Special Collections

This area contains 182 manuscript collections, comprising nearly 1800 linear feet of material, plus a number of individual manuscript items. Each of these collections is described in brief on ODYsseus the Libraries’ online catalog. Additionally, many have detailed finding aids, searchable here. Others will be added to this list as they are completed. If you find you have questions about the collections after you have read the catalog entries or finding aids, please contact us.

Mark McMurray, Curator of Special Collections and University Archivist Voice: (315) 229-5476 e-mail: mcm@stlawu.edu

Paul Haggett, Assistant to the Archivist Voice: (315) 229-5956 e-mail: phaggett@stlawu.edu

  • Collection Number: 101
    Collection Length: 0.25ft
    Period: 1840 to 1876

    Joshua Britton was born in Westmorland, NH in 1803 and died at Fork Atkinson, WI in 1878. He was ordained as a Universalist Minister in 1832 and served as pastor in Dudley, MA; Stoddard, NH; Bradford, VT and Fort Atkinson, WI. The collection consists of Universalist pamphlets and clippings as well as letters to Britton from the 1840's and the 1850's.

  • Collection Number: 166
    Collection Length: 0.50ft
    Period: 1850 to 1950

    An example of a Buddist religious text from Burma, Southeast Asia. This collection consists of a total of 12 leaves of Burmese Kammavaca manuscript on gilt palm leaves or lacquered cloth. 10 of the manuscript pages have a cover of lacquered boards, representing a complete text used in a Buddist ordination ritual.

  • Collection Number: 129
    Collection Length: 0.50ft
    Period: 1859 to 1883

    Born in Pierrepont, New York, in 1839, Orlando Knapp moved to Indiana, sometime around 1859, where he met and married Armina Cordelia Edmonds. They had two children before she died in 1862. At this point Orlando enlisted in the 12th Regiment Indiana Volunteer Infantry. While away from home he wrote to his sister, Charlotte, who lived in Pierrepont. After the war Orlando became a traveling salesman, working in Indiana, New Hampshire eventually settling in Howard City, Michigan. In the mid 1870's he ran a grocery store with his son James. He died in Howard City in 1917.

    Finding Aid: MSS129fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 152
    Collection Length: 0.25ft
    Period: 1895

    Leroy Wilson Coons (187?-1948) received his Bachelors of Divinity from St. Lawrence University in 1895. He married Elsie Loraine Thomas, (SLU n 1900) in the Canton Universalist Church in 1897. Wilson went on to be a leader in churches throughout New England. He pastored the Universalist church in Winthrop, NY until his retirement in 1942. This collection consists of two series of photo prints. Series 1 are photographs of various rural views in the North Country taken by Leroy Wilson Coons (SLU Div. '95). Series 2 are photographs of the St.

    Finding Aid: MSS152fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 173
    Collection Length: 16.25ft
    Period: 1840 to 1962

    John Stebbins Lee (1820-1902) was born in Vernon, Vermont and was educated at Amherst College, graduating in 1841. He became a respected minister in the Universalist church and held teaching positions and pastorates in New Hampshire and Vermont. From 1858 to 1869, Lee taught Latin and Greek at St. Lawrence University, while also serving as the college's first President. After travelling through Europe and the Holy Land, Lee returned to SLU and taught at the Theological School for many years. He died in 1902 in Canton.

    Finding Aid: MSS173fa_0.pdf
  • Collection Number: 107
    Collection Length: 0.50ft
    Period: 1833

    Lewis County became a county March 28, 1805. Lewis County is bordered on the north by St. Lawrence County, on the south by Oneida County, and on the east by Herkimer County and on the west by Jefferson and Oswego Counties. The county has approximately 30 towns and villages with the county seat in Lowville. This collection consists of a 1833-1868 land ledger, a fair souvenir program (1935), and a 1949-1950 flyer on the highway department.

    Finding Aid: MSS107fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 114
    Collection Length: 0.50ft
    Period: 1958 to 1966

    Log book of ships passing Massena, N.Y. on the Saint Lawrence Seaway kept by the Cook family from 1958-1966. Includes name of each ship, length, dates and direction.

