Thomas Angell papers
Scope and Content Note
The collection contains a two volume diary Angell kept from January 1, 1859 to July 24, 1870. In the first volume, Angell writes about life as a student at Brown University and records such events as attending a Republican meeting and seeing Abraham Lincoln speak in Providence. Angell frequently records his reaction to national events, such as the hanging of John Brown and the outbreak of the Civil War. Angell writes about life after graduation from Brown in 1862, and enlisting in the Rhode Island militia as aide de camp for General John E. Tourtellotte. He records detailed information about his home town of Greenville, Rhode Island, an area with a very large Free Will Baptist population, and writes about nearby North Scituate, Rhode Island, where he served as principal of the Lapham Institute, a now defunct Baptist school with close ties to Bates College.
In the second volume of his diary, Angell writes more about his time at Lapham Institute, and records his transition to becoming a professor at Bates College and purchasing a house in Lewiston from Oren B. Cheney, Bates College's founder. Angell records his reactions to early Bates students and faculty, and the graduation of Mary Mitchell, Class of 1869, as the first female graduate of a New England college. Angell ends the diary recording his travels in Europe.
The collection also includes a scrapbook containing a wide array of Civil War era articles, as well as Angell's receipts for voting for Abraham Lincoln in the Presidential election. The various articles pasted in the scrapbook include poetry, political satire, and notable news articles about topics such as Lincoln's inauguration, the Dred Scott case, and the fall of Fort Sumter. These clippings are pasted in an older account book, dated to circa 1800 to 1805.
The collection also includes a photograph album containing tintypes and photographs of various members of the Angell and Brown families and Thomas Angell's handwritten index of the photographs. The cover is embossed with the name Frances Brown.
Also included is Angell's journal from 1856 while attending the Thetford Academy in Vermont; a translation into French of The English Echo (1869); Angell's letters as published in the Woonsocket Patriot during his European trip (1869-1870); and a few miscellaneous papers. These last items include Angell and Brown family genealogical information, loose material removed from his scrapbook and diary, two unidentified handwritten documents of religious text, undated (but circa 1800) and possibly written by an Angell ancestor.
- ca. 1800 - 1940
- Angell, Thomas L., 1837-1923 (Person)
The collection is open for research.
The collection is the physical property of Edmund S. Muskie Archives and Special Collections Library. Bates College holds literary rights only for material created by College personnel working on official behalf of the College, or for material which was given to the College with such rights specifically assigned. For all other material, literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assigns. Researchers are responsible for obtaining permission from rights holders for publication or other purposes that exceed fair use.
Thomas Angell was born on November 10, 1837 in Greensville, Rhode Island, a descendent of Thomas Angell (1616-1694) one of the founders of Rhode Island. He attended the Wilbraham Academy in Massachusetts for two years starting in 1856, and in 1862 he graduated from Brown University. For a short time he was a minister, but he soon turned his attention to teaching. He served as principal of the Lapham Institute in North Scituate, Rhode Island for four years. In 1869, he came to Bates College as Professor of French and German.
While at Bates, Angell was granted a leave of absence for one year which he spent in France and Germany, devoting himself to the study of language and literature. When he returned, he succeeded professor B. F. Hayes as Professor of Modern Languages. Angell was one of the first group of faculty and administrators who guided Bates College through its formative years. He taught at the College for 33 years, retiring in 1902. Professor Angell married Emily Brown and they had one child, Mary Frances, an 1890 graduate of Bates College. Mrs. Angell died in 1902 and Thomas Angell died in 1923 in Worcester, Massachusetts.
0.75 Linear Feet
Language of Materials
Thomas Angell served as language professor at Bates College from 1869-1902. Shortly after arriving at Bates, Angell was granted a leave of absence for one year which he spent in France and Germany, devoting himself to the study of language and literature. The collection contains his diaries from January 1, 1859-July 24, 1870 in which he writes about: life as a student at Brown University; enlisting in the Rhode Island militia as aide de camp for General Tourtellotte during the Civil War; the Free Will Baptists; Lapham Institute where he served as principal; coming to Bates College; purchasing a house in Lewiston from Oren B. Cheney, Bates College's founder; the graduation of Mary Mitchell, Class of 1869, as the first female graduate of a New England college; and his travels in Europe. Also includes a scrapbook with articles about the Civil War, a photograph album containing various members of the Angell and Brown families, translations of The English echo (1869), Angell's letters as published in the Woonsocket patriot during his European trip (1869-1870), and a few miscellaneous papers, including some genealogical information.
Organization and Arrangement
The collection is in chronological order, with undated material at the end of the collection.
Acquisition and Custody Information
Donated by the Worcester County Law Library, 1940. Accession No.: xx-057.
Initially processed by Mary Riley, Special Collections Librarian.
Description by Caron Pelletier, 1999.
Additional arrangement by Kurt Kuss, 1999.
Additional description by Timothy Larson (Class of 2005), 2005.
Finding aid updated by Pat Webber, 2023.
- Angell, Thomas L., 1837-1923
- Angell, Thomas L., 1837-1923 -- Diaries
- Bates College (Lewiston, Me.) -- History
- Bates College (Lewiston, Me.) -- Faculty
- France -- Description and travel
- Free Will Baptists (1780?-1911)
- Germany -- Description and travel
- Lapham Institute (North Scituate, R.I.)
- Travel writing
- United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865
- Guide to the Thomas Angell papers, 1856-1921
- Edited Full Draft
- Kurt Kuss
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Code for undetermined script
- Language of description note
- Description is in: English
- Edition statement