Finding aid prepared by Laura A. Hess
Duncan family letters
University of Kentucky Special Collections
Collection is arranged chronologically.
Collection is open to researchers by appointment.
71M38: [Identification of item], Duncan family letters, 1803-1862, University of Kentucky Special Collections.
0.68 Cubic feet
Henry Timberlake Duncan was a farmer and livestock breeder, who owned two farms in Bourbon County, Kentucky, and maintained a family estate, Duncannon, outside Lexington. He also acted as president of the Clay Monument Association in the 1850s. His son, Henry Timberlake Duncan, Jr., attended Harvard and became a major in the United States Army, the founder of the Lexington Daily Press in 1870, and the mayor of Lexington twice. His sister, Mary Duncan, attended the Pittsfield Institute for Young Ladies.
The Duncan family letters comprise correspondence to Henry Timberlake Duncan, Jr. from family and friends. The letters date from 1803-1863, with the bulk of the letters written during the 1850s while Henry Duncan, Jr. attended Harvard College. The majority of the letters were written by Duncan's father, Henry J. Duncan, Sr.; his mother; his sister, Mary Duncan, while she was at the Pittsfield Institute for Young Ladies; and his cousin, H.D. Jenkins. Duncan's school friends, such as C.W. Horne, J.H. Richardson, and Henry M. Bond, also wrote frequently. Subjects covered include the Civil War, slavery, railroads, lynching, fairs, politics, the depression of 1857, and an Asiatic cholera outbreak in 1832. Some letters written in the 1850s from Henry Duncan, Sr., mention the plans of the Clay Monument Association.
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