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Gender and Sexuality Studies Resources: Women's Studies at Princeton

Resources for the study of gender and sexuality at Princeton University.

Women's Studies at Princeton

Primary materials pertinent to women's studies in the Department of Special Collections.

Medieval & Renaissance Manuscripts

Material in the Manuscripts Division, commissioned, produced, illustrated and/or owned by women, including the 13th century Tewkesbury Psalter, the visions of St. Bridget (1301-1373) in English, and a 15th century compilation of mystical literature in Middle-High German for the Dominican nuns of St. Catherine's convent in Nürnberg.

Legal Documents

Includes Fatwa from the Islamic manuscripts collection, outlining the laws of marriage, divorce, property ownership and inheritance; 18th century French marriage contracts; Italian notarial documents (1200-1650); and the 10th century Will of Ethelgifu (in Anglo-Saxon), privately owned by the Scheide Library.

Women in 18th century England

The collected correspondence of Elizabeth Montagu, founder of the "Bluestockings," correspondence and manuscripts of Hester Thrale Piozzi, friend of Dr. Johnson, but also a key figure in the society of Bath, including figures such as Penelope Pennington, Mrs. Sarah Siddons and Sophia Lee (qv).

Women in France

Documented in Manuscripts by an autograph collection of the Queens of France; also such items as a handwritten memoir for the daughter of Marie Antoinette about her parents' captivity; holdings relating to Adrienne Monnier, friend of Sylvia Beach.

American Family Papers and Correspondence

Extensive holdings include the writings, art work, correspondence and vital records of woman belonging to such families as Delafield, Livingston, Butler and Blair Lee (18th-20th Century).

Journal, Diaries and Commonplace Books

Numerous examples, such as the diary of 13-year-old Mary Stokes from 1797 (Chambers papers), the commonplace book of Elizabeth Blair Lee (friend of Mary Todd Lincoln), dream journal of Caroline Gordon, and accounts of Indian captivity (Western Americana).

19th Century Women Writers

Manuscripts and correspondence of Christina Rossetti in the Manuscripts Division, similar holdings for Emily Dickinson and Sara Orne Jewett in the Robert H. Taylor Collection. Extensive holdings in the Morris L. Parrish Collection of Victorian Novelists for George Eliot, Charlotte Yonge, Mrs. Craik, Mrs. Oliphant, Ouida, M.E. Braddon, and Mrs. Frances Milton Trollope. Much Brontë material in the Taylor Collection.

Papers of 20th Century Women Writers

Among the collections of personal papers for 20th century women writers housed in Manuscripts are those of Sylvia Beach, owner of the Left Bank bookstore in Paris, "Shakespeare & Co.," where

Joyce's Ulysses was first published. Also such figures as Zelda Fitzgerald, Caroline Gordon, Louise Bogan and Elizabeth Bishop.


Letters of Vita Sackville West, Virginia Woolf and her sister Vanessa Bell in the Raymond Mortimer Papers, as well as Woolf's correspondence with Dora Carrington in the Robert H. Taylor Collection.

Publishing Archives

Hundreds of women writers represented in the publishing archives housed in the Manuscripts Division from Charles Scribner's & Sons, Harper & Brothers, Henry Holt and Story Magazine: the Scribner Archives holds 700 letters from novelist Edith Wharton alone. Also business records of such well-known editors as Mary Mapes Dodge, St. Nicholas Magazine and Martha Foley, Harper & Bros.

Women in Politics

Documented in the Manuscripts Division by papers pertaining to American suffragist Mary Livermore, English suffragist Dora Marsden and American feminist Miriam Holden. Holden's papers also include the records of the World Center for Women's Archives.

Documented at Mudd Library by records of the American Civil Liberties Union pertaining to Margaret Sanger, Dorothy Thompson, et al. Mudd also has records of the history of coeducation at Princeton University.


The Graphic Arts Collection houses work of Julia Margaret Cameron, esp. her Idylls of the King; the works of Katherine Kilbourne and Hilleah Tzinhnahjinnie of the Navajo nation are part of Western Americana.


Documented in the Theatre Collection by the papers of such figures as Lulu Glaser, Sara Enright, Julia Marlowe and Blanche Pauli. The Theatre Collection also has the papers of Vardaman, a female impersonator, as well as extensive holdings on the history of the circus and vaudeville, including women's acts.

For further information contact the Department of Special Collections. 


Telephone: 609-258-3184






More information

For information about women and gender studies at Princeton University, please contact the Seeley G. Mudd Manuscript Library.


Telephone: 609-258-6345

Fax: 609-258-3385


For information about current course offerings, please visit the Program in the Study of Women and Gender web site.