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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Am 576

Christophe Daniel Ebeling letters to William Bentley and other letters

Letters from German librarian and professor, Christophe Daniel Ebeling, to American minister and scholar, William Bentley, with a few letters to Ebeling from others.


  • 1795-1817

Language of Materials

Collection materials are in English and German.

Conditions Governing Access

Restricted because of fragility. Permission of curator required.


.5 linear feet (1 box)

42 autograph manuscript letters, in English, (signed by Ebeling) to William Bentley; also with 3 letters to Ebeling from Nathaniel Silsbee, Van Staphorst & Co., and John Robison. The letters concern the exchange between Ebeling (in Hamburg, Germany) and Bentley (in Salem, Massachusetts) of parcels containing books, newspapers, and manuscripts. The letters to Ebeling concern Silsbee, Robison, and Van Staphorts & Co. couriering or shipping books to or from Bentley.

The letters have been disbound and the boards from the bound volume and the 1844 donor letter are housed at the end of the collection.

Biographical / Historical

Christophe Daniel Ebeling (1741-1817) was librarian of the Stadtsbibliothek and professor at the University of Hamburg. Part of his personal collection of Americana was bought by Israel Thorndike and presented to Harvard College in 1818. William Bentley (1759-1819) was an American Unitarian minister, scholar, columnist, and diarist. He received an AB from Harvard College in 1777. Bentley amassed a library of over 4,000 volumes, one of the largest private libraries in America at the time.


Arranged into the following series:
  1. I. Christophe Daniel Ebeling letters to William Bentley
  2. II. Letters to Christophe Daniel Ebeling
  3. III. Other material

Physical Location


Immediate Source of Acquisition

No accession number. Gift of William B. Fowle of Boston (nephew of William Bentley); received: 1844 July 3.

Processing Information

Processed by: Bonnie B. Salt
Link to catalog
Ebeling, Christophe Daniel,1741-1817. Christophe Daniel Ebeling letters to William Bentley and other letters, 1795-1817: Guide.
Houghton Library, Harvard College Library
Description rules

Repository Details

Part of the Houghton Library Repository

Houghton Library is Harvard College's principal repository for rare books and manuscripts, literary and performing arts archives, and more. The library's holdings of primary source material are managed by an expert staff and shared with scholars, students and the public in the reading room.

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