A memorial gift was offered that was of special significance. Quita Woodward, of the class of 1932, was a student beloved by all, gay, friendly, intrepid in the face of advancing ill health, bound to graduate at Bryn Mawr, bound also to let nothing darken her happiness there. Her death, in the year after her graduation, inexorable as merciless ill-ness had made it, was a desperate blow to all of the many who had known her and been so deeply attached to her. As Bryn Mawr lives, so her memory is to live, in the wing and the reading room which carry her name. It is, somehow, a memory that has preserved the impression of the beauty and happiness of her short life, not the unreconciled sorrow that goes with untimely death. Her father and mother subscribed to the new Library wing, particularly for the housing of the departments of Art and Archaeology, and for the specially designated reading room for the students to be called the Quita Woodward Room.
— From What Makes a College: A History of Bryn Mawr (p. 165-66)
Does anyone know the illness? Or is this an example of the common masking of mental illness by talking about it in vague terms in obituary/publications?
Great question, Angela (and thanks to Kristen for suggesting it). Woodward’s student file is restricted–meaning we researchers aren’t allowed access to it, like all BMC student files–but I’ve just learned from a colleague that her family wrote a book* about her that’s at Special Collections. Names and naming is always an interesting issue–perhaps a final project?
*The book is simply called “Quita” and here’s the Tripod record.