Special Collections and Archives

Zenas Kent family papers

Special Collections and Archives

Zenas Kent family papers

Repository:Kent State University Libraries. Special Collections and Archives.
Title:Zenas Kent family papers
Inclusive Date(s):1827-1949
Author:Finding aid prepared by Caitlin McCallum, June 2015
Creation:Finding aid encoded by Caitlin McCallum using the OhioLINK EAD Application in 2015
Origination:Kent, Zenas, 1786-1865
Extent:1.5 cubic feet (2 boxes= 1 record storage box and 1 oversized box)
Physical Location:11th floor
Finding Aid Identifier:OhKeUSC0165
Abstract:The Zenas Kent family papers, dating from 1827 to 1949, contain a general overview of the lives of Zenas Kent and other Kent family members. This collection consists of various items including correspondence, financial documents, news clippings and newspapers, photographs, as well as other publications and writings pertaining to and originating from the Kent family.
Language(s):The records are in English

Biography of Zenas Kent and Marvin Kent

Zenas Kent, born July 12, 1786, in Middletown Connecticut was married to Pamelia Lewis, also of Connecticut in 1811. During their fifty-three years of marriage they had thirteen children. Shortly after getting married, Zenas moved with his father's family to Mantua, Ohio and after securing a home, returned for Pamelia. In 1815 they moved to Hudson and Zenas, after receiving some initial financial backing, opened a general store in Ravenna. He continued to be prosperous in his endeavors in Ravenna as both a merchant and a builder. By 1831, Zenas was the senior partner of the firm Kent and Brewster which had a store in Hudson. In 1832 Zenas, with David Ladd, purchased a large tract of land in Franklin Mills which included waterpower from the Cuyahoga River. Zenas later bought Ladd's portion and built the Kent Flouring Mill which remained in operation for many decades after its opening. Zenas sold this property to the Franklin Land Company which afterward became the Franklin Silk Company for $75,000. By 1843, the Franklin Silk Company was in a disastrous state and Zenas ended up with most of the property he had sold. After being active thirty years in business, Zenas Kent retired and sold most of his stock of goods to his sons Marvin, Charles H., and Henry A. Despite being retired, Zenas remained an important member of the community as the president of the Franklin Bank of Portage County from its establishment in 1849 until 1864. Zenas passed October 4, 1865. Through his career, Zenas helped shape the city of Franklin Mills which later became the city of Kent.

Another prominent member of the Kent family was Marvin Kent, the third child born to Zenas and Pamelia on September 21, 1816. At age nineteen, he was sent to Philadelphia and New York with the instructions to buy stock of goods which proved to be a profitable venture. Upon his return home, Marvin continued to develop as a businessman through overseeing several businesses his father had started such as the tannery and the Kent Flouring Mill. Marvin also established a glassworks that was later purchased by Day, Williams, and Company. His greatest endeavor was yet to come; in 1851 he joined others in the engineering of the Atlantic and Great Western Railroad. The railroad was completed in 1863 and using his influence, Marvin had Franklin Mills selected as a site for the railroad's shops. The construction of these shops caused a boom in the population of the city. Out of gratitude, and to honor the work Marvin had done, the city name was changed to Kent. Marvin became president of what was now called the Kent National Bank and held his position until 1908 when he passed away.

Scope and Content

The Zenas Kent family papers include correspondence, financial documents, news clippings and newspapers, photographs, publications, writings, reports and certificates. Correspondence forms the bulk of this collection and includes correspondence written to and from Zenas Kent and other Kent family members. The correspondence details the personal and professional lives of the Kent family. Included in the collection is correspondence to and from Frank Rumrill which were written during Rumrill's time in California. The items within the collection give insight into the significance of Zenas and the Kent family to the city of Kent as well as documenting their activities.

Statement of Arrangement

This collection is arranged predominantly in chronological order with the exception of the series Photographs and Publications and Writings. The items that are not arranged chronologically are instead arranged alphabetically. The Zenas Kent family papers are divided into series as follows:
Series 1: Correspondence
Subseries 1: Correspondence to Zenas Kent
Subseries 2: Correspondence to and from Frank Rumrill
Subseries 3: Other Correspondence
Series 2: Financial Documents
Series 3: News Clippings and Newspapers
Subseries 1: News Clippings
Subseries 2: Newspapers
Series 4: Photographs
Series 5: Publications and Writings
Series 6: Reports and Certificates


Related Material

Further information concerning the Kent family can be found in the Kent Family papers.

Restrictions on Access

Original periodical clippings are very fragile, color photocopies for research use have been provided.

Preferred Citation

Zenas Kent family papers. Kent State University Libraries. Special Collections and Archives.

