The Laura Gibson Smith papers date from ca.1917 to 1983 and measure 10 linear inches. The papers are arranged in four series: Journals, Writings, Earle Sloan Smith, and Photographs. Most of the collection is writings in the form of journals and stories, both fiction and non-fiction, reflecting Laura Gibson Smith's travels abroad. There is very little biographical information.
The Journals series is comprised of six journals written by Laura Gibson Smith dating from 1917-1918 and 1923-1925. The journals contain information regarding her travels abroad, as well as the years he spent living in the Philippines. She writes at length about the social, economic, political, and educational systems in the Philippines. Some of the journals were written during her world cruise aboard the ship "Trier."The last journal was written while she was living in Iowa in 1971.
Writings consists of six sub-series: Essays, Manuscripts, Notebooks, Notes, Short Stories, and Miscellaneous. Essays includes descriptions of a world cruise taken in 1925 and the cities visited, superstitions of the Filipino people, and a trip to Japan. A typed manuscript "Almost Pioneers" documents Laura Gibson Smiths experiences homesteading in Chugwater, Wyoming, from 1913 to 1916. Included is a description of her attempts at forming a women's club and a church, and participating in the election of 1916 in which women were allowed to vote for the first time. Also included are photographs of the Smith family and their home on the prairie. The manuscript was privately published in 1983.
Notebooks and Notes were written during Laura Gibson Smith's residence in the Philippines. Included are descriptions of the people and customs, and the daily life experiences she observed whileliving there. Short stories were probably written during Laura Gibson Smith's residence in the Philippines. Essays include a variety of short pieces, possibly used for teaching. The final sub-series, Miscellaneous, contains examples of Filipino students' writing in a first year English class.
The Earle Sloan Smith series consists of a few pieces of his writings and a short story, "Ten", probably written in the early 1920s. Also included is a newspaper article announcing his nomination for the office of Story County Attorney in 1926, apolitical flyer, and the semi-official returns for the Story County General Election.
Photographs of the Philippine Islands, Egypt, and Sumatra, taken in the late 1910s, and other miscellaneous photographs make up the final series.