Collection inventory

Special Collections home page
printer friendly version

David B. Hill Papers

An inventory of his papers at Syracuse University

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Hill, David B. (David Bennett), 1843-1910.
Title: David B. Hill Papers
Inclusive Dates: 1885-1910
Quantity: 0.5 linear ft.
Abstract: New York State Governor, 1885-1891; U.S. Senator, 1891-1897. Collection contains incoming and outgoing correspondence (chiefly political), legal papers and memorabilia.
Language: English
Repository: Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010

Biographical History

David Bennett Hill (1843-1910) was an American politician from New York. He was mayor of Elmira, New York (1892) and shortly thereafter (1893-1895) became lieutenant governor of the state. He served as governor of New York from 1885-1891 and then was elected to the U. S. Senate where he served five years (1892-1897).

Return to top

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The David B. Hill Papers consist of correspondence (chiefly political), legal material and memorabilia.

Correspondence, most of which is incoming, includes both business and personal letters from many people active in state and national politics at the turn of the century. Many of the letters register opinions concerning various pieces of legislation which were before Hill during his tenure as governor, including those of Richard Croker, William E. Chandler, A. J. Dittenhoefer, William Evarts, R. G. Ingersoll, Francis Kernan, Daniel S. Lamont, Paul Smith, S. J. Tilden, Benjamin F. Tracy. Numerous letters include suggestions for political appointments (John Griffin Carlisle, Charles A. Dana, John W. Daniel, Asa B. Gardiner, A. H. Green, Horatio Collins King, Daniel E. Sickles), while others are social or personal in nature (Thomas F. Bayard, Perry Belmont, Roscoe Conkling, Thomas W. Hotchkiss, A. K. McClure, Jacob Ruppert, Claude A. Swanson, James A. Thomas).

There are also a substantial number of letters concerning New York State Democratic Party politics (Henry Watson Cornell, S. S. Cox, Alton B. Parker, Roger Atkinson Pryor, Edward Morse Shepard, F. M. Simmons, C. E. Treman); a few items relating to insurance legislation (James W. Alexander, William W. Armstrong, Charles Evans Hughes); and two letters discussing the installation of a zoological garden in a section of Central Park (A. H. Green, Henry Codman Potter). There is also a lengthy letter (25 May 1895) from John Bigelow in which he discusses his difficulties in writing a Samuel J. Tilden biography which would "prove acceptable to his contemporaries, and yet stand the test to which it will be subjected by an impartial posterity." He goes on to defend his description of New York Governor William Marcy as "more of a politician than a statesman."

Legal material in the collection includes a contract for sale of the Elmira Gazette, documents relating to the trial of Albert T. Patrick for the murder of William Marsh Rice, and an official opinion of the Governor "in the matter of the removal of Alexander Shaler from the office of the Department of Health" of New York City. The material relating to the Patrick case includes correspondence (including a series of letters from Patrick to the Governor, requesting a pardon), official documents concerning the case and its subsequent appeal, and an item by Clark Bell about the trial, reprinted from the Medico-Legal Journal.

Memorabilia includes three miscellaneous clippings and a photograph of Hill.

Return to top

Arrangement of the Collection

Correspondence is arranged alphabetically by correspondent.

Return to top


Access Restrictions

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

Return to top

Subject Headings


Armstrong, William W., b. 1833.
Bayard, Thomas F. (Thomas Francis), 1828-1898.
Belmont, Perry, 1850-1947.
Bigelow, John, 1817-1911.
Carlisle, John Griffin, 1835-1910.
Chandler, William E. (William Eaton), 1835-1917.
Clearwater, Alphonso Trumpbour, 1848-1933.
Conkling, Roscoe, 1829-1888.
Cox, Samuel Sullivan, 1824-1889.
Croker, Richard, 1841-1922.
Dana, Charles A. (Charles Anderson), 1819-1897.
Daniel, John W. (John Warwick), 1842-1910.
Dewey, Melvil, 1851-1931.
Dittenhoefer, Abram Jesse, 1836-1919.
Evarts, William Maxwell, 1818-1901.
Fairchild, Charles Stebbins, 1842-1924.
Farquhar, Arthur B., 1838-
Flower, Roswell Pettibone, 1835-1899.
Gardiner, Asa Bird, 1839-1919.
Glynn, Martin H., 1871-1924.
Green, A. H. (Andrew Haswell), 1820-1903.
Hill, David Bennett, 1843-1910.
Hughes, Charles Evans, 1862-1948.
Ingersoll, Robert Green, 1833-1899.
Kernan, Francis, 1816-1892.
King, Horatio Collins, 1837-1918.
Lamont, Daniel Scott, 1851-1905.
McClellan, George B. (George Brinton), 1865-1940.
McClure, Alexander K. (Alexander Kelly), 1828-1909.
McCurdy, Richard Aldrich, 1835-1916.
Murphy, Charles Francis, 1858-1924.
Oglesby, Richard J., 1824-1899.
Parker, Alton Brooks, 1852-1926.
Partington, Frederick E.
Patrick, Albert T.
Pillsbury, Albert Enoch, 1849-1930.
Potter, Henry Codman, 1834-1908.
Pryor, Roger Atkinson, 1828-1919.
Rice, William Marsh, 1816-1900.
Robinson, Lucius, 1810-1891.
Ruppert, Jacob, 1867-1939.
Schuyler, George Washington, 1810-1888.
Shaler, Alexander.
Shepard, Edward Morse, 1850-1911.
Sickles, Daniel Edgar, 1819-1914.
Simmons, Furnifold McLendel, 1854-1940.
Sulzer, William, 1863-1941.
Swanson, Claude Augustus, 1862-1939.
Tilden, Samuel J. (Samuel Jones), 1814-1886.
Tracy, Benjamin Franklin, 1830-1915.


