Antonia Chambers Newspaper Donations On Exhibit

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National Hamilton Advocate Antonia Chambers generously donated 85 newspapers and ephemera to the Society of the Cincinnati Library in Washington, DC. Several of the newspapers (including one from July, 1804 detailing Alexander Hamilton’s funeral procession and memorial events) were placed on display and prominently featured at The Society of the Cincinnati headquarters, Anderson House, as part of their Hamilton exhibit. Another exhibit at the George Washington University Museum titled "Breaking News: Alexander Hamilton!" is composed entirely of her newspapers with commentary on Hamilton's life and achievements as well as references to the musical.  


Most of the 85 donated items date from 1781-1804 and are all Alexander Hamilton-related. We sat down with Antonia to find out more about her collection and donation:

 

 

AHA:  Which is your favorite donated item? 

Antonia: The Pennsylvania Gazette and Weekly Advertiser from October 31, 1781--no, it's not about Halloween! The front page has dispatches from Washington and Lafayette about the victory at Yorktown.  Lafayette says:  "Col. Hamilton, who commanded the whole advance corps; at the same time a party of 82 men under Col. Laurens; turned the readouts.  I beg leave to refer your Excellency [Washington] to the report I have received from Col. Hamilton, whose well-known talents and gallantry were on this occasion most conspicuous and serviceable."

 

AHA:  How did you decide to donate to the Society of Cincinnati Library? 

Antonia: Several reasons: they have a strong Hamilton connection--he was their second President-General; they have a renowned research library on the Revolutionary War Period, which is very accessible to scholars; they have climate-controlled archival storage; they have very knowledgeable library professionals, especially Library Director Ellen Clark; and they are in Washington DC.  I especially wanted the collection to be in Washington!

 

AHA: Where did you get all these wonderful original, Hamilton-related items? 

Antonia: Mostly from two antiquarian newspaper dealers: Stephen Goldman Historical Newspapers and Timothy Hughes Rare and Early Newspapers.  I would like to give a special thanks to Stephen Goldman, who was especially helpful in locating papers for me. I could not have amassed this collection without his help.

 

AHA: And what was it like being recognized at the Anderson House exhibit’s grand opening reception?

Antonia: I was deeply honored, but I want Hamilton to have the recognition, not me--it's his life and achievements.

2011 Antonia Chambers Newspaper Donations On Exhibit. (c) 2016 The Alexander Hamilton Awareness Society
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