, Pennsylvania, including Malvern Treasures, A Century in Malvern, 1989, and Malvern Items, 1870-2006. Also in the collection are several scrapbooks she compiled with clippings of newspaper articles she wrote.

The research on Malvern, circa 1980s-2010s, includes binders organized by book title, subject binders on the Junior Women's Club of Malvern and Monday Afternoon Club, and two card files, one on women and one on business. The binders contain handwritten and typed notes, and photocopies of primary-source and secondary source materials. The binders on Schmitt's publications also include printer's proofs and drafts. The card files are organized alphabetically, by woman's last name or business name, and include research notes or other information about the individual or business.

The scrapbooks, 1975-1984, contain clippings of articles and news features written by Schmitt for the Suburban Advertiser about Malvern.

Also included in the collection are about fifty slides of scenes in Malvern, 1991, some film negatives and prints from Suburban Advertiser, and issues of newspapers/magazines such as Harper's Weekly and Ladies' Home Journal, 1880s-1920s.

Gift of Kelly Schmitt, circa 2014

Summary descriptive information on this collection was compiled in 2014-2016 as part of a project conducted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania to make better known and more accessible the largely hidden collections of small, primarily volunteer run repositories in the Philadelphia area. The Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories (HCI-PSAR) was funded by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

This is a preliminary finding aid. No physical processing, rehousing, reorganizing, or folder listing was accomplished during the HCI-PSAR project.

In some cases, more detailed inventories or finding aids may be available on-site at the repository where this collection is held; please contact Malvern Historical Society directly for more information.

Malvern Historical Commission
Finding Aid Author
Finding aid prepared by Sarah Leu and Anastasia Matijkiw through the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories
This preliminary finding aid was created as part of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories. The HCI-PSAR project was made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
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