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Mary Wright Dennis Papers

 Collection — Multiple Containers
Identifier: FMS-152

Scope and Contents

The Mary Wright Dennis Collection is kept in its original order, separated by subject of research. Boxes one through three include printed and primary sources, notes taken and publishings of findings, and correspondence with various individuals concerning the origins and relations of the Wright and Dennis families. Box four contains two family Bibles. Of particular interest is the photograph album in volume 3, which contains unique Civil-War-era images of Quakers in Wayne, Randolph, and Henry counties. Boxes are separated by the specific family name or other item being researched, and further, into numeric folders or specific subject matter within each name being researched. Subject matter that continues from one folder to the next without a noticeable difference in subject is split by numbers, while more clear divisions are named. Mary Wright Dennis published her findings in two compilations, James and Mary Wright and some of their Descendants and Thomas Dennis and some of his Descendants, both of which are located in box three.


  • 1970-2000

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open without restriction.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish, quote, or reproduce must be secured from the archivist.

Biographical or Historical Information

Mary Wright was born near Arba in Randolph County, Indiana, May 29, 1916, the daughter of William and Lucy (Tapp) Wright. She received degrees in education from Indiana University and Ball State University, and she was an elementary school teacher in Huntsville, Lynn, Hagerstown, and Richmond, Indiana, retiring in 1978. She died at her home near Modoc, Indiana, July 10, 2008. On November 24, 1944, she married Thomas E. Dennis (1916-1990), the son of Arthel and Jennie (Stanton) Dennis of Dalton Township, Wayne County, Indiana. He was a farmer in Wayne and Randolph counties. Mary Wright Dennis was well known for her interests in genealogy and local history. An indefatigable correspondent, she gathered photographs and documents relating to the Dennis family, many of which she donated to the Friends Collection before her death. (See FMS 26, Dennis Family Collection). With her neighbor LaVora Lumpkin, she was also responsible for the restoration of the West River Friends Cemetery near Dalton in the early 1980s.

Note written by


4.00 Boxes

Language of Materials



Research, findings, and correspondence pertaining to the family history of Mary Wright Dennis and her husband Thomas E. Dennis.

Technical Access Requirements

Photographs are scattered throughout the collection.

Method of Acquisition

Donation, children of Mary Wright Dennis--Jane Thomas, Sue Dennis, and Philip Dennis, August 2008

Accruals and Additions

No more additions or accruals are expected.

Related Materials

FMS 26: William Dennis Family Collection.

Separated Materials

The Dennis family also donated a number of historical and genealogical books that were separately catalogued and added to the Friends Collection.

Archon Finding Aid Title
Ann McShane, September 2009
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Friends Collection and Earlham College Archives Repository