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Taylor and Nicholson family papers

Coll.1215

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held at the Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the web.

Summary Information

Repository:
Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections
Creator:
Nicholson family
Creator:
Taylor family
Creator:
Taylor, Rebecca Nicholson, 1857-1944
Creator:
Taylor, William Nicholson, 1882-1945
Title:
Taylor and Nicholson family papers
Date [bulk]:
1869-1944
Date [inclusive]:
1810-1999
Call Number:
Coll.1215
Extent:
10.5 Linear feet
Language:
English
Language of Materials note:
While the bulk of the material in this collection is written in English, there is some material that is written in French.
Abstract:
The Taylor and Nicholson family papers contain the records of these two families from the late-nineteenth to mid-twentieth centuries. The two focal points of this collection are William Nicholson Taylor (1882-1945), and his mother, Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor (1857-1944). William graduated from Harvard in 1903 and afterwards spent considerable time abroad studying architecture. He also served as an officer in the United States Military from 1916 to 1917, and worked in diplomacy after the war. Rebecca was a noted writer and poet during this time period. The strength of this collection is the collected materials related to William’s time in the military, as well as his sketchbooks related to architecture and Harvard. Researchers interested in the works of Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor or Quaker women, should also consult Rebecca’s notebook and correspondence. There is extensive correspondence between the various members of these two families from the 1880s to 1940s.
Cite as:
Haverford College Library, Haverford, PA, Quaker Collection, Taylor and Nicholson family papers, Coll. No. 1215
PDF Version:

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Biography/History

William Nicholson Taylor was born on June 22, 1882 in Cincinnati, OH to Quaker parents Frank Hendrickson Taylor and Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor. He grew up at Linden, a family home near Haddonfield, NJ. Frank Hendrickson Taylor (1855-1934) graduated from Harvard and was president of the Westinghouse Electric Company. Rebecca Nicholson Taylor (1857-1944), a descendent of the Whitall family, is known for writing poetry, history and memoirs.

William Nicholson Taylor studied architecture at Harvard University. Following his graduation in 1903, “his interests were evenly divided between athletics, travel and art,” (Who’s Who Abroad). Spending a considerable amount of his adult life abroad, he studied at the American Academy of Rome and at the Ecole des Beaux-Arts from 1905-1910, receiving his Diplome d’Architecte. He also sketched cartoons throughout his life, and played Cricket internationally.

When the United States entered World War I, Taylor joined the Field Artillery Officers’ Reserve Corps as a captain. On May 15, 1917, he was called to active duty and sent to Officers’ Training camp in Fort Niagara, New York. By August 15, 1917, he was promoted to major. He was then assigned to the 310th Field Artillery, 79th Division in Camp Mead, Maryland and a month later, sent to the School of Fire in Fort Sill, Oklahoma. His military successes continued as he was appointed instructor on December 21, 1917, promoted to Lieutenant Colonel on July 28, 1918, and assigned to command the 29th Field Artillery at Camp Funston, Kansas. At the end of the war, Taylor was discharged on February 11, 1919.

Following the war, Taylor married Gertrude Christine Duret de Brie on May 15, 1919. The Taylors moved to France where Taylor served as general European Manager for the E.I. DuPont de Nemours Export Corporation, Inc. in Paris. Their three children were born in Paris: Constance Alix, born on July 8, 1921; Benjamin de Brie, born on March 15, 1923; and Marie-Celine, born on May 20, 1925. In 1927, Taylor became president of the American Chamber of Commerce in France. The Taylor family returned to the United States in 1936, living in Wilmington, Delaware, Norton, Connecticut, New York, New York, and Chestnut Hill, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Taylor worked as an architect for George Howe.

During the Second World War, Taylor served in the 3rd Services Command, United States Army Office of the Inspector General. He died in Washington, DC in April, 1945.

Publications by Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor include: Songs of Hope, 1915;  Small Adventures of a Little Quaker Girl, 1937;  A Family History of the Residence of Rebecca and Sarah Nicholson, Haddonfield, New Jersey, 1917;  The Wind Passeth Over It, circa 1925;  Poems: Christmas Greetings, 1915;  Earth People: and Other Verse, circa 1920s-1930s;  What Our Work Is: And Why We Do It, 1897; and  Memoir of Mary Whitall, 1885.

