University of Chicago Library

Guide to the Persis Burns Suddeth Papers 1985-1992

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Descriptive Summary


Suddeth, Persis Burns. Papers




4 linear feet (4 boxes)


Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.


Letters written by Persis Burns from 1944-50, during and after her time as an undergraduate at the University of Chicago (1944-1948). Dedicated to her children, the letters were transcribed in 1985 and collected in a binder along with photocopies of pictures from throughout the author’s life.

Information on Use


The collection is open for research.


When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: Suddeth, Persis Burns. Papers, [Box #, Folder #], Hanna Holborn Gray Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Biographical Note

Persis Burns Suddeth attended the University of Chicago as an undergraduate from 1944-1948. She met undergraduate David Houghton Suddeth, later an engineer for NASA, in 1946 and they married in 1950. Her letters to her parents discuss her courses and social life, and offer insight into the early years of the Core Curriculum and women’s experiences at the University of Chicago in the 1940s.

Scope Note

Originally housed in a binder, the letter collection is divided into two folders, one with letters from September 1944 to May 1946 (pages 1-103), and the other with letters from October 1946 to July 1950 (104-197). Throughout the letters are photocopies of photos of Persis, her husband David, and their friends. Also included in the collection is the cover of the original binder holding the letters, and a photocopy of David Houghton Suddeth’s obituary in the January 30, 1992 Washington Post.

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Subject Headings


Box 1   Folder 1

Persis Burns, Letters to My Family, Folder 1, 1985

Box 1   Folder 2

Persis Burns, Letters to My Family, Folder 2, 1985

Box 1   Folder 3

David Suddeth Obituary, 1992

Box 1   Folder 4

Binder Cover, undated