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Collections of college and personal papers, as well as a select number of individual documents, have been briefly described in entries available for browsing and searching on this site. All collection and document descriptions contain a representative image and a summary of the contents. 

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Legal Document, Authorization for Survey of Joseph Martin’s Land (Copy)
May 17, 1785

President of Pennsylvania John Dickinson authorizes John Lukens, Pennsylvania Surveyor General, to survey the land that Joseph Martin purchased in Northampton County. This document is a copy of the original, created in September 1820 by Surveyor...

Page from an Account Book of a Philadelphia Hatter
August - November 1785

This page from an account book of a hatter based in Philadelphia includes purchases by John Dickinson, John Montgomery, and Stephen Duncan.

Customs Declaration and Receipt Form Signed by Benjamin Rush
September 27, 1785

This customs declaration and receipt form, sworn and signed by Benjamin Rush, is for "One Box Books a present for Dickinson College."

Letter from John Armstrong Jr. to Secretary's Office
February 3, 1786

John Armstrong, Jr. writes to the Secretary's Office about the notice of sale of lands in the fourth district surveyed by Mr. Cunningham.  James Trimble signs the document for Armstrong.   Transcript included.

Location: I-SpahrB-undated-1

Subject: Land and Real Estate

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1780-1799

View Item: Letter from John Armstrong Jr. to Secretary's Office

Letters from John Dickinson to Benjamin Rush
1786-1803

John Dickinson writes ten letters to Benjamin Rush on a number of different topics, including the administrative affairs of Dickinson College, the state of political affairs in the United States, political philosophy, and the death of Dickinson's...

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Letter from George Thompson to Robert Magaw
March 10, 1786

George Thompson writes Robert Magaw about obtaining soldiers' pay owed from service during the Revolutionary War and discusses the conditions for selling "the plantation in my absence." Thompson explains how "we must charge the United States...

Promissory Note from Charles Biddle to the Trustees of Dickinson College
April 11, 1786

Vice-President of Pennsylvania Charles Biddle writes this note, which orders the Treasurer of Pennsylvania to pay £500 to the Trustees of Dickinson College. Benjamin Rush acknowledges the receipt of this note on behalf of the trustees.

Sworn Affidavit of Benjamin Rush about a Soldier's Pay Certificate
April 14, 1786

Benjamin Rush signs this affidavit that attests that Terrance Connel's payment certificate for service as a soldier is the property of Dickinson College. Connel's certificate, which is worth $80, is no. 72162 and dated July 1, 1784.

Sworn Affidavit of Benjamin Rush about a Soldier's Pay Certificate
April 17, 1786

Benjamin Rush signs this affidavit that attests that Joseph Fletcher's payment certificate for service as a soldier is the property of Dickinson College. Fletcher's certificate, which is worth $80, is no. 77580 and dated July 1, 1784.

Sworn Affidavit of Benjamin Rush about a Soldier's Pay Certificate
April 17, 1786

Benjamin Rush signs this affidavit that attests that Christopher Finnigan's payment certificate for service as a soldier is the property of Dickinson College. Finnigan's certificate is no. 75525 and dated July 1, 1784.

Sworn Affidavit of Benjamin Rush about a Soldier's Pay Certificate
April 17, 1786

Benjamin Rush signs this affidavit that attests that Arthur [Gillas'?] payment certificate for service as a soldier is the property of Dickinson College. Arthur's certificate is no. 77395 and dated July 1, 1784.

Sworn Affidavit of Benjamin Rush about a Soldier's Pay Certificate
April 17, 1786

Benjamin Rush signs this affidavit that attests that Michael Morrison's payment certificate for service as a soldier is the property of Dickinson College. Morrison's certificate, which is worth $80, is no. 73424 and dated July 1, 1784.

Sworn Affidavit of Benjamin Rush about a Soldier's Pay Certificate
April 17, 1786

Benjamin Rush signs this affidavit that attests that William Ford's payment certificate for service as a soldier is the property of Dickinson College. Ford's certificate, which is worth $80, is no. 77369 and dated July 1, 1784.

