Guide to the Collection
|Title:||Cunningham family papers
|Physical Description:||7 document
boxes and 1 oversize box
|Call Number:||Ms. N-2354
|Repository:||Massachusetts Historical Society
1154 Boylston Street
Boston, MA 02215
This collection consists of the papers of Henry
Winchester Cunningham and Mary May (Hayward) Cunningham, including
correspondence, notes, genealogical material, a collection of historical
documents, and printed matter.
Henry Winchester Cunningham (1860-1930) was the son of James Henry and
Lucinda Stearns (Winchester) Cunningham. He attended Roxbury Latin School and
graduated from Harvard College in 1882. In 1889, he married Mary May Hayward
(1863-1929), daughter of Isaac Davenport Hayward and Mary Vose Hayward of
Milton, Mass. The couple had no children.
Mary May Cunningham inherited the Wakefield Estate in Milton after her
mother's death in 1901. She initially held the property with her half-brother
George Griswold Hayward, Isaac Davenport Hayward's son by his first wife, and
her brother Roland Hayward, the child of his second wife. George sold his
inheritance to his half-brother and sister in 1902, and Roland bequeathed his
share to his sister when he died in 1906. Henry and Mary Cunningham split their
time between households in Boston and Milton, using the Mansion House in Milton
as their summer estate.
When Mary May Cunningham died in 1929, she divided her property between her
cousin Henry P. Binney (1863-1940) and her nephew Griswold S. Hayward. Henry
Binney was the son of her father's sister Josephine and her husband Henry
Binney (1838-1878). Griswold was the surviving son of her half-brother George
Henry W. Cunningham was deeply interested in the study of New England
history and genealogy. He was active in the management of local historical
societies and served for many years as corresponding secretary of the New
England Historic Genealogical Society. Henry died in 1930.
Graham, Shelby, Annie Rotner, and Claire Dempsey. "Biographies of
Wakefield Property Owners." Mary M .B. Wakefield
Charitable Trust: History and Background, June 2007. October
Graham, Shelby, Annie Rotner, and Claire Dempsey. "Title History of the
Wakefield Property, Milton, MA." Mary M. B. Wakefield
Charitable Trust: History and Background, June 2007. October
The Cunningham family collection consists of the papers of Henry Winchester
Cunningham (1860-1930) and Mary May (Hayward) Cunningham (1863-1929). Included
are personal papers of Henry W. Cunningham documenting his work with the
Colonial Society of Massachusetts, Harvard College (Class of 1882), the New
England Historic Genealogical Society, and other organizations; papers related
to his estate and to family property in Manchester and Milton, Mass.; notes,
correspondence, printed matter, and other genealogical material on the Binney,
Cunningham, Davenport, Hayward, May, and related families; and a number of
historical items collected by Henry. Among the genealogical papers is a diary
of merchant, farmer, and state senator Elijah Vose, 1831-1836. Among the
historical items are diaries of Samuel Checkley, John Kneeland, and John Price;
single letters by Thomas Pownall, Jeffery Amherst, Jonathan Belcher, and Jared
Sparks; papers related to the firm West & Blake; and papers related to the
smallpox vaccination in Milton, Mass.
The collection also contains a recipe book and estate papers of Mary May
Cunningham, as well as printed material on the history of Milton, some
ancestors and relations of the Cunninghams, and other historical and
The Massachusetts Historical Society (MHS) holds the following collections
related to the Cunningham family papers:
Henry P. Binney family papers. Ms. N-2355. Finding aid available at:
Davenport family papers. Ms. N-2353. Finding aid available at:
Joseph H. Hayward family papers. Ms. N-2368. Finding aid available at:
On deposit from the Mary M. B. Wakefield Charitable Trust, September
Henry P. Binney family papers, Cunningham family papers,
Hayward family papers, and Mary M. B. Wakefield papers originally
formed one large collection at the Wakefield Estate in Milton, Mass. Before the
papers were deposited at the MHS, they were separated into these five separate
but closely related collections.
The collection is organized into the following series:
|I. Henry W. Cunningham papers, 1735-1951
|A. Personal papers, 1882-1930
|B. Genealogical papers, 1823-1951
|C. Historical collection, 1735-1914
|II. Mary May Cunningham papers, 1920-1929
|III. Printed material, 1805-1948
|I. Henry W. Cunningham papers,
|A. Personal papers,
This subseries contains Henry W. Cunningham's personal correspondence;
papers of various organizations with which he was involved; papers related to
Cunningham family properties in Manchester and Milton, Mass.; and estate
|Box 1||Folder 1||Correspondence,
|Box 1||Folder 2||Club of Odd Volumes,
Included are letters, notes, and clippings related to the club,
acquisitions, members, and lectures.
