The Divie and Joanna Bethune collection contains correspondence, religious diaries, and an autobiography pertaining to the New York couple.
The Correspondence series is made up of 58 incoming letters to Divie and Joanna Bethune, which primarily relate to Divie's business interests, and 1 letter by Joanna Bethune to George Duffield (February 9, 1837). Arthur Dalton of New Orleans, Louisiana, wrote the bulk of the early correspondence, discussing the local tobacco trade and ships' movements near the city. Divie Bethune & Co. received letters from Thomas Masters about financial affairs in Liverpool and London, England. Personal letters include letters between members of the Bethune family, such as a letter from Joanna Bethune to her daughter Isabella, which alludes to the possibility of Canadian annexation (January 6, 1850).
The 22-volume Diaries series comprises the bulk of the collection, and contains material written by both Divie and Joanna Bethune. Divie Bethune filled the first 16 volumes with devotional prayers, religious poetry, hymns, and occasional daily diary entries. Each of these volumes has an identical inscription. Joanna Bethune kept 6 diaries after her husband's death, in which she reflected upon her emotions and wrote about her charity work and religious life.
Joanna Bethune's Autobiography , written in 1814, concerns her early life, emphasizing her religious conversion and religious convictions.