The Society has an extensive collection of papers and records related to the businesses, civic groups, associations, and governments of the communities along the Old York Road Corridor. The Society is the repository (either in whole or in part) for the records of the following organizations:
Abington Art Center – founded as the Old York Road Art Guild in 1939 by a group of women and evolved into the Abington Art Center, organizing art exhibitions and teaching painting and other creative arts.
Abington Bank – originally founded in Jenkintown in 1867 as the Abington Building Association, later converted to stock and was bought out in 2011.
Abington Civic Club – women’s club established in 1925 as the Highland Farms Civic Club, name changed in 1927, for civic betterment and to advance social welfare in the community; folded 2019.
Abington Junior Civic Club – formed in 1928 as the junior department of the Abington Civic Club, with similar interests and activities.
Abington Township Public Libraries – library system for Abington Township begun in 1966 and established the Abington Free Library in 1971.
Abington Township Republican Organization – founded in the late 1960s as the Republican Party organization within Abington Township and the borough of Rockledge.
Abington YMCA – more information to come
American Association of University Women, Northeastern Montgomery County Branch – founded in 1944 as the Glenside Branch to promote equality for women and girls.
R.B. Ball & Company, Realtors – formed in 1976, sold and rented residential and commercial properties in the Jenkintown area, sold assets in 1996 to The Realty Group.
J. Barton Benson Smithery – artisan in wrought iron who studied under Samuel Yellin and operated a forge in Philadelphia during the 1920s and later in Wyncote from the late 1930s until the 1960s.
The Bookstore – commercial bookstore founded and staffed by women volunteers for the support of the Jenkintown Library, in operation from 1959 to 1993.
The Cabinet of Natural Science of Abington – a splinter group from the Jenkinstown Lyceum that formed in 1839 in opposition to the Lyceum’s anti-abolitionist tendencies. Published The Cabinet Register (1839-1840) detailing the organization’s activities.
Cedarbrook Civic Association of Wyncote – founded in 1948 to serve the residents of the Cedarbrook section of Cheltenham Township; active until the mid-1970s.
Cheltenham Center for the Arts – founded in 1940 as the Cheltenham Township Art Center, provides classes and programming for a wide variety of performing and fine arts.
Cheltenham National Bank – savings bank founded in 1926 and absorbed into a larger bank in 1979.
Cheltenham/Northeast Business and Professional Women’s Club – established in 1965 and disbanded in 1998, purpose to promote the interests and rights of working women.
Child Care of Montgomery County – began as a study group of the American Association of University Women (AAUW) and later became an independent non-profit organization with goal of providing quality pre-and after-school care for children of working parents. Founded in 1977 and folded in 2000.
Coates-Jordan American Legion Post No. 163 – American Legion post located in Jenkintown and organized following World War I and folded in 2014.
Community Weekday Bible School of Jenkintown – organized in 1921 under the auspices of the Community Council of Religious Education, conducted one-hour religious classes for Protestant elementary and junior high students.
Eastern Montgomery County Chamber of Commerce (previously Greater Jenkintown Chamber of Commerce, Jenkintown Chamber of Commerce, Jenkintown Business Men’s Association) – founded in 1918 as an association of local businesses that now covers all of eastern Montgomery County.
Every Woman’s Club of Glenside – founded in 1923 as a women’s civic and social club.
Glenside Kiwanis Club – Kiwanis Club based in Glenside and in operation since 1926.
Greater Glenside Chamber of Commerce – founded in the early 1960s and folded in 2015, served as Glenside community chamber promoting business in the district.
Hatboro YMCA – more information to come
Hillside Cemetery – located in Roslyn, chartered 1890 and merged in 1953 with the Ardsley Burial Park.
Huntingdon Valley Fish & Game Protective Association – founded in 1933 and concerned with the Pennypack Creek, its water quality and fish stocks.
Huntingdon Valley Junior Women’s Club – founded in 1939 as a social and service organization for younger women and their families.
Huntingdon Valley Garden Club – founded in 1925 to promote a knowledge of horticulture and an interest in gardening, the club has been exhibiting at the Flower Show since 1929.
Huntingdon Valley Kennel Club – founded in 1921 to promote the interests of pure breed dogs and to hold exhibitions and shows for dogs. For many years held a dog show in conjunction with Abington Memorial Hospital’s June Fete.
Huntingdon Valley Mothers’ Club – founded in 1939, federated in 1966, to promote the welfare of children and provide educational and social activities for mothers. Operated a nursery school for a number of years.
Huntingdon Valley Women’s Club – founded in 1951 as a women’s civic and social club
Jenkintown Borough – founded in 1874 as an independent borough.
Jenkintown Community Alliance – founded in 1999 to bring residents and businesses of Jenkintown together to help revitalize the Jenkintown business corridor.
Jenkintown Day Nursery – early day care center for needy children of working women; opened 1903 and sold in 2015, offered daily care, education, and practical training; JDN Foundation still operating as charitable organization providing day care financial aid.
Jenkintown Improvement Association – civic organization founded in 1909, to provide municipal services to borough residents; active until 1980.
