Rare Book & Manuscript Library
 

John Jay II Papers, 1834-1911

Summary Information

Abstract

John Jay II was a graduate of Columbia college and an abolitionist. This collection includes letters, legal and financial documents, newspaper clippings, writings, photographs, circulars, and pamphlets.

At a Glance

Call No.: MS#1946
Bib ID 13503834 View CLIO record
Creator(s) Jay, John, 1817-1894
Title John Jay II Papers, 1834-1911
Physical Description 6.3 Linear Feet (15 document boxes)
Language(s) English .
Access You will need to make an appointment in advance to use this collection material in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room. You can schedule an appointment once you've submitted your request through your Special Collections Research Account.

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

Many boxes in the processed portion of the collection contained mold and have been professionally cleaned. All materials in Boxes 1-3, 5, 7-9, 11-15 have been cleaned. Materials in Boxes 4, 6, and 10 did not contain mold. Although all materials can be used in the reading room, patrons that are sensitive to mold may still experience a reaction to materials that have been cleaned in Boxes 1-3, 5, 7-9, 11-15.

There are nine boxes in this collection that have note been processed; these boxes are currently unavailable as the material may contain mold.

This collection has no restrictions.

Arrangement

Arrangement

This collection is arranged in two series.

Description

Scope and Contents

The collection contains mostly John Jay II's letters and other documents related to his anti-slavery activities. Besides letters, the collection also has John Jay II's drafts for lectures, newspaper clippings, pamphlets and circulars on abolition and related subjects. There are also some financial documents and miscellaneous notes and photographs.

A portion of this collection (9 document boxes) remains unprocessed. The majority of this material is from the 1880s and 1890s.

  • Series I: Correspondence, 1829-1889

    This series contains mostly John Jay II's correspondence with family members and friends, including Alexander Crummell, Charles Sumner, Oliver Johnson, Maria Weston Chapman, and Wendell Philips. Most correspondence have to do with issues including international copyright, fugitive slaves, the Civil War, and the role of the Episcopal church.

  • Series II: Documents, 1790-1911

    This series contains legal documents on cases including George Kirk, Lemmon, and Ann McFarland, partition and land sale documents, receipts relating to John Jay II's farms, John Jay II's writings on fugitive slaves, international copyright, and the Civil War, and newspaper clippings on abolition, freeman, the Civil War and John Jay I's political and antislavery activities. The series also includes pamphlets and circulars from anti-slavery societies, temperance petition from the women of Katonah, and some miscellaneous ephemera and photographs.

Using the Collection

Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Conditions Governing Access

You will need to make an appointment in advance to use this collection material in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room. You can schedule an appointment once you've submitted your request through your Special Collections Research Account.

This collection is located off-site. You will need to request this material at least three business days in advance to use the collection in the Rare Book and Manuscript Library reading room.

Many boxes in the processed portion of the collection contained mold and have been professionally cleaned. All materials in Boxes 1-3, 5, 7-9, 11-15 have been cleaned. Materials in Boxes 4, 6, and 10 did not contain mold. Although all materials can be used in the reading room, patrons that are sensitive to mold may still experience a reaction to materials that have been cleaned in Boxes 1-3, 5, 7-9, 11-15.

There are nine boxes in this collection that have note been processed; these boxes are currently unavailable as the material may contain mold.

This collection has no restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

Single photocopies may be made for research purposes. The RBML maintains ownership of the physical material only. Copyright remains with the creator and his/her heirs. The responsibility to secure copyright permission rests with the patron.

Accruals

Materials may have been added to the collection since this finding aid was prepared. Contact rbml@columbia.edu for more information.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchase, 1992

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Rare Book and Manuscript Library

Processing Information

Portions of this collection (Boxes 1-15) were processed by Mary Freeman (GSAS 2018) and Hong Deng Gao (GSAS 2021) in 2017-2018.

Finding Aid written by Mary Freeman (GSAS 2018) and Hong Deng Gao (GSAS 2021) in 2018.

Subject Headings

The subject headings listed below are found in this collection. Links below allow searches at Columbia University through the Archival Collections Portal and through CLIO, the catalog for Columbia University Libraries, as well as ArchiveGRID, a catalog that allows users to search the holdings of multiple research libraries and archives.