|Box 1||Folder 3-4||Colonial Society of Massachusetts,
Included are notes, lists, and correspondence related primarily to dinners
of the society, as well as to membership and other matters.
|Box 1||Folder 5-11||Harvard College,
Included are letters, notes, printed matter, financial material, and other
papers related to Cunningham's work as secretary of the Harvard Class of 1882,
including papers related to the Harvard commencement of 1907, at which
Cunningham served as chief marshal, as well as an 1882 pencil sketch of
Cunningham by his classmate William Winthrop Kent (1860-1955).
|Box 1||Folder 12||Home for Aged Women,
Included are notes of meetings, minutes, and a biography of late president
Alfred S. Woodworth.
|Box 1||Folder 13-17||New England Historic Genealogical Society,
Included are notes, printed matter, and correspondence.
|Property and estate papers,
|Box 2||Folder 1-5||Papers related to the Manchester, Mass. property,
Included is correspondence with tenants and contractors, bills and receipts,
tax and utility records, notes, printed matter, and other papers related to the
Cunningham house and property in Manchester.
|Box 2||Folder 6-16||Papers related to the Milton, Mass. property,
Included are letters, notes, accounts, tax and utility records, bills and
receipts, printed matter, specifications for work, agreements, returns, maps,
and other papers related to the Cunningham house and property in Milton.
|Box 2||Folder 17-19||Estate papers,
Included is Henry W. Cunningham's will, a copy of his birth certificate,
printed obituaries, and appraisals of his estate.
|Box 2||Folder 20||Miscellaneous notes and writings,
Included are writings and sketches related to James Edward Alexander's
expedition to Africa in 1836-1837, as well as a translation about French
|B. Genealogical papers,
Arranged alphabetically by family.
This subseries contains genealogical papers on the Cunningham family and
other families to which they are related, collected by Henry W. Cunningham. Due
to the interrelated nature of the material, there is a some overlap of subject
matter across sections.
Note: Series III (Printed material) contains some
pamphlets and other printed items related to genealogy and individual family
|Box 2||Folder 21-23||Binney family,
Included are writings, correspondence, typescript copies of correspondence,
and printed matter.
|Box 3||Folder 1-2||Cunningham family,
Included are letters, notes, papers concerning the Cunningham coat of arms,
and clippings, as well as some original documents related to Horace, Andrew,
John, and Helen Cunningham, 1823-1873.
|Box 3||Folder 3-12||Davenport family,
Included are notes on deeds and property owned by the Davenports, a detailed
family history covering five generations of the family, a pencil sketch, and
miscellaneous notes and papers.
|Box 3||Folder 13||Goddard family, undated
Included are notes about the history of the Goddard family in Brookline,
The Hayward family genealogical papers consist primarily of notes by Henry
W. Cunningham, but also include a significant amount of correspondence with
Mabel Hope Kingsbury (1927-1930), as well as letters of Walter C. Belcher,
Marion S. Arnold, Huldah E. Henshaw, and others; clippings and other printed
matter; poems; a book of pedigree diagrams of the related families filled out
by Cunningham; extracts of Hayward family deeds; material on the Henshaw family
connection; property maps; a detailed family history; papers related to the
Hayward coat of arms; and typescript copies of letters by family members.
|Box 3||Folder 14-22||1888-1943
|Box 4||Folder 1-15||1839-1930
|Box 4||Folder 16||Henshaw family, undated
Included is a detailed history of the Henshaw family and a typescript
biography of Lemuel Shaw.
|Box 4||Folder 17-18||May family, undated
Included is a detailed history of the May family, typescript copies of
correspondence, and a Samuel May family tree.
Included are genealogical notes, a cutslip autograph and diary of Elijah
Vose, and a printed obituary of Judge Henry Vose. The diary, kept at
Dorchester, Mass. from 1831-1836, describes Elijah Vose's farming and
gardening, work with the Massachusetts Horticultural Society and the First
Church in Dorchester, and service as a Massachusetts state senator.
Accompanying the diary is a note by A. P. Everett describing its discovery and
leaving it to Henry W. Cunningham.
|Box 4||Folder 19||Papers, undated and
|Box 7||Folder 11||Elijah Vose diary,
1831-1836, with A. P. Everett note,
|Box 4||Folder 20||Williams family, undated
Included is a detailed history of the Williams family.
|Box 4||Folder 21||Winchester family,
Included are letters and notes about the Winchester family and their coat of
|Box 4||Folder 22||Miscellaneous genealogical notes and clippings, undated and
|C. Historical collection,
This subseries consists of original historical documents collected by
|Box 4||Folder 23||Diary of Rev. Samuel Checkley of Boston, Mass., kept in
The New-England Diary: Or, Almanack...,
Published as Diary of the Rev. Samuel Checkley,
1735 (Cambridge, Mass.: J. Wilson and Son, 1909). The printed pamphlet
is located in Series III (Printed material).
