James Logan Conference and Display Announced

Thursday, August 21, 2014

HSP and other area institutions have partnered to host the conference, James Logan and the Networks of Atlantic Culture and Politics, 1699-1751, on Thursday, 9/18 - Saturday, 9/20.

James Logan (1674-1751) served as Provincial Secretary to the Penn family, studied the sexuality of plants, mentored Benjamin Franklin and John Bartram, served as Mayor of Philadelphia and Chief Justice of Pennsylvania, and shaped his province’s relationships with Native Americans. Logan traded furs, owned slaves, and was a gentleman-merchant, book collector, and scholar in Philadelphia in the decades that the colonial metropole became one of the most populous and cosmopolitan port cities in British North America.

This three-day conference explores the nuanced and multifaceted life of James Logan. Co-sponsored by the Library Company of Philadelphia, McNeil Center for Early American Studies, Stenton, and The National Society of the Colonial Dames of America in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania.

In conjunction with the conference, HSP will display a selection of documents related to the life of James Logan. Materials will provide a glimpse into the many facets of James Logan, including his personal life, his intellectual pursuits, his work as provincial secretary to William Penn and in the public sphere, and his role in Indian affairs.

Highlights include a map of the infamous Walking Purchase, William Penn’s Charter for Philadelphia with Logan’s marginal notes, chapters from Logan’s unfinished manuscript “Of the Duties of Man, as They may be Deduced from Nature,” plans for his house Stenton, and a courtship letter to his future wife, Sarah Read.