Jenkintown Kiwanis Club – Kiwanis Club based in Jenkintown and in operation since 1965.
Jenkintown Library – founded in 1803 as the Abington Library Society, a public library.
Jenkintown Music Theater – established in 1945 as the Jenkintown PTA chorus and for many years was called the Jenkintown PTA Musical Theater, continues to present musical and theater productions.
Jenkintown Republican Club – more information to come
Jenkintown Urban Mobilization Program – a non-profit corporation founded in 1985 to administer the Main Street Manager Program in Jenkintown, folded in 1990.
Jenkinstown Lyceum – influential adult educational and cultural institution, founded in 1838 and still in existence, now acting primarily as a charitable organization.
Robert N. Jordan Real Estate – firm active from the 1940s to the 1980s dealing primarily in industrial properties in Philadelphia.
Keswick Theatre – built in 1928 as a movie house, it later fell into disrepair and was saved by a non-profit organization, Glenside Landmarks Society, in 1981, which later sold the facility to a for-profit business and it is now a regional performing arts and entertainment center.
League of Women Voters, Abington-Cheltenham-Jenkintown Branch – non-partisan organization with goal of informing citizens about issues and candidates up for election.
Melrose Athletic Club of Oak Lane – private club organized by T. Henry Asbury which operated from 1887 to 1894.
Montgomery Newspapers – newspaper organization that publishes a number of local weekly newspapers throughout Eastern Montgomery County.
Music Theater of Abington – founded in 1950 as an amateur theater group which presented an annual musical, since 1953 also presented scholarship to promising musical students at Abington High School, folded in 1990.
National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, William Penn Chapter – organized in 1954 as a women’s civic and patriotic organization.
Neighbors of Hatboro – women’s club founded in 1910 and disbanded in 2000.
Noble Improvement Association – founded in 1906 to promote the economic welfare of the residents of Noble, a development in Abington Township, concerned with residential and commercial development in surrounding areas.
Old York Road Branch of the Southeastern Pennsylvania Chapter of the American Red Cross – organized in 1916 to help with World War I efforts, disbanded in 1919.
Old York Road Community Concerts Association – founded in 1947 for the purpose of bringing the best in live music to the local area, folded in the mid 1980s.
Old York Road Contemporary Club – woman’s club organized in 1932 with emphasis on educational and cultural activities.
Old York Road Country Club – private golf and country club founded in 1910 and originally located in Abington Township on the east side of Old York Road, north of Township Line Road, club moved to Spring House in 1963 and is still in operation.
Old York Road Dog Training Club – founded in 1980 to promote proper dog training.
Old York Road Garden Club – founded in 1935 to promote the art of gardening and an interest in native plants.
Old York Road Genealogical Society – founded in 1988 to promote and facilitate genealogical research.
Old York Road Hills Civic Association – local civic association founded in 1923 and dissolved in 1933 with a brief revival in 1935, interested in the Old York Road Hills section of Jenkintown.
Old York Road Historical Society – founded in 1936 for the purpose of studying the history and folklore of the communities along and adjacent to the Old York Road from Rising Sun to New Hope.
Old York Road Symphony – founded in 1932 as a community symphony orchestra.
Old York Road Women’s Exchange – founded in 1932 to enable women to make money by selling their home products and clothing and closed 1996.
P.E.O. Sisterhood, Chapter L – organized in 1945 as a literary, social, philanthropic and educational organization for women.
Penickpacka Historical Society – founded in the 1960’s to study the history of Lower Moreland and Bryn Athyn and disbanded in 1998.
Pennypack Ecological Restoration Trust (formerly Pennypack Watershed Association) – founded in 1970 to protect and preserve the watershed along the Pennypack Creek in Upper and Lower Moreland Townships and Bryn Athyn.
E. Allen Reeves & Company – founded in 1918 as a local building contractor that constructed many local residences and institutional buildings, folded in 2017.
Rydal-Meadowbrook Civic Association – founded in 1948 to promote the interests of the residents in the Rydal and Meadowbrook sections of Abington Township.
Suburban Horsham Willow Grove Chamber of Commerce – resulted from the merger of the Horsham and Greater Willow Grove Chambers of Commerce, operated from 2003 to 2008.
Tyson Pear Questers – Quester group founded in 1960 and still active in the Wyncote area.
The Valley Swim Club – founded in 1950 as a private swim club in Huntingdon Valley and folded in 2010.
VNA Community Services, Inc. – began in 1919 with World War I Red Cross funds as the Old York Road Public Health Center, merged in 1956 with another organization to form the Visiting Nurse Association of Eastern Montgomery County, in 1990 became VNA Community Services, Inc. with the goal of providing health care and social services to those in need.
Willow Grove Chamber of Commerce – Previously the Greater Willow Grove Chamber of Commerce, founded in 1965, merged with the Horsham Chamber of Commerce in 2003 and re-separated as an independent organization in 2007 and closed in 2017.
Woman’s Club of Noble – founded in 1912 to raise funds for Abington Memorial Hospital and later took lead in civic and social life in Noble area of Abington Township.
Woman’s Club of Wyncote – founded in 1898 as a women’s club interested in civic and social matters, folded in 2016.
