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Elizabeth Coffin Tuttle collection, 1857-[1900s]

23 items

This collection contains a journal and recipe book, family photographs, and other material related to Elizabeth Coffin Tuttle of Newburyport, Massachusetts, and Lancaster, New Hampshire.

This collection (23 items) contains a journal and recipe book, family photographs, and other material related to Elizabeth Coffin Tuttle of Newburyport, Massachusetts, and Lancaster, New Hampshire. Tuttle kept a Journal and Recipe Book (44 pages) between around 1875 and 1882. From January 11, 1875-July 16, 1875, she regularly wrote brief diary entries about food purchases, weather, and other topics. Though Tuttle continued to make brief notes about cattle prices and other financial transactions as late as 1882, the remaining pages are largely comprised of manuscript recipes giving instructions for making cakes, pies, puddings, other desserts, and a cure for smallpox. Two newspaper clippings are pinned into the volume: a recipe for "pop corn candy" and an obituary for Henry Lunt. Two late pages contain knitting instructions, and two additional small clippings are pasted into the volume's back cover.

Elizabeth Coffin wrote a 2-page Essay entitled "Account of a Freshet" on October 15, 1857. The manuscript is about a flash flood in northern New Hampshire following heavy rains.

The Photographs series (19 items) contains several types of materials. The photograph album holds 12 black-and-white photographs of Tuttle family members, such as "Mama Tuttle," in an informal outside setting; one shows a horse-drawn carriage. Of the 5 tintypes, 3 are housed in stamped metal frames, one with pictures of a drum and cannon and the words "The Union Now and Forever." The other 2 tintypes are pictures of a young boy and a young girl. The 11 card photographs show Winifred, Bert, and Edith Tuttle in 1888; a group of young women; a group of schoolchildren; the Atlantic Ocean; a farmhouse in Amesbury, Massachusetts; 3 structures in Newburyport, Massachusetts; a carriage parade; and 4th of July celebrations in Lancaster, New Hampshire. Two 20th-century color snapshots are pictures of the Theodore Atkinson Coffin house in Newburyport, Massachusetts, and another residence.

The Printed Items series is comprised of the following two items: a newspaper clipping about the death of Robert Tuttle and a pamphlet by Edward Melcher entitled A Sketch of the Destruction of the Willey Family by the White Mountain Slide, on the Night of August 28, 1826 (1879).


James Akin collection, 1805

4 items

The James Akin collection contains four items related to an engraving made by him in 1805. The material includes two personal letters and two testimonies.

The James Akin collection contains four items related to an engraving made by him in 1805. The material includes two letters and two testimonies . Both letters, written in the summer of 1805 by John McKown, relate to an engraving of "a very handsome Stone Horse on type metal," requested of Akin by McKown (June 3, 1805). The two testimonies contain statements made by Moses Moody and William Hooker to the Court of Common Pleas reflecting McKown and Akin's dispute about the proper price for the completed plate.


James Patten papers, 1788-1799

16 items

The James Patten papers contain letters and documents detailing his capture and captivity by Delaware Indians in Ohio, the funds raised by the family to purchase his ransom, his eventual release, and his life on the Ohio frontier.

The James Patten papers (16 items) contain letters and documents regarding Patten's capture and captivity by Delaware Indians in Ohio, the family's efforts to raise funds to purchase his ransom, his eventual release, and his life on the Ohio frontier (1789-1799). The collection is comprised of 12 letters (1788-1799), 3 receipts (1791), and a subscription list (1791). Also present is a photocopied excerpt from The Choates in America, 1643-1896, by E. O. Jameson, which describes the capture of Patton and Isaac and Francis Choate by the Delaware Indians (pages 125-128).

The earliest item in the collection is a letter of recommendation for David Patten (1761-1836) by the Selectman of Bedford, New Hampshire, and endorsed by Justices of the Peace from Hillsborough and Middlesex Counties (May 1, 1788). It asks "all Civil Officers and others let him pass and repass unmolested." David may well have planned to go to Ohio with his brother James, but changed his mind. Matthew and Elizabeth Patten wrote the next two letters in the collection to James Patterson, who accompanied their son to Ohio (June 13, 1789 and December 1, 1790). They discussed local news like the new style of singing hymns in the meeting house, family news, and news on crop yields. James Patten wrote all his 7 letters after his captivity; these contain details about his time with the Indians and how he was freed (November 1, 1796 -- April 21, 1799). Though many of his comments on the experience are brief, his letter to friend Samuel Patterson provides a day-by-day account of the nearly month-long trek he made across what is now the state of Ohio, from Big Bottom, where he was captured, to "The Grand Auglaize" in the heart of the Northwest Indian Confederacy (Sept. 10, 1797). He described his abduction, daily travel, and forced run through the gauntlet before he was accepted into the village: "I was welcomed into ther town one with his Club[,] a nother with his foot [,] another with his hand [,] another with a tomyhak."

