This collection documents multiple generations of the Sudlow and Haviland families, originally of Dutchess County, N.Y. The collection contains biographical information; personal, business, and Civil War correspondence; financial, insurance, legal, and real estate papers; family photographs; family trees and scrapbooks; and genealogy card files.
The earliest Sudlow materials relate to Richard Sudlow Sr., an English-born Quaker farmer who emigrated to Dutchess County, N.Y., in the early nineteenth century. In the 1830s, his sons, George Q. and Richard Sudlow, moved to Athens County (and later, Hocking County), Ohio. There Richard worked as a corn and tobacco farmer, and as a laborer on the Hocking Canal, which connected Lancaster, Ohio, to the Ohio and Erie Canal (1837). Richard and his wife Hannah had six children, John H., Elizabeth G. (Egbert), Phebe W., Egbert C., Henry Butts, and Lucy M., all of whom moved to the Quad Cities area (Illinois/Iowa) in the 1850s.
Much of the Sudlow half of the collection pertains to Richard Sudlow Sr.'s children and grandchildren. Notable Sudlow family correspondence includes Richard and Hannah Sudlow's letters to John and Elizabeth Haviland, describing life in Athens County, Ohio, in the 1830s; John Haviland Sudlow's 1850s letters to family, describing his life in Moline, Ill., where he worked as a carpenter and as a laborer for John Deere, and in Scott County, Iowa, where he farmed and taught school; Phebe W. Sudlow's letters about her teaching career, during which she became one of the first woman superintendents of schools in the United States and one of the first woman professors at the University of Iowa; and Lucy M. Sudlow's travel correspondence, regarding a trip from Chicago to Lake Eustis, Fla., and including a description of the Christmas celebration of blacks in Jacksonville, Fla., which featured fireworks, music, and a parade (1883).The collection also contains the Civil War correspondence of Henry Egbert, Egbert C. Sudlow, and Henry Butts Sudlow, who served in the 2nd Iowa Cav..
In the 1830s Richard Sudlow Sr.'s daughter Elizabeth married John Haviland, a Dutchess County farmer, linking the families. The Haviland part of this collection contains materials related to John Haviland's siblings, Hannah, Peter, Sarah, and William; children, Phebe Sophia, Richard, and Henry J.; grandson, John James; and great-grandson, Benjamin Hussey Haviland. Notable Haviland materials include S. T. Vail's letter to Phebe J. Underhill Haviland, describing the Mormon trouble in Nauvoo, Ill., his experience visiting the house of Joseph Smith, and his antagonism toward Mormons (Feb. 20, 1847); and Elizabeth Sudlow Haviland's letter to her family, describing her journey from Dutchess County, N.Y. to Columbiana County, Ohio, where she attended the Ohio Yearly Meeting of the Religious Society of Friends (Sept. 1, 1845). The Haviland materials also include several references to the Roosevelt family, the Havilands' next-door neighbors in Hyde Park, N.Y.
The collection also includes biographical information and newspaper clippings about several related families.
Paul Sudlow, a photographer in Danville, Ill., originally compiled the collection for genealogical purposes. His son, John M. Sudlow, of Oakwood, Ill., donated the collection to the Illinois Historical Survey in 1991.