May family. Papers of the May and Goddard families, 1766-1912: A Finding Aid.
Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe
Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Call No.: A-134
Repository: Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe
Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
Creator: May family
Title: Papers of the May and Goddard families, 1766-1912
Quantity: .83 linear feet (2 file boxes) plus 2 oversize volumes)
Language of materials: Materials in English.
Abstract: Photographs, correspondence, diaries, financial papers, etc., of the May and Goddard
families, of New England, including social reformer Abigail Williams May.
Accession numbers: 580, 674, 731, 767
These papers were given to the Schlesinger Library in memory of Abigail Williams May
by the descendants of her father and mother, Samuel and Mary (Goddard) May, via one
of their great-grandsons, Robert Morse May, in April 1963, and in January, April,
and June 1964.
Reprocessed: September 1985
By: Anne Engelhart
Access. Unrestricted, with the exception of Volumes 1 which is closed; use microfilm
M-36 and Volume 2, which is closed; use microfilm M-67.
Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by the May and Goddard families is held
by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright
in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs
Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.
May and Goddard family Papers, 1766-1912; item description, dates. A-134, folder #.
Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.
This collection centers on two prominent New England families: the Mays and the Goddards.
The daughter of Samuel (1776-1870) and Mary (Goddard) May (1787-1882), Abigail Williams
May (1829-1888) was for thirty years a leader among Boston's social reformers, a cofounder
of the New England Women's Club, and one of the first women to serve as a member of
the Boston School Committee, to which she was elected in 1873. For further biographical
information on Abigail Williams May, see Notable American Women, 1607-1950 (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1971). Her brother, Frederick Warren
Goddard May (1821-1904), married Eleanor Swan Goddard (1829-1853), the daughter of
Samuel (1787-1871) and Mehetable May (Dawes) Goddard (1796-1882). Frederick Warren
Goddard May and Eleanor Swan Goddard had one daughter, Eleanor Goddard May (1853-1923).
For further genealogical information, see #1 and #3.
This collection includes correspondence, diaries, financial papers, photographs, and
other documents of the two families and their relations. The bulk of the collection
are Abigail Williams May's papers, including letters from prominent abolitionists,
suffragists, and authors, and the papers of Samuel Goddard and Mehetable May Dawes
Goddard , with letters they wrote home during their residence in England from 1818
to 1827. Other persons represented are Frederick Warren Goddard May; Eleanor Goddard
May; Abigail May (1775-1800), a second cousin once removed of Samuel May; Samuel J.
May (1797-1871), a first cousin of Abigail Williams May; Samuel May of Leicester,
Massachusetts; Louisa May Alcott; Ednah Dow Cheney; Lydia Maria Child; Lucy Stone;
Julia Ward Howe; and Elizabeth Stuart Phelps.
- Box 1: Folders 1-24
- Box 2: Folders 25-55
- 1. Genealogical material.
- 2. Family photographs - "Abby" May, Samuel J. May, etc.
- 3. Printed biographical material re: Samuel J. May (1797-1871), Samuel May of Leicester,
& Lucretia Goddard (Mrs. Nathaniel). Goddard, Julia, The History of "Green Hill", December 1911. Brown, Howard N., The Brookline First Parish in My Time, Boston, 1912. Story of the Hancock Cup.
- 4. Early family material. Samuel May (1723-1794). Tax receipt, 1766.
- 5. Early family material. Lydia Gendell Dawes (1762-1809). Notebook, 1780. Lydia Gendell
married William Dawes, 18 November 1795; parents of Mehetable May Dawes Goddard.
- 6. Early family material. John Goddard (1756-1829). Letters & documents, 1781-1830. Portsmouth
Scope and Contents: Family letters, including three by his father, John Goddard (1730-1816); John Goddard's
appointment as Justice of the Peace; notice of election as Senator from New Hampshire;
copy of will, etc.
- 7. Early family material. White family. Diary of Nancy White, 1781-1786. Perhaps Ann
White (1768-1832), 4th wife of John Goddard (1756-1829). Letter by "Aunt White" to
John, Henry, and Samuel Goddard (sons of John Goddard, 1756-1829), Brookline, 1 January
1801. Will of Elizabeth White, 1837.
- 7a. Early family material. Incomplete manuscript of play by Abigail May.
- 7b. Early family material. Samuel May (1776-1870) and Mary (Goddard) May (1787-1882).
Two account books. Mary Goddard May's list of articles purchased, 1809, prior to her
marriage to Samuel May on July 19th. Samuel May's list of expenses, 1809-1821. 1 letter
to Mary Goddard May from William Lloyd Garrison October 22, 1865.
- 8. Early family material. Samuel May (1776-1870). Appointment as Justice of the Peace,
1827. Letter to sons, Reverend Samuel May & Frederick Warren Goddard May, 30 August
1843. Letter from nieces, 4 December 1865.
- 9. Early family material. Samuel May (1776-1870)?. Letter from L[ucretia] G[oddard],
10 June 1821.
- 10. Early family material. Frederick Warren Goddard (1800-1820). 1 v. of copies of letters
re: his death by drowning in Switzerland, 1820.
