Contents and Arrangement

Greene, Nathanael (1742-1786), 1775-1785

2 boxes

Collection Overview

Collection Description & Creator Information

Scope and Contents

Nathanael Greene served in the Continental Army during the American Revolutionary War. This series, dating from 1775-1785, consists of personal and professional correspondence from the last decade of his life and includes letters both to and from Greene. Many of the letters are directly related to his service in the Revolutionary War, including the difficulties he experienced while serving as Quartermaster General from March to August 1778. After resigning that post, Greene proved himself a leader on the battlefield as evidenced by his many communications with Commander in Chief George Washington. His letters to Washington and other army officers communicate troop locations and various successes and failures of the war. In addition, they highlight the difficult conditions experienced by many Continental soldiers who lacked appropriate shoes, clothing, and food. Personal correspondence between Nathanael and his wife, brothers, and cousin reveal the family's investment in multiple privateering ventures, as well as a family ironworks, which was occasionally commissioned to make weapons for the war.

The series is arranged alphabetically by name of correspondent. Many of the letters have been published in a multi-volume series devoted to Greene: The Papers of General Nathanael Greene (Chapel Hill : Published for the Rhode Island Historical Society [by] University of North Carolina Press, 1976-2005). Letters in this collection that are published in this series contain a bracketed notation in the item description citing the volume and page numbers. In some instances, the letters may not be published in full but merely summarized; in such cases the volume and page number are still provided as the editors often provide helpful footnotes and context for researchers.


The collection is arranged alphabetically by name of originator and/or subject; in the Miscellaneous and Provenance Files boxes (Boxes 43-44) the material is arranged alphabetically under the subject (ex.: "Washington, George.").

Collection History


No appraisal information is available.

Processing Information

This collection was processed by Rebecca Garcia during the period of November 2007 - October 2008. Finding aid written by Rebecca Garcia in 2008.

During 2022, restrictions on original materials, including items related to George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln, were lifted as part of a restrictions review project.

Collection title revised to provide more information about the collection by Faith Charlton in 2022.

Access & Use

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Single copies may be made for research purposes. To cite or publish quotations that fall within Fair Use, as defined under U. S. Copyright Law, no permission is required. For instances beyond Fair Use, it is the responsibility of the researcher to determine whether any permissions related to copyright, privacy, publicity, or any other rights are necessary for their intended use of the Library's materials, and to obtain all required permissions from any existing rights holders, if they have not already done so. Princeton University Library's Special Collections does not charge any permission or use fees for the publication of images of materials from our collections, nor does it require researchers to obtain its permission for said use. The department does request that its collections be properly cited and images credited. More detailed information can be found on the Copyright, Credit and Citations Guidelines page on our website. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us through the Ask Us! form.

Physical Characteristics and Technical Requirements

For preservation reasons, original analog and digital media may not be read or played back in the reading room. Users may visually inspect physical media but may not remove it from its enclosure. All analog audiovisual media must be digitized to preservation-quality standards prior to use. Audiovisual digitization requests are processed by an approved third-party vendor. Please note, the transfer time required can be as little as several weeks to as long as several months and there may be financial costs associated with the process. Requests should be directed through the Ask Us Form.

Credit this material:

Greene, Nathanael (1742-1786); Andre De Coppet Collection Concerning United States History, C0063, Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library

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Storage Note:
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