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William Bollaert papers

Identifier: VAULT-Ayer-MS-83


The William Bollaert Papers include eight separate items (Ayer MS 83a-83h) most of which relate to his years in Texas. The collection includes journals, notes, clippings, and maps consisting of the following items: Notes and memoranda, 1837-1838 (MS 83a); Private journals, 1841-1849 (MS 83b); Diary, 1844 (MS 83c); Texas in 1842 - by a Traveller (MS 83d); Personal Narrative of a Residence and Travels in the Republic of Texas, 1840-1844 (MS 83e); Notes on Texas, 1843-1844 (MS 83f); Notes and view of Galveston Island, 1843 (MS 83g); and Miscellaneous notes concerning Texas (MS 83h). The private journals and diary provided the basis for the Personal Narrative ... which Bollaert planned to use as a manuscript for publication. Bollaert's journals include numerous encounters with Texas President's Houston and Lamar among other prominent military and political leaders. The Papers remain one of the most important sources of information on the frontier Republic and its people.


  • 1837-1849


Biographical / Historical

English writer, geographer, chemist, and ethnologist, William Bollaert journeyed to the Republic of Texas in eb. 1842 at the request of his friend William Kennedy, British Consul at Galveston.,During the next two years, Bollaert traveled throughout Texas examining both the coastline and interior of the new Republic. From these investigations, he prepared a detailed report for the British Admiralty as well as maintained a comprehensive journal which he hoped to use as material for a commercial book one day. Despite his prolific publications in other areas, Bollaert's writings about Texas were limited to only ten journal articles. Troubled with yellow fever and dimmed prospects of Britain's future in Texas, Bollaert returned to London in July 1844.


5 Linear Feet (10 volumes and 4 boxes)

Language of Materials



Papers organized by type of material which contain 8 separate entries referred to as Ayer MS 83a-83h.

Ownership and Custodial History

Forms part of the Edward E. Ayer Manuscript Collection (Newberry Library).

Alternate Form Available

Microfilm copy available at the Newberry Library.

Related Archival Materials

Related material: Ayer MS 89, MS 92, MS 3022, MS 3023.

Bibliographic References

Butler, R.L. Checklist of Mss. in the Ayer Coll.,,83-88, 90, 93

General Note

All items except Notes and memoranda, 1837-1838,formerly known as Ayer MS 84-88, 90, 93.

General Note

Maps,cataloged separately, cf. Ayer MS 83 (map 1-4).

General Note

Contemporary newspaper and journal clippings accompany MS 83e.
Catalog Record Only
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the The Newberry Library - Modern Manuscripts Repository

60 West Walton Street
Chicago Illinois 60610 United States