Lord Family. Papers, 1807-1961: Finding Aid
Harvard Law School Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Harvard Law School
© President and Fellows of Harvard College
Location: Harvard Depository
Call No.: HOLLIS 8767706
Repository: Harvard Law School Library, Harvard Library, Harvard University
Creator: Lord Family
Title: Lord Family papers
Quantity: 4 boxes
Language of materials: English
Abstract: Correspondence, legal and business documents, writings, and ephemera related to and
produced by Eleazar Lord and his descendants.
Series I acquired October 2001; Series II acquired November 2005
Processed by Rebecca Fenning February 2006.
Access to these papers is governed by the rules and regulations of the Harvard Law
School Library. This collection is open to the public, but is housed off-site at Harvard
Depository and requires 2 business days' advance notice for retrieval. Consult the
Special Collections staff for further information.
The Harvard Law School Library holds copyright on some, but not all, of the material
in our collections. Requests for permission to publish material from this collection
should be directed to the Special Collections staff. Researchers who obtain permission
to publish from the Harvard Law School Library are also responsible for identifying
and contacting the persons or organizations who hold copyright.
Eleazar Lord was born in Connecticut in 1788, and, after studying for a career in the ministry, became a notable businessman, founding
the Manhattan Fire Insurance Company (1821), the New York Sunday School Society (1815), the University of the City of New York and Auburn Theological Seminary (1820), in addition to becoming the first president of the New York & Erie Railroad (1833) and writing several books. During the 1857 panic, Eleazar Lord mortgaged heavily
and borrowed money from relations, leaving him strapped for money and dependent on
others during the Civil War years. He anticipated being a beneficiary of his multi-millionaire,
bachelor brother Rufus Lord (1782-1869), but was ultimately disappointed when he inherited very little, the majority
going to Rufus's other brothers and executors, Thomas Lord and David Lord. Eleazar Lord's son-in-law, William H. Whiton (1823-1908), who was supporting Eleazar Lord and his wife, retained the services
of lawyer Christopher Columbus Langdell in an attempt to contest Rufus's will and the questionable behavior of the executors.
Ultimately, this suit failed.
Eleazar Lord was married twice -- to Elizabeth Pierson from 1824 until her death in 1833, then to Ruth Thompson, from 1835 until his death in 1871 -- and had a total of 8 children, including Sarah Pierson Lord (1823-1903), the wife of William H. Whiton. Sarah and William Whiton had several
children, among them Elizabeth Pierson (Whiton) Stillson (1847-1875), Edward Nathan Whiton (1848-1907), Julia Caroline (Whiton) Gunkel (1853-1927) and Sallie Craig (Whiton) Harris, all of whom are represented in this collection.
For more information regarding Eleazar Lord and his descendants, please see the Lord
family genealogy, Certain Members of the Lord Family
, by Kenneth Lord, located in Box 3
- Series I: Lord Family Papers, 1807-1961. 1807-1961.
- Series II: Addenda, 1824-1922. 1824-1922.This series contains more inter-family correspondence and religious writings of Eleazar
Lord, as well as additional correspondence from Christopher Columbus Langdell.
Within each series and/or subseries individual items or folders are identified by
box and folder number. For example, the number 3-12 corresponds to box 5, folder 12.
The Lord family papers span from 1807 to 1961, and document the lives of Eleazar Lord (1788-1871) and his descendants. The majority of the collection consists of correspondence
written to and from Eleazar, his first wife and his children, but also contains his
religious writings, the papers of his son-in-law William H. Whiton, and items related to the legal battle over his brother Rufus's 1869 will, including
several letters to and from Christopher Columbus Langdell. The collection also contains miscellaneous photographs, engravings, newspaper clippings
and other ephemera collected by the Lord family, as well as additional correspondence
to and from Eleazar Lord's grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
This collection of papers were most likely passed down through the descendants of
Eleazar Lord's daughter Sarah Pierson Lord, wife of William H. Whiton, and were at one point in the possession of their daughter Sallie Whiton Harris (1862-1926).
- Lord Family Papers, 1807-1961.
- 1-1 to 1-3. Early intra-family correspondence 1807-1865
- 1-1. Letters to Eleazar Lord, 1807-1845
Date: 1807-1845 Early intra-family correspondence, 1807-1865
23 letters; 15 from Eleazar Lord's brother, David Nevins Lord,5 from his sister Lydia Lord and 3 from his sister Mary Lord Abell.
