Frederick Wallace Putnam
Scrapbooks, ca. 1907-1930


Quantity: 2.50 cubic feet (8 boxes: 16 volumes)
Access: Open to research
Acquisition: Gift of Frederick Wallace Putnam, November 1930
Administrative Note: A number of documents in this collection are missing. The inventory list reflects those documents that were recovered in 2008 by the Office of the New York State Attorney General.
Processed By: Fred Bassett, Senior Librarian, Manuscripts and Special Collections, January 2001; revised March 2009.


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Biographical Note:

Frederick Wallace Putnam was born October 12, 1856, near Homer, New York. After graduating from Homer Academy in 1876, he began the study of medicine in the office of Dr. H.C. Hendricks of McGraw, New York.  He completed his formal academic training at the medical college at the University of the City of New York in 1880 and established his medical practice in Binghamton, New York. He was active in the Broome County Medical Society and the New York State Medical Association as well as being a member in several fraternal and civic organizations. He was an enthusiastic collector of antiquarian books and manuscripts. The 1930 federal census shows that he and his wife, Mary Elizabeth, resided in the dwelling they owned at 210 Vestal Avenue in Binghamton.

Scope and Content Note:

This collection of scrapbooks was compiled, circa 1907-1930, by Dr. Frederick Wallace Putnam, a practicing physician in Binghamton, New York. Most of the scrapbooks relate to the history of medical education and practice in New York State and parts of New England. Topics of other scrapbooks include the United States Civil War and the Roycrofters.

The first volume contains materials related to the Civil War and the period of Reconstruction. It includes letters and autographs of military officers and political leaders from both the north and south, muster rolls, currency, bonds, newspapers, and photographs, some of which relate to the Confederates States of America. A companion volume contains assorted papers, ca. 1830-1860, that appear to relate to the history of Broome County, New York, and many letters, ca. 1929-1930, addressed to Dr. Putnam from historians, librarians, etc., regarding the compilation of these scrapbooks.

Volumes three and four, compiled between 1907 and 1918, relate to the Roycroft Fraternity and its founder Elbert Hubbard. Hubbard operated the Roycroft Inn and Roycroft Shops in East Aurora, New York. The Roycroft Shops were renowned for their craftsmanship in printing, bookbinding, iron casting, and woodworking. These scrapbooks contain several letters written by Elbert Hubbard along with a variety of printed materials from the Roycroft Press. Many of these items attest to the fact that Dr. Putnam was a subscriber and member of the Roycroft Fraternity

Volumes five through eight, titled “Physicians in Manuscripts,” include numerous letters written by practicing physicians and surgeons regarding the history of medical procedures, education, and societies. Many of these letters were addressed to Dr. Putnam from fellow practitioners. The eighth volume is related specifically to the history of medical practice in Broome County, New York.

The remaining scrapbooks relate chiefly to the history of medical schools and education in New York State and New England. Volume 9 contains portraits of medical college faculty at the University Medical College in New York along with admission tickets to lectures that were issued to Frederick W. Putnam. The other scrapbooks in this series contain letters, printed circulars, college catalogs, photographs, and other ephemera relating to medical colleges in Fairfield and Geneva, New York; Pittsfield, Massachusetts; and at Castleton and Woodstock, Vermont. These scrapbooks also contain historical notes and essays by Dr. Putnam.

Related Collections and Resources:

Broome County Public Library, Binghamton, New York: holdings include 3.0 cubic feet (126 v.) of scrapbooks compiled by Frederick Wallace Putnam, ca. 1926-1933. These scrapbooks contain clippings, photographs, printed material, and memorabilia on aspects of Broome County history, including, churches, medicine, fraternal groups, clubs and organizations, and towns.

Box and Folder List:

