Guide to the Manuscripts in the Eleutherian Mills Historical Library by Riggs
Guide to the Manuscripts in the Eleutherian Mills Historical Library by Riggs
Guide to the Manuscripts in the Eleutherian Mills Historical Library by Riggs
Guide to the Manuscripts in the Eleutherian Mills Historical Library by Riggs

Guide to the Manuscripts in the Eleutherian Mills Historical Library by Riggs

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Guide to the Manuscripts in the Eleutherian Mills Historical Library by Riggs
 
A Guide to the Manuscripts in the Eleutherian Mills Historical Library through the year 1965 by John Riggs Hard Cover 1970 1205 Pages
The Eleutherian Mills Historical Library of Greenville, Delaware, collects a broad spectrum of research materials to explain the contributions of the Middle Atlantic states to American economic, business, industrial, and technological history.
As part of the Eleutherian Mills-Hagley Foundation, a nonprofit, educational institution, the Library supports Foundation commitments to the development of the Hagley Museum and its interpretation of a national historic landmark, and to train graduate students in American history in cooperation with the University of Delaware. At the same time, the Library strives to attract an ever-widening circle of graduate and postgraduate researchers to use its resources. Therefore, the Library provides this Guide to Manuscripts to scholars as an introduction to its collections and as an incentive to visit and to conduct research in the many facets of history these papers invite.
This Guide, which describes the manuscripts accessioned through the end of 1965, reflects the first two-thirds of Library existence. Many of the Du Pont family papers described in the Guide by Dr. John Beverley Riggs, Curator of Manuscripts, were part of the original collection or collected shortly after the founding of the Longwood Library in mid-1955. The initial task for Dr. Riggs and his staff was to bring the 1,200,000 manuscript items under immediate control.
The pattern of this Guide reflects two early decisions. The first maintained the Longwood manuscripts of Pierre S. du Pont and the Winterthur manuscripts of Henry Francis du Pont as two distinct collections, although the papers of certain individuals were found in both. The second decision imposed subdivisions based on Du Pont family relationships. For researchers, the comprehensive index to the Guide draws like items together wherever historical accident has scattered them. Nevertheless, the genealogical subdivisions tend to emphasize an individual's family connections, rather than his role as inventor, entrepreneur, or industrialist.
The business history research potential of the collections was clear to the Library's first Director, Dr. Charles W. David, when he set its academic course. Although philosophes, diplomats, politicians, and military leaders were represented by significant bodies of materials, they were a minority mingling with powdermakers, chemists, businessmen, and financiers. Consequently, the major subject specialty of this institution became American economic history within the context of the Middle Atlantic states.
Collecting of non-Du Pont materials relevant to economic history went on simultaneously with the processing of the original Longwood manuscript collections. When new accumulations of books and manuscripts strained the facilities of the late P. S. du Pont's residence at Longwood, the Library was combined with the Hagley Museum library -- itself devoted to the interpretation of an industrial site occupied by a black powder manufactory and other waterpowered industries along Brandywine Creek in Delaware.
The 1961 merger of the Library into the Eleutherian Mills-Hagley Foundation and the move to new quarters in Delaware began a new era in the increase of manuscript and archival collections. From July, 1961, to December, 1965 (the cutoff date for the present Guide), another 1,200,000 manuscript items were accessioned. Many of these came from the Hagley Museum library. Transferred materials represent varied business and industrial activities in the Wilmington, Delaware, area; but the most extensive collection is the archives of the E. I. du Pont de Nemours & Co. , 18021902. Since 1961, intensive collecting has brought to the Library significant quantities of research materials on steel, chemical, textile, leather, and other area industries. In addition to its own manuscript collections, the Library has developed a union list of some 2,500 manuscript collections relevant to regional economic and industrial history that are held in repositories within an eighty mile radius of Wilmington, Delaware.
In the years following the cutoff date of December 31, 1965, 360 new accessions totalling nearly a million manuscript items have arrived at the Library. Since the Library is committed to collecting business records and other manuscript materials for the foreseeable future, these new research opportunities will be reported from time to time in supplements to this Guide.
Manuscripts at the Eleutherian Mills Historical Library are backed by an extensive reference collection of printed works. Acquisition of monographs, periodicals, encyclopedias, pamphlets, trade catalogues, government reports, pictures, and other printed materials has kept pace with the accumulation of manuscripts. As a result, the Library now has a collection on American economic, industrial, and technological history reaching close to 100,000 volumes in 60,000 titles. These book and other non-manuscript collections have supported almost seventy percent of all outside research conducted at the Library from 1965 to 1969.
Users of the Eleutherian Mills Historical Library -- whether visitors on the premises at Greenville, or correspondents from a distance -- will appreciate the work reflected in this Guide to Manuscripts. The detailed listings, biographical chronologies, the bibliographical data, and the comprehensive index create a research tool far beyond the scope of a typical guide. This accomplishment clearly reflects the years of planning and the years of active application to the task by the Curator of Manuscripts and his staff. I join Dr. Riggs in expressing appreciation for the hard work by members of his department staff and for help from many other quarters, especially the members of the Foundation Advisory Committee, during the years of preparation.
With the publication of this Guide, it is particularly appropriate to offer a special word of thanks to the Longwood Foundation which Pierre S. du Pont founded. The Longwood Foundation Trustees have supported the activities of the Library from its inception.

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