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William Pyle Philips collection

Identifier: HC.MC-814

Scope and Contents

The William Pyle Philips collection mainly contains materials from Philips’ early life, including his time as a student at Haverford. The collection is divided into eight series: correspondence, essays, newspaper clippings, programs, notebooks, diaries, photographs, and miscellaneous.

Correspondence includes letters from Philips to his mother and father from Haverford, camp, and Harvard. Letters also include several letters from U.S. presidents that Philips collected. Essays include materials Philips wrote during his time as a student at Haverford and Harvard. Newspaper clippings cover his time at West Chester Normal School, while programs are from West Chester Normal School and Haverford. Notebooks appear to be mostly from classes, and cover topics including literature, math, and languages. Diaries record Philips’ trip to Germany in 1898-1899, as well as his time at Harvard. Photographs are of Marienfeld Summer Camp in New Hampshire. Miscellaneous materials include programs, pamphlets, report cards, and certificates. There are also several unidentified essays that are too late to be from Philips’ school days.


  • Creation: 1795 - 1921
  • Creation: Majority of material found within 1895 - 1915


Access Restrictions

The collection is open to research use.

Use Restrictions

Standard Federal Copyright Law apply (U.S. Title 17)

Biographical note

William Pyle Philips, son of George M and Elizabeth Pyle Philips was born in 1882. He received a B.A. and M.A. from Haverford College in 1902 and 1903 respectively and an LL.B. from Harvard in 1907. While at Haverford, he was editor-inchief of Haverfordian, the monthly magazine, and was Phi Beta Kappa. He was a partner with the law firm Byrne and Cutcheon, later J.S. Seligman, and director of a number of corporations. In 1914, he married Harriet Paris. Philips was a benefactor of his alma mater, donating books that formed the William Pyle Philips collection of mostly Renaissance-era first editions, as well as funds for such programs as the Distinguished Visitors program. He was a member of the Board of Managers of Haverford College. Today, a wing of the library is named in his honor. William Pyle Philips died in 1950.


1.5 linear ft. (4 boxes)

Language of Materials



Primarily the personal papers of William Pyle Philips (1882-1950), as well as a collection of 12 letters of United States presidents.


The collections is arranged into eight series: Correspondence, Essays, Newspaper clippings, Programs, Notebooks, Diaries, Photographs, and Miscellaneous

Related Materials

Charles Roberts Autograph Letter collection (HC.MC.100)

Processing Information

Original processing information unknown. Revised and box list added by Lilian Sweeney, March 2020.

William Pyle Philips collection, 1795-1921
Philips, William Pyle collection, 1795-1921
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note

Revision Statements

  • March, 2020: Revised and box listed added by Lillian Sweeney
  • June 2022: by Nathaniel Rehm-Daly, Harmful Language Revision Project

Find It at the Library

Most of the materials in this catalog are not digitized and can only be accessed in person. Please see our website for more information about visiting or requesting repoductions from Haverford College Quaker & Special Collections Library

370 Lancaster Ave
Haverford PA 19041 USA US