Papers of the Herrick-Chapman family, 1845-2010 (inclusive),1890-1960 (bulk)
- Majority of material found within 1890-1960
Language of Materials
Conditions Governing Use
Copying. Papers may be copied in accordance with the library's usual procedures.
23.31 linear feet ((1 carton, 53 + 1/2 file boxes) plus 1 folio folder, 1 supersize folder, 30 photograph folders, 1 folio+ photograph folder, 1 audiotape, 1 videotape, 7 objects)
Series I, JESSIE LOUISE HERRICK, 1867-1962, n.d. (#1.1-9.6, SD.1, PD.1-PD.3), includes diaries, letters, photographs, financial records, and writings of physician Jessie Louise Herrick. Women's rights, religion, women in medicine, the daily life of a college physician, and problems with neighborhood children on Halloween appear throughout her diaries. Early diary entries include commentary on leaving home for the first time to attend teacher training school in Glens Falls, New York (#1.1); the new state capitol building in Albany, New York (#1.1); the start of the Spanish-American War (#1.2); Carrie Chapman Catt speaking at a New York State Conference Committee meeting (#1.2); Woman's Christian Temperance Union meetings (#1.2); trip to Vienna (#1.4); Lillian's wedding (#1.4); patients, (#1.5); World War I, (#1.6); her broken engagement (#1.6); trip to California (#1.7); summer courses at Harvard (#1.8). Later diary entries include real estate she owned (#3.2); her retirement from Denton College (#4.2, #4.3); World War II (#4.4-5.2, 5 folders); death of Millian (#5.2). Between 1932 and 1934 Jessie used two diaries, possibly one for her office. Folders entitled "notes" primarily contain commentary on medical treatments, inspirational sayings, and human relations (#7.7-8.2). In 1939 Jessie began writing a book titled "The Mental and Physical Life Span." She began several chapters including those on infancy, the division of life, pre-school, and the golden age (#8.9). Of particular note is a letter to her brother Frederick asking to borrow money to finish her medical degree (#7.6). Letters with sister Lillian can be found in Series III and Series IV. The series is arranged alphabetically.
Series II, MILLIAN "MILLIE" BELLE HERRICK, 1890-1946, n.d. (#9.7-11.2), includes poems, financial records, and a diary of Millian Belle Herrick. In her diary Millie notes, "This book is the gift of my beloved poet friend Elizabeth Holdreu. I have never kept a diary before" (#9.8). Millian wrote many poems during her life; many use the imagery of the natural world to express her religious beliefs. Letters with Lillian can be found in Series III and Series IV. Other than her teaching certificate (#11.2), there is no material from her teaching career. The subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Series III, LILLIAN BELLE HERRICK CHAPMAN, 1856-1989, n.d. (#11.3-40.5, 53.2v-53.3v, 54.1v, T-383.1,Vt-190.1, PD.4-PD.6), includes biographies, correspondence, financial records, sermons, diaries, family records and genealogies, scrapbooks and photographs of Lillian Herrick Chapman. The series is arranged in six subseries
Subseries A, Biographical and personal, 1856-1989, n.d. (#11.3-12.4, 53.2v-53.3v, 54.1v), includes biographies, annotated bibles, family records, financial records, and other material of Lillian Herrick Chapman. In 1898, while teaching at the Elmira Free Academy, Lillian helped found the Kelvin Scientific Society (#11.5). A financial ledger contains a brief time line of Lillian and William Henry Chapman's life together and photograph postcard of them on the Giant's Causeway, Ireland (#11.8). The family estate papers includes records of the Cowan, Herrick, Brooks, and Chapman families (#12.1-12.2). Of note is the Parson's Register which includes a record of sermons by date, baptisms, church members received, marriages, funerals, pastoral visits, and Sunday