Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
Charles Russell Codman Journal, 1852-1853

Finding aid created by
C. D. F., October 1993

Summary Information
Title: Charles Russell Codman journal
Creator: Codman, Charles Russell, 1829-1918
Inclusive dates: 1852-1853
Extent: 295 pages
Abstract:
In October of 1852 Charles Russell Codman, a wealthy and well educated young man, started a year-long tour of Europe. The journal he kept while on tour records his experiences and attitudes.

Language: The material is in English
Repository: William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
Phone: 734-764-2347
Web Site: www.clements.umich.edu


Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

1990. M-2572b.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.

Copyright:

No copyright restrictions.

Preferred Citation:

Charles Russell Codman journal, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


Biography

The privileged son of an immensely wealthy mercantile family from Boston, Charles Russell Codman was born in Paris on October 28th, 1829. From an early education with private tutors through his attendance at Harvard law school, from which he graduated in 1852, Codman traveled in elite social and economic circles. Like many of the sons of the upper crust, it was de rigeur that he take a grand tour of Europe following graduation. From October, 1852, through September, 1853, he spent nearly a full year traveling through Britain, France, Italy, and Germany, with trips through Austria, Switzerland and the Low Countries, imbibing the culture, seeing the sights, and improving his mind.

After returning from Europe, Codman practiced law for only a short while, turning instead to the management of his father's property and affairs. He also devoted a great deal of time and energy to public service. During the Civil War, he raised the 45th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment, serving as its colonel from 1862 through 1864. He held political office several times, serving as a member of the Boston school commission in 1861-62, as a member of the Massachusetts state Senate, 1864-66, and as a member of the state House of Representatives, 1872-76, during which time he was Chairman of the Judiciary Committee. Codman opposed James G. Blaine's nomination as the Republican candidate for the Presidency in 1884, and became an ardent supporter of the Mugwump faction. Outside of his political life, Codman was elected as an overseer of Harvard College in 1878, a position which he held for 9 years. In his later years he served as president or committee member for various organizations in and around Boston until his death on October 5th, 1918. He left his widow, Lucy Lyman Paine Codman, and 9 children.


Collection Scope and Content Note

After graduating from Harvard, Charles Russell Codman went on a year-long tour of Europe. The true-bred son of the Back Bay elite, the journal he kept while on tour records his experiences and descriptions of what he saw and did along the way, but equally important, provide an interesting insight into Codman's mind set and the attitudes of an American aristocrat acquiring culture in the old world.

The diary is exceptionally well written throughout, as might be expected from such a highly educated young man. Particularly interesting are Codman's comments on Westminster Abbey, the Tower of London, the zoological gardens in London and the palace at Versailles and the Louvre in Paris. Also are included brief but often detailed descriptions of the countryside through which he passed en route.

Subject Terms

    Subjects:
    • Scotland--Description and travel.
    • Germany--Description and travel.
    • France--Description and travel.
    • Italy--Description and travel.
    • Switzerland--Description and travel.
    • England--Description and travel.
    Contents List
       Container / Location    Title
    Volume   1  
    Charles Russell Codman journal,  1852 October 6–1853 September 20 [series]:
    Additional Descriptive Data
    Partial Subject Index
    Aberdeen (Scotland)--Description
    • 1853 June 13
    Amsterdam (Netherlands)--Description
    • 1853 May 26-27
    Antwerp (Belgium)--Description
    • 1853 July 14-15
    Austria--Description and travel
    • 1853 May
    Baden-Baden (Germany)--Description
    • 1853 July 24-26
    Balloch (Scotland)--Description
    • 1853 June 17-18
    Banavie (Scotland)--Description
    • 1853 June 16
    Basle (Switzerland)--Description
    • 1853 July 27-28
    Berlin (Germany)--Description
    • 1853 May 21-25
    Bologna (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 May 3-5
    Boulogne (France)--Description
    • 1852 Nov. 19
    Brussels (Belgium)--Description
    • 1853 July 16-17
    Chalons (France)--Description
    • 1853 Feb. 23-24
    Chavornay (Switzerland)--Description
    • 1853 Aug. 16-18
    Cologne (Germany)--Description
    • 1853 July 18-19
    Dresden (Germany)--Description
    • 1853 May 19-21
    Edinburgh (Scotland)--Description
    • 1853 June 6-9
    Florence (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Mar. 10-15
    Florence (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Apr. 29-May 2
    Foligo (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Mar. 16-18
    France--Description and travel
    • 1852 November¬1853 February
    • 1853 July¬September
    Frankfurt (Germany)--Description
    • 1853 July 20-23
    Geneva (Switzerland)--Description
    • 1853 Aug. 13-15
    Genoa (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Mar. 1-3
    Germany--Description and travel
    • 1853 May, July
    Ghent (Belgium)--Description
    • 1853 July 13
    Great Britain--Description and travel
    • 1852 October, 1853 June¬July
    Hague (Netherlands)--Description
    • 1853 May 28-31
    Inverness (Scotland)--Description
    • 1853 June 14-15
    Italy--Description and travel
    • 1853 March-May
    Leamington (England)--Description
    • 1852 Oct. 26
    Lestre de Levante (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Mar. 4
    Liverpool (England)--Description
    • 1852 Oct 17
    • 1852 Oct. 18-25
    • 1852 Oct. 29-Nov. 18
    • 1853 June 1-4
    • 1853 June 29-July 8
    Lucerne (Switzerland)--Description
    • 1853 July 29-Aug. 12
    Lyons (France)--Description
    • 1853 Feb. 25-26
    Marseilles (France)--Description
    • 1853 Feb. 27-28
    Martigny (Switzerland)--Description
    • 1853 Aug. 19-22
    Milan (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Aug. 23-Sept. 19
    Naples (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Apr. 13-28
    Netherlands--Description and travel
    • 1853 May
    New York (City)--Description
    • 1852 Oct. 6
    Paris (France)--Description
    • 1852 Nov. 20-1853 Feb. 22
    • 1853 July 9-12
    • 1853 Sept. 20
    Perth (Scotland)--Description
    • 1853 June 10-12
    Pisa (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Mar. 8-9
    Rome (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Mar. 19-Apr. 12
    Scotland--Description and travel
    • 1853 June
    Shrewsbury (England)--Description
    • 1852 Oct. 26-28
    Spezzia (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Mar. 5-7
    Switzerland--Description and travel
    • 1853 July¬August
    Terni (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 Mar. 17-18
    Trosachs (Scotland)--Description
    • 1853 June 19-21
    Venice (Italy)--Description
    • 1853 May 6-12
    Vienna (Austria)--Description
    • 1853 May 13-18
    Windermere (England)--Description
    • 1853 June 22-28
    York (England)--Description
    • 1853 June 5