MsC 615

Iowa Author

  Manuscript Register


Collection Dates: 1945 -- 1955
2 linear ft.

This document describes a collection of materials held by the
Special Collections Department
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1420
Phone: 319-335-5921
Fax: 319-335-5900

Posted to Internet: January 1998

Acquisition Note: This collection was given to the University of Iowa in 1973 by Mrs. Graham's nephew, William C. Powell.

Access and Restrictions: This collection is open for research.

Photographs: Box 2 (doll collection, Mrs. Graham)

Digital Surrogates: Except where indicated, this document describes but does not reproduce the actual text, images and objects which make up this collection. Materials are available only in the Special Collections Department.

Copyright:  Please read The University of Iowa Libraries' statement on "Property Rights, Copyright Law, and Permissions to Use Unpublished Materials"

Use of Collections: The University of Iowa Libraries supports access to the materials, published and unpublished, in its collections. Nonetheless, access to some items may be restricted by their fragile condition or by contractual agreement with donors, and it may not be possible at all times to provide appropriate machinery for reading, viewing or accessing non-paper-based materials. Please read our Use of Manuscripts Statement.

Biographical Note

Alberta Powell Graham was born in Harrington, Delaware, but moved to Ottumwa, Iowa, with her family when she was just a child. A musician and composer of note, she is a graduate of the American Conservatory in Chicago. She has also had special training along many lines including public school music, poetry, education, and literature. She studied at Columbia University, Northwestern University, Cornell University, and with private teachers. She was Supervisor of Music in the public schools of Iowa, and she has had more than two hundred songs for children published.

Alberta Graham made her home in Washington, D.C., since 1939, where she engaged in writing and in historical research in the Library of Congress. She regularly contributed stories, poems, articles, plays, as well as songs to numerous magazines. She also served as president of the Washington Children's Book Guild. Many honors came to her in connection with her work in the fields of music education and historical writing. She died in Washington, D.C. on March 12, 1955.

Scope and Contents

The papers of Alberta Powell Graham date from 1945 to 1955 and document her writing and musical career. Included are manuscripts of her biographies written for children such as Chrisptopher Columbus, Discoverer and Clara Barton, Red Cross Pioneer, as well as manuscripts of songs that she composed. Also included are copies of magazine articles written by Graham.

Box 1

America's First Ladies (unpublished)

Rough draft mostly handwritten, approx. 60 p.

Typescript with corrections (not final version); sections on Martha Washington, Abigail Fillmore, Lucy Hayes, 10 p.

Typescript; sketches from Washington to Truman, 56 p.

Carbon typescript, 56 p.

Carbon typescript, duplicate copy

Chrisptopher Columbus, Discoverer

Rough draft, notes, handwritten, approx. 35 p.

Five artist's sketches

Typescript, Chapter 1 -- 9, 15 -- 22; carbon typescript, Chapter 10 -- 14 with corrections, approx. 100 p.

Miscellaneous typescript, Chapter 11 -- 15, some pages missing; duplicate carbon copies of several pages, approx. 30 p.

Carbon typescript, final version, 77 p.

Sixteen letters to Mrs. Graham from a Fort Wayne, Indiana school

Newspaper notices, approx. 10

Clara Barton, Red Cross Pioneer

Newspaper notices, 4

The Diary of a Teen-age Tourist (unpublished)

Notes, materials researched; "The Hungarian Legend", carbon typescript, 1 p.; typescript, 1 p.; "Little Balilo", carbon typescript, 4 p.; "About Luzerne--Switzerland", carbon typescript, 2 p.; "London Tower Guard", 2 p. of typescript; "The Changing of the Guard at Buckingham Palace", typescript, 1 p., carbon typescript, 1 p.; "Schwanda, the Dudelsackfieffer (Bagpiper)", from a comic opera by Jaromir Weiberger, text by Milo Kares, handwritten notes, 1 p., carbon typescript, 2 p.

Rough draft, handwritten, carbon typescript, and typescript, 71 p.

Typescript (revised from rough draft), 75 p.

