MS - 016: Edmund Burke Papers (1729? - 1797)

(1 box, .27 cubic feet)

Inclusive Dates: 1762-1796

Processed by: Christine M. Ameduri
January 2002

Link to Full Finding Aid - PDF


Purchased by Gettysburg College from the Dowager Lady Burnham, England through Hall Barn Archives Trust, England in 1994.


Famous 18th century conservative political philosopher, theorist, statesman, Whig politician and orator credited with being the founder of modern conservative ideology. He was born in Dublin, Ireland, probably in 1729, was sent to a Quaker boarding school, and then studied at Trinity College, graduating in 1749. He briefly studied law in London, but soon turned his attention to writing. Some of his more famous works are Philosophical Enquiry Into the Origin of Our Ideas of the Sublime and the Beautiful (1756), On Conciliation with America (1775) and Reflections on the Revolution in France (1790). His political career began when he became the private secretary to William Gerard Hamilton, chief secretary for Ireland in 1759. In 1765, he became the private secretary of Lord Rockingham, First Lord of the Treasury before becoming a member of Parliament in 1766, a post he held for the rest of his life. He is noted for his opposition to British government policies regarding the harsh treatment of the American colonies, the Catholics in Ireland and the Bengali Indians and also for his criticism of the French Revolution. He died in July 1797.

Scope and Content Notes:

The collection consists of 9 letters written between 1762 and 1796 from Charles O'Hara, Joseph Herford, John Nobel, Lord Charlemont (James Caulfeild), Dorothy Silburn, Richard Champion, De Genouillae and Britannicus, one letter written by William Draper dated November 23, two undated notes in Burke's hand, one poem, "To a Mouse who was caught…", and one receipt for R. T. Doodsley, signed by Edmund Burke.

Link to Full Finding Aid - PDF

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