Martin, Campbell, and Furlong families papers
Scope and Contents note
The materials in this collection, dating from the late-eighteenth century to the mid-twentieth century, document the personal as well as some business and estate affairs of several Philadelphia families, most notably the Martin and Campbell families. The three major families documented in the collection, the Martins, Campbells, and Furlongs, as well as the Kennedy family, were primarily from Philadelphia. The Jenkins and branches of the Kennedy family, who are also documented, also lived in Baltimore and New Orleans.
The collection includes correspondence, mostly amongst family members and to a lesser extent friends and business associates, alongside a few items that provide estate, financial, business, and genealogical information as well as a small number of photographs. Letters indicate a strong bond between parents and children and among siblings. While some letters discuss public affairs explicitly, many letters also indirectly reflect the political, economic, and social events of the time while providing insight into family structure, the religious beliefs of these devout Catholic families, and nineteenth- and twentieth-century Philadelphia culture. Some letters provide commentary and first-hand accounts of major events in Philadelphia and U.S. history, including the Civil War, the women’s suffrage movement, and World War I. Letters also provide genealogical information.
It should be noted that many letters include messages from two or more family members. Most often, the primary sender was chosen as the correspondent. Also, as these families are related to each other by marriage, there is some overlap in the arrangement. Letters relating to Frances Furlong Martin, for example, can be found in the “Martin Family” series as well as the “Furlong Family” series. Moreover, correspondence is mostly arranged by sender, though some is organized by recipient. Due to the fact that William J. Campbell amassed the collection, many of the letters from about the late 1870s to the 1920s are to his wife, Elizabeth Martin Campbell. Although most of the letters are in English, a few are written in Italian, Spanish and French; one uses Cyrillic script.
This collection has been arranged into four series: “Martin Family;” “Campbell Family;” “Furlong Family;” and “Miscellaneous Martin and Campbell Family papers.” The “Martin Family,” series, dating from circa 1809-1933, is divided into five subseries. Each subseries contains papers relating to the immediate family for which the series is named. Thus, the first subseries, “John and Maria Beebe Martin Family” (1822-1902) contains papers relating to the immediate family of John Martin and Maria Beebe.
A majority of the letters in the “Martin Family” series were written by Frances Martin Jenkins (1851-1916) and William Kennedy Martin (1853-1928). The former's letters can be found in the “William F. and Francis Martin Jenkins Family, 1859-1925” subseries. William Kennedy Martin's letters can be found in the "William Kennedy and Maria Guiteras Martin, 1870-circa 1918" subseries as well as the last series, "William Kennedy Martin letters, 1905-1924, undated".
John Martin (1781-1849) was a captain merchant and owner of the bark “William Kennedy,” who conducted business with Baltimore, New Orleans and the Caribbean as well as with cities along the east coast. He also seems to have had some dealings with Western Europe and China. His point persons in these areas appear to have primarily been family relations who were also involved in the trade industry, including Charles Kennedy (b.1808), Captain William Kennedy (1800-1873), Joseph M. Anguerra (b.1805) and Alexander Lucet.
Most of the papers relating to John Martin concern his business and estate affairs, including financial accounts and his last will and testament. Also included is a contract with William D. Waples from Delaware (1843) concerning the completion of construction of Martin’s shipping vessel.
Many of the papers relating to John Stephen Martin (1822-1910) also deal with business affairs. Many of John’s letters to his family are from the numerous places he visited while working for his father. Most of John’s letters are from Marseilles, which is where he lived for a good part of his life, and where he founded the business, “Martin and Blohorn & Cavagna: Commission Merchants and Ship Chandlers.”
Being from a merchant family, the children of John and Maria Martin did a significant amount of travelling. Several children’s travels ended tragically. Ann Catherine Martin died at sea. Henry Edwin Martin died while staying in Sacramento, California. Mary Stanley Martin died in St. John in the Caribbean. And Alexander Lucet Martin was presumably killed in Shanghai in 1864 by T’aiping “rebels.”
