Tuesday, December 17, 2019

Notarial Papers at the Boston Athenaeum

Emily Clark pursues her Ph.D. at Johns Hopkins University and her dissertation title is “Renouncing Motherhood: Women's Sexualities and Labors in Eighteenth-Century New England.” Emily spent a lot of time studying notarial papers in manuscript collections. Insurance records do not at first hearing inspire great interest; however, when you consider the various reasons one makes a claim or needs a notary, you realize that these collections provide windows into many aspects of ordinary life. Again, it is easy to make an appointment, and below is a link to but one of the series.

Monday, December 2, 2019

NERFC Fellow Research at the Boston Athenaeum

The Boston Athenaeum has welcomed two NERFC fellows this month. Amber Hodge travels from the University of Mississippi where she is a Ph.D. candidate. Her dissertation title certainly gets attention: "The Meat of the Gothic: Animality and Social Justice in United States Fiction and Film of the Twenty-First Century." Amber has requested a variety of works, including many pamphlets from the MSPCA and early proponents of animal rights. She's even looked at an artists' book. The deluxe edition of a collaboration between Oliver Jeffers and Sam Winston includes an edition of Black Beauty, which attracted Amber, but she couldn't help spending time admiring the accompanying prints. If you want to, follow this link and click on the button "request rare appointment." We'd be happy to share it.

Mary Warnement, MLIS
William D. Hacker Head of Reader Services
Boston Athenæum

Thursday, October 3, 2019

A Native Missionary with Royal Pretensions

The 1704 raid on Deerfield, Massachusetts, during Queen Anne’s War resulted in the death of 57 settlers and militia, the captivity of 112 more, and the destruction of nearly half of the frontier settlement.  Yet beyond tragedy and havoc, the raid created lasting ties between the small village and Native communities in Canada and northern New England who participated in the attack.  The Rev. John Williams, who returned from captivity in November 1706, later described being visited in Deerfield in 1716 by his “Indian master,” meaning captor. Williams’ young daughter, Eunice, remained in Canada where she married and had children, but came back to Deerfield and other nearby towns three times between 1740 and 1761. Visits by Native peoples bound to Deerfield by history and kinship continued into the 1830s.

One visitor, in 1848, was Eunice Williams’s grandson, Eleazer Williams.  Born in 1793 in the French Mohawk community of Kahnawake, little is known of Eleazer’s life until he and a brother were sent to Longmeadow, Massachusetts, where the Rev. Stephen Williams, brother of his grandmother Eunice, served as minister until his death in 1782. The young Williams boys lived with Nathaniel Ely and studied with Ely’s wife, Elizabeth, Rev. Stephen Williams’s daughter. As well as being taught English, the boys learned ‘proper Christianity,’ as opposed to the Catholicism practiced by the Mohawks in Kahnawake.  Eleazer next appeared in Mansfield, Connecticut, where the Elys and others supported him. From there he went on to Moor’s Charity School in Dartmouth, New Hampshire, where he studied with other Native youth.

During the war, Williams wrote two now-rare pamphlets, recently acquired by Historic Deerfield. The first, printed in January 1813 in Burlington, Vermont, by Samuel Mills, is titled Good News to the Iroquois Nation. A Tract on Mans Primitive Rectitude, his Fall, and his Recovery Through Jesus Christ. With the exception of the title page, the text is entirely in Iroquoian. Similarly, a pamphlet subtitled A Spelling-Book in the Language of the Seven Iroquois Nations (Plattsburgh, New York, 1813) consists of tables of words and text in the Iroquoian language. At the close of the war, Williams translated A Caution Against our Common Enemy into Iroquoian. Printed in Albany, New York, in June 1815, the pamphlet warns against the dangers posed by liquor.

