University of Chicago Library

Guide to the Helen Tunnicliff Catterall and Ralph C. H. Catterall Family Papers circa 1840s-1956

© 2010 University of Chicago Library

Descriptive Summary


Catterall, Helen Tunnicliff and Ralph C. H. Catterall Family. Papers


circa 1840s-1956


14.5 linear feet (18 boxes)


Special Collections Research Center
University of Chicago Library
1100 East 57th Street
Chicago, Illinois 60637 U.S.A.


Helen Honor Tunnicliff Catterall (1870-1933), attorney and historian, was born in Macomb, Illinois, one of three daughters of Damon George Tunnicliff (1829-1901) and Sarah A. Bacon (1846-1933). Ralph Charles Henry Catterall (1866-1914), historian, was born in Bolton, England, the son of Ralph C.H. Catterall, Sr. (b. 1840) and Sarah Reed Catterall (b. 1838). The collection consists primarily of papers and photographs of the Catterall family. There are smaller amounts of material from the Tunnicliff family; the Bacon family; and members of the Meade family, who were related to Louise Cadot Catterall.

Information on Use


The collection is open for research.


When quoting material from this collection, the preferred citation is: Catterall, Helen Tunnicliff and Ralph C. H. Catterall Family. Papers, [Box #, Folder #] Special Collections Research Center, University of Chicago Library

Biographical Note

Ralph Charles Henry Catterall (1866-1914), historian, was born in Bolton, England, the son of Ralph C.H. Catterall, Sr. (b. 1840) and Sarah Reed Catterall (b. 1838). The family emigrated to the United States during his childhood. Catterall received bachelor's degrees from Bucknell University (1891) and Harvard University (1892) before completing his studies at University of Chicago, where he received a Ph.D. in history in 1902. He also taught history courses at the university from 1894-1902. In 1902, he became Assistant Professor of History at Cornell University. He became a full professor in 1905, and also served as head of the history department. He was best-known as the author of The Second Bank of the United States (University of Chicago Press, 1902). Catterall died in 1914 at the home of William Lyon Phelps, with whom the family had a long and close friendship.

Helen Honor Tunnicliff Catterall (1870-1933), attorney and historian, was born in Macomb, Illinois, one of three daughters of Damon George Tunnicliff (1829-1901) and Sarah A. Bacon (1846-1933). She received a bachelor's degree from Vassar College and a law degree from Boston University. Her career included work as a graduate fellow in the Department of Political Science at University of Chicago (1893-1894), law practice in Massachusetts and Illinois, teaching history at Cornell University, and research on the history of slavery for the Carnegie Foundation. Her 5-volume Judicial Cases Concerning American Slavery and the Negro was published by the Carnegie Institution 1926.

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall (1897-1978) was the only child of Helen and Ralph Catterall. He attended Harvard University and served in World War I. He married Louise Fontaine Cadot (1899-1986) in 1923. The couple lived in Richmond, Virginia, where Catterall practiced and taught law. He was appointed to the Virginia State Corporation Commission in 1949, and served until 1973. Catterall published several critical articles on the judicial system.

Scope Note

The collection consists primarily of papers and photographs of the Catterall family. There are smaller amounts of material from the Tunnicliff family; the Bacon family; and members of the Meade family, who were related to Louise Cadot Catterall. The collection is organized into three series:

Series I: Papers, spans circa 1840s-1956. Best represented in this series are Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, Ralph C.H. Catterall, and Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall. Also represented are the family of Sarah A. Bacon; Lila Meade Valentine and the Meade family; Damon G. Tunnicliff; Ruth Tunnicliff; and other members of the Tunnicliff family. Materials include correspondence, diaries, manuscripts, publications, pamphlets, event programs, wedding books, genealogical records, clippings, engravings, place cards and calling cards. Files are arranged by family member, with correspondence among family members collected together.

Series II: Photographs, spans circa 1870s-1920s. There are photograph albums as well as loose prints and negatives. Many of the albums document Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall's childhood and young adulthood. Others contain travel photographs and family snapshots. Represented are the Catteralls, the Tunnicliffs, and their friends and extended family.

Series III: Memorabilia, contains a Catterall family scrapbook from 1899-1900, documenting the family's travels through Europe. In the scrapbook are correspondence and ephemeral items such as menus, tickets, programs, and stationery. This series also contains a lock of an unidentified person's hair.