Acquisition Information

Mary Johnston donated this collection to Special Collections and Archives on September 2, 2014.

Bibliography

Grismer, Karl. The History of Kent: Historical and Biographical. Kent: Kent Historical Society, 2001.

Subject Headings
The following subjects are found in this collection:

Subjects:
Kent, Zenas, 1786-1865--Archives
Franklin Mills (Ohio)--History
Kent (Ohio)--History
Railroads--Ohio--Kent
Banks and banking--Ohio
Stores, Retail--Ohio
Flour industry--Ohio--Kent
Persons:
Kent, Marvin, 1816-1908
Rumrill, Frank
Functions:
Letter writing
Commerce
Industrial management
Occupations:
Industrialists
Businessmen
Bankers
Civic leaders
Material Types:
Correspondence
Financial records
Clippings (Books, newspapers, etc.)
Photographs
Publications
Reports
Certificates



Detailed Description of the Collection

Series 1: Correspondence, 1827-1905

Sub-Series 1: Correspondence to Zenas Kent, 1827-1862
Box 1 / Folder 1
S. Robin to Zenas Kent, January 31, 1827
Box 1 / Folder 2
Alonso Chapmon to Zenas Kent, May 29, 1831
Box 1 / Folder 3
Zalmon Felch to Zenas Kent, June 15, 1831
Box 1 / Folder 4
Charles G. Paine to Zenas Kent, October 23, 1831
Box 1 / Folder 5
Graves and Merrick Goodun to Zenas Kent, January 3, 1832
Box 1 / Folder 6
B. O. Brown to Zenas Kent, May 30, 1832
Box 1 / Folder 7
Henry Kent to Zenas Kent, April 24, 1833
Box 1 / Folder 8
A. Sepnom to Zenas Kent, February 15, 1834
Box 1 / Folder 9
George Kirkurn to Zenas Kent and Cyrus Prentiss, December 20, 1834
Box 1 / Folder 10
Roswell Kent to Zenas Kent, August 23, 1835
Box 1 / Folder 11
Marvin Kent to Zenas Kent, September 10, 1835
Box 1 / Folder 12
Henry Kent to Zenas Kent, 1835
Box 1 / Folder 13
Henry Kent to Zenas Kent, February 5, 1836
Box 1 / Folder 14
Henry Kent to Zenas Kent, March 11, 1836
Box 1 / Folder 15
Henry Howe to Zenas Kent, October 5, 1836
Box 1 / Folder 16
George Kent to Zenas Kent, January 12, 1837
Box 1 / Folder 17
Roswell Kent to Zenas Kent, April 6, 1837
Box 1 / Folder 18
P. F. Griswold to Zenas Kent, November 16, 1837
Box 1 / Folder 19
D. H. Beardsley to Zenas Kent, March 7, 1838
Box 1 / Folder 20
Marvin Kent to Zenas Kent, April 8, 1839
Box 1 / Folder 21
B. Bostwick to Zenas Kent, February 1, 1840
Box 1 / Folder 22
J. F. Potmin to Zenas Kent, March 11, 1840
Box 1 / Folder 23
J. B. Douglass to Zenas Kent, April 16, 1840
Box 1 / Folder 24
D. H. Beardsley to Zenas Kent, April 6, 1841
Box 1 / Folder 25
Marvin Kent to Zenas Kent, February 20, 1843
Box 1 / Folder 26
B. Hendly to Zenas Kent, September 12, 1844
Box 1 / Folder 27
M. Johnson to Zenas Kent, March 5, 1846
Box 1 / Folder 28
W. I. [G.?] Otis to Zenas Kent, July 16, 1847
Box 1 / Folder 29
[J. W. Bringham?] to Zenas Kent, August 2, 1847
Box 1 / Folder 30
George Kent to Zenas Kent, January 25, 1848
Box 1 / Folder 31
Marvin Kent to Zenas Kent, May 26, 1848
Box 1 / Folder 32
Marvin Kent to Zenas Kent, June 8, 1848
Box 1 / Folder 33
Roswell Kent to Zenas Kent, November 25, 1848
Box 1 / Folder 34
George Kent to Zenas Kent, March 19, 1849
Box 1 / Folder 35
J. Poag to Zenas Kent, January 28, 1850
Box 1 / Folder 36
Roswell Kent to Zenas Kent, April 15, 1850
Box 1 / Folder 37
Roswell Kent to Zenas Kent, December 23, 1850
Box 1 / Folder 38
James H. McClentie to Zenas Kent, March 6, 1851
Box 1 / Folder 39
Marvin Kent to Zenas Kent, March 22, 1851
Box 1 / Folder 40
L. J. Pick to Zenas Kent, April 12, 1851
Box 1 / Folder 41
Charles H. Kent to Zenas Kent, August 20, 1861
Box 1 / Folder 42
Lewis Kent to Zenas Kent, October 17, 1862
Box 1 / Folder 43
Anne Kent to Zenas Kent, March 12
Box 1 / Folder 44
George L. Mills to Zenas Kent, May 13
Box 1 / Folder 45
George Rurdhin to Zenas Kent, May 23
Box 1 / Folder 46
Unidentified to Zenas Kent, August 15
Box 1 / Folder 47
F. R. Elliot to Zenas Kent, undated
Box 1 / Folder 48
T. C. Perkins to Zenas Kent, undated

