Finding aid for the James A. Garfield Family Papers


Repository: Western Reserve Historical Society
Creator: Garfield, James A. Family
Title: James A. Garfield Family Papers
Dates: 1849-1938
Extent: 0.60 linear feet (2 containers and 2 rolls of microfilm)
Abstract: James Abram Garfield was the twentieth president of the United States. He grew up in Orange, Ohio, graduated from Williams College in 1856, became president of Hiram College in Portage County, Ohio, and was a lay minister of the Disciples of Christ Church. He was elected to the Ohio Senate, and in 1858, married Lucretia Rudolph. Garfield served in the Civil War, as a lieutenant-colonel of the 42nd Ohio regiment. He was a major general when he resigned in 1863 to take a seat in the United States House of Representatives, where he served for 17 years. Nominated in 1880 as a compromise Republican presidential candidate, his campaign was conducted from Lawnfield, his Mentor, Ohio, home. Garfield was shot on July 2, 1881, and died September 19. He was survived by his widow, Lucretia Garfield, and by his children; Mary, who married his former secretary, Joseph Stanley-Brown, Irvin McDowell, Harry Augustus, who became president of Williams College, James Rudolph, a Cleveland attorney, Republican politician and member of Theodore Roosevelt's cabinet, and Abram, a Cleveland architect. The collection consists of correspondence, diaries, deeds, herbariums, receipts, architectural plans, and probate documents. The correspondence represents Garfield's Civil War and political careers, and commentary by Garfield and other family members on politics, the Republican Party, Garfield's assassination, as well as family relationships and management of Lawnfield as a family property. Lucretia R. Garfield's letters and papers cover travel and include details of farm life, remodeling, and management at Lawnfield. Joseph Rudolph, brother of Lucretia, managed the farm at Lawnfield, and also administered the estate of James A. Garfield. Some estate documents are included. Rev. Mark Hopkins, president of Williams College, received almost daily telegrams on the President's medical condition during the weeks after the assassination, which are included in the collection. The diaries of the president's mother, Eliza Ballou Garfield, are also included, and cover such topics as travels, household details, life in the White House, births, deaths, and illness, as well as the war and Garfield's political career. Correspondence and other documents written by Garfield's sons; James Rudolph, Harry Augustus and Irvin Garfield, and by his daughter and son-in-law, Joseph and Mary Garfield Stanley-Brown, are included. Other correspondents include Salmon P. Chase, Sara Williams Garfield, L.W. Whitney, John Newell, Rutherford B. Hayes, W. S. Rosecrans, Carl Schurz, and A. H. Smith.
MS Number MS 4575
Location: closed stacks
Language: The records are in English