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MC 357

Loring family. Papers of the Loring family, 1830-1943: 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

Descriptive Summary

Call No.: MC 357
Repository: Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America, Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study, Harvard University
Creator: Loring family
Title: Papers of the Loring family, 1830-1943
Date(s): 1830-1943
Quantity: .42 linear feet (1 file box) plus 2 folders of photographs 1 folio+ folder)
Language of materials: Materials in English.
Abstract: Correspondence, letterbooks, notebooks, etc., of the Loring family of New England.

Immediate Source of Acquisition:

Accession number: 77-M180
The papers of the Loring family were given to the Schlesinger Library in November 1977 by Susan G. Loring,Louisa Vaughan Conrad, and Mary Loring Clapp, grandnieces of Katharine Peabody Loring and Louisa Putnam Loring.

Processing Information:

Processed: March 1984
By: Anne Engelhart

Access Restrictions:

Access. Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use:

Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by the Loring family as well as copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.
Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.

Preferred Citation:

Loring family Papers, 1830-1943; item description, dates. MC 357, folder #. Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute, Harvard University, Cambridge, Mass.


Jane Lathrop Loring was born on August 27, 1821, the second child of Anna Pierce Brace and Charles Greely Loring. She married Asa Gray, the distinguished botanist and Harvard professor, on May 4, 1848; the couple resided in the Botanic Garden in Cambridge. She was a member of the Female Humane Society of Cambridge, a charitable organization for the relief of sick and indigent women, and in 1894, following the death of her husband in 1888, edited Letters of Asa Gray. She died at the Loring Estate in Pride's Crossing, Massachusetts, on July 29, 1909.
Katharine Peabody Loring and Louisa Putnam Loring were daughters of Elizabeth (Smith) Loring and Caleb William Loring, Jane Lathrop Loring's brother. Born on May 21, 1849, Katharine Peabody Loring was a founder of and for twenty years a teacher in the Society to Encourage Studies at Home. A trustee of the Beverly Public Library, Red Cross worker, and officer in the Woman's Education Association and in the Massachusetts Library Club, she was also a close friend of Alice James (1848-1892), sister of Henry James and William James. She wrote The Earliest Summer Residents of the North Shore and Their Houses (1932) and assisted in the preparation of Loring Genealogy (1917). For further information about Katharine Peabody Loring, see Jean Strouse, Alice James, A Biography (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1980).
Louisa Putnam Loring was born on January 15, 1854. The founder (and president) of the Aiken, South Carolina, Sanitarium, also called Aiken Cottages, and the Beverly Anti-Tuberculosis Society, she also held offices in the Beverly Hospital and the Essex County Chapter of the American Red Cross. She compiled The Hymns of the Ages (American Unitarian Association, 1906). After 1872 she lived at Pride's Crossing, Massachusetts, until her death on May 18, 1924. She is mentioned in Strouse's book about Alice James (see above).


Jane Lathrop Loring is represented in this collection by a letterbook and notebooks containing school essays, stories, plays, and copies of letters to friends and relations.
The correspondence of Katharine Peabody Loring contains some letters from abroad, including a letter from Alice Bache Gould in Spain and several descriptions by Clara Winthrop of her travels in India. Other letters from friends and family members made mention of Katharine Peabody Loring's great kindnesses and charitable activities. Her interest in working towards establishment of an international peacekeeping body is reflected in two certificates issued in 1918: one appointing her to the Win the War for Permanent Peace Convention, and one from the New England Congress for a League of Free Nations.
Some items pertain to both sisters; programs of the 1907 National Arbitration and Peace Conference Dinner in New York, invitations to the White House in 1911 and 1913, and miscellaneous writings and photographs.
The letters to Louisa Putnam Loring refer almost exclusively to her work on behalf of Bulgarian schoolchildren. The remainder of the material relating to Louisa Putnam Loring reflects her involvement in two organizations: Aiken Cottages in Aiken, South Carolina, and the Essex County Chapter of the American Red Cross.

Container List

Additional Index Terms

Bulgaria--Social conditions
Essex County (Mass.)
India--Description and travel
South Carolina--Social conditions
Spain--History--Civil War, 1936-1939
Voyages and travels
Aiken Cottages (Aiken, S.C.)
American Red Cross
American National Red Cross. Essex County Chapter
Gould, Alice Bache, 1868-1953
Gray, Jane Loring, 1821-1909
Loring, Katharine Peabody, 1849-1943
Loring, Louisa Putnam, 1854-1924