City Home  > Library Special Collections >Manuscripts > Pioneers > Norman Riggins Family Papers > Scope and Content


Scope and Content Note

Family members gather at Mosswood
for the funeral of Norman Riggins, 1941

The bulk of the documents and photographs in this collection was donated to the Lakeland Public Library by Margaret Darracott Pinkston, the granddaughter of Norman A. Riggins and the unofficial family historian and genealogist. Much of this collection served as the primary source material for her book Mosswood Remembered. Some documents and photographs were donated by other members of the extended Riggins/Darracott family.

The records in this collections are in a variety of formats and document to some extent the history of the Riggins and Darracott families and their roles in the growth and development of Lakeland. The records were preserved largely with the intention of devising family genealogies. As a result, they tend to focus more on the personal and kinship relations of the individuals than on the roles of those individuals in the larger world around them. There is almost nothing in the collection relating to the many business and civic activities in which Norman Riggins was involved. The records do provide, however, a fascinating glimpse into the everyday lives of several generations of one of Lakeland's most distinguished families.

The Riggins Family Papers total 6.75 linear feet and were organized into five series as follows:

Series I, Family Papers;
Series II, Family Genealogies;
Series III, Business Files;
Series IV, Photographs;
Series V, Memorabilia.

Series I, Family Papers, 1863-1986, contains the personal papers of several generations of the Riggins and Darracott families. Included are correspondence, news clips, scrapbooks, fragments of wills, and personal reminiscences.

Series II, Family Genealogies, 1872-1980, contains genealogies and family trees of the Riggins and Darracott families and their various branches. All of the genealogies were compiled by, or collected by, Margaret Darracott Pinkston for use in her book, Mosswood Remembered.

Series III, Business Files, 1889-1951, contains fragmentary records of the business and financial dealings of Norman A. Riggins. Included are contracts, correspondence, deeds, leases, mortgages, receipts, business licenses, and the articles of incorporation of the Polk County Agricultural Fair Association.

Series IV, Photographs, @1880's-1980's, consists of photographic prints and negatives of several generations of the Riggins and Darracott families (pictured above)and their ancestral home, Mosswood.

Series V, Memorabilia, @1862-1950, contains a variety of certificates awarded to various family members, college and high school diplomas, high school commencement programs, scrapbooks, and family coats of arms.