Section of: ALS, L[ouisa] M[ay] Alcott, Concord, [Mass.], to Mr. Ayer, 1865 Mar. 19
Section of: ALS, L[ouisa] M[ay] Alcott, Concord, [Mass.], to Mr. Ayer, 1865 Mar. 19


Vault A45, Alcott, Unit 1


EXTENT: 29 items (1 container plus oversize folder)

BIOGRAPHY: Amos Bronson Alcott—American Transcendentalist, educator, philosopher, mystic, lecturer, essayist, poet, idealist, reformer, and resident of Concord, Mass.—married Abigail May on May 23, 1830. Their children: Anna Bronson (born 1831); Louisa May (author, born 1832); Elizabeth Sewall (born 1835); a son (born and died 1839); and May (artist; born 1840). Anna Bronson Alcott married John Bridge Pratt in 1860. Their children: Frederic Alcott Pratt (born 1863) and John Sewall Pratt (later John Sewall Pratt Alcott; born 1865). Frederic Alcott Pratt married Jessica L. Cate in 1888. The first of their five children was Bronson Alcott Pratt (born 1889). May Alcott married Ernest Nieriker in 1878. Their daughter Louisa May was born in Paris in 1879; May died shortly thereafter.

SCOPE AND CONTENT: Correspondence includes eight letters and five poems from Louisa May Alcott to various correspondents, [1856]-1885, plus undated; four letters from Abigail May Alcott to several correspondents, [1862]-1872, including two ALS to Mrs. [Cynthia] Thoreau; two ALS from May Alcott Nieriker to her mother, 1877; three ALS (two partial only) from Ernest Nieriker, 1879-[1880]; three letters (one typed transcript, two original ALS) from Anna Bronson Alcott Pratt, 1871-[1889], one of them to her son Frederic Alcott Pratt and his family, one to Frederic alone; two ALS to Frederic Alcott Pratt, 1889 (one from John Sewall Pratt (Alcott) ), and one TLS from F. Alcott Pratt to Allen French, 1900 (poem enclosed); one ALS (invitation to opening of "The Alcott House" from Carrie M. Hoyle—Secretary of the Louisa May Alcott Memorial Association—to Bronson Alcott Pratt), 1912.

SOURCES OF ACQUISITION: Multiple. Two ALS from A.M. Alcott to Cynthia Thoreau deposited by Concord Antiquarian Society in 1971, converted to gift in 1974. Eighteen items presented by Mrs. Bronson Alcott Pratt (Louise DeRevere Pratt) in 1980. Two items (L.M. Alcott to Mr. Ayer, 1865, and one partial Ernest Nieriker letter) presented by Louisa Alcott Pratt Kussin in 1982. One item ([1880] partial Ernest Nieriker ALS) presented by Jayne Gordon on behalf of Orchard House, after 1986. ALS, LMA to Lucy Caroline Whittemore Myrick, gift of Christopher Brown, Aug. 26, 2009. ALS, LMA to Mrs. Talbot, purchased of Aleph-Bet Books, received 12/08/2012. ALS, LMA to Mrs. Adams, purchased at Skinner auction, 05/27/2015, received 06/19/2015. ALS, LMA to Laura [Whiting Hosmer], [June 24, 1886], presented by Bruce and Dorothy Eros, 07/14/2017.

NOTES/COMMENTS: Four items (as noted on folders) transferred from Letter Files, Mar. 1995: Letter File 3A, P1; Letter File 6, A10, A14, and A15. Two A.M. Alcott letters to C. Thoreau; formerly CAS D-2030h and D-2030n. ALS, LMA to Lucy C.W. Myrick, part of AMC 176. ALS, LMA to Mrs. Talbot, accessioned 12/08/2012 (AMC 209). ALS, LMA to Mrs. Adams, accessioned 06/19/2015 (AMC 243). ALS, LMA to Laura [Whiting Hosmer], accessioned 07/18/2017 (AMC 266).

PROCESSED BY: Leslie Perrin Wilson; finding aid prepared 11/15/95; prepared for mounting on the Web by CM, 08/24/04. Updated 05/11/11; 12/08/12; 6/27/2015; 6/28/2019



Folder 1:

ALS to Nan, [1856] Nov. 6 (referring to Theodore Parker, Charles Sumner, Boston Theatre).

ALS to Eliza, [1858] Mar. 19.

Poem, "Where is Bennie?" [1862] Aug. 14 (Benjamin Wells age 6 and his visit to Concord).

ALS to Mr. Ayer, 1865 Mar. 19.

Poems, to Ruth (two items, undated).

Poems, to Lizzie (two items, one undated, one 1885).

ALS to “Dear Laura” [Whiting Hosmer], Thursday Eve [June 24, 1886].

ALS to "My Dear Mrs. Myrick [Lucy Caroline Whittemore Myrick]" (undated).

Folder 1a:
ALS to Mrs. Talbot "Dec. 30, [1880]," on the hiring of a domestic, Mrs. Willis's case of the measles and sore throat, and Concord matters (including the engagement of Myrtle Whitcomb to Samuel Ripley Bartlett). Letter in custom slipcase.

Folder 1b:
ALS to Mrs. Adams , [Concord, August 5, undated],  accompanied by envelope addressed to Mrs. Ann Adams [Anne Rebecca Adams (Mrs. Alvin Hoar Adams)] and postmarked Concord, August 5.

Item in oversize folder, outside container
ALS to "Pythias," [1856] Dec. 11 ("The Boston Bulletin").


Folder 2:

ALS to Mrs. [Cynthia] Thoreau, [1862]

ALS to Mrs. Thoreau, 1870 Oct. 2 (with enclosure).

ALS to Elizabeth, 1871 Oct. 18.

ALS to Mr. Mumford, 1872 June 16.


Folder 3:

ALS, "Dearest Mother," Paris, 1877 Mar. 19.

ALS, "My Dearest Mamma," [1877].


Folder 4:

ALS to [to L.M. Alcott and Anna Alcott Pratt], Paris, 1879 Nov. 9 (concerning birth of Louisa May Nieriker).

Part of ALS regarding shipping of May’s things back to Concord after her death in 1879.

Part of another ALS regarding conveyance of May’s daughter and some of May’s things to Concord, [1880].


Folder 5:

Typed transcript of letter to Julia and Alice (two Vassar girls), 1871 Jan. 20.

ALS to "Dear Children" [Fred, wife, and child; 1889].

ALS to "My Dearest Fred," Zurich, [1889] July 24.


Folder 6:
FREDERIC ALCOTT PRATT [as recipient and writer] (3 items):

ALS, Ida to "Dear Fred," Zurich, 1889 Sept. 11.

ALS, John [Sewall Pratt Alcott] to "Dear Peddy," 1889 May 26.

TLS, Frederic Alcott Pratt to Allen French, 1900 July 6 (poem enclosed).


Folder 7:
BRONSON ALCOTT PRATT [as recipient] (1 item):

ALS, Carrie M. Hoyle "To Mr. Alcott Pratt," 1912 May 17 (invitation from Hoyle as Secretary of Louisa May Alcott Memorial Association to opening of the Alcott House).

Mounted 30th August 2004. Rev. 11 May 2011.Rev. 8 Dec. 2012. Rev. 28 June 2019.
c2004-c2019 Concord Free Public Library. Not to be reproduced in any form without permission from the Curator of the William Munroe Special Collections, Concord Free Public Library, Concord., Mass.


Back to Finding Aids Page

Back to Special Collections homepage