Box Volume Description
1 1 Civil War Scrapbook, compiled 1930 (This volume is no longer intact.  Here is found a folder containing documents and remnants of pages recovered by the Office of the New York State attorney General which are presumed to have originally been a part of the scrapbook. See appended list for details.)
1 2 Miscellaneous Manuscripts (1 v. compiled 1930; 121 p. 34 cm.). Content, ca. 1835-1930; index to names
2 3 Roycroft Scrapbook I, compiled 1907-1909; (ca. 100 p. 24 cm.). Content dates, ca. 1900-1909; includes personal letters from Elbert Hubbard, picture postcards of Roycroft shops and inn; souvenir menus, book list, and numerous items featuring writings and sayings of Elbert Hubbard.
2 4 Roycroft Scrapbook II, compiled 1909-1918; (ca. 100 p. 24 cm). Content dates, ca. 1908-1918; sequel to the first volume containing a wide array of printed materials from the Roycroft Press
3 5 Physicians in Manuscripts, Vol. I, compiled 1930 (213 p. 32 cm.; indexed). Mostly letters addressed to Putnam;  bulk date of content, 1890-1930
3 6 Physicians in Manuscripts, Vol. II, compiled 1930 (207 p. 32 cm.; indexed). Includes many reports submitted to the Medical Society of New York  from various cities and towns regarding epidemic diseases for the year 1868; letters to Putnam, ca. 1895-1925
4 7 Physicians in Manuscripts, Vol. III, compiled 1930 (235 p. 32 cm.; indexed).  Includes many manuscript letters of physicians in New York State, ca. 1840-1860; letters to Putnam, ca. 1900-1930
4 8 Physicians in Manuscripts, Vol. IV, compiled 1930 (67 p. 32 cm.; indexed). Includes prescriptions from Binghamton, N.Y., area pharmacies, ca, 1870-1890; letters, etc. related to the history of medical practice in Broome County
5 9 College of Physicians and Surgeons of the Western District, Fairfield, N.Y. Vol. I, compiled 1930 (ca. 100 p. 32 cm.). Content relates to the history of this school that existed from 1812 to 1840; includes historical notes, essays, list of faculty and graduates; photographs of buildings in Fairfield, Herkimer County, New York
5 10 College of Physicians and Surgeons of the Western District, Fairfield, N.Y. Vol. II, compiled 1930; (ca. 70 p. 32 cm.). Includes a debit-credit account of Dr. William Willoughby, 1814-1821; Fairfield Academy catalogue, 1857, and printed circular, ca. 1869; printed material related to history of medical education at Syracuse University; picture postcards of Newport, New York
6 11 “Faculty, New York University Medical College and College Tickets,” 1878-1880 (1 v. ca. 15 p. 32 cm.). Includes carte de visites of medical department faculty members, class rosters, and matriculation tickets for classes and lectures at the University of the City of New York
6 12 Geneva Medical College, Geneva, N.Y.; compiled 1930 (1 v.  ca. 50 p. 32 cm.). Includes letters, college catalogues, and printed rosters of faculty and students, ca. 1835-1870
7 13 Castleton Medical College, Castleton, Vermont (1 v. ca. 100 p. 32 cm.). Chiefly college catalogues, 1842-1860; historical notes and information by Putnam
8 14 Vermont Medical College, Woodstock, Vermont, compiled 1930 (1 v. ca. 25 p. 32 cm.). Includes college catalogues, lecture admission tickets, and miscellanea, ca. 1830-1880
8 15 Berkshire Medical College, Pittsfield, Massachusetts (1 v. ca. 25 p. 32 cm.). Includes college catalogues, lecture admission tickets, and miscellanea, ca. 1828-1867
8 16 “Medical,” compiled 1930 (1 v. ca. 50 p. 32 cm.). Miscellaneous compilation of photographs and printed material related to medical societies and clubs of New York and neighboring states, ca. 1900-1915

List of documents recovered by the Office of the New York State Attorney General that are presumed to have been taken from the Civil War Scrapbook (Box 1 Volume 1)

Volume Item Description
1 1 Henry A. Wise, A.L.S.., Richmond, Va., June 27, 1857
1 2 Confederate States of America loan certificate and bonds, February 20, 1863 (mounted on old p. 15)
1 3 Confederate States of America non-taxable bond certificate, no. 734 to Joseph A Hatch, August 12, 1864
1 4 Remnant of letter from p. 20: A.L.S., Lafayette McLowd to William Harden
1 5 Clipped signature of H.D. Clayton    
1 6 Original p. 33-34 containing autographs of various political and military officials
1 7 Remnant of p. 51-52 containing note signed by George H. Thomas and fragment of letter addressed to F.W. Putnam, January 17, 1914
1 8 A.L.S. John C. Robinson, Binghamton, N.Y. to F.G. Gedney, March 27, 1872
1 9 A.L.S. Thurlow Weed, New York, April 21, 1873
1 10 A.L.S. Benjamin Butler to F.G. Gedney, December 2, 1872
1 11 A.L.S. Roscoe Conkling, November 1872
1 12 John Everman (Ehrman?) to F.G. Gedney, Washington, D.C., November 30, 1872
1 13 A.C. Meersich (Neuersich?) to Alonzo Cornell, New York, March 20, 1872
1 14 Henry Wilson to F.G. Gedney, Natick, November 29, 1872
1 15 Andrew Johnson from Thomas Wright, St. Louis, Mo., July 14, 1868
1 16 Letter written in pencil, Cape Stone, from an unidentified person, January 19, 1862
1 17 Photographs (in envelope)
  1. John Goldwaite
  2. Unidentified
1 18 Autographs and miscellany (in envelope)
  1. Postal cover H.R. Paine, Col. of 4th Regiment Wisconsin Volunteers
  2. Calling Card: Gen. Oliver O. Howard
  3. Autograph: Montgomery C. Meigs
  4. Autograph: Irvin McDowell
  5. Major General McCook signature
  6. Early calling card of James M. Lord, 15th Maine Infantry, Co. D, Russell Post
  7. Postcard: The old packet boat (as it looks today) on which the remains of Stonewall Jackson were carried
1 19 (EL) Muster roll: Company E of 4th Regiment of North Carolina Troopers, C.S.A., Captain Charles Gallagher
1 20 (EL) Newspaper: Syracuse Daily Journal (Vol. 20, no. 287; December, 5, 1864); contains a report of activities of War Committee on Bounties
1 21 (EL) Newspaper: Chenango American (Greene, N.Y.  v. 10, no. 44, July 6, 1865); articles on the recollections of the 114th New York State Volunteers
Last Updated: May 24, 2021