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Scope and Contents

From the Collection:

The bulk of this collection is correspondence to Mrs. Laughton concerning Mount Vernon and the work of the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association. Other material includes correspondence from Mrs. Laughton, formal reports and papers of the MVLA, personal correspondence and memoirs, photographs, printed material, and ephemera. The overall dates range from 1850 to 1891 with the bulk of the collection dating from the 1860s-1880s.

This collection contains correspondence from a significant number of members of the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association including:

• Ann Pamela Cunningham • Christie Johnson – Secretary to Ann Pamela Cunningham • Vice Regents – Margaret Sweat, Susan Hudson, Nancy Halsted, Margaret Comegys, Letitia Walker, Emily Harper, Martha Mitchell, Magdalen Blanding, Abby Chace, Hannah Farnsworth, Ella B. Washington

Other notable correspondents represented in the collection: • Harriet R. Lane Johnston – First Lady of the United States during the administration of her uncle, President James Buchanan, married Henry Elliott Johnston from Baltimore • Selina Pauncefote – Wife of the British Ambassador to the United States, Julian Pauncefote • Edward Everett – U.S. Congressman, Governor of Massachusetts, orator, pastor • John J. Jacob – Governor of West Virginia • Gilbert S. Meem – Brigadier General for the Confederate States of America, Virginia State Congressman, U.S. Postmaster General • James L. Kemper – General for the Confederate States of America, Governor of Virginia • George Riggs – American businessman and banker • Montgomery C. Meigs – Quartermaster General of the United States Army, engineer • Thomas F. Bayard – Secretary of State, U.S. Senator from Delaware • Flora Payne Whitney – Heiress, socialite, philanthropist, daughter of Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney


  • Creation: 1850-1891


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research during scheduled appointments. Researchers must complete the Washington Library’s Special Collections and Archives Registration Form before access is provided. The library reserves the right to restrict access to certain items for preservation purposes.


From the Collection: 1.96 Linear Feet (2 Hollinger boxes, 1 half Hollinger box, 1 oversize box)

Language of Materials


Materials Specific Details

Photographs, graphic materials

Repository Details

Part of the Archives of the Mount Vernon Ladies' Association Repository

PO Box 3600
Mount Vernon VA 22121 USA