Cornelia Bruere Rose Jr. graduated from Bryn Mawr College in 1928 with a degree in economics and politics and a minor in history. She then worked as an economist in New York City until her marriage in 1934 to Laszlo Ecker-Racz, also an economist, after which they moved to the Washington area where she first worked for the federal government. However, she maintained her maiden name all her life, as she put it, “to preserve her identity.”
As assistant to the Arlington County Manager from 1958 to 1965, she wrote the manager’s Annual Report, edited the departmental reports and prepared the Handbook on County Government Organization. In the studies that she wrote and edited she said that she tried to cover “not just the current factors, but the background and development of the subject as well.” She also recalled not being able to find answers to historical questions that she was asked and soon discovered that no comprehensive history of Arlington, its issues and development, had been written. As a result, over the years she collected a wide variety of material on Arlington that would undoubtedly have disappeared if she had not had the foresight to preserve them, and published both The Boundaries of Arlington and The Indians of Arlington.
At the request of the Arlington Bicentennial Commission Rose compiled her extensive research into the book Arlington: A County in Virginia (1976), the most comprehensive history of the county that has been written.
RG 354, C.B. Rose Papers, is approximately 11.7 linear feet and contains many early documents including ephemera, correspondence, memos, maps, and reports, many of which were created by various departments of Arlington County government. It also includes copies of older material on Arlington dating from the 19th century that reside in other institutions.
This collection is currently in process and a finding aid will be available soon.