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Biographical / Historical
Norman Donaldson graduated from Yale University in 1915 and was a member of the Scroll and Key society. He married Hildegarde Beardsley Nash in 1917. Norman Donaldson worked at the Yale University Press and was appointed director of the Press in 1950. He retired in 1959 and died in 1964.
Hildegarde Nash Donaldson was born in Belgium on June 19, 1893, the daughter of James and Mabel W. Nash. Her father died in 1904; her mother died in 1914, leaving Hildegarde as guardian of her younger sister, Mabel Virginia "Gin" Nash. Mabel Virginia Nash lived in Paris much of her life and did not marry. During World War II she was imprisoned along with other American citizens by German forces occupying France. Mabel Virginia Nash died in Paris in 1957 of complications from alcoholism.
Hildegarde Nash Donaldson was an accomplished violinist, performing her first concert at age eighteen. She graduated in 1912 from the Royal Conservatory of Music in Brussels, where she studied violin under Alfred Marchot. Later she became a pupil of Leopold Auer and also studied with Charles Martin Loeffler in Boston, and toured the United States and Europe. She made a yearly tour of Europe and regularly performed in New England venues until her retirement in 1941. She died of arthritis in Taos, New Mexico in 1946.
Norman and Hildegarde lived in New Haven throughout their marriage. Sailing and fishing in Maine were family pastimes; they also made several trips to Italy. They had two children: Virginia Louise "Midge" Donaldson (born 1918) and Harry Nash "Sonny" Donaldson (born 1920). Midge Donaldson was an actress in theater on and off Broadway who used the stage name Eve Hastings. Sonny Donaldson attended Phillips Academy, Andover, and Rennselaer Polytechnic Institute and worked as an engineer. He married Julie Mildred Felter and they had one child, Carol Lynn Donaldson.
- Guide to the Donaldson Family Papers
- compiled by Matthew T. MacLean
- February 1999
- Language of description
- Finding aid written in English.