1.   Historical note

2.   Scope and content

3.   Provenance

4.   Processing note

5.   Inventory

6.   Subjects

    List of finding aids

    R.I.H.S. Library page

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 Peleg R. Angell Papers

 Scituate, R.I. farmer and school teacher

 Papers, 1807-1887. Bulk 1820-1859.

 Size: .5 lin. ft.

 Catalog number: MSS 959

 Processed by: Rick Stattler, August 1995

©Rhode Island Historical Society

Manuscripts Division


Historical note:

            Peleg R. Angell (1795-1877) was the son of Benjamin Angell of Scituate, Rhode Island (ca.1760-1834). He was a farmer in Scituate, and also at times taught school and worked as a surveyor. He married Mary West in 1827; they had five surviving children. Ann Eliza Austin (b. 1828), who moved to Iowa; Tabitha Salibury (b. 1830); Peleg W. Angell (b. 1831), a mill weaver; Mary E. Aylesworth (b. 1836); and Charles H. (b. 1843), who fought in the Civil War and moved to Chicago.


Angell, Avery. Genealogy of the Descendants of Thomas Angell, 1872.

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Scope and content:

            The papers include six family letters; household receipts; school contracts and attendance records; deeds and leases; lesson plans; scraps of poetry; and a few household receipts from Peleg's father Benjamin Angell.

            Although the letters are not very numerous, they are excellent documents from a hard-pressed working class family. One letter from Peleg W. Angell to his father Peleg R., dated 1859, explains that "i was sorry to hear that you wanted fifty or sixty Dollars and I was sorry for you to think that we could hand out so much monney at eny time for as for myself i am jest as poor as jobes turkey...i think i shall brake up keeping house and board out and if i am sick i shall go upon the town for i have nothing to help myself with but one hundred lbs of pork." The same Peleg wrote a friend in 1884 describing how he left his native mill town and shipped out on a whaling voyage to the Faulkland Isles. A letter from Peleg's brother Charles describes hard times in 1877: "times is orfull dull Here in Chicago, there is lots of men here Out of work, I han't had eny work in almost one year now...I gess I shall go to the town gard soon if I don't get eny work."

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            These papers were donated by Florence and Francis Cole in 1992, as part of a larger collection of Sessions family papers. As there was no apparent connection between Peleg Angell and the Sessions family, these papers were separated in 1995.

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Processing note:

            The papers were unfolded, organized and placed in an archival box and folders.

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1. Correspondence, 1822-1884 (6 items):

            H.L. Ross to Peleg R. Angell, 11/6/1822.

                        Angell's attending Ross' writing school.

            Ann Eliza Austin to father Peleg R. Angell, Iowa, 10/22/1857

                        Farm life.

            Peleg W. Angell to father Peleg R. Angell, Rockland, 2/13/1859

                        Hard times.

            Peleg R. Angell to "General Mauleland", ca. 1863

                        Draft of letter requesting discharge for son Charles.

            Charles Angell to brother Peleg W. Angell, Chicago, 4/14/1877

                        Hard times in Chicago.

            Peleg W. Angell to Cyrel Ingraham, New London, 6/24/1884

                        Whaling journey.

2. Peleg R. Angell - Receipts, etc. 1821-1829

3.                                              1830-1839

4.                                              1840-1855

5.                      - School contracts and attendance records, 1823

6.                      - Legal documents, 1807-1843 (10 items)


1. Certificate of marriage, Peleg R. Angell to Mary West, 2/4/1827

2. Memorandum of death of Benjamin Angell, 11/2/1834, aged 74

                                                            Misc. deeds, warrants, etc.

7.                      - Account books, 1849-1859

8.                      - Cyphering books and school notes, ca. 1828

9.                      - Misc. memoranda and poetry, n.d.

10. Benjamin Angell - Receipts, etc., 1820-1827

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Angell, Benjamin (ca. 1760-1834)

Angell, Charles H. (1843- )

Angell, Peleg W. (1831-?)

Austin, Ann Eliza (Angell) (1828-?)

Schools - Rhode Island - Scituate

Scituate, R.I. - Schools

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