Sweeney family papers
- Sweeney family papers
- 1819-1963 (inclusive)
- Bulk, 1865-1950 (bulk)
- 0.58 Cubic feet
- Collection is arranged by format.
- Preferred Citation
- 2009ms210: [identification of item], Sweeney family papers, 1819-1963, bulk 1865-1950, University of Kentucky Special Collections.
- University of Kentucky
- Biography / History
- Mary Sweeney was born in Lexington, Kentucky, October 11, 1879. During the World War I era she and her sister Sunshine Sweeney served Canteen Workers with the Army of Occupation in Germany. The sisters received the U. S. Army citation for bravery during World War II. Mary was also on advisory committees for the Federal government including the Food Habits Committee for the National Research Council.
- In addition to the master's degree from the University of Kentucky, she received a bachelor's degree (1899) and LB, (honorary) degree from Transylvania University and a master's degree (1912) from Columbia University.
- Mary was the assistant Director of the Merill-Palmer School (later Institute)in Detroit, Michigan for 20 years prior to her retirement in 1945. She was a North American Delegate to the International Missionary Conference, Madras, India, in 1946, and in the same year conducted a workshop for Rural Teachers at Minnesota State Teachers College. In 1948, she was sent to India as a consultant by Agricultural Missions, Inc., with the cooperation of the Department of International Exchange of Persons, U. S. Department of State, and at the invitation of the All-India Women's Conference and the Tata Institute of Social Sciences. She worked in China as a consultant on child welfare for United Services to China. She taught physics and chemistry at Campbell-Hagerman College, headed home economics at the University of Kentucky and was Dean of the College of Home Economics at Michigan State College. She taught at Mississippi Southern College, Hattisburg.
- Her versatility also is reflected in her memberships in a number of organizations: Kentucky Federation of Women's Clubs, American Biochemical Society (Vice President), American Chemical Society, American Academy of Political and Social Science, American Home Economics Association (President and Secretary), Society for the Advancement of Science, Society for Research in Child Development, Kappa Kappa Gamma, and the American Association of University Women. She also was the author of texts on the growth and development of children, including the book, Growth and Development of the Young Child. Mary Sweeney died on June 11, 1968, and was named to the Hall of Distinguished Alumni in February 1965.
- Sunshine Sweeney is mentioned in the book Cora Wilson Stewart and Kentucky’s Moonlight Schools: Fighting for Literacy, by Yvonne Honeycutt Baldwin, where she guided women in the fight for illiteracy in Kentucky. Biographical information for Sunshine Sweeney could not be found.
- Scope and Content
- The Sweeney family papers (dated 1819-1963, bulk 1865-1950; 0.58 cubic feet; 2 boxes) contain scrapbooks, newspaper clippings, genealogy documents, photographs, and memorabilia from the 1905 Presidential inauguration, documenting the Sweeney family of Kentucky, particularly Mary and Sunshine Sweeney. The collection was originally contained in four scrapbooks, a scrap box, and included loose materials. The scrapbooks and scrap box were deconstructed for preservation purposes, but all materials were kept in their original order. However, newspaper clippings within the scrapbooks were separated and are housed from the other materials for preservation purposes. The scrapbook series contains information on the Boscobel House, the Prewitt papers, newspaper announcements of friends and family, newspaper articles about the achievements of Mary and Sunshine Sweeney, and Kentucky historical homes. Photographs are also included throughout the four scrapbooks, but oversized photographs from the scrapbook were placed in box 2. The Genealogy Scrap Box documents the Cary/Sweeney and Prewitt/Chandler families. There is also materials related to membership in the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America and the Daughters of the American Revolution. The 1905 Presidential Inauguration folder contains souvenirs from the Inauguration ceremonies.
Restrictions on Access and Use
- Conditions Governing Access
- Collection is open to researchers by appointment.
- Use Restrictions
- Property rights reside with the University of Kentucky. The University of Kentucky holds the copyright for materials created in the course of business by University of Kentucky employees. Copyright for all other materials has not been assigned to the University of Kentucky. For information about permission to reproduce or publish, please contact Special Collections.
Contents of the Collection
Scope and Contents note
Newspaper clippings in all scrapbooks were separated from other materials for preservation purposes.
