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The University of Iowa Libraries

Guide to the Jennie Sies papers

Collection Overview

Date Span: 1880
Creator: Sies, Jennie (1859-1880)
Extent: 1.00 linear inch.
Collection Number: IWA0496
Repository: Iowa Women's Archives
Summary: Diary of a young Oxford, Iowa farm woman who died on October 3, 1880.

Access: The papers are open for research.

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

Acquisition: The papers (donor no. 854) were donated by Cathryn McCleery Harsha in 2003.

Preferred Citation: Jennie Sies papers, 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

Jennie Sies was born in November 1859 to Margaret Zuber Sies and William F. Sies. Sies grew up on a farm just outside of Oxford, Iowa. Her parents had emigrated to the United States sometime in the first half of the nineteenth century, leaving seven children behind in Germany with relatives, while bringing along their infant son, Fred. Jennie Sies was the sixth child born on American soil. After her mother died in 1875, Sies took over the housekeeping chores. At the time of her journal in 1880, Jennie was keeping house for at least two of her brothers, George and Oscar. "Jennie's Journal" begins on January 1, 1880 and ends on September 24, 1880. Jennie Sies died on October 3, 1880.

The Jennie Sies papers date from January 1, 1880 to September 24, 1880 and measure 1 linear inch. The papers consist of Jennie's original 1880 journal and a transcription of the journal  by Cathryn McCleery Harsha and her daughter Bertie Harsha See, who were descended from Jennie's older brother Fred Sies, and by Carmine Harsha Miller. The transcription includes copies of family photographs, but none of Jennie. The journal is made of daily entries in which Jennie Sies recorded her activities. Jennie's life is depicted as one of regular chores, Bible readings and social activities. The journal abruptly ends on September 24, 1880. Jennie Sies died on October 3, 1880 at age 20.

Browse by Series:
Series 1: Jennie Sies

  • Series 1: Jennie Sies
  • Box 1:
  • Journal - 1880
  • Transcription by Harsha, See, and Miller