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COLLECTION Identifier: MS Am 2911

Emerson family photographs and miniatures


Contains daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, glass plate negatives, and miniatures of members of the Emerson family.


  • circa 1850-1880

Language of Materials

Material is in English.

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.


1.5 linear feet (3 boxes)

The collection contains daguerreotypes, ambrotypes, miniatures, and glass plate negatives featuring Ralph Waldo Emerson, his wife, children, and grandchildren. The bulk of the daguerreotypes and glass plate negatives are of Lidian Jackson Emerson. The children, Edward Waldo Emerson, Ellen Tucker Emerson, and Edith Emerson Forbes, are represented in ambrotypes and daguerreotypes. Also includes miniatures of Lidian Jackson Emerson and Ellen Tucker Emerson in poses based on daguerreotype portraits found in the collection.

Biographical / Historical

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882) was an American essayist and poet. He married Lidian Jackson Emerson in 1835. The couple had 4 children Waldo Emerson, Ellen Emerson, Edward Waldo Emerson, and Edith Emerson Forbes. The Emerson family was prominent in the literary and social life of New England during the 19th century.


Collecetion arranged by material type.

Custodial History

The collection was donated by Beatrice Manz in 2013.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

2012M-138. Gift of Beatrice Manz; received 2013 March 26.

Processing Information

Processed by Susan Wyssen, 2017.

Emerson family. Emerson family photographs and miniatures, circa 1850-1880 (MS Am 2911): Guide
January 4, 2016
Description rules
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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