Finding aid for the General Historical Manuscripts and Ephemera collection 6004

Sue Luftschein
USC Libraries Special Collections
2011 November
Doheny Memorial Library 206
3550 Trousdale Parkway
Los Angeles, California 90089-0189

Contributing Institution: USC Libraries Special Collections
Title: General Historical Manuscripts and Ephemera collection
Creator: Blair, Montgomery
Creator: Bryan, William Jennings, 1860-1925
Creator: Cameron, Simon
Creator: Chase, Salmon P. (Salmon Portland)
Creator: Debs, Eugene V. (Eugene Victor)
Creator: Dennison, William
Creator: Dornberger, Walter, 1895-1980
Creator: Fessenden, William Pitt
Creator: Forster, George, -1836
Creator: Freiligrath, Ferdinand, 1810-1876
Creator: James, King of England, I, 1566-1625
Creator: Jefferson, Thomas
Creator: Lamartine, Alphonse de, 1790-1869
Creator: Raymond, Henry J. (Henry Jarvis)
Creator: Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Delano)
Creator: Seward, William Henry
Creator: Smith, William Stephens
Creator: Strange, Thomas Andrew Lumisden, 1756-1841
Creator: Von Braun, Wernher, 1912-1977
Creator: Wilde, Oscar
Identifier/Call Number: 6004
Identifier/Call Number: 1258
Physical Description: 3.21 Linear Feet 2 boxes, 1 oversize folder
Date (inclusive): 1605-1928, undated
Abstract: This artificially created collection consists of notes, letters, documents, and photographs created by and for important historical figures, mostly American, from 1605, 1790 to 1928, and undated. Of particular historical interest are the letters written by Thomas Jefferson, William Smith, and Eugene Debs, and the 1850 Los Angeles Justice of the Peace election results document.
Language of Material: English .

Scope and Content

This artificially created collection consists of notes, letters, documents, and photographs created by and for important American and European historical figures. Arranged chronologically, the collection includes letters written by Thomas Jefferson and William S. Smith; a document certifying the results of the 1850 Los Angeles Justice of the Peace election; autographed notes and letters penned by members of Abraham Lincoln's Cabinet; a stock certificate signed by Grover Cleveland; letters sent to Ruth LePrade from Eugene Debs en route to and from prison; a letter signed by Franklin Roosevelt; locks of George and Martha Washington's hair; a letter from Oscar Wilde; a letter regarding the activities of the British East India Company; a letter from an unidentified son to his mother sent from British Ceylon; and a 1605 proclamation by King James I of England. Of particular interest, for their content, are the Thomas Jefferson, William Smith, and Eugene Debs letters, and the election results document.

Conditions Governing Access

Advance notice required for access.

Conditions Governing Use

All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Manuscripts Librarian. Permission for publication is given on behalf of Special Collections as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

Preferred Citation

[Box/folder# or item name], General Historical Manuscripts and Ephemera collection, Collection no. 6004, Special Collections, USC Libraries, University of Southern California


The documents in this collection were acquired from a number of sources. The William S. Smith letter was donated by Harris Woods, April 1982. The Lincoln Cabinet members autographs were donated by Dr. Edward M. Pallette, February 1954. The Los Angeles election manuscript was purchased from the Historical Society of Southern California, 1988. The British East India Company letter was purchased from the Wayfarer's Bookshop, 2014. The letter from British Ceylon was purchased from Ken Spelman Books, 2019.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