Sub-Series 2: Correspondence to and from Frank Rumrill, 1851-1856
Box 1 / Folder 49
Austin Babcock and L. D. M. Neal to Frank Rumrill, February 23-February 24, 1851
Box 1 / Folder 50
G. E. Clarke to Frank Rumrill, March 26, 1851
Box 1 / Folder 51
Fred Wadsworth to Frank Rumrill, August 2, 1851
Box 1 / Folder 52
G. E. Clarke to Frank Rumrill, August 30, 1851
Box 1 / Folder 53
J. W. Gregory to Frank Rumrill, November 24, 1851
Box 1 / Folder 54
Frank Rumrill to unidentified, May 23, 1852
Box 1 / Folder 55
Frank Rumrill to Henrietta, June 20, 1852
Box 1 / Folder 56
Frank Rumrill to Henrietta, July 13, 1852
Box 1 / Folder 57
J.W. Gregory to Frank Rumrill, September 20, 1852
Box 1 / Folder 58
J. W. Gregory to Frank Rumrill, September 23, 1852
Box 1 / Folder 59
Frank Rumrill to J. W. Gregory, September 26, 1852
Box 1 / Folder 60
R. W. [Warhms?] to Frank Rumrill, July 25, 1853
Box 1 / Folder 61
Wells, Fargo, and Company to Frank Rumrill, July 25, 1853
Box 1 / Folder 62
Frank Rumrill to Henrietta, August 10, 1853
Box 1 / Folder 63
Henrietta to Frank Rumrill, August 15, 1853
Box 1 / Folder 64
Frank Rumrill to Henrietta, August 21, 1853
Box 1 / Folder 65
Frank Rumrill to Brother, May 23, 1854
Box 1 / Folder 66
W. M. to Frank Rumrill, May 28, 1854
Box 1 / Folder 67
Frank Rumrill to Henrietta, August 5, 1854
Box 1 / Folder 68
G. J. Davis to Frank Rumrill, November 3, 1854
Box 1 / Folder 69
W. J. Pardee to Frank Rumrill, February 3, 1855
Box 1 / Folder 70
W. J. Pardee to Frank Rumrill, February 3, 1855
Box 1 / Folder 71
Unidentified to Frank Rumrill, March 7, 1855
Box 1 / Folder 72
Unidentified to Frank Rumrill, March 8, 1855
Box 1 / Folder 73
James Pullman to Frank Rumrill, March 12, 1855
Box 1 / Folder 74
Unidentified to Frank Rumrill, June 28, 1855
Box 1 / Folder 75
James Pullman to Frank Rumrill, May 21, 1856
Box 1 / Folder 76
James Pullman to Frank Rumrill, October 19, 1856
Box 1 / Folder 77
Frank Rumrill to unidentified, undated
Box 1 / Folder 78
Unidentified envelopes, undated

Sub-Series 3: Other correspondence, 1842-1905
Box 1 / Folder 79
Marvin Kent to Norman Rood, December 8, 1842
Box 1 / Folder 80
Mr. Taylor to Joseph Lepran, January 4, 1843
Box 1 / Folder 81
Marvin Kent to Wells, Woodbridge, and Edward, April 23, 1843
Box 1 / Folder 82
Farmer to J. Poag, November 21, 1849
Box 1 / Folder 83
W. J. Pardee to C. H. Hedges, March 13, 1855
Box 1 / Folder 84
C. Aluatu to J. F. Brimmach, June 1861
Box 1 / Folder 85
Syman C. Draper to Marvin Kent, May 21, 1862
Box 1 / Folder 86
Henry to Joe, March 3, 1864
Box 1 / Folder 87
Henry Kent to Josie, April 10, 1864
Box 1 / Folder 88
Josie to Mother, March 23, 1868
Box 1 / Folder 89
Josie to Mother, 1868
Box 1 / Folder 90
Josie to Mother, May 30, 1869
Box 1 / Folder 91
Henry Kent to Grace, September 30, 1889
Box 1 / Folder 92
Momma to Grace, October 20, 1889
Box 1 / Folder 93
Marvin Kent to Grace, July 26, 1904
Box 1 / Folder 94
Marvin Kent to Marvin Kent Curtis and Josephine Curtis, September 28, 1905
Box 1 / Folder 95
Harriet Clapp to Mother, undated
Box 1 / Folder 96
Unidentified envelopes, undated

