Library of Congress
BURR, Aaron (1756-1836)
Senate Years of Service: 1791-1795; 1795-1797

BURR, AARON, (cousin of Theodore Dwight), a Senator from New York and a Vice President of the United States; born in Newark, N.J., February 6, 1756; graduated from the College of New Jersey (now Princeton University) in 1772; studied theology but soon abandoned it for the law; during the Revolutionary War entered the Continental Army 1775-1779; admitted to the bar in 1782 and practiced in Albany, N.Y.; moved to New York City in 1783; member, State assembly 1784-1785, 1798-1799; attorney general of New York 1789-1790; commissioner of Revolutionary claims in 1791; elected to the United States Senate and served from March 4, 1791, to March 3, 1797; unsuccessful candidate for reelection; president of the State constitutional convention in 1801; in the presidential election of 1800, Burr and Thomas Jefferson each had seventy-three votes, and the House of Representatives on the thirty-sixth ballot elected Jefferson President and Burr Vice President; challenged and mortally wounded Alexander Hamilton in a duel fought at Weehawken, N.J., July 11, 1804; indicted for murder in New York and New Jersey but never tried in either jurisdiction; escaped to South Carolina, then returned to Washington and completed his term of service as Vice President; arrested and tried for treason in August 1807 for attempting to form a republic in the Southwest of which he was to be the head, but was acquitted; went abroad in 1808; returned to New York City in 1812 and resumed the practice of law; died in Port Richmond, Staten Island, N.Y., September 14, 1836; interment in the President's lot, Princeton Cemetery, Princeton, N.J.

Boston Public Library
Boston, MA
Papers: 37 items.

Columbia University
Rare Book and Manuscript Library
New York, NY
Papers: 1779-1817. 19 items. Letters and documents.
Additional Papers: Correspondence in the Jay family papers, 1828-1943; typewritten copies of letters between Burr and Alexander Hamilton and their seconds, preceding their duel, in Frank Monaghan papers, ca. 1930-1935, 1954-1955, 1960; and in Alfred C. Berol collection, 1650-1830.

Connecticut Historical Society
Hartford, CT
Papers: 1765-1833. Ca. 100 items. Letters and papers, chiefly relating to Burr's law practice. Also 31 items of miscellaneous legal papers, several in the case of Burr vs. Richard Edwards, 1801-1818.
Additional Papers: Legal brief (September 10, 1812) stating the case against the Fulton-Livingston steamboat company; 6 items (1782-1787) in Jeremiah Wadsworth papers; 2 items (1795) in Oliver Wolcott, Jr. papers; 1 letter (February 21, 1790) in Hoadly collection; 1 letter (September 23, 1792) in A.L. Butler autograph collection; and 4 items (1782, 1783, 1833) in Wadsworth Atheneum loan collection.

Cornell University
Rare Books and Manuscript Collections
Ithaca, NY
Papers: In the Washington Irving's Life of George Washington, Volume IV, Miscellany, 1756-1807; Volume IX, Miscellany, 1766-1808; and Volume XII, Miscellany, 1769-1838; and in Wadsworth family papers, 1792-1803.

Fairfield Historical Society
Fairfield, CT
Papers: Personal correspondence in Reeve family papers, 1767-1866; and correspondence in Roger Minott Sherman papers, 1760-1848. Finding aid.

Filson Club Historical Society
Louisville, KY
Papers: 1784, 1814. 2 letters. Plus references in various collections.

Goshen Library and Historical Society
Goshen, NY
Papers: 2 promissory notes; 2 deeds; and 2 business letters (March 4, 1784 and August 12, 1785) to the sheriff of Orange County.

Hagley Museum and Library
Greenville, DE
Papers: In the Victor du Pont papers, 1753-1847; Pierre Samuel du Pont de Nemours papers, 1757-1836; Eleuthera Bradford du Pont collection, 1799-1834; and The Papers of Benjamin Henry Latrobe, 1788-1820, a microtext edition published for the Maryland Historical Society on 315 microfiche.

