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 Oliver Hazard Perry Collection

 Naval officer, Newport, R.I.

 Collected papers, 1811-1917.

 Size: 0.25 linear feet

 Catalog number: MSS 617

 Processed by: Rick Stattler, January 1997

©Rhode Island Historical Society

Manuscripts Division


Historical note:

            Commodore Oliver Hazard Perry (1785-1819) was a naval officer best known for his exploits in the Battle of Lake Erie in the War of 1812. He died in Venezuela in 1819, while negotiating a treaty. His father Christopher R. Perry (1761-1818) and brother Matthew C. Perry (1794-1858) were also noted naval officers.

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            The items in this collection were donated in several gifts between 1838 and 1996. See the collection file for details.

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Folder 1. "Proceedings of a Court of Inquiry Held Aboard the U.S. Frigate Constitution for the Purpose of Enquiring into the Causes of the Loss of the U.S. Schooner Revenge" (New London, Conn.: Printed by Samuel Green, 1811)


Folder 2. Letter to William S. Rogers of U.S.S. Adams, July 30, 1813. Written from the U.S.S. Lawrence. Personal letter discussing preparations for battle. 2 pages, ALS.


Folder 3. Letter to Commodore William Bainbridge of the U.S. Navy Yard in Charleston, S.C. December 18, 1813. Written from Newport. Thanks for praise on victory at Lake Erie. 2 pages, ALS.


Folder 4. Letter from Gov. William Jones, of Providence, June 6, 1814. Requests naval protection for Narragansett Bay. 1 page, ALS.


Folder 5. Power of attorney document to wife Elizabeth C. Perry, July 20, 1814. 1 page, ADS.


Folder 6. Letter to Benjamin Williams Crowninshield, Secretary of the Navy, April 9, 1815. Written from Newport. Recommends Dr. John R. Martin for a transfer. 1 page printed copy of ALS, reproduced in 1944 by Elijah E. Brownell.


Folder 7. Letter from Edward Fitzgerald of Washington, D.C., June 21, 1817. To Perry in Newport. 1 page, possibly a contemporary copy.


Folder 8. "Serious Charges Against Captain Oliver H. Perry of the United State Navy by John Heath, Late Captain of the Marine Corps" (Washington, D.C.: 1817)


Folder 9. Testimony of R.K. Randolph regarding the charges against Perry by Captain Heath, March 23, 1818, Newport. 4 pages, AD, not signed.


Folder 10. Letter, Lewis Cass to Capt. Jesse D. Elliot of the U.S. Navy, November 10, 1822. Recalling conversation in which Perry cleared Elliot's name from charges of misconduct. 3 pages, ALS.

Folder 11. Bound packet of research notes on Perry collected by Usher Parsons:

            a) Letter, S.W. Perry to Parsons, January 18, 1836. 2 pages, ALS.

            b) Letter, S.W. Perry to Parsons, December 19, 1835. 3 pages, ALS.

            c) Letter, [S.W. Perry] to Parsons, undated. 28 pages, AD, not signed.

            d) Draft of biography of Perry? Undated, unsigned, 16 pages.

            e) Reminiscences of Perry. Undated, unsigned, 1 page.

            f) Letter, William Peckham to Edward H. Hazard, June 14, 1840. 3 pages, ALS.


Folder 12. Notes on Slidell's Life of Commodore Perry by Daniel Dobbins, transcribed by son W.W. Dobbins. With letter from W.W. Dobbins dated June 8, 1860.


Folder 13. Notarized deposition regarding authenticity of bookcase owned by Perry, by Eunice B. (Carr) Littlefield, September 16, 1917. 2 pages, ADS.


Folder 14. Poem: "Lines by a young lady of Philadelphia on the Evening of the illumination of that city in honor of the victory obtained by Commodore Perry on Lake Erie". 1 page, manuscript, not signed.

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Bainbridge, William (1774-1833)

Cass, Lewis (1782-1866)

Crowninshield, Benjamin Williams (1772-1851)

Dobbins, Daniel

Elliot, Jesse D. (1782-1845)

Fitzgerald, Edward

Jones, William (1753-1822)

Littlefield, Eunice B. (Carr)

Parsons, Usher (1788-1868)

Peckham, William


Rogers, William S.

United States - History - War of 1812

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