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Bernard Barton letterbook


Held at: Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections [Contact Us]370 Lancaster Ave, Haverford, PA 19041

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections. 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

Bernard Barton (1784-1849) was a Quaker and poet. He was born on January 31, 1784, in Carlisle, England, the son of Quakers John and Maria (Done) Barton. His mother died shortly after his birth, and his father died when Barton was a child, leaving Barton to be raised by his father's second wife. Barton was educated at Friend's School, in Ipswich, and was apprenticed to Samuel Jesup in 1798. In 1807, Barton married Lucy Jesup, who died in 1808, while giving birth to the couple's only child, Lucy Barton. Barton then worked as a clerk for Messrs. Alexander's bank, where he worked for the remainder of his life.

In 1812, Barton published his first volume of poetry, 'Metrical Effusions,' and in 1818, he published the 'Convict's Appeal,' a protest against the criminal code of the time, written in verse. Later publications included 'Poems by an Amateur' (1818), 'Poems' (1820), 'Napoleon and other poems' (1822), and 'Verses on the death of P.B. Shelley' (1822). Barton became the friend and correspondent of many other writers and literary men, including Charles Lamb, Robert Southey, and William Wordsworth. He lodged with Anne Knight, a Quaker children's author, and provided her with poems for a few of her books.

Bernard Barton died February 19, 1849, in Woodbridge, England.

This collection is comprised of the single handwritten letterbook of Bernard Barton, as well as correspondence related to the history of the letterbook, dated 1942.

The letterbook contains personal correspondence from friends and family, and letters are often related to personal and family news, Barton's poetry and writings, and literature in general. Letter writers include Charles Lamb, Thomas Campbell, Elizabeth Fry, Charles Lloyd, Andrew Ritchie, Robert Southey, John Scott, Horatio Smith, Mary White, and John Chandler.

This scrapbook of letters was originally given to Anne Knight, a Quaker children's author and schoolmistress, by her lodger and friend, poet Bernard Barton. In latter years, Knight passed on the book to her pupil, Elizabeth Muskett, later Elizabeth Musket Morley (1824-1912), ancestor of a later president of Haverford College. Elizabeth passed the book on to her son, Frank Morley (1860-1937), who was a professor of mathematics at Haverford College. Following the death of Frank Morley, the book came into the hands of Christopher Morley, who placed it on indefinite loan with Haverford College Quaker and Special Collections, in 1942.

Correspondence related to the loan of the book is included in the collection.

The Bernard Barton letterbook was donated to Special Collections, Haverford College in 1942 by Christopher Morley.

Processed by Kara Flynn; completed August, 2015.

Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections
Finding Aid Author
Kara Flynn
Finding Aid Date
August, 2015
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research use.

Use Restrictions

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

Collection Inventory

Vol. 1, 1822-1837.
Volume 1

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