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The Pennsylvania historical and museum commission and the papers of the harmony society: An acquisition, a five-decade loan, and recovery

Mattern, E (2015) The Pennsylvania historical and museum commission and the papers of the harmony society: An acquisition, a five-decade loan, and recovery. Pennsylvania History, 82 (4). 516 - 535. ISSN 0031-4528

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Abstract

Copyright © 2015 The Pennsylvania Historical Association. Among archivists and manuscript collectors, the term "replevin" commonly describes efforts by government archives to recover public records that are in private hands. At times, such efforts can provoke friction, raising questions about the line between public and private property rights. This article chronicles an atypical replevin case in Pennsylvania, one that focuses on the struggles over the ownership of papers of a private origin, but which became government property with their transfer to the Commonwealth in 1937. This is a custodial history of a collection of papers documenting the Harmony Society, a religious separatist society once located in western Pennsylvania and in southwest Indiana. It is a story that involves a former Harmonist, a scholar, misplaced trust, and recovery that highlights the complex psychology of ownership.


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Details

Item Type: Article
Status: Published
Creators/Authors:
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Mattern, Eemm100@pitt.eduEMM1000000-0002-0421-0983
Date: 1 September 2015
Date Type: Publication
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Journal or Publication Title: Pennsylvania History
Volume: 82
Number: 4
Page Range: 516 - 535
DOI or Unique Handle: 10.5325/pennhistory.82.4.0516
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Information Sciences > Library and Information Science
Refereed: Yes
ISSN: 0031-4528
Article Type: Review
Date Deposited: 05 Feb 2016 15:18
Last Modified: 02 Feb 2019 16:57
URI: http://d-scholarship.pitt.edu/id/eprint/26784

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