Scope and Content Note
The John Milton Holley Papers, 1793-1799, consist of letters, arranged chronologically, that were written and received by Milton Holley (1777-1836) and his brother Myron (1779-1841) during their attendance at Williams College. The Holley correspondence can be broken into two broad categories, which combine to provide a lively, detailed picture of life at Williams in its earliest days. First, there are letters that the brothers sent home to their parents, Luther and Sarah Holley, reporting on their progress at school. These letters address practical concerns such as education and living expenses, travel schedules, health, rooming situations, classes, etc. Second, there are letters written to Milton at the Holleys' home in Dover by his friends who were still at Williams. These letters are witty, animated and often quite sentimental. They are, on the whole, less informative than the letters the brothers wrote to their parents. They do, however, include news of social events, post- graduation plans, interpersonal relationships and general gossip. Other than the Holleys, major correspondents include: Ephraim Judson (Class of 1797), Thomas Fitch (Class of 1798), Moses Curtis (Class of 1798), Elijah Mills (Class of 1797), Martin Field (Class of 1798), William Billings (Class of 1798) and William H. Williams (Class of 1798).