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© 2011 New-York Historical Society logo

Guide to the Records of Brown Brothers Harriman
1696 -1973, 1995 (bulk 1820-1968)
 MS 78

New-York Historical Society
170 Central Park West
New York, NY 10024
Phone: (212) 873-3400


© 2011 New-York Historical Society

Collection processed by Celia Hartmann. Machine readable finding aid created by Celia Hartmann.

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit on April 09, 2014
Description is in English.
using Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Container List

Series VI. Scrapbooks and Collected Material (1872-1964). 3.0 Linear feet 5 document boxes, 4 volumes

Scope and Content

The series includes a book of newspaper clippings documenting the history of Brown Brothers from 1872 to 1924; two introduction books (1896-1937 and 1938-1957) recording individuals' first contact with Brown Brothers as potential customers or trading partners; 17 scrapbooks (disbound and rehoused; see Arrangement Note) amassed by Miss Catherine Barrett of the Tax Department between 1925 and 1964 from both company-generated and external sources; a scrapbook of clippings pertaining to partner Robert A. Lovett during his World War II government service; clippings from the banking press including predominantly statements of condition; tearsheets from a profile of Brown Brothers Harriman published in Business Week in 1958, together with color and black and white photographic prints, including those used in the article; and messages of condolence received from the firm's clients, customers, and vendors after the assassination of President John F. Kennedy.

The Introduction books are arranged alphabetically by individuals' last names and include the name of the person who introduced them (usually an outside organization or person with ties to Brown Brothers), and comments that include the nature of their business or the outcome of the contact.

The Tax Department scrapbooks contain predominantly commercial newspaper clippings, correspondence, and some clippings from Brown Brothers employee publications. Miss Barrett, who retired from Brown Brothers Harriman in 1964 after 42 years of service, seems to have functioned as an informal clipping service for the firm. The books (the first three of which are numbered sequentially) are organized into those pertaining to Brown Brothers Harriman offices; personnel and employees, some of which are annotated with details of individuals' employment and affiliation within the company or the Brown family; partners, including separate volumes for W. Averell Harriman and Robert A. Lovett, and extensive coverage of E.R. Harriman's tenure as Chairman of the Red Cross and its role in mediating the release of prisoners taken in the aborted Bay of Pigs invasion; Brown and other partners' families, including almost exclusively newspaper clippings documenting births, marriages, and deaths; clients of the firm in general but particularly the Tax Department; statements of condition, which duplicate some of those found in Series II. Annual Reports and Statements of Condition, or may have been the original source for them; and publications including "Personality of a Bank" created for outside use, employee handbooks detailing practices and procedures for new hires, and "The Fifty-Niner," published during World War II for employees in the armed services to keep them apprised of and connected to events on the home front.

Some materials include questions on them in Sarah B. Brown's handwriting that are answered in Miss Barrett's writing. It appears that they were provided to the Historical Files for their research value in the writing of Partners in Banking.

The partner and family sections provide some detailed genealogical information that may complement information in Subseries I.C.vi. Partners and Series V. Partners Papers. In the client sections, a copy of the Brunner affidavit (seeking restitution for wartime damages) gives details of banking procedures and subterfuges for the protection of clients' identities and assets in Belgium under German occupation between 1940 and 1944.

The Lovett scrapbook (Volume 68) includes newspaper clippings, some sourced from a clipping service. The cover of its oversized album is an image from "Peace map of the world united: a pictorial history of transportation and communications" that was distributed by Oliver K. Whiting of London from a drawing by Ernest Dudley Chase, of Winchester, MA. Both front and back depict an idealized future in which world peace results from technological advances in mass communications and travel combined with the rejection of isolationism.

