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Inez Christen papers

Identifier: IWA0469

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Scope and Contents

The Inez Christen diaries consist of transcripts of diaries that date from 1922 to 1999 and measure 6 linear inches. Glen Christen transcribed the diaries over many years. The original diaries are in his possession. They recount the day by day activities of a hired girl on a northeast Iowa farm during the late 1920s and 1930s. The later diaries detail the daily routines and exceptional events of raising children on a farm in the 1940s and 1950s. They reveal the hard work of a hired girl and farm woman, as well as shopping trips and other entertainments in town and automobile vacations around the state. They also describe frequent socializing with nearby friends and family. World events are occasionally mentioned.


  • Creation: 1922-2000


Conditions Governing Access

The diaries are open for research. Electronic file: Diary transcripts, 1922-1999. [3.5 floppy disc ASCII electronic, 2001-2005]; 1 CD [d0032]

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright held by the donor has been retained by the donor.

However, copyright status for some collection materials may be unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owner. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the copyright owners. Responsibility and potential liability based on copyright infringement for any use rests exclusively and solely with the user. Users must properly acknowledge the Iowa Women’s Archives, The University of Iowa Libraries, as the source of the material. For further information, visit

Biographical / Historical

Inez Lucille Chase Christen, born November 26, 1906, was the second of seven children of Willis and Eliza Chase of rural Fayette County. Although active and successful as a student at Volga High School, she left before graduating, finding work as a hired girl at the Probert farm, just across the Volga River from the farm of her parents. She worked for the Proberts from 1926 until her marriage in 1941 to the neighboring farmer, Will Christen. They rented farms before buying a farm in the Elgin area in 1947 where they raised four sons, David, Paul, Glen, and Louis Christen. They retired to Elgin. Inez Christen died August 18, 1999.


6.00 linear inches

Language of Materials



Transcribed diaries of a Northeast Iowa hired girl, farmwoman and mother.

Method of Acquisition

The diaries (donor no. 694) were donated by Glen Christen in 2000 and subsequent years.

Doris Malkmus, 2001. [ChristenInez.doc]
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Repository Details

Part of the Iowa Women's Archives Repository

100 Main Library
University of Iowa Libraries
Iowa City IA 52242 IaU
319-335-5900 (Fax)