Creator:Burlingame, Virginia Struble

Provenance Note:The Virginia Burlingame papers were donated to Montana State University Library in three installments. In 1964, Virginia donated manuscripts and galley proofs for her three children's books, Cactus, Larry Two Feathers, and The Little Ducks Who Swam Away From Home, which were assigned accession numbers 91 and 92. A letter written by John Greenleaf Whittier to Burlingame's grandfather, John W. Wright, was donated by Virginia and her aunts in 1965 as accession 97. The balance of the material came to the University in 1994 as part of the research materials donated by her husband, Merrill G. Burlingame of Bozeman, Montana.

Historical Note:Virginia Struble Burlingame was born August 16, 1900 to Dr. and Mrs. Linton W. Struble of West Liberty, Iowa. She grew up in Davenport Iowa and attended high school there. She went on to graduate from Augustana College in Rock Island, Illinois, 1928 and Columbia University's library school in New York City, 1933. She taught for two years and was on the library staff of the University of Iowa at Iowa City (1926-1927) and the Kansas Teachers College in Pittsburg (1927-1930). On September 12, 1936, she married Montana historian Merrill Burlingame in Davenport. The couple made their home in Bozeman, Montana. She was a member of the Grand Avenue Christian Church, the Audubon Society and numerous environmental associations. Burlingame was the author of three children's books, Cactus, The Story of a Porcupine (Bethany Press: 1958); The Little Ducks Who Swam Away From Home (A.S. Barnes, 1961); Larry Two-Feathers of the Nine bar Ranch (Bethany Press, 1967). She also contributed more than fifty short stories and articles for children and adults dealing with a wide variety of historical and social topics. She had been active in her church on a local, state, and national level, attending three world conferences for the church. She died on November 19, 1993.

Content Description Note: The Virginia S. Burlingame papers consist of literary manuscripts, research files, and ancestral family papers created or collected by her. Burlingame's literary manuscripts include original drafts or galley proofs of her three published books, along with many of her magazine articles which dealt with religious themes, travel, and Western history. Burlingame published under at least three names: her married name; her maiden name, Virginia Strubel: and a pseudonym, John Linton Strubel. She was particularly interested in a nineteenth century steamboat captain, John C. Barr, and she attempted unsuccessfully to market a children's biography of Barr. Another topic of interest for Burlingame was John J. Healy, a Montana frontiersman who also went to Alaska during the Gold Rush. Her Healy research culminated in a series of television scripts which she also failed to successfully market.

Burlingame's ancestral papers include letters, documents, photos, and an transcribed diary created by John W. Wright, her maternal grandfather, who served in the Sixth Iowa Cavalry during the Civil War and took part in the 1864 campaign against the Lakota nation. The files have been arranged in alphabetical order, with folder titles in quotes indicating a manuscript she created under that title. In some cases the published version of the article accompanies the manuscript, along with publisher correspondence and royalty check stubs. One cased photograph of John W. Wright, originally placed in Box 5, folder 29, has been removed for preservation purposes and stored elsewhere.


