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Anna S. Palmer Collected Papers

Identifier: SFHL-RG5-304

Scope and Contents

Family and Quaker papers collected by Anna S. Palmer (1881-1973), a member of Falls Monthly Meeting. Included is a manuscript volume containing copies of letters and memorials concerning John Simpson (1739-1811), Quaker minister. Also postcards of Quaker meeting houses collected by Anna S. Palmer and/or her mother, Agness Simpson Palmer; and other miscellaneous Quaker manuscripts. The manuscript volume complements an 1877 published selection of John Simpson's letters and memoirs compiled by his step-daughter, Mary Ingham Hadley.


  • Creation: circa 1840-1910


Conditions Governing Use

Permission to reuse, publish, or reproduce items in this collection beyond the bounds of Fair Use or other exemptions to copyright law must be obtained from the copyright holder or their heirs/assigns. See

Biographical / Historical

Anna S. Palmer, the daughter of David and Agnes (Simpson) Palmer, was a birthright member of Falls Monthly Meeting (Hicksite), born 2mo 21, 1881. Her parents served as directors of Friends Boarding Home, Newtown, Bucks County, and her mother (1842-1922) was an elder and clerk at Falls Monthly meeting. Anna graduated from the George School in 1899 and worked as a teacher. She died 9mo. 3, 1973.

Anna's mother, Agnes Simpson Palmer, was the daughter of John and Letitia Buckman Simpson, and she was a great-granddaughter of Quaker minister John Simpson. John Simpson was born in England 10 mo 23, 1739, and his parents, members of the Society of Friends, came to America when he was an infant. He married Ruth Whitson and circa 1764 was recognized as a minister. Ruth died in 1803, and he married second Ann Ingham. He traveled widely in the ministry throughout the United States, moving to Ohio in 1809. In 1810, he requested a certificate of transfer from Falls Monthly Meeting to West Branch, Ohio. A letter dated 1810, 9mo, 2, informs his son David that they are living in a cabin near West Branch Meeting and the lot he purchased.

In 1877, Mary Hadley, daughter of John Simpson's second wife, Ann Ingham, arranged publication of Memoirs and Letter of John Simpson. Mary I. Hadley was also a prominent Friend, active in Indiana Yearly Meeting. Many of the John Simpson letters and excerpts in the published Memoirs are to his daughter Hannah Shinn who had married Samuel Shinn in 1795. The letters in the manuscript volume by an unknown copyist are largely to Simpson's eldest son, David, who married Agnes Wiggins in 1795. David Simpson's son, John (1799-1878), married, Letitia Buckman (1882), the grandmother of Anna S. Palmer, the collector. All were active members of the Society of Friends.

Three of John and Letitia's children married members of the Satterthwaite family, and the youngest, Agnes (1842-1922), married David Palmer. The genealogical information in the manuscript volume includes entries for the descendants of Joseph Simpson, including Palmer, Simpson, Taylor, Shinn, and Satterthwaite branches. The last entry records the death of Mahlon Taylor in 1898.


.25 linear ft. (1 box)

Language of Materials



Family and Quaker papers collected by Anna S. Palmer (1881-1973), a member of Falls Monthly Meeting. Included is a manuscript volume containing copies of letters, genealogical information, and memorials concerning John Simpson (1739-1811), Quaker minister; collected postcards of Quaker meeting houses; and other miscellaneous Quaker manuscripts.


Arranged topically

Custodial History

Henry P. Palmer, a descendent of John Simpson, acquired the papers after the death of Anna S. Palmer, his aunt. It was her wish that the papers be given to Swarthmore.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Henry P. Palmer, Accession 2005.007

Related Materials

RG5/111 Palmer Family Genealogical Manuscript and Deeds, 1722-1966 [bulk 1898] (formerly Palmer Family Papers)

Simpson, John. Memoirs and letters of John Simpson, a minister of the gospel in the Society of Friends : Printed for Mary Hadley, Philadelphia, 1877

Processing Information

Staff determination to keep papers as a collection since they were assembled by a single person. They are arranged as received.

Susanna Morikawa
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

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