Woodland Garden Club –garden club established 1955 and disbanded 1998.
Wyncote Audubon Society – Founded in 1914 as the Wyncote Bird Club, appointed manager of the Crosswicks Bird Sanctuary in 1957 and affiliated with the National Audubon Society in 1967.
Wyncote Players – a local theater group founded in 1930 and disbanded in the late 1990s.
The Society holds the papers of a number of important individuals and families. The larger designated collections are as follows:
Comfort-Dern Family Papers, 1850-1930 – important family group active in early Jenkintown government, business, and culture. Collection includes newspapers, letters, journals, photographs, diaries, household files, ephemera related to American Legion and local fraternal organizations.
Cox-Robinson-Ross Family Papers, 1682-1970 – important family group active in early Philadelphia and Bucks County, and later with the Lazaretto and the development of Hatboro. Collection includes letters, financial and property records, business papers, photographs, scrapbooks, architectural drawings.
Shirley M. Dennis Papers, 1970-2010 – Abington Township resident Dennis was deeply involved in housing issues throughout her career which included serving as Managing Director of the Housing Association of Delaware Valley and chairing the Willow Grove Chapter of the NAACP. Under Governor Dick Thornburg she served as Secretary of the Department of Community Affairs and chaired the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency. She was appointed by President Ronald Reagan to serve in the Department of Labor as Director of the Women’s Bureau.
Martin Evoy Papers, 1953-1989 – Col. Evoy lived in Abington and was concerned with development issues in Baederwood. Collection includes a large amount of correspondence, reports, plans, etc., dealing with various zoning and development questions in the Noble/Baederwood area.
Feit Family Papers, 1920-1980 – XXX Feit owned a small chemical company in Glenside, the family living in Huntingdon Valley at Fetters’ Mill; the son Duncan (b. 193X) was an artist. Collection includes business records, family letters, photographs, ephemera and works of art.
Richard H. Harte Papers, 1908-1927 – property owner in the Beaderwood section of Abington. Collection includes many blueprints, design plans and topographical maps from the firm of Olmsted Bros. relating to the Harte estate and later development.
Heist Family Papers, 1860-1980 – family based in Glenside that was involved with real estate development in Flourtown and Glenside. Other members were prominent in fields of biology and medicine. Collection includes financial records, papers, letters, diaries, plot plans, architectural drawings, photographs, ephemera, clothing and textiles, and other three-dimensional objects.
Herkness-Pennock Family Papers, 1860-1998 – two families related by marriage and extremely important in area as landowners, developers, and for business and cultural activities. Collection includes photographs, scrapbooks, ledgers.
Joshua M. Holmes Papers, 1860-1920 – builder in the Oak Lane and Cheltenham areas. Collection includes ledgers, deeds and other papers related to his business.
Charles Holt Papers, 1850-1898 – Quaker farmer who attended Abington Friends schools during the 1840s and was involved with the Huntingdon Turnpike, later selling his farm to John Pitcairn. Collection includes ledgers, diaries, school note books and correspondence from Holt and members of his family.
Gibson-Pepper-Robinson Family Papers, 1850-1950 – Henry C. Gibson was a wealthy distiller who lived in Philadelphia and on the Main Line while some of his descendants lived in the Rydal area of Abington Township. His son John Howard Gibson married into the Pepper family of Philadelphia and his son into the Robinson family of Pittsburgh. Collection includes scrapbooks, photo albums, day books, books and ephemera, and some correspondence.
Elliot Lester Papers, 1920-1950 – Elliot Lester (1893-1951) was a noted regional playwright whose works were written primarily in the late 1920s and early 1930s. His most famous play, The Mud Turtle (1925) appeared on Broadway and several of his plays were made into movies. Collection includes type scripts of plays, artist set design conception drawings and photographs.
John W. Merriam Papers, 1930-2000 – major regional real estate developer and philanthropist who developed and owned a number of large apartment complexes in Abington, Cedarbrook, and Wynnewood, and lived at the fabled Gibson estate, Maybrook. Collection includes ledgers, architectural blue prints, plot plans, correspondence and tax information.
John C. Parry Papers, 1884-1910 – Quaker, member of Abington Meeting who lived in Wyncote. Collection includes a very large number of household records and receipted bills including tax, bank, medical, utility, clothing, food, etc.
Major Clyde Mitchell Schuck Papers, 1940-1965 – an aide to General Eichelberger, commander of the U.S. Eighth Army in the Pacific Theater during World War II. Collection includes correspondence, photograph albums, maps, and ephemera.
Russell Smith Family Papers, 1820-1950 – an internationally known family of painters: father Russell (1812-1896), mother Mary Priscilla Wilson Smith (1819-1874), son Xanthus (1839-1929), daughter Mary Russell Smith (1842-1878), whose home was in Glenside. Collection includes family papers, diaries, correspondence, deeds, works of art on paper, glass negatives, photographs and a family photograph album.
John B. and Francis R. Taylor Papers, 1880-1945 – well-known Quaker family involved in real estate in Philadelphia and vicinity. Collection includes daily journals, diaries, business and professional correspondence.