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Jenkins 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

Jabez Jenkins (1792-1858) was a Quaker merchant. He was born in Little Creek, Delaware, and was a birthright member of Duck Creek Monthly Meeting. Jabez was received on certificate in Philadelphia Monthly Meeting in 1810, and transferred his membership to Chester in 1813, the year of his marriage to Ann. P. Newlin, the daughter of Nathaniel and Martha (Parker) Newlin. They had four children, the youngest of whom died in 1824, three months after her mother passed away.

Jabez was in business with his brother, Jonathan, and this endeavor failed; Chester Monthly Meeting disowned the young men in 1818 for extending business beyond their ability to manage and making only a partial assignment of debts. The former acknowledged this transgression in 1837 and was given a certificate of removal to Uwchlan Monthly Meeting. Uwchlan also accepted the certificate of his second wife, Mary S. (Newlin) Jenkins (1895-1864), daughter of Cyrus and Ann (Shipley) Newlin, from Wilmington Monthly Meeting; Mary S. had previously acknowledged her marriage "out of unity." The couple also requested membership for their only daughter from Uwchlan Meeting since she was not a birthright member. From that point on, until he moved back to Philadelphia in 1845, Jabez was involved in meeting affairs and was appointed a representative to quarterly meeting. Jabez Jenkins died in 1858, in his 66th year, a member of Western District Monthly Meeting.

John Guest, his wife Elizabeth, son George, and daughters Elizabeth and Anna transferred their membership to Southern District Monthly Meeting from Philadelphia in 1788. John died in 1793 at the age of 80, and Elizabeth a year later, aged 69. George died in 1802 at the age of 56. In 1809, Elizabeth and Anna returned to Philadelphia Monthly Meeting. John's sister, Anne, married Thomas Clifford in 1743. Anna Guest, along with relatives Ann and Amelia Guest, moved from Philadelphia to Western District in 1816, and removed to Green Street Monthly Meeting in 1826.

The Jenkins family papers include journals, a letterbook, other miscellaneous correspondence and a variety of other material.

Of particular note in Series 1 are the journals and copybook kept by Jabez Jenkins, a Quaker merchant. The documents from Canton were apparently assembled for his children after the death of their mother and contain parental advice on a variety of subjects. In another file is an abstract of the Jabez Jenkins journals, apparently made by Mary J. Warner, his granddaughter.

The Guest material includes family correspondence and other miscellanies. In Series 3, a letter, written in 1741 from Sophia Hume to Madam Shettele, provides information about her attitude towards rationalism and other topics. Alson included is a journal (anonymous) kept aboard the Schooner Jonathan Middleton Jr.

The collection is divided into three series:

  1. Jabez Jenkins Jr.
  2. Guest Family Papers
  3. Miscellaneous

The collection was given to Friends Historical Library by Catherine McClelland Dole, Swarthmore College Class of 1966. The papers descended in her family through her mother, Mary Sharpless McClelland, her grandmother, Grace Warner Waring, and her great-grandmother, Mary Jenkins Warner.

Donor: Catherine McClelland Dole, 4/26/2000

Accession number: 2000-018

The following materials were removed from the collection and recataloged:

  1. PA: 6 photographs: (1) Group photograph (probably Margaret H. Jenkins, Mary Jenkins Warner, Grace Warner Waring, and another woman), (2) William Y. and Mary J. Warner, (3) Elizabeth Allen 1897, (4) Jabez Jenkins, (5) Woman (prob. Margaret H. Jenkins), (6) Unknown Jenkins family female
  2. Relics:Piece of willow bark taken from a tree overhanging Napoleon's grave, St. Helena, by grandfather Jabez Jenkins.

Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College
Finding Aid Author
Finding Aid Date
Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Permission to reuse, publish, or reproduce items in this collection beyond the bounds of Fair Use or other exemptions to copyright law must be obtained from the Friends Historical Library of Swarthmore College which holds the copyright. See

Collection Inventory

Journal of a trip from Philadelphia to Pittsburgh, Illinois, Kentucky, Nashville, 1819-20.
Box 1
Journal of a trip from Philadelphia to Canton, 1826-27.
Box 1
Letter copybook kept during a trip to China and a stay in Canton, 1826-28.
Box 1
Journal/Commonplace book, 1834-46.
Box 1
Commonplace book, 1838.
Box 1
Correspondence received, 1839-40.
Box 1
Draught of a the Township of West Whiteland, 1839.
Box 1
Physical Description


Certificate: Friends' Reading Room Association, 1836.
Box 1
Selections from the Journal and the Letters of My Great Grandfather Jabez Jenkins (typescript), n.d.
Box 1

Letter of Anna Clifford to Cousin Guest, 1815.
Box 1
Receipt: George Guest to Daniel Trotter, 1793.
Box 1
Scope and Contents

for coffins

Miscellaneous Guest family manuscripts, 1798 & n.d.
Box 1

Letter from Sophia Hume to Madam [Shettele], 1741.
Box 1
Journal (anonymous) of Schr. "Jno. Middleton Jr.", 1877.
Box 1
Joseph Sturge to members of the Society of Friends in the United States concerning slavery, 1841.
Box 1
Scope and Contents

Printed circular lithograph concerning slavery

Miscellaneous Quaker manuscripts, 1769-1826 & n.d.
Box 1
Physical Description


For cure of a Dysentery or a Diarhea (recipe), n.d.
Box 1

Print, Suggest