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Josephine Diebitsch Peary Files

Identifier: 01

Collection Scope and Content

From the Collection: The collection consists of a large variety of historical items, including four important scrapbooks compiled by Rear Admiral and Mrs. Peary's daughter, Marie Peary Stafford, which place in chronological order, papers and photographs telling the story of their lives, the majority of the contents focusing on Josephine Peary. As in the scrapbooks, the collection contains letters of correspondence between Josephine and Robert as early as 1884 through 1910, publication and speech manuscripts, early personal and historical photographs of all family members, travel diaries, newspaper and magazine articles, ephemera, and biographical information. Items of interest among the artifacts from the Pearys' lives and travel are pieces of personal and household silver, textiles, some of which relate to the family's Arctic experience, and a shotgun belonging to Admiral Peary, to name a few. The four scrapbooks focus on the lives of Robert and Josephine Peary, the first one beginning with photographs as early as 1861 and concluding with the fourth scrapbook as a memorial to Mrs. Peary after her death in 1955. Throughout the scrapbooks, clippings, diary entries written by Josephine, photographs, ephemera and a large amount of correspondence to and from Josephine Peary document the family's remarkable achievements and network of contacts such as the National Geographic Society. There is also material relating to the books published by Mrs. Peary about the family's life while in the Arctic, mementos, both personal and professional, historical correspondence including Peary's letter to her husband relating news of their daughter, Francine's, death, documentation of a tourmaline necklace, and citations from National Geographic.


  • 1861-2003


Collection is open for research.


From the Collection: 9 linear feet (338 folders, 5 artifacts)

Language of Materials

From the Collection: English


Repository Details

Part of the Maine Women Writers Collection Repository

Abplanalp Library
University of New England
716 Stevens Avenue
Portland Maine 04103 United States