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-- Manuscript Group 221, Calvin Green (1765-1847), Farmer Papers, 1790-1846


Documents, Manuscripts, Maps, & Photographs

Manuscript Group 221, Calvin Green (1765-1847), Farmer

Papers, 1790-1846, 0.3 linear feet / 2 volumes

Call Number: MG 221


Includes Calvin Greenís autobiography, 1765-1845, and a diary, 1790-1844.  He has appended to the diary various autobiographical notes, and transcribed records for the First Presbyterian Church in Hanover Township, Morris County, 1747-1846.  Calvin Green, a farmer, was the son of Rev. Jacob Green (1722-1790) and a brother of Ashbel Green (1762-1848).

Biographical Note:

Calvin Green was born on July 25, 1765 in Hanover, Morris County, New Jersey.  Green’s father, the Harvard educated Rev. Jacob Green (1722-1790), was the minister of the First Presbyterian Church of Hanover Township and a founder of a Latin academy there.  Although Calvin did not attend his father’s school, as did his brother Ashbel (1762-1848), he was literate and able to read the Bible by the age of 5.

Too young to fight in the Revolutionary War like his older brother Pierson, Calvin spent his early years helping his father on the family’s farm.  Rev. Green encouraged his son to learn a trade and, at the age of 12, Calvin began studying shoemaking and tanning with a Hanover tradesman named John Smithson.  Leatherwork did not appeal to Green however and he spent much of his apprenticeship working in the fields on Smithson’s farm. Green eventually gave up the leather trade in 1794 and concentrated solely on farming and tending to livestock.

In 1787 Green married Hannah Beach (1768-1847) with whom he had six children: Nancy (1788-1813), Jacob (b. 1790), Gabriel (b. 1794), Willis (b. 1802), John Calvin (1805-1807), and Elizabeth (1809-1838).  He died in Hanover on February 3, 1847.


"Calvin Green’s ‘Diary’ The Life Of Calvin Green." N.J. Historical Society Proceedings. Volume 69, 1951: pages 115-136.


Provenance Note:

The collection was a gift of Calvin Green’s great-granddaughters, Mrs. Laura Green Dorer and Miss Emma J. Green of West Caldwell, New Jersey.


Scope and Content Note:

The collection consists of a handwritten autobiography dating from 1765-1846, a diary dating from 1790-1844, and a typescript index of the diary’s contents.  In addition to providing a yearly account of Green’s life from early childhood until 1846, the autobiography discusses the tanning and shoemaking trade, farming, historical events (example: the 1802 burning of the college at Princeton), his father’s Latin academy, the hiring of slave labor, the church’s succession of ministers, and deaths and births in the town.  The diary lists daily events such as biblical readings; the preaching schedule; town births, deaths, and marriages; and crop and livestock reports.  Appended to the diary are various autobiographical notes and transcribed records from the First Presbyterian Church of Hanover Township, Morris County (1747-1846) relating to church membership and activity. The typescript index of the diary’s contents is organized by year.


Related Collections:

Manuscript Group 347, First Presbyterian Church, Hanover, NJ Records

See Farmer's papers/records


Folder List:

Folder Description Dates
1 Autobiography 1765-1846
2 Diary / Daybook ca. 1790-1795, 1844
3 Diary (typescript) 1790-1829
4 Diary (typescript) 1830-1844


Processed by Jeff McMillan, August 2000 as part of the "Farm to City" project funded by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Submit a request to copy part of this collection


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