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Bernard Barton letterbook

Identifier: HC.MC-975-02-002

Scope and Content note

This collection is composed of the single handwritten letterbook of Bernard Barton, as well as correspondence related to the history of the letterbook, dated 1942.

The letterbook contains personal correspondence from friends and family, and are often related to personal and family news, Barton's poetry and writings, and literature in general. Letter writers include; Charles Lamb, Thomas Campbell, Elizabeth Fry, Charles Lloyd, Andrew Ritchie, Robert Southey, John Scott, Horatio Smith, Mary White, and John Chandler.


  • 1822-1837


Access Restrictions

The collection is open to research use.

Use Restrictions

Standard Federal Copyright Law Applies (U.S. Title 17).

Biographical note

Bernard Barton (1784-1849) was a birthright Quaker and poet. He was born on January 31, 1784 in Carlisle, England, the son of John and Maria (Done) Barton. His mother died shortly after his birth, and his father died when Barton was a child, leaving Barton to be raised by his father's second wife. Barton was educated at Friend's School, in Ipswich, and was apprenticed to Samuel Jesup in 1798. In 1807, Barton married Lucy Jesup, who died in 1808, while giving birth to the couple's only child, Lucy Barton. Barton then worked as a clerk for Messrs. Alexander's bank, where he worked for the remainder of his life.

In 1812, Barton published his first volume of poetry, 'Metrical Effusions,' and in 1818, he published the 'Convict's Appeal,' a protest against the criminal code of the time, written in verse. Later publications included 'Poems by an Amateur' (1818), 'Poems' (1820), 'Napoleon and other poems' (1822), and 'Verses on the death of P.B. Shelley' (1822). Barton became friends and correspondents with many other writers and literary men, including Charles Lamb, Robert Southey, and Wordsworth. He lodged with Anne Knight, a Quaker children's author, and provided her with poems for a few of her books.

Bernard Barton died February 19, 1849 in Woodbridge England.


0.16 Linear Feet (1 volume)



Custodial History note

This scrapbook of letters was originally given to Anne Knight, a Quaker children's author and schoolmistress, by her lodger and friend, the poet Bernard Barton. In latter years, Knight passed on the book to her pupil, Elizabeth Muskett, later Elizabeth Musket Morley (1824-1912), ancestor of a later president of Haverford College. Elizabeth passed the book on to her son, Frank Morley (1860-1937) who was a professor of mathematics at Haverford College. Following the death of Frank Morley, the book came into the hands of Christopher Morely, who placed it on indefinite loan with Haverford College Quaker and Special Collections, in 1942.

Correspondence related to the loan of the book is included in the collection.


The Bernard Barton letterbook was donated to Special Collections, Haverford College, in 1942 by Christopher Morley.

Related Materials

MC.975.07.139 "Bernard Barton, Quaker Poet"

Processing Information

Processed by Kara Flynn; completed August 2015.
Bernard Barton letterbook, 1822-1837
Kara Flynn
August 2015
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Find It at the Library

Most of the materials in this catalog are not digitized and can only be accessed in person. Please see our website for more information about visiting Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections Library

370 Lancaster Ave
Haverford PA 19041 USA US