Scope and Contents
The family papers of Corie Lynn Dorset Rivers include over 140 separate letters and other manuscript documents handed down to Rivers by her mother, Corie Lynn Slater Dorset. This collection includes papers written by several generation of Williamsburg, Virginia residents, including Lucy Ludwell Paradise; James and Louisa Bellett Lee and family; and Virginia Lee and Parker Slater and family.
Series One consists of the oldest item in this collection, a ledger or commonplace book originally kept by Lucy Ludwell Paradise, dated 1805 inside the front cover. This ledger was perhaps also used in some capacity by James Lee, whose name appears on the front outside cover of the book, and then his daughter Virginia Helena Lee Slater, whose signature appears on several pages on pasted-in clippings. Lucy Ludwell Paradise lived in the historic Williamsburg Ludwell-Paradise home until 1812. In 1816, James Lee purchased the house.
The clippings and other materials integrated into the leger book or saved between its pages may come from throughout the nineteenth century, but most seem most likely to date from the second half of the century. Since almost all of the pages of the original ledger book are covered by clippings, most original written text, if any, is not visible. However, on at least two pages, portions of accounting entries made by Lucy Ludwell Paradise are visible.
Series Two is composed of letters to and from members of the James Lee family, including correspondence with the Teagle family, also of Williamsburg, Virginia. The Lee and the Teagle families were related through the mothers of each family, Louisa Bellett Lee and Susan Bellet Teagle, who were sisters. This series contains documents relating to management of the estate of Edward Teagle. Also included in this series are academic essays written by Philip Ludwell Lee, son of James and Louisa Lee, from when he was a student at William & Mary in the 1830s.
Series Three includes papers relating to Virginia Lee Slater’s family. Virginia Slater, daughter of James and Louisa Lee, likely gave her family papers to Corie Lynn Slater Dorset, who in turn passed them on to her daughter, Corie Lynn Dorset Rivers. Included in this series are family letters, a Civil War-era loyalty oath, and a letter from an enslaved individual owned by the Slater family.
Series Four contains miscellaneous handwritten letter fragments, often undated or missing a sender and recipient name. Series Five collects photographs and personal artifacts relating to Corie Lynn Dorset Rivers.
The majority of items in this collection, particularly letters and other written documents, are individually described on an item-level in this finding aid.
Researchers should note that the ledger book and many letters are fragile and may require extra assistance from SCRC staff to read them.
Conditions Governing Access
Collection is open to all researchers. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, such as the Virginia Public Records Act (Code of Virginia. § 42.1-76-91); and the Virginia Freedom of Information Act (Code of Virginia § 2.2-3705.5). Confidential material may include, but is not limited to, educational, medical, and personnel records. If sensitive material is found in this collection, please contact a staff member immediately. The disclosure of personally identifiable information pertaining to a living individual may have legal consequences for which William & Mary Libraries assumes no responsibility.
Conditions Governing Use
Before publishing quotations or excerpts from any materials, permission must be obtained from the Curator of Manuscripts and Rare Books, and the holder of the copyright, if not Special Collections Research Center, William & Mary Libraries.