Eleazer Williams went on to write several more pamphlets, all in Iroquoian, did a translation into “Mohawk” of the Book of Common Prayer, issued by the Domestic Committee of the Board of Missions of the Episcopal Church in 1853, and a biography of his father, Thomas Williams, printed in Albany by Joel Munsell after Eleazer’s death. Williams’ assertion that he was the son of Louis XVI and Marie Antoinette, or the “lost Dauphin,” made in the 1840s and promoted in an 1854 book about Williams by John Hanson, appears not to have damaged his relationship with the Episcopal Church. He maintained his claim to the French throne until his death on the Akwesane Mohawk reservation in far northern New York in 1858. Contemporary accounts described him as impoverished and living in squalor among Natives indifferent to his situation.

In addition to the above publications and two other pamphlets with Iroquoian titles, Historic Deerfield owns an 1853 biographical essay on Eleazer Williams written by a collateral cousin, Stephen West Williams, and microfilm of the letters and documents in the Eleazer Williams Collection at the Missouri Historical Society. 

Note: Michael Ober has written the best modern source on the life of Williams, Professional Indian: The American Odyssey of Eleazer Williams (Univ. of Pennsylvania Press, 2015).

David Bosse, Librarian & Curator of Maps

Monday, August 5, 2019

Boston Athenaeum Fellows Update

2018-2019 New England Regional Fellowship Consortium (NERFC) fellow Gwenn Miller, associate professor of history at the College of the Holy Cross, visited the Boston Athenæum’s Vershbow Special Collections Reading Room in October and December 2018. She returned to speak at the proprietors summer symposium, June 25, 2019, about her work on "John Perkins Cushing and Boston's Early Opium Trade."

Another 2018-2019 NERFC fellow, Charles Ian Stevenson, Ph.D. candidate at Boston University, spent January 2019 studying materials in support of his dissertation “’The Summer-Home of the Survivors’: The Civil War Vacation in Architecture and Landscape, 1878-1918,” and he
delivered his Fellow Field Report to the Athenaeum community in March 2019.

None of 2019-2020 have visited yet, but we expect three of four to come in the autumn and winter.

Monday, July 8, 2019

Daniel Webster at Dartmouth

In May, Special Collections at Dartmouth College Library welcomed NERFC scholar Daniel Burge, a PhD History grad and adjunct instructor at the University of Alabama, who is currently working on revising his manuscript “A Struggle Against Fate: The Opponents of Manifest Destiny and the Collapse of the Continental Dream, 1846-1871.” This manuscript examines the ways in which individuals opposed manifest destiny during the nineteenth-century. While at Dartmouth College Library from May 4th through May 25th, Daniel spent the majority of his time immersed in the papers and collected correspondence of Daniel Webster. George Rable, his PhD advisor at the University of Alabama, chided him for writing a manuscript that focuses on Whigs and yet “overlooks Daniel Webster.” Daniel rectified that issue while here at Rauner Special Collections Library, and he had a wealth of information to explore, given Webster’s strong connections to the college.

Daniel Webster, the 19th-century lawyer and politician, is arguably one of the most famous sons of Dartmouth. A member of the class of 1801, Webster was a masterful orator who successfully argued before the Supreme Court on several occasions and was deeply respected for his eloquence among his fellow senators. His speech in response to Robert Hayne of South Carolina, delivered before the Senate in 1830, has been recognized as one of the best ever given within that august body. He also had a reputation for being a rallying figure for political opposition to President Andrew Jackson, who rode an uprising of populist sentiment into the White House in 1829. Nearly a century after his tenure ended, Webster was recognized by the Senate in 1957 as one of the greatest senators in the country's history.

Given Dartmouth's connection to Webster, including the fact that Rauner Library is in Webster Hall, it's not surprising that we have a strong Webster collection. Silk socks, a top hat, a pocket watch given by him to someone else, and a set of wine glasses and accompanying decanter all reside here at Rauner. We also have his handwritten notes from the Dartmouth College Court Case; a number of fascinating original letters to and from him; and his personal but incomplete copy of John James Audubon's Birds of America.