The collection provides considerable information on ransoming a prisoner during the Northwest Indian War. Lacking sufficient funds, James' father Matthew Patten wrote a subscription appeal to friends and neighbors and received 37 signatures (July 4, 1791). The three receipts follow the trail of the 93 dollars collected to ransom James, as it was carried to Montreal by Isaac Choate, Jr.

The papers also document improvements in transportation both in New Englandas well as in the Ohio territory. In his letter of Aug. 18, 1796, David Patten informed his brother James that they had had a bumper hay crop, but had to pay very high wages to harvest it because of the demand for local labor "which is caused by building bridges and digging canals." He also listed the locations along the Merrimack River where bridges were being built: Concord, Amoskeag, Pentucket, Bodwell's Falls, Haverhill, Sweat's Ferry, and Newbury. In letters to his brother David, James Patten described, in detail, new roads, canals, and bridges built in Ohio and Pennsylvania, and mentioned horse powered boats being used on rivers in Ohio (November 23, 1797).

On the back of the September 10, 1797, letter from James Patten to Samuel Patterson is a copy of a poem called O True Times, commemorating American independence.


Stephen Cross journal, 1756-1757

60 pages (1 volume)

The Stephen Cross Journal details the Massachusetts shipbuilder's journey to Fort Oswego to help with the French and Indian War effort, his capture after the fall of Fort Oswego in 1756, and imprisonment in Quebec City and Dijon, France.

The Stephen Cross journal consists of 60 pages of entries, spanning March 1, 1756-January 22, 1757. The journal begins with Cross' agreement to travel to Fort Oswego with eighteen others from his town, in order to "build some vessels for the King's service" (March 1, 1756). In mid-March and April, he provided a detailed account of his travel from Newbury, Massachusetts, to Oswego, New York, via Boston, Providence, Newport, Block Island, New York City, and Albany. During this period, Cross frequently described the difficulty of navigating the terrain of upstate New York, his encounters with Native Americans, and the details of his work, which included cutting and hauling timber to construct ships and to rebuild Fort Bull after its destruction by the French (April 27, 1756). On May 12, 1756, Cross mentioned an incident in which friendly Native Americans saluted his party with their muskets, resulting in confusion and a supposition that their greeting was "an ambush laid for us." Luckily, the misunderstanding was quickly discovered.

Cross and his party arrived at Fort Oswego on May 14, 1756, and he subsequently recounted the process of preparing for a siege. On May 23, 1756, he reported a bizarre incident in which a soldier survived a scalping while in a drunken stupor. He also described several desertions (May 30, 1756), the frequent discovery of enemy spies, and occasional skirmishes. On August 14, 1756, he gave a detailed description of the Battle of Fort Oswego and its aftermath, including his capture and the drunken antics of his fellow prisoners.

After his capture, Cross described his experiences as a prisoner of war, including imprisonment in Quebec City, crossing the Atlantic en route to France (August 22, 1756: “[W]e are confined to our dark and wretched hole below both decks, only allowed to come on deck twice a day”), several near shipwrecks, and various plots to escape. On November 20, 1756, he gave an account of the escape of several prisoners from Brest and their eventual return to prison because of starvation. He also noted his dislike of General Shirley's regiment (the 50th Regiment of Foot), consisting of fellow captives on their way to France and, Cross supposed, "convicts" (November 15, 1756). The last entries concern imprisonment in a castle and the kindness of a wealthy widow to the prisoners (December 27, 1756). In January, he expressed his fear of going to the hospital, where an increasing number of men were dying. The journal ends with Cross' admission to the hospital on January 22, 1757.


Thomas Bradford family papers, 1802-1869 (majority within 1802-1852)

1 linear foot

The Thomas Bradford family papers contain the incoming correspondence of the Philadelphia lawyer's family. The collection includes personal letters written by a variety of acquaintances, professional letters related to Bradford's financial affairs, and correspondence from his son Thomas, a Presbyterian minister.

The Thomas Bradford family papers contain the incoming correspondence of the Philadelphia lawyer's family. Many of the earliest letters in the collection relate to Thomas Bradford's personal finances, and much of the collection consists of letters written to Thomas and his wife Elizabeth by their children. Vincent L. and Juliet S. Bradford frequently wrote of their daily lives while living in Niles, Michigan, in the 1830s, where he worked as a lawyer. Thomas Budd Bradford also sent news to his father about his life in Michigan and about the Presbyterian Church in Warminster, Pennsylvania, after his return to Philadelphia. He frequently mentioned religion. Elizabeth Bradford, who married William T. Dwight, often wrote from her home in Portland, Maine, sharing family news. Other personal correspondence includes several letters of condolence written in March 1841, following a child's death, and a late letter from Thomas Bradford's grandson, Henry E. Dwight, who gave his opinion on American military action in Mexico (December 1, 1846). The collection also holds two drafts of an unsigned letter to President John Tyler, recommending William Bradford for the head of the Philadelphia Post Office (August 14, 1843).

Also included is a selection of personal correspondence addressed to Elizabeth Ann Bradford, wife of Samuel Bradford, Jr., of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, throughout the 1840s. She primarily received letters from female friends. Samuel and Elizabeth Bradford's relationship to the Thomas Bradford family is unclear.