School members and awards (#12.3). The subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries B, Correspondence, 1900-1956, n.d. (#12.5-12.11, PD.4-PD.5), includes letters to and from Lillian, family members, and others. Letters with her family include a birthday letter from Millie (#12.8), about Jessie moving into her house "Cedarcrest" (#12.7), and from niece Rachel Gleason Brooks (#12.5). Letters between Lillian, William Henry Chapman, and William Herrick Chapman are found in Series IV. (Other letters from Jessie and Millie to Lillian are also found in Series IV). In 1900 Lillian attended the Cornell Summer School of Field Geology in Trenton Falls, New York. Four women and eleven men camped for weeks in upstate New York with Professor Gilbert Harris, collecting samples, drawing maps, and studying geology; Lillian's letters home are in #12.9. The subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries C, Diaries, 1896-1965, n.d. (#13.1-24.4, PD.6), contains the diaries of Lillian Herrick Chapman. Her early diaries are a combination of personal entries, inspirational quotes, and written prayers. The personal entries are about teaching, Academy of Science meetings, and lectures. She often mused about her personal life, and wished for love (#13.1). Other entries describe Cornell Geology Field Camp (#13.4, 13.5); spiritualism (#13.6); wireless telegraphy (#13.7); the death of her father Orman Herrick (#14.1); seances (#14.1); courtship (#14.1); the death of her mother Louisa Cowan Herrick (#14.5); preaching and being licenced in Presbyterian Church (#14.5); ministry at Park Church (#15.1); her ministry at Big Flats Presbyterian Church (#16.2); the death of William Henry Chapman (#18.1); the deaths of Millian (#19.3) and Jessie (#23.2); and moving to Wakefield, Massachusetts and going into a nursing home (#24.3). Other topics found throughout the diaries include visits made, teaching Sunday School, sermons given, health of family and friends, family life, committees, and William Henry Chapman's preaching. The diaries from 1926 to 1930 consist of two diaries for each year; one functioning more as date book, and the other as a daily journal. The subseries is arranged chronologically.
Subseries D, Sermons, 1913-1989, n.d. (#25.1-35.10, T-383.1, Vt-190.1), includes sermons from Lillian's brief career as a licensed Presbyterian minister and later as an ordained Congregational minister. She often preached at the Park Church and the North Church in Elmira, New York; the Big Flats Presbyterian Church in Big Flats, New York; and the First Presbyterian Church of Horseheads, New York. Sermons were kept by Lillian in envelopes that recorded the date, reading, place given, and subject / title of the sermon. Each envelope has been separately foldered, and its information recorded in the folder title. Sermon titles are in quotes. Some folders include church bulletins or notes describing the congregation's reaction to the sermon, such as "well received." Lillian's sermons cover a wide range of religious themes such as standards of morality and sacrifice (#25.15, 26.4); religious and historic figures (#29.8, 32.18, 34.25); politics (#31.4); nature (#27.11, 27.20); religious tenets such as transfiguration (#26.5) and the ten commandments (#31.3); social relationships during war-time (#33.10); Sunday school (#25.12); the evils of alcohol (#33.21, 34.11); and World War II (#33.20). Mother's Day sermons focus on the relationship between Jesus and Mary. In 1943 Lillian retired from the Big Flats Presbyterian Church after serving as minister for 15 years. The message she read to the congregation asking them to accept her resignation describes her years of service, and her love for her congregation (#34.12). She continued to preach occasionally until 1951. The subseries is arranged chronologically.
