Cresson Literary Society records, 1859-1895

218

Collection Overview

Title:
Cresson Literary Society records
Dates (Inclusive):
1859-1895
Creator:
Cresson Literary Society (State College, Pa.)
Abstract:
The Cresson Literary Society was founded March 1859 at the Farmer's High School (now Pennsylvania State University) along with the Washington Agricultuarl Literary Society as the school's two literary societies. The collection contains the society's constitution and bylaws, meeting minutes, membership lists, financial records, and library records dating from 1859 through 1895.
Collection Number:
218
Size:
2 Linear Feet
Location:
For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the  library catalog.
Repository:
Special Collections Library. Pennsylvania State University.
Languages:
English

Historical Note

The Cresson Literary Society was founded in March of 1859 after the formation of the Farmers' High School. The student body of 125 men was divided in half, and each half founded a literary society. Formed in conjunction with the Cresson Society was the Washington (Agricultural) Literary Society which remained the Cresson's staunch competitor in essay writing and debate.

The Cresson Literary Society itself was named after Elliott Cresson, a Philadelphia man who had donated $5,000 to the college. By 1870, the Cresson Literary Society resembled similar literary societies in other colleges. The college had given it a room for meetings and its library in the Old Main Building. The members of the Society engaged in debates, essay and declamation writing, and orations. The Society also published a literary magazine for members called The Students' Miscellany. During the 1890s, due in part to the emergence of fraternities, debate clubs, and the more diversified student life, the Cresson Literary Society (and its counterpart the Washington) began to decline and dissolved in June 1895. Its society hall was returned to the college and it donated its library to the college.

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Collection Overview

The records of the Cresson Literary Society document the organization's history and span the society's existence, dating from 1859-1895. The bulk of the material consists of minutes, financial records, library records, and membership lists. Other notable materials include society correspondence, which largely focuses on the granting of honorary memberships, as well as scatter copies of the group's literary magazine The Students' Miscellany.

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Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Copyright Notice

Copyright is retained by the creators of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Cresson Literary Society records, PSUA 218, Special Collections Library, Pennsylvania State University.

Processing Information

Processed by Special Collections staff.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Cresson Literary Society (State College, Pa.)

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Collection Inventory

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