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Vermont and the Rebellion in Lower Canada 1837-1838

Letters and Records

Note: These documents are located in the UVM Manuscripts Collection in Special Collections, with the exception of the Perrault letters, which can be found in the Special Collections open stacks.

Benedict Family Papers, 2 documents, November-December 1837 (Carton 1, Folder 17).
UVM professor George W. Benedict condemns the Patriote cause in two letters to his brother in New York City.

Guy Catlin Papers, 6 documents, June 1838-March 1839 (Carton 1, Folders 14-15).
Alexander Catlin supported the Patriotes with much needed financial assistance. Letters from Patriote leaders and sympathizers refer to his relationships with Dr. Robert Nelson and Ludger Duvernay. In one letter, the Stowe, Vermont militia requests that Catlin return a cannon he borrowed for the Patriotes, and notes that the militia would assist the Patriotes in the future.

Crafts Family Papers, 8 documents, 1838 (Box 5, Folder 17).
Drafts of letters, notes, and speeches by an anonymous author. One letter, perhaps by the Irish-Canadian Patriote sympathizer J.B. Ryan, recounts the French Canadians’ demands for reform and alludes to the shared plights of the Canadas and Ireland.

Alexander Mann letter, 1 document, March 6, 1838 (Manuscript Files).
University of Vermont student Alexander Mann wrote to his father about Vermonters' responses to the Patriote cause. He reports on the Patriote theft of muskets from a New York arsenal and the arrest of Patriote leaders Drs. Robert Nelson and Cyrille-Hector-Octave Côté, who were jailed in St. Albans, Vermont for leading an invasion across the international boundary.

George Perkins Marsh Papers, 1 document, February 28, 1838 (Carton 1, Folder 8).
In a letter to Professor C. C. Rafn of Copenhagen, Marsh expresses his concern that American support for the Canadian rebels would lead to war with Great Britain.

James Marsh Papers, 10 documents, December 1837-January 1838 (Box 2, Folder 7).
The papers of James Marsh, University of Vermont professor, are a rich source for material opposing the Patriote cause.

Horace Sawyer Papers, 5 documents, March-May 1838 (Manuscript Files).
A lieutenant in the U.S. Navy, Sawyer patrolled the northern border during the crisis. His papers include military orders, correspondence form Brigadier General John Wool, and an inventory of confiscated rebel arms held at the arsenal in Vergennes, Vermont.

Henry Stevens Papers, 5 documents, November 1837-January 1838 (Carton 2, Folders 1-2).
Letters from friends in Upper Canada to members of the Stevens family in Vermont reflect different views, including sympathy for the rebel cause and fear that rebels would burn English-Canadian villages.

Perrault, Louis. Lettres d'un Patriote Refugie au Vermont. Montreal: Editions du Meridien, 1999.
Selected letters written by Louis Perrault, the publisher of Montreal's only English-language Patriote newspaper, who corresponded with many Patriote leaders while he was in exile in Vermont.
Call number: Special Collections Wilbur F1032 .P47 1999

 

"To His Excellency the Earl of Durham"