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Alpheus Felch Papers, 1817-1896

6 linear feet — 6 oversize volumes — 1 oversize folder

Lawyer, Member of Michigan Supreme Court, 1842-1846, Democratic Governor of Michigan, 1846-1847, and holder of numerous other public offices; papers include correspondence and other papers documenting his career in public service.

The Alpheus Felch papers details the active life of this nineteenth century Michigan public servant. Not only are public issues discussed in the correspondence files but the researcher will also gain an understanding of some of the personal problems associated with public service. The collection also includes several files of other family members.


American Bible Society papers, 1819-1855 (majority within 1828-1855)

100 items

This collection consists of American Bible Society reports from agents, often located in rural or frontier areas, and Bible distribution orders from affiliate Bible societies. These letters provide evidence of American Bible Society activity in Georgia, Kentucky, Arkansas, Missouri, Indiana, and Maine, and several letters provide the names and officers of local Bible societies.

The bulk of this accession consists of orders from subsidiary or affiliate Bible societies, often located in rural or frontier areas, for Bibles for distribution and sale. These orders came from societies ranging in location from Farmington, Maine, in the east to Bainbridge, Georgia, in the south, to societies in the western states and territories. The great number of local societies represented as correspondents and the quantity, quality, and cost of Bibles they ordered can be used to reconstruct patterns of evangelical activity and success on the fringes of the country during the 1840's and '50's. This correspondence provides evidence of American Bible Society activity in Georgia, Kentucky, Arkansas, Missouri, Indiana, and Maine, and several letters provide the names and officers of local Bible societies.

Included in the correspondence are a few informal reports from local societies of their situation vis-à-vis the needs of the evangelist, their finances, and the success of their efforts to date. Some of these societies served ethnic communities (Welsh, French, German, Native American) or frontier areas where contact was difficult. "You would find that lonely rides with your own conveyance over extensive Prairies and through forrests, is somewhat different from visiting important points by public Conveyances" (April 26, 1842).

A series of correspondence from the Wisconsin Territory to John Brigham in the late 1830's and early 40's is particularly detailed in describing plans for evangelizing in Wisconsin and reveals something of the mentality of the evangelists. The reports, orders, and letters from this quarter are detailed in terms of the numbers and types of Bibles distributed, the means used to distribute them, the finances of the local society, and the clientele served. The correspondents paint a fairly thorough picture of evangelical activity in Wisconsin and their personal experiences as evangelists.

Among their clientele were substantial numbers of Oneida Indians, the 'remnants' of the Iroquois, whom the correspondent, Julius Field, suggests 'are a peacible, Moral, - Industrious, and enterprizing People, - And the best of all Many of them give Satisfactory evidence of conversion & ardent piety' (May 20, 1842). Field continues at some length on the Oneidas and, in other letters, on the Oneida West Mission, 12 miles west of Green Bay. His descriptions of evangelizing among the Oneida are among the most complete in this collection, and his opinions on their life style and future prospects are particularly notable.


Barbourville (Ky.) Debating Society minutes, 1837-1839, 1922, 1954

3 volumes

The Barbourville (Ky.) Debating Society minutes concern the group's weekly meetings in the late 1830s. Each set of minutes contains attendees' names, the number of affirmative and negative votes regarding that week's question, and the next week's discussion topic. Members discussed subjects related to national and state politics, finances, penal codes, gender, and morality.

The Barbourville (Ky.) Debating Society minutes (122 pages) concern the group's weekly meetings between May 27, 1837, and November 16, 1839, with breaks between November 18, 1837-March 10, 1838, and August 4, 1838-March 30, 1839. The first entry and those that immediately follow the breaks contain the society's 3 constitutions. In addition to meeting minutes, the volume includes a 2-page membership list.