Ceylon -- History -- 19th century -- Archival resources
Elections -- California -- Los Angeles -- 19th century -- Archival resources
Great Britain -- History -- Archival resources
Great Britain -- History -- James I, 1603-1625 -- Sources
Los Angeles (Calif.) -- History -- 19th century -- Archival resources
Proclamations -- Great Britain -- Early Stuarts, 1603-1649 -- Archival resources
United States -- History -- 18th century -- Archival resources
United States -- History -- 19th century -- Archival resources
Blair, Montgomery -- Correspondence
Bryan, William Jennings, 1860-1925 -- Correspondence
Cameron, Simon -- Correspondence
Carrillo, Jose Antonio -- Archives
Chase, Salmon P. (Salmon Portland) -- Correspondence
Cleveland, Grover -- Archives
Debs, Eugene V. (Eugene Victor) -- Correspondence
Dennison, William -- Correspondence
Dornberger, Walter, 1895-1980 -- Correspondence
Dundas, Henry, 1742-1811 -- Correspondence
East India Company -- Archives
Fessenden, William Pitt -- Correspondence
Forster, George, -1836 -- Correspondence
Freiligrath, Ferdinand, 1810-1876 -- Archives
James, King of England, I, 1566-1625 -- Archives
Jefferson, Thomas -- Correspondence
Lamartine, Alphonse de, 1790-1869 -- Correspondence
Le Prade, Ruth -- Archives
Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865 -- Archives
Lindbergh, Charles A. (Charles Augustus), 1902-1974 -- Photographs
Raymond, Henry J. (Henry Jarvis) -- Correspondence
Roosevelt, Franklin D. (Franklin Delano) -- Correspondence
Sepulveda, Juan Capistrano -- Archives
Seward, William Henry -- Correspondence
Smith, William Stephens -- Correspondence
Strange, Thomas Andrew Lumisden, 1756-1841 -- Correspondence
Von Braun, Wernher, 1912-1977 -- Correspondence
Washington, George -- Archives
Washington, Martha -- Archives
Wilde, Oscar -- Correspondence

Oversize-folder 1

James I, King of England 1605

Creator: James, King of England, I, 1566-1625
Language of Material: English.


"By the King : Where a sedicious rumor hath bene raised this morning, that some ill accident should be befallen our person [...]
"Given at our palace of Westminster the two and twentieth day of March 1605; and in the third yeere of our Reigne of Great Britaine."
Imprinted by Robert Barker, Printer to the Kings most excellent Majestie, London, 1605.

Processing Information

This item had previously been cataloged individually as a book in the USC Libraries catalog. The old catalog record has since been deleted and the item is now described as part of the General Historical Manuscripts and Ephemera collection.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

James, King of England, I, 1566-1625 -- Archives
Box 1, Folder 23

Tronchon, Theodore 1726

Scope and Contents

Letter from Theodore Tronchon to Madame Charcot nee Achard. Found in Special Collections' copy of James Paxton's "Life of Voltaire".
Box 1, Folder 18

Louis XV 1763

Box 1, Folder 1

Jefferson, Thomas 214446 1780, 1822, 1826, 1842

Scope and Content

Three letters signed by Thomas Jefferson, two in his hand. Letter dated November 2, 1780 discusses the dispensing of military aid from counties north of Rappahanock. Letter dated December 12, 1822 (bound in folder) sends salutations, in third person, to Dr. Cutting, and discusses his age, physical infirmities, and mental clarity. Letter dated March 22, 1826 is a letter of introduction for his grandson, Thomas Jefferson Randolph, to Governor Clinton. Latter two letters sent from Monticello. Accompanied by facsimile of Henry Clay letter, dated September 13, 1842. Authentication of the letters performed by Huntington Library, 1960.
Box 1, Folder 15

East India Company 1786 April 22

Scope and Contents

Letter from George Forster to Henry Dundas regarding relations between the British East India Company, the Maratha Emppire, and the Kingdom of Mysore, and the Company's commercial activities on the Coromandel Coast and the Dutch settlements there.
Box 1, Folder 2

Smith, William S. 214499 1790 May 15

Scope and Content

Letter from Smith, John Adams' son-in-law, discussing George Washington's health and the status of Senate business at that time.
Box 1, Folder 10

