The Edward P. Smith journal (82 pages), written in London on May 9, 1872, contains Smith's retrospective account of his experiences in Massachusetts and England between October 1871 and the spring of 1872.
The volume begins with Smith's recollections about his voyage from England to the United States on the Aleppo in October 1871. After arriving in Massachusetts, he mentioned his theological studies, which culminated with a license to preach (p. 7). Smith preached guest sermons in multiple Massachusetts churches while attempting to find a teaching job. During a visit to Concord, Massachusetts, he commented on the town's history and prominent residents, and drew a manuscript map of its landmarks (p. 38). The Worcester County Free Institute of Industrial Science hired Smith to teach modern languages. He desired to improve his knowledge of French by travelling to Paris and he solicited advice from Harvard professors such as James Russell Lowell and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (pp. 42-43).
Smith sailed for Liverpool onboard the Adriatic in late April 1872 and described some of his fellow passengers, including General Daniel Sickles and the explorer Paul Du Chaillu, who shared stories of his travels in Africa and Scandinavia. After arriving in Liverpool, Smith continued to London, where he attended a concert at Royal Albert Hall, also attended by members of the British royal family (pp. 78-80). The journal ends mid-sentence. A 7-page manuscript essay, "Decline and Fall of the Merovingian," is laid into the volume.