- 11. Mehetable May Dawes. School prize cards, compositions, etc., 1802-1808. Woburn Academy
and Mrs. Cranch's Academy, Jamaica Plain.
- 12. Mehetable May Dawes. Correspondence, 1805-1818 September. Prior to marriage to Samuel
Goddard. Letters to half-sister Lucretia Dawes, to Ann Heath, to cousin of Samuel
Goddard-Lucretia Dawes Goddard. Letters from guardian, Benjamin Goddard, and from
aunt, Abigail Prescott. Correspondence between Mehetable May Dawes & Samuel Goddard.
- 13. Mehetable May Dawes Goddard . Correspondence, 1818 September - 1819. Mehetable May Dawes Goddard . Correspondence, 1818 September - 1819.
Scope and Contents: Letter from Lucretia Goddard to cousin describing wedding of Mehetable May Dawes to
Samuel Goddard, 30 September 1818. After marriage, the Goddards went to England for
nine years. Letters from England to relatives and friends. Letters from Benjamin Goddard
to Mehetable May Dawes Goddard and Samuel Goddard.
- 18. Mehetable May Dawes Goddard. Correspondence, 1833-1835.
Scope and Contents: Letters to husband, Samuel Goddard, and to sister, Lucretia Dawes. Correspondence
- 20. Mehetable May Dawes Goddard . Account book, Manchester England, 1821-1823.
- 21. Samuel Goddard. Business papers, England.
- 22. Samuel Goddard. Mortgage & church pew deed.
- 23. Samuel Goddard & Mehetable May Dawes Goddard. Genealogy chart of their children and
poems re: death.
- 24. Mehetable May Dawes Goddard. Miscellaneous including accounts, certificate of church
- 25. Samuel Joseph May (1797-1871)?. Letters from J. Ingersoll Bowditch, Thomas Hill, Samuel
Gridley Howe. Addressed to "Mr. May."
See also A - 134.3
- 26. Samuel May of Leicester (1810-1899). Letter to sister, "Abby" May, 9 September 1834.
- 27. Samuel May of Leicester (1810-1899). 2 letters from Julia Ward Howe, 15 & 19 May 1890.
Addressed to "Mr. May" - Samuel of Leicester?.
- 28. Samuel May of Leicester (1810-1899). Letter from Booker T. Washington, 24 September
1894, including letter from Samuel May to niece, Eleanor Goddard May.
See also folders 8, 30, 45 & A - 134.3.
- 29. Abigail Williams May. Extracts from journals, 4 October 1848 - 26 May 1888. Typescript.
12 pages. (original journals destroyed).
- 30. Abigail Williams May. Letter to brother, Samuel May (1810-1899), 9 May 1838.
- 31. Abigail Williams May. Letters to niece, Eleanor Goddard May ("Nellie"), 1859-1867,
- 32. Abigail Williams May. Letter addressed to "my friends," 31 March 1866.
- 33. Abigail Williams May. Letters to Abigail Williams May. A - B.
Scope and Contents: Agassiz, Elizabet; Cary, Agassiz, Louis; Alcott, Louisa May (2); Blackwell, Antoinette
Brown; Brackett, Anna Callender; Brooks, Philips.
- 34. Abigail Williams May. Letters to Abigail Williams May. C.
Scope and Contents: Chadwick, John; Child, Lydia Maria; Clarke, James Freeman; Cobbe, Frances Power; Corson,
Juliet; Curtis, George William (2).
- 35. Abigail Williams May. Letters to Abigail Williams May. E - G.
Scope and Contents: Emerson, Lidian; Emerson, Ralph Waldo; Faithfull, Emily (2); Gannett, William Channing;
(card) Garrison, William Lloyd; George, Henry.
- 36. Abigail Williams May. Letters to Abigail Williams May. H.
Scope and Contents: Hale, Edward Everett; Hale, Sarah J.; Harbart, Elizabeth Boynton; Helper, Hinton R.;
Holmes, Oliver Wendell (2); Howe, Julia Ward (3 & poem).
- 37. Abigail Williams May. Letters to Abigail Williams May. J - M.
Scope and Contents: Jackson, Helen Hunt; Kemble, Fanny (2); Lewis, Dioclesian; Livermore, Mary A. (3);
Long, John D. (2); Mitchell, Maria (3); Moulton, Louise Chandler.
- 38. Abigail Williams May. Letters to Abigail Williams May. O - R.
Scope and Contents: Olmsted, Frederick; Parker, Theodore; Phelps, Elizabeth Stuart (5); Phillips, Wendell
(3); Quincy, Josiah; Robinson, George D. (to Lucy Stone); Royce, Josiah; Russell,
- 39. Abigail Williams May. Letters to Abigail Williams May. S - W.
