MS Hyde 80
Thrale family. Thrale family papers, 1708-1844: Guide.
Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts 02138 USA
© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Location: b (shelved with bMS Hyde 79)
Call No.: MS Hyde 80
Repository: Houghton Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Thrale family.
Title: Thrale family papers,
Date(s): (bulk) 1780-1819.
Quantity: 1 collection (.4 linear feet (1 box)
Language of materials: Collection materials are in English.
Abstract: Correspondence and other papers relating to Henry Thrale (a friend of Samuel Johnson)
and his daughters.
2003JM-59. Bequest of Mary Hyde Eccles, Four Oaks Farm, Somerville, New Jersey; received: 2004.
Processed by: Rick Stattler
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Thrale Family Papers, 1708-1844 (MS Hyde 80). Houghton Library, Harvard University.
Several other record groups in the Hyde Collection include Thrale material, including
letters addressed to several family members in the Samuel Johnson Letters, MS Hyde
1; the Papers of Hester Maria Elphinstone, Viscountess Keith, MS Hyde 5; a settlement
of the family's Wales property, MS Hyde 36; documents relating to Henry Thrale's estate,
MS Hyde 39, 56, and 59; a Thrale family lease from 1613, MS Hyde 62; and several collections
relating to Henry Thrale's widow Hester Lynch Piozzi, in MS Hyde 3, 35, 70, 71, 72,
Henry Thrale (1728-1781) was the son of London brewer Ralph Thrale (1698-1758), and
assumed control of his father's large business in 1758 . He married Hester Lynch Salusbury
in 1763. Only four of their twelve children survived to adulthood: Hester Maria Elphinstone,
Viscountess Keith (1762-1857); Susanna Arabella Thrale (1770-1858); Sophia Thrale
Hoare (1771-1824); and Cecilia Thrale Mostyn (1777-1857). The Thrales divided their
time between two London residences: at the brewery compound in Southwark, and at a
larger country house at Streatham Park. After the Thrales were introduced to Samuel
Johnson in 1765, Streatham Park became the center of an important coterie of literary,
artistic, and political figures. Thrale also served in Parliament from 1765 to 1780.
Arranged alphabetically by name.
This collection includes papers relating to Henry Thrale and his family history, and
letters written by three of his daughters: Hester, Susanna, and Cecilia. Perhaps the
most significant is a letter from Hester to Samuel Johnson dated 1783 July 24, item
- Keith, Hester Maria Elphinstone, Viscountess, 1764-1857. Papers, 1781-1819. 5 folders
Daughter of Henry Thrale.
- (1). Johnson, Samuel, 1709-1784, recipient. Autograph letter, signed, from Keith, Bath, 1783 July 27. 1s. in 1 folder.
Date: 1783 July 27. Johnson, Samuel, 1709-1784, recipient. Autograph letter, signed, from Keith, Bath,
1783 July 27
Commenting on Johnson's health, and thanking him for his advice. Responding to his
1783 July 24 letter. See Bruce Redford, ed., The Letters of Samuel Johnson (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University press, 1994) IV, 180-181.
- (2). Presentation inscription, 1781. 1s. in 1 folder.
Reads, in its entirety, The gift of Dr. Sam: Johnson to H: Thrale 1781. The handwriting somewhat resembles Hester Maria's, and is definitely not in the hand
of Samuel Johnson, Henry Thrale, or Hester Lynch Piozzi (nee Thrale).
- (3). Mackay, Alexander, recipient. Autograph letter, from Keith, Kennet House [Tulliallan (Scotland)] 1819 Dec. 21. 1s. in 1 folder.
Date: 1819 Dec. 21.
Keith requests several books from Mackay, an Edinburgh bookseller, including The Life of Samuel Johnson LL.D. by Sir John Hawkins.
- (4). Norris, Thomas, correspondent. Correspondence with Lady Keith, 1807 Aug. 27 to Dec. 19, and undated. 8s. in 1 folder.
Keith's correspondence with lawyer Thomas Norris concerning her rental of a house
in London shortly before her wedding. Includes six letters from Keith to Norris, and related
single letters from Keith to Mrs. M.A. Baker, and from Baker to Norris.
- (5). Thrale, Henry, estate of. Document, signed, 1785 Sept. 27. 1s. in 1 folder.
Date: 1785 Sept. 27.
Keith's release to her father's executors for a portion of her inheritance that she
had received. Witnessed by Christopher Norris of Lincoln's Inn, London.
- (7). Thrale, Henry, 1728-1781. Autograph letter, signed, to George Gwilt, Brighton, 1780 July 1. 1s. in 1 folder.
Date: 1780 July 1.
Thrale requests that a chimney be taken down, possibly at his brewery compound in
Southwark [London] where Gwilt was based.
- (8). Thrale, Margarett. Promissory note : document, signed, [no place] 1707 Apr. 10. 1s. in 1 folder.
Date: 1707 Apr. 10.
Receipt for £66 lent upon credit on the land tax. The money is signed for on verso
by Thrale, 1708 Oct. 30, and by J. Haver as witness.
Mounted with a dealer's catalog entry which describes Margaret Thrale as the grandmother
of Henry Thrale. The Thrale family genealogy gives Anne Halsey Thrale as Henry's grandmother,
and suggests that Margaret was not closely related to the Thrales of Southwark.
Cited in James L. Clifford, Hester Lynch Piozzi (Mrs. Thrale) (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1941), 33-34. For family history, see Richard Thrale, A New Thraliana (St. Albans, England: Falconer Press, 1973), 66.
- Thrale, Susanna Arabella, 1770-1858. Letters, 1819-1844. 2 folders
Daughter of Henry Thrale.
- (10). Morant, Mr., recipient. Autograph note, from Thrale, Knockholt (England),  May 18. 1s. in 1 folder.
Date:  May 18.
Concerning the wallpapering of Thrale's house.
- (11). Thrale family arms: engravings, [no place] 1832 Feb. 27. 1s. in 1 folder.
Date: 1832 Feb. 27.
Two engravings taken from impressions made from the coffin plates of Henry Thrale and his father Ralph Thrale. Annotated in an unknown hand. Mounted together with an autograph note from Mrs. Berkeley, forwarding the engravings from Best & Son to Mr. Smith.