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Burton family collection, 1888-1940

14 items

The Burton family collection is made up of correspondence, financial records, and other items pertaining to Clarence M. Burton of Detroit, Michigan, and two of his sons, Frank and Louis. The Burton brothers wrote about their travels in Europe during the interwar period, among other subjects.

The Burton family collection is made up of 8 letters, 1 indenture, and 5 other items pertaining to Clarence M. Burton of Detroit, Michigan, and two of his sons, Frank and Louis. The Burton brothers wrote about their travels in Europe during the interwar period, among other subjects.

The first item is an indenture concerning the sale of a lot of land in Detroit, Michigan (January 3, 1888). Correspondence includes letters by Louis Burton (July 2, 1901) and Frank Burton (July 11, 1903) about their travels in Europe and additional letters about the Burtons' personal lives and, occasionally, business affairs and political events. Frank Burton's letter to Charles Edouard Guilliume of the Bureau International des Poids & Mesures concerns Burton's pessimism about American attitudes toward the Treaty of Versailles (May 25, 1921), and Louis Burton's letter of March 30, 1929, relates to his anticipation of poor business returns for the year. Other items include a postcard with a printed advertisement for a genealogical history of the Burton family, 3 blank checks of Charles W. Burton, and a piece of stationery from the Burton Abstract & Title Company of Detroit, Michigan.


Charles Joseph Dyer papers, 1888-1937

4 linear feet

The Dyer Papers contain approximately 1,000 letters written by Bostonian Charles J. Dyer while living in Europe as an aspiring singer, along with photographs, documents and newspaper clippings.

The Dyer Papers contain approximately 1,000 letters written by Bostonian Charles J. Dyer while living in Europe as an aspiring singer, along with photographs, documents, newspaper clippings, and sheet music. Nearly every week, Dyer wrote to his parents in long, descriptive letters, and the collection appears to be a nearly complete record of his days as a music student. His letters create an intimate running commentary on expatriate life, music, and travel.


Charles Russell Codman journal, 1852-1853

295 pages

In October of 1852 Charles Russell Codman, a wealthy and well educated young man, started a year-long tour of Europe. The journal he kept while on tour records his experiences and attitudes.

After graduating from Harvard, Charles Russell Codman went on a year-long tour of Europe. The true-bred son of the Back Bay elite, the journal he kept while on tour records his experiences and descriptions of what he saw and did along the way, but equally important, provide an interesting insight into Codman's mind set and the attitudes of an American aristocrat acquiring culture in the old world.

The diary is exceptionally well written throughout, as might be expected from such a highly educated young man. Particularly interesting are Codman's comments on Westminster Abbey, the Tower of London, the zoological gardens in London and the palace at Versailles and the Louvre in Paris. Also are included brief but often detailed descriptions of the countryside through which he passed en route.


European Grand Tour journal, 1818-1819

1 volume

The European Grand Tour journal recounts the experiences of two wealthy British travelers as they journeyed through France, Switzerland, and Italy throughout the second half of 1818.

The European Grand Tour journal (approximately 75 pages) recounts the experiences of two wealthy British travelers as they journeyed through France, Switzerland, and Italy throughout the second half of 1818. The author, a man named Moore, detailed the pair's itinerary and gave an extensive account of sightseeing, paying particular attention to the churches and cathedrals of France and to Italian art collections; his companion, Richard, often attended social functions and was introduced at court in Paris. Additionally, the writer frequently provided background information on the different locales he visited, and occasionally mentioned events from the recent Napoleonic wars, particularly during a visit to a French battlefield. In Switzerland, the travelers took an interest in local customs, including schooling and clothing -- in the August 22 letters, the diarist drew a sketch of a Swiss dress. After the travelers reached Italy, they focused more frequently on fine art, and the volume includes lists of the prominent art holdings in several palaces; it also notes visits to Da Vinci's The Last Supper in Milan and to the "Mona Elisa" in the "Nicoli Palace." The final entry was made on December 15, 1818, just after the author and his companion arrived in Rome.

