Emily Howland Family Papers
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
This collection includes the papers of Emily Howland (1827-1929), a Quaker educator and humanitarian who is particularly remembered for her work with formerly-enslaved African Americans in the South during and after the Civil War. The collection also contains family papers, surnames Howland and Tallcot.
The first Quaker Talcott (later changed to Tallcot to conform to pronunciation) was Nathan, the son of Governor Joseph Talcott of Connecticut. Nathan's son, Gaius, was a member of Nine Partners Monthly Meeting in Dutchess County, New York, and his son, Joseph, moved to Scipio, New York, and was the grandfather of Emily Howland.
The Howland family also moved to central New York from New England, where they had been persecuted for being members of the Society of Friends. Slocum Howland, the son of Benjamin and Mary (Slocum) Howland, married Hannah Tallcot at Scipio Monthly Meeting in 1821. They set up a household at Sherwood, Cayuga County, New York, and Slocum ran a general supply store with Thomas Alsop. The Howlands were committed abolitionists and may have been active in the Underground Railroad.
Their third child and only daughter, Emily, was born in 1827. She was educated locally and for a brief time in Philadelphia, and then left Sherwood in 1857 to teach at a school for the daughters of formerly enslaved people in Washington D.C.; during the Civil War, she worked at a "contraband camp" in Virginia, establishing a school there and coordinating relief activities. Her father died in 1881. After a sixteen month tour of Europe, Emily returned to Sherwood to contribute time and money to the maintenance of the Sherwood School. She continued to take an interest in a number of schools for African-American youth in the South and also was involved in women's suffrage and temperance. She was elected Director of the First National Bank of Aurora in 1891. Emily Howland never married, and died in Sherwood at the age of 101.
The collection contains correspondence, journals, other manuscripts, memorabilia, and pictures of Emily Howland and members of the Howland and Tallcot families. Topics covered include education, philanthropy, abolition, and women's rights. Correspondents include Benjamin Howland, Hannah (Tallcot) Howland, William Howland, Slocum Howland, Phebe Tallcot, Richard Tallcot, Thomas J. Tallcot Joseph Tallcot, Edward Strange, Caroline F. Putnam, John Alsop, and many others.
The collection is divided into eight series:
- Biographical and genealogical
- Emily Howland Correspondence
- Family Correspondence
- Diaries and Journals
- Other writings
- Business and Financial
- Reference files
- Breault, Judith Colucci. The World of Emily Howland: Odyssey of a Humanitarian. Millbrae, CA: Les Femmes, 1976 (FHL BX7796.H857B7 1976).
- Gaffney, Patricia H. (ed.). The Emily Howland Papers at Cornell University. Ithaca, NY: Cornell University Libraries, 1975.
Donors: Gift of William Slocum Howland and Louise Howland, 1955.
Gift of Phebe King, 1967-1979.
Gift of Isabel Kenrick, 1981.
Purchase, 1977 (scrapbook), 1986
The first group of papers was received from William Slocum Howland and Louise Howland in 1955. In 1967-1979, Phebe King, a former Principal of the Sherwood School, gave additional Howland manuscripts which had been sent to her by William S. Howland.
The first group of papers was received from William Slocum Howland and Louise Howland in 1955, as arranged by Henrietta Jacquette, a friend of FHL; this group was reported to NUCMC as 66-1930. In 1967, 1973, and 1979, Phebe King, a former Principal of the Sherwood School, gave additional Howland manuscripts (NUCMC 69-1802) which had been sent to her by William S. Howland.
During reprocessing in 1988 it was discovered that these collections had the same provenance, and a decision was made to recombine the materials into a single Record Group 5, together with later purchases.
In January 2003, the collection was transferred to new acid-free boxes and a new finding aid produced with a complete folder list. Boxes were consolidated, and old Series 6, Pictures, was transferred to FHL Picture Collection, PA 115.
The following pictures, mostly photographs and original art, were originally received with the collection and then recatalogued as PA 115. Photographs were probably collected by Emily Howland. Negatives, if available, are filed with the original.
- Emily Howland
- Howland and Alsop families
- Howland Family Homes. Includes interiors and exteriors
- Other Sherwood locations, including Sherwood Select School and Orthodox Meeting House
- Postcards from travels of Emily Howland in Europe and U.S.
Photographs: Special Subjects of Interest to Emily Howland--Afro-Americans
- Persons. Includes Passmore Williamson, Harriet Tubman, Jennie Dean, N.P. Rogers, John Brown, and Charley (A slave boy from New Orleans)
- Schools. Includes a number of schools for blacks in the South from 1912 to 1915: High Point School (North Carolina), Holley School (Lottsburgh, Virginia), Howland School (Heathsville, Virginia), Kowaliga School, Montgomery Normal School (Alabama), Statesboro School (Georgia), Tuskegee Institute.
