Abbildungen der Seite
PDF
EPUB
[ocr errors]

career of St. John de Crèvec@ur traced out; and in this work
he engaged the talents and research of one of the Columbia
students, Miss Julia Post Mitchell, a relative of the astronomer,
Maria Mitchell, who bas now for some years been investigating
St. John's adventures and writings, both in America and in
Europe; making many discoveries, some of which I have com-
municated to the Society. Lately she has visited the site of
St. John's farm in Blooming-Grove, Orange County, N. Y., and
has found, as she believes, the very house (modernized) of
which a sketch was given, from the Farmer's own drawing, in
our Proceedings for 1906. The identification seems to be
complete. She has examined the deeds of purchase and
sale, and finds that he bought the farm under the name of
Hector St. John, though perfectly aware that was not the
name by which he was baptized, married, and finally buried
in his native France. His marriage certificate, signed by
J. P. Tétard, a Calvinist pastor in the Province of New York,
gives him his baptismal name, but adds, “commonly called
Mr. St. John." His three children were all born at his
Pine Hill farm, and his house (now called “Elmcote") was
built by himself, near the ancient Crommelin house, - the
first one erected in that region, in 1716. Crommelin him-
self was a Frenchman born, as so many of the Huguenot
ancestors of New York citizens were. Tétard was afterwards
French instructor in Columbia College, after it dropped the
name of "King's."

Miss Mitchell will include in her book about St. John
many facts not before known, or forgotten, and will clear
up some of the mystery still attaching to his youthful career,
and to his brief visit to Ireland and England in 1780-81.
From the latter date the course of his life, up to his death
in 1813, is fairly well known, though somewhat disguised
by his efforts to conceal his exact residence during the worst
times of the French Revolution. The original of his letter
to President Süles of Yale, asking the freedom of the city
of New Haven for his titled French friends, and for Target
and Lacretelle, his literary sponsor in Paris, is among the
manuscripts of this Society, and may be reproduced, to show
St. John's singular use of English and orthography, while
French Consul at New York. This document was given
to the Society about a century ago, by the son-in-law of

[ocr errors]

1

[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][ocr errors][ocr errors]
[ocr errors][merged small][merged small][merged small]

1

Dr. Stiles, Caleb Gannett, but seems to have been unknown to Mr. Winthrop, when he wrote his brief paper on St. John in 1874.

Lately a new source of information about St. John has been accidentally opened to American inquirers by a letter from M. Henri Cluzant, a landed proprietor in the Gironde, living at the Château de Cabazac but owning some share, now or formerly, in the old estate of Cagny, near Caen in Normandy, the province of St. John's birth. William Alexander, the older son of St. John, had married in 1798 Narcisse de Mesnage de Cagny, and after his early death his widow resided in the family home at Cagny, where her father-in-law often visited her. He seems to have sent her from Munich, where he long resided, or to bave left in her care, many of his manuscripts, drawings and engravings, which were never reclaimed by his descendants now living in Paris, but remained in the old château. By descent from a sister of Mme. Ally de Crèvecæur (apparently), M. Cluzant, in no way related to the Crèveceurs, has come into possession of these documents, which, in a letter to the librarian of Harvard University, he seemed to offer to Americans who might be interested in the residence and researches of St. John de Crèvecoeur. This letter being referred to me, I saw at once the value of this find, and suggested to Professor Trent that it might be acquired for Columbia University. He has since been corresponding, as I have, with M. Cluzant, in the hope that these papers and sketches may come to America.

Altogether the way seems open for a full account of one of the most interesting of the many Frenchmen who have temporarily resided in this country. His correspondence, which was incessant and gossiping, as well as concerned with important matters, social and historical, still exists in France and this country, and throws much light on a period of colonial history wherein we were not well informed before. His relation to the Revolutionary founders of our nation, Franklin, Washington, Jefferson, Madison, the Livingstons, etc., is a feature of his life not sufficiently known as yet: and his earlier relations with the New York loyalists (of whom for some years he seems to have been one) add to the value of his writings. His disguises of name and date and residence seem to have been harmless, though vexatious to his readers, and his char

acter and experiences are worthy of the praise and the attention which they are again beginning to receive after the silence of nearly a century.

Remarks were made during the meeting by the PresidENT, and Messrs. FORD, RANTOUL, SANBORN, Davis and MEAD.

[ocr errors][ocr errors]

LIST OF DONORS TO THE LIBRARY.

UNITED STATES:

ILLINOIS Continued.

Springfield. UNITED STATES.

Illinois State Historical Library. Bureau of Education.

Illinois State Historical Society. Department of Interior.

Iowa. Department of State.

Cedar Rapids. Library of Congress.

