Skip to main content

Lane papers

Identifier: MS 0555

Scope and Contents

The Mary Haynes Lane papers include correspondence, writings, memorabilia, biographical information, and photographs dating from 1861-1922. Of particular note are letters that she wrote as a student at Mount Holyoke Female Seminary from 1861-1863. These letters are written to her brothers, Charles T. and John Haynes. Lane discusses many aspects of her life at the Seminary, including the rules, her course work in botany, domestic work on campus, and prayer meetings. These letters also include references to the Civil War and its impact on students. Also included in the papers are two essays by Lane written in 1889 and 1907 which discuss the history of Mount Holyoke and her experiences as a student. Biographical material includes notes and obituaries concerning Lane. Included in the memorabilia is a United States Christian Commission pin worn by her husband, John William Lane, during the Civil War and letters by Charles T. Haynes. The photographs consist of two formal portraits of her taken in 1868.


  • Creation: 1861-1922

Conditions Governing Access


Biographical Note

Mary Haynes was born in Townsend, Massachusetts on July 11, 1841 to Samuel Haynes and Eliza Spaulding Haynes. She attended public and private schools in Townsend and Groton, Massachusetts, then taught in Townsend and New Ipswich, New Hampshire. In 1861 she entered Mount Holyoke Female Seminary and graduated in 1864. She taught at Mount Holyoke from 1864-1868. She married the Reverend John William Lane, a Congregational minister, on August 26, 1868. They had eight children, three of whom died in infancy. She and her husband also took two Chinese children into their home and educated them along with their own children. From 1868-1877 they lived in Whately, Massachusetts and later moved to North Hadley, Massachusetts where her husband took charge of a congregation. Upon her husband's death in 1911, she went to live with her daughter, Mrs. Amy Powell in Springfield, Massachusetts. She remained there until her own death on June 25, 1922, at the age of eighty.


1 boxes (Faculty/Staff)

Language of Materials



Lane, Mary Haynes, 1841-1922; student and college teacher. Mount Holyoke Female Seminary graduate, 1864. Mount Holyoke Female Seminary teacher, 1864-1868. Papers consist of correspondence, writings, memorabilia, biographical information, and photographs chiefly documenting her activities as a student at Mount Holyoke with an emphasis on religious life and references to the Civil War.


Arranged in 5 series. Series 1. Correspondence. Series 2. Writings. Series 3. Memorabilia. Series 4. Biographical Information. Series 5. Photographs.

Lane papers, 1861-1922.
Edited Full Draft
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Mount Holyoke College Archives and Special Collections Repository

50 College Street
8 Dwight Hall
South Hadley MA 01075-6425 USA