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Laura Stedman Papers

Call Number: YCAL MSS 291

Scope and Contents

The papers consist of correspondence, writings, and personal papers that document the personal and professional life of Laura Stedman. The correspondence constitutes the larger part of the collection and highlights personal and professional affiliations with Edmund Clarence Stedman (grandfather), Dr. George M. Gould (husband), Ellen Douglas Stedman (mother), and a number of writers including Martha Dickinson Bianchi and Cora Miranda Baggerly Older. Of particular note is the correspondence group related to her work as literary agent for the writer Ednah Proctor Clarke (Hayes), which includes correspondence, playscripts, and contractual agreements between a range of interested parties including the actress Khyva St. Albans and a number of theatrical producers. Writings include notes and a typescript for a play titled "The Conquering Flame," notes and correspondence related to the editing and publication of the letters and manuscripts of Edmund Clarence Stedman, and limited collected writings of other authors, including Mary S. Edgar. The personal papers include materials related to Stedman's education, including an early report card and school notebooks; a run of scrapbook journals containing notes, photographs, postcards, and clippings which document a range of interests; and collected visual materials including drawings attributed to Albert Bierstadt and Petrella da Bologna.


  • 1887 - 1931
  • Majority of material found within 1894 - 1926


Conditions Governing Access

The materials are open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

The Laura Stedman Papers is the physical property of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Yale University. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. For further information, consult the appropriate curator.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Milton Seabury Dees, 1939.


Organized into three series: I. Correspondence, 1887-1930; II. Writings, circa 1902-1928. III. Personal papers, 1888-1931.

Related Materials

Edmund Clarence Stedman Collection, YCAL MSS 1008.


7.43 Linear Feet (15 boxes)

Language of Materials


Catalog Record

A record for this collection is available in Orbis, the Yale University Library catalog

Persistent URL


The papers consist of correspondence, writings, and personal papers which document the personal and professional life of Laura Stedman. The correspondence highlights personal and professional affiliations with Edmund Clarence Stedman (grandfather), Dr. George M. Gould (husband), and a number of writers including Martha Dickinson Bianchi, Ednah Proctor Clarke (Hayes), and Cora Miranda Baggerly Older. The papers include examples of Stedman's writing, publications, and a run of her scrapbook journals.


Laura Woodworth Stedman was born in 1881, the daughter of Frederick Stuart Stedman and Ellen Montague Douglas Stedman, and the granddaughter of banker, editor, and poet, Edmund Clarence Stedman. She was educated at private schools in New York City, including Arundell Academy and the Brackett School. Stedman served as literary secretary to her grandfather in the decade preceding his death in 1908 and, thereafter, as his literary executor. In 1908 Stedman contributed a bibliography to George M. Gould’s Concerning Lafcadio Hearn. Working with Gould again, she edited a two-volume edition of her grandfather’s letters, Life and Letters of Edmund Clarence Stedman (1910). In 1916 she published a short appreciation of Bayard Taylor in The Mid-West Quarterly. The following year Stedman and Gould married, taking up residence in Atlantic City, New Jersey. After Gould’s death in 1922, Stedman remained in Atlantic City through 1930, in which census she is listed as a widow and an author. At the time of her death in 1939, Stedman was married to Milton Seabury Dees and resided in New York.

Processing Information

This collection includes materials previously identified by the call number Za Dies, having been mistakenly identified as the papers of Laura Woodworth Stedman Gould Dies. This identification reflected an erroneous spelling of the last name of Laura Stedman's second husband, the donor of the papers, Milton Seabury Dees. The collection also includes material previously separated and cataloged under Za Brower which has been reintegrated.

Most of the descriptive information used in the inventory of this finding aid was derived from folder notes and catalog cards created by previous staff members of the Beinecke library.
Guide to the Laura Stedman Papers
by Christopher Geissler, Tom Hyry, and Beinecke Staff
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English.

Part of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library Repository

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New Haven, CT 06511

Opening Hours

Access Information

The Beinecke Library is open to all Yale University students and faculty, and visiting researchers whose work requires use of its special collections. You will need to bring appropriate photo ID the first time you register. Beinecke is a non-circulating, closed stack library. Paging is done by library staff during business hours. You can request collection material online at least two business days in advance of your visit, using the request links in Archives at Yale. For more information, please see Planning Your Research Visit and consult the Reading Room Policies prior to visiting the library.