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COLLECTION Identifier: MC 941

Papers of Mary French Weir, 1758-2000 (inclusive), 1829-1939 (bulk)


Correspondence, memoirs, financial and legal documents, photographs, etc., of Mary French Weir, her parents John William and Clara Miller French, and other members of the French family.


  • 1758-2000
  • Majority of material found within 1829-1939

Language of Materials

Materials in English.

Access Restrictions:

Access. Collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Copyright. Copyright in the papers created by Mary French Weir is held by the President and Fellows of Harvard College for the Schlesinger Library. Copyright in other papers in the collection may be held by their authors, or the authors' heirs or assigns.

Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.


2.92 linear feet ((7 file boxes) plus 1 folio+ folder, 1 oversize folder, 6 photograph folders)
The papers of Mary French Weir include Weir's correspondence, poetry, and writings, including 4 volumes and a transcription of a memoir entitled The Story of My Life: The Inner Life of a Human Soul, which includes reminiscences of the Civil War. Also included are correspondence, sermons, and writings of Weir's parents, John William and Clara Miller French; correspondence and estate documents of Weir's sister, author Lillie Hamilton French; and correspondence and a diary of Weir's son-in-law, Bishop James DeWolf Perry. Other documents include legal and financial documents of the Bradley family, who raised John William French following his parents' deaths, and photographs of members of the French family. Most of the photographs in this collection are or will be digitized and available online.


Mary French Weir was the daughter of Clara Miller and John William French, who was chaplain and professor of history, geography, and ethics at the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, from 1856 to 1871. She married John Ferguson Weir, a well-known artist who was the first head of the Yale School of Fine Arts. They had two daughters, Louise Weir Sargent and Edith Weir Perry.

Physical Location

Collection stored off site: researchers must request access 36 hours before use.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Accession number: 2011-M38

The papers of Mary French Weir were given to the Schlesinger Library by her great-grandchildren Adela Weir Perry, James DeWolf Perry, and John Haigh Daingerfield Perry, in February 2011.

Related Material:

Portions of this collection were microfilmed and are available on reels 533 and 565 of the Weir family papers at the Archives of American Art.

Processing Information

Processed: April 2018

By: Johanna Carll

The Schlesinger Library attempts to provide a basic level of preservation and access for all collections, and does more extensive processing of higher priority collections as time and resources permit.  Finding aids may be updated periodically to account for new acquisitions to the collection and/or revisions in arrangement and description.

General processing procedures in place at the Library include the following:  books (when not heavily annotated) by and about the collection's creator and on subjects which fall within the Library's collecting area are removed and cataloged separately with information about their provenance; other books and serials are not retained.  Other material not normally retained include:  clippings that are not by or about the collection's creator; research files; financial documents such as checkbooks, cancelled checks, bank statements, etc. (when there is financial documentation at a higher level); invoices, receipts, orders, airline tickets, etc.; and envelopes (when they do not contain additional information).

When samples of weeded documents are retained, it is indicated in the finding aid.
Link to catalog
Weir, Mary French, 1846-1927. Papers of Mary French Weir, 1758-2000 (inclusive), 1829-1939 (bulk): A Finding Aid
Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
Processing of this collection was made possible by the Jeannette Ward Fund.

Repository Details

Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository

The preeminent research library on the history of women in the United States, the Schlesinger Library documents women's lives from the past and present for the future.

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