Most sets of weekly minutes list the names of attending members, the names of members selected to debate that meeting's assigned topic, the results of the society's vote, and the topic to be discussed at the following meeting. The minutes also reflect administrative matters settled during meetings, frequently regarding the admittance of new members and the election of officers. The Barbourville Debating Society mainly discussed political matters; some topics were debated on multiple occasions. Issues for debate included banking and taxation, the death penalty, revision of the Kentucky constitution, the admission of Texas to the Union, the relative worth of wealth and talent, the intellectual capacity of men and women, foreign immigration to the United States, the propriety of sanctioning divorces, and the desired amount of government funding for education and infrastructure. On at least two occasions, the society considered whether Native American removal or slavery was the greater evil, and on one occasion they considered whether the United States government could be justified in its actions against the Seminole tribe (July 13, 1839). The society also debated the legacies of politicians such as Andrew Jackson and Napoleon Bonaparte, and discussed the possibility of Henry Clay running for president in 1840.

The Barbourville (Ky.) Debating Society minutes arrived at the Clements Library with two published volumes:

Carver Tract documents, 1796-1836 (majority within 1796)

6 items

This collection is made up of legal documents and memorandums pertaining to the chain of ownership of a 2,000 acre property. The tract was a part of the land allegedly granted to Jonathan Carver from the Naudowessie Indians during his 1766-1768 journey to present-day Wisconsin and Minnesota.

This collection (6 items) consists of legal documents and memorandums pertaining to the chain of ownership of a 2,000 acre property. The tract was a part of the land allegedly granted to Jonathan Carver from the Naudowessie Indians during his 1766-1768 journey to present-day Wisconsin and Minnesota.

The first 2 partially printed documents, numbered 188 and 189 and signed by John C. Fox, Simeon Avery, and Ezekiel Webb, each grant 1,000 acres of the Carver land to the bearer (February 6, 1796). The third item is an indenture to transfer the land from Benoni Adams to James W. Howard, both of New York City (September 12, 1796). In a document dated November 8, 1836, Seth Whalen of Milton, New York, granted Isaac Nash power of attorney for dealing with the same property. The final 2 items are manuscript memorandums listing the chain of ownership of these 2,000 acres and binding a group of Vermont residents to the Carver heirs for the sum of $200,000. The first memorandum includes small drawings of the tortoise and snake totems of the Naudowessie chiefs who allegedly granted the lands to Jonathan Carver.


Charles Adam Weissert papers, 1893-1947

3.3 linear feet (in 4 boxes) — 1 oversize folder

Journalist, historical researcher from Kalamazoo, Michigan; Correspondence, research articles and notes, and photographs.

The Weissert collection includes correspondence, 1893-1947, including letters from Joseph Bailly, Clarence M. Burton, Gurdon S. Hubbard, Chase S. Osborn, Albert E. Sleeper, and George Van Pelt. There are also speeches, and writings mostly on Michigan history topics, including Indian history and the history of Kalamazoo and Barry County. The series of research notes illustrates the variety of Weissert's interests: historical personalities, forts, Michigan cities, and early state history. The photographs and snapshots pertain to Weissert's interest in Michigan history, especially homes, churches, mills, hotels, businesses, and other sites primarily in western Michigan, but also including Sault Ste. Marie and Mackinac Island. There are also photographs of Michigan pioneers, particularly from the Hastings, Michigan area.


Chilocco Indian School Collection, 1908-ca.1950

16 tintypes, 18 photographic prints, 73 postcards, 1 piece of realia, 1 school yearbook, 1 pamphlet, 1 manuscript, and 1 graduation certificate in 3 boxes.

The Chilocco Indian School collection consists of 1 piece of realia, 1 school yearbook, 1 pamphlet, 1 manuscript, 1 graduation certificate, and 107 photographic images in various formats related to the Chilocco Indian School in northern Oklahoma.

