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Re: Eleanor Files Patch
Posted by: Emily Elliott Date: May 24, 2001 at 23:52:55
In Reply to: Eleanor Files Patch by Lorraine Files Sears of 382


A few years ago, I copied Eleanor Files Patch's Files Family Manuscript, which is on file in the Manuscripts Collection at the New England Historic Genealogical Society library in Boston.

The manuscript is quite lengthy, and appears to have been produced on a manual typewriter. The card catalog provided the only source of the author's name, Eleanor Files Patch. No where on the manuscript itself does it mention her. Nor does it have a title page.

The manuscript's pages were numbered by hand in pencil, which I assume was done by the library staff after receiving the manuscript. A few page numbers were skipped, and a couple were used twice in a row. Since the manuscript does not contain typed page numbers, it is difficult to immediately determine whether pages are missing from it, but Eleanor Files Patch and her branch of the family cannot be found in the manuscript, so it appears that someone removed at least that section from the manuscript. Surely she documented her own line! Perhaps a family member removed their pages before donating the rest of the manuscript to the library.

It is a huge compilation of data, compiled when researching was much more difficult than today, so it stands as a tribute to a dilligent, dedicated researcher. It looks like a lifetimes' work, to me.

The manuscript does contain errors on our immediate line of the family, so it needs to be used carefully, like all genealogical documents. Before Eleanor passed away, she had contacted our family by phone to request information. She obtained information verbally and some in writing, so we were sad to discover the errors concerning our family.

Unfortunately, Eleanor was not willing to provide much information about herself to our family, and our recent efforts to locate any information about her descendants or relatives have been futile.

We wonder if another copy of her manuscript exists, perhaps containing pages about her line and/or others. We also wonder if her research papers (source information) were donated to a library somewhere -- she obviously had to collect quite a large collection of documents to compile the data in the manuscript. Wouldn't it be nice to find Eleanor's source documents! Some are cited briefly as sources throughout the manuscript, but none are copied within the manuscript.

I hope you find this information helpful. If you locate any further information about Eleanor and her Files family manuscript, I hope you will let me know.

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