Pierce family correspondence, 1775-1825
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Brief Description:

The Pierce Family Correspondence consists primarily of letters to and from the children of John Pierce and his first wife, Mary (Paterson) Pierce, as well as of his second wife, Mary (Goodman) Pierce.  The collection documents events of national importance: John Pierce, a colonel and paymaster in the Continental Army, received letters from numerous correspondents concerning military, administrative, and political news of the American Revolution.  Moreover, the Pierce brothers traveled extensively along the East Coast as well as in the South, and their letters provide a record of the industrial and social development, natural resources, and scenery of the major cities of the early American republic as well as contemporary opinions on the condition of slavery in America. 

Since Timothy Pierce was a doctor, many of his letters illuminate medical practice during this time, including the difficulties of setting up a private practice and the realities of military medicine.  Meanwhile, the letters to Sarah Pierce make references to her role as founder and teacher of the Litchfield Female Academy, a nationally prominent girls' school.  The collection includes a letter to Pierce from Harriet Beecher Stowe praising her history textbook and requesting copies of it, correspondence about boarders for the school, and three silk diplomas.

Finally, the letters also shed light on social life in the early republic, as the Pierce brothers frequently attended parties, went on steamboat trips, advised their sisters on deportment, and discussed women's fashions with them.

Held at:
Litchfield Historical Society
7 South Street, P.O. Box 385
Litchfield, CT 6759
Phone: 860-567-4501
Fax: 860-567-3565
Email: archivist [at] litchfieldhistoricalsociety.org
Created by: Pierce, James (b. 1773), Pierce, John (d. 1788)
Volume: 0.42 Linear Feet
Acquired: 01/01/1978.
Biographical Note for Pierce, James (b. 1773) : James Pierce was admitted by the County Court in 1799.
Access Restrictions: This collection is open for research.
Subject Index
Bradley, Abraham, 1731-1824
Charleston (S.C.)--Description and travel
Epidemics--New York (State)--New York
Florida--Description and travel
Fort Ticonderoga (N.Y.)--Capture, 1777
Litchfield Female Academy (Conn.)
Medicine--United States--History--18th century
Pierce, Sarah, 1767-1852
Pierce, Timothy, 1778-1801
Private schools - Connecticut - Litchfield - History
Slavery--United States
Southern States--History--1775-1865
Stowe, Harriet Beecher, 1811-1896
Tisdale, Elkanah, 1768-1835
Trumbull, Jonathan, 1740-1809
United States--History--Revolution, 1775-1783
United States--Politics and government--1775-1783.
Washington (D.C.)--Description and travel
Washington, George, 1732-1799
Wolcott, Oliver, 1726-1797
Women - Education - Connecticut - Litchfield - History
Yellow fever--New York (State)--New York
Genres/Forms of Material
Languages of Materials
English [eng]
Rights/Use Restrictions: Unpublished materials authored or otherwise produced by the creator(s) of this collection are in the public domain. There are no restrictions on use. Copyright status for other collection materials is unknown. Transmission or reproduction of materials protected by U.S. Copyright Law (Title 17, U.S.C.) beyond that allowed by fair use requires the written permission of the copyright owners. Works not in the public domain cannot be commercially exploited without permission of the of the copyright owners. Responsibility for any use rests exclusively with the user.
Acquisition Notes: Susan G. Loring
Other Formats: Transcriptions are available for some documents.
Related Materials: Litchfield Female Academy Collection, Litchfield Historical Society.
PreferredCitation: Pierce family correspondence, 1978-39-8, Litchfield Historical Society, Helga J. Ingraham Memorial Library, P.O. Box 385, 7 South Street, Litchfield, Connecticut, 06759.