0-9 | A | B | C | D | E | F | G | H | I | J | K | L | M | N | O | P | Q | R | S | T | U | V | W | X | Y | Z

Lyle family papers, 1789-1944, 1824-1872 (bulk dates)

details | guide | text


Processed by: Archives Staff ; machine-readable finding aid created by:Eric Weig


Lyle family papers, 1789-1944


1824-1872 (bulk dates)


University of Kentucky Special CollectionsLexington, Kentucky 40506


Organized as follows: family papers, miscellaneous, scrapbooks, Charles Nourse Lyle papers, Joel Lyle papers, Lyle genealogies, James Nourse and his descendants, Nourse genealogy, and sermons. Arrangement is generally chronological within each unit.

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation Note

[Identification of item], Lyle family papers, 1789-1944, 1824-1872 (bulk dates), 1M62M49, Special Collections, University of Kentucky.


8.5 cubic ft.


Ministers, newspaper publishers. John Lyle was an elder of the Timber Ridge Presbyterian Church in Rockbridge County, Virginia. His sons, the Rev. John Lyle and Joel Reid Lyle came to Kentucky in the early 19th century. Joel Lyle had three sons, William, John and Joel Kenney Lyle; the latter married Maria Nourse. They were the parents of Lizzie, Helen and Charles Nourse Lyle. The Rev. John Lyle operated private schools in Bourbon County, Ky. and a printing shop in Paris in addition to his pastoral duties. He was active in the Presbyterian Church in Kentucky. Joel Reid Lyle taught in his brother's schools but resigned in 1809 to publish the WESTERN CITIZEN, a Paris newspaper. He retired in 1829, turning the paper over to his son, William.

Scope and Content

This collection represents four generations of the Lyle family of Virginia and Kentucky. The elder John Lyle is well represented through his correspondence in the collection. Papers relating to his son, the Rev. John Lyle, include his sermon on "Order" preached in opposition to the extravagancies which he perceived in the frontier revival, and a copy of the "Circular Letter" to the churches of the synod of Kentucky. There are letters between Joel Reid Lyle and his sons, William and John who attended Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, and Joel Kenney who attended Centre College in Danville, Ky. and Princeton Theological Seminary. These letters (1825-1849) comment on events of the times, the Great Revival, the Campbell-Rice debates, the Bank of Kentucky, slavery, abolition, and troubles in Texas. Joel Kenney Lyle's papers (1842-1872) include correspondence, records pertaining to his pastorates in Kentucky, sermons and notes. References to the Civil War are frequent.

Genealogical materials concerning both the Nourse and Lyle families were accumulated by Marie Nourse Lyle. Additional papers deal with Mrs. Lyle and her children. Among the Lyle papers are early indentures, day books, diaries, scrapbooks, broadsides, and photos (removed to the Photo Archives). Correspondents include Archibald Alexander of Princeton Theological Seminary, Robert Jefferson Breckinridge, Presbyterian historian Robert Davidson, textbook author and educator W. H. McGuffey, and religious historian Wiliam B. Sprague.


  • Alexander, Archibald, 1772-1851.
  • Breckinridge, Robert J. (Robert Jefferson), 1800-1871.
  • Davidson, Robert.
  • Lyle, Charles Nourse.
  • Lyle, Helen.
  • Lyle, Joel Kenney.
  • Lyle, Joel Reid, 1774-1849.
  • Lyle, John, 1769-1825.
  • Lyle, Lizzie Agnes.
  • Lyle, Maria Nourse.
  • Lyle, William.
  • McGuffey, William Holmes, 1800-1873.
  • Sprague, William Buell, 1795-1876.
  • Lyles family.
  • Nourse family.
  • Centre College (Danville, Ky.).
  • Miami University (Oxford, Ohio).
  • Princeton Theological Seminary (N.J.).
  • Timber Ridge Presbyterian Church (Va.).
  • Presbyterian Church.
  • Clergy.
  • Bourbon County (Ky.)--History.
  • Kentucky--History.
  • Rockbridge County (Va.).
  • United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865.
  • Diaries.
  • Photoprints

User Restrictions

Copyright has not been assigned to the University of Kentucky.