370 Lancaster Avenue
Haverford, PA 19041

The Haverford College Libraries support the educational mission of the College with an unrelenting commitment to excellence—for the institution, the students, the faculty, and the staff—through our collections, instruction, and services.

Haverford College Libraries aim to create descriptions that are inclusive and respectful to those who are represented in and use our collections. Read our full statement. If you encounter language in catalog records, digital collections, or finding aids that you find harmful or offensive, please email

Browsing as Anonymous (not verified)
No items found


The Religious Society of Friends was the first corporate body in Britain and North America to fully condemn slavery as both ethically and religiously wrong in all circumstances. It is in Quaker records that we have some of the earliest manifestations of anti-slavery sentiment, dating from the 1600s. After the 1750s, some Quakers actively engaged in attempting to sway public opinion in Britain and America against the slave trade and slavery in general. At the same time, some Quakers became actively involved in the economic, educational and political well being of the formerly enslaved.

 Quakers and Slavery was a consortial project of Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections and Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College. Funding was provided by the Federal Institute of Museum and Library Services, through a program stipulated by the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). This program is administered in Pennsylvania through the Office of Commonwealth Libraries for assisting libraries in providing all users access to information, developing partnerships, and increasing information access for persons who have difficulty gaining it.


1128 items

Quakers and Slavery

Rebecca Singer Collins (1804–1892) was the daughter of German Lutherans John and Anna Maria Singer, but became a Quaker as a young woman. She was the second wife of Isaac Collins, Jr. (1787-1863), who served on the Board of Managers of Haverford College from 1830 to 1842. Rebecca and Isaac had three children together, Anna (1835), Stephen Grellet (1836), and Mary Forster (1843). Rebecca was a minister of Twelfth Street Meeting in Philadelphia, and author of Parent’s Gift; or, reading book for little children, as well as editor of a book of quotations entitled Treasured Gems. She traveled extensively to speak to Friends’ Meetings in Europe, and late in life was well known for her philanthropic work in New York City.

The collection contains many letters between Rebecca and Isaac Collins during his extended business trip to London in 1845. Rebecca passes along news from friends and family, and from the Philadelphia Quakers. Isaac writes about the English Quakers, news from friends, and describes the gifts he is sending to Rebecca and the children. There are also many letters to Rebecca from Mary Anna Longstreth, during Rebecca’s visit to English and Irish Meetings in 1842-1843. There are also letters of John Pease to Rebecca and Isaac Collins. Rebecca’s diaries in the form of booklets and individual pages are dated 1824-1847. Most entries concern Rebecca’s religious feelings and her often-repeated desire to dedicate herself more and more fully to her faith. Some later entries describe her charitable visits to prisoners, the poor, the sick, and the patients of an insane asylum. The collection also includes Quaker documents, paper currency, and genealogical materials.


172 items

Rebecca Singer Collins Papers

This collection is comprised of the papers of Rebecca White and relate primarily to religious and community affairs. Several of the included letters were written by Sarah Mapps Douglass (1806-1882) to White. Douglass was an American educator and abolitionist who founded a school for African-American girls in Philadelphia and helped to found the Female Literary Association in the 1830s. The letters are part of HC.MC-1166, Josiah White papers. Josiah White (1781-1850) was Rebecca White's father.


225 items

Rebecca White papers

Scottish author Robert Louis Stevenson (1850-1894) created this book of geometry exercises and poetic verses. The front section of the notebook contains geometry and other mathematical exercises. Turning the book the other way around reveals poetry and poetic compositions, along with some mathematical exercises. These are drafts, with many cross-outs and changes. The notebook has been digitized in both directions to capture both the mathematical exercises and poetic compositions.


2 items

Robert Louis Stevenson geometry notebook and book of verses

The Rufus M. Jones papers contain letters, papers, photos, and diaries of Rufus Jones and his family. Many of the materials come from the Philadelphia and Haverford area, with many contributions from New York state as well. Materials in the collection were created between 1870 and 1960. Letters discuss family, friends, and home life, as well as philosophy, international affairs, and business. Some topics of note found within the letters include Haverford history, the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), World War II, illness and death, and Quakerism. They are a rich source of information on a large number of topics.


1644 items

Rufus M. Jones Papers

The Sharpless Family papers consist of letters, diaries, journals, narratives, and notes, by, concerning, or attributed to members of the Sharpless and Kite families. They include the papers of Joshua Sharpless, with letters to Ann Trimble Sharpless, his wife, and his children; notes on his physical condition; narratives of Edith Yarnall Sharpless, his first wife; correspondence among the children of Joshua Sharpless, including letters of Rachel Sharpless Cope, Edith (Sharpless) Kite, Isaac Sharpless, and other family members; letters of Benjamin Kite to his children, Thomas, John, Mary, and others; journals, diaries, and accounts of Mary Kite, daughter of Benjamin, and letters to family and friends describing religious travels, spiritual affairs, and conditions in the Society; correspondence among other members of the Kite family, including James, Joseph, Nathan, Abi, nieces, nephews, and others; accounts by Thomas Kite of Edith Sharpless Kite, his wife; letters from Susanna Kite Sharpless, daughter of Thomas, and an account of a trip through New York; and letters and accounts from Aaron Sharpless, husband of Susanna.


573 items

Sharpless Family Papers


Other Participating Institutions