Letter from James Ross to William Young
April 26, 1786

James Ross writes William Young, a bookseller and printer in Philadelphia, regarding the publication of books on grammar. Ross, a Professor of Greek and Latin at Dickinson, offers edits and improvements to Young's "edition of the rudiments, now...

Location: MC 2001.5, B1, F12

Subject: Business and Industry, Education, Literary Pursuits

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1780-1799

View Item: Letter from James Ross to William Young

Sworn Affidavit of Benjamin Rush about a Soldier's Pay Certificate
May 12, 1786

Benjamin Rush signs this affidavit that attests that Albion Guest's payment certificate for service as a soldier is the property of Dickinson College. Guest's certificate, which is worth $44, is no. 74942 and dated July 1, 1784.

Letter from James Wilson to William Bingham
May 30, 1786

James Wilson invites William Bingham to spend an hour the following evening visiting with him.

Location: I-Friends-1975-26

Subject: Personal and Family Life

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1780-1799

View Item: Letter from James Wilson to William Bingham

Letter from Joseph Priestley to Sir Charles Blagden
November 20, 1786

Joseph Priestley writes Sir Charles Blagden, the Secretary of the Royal Society, and asks him to “lay before the Royal Society Mr. [Abraham] Bennet's account of his Electrometer.” Priestley explains that “the value” of Bennet's electrometer “...

Location: I-RichardsonD-1992-3

Subject: Science and Technology

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1780-1799

View Item: Letter from Joseph Priestley to Sir Charles Blagden

Letter from John Dickinson to Robert Magaw
December 9, 1786

John Dickinson writes Robert Magaw and asks him to conduct a "strict Enquiry" into "a [mortgage] by James Wilson Esquire on my Land near Carlisle." Transcript included.

Letter from John Dickinson to Robert Magaw
January 15, 1787

John Dickinson asks Robert Magaw to have representatives of George Stevenson search for a particular survey that might be among his papers. If they find it, Dickinson requests that they "send it to the survey or general's office." Transcript...

Location: I-ValeM-1947-71

Subject: Land and Real Estate, Legal Affairs

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1780-1799

View Item: Letter from John Dickinson to Robert Magaw

Address after a Vacation by Charles Nisbet
May 13, 1787

President Charles Nisbet delivers this address to students after a "late recess & intermission" on May 13, 1787. John Young, a member of the Class of 1788, transcribed the address. Transcript included.

Letter from John Erskine to Charles Nisbet
May 23, 1787

John Erskine writes to Dickinson College President Charles Nisbet with news of home and a list of books that he will send for "your College library." Erskine also mentions a letter from Dr. Benjamin Rush, in which Rush notes that the College "was...

Letter from John Dickinson to Jasper Yates
June 27, 1787

John Dickinson writes to Jasper Yates regarding financial issues and encloses copies of two bonds. Dickinson expresses his wish "to have the debt perfectly secured as soon as possible," and asks for advice on the best way to proceed with these...

Location: MC 2001.13, B1, F3

Subject: Economics and Finance, Legal Affairs

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1780-1799

View Item: Letter from John Dickinson to Jasper Yates

Letter from William Irvine to Robert Magaw
July 28, 1787

William Irvine writes to Robert Magaw that Dickinson College Trustees' memorial to Congress was favorably reported from committee. Irvine also notes that he has advised Senator William Grayson to send his nephew, a Mr. Orr, to Dickinson....

Letter from Benjamin Rush to Julia Stockton Rush
August 26, 1787

Benjamin Rush writes to his wife, Julia Stockton Rush, regarding poetry, the division of land, and his medical essays. Transcript included.

Letter from John Dickinson to Robert Magaw
September 4, 1787

John Dickinson writes to Robert Magaw regarding rent due from Dickinson's tenant, Paul Randolph. Transcript included.

Location: I-Original-1787-1

Subject: Economics and Finance, Land and Real Estate

Format: Letters/Correspondence

Time Period: 1780-1799

View Item: Letter from John Dickinson to Robert Magaw

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