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Richard Humphreys Foundation Records

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Held at: Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College [Contact Us]500 College Avenue, Swarthmore, Pennsylvania 19081

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College. 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

Richard Humphreys was a Quaker who was born on the Island of Tortola in 1750. As young men he and his brother, Thomas, were sent to Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, as apprentices, Richard as a goldsmith and silversmith, Thomas as a tanner.

Richard Humphreys became a well-known and successful silversmith whose shop was at 54 High Street, Philadelphia. At his death in 1832, he left an estate of over $90,000, $10,000 of which he bequeathed to 13 members of the Philadelphia Yearly Meeting of the Society of Friends for the purpose of establishing a school for "...instructing the descendants of the African Race in school learning, in the various branches of the mechanical arts and trades and in Agriculture...in order to prepare and fit and qualify them to act as teachers in such of those branches of useful business as in the Judgment of the said society they may appear best qualified for..." In 1922, the State of Pennsylvania assumed control of the School, and the corporation changed its name to Richard Humphreys Foundation, with funds from the endowment to be used for promoting education of African-Americans to become teachers.

Chronology:
2/25/1837: TestPreamble and Constitution drawn up for an association of Friends to be called The African Institute; its object: ...the education and improvement of the Children and youth, of the African race, by instructing them in literature, Science, Agriculture, and the Mechanical Arts. April 1837: The name of the Association was changed to The Institute for Coloured Youth. 1839: A 136 acre farm on Old York Road, about 7 miles from the City of Philadelphia, was purchased as the site for the school and farm. 1840: School opened with 5 pupils from the Shelter for Coloured Orphans. 1846: Farm/school failed and the school was closed, the farm sold. 1848: Apprenticing committee was named to set up a program for an evening school for apprenticed African American youth. 1849-52: Evening school for apprenticed youths held in one room, Barclay St. 1852: Lombard Street School was completed. Day school for both boys and girls, tuition-free. Evening school continued until 1857. 1863: A lot on Shippen Street (now Bainbridge) above 9th St. was purchased and plans for 400 students made. 1866: Bainbridge Street School opened. Continued in operation until 1903. 1902 George Cheyney's farm, 25 miles from Philadelphia, was purchased as the site for the new school/farm. Cornerstone laid in 1903. 1904 Institute for Colored Youth reorganized, opened at Cheyney in 1904, the formal opening was 5-9-1905. 1905 Summer sessions for African American teachers held at Cheyney. Andrew Carnegie gave $10,000 for a library which was dedicated in 1910. 1914 Association for the Care of Coloured Orphans (the Shelter) moved to five acres of the Cheyney farm. July 1914 Name of the Institute for Coloured Youth changed to Cheyney Training School for Teachers. 1920 Cheyney became State (of Pennsylvania) Normal School, with graduates receiving a State teaching certificate. 1-1-1922 Management of Cheyney Training School for Teachers taken over by the State of Pennsylvania. The State paid $75,000 to the Corporation. 1923 Home for Destitute Colored Children (later Sunnycrest Farm for Boys) moved to the Cheyney site. 1932 Cheyney became a State Teachers College, granting Bachelor degrees.

The collection contains charters and bylaws, minutes of the Corporation and Board of Managers, annual reports, financial records, correspondence, and other papers.

Deposited by Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, 1975. Additional material from Richard Humphreys Foundation and Charlotte Tinker, 1978, 1983.

Parts of the collection have been microfilmed and are available in the repository:

Film Org.-R1
Board of Managers Minutes, 1922-77; Corporation Minutes, 1923-65; Annual Reports (bound), 1856-1900
Film Org.-R2
Board of Managers Minutes, 1866-1914
Film Org.-R3
Trustees Minutes, 1823-1838; Board of Managers Minutes, 1914-1922
Film Org.-R4
Corporation Minutes, 1837-59; Apprenticing Committee Minutes, 1848-1851; Corporation Minutes, 1860-1922; Discipline and Instruction Committee Minutes, 1871-1884; Board of Managers Minutes 1837-66

Deposited by Philadelphia Yearly Meeting, 1978, 1983;

