Summary Information

Repository
George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine 04011
Creator
Brown, Charles Brockden, 1771-1810
Title
Charles Brockden Brown papers
ID
M021
Date [bulk]
Bulk, 1792-1797
Date [inclusive]
1792-1821, undated
Extent
2.0 linear feet
Language
English

Preferred Citation

Charles Brockden Brown Papers, George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine


Biographical/Historical Note

Charles Brockden Brown, novelist and journalist, was the first professional American writer and the first American writer to develop an international reputation. While practicing the law, Brown published his earliest work, "The Rhapsodist," in the Columbian Magazine for 1789.

In 1793, he turned to writing full time, published all his novels between 1798 (Wieland) and 1801 (Jane Talbot), and edited literary and historical journals (1799-1810). Among his works were Alcuin: a Dialogue (1798), a work on the rights of women; Edgar Huntly (1799-1800), a novel in two parts; a translation of Volney's Tableau du climat et du sol des Etats-Unis... (1804); and the American Register or General Repository of History ..., which he edited from 1807-1810.


Scope and Content

The collection consists largely of Brown's correspondence, much of it with his friends Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., (1767-1834) and Deborah Ferris (1773-1844), later Mrs. Bringhurst, or between Ferris and Bringhurst. Many of the letters are included in Charles E. Bennett's "The Letters of Charles Brockden Brown: An Annotated Census," published in the Resources for American Literary Study, Autumn 1976. However, a number of the letters originally included in the Bennett Census as authored by Charles B. Brown under the alias "Petrarch" have since been reclassified as the writing of Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.


Administrative Information

Publication Information

George J. Mitchell Department of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Maine 04011

3000 College Station
Brunswick, Maine, 04011
(207) 725-3288
scaref@bowdoin.edu

Access Restrictions

No restrictions.


General Note

Photocopies of correspondence provided for patron use. Correspondence also available on microfilm; George J. Mitchell Dept. of Special Collections & Archives, Bowdoin College Library, Brunswick, Me.; 1 microfilm reel. (1796 Sep 14 letter not included on microfilm).


Collection Inventory

M21.1: Charles Brockden Brown Correspondence and Writings, 1792-1797, undated   0.75 linear feet

Series Description:

This series consists of approximately 50 letters written between 1792-1797, including correspondence from Charles B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., or Debby Ferris. Also included in this series is a copy of "Rasselas" by Samuel Johnson with a poem by Charles B. Brown inscribed on the endpapers. Many of the letters originally listed in the Bennett Census as correspondence between "Petrarch" [Charles B. Brown] and Debby Ferris have since been reclassified as correspondence between "Petrarch" [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.] and Debby Ferris. These letters include Bennet Census numbers 54, 55, 57, and 58, located in series M21.2, titled "Correspondence: Other."

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

Access Restrictions:

Photocopies of correspondence provided for patron use. Correspondence also available on microfilm. (1796 Sep 14 letter not included on microfilm).

Box Folder
1 1

Photocopy of Bennett Census; container listings, name index 

1 2

March 20, 1792 - June 11, 1793 (Bennett #5 - #46). 

1 3

December 21, 1792 - miscellaneous envelopes (Bennett #46a - #88). 

1 4

C.B. Brown poem inscribed to "D.F." on first endpapers of "Rasselas..." 

Originals (Restricted) 

Box Folder
3 1

[Charles B. Brown] to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], [Philadelphia] (March 20, 1792) 5 pages (Bennett: 5) 

3 2

[Charles B. Brown] to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], [Wilmington] (n.d.) 3 pages (Bennett: 8) 

3 3

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (n.d.) 7 pages (Bennett: 9) 

3 4

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (n.d.) 7 pages (Bennett: 10) 

3 5

[Charles B.] Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (r. May 5, 1792) 7 pages (Bennett: 12) 

3 6

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (r. May 7, 1792) 6 pages (Bennett: 13) 

3 7

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (r. May 7, 1792) 3 pages (Bennett: 14) 

3 8

[Charles B. Brown] to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], n.p. (n.d.) 4 pages (Bennett: 15) 

3 9

[Charles B. Brown] to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], n.p. (r. May 9, 1792) 1 page (Bennett 16) 

3 10

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (r. May 15, 1792) 6 pages (Bennett: 18) 

3 11

C[harles] B. B[rown] to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], Philadelphia (n.d.) 8 pages (Bennett 20) 

3 12

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (May 20, 1792) 17 pages (Bennett 21) 

3 13

[Charles B. Brown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (May 20, 1792) 3 pages (Bennett: 22) 

3 14

[Charles B. Brown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (May 30, 1792) 5 pages (Bennett: 23) 

3 15

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (June 1, 1792) 4 pages (Bennett: 24) 

