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COLLECTION Identifier: A/F748

Papers of Lucy H. Fosdick, 1911


Typed memoir describing 19th century travel across the United States western plains.


  • 1911

Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by Lucy H. Fosdick, as well as copyright in other papers in the collection, may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.


1 folder

The Papers of Lucy H. Fosdick consists of her typed memoir entitled Across the Plains in '61. The memoir mainly describes a family's journey from Massachusetts to Colorado from the perspective of a young girl. Topics include the challenges associated with frontier life, 19th century modes of travel, foodways, and the battles and skirmishes that took place between the United States Army and various Native American populations in Colorado.


Lucy H. Fosdick was born ca.1851 and grew up in a wealthy Boston, Massachusetts home. Her mother, also named Lucy, maintained the household and her father, Henry M. Fosdick, was a civil engineer. After a fire destroyed a substantial amount of the family's property, Fosdick's father decided to move the family out west where he planned to farm and raise cattle. He purchased land in Kansas, but was forced to abandon it after discovering the region had an unhealthy climate. He then traveled to Colorado where he was able to prepare a homestead for his family. Henry Fosdick was also responsible for surveying the regions that would eventually become Denver, Colorado City and other neighboring towns.

In 1861, Henry Fosdick sent for his family, and after traveling by train and ferry boat, they met him in St. Joseph, Missouri. From there the family crossed the western plains to Colorado in prairie schooners. The family initially settled in Colorado City, but by1864 had resettled in Booneville, Colorado.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession number: 388

The papers of Lucy H. Fosdick were donated by Mrs. Herbert Hosmer in 1961.

Processing Information

Updated and additional description added: January, 2021

By: Emilyn L. Brown.

The Schlesinger Library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.  Finding aids may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future. In addition to its traditional strengths in the history of feminisms, women’s health, and women’s activism, the Schlesinger collections document the intersectional workings of race and ethnicity, gender, sexuality, and class in American history.

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