Processing and conservation of this collection
were 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
Loring, George B. (George Bailey), 1817-1891
George Baily Loring (1817-1891)
4.75 linear feet (10 boxes)
This collection documents the
business and personal activities of the noted doctor, agriculturalist, statesman,
and diplomat, George Bailey Loring (1817-1891) of Salem.
SERIES I. United States Marine Hospital Patient
Records SERIES II. Addresses and Lectures
A. New England Dedicatory and Political
B. Agricultural Addresses
C. Miscellaneous Addresses
SERIES III. Business and Personal Papers SERIES IV. Family Papers
Scope and Content Note
This collection documents the business and personal activities of the noted doctor,
agriculturalist, statesman, and diplomat, George Bailey Loring (1817-1891) of Salem.
The papers contain descriptive patient records, kept while Loring was a surgeon at
the United States Marine Hospital in Chelsea, and many of his dedicatory, political,
and agricultural addresses. In addition, the collection includes political,
personal, and estate papers of George B. Loring, and correspondence, diaries, and
legal papers of family members. The papers are divided into four series.
Series I. United States Marine Hospital Patient
Records is comprised of 22 volumes which form a nearly complete
chronological run from 1843 to 1850. These important and illuminating volumes
contain the names, health history, disease symptoms, dates, and nature of treatment
provided to the patients Loring attended. All volumes include an index, either by
patient name, or, in the case of the 1843 records, by date of hospital entrance.
Noted in these pages are descriptions and treatments of such ailments as venereal
disease, typhoid, rheumatism, diarrhea, pneumonia, ulcers, cancer, hepatitis, burns,
measles, fractures, frostbite, epilepsy, scurvy, leprosy, insanity, intemperance,
and gunshot wounds. Of interest are several lists which Loring compiled: a
tabulation of the number of cases of each disease (August-November, 1844), and a
selection of medicinal recipes, and disease treatments (August-November 1847).
Series II. Addresses and Lectures, 1860-1879, are
divided into three chronologically arranged sections. Subseries
A. New England Dedicatory and Political Addresses includes dedication and
anniversary orations for towns, schools, town halls, and lyceums delivered in North
Andover, Salem, Topsfield, Plymouth, Dunstable, Swansea, Sherborne, Lexington,
Bolton, and Lawrence. Biographical addresses and an address made at the 1872
Republican States Convention in Worcester may also be found here. Subseries B. Agricultural Addresses includes speeches made
before the New England Agricultural Society, of which Loring was president, and the
Essex Agricultural Society. Subseries C. Miscellaneous
Addresses includes copied speeches and chapters from New England and the
rest of the country.
Series III. Business and Personal Papers contains
correspondence, legal, financial, and miscellaneous papers. The correspondence
illuminates events in Loring's political career and in national politics: the
celebration of Thomas Jefferson's birthday (1859), including the responses of
Jefferson Davis and United States Secretary of the Treasury Howell Cobb to
celebration invitations; Loring's support of the Lincoln administration against the
supporters of George B. McClellan (1864); the assassination attempt made on
President Garfield (1881); inner political conflicts in the government, recorded
while Loring was United States Commissioner of Agriculture and a United States
Representative; and Loring's tenure as a United States minister to Portugal
(1889-1890). The correspondence also includes personal letters regarding real
estates and stock investments, the estate of William Pickman, Loring's will, and the
Osgood family genealogy. Of special interest is a letter from Ralph Waldo Emerson
(November 23, 1853), reflecting Loring's avid interest in literature. Loring's legal
and financial papers often include or are authored by his brother, Boston attorney
John Alden Loring. These records include deeds for stock, real estate, and the
Pickman farm. The miscellaneous papers contain Honorable Joseph S. Cabot's speech
delivered at the 1859 Thomas Jefferson celebration, poetry, eulogies on George
Loring, and an undated survey of Salem property.
Series IV. Family Papers contain personal
correspondence, legal records, diaries, and commonplace books belonging to Loring's
wives, Mary Toppan (Pickman) (1816-1878) and Anna (Smith) Hildreth Loring, his
daughter and son-in-law, Sally Pickman (Loring) and Theodore F. Dwight, and his
brother, John Alden Loring (1824-1898). In addition to Mary Loring's will, this
collection contains three volumes of her original diaries (1831, 1834, 1839). The
volume of diary extracts (1831-1898), which includes Mary's biography, was compiled
by her husband as a gift to their daughter Sally. The legal papers of Anna Loring
include documents regarding the Pickman farm and court papers concerning Anna and
Sally's clear title to the real estate bequeathed to them in George Loring's will.