Harvard University
Houghton Library
Cambridge, MA
Papers: 1 notebook on Burr (1855) in James Parton papers, 1835-1966. Finding aid.

Henry E. Huntington Library
San Marino, CA
Papers: 1808-1812. 1,257 page diary. Also correspondence and papers (1797-1826) relating to a protracted litigation relating to Burr's indebtedness to Louis Le Guen.

Historical Society of Pennsylvania
Philadelphia, PA
Papers: Correspondence in the Charles Biddle papers, 1763-1829; Clement Biddle papers, 1743-1835; Simon Gratz collection, 1677-1910; Pennsylvania Population Land Company records, 1792-1834; Daniel Parker papers, 1800-1846; Coxe family papers, 1638-1897 (bulk 1776-1879), available on microfilm; and the Henry Drinker papers, 1747-1867.

Knox College
Seymour Library
Galesburg, IL
Papers: 1 letter (August 3, 1821) in Bookfellow Foundation autograph collection, 1705-1940.

Library of Congress
Manuscript Division
Washington, DC
Papers: 1788-1824, 1827. 25 items. Also 1 container, 1806-1808, of Burr conspiracy records. Available on 1 microfilm reel.
Additional Papers: Correspondence in Benjamin Homans papers, 1796-1840; Samuel Chester Reid papers, 1807-1963; William Wirt papers, 1802-1858; and material concerning the trial of Burr in Albert Gallatin papers, 1783-1847.

Long Island Historical Society
Brooklyn, NY
Papers: Personal letters in Brooklyn Letters collection, 1814-1976.

Massachusetts Historical Society
Boston, MA
Papers: Ca. 90 items (ca. 1779-1833) in various collections. Finding aid.

New Hampshire Historical Society
Concord, NH
Papers: Correspondence in John Langdon papers, 1762-1972. Finding aid.

New Haven Colony Historical Society
Whitney Library
New Haven, CT
Papers: Items in National and Local Historic Figures collection, 1638-1980.

New Jersey Historical Society
Newark, NJ
Papers: 1755-1836. 13 items. Letters and narratives by and about Burr. Includes letters of Herman Blennerhasset and Matthew Livingston Davis. Finding aid.
Additional Papers: Correspondence in De Zeng family papers, 1729-1925; Walter N. Eastburn collection, 1743-1956; and William Paterson papers, 1833-1897.

New-York Historical Society
New York, NY
Papers: 1774-1836. Ca. 2,000 items. Dockets, writs, leases, and correspondence. Additional items in various collections.

New York Public Library
New York, NY
Papers: [ca. 1780-1880]. Letters, clippings, legal documents, and engravings of portraits.
Additional Papers: Correspondence in Caesar Rodney papers, 1749-1823; William Edgar papers, 1750-1870; and Jones family papers, 1695-1876.

New York State Historical Association
Cooperstown, NY
Papers: 1804-1809. 34 items. Chiefly Burr correspondence relating to his duel with Hamilton. 4 additional items in Miscellaneous manuscripts "B'', 1793-1979.

New York State Library
Manuscripts and Special Collections
Albany, NY
Papers: 1781-1830. 70 items. Includes letters, documents regarding cases in chancery (1795, 1812-1816); and receipt book (1812-1821).
Additional Papers: Correspondence in the Henry Rutgers papers, 1730-1875; Wadsworth family papers, 1787-1860; Phelps and Gorham Company records, 1776-1892; and others.

Ohio Historical Society
Columbus, OH
Papers: Correspondence in Arthur St. Clair papers, 1763-1870.

Pierpont Morgan Library
New York, NY
Papers: 18 items (1770-1834); and 9 letters (1792-1807) on various topics and 1 document (ca. 1835) concerning divorce petition in the Gilder Lehrman collection. Finding aid.

Princeton University
Seeley G. Mudd Library
Princeton, NJ
Papers: 1770-1836. Ca. 700 items. Correspondence and other papers.

