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Notes on trips to Paris, Normandy and Brittany : Notes on a trip through the Smoky Mountains in 1935


Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Delaware Library Special Collections. 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

Emily Sowden took many sightseeing trips during the 1930s. Based on photographs of her in the journals, it appears that she was middle aged at the time of these trips. It is likely that she was unmarried and lived in Philadelphia.

Biographical information derived from the collection.

These two travel journals belonging to Emily Sowden contain descriptions of trips to France, the Southeast United States, and Latin America in the 1930s. The entries feature itineraries with commentary and are supplemented by numerous postcards, photographs, small maps, and plant specimens.

This collection is composed of two volumes with autograph descriptions of several sightseeing trips and numerous laid-in items. Both volumes are commercially available books designed to be travel journals. They have information and advice printed in the front and printed page headings throughout. For the most part, Emily Sowden did not follow the headings when writing her entries.

The first volume is bound in blue leather and has "Trips and Travels" printed on the cover. It contains the accounts of two trips to France. The first account began on May 10, 1933, when Emily visited Paris at the end of a tour of Spain. She described the landmarks and attractions she saw before leaving on May 24.

The second trip was a tour of Normandy and Brittany that left New York on June 20, 1936. Emily also described her daily sightseeing on this trip. Cities she visited include Rouen, Caen, Quimper, Angers, Chartres, and Paris. A printed itinerary has been inserted into the journal as well as a receipt for a tour from the Bureau of University Travel in Newton, Massachusetts. Emily returned to New York on the S. S. Normandie. The ship left France on July 8, 1936.

The second volume is bound in brown and black embossed leather and has "My Trip Abroad" printed on the cover. It contains accounts of three trips. The first is a tour of the Great Smoky Mountains and Pisgah National Forest. Emily left Philadelphia by train on August 25, 1935 and then visited several towns and scenic areas in Tennessee, North Carolina, and South Carolina aboard the Asheville Limited. A printed itinerary of this tour is also inserted in the volume. Emily returned to Philadelphia on September 5.

The next trip in the second volume is a visit to Charleston, South Carolina, taken from March 20 to March 25, 1936. Emily described the landmarks and attractions she visited within the city.

The final trip is a cruise with stops in Cuba, Costa Rica, and Panama taken from August 19 to September 3, 1939. Emily described her time aboard the boat as well as the sights she saw in Latin America.

For all five trips, more space is devoted to inserted items than written descriptions. Emily illustrated her entries with the images on postcards, photographs, or pictures clipped from periodicals. Many of these have been glued onto the pages, but some have been loosely inserted. The volumes also contain several botanical samples, receipts, and other pertinent papers. Botanical samples include cypress from France, Galax leaves from Appalachia, and Spanish moss from South Carolina.

University of Delaware. Library.

Self works : diaries, scrapbooks, and other autobiographical efforts : catalog of an exhibition, August 19, 1997-December 18, 1997 : guide to selected sources. Newark, Del. : Special Collections, Hugh M. Morris Library, University of Delaware Library, 1997.

  1. Item 0069: Shelved in SPEC MSS 0097

Purchase, 1956.

Processed and encoded by Kate Hand, September 2007. Updated by E. Evan Echols, May 2014.

University of Delaware Library Special Collections
Finding Aid Author
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
Finding Aid Date
2014 May 6
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections, University of Delaware Library,

Collection Inventory

Notes on trips to Paris, Normandy and Brittany : Notes on a trip through the Smoky Mountains in 1935, 1933-1939.
Item 0069
Physical Description

2 volumes

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