Seamen’s Church Institute

Seamen’s Church Institute records, 1828–2000.
149 boxes, 30 volumes, plus 6 oversize folders, and 1 film case (55 linear feet).

The Seamen’s Church Institute Records document the business activities of the Seamen’s Church Institute (SCI) in Philadelphia from 1919 to 2000. The collection boasts a wide breadth of textual documentation that includes meeting minutes, publications and ephemera, financial records, correspondence and subject files, seamen’s records and study materials for seamen’s licensing exams. In addition, there are small numbers of photographs, multimedia and blueprints. Together, the records offer a complete representation of the agency and its affiliates from its founding to the late 1990s. The collection also houses records created by SCI’s predecessors, the Churchmen’s Missionary Association for Seamen and the Pennsylvania Seamen’s Friend Society, from 1843 to 1923. Two additional Philadelphia-based seamen’s organizations represented are Maskline Clark Mariner’s Home and the Norwegian Seamen’s Church.

About Seamen’s Church Institute

Seamen’s Church Institute (SCI) was founded in Philadelphia in 1919 to care for the moral, spiritual, mental and bodily welfare of seamen, and to generally better the conditions surrounding and affecting “men of the sea.” It joined ranks with similar local organizations that had established a long tradition assisting the merchant marine, going back to the first decade of the nineteenth century when the Bible Society of Philadelphia singled out seamen as important beneficiaries of their work. Over one hundred years later, and in a considerably more ambitious manner than this earliest precursor, SCI set to work providing clean and affordable housing, affordable food, morally sound entertainment, banking, religious services and employment assistance to seamen while in the Port of Philadelphia.
The institution’s establishment was appropriately timed, coinciding with a municipally funded overhaul of port facilities along Philadelphia’s Delaware River waterfront. Improvements boosted business and by the early 1920s the newly instituted Department of Wharves, Docks and Ferries boasted of Philadelphia’s resurgence as a leading center of maritime commerce. The Department claimed that the City’s port ranked second in the Nation in terms of volume, handling $742 million worth of imported and exported goods in 1920 alone. An enterprise such as SCI’s complemented the municipality’s work and, as a result, the institution’s early plans to construct a hotel for seamen were warmly greeted by civic, corporate and private supporters.
SCI filled a growing void in Philadelphia. Newly booming maritime business brought greater numbers of seamen into the city, and existing agencies proved inadequate to service the increasing population’s needs. In 1919, according to SCI publication “The Crow’s Nest,” four other seamen’s organizations existed city-wide. All were small operations, typically with religious or ethnic affiliations. In contrast, SCI was larger and was created to service all seamen regardless of race, ethnicity or religion. Its founders hoped to consolidate the efforts of seamen’s social agencies in Philadelphia and, to this end, amalgamated two of the other four organizations: Pennsylvania Seamen’s Friend Society and Churchman’s Missionary Association for Seamen. This centralizing effort benefited all three agencies. The merge advanced SCI’s fundraising campaign to build a seamen’s hotel, through the acquisition of real estate and monetary funds, and the hotel, in turn, provided better accommodations for the other organizations’ constituencies. In addition to financial benefit, the newly partnered associations contributed their rich histories and longstanding ties to the port. For example, the Churchman’s Missionary Association, founded in 1847, operated the famous “Floating Church of the Redeemer” on the Delaware River in the 1850s. Over time, it also maintained multiple locations along the waterfront. Its northernmost post on Cambria Street became the Port Richmond Branch of SCI. The Pennsylvania Seamen’s Friend Society, which was founded in 1843, operated a small boarding house near the corner of Pine and Front Streets.
In addition to uniting existing agencies, SCI enabled the establishment of a new organization for seamen. The Maskline Clark Mariner’s Home was founded in 1927 in a wing of SCI’s new hotel building. It was the product of a $100,000 sum bequeathed by Maskline Clark in 1905 to establish a retirement home for seamen and SCI’s ongoing fundraising campaign to continue work on the hotel building that inspired the partnership. $100,000 was, by the 1920s, considered inadequate to fulfill the last wish of Clark by itself, but it substantially advanced SCI’s cause. Because Clark’s bequest was always intended to help seamen, this joint venture satisfied both organizations’ needs.
The hotel that housed SCI and its affiliates opened in 1925 after six years of fundraising and construction. It was built a mere two blocks from the Delaware River waterfront to provide clean and affordable lodging for seamen as well as other amenities including a restaurant, bank and library. Operations remained at this location until 1957 when SCI, having sold the Walnut Street hotel to the National Park Service, moved to a hotel at 1222 Locust Street in downtown Philadelphia. SCI relocated its headquarters again, in 1974, to an old bank building at 249 Arch Street. Approximately three blocks from the Delaware River, the move accomplished an institutional desire to physically reconnect itself with the Port. Drastic changes in the shipping industries as a result of new technologies had changed seamen’s needs while on shore, forcing SCI to evolve as well. Most notably, due to shorter port layovers, the demand for overnight accommodations was reduced. By the mid 1970s, rather than a place to sleep, seamen required a venue near the wharfs for a few hours of quiet recreation, companionship, and spiritual and moral support. Though this need was satisfied prior to the purchase of the Arch Street building by the “International Seamen’s Club,” a venue that was operated in a trailer erected on the waterfront in the late 1960s, it became apparent that the Locust Street hotel was financially impractical. SCI moved one last time in the 1990s to 475 North Fifth Street where it continued to offer recreation and various support services to the members of the merchant marine into the twenty first century.
Since its founding, five men have led SCI in its mission to support seamen. Reverend Percy Stockman was the organization’s first leader, fulfilling the dual role of Superintendent and Chaplain from 1919 to 1956. After his retirement he continued as Superintendent and Chaplain Emeritus until his death in 1968, working closely with his successor Reverend James McElroy. McElroy managed the organization from 1956 to 1973. That year Reverend Robert Peoples, who already had charge of SCI’s International Seamen’s Club, took the reins. Peoples held the directorship until 1985, when Father Neale Secor became director. In 1997, Father James Von Dreele took over management of the organization and its continuous efforts to serve the merchant marine.