Subseries E, Lectures, poems, and other writings, 1890-1956, n.d. (#35.11-39.1), includes the writings of Lillian Herrick Chapman. Lillian often spoke before various groups such as travel clubs, the Wednesday Morning Club, other women's groups, and church groups. Lillian's lectures reflected her trips to Europe through Chapman Private European Tours (#35.14, 35.21, 35.22); her scientific experiments on vibratory motion and wireless telegraphy at Elmira Free Academy (#37.7, 37.10); and religious figures such as Anne Hutchinson (#36.2) and Martin Luther (#36.6). Lillian, like her twin sister Millie, used nature as religious inspiration (#38.10-38.13). The subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries F, Scrapbooks, 1882-1964 (#39.2-40.5), includes scrapbooks containing photographs, clippings, poems, and letters assembled by Lillian Herrick Chapman. Of note is a long letter from Lillian's niece Rachel Gleason Brooks, a YWCA field worker in China (#40.1v). The subseries is arranged alphabetically; the untitled scrapbooks are arranged chronologically.
Series IV, OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS, 1845-2010, n.d. (#41.1-52.16, 53.4v-53.6v, 54.2v, FD.1, PD.7-PD.10), includes correspondence, photographs, books, diaries, and other materials from members of the Brooks, Cowan, Chapman, and Herrick families. The series is arranged in three subseries.
Subseries A, William Henry Chapman, 1845-1959, n.d. (#41.1-42.7, 53.4v-53.5v, 54.2v), includes books, diaries, sermons, and other material of William Henry Chapman. Diary entries are sporadic; topics include calls made, work around the house and garden, weather, weddings officiated, health of himself and family, sermons given (#41.6-42.1). Also included are programs from Chapman Private European Tours (#41.4). William Henry Chapman and Lillian both led tours to Italy, Great Britain, Northern Africa, Germany, and Greece with friends and other clients. William Henry Chapman served as Protestant chaplain at the Elmira Reformatory; he also taught ethics and history to the inmates. Pamphlets written by William Henry Chapman for the Elmira Reformatory are also included (#42.3). The subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries B, William Herrick Chapman, 1914-1985, n.d. (#42.8-52.3, PD.7-PD.10), includes diaries, correspondence, and other material of William Herrick Chapman. Early diary topics include scouting, weather, school, and the struggle to get out of bed on time for school and church (#43.2-43.4). Other diary entries include the family's trip to Texas (#43.3), and a trip to Europe in 1930 (#43.4). His 1935-1937 diary gives insight to his freshman year of college and his career choice of travel and tourism (#44.1). Correspondence with his parents Lillian and William Henry Chapman include letters they wrote to William Herrick while he was away at camp, working, and at college (#44.5-45.1). Later letters cover William Henry Chapman's health (#47.1-47.2), Lillian's life after losing her husband (#47.3-48.4), World War II (#47.1). The family's letters often touch on trips made, sermons given, visitors, weather, health, and are always very affectionate. There are no letters from the end of 1941 and the start of 1942. During World War II, Lillian writes of the government taking land in Big Flats, New York by eminent domain in 1942 (#47.3) and rationing (#47.3). After the death of her sister Jessie in 1960, Lillian writes of her feelings of isolation (#50.4). Letters from William Herrick Chapman's children, Katharine Chapman Krebs and Herrick Eaton Chapman, include descriptions of vacations, camp, and school work (#51.1). The subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries C, Others, 1852-2010, n.d. (#52.4-52.16, 53.6v, FD.1), includes letters, diaries, and other materials from members of the Brooks, Chapman, Cowan and Herrick families. A small number of letters belonging to Lillian Herrick Chapman's mother, Louisa Cowan Herrick from friends and family are included (#52.13). Also included are letters to Louisa Cowan Herrick from her father Asa Douglas Cowan, Sr., while he was in Kansas. He writes to remind Louisa how to run the farm in his absence (#52.10). Letters between Louisa Cowan Herrick and her brother Asa Douglas Cowan, Jr., discuss the family, and their father's death in 1857 (#52.11). Also included is a hymnal belonging to Louisa Cowan Herrick's mother Rachel Fields Cowan (#53.6v). A small amount of material from Lillian Herrick Chapman's cousin Rachel Gleason Brooks a YWCA field worker in China and New York City, and later a minister is also included. Letters to various family members from Rachel Gleason Brooks while she was in Asia are included throughout the collection (#52.5, 12.5, Series 1) She wrote and edited several genealogical works, including This Is Your Inheritance: A History of the Chemung County, New York Branch of the Brooks Family (#52.6) and The 1857 Diary of Asa Douglas Cowan (#52.9). The published diary contains a Cowan and Herrick family history, as well as a short background on spiritualism. According to Rachel Gleason Brooks, Louisa Cowan Herrick held many spiritualist meetings in her house and Frederick Herrick and Frances Herrick Brooks founded a Spiritualist Church in Elmira, New York in 1924. The family received several messages from the afterlife, both on paper (#52.15) and on small chalkboard slates (#55.1m-55.5m). Also of interest are letters from Lillian Herrick Chapman's aunt Almira Cowan McCartey to her parents Isaac and Dorcas Cowan, and brother Asa Douglas Cowan, Sr. (#52.14). The subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Series V, PHOTOGRAPHS AND MEMORABILIA, 1882-1959, n.d. (#PD.11-PD.31f+, 53.1m, 55.1m-55.5m, Mem.1-Mem.2), includes photographs, spirit writing on slates, Lillian Herrick Chapman's wedding handkerchief she bought during her trip to Venice in 1907, and other memorabilia. The series is arranged in two subseries by format.
Subseries A, Photographs, 1882-1963, n.d. (#PD.11-PD.30f+), includes photographs, tintypes, and cyanotypes of the Brooks, Chapman, Cowan, and Herrick families. #PD.1-PD.9 contain photographs found with other documents. Photographs were removed and foldered separately, and their folders listed in the various series above. The subseries is arranged alphabetically.
Subseries B, Memorabilia, 1907-1963, n.d. (#53.1m, 55.1m-55.5m, Mem.1-Mem.2), contains memorabilia removed from throughout the collection. Included are spirit writing on slates, Lillian Herrick Chapman's wedding handkerchief she bought during her trip to Venice in 1907, Jessie Louise Herrick's Woman's Medical College of Pennsylvania button, and Frederick Herrick's Elmira Exempt Fire Association button. Memorabilia is arranged by type.
Most of the photographs in this collection are or will be cataloged in VIA, Harvard University's Visual Information Access database. Others, referred to as "uncataloged" photographs, are not of sufficient research interest to warrant cataloging and are simply treated as part of the documents they accompany; they are marked on the back with an asterisk in square brackets [*].
Jessie Louise Herrick was born on January 6, 1864, in Big Flats, New York, to Orman (1833-1903) and Louisa (Cowan) Herrick (1830-1915). She graduated from the Horseheads, New York, public school and began teaching in Chemung County, New York. In 1887 Jessie attended the summer school for teachers at Glens Falls, New York. In September of 1887 she took a teaching position in Hornellsville, New York, and was eventually appointed supervisor of the primary school. Jessie attended the Elmira Free Academy, and in 1892 entered the Woman's Medical College of Pennsylvania (M.D., 1895). After graduation from medical school she was appointed house physician at the Woman's Hospital and Foundling Home in Detroit, Michigan. In 1897 Jessie opened a medical practice in Elmira, New York, and organized the local Visiting Nurse Association. In 1902 Jessie became the first woman named "city physician" in Elmira. In 1907 she took a post-graduate summer course at the University of Vienna. In 1917 Jessie became the resident physician at the State Training School for Girls in Hudson, New York. On November 11, 1918, in the midst of the influenza outbreak, she left New York to become the college physician at the College of Industrial Arts and Sciences in Denton, Texas. Jessie organized the Health Services department at the College, and was its first director. In 1923 she attended a summer school program at Harvard University. Jessie was later elected the first woman president of the Denton County Medical Society. In the 1920s and 1930s, Jessie built several homes in Denton, Texas, and rented rooms to college students and doctors. Jessie retired from medicine in 1939. She died in Denton, Texas, on May 16, 1960, at the age of 96.