Scope and Contents

This collection contains the records of the Taylor and Nicholson families from the late nineteenth to mid twentieth centuries. Included within the collection are correspondence, scrapbooks, newspaper clippings, and photographs. This collection is divided into three series; “William Nicholson Taylor,” “Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor,” and “Collected Family Material.” William Nicholson Taylor spent 1916 to 1917 serving as an officer in the United States Military and collected material (including panoramic photographs) of his time. He also sketched architectural designs and cartoons. Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor was a noted writer and poet during the late nineteenth and early twentieth century, thus researchers interested in her work or Quaker women should consult her notebook and correspondence included in the collection. Additionally, researchers interested in these families would be well served searching through this collection, as one of its strength lies in the intimate correspondence written between family members.

Within the “William Nicholson Taylor” series are four subseries: “Correspondence,” “School Material,” “French Material,” and “Manuscripts, Scrapbook, Proposal and Newspaper Clippings.” The “Correspondence” subseries includes letters predominately written to his wife Christine de Brie Taylor, and his mother Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor. Also represented in this subseries are his letters written during his time spent in the military from 1916 to 1917. The “School Material” subseries contains a scrapbook related to his final year at Harvard, 1903. Additionally, the "Photographs" subseries includes three oversized panoramic pictures of military bases and officers from William’s time in the military during World War I.

The “Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor” series contains correspondence, a photograph as child, and a notebook. Included in her correspondence are letters to her sister, Elizabeth Whitall Nicholson, and husband, Frank Hendrickson Taylor. Her notebook includes drawings, photos, and notes on her sons and her work as a writer.

The “Collected Family Material” series is comprised of three subseries: “Correspondence,” “Photographs,” and “Photocopy, Pamphlet, and Miscellaneous.” Of note in this series are the Notes on Whitall Family which includes genealogical sketches of the Taylor and Nicholson ancestry, as well as the “Photographs” subseries which include pictures of various family members and the Taylor estate. The Miscellaneous folder contains unidentified pieces of paper that were found within the collection.

Administrative Information

Publication Information

Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections,  2009.11.24

Finding Aid Author

Finding aid prepared by Leslie O'Neill and Forrest Wright

Sponsor

The processing of this collection was made possible through generous funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, administered through the Council on Library and Information Resources’ “Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives” Project.

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research use.

Use Restrictions

Copyright restrictions may apply. Please contact the Archives with requests for copying and for authorization to publish, quote or reproduce the material.

Custodial History note

Gift of Benjamin Taylor, son of William Nicholson Taylor.

Processing Information note

The processing of this collection was made possible through generous funding from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, administered through the Council on Library and Information Resources’ “Cataloging Hidden Special Collections and Archives” Project.

This collection is minimally processed to the folder level.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)
  • American Chamber of Commerce in France.
  • E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Co..
  • Field Artillery School (Fort Sill, Okla.).
  • Fort George G. Meade (Md.).
  • Fort Riley (Kan.).
  • Harvard University.
  • Old Fort Niagara (N.Y.).
  • Society of Friends.
  • United States. Army. Reserve Officers' Training Corps .
  • École nationale supérieure des beaux-arts (France).
Form/Genre(s)
  • Cartoons (humorous images)
  • Clippings
  • Correspondence
  • Family papers
  • Genealogical tables
  • Marriage certificates
  • Memorabilia
  • Notebooks
  • Photographs
  • Scrapbooks
  • Sketches
Geographic Name(s)
  • Boston (Mass.)
  • Chestnut Hill (Philadelphia, Pa.)
  • Haddonfield (N.J.)
  • Kansas
  • Maryland
  • New York (State)
  • Oklahoma
  • Paris (France)
Personal Name(s)
  • Taylor, Frank Hendrickson, 1855-1934
  • Taylor, Gertrude Christine de Brie, b. 1897
  • Taylor, Rebecca Nicholson, 1857-1944
  • Taylor, William Nicholson, 1882-1945
Subject(s)
  • Architecture
  • Art
  • Authors
  • Cricket
  • Painting
  • Quaker women
  • Quakers
  • World War I

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Collection Inventory

William Nicholson Taylor, 1882-1945.

Correspondence, 1899-1943.

Box

To Gertrude Christine de Brie Taylor, 1919-1945.