The last section contains charts showing the value of German and French money for 1819, as well as several listings of German tariffs. Enclosures include a German hotel receipt addressed to "Grosvenor & Moore," other financial accounts, and several hotel advertisements. Several pages between late September and early October are blank, but enclosed notes cover that time period.


European Travel journal, 1863-1865

1 volume

This journal recounts the author's travels in Europe between December 1863 and September 1865. He visited England, France, Italy, Switzerland, and Germany, though he spent most of his time in Paris, France; Rome and Elba, Italy; and Heidelberg, Germany. The journal records the author's impressions of local people and customs, his efforts to learn various European languages, and the friends he met while abroad.

This journal recounts the author's travels in Europe between December 1863 and September 1865. His first entry, in December 1863, documents his recent transatlantic voyage from New York to Liverpool, including rough weather while on the Atlantic Ocean. He composed entries sporadically through September 1865, recording his impressions of cities and people he encountered while traveling. After spending a few days sightseeing in London, he left for Paris, where he remained until March 1864. While in Paris, he attempted to learn French, saw numerous famous buildings and other sights, attended balls, and befriended local students.

He stayed in Italy from March to April, during which time he climbed Mount Vesuvius, visited Pompeii, and became acquainted with a pastor, with whom he traveled to Elba for a visit of about a month. He remained in the country after leaving Elba and provided descriptions of prominent Italian cities he encountered on his way to Geneva, Switzerland, such as Leghorn and Florence. After his stay in Geneva, he left his journal and most of his possessions behind as he traveled throughout Switzerland and northern Italy with only a knapsack, an experience he wrote about after his arrival in Heidelberg, Germany, which he reached before August 14. Once in Heidelberg, he recorded his thoughts about the local culture, the influence of university students, and visits to a local castle. Though his entries became more sporadic after August 1864, the journal reflects his subsequent travels to Bavaria and throughout Germany, northern Italy, and Austria, with detailed descriptions of scenery and of his experiences. While in Germany, he occasionally commented on Gothic architecture, and one late entry relates his experiences on a recent deer hunting trip. The final entry was composed around mid-September 1865.


Eyre Coote papers, 1775-1925 (majority within 1775-1830)

21 linear feet

The Eyre Coote papers contain the military, family, and estate material of Sir Eyre Coote, a prominent British officer who participated in the Revolutionary war and many military expeditions in the early 19th century. The papers include military commissions, letters and letterbooks, orderly books, journals, notebooks, diaries, financial accounts, genealogical material, estate and legal papers, newspapers, and maps.

The Eyre Coote papers consist of 41 boxes containing 1,925 numbered items, covering Eyre Coote’s military papers and family and estate material. These include: 13 Eyre Coote military commissions; 1,160 military letters, mostly to Coote; 22 letterbooks, containing copies of Coote’s correspondence, predominately to military and political figures; 69 orderly books covering Coote’s career from 1775 to 1809; 35 journals, notebooks, and diaries recording expedition details, day-to-day activities, and financial accounts; 14 items of genealogical material; 359 family letters; 200 financial papers; 235 estate and legal papers; 26 bound family and estate volumes; 83 newspapers, nearly all collected by Eyre Coote (1857-1925) with various references to either Sir Eyre Coote or the Coote family; and 40 maps.

The Military Papers series contains the letters, letterbooks, orderly books, and journals of Eyre Coote; these papers are organized into five subseries. See Additional Descriptive Data for a timeline of Eyre Coote's military placements.

The Commissions subseries (13 items) is comprised of Eyre Coote's official military commissions, from his assignment as an adjutant in the 37th Regiment in 1778 to his appointment as colonel of the 34th (Cumberland) Regiment in 1810. Such notable officers as William Howe, Henry Clinton, Thomas Townshend, William Henry Cavendish-Bentinck, and Thomas Pelham signed these documents.

