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Ellen Smith, Records

 Collection — Box: 001
Identifier: RG-27-00-01

Scope and Contents

The memorial records include memorial planning documents, correspondence from those who were invited to the memorial or who knew Smith, remarks from the April 24, 1903 memorial, biographical publications, newspaper clippings, and photographs. The correspondence includes letters from early university chancellors, faculty, and students. The memorial remarks were provided by Chancellor E. Benjamin Andrews. The remarks included in the records may include those read at the memorial or those sent in tribute to Smith with authors such as Clement Chase, J.S. Dales, and A.H. Edgren. A skit, written in 1915 by Amy Bruner Almy includes several scenes meant to honor Smith’s contributions to the university.


  • 1877-1903


Biographical / Historical

Ellen Smith was born on Feb. 14, 1838, in Ohio. She attended the Orwell Academy prior to attending Hillsdale College in Michigan. In 1877, she became the first female faculty member at the University of Nebraska when Chancellor Edmund Fairfield offered her a teaching position. Smith taught Latin and Greek, served as principal of the prepatory school starting in 1882, and served as a librarian even while appointed as registrar for the university in 1884. Her obituary notes that she ended her official role as registrar in 1902 but continued in an advisory capacity until her death on Feb. 21, 1903. Smith lived at 1204 “U” Street, Lincoln, Nebraska, when she passed due to cancer. The university named a building located on campus, purchased in 1920, after Ellen Smith. In 1958, expansion caused the university to demolish the building. For more details on Ellen Smith, see Nebraska U (


0.25 Linear Feet

1 Boxes

Language of Materials


Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Archives & Special Collections, University of Nebraska-Lincoln Libraries Repository

Archives & Special Collections
University of Nebraska-Lincoln Libraries
P.O. Box 884100
Lincoln NE 68588-4100 United States