Related Resources

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Subject Headings


Series I: Papers

Box 1   Folder 1

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, autograph books, 1879

Box 1   Folder 2

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, correspondence, 1914

Box 1   Folder 3-11

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, diaries, 1878-1888

Box 2   Folder 1-8

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, diaries, 1889-1895

Box 3   Folder 1-5

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, diaries, 1886-1900

Box 4   Folder 1-7

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, diaries, 1901-1907

Box 5   Folder 1

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, diary, undated

Box 5   Folder 2

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, piano instruction book, 1879

Box 5   Folder 3

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, Russia travel narrative, typescript, 1907

Box 5   Folder 4

Ralph C. H. Catterall, Andersen School lecture program, undated

Box 5   Folder 5

Ralph C. H. Catterall, autobiographical manuscript, undated

Box 5   Folder 6

Ralph C. H. Catterall, biographical writings and obituaries, circa 1914-1915

Box 5   Folder 7

Ralph C. H. Catterall, Browning, Elizabeth Barrett, Sonnets from the Portuguese, circa 1895

Box 5   Folder 8

Ralph C. H. Catterall, certificates and diplomas, 1892-1903

Box 5   Folder 9

Ralph C. H. Catterall, Cornell University view book, 1911

Box 5   Folder 10

Ralph C. H. Catterall, correspondence, 1888-1906

Box 5   Folder 11

Ralph C. H. Catterall, diary, 1882

Box 5   Folder 12

Ralph C. H. Catterall, "Ninety Years of St. John's Parish," pamphlet, circa 1914

Box 5   Folder 13

Ralph C. H. Catterall, Portraits of the Harvard Faculty, 1892

Box 6   Folder 1-4

Ralph C. H. Catterall, typescripts, undated

Box 6   Folder 5

Ralph C. H. Catterall, Universitaet Berlin handbook, 1902

Box 6   Folder 6

Ralph C. H. Catterall, University of Chicago convocation program, 1902

Box 6   Folder 7

Ralph C. H. Catterall, "Woman Suffrage in England," The Cornell Era, 1909

Box 6   Folder 8

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, address book, 1912

Box 6   Folder 9

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, "The Administration of Justice as Affected by Insecurity of Tenure of Judicial and Administrative Officers," typescript, undated

Box 6   Folder 10

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, The Bull, 1945

Box 6   Folder 11

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, childhood writings and correspondence, circa 1897-1907

Box 6   Folder 12

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, correspondence, 1949

Box 6   Folder 13

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, correspondence, Edmund Pearson, 1935

Box 6   Folder 14

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, "The Court of St. James's," correspondence and typescript, 1938

Box 6   Folder 15

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, École Alsacienne anniversary pamphlet and student report, 1903

Box 6   Folder 16

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, French lesson book, 1912

Box 6   Folder 17

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, "Judicial Self-Restraint: The Obligation of the Judiciary," American Bar Association Journal, 1956

Box 6   Folder 18

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, New Yorker, 1935

Box 6   Folder 19

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, Reader's Digest, 1935

Box 6   Folder 20

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, "Report of the Judicial Council for Virginia to the General Assembly and Supreme Court of Appeals of Virginia," 1949

Box 6   Folder 21

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, "States' Rights and Civil Rights," clipping, 1948

Box 7   Folder 1-4

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, travel journals, 1910

Box 7   Folder 5

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, "William v. North Carolina," Virginia Bar Weekly, 1943

Box 7   Folder 6

Louise Cadot Catterall, Bryn Mawr College course materials, 1917- 1918

Box 7   Folder 7

Louise Cadot Catterall, Humble Voyagers: Verses Issued by the Reeling and Writhing Club of Bryn Mawr College, 1919

