Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
Thomas Tredwell Papers, 1769-1807

Finding aid created by
Shannon Wait, June 2010

Summary Information
Title: Thomas Tredwell papers
Creator: Tredwell family
Inclusive dates: 1769-1807
Extent: 5 items
The Thomas Tredwell papers contain letters and documents related to Tredwell, concerning New York politics, travel across New York State, and family news.
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:

Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

1992. M-2858 .

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.


Copyright status is unknown

Processing Information:

Cataloging funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the "We the People" project.

Preferred Citation:

Thomas Tredwell Papers, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


The letters are arranged chronologically.


Thomas Tredwell was born in Smithtown, Long Island, New York, on February 6, 1743, the son of Timothy Tredwell and Mary Platt. In 1764, Tredwell graduated from Princeton University; he was soon after admitted to the bar, and began the practice of law in Plattsburg, New York. From 1777 to 1783, he served as a representative in the New York State Assembly, and was elected to the New York State Senate from 1786-1789. He was an Anti-federalist in the U.S. House of Representatives for two terms, 1791-1795. He again served as a member of the State Senate from 1803 to 1807 and was surrogate of Clinton County, New York, from 1807 until his death on December 30, 1831.

In 1765, he married Ann Hazard, and they had thirteen children, including prominent fur-trader Nathaniel Hazard Tredwell (1768-1855), and Hannah Phoenix Tredwell (b. 1771), who married Reverend Henry Davis.

Collection Scope and Content Note

The Thomas Tredwell papers consist of four letters and one document, spanning 1769-1807. The earliest item, a document dated 1769, concerns the building of a schoolhouse, and contains a list of subscribers; Tredwell apparently served as treasurer of the endeavor.

Tredwell wrote three of the collection's four letters. On January 1, 1794, he wrote to his son, Nathaniel, concerning family matters, a shipment of kettles, and the purchase of a slave by an acquaintance. A letter dated February 8, 1804, to his daughter, Hannah (Tredwell) Davis, includes Tredwell's comments on New York gubernatorial candidates, the ratification of the 12th Amendment, and the unpopularity of Aaron Burr. Tredwell's final letter in the collection, also to Hannah, describes the rough month-long journey between Albany and Plattsburgh, across frozen Lake Champlain and provides instruction on how to make an ointment out of roots (May 29, 1807). A "D. Bennett" wrote an additional letter, dated June 12, 1800, to Tredwell's daughter, Mary, concerning news from Norwalk, New York, and expressing sadness at the distance that separated them.

Subject Terms

    • Families--New York (State)
    • New York (State)--Description and travel.
    • New York (State)--Politics and government--1789-1805.
    • Plattsburgh (N.Y.)
    • Norwalk (Conn.)
    • Tredwell, Thomas, 1743-1831.
    Genre Terms:
    • Correspondence
    Contents List
    Container / Location Title
    Box   3, Small Collections Folder   18
    Thomas Tredwell papers,  October 20, 1769-May 29, 1807 [series]