All links open new windows.

Genre/Form

Heading "CUL Archives:"
"Portal"
"CUL Collections:"
"CLIO"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
"ArchivedGRID"
Clippings (Information Artifacts) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Financial records Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Pamphlets Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Personal correspondence Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Photographs Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

Subject

Heading "CUL Archives:"
"Portal"
"CUL Collections:"
"CLIO"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
"ArchivedGRID"
Abolitionists -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Antislavery movements -- United States Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Chapman, Maria Weston, 1806-1885 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Columbia College (Columbia University) Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Copyright, International Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Crummell, Alexander, 1819-1898 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Episcopal Church Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Fugitive slaves Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Jay, John, 1745-1829 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Jay, John, 1817-1894 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Jay, William, 1841-1915 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Johnson, Oliver, 1809-1889 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Phillips, Wendell, 1811-1884 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Sumner, Charles, 1811-1874 Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Biographical / Historical

John Jay II (1817-1894) was the grandson of John Jay and a graduate of Columbia College in 1836. He followed the example of his grandfather and his father, William Jay, becoming an active abolitionist. William Jay was a judge and an abolitionist who became the president of the New York State Anti-Slavery Society in 1835.

In 1834, while he was still a student at Columbia, John Jay II became a manager of the New-York Young Men's Anti-Slavery Society, which advocated for the immediate abolition of slavery. In the same year, New York was roiled by anti-abolitionist riots. Jay was among those who defended the home of Arthur Tappan, president of the American Anti-Slavery Society, from the mob.

While Jay found few among his fellow Columbians who also supported the antislavery cause, he embarked on a long career of abolitionist activism. As a lawyer, he defended fugitive slaves in New York City in the 1840s and 50s. He also protested racism in the Episcopal Church. Columbia, since its founding, had close ties with that religious denomination, and Jay came into direct conflict with several alumni. Jay also attempted to combat discrimination at the College of Physicians and Surgeons. When James Parker Barnett was summarily expelled from P&S in 1850 after it was discovered that he was of African descent, Jay took on his case. Jay filed a petition in the Supreme Court of New York for a writ of mandamus in an effort to compel P&S to readmit Barnett. This writ was eventually ruled invalid in a later contest.

During the Civil War, John Jay II served as the president of the Union League Club in New York. In this role, Jay strove to cultivate unity and patriotic support of the Union war effort, especially among members of the city's wealthy business community.

Colonel William Jay (1841-1915) was the eldest son of John Jay II and Eleanor Kingsland Field Jay (1819-1909). William Jay served as an aide-de-camp for the Union Army during the American Civil War. After the war, he followed his father into the legal profession. He married Lucy Oelrichs Jay (1854-1931) in 1878.

External users and Columbia affiliates may view materials on-site at RBML. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, only Columbia affiliates may view materials on-site at Avery, Starr, and Burke. After clicking 'Submit Request', users will login with their UNI and password (Columbia affiliates) or their special collections account (external users). Appointments are required and will be arranged according to each individual repository's policy.


Series I: Correspondence, 1829-1889

This series contains mostly John Jay II's correspondence with family members and friends, including Alexander Crummell, Charles Sumner, Oliver Johnson, Maria Weston Chapman, and Wendell Philips. Most correspondence have to do with issues including international copyright, fugitive slaves, the Civil War, and the role of the Episcopal church.