|Box 4||Folder 24||Account of charges for an eight-oared barge built by order of John
Henry Bastide, chief engineer for North America, for the expedition against
28 June 1758
Signed by Edward Grant, Nathaniel Glover, and Thomas Hancock.
|Box 4||Folder 25||Letter from Gov. Thomas Pownall to Mr. Townshend about a power of
attorney, with memoranda on verso,
|Box 4||Folder 26||Letter from Gen. Jeffery Amherst to Thomas Hancock about passage for
30 Aug. 1761
|Box 5||Folder 1||Journal of John Kneeland,
Included are notes by Cunningham about Kneeland and the journal.
|Box 5||Folder 2||Letter from Jonathan Belcher to Thomas Hancock,
5 Dec. 1763, with The Boston
Gazette, and the Country Journal,
22 Mar. 1784
|Box 5||Folder 3-7||West & Blake papers,
Included are accounts, receipts, correspondence, promissory notes, and other
financial papers related to the business of West & Blake. Among the
individuals and companies represented are Andrew Cunningham, Daniel Mallory
& Co., Edmund Baylies, Davis B. Lawler & Co., David West, John West,
Lincoln Edmands, and James S. Lovell. Included is correspondence between John
West and Andrew Cunningham.
|Box 5||Folder 8-9||Papers related to smallpox vaccination in Milton, Mass.,
Included are letters, resolutions, certifications of inoculation, reports,
and other papers. Among the individuals represented are Thomas Welsh, Amos
Holbrook, Oliver Houghton, Stephen Horton, Benjamin Russell, and Isaac
Davenport. Also included is a letter from Charles E. Goodspeed to Cunningham
about the papers, 31 July 1914.
|Box 5||Folder 10||Journal/memoranda book of John Price,
John Price was the town clerk of Manchester, Mass. Included are clippings
about the item, 1909.
|Box 5||Folder 11||Letter from Jared Sparks to Joseph Green Cogswell introducing James
20 July 1850
Included is a letter from James C. Carter to Cunningham, 15 May 1901, as
well as obituaries of Carter (1905) and notes.
|Box 5||Folder 12||Letter from Joshua Bates to William Roper,
10 Oct. 1850
Included is correspondence of Henry W. Cunningham about Bates, 1901.
|II. Mary May Cunningham papers,
|Box 5||Folder 13||Recipe book,
|Box 5||Folder 14-15||Estate papers,
Included are Mary May (Hayward) Cunningham's will, a copy of her birth
certificate, printed obituaries, and the appraisal of her estate.
|III. Printed material,
Arranged alphabetically by author.
This series consists primarily of printed pamphlets on genealogical and
historical subjects, both owned and written by Henry W. Cunningham. Also
included are a few books and miscellaneous clippings.
|Box 5||Folder 16||Ames, Ellis, comp. History of the Redman
Farm, So Called, and of the Title Thereto, Situate in Canton, Norfolk County,
Massachusetts, Now Mostly Owned by Henry L. Pierce, Esq. of Boston.
Boston: William Bense,
|Box 5||Folder 17||Batchelder, Samuel Francis. Harvard
Hospital-Surgeons of 1775: A Study in the Medical History of the American
Revolution. Cambridge, Mass.: [s.n.],
1920. [original and reprint]
Included is material on Dr. Lemuel Hayward.
|Box 5||Folder 18||Bimbo. The Pleasures of Yachting; Addressed
to Col. W. P. Winchester, by His Friend Bimbo. Boston: Eastburn's
|Box 5||Folder 19||Bowles, Francis Tiffany. The Loyalty of
Barnstable in the Revolution. Cambridge, Mass.: John Wilson and Son,
|Box 5||Folder 20||Centennial Gathering of the Hayward Family,
with Address by George W. Hayward, and Poem, by Almira L. Hayward.
Taunton, Mass.: John S. Sampson,
|Box 5||Folder 21||A Collection of Papers Relative to the
Transactions of the Town of Milton, in the State of Massachusetts, to Promote a
General Inoculation of the Cow Pox, or Kine Pock, as a Never Failing Preventive
Against Small Pox Infection. Boston: J. Belcher,
|Box 5||Folder 22||The Cow Pox Act with the Order of the
Legislature; and a Communication, Relative to the Subject, From the Selectmen
of the Town of Milton. Boston: Joshua Belcher,
|Box 5||Folder 23||Cunningham, Edward. The "Sister Ann": A
Milton Romance of the Last Century. Boston: Rockwell and Churchill,
|Box 5||Folder 24||Cunningham, Henry Winchester. Andrew
Cunningham of Boston and Some of His Descendants: A Brief Genealogy.
