Main content

Daniel Branch collection


Held at: Bryn Mawr College [Contact Us]Bryn Mawr College Library, 101 N. Merion Avenue, Bryn Mawr 19010

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Bryn Mawr College. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Overview and metadata sections

Daniel Branch was a young man from Connecticut who had enlisted in the provincial army (American), which served mostly in a support capacity for the British regulars. Setting out for Lake George on June 7th, 1758, he arrived there some three weeks later, and was present at the disastrous British attack on Fort Ticonderoga on July 8th. Thereafter, he spent the remainder of his enlistment on the eastern shore of Lake George.

The Branch diary and Branch family correspondence houses personal materials related to Daniel Branch and his family. The collection, which ranges from 1758-1828, provides information into the personal experience of a soldier in the French and Indian wars, as well as the life of the Branch family in Connecticut and Vermont.

The collection consists of the 18-page 1758 diary of Daniel Branch and 3 family letters from 1814-1828, totaling five pages.

Branch's diary details his participation in the French and Indian wars, campaign of 1758 at Fort Ticonderoga on Lake Champlain. It describes the daily life of a provincial soldier: the never-ending guard duties; the encounters with the enemy; the disciplining of the troops through executions and floggings; the fatigue duties—felling of trees, building breastworks, moving supplies; his own persistent dysentery; the deaths of fellow soldiers through disease and accident; and the notices of texts of sermons he heard. The Branch family correspondence consists of detailed accounts of deaths, comings and goings of relatives and friends, and plans for the future. The whole is suffused with the profoundly religious conception of the world that prevailed in the new country at that time.

The Branch family correspondence is primarily personal and of interest to the family. However, Branch's diary provides great clarity into the daily life of a soldier serving in an American provincial army during the French and Indian wars, and would be of use to any researcher studying these experiences: brushes with disease, discipline within the army, encounters with the enemy, etc.

The Branch diary and Branch family correspondence was a gift to Bryn Mawr College from Caroline Smith Rittenhouse '52 and James A. Rittenhouse, given on December 5th, 1986.

Bryn Mawr College
Finding Aid Author
?, Cassidy Gruber Baruth
Finding Aid Date
March 3, 2017
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17)

Collection Inventory

Print, Suggest