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Charles Grant, vicomte de Vaux papers, 1756-1805

0.5 linear feet

Correspondence and documents related to Vaux's support of the colonists in the Revolutionary War, his business interests, and his efforts to relocate to Canada.

The Charles Grant, vicomte de Vaux papers are composed of 8 unbound letters and 2 volumes containing correspondence, notes, and other writings. A total of 32 items that had been laid into the front of the volumes have been removed to their own folders.

The Unbound Correspondence series contains letters spanning May 8, 1778, to April 26, 1779, and primarily concerns Vaux's activities during the American Revolution, including his attempt to send aid to the colonies on the ship Comtesse de Brionne (May 8, 1778). A letter from June 1778 pertains to permission obtained from congress to arm a ship. Several other letters deal with Vaux's naval pursuits and contain news of the trans-Atlantic shipping business.

The Bound Volumes and Removed Items series contains two bound volumes of manuscripts, as well as the loose documents originally laid into the volumes, now arranged chronologically into folders. Materials in the series span approximately 1756-1805, though much of the material is undated.

Volume 1 contains correspondence, drafts, and documents, primarily dating from the period during which Vaux resided in Great Britain to escape the French Revolution. The items relate mainly to Vaux's attempts to organize a military regiment and to his efforts to settle in Canada. One undated document, entitled "State of the case of Charles Grant Viscount de Vaux in Great Britain," documents Vaux's life and history, and relates to his ancestry, birth, exile from France, attempts to build a military career in Britain, and literary works ([n.d.]; Folder 2). Vaux and his supporters' attempts to secure a military post or some other means for him to settle in Canada are a constant theme throughout. Also of interest are several letters that contain information on Vaux's son, Romain Grant, who remained in France when Vaux fled and was arrested attempting to travel to London without a passport (pp. 17-21).

Volume 2 primarily contains essays related to travel and notes on regions outside of France, such as Mauritius and the Americas. Included is a journal titled "Journal du voyage de Louis-Charles Grant de Vaux . . . lorsqu'il revenoit de l'isle Maurice en France en 1758" (Travel Journal of Louis-Charles Grant de Vaux. . .when returning from the island Mauritius in France in 1758). The journal begins on page 73 of the volume. Also included is the essay "Amerique ou Nouveau Monde," which contains an account of the history of the Americas from its discovery by Columbus in 1492, with descriptions of different regions such as Virginia, California, Nantucket, and the West Indies (begins on p. 25). The loose items include letters and notes related to the American Revolution and Canadian settlement. Of particular interest is "Memoire au congrés ameriquain," a draft of a letter to the American Congress describing vessels Vaux lost off the coast of America during the Revolution, and asking for some land in Ohio and Connecticut as recompense for his losses (1782).


Charles Townshend papers, 1660-1804 (majority within 1748-1767)

9.5 linear feet

The Townshend papers included the private and public records of Charles Townshend who served in various positions in the government of Great Britain including as Secretary of War during the Seven Years War and as Chancellor of the Exchequer where he authored the Townshend Acts to tax the American colonies.

The Townshend papers contain approximately 2,600 items, including letters, documents, accounts, and printed matter relating to the public life and activities of Charles Townshend, gathered largely during the last period of his career. The collection is an extremely valuable resource for study of British commercial and mercantile policy in the 1760s, administrative perspectives on the mounting crisis in the North American colonies, and the inner workings of British political life. The papers reflect Townshend's serious research efforts in his role as policymaker; much of the collection consists of documents that he gathered for his own information on legal cases, British politics, financial and treasury matters, and affairs in North America, the West Indies, and Africa. Also present is a small amount of incoming and outgoing correspondence and an assortment of memoranda and speech drafts by Townshend. The collection spans 1660-1804, but the bulk centers around the 1750s and 1760s, when Townshend held an appointment on the Board of Trade and Plantations (1748-1754) and served as Lord of the Admiralty (1754), Secretary-at-War (1762-1763), President of the Board of Trade (1763-1765), Paymaster General (1765-1766) and Chancellor of the Exchequer (1766-1767). The collection was originally arranged by Charles Townshend into numerous bundles marked with wrappers. This original order has largely been maintained and hence, document types and topics are scattered across the collection.

See "Additional Descriptive Data" for a partial subject index of the papers as well as a list of printed matter in the collection.