The Military Correspondence and Documents subseries (1160 items) consists of letters and documents concerning Coote's activities in the British military. These cover his role in the Revolutionary War with the 37th Regiment; his expedition to Egypt and the Mediterranean; his governorship in Jamaica; and his service in England, Ireland, and the Netherlands. Item types include letters from all ranks of the British army and navy; copies of letters written by Coote; accounts and receipts for supplies and payment of Coote's regiments; general orders, instructions, regulations, and memoranda; and copies of addresses given to various military and political audiences. Correspondence topics include notable military events and division maneuvers; regimental management, reviews and inspections; disciplinary actions and courts martial; capture and requests for parole; appointments, promotions, the purchases of ranks; military intelligence; soldier defections; and health and sickness of soldiers and family.

Notable material includes:
  • A Loyalist poem entitled "An address to Americans" [1775]
  • Revolutionary War items concerning the 37th Regiment in Virginia and Pennsylvania (1776-1782)
  • Private six-page memorandum containing Coote's description of landing near Ostend, his destroying the gates, and his subsequent capture (May 1798)
  • Letters between Coote and John Hely-Hutchinson concerning the British/French conflict in Egypt, including 5 reports from Coote on the state of the Abū Qīr Hospital (March 1801)
  • Material documenting Coote's governorship of Jamaica, such as letters from British Administration at Downing Street, including one item from Robert Stewart Castlereagh warning of the likelihood of a "negro insurrection" (April, 4, 1807), and material related to slavery and the slave trade in the West Indies
  • Letters describing the attack and unsuccessful occupation of Walcheren, Netherlands, (1809)
  • Two printed reports on the parliamentary inquiry into the Walcheren expedition (published 1811)

This series contains two printed items: two findings of the parliamentary inquiry into the Walcheren expedition, published in 1811.

The Letter Books subseries (22 volumes) consists of books with copies of letters to and from Coote concerning his military activities (1786-1809).

These letter books largely document Coote's correspondence with other British officers and regiments, while he was stationed at the following locations:
  • Bandon, Ireland, 1796-1798
  • Ostend, Netherlands, 1798
  • Dover, England, 1798-1801
  • Alexandria, Egypt, 1801
  • Southampton, England, 1800-1801
  • Athlone, Loughrea, Castlebar, Fermoy and Cork, Ireland, 1803-1804
  • Jamaica, 1805-1808
  • Walcheren, Netherlands, 1809

Many of the copied letters concern other British officers, including: Major Boulter Johntone, Captain Thomas Neill, Lieutenant Thomas Walsh, and Lieutenant Colonel William Yorke, among others. Of note are copies of messages from the Jamaican House of Assembly with Coote's replies and speeches (21 October 1806 -- 5 April 1808).

The Order Books subseries (69 volumes) consists of regimental and battalion orderly books and rosters, as well as books of general orders.

