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COLLECTION Identifier: MC 874

Papers of Edith Morse Palmer, 1905-1984


Correspondence, photographs, clippings, etc., of Edith Morse Palmer, nurse and health care volunteer.


  • Creation: 1905-1984


1.04 linear feet (2 + 1/2 file boxes)

Collection contains family, political, and business correspondence, photographs, clippings, and other material concern Palmer's activities and those of her four children. Also journals, 1926-1978, recording her activities and interests. Palmer kept clippings and other papers in two 5 x 7 card files. The archivist selected the present collection from these papers; it includes family, political, and business correspondence, a few photographs and clippings, and other papers, some of them concerning the activities of her four children. The following is a list of Palmer's headings on the dividers in the two files. In the case of several of these sections (e.g., Campus Unrest, U.N.), the archivist did not retain any papers, as none pertained to Palmer or her family. Papers not retained by the Schlesinger Library were returned to Palmer.

This collection was formerly cataloged as 82-M31. Folders 16-33 were added in September 2016.


Edith Morse, daughter of John G. and Julie B. Morse, grew up in Concord, Massachusetts, was graduated from the School of Nursing of Massachusetts General Hospital in 1928, and in 1929 married Dr. Robert S. Palmer. They lived in Brookline and had four children: Robert, Charles, Samuel, and Judith. After working as an industrial nurse for three years and for several years at home with her children, Palmer in 1935 began an active career of volunteer work. Her affiliations have included birth control clinics of the Planned Parenthood League, a Hypertension Clinic during World War II, various activities at Massachusetts General Hospital, and the League of Women Voters. Besides health, her major interests have been peace; local and state politics; and prisoners' rights, prison reform, and the abolition of the death penalty.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession number: 82-M31; 84-M176

These papers were given to the Schlesinger Library by Edith Morse Palmer in March 1982 and October 1984.


The following item has been transferred to the Schlesinger Library Menu Collection (Pr-7):

  1. Même Maison, 16 Avenue Victor-Hugo menu, ca.1921

Container List

  1. Box 1: folder 1-20
  2. Box 2: folder 21-29
  3. Box 3: folder 30-33

Processing Information

Preliminary inventory: March 1982

By: Eva Moseley

Updated: September 2016

By: Johanna Carll

Palmer, Edith Morse, 1905-1998. Papers of Edith Morse Palmer, 1905-1984: A Finding Aid
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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