University of Delaware Library

Special Collections Department

Henry Clay Trumbull

1844 - 1892

(bulk dates 1851 - 1852 and 1864 - 1865)

Manuscript Collection Number: 238
Accessioned: Gift, Anna D. Moyerman, 1972
Extent: .33 linear ft. (115 items)
Content: Letters
Access: The collection is open for research.
Processed: June 1993 by Rhonda R. Newton

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Special Collections, University of Delaware Library
Newark, Delaware 19717-5267
(302) 831-2229

Table of Contents

Biographical Note

Henry Clay Trumbull (1830-1903) was a noted author, editor, and Sunday-school missionary. Trumbull was born in Stonington, Connecticut to a prominent family. His brother, James Hammond Trumbull, was a noted historian, philologist, and bibliographer. Trumbull attended Stonington Academy and Williston Seminary. He moved to Hartford, Connecticut, at age 21 and worked for the Hartford, Providence, and Fishkill Railroad as a clerk. In 1854, he married Alice Cogswell Gallaudet, the daughter of Thomas Hopkins Gallaudet who was named in honor of Alice Cogswell, a daughter of Dr. Mason Cogswell and first deaf pupil of Gallaudet's.

In 1852, Trumbull joined the church and became the superintendent of a mission Sunday-school, continuing to work at the railroad. After working at several different jobs, in 1858 he became the state Sunday-school missionary for Connecticut.

Trumbull was ordained in 1862 and became the chaplain of the 10th Connecticut Regiment, stationed in North Carolina. He was held by the Confederates for four months in 1863, and after his release served in Virginia until his discharge in August 1865.

He then became New England secretary for the American Sunday-school Union. In 1875, he and his family moved to Philadelphia where he became editor of the Sunday School Times. Trumbull was the Lyman Beecher Lecturer at Yale Divinity School in 1888.

During his life, Trumbull wrote thirty-three books, including Kadesh-Barnea, about a historic site he identified in Palestine, and The Knightly Soldier, a biography of his friend Henry Ward Camp.


Malone, Dumas (ed.). Dictionary of American Biography. Volume 10. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1964. pp. 8-9.

Scope and Content Note

The collection contains 120 letters written by various members of Henry Clay Trumbull's family. The majority of the letters are between Trumbull and his parents and siblings. Several were written between his father and brother as well as between his mother and wife. The letters span 1844 to 1892, but the bulk are from 1851 to 1852 and 1864 to 1865. These cover part of Trumbull's time in Hartford and most of his Civil War service. They primarily deal with family news and requests but there is also information on religion, Connecticut state legislative action, and Trumbull's feelings towards those who paid for proxies during the war. Letters from April 1861 from Thomas Trumbull tell of his campaign to obtain letters of recommendation to support his application for the Consulship at Tunis.

A list of family names follows:

Trumbull, Henry Clay

Trumbull, Gurdon, father

Trumbull, Sarah Anne (Sally), mother

Trumbull, Charles, brother

Trumbull, James Hammond, brother

Trumbull, Alice Cogswell, wife

Trumbull, Thomas, brother

Prime, Mary Trumbull, sister

Noyes, Mrs. Fanny, grandmother

Contents List

Folder -- Contents

F1   1844-1849
     5 items

F2   1850
     4 items

F3   1851 Feb-Jul
     7 items

F4   1851 Oct-Dec
     9 items

F5   1852 Jan-Feb
     7 items

F6   1852 Mar-May
     7 items

F7   1852 June
     6 items

F8   1852 July
     5 items

F9   1852 Aug-Sep
     6 items

F10  1852 Oct-Dec
     5 items

F11  1853-1854, 1856
     4 items

F12  1860-1861
     9 items

F13  1862-1863
     7 items

F14  1864 May-July
     6 items

F15  1864 Aug-Dec
     5 items

F16  1865 Jan-May
     9 items

F17  1865 Jun-Aug
     9 items

F18  1885-1886, 1892
     3 items

F19  [n.d.]
     7 items

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