Guide to the Margaret Coolidge Pine Mountain Settlement Diary and Letters

Summary Information

Title: Margaret Coolidge Pine Mountain Settlement Diary and Letters
Collection: AC.1031
Extent: 0.5 linear feet (1 medium flat box)

The diary of Margaret Coolidge detailing life at the Pine Mountain Settlement School from 1922-1925. Coolidge captures life in the Kentucky mountains with anecdotes of dance parties, picnic outings, and walks through the mountains. Particular attention is paid to folklore and colloquialisms from the area. Earlier entries in the diary are from 1913 and focus on a trip to England.

Creator: Margaret Coolidge

Biographical/Historical Note

Pine Mountain Settlement School was founded in 1913 to serve as an educational and social center for the mountain communities of eastern Kentucky. It ran as boarding school for elementary and middle school aged children from 1913 until 1930 when it shifted focus to high school students. In the early 1970s, the school became a center for environmental education, Appalachian culture, and crafts.

Margaret Coolidge (1899-1979) was the daughter of a well-to-do Boston family who worked at the Pine Mountain Settlement School in the mid-1920s. Coolidge worked in the Scouting Office from 1921 to 1923 and as a Housemother in 1925. In addition to her office duties, Coolidge assisted in instructing in Girl Scouting, folk dancing, and office work. Coolidge was interested in English folk songs and dances and taught these traditions at the school. She married Robert Sturtevant (1892-1955) a noted landscape architect and horticulturalist.

Scope and Contents

This collection consists of one leather loose-leaf binder containing a partial 1913 diary of Margaret Coolidge and approximately 30 letters, mostly to her mother during 1922 and 1925. There is one loose page of a letter begun in 1933.


This is a one item collection.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for use in the Dougherty Reading Room. An appointment for research is recommended. The Dougherty Reading Room is located on the 4th floor of Belk Library in Special Collections.

Acquisitions Information

The diary was purchased from L and T Respass, June 2014.

Processing Information

Processed by by Trevor McKenzie, August 2016.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Margaret Coolidge Pine Mountain Settlement School Diary and Letters, W. L. Eury Appalachian Collection, Appalachian State University, Boone, NC 28608.