BRYAN, William Jennings, 1860-1925


Image courtesy of Library of Congress

Guide to Research Collections

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division
Washington, DC
Papers: 1877-1940, 24.8 linear feet.
Includes correspondence, military papers, diaries, speeches, printed matter, memoranda, phonograph records, scrapbooks, photographs, and memorabilia. The material concerns his public career 1902-1925, including his presidential campaign of 1896. An unpublished biography is also in the papers prepared by William Jennings Bryan’s daughter, Grace Bryan Hargreaves. A finding aid is available in the Manuscript Reading Room.


Arkansas History Commission
Little Rock, AR
Papers: n.d., 1 item.
Postcard from William Jennings Bryan in Hot Springs, Ark., to Antoinette Anderson in Washington, D.C.


Brigham Young University
Harold B. Lee Library, Special Collections and Manuscripts Library
Provo, UT
Papers: In the Fred A. Rosenstock Autograph Collection, 12 items, 1894-1898.
Includes handwritten, typed, and signed letters. Correspondents include John Brisben Walker, Mr. Seerley, Alston Ellis, and Arthur S. Handy.


Brooklyn Historical Society
Brooklyn, NY
Papers: In the Rev. Newell Dwight Hillis Papers, 1907 and 1914, 3 letters.
A finding aid is available in the repository.


Bryan College Library
Archives and Special Collections
Dayton, TN
Papers: ca 1860-1930, approximately 12 cubic feet.
This collection includes newspaper clippings, books by, about, and belonging to William Jennings Bryan, and photographs, including materials related to the John Thomas Scopes “Monkey” Trial” which was directly responsible for the founding of Bryan College. Also available are Edison cylinders of recordings by William Jennings Bryan and other items that are on loan to Bryan College from an anonymous donor. Realia include possessions of the Bryan family The collection is not cataloged but is indexed and must be used under the supervision of the Special Collections Librarian.


Copley Press
J.S. Copley Library
La Jolla, CA
Papers: 1921, 2 pages.
In this letter, William Jennings Bryan refuses an invitation to debate. The correspondent is not identified.


Duke University
Special Collections Library
Durham, NC
Papers: 1903, 1 item.
This letter was written on June 10, 1903, by William Jennings Bryan, editor of The Commoner. In the letter, William Jennings Bryan thanks Susan L. Avery for the articles she submitted.


Emory University
Special Collections Department, Robert W. Woodruff Library
Atlanta, GA
Papers: In the Warren A. Candler Papers, 1923; 1925, 2 letters.
The papers contain 2 letters from William Jennings Bryan to Warren A. Candler, May 14, 1923 and April 14, 1925. Information on literary rights is available in the repository.

Papers: In the Ralph McGill Papers, 1905, 1 letter.
The papers contain 1 letter from William Jennings Bryan to Ralph McGill, March 28, 1905.

Papers and Photographs: In the Raoul Family Papers, 1907, 2 letters.
There are 2 letters from William Jennings Bryan to William Greene Raoul, September 25 [1907] and October 16 [1907]. There are also 2 photographs of William Jennings Bryan with William Greene Raoul and his daughters (ca. 1907).


The Filson Historical Society
Special Collections Department
Louisville, KY
Papers: 1910, 2 items.
Includes a letter from William Jennings Bryan to Henry Watterson, May 13, 1910. In the letter, William Jennings Bryan discusses prohibition. Also included is an undated note introducing H.E. Kannapell and Irwin E. Beck of Louisville to Mr. Knight of Miami, Florida, notes their banking experience, and their desire to sell real estate.


Illinois State Historical Society
Springfield, IL
Papers: 1917, 1 item.
This is a letter from William Jennings Bryan to Mr. Pierce, en route, May 11, 1917. The letter includes $100 to contribute to the expenses for advertising a lecture.

Papers: 1922, 1 letter.
A letter from William Jennings Bryan to Mr. Woodburn discussing the most recent political meetings held in Florida.

Papers: n.d., 1 item.
A questionnaire filled out by William Jennings Bryan regarding his personal interests, ambitions, etc.

Papers: 1902; 1909, 2 items.
An 1909 letter from William Jennings Bryan to Robert Mackay discussing his editorial work and book review style. Also included is a 1909 speech delivered by Abraham Lincoln.

Papers: 1899, 1 item.
A business letter from William Jennings Bryan to Thomas Whitaker, June 10, 1899, mentioning the Phillipine question and William Jennings Bryan’s book Republic or Empire.


