Paul Weiss Papers, 1905-1937 (bulk 1905-1907): Finding Aid
Published in November 2009
- Publisher: United States Naval Academy. Special Collections & Archives.
- Publisher Address:
589 McNair Road
Annapolis, Maryland 21402-5029, USA
- Call number: MS 385
- Location: Special Collections & Archives Department - Manuscripts
- Title: Paul Weiss Papers
- Dates: 1905-1937
- Bulk Dates: 1905-1907
- Size: 1.83 linear feet
- Container Summary: 1 manuscript box, 1 flat box, 1 oversize folder
- Creator: Weiss, Paul, 1867-1945
- Language(s) of material: English
- Abstract: Paul Weiss was the engineer of mines, inspector of quarries for the department of the Seine in 1905 and supervised the excavations at the former cemetery for foreign Protestants in Paris where the remains of John Paul Jones were found.
Biography of Paul Weiss
Paul Louis Weiss, a Commander of the Legion of Honor, was born in Strasbourg, France on February 5, 1867. He graduated from the École Polytechnique and the École des Mines de Paris (School of Mining). He was a member of the Corps of Mines. In 1905, as the Engineer of Mines, Inspector of Quarries for the Department of the Seine, he played an instrumental role in the recovery of the remains of John Paul Jones. He was the Inspector General of Mines for France from 1911 to 1916.
After World War I, Weiss left the ministry to become director of the Compagnie Industrielle des Travaux et Entreprises Électriques. He was the consulting engineer to the Compagnie des Mines de Vicoigne, Noeux et Drocourt from 1919 to 1930 and then president of the Compagnie Française des Essences Synthétiques, which built a factory to convert coal into gasoline. He died in Paris on December 25, 1945.
Description of Contents
The collection consists mostly of material related to the recovery of John Paul Jones' body in 1905. Weiss oversaw the excavations at the former cemetery for foreign Protestants in Paris where research indicated Jones' remains were interred. Included in the collection are calling cards with brief notes to Weiss from General Horace Porter, American Ambassador to France. It was Porter who, in 1899, began the quest to find Jones' body and bring it back to the United States.
Items of interest include Weiss' plan of the site of the Saint Louis cemetery; three photographs of the body taken on April 11, 1905, two days after the autopsy; two invitations to the memorial service in Paris; the published proceedings of the Commission du Vieux Paris regarding the discovery and identification of the remains; and a program from the commemoration exercises for Jones held at the Naval Academy on April 24, 1906.
The collection also contains a set of photo post cards of the ceremonies in Paris to mark the transfer of Jones' body to the United States. There is an American and a European edition of the Century Magazine from October 1905, containing General Porter's article entitled "The Recovery of the Body of John Paul Jones." A set of thirteen photographs, some of which accompanied General Porter's article, record the excavation site and the activities there. From a French publication is an offprint of an article on the Protestant cemetery and the discovery of John Paul Jones' remains. There is also a copy of John Paul Jones Commemoration at Annapolis April 24, 1906 (Washington: GPO, 1907); General Porter's calling card is pinned to the front free endpaper of this volume.
The Paul Weiss Papers are arranged by document type.
Access and Use
Access is unrestricted.
Copyright and Permission
The Paul Weiss Papers are the physical property of Nimitz Library. Copyright belongs to the authors or creators of the works, or their legal representatives. For further information, consult the Head, Special Collections & Archives.
It is the responsibility of the researcher to secure written permission to publish, reprint, or reproduce material from Special Collections & Archives. The researcher assumes responsibility for infringement of copyright or literary or publication rights. Please contact the Head, Special Collections & Archives for permission to publish and for further information.
Acquisition and Appraisal
Provenance and Acquisition
Gift of Madame Jacques Bursaux in October 1974.
Location of Copies or Alternate Formats
The Weiss Papers have been digitized in their entirety. In addition to following the links in the Container List below, the materials can be accessed through the Nimitz Library Digital Collections at https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/ik5eus/alma991006447689306751
Related Archival Material
Additional material in this repository pertaining to the autopsy of John Paul Jones can be found in William H. Feldman's Report on Trip to Paris and London as a Civilian Consultant for the Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (September 14 to 29, 1955), MS 518.
Additional materials pertaining to the search and recovery of John Paul Jones' remains can be found in the Horace Porter Papers (http://lccn.loc.gov/mm79036608)at the Manuscript Division of the Library of Congress.
Materials Cataloged Separately
No materials have been removed from this collection and cataloged separately.
Processing and Other Information
Paul Weiss Papers, MS 385
Special Collections & Archives Department
United States Naval Academy
This collection was processed by Jennifer A. Bryan in November 2009. Finding aid written by Jennifer A. Bryan in November 2009.
Name and Subject Terms
- Jones, John Paul, 1747-1792
- Weiss, Paul, 1867-1945
Correspondence and Ephemera, 1905-1906, 1937
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447551006751
Photo Post Cards, 1905
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447551206751
Century Magazine, American edition, 1905 October
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447550906751
Proceedings of the Commission du Vieux Paris, 1906
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447551106751
Photograph - Head of John Paul Jones, undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447550206751
Photograph - Body of John Paul Jones [Upper Torso], undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447550106751
Photograph - Body of John Paul Jones, undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447550006751
Photograph - Scene of the Search for the Body of John Paul Jones in the Rue Grange-Aux-Belles (1 of 3), undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447550506751
Photograph - Scene of the Search for the Body of John Paul Jones in the Rue Grange-Aux-Belles (2 of 3), undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447550406751
Photograph - Scene of the Search for the Body of John Paul Jones in the Rue Grange-Aux-Belles (3 of 3), undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447550306751
Photograph - View of the Yard over the buried St. Louis Cemetery (1 of 5), undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447549906751
Photograph - View of the Yard over the buried St. Louis Cemetery (2 of 5), undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447549806751
Photograph - View of the Yard over the buried St. Louis Cemetery (3 of 5), undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447549706751
Photograph - View of the Yard over the buried St. Louis Cemetery (4 of 5), undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447549606751
Photograph - View of the Yard over the buried St. Louis Cemetery (5 of 5), undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447549506751
Photograph - The First Shaft, undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447549406751
Photograph - Refilling the Galleries and Restoring Property, undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447549306751
Photograph - Excavated Area, undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447549206751
Photograph - The Workman Holds the Point of his Pick Over the Spot Where he had Struck the Lead Coffin, undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447550606751
Photograph - Lead Coffin Containing the Body of John Paul Jones, undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447549106751
Plan of site of Saint Louis Cemetery, undated
Digital copy available at: https://usna.primo.exlibrisgroup.com/permalink/01USNA_INST/t2tcj0/alma991006447550706751