Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
Thomas Delf Letters, 1836-1837

Finding aid created by
Cheney J. Schopieray, December 2006, and Meg Hixon, December 2011

Summary Information
Title: Thomas Delf letters
Creator: Delf, Emeline Augusta Breed, 1809-1884
Inclusive dates: 1836-1837
Extent: 6 items
Abstract:
This collection consists of 6 letters that Emeline Breed of Salem, Massachusetts, received from her fiancé, Thomas Delf, an English businessman working in New York City. In addition to providing news of his daily life, he frequently reflected on the couple's engagement and commented on her family.

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:

2000. M-4115.2.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.

Copyright:

Copyright status is unknown

Processing Information:

Cataloging funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC). This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.

Preferred Citation:

Thomas Delf letters, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


Arrangement

The collection is arranged chronologically.


Biography

Emeline Augusta Breed, the daughter of Holton Johnson and Nancy Symonds Breed, was born in Salem, Massachusetts, on August 3, 1809. On November 14, 1837, she married Thomas Delf, an English immigrant. They had at least three children: twins Emeline Louisa (died young) and Thomas Holton (b. October 3, 1839) and Emeline Louise (b. August 13, 1840). Emeline Augusta Breed died a widow on September 3, 1884.


Collection Scope and Content Note

This collection consists of 6 letters that Emeline Breed of Salem, Massachusetts, received from her fiancé, Thomas Delf, an English businessman working in New York City. He provided updates on his social and business life in the city, and frequently commented on his lodgings with the Cook family, whom he found inhospitable. He made occasional trips to Brooklyn, where he met her father, Holton Breed, and her sisters. While he often wrote of his love for Emeline, particularly after a visit to her home in Salem, Massachusetts, in the spring of 1837, he occasionally mentioned his work and the economic conditions following the Panic of 1837. Several of his letters contain short poems.

Subject Terms

    Subjects:
    • Brooklyn (New York, N.Y.)
    • Courtship--United States.
    • Depressions--1836-1837.
    • Fiancés--Correspondence.
    • New York (N.Y.)--Social life and customs--19th century.
    • Salem (Mass.)
    Contributors:
    • Delf, Thomas.
    Genre Terms:
    • Letters (correspondence)
    • Poems.
    Contents List
       Container / Location    Title
    Box   38, Small Collections  
    Thomas Delf letters [series]:
    Folder   25  
      July 10, 1836-May 10, 1837
    Additional Descriptive Data
    Bibliography

    Vital Records of Salem, Massachusetts, to the End of the Year 1849... Salem, Mass: The Essex institute, 1916.