Incoming Correspondence, 1829-1889



Box 1 Folder 1 Correspondence--Incoming, 1829-1830


Box 1 Folder 2 Correspondence--Incoming, 1831


Box 1 Folder 3 Correspondence--Incoming, 1832


Box 1 Folder 4 Correspondence--Incoming, 1833


Box 1 Folder 5 Correspondence--Incoming, 1834


Box 1 Folder 6 Correspondence--Incoming, 1835


Box 1 Folder 7 Correspondence--Incoming, 1836 January-September


Box 1 Folder 8 Correspondence--Incoming, 1836 October-November


Box 1 Folder 9 Correspondence--Incoming, 1837 January-February


Box 1 Folder 10 Correspondence--Incoming, 1837 March-June


Box 1 Folder 11 Correspondence--Incoming, 1837 July-December


Box 1 Folder 12 Correspondence--Incoming, 1838


Box 1 Folder 13 Correspondence--Incoming, 1839


Box 1 Folder 14 Correspondence--Incoming, 1830s


Box 1 Folder 15 Correspondence--Incoming, 1840-1841


Box 1 Folder 16 Correspondence--Incoming, 1842



Box 2 Folder 1 Correspondence--Incoming, 1843


Box 2 Folder 2 Correspondence--Incoming, 1844


Box 2 Folder 3 Correspondence--Incoming, 1846-1849


Box 2 Folder 4 Correspondence--Incoming, 1850-1853


Box 2 Folder 5 Correspondence--Incoming, 1854


Box 2 Folder 6 Correspondence--Incoming, 1855-1859


Box 2 Folder 7 Correspondence--Incoming, 1860



Box 3 Folder 1 Correspondence--Incoming, undated


Box 3 Folder 2 Correspondence--Stephen Myers to John Jay II on Underground Railroad, 1861


Box 3 Folder 3-5 Correspondence--Incoming, 1861, 3 folders


Box 3 Folder 6 Correspondence--Incoming, 1862


Box 3 Folder 7-8 Correspondence--Incoming, 1863, 2 folders



Box 5 Folder 1 Correspondence--Incoming, 1864


Box 5 Folder 2 Correspondence--Incoming, 1865-1866


Box 5 Folder 3 Correspondence--Incoming, 1867


Box 5 Folder 4 Correspondence--Incoming, 1869



Box 4 Folder 1 Correspondence--Incoming, 1870-1879


Box 4 Folder 2 Correspondence--Incoming, 1880-1889, 1893


Box 4 Folder 3-4 Correspondence--Incoming, 1880-1889, 2 folders


Outgoing and Third-Party Correspondence, 1835-1889



Box 5 Folder 5 Correspondence--Outgoing, 1835-1839


Box 5 Folder 6 Correspondence--Third Party, 1830-1839, undated


Box 5 Folder 7 Correspondence--Outgoing, 1840-1849


Box 5 Folder 8 Correspondence--Third Party, 1840-1848


Box 5 Folder 9 Correspondence--Outgoing, 1855-1859


Box 5 Folder 10 Correspondence--Third Party, 1851, 1855


Box 5 Folder 11 Correspondence--Outgoing, 1860-1861



Box 7 Folder 1 Correspondence--Outgoing, 1862-1869


Box 7 Folder 2 Correspondence--Outgoing-John Jay II to Reverend Edward Boggs, 1862-1863


Box 7 Folder 3 Correspondence--Third Party, 1863



Box 6 Folder 1 Correspondence--Outgoing, 1870-1879


Box 6 Folder 2 Correspondence--Third Party, 1870-1879


Box 6 Folder 3 Correspondence--Outgoing, 1880-1889


Box 6 Folder 4 Correspondence--Third Party, 1885

Series II: Documents, 1790-1911

This series contains legal documents on cases including George Kirk, Lemmon, and Ann McFarland, partition and land sale documents, receipts relating to John Jay II's farms, John Jay II's writings on fugitive slaves, international copyright, and the Civil War, and newspaper clippings on abolition, freeman, the Civil War and John Jay I's political and antislavery activities. The series also includes pamphlets and circulars from anti-slavery societies, temperance petition from the women of Katonah, and some miscellaneous ephemera and photographs.


Legal and Financial Files, 1837-1850



Box 15 Folder 6 Legal Notes, 1837-1838


Box 15 Folder 7 Receipt and Financial Documents, 1835-1838


Box 15 Folder 8 Legal Files-Real Estate, Water Commissioners, 1790-1839



Box 8 Folder 1 Legal Files, 1840-1849


Box 8 Folder 2 Legal Files-Blackwood and International Copyright, 1849


Box 8 Folder 3 Legal Files--Petitions Re: Copyright, 1848


Box 8 Folder 4 Legal Files--Blackwood and International Copyright, 1848-1850


Box 8 Folder 5 Legal Files--Field Family, 1845-1849


Box 8 Folder 6 Legal Files--George Kirk, 1846


Box 8 Folder 7 Legal Files--Samuel Burhans, 1849-1850


Box 8 Folder 8 Receipts and Financial Document, 1840-1848


Legal and Financial Files, 1850-1859



Box 9 Folder 5 Receipts and Accounts, 1850-1859


Box 9 Folder 6 Legal Files-Real Estate and Financial-Jay/Field Family, 1850



Box 11 Folder 1 Legal Files--Real Estate and Financial-Jay/Field Family, 1851-1853


