Dunham Family

Dunham Family Collection


Collection Overview:
Title:  The Dunham Family Collection
Dates: c.1840-1930
Creator: Dunham Family
Call Numbers: DAL.SMS.101
Repository: Drew Archival Library
Location: Small Collections Box 4/Small Collections photo box 1
Quantity: 1 Folder
Language: English

Administrative Information:
Access Restrictions: The Dunham Family Collection is open to researchers.  There are no restricted materials in the collection.
Acquisition Information:  Accession #DAL.2016.009
Preferred form of citation: DAL.SMS.101, The Dunham Family Collection in the Drew Archival Library of the Duxbury Rural and Historical Society.
Finding Aid Prepared By: Harry Kelso/Carolyn Ravenscroft, March, 2016.

Scope and Content:  The Collection consists of 22 document and 31 photographs primarily of the Dunham family of Plymouth and Duxbury, MA. Included are Town of Duxbury tax receipts, a bill from Elijah Peterson for the burial of William J. Dunham (1917), and the marriage certificate of William J. Dunham and Martha D. Louden (1873).  Also included, are three receipts from the Society of California Pioneers of New England and one invitation to their 316th meeting in 1916. Newspaper clippings include obituaries for William J. Dunham and one article on the death of his brother, Chandler Dunham, during an Indian massacre in California.

The photographs in the collection are mostly of the Dunham’s house and vicinity on Parks Street in Duxbury MA.  There are both interior and exterior images of house.   There are two photographs of William J. Dunham, Jr., a carte de visite of Mary Louden Dunham, and a group photo that includes their daughter and long-time Duxbury teacher, Annie D. Dunham. There is also a tintype (c. 1870-1890), labeled “Dunham Brothers,” but it is unclear what brothers they are.

Biographical Information: William J. Dunham (1831-1916) was the son of Jesse Dunham and Hannah Bagnell, He was born in Plymouth, MA. In 1849, at the age of 17, he left Plymouth aboard the bark, Yeoman, and traveled 197 days to the California gold mines along with two of his brothers, Richard and Chandler, as part of the Pilgrim Mining Co. He returned to Plymouth and eventually married the widow of his brother Chandler, Ann Hinkley Dunham. Chandler had been killed in an Indian uprising in California in 1855. William was married a second time in 1873 to the widow, Martha Drew Louden, the daughter of Capt. George Drew Louden and Mary Sampson of Duxbury, MA. Together William and Martha had two children, William J. Dunham, Jr. and Annie Drew Dunham. The Dunhams lived in a cape cod style house built in 1836 by Martha’s parents on Parks Street in the Island Creek neighborhood of Duxbury where both William and William, Jr. worked for the railroad. Daughter Annie became a schoolteacher and later, principal. There is both a park and scholarship named for Annie Dunham in Duxbury.

Organization: The Collection consists of two folders.
Folder 1 – manuscript material/Small Collections Box 4
Folder 2 – Photographs/Small Collections Photo Box 1