Location: Bowdoin / Library / Special Collections & Archives / Manuscript Collections / Mellen Family Papers

LibraryGeorge J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives


Mellen Family Papers 1611-1968, n.d.

 5.50 linear feet.

Catalog Number: M129

Series List:

h

Agency History / Biographical Note:
The Mellen papers, collected and compiled by Clara Hawkins Mellen, contain correspondence and genealogical material on various families from Maine, New England, and beyond. Included are the Clark family of Massachusetts; the Cony family of Augusta, Maine; the Harward family of Bowdoinham, Maine; the Hawkins family of Kentucky and Tennessee; the Manley family of Augusta, Maine; the Mellen family of Massachusetts; the Sewall family of Augusta, Maine; the Seymour-Ledyard and Seymour-Lincoln families of Cheltenham, England; and the Snow family of Massachusetts.

Joseph Clark came to Dedham, Massachusetts from Suffolk, England in 1640. He was one of the first thirteen settlers of Dedham. Ellen Seymour Clark married William Proctor Mellen in 1876.

The Cony family has an extensive history in the Augusta area of Maine. Daniel Cony was James Bowdoin III's land agent, and a charter Overseer of Bowdoin College. Lucy Cony Manley, daughter of Susan Hannah Cony and Joseph Homan Manley, married Chase Mellen in 1893.

The Harward family has a strong affiliation with Bowdoinham, Maine and also has a house on Swan Island, Maine, built in 1782. The progenitor of the New England Harward family, Reverend Thomas Harward, M.D., was born in Surrey, England and died in Boston. He was King's lecturer at King's Chapel in Boston. The third generation of Harwards began building ships, a business which continued into the fourth generation. The Harwards were friends of the Mellen family; Joseph and Clara Mellen bought the Swan Island property, called Harward House.

The Hawkins family included many notable figures, including William Hawkins, governor of North Carolina, Alvin Hawkins, governor of Tennessee, and Ashton William Hawkins, captain of the 2nd West Tennessee Federal Cavalry Regiment. Ashton William Hawkins' granddaughter was Clara Mellen nee Hawkins, compiler of these records.

The Manley family has strong ties to Augusta, Maine. Lucy Cony Manley married into the Mellen family in 1893.

The first Mellen in the United States was Richard, who emigrated to Weymouth, Massachusetts in 1639.

The Sewall family are long time residents of New England. Henry Sewall was the first in his family to arrive in the United States, emigrating from Great Britain to Rowley, Massachusetts in 1634. He married Jane Dummer in 1646, and the couple had three sons and five or six daughters. Judge David Sewall graduated from Cambridge College as a classmate of John Adams. President Washington appointed Sewall Judge of the District Court of Maine. Mercy Hannah Sewall married Samuel Cony in 1834; their granddaughter Lucy Cony Manley married Chase Mellen in 1893.

The Seymour family resided in Hartford, Connecticut in the 19th century. Catherine Ann Seymour (some records Charlotte Ann Seymour) married Major Nathan Clark in 1816. Daughter Ellen Seymour Clark married William Proctor Mellen in 1856.

Nicholas Snow came to the United States on the Anne in 1623. He married Constance Hopkins, who came with her father on the Mayflower in 1620. Family descendants of Snow lived in Plymouth and Barnstable counties. Descendant Sarah Snow married William Mellen, Jr., in 1809.

Scope and Content:
The collection contains print and manuscript material from the family papers and genealogical research of the compiler, Clara Hawkins Mellen. The bulk of the collection dates from the Revolutionary War through the Civil War to the mid-20th century, and consists of genealogical notes, charts, and correspondence; ancestral and family correspondence, including Civil War (Ashton Hawkins) and Revolutionary War (Henry Sewall, Jr.) correspondence; diaries, including a copy of Henry Sewall, Jr.'s revolutionary war diary; documents; and clippings. Families represented include: the Clark family of Massachusetts; the Cony family of Augusta, Maine; the Harward family of Bowdoinham, Maine; the Hawkins family of Kentucky and Tennessee; the Manley family of Augusta, Maine; the Mellen family of Massachusetts; the Sewall family of Augusta, Maine; the Seymour-Ledyard and Seymour-Lincoln families of Cheltenham, England; and the Snow family of Massachusetts.

Among the major correspondents, most in government or the military, are: Salmon Portland Chase, James Abram Garfield, Ulysses S. Grant, Horace Greeley, Henry Wager Halleck, Benjamin Harrison, William Heath, Andrew Johnson, Frank Andrew Munsey, Albion Keith Parris, Timothy Pickering, Whitelaw Reid, William Tecumseh Sherman, Charles Sumner, John Quincy Adams, and George Washington.

Correspondents with twenty or more letters include: Gardiner Hawkins of Greenville, S.C.; Edward Verrall Lucas, essayist and member of the staff of Punch; William Proctor Mellen, Treasury agent; Stephen Caldwell Millett, Jr. of New York; William J. Palmer of the Denver office of the Kansas Pacific Railway; Henry Sewall, Jr., (Revolutionary War captain), Henry Sewall Sr. and Jotham Sewall, his father and brother. Principal correspondents with connections to the College include: Salmon Chase, Frank Andrew Munsey, Albion Keith Parris, and Jotham Bradbury Sewall.

Finding Aid/Index:
A chronological list of correspondence and an alphabetical list of correspondents are available.

Cite as: Mellen Family Papers, George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library.

Access Restrictions: None.

George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives · Staff · Hours
Bowdoin College Library, 3000 College Station, Brunswick, Maine 04011-8421 · scaref@bowdoin.edu · (207) 725-3288