Appleton's Cyclopedia of American Biography, edited by James
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SHURTLEFF, Nathaniel Bradstreet, antiquary, born in Boston, Massachusetts, 29 June, 1810; died there, 17 October, 1874. He was the son of Dr. Benjamin Shurtleff, whose donations to the college in Alton, Illinois, caused that institution to assume his name. The son was graduated at Harvard in 1831, and at the medical department in 1834, but gave his attention to literary and scientific pursuits. His list of works on genealogy shows his devotion to that subject, and he traced his descent to eleven of the Pilgrims of the "Mayflower," a number probably exceeding that of any of his contemporaries. For three terms he was mayor of Boston (1868-'70), and he prided himself on the fact that he was the first to hold that office who had always belonged to the Democratic party. During his administration extensive improvements in the streets, made necessary by the rapid growth of South Boston, were effected in that district, and Dorchester became a part of Boston. His books include "Epitome of Phrenology" (Boston, 1835) ; "Perpetual Calendar for Old and New Style" (1848); "Passengers of the ' Mayflower' in 1620" (1849) ; "Brief Notice of William Shurtleff, of Marsh-field" (1850); "Genealogical Memoir of the Family of Elder Thomas Leavett, of Boston" (1850); "Thunder and Lightning, and Deaths in Marsh-field in 1658 and 1666 " (1850); "Records of the Governor of and Company of the Massachusetts Bay in New England, 1628-1686" (5 vols. in 6, 1853-'4) ; with David Pulsifer edited "Records of the Colony of New Plymouth in New England" (1.1 vols., 1855-'61); "Decimal System for Libraries" (1856) ; and " Memoir of the Inauguration of the Statue of Franklin" (1857).
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