The Kennedy condolence messages (typed, handwritten, and telexes) are in alphabetical order by the writers' country of origin. Each is accompanied by a carbon copy of the reply from partners including F. H. Kingsbury, Jr., and John Madden. Most include a cc to L. Parks Shipley ("LPS") who was the partner responsible for the firm's lending overseas. Each one thanks the writer for his or her condolences, attests to the country's confidence in new-President Johnson's policies, including, in letters to South American correspondents, his affirmation of continued friendly trading policies there. Received in the days and weeks following the assassination, the messages are short, direct, and heart-felt and document the shock felt worldwide.

Historical Note

Books of introduction were used by banking firms to track contacts and their connections to employees and partners. In some cases they provided documentation of referrals made by partners to outside individuals and were used to determine the appropriate commissions due.

After the assassination of President John F. Kennedy on November 22, 1963, American companies were the recipients of an outpouring of condolence messages from their overseas customers, contractors, and suppliers. An undocumented person at Brown Brothers Harriman amassed the messages received in New York.

Arrangement

The Tax Department scrapbooks were originally housed in ring binders. Materials have been removed and placed in acid-free folders within archival boxes. The binders' contents were listed in detail on their spines: these labels have been photocopied onto acid-free paper and precede the materials they describe in the folders. The folder titles are taken from the binders' original tab dividers.

The Business Week tearsheets and prints were originally in a spiral-bound presentation portfolio and the banking press clippings in a post-bound portfolio. These two have been removed and placed in their original order in acid-free folders in archival boxes.

The Kennedy assassination condolence messages were arranged in a ring binder, alphabetically by the sender's country of origin. These have been removed and placed in the same order in acid-free folders in archival boxes.