Alexander Lucet Martin served as the first mate of the British gunboat Firefly during the T’aiping Rebellion (1850-1864). The ship and its crew were captured by T’aipings, who were aided by a renegade Englishman named Augustus Lindley, in November 1863. The crew was later tortured and executed in retaliation for atrocities committed by British troops during their capture of the T’aiping-held city of Soochow. A few items relating to this incident are located in Alexander Martin’s folder and can also be found within W.A.K. Martin’s correspondence and the Miscellaneous Martin Family folders.
Other than family correspondence, the “William A.K. and Frances Furlong Martin Family” subseries, dating from 1828 to 1924, contains a decent amount of materials relating to William A.K. Martin’s (1816-1867) career as an artist. From the turn of the century up until the mid 1800s, Philadelphia served as the preeminent city for artists in the country, particularly portrait artists and lithographers. Thus, William was privy to a vibrant artistic scene. He received tutoring in portrait painting from notable artist John Neagle. William was also a member of the Artists Fund Society and Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts which held annual exhibitions to sustain art activity in the city.
It appears that William had a fairly steady amount of business in his home town. His work garnered some interest outside Philadelphia as well. He was asked to exhibit paintings at the Metropolitan Mechanical Institution in Washington D.C. Moreover, Librarian of Congress, John Silva Meehan took an interest in his paintings. Meehan worked on Martin’s behalf to have him hired to paint a marine subject for one of the panels in the new extensions of the U.S. Capitol building.
William also painted works with religious themes for churches and parish societies. A friend of St. Philip Neri’s first pastor, John Patrick Dunn, William donated one of his first paintings, the Scourging of Christ at the Pillar, to the church. Thus, correspondence relating to William A.K. Martin includes letters from prominent clergy and Catholic laity, including Rev. Dunn.
A fair amount of business-related materials can also be found amongst the papers relating to William A.K. Martin’s son, William Kennedy Martin (1853-1928), in the third subseries, “William Kennedy and Maria Guiteras Martin Family, 1870-circa 1918". Many of William’s letters concern his work as an engineer with the Pennsylvania Railroad Company as well as his time working for the Mexican National Construction Company.
The fifth subseries, “Related Family Members” (circa 1809-1919) contains papers of persons related to the Martin family, including Alexander and Margaret Lucet who resided in Trieste, Italy and who were very close to John and Maria Beebe Martin; Ellen Busch, a cousin; and Lucia Lambert Roby, the daughter of Louis C. Lambert and Adrianna Maria Martin (1835-1896). Also included are miscellaneous correspondence and notes related to the Jenkins and Kennedy families. Correspondence relating to members of the Kennedy family, including William and Charles Kennedy, can also be found throughout the “Martin Family” series, particularly the folders relating to John Martin and W.A.K. Martin.
The “Campbell Family” series, dating from 1855 to 1939, is divided into two subseries. The first subseries, “William J. and Elizabeth Martin Campbell Family” (1870-1963) contains papers relating to the immediate family of which the subseries is named. Much of the correspondence is letters written between William and Elizabeth, including those written during their courtship. Also included is a fair amount of letters to Elizabeth, especially those from her friend Caroline B. Perot.
Due to his involvement in the Catholic community in Philadelphia, correspondence relating to William J. Campbell includes letters from prominent Catholic laity, including a letter from Dr. Lawrence F. Flick (1897), founder of the Pennsylvania Tuberculosis Society, regarding the death of William’s brother John Hugh Campbell. William and Elizabeth’s son John James Campbell (1883-1852) is also well represented. Most of the letters from 1918 are to and from William Martin Campbell (b.1887), who was stationed in France at the end of World War I. This subseries contains numerous postcards.
The second subseries, “Other Campbell Family Members, 1855-1939" includes papers mostly relating to members of the John and Margaret Hughes Campbell family. There is only a scant amount of documentation for John Campbell (1810-1874) and his children John Hugh Campbell (1847-1897), Charles Campbell (1836-1867), and Marianne Campbell (1840-1913) including a few letters, obituary notices, and estate items.
There is, however, a decent amount of correspondence to and from Sarah Jane Campbell (1844-1928). The majority of these letters are from Jane to the family of William J. and Elizabeth Martin Campbell who lived with Jane and her sister Marianne. Some document Jane’s involvement in the suffrage movement as well as her involvement in numerous associations and clubs, and reveal her political, religious, and family loyalties. Other materials relating to Jane include her will, and land deeds for the property she and Marianne purchased in Germantown.