A moderate amount of Townshend's incoming and outgoing correspondence is located throughout the collection. This includes contemporary copies of his letters to and from William Barrington and Thomas Gage relating to the War Office during his time as Secretary-at-War (Box 8/ Bundle 2), numerous incoming letters concerning patronage and requesting favors (8/3/A), and correspondence between Townshend and John Morton concerning politics and happenings in the House of Commons in 1764-1766 (8/37). Also present are a series of letters written from the Mediterranean by Commodore Augustus Keppel, describing British peace negotiations with Tunis and Tripoli and the signing of a treaty on October 21, 1751, (Box 297/1/2) and incoming correspondence on a variety of topics from William Dowdeswell, George Sackville-Germain, George Younge, William Shirley, Edmund Burke, Wellbore Ellis, George Macaulay, Edward Walpole, Henry Pelham-Clinton (3rd Duke of Newcastle), and John Stuart, (3rd Earl Bute).

Legal Papers

The collection also contains scattered documents relating to legal issues and court cases in the late-18th century. The box marked 8/5 contains accounts of the court cases of the following parties, heard before the House of Lords and the Commissioners of Appeals in 1760: Francis Watkins; Francis Dalby; the Proprietors of Sulbrave, Northamptonshire; the Pennsylvania Land Company; a group of London fishmongers; and John Potter, Archbishop of Canterbury. Also represented are several cases concerning prizes captured by Dutchmen (8/5). Other legal papers include those relating to Townshend's wife, Caroline, 1st Baroness Greenwich, which span 1754 to 1789 and are located in Box 298, and documents concerning Samuel Waldo and his service in the Siege of Louisburg (8/24/a).

Other Documents

The Charles Townshend papers contain numerous documents gathered by Townshend for his own information or created by him during the process of policymaking. These include many items relating to North America, including reports on trade, military matters, the characteristics and features of various regions, and debates on British policies. Among the military-related topics addressed are recruitment for the British army in North America in the years 1753-1763 (8/22), expenses of maintaining a force in North America for 1765-1766 (8/28), the cost of maintaining various British forts (8/31), and the debate over foreign officers' commissions in America in 1756 (8/4). Other items concern trade between North America and Great Britain; this includes a 1761 memorandum on the prevalence of smuggling in Boston (297), information on Newfoundland fisheries (8/4 and 299), and notes on the importation of iron bar from America (299). A group of undated documents relate to the settlement of East and West Florida (8/34) and the expenses related to the settlement of East Florida by Greeks (297/4/5). Box 8/31 contains Townshend's own notes on his proposal to impose new duties on salt, wine, oil, fruit, glass, tea, sugar, molasses, china, and paper. A draft of the Townshend Duties is also included in the papers.

Other documents in the collection concern a variety of British political matters, such as contested 1754 English parliamentary elections (8/32), estimates of the strength of several parties in the House of Commons (8/42), and proceedings against John Wilkes in the House of Commons (296). The collection also includes Townshend notes for his speeches opposing the Marriage Act (298), and documents concerning his election to Parliament for Great Yarmouth in 1754 and 1756 (8/52).

Additional scattered papers relate to world trade and matters of the British Treasury. A substantial amount of material concerns the East India Company, including debates on the taxation of tea, memoranda concerning precedents for government intervention in East India Company matters, and Townshend's 1766 notes on a bill concerning East India, all of which are located in the Bowhill Box. Box 298 contains many lists and statistics on British imports and exports abroad, particularly to the North American colonies. Other documents pertain to the British manufacture of earthenware and china, the coal trade (8/40), and trade with Africa, including the activities of the Committee on African trade in 1752-1754 (297/5/3).


Detroit (Michigan) Collection, 1672, 1868, and undated

.25 cubic foot (in 1 box)

Collection includes copies of French documents re: Detroit military and Indian relations history, letters from a French Register in Quebec, documents in English on same topics, probably copied from Gen. Thomas Gage's papers, and later additions of miscellaneous Detroit history documents in English.

This collection includes nineteenth century copies of French documents concerning early military and Indian relations history, 1698, 1738, and some 1743/1747 letters copied from a French register in Quebec in 1842. Most of these documents were numbered and compiled in a specific order.

There are also documents in English concerning the same topics, 1763, 1766, probably copied from Gen. Thomas Gage’s paper. Gage’s papers are housed at the Clements Library in Ann Arbor.

Lastly, later additions to this collection include various miscellaneous documents in English about Detroit history, 1672, circa 1868? These papers were in the State Papers Office, Military Correspondence Series.

Many variations in spelling are evident throughout the collection.

Lewis Cass (1782-1866) supposedly ordered a copy of documents relating to early Detroit history from France during his years as Governor of Michigan (1813-1831). It is unknown whether or not some of this material could have eventually been purchased at auction for the Clarke.

