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Alexander Robinson Papers, 1804-1863, 1886

Identifier: MH 255

  • Staff Only

Scope and Content Note

This collection contains ships' papers, correspondence, receipts, and accounts. It has been arranged into four series.

Series I. Ships' Papers contain receipts, bills of lading, custom documents, insurance policies, and crew lists for several vessels that Robinson owned or sailed on. It is arranged into four subseries: A. Tuley (Brig); B. Moses Brown (Ship); C. Liverpool; and D. Other Ships.

Series II. Business Papers have been arranged into three subseries. Subseries A. Financial contains financial documents, not related to a particular ship. Subseries B. Correspondence contains legal papers and general business correspondence. Of some interest is a letter requesting that Captain Robinson transport "a distressed American Seamen, Henry James, negroe" home from France on the ship Independence. Subseries C. Military includes military papers from the time Captain Robinson served in the Corps of Sea Fencibles, a special volunteer naval artillery militia that served on both land and floating batteries to protect ports, harbors, and other vital coastal areas.

Series III. Personal Papers has been arranged into two subseries. Subseries A. Financial includes receipts for household expenses, cancelled checks, deeds, and account books. Receipts for the building of and furnishing a house in Brooklyn can be found here in the folders from the 1820s. Subseries B. Correspondence and Other contains a diary, personal correspondence from family members and some printed items.

Series IV. Family Papers includes receipts, correspondence, and school papers belonging to his wife, Hetty, son, George W., and other family members.


  • 1804-1863, 1886


Restrictions on Access

This collection is open for research use.

Biographical Sketch

Alexander Robinson was born in [Ireland] in 1784. He was a merchant seaman who traded with England, France, and Ireland as well as several American ports. He served in the War of 1812 in the Corps of Sea Fencibles. He married Hester [P?] (1794-1863) on December 15, 1812 and they had eight children: Ann (b. 1813); Catherine (1815-1815); Catherine Augusta (b. 1816); Maria Antoinet (b. 1818); Hetty (b. 1820); George Washington (b. 1822); Susan Elizabeth (b. 1825); and Eliza (b. 1827). They lived in Brooklyn, New York and later Hudson, New York. In 1822 he was Treasurer of the Freemasons Hohenlinden Lodge No. 338 and a member of the New York Nautical Institution. Captain Robinson died on February 17, 1846 in Hudson, New York.


7.5 linear feet (8 boxes)

Language of Materials



This collection contains merchant seaman Alexander Robinson's ships' papers, correspondence, receipts, and accounts.

Series List

SERIES I. Ships' Papers

  • A. Tuley (Brig)
  • B. Moses Brown (Ship)
  • C. Liverpool (Ship)
  • D. Other Ships
SERIES II. Business Papers

  • A. Financial
  • B. Correspondence
  • C. Military
SERIES III. Personal Papers

  • A. Financial
  • B. Correspondence and Other

SERIES IV. Family Papers


This material was a gift of Marion Lane in 1991 (accession # 25,721).

Bibliography and Related Material

More of Alexander Robinson's papers can be found in the Manuscripts Division of the William L. Clements Library at the University of Michigan.

Processing Information

Collection processed and cataloged by Tamara Gaydos, May 2012.

Inventory prepared by Tamara Gaydos
Language of description
Script of description
Processing of this collection was funded by a grant from the NHPRC (National Historical Publications and Records Commission).

Repository Details

Part of the Phillips Library Repository

Peabody Essex Museum
306 Newburyport Turnpike
Rowley MA 01969 USA