Other Campbell family members represented in this subseries are William Francis Campbell (b. 1882); John Hugh Campbell, Jr. (b. 1881) a newspaper journalist in Chicago; and John Bart Campbell, a journalist and member of the National Press Club. Materials relating to William Francis Campbell and John Bart Campbell include a few family photographs from the late 1920s.
“Furlong Family, 1795-1897", the third series in this collection, contains mostly letters written from family in Ireland to relations in Philadelphia. Multiple letters were either fully or partially transcribed by William J. Campbell, the original creator of the collection, in order to tease out genealogical information. These transcripts are located in the first folder of the series. The transcripts and the original letters have corresponding numbers. Most of the letters from Haysland are from William Furlong, the brother of John and James who immigrated to Philadelphia. A few materials relating to John Furlong and James Furlong, including the latter’s official certificate granting him U.S. citizenship (1813), are contained in the series.
The children of James and Frances Boyle Furlong are also represented as well as family members relating to the Furlongs, including Ann Boyle Barry and Mary E. Barry (1798-1868). Letters written to Ann Boyle Barry from Ireland, dating from 1795-1818, include the oldest items in the collection. Miscellaneous financial papers and correspondence are also included in the series. The series “Martin and Campbell Families Miscellaneous” (1837-1925) contains miscellaneous correspondence and letter fragments relating to these two families. It also includes financial papers, ephemera and blank postcards.
- Creation: 1795-1963
- Creation: Majority of material found within 1825 - 1930
Conditions Governing Access
The collection is open for research.
Captain John Martin (1781-1849) serves as the earliest member of the Martin family documented in the collection. John was most likely from Genoa, Italy, his name originally being Giovanni Martini. A captain merchant dealing in overseas trade, he married Maria Beebe/Biby (1795-1849) who was the daughter of Daniel Beebe of Boston and Ann Catherine Kyle, in 1813. They had eight children: William Augustin Kennedy Martin (1816-1867), Ann Catherine Martin Cole (1818-1852), Mary Stanley Martin Fleming (1820-1842), John Stephen Martin (1822-1910), Henry Edwin Martin (1825-1849), Alexander Lucet Martin (1829-1864), George Stephen Martin (1832-1897), and Adrianna Maria Martin Lambert (1835-1896).
It appears as if before her marriage to Daniel Beebe, Ann Catharine Kyle was previously married to Adam Primer/Premier with whom she had two daughters: Margaret Primer (d.1857) who married Alexander Lucet from Trieste, and Sara Primer who married John Kennedy. Alexander and Margaret Lucet lived in Trieste and had one child, Angelica Lucet (d. 1834).
John and Sara Kennedy had several children, including William Kennedy (1800-1873), John Kennedy (b. 1803), Alexander Lucet Kennedy (b. 1805), Charles Kennedy (b. 1808) who married Sarah Kennedy of New Orleans, and Anna Maria Kennedy (b. 1809) who married Joseph M. Anguera (b. 1805) of Barcelona, Spain. The family lived in Philadelphia several years before moving to Baltimore.
John Stephen Martin (1822-1910) followed in his father’s footsteps and was involved in overseas commerce. He married Josephine Johnson in 1852 and had several children: Mary Gracine Martin (b. 1854) who died in infancy, John Stephen Martin, Jr. (1855-1940) who served as a translator for the State Department, Louis Martin (d. 1910), Marie Colombe Martin, Henry Martin, Helene Martin (d.1928), Josephine Martin, and Henrietta Elizabeth Martin (1869-1930).
John and Maria Martin’s eldest son, William A.K. Martin (1816-1867) made his living in Philadelphia as an artist. His works primarily included landscape, portrait, and maritime paintings, specifically paintings of U.S. Naval ships. He also painted works with religious themes. In 1845, William married Frances A.C. Furlong (1820-1897), daughter of James Furlong (1775-1844) and Frances Boyle.
