Papers of Nathan Wetherell (Master 1764-1807)

Nathan Wetherell matriculated at Lincoln College in 1744, before being elected a Fellow of University College in 1750.

He was elected Master in 1764, and his 43-year tenure of the office is the longest in the College's history. From 1771 he was also Dean of Hereford, and later became a Prebendary of Westminster Abbey.

Wetherell's time as Master was very successful: many members of the College from this period attained important positions in public life, such as Lord Eldon, Lord Stowell and Sir William Jones. He was also a friend of Samuel Johnson, and is mentioned in Boswell's Life of Johnson. More information on Wetherell’s Mastership can be found in Robin Darwall-Smith, A History of University College, Oxford (Oxford, 2008), pp. 275–301.

Of Wetherell’s several children, three, Charles, Nathan Croke and Richard all went to University College (Nathan Croke became a Fellow here in 1788–1840, but Charles went on to become a Demy at Magdalen College); another, Henry, matriculated at Magdalen, and two more, James and Robert, went to New College.

These are so far the only documents specifically connected with Wetherell which have been found in the archives of University College.

Recatalogued in June 2004.

UC:MA37/L1/1                                        20 Dec 1786
Declaration made by Nathan Wetherell, both that he has received from Richard Browne, nephew of John Browne (Master 1745–64) a sum of £600, interest from which is intended to augment the Master’s stipend, and that, on his ceasing to be Master, the £600 will be transferred to his successor.

UC:MA37/MS1/1                                    19 May 1768
Inventory of Plate and Furniture in the Master’s Lodgings.