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Guide to the Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans Papers, 1947-1989

Abstract

Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans attended Duke University and graduated in the class of 1939. She later became a philanthropist and Duke trustee. This collection contains printed matter, photographs, clippings, speeches and other memorabilia relating to Semans' time as trustee, her affiliation with the British American Festival of 1984, and other Duke related activities and events.

Descriptive Summary

Title
Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans papers
Creator
Semans, Mary Duke Biddle Trent
Extent
3.7 linear feet
Repository
David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library
Language
Material in English

Collection Overview

This collection contains printed matter, photographs, clippings, speeches and other memorabilia relating to Semans' time as a Duke University trustee, her affiliation with the British American Festival of 1984, and other Duke-related activities and events.

Duke files include reports, programs, addresses and printed ephemera pertaining to matters and events at Duke University. These materials reflect Semans' activities as a university trustee as well as her support for the arts at Duke. These papers also include the transcript of a discussion on race relations at Duke and the takeover of the Allen Building from 1969, as well as minutes from the University Center Committee, the report of the Special Committee on the Functions and Organization of the Board of Trustees, and a summary report of the B.N. Duke Leadership Program.

These materials also include reports on fund raising at Duke and several reports that address salary levels and other issues faced by Duke faculty women and Semans' speech (with slides) given at the 100th Celebration of Duke Memorial United Methodist Church in 1986.

The British American Festival scrapbook contains clippings, correspondence and color snapshots relating to the 1984 North Carolina British-American Festival. There is also a a cassette tape of a recorded interview with Ian Hamilton, who composed "Raleigh's Dream" for the festival.

Oversize folders contain a newsletter from the Duke Class of 1939, Robert Ward's musical score for Music for a Great Occasion for Terry Sanford's inauguration, as well as chapel architectural drawings.

Administrative Information

A majority of collections are stored off site and must be requested at least 48 business hours in advance for retrieval. Contact Rubenstein Library staff before visiting. Read More »

warning Access Restrictions

Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection.

All or portions of this collection may be housed off-site in Duke University's Library Service Center. The library may require up to 48 hours to retrieve these materials for research use.

Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the University Archives to use this collection.

Records of the University's Board of Trustees which have been in existence for at least fifty years are available for scholarly research with the permission of the University Archivist. Access to records which have been in existence for less than fifty years shall be granted only by special permission, in writing, from the Board of Trustees.

For a period of twenty-five years from the origin of the material, permission in writing from the office of origin and the University Archivist is required for use. After twenty-five years, records that have been processed may be consulted with the permission of the University Archivist.

warning Use Restrictions

Copyright for Official University records is held by Duke University; all other copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Contents of the Collection

Container List, 1947-1989

3.7 Linear Feet; 2 boxes, 1 Oversize Folder

Files pretaining to Semans' activities with the Board of Trustees are restricted for 50 years from date of origin. Other administrative files including committee records are restricted for 25 years from the date of origin. Publicly distributed material is not restricted.

Duke files, 1947
Box 1
Folder 1
Duke files, 1955-1958
Box 1
Folder 2
Duke files, 1962-1966
Box 1
Folder 3
Duke files, 1967
Box 1
Folder 4
Duke files, 1967-1968
Box 1
Folder 5
Duke files, 1968-1969
Box 1
Folder 6
Duke files, 1970-1972
Box 1
Folder 7
Duke files, 1973-1980
Box 1
Folder 8
Duke files, 1983-1989
Box 1
Folder 9
Duke files, 1986
Box 1
Folder 10
Duke files, 1987
Box 2
Folder 1
Duke files, undated
Box 2
Folder 2
Christmas cards, 1960, 1962, 1965, undated
Box 2
Folder 3
British American Festival scrapbook
Box 2
Folder 4-13
British American Festival: Raleigh's Dream Composer Commentary I. Hamilton audiocassette, June 1984
Box 1
Audio-cassette UA29020222-CS-01
Oversized items

Includes: (1) Blueprint, Duke Chapel accessibility study for physically handicapped, 22 August 1977, (2) Duke University newsletter Class of 1939, January 1966, and (3) Ward, Robert, Music for a Great Occasion commissioned by Dr. and Mrs. James Semans for the Inauguration of Terry Sanford, fifth President of Duke University.

Oversize-folder 1

Historical Note

Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans was born in 1920, and attended Duke University, graduating in 1939. She became a philanthropist and supporter of the arts, a trustee of Duke University and of the Duke Endowment, as well as vice-chairperson of the Mary Duke Biddle Foundation.

Subject Headings

Related Material

Related Materials

Papers of the Semans Family, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Events Reference Collection, Duke University Archives, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Board of Trustees Records, University Archives, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans Papers, Duke University Archives, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University.

Provenance

The Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans Papers were received by the University Archives as a transfer in 1983.

Processing Information

Processed by Jessica Wood, February 2007

Encoded by Molly Bragg, May 2011

Accessions were merged into one collection, described in this finding aid.

Collection reprocessed to segregate Board of Trustees restricted materials by Tracy M. Jackson, January 2015.