Historical Collections

Bronxville History Center

The Bronxville History Center holds and makes available for research personal papers, organizational records, photographs, printed materials, artifacts, and other materials relating to the history of Bronxville.  The History Center's collections complement, as a historical resource for the history of Bronxville, the records of the Village of Bronxville, which are kept in Village Hall.

The History Center’s collections include personal papers; organizational records; materials organized around a place or an event (Bronxville School Collection, Hotel Gramatan Collection, Westchester County Historical Pageant Collection); audiovisual materials; maps, blueprints, and posters; artifacts; and printed materials;  Finding aids will be linked to the collection listings as they are completed.

The History Center is a department of the Village of Bronxville.  It is managed by the Village Historian, who is a volunteer.

Contact the Village Historian, at geselbracht321@gmail.com, to make an appointment to use the History Center’s collections. 

A list of the History Center’s collections follows:

Records and Personal Papers

  • American Field Service, Bronxville Chapter Collection
  • Architects of Bronxville Collection
  • Boulder Ledge Garden Club Collection
  • Records of the Bronxville Architectural and Historical Survey, 1973-1977
  • Records of the Bronxville Camera Club
  • Records of the Bronxville Friends of Rotary Park, Recreation and Conservation Project, Inc. (Bicentennial Park)
  • Bronxville Historical Conservancy Collection
  • Bronxville History Center Document Collection, 2.1 linear feet (about 1,700 pages), 1853-present.  The collection includes individual documents or small groups of documents that are not part of any other collection.  Organized by names of individuals and organizations.
  • Records of the Bronxville Public Library
  • Bronxville School Collection
  • Records of the Bronxville Women’s Club--The Villager, 1928-2003
  • Barbara B. Buff Papers--Will Low Research Materials
  • Bertrand Burtnett Papers, 1818-1960 (bulk c.1900-mid 1950s), 2.2 linear feet (about 4,000 pages).  Correspondence, photographs, printed material, reports, speeches, and other materials relating to the history of Bronxville, to Burtnett's several jobs and enterprises during his life, and to his family history.
  • Frank Ross Chambers Papers, 1866-1964, about 300 pages.  Correspondence, photographs, an autobiographical manuscript, and other materials relating primarily to the lives of Frank Ross Chambers and his wife Kate Waller Chambers, and to their house in Bronxville, called "Crow's Nest."
  • Hannah Dunlop (Andrews) Colt Papers, 1909-c.1992 (bulk 1917-1919), about 600 pages.  Correspondence, primarily, and reports, college records, and other materials relating to Colt's activities as a member of the Smith College Relief Unit (Red Cross) during World War I.
  • Anita Inman Comstock Papers
  • Records of the Daughters of the American Revolution, Anne Hutchinson Chapter
  • “Dear Gang” Collection of World War II Letters
  • Records of the Earnest Workers Circle of the King's Daughters
  • Conrad Frey Papers, 1945-1968, about 600 pages.  A scrapbook, photographs, correspondence, school football schedules, school newspapers, and other documents relating primarily to the Bronxville Broncos football team of 1947, and also to other school sports and to Frey's membership in the Boy Scouts.
  • Hotel Gramatan Collection
  • Girl Scout Collection
  • William F. Kraft Papers, 1815-1964, Bulk 1920s-1940s, about 200 pages.  William F. Kraft's passport (1915), newspaper clippings, correspondence, notes, ephemera, a speech draft, a Valentine to Mrs. Frederick W. Kraft (c. 1850), and indentures (1815, 1819, and 1845) relating to Abraham Secord and others and land in New Rochelle.
  • Records of the Business Affairs of the Lawrence Family, 1888-1985, 13 linear feet (about 26,000 pages).  Includes ten very detailed accounts ledgers, three of them entirely or largely kept by William Van Duzer Lawrence; two bound volumes of copies of out-going correspondence written by Lawrence and his two sons, 1916-1918; the business records of forty Lawrence-owned companies; and a large collection of deeds and mortgage-related documents relating to individual properties.
  • Records Relating to Lawrence Park Heat, Light and Power Company, 1974-1979, about 800 pages.  Legal briefs, documents relating to a hearing, correspondence, briefing papers, and other materials relating to the business affairs of the company.
  • Records of the Lawrence Park Hilltop Association
  • Records of the League for Service
  • Records of Leonard Morange Post No. 464, American Legion, 1918-1983. 4 linear feet (about 8,000 pages).  Includes reports of the Post commander; minutes of Post meetings and of the meetings of its executive committee; Post event programs, including those for all the Night of Sport events; and correspondence, financial statements, membership data, and newspaper clippings.  Partly processed; preliminary inventory only.
  • Records of the Little Forum
  • Records of Miss Covington’s of Bronxville, Inc., 1981-1996
  • Abijah Morgan House (339 Pondfield Road) Collection
  • Eloise Morgan Papers, c. 1998 and older research materials, 11 linear feet (about 22,000 pages).  Research materials accumulated primarily during the writing of Building a Suburban Village, Bronxville, New York, 1898-1998, and also during the writing of other historical works, including Out of the Wilderness:  The Emergence of Eastchester, Tuckahoe & Bronxville, NY, 1664-2014.
  • Nondescript Club Collection
  • Records of the Oral History Project, 1984
  • Records of the Prescott Square Company, Inc.
  • Records of the Sagamore Development Company
  • Robert Scannell Papers
  • Scrapbook Collection
  • Mary Arimintha Swain Smith Diaries, 1858-1899, about 500 pages
  • Penrose V. Stout Papers
  • Village of Bronxville Collection
  • Records of the Village of Bronxville:
    •      Assessor Records (Assessment Rolls), 1900-1920, about 1,200 pages
    •      Board of Trustees Records--Minutes of Meetings, 1898-1922, about 1,900 pages
    •      Board of Health Records--Minutes of Meetings, 1898-1925, about 320 pages
    •      Building Department Records--Blueprint Files
    •      Planning Commission Records--Minutes of Meetings, 1904-1923, about 280 pages
    •      Police Department Records--Blotter, 1905-1924, l linear foot (about 2,000 pages)
    •      Village Clerk Records--Official Oath of Office Records, 1904-1917, about 115 pages
  • Ward Leonard Electric Company Collection,  1903, 1912, 1914, 1973, 1993 and Undated, about 400 pages.  Product catalogs, promotional material, autobiographical essays, magazine articles, printed materials, and clippings.
  • Charles Weber, Jr. Papers, 1911-1979, about 100 pages.  Correspondence, printed materials, clippings, membership cards, season passes, chaffeur's licenses, and other documents.
  • Westchester County Department of Planning--Portfolio of Maps, 1944

