Scope and arrangement
The collection is divided into general correspondence, letter-student notes books, family correspondence, writings, notes and transcripts, and notebooks, diaries, scrapbooks, personal miscellaneous papers, miscellaneous papers, photographs, printed matter, and unsorted papers.
The general correspondence, 1862-1938, is arranged chronologically, alphabetically, and by subject. Most of the correspondence is between Ford and various colleagues from different areas of the United States, including historians, librarians, academics, and writers, along with publishers, printers, booksellers and lawyers. Many of these individuals were also close friends of Ford. The collection incorporates extensive correspondence of Charles Francis Adams, Henry Cabot Lodge, James Ford Rhodes, and John Franklin Jameson. Other correspondence includes that of Brooks Adams, Henry Adams, James Truslow Adams, Albert Jeremiah Beveridge, Lindsey Swift, Mark Antony De Wolfe Howe, William Herbert Perry Faunce, Albert Bushnell Hart, Abbott Lawrence Lowell, Herbert Putnam, Galliard Hunt, Barrett Wendell, Daniel Berkely Updike, Wilberforce Eames, William Roscoe Thayer, Richard Rogers Bowker, Samuel Flagg Bemis, Richard Henry Dana, Oswald Garrison Villard, and Charles Nordhoff. In addition, there are a few letters of Mark Van Doren, Gamaliel Bradford, John Bigelow and Albert Shaw. Further correspondence is that of Ford's brothers-in-law, Roswell Skeel, Richmond Mayo-Smith, and Robert Turle, and that of his cousin, Wolcott Ellsworth. The alphabetical correspondence is also arranged chronologically (1899-1937). It includes separated correspondence 1878, 1898, and 1910-1925 of Charles Francis Adams, 1910-1916 of the American Historical Association, 1929-1935 of John Franklin Jameson, 1916-1922 of the John Carter Brown Library,1910-1924 of Henry Cabot Lodge, 1898-1928 of James Ford Rhodes, and 1909-1920 of Barrett Wendell. Finally, there are letters (1887-1891) concerning the Writings of George Washington, letters (1912-1921) concerning the Writings of John Quincy Adams, letters (1937-1938) concerning the Letters of Henry Adams, letters (1928-1929) concerning forged Lincoln correspondence published by the Atlantic Monthly, and letters (1914-1925) chiefly between Ford and lawyers concerning the settlement of the Ford Estate and the sale of property. Of six letter-press copy-books, one (1881-1882) is a record of Ford's term as secretary of the Brooklyn Reform Club. Four others, covering the periods June 26, 1893-March 24, 1894, May 31-January 4, 1895, January 6-September 5, 1896, and September 14, 1896-August 16, 1897 all consist of letters written while Ford was chief of the Bureau of Statistics, Treasury Department. One other letter-press copy-book, February 23-October 22, 1894, contains letters along with a few pages of notes on economic subjects and an article on Chinese foreign commerce. The family correspondence (1870-1935) is chiefly incoming; letters from Ford to many family members are in their respective collections, It includes several letters from Ford's mother, until her death in 1893, and from his brother Paul, until his death in 1902. There are a few letters from Malcolm Webster Ford, the middle brother. In addition, early letters include a few to Ford's grandfather, Lester Ford, and a few (1876 & 1878) from a cousin, C. F. Clarke and separated correspondence (1871-1885) Throughout the correspondence are letters from Ford's sisters, from Vincent Ford, perhaps a cousin, particularly Emily Ellsworth Skeel, and also Rosalie Greenleaf Barr, Mabel Percy Mayo-Smith, and Kathleen Gordon Turle. There are numerous letters between Ford and his wife (ca, 1899-1924) and his two children. Further correspondence includes that between Ford and several nieces and nephews, including Malcolm, Richmond, Byrd, Rufus, Gillian, Lucie, Betty, June, Amy and Ulrich Philips (evidently a nephew by marriage), and also Grace Kidder, Paul's widow. Ford's writings are partially sorted. They are loosely grouped according to subject and period, with overlap throughout most of the series. Most of the writings are drafts or handwritten manuscripts, often with the final or intended form unclear. Some of the manuscripts follow upon each other, while others are more fragmentary. A few annotated transcripts are included, which presumably were intended for works which Ford edited. Some manuscript drafts are interspersed with clippings which remain in context. The writings are chiefly concerned with American history, and with economics, finance, and commerce. Economic writings concentrate both on the history of commerce, including European and