Lilly Library Manuscript Collections


The Eastman, A.F. mss., 1896-1956, consist of the correspondence of Anstice Ford Eastman, 1878-1937?, surgeon, with his mother, Annis Bertha (Ford) Eastman, 1852-1910, minister, his father, Samuel Elijah Eastman, 1846?-1925, clergyman, his sister, Crystal Eastman, 1881-1928, lawyer, his brother, Max Eastman, 1882-1969, author, and letters of his wife, Lois Eastman, and his son, Peter Ford Eastman, 1914- , physician.

In 1896 Anstice Ford Eastman, sometimes called Peter by his family, was teaching school in Weiser, Idaho, which involved grubbing sagebrush on the farm as well as instructing Latin classes. From 1897 to 1901 Eastman, enrolled at Princeton University, recounted his life as a student to his brother Max and passed judgement and criticism upon Max's early attempts at writing. During this time he was employed as school news correspondent by the Philadelphia Enquirer and the Brooklyn Eagle. In July 1901 Eastman sailed to the Philippine Islands from where he wrote to his sister Crystal about his work in the educational system of the country at Nagaba on Guimaras Island and later at Dingle on Panay among the Visayan people. On one occasion (July 5, 1903) he related with interesting detail a duck hunting trip on Panay. By 1906 Eastman was studying at Ann Arbor, Michigan, to become a doctor. The letters in the 1930's describe the symptoms of the heart ailment from which he died.

Other family letters complete the collection. In one of these (March 14, 1900) Annis Bertha (Ford) Eastman gives the circumstances of the death of Thomas Kinnicut Beecher. They are accompanied by pencilled notes made by Max Eastman as he reread the letters many years later.

Collection size: 149 items

For more information about this collection and any related materials contact the Public Services Department, Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405. Call (812) 855-2452 or send an email using our Ask a Question form.