Special thanks goes to Barbarah Saungweme who translated some of the French language materials.


Frederick North collection, 1775-1783

5 items

The Frederick North collection contains four letters written by North between 1775 and 1783 and a financial record for extraordinary military services and provisions incurred by and paid for by North and George Cooke as Paymasters of Forces, 1766-1767.

The Frederick North collection contains 4 letters from North to various recipients, 1775-1783 and one 1766-1767 record of payment for services. In the first letter (April 17, 1775), written to an unknown recipient, North mentioned transferring a "Dr. Tatten" to Westminster, which he considered "more profitable" than other institutions. He also expressed regret that John Burgoyne did not attend a meeting at which Lord Dartmouth gave "explicit & proper" instructions. In his letter of August 22, 1782, also to an unknown recipient, North referred to a month-long "Tour of visits," which prevented him from writing sooner. He pledged his assistance in recruiting men for the 40th Regiment of Foot, recently renamed the 2nd Somersetshire after Somerset County, but opined that he could "do but little" because of his residence outside the area. In the next piece of correspondence, dated January 19, 1783, North congratulated William Eden on the birth of a son, accepted the role of godfather, and noted that their friendship was a "principal happiness" in his life. North wrote the final letter to the Duke of Portland, September 23, 1783, informing him of the material needs of emigrants from East Florida to the Bahamas, and inquiring if the army's extra provisions could be sent to the Bahamas for the settlers.

Also included in the collection is a 7-page "Account of Extraory Services incurred & Paid by the right honble Lord North & Geo. Cooke," covering 1766-1767, when North and Cooke served as Paymasters of the Forces. This document contains sums paid to various military officials for services and supplies in Germany and colonies such as Grenada, East Florida, and Jamaica. Also provided in the document is a list of names of the compensated and dates of warrant.


Freiherr von Jungkenn papers, 1775-1784

1.75 linear feet

The von Jungkenn papers comprise one of the major resources in North America for study of the "Hessian" auxiliaries to British forces during the American Revolution. The involvement of German auxiliaries in many of the most significant campaigns of the war make the von Jungkenn collection of great importance for understanding both military and social aspects of the Revolution.

The von Jungkenn papers comprise one of the major resources in North America for study of the "Hessian" auxiliaries to British forces during the American Revolution. The correspondence, diaries, and military returns of German officers hired by the British during the American Revolution provide a thorough documentation of the military activities involving German forces, and insight into the martial culture that bound them to the British authority. As professional soldiers, serving for pay, rather than patriotism, von Jungkenn and his fellow German officers were often more candid in their assessments of the war and less inclined to the self-serving or wishful myopia that hindered some of their British colleagues. The involvement of German auxiliaries in many of the most significant campaigns of the war make the von Jungkenn collection of great importance for understanding both military and social aspects of the Revolution.

Nearly all of the correspondence received by von Jungkenn is written either in German or French, reflecting the linguistic difficulties posed in fielding a multi-national, multi-lingual force. The letters in German are written exclusively in the old script. The correspondence of Adj. Gen. Maj. Bauermeister comprises the most extensive single correspondence in the collection -- almost one third of the von Jungkenn Papers -- and has been fully translated and published by Bernhard Uhlendorf.


Gough family papers, 1804-1926 (majority within 1860-1901)

1.5 linear feet

This collection is primarily made up of correspondence between and addressed to members of the Gough family of Gort, Ireland, including George Stephens Gough; his wife, Jane Arbuthnot; and their children, Hugh, George, Rodolph, and Eleanor ("Nora"). The Gough family directly descended from Hugh Gough, 1st Viscount Gough. Most of the letters pertain to the education and military career of the younger George Gough. The collection also includes a travel diary, documents, financial records, and notes.

This collection is primarily made up of correspondence between and addressed to members of the Gough family of Gort, Ireland, including George Stephens Gough; his wife, Jane Arbuthnot; and their children, Hugh, George, Rodolph, and Eleanor ("Nora").

The Correspondence series (740 items) largely consists of incoming personal letters addressed to Jane Gough, Viscountess Gough, and her son George. George Gough frequently wrote to his parents (most often his mother) throughout the 1860s, describing aspects of his education at Woodcote House in Henley-on-Thames, England; Eton College; and the University of Cambridge. He also commented on family news and his desire to join the military. George's later letters, written from the 1870s-1890s, concern his career with the British Army, which included service in England, India, and Africa; some of his letters from 1881 refer to political relations around the time of the First Boer War. He also wrote letters from Dresden, Germany, and from Switzerland.

