Gilpin and Cope Family correspondence, 1899-1958

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Collection Title: Gilpin and Cope Family correspondence, 1899-1958

Collection Number: 126

Dates of Collection: 1899-1958

Box Numbers: 1, containing115 items

Repositiory: CCHS

Language: English

Project Archivist: ?

Collection Contents:

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Collection Contents: 

Biographical information

Ellen Cope (b. 1884) was the daughter of Anna and Gilbert Cope of West Chester, Pennsylvania.  She received an education at Westtown Boarding School in Chester County and Wellesley College in Massachusetts.  

 John R. Gilpin (1827-1907) was born in Wilmington, Delaware.  His father founded the Philadelphia bank of V. and I.F. Gilpin.  Upon graduating from the University of Pennsylvania he joined his father’s banking firm.  After his father died in 1866, Gilpin retired and relocated to West Chester.  He married Emma Bowers of Lancaster in 1872 and had a son, Vincent Gilpin (b. 1874).  In 1889, he moved into his home on North Church Street.

 Scope and content

The Cope and Gilpin families were neighbors on North Church Street in West Chester from the late 19th century into the early 20th century.  The collection primarily contains correspondence between John R. and Emma Gilpin with Ellen Cope while the latter attended school at Westtown and Wellesley.  The letters relay news from home and Ellen’s activity while attending school with details regarding academic and social life.  The Gilpins traveled during the years of their correspondence so they sent letters from upstate New York, Maryland and Florida that offer descriptions of their vacations.  The Gilpins and Emma Cope also had an appreciation of nature that comes through strongly in their correspondence.  In addition there appears to have been a great deal of gift exchange between the Copes and Gilpins--the collection contains a number of thank you letters for gifts.  Collection contains a number of handwritten duplicate copies of letters.

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Folder 1/1/126 – Correspondence

Cope, Anna, 6 letters, 1899-1906

To: John R. Gilpin; Emma Gilpin; Vincent Gilpin

From: West Chester, PA 

Topics include: letters of thanks; Christmas; gift giving

 Folder 2/1/126 – Correspondence

Cope, Joseph, 2 letters, 1900-1901

To: John R. Gilpin; Emma Gilpin

From: Westtown, PA

 Folder 3/1/126 – Correspondence

Cope, Herman, 6 letters, 1899-1905

To: John R. Gilpin; Emma Gilpin

From: Westtown, PA; Philadelphia

Topics include: letters of thanks; books as gifts

 Folder 4/1/126 – Correspondence

Gilpin, Emma E., 1 letter, 1901

To: Anna Cope

From: Keene Valley, NY

Topics include: daily life and activities while on vacation

 Folder 5/1/126 – Correspondence

Gilpin, John R., 2 letters, 1899, 1902

To: Herman Cope; Anna Cope

From: West Chester, PA

 Folder 6/1/126 – Correspondence

Gilpin, Vincent, 7 letters, 1 wedding invitation, 1926-1927, 1949-1958

Note: Invitation for the wedding of Margaret Hyde Gilpin and Alan Neidlinger Hall

To: Ellen Cope; Vincent Gilpin; Margaret Gilpin

From: Longport, NJ; West Chester

Topics include: death and memory of parents; reminiscences

 Folder 7/1/126

Correspondence between John R. & Emma E. Gilpin and Ellen Cope,

9 letters, 1899

From: West Chester, PA; Westtown, PA

Topics include: Florida; school; letters of thanks; gift giving

 Folder 8/1/126

Correspondence between John R. & Emma E. Gilpin and Ellen Cope,

15 letters, 1900

From: West Chester, PA: Westtown, PA

Topics include: Florida; school; participation in sports; Vincent Gilpin’s

engineering work in Kentucky; Hospital Fair in West Chester; Christmas gifts

 Folder 9/1/126

Correspondence between John R. & Emma E. Gilpin and Ellen Cope,

10 letters, 1901

From: Westtown, PA: Keene Valley, NY; Avalon, NJ

Topics include: “grape cure”; the family horse; vacation; daily activities while vacationing in the Adirondack Mountains; activities at school; a walk through Chester County

 Folder 10/1/126

Correspondence between John R. & Emma E. Gilpin and Ellen Cope,

14 letters, 1902

Note: Includes clipping from West Chester Local News about graduation exercises at

Westtown school.  The article quotes an essay delivered by Ellen Cope at the

ceremonies.

From: West Chester, PA; Westtown, PA; Wellesley College

Topics include: social life in West Chester; birthday; activities at Westtown school;

description of life at Wellesley College

 Folder 11/1/126

Correspondence between John R. & Emma E. Gilpin and Ellen Cope,

14 letters, 1903

Note: Includes poetry by John R. Gilpin

From: Wellesley, MA; Rockledge, FL; West Chester, PA

Topics include: life at Wellesley College; attending the Boston Symphony; visiting

Boston; visiting Cambridge; description of and activity in Florida; death of Mrs.

Richard Darlington; boat trip; Christmas

 Folder 12/1/126

Correspondence between John R. & Emma E. Gilpin and Ellen Cope,

6 letters, Feb. 1904 to May 1904

From: Wellesley, MA; West Chester, PA

Topics include: life at Wellesley College; academics and leisure; Hazard family home

destroyed by fire in West Chester; reading George Eliot; “opera glasses”;

description of Easton Massachusetts; opening of a Catholic Church; city versus country living; Chester County landscape; Russia; Vincent Gilpin’s walking trips through Chester County 

 Folder 13/1/126

Correspondence between John R. & Emma E. Gilpin and Ellen Cope,

5 letters, April 1904 to December 1904

From: West Chester, PA; Betterton, MD; Philadelphia

Topics include: vacationing on the Chesapeake Bay; dance halls, pool halls, bowling alleys; racial segregation in the South

 Folder 14/1/126

Correspondence between John R. & Emma E. Gilpin and Ellen Cope,

9 letters, 1906, 1908, 1910, 1913, 1921

Note: Includes poem by John R. Gilpin

From: Coconut Grove, FL; West Chester, PA; Eaglesmere, PA; Keene Valley, NY

Topics include: Seminole Indians in Florida; vacation in Eaglesmere Pennsylvania;

carnival at Eaglesmere; poetry; revisiting Keene Valley; death and memories of John R. Gilpin; Byron’s poetry; changes in the old neighborhood [Church Street in West Chester]

 Folder 15/1/126

Christmas cards, 2 items

 Folder 16/1/126

Christmas cards, 5 items

Note: Cards of Vincent and Margaret Gilpin, include family photographs

 Folder 17/1/126

Invitation and schedule for graduation exercises at Westtown Boarding School, 1902

 Folder 18/1/126

List of members, graduating class at Westtown Boarding School, 1902