The Morgan Library
Department of Literary and Historical Manuscripts
New York, NY
Papers: 1900, 1 item.
An autograph testimonial signed, September 30, 1900. This testimonial is written in pencil on a letter from Homer Davenport.


Natural History Museum Foundation
Los Angeles, CA
Papers: n.d., 1 page.
A handwritten letter from William Jennings Bryan to Mrs. Coffin in regard to his efforts to acquire a handkerchief for Mrs. Coffin’s church.


Nebraska State Historical Society
Library/Archives
Lincoln, NE
Papers: 1883-1929, 6 cubic feet (ca. 2,000 items and 1 reel of microfilm).
This collection contains correspondence, biographical material, clippings, speeches, and scrapbooks. Microfilm is copy of material at Occidental College. A finding aid is available in the repository: http://www.nebraskahistory.org/lib-arch/research/manuscripts/politics/bryanwj.htm.

Photographs: ca. 1860s-1925, 800 photographs.
These images reflect William Jennings Bryan’s life from his Illinois boyhood in the 1860s through his death following the Scopes trial in 1925.


New-York Historical Society
New York, NY
Papers: 1913-1914; 1923, 6 letters.
Includes 5 items of official correspondence (1913-1914) and 1 personal letter (May 2, 1923). A finding aid is available in the repository.


The Newberry Library
Chicago, IL
Papers: In the Carter Harrison Papers, 1900-1914, 22 items.
Includes 22 letters from William Jennings Bryan to Carter Harrison. The letter of July 20, 1904, also enclosed a copy of the Nebraska Democratic Platform, March 19, 1900. A letter from July 20, 1904, includes a copy of The Commoner, July 22, 1904.

Papers: In the John Tinney McCutcheon Papers, 1896-1923, 18 letters and 1 postcard.
The correspondence is from William Jennings Bryan to John Tinney McCutcheon. Also included is a clipping of an editorial entitled, Beer vs. Whiskey, from The Commoner. Also included is a letter from William Jennings Bryan to Mr. Abbott, 1894, and a letter to Mr. Furbish, 1892.


Occidental College Library
Los Angeles, CA
Papers: 1880-1925, ca. 24 boxes..
This collection includes family correspondence and books. The collection is not cataloged or indexed and must be used under the supervision of the Special Collections Librarian.


Ohio State University
Columbus, OH
Papers: 1921, 2 items.
Letters from William Jennings Bryan to M.L. Beard. The letters concern William Jennings Bryan’s relationship with former governor James M. Cox, and regarding proper Democratic attitude toward the Washington Conference of 1921-1922.

Papers: 1900s, 1 item.
A letter from William Jennings Bryan to Charles E. Belcher regarding the condition of the Democratic Party and the importance of the rank and file.

Papers: In the James Creelman Papers, 1890-1915, 4.5 linear feet.
Correspondents include William Jennings library. The collection is restricted for research use in the library only. A partial index of correspondence is also available in the library.

Papers: In the William Oxley Thompson Papers, ca. 1880-1933, 49 cubic feet.
Correspondents include William Jennings Bryan. The papers form part of the Records of The Ohio State University Office of the President (Record Group 3) and are available on microfiche for research use in the repository only. An inventory is available in the repository.


Southern Baptist Theological Seminary
Louisville, KY
Papers: 1925-1929, 14 items.
Newspaper clippings cover Mr. Bryan as a hunter, his reminiscences about the Baltimore Convention, his nomination of Wilson, his last speech (on evolution), an article he wrote on Darwinism, and when he read from a manuscript.


Texas Tech University
Lubbock, TX
Papers: n.d., 1 letter.
A personal reply from William Jennings Bryan to Mr. Chambers.


University of Chicago Library
Department of Special Collections
Chicago, IL
Papers: In the Robert Herrick Papers, 1915, 1 letter.
A letter from William Jennings Bryan introducing Robert Herrick to U.S. diplomatic and consular officers in Europe, March 10, 1915.

Papers: In the Miscellaneous Manuscripts Collection, 1903, 1 letter.
A letter from William Jennings Bryan to Miss Francis [sic] E. Emerson, June 26, 1903.

Papers: In the President’s Papers, 1889-1925, 1 letter.
Includes a letter from William Jennings Bryan to Harry Pratt Judson and 2 letters from Harry Pratt Judson to William Jennings Bryan, 1915, along with related documents concerning the immigration of Japanese women students.


