Calista M. Stover Papers

Manuscripts Collection 105

Overview of the Collection

Repository: G. W. Blunt White Library, Mystic Seaport
Creator: Stover, Calista M., b. 1838
Title: Calista M. Stover Papers
Dates: 1859-1881
Extent: 55 items
Abstract: The essence of this collection is a series of diaries and journals kept by Calista Stover and her daughter on several voyages by the Ship DANIEL BARNES between 1882 and 1891. Joseph Stover was of course Master of the vessel and ports of call included Honolulu, Australia, and Japan.
Abstract: Some of the diaries came to us unbound and several pages are missing or out of sequence. Penmanship and organization of the entries is sloppy and in many cases difficult to follow. However this collection does provide a valuable insight into a woman’s life at sea, her activities aboard ship, and her impressions of maritime life.
Identification: Coll. 105

Biography of Calista M. Stover

Calista Meader was born in Dover, Maine on January 8, 1838. As a young girl she attended the Methodist-Episcopal Eastern Conference Seminary, where the seeds were sown for her later deep religious convictions. In fact, Calista mentions this period in her life as the time when she underwent a personal religious conversion.

Calista married Joseph Stover, a shipmaster from Bucksport, Maine, who was 20 years her senior, in 1874. The following year she gave birth to a daughter, Maria, at the age of 37.

Calista Stover was a sensitive woman who appreciated nature and poetry. She was devoted wife and mother. Along with her husband, she belonged to the upper middle class of their day. She supported the temperance movement and followed the political activities of her time.

Between 1878 and 1892 Calista and her children spent a total of 12 years at sea, the only interruption being the birth of her second child, Edward, in 1880. During her first voyage to Java, Calista and her daughter Maria were gone for two years. In the years that followed she and her family traveled around the world three times and made one trip across the Atlantic.

Top →


Restrictions on Access

Available for use in the Manuscripts Division

Restrictions on Use

Various copying restriction apply. Guidelines are available from the Manuscripts Division.

Top →

Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in the catalog of the G. W. Blunt White Library. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons or places should search the catalog using these headings.


Stover, Joseph
Stover, Maria, b. 1875

Corporate Bodies (Including Vessels):

Daniel Barnes (Ship)


Australia–Description and travel
Honolulu (Hawaii)–Description and travel
Japan–Description and travel


Seafaring life
Voyages and travels

Document Types:



Shipmaster’s spouses–Maine–Bucksport

Top →

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Coll. 105, Manuscripts Collection, G. W. Blunt White Library, Mystic Seaport Museum, Inc.

Top →

Index to Personal, Corporate and Vessel Names

NOTE: The fraction(s) indicate the Box and Folder numbers where that particular reference can be found. For example, the researcher will find information about the American Seamens Friend Society in Box 1, Folder 1 of the collection.
American Seamen’s Friend Society 1/1
Bradley, Charley 1/1
Buck, Joseph 1/1
Caldwell, ? (General) 1/1
Gilman, ? (Miss) 1/1
Lewis, John 1/1
Rowell, ? (Chaplain) 1/1
Spofford, Frank 1/1
Stitt, ? (Reverend) 1/1
Stover, Joseph G. 1/1
Stover, Ricky 1/1
Stover, Willy 1/1
Sweet, ? 1/1

Top →

Detailed Description of the Collection

The following section contains a detailed listing of the materials in the collection.

Papers, 1866-1891

Box Folder
1 1 Scattered papers and correspondence, 1866-1891
2 Miscellaneous unidentified material, undated

Volumes, 1861-1891

1 Autograph Album, Calista M. Stover, ca. 1861
2 Autograph Album, Maria C. Stover, ca. 1883
3 Diary, Calista M. Stover, 1876-1882
4 Journal of a voyage to Japan (vol. 1) kept by Calista M. Stover, aboard Ship DANIEL BARNES, 1882 Mar-Jun
5 Continuation of preceeding volume, 1882 Jun-Jul
6 Diary of a trip to Honolulu, Australia, and Japan, kept by Calista M. Stover aboard Ship DANIEL BARNES, ca. 1888
7 Continuation of preceeding volume, ca. 1888-1889
8 Continuation of preceeding two volumes, 1890-1891
9 Diary of the same voyage (i.e. Ship DANIEL BARNES to Honolulu, Australia, and Japan) kept by Calista’s daughter, Maria Stover), 1888
10 Continuation of vol. 9, 1889-1890

Top →