Scope and Contents
This collection is valuable for the documentation it provides concerning a New Haven area clergy family during the period 1800 to 1880. Daily events and family relationships are revealed in substantive family correspondence. Letters were most often exchanged when a family member had left the New Haven area to live in the Midwest. Mary Dutton, daughter of Aaron, for example, lived in Cincinnati, Ohio for a number of years. Letters exchanged with her parents reveal a conflict between her desire to continue her work there and her parents' desire to have their daughter living at home. Mary eventually returned to Connecticut and headed a girls' school in New Haven. The general correspondence in the collection is not extensive but includes letters from Charles Beecher, George Edward Day, and Increase Tarbox.
The notebooks and diaries of Series II highlight various facets of the lives of Mary and Samuel Dutton. Of particular interest are Samuel's notebooks from his student days at Yale. Notes on sermons preached in the Yale College Chapel are included, as well as class notes. Pocket diaries of Samuel Dutton for the years 1861 to 1864 are available. A series of account books of Mary Dutton with Austin and Gilbert, grocers, provide interesting detail on New Haven life during the period 1855 to 1865.
The bulk of the collection is comprised of manuscript sermons written by Aaron and Samuel Dutton during their pastorates in Guilford and New Haven. These sermons touch on topics such as slavery, the Civil War, "Millerism," temperance, and immigration. The sermons span the careers of both Duttons and thus provide an opportunity for tracing the development of their thought over a number of years.
The writings other than sermons in Series III are also of interest. Those of Aaron Dutton include college compositions and "disputes" from his Yale years, essays on theological subjects, and drafts of articles on subjects such as slavery, Congregationalism, and missionary work. The writings of Samuel Dutton include college compositions, speeches delivered before the Linonian Society, an address delivered at the Yale Commencement of 1833, reviews of works by Horace Bushnell, and others. Historical information regarding the North Church in New Haven is available in an 1860 statement of Dutton to its United Society.
The personal items and memorabilia of Series IV include a portrait of Aaron Dutton and the memorial sermon preached at the funeral of Samuel Dutton's wife.
Conditions Governing Access
The materials are open for research.
- I. Correspondence, 1825-1880
- II. Notebooks and Diaries, 1829-1868
- III. Writings, 1800-1866
- IV. Personal Items and Memorabilia, 1864, undated
9 Linear Feet (18 boxes)
Language of Materials
The collection is valuable for the documentation it provides concerning a New Haven area clergy family during the period 1800 to 1880. Daily events and family relationships are revealed in substantive family correspondence. Of particular interest are Samuel Dutton's notebooks from his student days at Yale. The bulk of the collection is comprised of manuscript sermons written by Aaron and Samuel Dutton during their pastorates in Guilford and New Haven. These sermons touch on topics such as slavery, the Civil War, "Millerism", temperance and immigration. The sermons span the careers of both Duttons, who were known for their abolitionist stances, and thus provide an opportunity for tracing the development of their thought over a number of years. Aaron Dutton was born in Watertown, Connecticut on May 21, 1780. He served as minister of the First Congregational Church in Guilford, Connecticut from 1806 until 1842, at which time he resigned due to the dissension in the congregation regarding his abolitionist stance. In 1843, he went to Iowa in service of the American Home Missionary Society. He died in New Haven in 1849. His son, Samuel William Southmayd Dutton was born in Guilford, Connecticut on March 14, 1814. After receiving his Bachelor of Arts degree from Yale in 1833, he held positions as teacher, tutor, rector, minister (North Church, New Haven, Connecticut), publisher and editor. He was a noted champion of the antislavery cause. He died in Millbury, Massachusetts in 1866.
Biographical / Historical
- 1780 May 21
- Born in Watertown, CT
- B.A., Yale
- Preceptor of Woodstock Academy, then pursued study of theology under Timothy Dwight
- Licensed to preach
- Married Dorcas Southmayd. Their children were: Mary Dutton (1807-1887), Dorcas Southmayd Dutton Gilbert (1810-1849), Thomas Dutton (1812-1885), Samuel William Southmayd Dutton (1814-1866), Aaron Rice Dutton (1816-1885), John Southmayd Dutton (1818-1834), Anna Dutton (1820-1831), Matthew Henry Dutton (1822-1841)
- Minister of First Congregational Church, Guilford. Besides his pastoral duties he also prepared many young men for college.
- Member of Yale Corporation
- Resigned from position in Guilford, due to dissension in congregation regarding his abolitionist stance. The party which stood by him formed the Third Congregational Church of Guilford in November, 1843.
- Went to Iowa in service of American Home Missionary Society. He was invited to the pastoral charge of the church in Burlington, capital of the Iowa Territory. Illness prevented him from accepting the postion.
- Died in New Haven
Biographical / Historical
Samuel Southmayd Dutton
- 1814 March 14
- Born in Guilford, CT, son of Aaron and Dorcas Southmayd Dutton
- B.A., Yale
- Taught at Mount Hope College, Baltimore, MD
- Rector of Hopkins Grammar School, New Haven
- Tutored at Yale and pursued theological studies
- Married Harriet Waters, who died in 1864; daughter of Asa Waters of Millbury, MA
- Minister at North Church, New Haven, CT. Was a noted champion of the antislavery cause
- Published A History of the North Church in New Haven
- New Englander established, of which Dutton was an associate editor; contributed 46 articles
- D.D., Brown University
- 1866 January
- Died in Millbury, Ma.
The discourse delivered at his funeral by the Rev. Leonard Bacon has been published. A sketch of his life appeared in the Congregational Quarterly for April 1866.
- Beecher, Charles, 1815-1900
- Church of Christ (New Haven, Conn.)
- Church work
- Congregational Home Missionary Society
- Day, George Edward, 1815-1905
- Dutton, Aaron, 1780-1849
- Dutton, Samuel W. S. (Samuel William Southmayd), 1814-1866
- Emigration and immigration
- First Congregational Church (Guilford, Conn.)
- Guilford (Conn.) -- Church history -- Sources
- New Haven (Conn.) -- Church history -- Sources
- New Haven (Conn.) -- History -- Sources
- Sermons, American
- Tarbox, Increase N. (Increase Niles), 1815-1888
- United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865
- Yale University
- Guide to the Dutton Family Papers
- Compiled by Martha Lund Smalley
- Description rules
- Finding Aid Prepared According To Local Divinity Library Descriptive Practices
- Language of description note
- Finding aid written in English.
Part of the Yale Divinity Library Repository
409 Prospect Street
New Haven CT 06511 US