Including Frances, James and Frances Furlong had five children: Elizabeth F. Furlong (1810-1862), Catherine Furlong (1812-1890), Anastasia Teresa Furlong (1815-1833), and Eleanor C. Furlong (1817-1895). James and his brother John Furlong had immigrated to the United States from Haysland, Ireland by 1805. Their brother, William, who remained in Ireland, as well as other Furlong relations, kept in contact with James and John, and subsequently with James’ descendants after his death.
William A.K. and Frances Furlong Martin had seven children: John Martin (1846-1850), James Furlong Martin (1848-1909), Frances Martin Jenkins (1851-1916), William Kennedy Martin (1853-1928), Elizabeth Anastasia Furlong Martin Campbell (1856-1925), Catherine Furlong Martin (1860-1948), and Henry Augustin Martin (1865-1942). James Furlong Martin was involved in real estate and insurance, and was also very involved in the alumni activities of Central High School. Catherine Furlong Martin entered the Convent of the Sacred Heart. Henry Augustin Martin was a conveyancer in real estate and collecting, and was also a print dealer and publisher. Many of the art works that he handled were those by his father. Henry married Rebecca Agnes McGirr with whom he had two children, Henry Martin and Eleanor Martin.
Frances Martin married William F. Jenkins (1873-1945) of the Baltimore Jenkins in 1873. They had seven children: Joseph Wilcox Jenkins (b.1876), Francis Martin Jenkins Tucker (b. 1877), Matilda Lee Jenkins (b.1879), James M. Jenkins (b.1883), William Jenkins (b.1886), Gertrude S. Jenkins (b. 1888), and Eleanor Jenkins (b.1890).
William Kennedy Martin became a chief engineer with the Pennsylvania Railroad Company primarily working in western Pennsylvania. He also worked as an engineer for the Mexican National Construction Company for several years. William married Maria Guiteras from New York in 1892, and they had two children: Maria (Mariquita) Martin (b. 1894) and Teresa (Teresita) Martin (b. 1898).
The Campbell family relates to the Martins and Furlongs through the marriage of Elizabeth A.F. Martin to William James Campbell (1850-1931) in 1882. William J. Campbell was the son of John Campbell (1810-1874) and Margaret Hughes (1814-1881). John, son of Patrick Campbell and Mary Malone, was born in County Armagh, Ireland. Margaret, from County Westmeath, was the daughter of Lawrence and Mary Hughes. John Campbell married Margaret Hughes in 1833, and in 1843, the couple immigrated to Philadelphia. Including William James Campbell, they had seven children: Charles Campbell (1836-1867) who married Eulalie Baenn in New Orleans (1862) and had two children, John Campbell (1864-1892) and Eulalie Josephine Campbell (1867-1882); James Campbell (1838-1839); Marianne Campbell (1840-1913); Jane Campbell (1842-1843); Sarah Jane Campbell (1844-1928); and John Hugh Campbell (1847-1897).
Many of the Campbells were prolific writers and were heavily involved in political and social movements as well as numerous Catholic, historical, civic, and Irish-American organizations and associations, such as the American Catholic Historical Society. Long-time residents of Germantown, the Campbells were also actively involved in the social and cultural affairs of this section of the city.
John Campbell (1810-1874) was a bookseller, publisher, writer, and strong supporter of the labor movement. Having moved from Ireland to Manchester and then London during the 1830s, John was compelled to immigrate to the United States for political acts and declarations against the British government. Campbell became a reporter of the Philadelphia labor movement for the New York Tribune. Becoming a prominent voice within the labor movement in the mid-1840s, Campbell spoke at many important mass meetings. In 1844, he became the first secretary of the Philadelphia Social Reform Society, and subsequently founded other similar organizations, such as the Social Improvement Society. Campbell’s ideas regarding socialism, strongly influenced by European socialist theories, were seen as too radical so that by the early 1850s his influence began to wane. John’s bookselling and publishing company was one of the most successful in Philadelphia.
