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Gove-Meader Family Papers

Identifier: SFHL-RG5-294

Scope and Contents

This collection contains letters and miscellaneous papers of members of the Gove and Meader family, New England Wilburite Quakers. The correspondence is largely addressed to Levi and Mary (Meader) Gove from their siblings and children who eventually scattered to Ohio, Indiana, Nebraska and elsewhere. Some of the letters express the frustrations with the separations dividing Friends.


  • Creation: 1803-1927


Limitations on Accessing the Collection

The collection is open for research.

Copyright and Rights Information

Friends Historical Library believes all of the items in this collection to be in the Public Domain in the United States, and is not aware of any restrictions on their use. However, the user is responsible for making a final determination of copyright status before reproducing. See

Biographical / Historical

The Meader and Gove families emigrated from England to America in the mid-1600s. John Meader (1625-1715), arrived in New England from England in the mid 1600s. His descendant, Joseph Meader was born on September 22, 1788, in New Hamphire to Joseph Meader (1753-1820) and his second wife, Elizabeth Gould (1756-1814). He married Mehitable Varney in 1810. He was a farmer and an acknowledged Quaker minister at Sandwich Meeting in New Hampshire. He died on January 28, 1864. In the Wilburite Separation, his family aligned with the Wilburites in 1845.

Valentine Meader was Joseph Meader's brother, born on August 6, 1777, in New Hampshire. His mother, Abigail Field (1759-1784), was the first wife of Joseph Meader (1753-1820). He was a carpenter and a Quaker minister. He traveled widely in the ministry and died of an illness during one of his religious visits in 1837.

In 1830, Joseph Meader's daughter, Mary Meader (1817-1901) married Levi Gove, a descendant of John Gove (1604-1647/8) who had settled in the Massachusetts Bay Colony shortly before his death. Later generations settled in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Vermont, and many were members of the Society of Friends. Levi Gove (1802-1885) was the son of Moses Grove (1774-1851) and his first wife, Hannah Chase (1776-1831). He was a farmer who lived in Lincoln, NH, South Berwick, ME, and Lynn, MA, and had been married twice before. With his marriage to Mary Meader, he affiliated with the Wilburite Friends. His children from earlier marriages included Hiram (b. 1828) who lived in Nebraska for a time; Mary (1829-1864) who married Johnson Stout and lived in Hesper, Iowa; Eliza (1833-1855) who married Nicholas Guindon; Ruth (18334-1878) who married Job Batty. Levi and Mary (Meader) Gove had two children: William Henry Gove and Eliza Hetta Gove.


0.25 Linear Feet (1 box)




This collection contains letters and miscellaneous papers of members of the Gove and Meader family, New England Wilburite Quakers.


The papers were organized into two series: :

  1. Ser.1 Correspondence which includes letters from three generations of the Gove-Meader family
  2. Ser.2 Miscellaneous

Physical Location

For current information on the location of materials, please consult the Library's online catalog.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Sharryn Taylor, Acc. 2013.030

The donor wrote that she had purchased the papers at auction about 20 years previous in Florida. William Henry Grove, who published the Gove Family genealogy, had vacationed there shortly before his death in 1920, and his sister Maria Sawyer resided in Florida.

Gove-Meader Family Papers, 1803-1927
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