Great Bands of America

Rough draft, handwritten for Chapter VI (1 p.), Chapter VII, except for introductory paragraph, and Chapter VIII, on high school bands.

Typescript with extensive corrections of Chapter II, section on Patrick Conway, Chapter VIII, section on A.R. McAllister.

Carbon typescript with corrections; includes two copies of Chapter V, section on the Salvation Army; lacks introductory paragraph for Chapter VII and Chapter VIII, on farm and trade school bands.

Newspaper notices, approx. 8

I Do Solemnly Swear (unpublished manuscript on inaugurations)

Miscellaneous material on the presidents
Typescript with corrections, 9 p.

Typescript (another version) with extensive corrections, 10 p.


Carbon typescript, p. 18 -- 33 of the typed manuscript

Duplicate of above carbon typescript (another version) with corrections, 6p.


Typescript with corrections, 18p.

Carbon typescript, miscellaneous, 9p.


Carbon typescript, miscellaneous, 7p.


Typescript (not final version), 9p.

Carbon typescript, p. 66 -- 78 of manuscript

Adams, J.Q.

Carbon typescript (manuscript version), 4p.

Carbon typescript (slightly different version), 9p.

Another copy of above with corrections, 9p.

Van Buren

Carbon typescript of p. 107 -- 114 of typed manuscript

Harrison, W

Carbon typescript of p. 155 -- 122 of manuscript


Carbon typescript of p. 123 -- 129 of manuscript

Carbon typescript of p. 141 -- 148 of manuscript

Typescript with corrections, 2p.

Carbon typescript (not final version), 1p.

Notes, handwritten, 1p.


Carbon typescript of p. 149 -- 157 of manuscript


Carbon typescript, 4p.


Carbon typescript of p. 169 -- 175 of manuscript

Johnson, A.

Carbon typescript of p. 199 -- 208 of manuscript


Carbon typescript, 10p.


Carbon typescript, 6p.


Carbon typescript, 4p.


Carbon typescript, 2p.

Harrison, B.

Carbon typescript, 4p.


Carbon typescript of manuscript, p. 276 -- 281.

Mc Kinley

Carbon typescript, 8p.

Notes, handwritten, 1p.

Roosevelt, T.

Carbon typescript, 8p.

Typescript, miscellaneous, 4p.


Carbon typescript, 5p.


Carbon typescript, 11p.


Carbon typescript, 1p.


Typescript (not final version), 17p.

Carbon typescript, 1p. (two copies)


Carbon typescript, 7p.

Roosevelt, F.

Typescript, miscellaneous, 31p.

Carbon typescript, miscellaneous, 7p.

Truman, Harry

Typescript, with corrections, 8p.

Carbon typescript, with corrections, 5p.

Two prints

"Presidential Inauguration of Wm. H. Harrison in Washington, D.C. on the 4th of March, 1844. For sale at Mr. F. Taylor, Bookseller, Washington. Taken on the spot."

"The Great American Durbat" (Theodore Roosevelt)

Miscellaneous material, approx. 10p.

Typescript manuscript. 409p.

Carbon typescript, approx. 37p. missing

Newspaper notices, 1 (with 2 duplicates)

Lafayette, Friend of America

Notes, rough draft, handwritten, approx. 100p.

Typescript with corrections, 13p. missing, approx. 70p.

Typescript of "Surrender of Cornwallis" to end (not final version), 26p.

Carbon typescript, (not final version), 73p.

Carbon typescript, another version, not final, 84p.

Another copy above with corrections, approx. 13p. missing.

Duplicates carbon typescript of p. 59 -- 84 of above, 26p.

La Salle, River Explorer

Notes, rough draft, handwritten, approx. 100p.

Carbon typescript with corrections, 78p.

Letter to Graham from Edith Patterson Meyer (editor, Children's Books, Abingdon-Cokesbury Press), offering criticism and suggestions, 2p.

Newspaper notices, five.

Strike Up The Band

Carbon typescript of Chapter I (on Louis Armstrong), 7p.

