Edith Winifred Simester papers, 1930-1952  PDF

Overview of the Collection

Simester, Edith Winifred
Edith Winifred Simester papers
1930-1952 (inclusive)
0.25 linear feet, (1 containter, 4 folders)
Collection Number
A 183
Edith Simester was a Christian missionary in China and later Brazil, serving from the 1930s through the 1950s. The collection includes incoming correspondence and transcriptions of letters to her mother.
University of Oregon Libraries, Special Collections and University Archives.
UO Libraries--SPC, 1299
University of Oregon
Eugene OR
Telephone: 541-346-3068
Fax: 541-346-3485
Access Restrictions

Collection is open to the public.

Collection must be used in Special Collections & University Archives Reading Room.

Funding for encoding this finding aid was provided through a grant awarded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Historical NoteReturn to Top

Born into a Methodist missionary family in China, Edith Simester attended Chinese schools before moving to the United States where she attended college and graduate school. In 1930, Simester entered missionary service and moved to Foochow (Fuzhou) in northern China where she worked as a teacher in a missionary school. She remained in Fuzhou until 1946 (however, it appears that she was in the United States during much of World War II, from 1937-45) when she returned to the U.S. to care for her ailing mother. Simester took a missionary post in Brazil, in order to be closer to her mother who died in 1952.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The Edith Simester collection includes incoming correspondence from missionary colleagues and from former students. Also included is a one-volume letterbook with transcriptions of letters from Simester to her mother, dated February 24, 1945-September 6, 1946. Collection also include photographs from Simester's service in China.

This collection is remarkable because it demonstrates the connections between foreign missionaries in China. Unlike similar collections in this repository that offer materials authored by an individual missionary woman, the Simester collection brings together a small assemblage of correspondence authored by Methodist missionary women from Tientsin (Tianjin), and Ch'angli, to Peking (Beijing). Thus, the Simester collection offers insights into communication between missionary women. Simester also received a number of letters from former students upon her 1946 departure from China. Many wrote from Chinese universities to express their regret upon her departure. The collection also includes several letters from a Brazilian correspondent, César Dacorso Filho.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Alternative Forms Available

Available in microfilm as part of: Women's lives. Series 3, American women missionaries and pioneers collection (MICROFILM BV3703 .W66 2006, reel 53); Primary Source Microfilm, 12 Lunar Dr., Woodbridge, Conn. 06525.

Restrictions on Use

Property rights reside with Special Collections & University Archives. Copyright resides with the creators of the documents or their heirs. All requests for permission to publish collection materials must be submitted to Special Collections & University Archives. The reader must also obtain permission of the copyright holder.

Archival may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal and/or state right to privacy laws and other regulations.

Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g. a cause of action for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of Oregon assumes no responsibility.

If a researcher finds sensitive personal information in a collection, please bring it to the attention of the reading room staff.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Edith Winifred Simester Papers, A 183, Special Collections & University Archives, University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Letterbook transcriptions of letters from Simester to her mother, February 24, 1945-September 6, 1946Return to Top

Container(s): Box 1, Folder 1

Incoming letters, 1930-1945Return to Top

Container(s): Box 1, Folder 2

Incoming letters, 1946-undated [circa 1947]Return to Top

Container(s): Box 1, Folder 3

Incoming letters, 1951-1952; Clippings, 1949, undated, 1949-1952, undatedReturn to Top

Container(s): Box 1, Folder 4

Photographs (PH279_1), 1930-1959Return to Top

0.25 linear feet
Simester, Edith
Description Dates
PH279_1_01: Tieng Ang Dong. Church of Healing Peace Foochow, China Christmas 1935. Trimmed with bamboo trees and banyan festoons--Edith 1945. [Interior view.]
1.0 photographic print
2.75 x 4.5 inches
1935 Dec
PH279_1_02: Foochow Guild Hall, Yangkow. Loaned to us as main building for A.C.C., 1938-1946. [Exterior of Chinese building behind brick wall, with one large tree to side.]
1.0 photographic print
2.25 x 3 inches
PH279_1_03: Looking across the playground to the primary school and "our" house--Edith. [Exterior of two buildings on sloped hill, playground area in foreground on flat land.]
1.0 photographic print
2.25 x 3 inches
1936 c
PH279_1_04: Gathering for "clean-up" day in Yangkow Public Playground. [Several rows of people in playground area, buildings around open playground area.]
1.0 photographic print
3.5 x 2.25 inches
1936 c
PH279_1_05: Edith in front of our houses March 1936. There are the windows of my study. Edith wore Chinese dress occasionally. The Chinese loved to see her in it. [Woman standing in courtyard in white Chinese dress.]
1.0 photographic print
4.5 x 2.5 inches
1936 Mar
PH279_1_06: Lu Ong took this. The perspectives makes me look terrible, but you'll get an idea of our "shack." It doesn't look any more attractive than it is. The inside is better. [Woman standing at top of set of stairs in front of open doorway of building.]
1.0 photographic print
2.5 x 3.25 inches
1936 c
PH279_1_07: Taipei airport, 1956. Edith Simester and six of her former students. [Edith standing in between six Chinese men in suits, plane and other people in the background.]
1.0 photographic print
3.25 x 4.5 inches
PH279_1_08: Anglo-Chinese College Y.M.C.A. cabinet and advisors 1944 while we were a refugee school. [18 Chinese men standing with Caucasian woman (Edith?).]
1.0 photographic print
1.75 x 5 inches
PH279_1_09: Best wishes to Our adviser - Miss Edith Simester- Senior III English Club. [20 Chinese men and one Chinese woman posing with Edith.]
1.0 photographic print
2 x 5.25 inches
PH279_1_10: Faculty wives farewell to Emily and me, July 1946. [19 Chinese women posing with Edith. Names listed.]
1.0 photographic print
[19 Chinese women posing with Edith.] Front row" Edith Simester, Emily Ding. Left to right" Mrs. Ding Hevai Ding, Mrs. Li Hok Gung, Mrs. Hung Sing Hong, Mrs. Hus Caik Seu, Mrs. Lau IngMrs. Ding Si Dung, Mrs. Eu-Iong Ceng, Mrs. Uong Muk Huo, Mrs. Co Buoi
3 x 7.25 inches
1946 Jul
PH279_1_11: Tieng Ang Church Youth Group 1946 Advisers: Rev. Sia Dung Leu, Dr. C.J. Yang, Bishop Carleton Lacy, Dr. David Lin, Edith Simester. [Group of men and women on steps of open doorway of building.]
1.0 photographic print
4.75 x 4 inches

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

  • Subject Terms :
  • Methodist women--China--Correspondence
  • Missions, American--Brazil
  • Missions, American--China
  • Mothers and daughters--Correspondence
  • Women Christian educators--China--Correspondence
  • Women missionaries--China--Correspondence
  • Women missionaries--China--Photographs
  • Personal Names :
  • Dacorso Filho, César
  • Dacorso Filho, César--Correspondence
  • Simester, Edith Winifred--Correspondence
  • Corporate Names :
  • Methodist Church (U.S.)--Missions--Brazil
  • Methodist Church (U.S.)--Missions--China
  • Form or Genre Terms :
  • Photographs