The Chilocco Indian School collection consists of 1 piece of realia, 1 school yearbook, 1 pamphlet, 1 manuscript, 1 graduation certificate, and 107 photographic images in various formats related to the Chilocco Indian School in northern Oklahoma. Many of the images are portraits of individuals, structures, and activities associated with the Chilocco Indian School; most are individual and group portraits of Native Americans, but there are also several images showing school buildings, agricultural activities, sports teams, and white American adults and children. The majority of the images are real photo postcards from the 1910s.

A total of 16 tintypes (mostly 8 x 5 cm) are present in the collection. Included are studio portraits of Native American men, women, boys, and girls wearing western clothing. Many of the tintypes have been moderately hand-colored. None of the subjects nor their tribal affiliations have been identified.

Also present are 18 photographic prints (6 unmounted and 12 mounted). The 6 unmounted prints are all 11 x 6.5 cm snapshots taken in 1920 that appear to have been taken by tourists and were once stored in a photograph album. Inscribed captions include the following: "Gold Fish Pond Chilocco OK 1920"; "Three Indian Boys"; "View of the lake at Chilocco"; "Little Girls Dormitory at Chilocco Government School 1920"; "Dairy at Chilocco"; "Chilocco OK Indian School Stadium 1920." Of the mounted photographs, there are 10 of approximately the same size (8.5 x 6.5 cm; all albumen prints) that show individual and group studio portraits of Native American men, women, boys, and girls. The remaining two mounted photographs (12.5 x 8.5 cm and 10.5 x 6.5 cm respectively; both albumen prints) are studio portraits of a very young Native American girl and a Native American boy with his mother which bears the verso inscription "T. Wolf." None of the subjects nor their tribal affiliations have been identified.

Real photo and photomechanical postcards (mostly 14 x 8.5 cm) make up the remaining 73 photographic images in this collection. Most images consist of individual and group portraits of Native American and white people, the latter of which many appear to have been affiliated with various Indian Agencies and/or boarding schools.

Items of particular interest include an image of a young Native American boy captioned "Jim McKay's kid"; a studio portrait of an unidentified Native American man by George B. Cornish; a studio portrait of a man possibly identified as "Red Fox" through an inscription on the verso; a studio group portrait of an unidentified married Native American couple captioned "New Year Eve. 08-09" in which the photographer appears to have edited the negative by painting fake snowflakes on the subjects; a group portrait of Umatilla Agency superintendent E. L. Swartzlander's children Lawrence and Inez; views of Chilocco Indian School buildings such as Haworth Hall, Home One, the Printing Department, and the inside of a classroom; and three photographs showing young men dressed in World War I-era army uniforms.

Sports-related images include group portraits of the 1912-13 Chilocco men's basketball team, the 1906 and 1915 Chilocco women's basketball teams, the 1945-46 Chilocco men's football team, and a Chilocco men's baseball team from an unknown year.

A relatively small number of postcards have been signed. Of the postcards that have signatories, there are eight signed by Samson B. Harjo (Seminole; name also spelled "Sampson B. Harjo"); one signed by "John Wolf" (tribal affiliation unknown); one signed by "Silas Beal Brown"; three signed by Chief Tishomingo's grandson Joe F. Factor (Chickasaw); and five signed by Umatilla Agency clerk Alvin Barbour.

The Alvin Barbour postcards (6 in total) are the only postcards in the collection that contain correspondence. Writing from Pendleton, Oregon, Barbour was in communication with a girl at the Chilocco Indian School named "Anna" of unknown tribal background who appears to have come from the Umatilla Agency. In one postcard with a view of a school building dated March 4 1914, Barbour expresses delight that Anna was "pleased with the pennant" he sent her and that he hopes it will "remind you of home and of the sender." In another postcard bearing an outdoor portrait of Barbour dated April 18 1914, Barbour states that he is glad Anna has recovered from an illness and that he sent her some Easter lilies. Two postcards dated April 27 1914 show images of Barbour and a Native American girl from the Umatilla Agency identified as "Ruth" taking turns sitting on a fallen tree trunk. Two postcards do not bear any correspondence and include an outdoor portrait of Barbour (signed "Yours very truly, Alvin Barbour") and an unsigned outdoor group portrait of Barbour with two other men posing on a bridge.

