"I contemplate depositing them with the Essex Historical Society"

The Essex Historical Society was formed by Salem doctor Edward Augustus Holyoke in 1821 "for the purpose of collecting and preserving materials for the civil and natural history of the said county of Essex" (Petition for Incorporation, 1821, p. 3). In 1848 it merged with the Essex County Natural History Society to form the Essex Institute, so when Hawthorne was writing it was no longer strictly extant. The Institute joined forces with the Peabody Museum of Salem in 1992 and now exists as the Peabody Essex Museum.