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Victorine (du Pont) Bauduy and her husband, Ferdinand Bauduy, papers, 1792-1862

Accession: WMSS-VIIdentifier: WMSS-VI-I.


  • Creation: 1792-1862

Biographical Note

Victorine du Pont Bauduy and Eleuthera du Pont Smith were teachers at the Brandywine Manufacturers' Sunday School (BMSS), a nonsectarian school offering classes in reading, writing, arithmetic, and Bible lessons. Evelina (du Pont) Bidermann spent much of her adult life traveling alongside her husband and then building the Winterthur Mansion in Delaware.

Victorine du Pont Bauduy was born in Paris and came to the United States in 1800. She was educated at a school for French-speaking children in New York. After the family moved to Delaware, she attended a Wilmington boarding school and then Mrs. Rivardi's Academy for Young Ladies in Philadelphia. As the eldest child and with an ailing mother, she was responsible for overseeing her younger siblings. Victorine married Ferdinand Bauduy (1791-1814) in 1813, but he died six weeks later and she never remarried. After a period of mourning, she became involved in the Brandywine Manufacturers' Sunday School, sponsored by her father to teach workers' children. She was a teacher and superintendent until her death. Victorine also taught her siblings, nieces, and nephews at home.

Scope and Contents

Victorine du Pont Bauduy's papers cover a period of sixty years. As a woman of means, she was able to pursue her interests, which included education and literature. Outgoing letters dating from 1803 to 1861 were written to her mother, siblings, nieces and nephews, and friends. The letters primarily discuss family matters, health, sewing, clothing, weather, and household administration, particularly the management of servants. Incoming letters dating from 1798 to 1861 were written by family and friends. Letters from school friends document their interest in fashion, visits, courting, and literature. Of particular note are exchanges with Antoinette Brevost, a member of a French refugee family who established a girl's school in Pittsburgh before going on to teach at Natchez.

In addition to correspondence, the papers include the "Tancopanican Chronicle," a family newsletter written by Victorine and her sisters in the 1820s, which details domestic events. The papers also include some records of the Brandywine Manufacturers' Sunday School (BMSS) from 1816 to 1852, consisting of reports on students, speeches before a class, copies of reports sent to the American Sunday School Union describing the BMSS, lists of Sunday School books, and BMSS subscribers with the amounts subscribed.

Additional papers include household accounts from 1838 to 1842, which primarily record expenditures for food, but also contain miscellaneous and private expenses (including donations to the poor), servants' wages, and "work done for the factory and other expenses." Another account book from 1815 to 1818 records Victorine's personal expenses. Her diaries, dating from 1843 to 1849, include private expenses; they also note the weather and activities, mostly visits. There are also lists of New Year's gifts given to family, household staff, and friends from 1847 to 1861.

Ferdinand Bauduy's papers consist of a few brief items of correspondence.


6 Linear Feet

Additional Description

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Related Names


Repository Details

Repository Details

Part of the Manuscripts and Archives Repository

PO Box 3630
Wilmington Delaware 19807 USA