Strange, Sir Thomas 1817 December 12

Scope and Contents

Letter to Charles Grant, in which Strange discusses the importance of his three volume work, "Notes of cases in the court of the Recorder and in the Supreme Court of Judicature at Madras; commencing in the year 1798, and ending in the year 1816. To which are added, copies of the Statutes, Charter, and of the Rules of the Supreme Court."
Box 1, Folder 13

Freligrath, Ferdinand circa 1832

Box 1, Folder 16

Letter from British Ceylon [unidentified author] 1833 August 15

Scope and Contents

A four page letter written by a son to his "dearest mother" and dated 15th August 1833. The unidentified author departed England aboard the Lady Raffles, and wrote earlier from Ceylon in January. He mentions Baroda, notes that he expects to be in Bombay, and regrets not receiving letters back from home.
Box 1, Folder 3

Los Angeles election returns for Justice of the Peace 214445 1850 November 4

Scope and Content

Manuscript of certification of election results for Justice of the Peace for Los Angeles. Signed by Judges of Election Jose Antonio Carrillo, Juan Sepulveda (the election winner), John Ricord, Francisco J. Alvarado, and J.S. Mallard [?]. Participating in the election were Sepulveda, William B. Osburn, and Francisco Alvarado.
Box 1, Folder 4

Members of Abraham Lincoln's Cabinet 214491 1855-1881

Scope and Content

Autographs, generally in the form of signed notes and letters. Some engravings are also included. Blair, Cameron, Fessenden, and Chase letters dated prior to Lincoln administration; Seward and Dennison letters dated after Lincoln administration. Also includes a letter from prominent New York Republican and journalist Henry Jarvis Raymond.

Blair, Montgomery 214498 1855 June 9


Chase, Salmon P. 214494 1861 February 6


Cameron, Simeon 214497 1860 November 12


Dennison, William 214496 1881 April 14


Fessenden, William Pitt 214495 1860[?] August 15


Raymond, Henry Jarvis 214493 1858 April 2


Seward, William H. 214492 18[?]5 October 11

Box 1, Folder 20

Dolcetti, Domenico circa 1856

Box 1, Folder 21

Davis, Jefferson circa 1856

Box 1, Folder 12

Lamartine, Alphonse de 1861

Box 2

Lincoln, Abraham 1864 May 18

Scope and Contents

Proclamation appointing Nelson L. Drake as Assistant Surgeon of Volunteers, signed by Edwin Stanton, Secretary of War, and Abraham Lincoln.
Box 1, Folder 5

Cleveland, Grover 214443 1877 April 1

Scope and Content

Stock certificate for one share of the Beaver Island Club, signed by Cleveland.
Box 1, Folder 19

Bassi, Giuseppe circa 1893

Box 1, Folder 11

Wilde, Oscar circa 1897

Scope and Contents

Box 1, Folder 14, Oversize-folder 1

Bryan, William Jennings 1905 September 8, 1917 April 30

Scope and Contents

Letter from Bryan to Secretary of Agriculture David F. Houston, introducing him to Rufus VonKleinSmid. Passport issued by the Department of State to Bryan.
Box 1, Folder 22

Round, J.H. 1911

Box 1, Folder 6

Debs, Eugene V. 214489 circa 1919

Scope and Content

Letters from Debs to Ruth LePrade, sent en route to and from prison.
Box 1, Folder 7

Lindbergh, Charles A. 214444 1928 May 6

Scope and Content

Autographed photograph of Lindberg, addressed to J.B. Lyman, V.P. of Maddox Air Lines, Inc.
Box 1, Folder 8

Roosevelt, Franklin D. 214442 1928 September 14

Scope and Content

Copy of letter to Mr. John Elliot, Los Angeles, in which he inquires about Elliot's decision about supporting Governor Smith as a presidential candidate.
Box 1, Folder 9

Washington, George and Martha 214478 undated

Scope and Content

Locks of hair.
Box 1, Folder 17

Brown, John undated