John Hugh Campbell (1847-1897) was a lawyer, writer and active member of several Philadelphia-based associations. Along with his brother William James, John was a member of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick and Hibernian Society of Philadelphia. As the Society’s Historian, Campbell authored Friendly Sons of St. Patrick and Hibernian Society for the Relief of Emigrants from Ireland, 1771-1892. He also served as the editor of Legal Gazette and C.T.A News. For eleven years, John served as President of the Catholic Total Abstinence Union of Philadelphia, and was also one of the originators of the American Catholic Historical Society.
In 1878, John H. married Kate Sparks. They had eight children: John Hugh Campbell, Jr. (b. 1881), William Francis Campbell (b. 1882), Margaret Campbell (b. 1883), Charles Campbell (b. 1885), Catherine Campbell (b. 1886), Mary Campbell (b. 1888), Jane Campbell (b. 1890), and Joseph Campbell (b. 1892).
William James Campbell (1850-1931) graduated from the University of Pennsylvania with doctorates in medicine and philosophy in 1871 and succeeded his father in the book and publishing business. William was a member of the Catholic Total Abstinence Union of Philadelphia and was President of St. Malachy’s Total Abstinence Society. He was also a charter member of the American Catholic Historical Society, president and publisher of the City History Society, and member of the Young Men’s Democratic Association. William was also involved in other historical associations that dealt with the history of Philadelphia and Germantown. He authored The collection of Franklin imprints in the museum of the Curtis Publishing Company: with a short-title check list of all the books, pamphlets, broadsides, &c., known to have been printed by Benjamin Franklin (1918).
William James Campbell and his wife Elizabeth Martin had five children: John James Campbell (1883-1952) who continued the Campbell bookseller and publishing business, Elizabeth Martin Campbell (b. 1885), William Martin Campbell (b.1887) a prominent Philadelphia architect who was involved in local politics, James Campbell (1888-1890), and Frances Martin Campbell (b.1897).
Sarah Jane Campbell (1844-1928), was a prolific writer and speaker. A strong supporter of the women’s suffrage, Jane was very active within the movement. In 1892, she founded the Women’s Suffrage Society of Philadelphia, and served as its president for 22 years. Jane was also on the executive board of the Pennsylvania Women’s Suffrage Association and represented Philadelphia in the American Women’s Suffrage Association. She often served as a delegate to the national and state conventions and was often in demand as a speaker. Jane edited the magazine Woman’s Progress which was founded by her sister, Marianne Campbell.
Jane was involved in numerous civic, Catholic, gardening, and historical organizations, clubs, and associations, including the American Catholic Historical Society for which she served as recording secretary for a time, the City History Society of Philadelphia, the Audubon Society, St. Vincent’s Aid Society, the Civic Club, the Mercantile Club, the Current Events Club of Germantown, and the Women’s Press Club among others for which she wrote articles and gave speeches.
Jane also contributed to several Philadelphia newspapers, including The Philadelphia Inquirer, The Record, and The Ledger writing about a multitude of topics. She also wrote children’s folk tales for the Record and contributed to Catholic publications, including the Rosary Magazine of New York, the Catholic Messenger, and the Records of the American Catholic Historical Society.
Jane Campbell’s sister, Marianne Campbell (1840-1913) was also an advocate for women’s rights, being a member of the Women’s Suffrage Society of Philadelphia. In 1893, Marianne founded the magazine Woman’s Progress in literature, science, art, education, and politics for which her sister Jane was the editor. Under the pseudonyms “T.S. Arthur” and “Catherine Osborne,” Marianne contributed many articles. The magazine ran for three years.
As an art teacher who worked in Philadelphia’s public schools for fifty-five years- her last position as Head of the Art Department at the Girls’ Normal School- Marianne was deeply devoted to and active in her profession. She was pivotal in the formation of the Teachers’ Annuity and Aged Society for the care of aged teachers. Marianne herself was an artist having studied at the Academy of the Fine Arts, often entering paintings in its annual exhibitions. Like her sister Jane, Marianne was involved in numerous clubs and associations, especially those associated with her interest in botany, including the Audubon Society, the Geographical Society, and the Academy of Natural Sciences.
A more detailed and extended family tree is located in this collection’s accession folder.