About the collection

The Seamen’s Church Institute Records document the business activities of the Seamen’s Church Institute (SCI) in Philadelphia from 1919 to 2000. The collection boasts a wide breadth of textual documentation that includes meeting minutes, publications and ephemera, financial records, correspondence and subject files, seamen’s records and study materials for seamen’s licensing exams. In addition, there are small numbers of photographs, multimedia and blueprints. Together, the records offer a complete representation of the agency and its affiliates from its founding to the late 1990s. The collection also houses records created by SCI’s predecessors, the Churchmen’s Missionary Association for Seamen and the Pennsylvania Seamen’s Friend Society, from 1843 to 1923. Two additional Philadelphia-based seamen’s organizations represented are Maskline Clark Mariner’s Home and the Norwegian Seamen’s Church.
Three series in the collection are particularly rich in institutional history, and to a lesser extent local and maritime history: Series II Board of Managers Records, Series IV Publications and Printed Materials, and Series VIII Seamen’s Records. The first two series mentioned fully expose the history of SCI and its work in the Port of Philadelphia. Researchers interested in twentieth-century port developments and the evolution of commercial maritime activities will also be well satisfied. In particular, the Board of Managers’ records include annual and general meeting minutes from 1919 to 1983 as well as assorted committee records. Similarly, in the Publications series researchers will find among other items a near complete run of SCI’s newsletter “The Crow’s Nest,” from 1920 to 1985. Both record groups document important events and decisions in SCI’s institutional history, and to varying degrees report on the organization’s day to day operations. In addition, the fact that SCI paid close attention to the ebb and flow of the port community and maritime industries is evidenced in meeting minutes and especially in “The Crow’s Nest.” This publication offers articles on the efforts of city departments and private industry to maintain a healthy port environment. It also touches on the effects that events, such as the Great Depression and World War II, and changes in commercial transport had on the shipping industry and in turn on seamen. “The Crow’s Nest” also chronicles the activities of the merchant marine schoolship “Annapolis.”
The Seamen’s Records series houses significantly different information than the Board of Managers or Publications series. Comprised of multiple card files, the record group documents the individuals who utilized the various services of SCI from 1929 to 1973. The cards are useful individually as genealogical resources and they present a collective biography of seamen in the twentieth century. In addition to perusing the Seamen’s Records, researchers interested in the life and work of the merchant marine may also wish to review the documents that make up Series XII Study Materials. This series houses study guides and other records designed to help seamen prepare for various licensing exams.
The remaining nine series in the collection greatly augment the above described series, with the exception of Series XIII Military Order of the World Wars, which addresses the work of a patriotic organization in the 1960s, rather than SCI. Series V Financial Records and Series VII Correspondence and Subject Files offer the most in terms of abundance of documentation. Among the financial records researchers will be pleased to find year-end audit reports, or annual reports, dating from 1922 to 1999. In the Correspondence and Subject Files researchers will find information on just about any topic related to SCI and its work. Records produced between 1920 and 1940 that are similar in nature to the records housed in the Correspondence and Subject Files are maintained separately in Series VI Early Records.
Please review individual series descriptions and folder lists for more detailed information.

