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The Small Manuscript Collection is a collection of materials given to Mrs. Leola Selman Beeson, the author of History Stories of Milledgeville and Baldwin County and the wife of former college president Dr. J. Luther Beeson (1926-1934) . Mrs. Beeson in turn gave the collection to The Georgia Room during the 1930's and 1940's. A portion of the materials in this collection were solicited by Virginia Satterfield and Betty Ferguson and donated to The Georgia Room by their previous owners.
In 1929 the History Club, under the direction of Dr. Amanda Johnson, began plans for a museum and housed books, manuscripts and three-dimensional items in Parks Hall. With the construction of the library building in 1932, the special collections/museum moved into the library and became known as The Georgia Room. The papers exist today as one of the founding collections of our current Special Collections.
The materials located in this collection are generally unrelated to each other, but offer glimpses into Georgia and Baldwin County's early history. Many of the papers are land grants, single letters, miscellaneous advertisements, and historic materials from as early as 1805 with the majority of the collection dating between 1820 and 1890.