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H88-0122. Phelps, Philip Jr. (1826-1896). Papers, 1795-1972 (bulk 1834-l897). 3.50 linear ft.

 Collection
Identifier: H88-0122

Scope and Contents

The papers of Philip Phelps, Jr., consist of materials from 1795-2008, the bulk of which covers 1934-1897. Included are biographical materials, correspondence, Hope College pamphlets and songs, photographs, Fraternal Society materials, scrapbooks, publications of the Youth's Temperance Enterprise, publications of Union College and a book of information on Hope College prepared for the national centennial celebration. Also biographical materials on his wife, Margaret, his daughter Lizzie and his parents, Philip, Sr., and Hannah.

The first box of the collection is arranged alphabetically with the exception of photographs and the materials on Margaret, Philip, and Hannah and Lizzie Phelps, which are placed last. After the folders are a number of books. These are arranged in the following manner: Hope College related, memorial scrapbooks, Union College related (organized chronologically), Youth's Temperance Enterprise materials, and finally a large print copy of the New Testament. The second box contains a souvenir from the 50th Wedding Anniversary of Philip, Sr., and Hannah Phelps, two scrapbooks, and an 1839 Certificate from Albany Female Academy for Eliza Phelps. These are arranged by size.

The strength of this collection is the scrapbooks. These books, complied by Philip Tertius Phelps, contain a wealth of information on Philip Phelps, Jr. They are arranged chronologically and contain letters, programs, clippings and photographs on a number of aspects of Philip’s life. The only downfall of these books is that they are in extremely poor condition and some pages and documents have been removed.

Dates

  • 1795 - 2008
  • Majority of material found within 1834 - 1897

Creator

Biography

Philip Phelps, Jr., was born in Albany, New York, on July 12, 1826. He attended Albany Academy for nine years, graduating in 1842. He then entered the junior class of Union College and received his Bachelor of Arts, Phi Beta Kappa from Union in 1844. In 1849, Phelps graduated from New Brunswick Theological Seminary.

In 1850, Phelps entered the ministry as pastor of Greenburg Church in Westchester County, New York. He founded the Reformed Church of Hastings-on-the-Hudson in 1852. The next year he married Margaret Anna Jordan. They had three children, Frances Few Chrystie (later Mrs. John A. Otte), Lizzie and Philip Tertius.

In 1859, Phelps accepted an appointment as principal of the Holland Academy. By 1866, Phelps had helped transform the Academy into Hope College. He was inaugurated as the first president. He was also responsible for the founding of the first English-speaking Reformed church in Holland, Hope Church.

Phelps was responsible for many changes in the college over the years. He organized the students into different departments, raised funds from the church for the college and established a board of supervisors. Phelps established a theological department at Hope at the request of the first graduates, which later became Western Theological Seminary. He brought the Fraternal Society (OKE) to Hope after its disbandment at Union College. It was the college’s first literary society. Phelps was also responsible for the first female students at the college, who started in 1878. These women included both of his daughters, Frances, who graduated in 1882, and Lizzie, who graduated in 1884. Also during his presidency, the first Japanese students came to Hope in 1869.

In 1878, Phelps resigned from the presidency. He returned to preaching and also pursued literary interests. He kept ties with Hope and was asked to speak at the college’s Quarter-Centennial and at the inauguration of President Gerrit J. Kollen. Phelps died in Albany, New York, on September 4, 1896.

Extent

3.50 Linear Feet

Language of Materials

English

Abstract

Principal of Hope Academy, 1859-1866 and the president of Hope College, 1866-1878. The collection includes biographical materials, correspondence, Hope College pamphlets and songs, photographs, Fraternal Society materials, scrapbooks, publications of the Youth’s Temperance Enterprise, publications of Union College and a book of information on Hope College prepared for the national centennial celebration. Also contained are biographical materials on his wife, Margaret, his daughter Lizzie and his parents, Philip, Sr., and Hannah; scrapbook containing correspondence, clippings, diplomas, certificates and programs documenting Phelps’ early life, first pastorates, temperance activities in New York State, and service at Hope College, together with miscellaneous papers, including letters of Phelps and his wife, addresses, clippings, and photos; scrapbook: "Hope College and the West," (ca. 1870-1923) and another scrapbook of mainly obituaries and memorials, 1896, both compiled by Philip Tertius Phelps; nine letters by Philip Phelps to his brother Will (1857-1860); account sheet for Academy; two items by and about Mrs. Phelps; three pamphlets by Philip Phelps in “self-defense” against the Hope College Council for asking him to resign; catalogs, 1844, 1847 and 1856 of the Fraternal Society (OKE); bound copies of The Youth’s Temperance Enterprise monthly periodical, 1843-1846 (P. T. Phelps has listed pages referring to Philip Phelps’ activities in this connection); a printed report of the 4th decennial meeting of graduates of Union College containing a report on Phelps, 1844-1884; also includes excerpts from his letter sent for this reunion. All these items are a gift from George Benjamin Scholten. Minutes of Albany Particular Synod (printed), 1838, 1844-1850. Contains Classical Reports, including Classis of Michigan, 1844-1850 (Holland not listed). Detailed Collection Register available.

General

Philip Phelps, Jr.

Photographs

11 images (Box 1)

Creator

Source

Status
Completed
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin

Repository Details

Part of the Joint Archives of Holland Repository

Contact:
Theil Research Center
9 East 10th Street
Holland Michigan 49423 United States
616-395-7798