Biographical / Historical
William Sharp Prickett (1862-1926) was youngest child of Josiah J. and Emaline B. (Engle) Prickett. The Prickett family were Quakers who lived in the area of Northampton and Southampton Townships, Burlington Co., New Jersey, from 1716, the date of the earliest document in the collection. William Prickett's parents were married out of unity, but his mother, Emaline B. Engle Prickett, retained her membership in Evesham Monthly Meeting and, later, Upper Evesham Monthly Meeting. They lived in or near villages such as Masonville, Easton, and Vincentown, near Rancocas Creek. In later generations most of the children attended or graduated from Westtown Boarding School, as did many of their spouses. The men in this family were farmers, educators, and lumbermen.
William S. Prickett graduated from Westtown in 1879 and served as an assistant teacher for a few months after graduation. He taught at Newark Academy, Delaware, under headmaster Joseph Polk, and in 1888 married Polk's daughter, Mary Wilson Polk. She was not a Quaker, and at that time, William Prickett resigned his membership at Upper Evesham Monthly Meeting. He became an attorney in Wilmington, Delaware, after his marriage and died there in 1926. His correspondence is mainly about family affairs.