Scope and arrangement
The William Bross Lloyd papers date from 1910 to 1946 (bulk dates: 1920-1946) and contain correspondence, chiefly between Lloyd and his children; documents on the building and maintenance of Lloyd's winter home, Bu Saaba, in Montego Bay, Jamaica; and a file on Lloyd's affiliation with the Socialist Party.
Correspondence in the collection is arranged by correspondent and chronologically thereafter, with files for Georgia Lloyd, Mary Maverick Lloyd, and Family. In the Georgia and Mary Maverick Lloyd files, the daughters' correspondence with Lloyd's secretary Agnes M. Johansen is also extant. In addition to letters, the files include a small amount of drawings, greeting cards, event programs, and carbon copy enclosures of letters to other family members.
The correspondence provides sometimes weekly updates on the activities of the family, often sharing news of Madge and John Bird Lloyd with the Lloyd daughters, who resided with their mother. Throughout the letters, William Bross Lloyd inquires and learns about his daughters' music lessons, interests in handcrafts, jewelry and belongings, travel, health, education, friendships and relationships, and eventually, employment. Correspondence with daughter Georgia spans 1919, in her early childhood, to 1935, during her final year of attendance at Antioch College. Mary Maverick Lloyd's correspondence, dating from 1915 to Lloyd's death in 1946, includes detailed discussion of her financial matters. The bulk of the Family letters date from 1939 to 1946, and are primarily Lloyd's outgoing letters written while in residence at Bu Saaba. These letters discuss his daily activities on the estate, and are comparable to lengthy diary entries for the level of detail provided. Other items in the Family files include a 1910 postcard from Lola Maverick Lloyd and a small amount of correspondence with children William Bross Lloyd Jr. and Jessie Lloyd O’Connor.
The Jamaica property files date from 1930 to 1946, and document the purchase of land for the estate; the design and construction of several structures within Bu Saaba, including a living house and dining house; and annual maintenance on the estate until Lloyd's death. The property files contain correspondence, architectural plans, design specifications, and memoranda regarding the land, structures, and roads on the estate. Correspondence is between Lloyd and Miss A. G. Roper, who coordinated the sale of the land; Eleanor Raymond, an architect with the Boston firm Frost and Raymond, who designed the structures built on the estate; and various manufacturing firms and salespeople, discussing fixtures and appliances. Floor plans and land surveys show the layout of the main living house and dining house; details on the plumbing and water delivery systems; and proposals for access roads on and near the property. Memoranda and lists of specifications articulate Lloyd's specific and comprehensive requests for fixtures, appliances, and design features on the interior and exterior of the living and dining houses as well as his sailboat, Hi-Ho. Lloyd’s annual instructions to estate staff list tasks and improvement projects to be completed at Bu Saaba in the off season.
A small file on Lloyd's Socialist Party affiliation contains briefs for the 1922 appeal of his conviction; three letters with Hull House co-founder Ellen Gates Starr discussing his socialist beliefs; and a letter from 1940 that illustrates the marked change in his political views.
The collection is divided into correspondence files, Jamaica property files, and a Socialist Party file. Correspondence is arranged by correspondent (Family, Georgia Lloyd, and Mary Maverick Lloyd), then chronologically by year.