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.

The Pennsylvania Mercury and Universal Advertiser

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 #: GLC09151 Author/Creator: Place Written: s.l. Type: Newspaper Date: 29 April 1788 Pagination: 4 p.

Summary of Content: Letter from "A Free Negro" printed in the Pennsylvania Mercury and Universal Advertiser. "I am one of that unfortunate race of men who are distinguished from the rest of the human species by black skin and woolly hair, disadvantages of very little moment in themselves, but which prove to us a source of the greatest misery, because there are men who will not be persuaded, that it is impossible for a human soul to be lodged within a sable body..." Issue also includes one of John Dickinson's "Letters of Fabius" supporting the Federal Constitution.


Historical Era: The New Nation, 1783-1815

Subjects: US ConstitutionGovernment and CivicsFreemenAfrican American History

Sub Era: Creating a New Government

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