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These documents consist primarily of photocopies from a scrapbook kept by Madeleine Edison and subsequently given to her granddaughter, Madeleine (Madalee) Sloane. The bulk of the material dates from the period that Madeleine was attending Bryn Mawr College (1906-1908), but there are also documents for the years 1909-1914. In addition to the scrapbook, there are loose items that were inserted into the book, as well as a few other documents such as an autographed copy of Ida Tarbell's The Business of Being a Woman (1914), which was probably given to Madeleine as a wedding gift.
The earliest documents date from July 1906 and relate to Madeleine's admission into Bryn Mawr. She was admitted conditionally and required re-take and pass her entrance examinations in plane geometry, Latin, and German in order to receive her certificate of acceptance. Also included are drafts in Madeleine's handwriting of her toast and her dramatic rendition of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde at the Freshman Class Dinner on May 3, 1907; her remarks on "Our Future" at the Sophomore Class Dinner on May 15, 1908; and her toast at a breakfast of the Class of 1910 on June 1, 1910.
In addition, there is a letter from Sarah Atherton of the Class of 1913 inviting Madeleine to return to the college in November 1911 to perform her Jekyll-and-Hyde rendition; calling cards and invitations to social events at the college; and photographs, including several of Madeleine playing the Princess of France in the sophomore show, Love's Labors Lost, on November 1, 1907. A printed program for the show bears a note in Madeleine's hand entitled "Rules for Freshman1911." An undated letter from Theodore Edison, possibly written from Florida in 1907, expresses his wish that "you were down here with us." There is also a set of printed examination questions, with handwritten notations by Madeleine. These include questions for General Psychology, January 22, 1908; Elocution, January 24, 1908 and May 23, 1908; English Literature, January 25, 1908, March 16, 1908, and May 25, 1908; Politics, May 26, 1908; and General Philosophy, May 28, 1908.
Loose items include a telegram from Charles Edison, June 12, 1908, expressing his "best wishes for a brilliant society career"an indication that he may have been aware of Madeleine's intention not to return to Bryn Mawr in the fall. Among the several newspaper clippings are an article from the New York American, October 6, 1909, about an "autoists' road map" invented by Madeleine; a letter to the editor regarding Thomas Edison's controversial views on immortality; a clipping about Madeleine's starring role in The Merrie Masquers' 1911 production of The New Lady Bantock; and an account of the dinner-dance preceding Madeleine's wedding in 1914.
In addition, there are engraved invitations to Thomas Edison's sixty-fifth birthday party and to a luncheon in his honor sponsored by the New York Illuminating Co. in 1912. Several items pertain to Madeleine's 1913 tour of Italy, including a note from Monsignor Thomas F. Kennedy regarding her desire to have an audience with the Pope and a printed program for a drill of the Reggimento Piemonte Reale. There is also a typewritten agreement signed by Madeleine, her fiancÚ John Eyre Sloane, and Margaret Gregory establishing a partnership to act as sales agents for the Domestic Utilities Co. A humorous song entitled "Edison"intended to be sung to the tune of George M. Cohan's "Harrigan"appears in a printed circular most likely prepared in connection with the third annual convention of H. M. Byllesby & Co. in January 1912. A humorous "questionnaire" for the Class of 1910, bearing the typewritten signature "Madeleine Edison Sloane, Toastmistress," was probably prepared in connection with a class reunion.
The items not selected relate to the Fiftieth Reunion Dinner of the Class of 1910, held on June 4, 1960. These include the typewritten program, a four-page handwritten speech by Madeleine, two typewritten pages of songs, one by Madeleine; a humorous newspaper clipping; and a letter from former classmate Frances Hearne Brown. Courtesy of David E. E. Sloane.