  • Sailors
  • Merchant mariners — Missions and charities
  • Women in charitable work
  • Travelers’ aid societies
  • Old age homes — 20th century
  • Occupational training
  • Merchant marine — Vocational guidance
  • Boardinghouses — Philadelphia — Pennsylvania
  • Hotels — Philadelphia — Pennsylvania
  • Industrial welfare — Philadelphia — Pennsylvania
  • Church work with the working class — Philadelphia — Pennsylvania
  • Harbors — Philadelphia — Pennsylvania
  • Community welfare councils — Philadelphia — Pennsylvania
  • Working class — Education
  • Sailors — Religious life
  • Seafaring life
  • Stevedores — Philadelphia — Pennsylvania
  • Charities — Philadelphia — Pennsylvania
  • Moral education
  • Professional education
  • Philadelphia (Pa.) — History — 19th century
  • Philadelphia (Pa.) — History — 20th century
  • Philadelphia (Pa.) — Social life and customs — 19th century
  • Philadelphia (Pa.) — Social life and customs — 20th century
  • Seamen’s Church Institute
  • Maskline Clark Mariner’s Home
  • Pennsylvania Seamen’s Friend Society
  • Churchmen’s Missionary Association for Seamen
  • Norwegian Seamen’s Church
  • Military Order of the World Wars
  • Stockman, Percy
  • McElroy, James
  • Peoples, Robert
  • Secor, Neale
  • Von Dreele, James
Types of material
  • Annual reports
  • Correspodence
  • Ephemera
  • Financial records
  • Index files
  • Minutes
  • Newsletters
  • Photographs
Reference files
  • Floating Church of the Redeemer
  • Merchant Marine Traning
  • Seaman’s Church
Posted in Photo-rich Collections, Seamanship, Seamen's Welfare | Leave a comment

Schuylkill Navy

Schuylkill Navy records, 1865–1977.
71 boxes, 3 volumes, plus 1 oversize folder and loose items (59.75 linear feet).
About Schuylkill Navy

The Schuylkill Navy of Philadelphia is the oldest amateur athletic governing body in the United States. It was founded in 1858 with nine clubs and approximately 300 members. The member clubs of the Navy are all located on the Schuylkill River where it flows through Fairmount Park in Philadelphia, with most of the clubs being located on the historic Boathouse Row. Clubs represented at the founding of the society in October 1858 included America, Camilla, Chebucto, Falcon, Independent, Keystone, Neptune, Pennsylvania, and University. Later that month Nautilus and Quaker City joined. Half of the clubs lapsed during the Civil War. Current member clubs include Fairmount Rowing Association, Crescent Boat Club, Bachelors Barge Club, University Barge Club, Malta Boat Club, Vesper Boat Club, College Boat Club, Penn Athletic Club Rowing Association (Penn AC), Undine Barge Club, Philadelphia Girls’ Rowing Club (PGRC), Gillin Boat Club, and St. Joseph’s University and St. Joseph’s Prep. At least 23 other clubs have belonged to the Navy at various times. By charter, the Schuylkill Nav’s object is “to secure united action among the several Clubs and to promote amateurism on the Schuylkill River.” Each club sends a delegate to the monthly meetings and the clubs elect the officers of the Schuylkill Navy at the January meeting. The Schuylkill Navy and its member clubs still host many races. In 1953, the Navy convinced the Dad Vail Rowing Association to move its regatta to Philadelphia, where it has remained ever since. The Dad Vail is probably the largest collegiate regatta and usually signifies the end of the spring rowing season for most collegiate teams. Other major regattas held each year include the Thomas Eakins Head of the Schuylkill Regatta (sponsored by the University Barge Club) and the Frostbite Regatta. The Navy also sponsors other athletic endeavors including a basketball league and an annual cross country race. The latter has been held since 1899, with a few interruptions during World War II.

