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Joshua Maule Papers

Identifier: FMS-112

Scope and Contents

Maule's papers reflect his business life and Quaker interests. They include correspondence with sympathetic Friends, Wilburite theological documents, and memorials of Sarah Maule and Joshua Maule's father, Jacob Maule. Of special interest is an account of a visit by the Quaker minister Thomas Lamborn to Abraham Lincoln in letters, and other documents reflect the life his youngest child, Sarah Maule, who married Ross L. Walker and also lived in Belmont County.


  • 1838-1951
  • Other: Date acquired: 07/08/2003

Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open without restriction.

Conditions Governing Use

Some materials may be protected by copyright. Permission to reproduce and to publish for commercial purposes must be requested from the Archivist.

Biographical or Historical Information

Joshua Maule (1806-1887) was an Orthodox Friend of Colerain, Belmont County, Ohio. An articulate and disputatious defender of what he perceived as primitive Quakerism, by the later years of his life he had refused to acknowledge the legitimacy of all but a handful of Quakers in North America and British Isles. Joshua Maule was born in Delaware County, Pennsylvania, May 5, 1806. In 1831 he moved to Belmont County, Ohio, where he spent the rest of his life. He married Sarah N. Ecroyd of Muncy Monthly Meeting of Friends in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania, March 28, 1832. They had three sons. Sarah Maule died in 1871 and in 1875 Joshua married Hannah Thomas Cope (1840-1908). They had one daughter, Sarah, through whom these papers apparently descended. Maule kept a store and farmed in and around the hamlet of Colerain in Belmont County. After a brief flirtation with the Hicksties at the time of the separation of 1827-1828, Maule remained resolutely Orthodox for the rest of his life. As the controversy developed between Gurneyite and more conservative Friends in the 1830s and 1840s, Maule identified with the most conservative factions in Ohio and Pennsylvania. He was doubtless influenced by his brother-in-law Thomas B. Gould (1813-1856), who was a leading New England Wilburite. Not surprisingly, when Ohio Yearly Meeting (orthodox) split in 1854, he supported the Wilburite group. In 1866, convinced that even the Ohio Wilburites were compromising Quaker testimonies, he led the secession of a small group who became known as Primitive or Mauleite Friends. They formed what they called the Ohio General Meeting. He died near Colerain in 1887 and was buried on his farm. Ironically, for someone who adamantly opposed tombstones, he has two: one in the burial ground on his farm with his first wife, and a second with his second wife in the Grange Friends Cemetery at Colerain.

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3.00 Boxes

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Method of Acquisition

Purchase, July 2003 from Mark Armitage of Tiltonville, Ohio, who found them at a yard sale near Colerain, Ohio, in 1996.

Accruals and Additions

No additions or accrual are expected.

Related Materials

Another collection of Joshua Maule manuscripts is at the Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College. For further information on Maule, see his book Transactions and Changes (1986)
Archon Finding Aid Title
Thomas Hamm
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Other Unmapped
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Repository Details

Part of the Friends Collection and Earlham College Archives Repository