Grand Lodge of Iowa. Smithsonian Institution.

Des Moines. War Department.

Iowa Geological Survey. CALIFORNIA.

Iowa City. Berkeley.

Iowa State Historical Society. University of California.

KANSAS. CONNECTICUT.

Topeka. State Library.

Kansas State Historical Society. Hartford.

MAINE. Connecticut Historical Society. Brunswick.

Hartford Theological Seminary. Bowdoin College.
Meriden.

Portland.
Journal of American History.

General Conference of CongregaMiddletown.

tional Churches in Maine. Berkeley Divinity School.

Maine Baptist Missionary ConNew Haven.

vention.
Society of Colonial Wars.

Maine Historical Society.
Yale University.

Waterville.
Norfolk.

Colby College.
Litchfield County University Club. MARYLAND.
DELAWARE.

Baltimore.
Wilmington,
Delaware Historical Society.

John F. Slater Fund.
DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA.

Johns Hopkins University. Public Library

Maryland Historical Society.
Washington,

Peabody Institute.
American Colonization Society. MASSACHUSETTS.
American Historical Association. Commonwealth of.
American Jewish Historical So Amherst.
ciety.

Amherst College.
Longfellow National Memorial As Andover,
sociation.

Andover Theological Seminary.
National Board of Trade.

Boston.
Society of Colonial Wars.

American Board of Commissioners FLORIDA.

for Foreign Missions. Jacksonville.

American Congregational AssociaFlorida Historical Society.

tion. GEORGIA.

American-Irish Historical Society. Savannah.

American Unitarian Association. Georgia Historical Society.

Bay State Historical League. Illinois.

Boston Athenæum. Chicago.

Boston Children's Aid Society. Chicago Historical Society.

Boston Children's Friend Society.

City of

il

MASSACHUSETTS, Boston Continued. MASSACHUSETTS - Continued.
Boston City Hospital.

Framingham.
Boston Cooperative Building Co. Town of.
Boston Globe.

Groton.
Boston Lying-in Hospital.

Town of.
Boston Protective Department.

Groton School.
Boston Public Library.

Ipswich
Boston Transit Commission.

Ipswich Historical Society.
Boston University.

Medford.
Boston Young Men's Christian As Medford Historical Society,
sociation.

Tufts College.
Bostonian Society.

Nantucket.
Bunker Hill Monument Associa Nantucket Historical Association.
tion.

Nantucket Maria Mitchell Associa-
Cambridge Bridge Commission.

tion.
Children's Hospital.

Natick.
Children's Mission.

Historical, Natural History, and
City of.

Library Society, South Natick.
Colonial Society of Massachusetts, New Bedford.
Farm and Traves School, Thomp Old Dartmouth Historical Society.
son's Island.

Newbury.
Free llospital for Women.

Historical Society of Old Newbury.
Good Government Association. Newburyport.
Grand Army of the Republic.

Towle Manufacturing Co.
Grand Lodge of Massachusetts. Newton.
Ilarvard Medical Alumni Associa-

City of.
tion.

Peabody.
House of the Good Samaritan.

Peabody Historical Society.
Massachusetts Association of the Pittsfield.
New Jerusalem Church.

Berkshire Historical and Scientific
Massachusetts College of Phar. Society
macy.

Salem.
Massachusetts Cremation Society. Essex Institute.
Massachusetts Forestry Associa. Merchants National Bank.
tion.

Sharon.
Massachusetts General Hospital. Sharon Historical Society.
Massachusetts Infant Asylum. Somerville.
Massachusetts Medical Society.

The Somerville Journal
Massachusetts Society for the Pre South Hadley.

vention of Cruelty to Animals. Mount Holyoke College.
Museum of Fine Arts.

Sutton.
New England Historic Genealogi. Town of.
cal Society.

Taunton.
Perkins Institute and Massachu Old Colony Historical Society.
setts School for the Blind.

Waltham.
Sons of the Revolution.

City of
Woman's Relief Corps.

Williamstown.
Brookline.

Williams College.
Brookline Historical Society. Wilmington,
Cambridge.

Town of.
Cambridge IIistorical Society.

Worcester.
Harvard College Library.

American Antiquarian Society.
Harvard Law School,

Worcester Board of Trade.
Harvard University.

Worcester Musical Festival Asso-
Mount Auburn Cemetery.

ciation.
Peabody Museum of American MICHIGAN.

Archaeology and Ethnology. Detroit.
Danvers.

Michigan Pioneer and Historical
Danvers llistorical Society.

Society.
Deerfield,

MINNESOTA.
Pocumtuck Valley Memorial As St. Paul.
sociation,

Minnesota Historical Society.

[ocr errors]
« ZurückWeiter »