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Joshua Bates, 1818-1839

Identifier: A2.I

Scope and Contents

From the Record Group:

The volume of materials collected for each President varies widely from earliest appointees to current. The holdings for each presdient are primarily correspondence, published essays, sermons, and speeches, and since the 1970s-1980s includes reports generated by the Office of the President. For presidents prior to 1908, additional information may be located in associated record groups, including Board of Trustee records and correspondence, and early subscription/development records.


  • 1818-1839

Conditions Governing Access

Open for research without restriction.

Biographical / Historical

Joshua Bates was born in Cohasset, Massachusetts in 1776 and attended Harvard. After his graduation in 1800, Bates studied to be a pastor and was ordained in 1803. Bates served as a pastor in Dedham, Massachusetts for 15 years before being appointed president of Middlebury College.

Bates served as Middlebury’s third president from 1818 to 1839. Bates assumed the presidency at a tumultuous time and successfully fundraised enough to finish Painter Hall and build a multipurpose chapel to house the academic and administrative departments of the college. In the late 1830s, Bates supported an itinerant evangelical preacher that reflected poorly on the college and once again the college fell into hard times.

After enrollment had plummeted and many faculty had died or resigned, Davis resigned as president in 1839. Bates served as the pastor in Dudley, Massachusetts for 11 years before his death in 1854.

Source: Bain, David Haward. The College on the Hill: A Browser's History for the Bicentennial, Middlebury College, 1800-2000. Middlebury, VT: Middlebury College, 1999. Print.


0.5 Linear Feet (1 document box)

Language of Materials


Other Finding Aids

Joshua Bates Correspondence Finding Aid

This finding aid is redundantly filed under A2.I Joshua Bates correspondence.

Repository Details

Part of the Middlebury College Special Collections & Archives Repository

Middlebury College
Davis Family Library
110 Storrs Avenue
Middlebury Vermont 05753 United States