James Grier Ralston papers

For a greater portion of his life, James Grier Ralston (1815-1880) was an educator and very much concerned with the religious/spiritual life of his pupils. His interests in religious affairs and education led to the founding of a seminary for women and missionary activities in Wisconsin. Privy to th...

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Bibliographic Details
Main Author: Ralston, James Grier 1815-1880 (Teacher (tch))
Collection:James Grier Ralston Papers
Collection Number:3153
Format: Manuscript
Language:English
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Online Access:Link to finding aid
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Physical Description: 0.25 Linear feet ; 1 box
Access: This collection is open for research.
Summary: For a greater portion of his life, James Grier Ralston (1815-1880) was an educator and very much concerned with the religious/spiritual life of his pupils. His interests in religious affairs and education led to the founding of a seminary for women and missionary activities in Wisconsin. Privy to the needs of his community, he gave considerably of his time to community affairs in Norristown, for which he was most honored and respected. Ralston was also a mineralist and collector. This collection consists of four volumes that contain Ralston’s notes about religion, natural sciences, a trip to Europe, and his activities as a student and teacher, as well as news clippings related to his death.
This collection consists of four volumes and loose items removed from the volumes. The volumes record Ralston's interests and administrative activities from his time at college to his serving as head of a school. The volumes do not present in-depth details of Ralston's activities from which one could produce a complete narrative of events. Volume One, "Miscellany and Memorandum," primarily includes notations from his experiences before and after graduating from Washington College. It covers a ten year period between 1833-1843. Ralston scribbled in notes about various religious subjects including the nature of Christ, "religion as science," and prayers. Most of the notations reflect his interests in the natural sciences and history and in recording changes in weather patterns. More specifically, he seemed to have been most intrigued by snow storms, for the majority of the weather notations mention something about snow. He also recorded his height and body weight beginning August 7, 1834. After he graduated from college in 1838, he continued to record similar material along with the names of students. Volume Two records a trip to Europe in 1867. It seems to be more of a to-do list where he noted the names of people and places he encountered in France. In Volume Three are news clippings. It is from this volume that the loose materials were removed. There are two news clippings that discuss his trip to Europe. There are many clippings that discuss his death, which indicates that another person collected or created this volume of clippings. And, finally, Volume Four is a receipt book of his student payments when he was head of the women’s seminary.