3 16

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (n.d.) 1 page (Bennett: 25) 

3 17

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (June 9, 1792) 3 pages (Bennett 26) 

3 18

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (June 10, 1792) 3 pages (Bennett: 27) 

3 19

[Charles B. Brown] to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], n.p. (n.d) 4 pages (Bennett: 29) 

3 20

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (Aug. 9, 1792) 4 pages (Bennett: 30) 

3 21

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (December 1792) 7 pages (Bennett: 34) 

3 22

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (December 9, 1792) 10 pages (Bennett: 35) 

3 23

C[harles] B. Brown to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], n.p. (December 21, 1792) last 4 of 8 pages (Bennett: 36). For pages 1-4 see folder 32, (Bennett: 46a) 

3 24

C[harles] B. Brown to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], [Philadelphia] (December [1792]) 4 pages (Bennett: 38) 

3 25

Charles B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, [Jr.], [Philadelphia] (r. April 22, 1793) 3 pages (Bennett: 40) 

3 26

C[harles] B. Brown to Jos[eph] Bringhurst, [Jr.], n.p. (n.d.) 1 page (Bennett: 41) 

3 27

Charles B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, [Jr.], [Philadelphia] (n.d.) 5 pages (Bennett: 42) 

3 28

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, [Jr.], Litchfield [Conn.] (May 22, 1793) 2 pages (Bennett: 43) 

3 29

[Charles B. Brown] to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], Middletown, Conn. (n.d.) 4 pages (Bennett: 44) 

3 30

[Charles B. Brown] to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], Middletown, Conn. (n.d.) 3 pages (Bennett: 45) 

3 31

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., Hartford [Conn.] (June 11, 1793) 1 page (Bennett: 46) 

3 32

C[harles] B. Brown to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], n.p. (December 21, 1792) first 4 of 8 pages (Bennett: 46a). For pages 5-8 see folder 23, (Bennett: 36) 

3 33

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (July 25, 1793) 5 pages (Bennett: 47) 

3 34

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, [Jr.], [Philadelphia] (July 29 and August 1, 1793) 13 pages (Bennett: 48) 

3 35

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (August 16, 1793) 3 pages (Bennett: 49) 

3 36

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (December 20, [1793] and January 8, 1794) 3 pages (Bennett: 50, 66) 

3 37

Poetry: Charles B. Brown to Debby Ferris, Philadelphia (4 October, 1794) 24 pages (1 page dedication letter, 23 pages poetry) 

3 38

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (October 24, 1795) 8 pages (Bennett: 62, 63) 

3 39

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (October 30, 1795) 2 pages (Bennett: 64) 

3 40

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (December 29, 1795) 3 pages (Bennett: 67) 

3 41

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (January 1, 1796) 1 page (Bennett: 69) 

3 42

Charles B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (May 11, 1796) 3 pages (Bennett: 73) 

3 43

C[harles] B. B[rown] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (July 11, 1796) 1 page (Bennett: 76) 

3 44

C[harles] B. B[rown] to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], [Philadelphia] (July 20, 1796) 4 pages (Bennett: 77) 

3 44a

C[harles] B. Brown to [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.], Philadelphia (September 14, 1796) 1 page 

3 45

C[harles] B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., [Philadelphia] (August 18, 1797) 3 pages (Bennett: 88) 

3 46

[?] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., h.p. (r. May 16, 1792) envelope only 

3 47

Charles B. Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (r. December 1, 1792) cover only 

3 48

[?] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (postmarked December 11, [?]) envelope only 

3 49

[?] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p (n.d.) envelope only 

3 50

blank fragment (?) 

Object
1

"Rasselas; Prince of Abissinia" by Dr. Johnson (London: 1790) [C.B. Brown poem inscribed to "D.F." on first endpapers, n.d.] 


M21.2: Correspondence, Other, 1795-1821, undated   1.25 linear feet

Series Description:

This series consists of about 85 letters written between 1795 and 1821. The bulk of these letters includes correspondence between Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., ("Petrarch") and Debby Ferris ("Laura"). Some letters originally included in the Bennett Census as correspondence between "Petrarch" [Charles B. Brown] and Debby Ferris have since been reclassified as correspondence between "Petrarch" [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.] and Debby Ferris. These letters include Bennet numbers 54, 55, 57, and 58.

Arrangement:

Arranged chronologically.

General Note:

Photocopies of correspondence provided for patron use. Correspondence also available on microfilm.