      Printed Materials

      • Historical Newspapers, about 100,000 pages of historic newspapers from Bronxville, Tuckahoe, and Eastchester, 1902-2009, accessible and searchable online at news.hrvh.org.
      • Books, about 365 items.  Books about Bronxville, its history, people, and institutions; books written by Bronxville residents, including Roy Chapman Andrews, Elizabeth B. Custer, Tudor Jenks, Charles R. Knight, Will H. Low, Jack Paar, Eddie Rickenbacker, Alice Wellington Rollins, Edmund Clarence Stedman, and Louise Beebe Wilder; books by and about members of the family of Joseph P. Kennedy; autogbiographies of William Van Duzer Lawrence and Kate Waller Chambers; and histories of Eastchester, Westchester County, and New York City. 
      • Pamphlets, Booklets, Reprints, Reports, and Periodicals, 5.3 linear feet, 1895-2019.  Includes items about the history of Bronxville and surrounding communities; Bronxville's village government, its neighborhoods, its artists and architects, its schools, churches, civic organizations, veterans and patriotic organizations, and country clubs; its real estate developments; its political parties and campaigns; and Lawrence Hospital, the Hotel Gramatan, the Bronxville Public Library, and the Bronx River Parkway Reservation.
      • City Directories and Telephone Books, 2.1 linear feet.  Includes two city directories (1916 and 1929); several other business and resident directories and extracts from directories (1891-1966, 2000); issues of the Bronxville Guide, published by the Chamber of Commerce (1965-2012, 2019); issues of the Bronxville Handi-Book (1979-1985); and issues of Directory--Village of Bronxville (1967-2012).
      • School Yearbooks (not including Bronxville School), 14 items.  Includes yearbooks from Brantwood Hall (1921, 1925, 1928, 1941-1946), Concordia College (1913, 1915, 1919, 1953), and the Edison Vocational and Technical High School of Mount Vernon (1947).
      • Exhibition and Auction Catalogs, 39 items, 1895, 1977-2010.  Includes catalogs from the Bronxville Public Library, the Bronxville Historical Conservancy, Christie's, the Hudson River Museum, the Museum of the City of New York, the OSilas Gallery (Concordia College), the Spanierman Gallery of New York, and other galleries and auction houses.
      • Postcards, about 529 items, 1906-1960s.  Includes images, often the best images of their subjects in the History Center's collection, of many of Bronxville's public buildings, past and present, and some of its residential streets.

      Audiovisual Materials

      • Robert Browning Baker Studio Photograph Collection.
      • Bronxville History Center Media Collection, about 60 videos, 40 sound recordings, 200 photographs, and 130 documents, 1964, 1979-2018.  Includes item featuring Bronxville citizens and others talking primarily about Bronxville and its history.
      • Bronxville History Center Photograph Collection, about 4,700 photographs, 1870 to the present.  Photographs of Bronxville organized under headings such as Artists, Celebrations, Education, Houses and Buildings, Individuals and Groups, Religion, and Social Organizations.
      • Bronxville History Center Slide Collection
      • Bronxville Mayors Photograph Collection
      • Bronxville Photograph Collection--Judith Watts Photography, Inc., 238 photographs, 2005-2006.  Includes color photographs of Bronxville's commercial and residential buildings, and aerial photographs.
      • John Gass Photograph Collection
      • Girl Scouts Photograph Collection
      • Hotel Gramatan Photograph Collection--Eric Aitken, 1972
      • Kraft Family Photograph Collection
      • Louise Lawrence Meigs Photograph Collection, about 1,200 photographs, 1887-1916.  The photographs depict primarily Meigs family members and friends and the places they lived in and visited; many depict their vacations in the Adirondack Mountains; Bronxville is also a frequent subject, and New York City, Washington, DC, rural England, and William Van Duzer Lawrence's home in New Hampshire are also shown.
      • Westchester County Historical Pageant, 1909--Caroline Parsons

      Artifacts

      • Bronxville History Center Artifact Collection, about 130 artifacts, including twenty-eight works of art by Bronxville artists or featuring Bronxville subjects; items manufactured by Bronxville firms J. Ward & Co. and Ward Leonard Electric Company; ten items from the Hotel Gramatan; the historic marker regarding Chief Gramatan and the alleged donation of land in 1666; and other items relating to Bronxville's history.

      Vertical File

      • Bronxville History Center Vertical File14.3 linear feet (about 28,000 pages).  Primarily a collection of newspaper and magazine clippings, reprints, and photocopies, but also including correspondence, printed material, and other items.  Organized under subject headings such as Artists, Education, Houses and Buildings, Individuals, and Organizations.