Processing and conservation of this collection
was funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
The Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum 132 Essex Street Salem, MA 01970 Phone: 978-745-9500 Fax: 978-531-1516
Dunlap, Andrew, 1794-1835
Andrew Dunlap (1794-1835)
8 linear feet (15 boxes, 2 volumes)
The Andrew Dunlap Papers,
1754-1847, contain attorney's, political, personal, and estate papers of Andrew
Dunlap (1794-1835), a famous United States District Attorney for Massachusetts and
follower of Andrew Jackson.
SERIES I. Attorney's Papers
A. Marine Cases
B. Civil Cases
SERIES II. Political and Personal Papers SERIES III. Estate Papers SERIES IV. Miscellaneous Papers
Scope and Content Note
The Andrew Dunlap Papers, 1754-1847, contain attorney's, political, personal, and
estate papers of Andrew Dunlap (1794-1835), a famous United States District Attorney
for Massachusetts and follower of Andrew Jackson. Andrew's attorney's papers include
both marine and civil cases running from 1814, when he began his law practice in
Salem, through his tenure as U.S. District Attorney. His political correspondence
and speeches contain fascinating views of the political scene in New England during
the 1820s and early 1830s. The personal papers include shipping papers reflecting
Andrew's shares in mercantile and whaling vessels. The collection is divided into
Series I. Attorney's Papers cover the period from 1814,
when he first became an attorney in Salem, through his work in the Massachusetts
General Court and as the U.S. District Attorney for Massachusetts, until his death
in 1835. Subseries A. Marine Cases, filed
chronologically, include correspondence regarding the cases, shipmaster
correspondence, testimony, bills of lading, receipts, indictments, etc. Notes on
marine cases are located in the civil cases notebooks. The papers cover such topics
as non-payment of seamen's wages, abuse of seamen, disagreements regarding cargo
deliveries, smuggling in defiance of the revenue laws, illegally collected fishing
bounties, insurance disputes, theft, murder, mutiny, and piracy (see Appendix II).
The vessels mentioned in these papers sailed from a number of Massachusetts ports,
including Boston and Salem. Of special note are the large number of papers
documenting the 1830 murder and mutiny aboard the brig Orbit, the attempted mutinies on the ship Clay (1834) and brig Parthian (1834), and
the 1834 assault aboard the ship Milwood. Also included
is the famous 1832-1835 case of the brig Mexican (owned
by Joseph Peabody) in which the Salem vessel was plundered and fired by pirates out
of Cuba. The Mexican's crew survived, and the pirates,
recognized and captured by the British, were returned to the United States and
ultimately sentenced to death.
Subseries B. Civil Cases are divided into correspondence,
case notes, case documents, account books, and financial papers. Correspondence
contains letters from associates (including Daniel Webster, Joseph G. Waters, Larkin
Thorndike, Leverett Saltonstall, and Benjamin L. Oliver Jr.), correspondence from
prisoners appealing for legal aid or applying for pardons, letters from the Treasury
Department regarding the collection of revenues and the relief of insolvent debtors,
and correspondence regarding court cases. These civil cases deal with a wide variety
of subjects, including: debt, murder, assault, estate settlements, forgery, robbery,
fraud, defamation of character, performing without a license, tampering with the
U.S. mail, embezzlement, perjury, and counterfeiting.
The civil case notes and notebooks come from a various civil and marine cases,
and include Andrew's notes and copy of a speech made by Daniel Webster as the
defense attorney in an 1816 robbery trial. Case documents contain powers of
attorney, summons, writs, testimony, memorials, a list of traverse jurors for 1834,
a copy of Dr. Bentley's will (1819), and contemporary and older legal documents,
including an 1814 patent for a plough. The financial papers, consisting of account
books, accounts, bills, and receipts, include administrative costs, such as
attorney's fees, office rent, employees' wages, and costs of serving writs or taking
depositions; debts collected or financial business conducted for clients; and the
financial outcome of trials, including court costs and settlements.