Millian Belle and Lillian Belle Herrick were born on June 9, 1872, in Chemung County, New York, to Orman and Louise Herrick. Millian "Millie" Belle Herrick graduated from Elmira College (B.A., 1894) and taught high school English in Kentucky and at the Binghamton Central High School in New York. Millie lived in Binghamton, New York, for 30 years. In 1938 she founded the Binghamton Poetry Group. Much of her published work celebrated "Universality," a tenet of the Bahá'í faith. In 1943 she moved to Elmira, New York, to live with her twin sister Lillian. She also often traveled to Texas to visit with Jessie. Millian died of cancer on June 30, 1945, at the age of 73.
Lillian Belle Herrick Chapman graduated from Elmira College (B.A., 1894), majoring in physics and chemistry. She taught physics, chemistry, astronomy, and geology at Elmira Free Academy for 14 years. In 1897 Lillian founded the Kelvin Scientific Society at Elmira Free Academy, and in 1901 with her student, Leon Bogardus, assembled and demonstrated the wireless telegraph. In 1908 Lillian left Elmira Free Academy to marry the Rev. William Henry Chapman (1861-1940). The Chapmans regularly led group tours to Europe during the summers, often leaving New York at separate times and meeting in Europe with their groups. During the summer of 1910 the Chapmans attended the Oberammergau Passion Play in Oberammergau, Germany. Upon their return to New York, Lillian was asked by a Presbyterian minister to lecture on the play. Soon, she was lecturing at several local churches. In time, the ministers turned to her to act as "stated supply" or back up when a preacher was needed. Encouraged by her husband to enter the ministry, Lillian studied at the Auburn Theological Seminary and the Union Theological Seminary in New York. In 1918 she was the first woman licensed to preach by the Presbyterian Church; in 1919 this action was rescinded. In 1925 she was ordained by the Congregational Church and served as assistant to the pastor of the Park Church in Elmira, New York, until 1930, when she resigned in order to help her husband at his church in Big Flats, New York. Lillian moved to Wakefield, Massachusetts, in 1964 to be closer to her son William Herrick Chapman and his wife Rosemary. Lillian died in Wakefield, Massachusetts, on February 13, 1965, at the age of 93.
William Henry Chapman was born in Saratoga Springs, New York, on March 15, 1861. He graduated from Hamilton College (B.A., 1887; A.M., 1907), and Auburn Theological Seminary (1891). He served as minister at the Franklin Street Presbyterian Church in Elmira, New York, as well as state clerk of the Chemung Presbytery. In 1895 William Henry Chapman became the Protestant chaplin for New York State Reformatory (at Elmira), later Elmira Reformatory. He continued to serve as senior chaplain into the 1930s while also teaching ethics and history to the inmates. William Henry Chapman founded Chapman Private European Tours in 1901 or 1902; after their marriage in 1908, Lillian joined him as a partner. They would often lead groups separately to Europe, giving their clients many different travel options. In 1914 William Henry Chapman became pastor of the First Presbyterian Church, Big Flats, New York. He died on July 27, 1940, at the age of 79.
William Herrick Chapman (known as Herrick as a child and Bill as an adult) was born April 19, 1914, to Lillian and William Henry Chapman. William Herrick Chapman graduated from Hamilton College (B.A., 1933). He worked for the Greyhound Bus Company while in college and, after graduation, began working for American Express. At the outbreak of World War II, William Herrick Chapman joined the U. S. Navy; he retired as a Lieutenant commander in 1974 from the U.S. Naval Reserve. After the war William Herrick Chapman returned to American Express, becoming a district manager for their travel company. He married his first wife, Katharine Eaton in 1938. They had two children: Katharine Chapman Krebs (b.1945) and Herrick Eaton Chapman (b.1949). The marriage ended in 1957. William Herrick Chapman married his second wife, Rosemary Templin, in 1958. William Herrick Chapman died on November 19, 1997, in Ayer, Massachusetts, at the age of 83.