Rutgers University Libraries
Special Collections and University Archives
New Brunswick, NJ
Papers: 5 letters (1771-1787); and 14 boxes of material in the Charles Felton Pidgin Aaron Burr collection, ca. 1800-1810.

Staten Island Institute of Arts and Sciences Archives
Staten Island, NY
Papers: Material collected for book, Staten Island and Its People, in the William Thompson Davis collection, 1851-1858. Finding aid.

University of Virginia
Alderman Library
Charlottesville, VA
Papers: Correspondence in various collections. Finding aid.

Virginia Historical Society
Richmond, VA
Papers: In United States Circuit Court, Ohio District records, 1805-1808, photocopies from originals in the Naitonal Archives. Chiefly indictments, affidavits, summonses, bonds, letters used as evidence, and other papers pertaining to the trial of Aaron Burr and Harman Blennerhassett for treason. Finding aid.

Virginia State Library and Archives
Richmond, VA
Papers: In the Tucker-Ewell papers, 1770-1893; and Tazewell family papers, 1772-1866.

Western Reserve Historical Society
Cleveland, OH
Papers: In Joseph Buell papers, 1806-1811. 41 items. Correspondence, notes, property list of Harman Blennerhassett, and other papers relating to the Aaron Burr conspiracy and the seizure and confiscation of Burr's ships and property. Finding aid.

Yale University Libraries
Manuscripts and Archives
New Haven, CT
Papers: 1757-1836. 27 microfilm reels. Includes correspondence, public papers, orderly books, journal, and legal papers. Published finding aid.
Additional Papers: Items in the Burr family papers, 1750-1853; Aaron Burr microfilm collection, 1771-1903, on 1 reel; Humphreys-Marvin-Olmstead collection, 1776-1867; Edwards family papers, 1805-1874; Reeve family papers, 1766-1813; Henry Dearborn microfilm collection, 1801-1812, on 1 microfilm reel; Jeremiah Mason papers, 1798-1844; and Lefferts family papers, 1712-1936 (bulk 1712-1850).
Research Libraries Information Network In addition to the institutions listed above, items are also cataloged in collections at: American Philosophical Society Library, Philadelphia, PA; Brooklyn Historical Society, Brooklyn, NY; Chase Manhattan Corporation Archives, New York, NY; Dartmouth College, Hanover, NH; Emory University, Robert W. Woodruff Library, Atlanta, GA; Franklin D. Roosevelt Library, Hyde Park, NY; Harvard University, Houghton Library, Cambridge, MA; Huguenot Historical Society, New York, NY; Kentucky Department for Libraries and Archives, Frankfort, KY; Museum of the City of New York, New York, NY; New York Society Library, New York, NY; Rosenbach Museum and Library, Philadelphia, PA; Senate House State Historic Site, Kingston, NY; Stanford University Libraries, Stanford, CA; University of Rochester, Rush Rhees Library, Rochester, NY; University of Virginia Library, Charlottesville, VA; and others.

