THE POWELLS

A Collection of 19th Century Women's Papers

Finding Rome
Finding Rome

Trying to contact the owners of a site with no address at Christmas.

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The Powell's School
The Powell's School

in Winchester, VA where Hattie Powell and her family educated young women through 1862.

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Home for a refugee
Home for a refugee

Hattie Powell was hired as a teacher here in 1862 and 1863. The property is still owned by descendants of the same family today

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Book of Letters
Book of Letters

Each property owner receives a book of letters to connect them to this history

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Civil War Diary
Civil War Diary

of Rebecca Powell Courtesy of Special Collections Research Center, Swem Library, College of William and Mary

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PROJECT BACKGROUND

I am researching the Powell Family Papers held at Swem Library at William & Mary.  This is a collection of women's papers from an unconventional family in the 19th century.  This site provides an overview of that research, my background, contact information, and links to online speaking engagements. This endeavor began when I volunteered in an online Civil War transcription project.  I initially focused on the letters of Harriet Lee Powell, who had a captivating tale during the Civil War. My focus grew to include her sisters, brothers, parents, and extended family. Hattie Powell, her sisters, and her parents were educators of young women, but the chaos of the Civil War sent them fleeing to live separate lives as refugee teachers until the war ended. Their separation produced a large archive of letters detailing their experience in a dozen locations across the state. I have traveled throughout Virginia to find these locations and reunite this history with the people who live and work there today.