About the collection

This collection is scheduled to be arranged and described. Please stay tuned for updated collection information. This is a collection of papers of the Schuylkill Navy. Materials include: minutes of meetings of the Schuylkill Navy, attended by representatives of each of the Navy’s constituent clubs, 1865-1954 (missing 1883-1888) and 1955-1966. The minutes discuss routine business, including committee reports and rewriting of the group’s constitution and by-laws, preparation for regattas, and activities of member clubs. Correspondence of the Schuylkill Navy’s secretaries include incoming and outgoing correspondence to member rowing clubs, individual members, and other Philadelphia area clubs and organizations. Letters discuss planning of regattas and other events, membership, meetings, and equipment and property of the Schuylkill Navy. Office records, 1940s-1960s, include files on regattas, treasurer’s files, financial records, including account books, check registers, and member lists, by-laws, charter, and other records.

Materials related to regattas include: correspondence, programs, announcements, 1867-1972 (bulk 1930s and 1960s); logbooks of participants and outcomes, 1873-1965; photos, correspondence, programs, and clippings related to the Philadelphia Gold Challenge Cup, 1930s-1950s; scrapbooks (disbound) of programs and clippings, 1913-1940: programs are annotated with scores and outcomes of races); clippings; and regatta programs, 1880-1955, of regattas held by the Schuylkill Navy and local and regional regattas held by other rowing clubs. Records related to other rowing organizations include: files related to FISA, the international rowing federation, including member bulletins, annual reports, and proceedings of annual congresses; National Association of Amateur Oarsmen records including correspondence, minutes, financial information, and office files; correspondence related to donations for the U.S. Olympic Rowing Team (1950-1952); and minutes of the Middle States Regatta Association, 1888-1961.

Records for the Schuylkill Navy Basketball League, 1957-1970, include schedules, player lists, and score books. Files related to the Schuylkill Navy Cross Country Run, 1925-1965, include programs, race results, reports, and correspondence.

Scrapbooks, 1928, 1935-1946, 1947-1960, 1966, include clippings, programs, and photographs.

Photographs in the collection, 1940s-1970s, include portraits of rowing crews, photos of crews during races, (some with information about the crew). Many of these are of university or prep school crews.

The collection also contains bound and some loose copies of Rowing News, 1943-1959, and flags of the United States, Canada, and the Soviet Union.

  • National Association of Amateur Oarsmen (U.S.)
  • Regattas–Pennsylvania–Philadelphia
  • Rowing clubs–Pennsylvania–Philadelphia
  • Rowing–Pennsylvania–Philadelphia
Types of material
  • By-laws
  • Clippings
  • Constitutions
  • Correspondence
  • Minutes
  • Photographs
  • Programs
  • Scrapbooks
Reference files
  • Rowing
Posted in Photo-rich Collections, Rowing Clubs and Rowing | Leave a comment

Schuylkill Canal Transportation Line

Schuylkill Canal Transportation Line records, 1872–1875.
1 volume (0.08 linear feet).
About Schuylkill Canal Transportation Line

The Schuylkill Navigation Company was chartered in 1815 to build a series of navigation improvements in the Schuylkill River. A 108-mile waterway was completed in 1827 linking Philadelphia to Port Carbon in the anthracite coal fields above Pottsville, Pennsylvania. During the 1860s the canal entered a period of decline. In 1869 it was damaged by a flood. Surrendering to the competition in 1870, the Schuylkill Navigation Company leased its waterway to the Philadelphia and Reading Railroad for a period of 979 years. Under the railroad’s control, the Schuylkill Navigation continued to decline. Since the Delaware and Raritan Canal was owned by the competing Pennsylvania Railroad, Schuylkill boats were denied access to this important New Jersey waterway. As a result, traffic on the Schuylkill decreased rapidly. By 1890 only 144,994 tons of cargo passed through the Schuylkill Navigation. The Schuylkill Navigation was also greatly hindered by the problems of coal silt deposits which made its upper sections almost unusable. By 1891 the portion of Navigation above Port Clinton was abandoned. By 1904 the anthracite traffic had almost completely ceased, and after 1913 only an occasional cargo passed between Port Clinton and Philadelphia.

About the collection

One volume of records of the Schuylkill Canal Transportation Line. Volume includes: lists of canal barges, with captain, address, year built, builder, where wintered and notes; list of letters sent, 1874; list of discharged captains, 1873, including reason for discharge; a list of captains who quit dishonorably, 1874; lists of damages and collisions, 1872-1875, including notes about the incidents and costs of repairs; Engineer’s Department charges for assistance and repairs to boats, 1874-1875; and a list of Philadelphia and Reading Railroad Co. officers for 1874. The cover of the volume is inscribed “G.T. Philips, Boat Agent, Office Schuylkill Canal Transportation Line, Fairmount Locks, Philadelphia, PA. P & R RR Co.”