- 1-2. Letters to Elizabeth Pierson Lord, 1826-1833
21 letters; from her cousins C.W. Colt and Eliza Colt and from her mother, Sarah Colt Pierson (with autograph post-script from her father Jeremiah Colt).
- 1-3. Letters to Sarah Lord Whiton, 1841-1865
40 letters to SLW and her children; from her siblings Nathan Lord, Edward Lord and
Franklin Lord, from her maternal aunt, Eliza Colt, as well as other relatives and
girlhood friends. Also one letter from SLW to her stepmother.
- 1-4. Sarah Lord Whiton's commonplace book of proverbs, "Proverbs for the 'Mess' or a Mess
of Proverbs," and quotations,
- 1-6 to 1-8. Eleazar Lord's economic and religious notes and draft compositions, 1817-1865
- 1-6. Economic drafts,
Includes 2 1864 dockets from William Whiton concerning bill's introduction and promotion in Congress.
- 1-7. Thomas Lord correspondence, 1861-1864, 1869
Date: 1861-1864, 1869
Correspondence to Eleazar Lord from his brother regarding Eleazar Lord's 1861 "Plan
for a National Currency."
- 1-8. Religious notes and drafts, 1817-1853
Also includes 4 letters on religious subjects.
- 1-9. Legal papers and related correspondence related to Eleazar Lord's real estate holdings
and mortgages thereon, 1811-1866
- 1-10 and 2-1. Legal papers and correspondence related to the will of Rufus Lord, 1869-1889
Contains documents pertaining to the will of Eleazar Lord's brother, millionaire Rufus
Lord, and the dispute over the contents of his will. Includes 9 letters from Christopher Columbus Langdell.
- 2-2 to 2-4. William H. Whiton papers, 1844-1908
- 2-2. Bank checks, 1872-1874
Checks largely paid to Elijiah Weston. Also includes an account of work done on behalf of Weston's firm.
- 2-3 to 2-4. Correspondence and other miscellany, 1844-1908
Includes items related to WHW and Eleazar Lord's indebtedness to Thomas and Rufus
Lord, and WHW's work in Washington, D.C., as well as the death of Sarah Lord Whiton
- 2-5 to 2-6. Later Lord family papers, 1864-1930
Correspondence and other documents related to the lives of Sarah Lord and William
H. Whiton's descendants, including their children, Elizabeth Pierson Whiton and Edward Nathan Whiton, and grandson Henry Devereux Whiton. Also contains some published materials.
- 2-7. Published reference materials
Includes magazine articles. Compiled by dealer [?].
- Certain Members of the Lord Family who settled in New York City by Kenneth Lord (privately printed, 1945).
Loose in front of Box 3.
- 3-1 to 3-4. Unorganized Ephemera, 1840s-1960s.
Materials collected and related to members of the Lord family. Photographs included
in 3-1 and 3-2. Portrait engraving of Eleazar Lord in 3-3.
- Addenda, 1824-1922.
- 3-5 to 3-10. Lord family correspondence, 1824-1922.
Primarily intra-family correspondence, but also includes deeds, account information
and other miscellany.
- 3-6. 1860-1869
- 3-7. 1882-1899
- 3-8. 1900-1909
Contains many items related to Sarah Lord Whiton's 1903 death.
- 3-9. 1914-1922
- 3-10. Miscellany, 1918-1947, undated.
Date: 1918-1947, undated.
In addition to undated Lord family correspondence, this folder contains newspaper
clippings and other miscellany.
- 3-11. Papers related to contested will of Rufus Lord, 1869-1871.
Contains correspondence and other materials from Christopher Columbus Langdell.
- 4-1 to 4-2. Religious writings of Eleazar Lord, 1852, undated.
Date: 1852, undated.
Religious literature, American
Willis--Cases--Rufus Lord Willl
Colt, C. W.
Langdell, C. C. (Christopher Columbus), 1826-1906
Lord, David N. (David Nevins), 1792-1880
Lord, Eleazar, 1788-1871
Lord, Elizabeth Pierson d. 1833
Lord, Rufus, 1782-1869
Stillson, Elizabeth Pierson (Whiton), 1847-1875
Whiton, Edward Nathan, 1848-1907
Whiton, Sarah Pierson (Lord), 1823-1903
Whiton, William H., 1823-1908