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The Burton Historical Collection
COLLECTED AND PUBLISHED BY
C. M. BURTON
DETROIT, Mich., OCTOBER, 1916
In the Burton Historical Library, Detroit has a possession of very great historical value, unapproachable so far as the history of Detroit and Michigan is concerned, and of great value for the history of the Old Northwest. Containing as it does a large collection of printed material and many rare volumes and pamphlets, its chief value to the student and historian lies in the mass of manuscripts which many years of untiring industry, intelligence and liberal expenditure have co-operated in bringing together.
A few instances will illustrate the character and value of the papers bearing on the early history of Michigan and the Old Northwest.
Solomon Sibley came to Detroit from Ohio in 1796. As lawyer, judge and public official in other capacities, he was an important factor in Detroit and Michigan, socially and politically. His papers, collected and arranged, are of great interest and historical importance, containing many letters from high public personages, letters from Senator Worthington, W. H. Harrison and others, throwing light on the creation of the Territory of Michigan, documents of the estate of James Henry (of whic he was administrator) relating to business conditions, and other legal documents.
William Woodbridge came to Michigan from Ohio in 1814. A capable lawyer of large practice, he was Secretary of the Territory, Collector of Customs, Governor of the State, United States Senator, and influential citizen in general. He kept all papers and letters which he received, and made drafts of many of his replies, and together his papers form a large depository of inestimable value in showing the political, social and economical conditions in Michigan from 1817 to 1866.