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Manuscript Collection: Samuel Austin Worcester

Collection Overview

Collection summary derived from "Guidebook to Manuscripts", 1969: Samuel Austin Worcester (1798-1859) was a missionary to the Cherokees in Georgia and in Indian Territory. His great contribution was his translation of various works into Cherokee, securing the type of the Sequoyah Syllabary, and the many publications from his press for the Cherokees, Choctaws, and Creeks. In this collection, there is only one original item: the agreement of the "Old Settlers" Council to allow him, with certain stipulations, to set up his press at the Forks of the Illinois. Instead Worcester located the press at Union Mission where there was a building available. After a little more than a year's time, it was moved to Park Hill. The remainder of the collection, dated from 1831 to 1868, consists of typescripts and photostats of letters from his wife, Ann; his daughter, Ann Eliza Robertson; and from D. D. Hitchcock, doctor in the Union Army who married his daughter Sarah and, after her death, her sister Hannah. There is also some correspondence about the location of the press, and a diary of Worcester's kept in 1831 from January to July. In the Ross papers (39-7) there is an original letter (1839) from Worcester to James Orr, the missionary at Dwight Mission. Important item: A photostat of the order to Worcester on February 15, 1834, to vacate his house in New Echota to Colonel William Handen and to leave the state. The order is signed by William S. Springer (?), Agent of the Cherokees in Georgia. The original of the order is in the possession of a great grandson, H. W. Hicks of Tulsa.

Thomas Gilcrease Library and Archive
82 items
1831 - 1961
CSV file

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Access Restrictions

Available by appointment only at the Helmerich Center for American Research (HCAR) with the exception of materials with donor restrictions. Contact Library staff in advance to inquire if materials exist pertaining to your research interests.

Use Restrictions

Please contact the Rights and Reproduction Department for information on publishing or reproducing materials included in these records. Permission will be granted by the Gilcrease Museum as the owner of the physical materials, and does not imply permission from the copyright holder. It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain all necessary permissions from the copyright holder.


The Gilcrease Foundation acquired these materials before 1964 and is housed in the Helmerich Center for American Research (HCAR). The library currently receives most materials through community donation, board members, artists and the acquisition of manuscript collections.

Staff, interns, and volunteers of the Thomas Gilcrease Library and Archive have contributed to the organization and maintenance of the files since the collection passed to the City of Tulsa in the 1950s.