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Patrice Racette Sundstrand Diaries

Identifier: RH-A-3384

Scope and Contents

The collection is composed of eleven diaries from 1935 to 1953 written by Patrice (Patsy) Racette Sundstrand (1924-2009) who lived in Paw Paw, Michigan. The diaries cover daily life and activities, school, national events like World War II and the death of FDR, family, vacations and her husband Warren Sundstrand.

She mentions going downtown meaning downtown Paw Paw and going to Kalamazoo but does not give too many specifics about where she went in Kalamazoo but does talk in generalities about what she would do. She entered Western in September, 1944 and stayed what looks like a semester and then transferred to Northwestern University. Warren figures in prominently in the diaries as they both graduated from high school in 1942. After the War, he spent two years at Western and then transferred to the University of Michigan where he graduated in 1950 with an electrical engineering degree. She talks a great deal about him. She goes into great detail about her day-to-day activities and frequently uses the term, "slick up" as in "...slicked up the house today," which possibly could mean cleaning or tidying it up. She wrote faithfully every day although there are some years where some entries are empty but that is unusual. The first diary entry began when she was eleven and the last one when she was twenty-nine. She passed away on February 28, 2009. The invitations and announcements are for various graduations and weddings. In addition, there was a love letter, possible a draft, to Warren found in one of the diaries. Also in some of the diaries in the back are addresses for family and friends. In addition in the back of the first diary is a list of family and friends who have met famous people.


  • Creation: 1935-1953


Conditions Governing Access


Biographical / Historical

Patrice Racette Sundstrand was born on February 17, 1924. She spent most of her entire life in Paw Paw. She married Warren Sundstrand on June 20, 1948.


.50 Cubic Feet

Language of Materials



The collection is composed of eleven diaries from 1935 to 1953 written by Patrice (Patsy) Racette Sundstrand (1924-2009) who lived in Paw Paw, Michigan.

Source of Acquisition

Starring Fund

Physical Description

The collection amounts to .50 cubic feet and is composed of eleven diaries from 1935 until 1953. In addition there are sixteen loose invitations, announcements and a booklet to celebrate Patrice's baptism. The diaries vary in size from 5 ½”x4” to 7”x4 ¼”. Two are five year diaries (1935-1939; 1940-1944). The 1945 diary is in a five year diary but is just used for that year. The diaries are in good condition for the most part although some of the covers are worn and the diaries from 1947 and 1948 have loose spines. The handwriting is legible with the exception of the five year diaries where some of the dates have very small handwriting and many words which are hard to read. The invitations are in good condition although there is some yellowing. Some of the envelopes are torn.

Patrice Racette Sundstrand Diaries Finding Aid
Lynn Houghton
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 Western Michigan University Archives & Regional History Collections Repository

Charles C. and Lynn L. Zhang Legacy Collections Center
1650 Oakland Drive
Kalamazoo MI 49008-5307 US
(269) 387-8490