The realia item is a double-handled silver basketball trophy (10 x 15 x 6 cm) bearing the engravings "Chilocco Basket Ball League 08" and "Bird's Head - Escudero - Du Bois - Taylor - Jones." The trophy was awarded to "Team Jones" in 1908 after they won all four of their matches in their five-team intramural league. "Bird's Head" may possibly be Jesse Bird's Head, while "Escudero" may possibly be Cipriano Escudero (approximately 1882-?).

Printed publications include a 1932 Chilocco Indian School senior class yearbook as well as an illustrated libretto and associated program from a 1907 Chilocco Indian School production of Hiawatha. The front cover of the libretto bears the inscription "Lulu Gregory, Tonkawa, Okla."

The manuscript item consists of a three-page handwritten document regarding the "Crimson" flag of an unidentified University Preparatory School (possibly the Tonkawa U.P.S.) and its importance being "similar to that of the Stars & Stripes to the United States." The document is unsigned and undated.

Also present is a graduation certificate (51 x 40.5 cm) granted by the Chilocco Indian School in 1897 to Myrtle M. Long (tribal affiliation uncertain). The diploma was signed by Superintendent Benjamin F. Taylor, principal teacher Philena Everett Johnson, and teacher Anna D. Burr.


City and Country Life Photograph Album, approximately 1890

approximately 70 photographs in 1 album.

The City and country life photograph album contains approximately 70 photographs primarily showing the city and country residences of an unidentified wealthy family.

The City and country life photograph album contains approximately 70 photographs primarily showing the city and country residences of an unidentified wealthy family.

The album (21 x 27 cm) is half bound in black leather and has a detached front cover.

City scenes include views of townhouses on a city block in winter; a woman entering a carriage beyond a decorative wrought iron fence; a well-dressed couple in a two-wheeled carriage; an infant in a wicker baby buggy; a housekeeper or servant standing at a side door; and women and a young girl standing on a city street in elegant winter capes, muffs and hats. One woman stands on a snowy sidewalk holding a Kodak Brownie camera in her gloved hands. Five photographs show well-furnished formal interiors.

Rural scenes include views of a log house on a wooded lake whose well-furnished interior includes bookshelves, Native American baskets and textiles, snowshoes, a wolfskin rug, a desk, a chaise, and a piano. Men and women are shown with guns and gamebirds, fishing from a dock and in a rowboat, and partaking in an elaborate outdoor tea party. One photograph shows a Native American man sitting on the cabin steps. Nature views include images of logs in a flooded river, streams, a small wooded island, and a spotted fawn.


Clarence T. Johnston papers, 1888-1941

17.5 linear feet

Professor of engineering at the University of Michigan. Photos of Johnston's personal and family life in Wyoming and Michigan, including student activities at the University of Michigan; photos of his work on water projects in the West and in Egypt; and photos of Camp Davis, the summer engineering camp of the University of Michigan in Cheboygan Co., Michigan..

The Johnston collection spans the years of 1888-1928. The bulk of the collection is comprised of photographic prints, mainly cyanotypes, and glass plate negatives. Scattered papers are also present and include biographical material and topical files relating to Johnston's personal, religious, and professional activities. The collection has been arranged into five series, which include: Personal and Family Photographs, Work Photographs, Camp Davis Photographs, Glass negatives, and Biographical Materials.


Clifford H. Scroggs collection, 1917-1919

0.5 linear feet

The Clifford H. Scroggs collection contains letters and postcards that Scroggs wrote to his mother and sister in Ohio while serving with the American Expeditionary Forces in the United States and France during World War I. He commented on camp life and training in the United States, his experiences at and behind the front lines in France, and his travels around Europe after the war.

