This collection contains correspondence that Julia Dougrey of Lansingburgh, New York, received during and after her time at St. Mary's Hall in Burlington, New Jersey. The bulk of the collection consists of letters from Julia's friends at the school, who described their experiences there and aired complaints about its regimen and teachers. Dougrey also received social letters from her sisters Mary and Clarissa Ann, as well as letters from friends in New Haven, Connecticut.
Collection processed and finding aid created by Janet Bloom, June 2001; Clements Staff, May 2007; and Meg Hixon, February 2012
Scope and Content:
This collection contains correspondence that Julia Dougrey of Lansingburgh, New York, received during and after her time at St. Mary's Hall in Burlington, New Jersey. Her sister Mary wrote the first 5 letters between May 1837 and February 1838, while Julia lived and studied at St. Mary's Hall. Mary expressed her pleasure at hearing that Julia enjoyed the school, shared social news from Lansingburgh, and reported on their sister Clarissa, then living in Marshall, Michigan.
Julia Dougrey received most of the remaining dated letters from friends at St. Mary's Hall after returning home around 1839. Her correspondents included Augusta Whipple, one of the school's two female teachers, and 3 women who referred to themselves using male pseudonyms; one of these, "John," referred to herself as Julia's "husband." Correspondents from St. Mary's reported details of their lives of the school, provided updates on other students, and shared their opinions of its strict rules and "cross" teachers. The women were only allowed to write letters once weekly, and often reported feeling homesick. One letter contains a poem dedicated to Julia (July 21, 1838).
Other correspondence includes 2 letters to Julia Dougrey from her sister Clarissa, who wrote of her social life in Marshall, Michigan (July 28, 1840), and Chicago, Illinois (September 1844), and undated letters from acquaintances in New Haven, Connecticut. The collection also contains an anonymous love letter and poem written in Troy, New York, under the pseudonym "Rowland Abbot" (March 12, 1841). Julia Dougrey wrote one letter to a sister-in-law Frances on September 12, 1842.
Biographical / Historical:
James Dougrey (1781-1838) of Lansingburgh, New York (now part of Troy), and his wife, Clarissa Bontecou (1785-1850), had six children: Hannah (1806-1872), James, Jr. (b. 1808), Clarissa Ann (1809-1853), John (1811-1825), Mary Elizabeth (1818-1880), and Julia (b. 1821). Julia Dougrey attended St. Mary's Hall in Burlington, New Jersey, in the late 1830s, and returned to Lansingburgh around 1839. She married William Brownell Cory (d. 1854) on December 24, 1845, and had at least two children, William and Alice. Her brother James and his wife, Frances Elizabeth Moulton, lived in Lansingburgh, where he was a merchant. Clarissa Ann Dougrey married Charles Dikeman Smith in 1834, and moved to Marshall, Michigan, before the 1840s. Mary Elizabeth Dougrey married James Norman Barker in 1839 and eventually moved to Chicago, Illinois.
2001. M-4137.5 .
Cataloging funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.
The collection is arranged chronologically, with undated items placed at the end.
Rules or Conventions:
Finding aid prepared using Describing Archives: A Content Standard (DACS)
Additional Descriptive Data:
Morris, John E. The Bontecou Genealogy. Hartford, Connecticut: Press of the Case, Lockwood & Brainard Company, 1885.
A more detailed description of the collection is available in the Manuscripts Division.
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