Newspaper notices, eleven.

Thirty-one Roads to the White House

Newspaper notices, three.

Thirty-three Roads to the White House

Sketches of the presidents

Typescript of section on Eisenhower, 7p.

 Box 2

Washington: the Story of Our Capital

Notes, rough draft, handwritten, approx. 20p.

Material rescearched but not used (on the Royal Whale Tooth Treaty and the Elephant Tusk Treaty).

Typescript, miscellaneous with extensive corrections, approx. 45p.

Typescript with extensive corrections under title "There's So Much to See in Washington"

Typescript with corrections (not final version), under title "There's So Much to See in Washington"

Carbon typescript, miscellaneous, approx. 40p.

Carbon copy typescript (not final version), 145p. (2 copies)

Letter to Graham from Elizabeth Tompkins (editor, Juvenile Books, Thomas Nelson and Sons), 1p.

Newspaper notices, two.

Book jacket, two.

Short Stories and Essays

"A Clown of Bunche" Handwritten notes; carbon typescripts, two (different versions); published version in American Junior Red Cross News, March, 1943, p. 177 (two copies).

"Dicky Robin's First Summer" Typescript (two versions of some chapters), approx. 75p.

"The First Columbus Day" Typescript, 6p.

"The First Inauguration" Miscellaneous typescript, 3p.; carbon typescript with minor corrections, 7p. (states: "From Young Lutherans' Magazine, January 1945, pp. 2 -- 6. All rights reserved."); published version, appearing in "Boys Today," January 7, 1945, p. 3, 5 (five copies); a letter to Graham from William A. Kramer, editor of school publications, Evangelical Lutheran Synod, requesting permission to use "The Inauguration of the First President" "Boys Today," January 7, 1945) in a Lutheran Reader.

"I Do Solemnly Swear" Written by Graham and Muriel Fuller. Carbon typescript, 10p.; another version, 17p.; another version, entitled "Inaugural 'Firsts'," 10 p.

"The Legend of St. Christopher" Typescript, 2 p.; carbon typescript, 2 p.

"Little Woolly Lamb's Adventure" Typescript, 3p.

"Presidential Epithets" Typescript, 16p.

Dramatizations and Musicals

"The Doctor's Orders" (A simple little play for small children", typescri[t, 5p.

"Folk Dances of the Peoples of Mississppi in the Early Days," Typescript, 5p.

"A Garden Idyl: a One-act Play in Verse and Song for Little Children," Typescript, entitled "The Lonely Garden," 8p.; rough draft of "Bumble Bees' Song," 2 published editions, 18p. each.

"Garden Magic: Operetta for Elementayy Grades," Carbon typescript, approx. 25p.; another copy, with corrections; music, approx 15p.; miscellaneous, 2 performance programs, crayon sketch of the stage.

"Hallowe'en Capers," Miscellaneous typescript, music, notes, approx. 12p.

"June's Coronation" Suggestions for the dramatization of the song; miscellaneous material, approx. 12p.

"The Magic Hour: A Christmas Play for Little Children," Typescript, approx. 20p.; carbon typescript of above; another version, approx. 15p.; a version similar to above, with corrections, approx. 15p.

"Thanksgiving Story -- Dramatized," Miscellaneous material, 4p.

Untitled pageant, concerning old and modern fashions, miscellaneous material, 6p.


"America, Best Land of All"

"April Days"

"April Lullaby"

"April Rain"

"April's Task"

"Babe Divine"

"Band Music"

"Beggar's Song-1567"


"Best Holiday"

"Brave March"

"Breeze of Spring"

Busy Little Elf"

"Calling You"


"Chicken Talk"

"Christmas Secrets"

"Contented Goldfish"

"Cricket and the Bee"

"Cruise of the Pillowship"

"A Dillar a Dollar"

"Don't Dream on the Street"

"Drill Song"

"Drum Beats"

"Drum Major"

"Early Bud"

"Easter Eggs"

"Echo Calls"

"Fairy Key"

