Skip to main content

Barlow Family Papers

Identifier: Midwest-MS-041

Scope and Content of the Collection

Letters and writings of two William Barlows, possibly father and son.

Collection includes two letters of the Reverend William Barlow relating to his wooing of Sally Canfield, a religious poem dedicated to his parishioner Mary Matilda Richards (who later married the younger William Barlow), and a notebook of a sermon apparently delivered several times over a twenty-year period. Also, the draft of an address to be delivered to the American Institute on the subject of the appropriate disposition of the funds given to establish the Smithsonian Institution. Also, eleven letters from William Barlow the younger, to his wife, Matilda Richards Barlow, 1842-1851. Barlow, unemployed at the time of the bulk of the correspondence, apparently had tuberculosis. The content of the letters is mostly about his poor health and his feelings about his uncertain future. Also, an undated cabinet photograph of two unidentified women.


  • Creation: 1816-1851



Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

The Barlow Family Papers are open for research in the Special Collections Reading Room; 1 box at a time (Priority III).

Ownership and Literary Rights

The Barlow Family Papers are the physical property of the Newberry Library. Copyright may belong to the authors or their legal heirs or assigns. For permission to publish or reproduce any materials from this collection, contact the Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections.

Biography of the Barlow Family

Details about the lives of the two William Barlows are unknown. William Barlow the elder was a minister from southern New York State. The profession of the younger William Barlow, also from New York, is not known, although his letters indicate that though ill, he hoped to find a post in a bank or to go into some trade.


0.1 Linear Feet (6 folders)


A small collection of material relating to two men, both named William Barlow, possibly father and son. Consists of letters, a poem, a notebook of a sermon and a draft of an address to the American Institute in Washington, D.C. by Reverend William Barlow; correspondence from William Barlow the younger to Matilda Richards Barlow, and an undated, unidentified cabinet photo of two women.


The papers are arranged by author and type of material.

Collection Stack Location

1 1 2


Separated from the Mitchell Dawson Papers, a gift in 1988.

Processed by

Virginia Hay Smith, 2005.

Inventory of the Barlow Family Papers, 1816-1851
Virginia Hay Smith
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • 08/12/2011: Revisions, additions, and updates were made.

Repository Details

Part of the The Newberry Library - Modern Manuscripts and Archives Repository

60 West Walton Street
Chicago Illinois 60610 United States