Criminal justice, Administration of.
Governors -- New York (State)
Murder -- New York (State)
Murderers -- New York (State)
Patronage, Political -- New York (State)
Politicians -- United States.
Trials (Murder)


Central Park (New York, N.Y.) -- History -- Sources.
Legislators -- United States.
New York (State) -- Officials and employees -- Selection and appointment.
New York (State) -- Politics and government, 1865-1950 -- Sources.

Genres and Forms

Legal documents.



Return to top

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

David B. Hill Papers,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Bulk unspecified, 1966.

Sickles letters, purchase, 1969, 1971.

Finding Aid Information

Created by: KM
Date: Oct 1988
Revision history: 3 May 2010 - converted to EAD (MRC)

Return to top


Box 1 Alexander, James W. 1899
Box 1 Armstrong, William W. 1905
Box 1 Atwater, Edward S.
Box 1 Bayard, Thomas Francis 1887
Box 1 Belmont, Perry 1900
Box 1 Bigelow, John 1887, 1889, 1895, 1905
Box 1 Brewster, H. D. 1900
Box 1 Carlisle, John Griffin 1886
Box 1 Chandler, William E. 1901
Box 1 Clearwater, Alphonso T. 1899
Box 1 Conkling, Roscoe 1887
Box 1 Cornell, Henry Watson 1900
Box 1 Cox, Samuel Sullivan 1886-1887
Box 1 Croker, Richard 1888-1889
Box 1 Dana, Charles A. 1886
Box 1 Daniel, John Warwick 1902
Box 1 Dewey, Melvil 1905
Box 1 Dittenhoefer, Abram Jesse 1886, 1896, 1898
Box 1 Evarts, William Maxwell 1891
Box 1 Fairchild, Charles Stebbins 1887
Box 1 Farquhar, Arthur B. 1896
Box 1 Flower, Roswell Pettibone 1886
Box 1 Gardiner, Asa Bird 1887, 1895
Box 1 Glynn, Martin 1901, 1906, undated
Box 1 Green, Andrew Haskell 1886-1887, 1889
Box 1 Hotchkiss, Thomas W. 1888-1890
Box 1 Hughes, Charles Evans 1905
Box 1 Ingersoll, Robert Green 1889
Box 1 Kernan, Francis 1888
Box 1 King, Horatio Collins 1885
Box 1 Lamont, Daniel S. 1885, 1889, 1902, undated
Box 1 McClellan, George B. 1898, 1908
Box 1 McClure, Alexander Kelly 1895
Box 1 McCurdy, Richard A. 1895
Box 1 Murphy, Charles Francis 1904
Box 1 Oglesby, Richard James 1885
Box 1 Parker, Alton B. 1897, 1907
Box 1 Partington, Frederick Eugene 1894
Box 1 Pillsbury, Albert Enoch 1894
Box 1 Potter, Henry Codman 1887
Box 1 Pryor, Roger Atkinson 1888-1889, 1891
Box 1 Pruyn, Anna Parker 1895
Box 1 Robinson, Lucius 1879
Box 1 Ruppert, Jacob 1899
Box 1 Schuyler, George Washington 1877
Box 1 Shepard, Edwin Morse 1910
Box 1 Sickles, Daniel Edgar 1886, 1888, 1891, 1896, 1901, undated
Box 1 Simmons, Furnifold McLendel 1904
Box 1 Smith, Paul 1888
Box 1 Sulzer, William 1900-1901
Box 1 Swanson, Claude Augustus 1900
Box 1 Thomas, James A. 1900
Box 1 Tilden, Samuel Jones 1886
Box 1 Tracy, Benjamin Franklin 1889, undated
Box 1 Treman, Charles E. 1900
Box 1 Whitney, William Collins 1890
Box 1 Miscellaneous
Legal material
Box 1 Elmira Gazette - sales contract
Albert T. Patrick case
Box 1 Koehler, Edgar J.
Box 1 Milliken, John T.
Box 1 Milliken, Mary Patrick sister of accused
Box 1 Patrick, Albert T. letters to Governor Hill requesting pardon 1906
Box 1 Official documents (3 folders)
Box 1 Opinion holograph draft
Box 1 "The Patrick Case" by Clark Bell, reprinted from Medico-Legal Journal
Box 1 Alexander Shaler case - opinion, with extensive corrections and additions
Box 1 Miscellaneous printed material, clippings
Box 1 Photograph of Hill, autographed

Return to top