The William W. Johnson Papers consist of ten inches of correspondence, personal financial records, and miscellaneous items spanning from 1858 to 1903. Most of the letters were exchanged among members of the family principally William W. Johnson, his wife and children, and his parents, brother, and sisters. The largest groups of letters were sent to his parents from Yale (1858-1862) and to his future wife from the U.S. Naval Academy (1867-1869). There are also many notes and postcards from family members in Europe in the 1880s and 1890s. The non-family correspondence consists mainly of a sprinkling of letters to William W. Johnson from friends and professional associates, including Thomas Wentworth Higginson (1866 May 22) and Albert Francis Judd. The financial records include household accounts kept by Johnson's wife, Susannah Leverett (Batcheller) Johnson.
The William W. Johnson Papers were purchased from F.H. Sweet and William Sanders in 1955; gift of Charles Fredrick Johnson, 1999.