Special Collections

SHAKESPEARE FOLIOS

Among our hundreds of rare and early printed books are a complete set of Shakespeare Folios. These volumes contain the first collected works of Shakespeare and divide his plays for the first time into histories, tragedies, and comedies. West Chester's First Folio is one of just 235 remaining in the world.

FREDERICK DOUGLASS LETTERS

Frederick Douglass delivered his last public speech to the students of West Chester Normal School on February 1, 1895. A series of letters from Douglass to Principal George Morris Philips discuss the logistics of Douglass' visit and chronicle the brief friendship that developed between the two men. The check for $50 with which Douglass was paid for his talk is also among the items in this important collection. 

PHILIPS AUTOGRAPH LIBRARY

Collected by Principal George Morris Philips, this collection of roughly 2,000 volumes contains works autographed by leading writers such as Joseph Conrad, Frederick Douglass, John Ruskin, Leo Tolstoy, Mark Twain and many others. The collection is housed in the Philips Memorial building and may be viewed electronically here

GEN. ANTHONY WAYNE LETTERS

This collection of 15 letters deal largely with the Battle of Stony Point, where General Wayne led his army to victory over the British in 1777. Included are letters from George Washington, the Marquise de Lafayette, and Benedict Arnold among others. The digitized and fully transcribed collection may be viewed here.

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