University of Delaware Library

Patterson, William D. , b. 1833.

William D. Patterson journal

1856 January 1–1861 April 28

Descriptive Summary

Identification: MSS 097, Item 058

Creator: Patterson, William D. , b. 1833.

Title: William D. Patterson journal

Inclusive Dates: 1856 January 1–1861 April 28

Extent: 1 v. 4 items ; 25 cm.

Abstract: William D. Patterson kept this diary from January 1, 1856, to July 22, 1857, while attending Allegheny Seminary near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. It covers a range of topics from daily activities to intellectual debates.

Language: Materials entirely in English.


MSS 097, Item 058, William D. Patterson journal, Special Collections, University of Delaware Library, Newark, Delaware.

Shelving Summary

Item 058: Shelved in SPEC MSS 097


Special Collections Department, University of Delaware Library / Newark, Delaware 19717-5267 / Phone: 302-831-2229 / Fax: 302-831-6003 / URL:




Processed and encoded by Christiana Dobrzynski, September 2008.

The collection is open for research.

Terms Governing Use and Reproduction

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections Department, University of Delaware Library,

Biographical Note

William D. Patterson was born on July 22, 1833, and attended the Allegheny Seminary near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in the late 1850s.


Biographical information derived from the collection.

Scope and Content Note

William D. Patterson kept this diary from January 1, 1856, to July 22, 1857, while attending Allegheny Seminary near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. His daily entries range from brief notations about weather, health, and daily seminary life to more extended meditations and reflections on Biblical verses, sermons delivered by colleagues, and intellectual debates held at the seminary.

Greatest detail was expended on summaries of arguments heard at regular meetings of the Society of Religious Inquiry, where he followed such discussions as "Are creeds useful?" or "Is the union of Church and State adapted to promote the morals of a nation?" Patterson's reflections on intellectual issues include discussion of slavery, morals, temperance, the role of the organized church in supporting local public education, and local and federal law. Other entries describe letter writing to family members and social acquaintances, as well as local social life and visits.

This journal is one bound volume, 200 pages (137 of which were used), with handwritten entries in ink. Three small booklets of sermon notes and a sentimental poem, "Dinna Forget" by John Jonlah, accompany the volume.

Selected Search Terms

Personal Names
Patterson, William D. , b. 1833--Diaries.
Corporate Names
Allegheny Theological Seminary.
Topical Terms
Students--Pennsylvania--19th century--Diaries.
Theological seminaries--Pennsylvania--19th century.
Theological seminaries--Pennsylvania--19th century--Sources.
Form/Genre Terms
Weather diaries.

Related Materials in this Repository

This item forms part of MSS 097 Diaries, Journals, and Ships' Logs collection.

Publication Note

University of Delaware. Library. Self works : diaries, scrapbooks, and other autobiographical efforts : catalog of an exhibition, August 19, 1997–December 18, 1997 : guide to selected sources.Newark, Del. : Special Collections, Hugh M. Morris Library, University of Delaware Library, 1997.

Detailed Contents List

William D. Patterson journal, 1856 January 1–1861 April 28   [Item 058]