Perhaps the most exhaustive collection of material related to Webster at Rauner, however, is the numerous images that we have of the man. It's safe to say that we have more impressions of Daniel Webster than any other dignitary or individual associated with the college. What is most fascinating about this gathering of likenesses, moreover, is how each of them is different from the other, sometimes in very striking ways. Still, the unmistakable gravitas of the Massachusetts senator seems to be present in every instance. Although a great statesman, Webster's legacy has been tarnished somewhat by his desire to maintain national unity by any means necessary, including his support of the infamous Fugitive Slave Act of 1850. A little more than a decade later, despite Webster's questionable decision to sacrifice the moral imperative in order to appease the Southern states, the country inevitably descended into civil war.

There are too many Webster images to list them all here (more than a hundred!), but you can get a start by coming to Special Collections at Dartmouth College Library and asking for Iconography 933, Iconography 944, Iconography 1429, and Iconography 1649.

Thursday, May 30, 2019

Elisha Porter: Forgotten Man of the Revolution

Elisha Porter (1742-1796) is not a household name unlike George Washington or Benedict Arnold. Porter never betrayed his country, nor did he become president. Porter though, like Washington and Arnold, did participate in the early phases of the American Revolution. He was a colonel in the Fourth Hampshire Regiment of Massachusetts. He fought at Bunker Hill, made the acquaintance of George Washington, and soon became a courier for the General. After the fighting in Boston subsided, he was ordered to Canada with his men to assist Benedict Arnold in his siege. Porter later engaged in the battles at Saratoga ,and was selected to escort Burgoyne to Boston after the surrender. After the war shifted to the middle Atlantic and southern states, Porter returned home to Hadley, Massachusetts, where he quietly lived out the rest of his life. Today he is remembered by locals, but only by some. His brief time associating with future legends was either unknown or forgotten.

In late 2017, Historic Deerfield received a gift of the Porter Family Papers. comprising the papers of Elisha and his older brother, Eleazer. Reading through the papers, Elisha’s connections to the Revolutionary War became apparent. There are orders written by George Washington, sending Porter to Canada;  orders from Benedict Arnold directing him to Quebec; orders from General Wooster; a signed commission from John Hancock; and many other documents relating to the war.

These papers encouraged further research into this important chapter in Porter’s life. Here was proof that an ordinary man from a small town in western Massachusetts  witnessed and even participated in, some of the most significant events of the Revolution. The papers provide brand new material for scholars of the Revolution.

As a colonel in the local militia, Porter received militia returns from the neighboring towns in 1775, reporting on the number of able soldiers, weapons, and gunpowder present in each town. These returns were previously unknown. Some towns  provided great detail, listing each man by name, and distinguishing which were “minute men.” These returns give an idea of the preparedness of small towns in the western part of the state were doing prior to the Revolution. Porter, and other military leaders, could determine which towns were best able to defend themselves from attack, and how many men they could count on to join the fight, if needed. The wide-ranging results also showed the diversity in population among the towns of Hampshire County.

The Porter papers add depth to other existing Revolutionary War documents in the library. Many local families fought in the war, some as part of Porter’s regiment. The families of those who left traces of their time in war have passed their diaries, war records, and other documents down, generation to generation. Some of that material has come into the collections at Deerfield. The Porter materials are just the newest and flashiest collection to be added.

“Sir I am this minute Informed of your Arrival at St Johns, with part of your Regt. you will please on receit of this to, Draw, Ten Days Provission at Chamble, & proceed In your Battoes, Down the Sorell, to the Army before Quebec & join Genl. Wooster. you will please to take as many Men in the Battoes as they will Carry with Two Chests of Medicine at Chamble. I wish you Success, I am Sir Your Hbl servant  B Arnold B Genl.” Montreal, April 20, 1776.

