© 2010 University of Chicago Library
Sanders, Edgar. Papers
Crerar Ms 250
2.5 linear feet (2 boxes)
Special Collections Research Center
Edgar Sanders (1827-1907) was a horticulturist who opened Chicago's first permanent flower store in 1864. This collection contains correspondence, diaries, essays, photographs, and a scrapbook. Material spans 1845-1898.
The collection is open for research.
When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: Sanders, Edgar. Papers, Crerar Ms 250, [Box #, Folder #], Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library
Edgar Sanders was a horticulturist who opened Chicago's first permanent flower store in 1864.
Sanders was born on 10 October, 1827 in East Grinstead, Sussex, England. His father was also a gardener, and Sanders' early career was as head gardener for two Surrey estates. In 1853 he left England with his wife, where he established a nursery with a Mr. Rathbone in Albany, New York.
In 1857 Sanders moved to Chicago, building a fifty-foot greenhouse and organizing the Chicago Gardener's Club. His pioneering flower store was destroyed in the fire of 1871 but reopened in 1874. Sanders variously chief executive and treasurer of the Chicago Florist's Club, an active member of the Cook County and Northern Illinois Agricultural and Horticultural Societies, and president of the American Association of Nurserymen. He also wrote for The Country Gentleman, The Prairie Farmer, The Orange Judd Farmer, The Philadelphia Florist, The London Gardener's Chronicle, The American Gardener's Chronicle, and The Florist's Exchange.
Sanders died in 1907. He was remembered in The Florist's Exchange for his "rugged honesty," "unvarying amiability," and "complete unselfishness." The Illinois Horticultural Society called his life "a story of progressive achievement and kindly living in a world of the beautiful."
This collection spans 1845-1898 and contains correspondence, diaries, essays, photographs, and a scrapbook. Sanders' diaries detail his gardening pursuits, conversations he found interesting, and his journey from England to New York in 1853. Also of note are photographs of the Horticulture Building at the 1893 Chicago World's Fair, the World's Columbian Exposition.
The following related resources are located in the Department of Special Collections:
Edgar Sanders. Scrapbooks
|Box 1 Folder 1|
"A catalogue of remarkable plants," 1848
|Box 1 Folder 2|
|Box 1 Folder 3|
|Box 1 Folder 4|
"Diary and Useful Information," circa 1845-1849
|Box 1 Folder 5|
Diary and "Essay on Alcohol," 1851-1852
|Box 1 Folder 6|
"Essay on Mechanic Institutions," 1850
|Box 1 Folder 7|
Farms and landscapes, photographs, circa 1880s
|Box 1 Folder 8|
Greenhouses, possibly Chicago World's Fair, photographs, circa 1880s-1890s
|Box 1 Folder 9-10|
Horticulture at the Chicago World's Fair, photographs, 1893
|Box 1 Folder 11|
Landscaping in a cemetery, photographs, circa 1880s-1890s
|Box 1 Folder 12|
Lectures on horticulture, undated
|Box 1 Folder 13|
"Manuscript on a few of the words taken out of Johnson's Dictionary," undated
|Box 1 Folder 14|
|Box 1 Folder 15|
Parks and landscapes, photographs, circa 1880s-1890s
|Box 1 Folder 16|
Rosedale Nursery display, East Texas Fair, 1889
|Box 2 Folder 1|
Design for proposed New York State Prison, Isaac Perry, circa 1880s
|Box 2 Folder 2-3|
Greenhouse, possibly Chicago World's Fair, photograph, circa 1880s-1890s
|Box 2 Folder 4|
Horticulture at the Chicago World's Fair, photograph, 1893
|Box 2 Folder 5|
Ornamental stock, possibly Rosedale Nurseries, Texas, photograph, circa 1880s
|Box 2 Folder 6|
Railroad tracks, photograph, circa 1880s
|Box 2 Folder 7|
Scrapbook of Prairie Farmer clippings, 1882-1890
|Box 2 Folder 8|
Specimen grounds at Rosedale Nurseries, Texas, photograph, circa 1889