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Collection Description & Creator Information
The Bayard Family Papers, 1801-1915, document Ann Caroline Bayard (1797-1871) and her politically active family and are arranged in five series, "Correspondence," "Legal Records," "Photographs," "Miscellaneous Files and Ephemera," and "Newspaper Clippings."
"Correspondence" includes letters to Ann Caroline Bayard and to other members of her family. The letters "To Ann Caroline Bayard" are arranged alphabetically by author of the letter. These letters address a range of topics including family, books, education, abolition, and politics. Her friends' letters contain friendly gossip, discussions of travels and notable people met, including Washington Irving (a friend of Caroline Bollman). A letter from Sarah Lowndes, in response to a query by Ann Caroline Bayard, provides her justification for the institution of slavery in 1820. Ann Caroline Bayard also corresponded with her sisters-in-law Mary S. Carroll Bayard and Tryphena Cady Bayard. Of note, Tryphena Bayard mentions her sister, Elizabeth Cady Stanton.
Family and friends, particularly Henry Clay (1777-1852) and Louis McLane (1786-1857), wrote to Ann Caroline Bayard regarding politics. Letters from Henry Clay discuss abolition, politics, and speeches. In a particularly revealing letter, Clay's feelings on his defeat in the 1844 presidential election are discussed. She was equally respected by Louis McLane, a Delaware politician. Her father and her brother Richard Henry Bayard wrote from Washington and these letters, along with those of Clay and McLane, discuss the writers' opinions of Rufus King (1755-1827), Ninian Edwards (1775-1833), Mr. Pinckney, Mr. Randolph, and Joseph Bringhurst (1767-1834), to name only a few.
The letters "To Others" include many members of Ann Caroline Bayard's family, but center largely on Emma Dixon Bayard and were written mostly by her family. There are also a number of letters to Ann Bayard, James Asheton Bayard, and Mary S. Bayard. Letters to Shipley relations are also included. These letters are arranged alphabetically by recipient of the letters.
"Legal Records" include court records; land records possibly relating to the U.S. Supreme Court Case, "Henry M. Bayard, Plaintiff in Error, v. Israel Lombard and Charles O. Whitmore;" wills and letters regarding wills; and records that are not immediately connected to a specific individual.
"Photographs" relate mainly to the descendents of Henry Milligan and Emma Dixon Bayard. There are also photographs of Clark's Creek, Camp Shiley, and "Victoria" and several photographs of individuals who are either unidentified on the photographs or their connections to the Bayard family are unknown.
"Miscellaneous Files and Ephemera" includes genealogical information regarding the Bayard family, clippings of hair from twelve family members, and prayers, hymns, and poems. Finally, "Newspaper Clippings" contains clippings on Bayard family members, particularly obituaries. When these individuals are represented only by an obituary, it is noted.
This collection provides a unique glimpse into the family and social circles of Ann Caroline Bayard, an educated and politically connected woman during the 19th century. It is important to note, however, that there is almost nothing of her own creation in this collection; instead, her role in her world is revealed in the writings of others.
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The collection is open for research.
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- Credit this material:
Miscellaneous; Bayard Family Papers, C1423, Manuscripts Division, Department of Special Collections, Princeton University Library
- Firestone LibraryOne Washington RoadPrinceton, NJ 08544, USA
- Storage Note:
- Firestone Library (mss): Box 3