Manuscript Group 1224, Colhoun Family (Rutherford, NJ) Papers, 1805 – 1978

Archives Documents, Manuscripts, Maps, & Photographs

Manuscript Group 1224, Colhoun Family (Rutherford, NJ)
Papers, 1805-1978, 0.5 linear feet / 1 box
Call Number: MG 1224



Papers of various members of the Colhoun family of Rutherford, New Jersey. Included are newspaper clippings on the activities of Dr. Charles M. Colhoun (ca. 1864-1931); the scrapbook, 1944-1964, of his daughter Margery Colhoun (ca. 1895-1985) who served as assistant director of the Free Public Library of Rutherford for over thirty-years; a variety of pamphlets on the First Presbyterian Church of Rutherford; family photographs; and nineteenth-century documents including letters from Gustavus Colhoun to his daughter Jane Colhoun, letters of Martha Colhoun to Jane Colhoun, and two diplomas given to John Bohlen Colhoun (1813-1893), a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania (1833) and of the General Theological Seminary in New York.

Given by David B. Pickering in honor of Margery Elizabeth Colhoun, 1985.

Biographical Note:

Gustavus Colhoun was a Philadelphia merchant. One of his three sons, John Bohlen Colhoun (1813-1893) earned an M.D. from the University of Pennsylvania, and in 1844, graduated from the General Theological Seminary. He married Elizabeth Jane Moore, the daughter of Reverend James Moore. John Bohlen Colhoun died in Rutherford, New Jersey on November 7, 1893.

Charles M. Colhoun (ca.1864-1931), the son of Elizabeth and John Bohlen Colhoun, was born in North Carolina, though his parents moved to Rutherford, New Jersey, soon after his birth. He attended Columbia University’s College of Physicians and Surgeons, from which he obtained his M.D. He subsequently married Camila Murray, with whom he had three children: Jefferson, Margery, and Helen. Dr. Colhoun was a member of the Bergen County Medical Society and also served on the Rutherford Board of Health. He died in February 1931 an the age of sixty-seven.

Margery Colhoun (ca. 1895-1985) spent most of her life in Rutherford, New Jersey. From 1918-1965, she worked in the Rutherford Free Public Library as a librarian. During this period she assisted with the gradual transformation of the library from a private organization housed on land once owned by the local Presbyterian Church, to its current status as the town’s public library. In 1965, after her retirement, she moved to Connecticut where she stayed until her death in October 1985. She never married.

Provenance Note:

This collection was donated to the New Jersey Historical Society in October 1985 by David Pickering. Mr. Pickering was the husband of Helen (Colhoun) Pickering.

Scope and Content Note:

The Colhoun Family Papers consist of one box of correspondence, diplomas, certificates, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, miscellaneous printed material, and photographs dating from 1805 to 1978. These documents reflect a variety of subjects, such as the early environmental effort of the Rutherford city government and riverside communities (ca.1905) for the purification and preservation of the Passaic River; employment strategies and professional development in the 1950-1960s; and child-parent relationships in the early nineteenth century.

Folder List:

Folder Title Dates
1 Gustavus Colhoun. Correspondence 1805
2 Gustavus Colhoun. Correspondence 1816-1853
3 Gustavus Colhoun. Correspondence. Copies (1805) n. d.
4 Gustavus Colhoun. Correspondence. Copies (1816-1853) n. d.
5 John B. Colhoun. Diplomas 1834-1844
6 John B. Colhoun. Printed materials. Eulogy for James Moore by Rev. Geo.W. Hinkle 1833
7 John B. Colhoun. Report for Systemic Divinity professor at the General Theological Seminary 1843
8 Charles M. Colhoun. Honorary certificate from Bergen County Medical Society n. d.
9 Charles M. Colhoun. Wedding invitation n. d.
10 Charles M. Colhoun. Scrapbook of newspaper clippings regarding the Passaic River tidal basin plan 1905
11 Charles M. Colhoun. Scrapbook of newspaper clippings regarding the Passaic River tidal basin plan. Photocopies n. d.
12 Margery Colhoun. Certificates as a professional librarian in New Jersey 1931-1956
13 Margery Colhoun. Correspondence 1956-1965
14 Margery Colhoun. Greeting cards 1964
15 Margery Colhoun. Greeting cards 1965
16 Margery Colhoun. Newspaper clippings 1964-1965
17 Margery Colhoun. Printed material. Historical brochures on the First Presbyterian Church of Rutherford 1938-1963
18 Margery Colhoun. Printed material. Rutherford Library 1948-1978
19 Margery Colhoun. Scrapbook on retirement 1964
20 Margery Colhoun. Scrapbook on public service and retirement 1957-1965
21 Colhoun Family. Genealogical notes n. d.
22 Colhoun Family. Eulogy for John Bohlen 1874
23 Colhoun Family. Legal documents relating to J. Beckwith 1878-1879
24 Colhoun Family. Photographs n. d.

Processed by Joseph M. Ciccone, March 2000 as part of the “Farm to City” project funded by a grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

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