Series II. Political and Personal Papers, covering 1812
to 1835, contain personal letters from his family and friends, correspondence
reflecting the political atmosphere of New England in the 1820s and 1830s, shipping
correspondence and papers generated from Andrew's mercantile and whaling ventures,
political and personal speeches and essays, and legal and financial papers. Personal
correspondence, interfiled with political correspondence, includes letters regarding
Andrew's interests in manufacturing companies and bank stocks, his memberships in
the Washington Society, the companies and bank stocks, his membership in the
Washington Society, the Charitable Irish Society, the Boston Debating Society, and
the Republican Institution, orders for law books and literature, and letters
concerning his own book, "A Treatise on the Practice of Courts of Admiralty." Also
included is correspondence from actors Louisa and H.A. Williams, a small number of
letters from Andrew's wife, Augusta, and a number of letters from his mother, Sarah
The political correspondence illuminates contemporary political figures and
issues, reflecting the upheavals of the 1820s, and the rise of Andrew Jackson and
the Democratic Republicans to power. These letters describe the political stands of
such national figures as John Quincy Adams, Henry Clay, Andrew Jackson, John C.
Calhoun, and Martin Van Buren. Also mentioned are such issues as the Missouri
question, the tariff bill, the revision of the Constitution (in which Andrew was
personally interested), Indian affairs, the anti-Masonic movements, and the
re-charter of the Bank of the United States. Underlying these issues is pictured the
hot dissent between the Federalist followers of John Quincy Adams and the Jacksonian
Democratic Republicans. Through Andrew Dunlap's correspondence one can follow the
rise of Andrew Jackson, his defeat in the 1824 presidential race to John Quincy
Adams, and his victory in 1828. Also recorded are inside views of Washington, D.C.
(see Appendix III for a list of notable correspondents) including: political
appointments and rivalries, the 1832 cholera epidemic, and the coldness which
developed between President Andrew Jackson and his Vice President John C.
The political and personal correspondence also reflects the course of Andrew's
own political interests. Letters of recommendation may be found here, including
three from Dr. William Bentley and one from Joseph Story. His many political
orations, editorials, and newspaper articles are also discussed. Included is
correspondence illuminating Andrew's personal efforts to gather support for Andrew
Jackson. Andrew Dunlap was Chairman of the 1828 Jackson Republican Central Committee
and was instrumental in gathering the electorate who voted Jackson President.
Because Dunlap was in the forefront of Massachusetts politics and considered
controversial by some, he received a number of anonymous derogatory letters (see
October 1826 and April 1830) terming him a "mean low life puppy," etc. He also
received appeals from Jackson followers who wished appointment recommendations,
especially following the 1828 Presidential election when opponents of Jackson were
being removed from government offices. These appointments included such offices as
road commissioner, post master, port collector, measurer, surveyor, and light house
keeper. Of note is Andrew's letter of recommendation (February 11, 1830) written to
President Jackson on behalf of John Crowninshield (1771-1842), who was appointed
appraiser at Boston later that year.
Andrew's political and personal papers also contain shipping papers, drafts of
political essays, personal essays including a short family history, legal papers,
his will, and personal bills and receipts. The shipping correspondence and papers
briefly note the mercantile and whaling vessels upon which Andrew sent cargo or in
which he owned shares (see Appendix IV for listing). The whaling ships sailed mainly
in the Pacific, and the shipping vessels sailed to Europe, Calcutta, Sumatra, South
American, and the east coast of the United States. Included is a large amount of
correspondence with Abraham Osborn of Edgartown, who mastered and oversaw the
building of a number of Andrew's whaling vessels. Additional shipping records may be
found in account books and in the estate papers.
Series III. Estate Papers, 1835-1847, include letter and
account books, correspondence, and legal and financial papers. Benjamin W. Stone,
Andrew's estate executor, settled the deceased's accounts, including the sale of
Andrew's comprehensive law library, maintained the estate's whaling vessels, and
oversaw the publishing of the "Treatise on the Practice of Courts of Admiralty." The
papers include a copyright for Andrew's book and a list of people to whom he wished
the volume sent.
Series IV. Miscellaneous Papers, 1800-1846, include
accounts of Andrew's son Samuel Fales Dunlap, miscellaneous clippings, a scientific
notebook, and a commonplace book of his mother Sarah (Stone) Dunlap.
Andrew Dunlap, attorney and politician of Salem and
Boston, Massachusetts, was born in 1794 to Irish immigrant merchant James Dunlap and
Sarah Stone of Salem. The Dunlap family moved from Salem to Boston in 1797 due to
James Dunlap's ill health. Upon James' death in 1800, Sarah (Stone) Dunlap moved the
family back to Salem where they lived with her parents, Robert and Anstiss
(Babbidge) Stone. Here Andrew Dunlap was prepared by Dr. William Bentley for Harvard
College, from which Andrew graduated in 1813. Andrew first set up his law practice
in Salem, moving to Boston in approximately 1820. In 1824, he married Lucy Ann
Charlotte Augusta Fales, daughter of Boson merchant Samuel Fales. Their son, Samuel
Fales Dunlap, was born in 1825.