Below is a list of the regiments and missions documented in this series:
  • 37th Regiment of Light Infantry's activities in Dublin, Ireland; York Island [Manhattan], New York; and Elkton, Maryland; their march towards Chadds Ford, New Jersey; their participation in the Battle of Brandywine; and their efforts at Germantown, Philadelphia, Jamaica [Long Island], and New York City, 1775-1779
  • Battalion Order Book: Staten Island; at sea; James Island; Drayton House; William’s House; Charleston; Monk’s Corner; Philipsburg, South Carolina; and Flushing, New York, 1779-1781
  • 47th Regiment at New York and later at various English cities: Lancaster; Preston; Warrington; Warrington [Cheshire]; Whitehaven [Cumbria]; Whitehaven; Drogheda; and Limerick, Ireland, 1781-1785
  • Also a duty roll of the 56th and 47th Regiments for 6 September 1783
  • Standing orders for the 70th or Surrey Regiment, 1786
  • Standing orders for the Sussex Regiment of militia, 1792
  • General Order Book of the expedition to the West Indies, 1793-1794, with headquarters in Barbados, Guadeloupe, and Port Royal, Martinique
  • General and Garrison Order Book of the regiment garrisoned at Dover, Canterbury, Bandon and Dunmanway, Cork, throughout 1797-1799
  • General Order Book for the expedition to Ostend, Netherlands,1798-1799
  • General and battalion orders for the expedition to Helder, Netherlands, headquartered at Schagerburg and Helder
  • General orders for the expedition to Egypt, at sea on board HMS Kent, and at headquarters in Alexandria, 1800-1801
  • General and district orders for the regiment garrisoned at Dublin, Cork, and the south-western district, Ireland, 1804
  • General orders for the regiment intended for the West Indies, including Jamaica, 1805-1808
  • General orders for the regiment intended for Walcheren Island, Netherlands, expedition, garrisoned at Portsmouth, London, and ‘at sea’ and later at headquarters in Middleburg and on Walcheren Island. Endorsed ‘Lieut.-Colonel [Thomas] Walsh', 1809
This subseries holds 3 printed items:
  • A list of the General and Field Officers, as they Rank in the Army. Printed by J. Millan, London, 1758 (160 pages).
  • Standing Orders to be Observed in the 47th (or Lancashire) Regiment, by Order of Lieutenant-Col. Paulus Æmilus Irving. Printed by Edward Flin, opposite Quay-Lane, Limerick, 1785. (40 pages with additional blank forms of documents).
  • Regimental Standing Orders, Issued by the Field Officers and to be Observed by the 70th (or Surry [sic]) Regiment of Foot. And to be Read to the Men, with the Articles of War. Printed by Catherine Finn, Kilkenny, 1788 (50 pages with additional blank forms of documents).

The Journals and Notebooks subseries (35 items) contains journals, notebooks, and diaries related to both military and personal matters. Eyre Coote kept many volumes that contain his remarks and reflections on regiments, forts, and military expeditions lead by him. Fellow officers, including Major General Archibald Campbell, Major Henry Worsley, and Lieutenant Thomas Walsh, kept the other journals. Of particular interest are two of Walsh's journals kept during Coote's expedition to Egypt; these contain numerous maps of the region and sketches and watercolors of cities, landmarks, and monuments in Egypt and along the Mediterranean coast (June-December 1801). Locations mentioned are Alexandria, Egypt; Ceuta, Spain; Houat, France; Marmaris, Turkey; Tangiers, Morocco; and Valletta, Malta. Monuments pictured include the Grecian mausoleum at Marci; the Great Sphinx; the Great Pyramids of Giza; Pompey’s pillar; Cleopatra’s needle; Porte des Bombes; Palace of the Grand-Masters; and funeral monuments for various Grand Masters of the Order of St. John in Malta. Also of interest are 10 volumes recording Coote’s daily movements and his expenses (1784-1800).

The Family and Estate Material series contains genealogical materials, family correspondence, financial papers, and personal journals and notebooks; these are organized into five subseries.

The Genealogy Material and Notes subseries (14 items) consists of documents relating to Coote family genealogy. Among the 14 items are a 17th-18th century genealogical chart, a volume entitled Memoirs of the Anchent and Noble family of Coote (late 18th century), the wills of Reverend Chidley Coote (1730) and Sir Eyre Coote (1827), and memoranda of biographical information on Coote and the Coote family. The series also contains locks of hair from Eyre Coote's immediate family, and two official Coote seals.

The Family Correspondence subseries contains letters concerning various members of the Coote family.

These letters are arranged by correspondent in the following groups:
  • Coote, Eyre, Sir, 1726-1783, to Susan Hutchinson Coote
  • Coote, Eyre, Sir, 1759-1823
  • Coote, Jane Bagwell
  • Fordingbridge Yeomanry Cavalry (1830-1833)
  • Miscellaneous

The correspondence of Coote’s second wife Jane and his son Eyre are also catalogued under a separate heading. The remaining correspondence concerns Eyre Coote’s (d. 1834) education, and the organization of the Fordingbridge Yeomanry Cavalry.

The Financial Papers subseries contains 200 items largely grouped into bundles of bills and receipts for Eyre Coote and Lady Jane Coote's expenses. These include receipts for a service of china, a list of personal jewelry, and a veterinary bill for Coote's horses.

