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The University of Iowa Libraries

Guide to the Dorothy Sprout Place memoir

Collection Overview

Date Span: 1993
Creator: Place, Dorothy Sprout (1921-)
Extent: 1.00 linear inch.
Collection Number: IWA0384
Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Summary: Reflections on life as a farmwoman and young mother during World War II.

Arrangement: One folder, shelved in SCVF.

Access: The memoir is open for research.

Use: Copyright held by the donor has been transferred to The University of Iowa.

Acquisition: The memoir (donor no. 547) was donated by Dorothy Place in 1998.

Preferred Citation: Dorothy Sprout Place memoir, Iowa Women's Archives, The University of Iowa Libraries, Iowa City.

Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Address: 100 Main Library
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, IA 52242
Phone: 319-335-5068
Curator: Kären Mason

Dorothy Sprout was born on July 8, 1921, to LeRoy and Edith Sprout near Emmetsburg in northwestern Iowa. She grew up on farms and graduated from Emmetsburg High School in 1938. While in high school, she took a teacher certification course and taught rural school. When World War II began and her classmate and future husband, Harlan Place, left for officer training,she visited him at the Air Force bases where he was stationed. They were married July 19, 1944 in Emmetsburg. After their marriage, Dorothy Sprout Place moved near the bases where Harlan was stationed, returning to Emmetsburg, where the first of her five children was born. After the war, the parents of Harlan Place retired to Emmetsburg and Harlan and Dorothy Place moved on to the Place family farm which they farmed for thirty-five years.

Dorothy and Harlan Place were busy in the family farming enterprise. Dorothy Place was active in the Freedom Township Women's Club, which her mother-in-law helped to organize. She and Harlan Place retired to Emmetsburg.

The Dorothy Place collection consists of one item, a fifty-nine page reminiscence entitled "The War Years, 1938-1945 -- The Story of How World War II Shaped MyLife." Written in 1993 from diaries kept after her graduation from high school and until she and Harlan settled on his family farm after the war, the reminiscence provides a personal narrative of a farm woman's experiences of courtship, work, travel, marriage, and young motherhood during World War II. It gives an insider's account of the daily life of a young wife living near military bases during the war and of the enduring friendships that developed between the families of servicemen.
Edith Sprout memoir (IWA): Edith Sprout was the mother of Dorothy Sprout Place.

Freedom Township Women's Club (Palo Alto County, Iowa) records (IWA): Dorothy Place was a member of this club from 1945 to 1998.

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