The Rural Record is a handwritten
journal of School events kept by various SPS Faculty members
from 1857 to the early twentieth century. An indispensable source
for the School’s early years, the Rural Record was kept
in turn by Francis Chase from 1857 to 1862, John T. Wheeler
to 1872, Hall Harrison (the School’s first Librarian)
to 1874, and Augustus M. Swift to 1879. A gap of nine years
occurs, then the entries are carried on by various hands until
1890, and then by J. M. Lamberton and Willard Scudder.
The entries in the Rural Record
range from descriptions of the weather (the temperature being
recorded faithfully three times a day) and daily life at the
School to events of national significance. In recent years,
the folio volumes of the Rural Record were sent to the New England
Document Conservation Center in Andover, Mass. for deacidification
treatment, intended to prolong the life of the handwritten journals.