Box 7   Folder 8-14

Catterall family, correspondence, 1894-1912

Box 8   Folder 1-4

Catterall family, correspondence, 1914-1918

Box 8   Folder 5

Catterall family, correspondence with William Lyon Phelps, 1912- 1945

Box 8   Folder 6

Catterall family, correspondence with Tunnicliff family, 1918

Box 8   Folder 7

Catterall family, guest book, 1908-1912

Box 8   Folder 8

Catterall family, journal, 1897-1901

Box 9   Folder 1-3

Catterall family, journals, 1902-1907

Box 9   Folder 3

Catterall family, "London in the Reign of Queen Elizabeth," engravings, undated

Box 9   Folder 4

Catterall family, place cards, undated

Box 9   Folder 5

Catterall family, theater program, Sarah Bernhardt farewell performance, 1892

Box 9   Folder 6-7

Catterall family, wedding books, circa 1896

Box 9   Folder 8

Bacon family, birth, death and marriage register, circa 1840s-1850s

Box 9   Folder 9

Ingersoll, I.G. to Chancey S. Higbee, correspondence, 1873

Box 9   Folder 10

Meade, Lila Valentine, memorial program, 1936

Box 9   Folder 11

Meade family, "Record of 'M.C'." club book, circa 1887

Box 9   Folder 12

Tunnicliff, Damon G., memorial program, obituary and calling cards, circa late 19th century-1901

Box 9   Folder 13

Tunnicliff, Ruth, Alphonse Loisette, Physiological Memory or, The Instantaneous Art of Never Forgetting, 1888

Box 9   Folder 14

Tunnicliff family, correspondence, undated

Box 10

Tunnicliff family tree, undated

Box 10

Tunnicliff family, photostat of land lease, circa 1792

Box 11   Folder 1

Unidentified correspondence and bibliography, undated

Box 11   Folder 2

Unidentified Christmas greetings, undated

Series II: Photographs

Box 11   Folder 3-8

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, circa 1870s-1910s

Box 11   Folder 9

Helen Tunnicliff Catterall with Helen Starrett Dinwiddie and Katharine Starrett Whitton, circa 1890

Box 11   Folder 10-12

Ralph C.H. Catterall, circa 1870s-1890s

Box 11   Folder 13

Ralph C.H. Catterall and Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, circa 1896

Box 11   Folder 14-15

Ralph C.H. Catterall, Thayer Hall dormitory, Harvard University, circa 1892-1893

Box 11   Folder 16-17

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, circa 1897-1920s

Box 12   Folder 1-4

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall, circa 1900s-1920s

Box 12   Folder 5

Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall and Helen Tunnicliff Catterall, circa 1900s-1920s

Box 12   Folder 6

Ralph C.H. Catterall, Sr., circa 1905

Box 12   Folder 7

Catterall family album, circa 1896-1910

Box 12   Folder 8-9

Catterall family albums, Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall's infancy and childhood, 1897-1900s

Box 13   Folder 1

Catterall family album, Ralph Tunnicliff Catterall's infancy and childhood, 1903-1910

Box 13   Folder 2

Catterall family album, travel, circa 1890s

Box 13   Folder 3-4

Catterall family albums, Catterall and Tunnicliff families, circa 1890s-1910s

Box 14   Folder 1

Catterall family album, travel in England, circa 1900s

Box 14   Folder 2

Catterall family album, travel in Russia, 1907

Box 14   Folder 3-4

Catterall family album, circa 1900s-1910s

Box 14   Folder 5

Catterall family album, St. Paul's School and New England travel, circa 1911-1914

Box 15   Folder 1

Catterall family album, travel, circa 1910s

Box 15   Folder 2-3

Catterall family albums, Harvard University, 1914-1918

Box 15   Folder 4

Catterall family albums, summer vacations, 1914-1922

Box 16   Folder 1

Catterall family album, circa 1920s

Box 16   Folder 2

Bacon, William, undated

Box 16   Folder 3

Bacon home, Hillsgrove, Illinois, 1894

Box 16   Folder 4

Bacon family, unidentified man, undated

Box 16   Folder 5

Richey, Alice Gertrude, 1897

Box 16   Folder 6-7

Tunnicliff, Damon G., undated

Box 16   Folder 8

Tunnicliff, George, undated

Box 16   Folder 9

Tunnicliff, Ruth M., circa 1880s-1900s

Box 16   Folder 10

Tunnicliff, Sarah Bacon, circa 1870s-1920

Box 16   Folder 11-12

Tunnicliff family, circa 1870s-1900s

Box 16   Folder 13

Tunnicliff family, Boston, circa 1890-1891

Box 16   Folder 14

Tunnicliff family home, Macomb, Illinois, 1902

Box 16   Folder 15

Unidentified home, undated

Box 17

Bacon and Tunnicliff families, album, circa 1890s

Series III: Memorabilia

Box 18

Catterall family, European travel scrapbook, 1899-1900

Box 18

Unidentified lock of hair