  • Collection Number: 73
    Collection Length: 0.25ft
    Period: 1798 to 1892

    Lucia Millham (Mrs. Newton Millham) from Glen Cove, New York was the former Lucia Pink of Kew Gardens. In 1932 she graduated from St. Lawrence University, Canton, New York. This unprocessed collection consists of correspondence dating from 1798 until 1892, with most letters are from the Hazelton (Haselton) family. Other items included are a stockholder meeting notice of the Potsdam and Watertown Railroad Company (1853), pamphlet on Hon. William Kelly (Democratic Candidate for Governor of State of New York), deed between Louisa Olin and S. W.

    Finding Aid: MSS73fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 24
    Collection Length: 4.00ft
    Period: 1893 to 1953

    Diaries of Mabel S. Laidlaw and her daughter Helena Laidlaw Livermore of Canton, St. Lawrence County, N.Y. Collection consists of diaries kept by a wife and a daughter of a Doctor in Canton, N.Y., and provides a daily log of domestic life in the first part of the century. Other items include automobile records, autograph books, scrapbooks, photographs, clippings, correspondence and microfilm of diaries.

    The image at left comes from Mrs. Laidlaw's scapbook.

    Finding Aid: MSS24fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 26
    Collection Length: 0.75ft
    Period: 1899 to 1917

    The diaries for 1901 and 1902 have been published as: Dear home Mabel Lila Wait was born in Canton, N.Y. on October 2, 1876. After her parents death she managed the family farm alone until she married Fred Roberts in 1901. Mabel and Fred continued to live on the Wait farm throughout their lives. They had one daughter, Gladys, born in 1908. In addition to doing farm work, Fred taught school in the Brick Chapel district. They both attended Grange functions in Crary Mills, and Mabel was active in the Presbyterian Ladies' Aid Society at Brick Chapel.

    Finding Aid: MSS26fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 117
    Collection Length: 0.25ft
    Period: 1829 to 1868

    Two account books for the town of Madrid, N.Y. Town Supervisor's account book 1829-1868 and "Book of public land of the town of Madrid", 1840-1859. Both contain names of individuals, dates, and amounts paid.

  • Collection Number: 99
    Collection Length: 0.75ft
    Period: 1951 to 1986

    Maitland C. De Sormo was born August 26, 1906 in Canton, N.Y., was educated in Malone, N.Y., Hamilton College, New York University and Columbia University. He was a high school teacher for almost 40 years. He was the owner of Adirondack Yesteryears in Saranac Lake and was the author/editor of many articles and books on the Adirondacks. Maitland C. De Sormo died January 24, 1993 in Saranac Lake, N.Y. The collection consists of 117 letters from various historians (Paul Jamieson and Atwood Manley), the bulk of the correspondence is from individuals at St. Lawrence University in Canton, N.Y.

    Finding Aid: MSS99fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 150
    Collection Length: 0.75ft
    Period:

    Malcolm McCormick, born in Gouverneur, NY to parents James F (1889-1978) and Eula M. Mckenney McCormick (1892-1979) studied the arts and dance. Malcolm, a 1945 graduate from Canton High School was the soloist(lead dancer) at the Metropolitan Opera Company in New York City from 1951-1959. He returned to northern New York after teaching in the department of dance and theater at UCLA. Malcolm brought with him an interest in the founding of Canton, NY and his father's alma mater, St. Lawrence University.

    Finding Aid: MSS150fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 17
    Collection Length: 1.25ft
    Period: 1830 to 1903

    The Man brothers, Alric and Dr Albon, moved to Westville, Franklin County, New York from Addison, Vermont in 1803. Albon had two sons; Buel and Ebenezer. Ebenezer Man was on the first Board of Commissioners of the Water Works, at the time of the Salmon River development, and land agent for Edward Ellice of London who owned large parcels of land around Malone. The papers are closely connected with the Parish-Rosseel collection (MSS. COLL. NO. 005) as Joseph Rosseel, land agent for David Parish, was the general agent for Edward Ellice.