Sally (Loring) and Theodore Dwight's correspondence also discusses George Loring's
estate, and the conflicts between Anna and Sally in their selection of estates
trustee. Also included is a list of Sally and Theodore's wedding gifts (1895),
Theodore's 1904 appointment as consular agent to Switzerland, and an undated
photograph of Sally. John Alden Loring's papers include correspondence and legal
papers concerning the William Pickman estate, and stock and real estate investments
which he held jointly with his brother George B. Loring.
George Bailey Loring was born in 1817, the eldest son of the Reverend Bailey and
Sally Pickman (Osgood) Loring of North Andover, Massachusetts. Upon his graduation
from Harvard College in 1838, Loring taught school for a year in Boston and Andover.
In 1839, he commenced his medical studies with Dr. Joseph Kittredge of North Andover
and Dr. Oliver Wendell Holmes. He graduated from the Harvard Medical School in 1842
and set up a private practice in North Andover. In 1843, Loring became a surgeon at
the United States Marine Hospital in Chelsea, a position he occupied until 1850.
During his tenure, he was also appointed commissioner to revise the United States
Marine Hospital system.
Retiring from the medical profession in 1851, Loring moved to Salem,
Massachusetts, where he married Mary Toppan Pickman (1816-1878). At this time, he
turned his attention to politics and agricultural studies. Over the years, Loring
became increasingly politically active. From an appointment as Salem postmaster
(1853-1857), he was elected to the Massachusetts House of Representatives
(1866-1868), the Massachusetts Senate (1873-1877), and the United States House of
Representatives (1877-1881). He also served as a member of the Massachusetts
delegation to the National Democratic Convention (1856), chairman of the
Massachusetts Republican Committee (1869-1876), and a delegate to the Republican
National Convention (1868, 1872, 1876). Although originally a member of the
Democratic Party, Loring felt impelled during the 1860s to change his political
affiliation. The unwillingness of the Democrats to support the preservation of the
Union convinced him to back the Republican administration of President Lincoln.
Loring's agricultural studies led him to found the New England Agricultural
Society, of which he was president from 1864 to 1889. His energies and abilities as
an agriculturalist also prompted his appointment as United States Commissioner of
Loring died at Salem in 1891, a year after returning from Lisbon where he had
served as United States minister to Portugal (1889-1890). He left his only daughter,
Sally Pickman (Loring) Dwight, and his second wife, Anna (Smith) Hildreth
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.
The George Bailey Loring Papers are a reorganization of 22 volumes of United States
Marine Hospital patient records and three boxes of manuscript material which were
received from an unknown source. Integrated into these papers was one box of records
separated from the Pickman Family Papers (MSS 5). The Pickman materials included
correspondence, legal documents, diaries, and commonplace books belonging to George
Bailey, Mary Toppan (Pickman) and Anna (Smith) Hildreth Loring, and Sally Pickman
(Loring) and Theodore Dwight (papers and volumes removed from MSS 5 are marked). A
George Loring poem book (1836), donated by M. Elliot in 1922, was also integrated
into the collection.
Collection processed by Sylvia B. Kennick, June 1985. Updated by Catherine Robertson,
Hurd, D. Hamilton. History of Essex County, Massachusetts: with
Biographical Sketches of many of its Pioneers and Prominent Men.
Philadelphia : J.W. Lewis, 1888.
Maloney, Joan M. ""George Bailey Loring: A Matter of Trust-s"" Essex Institute Historical Collections 1st ser. 122
Pope, Charles Henry, Katharine P. Loring, James Spear Loring, and John Arthur
Loring. Loring Genealogy. Cambridge, MA: Murray and
Benjamin Pickman Papers, 1679-1923, MSS 5.
Ennion Williams Papers, 1875-1876, Fam. MSS.
Theodore F. Dwight Papers, 1884-1916, Fam. MSS.
The George Bailey Loring Papers are a reorganization of 22 volumes of United States Marine Hospital patient records and three boxes of manuscript material which were received from an unknown source. Integrated into these papers was one box of records separated from the Pickman Family Papers (MSS 5). The Pickman materials included correspondence, legal documents, diaries, and commonplace books belonging to George Bailey, Mary Toppan (Pickman) and Anna (Smith) Hildreth Loring, and Sally Pickman (Loring) and Theodore Dwight (papers and volumes removed from MSS 5 are marked). A George Loring poem book (1836), donated by M. Elliot in 1922, was also integrated into the collection.