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The MacJannet Legacy

Attempting to 'sum up' the legacy of Donald and Charlotte MacJannet would not fit on one page. The whole site is dedicated to trying to understand even the smallest portion of the legacy they have left behind. I encourage you to explore in particular the oral history interviews which, In the Words of Others, shows just how much of the MacJannets is left behind though they are no longer with us.

"What shall I do with my slides, movie films, files of correspondence, Prieuré into which I have put so much personal hard labor, - chief cause of my painful back? It was great fun, but the doctors say 'no more lifting whatsoever.' So now I can use the time for sorting out and throwing away. This last is painful, but who wants my immense file of letters, my photo albums etc.? Every day I give thanks for all my blessings. They are incredible: health, no financial worries, devoted friends old and young, and lots to do."1

The legacy of theDonald and Charlotte MacJannet, ca. 1960 MacJannets lies in what they have left behind, both tangible and intangible. Their personal papers collection, the Donald and Charlotte MacJannet Papers at the Digital Collections and Archives, is filled with their correspondence, papers, photos, scrapbooks, and films which document their lives and illustrate the issues and ideas that had meaning to the MacJannets. Their legacy exists in the places they inhabited, such as the Prieuré in Talloires, which continues to this day as a place of international understanding and educations, a place such as they dreamed it could be when they purchased it. The people they touched both while they were living and now through the items and places they have left behind, keep the legacy alive. The legacy of Donald and Charlotte MacJannet is larger than them and larger than those who knew them; it encompasses whomsoever wishes to discover it.

"My life, as it appear to me, and as I rediscover it in trying to read faded carbon copies, is that I have been extremely lucky, and that I had no picture of the distant future but only of the immediate problems and how to solve them.2

Donald speaking on his 'legacy': listen.


  1. Donald MacJannet to Pearl Carmichael, Feb. 29, 1976, MS024/001-145#31
  2. Donald MacJannet to Herbert Jacobs, Jan. 20, 1982, MS024/001-133#9