Scope and arrangement
The Founding Members Records consist of handwritten, typewritten and printed documents and span the years 1895 to 1930. They include John Cadwalader's correspondence, 1895-1914 and his general files, 1904-1913; Lewis Cass Ledyard's correspondence, 1897-1930; and George Rives' files, 1904-1916. Items include incoming and outgoing correspondence, interoffice memoranda, NYPL Executive Board memoranda, drafts of Board of Trustee minutes, budgets, clippings, receipts, bills, and reports of various NYPL committees generated during the day-to-day operations of The Library during its early years. The records document the founding of The New York Public Library and illuminate a wide range of Library affairs, as well as the careers of its trustees and staff.
The Founding Members' records are arranged in three series:
- 1895-19142 boxes
The records of NYPL Trustee John Cadwalader consist of two subseries, described below.
- 1897-19302 boxes
Chronologically arranged correspondence files contain information on Library administration and operations. There is also substantial documentation of NYPL's sale of Lenox Library properties, including the site at 5th Avenue between 70th and 71st Streets.
- 1904-19162 boxes
Alphabetically arranged files contain information on the NYPL Central Building project, Reference Department collections, Circulation Department branch libraries and other administrative matters.