    Finding Aid: MSS17fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 49
    Collection Length: 0.25ft
    Period: 1936 to 1972

    Marianne Craig Moore, American Poet, was born November 15, 1887 in Missouri and died February 5, 1972 in Brooklyn, NY. Miss Moore graduated from Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania in 1909. She taught school at the United States Indian School in Carlisle, Pa., was a secretary to a girls school, 1921-1925 was an assistant librarian at the Hudson Park Branch of the New York Public Library, and from 1926-1929 edited the literary magazine "The Dial". Miss Moore was the recipient of many awards including the Bollingen Prize in Poetry, the National Book Award for Poetry and the Pulitzer Prize.

    Finding Aid: MSS49fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 50
    Collection Length: 5.50ft
    Period: 1882 to 1959

    Franklin D. Roosevelt, 32nd President of the United States, was born in Hyde Park, New York on January 30, 1882 and died April 12, 1945 in Warm Springs, Georgia. He was educated at Groton in Massachusetts, received a B.A. in history from Harvard in 1903, and studied law at Columbia University. He married Anna Eleanor Roosevelt in 1905 and they had six children. He was Governor of New York in 1928 and became President in 1932 until his death in 1945. The Franklin D. Roosevelt collection was donated to St. Lawrence University in February 1965 by Dr. Harold T.

    Finding Aid: MSS50fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 48
    Collection Length: 2.70ft
    Period: 1845 to 1928

    Orrin E. Martin was born December 22, 1847 in Westville, Franklin County, New York. He was the son of Hollis and Selina Martin. He married Mary J. Butler on February 15, 1876 and had three children; Arthur H., Hollis W., and Edith L. During his life he owned and operated a pulp mill near Norwood. In 1877, he and his father operated a wagon hub business in Norwood and in 1880 he moved to Ogdensburg and established a hub business of his own. In 1910 he and his sons established the Martin Pulp and Paper Company in Norwood of which he was president at the time of his death on February 8, 1923.

    Finding Aid: MSS48fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 153
    Collection Length:
    Period: 1968

    Martin Luther King Jr. was a Baptist minister and an iconic figure in the Civil Rights movement in the 1950s and 60s. Beginning with the 1955 as a leader of the Mongomery, Alabama bus boycott and culminating with his assassination in Memphis, Tennessee in 1968, Dr. King was both a figurehead and a foot soldier in the struggle for equal rights for black Americans. His most famous speech was his "I Have a Dream" speech, given before hundreds of thousands of marchers on the National Mall in Washington, DC.

  • Collection Number: 161
    Collection Length: 3.00ft
    Period: 1810 to 1985

    Mary H. Smallman (1919-2009) was daughter of Doris Jones Hadlock (1896-2000) and Perry Hadlock (1899-1983). Well known for her preservation work in the history of northern New York, she served as St. Lawrence County Historian from 1965 to 1981. Mary was also the town historian for the Town of Hermon, NY. After her first marriage ended in 1951, Mary lived with her parents in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil and later moved to Ogdensburg, NY in 1960. Along with her late husband Walter, Mary dedicated her life to genealogical research.

    Finding Aid: MSS161fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 98
    Collection Length: 28.00ft
    Period: 1849 to 1996

    Karl M. Mayhew Jr. was proprietor of Mayhew Wholesale Candy and Tobacco Company in Canton for many years. He was born in Ridgetown, Ontario, moved to Canton as a young boy, graduated from Canton High School in 1934 and St. Lawrence University in 1938. During World War II Mayhew served with the 95th Division, serving in France, Germany and England. Following the war, Mr. Mayhew joined his father’s candy and tobacco business. He married Bette Limpert Mayhew in 1946. He died in 1994. While in business, Mr.

    Finding Aid: View
  • Collection Number: 27
    Collection Length: 0.25ft
    Period: 1868 to 1875

    Diaries of M. L. Howard of Pierrepont, St. Lawrence County, N.Y. The collection consists of two diaries about farm life and logging in St. Lawrence County during the latter half of the nineteenth century.