"Fairy Music"

"Fall, The"

"Farm Team"

"February's Hero Days"

"Fire-engine Song"

"Flag of the USA"

"Flowers' Sleepy Time"

"Flute and the Drum"

"Foot Music"

"Fresh Air and Sunshine"

"Friendly Warning"


"Fun on a Wint'ry Night"

"Guard America"

"Halloween Sights"

"Halloween Thrills"

"Happiest Time of the Year"

"Happy Thanksgiving Day"

"Hero Days"


"Hiawatha's Lullaby"


"Honor the Pilgrims"

"Hot Cross Buns"

"How We Celebrate Christmas"

"Humming Bird"

"Hungry Indians"

"Indian Hunters"

"Indian Lullaby"

"Indian Raid"



"Japanese Dolls"

"Jolly January"


"Jumping Rope Song"


"The Land We Love" ("God Save America")

"Leader, The"

"Left, Right, Left"

"Let's Play Indian"

"Life of a Duck"

"Little Miss Tulip"

"Lullaby Low"

"Make a Happy New Year"

"March Weather"

"March Winds"

"Marching Song"

"May Time"

"Merciful Menu"

"Merry Christmas"

"Merry Christmas is Here"

"Milk from the Skies"

"Month of Charm"

"Mother March"

"My Hobbyhorse"

"My Kite"

"My Wonderful Horse"

"My Zoo"

"Naughty Ducks"

"Naughty Jack Frost"

"New Year Greetings"

"Night in the Garden"


"October Nights"

"Old Mother Hubbard"

"Old Mother March"

"Old Music Box"

"Our America"

"Our School Song"

"Over the Range"

"Pirate Song"

"Play-Time Band"

"Plea for Peace"

"Poplar Trees"

"Popping Corn"

"Prayer for Peace"

"Processional--Coming of the Flowers"

"Pumpkin Faces"

"The Pussywillow's Answer"

"Pussy's Reply"

"Queen's Coronation"

"Queen of Springtime"

"Racing with the Waves"

"Rainy Day Romance"

"Rowing Not Drifting"

"Sailor's Song"

"Santa's Visit"

"Scarecrows' Song"

"School Song"

"September is Here"

"September Song"

"September's Honor Days"

"September's Magic"


"Silent Pussies"

"Sing Merry Christmas"

"Skating Song"

"Song for a Rainy Day"

"Song of April"

"Song of March Winds"

"Song of Merry Christmas"

"Song of Thanks"

"Spring Song"

"Spring's Announcer"

"Spring's Greeting Song"

"Spring's Messengers"

"Spring's Welcome"

"Squirrel and the Wren"


"Suke and Cho-san"

"Summer Rain"

"Tale of a Frog"

"Ten Little Pumpkins"

"Thankful Patriot"

"Thanksgiving is Coming"

"Thanksgiving Offering"

"Thanksgiving Song"

"There Was an Old Woman Who Lived in a Shoe"

"Thrilling Music"

"Triumphant Peace"


"Two Good Friends"

"Up-to-date Santa"




"Welcome Christmas"

"Welcome Month"

"Welcome Spring"

"We're Thankful for America"

"What Animals Say"

"When Rain Comes"

"When Spring Comes"

"When Spring Passes By"

"Where the Goldfish Sleeps"

"Who Is It?"

"Why the March Wind Blows"

"Winter Fun"

"Wise Pussies" ("The Reason")

"Wise Turkey"

"Wishesfor the New Year"

"Wordes of Warning"

"Your Valentine"

"Youth's Prayer for Peace"

Some New Songs for Little Ones (Song book) Willis Music, Cincinnati, Ohio, 1917. 31p.

Thirty-six Songs for Children. Music by G.A. Grant-Schaefer, C.C. Birchard, Boston, Massachusetts, 1909. 36p.

Groups of song manuscripts, approx. 75p. Music books, tablets containing manuscripts for more than one song.

Miscellaneous music. Untitled songs, lyrics to unfifshed song, etc. approx. 30p.

