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.

Luce, Stephen Bleecker (1827-1917) to Stevenson Taylor

High-resolution images are available to schools and libraries via subscription to American History, 1493-1943. Check to see if your school or library already has a subscription. Or click here for more information. You may also order a pdf of the image from us here.

Gilder Lehrman Collection #: GLC03479.67 Author/Creator: Luce, Stephen Bleecker (1827-1917) Place Written: Newport, Rhode Island Type: Autograph letter signed Date: 6 November 1900 Pagination: 2 p. ; 20 x 12.3 cm.

Summary of Content: Luce says he heard from Frederick P. Vinton that Taylor was the President of the Webb Institute. Is writing for a copy of the Prospectus of the Institute. Is particularly interested in knowing about a course on naval architecture and ship building. Written on Luce's own stationary with an address at "15 Francis Street, Newport, Rhode Island."

Background Information: Born in Albany, New York, Stephen Luce was one of the Navy's outstanding officers in many fields, including strategy, seamanship, education, and professional development. Entering the naval service 19 October 1841 as ...a midshipman, he served with the Atlantic coast blockaders during the American Civil War, and commanded the monitor Nantucket at the siege of Charleston, South Carolina. In 1862, while serving as head of the Department of Seamanship at the U.S. Naval Academy, he prepared one of the first seamanship textbooks used by the Academy. After the war Luce organized the Navy's apprentice training program to prepare seamen and petty officers for fleet duty. From 1878 to 1881 Captain Luce was inspector of training ships and, as commodore, he commanded the U.S. Training Squadron from 1881 to 1884. Based on Luce's urgings and exhaustive reports, the Naval War College at Newport, Rhode Island, was established 6 October 1884 with Luce as its first president. He was also instrumental in starting the U.S. Naval Institute and its publication, Proceedings. He again served at sea before retiring 25 March 1889. He returned to the War College in 1901 and served for a decade as a faculty member.See More


Historical Era: Progressive Era to New Era, 1900-1929

Subjects: Progressive EraMilitary HistoryNavyEducationArchitecture

Sub Era:

Order a Copy Citation Guidelines for Online Resources