1-4

To Gertrude Christine de Brie Taylor (transcribed photocopies), 1919-1945.

Transcribed Copies
Files in this sub-series are made up of letters sent from William Nicholson Taylor to his wife, Gertrude, that have been transcribed and photocopied.
5-6

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, Letters from Camp Mead, 1917.

7

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, Letters from Camp Funston, 1917-1919.

7

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, Letters from England and Paris, 1920.

7

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, Letters from Paris, 1921-1922.

7

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1910.

7

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor (2 folders), 1917.

8

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1917-1918.

8

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1918.

8

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1919-1929.

8

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1920.

8

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1920-1922.

8

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1920-1936.

9

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1920.

9

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1921-1922.

9

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1922.

9

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1923-1928.

9

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1924-1938.

10

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1925-1926.

10

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1926-1928.

10

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor (2 folders), 1930.

10

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1932.

11

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor (2 folders), 1933.

11

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1933, 1936.

11

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1934.

11

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1936.

11

To Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, Typescript Copies of Letters (2 folders), 1902-1919.

12

To William H. Nicholson, 1899, 1901.

13

To Frank Hendrickson Taylor, undated.

13

To Sara and Rebecca Nicholson, 1906-1920.

13

To Eliza Nicholson, circa 1890s.

13

To Others, 1943.

13

Travel Letters (typescript copies) (2 folders), 1902-1905.

13

Military, Expense Records, 1917.

13

Military, Letter Exchanges with Personnel.

13

Military, American Field Service, 1940.

13

Invitations, undated.

14

Unidentified, undated.

14

Empty envelopes, undated.

14

School Material, 1901-1917.

Box

History of Architecture Course Notebook, 1902.

14

Harvard Class of 1903 Scrapbook, 1903.

14

Ecole Des Beaux Arts Notebook, 1913-1917.

15

Harvard cartoon sketches, 1917.

15

French Material, 1924-1930.

General note

This subseries is comprised of materials collected by William Nicholson Taylor related to his time spent living in France.

Box

Pamphlets, 1924, 1928, 1930.

15

Photographs and Clippings, 1929-1930.

15

Manuscript, Scrapbook, Proposal and Newspaper Clippings.

Box

Manuscript fragments, undated.

16

Scrapbook: The War Years, The Army, and After, 1917-1929.

16

Proposal for Philadelphia Revitalization, 1939-1940.

16

Newspaper Clippings, undated.

16

Rebecca Morgan Nicholson Taylor, 1886-1940.

Box

Correspondence to Elizabeth Whitall Nicholson, 1880-1936.

17-19

Correspondence to Frank Hendrickson Taylor, 1886.

19

Photograph as child.

19

Notebook, including photos and drawings, 1882-1893.

20

Collected Family Material.

Correspondence, 1872-1940.

Box

From Seth Gifford to Whitall Nicholson, 1872.

20

From Bessie Nicholson to Whitall and Eliza Nicholson, undated.

20

From Emma Penny to Eliza Nicholson, 1913.

21

From Emma Penny to Gertrude Christine de Brie Taylor, undated.

21

From Frank Hendrickson Taylor to Whitall Nicholson, undated.

21

From Frank Hendrickson Taylor to William Nicholson Taylor, undated.

21

Frank Hendrickson Taylor.

Box

From Gertrude Christine de Brie Taylor to Eliza Nicholson, 1933.

21

From Gertrude Christine de Brie Taylor to Parents, undated.

21

From Taylor Children (Constance Alix, Benjamin de Brie, and Marie Celine) to William Nicholson and Gertrude Christine de Brie Taylor, undated.

21

From Taylor Children (Constance Alix, Benjamin de Brie, and Marie Celine) to family members, undated.

21

Notes on Whitall Family, undated.

21

Photographs.

Box

Nicholson Home, undated.

21

Rebecca and Sarah Nicholson, undated.

21

William Nicholson and Gertrude Christine de Brie Taylor Family, 1921.

21

Gertrude Christine de Brie Taylor, undated.

21

Encased Photographs, undated.

21

Photocopies, Pamphlets and Miscellaneous.

Box

Photocopy of 1697 New Testament, undated.

21

Pamphlet: The Science of Motherhood, given to Bessie Nicholson from Aunt Hannah, undated.

21

Miscellaneous, undated.

21