Photographs: Special Subjects of Interest to Emily Howland--Women Suffrage
- Persons. Includes Susan B. Anthony, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Anna H. Shaw, Mary A. Livermore, Emmeline Parkhurts, Cornelia Hancock, and others.
- Organizations. Includes Cayuga County Political Equality Club, Lily Dale Woman's Da (1903).
- Pundita Ramabai. Includes photographs of Pundita Ramabai and some of the young widows whom she helped.
- Edward Strange. Includes a photograph of Edward Strange (1870) and some of his relatives.
- "From Arthur and Emily," Album of photos, primarily of Catskill region and New York City, 1915.
Original Art: Emily Howland
- Drawings of camp Todd, Va., 1865
- Miscellaneous sketches, 1854-1867, n.d.
- Sketchbook of Westminster Abby, 1884
- Photographs of her paintings currently in private collections, n.d.
Original Art: Sarah Alsop
- Drawing of "Old Grant," 1870 (folder also includes oil on cardboard of same subject, painted by same artist?)
Original Art: Horace Howland
- Watercolors of Howland Family
- Quaker women
- Women -- Education
- Women -- Suffrage
- Quakers -- Social service
- Antislavery movements
- African Americans -- Education
- Quakers -- Education
- Quaker women -- Education
- Quakers -- Social life and customs
- Quakers -- New York (State)
- Quakers -- Diaries
- Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College
- Finding Aid Author
- FHL staff
- Finding Aid Date
- 1955, 1988
- Encoding made possible by a grant by the Gladys Kriebel Delmas Foundation to the Philadelphia Consortium of Special Collections Libraries
- Access Restrictions
Collection is open for research.
The bulk of this collection has been digitized and is available in our Digital Library. Explore this collection online.
- Use Restrictions
Friends Historical Library believes all of the items in this collection to be in the Public Domain in the United States, and is not aware of any restrictions on their use. However, the user is responsible for making a final determination of copyright status before reproducing. See http://rightsstatements.org/vocab/NoC-US/1.0/.
Arranged chronologically. Divided into folders received and sent. See also: Series 5 for Financial Correspondence.
Pundita Ramabai was a worker for the welfare of child widows on India who visited Emily Howland in Sherwood.
Tierney was a Quaker minister and teacher who was a good friend of Emily Howland's.
Includes letters written by Emily Howland which were printed in the Auburn Journal during her tour of Europe.
Strange was a protege of Margaret Burleigh and had been confined at the Eastern State Penitentiary. He was released because of illness, and was sent to Emily Howland's where he died of tuberculosis in 1872. Most of the letters are from his family in England. Also included is an incomplete history of his life in the United States by Emily Howland.
Miss Caroline A. Putnam (1826-1917) was a close friend of Emily Howland's who started the Holley School in Lottsburgh, VA. After her death, her correspondence was sent to E.H. by Miss E.A. Knapp. ALsS include correspondence from Emily Howland.
Arranged chronologically. See also: Series 5 for Financial Correspondence.
For identification of family members, a genealogical chart is included in Series 1.
Includes ALsS from friends at Nine Partners School.
Includes letters from a cousin at Haverford College and a few written with and by his wife, Hannah (Letchworth), after their marriage (correspondence of Hannah Letchworth before her marriage is included in Emily Howland, ALsS Received and Sent).
Includes Freedmen's Box Accounts, notes on sermons, copied poetry, list of scholars.
Includes accounts, 1878-1884.
Hardcover album, Emily Howland embossed on cover. Includes signatures of friends during her time at Mary Robinson's school.
Financial correspondence concerning general supply store addressed to Thomas Alsop and/or Slocum Howland.
Includes copied verse.
For additional accounts, see Journals in Ser. 3. Includes notes on students at Camp Todd, -1870, 1875-79, and notes on needs of Freedmen, 1866, 1885-1886.Physical Description
Includes relics and other memorabilia that were owned or collected by Emily Howland.
Includes articles and writings of Whittier, Longfellow, Lowell, Emerson, Holmes, Frances E. Willard, Helen M. Jackson, etc., as well as printed newspaper accounts written by Isabel Howland while travelling (purchased from Donald K. Weber, 1-27-1977).
This Series includes printed materials and newspaper clippings, some identified by owner or collector, which were received with this manuscript collection and were probably all collected by Emily Howland. They are sorted by topic. In the case of books which are available elsewhere, only title pages and annotation have been retained, for the sake of space and overall preservation.