Jane Gough received additional letters from acquaintances, including a group of letters expressing sympathy after George was wounded at the Battle of Abu Klea in January 1885. George Gough received letters from his siblings Hugh, Rodolph, and Nora, and from school friends and other acquaintances. One frequent correspondent, "Hubie," wrote throughout the 1860s, telling Gough about his experiences at Eton College and University College, Oxford.

The Diary (147 pages) recounts George Hugh Gough's travels in Canada and the United States during the fall of 1888. The volume covers the entirety of the trip up to Gough's return departure for Ireland, including ocean travel between Ireland and North America and railroad travel throughout Canada and the United States. Gough's entries regard daily activities, the scenery, historical context about places visited, and current events (such as the United States presidential election of 1888). The first page contains a list of visited locations and the distances between them. The final four pages contain a list of expenses incurred between September 28, 1888-November 15, 1888. A menu for passengers on the "'Allen' Line" of "Royal Mail Steamers" is pinned into the volume.

Partial Geographical List (George Gough diary):
  • Québec, Québec
  • Montréal, Québec
  • Ottawa, Ontario
  • Toronto, Ontario
  • North Bay, Ontario
  • Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Victoria, British Columbia
  • Portland, Oregon
  • San Francisco, California
  • Yosemite Region, California
  • Ogden, Utah
  • Denver, Colorado
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • New York City, New York

The Documents series (11 items) contains military appointments for Hugh Gough (March 15, 1843, and May 1, 1861) and George Stephens Gough (January 5, 1849), a document authorizing the recipient to raise a number of men for a military regiment (November 5, 1804), and 7 accounts for purchases made by G. V. H. Gough in March 1914. Gough paid for automobile repairs, shoe repairs, medical supplies, and food.

The Photographs series (11 items) includes nine black-and-white prints showing soldiers at leisure, soldiers with horses, and a military encampment. The remaining items are a carte-de-visite portrait of an unidentified boy and an informal outdoor picture of a boy with a dog.

The Writings, Lists, and Genealogy series is made up of 12 items. Writings include a small notebook containing French poetry, a sheet containing limericks and drawings, and an item titled "Liber secundus." Extracts and notes pertain to a House of Lords commission respecting forfeited Irish estates around the turn of the 18th century, to an "Index to the "Prerogative Wills of Ireland," and to a poem entitled "The Migration of the Sons of Umor." Lists include a "Catalogue of a Collection of Minerals and Geological Specimens arranged and sold by J. Tennant" in London, a list of clothing belonging to a member of the Gough family, a list of men involved in a cricket match, and a list of words made for an unidentified purpose. A family tree traces the descendants of Hugh Gough, great-grandfather of Hugh Gough, first Viscount Gough. One group of papers was intended to be used to record purchases in February 1862, though it contains only a heading.

Two items in the Printed Items series (11 items) pertain directly to Viscount Hugh Gough: a poem addressed to Gough and his wife during their visit to Bath on April 1, 1850, and a document regarding the construction of a memorial to Gough following his death (May 21, 1869). Other items include a "Map of the Northern Uaso Nyiro" (1914), three scorecards from cricket matches held at Lord's Cricket Ground in 1868 and 1780, and newspaper clippings pertaining to wineglasses, a funeral, and the Franco-Prussian War. The collection includes two books: a pocket-sized Book of Common Prayer that belonged to George Gough (1872) and a Catalogue of Pictures at Basildon Park, Berkshire (1910).

The Personal Stationery and Family Crests series (62 items) includes a drawing of a jester and numerous drawings and crests, most cut out of personal stationery belonging to a variety of individuals and families.


Henry and Thomas Rowson collection, 1807-1814

7 items

This collection is made up of correspondence and legal documents related to Henry and Thomas Rowson, who were lawyers in Prescot, England, in the early 19th century. Most of the materials pertain to debt collection, and one concerns personnel in the 2nd Royal Lancashire Regiment.

This collection (7 items) is made up of correspondence and legal documents related to Henry and Thomas Rowson, who were lawyers in Prescot, England, in the early 19th century. Most of the items are letters requesting the Rowsons' assistance with collecting debts, though some correspondents mentioned other legal matters, such as bail. One document lists three "casualties" who were discharged from the 2nd Royal Lancashire Regiment between January 4 and February 6, 1813; two had served five-year terms and the third was transferred to a different militia regiment.