Heather Harrington, Associate Librarian, Historic Deerfield Library

Tuesday, April 16, 2019

John J. Burns Library: These are a few of our favorite things…

Since Burns Library is a new(ish) member of the Consortium, we thought we would help researchers understand our unique holdings and collecting areas by providing a few exemplars. How better to surface collections highlights than to ask the staff to show you something they love? Below is a sampling of items as varied as the staff, why staff chose them, and search strategies to help you find out more about these items or similar items. As always, please contact Burns Library for more information or assistance.
Shelley Barber (Outreach & Reference Specialist): 

I chose the souvenir of a daring adventure that connects to the histories of both Ireland and Boston. Among the papers of John Boyle O’Reilly at the Burns Library is the tooth of a sperm whale. An Irish nationalist, O’Reilly (1844-1890) was arrested and imprisoned by the British, then transported to Australia’s Fremantle Prison, from which he escaped with the assistance of a local Catholic priest in 1869. The Gazelle was the New Bedford whaling vessel that rescued O’Reilly off the coast of Australia. After his escape, he came to the United States and settled in Boston, where he became the editor of the Boston Pilot and a well-known author, sportsman, poet, and lecturer.
§  Find more about this collection through an advanced search by changing “Anywhere in record” to “Title,” and entering “John Boyle O’Reilly papers.” 

Kathleen  Williams (Former Senior Reference Librarian, Bibliographer for Irish Studies):  

I chose this special edition of Táin bó Cúailnge (The Cattle Raid of Cooley) because I love dipping into the mythological tales that seem to spring from the mists of the distant past. The tale, which scholars date to the 8th or 9th century, is translated here by the poet Thomas Kinsella and features King Conor, his hero Cuchulainn (the Hound of Ulster), and the invasion of Ulster by Queen Medb of Connaught to capture the brown bull of Cualaigne. I love that the artist, Louis le Brocquy, impressed upon my mind the characters and scenes of fantastic feats, bloody battles, spells, curses, and mythical creatures in unforgettable, stark, black and white brush drawings. Lastly, I love that publisher, Liam Miller of Dolmen Press, fused all of these elements to produce a remarkable book!
§   Find more illustrations similar to The Tain through an advanced search by entering Louis Le Brocquy” in the “Anywhere in record,” then changing the search scope (upper right) from “All BC Libraries” to “Burns Library.”
§   Find more Dolmen Press books at the Burns Library through an advanced search by changing “Anywhere in record” to “Local Collection Name,” and entering “dolmen press” as your search term.

Amy Braitsch (Head Archivist)

 Among thousands of letters exchanged by Graham Greene with many interesting and notable people, these 11 letters (box 12, folder 48) between Ray Bradbury and Greene have always thrilled me. Most of these letters are by Bradbury, who begins the correspondence in 1979 exuberantly thanking Greene “for being my companion in writing, my helper, and my introducer to Carol [Reed]” and begs for Greene to write “another novel, please! or, God, more stories!” Their exchange continues pleasantly over years, with each seemingly interested in the other’s writing and whereabouts, but never connecting for a face-to-face visit despite their overlapping worlds of fiction and film. Bradbury’s lively letters are on his unusual stationary and include his large, legible signature; in contrast, Greene’s letters are faint carbon copies that lack personality and make him seem less present. I love the physicality and dichotomy of these letters — each typewritten and corrected, with ink or tape; one set so “real,” and the other a mechanical shadow.
§  Find other Graham Greene correspondents by reading the finding aid http://hdl.handle.net/2345/7753

Katherine Fox (Head Librarian, Public Services & Engagement)

I have loved the 13 unique, screen-printed and wire puppets from this artist’s book since I first discovered them. Not many people realize the strength of the Caribbean related material at Burns, and this piece adds a new dimension to them. Roy Risher’s poetry is based upon another title in the collection: Walter Jekyll’s Jamaican Song and Story, 1907.  I find it fascinating that this story of a trickster spider moved from West Africa to the Caribbean, then to a Caribbean neighborhood of London, where this fine press just happens to be located.
§   Find more fine print books at the Burns Library through an advanced search by changing “Anywhere in record” to “Local Collection Name,” and entering “fine print” as your search term.
§   Find more Caribbean related material through an advanced search by changing “Anywhere in record” to “Local Collection Name,” and entering “Williams” as your search term.

