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A.A. Burleigh Papers



Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

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A.A. Burleigh Papers, 1867-1938 | Berea College Special Collections and Archives Catalog

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Collection Overview

Title: A.A. Burleigh Papers, 1867-1938Add to your cart.

ID: RG 08/8.06

Extent: 1.0 MS boxes

Subjects: African American history., African Americans -- Education -- Kentucky., Berea College, Fee, John Gregg -- 1816-1901, Students, college -- Berea College

Languages: English


A.A. Burleigh was born in 1848, somewhere on the Atlantic Ocean.  He was the son of an African American mother – Charlotta De Dasco - and a sea captain of English descent, Charles A. Burleigh.  His mother’s descent is unclear—Angus Burleigh declared her of Moorish descent from Granada, Spain, whereas many other sources describe her as African American slave born in Florida.  Burleigh was born free, but after his father’s death, both he and his mother were forced into slavery.  At first slaves in Virginia, they were moved to Kentucky at a later date.

On August 22, 1864, at the age of sixteen, A.A. Burleigh escaped to a recruiting station in Frankfort and enlisted as volunteer in the 12th U.S. Colored Heavy Artillery at Camp Nelson.  By November 2, 1865, he was promoted to the rank of Sergeant.  After being discharged, Burleigh met John G. Fee (April 24, 1866).  Fee invited him to attend Berea College.  Burleigh enthusiastically accepted the offer and arrived at Berea on foot after a long trip from Camp Nelson.  Burleigh was one of the first African American males to attend and graduate from Berea College.  He graduated in 1875 with an A.B. and A.M. degree in Classics.

Burleigh followed various career paths and professions.  He was a minister with the AME Church and served as chaplain in the U.S. Army from around 1874 to 1906.  He also served as a schoolteacher, salesperson, and farmer.

Burleigh married Louisa E. Shaffer in Greene County, Ohio, on November 25, 1875.  They had three children: two sons – Otto F. and Cornelius H.—and one daughter – Benitta.  Throughout his life he lived in various parts of the United States, such as Illinois, New York, Wisconsin, Indiana and California.  He settled permanently in Hermosa Beach, California.

Burleigh was 93 when he died on May 24, 1938, in the National Military Home in the Veteran’s Administration Facility in Los Angeles, California. He was buried in Los Angeles.  In the early 1930s, Burleigh was considered the oldest living Berea College graduate.

Burleigh wrote a booklet called John G. Fee, Founder of Berea College.  In his booklet, he shared his knowledge of John G. Fee’s biography, as well as his own memories of meeting and working Fee.  The booklet extensively narrates the early history and construction of Berea College.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

These are the papers of A.A. Burleigh, one of the first African Americans to attend and graduate from Berea College.  Materials include biographical information, correspondence, pension applications, medical and death records, and additional print material.

Subject/Index Terms

African American history.
African Americans -- Education -- Kentucky.
Berea College
Fee, John Gregg -- 1816-1901
Students, college -- Berea College

Administrative Information

Repository: Berea College Special Collections and Archives Catalog

Access Restrictions: Records can be accessed through the Reading Room, Berea College Special Collections and Archives, Hutchins Library, Berea College.

Use Restrictions: There are no restrictions on the collection other than federal copyright regulations.

Preferred Citation: [Record/Folder], RG 8/8.06: A.A. Burleigh Papers.  Berea College Special Collections and Archives, Berea, KY.

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Box:

[Box 1],

Box 1Add to your cart.
Folder 1: BiographicalAdd to your cart.
Folder 2: Correspondence, Apr. 25, 1867Add to your cart.
John G. Fee to "Mr. Angus Burley"
Folder 3: Correspondence, Sep. 05, 1874Add to your cart.
A.A Burleigh to "Mrs. White" and "Eddie Fee"
Folder 4: Correspondence, [c. 1873-1876]Add to your cart.
Folder 5: Correspondence, Aug. 29, 1875Add to your cart.

Letter: A.A Burleigh to Burritt H. Fee

Link to digital image: https://berea.access.preservica.com/file/sdb%3AdigitalFile%7C58525015-53a6-49d5-ad9d-35df97fb1cf3/

Folder 6: Correspondence, Dec. 1924Add to your cart.
A.A. Burleigh to Edwin S. Fee
Folder 7: Correspondence, Dec. 20, 1924Add to your cart.

Letter to Edwin Fee from A. A. Burleigh

Link to digital image: https://berea.access.preservica.com/file/sdb%3AdigitalFile%7Ca17bd760-9ecc-44c1-bed9-9aae57377620/

Folder 8: Correspondence, Dec. 7, 1875Add to your cart.
A.A Burleigh to Burritt H. Fee
Folder 9: Correspondence, Sep. 16, 1930Add to your cart.
A.A Burleigh to "Bro. Morgan"
Folder 10: Correspondence, Sep. 22, 1930Add to your cart.
Charles Morgan to Burleigh
Folder 11: Correspondence, July 30, 1931Add to your cart.

Letter: A.A Burleigh to "Bro. Morgan"

Link to digital image: https://berea.access.preservica.com/file/sdb%3AdigitalFile%7C54eb81e1-4e6b-4097-aeac-22ea5c95254d/

Folder 12: Correspondence, [c. 1931]Add to your cart.
A.A Burleigh to [Berea] Citizen
Folder 13: Correspondence, Apr. 29, 1931Add to your cart.
A.A Burleigh to Charles Morgan
Folder 14: Correspondence, May 29, [1931]Add to your cart.
A.A Burleigh to "Prof. Morgan"
Folder 15: Correspondence, Jul. 31, 1931Add to your cart.
A.A Burleigh to Morgan
Folder 16: Correspondence, May. 7, 1934Add to your cart.
A.A Burleigh to "Mr. Morgan"
Folder 17: Correspondence, May. 19, 1934Add to your cart.
A.A. Burleigh to "Mr. Morgan"
Folder 18: Correspondence, Jan. 16, 1935Add to your cart.
A.A Burleigh to "Dear Bretheren"
Folder 19: Print MaterialAdd to your cart.
Pamphlet: "John G. Fee, Founder of Berea College"
Folder 20: Print MaterialAdd to your cart.
Chaplin Card, Illinois State Senate
Folder 21: Pension Applications, 1889Add to your cart.
Folder 22: Pension Applications, 1890Add to your cart.
Folder 23: Pension Applications, 1891Add to your cart.
Folder 24: Pension Applications, 1894Add to your cart.
Folder 25: Pension Applications, 1897Add to your cart.
Folder 26: Pension Applications, 1898Add to your cart.
Folder 27: Pension Applications, 1899Add to your cart.
Folder 28: Pension Applications, 1904Add to your cart.
Folder 29: Pension Applications, 1910-1914Add to your cart.
Folder 30: Pension Applications, 1926Add to your cart.
Folder 31: Medical and Death Records, 1938Add to your cart.

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[Box 1],

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