Access and Use
INFORMATION FOR USERS
This is a large guide and will take time to fully
Restrictions on use:Boxes 63, 72, 187, and 189 are available by appointment only, to be viewed one
folder at a time.
Cite As:Dean Lafayette Collection, #4611. Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections,
Cornell University Library.
HISTORY OF OWNERSHIPConsisting of an enormous quantity of manuscripts as well as printed works,
graphics, and other remembrances of the General, the collection had originally
belonged to the Lafayette family and had been preserved at the family estate at
Chavaniac. Early in this century it was sold to the Parisian antiquarian dealer,
Dieudonne-Elie Fabius, who himself made substantial additions to the collection
in the following decades.
PROVENANCEThe Lafayette Collection was created in the 1960's through the interest and
generosity of Arthur H. and Mary Marden Dean. The first step was taken in 1963
with the purchase of the Chavaniac or "Fabius" collection of materials by and
about General Lafayette. When it was purchased for Cornell in 1963, the
manuscripts alone filled fifty-three cartons. The French government agreed to
its export but only after three of the cartons, which contained papers relating
to the French Revolutions of 1789 and 1830, were removed and deposited in the
Archives Nationales. In 1966, once again through the generosity of the Deans,
Cornell expanded its holdings when it acquired the Lafayette collection of
Marcel Blancheteau, a noted Parisian book dealer. The new addition contained
over 600 items, mostly printed and graphic materials, which complemented the
manuscript character of the Fabius purchase. See Laurent Ferri, "How Lafayette
Collections Were Built in the U.S.A. (and at Cornell University in Particular)",
http://www.library.cornell.edu/insidecul/ May 2008.