Over the past year Special Collections and Archives has been fortunate to receive many generous offers from members of the public to donate their Cunard memorabilia and family papers. These all of course become part of the Cunard Associated Deposits which complement the business papers of the Cunard archive.
One of the more unusual donations we received recently is that of a small bundle of staff papers, its uniqueness being that it was created by a female employee of Cunard from the 1920s – that of Miss Lucy Squires who worked as a Secretary for the company in their London Office on Cockspur Street.
The papers include an indexed notebook used in the course of the Lucy Squires’ employment as a Secretary for Cunard until her marriage in 1927. Each indexed page has loose pages of typed and handwritten (sometimes short hand) notes and draft example letters attached. There were also loose pages within the workbook, some of which contained instructions on how to address individuals with titles before their name and copies of letters sent to Cunard passengers promoting the services of Cunard.
The workbook was in a fragile condition and contained original metal pins and staples that had gone rusty – to make the record accessible to readers in our reading room these were removed and each page numbered to reflect the original order in which they were attached to the workbook.
Other items within the collection include a 1923 Christmas edition of the Cunard Magazine (Vol. XI. No. 6.) and memorabilia from Lucy Squires’ time as a passenger with her family on the Queen Elizabeth and Queen Mary during 1967. Again, these items are unique to the archive since they contain example passenger tickets which have generally not survived as part of the Cunard business papers.
We are sure that researchers will be excited to learn of the existence of such unique staff papers created by a female employee of Cunard and we look forward to cataloguing all of the other generous donations that we have received in order to make them accessible to all.
All updates to the Cunard archive, including new accessions can be viewed via the Cunard archive webpage or searched via the SC&A Archive Catalogue. The reference number for the Lucy Squire papers is 2020.034.