Lynn Moulton (Processing Archivist)

I chose a St. Elizabeth’s Hospital School of Nursing “cupcake” style nursing cap, complete with hatbox. In processing the St. Elizabeth’s records (MS.2000.018B), I saw much of substance, as well as of charm. The records include a complete run of yearbooks and graduation programs, many course descriptions, faculty committee minutes, and photographs of student life, but, for me, there was something about this little, pleated and starched cap that really evoked the care that the students took in their attire and in their training. The careful preservation of this one cap, with the color of its velvet ribbon showing that its owner had achieved graduate status, made the pride the students felt on completing their rigorous training tangible for me.
§  Find more about the St. E’s School of Nursing through the finding aid http://hdl.handle.net/2345/9381
§  Find other Burns Library nursing collections through an advanced search by changing “Anywhere in record” to “Local Collection Name,” and entering “nursing” as your search term.

Monday, April 8, 2019

Indentures, quitrents, and royal appointments: Four centuries of parchments in the collections at the Maine Historical Society

Even after working at Maine Historical Society for over 20 years, I am still amazed at the treasures that are contained here, that I have never seen or heard of. This recently came to light with the discovery of a flat file drawer labeled “Parchments,” which was apparently only known to one staff member. And thus began our adventure into the wonderful world of parchments (or any “antique” document within our inner sanctum). I embarked this winter on cataloging this artificial collection of 29 documents, which may date to as early as the 14th century. The majority were from the 1600s and 1700s. Some are part of larger collections, but most are unique documents. Some have Maine connections, but many originated in England or Spain, which posed the real mystery – why are they here? Many were written in English, but several were written in Spanish or Catalan, and others were written in Latin.

Fortunately, many of these documents were housed in envelopes that had labels on them, which provided me with some information in which to catalog the item. Others, if I was able to figure out a name or date, I was able to find a card in our defunct card catalog, which we’ve kept in a back room. Thank goodness for the date file which we maintained for decades!

Most of the documents were on parchment, but some on linen and vellum. Several have seals and a few have ribbons. There are indentures, which were often agreements, but the collection also includes deeds and certificates, even a diploma in Latin.

Some of the most interesting documents relating to Maine, New England, and North American history:

             Documents from Charles I, King of England, 1631 March 2, declaring a duty of 
             threepence per pound as customs and sixpence per pound as impost on every pound
             of tobacco of the growth of Virgina and the Somers Islands, and a duty of threepence
             per pound as customs and ninepence per pound as impost upon the growth of St.
             Christopher's and other Cariibbean Island. (Parchment 1 - Part of the Trelawney
             papers, Coll. 107)

             Appointments by William III, King of England (1650-1702): a 1684 appointment of 
             Justices of the Peace in York County (Parchment 15) and a 1696 appointment of Justices
             of the Courts of Common Pleas in York County (Parchment 16).     

             Several Maine deeds and indentures, dated 1629-1706, related to Casco Bay, the
             Kennebec Purchase, Saco, as well as New Hampshire (New Castle), and Massachusetts

             Plymouth Company (1749-1816) indenture, 1661, to Antipas Boyes and Edward Tyng,
             Thomas Brattle and John Winslow, for sale of land in New England, embracing all owned
              by the Plymouth Patent with additions from purchase from the Indians. This ink on
              vellum document is regarding the Plymouth Company, also known as the Kennebec
              Purchase Company or the Kennebec Proprietors. Even prior to 1675, the trade at
              Cushnoc had diminished, prompting the Plymouth Company to sell the no-longer-
              profitable patent. In 1661, four Boston men purchased the Kennebec patent: John
              Winslow, Antipas Boyes, Edward Tyng and Thomas Brattle. Their brief attempt at trade
              failed - the dwindling fur supply and a change in the relationship with the natives were
              the main reasons - and the post was closed. The area was of little interest until the mid-
              eighteenth century. (Parchment 2)

