This collection consists of a composition book written by Teresa Dalbey, a student at the Morgan School, Emerald Point, Morgan County, Ill., in 1859. The book contains notes on grammar, mathematics, geography, and physical sciences. Dalbey was probably in her early teens at the time she kept the book.
The book also contains poems by Dalbey and biographical information about her family, including details about the Dalbeys' move from Illinois to Nebraska Territory in 1864. Teresa Dalbey died only six weeks after they arrived.
Marian Dalbey Glasgow, of Little Rock, Arkansas, and Mrs. Nellie Avery, of Humboldt, Nebraska, donated the book to the Nebraska State Historical Society in 1959. In 2009, the Society gave it to the University of Illinois Library.