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  • Notes on the Manuscript Collection

    John B. Carney

    Published Date : December 1988
    Du Bois Papers
    MSS 21, 3 linear feet

    Coert du Bois, 1881-1960, was born at Hudson, New York, and educated at the Biltmore Forest School. He began his career in 1900 in the United States Forest Service and became an officer in the United States Army in 1917. In 1920 he joined the State Department Consular Service, holding several prominent positions until he retired in 1948. The du Bois papers were donated to the Society by Henry Hornblower III on May 26, 1981.

    The private and official papers, 1804-1961, mainly consist of notes, letters, and diaries, reflecting du Bois’s career in the United States Army as a lieutenant and Chief of Engineers with the 10th Engineers in France, 1917-1918; in the State Department as Consul to Naples, 1920, and to Port Said, 1922; as administrator in the Visa Office, Washington, D.C., 1924-1927; as Consul General in Batavia, Java, 1927-1930; as foreign service inspector in Naples, Italy, 1931-1937; as a member of the President’s Anglo-American Caribbean Commission, 1942-1944; and as a United States delegate to the United Nations Security Council’s Committee of Good Offices, Java, N.E. Indies, 1948.

    The private papers include correspondence between du Bois and his wife Margaret and some papers of his daughter Jane. There is also an incomplete manuscript of du Bois’s autobiography. The collection also includes personal photographs, 1897-1960, and sketches by du Bois, 1909-1955.

    The material is divided into three sub-groups: I -Private’ papers II - Official papers; III – Illustrations.

    Drinkwater Papers
    MSS 22, 460 items

    The Drinkwater Papers, dated 1814-1848, are primarily those of Theophilus Drinkwater, fl. 1814-1848, with some papers of his brother Allen Dninkwater, fl. 1819-1845. Both men were captains at North Yarmouth, Maine, during the second quarter of the 19th century. Both were engaged in coastwise trade, with some trade elsewhere, principally in the West Indies. The papers were donated to the Society March 2, 1981, by Mrs. Frank Rees, a descendant of Theophilus.

    Theophilus Dninkwater’s papers include business correspondence, letters to him from his brothers and sisters, and letters by him to his wife on household and business affairs.

    Following these are a group of ship papers. They are arranged by name of the vessel and then chronologically and consist primarily of bills and receipts.

    Allen Drinkwater, Jr.’s papers are arranged hike those of his brother. A small section of correspondence is followed by miscellaneous bills and receipts.

    The papers are divided into three sub-groups: I -Theophilus Dninkwater; sub-divided into two series: A - Business Correspondence, and B - Ship Papers, which includes six different vessels and a miscellaneous section; sub-group II - Allen Drinkwater, Jr., is subdivided into two series: A - Business Correspondence, and B - Bills and Receipts; and a third subgroup, III - Miscellaneous.

    Durfee Papers
    MSS 53, 83 items

    The Durfee Papers were given to the Society November 9, 1982 by Mr. Eric Rudd of Wellesley, Massachusetts. The material is generally legal documents from the activities of Thomas Durfee, 1706-1784, and his son Oliver, 1754-1798. The elder Durfee described himself at various times as a vintner and yeoman. Among the papers is a complaint against a neighbor for selling rum without a license in 1772 an a later itemization of property losses to British troops in 1776.

    Oliver Durfee’s manuscripts fall into two parts. The first contains private papers. The second contains warrants issued by Durfee as Justice of the Peace in Middletown, Rhode Island. There is a final section of material which is not attributable to either man but was probably kept by Oliver in his official capacity.

    Thomas was active in Portsmouth, Rhode Island, and Oliver was active in Middletown. Rhode Island.

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