  • Philadelphia & Reading Railroad Co.
  • Schuylkill Navigation Company
  • Inland waterway vessels
  • Ships–Maintenance and repair
Types of material
  • Business records
Reference files
  • Canals, PA
  • Canals, NJ(?)
  • Pennsylvania Railroad
Posted in Canals | Leave a comment

Samuel Welsh (Brig)

Samuel Welsh (Brig) account book, 1857–1868.
1 volume (0.08 linear feet).
About the brig Samuel Welsh

In the period covered by this collection, the brig Samuel Welsh traveled from Philadelphia to Florida, the West Indies and the Mediterranean.

About the collection

Account book of expenses incurred on nine voyages of the brig Samuel Welsh, listing amounts paid for wages for captain and crew, pilotage, wharfage, repairs, and labor.

  • Shipping — Accounting
  • Ships — Equipment and supplies
Types of material
  • Account Books
Posted in Collection Themes | Leave a comment

Anderson, Samuel V.

Samuel V. Anderson letterbook, 1802–1824.
1 volume (0.12 linear feet).
About Samuel V. Anderson

Samuel V. Anderson was a Philadelphia merchant. His business was located at 25 North Water Street.

About the collection

Letterbook of Samuel V. Anderson, with retained copies of letters regarding expenses, cargo, etc., to firms in Philadelphia, New York, Baltimore, and Charleston.

  • Naudain, Andrew
  • Balderston, Ely
  • Wickersham, Amos
  • Shipley, Morris
  • Boon, Arnold
  • Robert Kirby & Co.
  • Hopkins & Charles
  • Merchants — Pennsylvania — Philadelphia
Types of material
  • Letterbooks
Posted in Merchants, Shipping Trade | Leave a comment

Massey, Samuel

Samuel Massey business papers, 1755–1763.
1 box (0.2 linear feet).
About Samuel Massey

Philadelphia merchant Samuel Massey (1734-1793) began his business career in the store of Jonathan Mifflin in Philadelphia in 1751. From approximately 1756 to 1760, Massey was in business with his father, Wight Massey (1703-1761). In 1760, Samuel Massey formed a partnership with Benjamin Mifflin (1718-1787), also a Philadelphia merchant. This firm operated under the name of Mifflin & Massey, and dealt primarily in teas, coffee, sugar, and flour.

About the collection

This collection consists of account and waste books of the Philadelphia merchant Samuel Massey. Mifflin and Massey waste book (1761-1763) and Wight and Samuel Massey waste book (1759-1760), document daily transactions in sugar, coffee, wine, tea, oranges, spirits, and other merchandise. Two notebooks of accounts (1755-1756) of Samuel Massey document transactions in corn, chocolate, limes, boards, rum, pork, and other merchandise; one volume includes several copies of business letters.

  • Philadelphia (Pa.) — Commerce — 18th century
  • Merchants — Pennsylvania — Philadelphia
  • Ship chandlers — Pennsylvania — Philadelphia
  • Mifflin, Jonathan, 1704-1781
  • Mifflin and Massey
  • Wight and Massey
  • Mifflin, Benjamin, 1718-1787
  • Wight Massey, 1703-1761
  • Business records –Pennsylvania–Philadelphia
Types of material
  • Account books
  • Waste books
Related collections
  • check the item called “Waste Book B” — is this related?
Posted in Merchants, Ships' Chandlers | Leave a comment

Coates, Samuel

Samuel Coates business papers, 1791–1801.
1 folder (0.08 linear feet).
About Samuel Coates

Samuel Coates was a Philadelphia merchant. His business was located at 82 Front Street. Coates died in 1830.

About the collection

Copies of outgoing correspondence of unknown sender, addressed to Samuel Coates and Gurdon Backus, both of Philadelphia.

  • Philadelphia (Pa.) — Commerce — 18th century}Merchants — Pennsylvania — Philadelphia
Types of material
  • Correspondence
Posted in Merchants | Leave a comment

Archer, Samuel

Samuel Archer papers, 1826–1838.
1 box (0.2 linear feet).
About Samuel Archer

Samuel Archer was born in Burlington County, New Jersey in 1771. In 1800, he opened a retail dry goods business in Philadelphia, eventually becoming one of the largest importers and shipping merchants in the city. His firm, Samuel Archer & Co., and later Archer & Bispham, imported extensively from China and India, dealing notably in the trade of fabrics. Archer died in 1839 at the age of sixty-eight.

