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MS Am 1569.7

Clarke, James Freeman, 1810-1888. James Freeman Clarke additional correspondence, 1787-1886: Guide.

Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University


Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA

© President and Fellows of Harvard College

Descriptive Summary

Location: b
Call No.: MS Am 1569.7
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Title: James Freeman Clarke additional correspondence
Date(s): 1787-1886
Quantity: 2.5 linear feet (5 boxes)
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Abstract: Letters written to the Unitarian clergyman and author James Freeman Clarke and his family.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

45M-183. Deposited by James Freeman Clarke; received: 1946 February; gift: 1956 December 13 and 1958 December 9.

Conditions Governing Access:

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.

Conditions Governing Use:

Images linked to the finding aid describing this collection are intended for public access and educational use. This material is owned and/or held by the Houghton Library, and is provided solely for the purpose of teaching or individual research. Any other use, including commercial reuse, mounting on other systems, or other forms of redistribution requires the permission of the curator.

Preferred Citation for Publication:

James Freeman Clarke Additional Correspondence, 1787-1886 (MS Am 1569.7). Houghton Library, Harvard University.

Biographical / Historical

Clarke was a Unitarian clergyman, author, and reformer closely associated with the Transcendentalists. He was minister in Louisville, Ky. (1833-1840) and at the Church of the Disciples in Boston (1841-1850, 1854-1888). Clarke was editor of the Western Messenger (1836-1839). He was married in 1839 to Anna Huidekoper, daughter of Harm Jan Huidekoper, businessman, lay theologian, and founder of Meadville Theological Seminary.


Arranged alphabetically by correspondent.

Scope and Contents

Collection contains correspondence of James Freeman Clarke, and some additional letters that Clarke collected for the autographs. Letters written to Clarke address topics such as religion and the Unitarian church, life in New York City, comments and congratulations on Clarke's books, dinner invitations, reading suggestions, and a certificate of membership to the American Philosophical Society. There are several letters from Emerson to Clarke about Clarke's writing, and about Emerson's lectures. There are also several poems written by Emerson and Julia Ward Howe. Letters also discuss abolitionists, including a letter from John Brown that he wrote from prison before being put to death, and an article on John Brown's raid. There is a letter from Nathaniel Hawthorne requesting that Clarke perform his wedding ceremony, and also a letter from Henry James asking Clarke to perform funeral services for his wife. There are also several letters from Booker T. Washington asking Clarke for donations to help aid his school; letters from Presidents of the United States that Clarke collected, including John Quincy Adams, James Buchanan, Grover Cleveland, Theodore Roosevelt, William Howard Taft, and George Washington; photographs or drawings of Clarke's correspondents; newspaper clippings; receipts; playbills; hair; and invitations.

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