Box 11 Folder 2 Legal Files--Real Estate and Financial--Jay/Field Family, 1853-1856


Box 11 Folder 3 Legal Files--Real Estate and Financial-Jay/Field Family, 1857-1859


Box 11 Folder 4 Legal Files--Jay Family Partition Deeds, 1857-1858


Box 11 Folder 5 Legal Files--Lemmon Case, 1852-1860


Box 11 Folder 6 Legal Files--Elizabeth McFarland vs. George Fogel, 1850-1855


Box 11 Folder 7 Legal Files--Miscellaneous, 1850-1859


Legal and Financial Files, 1860-1889



Box 9 Folder 8 Receipts and Financial Documents, 1860-1869



Box 13 Folder 1-4 Receipts and Financial Documents, 1860-1869, 4 folders


Box 13 Folder 5-6 Legal Files, 1860-1869, 2 folders


Box 13 Folder 7 Receipts and Financial Documents, 1870-1879


Box 13 Folder 8 Legal Files, 1870-1879


Box 13 Folder 9 Receipts and Financial, 1880-1189


Box 13 Folder 10 Receipts and Financial--"Hotel Accounts", 1876-1887


Box 13 Folder 11 Legal Files, 1880-1889


Notes, Photos and Clippings, 1830-1849



Box 9 Folder 1 Miscellaneous Notes, Photos of Horace Mann Seating Chart, circa 1830s


Box 9 Folder 2 Clippings, circa 1840-1849


Box 9 Folder 3 Scrapbook, 1836-1842


Box 9 Folder 4 Miscellaneous-Georgia Historical Society Membership, St. Matthews Church, 1840-1841


Clippings, Photos, and Circulars/Pamphlets, 1850-1869


Box 9 Folder 7 Clippings--Lemmon Case, 1852-1860



Box 12 Folder 1 Clippings, 1850-1859


Box 12 Folder 2 Clippings--"Slave Cases" Notebook, 1847-1852


Box 12 Folder 3 Pamphlets and Circulars, 1850-1859


Box 12 Folder 4-6 Newspaper Clippings, 1860-1869, 3 folders


Box 12 Folder 7 Printed Materials, 1860-1869


Box 12 Folder 8 Photographs, 1860-1869


Box 12 Folder 9 Petition of the Women of Katonah, 1862


Newspaper Clippings, Printed Materials, and Will of Agnes Ward, 1870-1911



Box 14 Folder 1 Printed Materials and Invitations, 1870-1879


Box 14 Folder 2-3 Newspaper Clippings, 1870-1879, 2 folders


Box 14 Folder 4 Printed Materials and Invitations, 1880-1889


Box 14 Folder 5 Will of Agnes Ward, 1911


Writings, 1833-1859



Box 7 Folder 4 Columbia College Compositions, 1833-1836


Box 7 Folder 5 Compositions Written by Others, 1834-1835


Box 7 Folder 6 Notes--Columbia College, 1833-1836


Box 7 Folder 7 Writings, 1841-1842


Box 7 Folder 8 Writings, 1843



Box 15 Folder 1 Writings, 1844-1848


Box 15 Folder 2-3 Writings, circa 1840-1949, 2 folders


Box 15 Folder 4 Writings, 1854-1859


Box 15 Folder 5 Writings--Lecture on New York Manumission Society, 1852


Writings, 1860-1889



Box 6 Folder 5-6 Writings-Notes and Drafts, 1860-1869, 2 folders



Box 10 Folder 1-3 Writings, 1860-1869, 3 folders


Box 10 Folder 4 Writings--Address to the Colored Troops, 1864


Box 10 Folder 5 Writings--Draft of Address on Civil War, 1861-1865


Box 10 Folder 6 Writings--Address on Common Schools, 1860s


Box 10 Folder 7 Writings, 1870-1879


Box 10 Folder 8 Writings, 1880-1889