The Estate and Legal Papers subseries is organized into three groups: the Estates in Ireland (1798-1827); the Estates in England (1807-1828); and the Estate and family papers (1897-1925). These papers include letters and documents concerning leases and rent payments, property sales, land disputes, feuding tenants, land use (agriculture), property development, wills and estate transfers, and banking matters. This subseries also contains published correspondence between Coote's family and their legal representative, A plain statement of facts, relative to Sir Eyre Coote (London, 1816), relating to Coote's prosecution for indecency (1815-1816).

Lady Jane Coote handled many letters concerning the estates in Ireland, including decisions regarding raising or reducing rent and managing accounts that were in arrears. Other Ireland material includes 28 half-yearly accounts prepared by the firm Dublin and Maryborough, covering 1796-1817. The England papers largely concern the West Park property, which were largely handled by Eyre Coote. Of note are the audited income and expenditure accounts for West Park, prepared by William Baldwin (1815-1822) and a wine cellar inventory book (1810-1839 and 1966). Estate and family papers document Eyre Coote's (1857-1925) handling of the Coote properties.

The Family, Estate, and Financial Bound Volumes subseries contains the bound estate papers and the personal journals and notebooks of the Coote family. Estate volumes include an item containing copies of wills and accounts, and 5 lists of tenants at the Coote's West Park estate and their Irish estates. Among the personal items are two journals kept by Eyre Coote (1806-1834) that contain his observations of Italy and Switzerland (1821), and a sketchbook of pencil and ink drawings of coastlines, towns, boats, antiquities, buildings, and volcanoes, which he made while sailing in the Mediterranean. Financial volumes include private account books of Eyre Coote (1830-1864) and of his son Eyre Coote (1857-1925) and accounts for their West Park estate.

The Newspapers series contains 83 newspaper clippings, nearly all collected by Eyre Coote (1857-1925), with various references to either Sir Eyre Coote or the Coote family. These clippings span from 1766-1926 and come from 24 different publications (see Additional Descriptive Data for a complete list). Articles document honors bestowed upon the Coote family, death notices for members of the Coote family, and reports of Eyre Coote's activities in the House of Lords and in the military. Of note is an item mentioning the first Sir Eyre Coote's defeat of Hyder Ali at Porto Novo, Benin (The Gazetteer and New Daily Advertiser, December 18, 1781); a "Law Report" concerning Major Armstrong's attempt to summon Coote for a duel (The Times, June 11, 1801); and 16 items related to the Walcheren Expedition and Coote's attack on Flushing, Netherlands (The Morning Chronicle, July 1809-April 1810).

The Maps series (40 items) consists of maps of England, Ireland, the Netherlands, Portugal, and locations in the Mediterranean, including Egypt and Asia Minor (Turkey). Thirty-three maps are housed to the Map Division (see Additional Descriptive Data for list of maps). Additionally, the collection contains 63 maps found within the military papers, orderly books, journals, and notebooks. These have been cataloged and can be found in the University of Michigan library catalog (search for "Coote Maps").

The Manuscripts Division has detailed a calendar of the Eyre Coote papers. The following calendar contains item-level description and additional background information on the Coote genealogy: Eyre Coote Papers Calendar.


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.


John and Charles Francis collection, 1869-ca. 1905

1 linear foot

This collection consists of condolence letters, newspaper scrapbooks, a letter book, a published memorial volume, and a photograph album related to John M. Francis of Troy, New York, and to his son Charles. The letters, which are addressed to Charles Francis, express sympathy following his father's death in June 1897; the memorial volume contains biographical sketches and published tributes to John M. Francis; and the newspaper scrapbooks chronicle John M. Francis's travels around Europe and the world between 1869 and 1876.

This collection (1 linear foot) consists of condolence letters, newspaper scrapbooks, a letter book, and a published memorial volume related to John M. Francis of Troy, New York, and to his son Charles.

