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Virginia Swearingen Diary

Identifier: MS-440

Scope and Contents

In 1837 at the age of 16 Virginia Swearingen travels from Chillicothe, Ohio to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania to attend a French boarding school run by Charles Picot. Charles Picot was born in France and served as Captain of Cavalry under Napoleon and was captured during the burning of Moscow in 1812. After the defeat of Napoleon, Charles Picot and his wife Maria moved to America and opened the boarding school. The school was open until the death Charles Picot in 1860. Their son, Mitchell H. Picot, was born in Philadelphia on 12 January 1840. He was a physician and died in Geneva on 6 June 1896. The beginning of the diary keeps track of expenses for 1837 and 1838 while she is in Philadelphia. After this is a diary of her travels (it appears to be before going to Philadelphia) from June 6 through June 24, [1837?]. The diary then picks up on February 23, 1840 and runs through April 24, 1841. The last two pages are reminiscences of 4th of July celebrations 1836-1839. She was in Philadelphia in 1838 according to this and appears to be back in Chillicothe in 1839.


  • 1837-1841
  • Other: Date acquired: 11/07/2015


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1.00 items

Language of Materials



Virginia Swearingen, born 24 April 1821 was the 4th child of James Strode Swearingen and Nancy Bedinger. She had 5 siblings: Henry B. Swearingen, Eleanor Swearingen, Sarah Bedinger Swearingen (1819-1886) who married Nathaniel Woodbridge Thatcher, James Swearingen and Nancy C. Swearingen.

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Method of Acquisition


Existence and Location of Originals

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Repository Details

Part of the Millersville University Special Collections Repository

9 North George Street
McNairy Library, PO Box 1002
Millersville University
Millersville 17551-302 US