Skip to Top NavigationSkip to ContentSkip to Footer
Ferris State University BulldogFerris State University Logo

A Finding Aid for the Mary E. Ferris Papers 1920-19402

Summary Information

Repository: Ferris State University Archives and Records Management Program

Creator: Ferris, Mary E. b. ca. 1902

Collection Title: Mary E. Ferris Papers

Identification: MSS-16

Dates: 1920-1940

Extent: 0.2 cubic feet; 1 box

General Physical Description: 1 box

Language: English

Abstract: This collection consists of a variety of papers belonging to Mary E. Ferris, second wife of Phelps Fitch Ferris. The majority of the collection consists of correspondence from her family and bills relating to the settling of the estate.

Preferred Citation: Footnotes and bibliographic references should use the following format:
Folder, Box. Mary E. Ferris Papers. Ferris State University Archives. Big Rapids, Michigan.

Biographical/Historical Note

Rosemary E. Hughes was born ca. 1902. Not much is known about her early life, except that she attended the Immaculate Word High School, which was a private girl's school in San Antonio, Texas. She took a job in the early twenties as a receptionist for Senator Morris Sheppard of Texas, in Washington D.C.

It was while working for Senator Sheppard that Rosemary (who went by the name Mary) meet, Phelps Ferris, son and congressional aide for his father Senator Woodbridge N. Ferris. They were married and had their only child Shirley Elizabeth Ferris ca. 1926.

Phelps Ferris became ill in 1929, and spent much of his final years in and out of private hospitals. He passed away December 8, 1938. Mary remained in the Washington D.C. area until around 1940. After that she moved and her later years are unknown.

Scope and Contents Note

This collection provides a window into the later life of Phelps Ferris, second son of Senator Woodbridge N. Ferris. This collection has correspondence between them during the period of his illness, and relates to family issues including the estate of his father and the upbringing of their only child Shirley. There are a number of photos of Mary Ferris and her relatives in San Antonio, Texas. Most of the material is concentrated between 1928-1938. This collection does not contain correspondence with her family back in Texas, nor discuss her job with Senator Morris Sheppard.

Arrangement Note

These papers are arranged into a single series.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

Ferris State University Archives and Records Management Program. 10-22-2009

Conditions Governing Access Note

The Mary E. Ferris Papers are open to all researchers in accordance with the University Archives and Records Management Program access policies. Copyright to the Mary E. Ferris Papers is not held by Ferris State University. Copyright to materials found in the collection not authored by Ferris are held by the individual and his/her heirs. Any questions regarding copyright should be directed to the University Archivist.

Conditions Governing Use Note

This collection is open for research. For some of the object based material, copying may not be available. Please consult with the University Archivist.

Immediate Source of Acquisition Note

This collection was donated by Crystal Townsend, of Florida to the Historical Task Force in 2005. The materials were found in the attic of a house which belonged to Shirley Elizabeth Ferris.

Processing Information Note

The Mary E. Ferris Papers were processed to the folder level by Melinda McMartin Isler in October 2009. A finding aid was prepared and converted to EAD 2.0, utilizing the Archivists Toolkit. A collection level MARC-format record was prepared and placed in the library online public access catalog. Description was based on Describing Archives: A Content Standard (Chicago: Society of American Archivists, 2004).

Related Materials

Related Archival Materials Note

Woodbridge N. Ferris Papers. UA 1.1

Separated Materials Note

None specified.

Controlled Access Headings

Personal Name(s)

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements Note

This collection consists of paper correspondence, copied newsclippings, a few photos and other paper based materials. No specialized software or hardware is required for viewing.

Collection Inventory

Series 1. Subject Files. 1920-1940

Arrangement Note

This file is arranged alphabetically by subject. Within folders, material is arranged chronologically.

Scope and Contents Note

This series provides a snapshot into the life of Mary Ferris, her bills, her activities and her relationship to her husband Phelps Ferris and her child Shirley Elizabeth Ferris.

Contents Box Folder

Correspondence. 1928-1940

1 1

Ferris, Woodbridge - estate. Inventory. 1928

1 2

Newsclippings. 1922-1935

1 3

Papers. Includes membership cards, memorabilia, ads, bills, bank books and receipts. 1920-1940.

1 4

Photos. Mostly unidentified. Some may be of Shirley Elizabeth Ferris. Undated

1 5