  • Alexander, Holmes Moss. Aaron Burr: The Proud Pretender. 1937. Reprint. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1973.
  • Burr, Samuel Engle. Colonel Aaron Burr. 1961. Rev. ed. New York: Exposition Press, 1964.
  • Carroll, Mary Tarver. The Man Who Would Not Wait: The Story of Aaron Burr. New York: Longmans, Green Co., 1941.
  • Daniels, Jonathan. Ordeal of Ambition: Jefferson, Hamilton, Burr. Garden City, NY: Doubleday Co., 1970.
  • Davis, Matthew L., ed. Memoirs of Aaron Burr, with Miscellaneous Selections from His Correspondence. 2 vols. 1836-1837. Reprint. New York: Da Capo Press, 1971.
  • ___, ed. Private Journal of Aaron Burr, During his Residence of Four Years in Europe; with Selections from His Correspondence. 2 vols. 1838. Reprint. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Literature House, 1970.
  • Fleming, Thomas. Duel: Alexander Hamilton, Aaron Burr, and the Future of America. New York: Basic Books, 1999.
  • Ford, Worthington Chauncey, ed. Some Papers of Aaron Burr. Worcester, MA: The Society, 1920.
  • Geissler, Suzanne Burr. "The Burr Family, 1716-1836.'' Ph.D. dissertation, Syracuse University, 1976.
  • Hoffer, Peter Charles. The Treason Trials of Aaron Burr. Lawrence: University Press of Kansas, 2008.
  • Isenberg, Nancy. Fallen Founder: The Life of Aaron Burr. New York: Viking, 2007.
  • Johnson, Leland R. "Aaron Burr: Treason in Kentucky?" Filson History Quarterly 75 (Winter 2001): 1-32.
  • Kennedy, Roger G. Burr, Hamilton, and Jefferson: A Study in Character. New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.
  • Kline, Mary-Jo. "Aaron Burr as a Symbol of Corruption in the New Republic.'' In Before Watergate: Problems of Corruption in American Society, edited by Abraham S. Eisenstadt, Ari Hoogenboom and Hans L. Trefousse, pp. 69-77. Brooklyn: Brooklyn College Press, 1978.
  • Kline, Mary-Jo, and Joanne Wood Ryan, eds. Papers of Aaron Burr. Ann Arbor: University Microfilms International, 1978-1981. 27 reels and guide, 1 supplemental reel.
  • ___, eds. The Political Correspondence and Public Papers of Aaron Burr. 2 vols. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 1984.
  • Knapp, Samuel Lorenzo. The Life of Aaron Burr. New York: Wiley Long, 1835.
  • Kunstler, Laurence S. The Unpredictable Mr. Aaron Burr. New York: Vantage Press, 1974.
  • Lewis, Alfred Henry. An American Patrician: or, The Story of Aaron Burr. New York: D. Appleton Co., 1908.
  • Lomask, Milton. Aaron Burr. 2 vols. New York: Farrar, Straus Giroux, 1979-1982.
  • Melton, Buckner F., Jr. Aaron Burr: Conspiracy to Treason. New York: Wiley, 2002.
  • Newmyer, Kent. The Treason Trial of Aaron Burr: Law, Politics, and the Character Wars of the New Nation. New York: Cambridge University Press, 2012.
  • Nolan, Charles J., Jr. Aaron Burr and the American Literary Imagination. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1980.
  • Parmet, Herbert S., and Marie B. Hecht. Aaron Burr: Portrait of an Ambitious Man. New York: Macmillan Co., 1967.
  • Parton, James. The Life and Times of Aaron Burr. 2 vols. 1864. Enlarged ed. Boston: Houghton, Mifflin Co., 1892.
  • Rogow, Arnold A. A Fatal Friendship: Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr. New York: Hill and Wang, 1998.
  • Rorabaugh, W.J. "The Political Duel in the Early Republic: Burr v. Hamilton.'' Journal of the Early Republic 15 (Spring 1995): 1-23.
  • Schachner, Nathan. Aaron Burr. New York: Frederick A. Stokes Co., 1937.
  • Stewart, David O. American Emperor: Aaron Burr's Challenge to Jefferson's America. New York: Simon & Schuster, 2011.
  • Todd, Charles Burr. Life of Colonel Aaron Burr, Vice-President of the United States. New York: S.W. Green Printer, 1879.
  • Tompkins, Hamilton Bullock. Burr Bibliography: A List of Books Relating to Aaron Burr. 1892. Reprint. New York: AMS Press, 1973.
  • Vail, Philip [pseud.]. The Great American Rascal: The Turbulent Life of Aaron Burr. New York: Hawthorn Books, 1973.
  • Van Doren, Mark, ed. Correspondence of Aaron Burr and His Daughter Theodosia. New York: Covici-Friede, 1929.
  • Wandell, Samuel H. Aaron Burr in Literature: Books, Pamphlets, Periodicals, and Miscellany Relating to Aaron Burr and His Leading Political Contemporaries. 1936. Reprint. Port Washington, NY: Kennikat Press, 1972.