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Christensen family papers

 Collection
Identifier: SC-029

Scope and Contents

The Christensen family papers, 1945-1986, consist of letters written by John Francis (J.F.) Christensen to his wife, Alcyone Christensen, and mother-in-law, Nellie Condon, from 1945 to 1947. The letters to Alcyone update her on his health and experiences in new cities, discuss plans to move the family to the Canal Zone, and refer to her letters about their children, Helen and John. The first letter addresses Alcyone by name, but all others begin with "Dear Buddie" and end with "Buddie" to signify the relationship between husband and wife. The March 1947 to July 1947 letters discuss J.F.'s growing health issues and the long wait to return to Pensacola, Florida. The two 1945 letters to Nellie Condon ask about Alcyone, the children, and his father-in-law, Thomas Condon. J.F. updates Nellie about his current location and upcoming work assignments. These letters begin with "Dear Nellie" and end with "Chris."

The collection includes certified copies of Alcyone's and J.F.'s birth certificates and baptism records as well as a certified letter confirming their 1926 marriage. Thomas Condon's 1954 death certificate and a copy of Alcyone's 1971 will are enclosed as well. The collection also includes Sister Helen's autograph book from Mount Saint Agnes College, containing well wishes and goodbye messages written by fellow classmates. The autograph book folder contains newspaper clippings commemorating Bob Hope's 100th birthday in 2003. Since J.F. and Alcyone were born in 1903, Sister Helen may have kept these clippings to acknowledge their 100th year as well.

Dates

  • 1945 - 1986

Language of Materials

Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is located at the Loyola Notre Dame Library. Contact Archives and Special Collections for more information.

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

The Christensen family papers are the physical property of Archives and Special Collections, Loyola Notre Dame Library. Copyright, except in cases where material has passed into the public domain, belongs to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns

Biographical / Historical

John Francis (J.F.) Christensen was born May 9, 1903 in Utica, New York to John Christensen and Catherine Ryan. He married Alcyone Condon at Sacred Heart Church in Pensacola, Florida on September 9, 1926. They had a daughter named Helen in 1927 and a son named John in 1935. J.F. was a Naval Supply Officer stationed in New York and the Canal Zone.

Historical information adapted from:

State of New York Certificate of Birth, dated June 29, 1957

Certificate of Baptism, dated June 29, 1957

Certified letter from Sacred Heart Church, dated March 8, 1929

https://www.ancestry.com/1940-census/usa/Florida/John-F-Christensen_4p3xj4 (accessed March 2019)

Biographical / Historical

Alcyone Margareta Christensen (nee Condon) was born July 28, 1903 in Mobile, Alabama to Thomas Condon and Nellie Giblin Condon. She married John Francis Christensen at Sacred Heart Church on September 9, 1926 in Pensacola, Florida. They had a daughter named Helen in 1927 and a son named John in 1935. Alcyone lived with her parents in Pensacola while her husband served as a Naval Supply Officer during and after World War II.

Historical information adapted from:

Alabama Department of Health Delayed Certificate of Birth, dated July 30, 1954

Certified letter from Sacred Heart Church, dated March 8, 1929

https://www.ancestry.com/1940-census/usa/Florida/Alcyone-Christensen_4p3xj2/amp (accessed March 2019)

Biographical / Historical

Sister Helen C. Christensen, R.S.M., was born in Pensacola, Florida in 1927 to parents John and Alcyone Christensen. She earned a bachelor's degree in mathematics from Mount Saint Agnes College and joined the Sisters of Mercy novitiate in 1946. Sister Helen taught math at schools in Maryland and Alabama before earning a master's degree in mathematics from the University of Notre Dame. She was a math professor at her alma mater, Mount Saint Agnes College, from 1966 until its merger with Loyola College Maryland in 1971. Sister Helen continued as a math professor at Loyola College from 1971 until her retirement as Professor Emerita in 2006.

While employed at Loyola, Sister Helen established the National Scholarships Committee in 1983 to help students apply for Fulbright, Goldwater, and Rhodes scholarships. She served as director of the committee for twenty years, helping seventy-one Loyola students obtain national scholarships. In 1988, she published the textbook, Mathematical Modeling for the Marketplace: Applying Graph Theory in Liberal Arts and the Social and Management Sciences and re-released the book as Mathematical Modeling for the Marketplace: Graphs and Digraphs in Everyday Life in 1997. The textbook served as the foundation for a Loyola College math course for non-science majors. Sister Helen Christensen passed away on August 2, 2012 at age 85.

Historical information adapted from:

http://sections.maa.org/mddcva/OtherDocuments/MeritoriousServiceSisterHelenChristensen.pdf (accessed March 2019)

https://www.archbalt.org/sister-helen-christensen-r-s-m-dies-at-85/?print=print (accessed March 2019)

https://www.ancestry.com/1940-census/usa/Florida/Helen-C-Christensen_4p3xj3/amp (accessed March 2019)

Extent

1.17 Cubic Feet (7 legal sized folders)

Abstract

The Christensen family papers, 1945-1986, consist of letters written by John Francis (J.F.) Christensen to his wife, Alcyone Christensen, and mother-in-law, Nellie Condon, from 1945 to 1947. The collection includes certified copies of Alcyone's and J.F.'s birth certificates and baptismal records as well as a certified letter confirming their 1926 marriage. Thomas Condon's 1954 death certificate, Alcyone's 1971 will, and Helen Christensen's Mount Saint Agnes College autograph book can be found among the materials.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

There is no known acquisition information for this collection.

Processing Information

This collection was processed in 2019 by Shavonne Munnlyn.
Title
Guide to the Christensen family papers
Author
Shavonne Munnlyn
Date
2019
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Undetermined
Script of description
Code for undetermined script
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the Loyola Notre Dame Library Archives and Special Collections Repository

Contact:
200 Winston Avenue
Baltimore MD 21212
410-617-6870