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William A. Ingram diary of European travel


Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the University of Delaware Library 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

William A. Ingram was a young American who spent a winter in Heidelberg, Germany, before traveling with other young men through Europe from March 15 through June 27, 1853. William Ingram's name, as has been best determined from his handwriting, is taken from the paper label on the cover of this diary. The dating of the diary to 1853 is based on the April 23 entry noting thirty years of repair since the fire at San Paolo Fuori le Mura which occurred in 1823.

Biographical information derived from the collection. Roma: San Paolo Fuori le Mura, Arounder Journal. Vrway International Ltd. London. (accessed June 22, 2007).

This travel diary documents the mid-nineteenth-century European excursion of American William A. Ingram. Along with several other young male friends, he visited Germany, Switzerland, France, Italy, and Austria.

After an apparent season of study in Heidelberg, William A. Ingram and his friend to whom he refers as Paul P.V. traveled in "bachelor society" with other young male companions through Germany, Switzerland, and France. They had an extended visit in Italy, after which they returned via Austria to Germany. They spent a month in Rome (including Holy Week at the Vatican) with other stops in major cities such as Naples, Florence, Bologna, Padua, and Venice. Ingram included detailed observations of landscapes, churches, scenic ruins, art galleries, and museums, as well as citizens of each locale. He visited artists and studios as well as the grave of Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792-1822; see entry for April 17). Ingram regularly mentioned carriages, steamers, and other methods of transportation in his travel description.

The volume comprises about 300 pages; approximately seventy-eight leaves were filled with diary entries from March 15 until June 27. Many cities and areas were mentioned, including the following: Ladenburg, Basel, Berne, Geneva, Lyons, Avignon, Arles, Marseilles, Genoa, Leghorn, Pisa, Rome, Naples, Florence, Bologna, Ferrara, Padua, Venice, Trieste, Adelsberg, Vienna, Passau, Regensberg, Nurnberg, and Augsburg.

Three leaves of text, beginning upside-down at the back of the volume, are filled with a character sketch of an American medical student, "Strachan" of Virginia. Nine loose items are laid in, including two French calling cards, brief itineraries, laundry lists with prices, and a partial tabulation of expenses.

The manuscript is bound in embossed paper-covered boards. The front cover, first signature, and several pages are loose. The front cover bears a paper label which reads, "Wm. A. Ingram’s Diary of European travel." The entries were all written in ink in a single hand.

University of Delaware. Library.

Self works : diaries, scrapbooks, and other autobiographical efforts : catalog of an exhibition, August 19, 1997-December 18, 1997 : guide to selected sources. Newark, Del. : Special Collections, Hugh M. Morris Library, University of Delaware Library, 1997.

  1. Item 0115: Shelved in SPEC MSS 0097


Processed and encoded by Lynda Gillow, June 2007. Updated by E. Evan Echols, July 2015.

University of Delaware Library Special Collections
Finding Aid Author
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
Finding Aid Date
2007 June 27
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections, University of Delaware Library,

Collection Inventory

William A. Ingram diary of European travel, circa 1853. 1 volume.
Item 0115
Physical Description

1 volume

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