Rhoads-Gibbons family papers
Held at: Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections [Contact Us]370 Lancaster Ave, Haverford, PA 19041
This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in their reading room, and not digitally available through the web.
Overview and metadata sections
Sarah Wistar (1839-1920) married William Gibbons Rhoads (1838-1880) on November 28, 1866. This event joined three Quaker families, the Rhoads, Gibbons, and Wistars, beginning a long correspondence between them all. Samuel Rhoads, Jr. (1806-1868) was born on September 19, 1806, the son of Samuel and Sarah (Garrett) Rhoads. Samuel Rhoads, Jr. was a manager of Haverford College and the publisher and editor of the Friends Review from 1853 to 1867. On March 15, 1837, he married Anne Gibbons (1809-1890). Gibbons was born on September 28, 1809 and died on February 16, 1890, at the age of 81. Samuel Rhoads Jr. died on July 14, 1868. They had at least four children: Jane, Edward, Sophia, and William Rhoads. Jane Gibbons Rhoads died on February 25, 1860, at age 20. Edward was born on September 29, 1841, and obtained his education at Haverford College from 1855 to 1859, graduating at the head of his class in 1859. He continued his education at the University of Pennsylvania, studying medicine and graduating with the degree of Doctor of Medicine in 1863. He began his work as Resident Physician in the Philadelphia Hospital located in West Philadelphia and in 1864, became Resident Physician at the Pennsylvania Hospital. At this point, he suffered from a relapse of articular rheumatism which first affected him in 1859 and 1860. After recovering from his illness in 1865, Edward traveled to Europe for eight months. Upon his return in 1866, Edward became Visiting Physician to the Philadelphia Hospital and also taught courses at the University of Pennsylvania where, in 1870, he was appointed lecturer on Physical Diagnosis. His memberships included the Philosophical Society; the Philadelphia College of Physicians, serving as Recording Secretary; the Academy of Natural Sciences; and the Pathological Society. He died on January 15, 1871, at the age of 29. According to an obituary notice written and read before the American Philosophical Society by Henry Hartshorne, M.D., Dr. Edward Rhoads's "intellectual endowments, though great, were always perceived to be subordinated to moral qualities more rare and admirable," (Hartshorne, Box 15). Sophia Rhoads was born in 1850 and married Asa Shove Wing, President of the Provident Life and Trust Company of Philadelphia, on April 30, 1873. Sophia died on March 16, 1901. William Gibbons Rhoads was born on March 26, 1838, and obtained his education at Haverford where he "gained the respect and esteem of his instructors and fellow students," ( Friends' Review, page 681). Because Haverford did not have a Scientific Department until 1858, he never received his degree. William Rhoads worked with a shipbuilding firm until he discovered that the company was involved in war work at which point he resigned his post. He then became involved in the plumbing business, in which his "knowledge and successful application of the laws of hydraulics gave him a high standing, both with the trade and those who had occasion to employ him," ( The Haverfordian, pages 8-9). He died on April 28, 1880 from inflammatory rheumatism at the age of 42. William G. Rhoads and Sarah Wistar Rhoads had six children: Lydia Wistar Rhoads, born June 29, 1868; Jane Gibbons Rhoads, born May 1, 1870; Ethel Rhoads, born June 18, 1871; Edward Rhoads, born October 8, 1873; William Rhoads, born July 10, 1876; and Samuel Rhoads, born on February 16, 1878. Jane Gibbons Rhoads married Marriott C. Morris on June 8, 1897, and died on March 24, 1950. Edward Rhoads graduated from Haverford College in 1893, with second honors in physics. He attended John Hopkins University from 1896 to 1898 where he earned his Ph.D. He then became an instructor in physics at the Worcester Polyclinic Institute from 1898 to 1901. In 1901, he became an instructor of physics at Haverford College. He was a member of the American Philosophical Society and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. He died on July 4, 1903, following an attempt to run the Susquehanna rapids near Columbia, Pennsylvania at the age of 30.
Bibliography: Friends Review. Vox. XXXIII, No. 43 (Box 15). Hartshorne, Henry, M.D. "Obituary Notice of Eward Rhoads, M.D.," Read before the American Philosophical Society (Box 15). The Haverfordian. Vol. 1, No. 9, 1880 (Box 15).
This collection contains the records of members of the Rhoads and Gibbons families between 1832 and 1963. It consists of correspondence, genealogical materials, ephemera, manuscripts, and photographs.
This collection is arranged into five series: Correspondence, Genealogical Materials, Ephemera, Manuscripts, and Photographs. Within each series, the materials are arranged chronologically.
Processed by Madison Arnold-Scerbo; completed August, 2018.
- Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections
- Finding Aid Author
- Madison Arnold-Scerbo
- Finding Aid Date
- July, 2018
- Access Restrictions
The collection is open for research use.
- Use Restrictions
Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17).