Box Folder
2 1

Container listings: 1 complete, 1 incomplete 

2 2

Correspondence: 1/10/1795-5/29/1795 

2 3

Correspondence: 5/30/1795-8/1/1795 

2 4

Correspondence: 8/6/1795-9/26-28/1795 

2 5

Correspondence: 3/23/-- (cover only)-Genealogy listing 

Originals (Restricted) 

Box Folder
4 1

D[ebby] F[erris] to [?], Wilmington [Delaware] (January 10, 1795) 4 pages 

4 2

[?] to [?], n.p. (January 13, 1795) 3 pages 

4 3

[?] to [?], Wilmington (January 15, 1795) 8 pages 

4 4

[?] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., Wilmington (February 1, 1795) 3 pages 

4 5

Delia to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., Wilimington (February 12, 1795) 1 page 

4 6

[?] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (February 22, 1795) 6 pages 

4 7

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst] to Debby Ferris/Laura, n.p. (12 March 1795) 5 pages (Bennett: 54) 

4 8

[Debby Ferris] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (March 13, 1795) 2 pages 

4 9

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst] to Debby Ferris, Wilmington (19 March 1795) 3 pages (Bennett: 55) 

4 10

Laura [Debby Ferris] to [?], n.p. (April 2, 1795) 4 pages 

4 11

[?] to [?], Philadelphia (April 3, 1795) 23 pages 

4 12

Laura [Debby Ferris] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (April 8, 1795) 11 pages 

4 13

Petrarch to [?], Philadelphia (April 10, 1795 and April 12, 1795) 22 pages 

4 14

Laura [Debby Ferris] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., Philadelphia (12 April 1795) 1 page 

4 15

Petrarch to Laura, Philadelphia (16 April 1795) 4 pages 

4 16

P[etrarch] to Debby Ferris, [Philadelphia] (18 April 1795) 1 page/ [Debby Ferris], gloss (19 April 1795) 

4 17

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst] to Laura [Debby Ferris], n.p. (21 April 1795) 2 pages (Bennett: 57) 

4 18

Laura to Petrarch, n.p. (22 April 1795) 8 pages 

4 19

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, Philadelphia (23 April 1795) 4 pages plus 2 fragments 

4 20

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., Philadelphia (2 May 1795) 4 pages 

4 21

Petrarch to [?], n.p. (3 May 1795) 12 pages 

4 22

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (6-7 May 1795) 5 pages 

4 23

Petrarch to [?], n.p. (8 May 1795) 8 pages 

4 24

Petrarch to [?], n.p. (10 May 1795) 9 pages 

4 25

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, Philadelphia (16 May 1795) 3 pages 

4 26

Laura to [?], n.p. (27 May 1795) 8 pages 

4 27

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., Philadelphia (27 May 1795) 1 page 

4 28

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst] to [Debby Ferris], Philadelphia (28 May 1795) 4 pages (Bennett: 58) 

4 29

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (29 May 1795) 2 pages 

4 30

Petrarch to [?], Philadelphia (30 May 1795) 14 pages 

4 31

Jos[eph] Bringhurst, Jr. to Edith Ferris, Philadelphia (30 May 1795) 3 pages 

4 32

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (15 June 1795) 5 pages 

4 33

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, Philadelphia (16 June 1795) 5 pages 

4 34

Petrarch to [?], Philadelphia (18 June 1795) 3 pages 

4 35

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (18 June 1795) 8 pages 

4 36

Petrarch to [?] (19 June 1795) 4 pages 

4 37

Petrarch to Debby Ferris (19 June 1795) 6 pages 

4 38

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (19 June 1795) 

4 39

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (21-22 June 1795) 10 pages 

4 40

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (21 June 1795) 4 pages 

4 41

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (23 June 1795) 3 pages 

4 42

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (24 June 1795) 8 pages 

4 43

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (25 June 1795) 6 pages 

4 44

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (26 June 1795) 4 pages 

4 45

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (27 June 1795) 3 pages 

4 46

[?] to [?], Philadelphia (8 July 1795) 4 pages 

4 47

Laura to [?], n.p. (9 July 1795) 4 pages 

4 48

D[ebby Ferris] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (10 July 1795) 1 page 

4 49

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, Philadelphia (10 July 1795) 5 pages 

4 50

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (10 and 11 July 1795) 7 pages 

4 51

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., Wilmington [Delaware] (11 July 1795) 8 pages 

4 52

Petrarch to Laura/Debby Ferris, n.p. (12 July 1795) 9 pages 

4 53

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (14 July 1795) 5 pages 

4 54

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, New York (15 July 1795) 3 pages 

4 55

[?] to [?], n.p. (16 July 1795) 4 pages 

4 56

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, New York (17 July 1795) 3 pages 

