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Joseph Reade Letters


Held at: Princeton University Library: Manuscripts Division [Contact Us]

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Princeton University Library: Manuscripts Division. 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

Reade, Joseph, 1780-1809.

Joseph Reade graduated from the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) with the Class of 1796. After college, he joined his father's freighting business, where he made several trips abroad. In 1809 Reade was on a trip to Antigua when he became ill and died.

The collection consists of nineteen autograph letters sent by Joseph Reade to his father, John Reade, while Joseph was a student at the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University.) The letters provide a very brief picture of the life of a Princeton student in the late eighteenth century as Reade does not elaborate on his education in Princeton. In his early letters, Reade writes about decorating his college room, buying new shoes, the yellow fever breakout in New York in 1795, his curriculum, the difficulty of his classes and exams, the poor quality of the food on campus, and the Trustees of the College raising tuition several times; he asks his father for money, and promises not to associate with the wrong crowds and to focus on his school work. Reade describes a fire that broke out on December 5, 1795, which burned the roof of the Princeton Academy. At the time the College of New Jersey had only two faculty members, one of them its president Samuel Stanhope Smith, who was also one of Reade's teachers mentioned in his letters. Also included is a letter from Reade to his sister, Kate (Mrs. Nicholas W. Stuyvesant of New York), dated July 29, 1795.

The collection is organized by accession number.

The collection was formed as a result of a Departmental practice of combining into one collection material of various accessions relating to a particular person, family, or subject.

Nineteen letters to his father, purchased on November 23, 1953.

Letter to his sister Kate, gift of Rich Grunder-Brooks, via Alfred L. Bush, Curator, Western Americana Collection, Princeton University Library, on March 22, 1988 (AM88-68, 15031).

This collection was processed by Dina Britain in 2008. Finding aid written in 2008. Folder Inventory added by Hilde Creager (2015) in 2012.

No appraisal information is available.

Manuscripts Division
Finding Aid Date
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. No further photoduplication of copies of material in the collection can be made when Princeton University Library does not own the original. Inquiries regarding publishing material from the collection should be directed to RBSC Public Services staff through the Ask Us! form. The library has no information on the status of literary rights in the collection and researchers are responsible for determining any questions of copyright.

Collection Inventory

Letter partly signed by Joseph Reade to his sister Kate sent from Princeton, 1792 July 29. 1 folder.
Physical Description

1 folder

9 Letters from Joseph Reade to his father, 1795 March-December. 1 folder.
Physical Description

1 folder

11 Letters from Joseph Reade to his father, 1796 January-August. 1 folder.
Physical Description

1 folder

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