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Mercer Literary Society records


Mercer Literary Society records
Mercer Literary Society
Collection number:
1.50 linear feet
Bulk dates:
Inclusive dates:
Collection Area:
University of Maryland
Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries, Hornbake Library, College Park, MD 20742. Tel: 301-405-9212, Fax: 301-314-2709, Email:

The Mercer Literary Society, one of the Maryland Agricultural College's earliest student organizations, was founded in 1861 by Dr. William N. Mercer of Louisiana. Open to any individual in good standing with the college, students joined the society to pursue intellectual pursuits that were not addressed in the rigid course work of the nineteenth century. At the Mercer Literary Society meetings, members developed oratory skills and listed to speakers debate the major issues of the day. The society also maintained a library known to be superior to that of the Maryland Agricultural College itself. The original society was reconfigured several times during its existence, ultimately becoming the New Mercer Literary Society in 1896. The records of the Mercer Literary Society consist of minutes, membership lists, and a constitution for the New Mercer Literary Society. The bound volumes also include copies of the Journal of the New Mercer Literary Society.

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This collection is open for research.

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Mercer Literary Society records, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.

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