1901. [2 copies]
|Box 5||Folder 25||Cunningham, Henry Winchester. Brief Sketch of
the Old Milton Church, Its Ministers and Meeting Houses, 1678-1928.
[Milton, Mass.: s.n.],
April 1928. [4 copies]
|Box 5||Folder 26||Cunningham, Henry Winchester, ed. Diary of
the Rev. Samuel Checkley, 1735. Cambridge, Mass.: John Wilson and Son,
The original manuscript diary is located in Series I.C. (Historical
|Box 6||Folder 1||Cunningham, Henry Winchester. John Winchester
of New England and Some of His Descendants. [Boston: s.n.],
|Box 6||Folder 2||Cunningham, Henry Winchester, ed. Journal of
Lieutenant-Colonel Joseph Vose, April-July, 1776. Cambridge, Mass.:
John Wilson and Son,
1905. [3 copies]
|Box 6||Folder 3||The First Four Meeting Houses of Milton,
Mass., Covering a Period of Two and a Half Centuries. [Milton, Mass.]:
John A. Tucker,
|Box 6||Folder 4||Foran, George J. In Memoriam: Washington and
Harriet Fowle Snelling, Boston, Massachusetts. [Boston: s.n.],
|Box 6||Folder 5||A Genealogy of the Descendants of John May
Who Came From England to Roxbury in America, 1640. Boston: Franklin
Press; Rand, Avery & Co.,
|Box 6||Folder 6||Hammond, Otis Grant. Tories of New Hampshire
in the War of the Revolution. Concord, N.H.: New Hampshire Historical
Included is a letter from Otis G. Hammond to Henry W. Cunningham.
|Box 6||Folder 7||MacPherson, James, trans. The Poems of
Ossian, the Son of Fingal. Vol. 2. Edinburgh: Thomas Oliver,
|Box 6||Folder 8||Milton Cemetery: A Catalogue of the
Proprietors of Lots, Together With a Record of Ancient Inscriptions on All
Tablets in the Cemetery Prior to and Including A.D. 1800. Boston: David
Clapp & Son,
|Box 6||Folder 9||Le Nouveau Testament de Notre Seigneur
Jesus-Christ. London: Baker and Fletcher,
|Box 6||Folder 10||Park, Lawrence. Major Thomas Savage of Boston
and His Descendants. Boston: David Clapp & Son,
Included is a letter from Lawrence Park to Henry W. Cunningham.
|Box 7||Folder 1||Proceedings of the Stoughton Historical
Society, April 19, 1899, at the Dedication of the Memorial Stone Marking the
Location of the First House Built in Stoughton. Stoughton, Mass.:
[Stoughton Historical Society],
|Box 7||Folder 2||Register of Marriages in Milton, Mass. From
the Diary of Rev. Peter Thacher, 1686-1727. Boston: David Clapp &
|Box 7||Folder 3||Sanford, Enoch. Biographical Sketch of the
Centenarian, Mrs. Abigail Alden Leonard, of Raynham, Mass. Raynham,
1887. [2 copies]
Abigail Alden Leonard was Henry W. Cunningham's great-great-grandmother.
|Box 7||Folder 4||Scott, Henry Edwards. "Henry Winchester Cunningham, A.B."
The New England Historical and Genealogical
Register. Vol. 85. Boston: New England Historic Genealogical Society,
|Box 7||Folder 5||Teele, A. K., ed. The History of Milton,
Mass., 1640 to 1887. Boston: Rockwell & Churchill,
|Box 7||Folder 6||Items removed from The History of Milton,
Included are clippings, notes, correspondence, and maps.
|Box 7||Folder 7||Ware, Horace E. The Powder Mill on the
Neponset; Its Importance to the Colony in Philip's War. [Milton, Mass.:
|Box 7||Folder 8-10||Miscellaneous printed matter,
Cunningham family papers, on deposit from the Mary M. B. Wakefield
Charitable Trust, Massachusetts Historical Society.
This collection is indexed under the following headings in
the online catalog of the Massachusetts Historical Society. Researchers
desiring materials about related persons, organizations, or subjects should
search the catalog using these headings.
|Amherst, Jeffery Amherst, Baron,
|Checkley, Samuel, 1696-1769.
|Cunningham, Henry Winchester,
|Cunningham, Mary May Hayward,
|Kneeland, John, 1748-1831.
|Pownall, Thomas, 1722-1805.
|Sparks, Jared, 1789-1866.
|Colonial Society of Massachusetts.
|Harvard College (1780- ). Class of
|New England Historic Genealogical
|West & Blake.
Photographs from this collection have been removed to the MHS Photo Archives
(Photo. Coll. U-168).