This one was a head scratcher:

             Certificate (1800) in Spanish signed by Don Juan Stoughton, regarding Ebenezer Mayo,
             Notary Public of Portland, Massachusetts (Parchment 25). Once one of our staff 
             translated and researched it, we found out more about Don Juan Stoughton, who was the 
             Spanish consul in Boston for the states of New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Connecticut,
             Rhode Island and Vermont. His papers are at Harvard's Baker Library:
             See Women, Enterprise and Society 

Why he was signing certificates for a notary public in Portland is another question.
And then there are the odd few items that don't seem to have any connection to Maine or New

              Valuation by a committee of houses destroyed in Edinburgh fire, August 21, 1701
              (Parchment 10)
              A Spanish deed, ink on vellum, rolled, dated 1623. It was the quitrent of Petrus Pedro
              and his son, who were farmers in Barcelona, to Petrus Nin of Albinyana, Spain.     
              Apparently, a quitrent was a fixed rent payable to a feudal superior in commutation
              of services, specifically, a fixed rent due from a socage tenant. (Parchment 29)

A few English indentures on parchment:

             Indenture, 1758, for Thomas Legge of Willey in the parish of Presteigne in the county of
             Radner, esquire, and Joseph Ffluck of the parish of Westbury in the county of Gloucester;
             Yeoman, leasing a tenement, barn, and lands in the Tything of Lower Leigh in the parish
             of Westbury in the county of Gloucester. (Parchment 3)
             Indenture, 1677, at Surrey, Eng., 8 May 1677, for Nicholas Best to make annual payments
             on his debts to William Shorter and John Hoare, to settle on his mother Katharine Best
             15 pounds annually, and to pay 100 pounds to Anne Evans, spinster. (Parchment 6)

And finally, the mystery documents in (at present) indecipherable languages. We have reached
out to the experts for assistance in deciphering the documents. One may possibly be as early as
1326, and perhaps in medieval/Catalan, and relate to the de Bisaura family in Catalonia. Which again begs the question - why would something like this be at the Maine Historical Society?
Somehow, they withstood the past six centuries and probably at least 100 years at our
organization, and are now finally seeing the light of day in this 21st century world. Hopefully we can tell their stories.
Parchment 7

Parchment 27

Written for the New England Regional Fellowship Consortium
Nancy Noble, MHS Archivist, March 2019
With research assistance by Isabel Turk, MHS Library Assistant

Tuesday, March 12, 2019

American Feminist vs. Risorgimento General, 1862

Turin was an exciting place for foreign diplomats in the years following the establishment of the united kingdom of Italy in 1861.  The Risorgimento, both a political and a cultural movement, brought Italy’s political, intellectual, and social leaders to the new capital in the north. (Rome, the putative capital, remained under the control of the Catholic Church, with French support, until 1870).  As the new nation’s leaders debated how to address the many unresolved questions of Italian nationhood, Turin became a haven for Italian aristocrats, former revolutionaries, intellectuals, and visitors from America and Britain.  It was in this stimulating environment that George Perkins Marsh and his second wife, Caroline Crane Marsh, found themselves after George’s appointment by President Lincoln as the first U.S. Minister to Italy in 1861.

Caroline Crane Marsh (1816-1901) was a woman of enormous talents and intellect.  Fluent in German and conversant in many other languages, she was a poet, translator, and eventually her husband’s biographer. Her diaries in the Marsh Papers at the Silver Special Collections Library, University of Vermont, provide ample evidence of her engagement in the social and intellectual life of Italy, as well as the vital role she played in the diplomatic mission advising her husband and hosting visitors.
Caroline Crane Marsh in Italy, 1860s.