Politically active and a forceful speaker, Andrew quickly achieved notoriety in
judicial and political spheres. He was elected to the General Court in 1826 and in
1829 was appointed United States District Attorney for Massachusetts under the
administration of President Andrew Jackson. He handled a wide variety of civil
cases, from debt to murder to counterfeiting. He also worked on a number of marine
cases, including fishing bounty disputes, abuse of seamen, smuggling, mutiny, and
piracy. Toward the end of his life, Andrew wrote his "Treatise on the Practice of
Courts of Admiralty" which was published posthumously.
As a member of the Republican Institution and the Chairman of the 1828 Jackson
Republican Central Committee, Andrew was in the center of hot debates between the
followers of John Quincy Adams and Andrew Jackson. He was instrumental in
solidifying the Massachusetts Jacksonians in the 1824 and 1828 elections, writing
articles in newspapers and giving numerous speeches. He remained politically active
throughout his life, corresponding frequently with friends and colleagues in
Washington, D.C. and New England.
Andrew Dunlap died of consumption in 1835 at his mother's home in Salem.
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.
Adams, John Quincy, 1767-1848
Bentley, William, 1759-1819
Clay, Henry Caldwell, 1782-1850
Crowninshield, John, 1771-1842
Dunlap, Andrew, 1794-1835
Dunlap, Lucy Ann Charlotte Augusta Fales, d. 1887
Dunlap, S. F. (Samuel Fales), 1825-1905
Dunlap, Sarah Stone, 1773-1855
Henshaw, David, 1791-1852
Jackson, Andrew, 1767-1845
Osborn, Abraham, b. ca. 1799
Saltonstall, Leverett, 1783-1845
Stone, Benjamin W., 1809-1891
Story, Joseph, 1779-1845
Van Buren, Martin, 1782-1862
Webster, Daniel, 1782-1852
Woodbury, Levi, 1789-185
George & Mary (Ship)
Milwood (Ship : active 1834)
Abandonment (Maritime law)
Administration of estates
Lectures and lecturing
Restrictions on Access
This collection is open for research use.
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
The Andrew Dunlap Papers are a reorganization and integration of 15 scrapbooks, 10
account books, 1 folder of estate papers removed from the Stone Family Papers, and
several other miscellaneous folders. The collection was donated by the estate of
Collection processed by Sylvia B. Kennick, October 1984. Updated by Catherine
Robertson, January 2015.
Battis, Edward C. "The Brig Mexican of Salem, Captured
by Pirates, and Her Escape." Historical Collections of the
Essex Institute, vol. 34, 1898. pp. 41-63.
Murdock, Richard K. "Cod or Mackerel: Bounty Payment Disputes, 1829-1832." Historical Collections of the Essex Institute, vol. 105,
1969. pp. 306-337.
The Andrew Dunlap Papers, 1754-1847, contain attorney's, political, personal, and estate papers of Andrew Dunlap (1794-1835), a famous United States District Attorney for Massachusetts and follower of Andrew Jackson.
Champion (Ship); Clay (Ship); George & Mary (Ship); Herald (Ship); Mexican (Brig); Milwood (Ship : active 1834); Orbit (Brig); Pathian (Brig); Salem (Mass.); Adams, John Quincy, 1767-1848; Bentley, William, 1759-1819; Clay, Henry Caldwell, 1782-1850; Crowninshield, John, 1771-1842; Dunlap, Andrew, 1794-1835; Dunlap, Lucy Ann Charlotte Augusta Fales, d. 1887; Dunlap, S. F. (Samuel Fales), 1825-1905; Dunlap, Sarah Stone, 1773-1855; Henshaw, David, 1791-1852; Jackson, Andrew, 1767-1845; Osborn, Abraham, b. ca. 1799; Saltonstall, Leverett, 1783-1845; Stone, Benjamin W., 1809-1891; Story, Joseph, 1779-1845; Van Buren, Martin, 1782-1862; Webster, Daniel, 1782-1852; Woodbury, Levi, 1789-1851; Abandonment (Maritime law); Account books; Authors; Administration of estates; Fishing; Genealogy; Marine insurance; Lawyers; Lectures and lecturing; Libraries; Merchants--Boston (Mass.); Murder; Mutiny; Pirates; Prisoners; Public prosecutors; Shipbuilding; Shipping; Shipwrecks; Smuggling; Societies; Trials; Whaling
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.