Contains correspondence concerning the sale of architectural drawings by Thomas Jefferson to the University of Virginia by Mrs. Lewis Benson in 1963 (in envelope marked "Thomas Jefferson architectural drawing), A Prayer," by Alice Jackson 1911, Letter from Herbert Hirshfeld to Sarah and Lewis Benson from Caracas Venezuela on May 17, 1980, Letter from "Elizabeth" to Mrs. Thomas Potts (Ethel) Nov. 19, 1930, Envelope of poetry by Lydia Wistar Rhoads, "Poem by "The Committee of Seventy" April 29, 1938, envelope with note from A. Peale with photo of Lydia Wistar, referring to article about Mary Wright, and a poem about death
"An appeal for the bondwoman: to her own sex" 1846 given to Samuel and Anne Rhoads. Memorial of Jane Gibbons, 1898. Haines, Some notes concerning Caspar Wistar (immigrant) and on the origin of the Wistar and Wister families, 1926 by Casper Wistar Haines. Obituary of Edward Rhoads, M.D., 1872 (2 copies).
Contains news clippings – marriage and family announcements (in envelope labeled "clippings from Ethel Potts," Obituary of William G. Rhoads in The Haverfordian, Calling card of Lydia Wistar Rhoads, Between ourselves, Vol. II, No. 5, Twelfth Month, 1913, Obituary of Edward Rhoads read before the Am. Philosophical Society 1871, Page from Provident Notes re Haverford Class of 1858, Medical Times 2/1/1871, Obit of William G. Rhoads in The Plumber and Sanitary Engineer and the Haverfordian volume 1 No. 9 1880.
Contains Cope Half-Wheel Genealogical Charts – photocopies (to be copied and returned to donor) (1) Ethel Rhoads, daughter of William G.(?) Rhoads and Sarah Wistar (2) Thomas C. Potts, son of Horace Turley Potts and Annie O'Harra Lineal Descendant chart from William Gibbons Rhoads and Sarah Wistar labeled "Rhoads-Potts-Morris-Family Party June 13, 1953" Handwritten genealogical notes: Waln, Carpenter, Bella Wistar, Cooper-Riggs, Lewis-Newlin, William Ashton, Passengers on the Welcome Chart of the descendants of Caspar and Lydia J. Wistar, married June 8, 1826
Contains Obituary of Mary Gibbons in The Friend 3/17/1877, The Friend 7/26/1856, 7/19/1856, 9/11/1897, 9/11/1897, 12/31/1936, American Friend 7/19/1894
Contains "Articles of interest to Mother" in Friends Review 3/4/1871, 2/18/1871, 9/18/1858, 12/3/1859. 12/10/1859, 9/20/1879, 2/2/1878, 3/30/1878, 10/26/1872, 7/25/1868, 6/5/1880, 7/5/1894, 4/3/1890 (3 copies)
Contains J.R.W.'s address book with the cover reading "Caldwell 1923. Almanak calculated by Samuel Rhoads Jr. 1824. "From the Underground Railroad" article copied by Samuel Rhoads. "Chronological Rhymes on English History." A. Gibbons copybook. Anne Gibbons commonplace book 1826.
Full title "Notes of a journey to Canada, with Jacob Green, a minister from Ireland, during the winter of 1832-3."
"Album Friendship's Offering M. Offley to A. Gibbons"
Includes writing and lithographs and is bound
Contains photographs of Sarah W. Rhoads. Rhoads family photo including Sarah Wistar Rhoads (Black and white). Sarah Wistar Rhoads with Sarah Rhoads Potts, child, "1908?". Sarah Wistar Rhoads with Sarah Rhoads Potts (Benson). Daughters of Sarah Wistar Rhoads. Four Potts children standing in a row (Sarah, Thomas, Edward, Asa). Sarah W. Rhoads and grandson. 11 ½" x 15 photograph of Sarah W. Rhoads sitting with a fragile fragment of her in a similar pose with a photocopy.
Contains photographs of Nora (Nonya) daughter of William and Nora Rhoads: (in white dress), as a very young child with necklace, in the garden (2), with a lamb doll, posed with apple, posed by Dooner (?) photographer. Potts, Asa Wing: boy with glasses and sailor suit. Six women: Sarah Wistar Rhoads, Lydia Wistar Rendall, Hannah Wistar Hacker, Katherine J. Wistar, Mary Waln Wistar Brown, Margaret Wistar Haines, photographed by Taylor in Philadelphia in 1890. Ethel R. Potts, November 1927. Edward and William Rhoads sitting. Ethel Rhoads Potts portrait.
Contains photographs of Stokes and Rhoads family members at their home Meadow Farms in Maryland. Thomas Wistar, grandfather of Caspar Wistar's brother L.W.R.) Gutenkunst photographer. Group portrait of Sarah Wistar Rhoades, Dr. Thomas Wistar, Hannah Wistar Hacker, Margaret Wistar Haines, and Lydia Wistar Kendall. Group photo of gathering at Four Way Lodge. Sarah Rhoads Potts and Thomas Israel Potts.