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Robert Proud papers

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Held at: Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College [Contact Us]500 College Avenue, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania 19081

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore 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

Robert Proud was born in Yorkshire, England, in 1728 to Ann and William Proud. After completing his education, he immigrated to the Pennsylvania Colony, where he eventually secured a job at the Friends School in Philadelphia (today the Friends Select School). Proud lived on perpetually tenuous financial footing, relying on fellow Quakers for his room and board for around twenty years. He was considered a Loyalist during the American Revolution, which placed him in a perilous position in Philadelphia with its abundance of Patriots. However, he became a noteworty historian and writer, dubbed by some as "Pennsylvania's first historian."

This collection consists of Proud's observations and memoranda, Latin and Greek translations, poetry, copies of other documents, letters, and some of Proud's published work, along with some other documents.

This collection is arranged in folders and sub-folders by manuscript and/or subject.

Gift of Charles Jenkins, 1911-03-29 and 1913-06-30. One item purchased from Goodspeed, Jan. 1972.

Publisher
Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College
Finding Aid Author
Zoe Peyton Jones
Finding Aid Date
2018
Access Restrictions

This collection is available for research use.

Use Restrictions

Friends Historical Library believes all of the items in this collection to be in the Public Domain in the United States, and is not aware of any restrictions on their use. However, the user is responsible for making a final determination of copyright status before reproducing. See http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/NoC-US/1.0/.

Collection Inventory

1. Cursory observations and memoranda.
Box 1 Folder A
Scope and Contents

Contains: On Novelty; On Slavery in the United States; On the Population of the United States Number and increase of the inhabitants of Pennsylvania; Funerals at different times in Philadelphia; Of Friends Meetings in England and America; Friends Meetings in England and Mortality & numbers of Friends in Philadelphia; Funerals in Philadelphia; Probable number of Friends in Philadelphia and its Environs; Census of Philadelphia (from Paulson's Gazette, 1801); Extract from the annual Register for the year 1780; Population of the United States.

2. Memoranda R.P. Philadelphia, 1775-1806.
Box 1 Folder A
Scope and Contents

Contains: Latin translations in verse; "Forbidden Fruit;" "On the Violation of Civil Order...;" "On Wisdom;" "A Pastoral Elogium [?];" "To those who Enquire my Age;" "To Those who ask me about my Country;" "The Voice of Nature."

3. Quadam a R. Proudo, Philadelphia, obiter observata atque notata, 1747-1806.
Box 1 Folder A
Scope and Contents

Contains some of Proud's observations, along with extracts of Psalms, poetry, and other writings he found noteworthy. Includes "Of My Leaving Eng. and Arrival at Philada.;" "Of the Great Changes in Penna." - includes an original poem; "Part of a Letter to John Wilson lately arrived in Phila. - with Vorsos on my Ago;" "Reflections on Human Nature compared with that of a Fly which disturbed the author in a warm summer day."

4. De immortalitate animi and sundry other papers, 1776-1806.
Box 1 Folder A
Scope and Contents

Contains: Latin translations, poetry, letter extract, and other miscellaneous papers. Also includes "On the Violation of Public Order, especailly that of the Present Government of Penna., etc. by Usurpers. Written by R.P., Phila., Jan 30, 1776" - 30 lines of verse, with numerous notes; an original poem of 11 stanzas written when he first entertained thoughts of visiting America.

5. Autograph Manuscript "Pestilential Disorders", 1802.
Box 1 Folder A
Scope and Contents

Translated from Greek and Latin, also including "The Yellow Fever in Philadelphia in 1799." Heavy paper cover with copper-plate view "Rural Cottage." Includes "Notes on Part of a Publication in Fenno's Paper of May 1, 1799 upon the original of the Yellow Fever which appeared in the United States of America;" this referring chiefly to Philadelphia.

6. Memoranda Literaria, 1728-1779.
Box 1 Folder B
Scope and Contents

Contains a number of translations of documents that Robert Pround found interesting (mostly translated from Latin and French(. Among these is "Translation from the Latin of A Poem entitled Encomium Pensylvaniee, written and inscribed to James Logan, July 2 1728 by Thomas Makin..." (80 lines and some translation), and "Done on the banks of the Pensawkin, New West Jersey, 1779.

7. Excerpta poetis Latinis.
Box 1 Folder B
Scope and Contents

Contains Latin and Greek poetry, with some translations. Also includes a short original poem in English.

8. Memoranda.
Box 1 Folder B
Scope and Contents

The first leaf is missing, but it also includes "A Description of the Month of May" and "The Concert of Birds."

1. Sketches on public schools in Philadelphia, 1784-1788.
Box 1 Folder C
1a. Letter [?] to the Overseers of the Friends Public School in Philadelphia.
Box 1 Folder C
2. Memoranda, 1777-1803.
Box 1 Folder C
3. Short Observations, 1806-05.
Box 1 Folder C
4. Copies of some scattered papers.
Box 1 Folder C
Scope and Contents

Includes: Mute Comedy; Luck Cock's Sermon; John Richardson; A Letter of D. Hall to J. Wilson; Dream of ?; Postscript by R.Jordan

5. Copy of a paper...exhibiting the difference between the Society friends...&...German Baptists.
Box 1 Folder C
6. Copy from Benjamin Shoemaker, Germantown, 1806.
Box 1 Folder C
7. G. Keith's discipline improved, etc.
Box 1 Folder C
8. The payment of quit-rent.
Box 1 Folder C
9. Some strictures on three papers...against the Quakers Address.
Box 1 Folder C
10. Keith, George, transcribed by Robert Proud.
Box 1 Folder C
Scope and Contents

Contains: The Way of God (1668); Several Glorious Discoveries; Ten Articles of Faith.

11. G. Keith's articles of church fellowship.
Box 1 Folder C
Philadelphia's just Rights, with its internal Privileges and Property considered and asserted.
Box 1 Folder D
Scope and Contents

The original autograph manuscript. Also includes a biographical sketch of Robert Proud.

Notebook, 1754-1759.
Box 1 Folder E
Scope and Contents

Includes translations from Latin and Greek, original poetry, and a journal (in Latin) of his observations during a voyage from England to America in 1758-59.

Print, Suggest