Asian (particularly Chinese) subjects along with American, and with foreign trade and policies. These writings include a letter-press copy-book of essays on finance and commerce, and two notebooks of material for a projected work, "History of the Public Finances of the United States" (ca. 1885). There are also drafts for another projected work, "History of Commerce" (ca. 1904). Some writings are of the Revolutionary War period, including work regarding Washington and the Journals of the Continental Congress, and some are of the Civil War period. Writings concerned with the 17th century and other periods of the 18th and 19th centuries are grouped together. Further manuscripts include copy for The Writings of George Washington and The Writings of John Quincy Adams. Essays, addresses and articles form another group. These include writings on historical societies and archives, and biographical sketches including one of Cotton Mather. Miscellaneous writings incorporate unsorted drafts on various periods and subjects. Various galleys and page proofs and some printed copies of Ford's published work end the writings. Notes and transcripts are comprised of numerous transcripts of historical letters and other documents, many of which were copied by hand by Ford. Presumably they were used both as research material and for collected editions of letters and writings. Among the transcripts are considerable letters of George Washington, John Quincy Adams, Richard Henry Lee, James Madison, James Monroe, and John Caldwell Calhoun. Some transcripts were collected for a projected work on the Civil War. Extracts from F. O. (Foreign Office) America are from a record group in the British Public Record Office. Other transcripts are from various periods of the 18th and 19th centuries. In addition, there are unsorted notes and transcripts. Scattered through the series but particularly in this last group are fragmentary research notes and annotated printed matter. Of six notebooks, two include various newspaper articles (1865) concerning the assassination of President Lincoln, and one in. French is of articles in French newspapers on the same subject. One other is a commonplace book, another records extracts from a 1777 diary of Robert Morton, and a last contains various transcripts. There is also an 1896 letter-press copy-book of financial statistics. Two notebooks document the names of Revolutionary War soldiers; in addition, there are index cards on the same subject. Student notes and notebooks (ca. 1872-1879) include some high school notes but are mostly from college; along with history, they are chiefly of languages (particularly Greek and Latin translations) and science. The diaries (1873-1918) are comprised of hard-bound notebooks, leather pocket diaries, and desk-calendars (1911-1914). They record everyday and more unusual events with brief and curt entries. The scrapbooks (ca. 1898-1931) consist mostly of clippings and other matter which Ford put together on a. particular subject. They include a scrapbook concerning the Washington family, one concerning the Society for Political Education, and several of articles and essays written by Ford. Miscellaneous papers include personal papers consisting of school reports both of Ford and of his two children, various juvenilia, an account regarding the reading of Gordon Ford's will, an essay by Ford " Recollections of my Father", a passport, and stamps with Ford's portrait on them, miscellaneous papers contain writings by individuals other than Ford along with a few unidentified manuscripts, and records of societies and committees of which Ford was affiliated. Other papers are genealogical documents and biographical sketches of the Fowler and Chauncey families, legal papers which include a copy of Ford's will and one of his father's will, announcements of publications, bills and receipts, accounts including one account book (1891-1893), various memos and short notes, invitations and calling cards, and voting slips. Photographs includes several of Ford, along with others of his father and mother, his brothers Malcolm and Paul, and his sister Emily Skeel. Some photographs are probably of Ford's two daughters, along with others which are possibly of Ford family members or relatives. Other photographs include of both identified and unidentified people, and miscellaneous photographs of various subjects both personal and public. There is one photo album and glass negatives of two pictures. Printed matter includes material concerned with the Lincoln forgeries and numerous clippings.
The Worthington Chauncey Ford papers are arranged in ten series:
(chronological & alphabetical).