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Morse-Lea photograph collection
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Morse-Lea photograph collection

Accession 1970.018

Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department, Hagley Museum and Library


PO Box 3630
Wilmington, Delaware, 19807
302-658-2400
research@hagley.org

Finding aid prepared by Laurie Rizzo, 2013,

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2013-06-26T11:37-0400

Finding aid prepared using best local practices and Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Cite items for this collection in the following format:
[Description and dates], Box/folder number, Morse-Lea photograph collection (Accession 1970.018), Hagley Museum and Library, Wilmington, DE 19807

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Descriptive Summary

Title: Morse-Lea photograph collection
Dates: circa 1800-circa 1840
Accession Number: 1970.018
Creator: Lea family
Extent: 31 items
Physical Description: 1 album (38 silhouettes); 15 x 19 cm and 30 items: silhouettes ; 12 1/2 x 11 cm. or smaller.
Language of Material: English
Repository: Hagley Museum and Library: Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department
Abstract: The Lea family were among the largest flour mill operators at the Brandywine Falls, north of Wilmington, Delaware, since the 1770s, when Thomas Lea joined in partnership with Joseph Tatnall. The album contains considerable genealogical information on the Lea family, as well as 38 silhouette portraits of members of the Lea and related families. These include family names such as Tatnall, Baily, Bellah, Warner, Pusey, and Rodman.
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Administrative Information


Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

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Biographical Note

The Lea family were among the largest flour mill operators at the Brandywine Falls, north of Wilmington, Delaware, since the 1770s, when Thomas Lea joined in partnership with Joseph Tatnall. After his death, his son, William Lea, took over operation of the mills in 1837. In 1864, William Lea brought his sons Henry and Preston into the firm, changing the name to William Lea & Sons Company. The Lea family was prominent in Wilmington and Brandywine Village, and married into several other prominent Delaware business families.

An appraisal of this collection in 1969 determined that the bulk of the silhouettes were made at the Peale Museum in Philadelphia, possibly by more than one hand. According to the appraiser: "Peale silhouettes are not easily come by. They were made to order by individuals, at the Museum and were cut from a piece of Whatman paper, French fold, resulting in 4 finished profiles, approximate finished size 4 x 5 in. high. They were generally blind-stamped with the Museum logo, probably before cutting and which may or may not show in the finished product. They are characterized by a high degree of artistic ability and generally show a uniform treatment of the bust cut-off and the loose strands of hair which are almost always present in the female profiles. A comparison made with the Peale collection of file copies in possession of the Library Company of Philadelphia confirm (sic.) the above."

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Scope and Content

The album, which is marked "Profile Book" on its spine, contains considerable genealogical information on the Lea family, as well as 38 silhouette portraits of members of the Lea and related families. These include family names such as Tatnall, Baily, Bellah, Warner, Pusey, and Rodman. There are also 26 loose silhouette portraits of the same families. An additional four silhouette portraits of members of the Lovett and Lea families are matted together in one frame.

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Access Points

Morse, Albert W., Mrs., Jr.
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Series Descriptions and Inventory

Box Album
1 1 Elizabeth Lea Tatnall
Box Album
1 1 Margaret Lea
Box Album
1 1 Joseph Tatnall
Box Album
1 1 Elizabeth Tatnall (“not a correct likeness – being taken after her decease”)
Box Album
1 1 Sarah Lea
Box Album
1 1 Joseph Baily
Box Album
1 1 Elizabeth Baily
Box Album
1 1 Joseph T[?] Bellah
Box Album
1 1 Elizabeth T[?] Bellah
Box Album
1 1 Esther (Tatnall) Warner
Box Album
1 1 Edward Tatnall
Box Album
1 1 Joseph Lea
Box Album
1 1 Sarah Ann [Robeson] Lea
Box Album
1 1 Mary Lea
Box Album
1 1 Sarah Lea Jr.
Box Album
1 1 Thomas Lea Jr.
Box Album
1 1 Edward Lea
Box Album
1 1 Tatnall Lea
Box Album
1 1 Sarah Lea Jr.
Box Album
1 1 William Lea
Box Album
1 1 Henry Lea
Box Album
1 1 Thomas Tatnall Lea
Box Album
1 1 Unidentified
Box Album
1 1 Jonas Preston
Box Album
1 1 Ashton Richardson
Box Album
1 1 Mary Edge to Lea Pusey [female]
Box Album
1 1 Unidentified – perhaps Edward Lovett?
Box Album
1 1 Lydia Nichols to Jacob Pusey
Box Album
1 1 Thos. Edge to Edith Pusey [male]
Box Album
1 1 Martha Ellicott married Nathan Tyson [female]
Box Album
1 1 Lydia Rodman to Micha Ruggles . N Bodf-unintelligible [female]
Box Album
1 1 Tho. Rodman deceased at H-? [male]
Box Album
1 1 Anna Rodman to A-? Robison(?) [female]
Box Album
1 1 Unidentified
Box Album
1 1 Elizabeth McPherson married Jon Jenney Alin(?)
Box Album
1 1 Ann Shoemaker married John Janney-Al(?)
Box Album
1 1 Jasper Cope married Rebecca Shoemaka(?) [male]
Box Folder
1 1 Sarah Tatnall Lea
Box Folder
1 1 John Bellah
Box Folder
1 2 Thomas Lea and letter to Anna Lea
Box Folder
1 3 Anne McCall Willing
Box Folder
1 3 Jane Scott Lea
Box Folder
1 3 Ester Warner, 1931 January 31
Box Folder
1 3 Ann Tatnall Bellah
Box Folder
1 3 Edward Tatnall
Box Folder
1 3 John Lea
Box Folder
1 3 Wm Warner, 1932 February 17
Box Folder
1 3 E_ Lea son of Thomas Lea & Sarah Tatnall Lea
Box Folder
1 3 Sarah Lea daughter of _ & Sarah Tatnall Lea
Box Folder
1 3 Caroline Hicky
Box Folder
1 3 Joseph Bailey
Box Folder
1 3 Margaret Marshall Lea(?)
Box Folder
1 3 unidentified female; 9 different silhousettes
Box Folder
1 3 unidentified male; 2 different silhouettes
Box Folder
1 4 Mary Scott Lovett, Edmund Lovett, Sarah Stackhouse Lovett and Jan Scott Lovett Lea; 4 silhouettes in frame