The Bowers Family Papers are contained in one box and include alphabetically arranged correspondence plus reports, notes, and bills on forestry and the preservation of forest lands. The collection spans the dates 1859 – 1910 and consists of two groups of material. The first is the papers of Edward Augustus Bowers and the second is the Bowers Papers transferred from Beinecke Rare Books Library in February 1984.
Correspondence, folders 1-13, consists of letters primarily written to Caleb Bailey Bowers (1820 – 1898) and two of his sons, Edward Augustus Bowers (1857 – 1924) and Dwight Eliot Bowers (1866 – 1907). For biographical information see Edward E. Atwater's History of the City of New Haven (1887), pp. 343-45; on Edward A. Bowers see Obituary Record of Yale Graduates, 1924 – 1925, pp. 1343-45; and on Dwight E. Bowers the Obituary Record of Graduates, 1906 – 07, pp. 769-70.
The Bowers Papers contain some sixty letters to Caleb B. Bowers on politics in New Hampshire and Connecticut during the Civil War and reconstruction eras. Bowers lived in New Hampshire in 1866-7, was an active supporter of the reconstruction policies of President Andrew Johnson, and was elected a delegate to the National Union Convention of Internal Revenue for the third district of New Hampshire as a reward for his loyalty. Bowers' New Hampshire correspondents in 1866-7 include Charles Jacob Amidon, Edmund Burke, Micajah Currier Burleigh, Joshua D. Colony, William Huse Cummings, Edward Stearns Cutler, Daniel Marcy, and Don Houston Woodward. Except for his brief stay in New Hampshire, Bowers spent most of his life in Connecticut and information on politics in the state for the period 1862-68 can be found in the correspondence of Roger Averill, James Dixon, and Thomas A. Hendricks. In 1868, for example, Bowers stated that Hendricks was likely to receive the support of a majority of the state's delgation to the Democratic Convention.
For several years in the early 1890's Edward A. Bowers was an officer in the Yale Alumni Association of Washington, D.C. Approximately twenty letters, mostly written between 1892 and 1894, concern this subject. The collection also includes autograph correspondence. It contains letters written by Admiral George Dewey, Stephen J. Field, John Marshall Harlan, Joseph R. Hawley, Rutherford B. Hayes, Theodore Roosevelt, and Alfred H. Terry, plus a folder containing clipped autograph signatures. The Bowers Family Papers also contain material on forestry and timber lands dating from the years 1885-94, when Edward A. Bowers was inspector of the Public Land Service, assistant commissioner of the General Land Office, and an attorney in Washington, D.C.