Scope and Contents: Stanton, Elizabeth Cady (to Lucy Stone); Stone, Lucy (2); Thoreau, Henry D. (?); Walker,
Francis A.; Weld, Theodore; Whitney, Adeline D. J. (4); Willard, Frances E.; Woolsey,
- 40. Abigail Williams May. Miscellaneous letters to Abigail Williams May.
- 42. Abigail Williams May. Letter to Ednah Dow Cheney from Booker T. Washington, 22 May
1893, re: Abigail Williams May's letters.
See also folder 26, A - 134.2 & A - 134.4.
- 43. Julia Goddard (1837-1920), daughter of Samuel and Mehetable May Dawes Goddard. Letters
to niece, Eleanor Goddard May ("Nellie"), 1861-1868.
- 44. Julia Goddard (1837-1920), daughter of Samuel and Mehetable May Dawes Goddard. Letters
from John Bright, Bernard Coolidge, and "W.C."
- 45. Eleanor Swan Goddard. Letter from Samuel May of Leicester, 11 November 1852 re: her
marriage to Frederick Warren Goddard May.
- 47. Frederick Warren Goddard May. Letter to father, Samuel May (1776-1870), 11 March 1830?.
- 48. Frederick Warren Goddard May. Letter to brother-in-law, William Goddard, 16 January
- 49. Frederick Warren Goddard May. Letters to daughter, Eleanor Goddard May ("Nellie"),
- 50. Frederick Warren Goddard May. Letter from Theodore Parker, 26 October 1851.
See also Folder 8 & A - 134.1.
- 51. Eleanor Goddard May. Letters from friends & relatives, 1855-1864, including many childhood
- 52. Eleanor Goddard May. Letters from friends and relatives, 1865-1868.
- 53. Eleanor Goddard May. Undated letters from friends and relatives, including many childhood
- 54. Eleanor Goddard May. Letters from Julia Ward Howe, Ednah Dow Cheney, Anna Fuller,
and Andrew D. White.
See also folders 19, 28, 31, 43, & 49.
- 55. Miscellaneous autographs.
- A - 134.4. Anne Whitney correspondence, 1869, n.d.
Boston (Mass.)--Social life and customs
Great Britain--Description and travel
New England--Social life and customs
New Englanders--Family relationships
Women social reformers
Agassiz, Elizabeth Cabot Cary, 1822-1907
Agassiz, Louis, 1807-1873
Alcott, Louisa May, 1832-1888
Blackwell, Antoinette Louisa Brown, 1825-1921
Brackett, Anna C. (Anna Callender), 1836-1911
Brooks, Phillips, 1835-1893
Chadwick, John White, 1840-1904
Cheney, Ednah Dow Littlehale, 1824-1904
Child, Lydia Maria, 1802-1880
Clarke, James Freeman, 1810-1888
Cobbe, Frances Power, 1822-1904
Coolidge, Susan, 1835-1905
Curtis, George William, 1824-1892
Emerson, Lidian Jackson, 1802-1892
Emerson, Ralph Waldo, 1803-1882
Garrison, William Lloyd, 1805-1879
George, Henry, 1839-1897
Goddard, John, 1756-1829
Goddard, Mehetable May Dawes, 1796-1882
Goddard, Samuel, 1787-1871
Hale, Edward Everett, Sr., 1822-1909
Hale, Sarah Josepha Buell, 1788-1879
Harbert, Elizabeth Boynton, 1845-1925
Holmes, Oliver Wendell, Jr., 1841-1935
Howe, Julia Ward, 1819-1910
Howe, S. G. (Samuel Gridley), 1801-1876
Jackson, Helen Hunt, 1830-1885
Kemble, Fanny, 1809-1893
Livermore, Mary Ashton Rice, 1820-1905
Long, John Davis, 1838-1915
May, Abby W. (Abby Williams), 1829-1888
May, Abigail, 1775-1800
May, Frederick Warren Goddard, 1821-1904
May, Samuel, 1810-1899
May, Samuel J. (Samuel Joseph), 1797-1871
Mitchell, Maria, 1818-1889
Moulton, Louise Chandler, 1835-1908
New England Hospital for Women and Children
Olmsted, Frederick Law, 1822-1903
Parker, Theodore, 1810-1860
Phelps, Elizabeth Stuart, 1844-1911
Phillips, Wendell, 1811-1884
Quincy, Josiah, 1772-1864
Robinson, George D.
Royce, Josiah, 1855-1916
Stanton, Elizabeth Cady, 1815-1902
Stone, Lucy, 1818-1893
Washington, Booker T., 1856-1915
Weld, Theodore Dwight, 1803-1892
Whitney, A. D. T. (Adeline Dutton Train), 1824-1906
Willard, Frances E. (Frances Elizabeth), 1839-1898
Zakrzewska, Marie E. (Marie Elizabeth), 1829-1902