Miscellaneous poetry. Handwritten, typescript, carbon typescript, approx. 35p.

Material on Books for the Blind

"Books for the Blind" (Pamphlet), with material notes by the author.

"Volunteer Braille Transcribing" (Pamphlet)

Newspaper notices on the selection of five of Graham's books for talking records and translation into Braille.

Material concerning Mrs. Graham's doll collection

Two letters from may Ditch (Ottumwa Public Library) concerning the collection; enclosed is a list of visitors to the collection.

Five newspaper notices with duplicates.

Eight photographs of the collection with some duplicates (Photos by John Henry Reynolds from The Courier, Ottumwa, Ia.)

Photographs of Mrs. Graham, four.

Three letters from Grace Wormer, Assistant Director, State University of Iowa Library.

Unsigned letter from Mrs. Graham to unknown, concerning projected book on West Point. "Last letter before her final illness". Handwritten, 2p.

"Writing For Children"

Typescript of a speech with corrections, 15p.

Newspaper clippings, notices, etc. about Mrs. Graham, approx. 12p.

Miscellaneous material includes: newspaper clippings of ( not about) Mrs. Graham; magazine bibliography for "They All Marched"; list of songs published before she left Ottumwa; list of previous writings published; three handwritten pages of suggestions on writing, from Mrs. Myrs; one page typescript of Mrs. Coblentz's comments on writing, souvenir of hotel Brunswick, Lancaster, Penn.; quotation from the old clock in Chester, England (from the Cathedral); leaflet on a prize contest in Community Fine Arts; letter to Mrs. Graham from Thomas Nelson, Elizabeth Tompkins (editor, Juvenile Books), concerning Washington: The Story of Our Capital and Great Bands; approximately twenty pages of handwritten notes, including material on famous musicians, the Church in Denmark, and the U.S. Flag.

Memorial tributes and Obituary Notices

Letter from Lois Johnson (editor of American Red Cross News and Journal) of Chapter U., P.E.O. to Mary Powell, handwritten, 2p.

Memorial tribute by Lois Johnson, carbon typescript, 6p.

A typescript write-up of Mrs. Graham's achievements and death , 2p.

Newspaper notices, approx. ten with some duplicates.

Published memorial by Lois Johnson in The P.E.O. Record, June 1955, p21.

Magazines containing stories, poems, song of Mrs. Graham

American Junior Red Cross Journal, February 1949 (three copies) "The Odyssey of the Declaration", p. 13 -- 16.

American Junior Red Cross Journal, December, 1952 "Two persons who did much to further PEACE", p27.

American Junior Red Cross Journal, March, 1954 (two copies) "Clara Barton, Courageous Founder of the American Red Cross", p. 8 -- 11.

American Junior Red Cross News, October, 1950 (two copies, in English, two in Spanish). "Why the Moon Turned Black", p. 7 -- 9.

American Junior Red Cross News, May, 1953 "Henri Dunant, the man who hated war...", p. 22 -- 23

American Junior Red Cross News, March, 1954. (Spanish, English editions). "Clara Barton, Founder of the American Red Cross", p. 8 -- 9.

American Junior Red Cross News, October, 1954. (two copies) "The First Columbus Day", p. 12 -- 14.

Child Lore, undated "The Melancholy Crow" (poem), p. 80.

Classmate, July, 1945, Part I for July 1 (two copies). "The Third President", p.3 -- 4.

Instructor Handbook Series: Health Activites for all Grades. "A Good Old Game", p. 82 -- 83.

Instructor Handbook Series: Safety Activites for all Grades. "A Safety Code", p. 73; "Be Safe", p.74; "Traffic Lights", p.76; "A Safety Song", p.78 -- 79; "Never Look Back", p. 86.

The Story Hour Leader, October, November, December, 1945 "God's Gifts", p.1

Wee Wisdom, September, 1934. "Mr. Bat's Adventures", p. 20 -- 21.

Wee Wisdom, May, 1942. "Chester Chick and Dicky Duck", p. 18 -- 19.


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