59 School Street, Box 1310, Edgartown MA 02539 - 508.627.4441
Martha's Vineyard Museum MV Museum

A Finding Aid to the Nancy W. Look Diaries, 1886-1889, 1927-1928

Descriptive Summary

RepositoryMartha's Vineyard Museum, Gale Huntington Research Library
59 School Street
P.O. Box 1310
Edgartown, MA 02539
Call NumberRU 318
Creator Look, Nancy W., 1862-circa 1936
TitleNancy W. Look diaries
Date1886-1889, 1927-1928
Extent1/2 box
LanguageThe materials are in English.
AbstractThe diaries of Nancy W. Look, 1927-1928, record daily events and activities, such as household chores, visitors, the health of friends, family or acquaintances, church services and social functions. The collection also contains a brief excerpt from the diary of Eva Abbott, 1886-1889.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Use and Reproduction Restrictions

Requests to reproduce material from this collection should be directed to the library's staff. Reproduction fees may apply.

Preferred Citation

Martha's Vineyard Museum, RU 318, Nancy W. Look Diaries.

Acquisition Information

Gift of James Richardson in 1991. (Accession no. 1991.113)

Publication Information

Martha's Vineyard Museum

Gale Huntington Research Library
59 School Street
P.O. Box 1310
Edgartown, MA 02539

Processing Information

Finding aid prepared by Insley Julier in January 2013. Machine-encoded by Nathaniel Janick April 2014.

 Processing of this collection and creation of this finding aid was sponsored by the towns of Aquinnah, Chilmark, Oak Bluffs, Tisbury, and West Tisbury through the Massachusetts Community Preservation Act. Machine-encoding of the finding aid was sponsored by the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Index Terms


  • Diaries

Geographic Name(s)

  • London (England)--Description and travel
  • Martha's Vineyard (Mass.)--Description and travel
  • Oak Bluffs (Mass.)--Social life and customs

Personal Name(s)

  • Abbott, Eva


  • Clubs--Massachusetts--Martha's Vineyard
  • Daily life

Biography/Historical Note

Nancy William Pease Look was born November 15, 1862, to Nancy Cleveland Pease and William Luce Pease. She married Christopher Look in 1881 and the pair lived in Oak Bluffs. They had three children, Hosea Stetson, Harold and Dorothy. Nancy Look was an active member of the community. She participated in the Woman's Relief Corps, Auxiliary to the Grand Army of the Republic. She was also heavily involved with the Woman's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU), Oak Bluffs chapter. According to their records, she seldom missed WCTU meetings and for many years served as Scientific Temperance Instructor. She was ultimately elected Vice President in 1935. Nancy W. Look died around 1936.

No information is known about Eva Abbott other than the fact that she made a trip to London, England in 1889 and spent the summer in Oak Bluffs in 1886.

Scope and Content of Collection

The collection contains two anonymous diaries, 1927-1928. Museum and library staff have identified the author as Nancy W. Look on the basis of people and organizations mentioned in the entries. Many refer to Chris, the name of Nancy W. Look's husband and her son, as well as several of the other children, including, Hosea and Dorothy. The diaries record daily events and occurrences, such as household chores, dessert recipes tried, visitors to the house, correspondence received, the health of friends, family or acquaintances, family members outings, church services and club activities. Among the organizations mentioned are the girl scouts, Ladies Aid Club, Triad Club, Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) and, in particular, the Woman's Christian Temperance Union (WCTU). In addition, the collection contains a brief excerpt from a 1886-1889, diary of Eva Abbott recounting her 1889 trip to London, England and her 1886 summer vacation in Oak Bluffs, Massachusetts. In the latter entry, Abbott describes her daily activities as a vacationer and recounts her tour around the island of Martha's Vineyard.


The collection is arranged chronologically.

Contents of Collection


Eva Abbott Diary Extract, 1886-1889 


Nancy W. Look Diary, 1927 


Nancy W. Look Diary, 1928