About the collection

This collection consists of eighteen letters written by Samuel Archer of Philadelphia to his nephew Franklin Jones, also of Philadelphia, between 1826 and 1838. The letters were written while Archer served as a supercargo on board ships sailing out of Philadelphia, bound for ports in Asia or South America, such as Canton, Calcutta, or Valparaiso.
Most letters are written as journal entries, detailing day-by-day Archer’s experiences and thoughts while aboard ship or in ports of call.
“They had an idea on shore there that I was a MISSIONARY going to the Sandwich Islands to convert the benighted Pagans! I have been taken for a doctor repeatedly, but this I believe is the first time they have put me down as a divine; the profession of the latter is as far above my merits as it is from my ambition.”
Archer’s writing style is colorful and expressive, and he has a tendency to compose rather poetic passages, such as this excerpt written to congratulate Jones on his upcoming marriage:
“May that same sun shine on your jubilee and auspicious be the breeze for those about embarking in the good ship called the “Matrimony.” The ship sails long voyages, but has the character of being a good vessel, and tho’ the sea she navigates be not always without storms, yet with you discreet pilot on board, and your sails at starting filled with the winds of Prosperity, there is reason to expect a pleasant passage over a pleasant ocean.”
Occasionally Archer includes in his letters information such as latitude and longitude or distance traveled. His final letter from 1838 lists the names of all the vessels on which he had sailed since 1826, as well as his destinations and the number of days spent sailing.

  • Archer, Samuel
  • India — Description and travel
  • China — Description and travel
  • South America — Description and travel
Types of material
  • Correspondence
Reference files
  • China-Commerce-USA
  • China Trade
Posted in China Trade, Seafaring Accounts | Leave a comment

Cooper, Ryan

Ryan Cooper collection of Philadelphia Custom House records, 1821–1925.
3 boxes, 1 folder (3 linear feet).
About Ryan Cooper

Ryan Cooper is a collector of and dealer in nautical antiques. The United States Customs Service (1789-1927) processed paperwork for the import and export of goods into and out of the country. Customs officials also assessed and collected customs fees and penalties. Past functions of the Customs Service included administration of navigation aids and lighthouses, and functions relating to the protection of seamen, and to revenue cutters. In 1927 the Customs Service became the Bureau of Customs.

About the collection

This is a collection of papers of the United States Customs Service of the Port of Philadelphia, from 1821 to 1926, with the major concentration of materials falling between the 1830s and the 1890s. The records illustrate commercial and shipping interests, as well as foreign trade relations, of the United States. Materials include: consular invoices; bills of lading; customs declarations and affadavits of consignees, importers, and agents; surveyor’s office reports of arrivals; inspection records; invoices for goods; receipts for port fees; and miscellaneous correspondence related to customs. The records document shipments of a wide variety of goods and merchandise: wool and textiles, coal, iron, ash, wood, sugar, coffee, salt, fruit, gin, whiskey, wine, and many other items. Ships arrived from Liverpool and other ports in Great Britain, Germany, France, and Holland, as well as various Caribbean ports. These papers were collected by Ryan Cooper.

  • United States Custom House (Philadelphia, Pa.)
  • Customs administration–Pennsylvania–Philadelphia
  • Shipping–Pennsylvania–Philadelphia
  • Philadelphia (Pa.)–Commerce
Types of material
  • Bills of lading
  • Receipts (financial records)
Reference files
  • Custom House, Philadelphia
  • Port of Philadelphia
  • Port Records
Posted in Port of Philadelphia | Leave a comment

Russell & Mason

Russell & Mason records, 1875–1890.
1 box (0.2 linear feet).
About Russell & Mason

The firm Russell & Mason, owned by William F. Russell and Charles H. Mason, bought the steamboat Twilight from the heirs of Captain Henry Crawford in 1890. Twilight was one of several steamers making a regular run on the Delaware River between Trenton and Philadelphia in the last decades of the nineteenth century. Twilight struck a rock near Perriwig Bar in the Delaware River and sank in 1901.

About the collection

Legal and financial papers, mostly relating to the sale of the steamer Twilight to the Upper Delaware River Transportation Company in 1890. Includes several receipts for disbursements from the estate of Catherine S. Russell. The collection also includes a photograph of an unidentified man.

  • Twilight (Steamer)
  • Russell, William F.
  • Mason, Charles H.
  • Upper Delaware River Transportation Company
Types of material
  • Financial records
  • Receipts (financial records)
Posted in Steamships and Steamboats | Leave a comment