Box 1
2. Alaska and the Yukon
3. Alaska and the Yukon-pamphlets and brochures Alaska Sportsman
4. Alaska Sportsman
5. Alaska Sportsman
6. "Alaska Over a New Route"
7. Arctic
8. "Are You an In or an Out?"
9. Augustana College
10. Baker, Isaac P.
11. Barr, John C.-Family correspondence
12. Barr, John C.-Research correspondence
13. Barr, John C.-Outline
14. Barr, John C.-Manuscript drafts
15. Barr, John C.-Chronology
16. Barr, John C.-Publishing correspondence
17. "Bird Brain"
18. "The Bird Tree"
19. Black America
20. "Branches of the Vine"
21. "The Brown Cranes"
22. Brown, John
Box 2
1. "Cactus"-Galley Proofs
2. "Cactus"-Reader's letters
3. "Cactus"-Publicity
4. Cariboo Trail
5. Carson, Charlie
6. Cattle Brands
7. "The Cheyenne Indians Get a Break"
8. "Christmas 1966"
9. "Christmas Eve on the Ranch"
10. "Church Attendance During Vacation"
11. Civil War
12. "Clad With Zeal as a Cloak"
13. "Devotions"
14. Diamonds
15. "Editorial"
16. Encyclopedia Britannica
17. "Evergreen State"
18. Everts, Truman
19. "Fillers"
20. Food and drink
21. Forest lookout
22. Fort Benton
23. Freighters
24. Friends wedding
25. "Frontier Mother"
26. "The Golden Eagle"
27. "A Good Steady Job"
28. Hapner, Laura
29. Hayden survey
30. Healy, J.J.-Alaska Journal
31. Healy, J.J.-Clippings
32. Healy, J.J.-Davidson to Vadez letter
33. Healy, J.J.-Research notes
Box 3
1. Healy, J.J.- "John Healy and the Idaho Mines"
2. Healy, J.J.- Scripts "Fiddle Footed Irishman"
3. Healy, J.J.- Scripts "Fiddle Footed Irishman"
4. Healy, J.J.- Scripts "Fiddle Footed Irishman"
5. Healy, J.J.- Scripts "Fiddle Footed Irishman"
6. Healy, J.J.- Scripts "Fiddle Footed Irishman"
7. Healy, J.J.- Research correspondence
8. Healy, J.J.- "The Horse Tamer" by Jesse Green
9. Healy, J.J.- "Healy Makes a Horse Trade"
10. "The Hilder Memorial"
11. "How Now, Parnelli?"
12. Ideas
13. "An Incident on the Frontier"
14. "The Indian Tipi"
15. Indians
16. Indians
17. Iowa
18. "It's For the Birds"
19. "Klondike Cat"
20. Klondike Kate
21. "A Knock on the Door at Night"
22. "Larry Two Feathers"
23. "The Last of the Montana Road Agents" by Jesse Green
24. "The Lazy Willow Warbler"
25. "The Little Ducks who Swam Away"
Box 4
1. "Little Things"
2. "Lord Belvedere"
3. "The Lost Lamb"
4. "Lulu Learns a Lesson"
5. "A Monument in Gingerbread"
6. "Mister Everts and the Wilderness"
7. Mettler Inventory
8. Miscellaneous
9. Mining Camps
10. Montana Mistique
11. Montana travel
12. "Nothing But the Sky Above"
13. "Old Empty Top"
14. Oregon
15. "The Patient in the Other Bed"
16. "The People's Bishop"
17. Pony Express
18. Presbyterian Church in Montana
19. "The Ptarmigan"
20. "The Rabbit and the Flood"
21. "The Railroads of Iowa"
22. Rankin, Jeannette- "Courage Comes High"
23. Rodeo
24. "Romance of Whoop-Up"
25. RCMP
26. "St. Mary's Church"
27. "Save, Save, Save!"
28. Scorpions and spiders
Box 5
1. "Second Choices"
2. "Sidney, the Trumpeter Swan"
3. Sign Language
4. "Sleepy Jake's Rabbit"
5. "So You're Trailering to Alaska"
6. Songs
7. "Sparrows"
8. "Stage Coach Robbery"
9. "Stage Coaching in Montana"
10. Steam Boating
11. "Surly Sam"
12. "Swamper's Gold"
13. "The Tenderfoot's Arrival"
14. "There's Gold in them thar Fish"
15. "Three Forks of the Missouri"
16. "The Tom Harlow Gang"
17. "Too Many Signs"
18. TV markets
19. TV play
20. Vocabulary
21. "The Wayward Son"
22. "What To DO With Your Spare Time"
23. "Wild Bill"
24. "Woman Hater"
25. "In The Wonderland of the Yellowstone"
26. Wright, John W.-diary
27. Wright, John W.-Letters and documents
28. Wright, John W.-Research letters
29. Wright, John W.-Photographs
30. "Yellowstone Creatures"

Contents | Special Collections

Updated: 4/20/09