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Cox-Robinson-Ross family papers


Held at: Old York Road Historical Society [Contact Us]

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Old York Road Historical Society. 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

The Cox, Ross, and Robinson families were important Pennsylvania families active in early Philadelphia and Bucks Counties, and later in the development of Hatboro in Montgomery County.

"Justice Cox, retired, P.O. Buckingham [Bucks County] was born in Kingsessing, Philadelphia county, November 6, 1805. He is a son of Justice and Elizabeth (Paschall) Cox, natives of Philadelphia county. Otto Ernest Cox, from whom this family is descended, came from Sweden in 1638 and settled on the bank of the Delaware, where he took up a large tract of land in the then province of New Sweden...He was somewhat interested in politics in his younger days, having been justice of the peace in Philadelphia for nearly ten years and was a judge of election at the time of the "Buckshot war" [a conflict that arose when both the Whig and Democratic parties claimed control over the Pennsylvania House of Representatives after the 1838 Pennsylvania gubernatorial and legislative elections]. Mr. Cox was for many years warden of St. James church, Kingsessing." (Battle)

"In 1851 Mr. Cox purchased the farm which he still owns in Bucks county and which is part of the Watson grant. He was married in 1829 to Mary Moloney, a native of Philadelphia and daughter of James Moloney of Limerick, Ireland, by whom he had eight children: Gustavus Adolphus, married to Sarah, daughter of Thomas W. Bye, of Buckingham; James M., married to Roselma Josephine, daughter of Captain Joseph Archambault; Justice, married to Anna W., daughter of Colonel Richard Oakford, of Scranton; William, married to Ida M. Alburger, of Philadelphia; Elizabeth, married to Robert C. Cornelius, of Philadelphia; Mary M., married to Dr. W. T. Robinson of Philadelphia, and since deceased; and Sarah and Harry, deceased." (Battle)

"Dr. William T. Robinson [1838-1900] was born in Boston, but most of his life was spent in Philadelphia and its vicinity... His education was obtained in the public schools of Philadelphia and in the University of Pennsylvania. He practiced medicine for ten years in Hatboro, Montgomery County, and in 1873 established the Hatboro Public Spirit. He was its editor until his death. For six years he served the State as physician at the Lazaretto, and was afterwards connected with the Bureau of Health for eight years. This work he continued until ill health obliged him to retire from it. He served as surgeon of the 104th Pennsylvania Volunteers for four years during the Civil War. He was an active and progressive citizen of Hatboro and was largely instrumental in having it converted into a borough. Dr. Robinson was twice married. His first wife was a daughter of the late Justice Cox, of Buckingham. His second wife was Mrs. Paynter, a sister of the late William M. Singerly." (Miles)

Oscar Ernest Cox (O.E.C.) Robinson was one of several children of William T. Robinson and Mary Cox (1837-1880). He married Florence Willard (1874-1968) with whom he had several children, including Ruth Ross (1914-1987).


Quoted text from Battle, J.H., ed. History of Bucks County, Pennsylvania. A. Warner & Co., 1887. Accessed May 7, 2013.

Quoted text from Miles, Joan. "Dr. William T. Robinson." Find a Grave. Accessed May 7, 2013.

This collection consists of papers of the Cox, Robinson, and Ross families dating from 1669-1980. It includes letters, financial and property records, business papers, photographs, scrapbooks, architectural drawings, and research materials, is roughly organized into five series: "Series I. Cox papers, 1669-1813"; "Series II. Dr. William T. Robinson papers, 1840s-1880s"; "Series III. O. E. C. Robinson papers, circa 1901-1931"; "Series IV. Ruth Willard Robinson Ross papers, circa 1960s-1970s"; and "Series V. Miscellaneous family material."

Series I. Cox papers, 1669-1813, largely include estate and financial records such as receipted bills and poor tax records. The family members that are represented in this series include Otto Ernest Cocks, Zachariah Coxe, Elizabeth Cox Graham, and Justice Cox.

Series II. Dr. William T. Robinson papers, 1840s-1880s, include Civil War claims, accounts, land purchase papers, blank checks, Lazaretto documents (1878-1883), and trade cards.

Series III. O. E. C. Robinson papers, circa 1901-1931, include a European scrapbook (1901), clippings, photographs, letters to Mrs. O.E.C. Robinson, and Willow Grove specifications.

Series IV. Ruth Willard Robinson Ross papers, circa 1960s-1970s, include research notes and writings on local history topics with photographs, newspaper clippings, and correspondence.

Series V. Miscellaneous family material include mostly published items, family notes and genealogical materials, an autograph album, a clippings scrapbook, and Willard family estate and property records (1773-1862, 1907). The collection also includes an 1813 Bible.

Summary descriptive information on this collection was compiled in 2012-2014 as part of a project conducted by the Historical Society of Pennsylvania to make better known and more accessible the largely hidden collections of small, primarily volunteer run repositories in the Philadelphia area. The Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories (HCI-PSAR) was funded by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

This is a preliminary finding aid. No physical processing, rehousing, reorganizing, or folder listing was accomplished during the HCI-PSAR project.

In some cases, more detailed inventories or finding aids may be available on-site at the repository where this collection is held; please contact Old York Road Historical Society directly for more information.

Old York Road Historical Society
Finding Aid Author
Finding aid prepared by Celia Caust-Ellenbogen and Faith Charlton through the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories
This preliminary finding aid was created as part of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories. The HCI-PSAR project was made possible by a grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.
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