A Guide to the
John H. Grabill Collection , 1817-1981 (bulk 1894-1922)
Compiled by: Tiffany W. Cole, May 2010
Repository: Special Collections, Carrier Library, James Madison University
Title: John H. Grabill Collection, 1817-1981
Collection No.: SC# 3018
Creator: John H. Grabill
Extent: 1/2 Hollinger box; .21 linear feet
The John H. Grabill Collection, 1817-1981, contains a variety of items including business documents, personal correspondence, and ephemera relating to John H. Grabill, the Grabill family of Shenandoah County, and the Shenandoah Herald.
Collection is open for research.
The copyright interests in this collection have been transferred to the James Madison University Special Collection Library. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library Reference Desk (firstname.lastname@example.org).
Grabill, John H. Collection, 1817-1981, SC# 3018, Special Collections, Carrier Library, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, Va.
The collection was purchased from Rocky's Gold, Silver, and Antiques in Weyers Cave, Virginia in December 2008.
John Henry Grabill (1839-1922) was born to Ephraim and Caroline Donaldson Grabill in Mount Jackson, Virginia. After graduating from Dickinson College in 1860, Grabill served in the 33rd Virginia Volunteer Infantry Regiment (Stonewall Brigade) and in the 35th Battalion of Virginia Cavalry (White's Comanches) during the Civil War. In 1866, Grabill married Mary L. Hollingsworth of Woodstock and in 1868 became the owner and editor of the Shenandoah Heriald until his death in 1922. Grabill was appointed the first superintendent of the Shenandoah County school system in 1870 and along with P.W. Magruder established the Massanutten Academy, now the Massanutten Military Academy in Woodstock, Virginia.
Scope and Content
The John H. Grabill Collection, 1817-1981, consists of 1/2 Hollinger box (.21 linear feet) of items including business documents, personal correspondence, and ephemera relating to John H. Grabill, the Grabill family of Shenandoah County, and the Shenandoah Herald.
The collection is comprised of general correspondence and correspondence to and from the Shenandoah Herald newspaper, including drafted letters. Letters written to the Herald often reference proposed topics for articles including the myths about prohibition propoganda and how to grow one's own vegetables in an effort to triumph in the WWII effort. Also present are legal documents, receipts, promissory notes and other accounting papers, and fire insurance policies, the latter of which were used as scrap paper for diary entries. A folder of ephemera consists of a photograph of three named WWII soldiers who were stationed at Camp New Orleans in France, a United States ration sheet that belonged to Mary Caroline Grabill, programs, postcards, and paper samples from the Chemical Paper Manufacturing Company. Documents such as receipts and accounting papers pertaining to Israel and Ezra Huffman are also present, although their relevance or relationship to the Grabill's is unclear.
The collection is arranged topically in eight folders.
Cappon, Lester J. Virginia Newspapers, 1821-1935: A bibliography with historical introduction and notes. New York & London: Appleton-Century Company, Inc., 1936.
Hanks, Calvin J. "Capt. John H. Grabill." The Confederate Veteran Magazine, June 1922.
Wayland, John W. A History of Shenandoah County Virginia. Strasburg, Va.: Shenandoah Publishing House, 1927.
Grabill, John H. Diary of a Soldier of the Stonewall Brigade. Woodstock, Va.: Press of the Shenandoah Herald, 1909.
General Correspondence, 1872-1945
Shenandoah Herald Correspondence:
Folder 3 Notes and Fire Insurance Policies, 1845-1907 Folder 4 Receipts and Accounting Miscellany, 1843-1938 Folder 5 Legal Documents, 1843-1899 Folder 6 Ephemera, 1894-1981 Folder 7 Huffman Documents, 1818-1870 Folder 8