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Special Collections: Guide to the Spratt Family Papers

Arranged and described by Brenda Howitson Steeves
Raymond H. Fogler Library Special Collections Department
September 2004
Introduction and Summary Information
Collection Title: Spratt Family Papers.
Dates of the Collection: 1880-1969 (inclusive); 1880-1920 (bulk).
Provenance: Unknown.
Collection Number: MS 476.
Box Numbers: 1 (formerly Box 1641).
Size and Arrangement: The collection consists of one document box of material (0.5 cubic feet).
Conservation Note: The collection has been re-housed in acid-free folders and boxes. Photographs have been housed in polypropylene sleeves and remain with the relevant documents.
Preferred Citation: Spratt Family Papers, Special Collections, Raymond H. Fogler Library, University of Maine.
Restrictions on Access and Use: Kept at Fogler Library's offsite storage facility. One week's notice required for retrieval.
The collection contains correspondence of Fred E. Spratt and Chessman Chadwick Spratt, two brothers born in Palermo, Maine. It also contains genealogical information about the Spratt family.
Fred E. Spratt was born in 1863 in Palermo, the son of David W. Spratt and Melissa Chadwick Spratt. Fred Spratt remained on the family farm and after his father’s death became responsible for the work on the farm and the care of his mother. Fred Spratt also held various positions in the town of Palermo, was in the state legislature, and was a justice of the peace from 1902 until 1920. He married Estella Turner in 1902, and the Spratts had one daughter, Melissa, born in 1904. Fred Spratt died in 1920.
Chessman Chadwick Spratt, Fred’s brother, was born in Palermo in 1867. After study in the local schools, he went to Bates College, graduating in 1893. He became principal of the high school in Richmond, Maine, and then spent seven years at the Bridgton Academy in North Bridgton, Maine. He received further education at the Detroit University School in 1902-1903 and at Harvard in 1904. He then spent seven years at the high school in Putnam, Connecticut, before moving to his last position as principal of the high school in Woonsocket, Rhode Island. Chessman Spratt died in 1923 in Woonsocket.
Researchers may also want to consult the book, The Spratt’s [sic] of Maine by Gertrude W. Lundberg, issued in 1968.
Scope and Content Note
This small collection consists primarily of correspondence between the two Spratt brothers, Fred and Chessman. Most of the letters were written by Fred to Chessman and reflect his life on the family farm. They include comments on agriculture, crops, planting, and prices, general comments on the weather and its effects on crops, as well as family and local news. A few letters from Melissa Chadwick Spratt to her two sons are also included in the correspondence.
The collection also contains letters to various other Spratt family members, some unidentified family photographs, and school essays written in Palermo in 1882 and 1883. A section of the collection from the 1960’s contains correspondence about the family genealogy, much of it to Fred Spratt’s daughter Melissa Sennett from Gertrude Lundberg, compiler of a book about the Spratt family.
Box List
Box 1
1 Correspondence to Fred Spratt from Chessman C. Spratt, 1883(?), 1890-1899, 1902, 1920, undated
2 General correspondence to Fred Spratt, 1880, 1899, 1904, undated
3 Fred Spratt: financial information, tax bills, etc.
4-5 Correspondence to Chessman Spratt from Fred Spratt, 1893-1920, undated
6 General correspondence to Chessman Spratt, 1885-1913, undated
7 Correspondence of other Spratt family members, 1880-1949, undated
8 Unidentified family photographs
9 School essays, Palermo, 1882-1883
10 Miscellaneous genealogical correspondence and notes
11 Miscellaneous genealogical information
12 Lundberg correspondence about Spratt family, 1965-1969

Finding Aids for selected manuscript collections in the Special Collections Department at Fogler Library are accessible online in URSUS, in a browsable Guide to Manuscript Collections. Please contact Special Collections at or (207) 581-1686 for further information.

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Special Collections Staff: | Revised: 03/31/2015
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