The Robinson family acquired land and began raising tobacco in Prince George's County, Maryland, in 1843. The property consisted of over 170 acres by the end of the 19th century and included a dwelling, a tenant house and various outbuildings. While the principal crop remained tobacco, other grain crops were grown and sheep were raised. By the 1950s-1960s, the Robinson family was farming over 1,000 acres in Prince George's and Charles Counties, Maryland, through a combination of lease and direct ownership. The Via family acquired land and began raising tobacco and livestock in Prince George's Co., Maryland by 1949. The property consisted of thirty acres of owned property and included a dwelling and small outbuildings.
The Via family were also employed off the farm. By 1956 they had moved to Calvert Co., Maryland and were farming full-time on approximately 150 acres of owned property, raising tobacco, small grains and livestock. The Robinson family continues farming on approximately 300 acres of owned property in Benedict, Charles Co., Maryland. By 1993, the Via farm had been reduced to approximately five acres of owned property, and is no longer farmed.
Farm records from the Robinson and Via Families of Southern Maryland, documenting family life, agricultural work, community involvement, and rural culture over a period of 150 years. Primarily correspondence, diaries, photographs, home movies, farm account books, and miscellaneous farming papers. Includes scrapbooks, funeral registers, cookbooks, architectural drawings, phonograph records, and postcard albums. 2009 addendum consists of approximately 1.6 cubic feet of papers including six scrapbooks, a music portfolio, two farm account books, a map, funeral memorabilia, and other miscellaneous papers. The 2011 addendum consists of approximately three fourths of one cubic foot of papers relating to the family and the farm, including correspondence, school papers, and diaries. The 2013 addendum consists of two volumes from a nursing school correspondence course.
Several documents are signed with an X.
2009 addendum consists of six scrapbooks and one bound music folio, one farm account book, five memoranda books about the farm, a road map, funeral memorabilia, and loose papers relating to the operation of the farm.
Robinson and Via Family Papers, 1845-1994, Archives Center, National Museum of American History. Gift of Franklin A. Robinson, Jr
Work and family
Women in agriculture
1994.3003 (NMAH Acc.)
2009.3080 (NMAH Acc.)
2011.3082 (NMAH Acc.)
2012.3106 (NMAH Acc.)
2013.3024 (NMAH Acc.)
2014.3109 (NMAH Acc.)
2016.3186 (NMAH Acc.)
Unrestricted research use on site to portions of collection, but papers of living persons are restricted. Access to restricted portions may be arranged by request to donor. Gloves required for unprotected photographs