John Peddie letter and enclosures, 1815

4 items

The John Peddie collection is made up of a signed letter from John Peddie to William Henry Clinton, written from a bivouac on the "banks of the Bayoue Catalan" and dated January 24, 1815. Peddie wrote of "the fate of our unfortunate Expedition," referring to operations surrounding the Battle of Lake Borgne and the Battle of New Orleans. He enclosed a manuscript map and a copy of Charles Ramus Forrest's journal dated November 25, 1814-January 7, 1815. The letter and enclosures are part of the larger Henry Clinton papers.

The John Peddie collection includes a signed letter from John Peddie to William Henry Clinton, written from a bivouac on the "banks of the Bayoue Catalan" and dated January 24, 1815. Peddie wrote of "the fate of our unfortunate Expedition," referring to operations surrounding the Battle of Lake Borgne and the Battle of New Orleans. He offered his opinions about the causes of the British failures. Peddie requested Clinton's aid in securing a promotion.

Peddie enclosed a manuscript map of "Genl Lambert's position on the River Mississip[p]i," signed by John Fox Burgoyne, and a 15-page copy of Charles Ramus Forrest's "Journal of the Movements of the Army acting in the Southern part of the North American Coast." Forrest's account describes events from November 25, 1814, through January 7, 1815. He remarked on Major General Keane's command in Negril, Jamaica, the movements of the British Fleet as they proceeded to the American coast, and subsequent military decisions, maneuvers, and engagements leading up to the Battle of New Orleans. Forrest provided details on difficulties faced by British troops, including unfavorable tides and geography, and described military encounters with American forces. He also noted work on the Villeré Canal and included copies of orders and memoranda concerning military preparation and actions. Forrest concluded by summarizing the circumstances that stymied the British efforts in New Orleans, including their distance from supplies; the "impossibility of gaining intelligence" from locals, prisoners, and African Americans; the bad "nature of the Soil"; Americans' ability to prepare in advance and establish a strong line of defense; and the unexpected local opposition to the British.

The letter and enclosures are part of the larger Henry Clinton papers, though they are housed separately.


Richard and William Howe collection, 1758-1812

48 items

This is a miscellaneous collection of letters to and from members of the Howe family, including British army officer William Howe, British naval officer Richard Howe, and their families.

The Richard and William Howe collection contains 48 miscellaneous single letters and documents, spanning 1758 to 1812. The correspondents were various members of the Howe family, including William Howe, Richard Howe, Mary Hartopp Howe, Mary Juliana Howe, and Louisa Catherine Howe. Brought together over several decades, the group of materials includes miscellaneous items related to military operations, as well as a number of family letters. A handful of items concern the Seven Years War and American Revolution, and over half of the collection postdates 1783. See "Detailed Box and Folder Listing" for a full inventory of the items, including abstracts of each letter.


Thomas Gage warrants, 1763-1775

10 linear feet

The Thomas Gage warrants are financial documents authorizing payment for the British military forces in North America from the conclusion of the French and Indian War through the beginning of the Revolutionary War. The warrants are one series within the larger Thomas Gage papers.

The financial records contained in this collection represent financial accounts for British forces in North America from the conclusion of the French and Indian War to the beginning of the Revolutionary War. These documents are secretarial copies retained by Thomas Gage (1720-1787) for his personal records.

Types of documents in the collection:
  • Subsistence warrants: Documents issued by Gage authorizing payment for regular salaries and rations.
  • Warrants for extraordinary expenses: Documents issued by Gage authorizing payment for irregular expenses.
  • Temporary warrants: Documents signed by Gage allowing financial advances.
  • Annexed accounts: Detailed lists or accounts affixed to warrants, often including vouchers and receipts from various middlemen and agents. These may be lists of bills of exchange and are occasionally signed.
  • Abstracts of accounts: Abstracts or explanations of complex accounts.
  • Vouchers: Receipts showing payment.
  • These may include:
    • Bills of lading: Used when dealing with hired ships.
    • Pay rolls: Listing of personnel, their occupations, and their wages.
    • Invoices: Enumerating goods received.
    • Bills of exchange: Calling for one party to pay a certain amount to a second party; may be accompanied by receipts.
The miscellaneous documents in the collection include:
  • Memorials: Signed statements certifying that a service has been performed.
  • Legal documents: Depositions, testimonies, contracts, or other witnessed and sworn statements.
  • Discharges: Documents releasing men or vessels from military service.
  • Wrappers: Papers in which documents were originally contained.

See the Gage Warrants Finding Aid and Index (pdf) for more information on the Gage Warrants and an itemized list of volumes 6-36.

See the finding aid for the Thomas Gage papers for a complete description of the collection.