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Pierre Eugène Du Simitière papers, 1560-1786, bulk 1721-1786

Du Simitière, Pierre Eugène, ca. 1736-1784

Curator, Painter, Portrait painter


Collection Information

Size: 10 Volumes, (on 3 microfilm reels)

Summary: Papers relating to natural history and Du Simitière's collection of specimens; material collected on the history of the West Indies and Colonial American affairs in New England, Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey, including the Lancaster Treaty, 1744, and Indian treaties, 1721-1756; letters, 1560-1781; journals, pamphlets and extracts; a broadside of the Du Simitière sale, 1785; drawings and portraits of American legislators and soldiers by Du Simitière; and leaves of a medieval illuminated manuscript.

Biographical/Historical Note

Portrait painter, curator and naturalist; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Born in Geneva, Switzerland. Came to America in 1765 after spending several years in the West Indies collecting natural history specimens. Elected curator, 1768, of the American Philosophical Society, and set up a natural history museum. He collected Revolutionary War ephemera and literature.


Lent for microfilming, 1955, by the Library Company of Philadelphia. In 1785 Du Simitière's effects were sold at auction, resulting in his library being scattered. Most of the manuscripts were purchased by the Library Company of Philadelphia. The Library of Congress later acquired some others. The whereabouts of some material is still uncertain.

Language Note

English .

Location of Originals

  • Originals in the Library Company of Philadelphia, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.

How to Use This Collection

Alternative Forms Available

35mm microfilm reels P7 (fr. 128-913), P8 (fr. 1-854) & P9 (fr. 1-750) available for use at Archives of American Art offices and through interlibrary loan.

Restrictions on Access

The Archives of American art does not own the original papers. Use is limited to the microfilm copy.

How to Cite This Collection

Pierre Eugène Du Simitière papers, 1560-1786, bulk 1721-1786. Archives of American Art, Smithsonian Institution.