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The materials comprising the British Correspondence and Miscellany Collection are dated from 1556 to 1972 (bulk 1740-1890). The papers are arranged into the following series: Correspondence, 1556-1972 and undated; Subject Files, 1699-1902 and undated; Pictures, 1795-1921 and undated; and Miscellaneous Material, 1814-1836 and undated An artificial collection, the papers are, for the most part, unrelated by provenance. The collection consists chiefly of correspondence, and topics include numerous political events and activities of the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries in Great Britain and the colonies (particularly India and Africa).

The Correspondence Series includes numerous letters to and from British notables. Among the major correspondents represented are: the 8th Duke of Argyll, the 1st and 2nd Barons Auckland, Charles Bradlaugh, John Bright; Robert Brownrigg; George Canning, John Wilson Croker, the 1st Earl of Durham, John Foster, the 1st Baron Dover, George Joachim Goschen, John Hay, the 3rd Marquess Lansdowne, W.E.H. Lecky, Captain John Lenty, the 1st Earl of Liverpool, the 3rd Earl of Lucan, William Melbourne, Lord Broderick Midleton, Viscount Milner, David Christie Murray, Thomas Nimmo, Baron Northcote, Pierce O'Mahoney, the 3rd Viscount Palmerston, the 1st Baronet Pollock, George Rose, the 7th Earl of Shaftesbury, William Sheowring, John Deas Thompson, the 1st Duke of Wellington, William Wilberforce, and Edward Wodehouse.

Among the items in the Correspondence Series are a copy of John Bright's 1851 speech entitled "Papal Aggression" (Bright correspondence); material regarding the Horseguards (Brownrigg correspondence); a testimonial to the character of Sir Francis Burdett written by Lady Hester Stanhope (Burdett correspondence); a letter regarding Wellington's correspondence concerning a transport ship wrecked in the Tagus during his last Iberian campaign (Canning correspondence); letters from David Dundas, including two accompanying circulars (1804 and 1805) from the War Office (Dundas correspondence); and correspondence (and accompanying transcripts) between King George I and M. Braconnier (1709) concerning the King's inability to send a detachment large enough to oppose the French along the borders of the Rhone and Lake Geneva (George I correspondence). Other items include correspondence relating to George Henry's mission in Nyasaland (Henry correspondence); material concerning the cargo ship "The Sea Witch" (Lenty correspondence); correspondence regarding Marsden-Smedley's unsuccessful campaign for Parliament in 1910 (Marsden-Smedley correspondence); and Wellesley's transcript of a testimonial to the character of Charles Wyatt written by the Governor General of India (Wellesley correspondence). The Murray correspondence includes handwritten biographical notes and a printed review (1908) of David Christie Murray's Reflections.

Papers in the Subject Files Series concern a wide range of political, military, and economic matters. They include an anonymous account (1743) of the battle of Dettingen (in French); papers (1856-1860 and undated) relating to the raising of ships at Sebastopol during the Crimean War; a collection of letters from various correspondents concerning decimal currency (1856-1869); papers concerning Newfoundland fisheries (1901-1902); and a document pertaining to the impressment of sailors (1745).

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Josiah C. Trent papers, 1536-1961 and undated, bulk 1938-1951 6.5 Linear Feet — 9 boxes; 1 oversize folder — approx. 1800 items — approximately 1800 items

U.S. thoracic surgeon, rare book and manuscript collector. The papers consist mostly of correspondence, printed material, photographs, and lecture notes taken during medical training, as well as diplomas and certificates of residency, and notes and drafts for published and unpublished research and articles. The bulk of the material documents Dr. Trent's activities and publications as collector and historian of medical practice, particularly surgery and epidemiology. There are folders of photographic reproductions of medical texts and illustrations dating from the 16th century to the 20th century, whose content is reflected in the earliest dates for the collection. There is also material relating to Dr. Trent's death and the subsequent donation of his rare book and manuscripts collection to the Duke Medical Center Library, along with condolences and other items related to his wife, Mary Duke Biddle Trent. Acquired as part of the History of Medicine Collections at Duke University.

The Josiah C. Trent papers consist mostly of correspondence, photographs, research files, and notes and drafts of published and unpublished research and articles. Many of these materials concern Dr. Trent's activities and publications as a collector and historian of medical practice, particularly surgery and epidemiology. The collection also includes printed materials, photographs, a card file - possibly of his personal library, and lecture notes taken during his medical training, as well as diplomas and certificates of residency. The Writings series reveals his wide interests in surgery, medicine in general, the humanities, and medical history.

There is also material relating to Dr. Trent's death and the subsequent donation of his large rare book, artifact, and manuscript collection to the Duke Medical Center Library. Early dates in the collection refer to the content of reproductions of 16th-19th century medical illustrations rather than their dates of reproduction.

The correspondence, found in the Subject Files folders, dates mostly from the 1940s and 1950s, documenting Dr. Trent's rare book and manuscript collecting, and his involvement with various professional organizations and his association and friendships with prominent figures in various fields: medical history - John Fulton, Henry Sigerist, W. W. Francis; book collecting - Henry Schuman; Duke University - Wilburt Davison, Lenox D. Baker. Some folders contain an index of the contents.

There is also some information concerning Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans, Dr. Trent's wife, who was instrumental in facilitating the support of the history of medicine collections at Duke.

The collection also contains several hundred photographic prints and negatives reproducing medical texts and illustrations dating from the 16th to 20th centuries. The earliest dates in the collection refer to the content of the images, rather than their reproduction by Dr. Trent, Duke Medical Library staff, and others, in the mid-20th century.

The files were kept in Dr. Trent's medical office and contain relatively few items which pertain to his private life. Items of a more personal nature may be found in the James H. and Mary Duke Biddle Trent Semans Family Papers in the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.

Acquired as part of the History of Medicine Collections at Duke University.