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Finding Aids

The Newport Historical Society’s Archives & Special Collections consists of more than 1,500 linear feet of manuscript materials, including merchants’ records from the 18th to the 20th century, church records for fourteen congregations, log books for dozens of ships, family papers for hundreds of Newporters, an extensive African-American history collection, town and city records, and a unique collection of diaries and journals. The materials encompass the full range of social and cultural diversity that makes Newport County unique. As collections are formally arranged and processed, the accompanying finding aid will be posted to this page. To access information regarding unprocessed archives and manuscript items, please visit our Archives and Manuscripts Collection Inventory.

NHS Finding Aids

Call NumberTitleDateAbstractFormats
MS.1854.3 Newport Historical Society's collection of holiday and greeting cardsapprox. 1854- approx. 2000, undatedA collection of holiday and greeting cards collected by the Newport Historical Society.PDF
MS.1854.6 Newport Historical Society's collection of music1643-1975, undatedThis collection contains music manuscripts, books, full and condensed scored, and sheet music. Much of the material was written, printed, or performed in Newport.PDF
Web
MS.1854.7 Newport Historical Society's collection of unpublished papers1993-presentThis open collection contains student and unpublished papers on various subjects relating to Newport, Rhode Island.PDF
MS.1854.8Newport Historical Society's Old Stone Mill collectionapprox. 1677-2010, undatedThis collection contains correspondence, booklets, published works, archaeological land surveys, and other materials related to the origin, history, and lore surrounding the Old Stone Mill in Newport.PDF
MS.2012.33 Berkeley House collection1881-1895, undated (bulk 1884-1895)This collection contains 4 architectural drawings and specifications, personal artwork, and household receipts related to LeRoy King and his residence, Berkeley House located on the corner of Berkeley and Bellevue Streets.PDF
Web
MS.44.4Odell M. Chapman collection1882-1975, undatedThis collection contains images, music books, sheet music, instruments, and documents relating to martial ensembles primarily of Connecticut and Rhode Island.PDF
Web
MS.FIC.2013.7 Arthur B. Commerford Colony House scrapbooks1925 Sept 20-1942 Feb 5Three scrapbooks of the activities and news regarding the Colony House as it transitions from the Newport County Courthouse to a historic site.PDF
Web
MS.FIC.2013.6Arthur Commerford and Edith Wetmore papers on Stuart's Washington portrait at Newport's Colony House1939 July 17-1940 May 24, undatedThe bulk of this collection comprises of correspodence between Arthur B. Commerford and Edith Wetmore as they make efforts to reclaim the George Washington portrait by Gilbert Stuart back into the Colony House after its relocation to the Newport County Courthouse.PDF
Web
MS.2012.2 Newport Gardner letter to Sarah Burk1821 October 16This collection consists of one letter written by Newport Gardner to his niece, Sarah Burk.PDF
Web
Letter transcription
MS.2013.22Charles E. Hammett papers1831-1907, undatedThese papers are the personal and business papers related to Charles E. Hammett Jr.PDF
Web
MS.2012.1 Newport Insurance Company records1799-1835 (bulk 1799-1802)This collection contains the business records of the Newport Insurance Company.PDF
Web
MS.2012.43Elizabeth Wheeler Paul family papers1874-1898This collection contains correspondence, photographs, and a pair of pockets of Elizabeth Wheeler Paul (1817-1906) and her family.PDF
Web
MS. 2011.2 Frederick W. Rhinelander family papers1842-1911 (bulk 1842-1888)This collection contains correspondence, photographs, and other material from the extended family of Frederick William Rhinelander of New York and Newport.PDF
Web
MS.42.2.1John Austin Stevens, Jr. family papersapprox. 1777-1941, undated (bulk 1863-1907)The personal papers of the John Austin Stevens Jr. family of New York and Newport, including correspondence, historical research, published articles and poetry and other papers by various family members. This collection notably contains a hand-drawn map of Valley Forge possibly created by Louis Lebègue Duportail, dated approximately 1777.PDF
Web
MS.2013.5 Vernon Court Junior College collection1964-1971, undated (bulk 1964-1966)Small collection of documents, ephemera, and printed material relating to Vernon Court Junior College.PDF
Web
MS.2012.3Oscar Wilde invitation1882 July 15This collection contains one item, an invitation to hear Oscar Wilde speak on "The Decorative Arts" at the Casino.PDF
Web
Invitation front
Invitation back
MS.91.57.1Correspondence from the Williams collection1743-1859, undatedCorrespondence and related documents of two generations of the Obadiah Williams (1767-1848) family, Quakers, of Newport and Providence, R.I., New Bedford, Mass., and New York State, chiefly reflecting family matters; connections with the Rotch and Rodman families, whalers and merchants from New Bedford and the Brown family. PDF
Web (item-level inventory)
Selected transcriptions