The Condolence Letters series contains 211 items addressed to Charles S. Francis between June 5, 1897, and January 18, 1898. One letter from Hallie M. Brown concerns her regret about missing an opportunity to visit, and the remaining correspondence is made up of letters expressing the authors' condolences after the death of John M. Francis on June 18, 1897. Writers included Charles Francis's friends and family members and John Francis's personal and professional acquaintances. Many writers reminisced about their relationships with John M. Francis and shared stories about their experiences at the Troy Daily Times.

The Letter Book, Scrapbooks, and Published Memorial series (6 volumes) pertains to John M. Francis's travels around the United States, Europe, and Asia in the 1870s and to Charles S. Francis's career and business affairs. Four scrapbooks contain newspaper clippings of letters that John M. Francis sent to the Troy Daily Times while traveling abroad. Each contains lengthy descriptions of local people, customs, politics, architecture, geography, and history, and some also have accounts of transoceanic and transcontinental travel.

  • Western Europe, June 12, 1869-October 15, 1869, including England, Wales, Ireland, Scotland, the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Switzerland, and France (21 letters; 38 pages)
  • Western and Southern Europe, July 18, 1871-December 28, 1871 (published August 2, 1871-January 3, 1872), including England, Wales, France, Belgium, Germany, Austria-Hungary (now the Czech Republic and Austria), Italy, and Greece (20 letters; 28 pages)
  • Around the world, July 5, 1875-June 6, 1876, including the western United States, Japan, China, Ceylon (now Sri Lanka), India, Egypt, Greece, Italy, and France (2 volumes containing duplicate clippings, 115 pages and 71 pages)

The letter book (282 pages), which belonged to Charles S. Francis, has retained copies of his outgoing correspondence from October 25, 1897-July 29, 1901. The letters pertain to personal and business affairs, such as Francis's editorial work for the Troy Daily Times and land he owned in Mississippi. Several newspaper clippings relate to Francis's appointment as envoy extraordinary and minister plenipotentiary to Greece, Romania, and "Servia."

The published memorial (125 pages), entitled In Memoriam: John M. Francis, March 6, 1823-June 18, 1897, contains an engraved portrait, a brief biographical sketch, reminiscences, essays, poetry, and reprinted newspaper obituaries commemorating the life and death of John M. Francis.

The Photograph Album (ca. 1905?) contains 14 images of a new automobile, family members, and pets (possibly in New York state); and 144 vacation photographs showing landscapes, buildings, and persons in Europe. The photos are not labeled or identified, but appear to show Switzerland or Austrian lake districts, as well as urban environments. The photographer captured many of these images with a panoramic camera.


John Ball Family Papers, 1815-1943, and undated

.5 cubic feet (in 1 box)

The papers include biographical materials, legal and financial papers, correspondence, maps, ephemera, and diaries.

The John Ball Family Papers consist of legal and financial records, correspondence, essays, ephemera, and diaries, largely but not entirely dated after John Ball moved to Michigan. The topically grouped material is arranged alphabetically. The legal and financial records contain certificates allowing John Ball to practice law in New York. A large portion of the correspondence is between John, his wife, Mary, and their daughter, Lucy, which consists mainly of family affairs and travel to Europe, especially Switzerland and France (1869-1894). Earlier letters cover family matters and Michigan social conditions (after 1836). A letter of 1 March 1883 describes travel conditions and Indians at Fort Vancouver and a letter of 29 November 1838 expresses John Ball’s anti-abolitionists sentiments. The diaries written by John Ball tell about a trip to Lansingburgh (New York), 1878, and a trip to New York and New Hampshire, 1883. Mary Ball’s diaries describe traveling abroad, 1872, and her daily life in 1874.

Copies of several books on Ball are in Clarke, as are the papers of Ball and McKee. McKee’s diary of his student years in Massachusetts and Vermont are in the Bentley Historical Library.

A portrait of John Ball is housed in the Clarke as well. The note on the back reads as follows: “John Ball. Portrait painted while he was a student at Dartmouth. Ball became one of Michigan’s most famous pioneers. He was the first to teach west of the Mississippi.” The portrait is in a small, oval frame.


