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Alvilda (Myre) Sorenson-Smith and Nancy Lee (Sorenson) Buckmaster Collection

 Unprocessed Material — Multiple Containers
Identifier: H2011-113

Content Description

The collection consists mainly of diaries written by Alvilda (Myre) Sorenson-Smith and her daughter Nancy Lee (Sorenson) Buckmaster. Alvilda’s diaries run from the late 1930s to the mid-1990s. Nancy’s diaries run from the 1940s to the 1980s. Alvilda has the more complete set of diaries. The daily diaries include information on the weather as well as social, community, and family events mainly in the Brookings (S.D.) area after 1950. The diaries also include names of individuals in the community. Most of the diaries are bound though the binding on some of the diaries are severely damaged. Alvilda Joan (Myre) Sorenson-Smith was born November 1, 1901 in Estelline (S.D.) to Richard Pedersen and Marian Henrietta (Gregersen) Myre. She grew up in Estelline and Desmet (S.D.) graduating from Desmet High School in 1920. She attended South Dakota State University and graduated from the College of Home Economics in 1924. She taught in Bryant (S.D.) while Karl Mundt was the superintendent. She married Hans Sorenson in June of 1928. Mrs. Sorenson-Smith was a generous benefactress to SDSU, the Family Resource and Management Center was named after her in October of 1981. She received an Honorary Doctorate of Humanities degree from SDSU in 1978. She was also the South Dakota Mother of the Year in 1957. She died November 2001. Nancy Lee (Sorenson) Buckmaster was born November 1932 in Aberdeen to Hans and Alvilda (Myre) Sorenson. She attended first through fifth grades in Watertown and sixth through twelfth grades in Erwin (S.D.) graduating in 1950. She attended SDSU for two years, and was homecoming queen in 1952. She married John Buckmaster in Brookings in March 1956. They lived in Colorado for a time before moving to Erwin and operated a potato farm and small grain business. Nancy died in Brookings in June 2010. The collection also includes two school scrapbooks from Alvilda and Nancy titled, “School Girl Days” for Alvilda Myre while a teacher at Bryant (S.D.) and “School Day Memoirs” for Nancy Sorenson while a student at Erwin (S.D.). The collection includes a scrapbook of items relating to Alvilda’s time at South Dakota State University (Brookings, S.D.). Alvilda graduated from SDSU in 1924. There are also guest books and address books belonging to both Alvilda and Nancy. The collection features a number of photo scrapbooks dated to the 1920s presumably of Alvilda and her friends. A content list is included.

Acquisition Type


Restrictions Apply



  • 1920s-1990s



8.5 Cubic Feet


8995 Alvilda (Myer) Sorenson diaries 1990-1996 1981-1989 [missing 1985] 8996 Alvilda (Myer) Sorenson diaries 1970-1980 [missing 1974 and 1976] 1961-1965 [missing 1960] 8997 Alvilda (Myer) Sorenson diaries 1966-1969 1950-1958 [missing 1951, 1955 and 1959] 1936-1947 [missing 1937, 1941, 1946, 1948, and 1949] Guest Books: 1957, 1981-1982, and 1991 Address Book 8998 Nancy Lee (Sorenson) Buckmaster diaries 1974-1979 1981, 1982, 1984 8999 Nancy Lee (Sorenson) Buckmaster diaries 1941, 1945, 1948, 1949, and 1953 1970-1973 Address Book Note Book 9000 Photo Album: Black Hills/Badlands Vacation images ca. 1940. - Deadwood (S.D.), Rough Lock Falls, Mount Rushmore Scrapbook (SD State binder): Letters, Photos, Cards, etc. Scrapbook (wooden): Greeting Cards Scrapbook: Family Trip to Billings, MT 1941; other photos mid 1940s Photo Album (Snapshots): Family photos, ca. 1940s-1950s 9001A Scrapbook – “School Girl Days,” by Alvilda Myre while teaching at Bryant (S.D.) High School - Photos, News clippings, Karl Mundt photos, School events, ca. late 1920s 9001B Scrapbook – “School Day Memoirs,” by Nancy Lee Sorenson, Erwin (S.D.) High School - Photographs, class photos, news clippings, class notes, 4-H materials, YCL Pierre 1946, ca. late 1940s to 1950 9002A Alvilda Sorenson--Miscellaneous Photo Albums, ca. 1920s Black Hills, Sylvan Lake Hotel, State Game Lodge, Badlands, South Dakota Cement Plant (Rapid City, S.D.), 1920s era clothing, automobiles, South Dakota State University (Brookings, S.D.), classmates, family photographs 3534C Folder 1: Alvilda Sorenson, Family Resource Management Center dedication 1981(brochures and photos) Folder 2: John Buckmaster materials Folder 3: Family Photos Folder 4: Alvilda Sorenson, honorary degree SDSU 1978 FB 670 South Dakota State University (Brookings, S.D.) – Scrapbook, 1920-1924 Oversized family photographs Mother of the Year 1957 Photo, Alvilda Sorenson