Fales Family Papers
Language of Materials
The Fales Family Papers document the history of the family from the 17th- 20th centuries through their correspondence, legal documents, family trees, travel journals, auction catalogs, photographs, and some books from the personal library of DeCoursey and Haliburton Fales. Among the interesting items in the collection are letters from John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, both dating from 1822. Other correspondents include: Andrew Dunlap, Samuel Fales Dunlap, Haliburton Fales, Sr. and Jr., and DeCoursey Fales, Jr.
The Fales family can claim ancestry back to the Puritan settlers who arrived in New England on the Mayflower. Eventually, the family became centered in Bristol, Rhode Island. Descendants of the Fales family have been variously involved in politics (Andrew Dunlap, 1796-1835), aviation, yachting, philanthropy and other assorted businesses and interests. DeCoursey Fales (1888–1966) collected rare books and manuscripts. In 1957, he donated his collection to NYU in memory of his father, Haliburton Fales. An in-depth description of the family and its history up to 1919 can be found in De Coursey Fales's 'The Fales Family of Bristol, Rhode Island' (Series III, box 6 and 7 of this collection).
Sources: Fales, De Coursey. The Fales Family of Bristol, Rhode Island. Boston: Privately printed, 1919.
Series I, II and IV are arranged alphabetically and the remainder are arranged chronologically.
Organized into 6 Series: 1. Fales Family ; 2. DeCoursey Fales ; 3. DeCoursey and Haliburton Fales Library list ; 4. DeCoursey Fales auction catalogs; Series V, DeCoursey Fales, Jr; Series VI, Lyman Law; and three Accretions from 2000, 2001 and 2003.
Scope and Content Note
The Fales Family Papers are a part of the Manuscript and Archive Collections at the Fales Library, New York University. The Fales Library is the primary special collections division of the NYU libraries, housing over 170,000 volumes of English and American literature from 1700 to the present. Strengths of the collection include the development of the English and American novel, with an emphasis on the Gothic and the Victorian novel.
The Fales Family Papers is an archive of the personal papers of the Fales family spanning from circa 1626 to 1966. The collection includes correspondence, legal documents, family trees, travel journals, auction catalogs, photographs, and some books from the personal library of DeCoursey and Haliburton Fales. Among the interesting items in the collection are letters from John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, both dating from 1822. Also included is a curious passport of Samuel Fales Dunlap, which included letters of announcement, calling cards, and a French Visa all dating from the year 1846. The collection was sorted by Amber Creger and arranged in an alphabetical and chronological order. Oversized materials from the various series are located in an oversize box at the end of the collection. For a detailed history of the Fales Family, please consult The Fales Family of Bristol, Rhode Island, written and published by DeCoursey Fales, 1919.
An additional gift of material from the mid to late 1800s was added to the collection and is listed at the end of this finding aid as Accretions 2000. The materials were sorted and many docketed by Dorothy Mildred Mitchell Fales. In addition, a gift of Iten Scott (Mrs. DeCoursey Jr.) Fales of material pertaining to DeCoursey Fales, Jr., dating from ca. 1940 to 1957, was added to the collection. This material is listed at the end of this finding aid as Accretions 2001 A. Further acquisitions of materials were processed and listed as Accretions 2001 B. This series includes nineteenth and twentieth century correspondence and photos, ephemera, mementos, and books.
Series I: Fales Family: contains three boxes of personal Fales Family documents, which are then divided into three subseries. The files are arranged alphabetically and chronologically. subseries A contains 1 and half boxes of Fales Family correspondence, travel journals, photographs, memorial cards, and scrapbooks. subseries B contains 1 box of Fales Family legal documents including wills, court case manuscripts, account books, leases, receipts, and business records.
Series II: DeCoursey Fales: contains two boxes of files relating to DeCoursey Fales, which are divided into four subseries. The files are arranged alphabetically and chronologically. subseries A contains half a box of DeCoursey Fales correspondence, scrapbooks, photographs, and printed material. subseries B contains half a box of documentation of the various clubs and hobbies Fales participated in, such as; yacht log books, New York Flight Club meeting minutes, Harvard Club, and Masonic Lodge. subseries C contains half a box of items relating to the book, The Fales Family of Bristol, Rhode Island, including correspondence, engravings, and the Dedham Fales family ancestry of Haliburton Fales 2 nd. subseries D contains half a box of items relating to Fales collecting books and the NYU collection. Material includes lecture notes, Fales collection register, and pamphlets produced by NYU about the collection.
Series III: DeCoursey and Haliburton Fales Library List: contains six boxes of books, that were originally from the personal libraries of DeCoursey and Haliburton Fales.
Series IV: DeCoursey Fales auction catalogs: contains fifteen boxes of auction catalogs from the early and mid-twentieth century that were used by DeCoursey Fales to purchase items for his vast manuscript and book collections. The files are arranged alphabetically and chronologically. Some have annotations by Fales.
Series V: DeCoursey Fales, Jr. consists of material pertaining to DeCoursey Fales, Jr., dating from ca. 1940 to 1957.
Series VI: consists of legal contracts, commissions, and receipts relating to Lyman Law's legal practice in early 19th century New London, Connecticut. Also included are Lyman Law's personal letters to his son, William Henry Law, as well as documents relating to William Henry Law's legal practice.
Oversize: Box 28 Contains oversize materials from Series I and II. Box 39A contain oversize materials from accretions received in 2001.
Materials are open to researchers. Please contact the Fales Library and Special Collections, email@example.com, 212-998-2596.
Conditions Governing Use
Copyright (or related rights to publicity and privacy) for materials in this collection was not transferred to New York University. Permission to use materials must be secured from the copyright holder. Please contact the Fales Library and Special Collections, firstname.lastname@example.org, 212-998-2596.
Published citations should take the following form: Identification of item, date (if known); Fales Family Papers; MSS 029; box number; folder number; Fales Library and Special Collections, New York University Libraries.
The Fales Family Papers were acquired between 1957-1997 through generous contributions made by DeCoursey Fales and Haliburton Fales, II. The original portion of the collection, relating to DeCoursey Fales, was acquired sometime after the founding of the Fales Library in 1957. The first donation by Haliburton (December 1996), consisted of the R.B. Taney letter to Benjamin Stone (1836) and three copy books of the late Haliburton Fales Jr. The second donation (March 1997), included three boxes of archival materials from the Fales Family. Subsequent donations were made in 2000, 2001, and 2003. These materials are described at the end of the collection as accretions.
About this Guide
In September 2017, two paintings, one print, and one historical model were prepared to be sent to offsite art storage in September 2017.