Leopold Mayer family collection, 1864-1970 (majority within 1885-1909)

0.25 linear feet

This collection is made up of letters, documents, genealogical research, and other items pertaining to Leopold Mayer of Chicago, Illinois, and his descendants. The materials concern family news, courtship, and the history of Chicago's Jewish community.

This collection is made up of over 25 items pertaining to Leopold Mayer of Chicago, Illinois, and his descendants. Items in the Correspondence series (17 items) concern Leopold Mayer and his family members, particularly his daughter Amelia and her husband, Jacob Henry Mahler. In a letter dated November 10, 1864, Leopold expressed condolences to Mrs. M. M. Spiegel after learning of the death of her husband, a colonel, during the Civil War. The series also has 2 manuscript letters, 1 manuscript postcard, and 2 typescripts of letters that he wrote to his daughters, son-in-law, and grandchildren from 1885-1902. Most of these contain Mayer's moral advice on topics such as marriage (July 10, 1885) and his later reflections on his life and his wife (February 27, 1902; December 24, 1902).

Most of the remaining items in the series pertain to Amelia Mayer and Jacob Mahler. These include 2 personal letters from Mahler to Mayer (July 14, 1885, and August 26, 1896); 2 German-language letters by members of Mahler's family (January 13, 1892, and August 29, 1896); and 2 personal letters to Amelia from "Jennie," a friend in Milwaukee, Wisconsin (March 15, 1885), and from Ida, her sister, then traveling in Europe (August 27, 1906). Jacob Mahler received a letter about hotel rates in Wisconsin (May 24, 1896) and a birthday greeting from his son Felix in 1898, and wrote 2 friendly notes to Felix (September 22, 1903, and undated). The final item in the series is a typed letter that Arthur M. Oppenheimer wrote to Leopold Mayer's descendants in 1962, with an excerpt about Mayer from Deborah Pessin's History of the Jews in America.

Leopold Mayer's Journal, "From Land to Land, From Port to Port," concerns his visit to Germany and Switzerland in the summer of 1895. Included are a typed journal transcript (35 pages, June 1, 1895-August 3, 1895) and manuscript journal (29 pages, [August 1, 1895]-August 24, 1895, and 1 page, undated). Mayer and his daughter Flora traveled to various cities and towns, saw several Alpine mountains, and met with acquaintances.

The Speech transcript (5 pages) records Leopold Mayer's address to the Council of Jewish Women in November 1899, marking the 25th anniversary of Chicago's Sinai Congregation. Mayer recounted some of his personal history in Chicago, and remarked on the development of the city's Jewish community and institutions.

Financial and Legal Documents relate to Leopold Mayer's estate and to his son-in-law, Jacob Henry Mahler. Mahler received a bill from a laborer dated July 23, 1901, and completed a partially-printed income tax form for himself and his wife on February 19, 1917. Three printed legal documents (December 28, 1903; June 1, 1909; and [1927]) pertain to the settlement of Leopold Mayer's estate and to legal disputes among his heirs. The latter item includes copies of 2 versions of Mayer's will.

The Poetry, Printed Items, and Genealogy series concerns several generations of the Mayer family. The programs document confirmation services held by the North Chicago Hebrew Congregation on May 26, 1901, and a production of the 3-act play The Mayer Saga, presented in Glencoe, Illinois, on December 31, 1925. The extended Mayer family published a newsletter, Unter Uns, on December 25, 1902, with poetry, news articles, and advice columns by Leopold Mayer's children and their spouses. A small packet of typed poems dedicated to Amelia Mayer Mahler accompanies a printed invitation to Mahler's 90th birthday celebration, hosted by her grandchildren on April 18, 1953. The final 2 items are genealogies and a memorial dedicated to Leopold Mayer and his descendants. The memorial was initially issued on March 3, 1927, with genealogical revisions made in 1941. One copy has manuscript genealogical notes dated as late as 1970.