Main content

Caroline Nicholson Jacob papers


Held at: Westtown School Archives [Contact Us]975 Westtown Road, West Chester, PA, 19382

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Westtown School Archives. 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

Caroline Lucile Nicholson was born to Samuel Edgar Nicholson and Rhoda Elma Parker Nicholson on November 11, 1891, in New London, Indiana. She was the sibling of Vincent DeWitt Nicholson and Samuel Francis Nicholson. Caroline attended high school in Paxtang, Pennsylvania, and graduated from Earlham College in 1912. She taught school in Indiana from 1913-1916.

In the fall of 1916 Caroline left Indiana to teach at Westtown School, a prominent Quaker boarding school in Chester County, Pa., accompanied by her brother, Francis, who attended Westtown for his senior year. Caroline had a long career at Westtown from 1916-1939, teaching German, Bible, French and History, and serving as Assistant Principal from 1926-1939. She was on leave from Westtown from 1919-1921 to work with the American Friends Service Committee distributing food to school children in Hamburg, Germany, during the famine. She served on the Westtown School General Committee from 1942-1953. During the summers Caroline pursued graduate work at the University of Wisconsin and she received a Master's degree from there in the summer of 1925.

Caroline Nicholson married Edward H. Jacob on November 25, 1939. During her lifetime, she was active with the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, St. Petersburg Friends Meeting and Friends World Committee. She was the first clerk of Southeastern Yearly Meeting of Friends which she helped organize. She was the author of several books about Quakerism and individual Quakers. Caroline Nicholson Jacob died June 16, 1991.


Family Correspondence

Westtown Through the Years Catalog.

Obituary in the Daily Local News.

This collection of papers and photographs documents the travels, interests, and religious and social activities of Caroline Nicholson Jacob, including trips to Africa, Europe, the Western U.S., and to the Fourth Friends World Conference; her engagement to be married and her birthdays--including her 90th. These activities included many Westonians. Letters from Caroline to family members were written during her time at Westtown School, University of Wisconsin, and while in Europe. The papers also include a published transcript of an oral history interview by American Friends Service Committee in 1989; published writings of Caroline Nicholson Jacob about Quaker history and religious education, and documents concerning her estate. The wedding certificate of Caroline Nicholson and Edward Jacob is also included.

The collection is left grouped primarily as transferred to the archives, papers having been arranged in folders by Frances Nicholson Beer.

The contents of the collection is as follows: Folder 1 European Trip 1960 (Scrapbook of trip to Europe with Ruth Vail, Rebecca Nicholson and Wilma Reese) Folder 2 Birthday 1939 and Engagement Party (Scrapbook –inscribed Happy Birthday! to Caroline! 11th month, 11th, 1939- with papers from engagement party Folder 3 Birthday, 90th (Scrapbook presented to CNJ on her 90th birthday from Sarah and Fred Swan; includes many photographs of Westtown places and people) Folder 4 Correspondence (Six printed supplements from The Westonian; Two handwritten notes from Dot Gould; Typescript letter to CNJ from Lou Flaccus February 11, 1980; Manuscript letter to CNJ from Alex H[ay] April 29, 1982) Folder 5 Class of 1927 50th anniversary booklet (dedicated to honorary member CNJ); Class of 1934 50th anniversary booklet Folder 6 Youth Folder 7 Correspondence from friends including Ernest Wildman, Gillett Whitney, Wilma Reeve Wildman, William A. Tomlinson, Ruth and Josiah Russell, Mary P. Ware, Pauline O. Bailey, and Jan de Hartag Folder 8 Passports and other personal Folder 9 Travel letters (and Ruth Vail), South Africa and Scandinavia Folder 10 Engagement and marriage Folder 11 Minutes for religious travel Folder 12 Publication Reviews and letters Folder 13 Estate Tax Folder 14 General Misc. Folder 15 Philosophical Interests Folder 16 Quaker related Folder 17 Letters to Samuel Edgar Nicholson, Rhoda Elma Nicholson, Vincent Nicholson, S. Francis Nicholson, 1911-1939 Folder 18 Obituaries Folder 19 Gifts Folder 20 Florida House Folder 21 Publications Folder 22 Publications Reviews and letters Folder 23 Transcript of Oral History Interview of CNJ by AFSC, 1989; Guest book from FL home and Kendal residence

Gifts of James "Tim" Nicholson and Frances Nicholson Beer, 2008 and 2010 (accessions 2008.02 and 2010.08).

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 Westtown School Archives directly for more information.

Photographs to Personal Photograph collections, shelved in one box for this collection: 4 pages from a photo album, includes black and white photographs, some of trip to Europe 1929, Maine in summer 1936; six single photographs; portrait of Janet Whitney; portrait of Elma Clark; select faculty; faculty group 1922; photograph of Rachel Letchworth, Caroline Nicholson Jacob and others; plus two photograph albums added in 2010.

The wedding certificate of Caroline Nicholson and Edward Jacob in the original metal tube is shelved in oversize box of rolled diplomas.

Scrapbook of trip to Europe in 1965 [Oversize on shelf in Personal Papers]

Scrapbook of Friends World Conference at Guilford, 1967 and trip to Western states and Canada [Oversize on shelf in Personal Papers]

Family Correspondence of Samuel Edgar Nicholson and Rhoda Elma Parker Nicholson, Their Parents and Their Children, 1860-1940; transcribed by Frances Nicholson Beer, June 2007, is cataloged and shelved separately (Row 1).

Westtown School Archives
Finding Aid Author
Finding aid prepared by staff of the Historical Society of Pennsylvania's Hidden Collections Initiative for Pennsylvania Small Archival Repositories using data provided by the Westtown School Archives
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.
Access Restrictions

Contact Westtown School Archives for information about accessing this collection.

Collection Inventory

Print, Suggest