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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Hyde 10

Donald Hyde and Mary Hyde Eccles Autograph Collection


A collection of single letters, documents, and manuscripts, primarily dating to the 18th century, from the collection of Donald Hyde and Mary Hyde Eccles.


  • Creation: 1505-1957
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1702-1854

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

There are no restrictions on physical access to this material.

Conditions Governing Use

Images linked to this finding aid are intended for public access and educational use. This material is owned and/or held by the Houghton Library, and is provided solely for the purpose of teaching or individual research. Any other use, including commercial reuse, mounting on other systems, or other forms of redistribution requires the permission of the curator.


9.5 linear feet (19 boxes and 1 volume)

This collection includes many of the unbound single items in the Donald and Mary Hyde Collection of Dr. Samuel Johnson. To see finding aids for the other Hyde manuscripts, enter "MS Hyde" in the OASIS search box, using quotation marks.

Many of the items in the Hyde Autograph Collection relate in some way to Samuel Johnson and his extended circle. The collection includes significant letters from Joseph Addison, Sir Joseph Banks, Jeremy Bentham, William Cowper, Daniel Defoe, Jonathan Edwards, Thomas Hobbes, T.E. Lawrence, John Locke, John Stuart Mill, Alexander Pope, Sir Walter Scott, Percy Bysshe Shelley, and Horace Walpole. Another highlight is a letter of introduction written by Gilbert Walmsley for Samuel Johnson and David Garrick on their first journey to London. Many of the items concern bookselling and publishing in late eighteenth-century England.


Arranged alphabetically by author.

Physical Location



The Hyde Autograph Collection is a part of the Donald and Mary Hyde Collection of Dr. Samuel Johnson, which was collected by Donald Frizell Hyde (1909-1966) and Mary Hyde, later Viscountess Eccles (1912-2003). Approximately half of the Autograph Collection was acquired in 1950, as part of an extra-illustrated copy of Boswell's Life of Samuel Johnson, LL.D. from the collection of A.B. Burney (Sotheby's, 1950 Apr. 24, lot 153). The volume was disbound in 1953. At least 84 other items had been removed by the Hydes at various times from three extra-illustrated sets they had acquired from R.B. (Robert Borthwick) Adam in 1948 (now MS Hyde 75, 76, and 77). The remainder of the Hyde Autograph File was acquired by the Hydes singly or in small groups from various sources from 1941 to 2002.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

2003JM-35 (part), 2003JM-47 (part), 2003JM-57 (part), 2003JM-58, 2003JM-64 (part), 2003JM-207 (part), and 2003JM-236 (part). All items are 2003JM-58 unless otherwise noted. Bequest of Mary Hyde Eccles, Four Oaks Farm, Somerville, New Jersey; received: 2004.


  • The R.B. Adam Library Relating to Dr. Samuel Johnson and his Era, Volume the Third (London: Oxford University Press, 1929).

Processing Information

Processed by: Rick Stattler

Donald Hyde and Mary Hyde Eccles Autograph Collection, 1505-1957: Guide.
Houghton Library, Harvard College Library
Language of description

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, archives, and more. Houghton Library's collections represent the scope of human experience from ancient Egypt to twenty-first century Cambridge. With strengths primarily in North American and European history, literature, and culture, collections range in media from printed books and handwritten manuscripts to maps, drawings and paintings, prints, posters, photographs, film and audio recordings, and digital media, as well as costumes, theater props, and a wide range of other objects. Houghton Library has historically focused on collecting the written record of European and Eurocentric North American culture, yet it holds a large and diverse number of primary sources valuable for research on the languages, culture and history of indigenous peoples of the Americas, Africa, Asia and Oceania.

Houghton Library’s Reading Room is free and open to all who wish to use the library’s collections.

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