University of Texas
Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center
Austin, TX
Papers: In the Harpers MagazineCollection, 1900, 1 letter.
A letter from William Jennings Bryan to Harpers Magazine, June 6, 1900.

Papers: In the Elbert Hubbard Papers, 1909, 1 letter.
A letter from William Jennings Bryan to Elbert Hubbard, January 25, 1909.

Papers: In the Robert Underwood Johnson Papers, 1913, 3 letters.
Includes 2 letters from the secretary of William Jennings Bryan, M.M. Wyvell, to Robert Underwood Johnson, March 20 and May 22, 1913. Also include 1 letter from William Jennings Bryan to Robert Underwood Johnson, December 16, 1913.

Papers: In the Edgar Lee Masters Papers, 1900-1906, 7 letters.
Includes 7 letters from William Jennings Bryan to Edgar Lee Masters, n.d., 1900-[1906].

Papers: In the Elisabet Ney Papers, 1900-1902, 7 photocopies.
Includes 3 photocopies of a copyright document for a statue of William Jennings Bryan; a photocopy of a resolution [1902] by the Board of Trustees of the Dallas Public Library regarding receipt of a statue of William Jennings Bryan; a photocopy os a letter from William Jennings Bryan to Elisabet Ney, January 24, 1901, with a note by Mary B. Bryan; a photocopy of a letter from Elisabet Ney to William Jennings Bryan to Elisabet Ney, August 23, 1901; and a photocopy of a letter from Mary B. Bryan to Elisabet Ney, October 12, 1900.


Wheaton College
Billy Graham Center Archives
Wheaton, IL
Audio tapes: 1896; 1908, 1 reel of audio tape.
A tape of speeches and recitation by William Jennings Bryan. Includes his Cross of Gold speech from the 1896 presidential convention, an election talk from 1908, and a recitation of the 23rd Psalm. A cassette copy and a finding aid is available in the repository reading room. A finding aid also is available online.


Wisconsin Historical Society
Archives Division
Madison, WI
Papers: 1896, 0.1 cubic foot.
A signed autographed letter, dated Lincoln, Nebraska, November 1896, from William Jennings Bryan to an unidentified person expressing his thanks for help in the campaign and his confidence of ultimate victory for their cause.

Papers: 1912, 0.1 cubic foot.
The original typewritten resolution introduced by William Jennings Bryan at the Democratic Convention in Baltimore in 1912, which opposed the nomination of any candidate for president under obligation to J. Pierpont Morgan, Thomas F. Ryan, August Belmont, or others of the privilege-hunting...class; adopted June 27, 1912.

Papers: In the Clara Bewick Colby Papers, 1893; 1896, 3 letters.
Includes 2 letters from William Jennings Bryan to Clara Bewick Colby enclosing his recommendation of Clara Colby for appointment to the Board of Lady Managers of the World’s Columbian Exposition Committee on Awards.

Papers: In the William Theodore Evjue Papers, 1916; 1922, 5 letters and 4 telegrams.
The exchange between William Jennings Bryan and William Theodore Evjue concerns William Jennings Bryan’s trip to Madison, Wisconsin to speak in connection with anti-alcohol legislative efforts.

Papers: In the Rufus Ashley Lyman Papers, 1921, 2 letters.
Includes 2 letters from William Jennings Bryan to Rufus Ashley Lyman concerning the transmission of a donation to West Minster Church in Lincoln, Nebraska where Rufus Lyman was session clerk at the time. William Jennings Bryan notes the unpredictability of his income which is dependent on lectures and writings, and his wife’s ill health.

Papers: In the Theodore Albert Schroeder Papers, 1894, 1 letter.
A letter from William Jennings Bryan to Theodore Albert Schroeder, dated August 31, 1894, concerning a personnel matter in a Washington office on which Theodore Schroeder had inquired.


Yale University Library
Microfilm Reference
New Haven, CT
Papers: 1913-1915, 4 reels.
The records consist of 4 volumes of correspondence between Secretary of State William Jennings Bryan and Woodrow Wilson during the first 3 years of Woodrow Wilson’s first term. The letters, arranged chronologically, range over topics that include political appointments, the Mexican Revolution, China and Japan, Nicaragua, the San Francisco Panama-Pacific Exposition, and the beginnings of World War I in Europe.