Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary
 

Titus and Fidelia Church Coan papers, 1830 -- 1848

Summary Information

Abstract

Titus Coan was an Auburn Theological Seminary alumnus and Presbyterian missionary; his first wife Fidelia Church Coan was a teacher who accompanied him to Hawaii on missionary work. The collection contains letters describing events and practical concerns of life in Hawaii, and reflecting on the missionary movement of the time.

At a Glance

Bib ID 4492438 View CLIO record
Creator(s) Coan, Titus, 1801-1882 ; Coan, Fidelia Church, 1810-1872
Title Titus and Fidelia Church Coan papers, 1830 -- 1848
Physical Description 0.25 linear feet (0.25 linear feet; 1 box)
Language(s) English .
Access

This collection is open for research.

Onsite storage.

Arrangement

Arrangement

This collection is arranged in one numerical series.

Description

Scope and Contents

This collection contains copies of 489 numbered letters (as well as an index of letters) exchanged between Titus and Fidelia Church Coan between 1830 and 1848. Letters describe events and practical concerns of life in Hawaii, and also reflect the missionary movement of the time. The copies herein are described as 'carefully corrected from the original letters by Titus Muson Coan and Sarah Coan Waters and were created between 1891 and 1897. The letters are accompanied by hand written annotations.

  • Titus and Fidelia Church Coan papers, 1830 -- 1848

    This series contains copies of 489 numbered letters (as well as an index of letters) exchanged between Titus and Fidelia Church Coan between 1830 and 1848. Letters describe events and practical concerns of life in Hawaii, and also reflect the missionary movement of the time. The copies herein are described as 'carefully corrected from the original letters by Titus Muson Coan and Sarah Coan Waters and were created between 1891 and 1897. The letters are accompanied by hand written annotations.

Burke Library record group:

Union Theological Seminary Archives: UTS 1, papers of faculty and students

Using the Collection

Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary

Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Onsite storage.

Conditions Governing Use

Some material in this collection may be protected by copyright and other rights. Information concerning copyright, fair use, and reproduction requests can be consulted at Columbia's Copyright Advisory Office.

Preferred Citation

Item description, UTS1: Titus and Fidelia Church Coan papers, 1830-1848, box #, folder #, The Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary, Columbia University in the City of New York.

Related Materials

Titus Coan family papers, 1818-1923 (bulk 1832-1882). Manuscript Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

About the Finding Aid / Processing Information

Columbia University Libraries, Burke Library at Union Theological Seminary

Processing Information

Material was cataloged by Lynn A. Grove on 1988-07-07. Materials were housed in new acid-free folders and labeled in accordance with the original arrangement scheme indexed by the American Geographical Society. The finding aid was created by Paul Paulson in 2016 with the support of the Henry Luce Foundation and the E. Rhodes and Leona B. Carpenter Foundation, and edited by Leah Edelman in 2020.

Revision Description

2020-08-31 PDF converted to EAD and description updated by Leah Edelman.

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"
Correspondence Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

Subject

Heading "CUL Archives:"
"Portal"
"CUL Collections:"
"CLIO"
"Nat'l / Int'l Archives:"
"ArchivedGRID"
Coan, Fidelia Church, 1810-1872 -- : Correspondence Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Coan, Titus, 1801-1882 -- : Correspondence Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Missionaries Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID
Missionaries -- Hawaii -- Correspondence Portal CLIO ArchiveGRID

History / Biographical Note

Biographical / Historical

Titus Coan was born in Connecticut in 1801 and educated at the East Guildford Academy. He was ordained by the Auburn Theological Society in 1833 after he was received into the Presbyterian Church at a Charles G. Finney revival in 1828. Fidelia Church was born in Riga, New York in 1810 and went on to study and become a teacher in Rochester. Fidelia and Titus Coan had been engaged for 6 years when in 1833, one month before they were due to be married, Titus was sent to Patagonia in Argentina on behalf of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions. Titus returned in 1834, married Fidelia, and in that same year they sailed together to Hawaii, then better known as the Sandwich Islands. After a seven month journey they settled in the city of Hilo on the island of Hawaii (the Big Island) and lived there for the following 45 years. Titus was very successful in converting the local population to Christianity and is celebrated in the Christian community for doing so. Both Titus and Fidelia made scientific observations of the volcanic activity on Hawaii and both wrote extensively on the subject in several publications, including the American Journal of Science and Arts. Titus Coan also provided articles for The Missionary Herald and wrote the book Life in Hawaii, recounting his experiences there. In separate trips in 1860 and 1867, Titus Coan made a visiting tour of the Marquesas Islands as a delegate of the Hawaii Missionary Society. Fidelia died in 1872 and Titus remarried in 1873 to Lydia Bingham. Titus Coan died in Hilo Hawaii in 1881.