Gift of Richard Humphreys Foundation, 1978, 1983

Publisher
Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College
Finding Aid Author
FHL staff
Finding Aid Date
2001
Sponsor
Encoding made possible by a grant by the Gladys Kriebel Delmas Foundation to the Philadelphia Consortium of Special Collections Libraries
Access Restrictions

Access is through microfilm when available. Collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Some of the items in this collection may be protected by copyright. The user is solely responsible for making a final determination of copyright status. If copyright protection applies, permission must be obtained from the copyright holder or their heirs/assigns to reuse, publish, or reproduce relevant items beyond the bounds of Fair Use or other exemptions to the law. See http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/UND/1.0/.

Collection Inventory

History of the organization,, 1842-1967.
Box 1
Charter,, 1842 (amended 1914, 1922, 1972).
Box 1
Bylaws and Rules,, 1915, 1921-22, 1967.
Box 1

Physical Description

3 vols.

1837-1884.
Box 1
1884-1910.
Box 2
1910-1919.
Box 3
1919-1922.
Box 4
1922-1977.
Box 4
1977-1980.
Box 4
1837-1907.
Box 5
Physical Description

2 vols.

1908-1922.
Box 5
1923-1965.
Box 5
1823-1838.
Box 5
- Apprenticing (at back of book of Corporation, Minutes, 1860-1907), 1848-1851.
Box 5
- Building, 1864-1866.
Box 5
- Bylaws, 1884, 1894, n.d.
Box 5
- Discipline and Instruction., 1871-1884.
Box 5
- Real Estate, 1884.
Box 5
1884-1889.
Box 5
1892-1893.
Box 6
1894-1897.
Box 6
1950-1963 (gaps).
Box 6
- Membership, Board of Managers and Corporation, 1837-1922.
Box 6
- Cheyney Opening, 1904-1905.
Box 6
- Miscellaneous papers, 1896-1921.
Box 6
Ser. 3 Correspondence of the Board of Managers, 1856-1976, n.d.
Box 6

Annual Reports (printed), 1856-1900.
Box 7
Physical Description

2 bound vols.

Annual Reports (printed, not complete run), 1899-1911.
Box 7
Annual Reports (typewritten drafts), 1896, 1904, 1906, 1908.
Box 7

Receipts, cancelled checks, reports, etc., 1895-1901.
Box 8
Physical Description

3 pkg.

Legacies, Securities, etc., 1838-1889.
Box 8a
Vouchers, 1889-1990.
Box 8a
Trial Balance, 1920-1934.
Box 9
Appraisal, 1922.
Box 9
Cash Books 3-4, 5-6, 1925-1958, 1958-1981.
Box 9a
Ledgers (2), 1919-1941.
Box 10
Checkbook stubs, 1947-1960.
Box 10
Receipts, cancelled checks, bank statements, Cheyney Homestead Development information, etc., 1958-1966.
Box 10
Physical Description

8 fols.

- Wm. S. Vaux Fund, statements, 1942-66, 1979.
Box 11
- General Fund Annual statements, 1943-1977.
Box 11
- General Fund Monthly statements, 1958-1966.
Box 11
Treasurer's reports (not complete run), 1901-1976.
Box 11
Cheyney reports to the Board of Managers (gaps), 1950-1977.
Box 11
Tax returns and miscellaneous tax papers, 1971-1981.
Box 12
Financial correspondence and papers, 1842-1975.
Box 12
Physical Description

9 folders

Legal papers, 1896-1933.
Box 13
Vaux Scholarships, 1979.
Box 13
Merger, 1981-1982.
Box 13

Miscellaneous Memorabilia, 1907-1909.
Box 13
Scope and Contents

Includes: Commencement programs, report cards, address book of those to whom The African's Friend was sent.

The Negro in America, Andrew Carnegie. Address delivered 10-16-1907.
Box 13
Philadelphia Negro Educator: Jacob C. White, Jr., 1837-1902, Harry C. Silcox.
Box 13
Prepared for Conference Schools of the Society of Friends for Colored People in the United States, Nov. 4, 1919.
Box 13

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