Container 1 Container 2   Title Date
Box: 112 Folder : 6 Tax Department scrapbook 1: Brown Brothers Harriman New York. Addresses - banking field position
1948-1965
Box: 112 Folder : 7 Tax Department scrapbook 1: Brown Brothers Harriman New York. Brown Brothers Harriman's many roles - Flag
1948-1965
Box: 113 Folder : 1 Tax Department scrapbook 1: Brown Brothers Harriman New York. Foreign Banks - Hearings
1948-1965
Box: 113 Folder : 2 Tax Department scrapbook 2: Brown Brothers Harriman New York. Historical articles - 125th anniversary
1931-1964
Box: 113 Folder : 3 Tax Department scrapbook 2: Brown Brothers Harriman New York. Expansion of Brown Brothers & Co. - Wall Street; Brown Brothers Harriman Boston
1931-1964
Box: 113 Folder : 4 Tax Department scrapbook 2: Brown Brothers Harriman Chicago; Brown Brothers Harriman Philadelphia; Harriman & Co.; Estate; Scandal
1931-1964
Box: 113 Folder : 5 Tax Department scrapbook 3: Personnel. Bartlett - Gernert
1943-1965
Box: 113 Folder : 6 Tax Department scrapbook 3: Personnel. Graves - Merrill
1943-1965
Box: 113 Folder : 7 Tax Department scrapbook 3: Personnel. Morrison - Zedren; Misc.
1943-1965
Box: 113 Folder : 8 Tax Department scrapbook [4]: Partners A-K. Ackerman - Brown, M.D.
1935-1964
Box: 113 Folder : 9 Tax Department scrapbook [4]: Partners A-K. Brown, T.M. - Bush
1935-1964
Box: 113 Folder : 10 Tax Department scrapbook [4]: Partners A-K. Curtis - Gerry
1935-1964
Box: 114 Folder : 1 Tax Department scrapbook [5]: Partners H-W. Harriman, E.R.
1941-1964
Box: 114 Folder : 2 Tax Department scrapbook [5]: Partners H-W. Hoch - Morris
1941-1965
Box: 114 Folder : 3 Tax Department scrapbook [5]: Partners H-W. Newquist - Woolley
1941-1964
Box: 114 Folder : 4 Tax Department scrapbook [6]: Partners Lovett/ McCance/ Morris. Lovett
1930-1965
Box: 114 Folder : 5 Tax Department scrapbook [6]: Partners Lovett (1930-1951)/ McCance/ Morris. Lovett - Morris
1930-1959
Box: 115 Folder : 6 Tax Department scrapbook [7]: Partner W. A. Harriman (1932-1956).
1932-1961
Box: 114 Folder : 7 Tax Department scrapbook [7]: Partner W. A. Harriman (1932-1956).
1960-1966
Box: 114 Folder : 8 Tax Department scrapbook [7]: Partner W. A. Harriman - I
1960
Box: 115 Folder : 1 Tax Department scrapbook [8]: Families. Ackerman - Brown
1936-1965
Box: 115 Folder : 2 Tax Department scrapbook [8]: Families. Bush - Hammond
1936-1965
Box: 115 Folder : 3 Tax Department scrapbook [8]: Families. Hord - Shipley
1936-1965
Box: 115 Folder : 4 Tax Department scrapbook [9]: Clients A - E. Agle - Brunner
1935-1964
Box: 115 Folder : 5 Tax Department scrapbook [9]: Clients A - E. Camp - Curtis
1935-1965
Box: 115 Folder : 6 Tax Department scrapbook [9]: Clients A - E. D - E
1935-1964
Box: 115 Folder : 7 Tax Department scrapbook [10]: Clients F - L. F - H
1933-1966
Box: 115 Folder : 8 Tax Department scrapbook [10]: Clients F - L. I - K
1933-1936
Box: 116 Folder : 1 Tax Department scrapbook [11]: Clients L - N. L.
1934-1960
Box: 116 Folder : 2 Tax Department scrapbook [11]: Clients L - N. Mc - Ma
1929-1964
Box: 116 Folder : 3 Tax Department scrapbook [12]: Clients O - T. O - P
1930-1960
Box: 116 Folder : 4 Tax Department scrapbook [12]: Clients O - T. R
1929-1961
Box: 116 Folder : 5 Tax Department scrapbook [12]: Clients O - T. S
1930-1960
Box: 116 Folder : 6 Tax Department scrapbook [13]: Clients T - Z
1942-1965
Box: 116 Folder : 7 Tax Department scrapbook [14]: Statements of condition
1950-1960
Box: 116 Folder : 8 Tax Department scrapbook [15]: Tax Department, Misc.
1942-1964
Box: 117 Folder : 1 Tax Department scrapbook [16]: Statements of condition, extras
1958-1966
Box: 117 Folder : 2 Tax Department scrapbook [17]: Publications. "The Album of a Bank", "The Fifty-Niner"
1938, 1945
Box: 117 Folder : 3 Tax Department scrapbook [17]: Publications. "Introduction to Brown Brothers Harriman & Co.", "The Personality of a Bank"
1950, 1958-1960
Box: 117 Folder : 4 Business Week article: tearsheets
1958 September 13
Box: 117 Folder : 5 Kennedy assassination condolences: Argentina - Denmark
1963 November 25 - December 10
Box: 117 Folder : 6 Kennedy assassination condolences: England - Japan
1963 November 25 - December 26
Box: 117 Folder : 7 Kennedy assassination condolences: Mexico - Uruguay
1963 November 23 - December 9
Box: OS 8 Folder : 17 Banking publications: clippings
1957-1963
Box: OS 11 Folder : 3 Tax Department scrapbook [9]: Clients A-E - Davis; [10]: Clients F-L - Habsburgs
1965
Box: OS 11 Folder : 4 Business Week article: black and white prints
1958 September 13
Box: OS 11 Folder : 5 Business Week article: cover photo color print
1958 September 13
Box: OS 13 Folder : 1 New York Times entire issue
1968 October 10
Box: OS 13 Folder : 2 New York Times entire issue
1968 October 10
Box: OS 13 Folder : 3 New York Times entire issue
1968 October 10
Volume: 65 Clippings on history of Brown Brothers
1872-1924
Volume: 66 Introduction book
1896-1937
Volume: 67 Introduction book
1938-1957
Volume: 68 Scrapbook on Robert A. Lovett
1940-1946

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