Scope and arrangement
The Albert Sonnichsen papers primarily consist of Sonnichsen's personal and professional papers, with the most valuable material in the collection relating to his experiences in Macedonia and the Philippines, including correspondence, photographs and original diaries providing insight into those periods. The collection is comprised of clippings; correspondence; diaries; personal papers including contracts and military records; photographs; printed material and publications; a scrapbook, and some family papers.
Sonnichsen's experiences in the Philippines are represented by correspondence, a diary, military discharge records and a scrapbook containing clippings spanning the years 1899-1901, relating to his release from captivity and the publication of his first book, Ten Months a Captive Among Filipinos. Sonnichsen's time in Macedonia yields correspondence, diaries, photographs and printed material. There is a handwritten personal narrative of his work in Macedonia, complete with attached photographs, as well as numerous snapshots of Macedonian separatists, pictured with and without Sonnichsen. Postcards and memorial cards found in the collection represent people and events in the history of the Macedonian independence movement.
The collection also contains clippings, correspondence, personal papers and printed material from other eras in Sonnichsen's life. One appreciative fan letter comes from author Jack London. There is little correspondence between Sonnichsen and other members of the cooperative movement, but the condolences sent to Sonnichsen's widow, Gladys, come primarily from those people. The publishing contract for one of his books is included, as well as some personal photographs of friends and family in the United States. Printed material includes items from the cooperative movement, a piece by Sonnichsen appearing in the pulp periodical Adventure, and copies of Excelsior and The California Sun Flower, local monthly magazines from San Francisco. A typewritten draft of a short story by Robert Brett Standish, apparently sent to Sonnichsen, is also included.
Also found in the collection are Albert's father Nicolai (Nicholas) Sonnichsen's consular documents, his personal narrative relating to his capture and imprisonment at Rock Island by the Union Army, and a diary by D.A. Robinson describing Army life in the Philippines in 1898.
The Albert Sonnichsen papers are arranged in four series:
- 1906-1907, 1927, n.d.
- 1891-1933, 1944
- 1874, 1902, 1931-1932, n.d.