5.2 Linear Feet (; 13 boxes)
Language of Materials
This collection contains papers that document several generations of the Martin, Campbell, and Furlong families with the Martin family receiving the most coverage. To a lesser extent, the Kennedy and Jenkins families, who had strong personal and mercantile ties to the Martin family, are also represented. These interrelated middle class Irish Catholic families from Philadelphia were involved in several prominent industries in the region, including overseas commerce.
Devout in their religious beliefs, the families, the Campbells in particular, played a significant role in shaping Catholicity in Philadelphia. Members of the Campbell family were also actively involved in political and social movements of the nineteenth- and twentieth-centuries, including the labor movement and women’s suffrage. Distinguished members of these families are represented, including suffragist and writer Sarah Jane Campbell (1844-1928).
Items in the collection date from 1795 to 1939 with the majority of materials dating from the period 1825 to 1925. Most items are correspondence, family-oriented and personal in nature; also included are business, estate, and genealogical materials as well as a few photographs.
Overview of Arrangement
Series I Martin Family, circa 1809-1933
a. John and Maria Beebe Martin Family, 1822-1902
b. William A. K. and Frances Furlong Martin Family, 1828-1924
c. William Kennedy and Maria Guiteras Martin Family, 1870-circa 1918
d. William F. and Frances Martin Jenkins Family, 1859 -1925
e. Related Family Members, circa 1809-1919
Series II Campbell Family, 1855-1963
a. William J. and Elizabeth Martin Campbell Family, 1870-1963
b. Other Campbell Family Members, 1855-1939
Series III Furlong Family, 1795-1897
Series IV Martin and Campbell Families Miscellaneous, 1843-1925
Series V William Kennedy Martin letters, 1905-1924, undated
Gift of Willman Spawn, 1997.
Accession number 1997.027.
- Campbell, John H. History of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick and of the Hibernian Society for the Relief of Emigrants from Ireland, March 17, 1771- March 17, 1892. Philadelphia: The Hibernian Society, 1892.
- Leigh, Mary Ann. “An Epistolary Portrait: Sarah Jane Campbell, 1844-1928.” Master of Liberal Arts Capstone Project, University of Pennsylvania, 2000. (P008.173)
- Records of the American Catholic Historical Society.
- Weigley, Russell F. et. al. Philadelphia: A 300-Year History. New York: W.W. Norton & Co., 1982.
The few papers that I could discern that Campbell had organized, such as letters between him and his wife, Elizabeth Martin Campbell, were maintained in their original order. Campbell also transcribed a majority of the Furlong family letters in effort to discover genealogical information. These transcriptions are located in the “Furlong Family” series.
Willman Spawn, a professional conservator who had custody of the collection for a time, appears to have reorganized the collection, sorting letters and other materials chronologically. I did not think that the collection's chronological ordering was beneficial for researchers who would most likely be searching for individual names. Thus, since an original order for the most part no longer existed, I reorganized the collection by surname, family member, and date.
The last series in the collection, "William Kennedy Martin letters, 1905-1924, undated" contains letters that were found in an unmarked box in the Parish Calendar collection several months after the Martin, Campbell, and Furlong families papers had been processed. They somehow became separated from the rest of the collection.
Some minimal conservation was undertaken, such as refoldering, removing metal pins and paper holders, and removing dirt. A few items are in very poor condition and need proper attention.
Genre / Form
- Estate records
- Family records
- Financial records
- Baltimore (Md.)
- Germantown (Philadelphia, Pa.)
- Haysland (Co. Wexford, Ireland)
- New Orleans (La.)
- Olean (N.Y.)
- Philadelphia (Pa.)
- Richmond (Va.)
- Titusville (Pa.)
- Catholic women
- Catholics -- Pennsylvania -- Philadelphia (Pa.)
- Commerce and trade -- Philadelphia -- 19th century.
- Family life -- Pennsylvania -- 19th century.
- Family life -- Pennsylvania -- 20th century.
- Irish American Catholics.
- Philadelphia (Pa.) -- Social life and customs -- 19th century.
- Philadelphia (Pa.) -- Social life and customs -- 20th century.
- Martin, Campbell, and Furlong families papers
- Faith Charlton
- ; June 2011
- Description rules
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
- Language of description
- Script of description
- Code for undetermined script
- Language of description note