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LibraryGeorge J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives


Thacher Family Papers, 1782-1914


0.5 linear feet.

Catalog Number: M174

Agency History / Biographical Note:
The collection centers around two members of the Thacher family, Stephen (1774-1859), an Overseer of Bowdoin College from 1821-27, and his son Peter (1810-94), a member of Bowdoin's Class of 1831.

Stephen, until 1818 a merchant in Kennebunk, Maine, held public office as Judge of Probate for York County (1807-18), postmaster of Kennebunk (1810-18) and, following a move to Lubec, Maine, U.S. Collector of Customs for the town (1818-30). He lived in retirement in Lubec until his death.

Peter, a lawyer, studied under his uncle, William Pitt Preble and in the Portland firm of Fessenden and Deblois. Admitted to the bar in 1836, he practiced in Machias (1836-54) and Rockland, Maine (1854-71), and Boston (1871-92). In 1842, he became Commissioner of the U.S. Circuit Court of Maine, and served as Register in Bankruptcy for the Fifth Congressional District (1867-71). Other members of the Thacher family, including Peter's siblings and children are also represented in the collection.

Scope and Content:
Correspondence, chiefly between Stephen Thacher and his son Peter,together with exchanges with other family members, members of the Bowdoin community, or other acquaintances. Correspondents from the Bowdoin community include various professors and overseers, including Prof. Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (Class of 1825), as well as Bowdoin graduates ranging in class year from 1810s to 1840s. The correspondence is followed by some manuscript and typescript notes, and an edited draft of the text of the Packard-Cleaveland History of Bowdoin College prepared by Peter Thacher.

Cite as: Thacher Family Papers, George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library.
Access Restrictions: None.

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