Scrapbook 1 contains materials on various subjects including, the Boscobel House restoration project, correspondence from Levi Prewitt and William Prewitt, 1956 University of Kansas commencement booklet, and one photo of the U.S. Army Signal Corps reading books. The newspaper clippings concern Mary and Sunshine Sweeney's achievements and historical homes of Kentucky.
Scrapbook 2 contains various materials on the Boscobel House, correspondence for and from William O. Sweeney and Levi Prewitt. Also included are several photographs of Mary Sweeney and unidentified people, as well as a letter of commendation for Mary Sweeney's service in France during World War I.
Scrapbook 3 on page one had "To Sunshine from Mary E.," written. Contains various wedding and funeral annoucements. The scrapbook also contains two short stories, (one by Maggie Prewitt). Photographic negatives are of various scenes in Spain, 1949. The newspaper articles contain achievements of Mary and Sunshine Sweeney, obituaries, and wedding announcements. Many of the articles are older than 1938, but cannot be confirmed.
Most of the contents in Scrapbook 4 were deaccessioned because the majority consisted of copies of printed art that did not pertain to the collection. Oversized photographs that were kept were placed in box 2. There is one postcard to Mary Sweeney, and an early cabinet card photograph of an African-American woman with two children.
Scrapbook 1, 1819-1956
- Box 1, Folder 1
Scrapbook 1: newspaper clippings, 1936-1959
- Box 1, Folder 2
Scrapbook 2, 1865-1957
- Box 1, Folder 3
Scrapbook 3, 1854-1960
- Box 1, Folder 4
Scrapbook 3: newspaper clippings, 1938-1963
- Box 1, Folder 5
Scrapbook 4, undated
- Box 1, Folder 6
Genealogy Scrap Box, 1820-1959
Scope and Contents note
The Cary/Sweeney Families folder contains family information on the Cary and Sweeney families as they pertain to Mary and Sunshine Sweeney. This includes family trees, death records, correspondence from other family members, and business ledger of Joseph A. Sweeney. There is also information on the National Society of the Colonial Dames of America, including the National Society booklet, application, and membership card.
The Prewitt/Chandler Families folder contains family information on the Prewitt and Chandler families as they pertain to Mary and Sunshine Sweeney. This includes correspondence and papers from Levi Prewitt and William Prewitt, birth and marriage records, correspondence from other family members about family information, and the Chandler Family history. There is also an application for the Daughters of the American Revolution from Lanie Prewitt Stucky.
The Other Family Branches folder contains information about other branches of Mary and Sunshine Sweeney's family. This includes correspondence from the other branches, invitations, and a damaged book of family histories. The newspaper clippings include news on weddings, reunions, and obituaries.
Cary/Sweeney Families and National Society of the Colonial Dames of America, 1820-1959
- Box 1, Folder 7
Prewitt/Chandler Families and Daughters of the American Revolution, 1844-1956
- Box 1, Folder 8
Other family branches, 1880-1957
- Box 1, Folder 9
Newspaper clippings, 1954
- Box 1, Folder 10
Miscellaneous, 1881, 1905
Scope and Contents note
The 1905 Presidential Inauguration folder contains an Inaugural Ball booklet, an inauguration program, invitation to inauguration with pictures of Theodore Roosevelt and Charles W. Fairbanks, an Inaugural Souvenir booklet, and ticket to the event. Also included with these materials was a copied photograph of Franklin Roosevelt.
There are two oversized photographs taken from Scrapbook 4. The first is of Boscobel House, Febuary 24, 1881. The other is of Sunshine Sweeney with a group of girls, undated.
1905 Presidential Inauguration, 1905
- Box 1, Folder 11
Oversize photographs, 1881
- Box 2
UK Libraries Special Collections Research Center is open Monday to Friday, 9:00am to 4:00pm. Appointments are encouraged but not required. Schedule an appointment here.
Researchers must have an SCRC Researcher Account to request materials. View account set-up and use instructions here.
Questions? Contact SCRC via our Contact Form.
Table of Contents
You may come across language in UK Libraries Special Collections Research Center collections and online resources that you find harmful or offensive. SCRC collects materials from different cultures and time periods to preserve and make available the historical record. These materials document the time period when they were created and the view of their creator. As a result, some may demonstrate racist and offensive views that do not reflect the values of UK Libraries.
If you find description with problematic language that you think SCRC should review, please contact us at SCRC@uky.edu.
Questions? Contact SCRC via our Contact Form.