The Clifford H. Scroggs collection contains 79 letters and postcards that Scroggs wrote to his family in Ohio while serving with the American Expeditionary Forces in the United States and France during World War I. Most items are manuscript or typed letters to Clifford's mother, Sarah A. Scroggs, and sister, Kate Boyd. One of Scroggs's letters to his sister includes letters to his niece and nephew, Kathryn and Paul (August 12, 1918). The collection also includes one letter from Clifford Scroggs to one of his brothers (December 7, 1917).

Clifford H. Scroggs wrote 78 letters and postcards between May 12, 1917, and May 12, 1919, describing aspects of military life. While at Camp Benjamin Harrison, Indiana; Camp Sherman, Ohio; and Camp Sheridan, Alabama, he discussed his daily training routine, which included classes, drills, and shooting practice. He commented on news from home and sent his regards to family members and friends. In January 1918, he wrote from New York while awaiting overseas deployment, and in February 1918 he began writing from Europe. He wrote one additional letter shortly before his discharge at Columbus, Ohio, on August 15, 1919.

While in France during the final months of the war, Scroggs wrote about his trip across the Atlantic Ocean, courses at the Saumur Artillery School, and service with the 12th Field Artillery Battalion. He often complained about poor sleeping conditions and reflected on his newfound ability to sleep during shelling or other suboptimal conditions. He sometimes commented on the progress of the war, mentioning Marines' capture of German prisoners, bombing raids, others' encounters with German troops or dugouts. Scroggs remained in Germany for around 6 months after the armistice. His postwar correspondence includes mentions of travel in France, Belgium, Luxembourg, and Italy. His letter of December 14, 1918, recounts his locations during combat. Some of the envelopes containing Scroggs's later letters are sealed with stickers containing the 2nd Division's "Indianhead" insignia.


Cross-County photograph album, 1896-1907

1 volume

The Cross-Country photograph album contains photographs taken in various locations throughout the United States, including travel photographs of scenery and buildings in Washington, Colorado, Louisiana, and Massachusetts, among other states, and family photographs taken in New Hampshire, Massachusetts, and elsewhere.

The Cross-Country photograph album (26cm x 32cm, 59 pages) contains around 340 photographs taken throughout the United States between 1896 and 1907, including 15 cyanotypes and 10 panoramas. The items represent numerous printing processes in a variety of sizes. Some have captions, often providing information about the place and the date. Several reference the Gill family. The album has the title "Photographs" printed in gold on its front cover and its pages are bound with a thick string.

Many of the photographs are casual group portraits of men, women, children, and family dogs taken outdoors, often in front of large houses and cottages; some of the same individuals are present in multiple pictures. Included are a portrait of an African American woman holding a Caucasian infant (p. 1), two young boys in dress military uniforms with a collection of toy soldiers (p. 3), and a wedding party (p. 46). Some men and women are pictured golfing at Bass Rocks in Gloucester, Massachusetts. Most of the remaining images are views of landscapes, city streets, buildings, and natural scenery in locations such as Spokane, Washington; Tacoma, Washington; Lake Coeur d'Alene, Idaho; Pikes Peak, Colorado; New Orleans, Louisiana; Hampton, New Hampshire; Boston, Massachusetts; Gloucester, Massachusetts; Beacon Falls, Connecticut; and Washington, D.C. Included are a small number of commercial photographs of the area around Pikes Peak in Colorado including views by William H. Jackson. City views often feature prominent buildings and other landmarks. Other photographs show the rocky coast of New England, harbors, sailing vessels of various sizes, and large homes. Of note are a group portrait of Spokane Native Americans (p.14); views of the Tacoma waterfront (p.15); the New England coast, with aspects of the Gloucester fishing industry including a view of salted cod laid out to dry (p.24-29); pictures of Victorian home interiors (p. 20, 34, 47, 55, 56); and panoramic landscape views taken near Spokane (p. 47, 48). The album includes one print and a hand-colored collotype of the home of Senator George Turner in Spokane, Washington (inside front cover).