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Blatchford family papers - Additions

Identifier: Midwest-MS-Blatchford 2

Scope and Content of the Collection

Primarily correspondence, writings, and other personal materials related to E.W. Blatchford, which were removed from the Newberry Library Archives and added to the Blatchford Family Papers.

Correspondence covers E.W. Blatchford's work with the Chicago Academy of Sciences, the Chicago Manual Training School, and a variety of his missionary and religious contacts. E.W. Blatchford was heavily involved in the Chicago Academy of Sciences in the 1870s-1880s, and the collection includes his expedition notes from a trip to the Dry Tortugas in Florida, notes for an address, and photographs, as well as bulletins and reports of the Academy.

Also included are drafts of E.W. Blatchford's "Reminiscences" and some genealogical research, correspondence and biographies of Reverend Rensselaer Winchell and his family, of whom E.W. Blatchford had a particular interest, and correspondence and memorials related to the death of Henry H. Belfield, director of the Chicago Manual Training School.

There is a small amount of material related to other Blatchford family members, including an early diary by Mary E. Blatchford detailing her religious convictions, and some religious writings by John Blatchford. Scrapbooks are primarily collections of memorials and obituaries, including Rev. Richard Salter Storrs and Nicholas Senn.

The cornerstone box was contained within Ulmenheim, the Blatchford family home located at 1111 N. La Salle St., and held family materials placed there in 1875. Items include a letter written by E.W. Blatchford and signed by the rest of the family, a bible, a history of Ulmenheim, a current newspaper, and some family photos. The cornerstone was removed in 1929 when the house was demolished.


  • Creation: 1841-1947
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1870 - 1914



Materials are in English.

Conditions Governing Access

The Blatchford family papers - Additions are open for research in the Special Collections Reading Room; 1 box at a time (Priority III).

Ownership and Literary Rights

The Blatchford family papers - Additions are the physical property of the Newberry Library. Copyright may belong to the authors or their legal heirs or assigns. For permission to publish or reproduce any materials from this collection, contact the Roger and Julie Baskes Department of Special Collections.

Biography of Blatchford family

Eliphalet Wickes (E.W.) Blatchford was born May 31, 1826 in Stillwater, NY, the son of Rev. John Blatchford and Frances Wickes Blatchford. The family moved to Chicago in 1837, when John Blatchford took charge of the First Presbyterian Church, but later relocated to Marion City, Mo, when John Blatchford became president of Marion College. After early schooling in Missouri, E.W. Blatchford attended Illinois College, graduating in 1845. Initially beginning his business career in St. Louis, he established a lead and linseed oil manufacturing plant with a partner, eventually opening a branch of the company in Chicago and returning there. By the early 1860s he had bought out his partner and reorganized the company into E.W. Blatchford and Co. The firm manufactured lead pipe for plumbing equipment, as well as animal feed derived from linseed oil, and later provided lead wire for the production of ammunition during the Civil War. By the 1890s, the company was known for producing lead shot, and also type metal for the printing industry.

E.W. Blatchford was married to Mary Emily Williams, and the couple had seven children. Throughout his life, E.W. Blatchford maintained an avid involvement in local church activity, missionary work, and many other organizations in and around Chicago, in addition to the Newberry Library. He died at his home in Chicago on January 25, 1914.


5.3 Linear Feet (9 boxes and 2 cartons)


Chicago lead manufacturer, co-executor of Walter L. Newberry's will, and first president of the Newberry Library Board of Trustees, 1892-1914. Papers include letters, notes, documents, photographs, scrapbooks and clippings relating to his family, his business ventures, his work at the Newberry, and his involvement with Chicago social, charitable and educational organizations.


Materials arranged alphabetically, with cornerstone contents and scrapbooks at the end.

Collection Stack Location

1 5 3, 1 16 2


Gift of Frances L. Blatchford, 1946.

Related Materials

See also the Blatchford family papers (Midwest MS Blatchford) and the NL Archives - E.W. Blatchford Papers (NL Archives 02/15/01).

Processed by

Kelly Kress, 2011.

Inventory of the Blatchford family papers - Additions, 1841-1947, bulk 1870-1914
Kelly Kress
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the The Newberry Library - Modern Manuscripts and Archives Repository

60 West Walton Street
Chicago Illinois 60610 United States