Ransom Dunn papers: 1796-1900
Ransom Dunn papers
Dunn, Ransom, 1818-1900
10 linear feet
Free Will Baptist minister, professor and acting president of Hillsdale College. Correspondence and other materials concerning the Free Will Baptists, Hillsdale College and its predecessor, Michigan Central College at Spring Arbor, with mention of Dunn's anti-slavery and Republican Party activities; also Civil War letters from his sons, Francis Wayland Dunn and Newell Ransom Dunn.
851288 Aa 2
The material is in English
Bentley Historical Library
1150 Beal Ave.Finding aid created by Michigan Historical Collections staff
Ann Arbor, MI
Home Page: http://www.bentley.umich.edu/
Access and Use
The collection was the gift of the Dunn-Slayton family (donor no. 3361) and came to the library in 1957.
The collection is open to research.
To protect fragile audiovisual recordings (such as audio cassettes, film reels, and VHS tapes), the Bentley Historical Library has a policy of converting them to digital formats by a professional vendor whenever a researcher requests access. For more information, please see: http://bentley.umich.edu/research/duplication/.
Copyright is held by the Regents of the University of Michigan but the collection may contain third-party materials for which copyright is not held. Patrons are responsible for determining the appropriate use or reuse of materials.
Portions of the John Dunn, Ransom Dunn and Cyrena Dunn correspondence is available on microfilm.
[item], folder, box, Ransom Dunn papers, Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan
Ransom Dunn was born in Bakersfield, Vermont, July 7, 1818. Around 1830, he joined the Free Will Baptist Church and soon thereafter decided to enter the ministry. He moved about frequently in this period. In 1837, he was in Ohio where he was ordained, then back east where he was minister at the Washington Street Free Baptist Church in Dover, New Hampshire, and later at the First Free Baptist Church of Great Falls, New Hampshire. He returned to Ohio for a period, then to New York where he did missionary work, then on to the First Free Baptist Church of Boston, Massachusetts.
In 1851, Dunn accepted appointment as professor of mental and moral philosophy in Michigan Central College, Spring Arbor, Jackson County. With the move of that school to Hillsdale, Dunn took on the additional role of fund raiser for the needed buildings on the new campus. In 1863 he became Burr Professorship of Christian Theology. From 1884 to 1886, Dunn also served as acting president of Hillsdale College. He died November 9, 1900.
Collection Scope and Content Note
The Ransom Dunn collection includes both his own papers and those of other family members, including his father John Dunn and Ransom Dunn's wife Cyrena Emery Dunn. The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence received by Ransom Dunn in the period of 1835 to 1900. These letters concern the Free Will Baptist Church and the growth and development of Hillsdale College and its predecessor, Michigan Central College at Spring Arbor. Some of the letters concern anti-slavery and Republican Party activities; others relate to personal and family affairs. Importantly, there are letters from his sons Francis Wayland Dunn and Newell Ransom Dunn, as students at Hillsdale and as soldiers serving in the Civil War. One of the letters in the collection is from Austin Blair (Feb. 23, 1853) discussing the legality of an injunction on Michigan Central College, Spring Arbor. Other portions of the collection include Dunn's writings on theological topics, sermons, diaries, and a few photographs.
This collection is indexed under the following headings in the finding aid database and catalog of The Bentley Historical Library/University of Michigan. Researchers desiring additional information about related topics should search the catalog using these headings.
- Clergy -- Michigan -- Hillsdale.
- Presidents -- United States -- Election -- 1860.
- Presidents -- United States -- Election -- 1884.
- Antislavery movements -- United States.
- Spring Arbor (Mich.)
- United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865.
- Dwellings -- Michigan -- Hillsdale.
- Hillsdale (Mich.) -- Dwellings.
- Interiors -- Michigan -- Hillsdale.
- Private libraries.
- Dunn, Ransom, 1818-1900.
- Dunn family.
- Free Will Baptists (1780?-1911)
- Hillsdale College.
- Michigan Central College (Spring Arbor, Mich.)
- Republican Party (Mich.)
- United States. Army. Illinois Infantry Regiment, 64th (1861-1865)
- Blair, Austin, 1818-1894.
- Dunn, Cyrena Emery, 1824-1896.
- Dunn, Francis Wayland, 1843-1874.
- Dunn, John.
- Dunn, Newell Ransom, 1841-1863.
Additional Descriptive Data
Collections of papers of Ransom Dunn's sons, Francis Wayland Dunn and Newell Ransom Dunn have been separately cataloged. There is also a separate collection of papers for the Slayton family.