Caroline Marsh enjoyed debating issues of current interest with her guests, and was not afraid to make a reasoned rebuttal to an opinion with which she differed.  As an advocate for women’s rights she greatly influenced her husband and offered her feminist views freely to others.  In March 1862, for instance, she relished the opportunity to respond to remarks on the education of women made by Luigi Federico Menabrea, an Italian general and future prime minister.  She recounted the incident in her diary on March 15:

Saturday [March] 15 [1862]

Visitors few but all acquaintances, with many of whom I begin to feel myself quite familiar.  To my great satisfaction General Menabrea, by repeating the remarks he made to me some weeks since at the opera, gave me an oportunity [sic] to say a few words on the other side of the question.  The graces in woman and a devotion to her family duties were all that were required to her perfection.  “But,” I said, “what is there left for us if nature has not gifted us with graces, if we have no family to which to devote ourselves or if ill health deprives us for long years of all social enjoyments and of the strength necessary to attend to household matters? With thousands of women one or more of the suppositions are stern facts.  You would deny us all those mental rescources [sic] with which wide knowledge furnishes you—you would leave us to count our beads under such circumstances, but you would leave us nothing else.”  I then told him that I thought nature had made wide differences between men and women and that it should be the object of education to bring them nearer together rather than to increase these differences, and finished my speech by a quotation from St Clement’s advice to his clergy “teach your men to be modest, your women to be brave.”  The General seemed much amused and quite inclined to pursue the discussion, but we were interrupted by the coming of a new set of visitors.

Italy had been home to an unusual number of woman scholars in the Renaissance and female literacy had once been higher than in most of Europe.  By the nineteenth century, however, these advantages had been lost.  Caroline Marsh encountered in Italy a society in which the social expectations for women of all castes were more tightly drawn than in America, and where few recognized the value of female education.  In citing her “suppositions,” moreover, she spoke from experience: for much of her life she suffered from an undiagnosed illness that gravely affected her eyesight and often left her unable to walk more than a few steps at a time.  Clearly, she used this time to perfect her mind.

Caroline’s views on women’s roles, as expressed in her diaries, are explored more fully by David Lowenthal in his 2008 article in the Journal of Social History (see below).  She continued to keep her insightful diaries until at least 1880.  When George died in 1882, he left little money to his family, but his life-long passion for books had produced a 12,000-volume library of great value that would soon find its way to the University of Vermont. Frederick Billings, a lifelong friend of Marsh’s and an 1844 alumnus, purchased the books from Caroline for $15,000 and donated them to UVM, along with funds to build a new library. In the late 1880s Caroline Marsh donated George’s papers to the University, establishing one of our most important research collections.  Her diaries and other papers, which have received less scholarly attention than her husband’s, were given to UVM in 1958-59 by Lowenthal (1923-2018), the eminent geographer and Marsh biographer.  We recently received Dr. Lowenthal’s papers, containing additional Marsh materials.


Lowenthal, David. "The Marriage of Choice and the Marriage of Convenience": A New England Puritan Views Risorgimento Italy. Journal of Social History, Vol. 42, No. 1 (Fall, 2008), pp. 157-174.

Lowenthal, David.  George Perkins Marsh: Prophet of conservation.  Seattle: University of Washington Press, 2000.

Crane, Elizabeth Greene. Caroline Crane Marsh: A life sketch.  n.p., n.p., after 1901.

Marsh, Caroline Crane. Wolfe of the knoll, and other poems. New York: C. Scribner, 1860.

Marsh, Caroline Crane.  The Hallig: or, The sheepfold in the waters: a tale of humble life on the coast of Scheswig: with a biographical sketch of the author. Translated from the German of Biernatzki by Mrs. George P. Marsh. Boston: Gould and Lincoln, 1856.
Marsh, Caroline Crane. Life and letters of George Perkins Marsh, comp. by Caroline Crane Marsh.  New York: C. Scribner’s Sons, 1888.