Archives Directory for the History of Collecting in America

Archives related to: Melville, Herman, 1819-1891

titleMelville collection, 1844-[ongoing].
repositoryBerkshire County Historical Society
collection titleFamily correspondence, originally published short stories, reviews, biographical materials, essays, newsletters, pamphlets, programs, poems, scripts, deeds, obituaries, newspapers, and other materials, assembled by the Berkshire County Historical Society in connection with its occupancy of Arrowhead, Melville's home in Pittsfield, Mass., from 1850-1863.

Includes letters of his brothers and sister, Allan, Augusta, and Gansevoort Melville and granddaughter, Eleanor Melville Metcalf; essay about Arrowhead written by niece, Florence Melville; papers of father-in-law, Lemuel Shaw, chief justice of Massachusetts; histories, pictures, and genealogical materials of the families of Melville and his wife, Elizabeth (Shaw) Melville; reviews and analysis of Melville's writings, including original copies of a number of 19th century periodicals; documentation about Melville's reading; documents of the Melville Society; descriptions of Melville collections in other libraries and museums; descriptions of movie versions of his books; and miscellaneous items including photographs and drawings of Melville, foreign language publications, publications for young readers, and ephemera. Places represented include Lansingburgh, N.Y., and New York, N.Y.
extent3 cubic ft.
formatsCorrespondence Printed Materials Ephemera Legal Papers Clippings
accessContact repository for restrictions and policies.
record source
finding aidFinding aid in the repository
updated02/07/2020 18:20:05

titleGansevoort-Lansing collection, 1650-1919, bulk (1800-1899) (MssCol 1109)
repositoryNew York Public Library, Manuscripts and Archives Division
collection titleCollection consists chiefly of papers of the Gansevoort, Lansing and Melville families and reflects the social, business and political interaction between family members and friends and associates of the families. Also included are some papers of members of the Sanford, Van Schaick and other related families.

Gansevoort-Lansing papers contain correspondence, land deeds, financial documents, maps and surveys, notebooks, cookbooks, diaries, architectural drawings, photographs, and artifacts. The social, economic and political life of upstate New York over a period of more than 250 years is covered in the collection. Also, materials pertaining to military service in the American Revolution and the U.S. Civil War. Gansevoort family members represented in the collection include Peter Gansevoort (1749-1812), military leader in the American Revolution, Peter Gansevoort (1788-1876), New York political figure, Henry Sanford Gansevoort (1835-1871), Union officer in the Civil War, and Catherine Gansevoort Lansing (1839-1918), benefactress. Photographs (tintypes, daguerreotypes, cyanotypes, and black and white prints) show individuals, family portraits, house interiors and exteriors, historic occasions, and family holdings. Among Lansing family members represented in the collection are Barent Bleecker Lansing (1801-1876) attorney and landowner, and Abraham Lansing (1835-1899).

Subjects include business and financial matters, social events, family news, and current events. Melville family papers document the family of Herman Melville (1819-1891), author of Moby Dick and other works. The bulk of these papers consists of correspondence among three generations of both Melville and Gansevoort family members detailing the lives and daily activities of the writers who include Herman Melville and his father, Allan Melvill (1782-1835). Some manuscripts of Melville's writings also are in the collection.

Bio/History: The Gansevoorts and the Lansings were two of the original Dutch families to settle in the Hudson and Mohawk Valleys of New York State. Other families who intermarried with the Gansevoorts and the Lansings were the Melvilles, Sanfords and Van Schaicks. Members of these families were prominent in politics, the military, literature, law, politics, medicine, and economics.

Available on microfilm
extent212 linear feet
formatsBusiness Papers Personal Papers Financial Records Photographs Correspondence
accessApply in the Special Collections Office for admission to the Manuscripts and Archives Division. Microfilm must be used in lieu of originals when available.
record link
record source
finding aidFinding aid available in repository and on internet:,1,1,B/l856~b2669576&FF=tgansevoort-lansing+collection&1,1,,1,0/startreferer//search/tGansevoort-Lansing+collection/tgansevoort-lansing+collection/1,1,1,B/frameset&FF=tgansevoort-lansing+collection&1,1,/endreferer/
updated11/12/2014 11:29:58

title[Collection], Herman Melville Collection (C0321)
repositoryPrinceton University
collection titleConsists of photostats of letters by Melville used by Willard Thorp in his edition of Melville's REPRESENTATIVE SELECTIONS (1938), photographs of Melville and his family, and printed matter about Melville and his works, including magazine articles, movie adaptations and stage versions, comic books, pamphlets, reprints, material on centennial celebrations, and book jackets.

Location: Rare Books: Manuscripts Collection (MSS)
Call number: C0321
extent0.90 cu. ft. (2 boxes)
formatsCorrespondence Photographs
accessContact repository for restrictions and policies.
record link
bibliographyREPRESENTATIVE SELECTIONS, with Introduction, Bibliography and Notes by Willard Thorp (New York: American Book Co., 1938)
record source
updated11/12/2014 11:29:58