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Wilbur family papers, 1830-1923.
Wilbur family.
Holdings
Library Call Number Copy Material Location
Vermont Historical Society Library  Doc 469 (cont'd in Doc 470 and MSA 269)  Manuscript  Vault-Manuscript 


Personal Author : Wilbur family.
Title : Wilbur family papers, 1830-1923.
Physical Description : 2.5 linear ft.
Summary :

Series I contains correspondence from LaFayette to his son Earl, (and to Ralph, when the two boys were together), giving advice on where Earl should settle, how he should finance his home, other financial and legal advice, details of loans made to Earl, discussions of some of the court cases LaFayette was handling, and religious discussions of sermons LaFayette had heard or of sermons Earl had sent to him, and soul-searching when LaFayette joined the Unitarian church. There is also discussion of trips made to the west coast, questions about how to dispose of the Jericho home and belongings when LaFayette and Mercy moved to the Pacific coast, and some details on the sale of his History of Vermont. There are a few letters to "Cousin Flora" about Wilbur genealogy.

Series II contains many letters from Mercy Wilbur, mostly to Earl and family, some to Ralph. These are weekly, sometimes daily, accounts of life in Jericho, births, marriages, and deaths, fires and floods, the weather, the state of Mercy's and LaFayette's health. Mercy speaks of her work in the church and occasional feuds with the church, (she and three other women were censured and "banned" by her church and she moved into Unitarianism), her activities as secretary for the Home for Friendless Women in Burlington, Vermont, and as editor of Our Home Guards, the publication of the Woman's Christian Temperance Union of Vermont. In later years her letters get shorter and deal more with ill health and the weather, less with causes that had interested her. She shared her husband's interest in the suffrage movement, and she was strongly against alcohol and tobacco and visited jails to try to reform drinkers.

Series III consists of 1856-1859 ledger books belonging to LaFayette, and a book of court dockets for 1857-1859, which lists 153 cases LaFayette handled.

Series IV contains a variety of genealogical sources, including Asa Wilbur's Genealogical Record of the Wilbur Family, records of the Morse, Fuller, Mead, Eliot, and Wilbur lines, photographs of homes and graves, deeds, draft records, and correspondence relating to genealogical questions. There are also some early (1830s-1840s) Wilbur letters and a scrapbook kept by LaFayette.

Series V is made up of lectures written for talks LaFayette gave to many audiences, including the Jericho Literary and Scientific Club. The subjects ranged from historical topics (early English history, Lee and Grant, the Huguenots in Florida), politics (the courts and the law, free trade, conservatives vs. progressives), and women's suffrage

Biographical or historical data :

LaFayette Wilbur (1834-1918) was a Vermont lawyer, first admitted to the bar in Lamoille County in 185l. He practiced law mainly in Chittenden County, with his office in Burlington or Jericho. He lived in Jericho, Vermont, except for twelve years spent in Burlington. He was the son of William Wilbur (1801-1882) and Betsy Fuller Wilbur, (1802-1888) of Waterville, Vermont. LaFayette received his early education in Waterville, Vermont, and later attended schools in Bakersfield, Underhill Center, Fairfax, and Morrisville, Vermont. He studied law under Thomas Gleed and specialized in civil law. He wrote a four-volume history of Vermont, Early History of Vermont, published in 1889-1903, and Life of LaFayette Wilbur and Family Genealogy, 1881. He was a member and clerk of the Congregational church in Jericho and later became a member of the Unitarian church in Burlington. LaFayette married Mercy Jane Morse of Underhill, Vermont, in 1861, and they had two sons, Earl Morse Wilbur and Ralph Williams Wilbur.

Earl Morse Wilbur (1866-1956) graduated from the University of Vermont in 1886, graduated from the Harvard Divinity School in 1890, and was ordained a Unitarian minister. He preached in Portland, Oregon, from 1890 to 1898. Following that, he served both as minister and instructor in the Theological School in Meadville, Pennsylvania. He then moved to Berkeley, California, where, in 1904, he co-founded the Starr King School for the Ministry (Unitarian), and became President and Professor of Practical Theology at the Pacific Unitarian School for the Ministry. Earl married Dorothea Dix Eliot, daughter of Thomas L. Eliot, D.D., in Portland, Oregon, in 1898. His papers are at the Graduate Theological Union in Berkeley, California.

Ralph Williams Wilbur (b. 1869) graduated from the University of Vermont (1890), Burlington Business College, and Boston University Law School in 1892. He practiced law in Portland, Oregon, and married Alice Dunbar Heustis of Boston, in 1894.

Personal Subject : Wilbur family.
Wilbur, Earl Morse, 1866-1956.
Wilbur, Ralph William, 1869-
Corporate Subject : Woman's Christian Temperance Union of Vermont.
Home for Friendless Women Burlington, Vt.
Subject Term : Children Correspondence.
Practice of law Vermont Jericho.
Finance, Personal.
Unitarians.
Conversion.
Christian life Correspondence.
Women Suffrage.
Suffrage Vermont.
Temperance Vermont.
Geographic Term : Jericho (Vt.) Social life and customs.
Genre/Form : Letters correspondence.
Ledgers.
Dockets.
Genealogies.
Deeds.
Lectures.
Scrapbooks.
Photographs.
Occupation : Lawyers
Historians
Added Author : Wilbur, LaFayette, 1834-1918.
Wilbur, Mercy, 1840-
Electronic Resource : Click here for full text of finding aid.