- Series I. Jessie Louise Herrick, 1867-1962, n.d. (#1.1-9.6, SD.1, PD.1-PD.3)
- Series II. Millian "Millie" Belle Herrick, 1890-1946, n.d. (#9.7-11.2)
- Series III. Lillian Belle Herrick Chapman, 1856-1989, n.d. (#11.3-40.5, 53.2v-53.3v, 54.1v, T-383.1, Vt-190.1, PD.4-PD.6)
- ___Subseries A. Biographical and personal, 1856-1989, n.d. (#11.3-12.4, 53.2v-53.3v, 54.1v)
- ___Subseries B. Correspondence, 1900-1956, n.d. (#12.5-12.11, PD.4-PD.5)
- ___Subseries C. Diaries, 1896-1965, n.d. (#13.1-24.4, PD.6)
- ___Subseries D. Sermons, 1913-1989, n.d. (#25.1-35.10, T-383.1, Vt-190.1)
- ___Subseries E. Lectures, poems, and other writings, 1890-1956, n.d. (#35.11-39.1)
- ___Subseries F. Scrapbooks, 1882-1964 (#39.2-40.5)
- Series IV. Other family members, 1845-2010, n.d. (#41.1-52.16, 53.4v-53.6v, 54.2v, FD.1, PD.7-PD.10)
- ___Subseries A. William Henry Chapman, 1845-1959, n.d. (#41.1-42.7, 53.4v-53.5v, 54.2v)
- ___Subseries B. William Herrick Chapman, 1914-1985, n.d. (#42.8-52.3, PD.7-PD.10)
- ___Subseries C. Others, 1852-2010, n.d. (#52.4-52.16, 53.6v, FD.1)
- Series V. Photographs and memorabilia, 1882-1963, n.d. (#PD.11-PD.31f+, 53.1m, 55.1m-55.5m, Mem.1-Mem.2)
- ___Subseries A. Photographs, 1882-1963, n.d. (#PD.11-PD.31f+)
- ___Subseries B. Memorabilia, ca.1903-1945, n.d. (#53.1m, 55.1m-55.5m, Mem.1-Mem.2)
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The papers of the Herrick-Chapman family were given to the Schlesinger Library by Herrick Chapman and Katharine Chapman Krebs between 2007 and 2011.
By: Cat Lea Holbrook, with assistance of Emily Underwood.
- Automatic writing
- Baby books
- Big Flats (N.Y.)--Social life and customs--20th century
- China--Social conditions--1912-1949
- Denton (Tex.)--Social life and customs--20th century
- Elmira (N.Y.)--Social life and customs--20th century
- Europe--Description and travel
- Family records
- Home economics--United States
- Marriage--United States
- Motherhood--United States
- Mothers and daughters--United States
- Mothers and sons--United States
- New York (State)--Social life and customs
- Ordination of women -- United States
- Poets, American
- Prison chaplains--New York (State)
- Prohibition--United States
- Spirit writings
- Spiritualism--United States
- Spiritualists--United States
- Spouses of clergy--United States
- Teachers--New York (State)
- Travel agents
- Voyages and travels
- Women clergy--United States
- Women in science--United States
- Women in the Bahai Faith
- Women physicians--United States
- Women poets, American
- Women teachers--United States
- World War, 1914-1918--Personal narratives, American.
- World War, 1939-1945--Personal narratives, American
- Herrick family. Papers of the Herrick-Chapman family, 1845-2010 (inclusive), 1890-1960 (bulk): A Finding Aid
- Arthur and Elizabeth Schlesinger Library on the History of Women in America
- Processing of this collection was made possible by gifts from the Radcliffe College Class of 1956, the Jane Rainie Opel Fund, and the Zetlin Sisters Fund.
- EAD ID
Part of the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe Institute Repository
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