Saturday, March 23, 2013

1880s Autograph Album of Sylvania Whiteside of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


1880s autograph album of Sylvania Whiteside, or "Vanie", of the Manayunk area of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  


She may have been Hannah Sylvania Whiteside, daughter of George and Hannah Amanda (Earl) Whiteside.  Hannah Sylvania was born 15 November 1857 and died 25 June 1893 at Philadelphia, not long after the last autographs in her album were collected.


The album is approximately 6-1/4" x 4" and contains 24 pages signed by Sylvania herself and her friends.  An alphabetical list of the signers appears at the end of this post.

The album has several illustrations scattered throughout the album, most of them unused by the signers.  This is my favorite:


Julius Arnold signed facing pages at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 5 December 1886, the left in Greek and the right in English.



Joseph Clegg of England signed a page and gave his birthdate as 17 December 1863.  [If you read his surname differently, please let me know.]


Two pages were inscribed to an Evelyn/Eve and appear to be from a more modern era.  Perhaps a relative found Vanie's album after her death.  Lieutenant John R. Salter, Sr., of the U. S. Navy, serving on the USS Sperry, inscribed a page to his "very good friend Evelyn".


 Several people wrote on a page inscribed to Eve: Henry L. Willemssen, Bess Lokken; Bill Christopherson.


One page was written in German in 1887.  If you can translate and/or identify the signer, please leave a comment.


F. E. Donaghay signed a page at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania on 4 February 1888.  I'm not sure of the first initial.


If you have any information on Hannah Sylvania Whiteside or any of the signers listed below, please leave a comment or contact me directly.  Thanks!

Alphabetical list of signers: [Note: given names within a specific surname may not be in alphabetical order.]


  • M. M., signed in 7 March 1885
  • Page written in German, signed at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in 1887
  • Page inscribed to Eve/Evelyn by Henry L. Willemssen, Bess, Lokken and Bill Christopherson
  • Inscription written in shorthand or code, in 1887
  • Page inscribed by Julius Arnold in Greek; he inscribed the facing page in English on 5 December 1886
  • H. M. Brown of Falls, Pennsylvania, signed on 26 March 1889
  • Joseph Clegg of England; he gave his birthdate as 17 December 1863. Not sure of his surname.
  • ? E. Donaghay, signed at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 4 February 1888.  FIrst intial might be F. or I. of V. or?
  • L. F. Givin, signed at Manayunk, Pennsylvania, on 4 February 1887
  • S. A. Holt, signed at Wissahickon, Pennsylvania, on 17 February 1887
  • Mamie Holt, signed in February 1887
  • Emily Jackson, signed at Falls of Schuylkill, Pennsylvania, on 4 October 1888
  • Alice Jackson, signed at Falls of Schuylkill, Pennsylvania, on 4 October 1888
  • Rachael Lawson [not sure of surname]
  • E. Pilkington, signed at Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on 20 March 1887
  • Page inscribed to Evelyn by Lt. John R. Salter, Sr., U.S.N., USS Sperry (AS12).  Inscribed to someone other than the original owner, in a more contemporary ink and hand.
  • M. A. Schofield, signed at Roxborough, Pennsylvania, on 20 January 1887; not sure of middle initial
  • Emma V. Siedell, or Seidell, signed on 22 January 1889
  • Eva Simonton, signed by Roxborough, Pennsylvania, on 16 March 1885
  • H. M. Stormont, signed on 25 November 1885
  • M. L. Talmage, signed at Roxborough, Pennsylvania, in October 1884
  • L. S. Talmage, signed in November 1884
  • Robert Turner, signed on 19 June 1889
  • Sylvania Whiteside, album owner.  In lighter color ink: "Autumn 1884"
The Manayunk area of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania


Thanks for stopping by!




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