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Gilbert L. Streeter (1823-1901) Papers

Gilbert L. Streeter (1823-1901) Papers

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GILBERT L. STREETER (1823-1901) PAPERS, 1845-1905


Processing and conservation for this collection were funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Collection Summary

Repository:The Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum 132 Essex Street Salem, MA 01970 Phone: 978-745-9500 Fax: 978-531-1516
Creator:Streeter, Gilbert L. (Gilbert Lewis), 1823-1901
Title:Gilbert L. Streeter (1823-1901) Papers
Quantity:0.25 linear feet (1 box, 1 envelope)
Abstract:The Gilbert L. Streeter papers are a collection of Streeter's business and personal papers, including correspondence dealing with the Salem Lyceum.
Collection Number:MSS 108

Series List

Scope and Content Note

The Gilbert L. Streeter papers are a collection of Streeter's business and personal papers, including correspondence dealing with the Salem Lyceum. The majority of the Salem Lyceum papers (Folder 1), 1845-1855, contain acceptances or refusals from scholars to speak at the Lyceum lectures. Well-known correspondents include A.B. Alcott, 6/9/1849; R.W. Emerson, 6/11/1849; E. Everett, 8/24/1850; Wm. L. Garrison, 11/28/1850; H. Greely, 9/26/1850, 10/12/1852; O.W. Holmes, 8/20/1852, 11/18/1852; T. Mann, 8/18/1852; W. Phillips, 10/25/1852; S.E. Sewall, 8/14/1850; C. Sumner, 6/5/1849; and G. Ticknor, 10/12/1849. The folders of sermons and lectures (Folders 2 and 3) contain lectures written by Streeter and religious sermons which may have been written by his father, Barzillai Streeter. Of interest are lecture notes discussing the history of the newspaper in Salem and the benefits of separating the sexes in institutions of higher education. Streeter's correspondence (Folder 4), 1851-1897, includes letters from friends and business associates. Also included in the folder are financial accounts and various autographs, one of which is from Daniel Webster.

Rebecca Ives correspondence (Folder 5), 1851-1854, contains letters from Gilbert L. Streeter and other friends and relatives. Miscellaneous papers (Folder 6), 1855-1869, contain poetry written by both Gilbert L. Streeter and Rebecca Streeter. Also included are miscellaneous poems and notes taken on the book of poetry From Homes of the New World which contains poetry by John Greenleaf Whittier, William Lloyd Garrison, James Russell Lowell, Ralph Waldo Emerson, and George Cheevers. Their poems discuss such issues as abolitionism, slavery, capital punishment, and nature. Of interest is a written compliment by L.N. Fowler discussing Streeter's fine moral and intellectual faculties.

Biographical Sketch

Gilbert L. Streeter was cashier of the First National Bank and editor of the Salem Observer. Born on April 30, 1823 in Salem, Massachusetts, he was the son of Barzillai Streeter, minister of the Universalist Church, and Sarah Lewis Streeter.

Streeter went to Salem English High School and upon leaving, learned the trade of a watchmaker through Edmund Currier. He then turned to journalism and became editor of the Essex County Freeman. Next, Streeter formed a partnership with his father-in-law John Ives in a book and seed store. In approximately 1859, Streeter became a teller at the First National Bank and by 1893 had worked his way up to cashier of the bank. Continuing his work in journalism, he took the position of editor at the Salem Observer, and upon leaving that post he continued to contribute to the local press.

An antiquarian student, Streeter wrote a great deal for the Essex Institute Historical Collections and was elected a member on July 18, 1849. He was secretary of the Plummer Farm School, treasurer of the Essex Agricultural Society, and a trustee and treasurer to the Salem Lyceum.

Streeter married Rebecca Ives and had four children, Gilbert S., Mrs. Charles H. Parker, Mary E., and Rebecca I. He died in Salem on July 10, 1901.

Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in Philcat. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

Alcott, Amos Bronson, 1799-1888
Beecher, Henry Ward, 1813-1887
Emerson, Ralph Waldo, 1803-1882
Everett, Edward, 1794-1865
Garrison, William Lloyd, 1805-1879
Greeley, Horace, 1811-1872
Holmes, Oliver Wendell, 1809-1894
Mann, Thomas, 1746 or 1747-1822
Phillips, Wendell, 1811-1884
Sewall, Samuel E. (Samuel Edmund), 1799-1888
Streeter, Barzillai
Streeter, Rebecca Ives, b. 1835
Sumner, Charles, 1811-1874
Ticknor, George, 1791-1871
Webster, Daniel, 1782-1852
Winthrop, Robert C. (Robert Charles), 1809-1894
Salem Lyceum (Salem, Mass.)
Lectures and lecturing
Salem (Mass.)--Imprints


Restrictions on Access

This collection is open for research use.

Administrative Information


Requests for permission to publish material from the collection must be submitted in writing to the Manuscript Librarian in the Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum.

Preferred Citation

Gilbert L. Streeter (1823-1901) Papers, MSS 108, Phillips Library, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass.


The Gilbert L. Streeter papers are a reorganization and integration of one box. Lyceum correspondence was purchased in 1950; 17 letters to Streeter were donated in 1953 by Joan Boudreau of the Cotting-Smith Assembly House in Salem (acc #92036); the remainder of the collection is from an unknown source.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Lisa Petrucci, January 1984. Updated by Catherine Robertson, January 2015.

Related Material

Streeter, Gilbert L. Account of the Clergymen Settled in Salem at the time of the Revolutionary War. Salem, 1857.

Streeter, Gilbert L. An Account of the Newspapers and Other Periodicals Published in Salem from 1768 to 1856. Salem: Salem W. Ives and G.W. Pease Printers, 1856.

Streeter, Gilbert L. Historical Sketch of the Building of the Frigate Essex at Salem and her Subsequent Fate. Salem, 1856.

Streeter, Gilbert L. How to Manage the Hen Coop. Essex Agricultural Transactions. Vol. 8, 1868. pp. 118-135.

Streeter, Gilbert L. Letter to Mr. Carroll of Peabody Concerning the First Meetinghouse in Salem, Mass.. Salem: Newcomb and Gauss Printers, 1900.

Streeter, Gilbert L. Salem Before the Revolution. Salem: The Salem Press, 1896.

Streeter, Gilbert L. Some Historical Streets and Colonial Houses of Salem. Salem, 1900.

Streeter, Gilbert L. Story of Winter Island and Salem Neck. Salem, 1897.

The Salem Evening News, Salem, Mass.; Wednesday, July 10, 1901.

Salem Lyceum Records, 1829-1898, MSS 269.

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