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Call No.: 89-M116--89-M176
Repository: Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
Creator: Freda M. De Pillis
Title: Papers of Freda M. De Pillis, 1936-1976
Quantity: 1.25 linear feet (2 file boxes, 2 half file boxes) plus 1 folio folder)
Language of materials: Materials in English.
Abstract: Journals and letters of Freda M. De Pillis, social worker.
Freda Mae Rustemeyer was born and raised on a farm outside Linn, Missouri; her parents were Fred and Julia (Bogler) Rustemeyer, and she had three sisters: Dorothy, Marcella, and Mary Ellen. She worked in Japan with the occupation forces of the United States Army, as a clerk in the Adjutant General's office, 1947-1949.Upon her return to the United States, she attended the University of Chicago, earning a Master of Social Work degree in 1954. While there, she met and married a fellow student, Mario S. De Pillis, who became a professor of history; they had three sons: Vincent, Mario, Jr., and Alexander. The family lived in Chicago, New Haven, Connecticut, and Berkeley, California, before settling in Amherst, Massachusetts. De Pillis pursued her profession of social work in all these places.
This collection consists almost entirely of writings - journals and letters - by Freda M. De Pillis. The journals begin in 1936, when she was eleven; she continues to add to them. Included Freda Mae (Rustemeyer) are both the original journals, 1936-1976, and typed transcripts for the same period. De Pillis has recorded her daily life, her observations, activities and concerns, and often her feelings. In the earliest journals she describes farm life, chores, the seasons, and school in rural Missouri. Later, at Chicago, she discusses her feelings as a woman of twenty-five beginning college alongside eighteen- and nineteen-year-olds; she describes her social life and her relationships with peers, teachers, employers, and family, and chronicles her failures and successes in various courses and the process of deciding what to study and choosing a career. In later years, De Pillis has continued to write of her work, family, and other experiences and describe her responses to them, her doubts, hopes, worries, and joys.In her letters from Japan, De Pillis wrote to her family about her work with the occupation forces, describing her social life, her travels in Japan, and her impressions of the country. Miscellaneous papers from this period include occupation forces newsletters and clippings.
- Box 1: 1-16v
- Box 2: 17v-24
- Box 3: 25v-36v
- Box 4: 37-42