    Finding Aid: MSS27fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 183
    Collection Length: 6.00ft
    Period: 1968 to 1975
    Cousino Vietnam War Dioramas Collection

    Michael D. Cousino was born in Gouverneur, New York in 1947.  He served in the U.S. Marine Corps’ I Corps in Northern Vietnam from 1968 to ’69, when he was wounded in battle.  After his discharge from the service and stints in physical rehabilitation, Cousino lived in the southern U.S.

    Finding Aid: MSS 183fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 97
    Collection Length:
    Period:
    Finding Aid: MSS97fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 75
    Collection Length: 0.40ft
    Period: 1862 to 1945

    This unprocessed collection consists of primarily the correspondence between William Murray to his wife Beatrice (Fulton of New York City) during World War II. Also included is a Civil War Diary of a Lewis Murray, miscellaneous items (dog tags, military buttons, bracelet, etc) of William and Mary's as well as a notebook William kept while in the Armored Force School, and material while he was in Officer Candidate School in Fort Knox, Kentucky. St. Lawrence University received this collection from Roger Duvall, heir of Murray family, of Ogdensburg, New York in April, 1998.

    Finding Aid: MSS75fa_0.pdf
  • Collection Number: 47
    Collection Length: 0.40ft
    Period: 1952 to 1970

    The collection consists of photographs of African pottery making, post cards of African Art, broadsides and articles on the American Artist Leonard Baskin.

    Finding Aid: MSS47fa_0.pdf
  • Collection Number: 171
    Collection Length: 0.40ft
    Period: 1979 to 1990

    The Natural Farmers Association (later, Co-operative) of the St. Lawrence Valley formed in late 1977 as the result of a number of organizational meetings among small farmers, gardeners and homesteaders in St. Lawrence County. The group’s aims were to foster and promote natural, organic and alternative farming, to promote a local food economy and act as a support system to small rural farmers and homesteaders. Almost immediately it became apparent that a major focus of the group would be direct marketing of local produce.

    Finding Aid: MSS171fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 33
    Collection Length: 0.25ft
    Period: 1933 to 1938

    The collection was donated to St. Lawrence University library by Dr. Mary Saleski, a member of the Modern Languages Department. The common word "Nazi" is a contraction of the German word Nationalsozialismus, or National Socialism, a political movement that emerged after W.W.I. The party was founded in 1920 and led almost from the outset by Adolph Hitler. In 1933 the party gained control of the German state and established a dictatorship, embarking on a program of domestic reconstruction and foreign conquest that culminated in W.W.II.

    Finding Aid: MSS33fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 21
    Collection Length: 1.00ft
    Period: 1787 to 1928

    William S. Connolly of Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, was president of the New York and Ontario Power Company. The company applied in 1918 to the International Joint Commission for approval for "...the obstruction of the waters of the St. Lawrence River at Waddington, N.Y." Connolly was also a manager of the Bank of Montreal for 40 years (1890-1930) and spent most of his earnings to gain control of the land in the area that he believed to be, because it was the narrowest part of the river, the logical spot for a power dam. The dam was never built in this location.

    Finding Aid: MSS21fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 28
    Collection Length: 0.25ft
    Period: 1797 to 1803

    These documents, written in French, concern land transactions in Castorland, N.Y.

    Finding Aid: MSS28fa.pdf
  • Collection Number: 30
    Collection Length: 5.25ft
    Period: 1867 to 1932

    The Noble family was from Gouverneur, New York (St. Lawrence County). Harvey H. Noble and Edna Wood Noble had three children: Katherine L. Noble, Robert N. Noble and Edward J. Noble (born August 8, 1882). Harvey ran a coal, wood and building supply business and served as an agent for the Rome and Watertown Railroad,. Robert attended Purdue University and studied engineering and Edward attended Yale. Katherine taught school in Weedsport and married Alger Conger.

    Finding Aid: MSS30fa.pdf

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