Our Collection

At the Institute’s core is the Gilder Lehrman Collection, one of the great archives in American history. More than 70,000 items cover five hundred years of American history, from Columbus’s 1493 letter describing the New World to soldiers’ letters from World War II and Vietnam. Explore primary sources, visit exhibitions in person or online, or bring your class on a field trip.

Livingston, John (1714-1786) to Robert Livingston, Jr. re: destruction caused by a fire

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Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC03107.02969 Author/Creator: Livingston, John (1714-1786) Place Written: New York, New York Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 1756/05/25 Pagination: 1p. + docket 32.4 x 20.2 cm

John explains how one of his enslaved people accidently set a closet on fire with a candle. A table, linens, and napkins were destroyed, but it was put out before more any more serious damage occurred.

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