4 57

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (18 July 1795) 5 pages 

4 58

Petrarch to Deborah Ferris, Philadelphia (22 July 1795) 4 pages 

4 59

Laura to Petrarch, n.p. (22 July 1795) 3 pages 

4 60

Petrarch to [?], n.p. (22 July 1795) 12 pages 

4 61

Petrarch to Laura, n.p. (26 July [1795]) 1 page 

4 62

Laura to Petrarch, Present (1 August 1795) 3 pages 

4 63

Petrarch to Laura, Present (6 August 1795) 3 pages 

4 64

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., (8 August 1795) 3 pages plus fragment 

4 65

Petrarch to Laura, Present/Wilmington [Delaware] (14 August 1795) 3 pages 

4 66

Petrarch to [?], n.p. (14 August 1795) 3 pages 

4 67

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (24 August 1795) 4 pages 

4 68

Petrarch/J[oseph] B[ringhurst] to Laura [Debby Ferris], n.p. (23 August 1795) 1 page corr./1 page poetry 

4 69

Petrarch to Deborah Ferris, Philad[elphia] (25 August 1795) 4 pages 

4 70

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (26 August 1795) 3 pages 

4 71

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (26 August 1795) 3 pages 

4 72

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (26 August 1795) 2 pages 

4 73

Laura to [?], n.p. (27 August 1795) 4 pages 

4 74

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (28 August 1795) 4 pages 

4 75

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, Present (28 and 29 August 1795) 10 pages 

4 76

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (3 September 1795) 2 pages 

4 77

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, Philad[elphia] (4 September 1795) 7 pages, later gloss by D[ebby Ferris] B[ringhurst] 

4 78

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (4 September 1795) 3 pages 

4 79

[?] to [?], n.p. (9 September 1795) 4 pages 

4 80

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (23 September 1795) 3 pages 

4 81

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (24 September 1795) 3 pages 

4 82

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (24-25 September 1795) 10 pages 

4 83

Laura to Petrarch, n.p. (25 September 1794 (?)) 8 pages 

4 84

Petrarch to [?], n.p. (26 and 28 September 1795) 4 pages 

5 1

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., Wilmington (26 September 1795) 1 page 

5 2

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (27 September 1795) 7 pages 

5 3

[?] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (29-30 September 1795) 8 pages 

5 4

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (28-29 September 1795) 13 pages 

5 5

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (1 October 1795) 5 pages 

5 6

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (1 October 1795) 5 pages 

5 7

[?] to [?], n.p. (3 October 1795) 4 pages 

5 8

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (4 October 1795) 4 pages 

5 9

Petrarch to Debby Ferris, n.p. (2 October 1795) 6 pages 

5 10

Petrarch to [?], n.p. (5 October 1795) 4 pages 

5 11

Laura to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., n.p. (7 October 1795) 1 page 

5 12

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.] to Debby Ferris (w. October 8, 1795) 

5 13

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.] to Laura [Debby Ferris], (w. October 28, 1795) 

5 14

Laura [Debby Ferris] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., (w. November 13, 1795) 

5 15

Laura [Debby Ferris] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., (w. November 15, 1795) 

5 16

Laura [Debby Ferris] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., (w. November 16, 1795) 

5 17

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.] to Debby Ferris, (w. November 16, 1795) 

5 18

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.] to Debby Ferris (w. November 16-18, 1795) 

5 19

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.] to Debby Ferris (w. November 18, 1795) 

5 20

Laura [Debby Ferris] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., (w. November 18, 1795) 

5 21

Joseph Bringhurst, Jr. to Debby Ferris (w. November 19, 1795) with response from D.F. 

5 22

Poetry: [Joseph Bringhurst] to [Debby Ferris] (Laura), Wilmington (November 28, 1795) 3 pages 

5 23

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.] to Debby Ferris (November 1795?) 

5 24

Laura [Debby Ferris] to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., (w. December 9, 1795) 

5 25

Petrarch [Joseph Bringhurst, Jr.] to Debby Ferris, (w. December 11, 1795) 

5 26

Petrarch to [?], Philadelphia ([?] 1795) 4 pages 

5 27

James Brown to Joseph Bringhurst, Jr., Philadelphia (January 1, 1796) 1 page 

5 28

Poetry: [Joseph Bringhurst] to Laura [Debby Ferris], n.p. (10 April 1798) 3 pages 

5 29

D[ebby Ferris] B[ringhurst] to [?], n.p. (April 11, 1806) 3 pages 

5 30

[Debby Ferris Bringhurst] to [?], n.p. (April 18, 1809) 6 pages 

5 31

[?] to Joseph Bringhurst, postmarked Philadelphia (23 March [?]), cover only 

5 32

unsigned letter 

5 33

[Debby Ferris Bringhurst] to [?] n.p. (July 11, 1816) 2 pages 

5 34

[floor plans?] 

5 35

"To the Memory of George Dillwyn" copied by Rachel Hayes for D[ebby Ferris] B[ringhurst] (July 28, 1821) 2 pages 

5 36

Genealogy