Series 2: Financial Documents, 1828-1889
Box 1 / Folder 97
Receipt from Johnson and Wickson to Zenas Kent, November 9, 1828
Box 1 / Folder 98
Invoice for "The Statesman from John B. Butler to Zenas Kent, May 23, 1830
Box 1 / Folder 99
Receipt from Clarke and Tallmadge to Zenas Kent, July 31, 1830
Box 1 / Folder 100
Duplicate invoice from unidentified to Zenas Kent, Decmber 18, 1830
Box 1 / Folder 101
Receipt from unidentified to Zenas Kent, November 27, 1835
Box 1 / Folder 102
Property appraisal from John B. Butler to Zenas Kent and Brewster, February 20, 1840
Box 1 / Folder 103
Bankruptcy notice from the District Court of the United States for the District of Ohio to Zenas Kent, June 10, 1842
Box 1 / Folder 104
Invoice from B. Taylor to Zenas Kent, February 1, 1843
Box 1 / Folder 105
Receipt from Sprang and Company to Zenas Kent, October 12, 1846
Box 1 / Folder 106
Order to E. H. Limes Court Dressmaker, October 1872
Box 1 / Folder 107
Receipt from Heyse and Weisgerber to Marvin Kent, October 1889
Box 1 / Folder 108
The Kent National Bank, Ten Dollar Bill signed by William S. Kent, 1904
Box 1 / Folder 109
Memorandum from Marvin Kent to Henry A. Kent, September 15
Box 1 / Folder 110
Franklin Silk Company, Five Dollar Scrip, undated
Box 1 / Folder 111
Franklin Silk Company, Ten Dollar Scrip, undated
Box 1 / Folder 112
Memorandum of Drafts drawn by Frank Rumrill, undated
Box 1 / Folder 113
Transcript of Ledger due Wells, Fargo, and Company, undated

Series 3: News Clippings and Newspapers, 1858-1951

Sub-Series 1: News Clippings, [1860?]-1951
Box 1 / Folder 114
Weekly Plain Dealer, [1860?]
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 115
News clippings in reference to the Atlantic and Great Western Railway and Marvin Kent, [1865?]
Physical Description: Original copies are fragile; please use reference copies
Box 1 / Folder 116
The Akron Times, December 11, 1908
Box 1 / Folder 117
The Glasgow Herald, June 23, 1935
Box 1 / Folder 118
The Daily Mail, February 23, 1931
Box 1 / Folder 119
The Plain Dealer, June 29, 1938
Box 1 / Folder 120
unidentified news clipping, November 26, 1948
Box 1 / Folder 121
Cleveland Plain Dealer, June 3, 1951
Box 1 / Folder 122
The Akron Times, undated
Box 1 / Folder 123
Unidentified news clipping, undated
Box 1 / Folder 124
Unidentified news clipping, undated
Box 1 / Folder 125
Unidentified news clippings, scrapbook, undated

Sub-Series 2: Newspapers, 1858-1927
Box 1 / Folder 126
The New York Times, February 22, 1858
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 127
Cleveland Daily Review, May 6, 1861
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 128
The Saturday Review, June 2, 1866
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 129
The Saturday Review, June 9, 1866
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 130
Cleveland Daily Herald, July 6, 1875
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 131
The Chicago Record, August 18, 1899
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 132
The Kent Courier, December 18, 1908
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 133
The Kent Tribune, March 8, 1923
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 134
Reprints of The Times for the British Empire Exhibition, 1924
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 135
The Nassau Guardian, July 31, 1926
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 136
Le Matin, May 22, 1927
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Language(s): The records are in French
Box 1 / Folder 137
Paris-Soir, June 5, 1927
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Language(s): The records are in French

Series 4: Photographs, undated
Box 1 / Folder 138
Grace Kent, undated
Box 1 / Folder 139
Grace Kent, undated
Box 1 / Folder 140
Marvin Kent home, undated
Box 1 / Folder 141
Marvin Kent home, undated
Box 1 / Folder 142
Marvin Kent home, undated
Box 1 / Folder 143
Marvin Kent home, undated
Box 1 / Folder 144
Marvin Kent home, undated
Box 1 / Folder 145
Marvin Kent rail car dedication, undated
Physical Description: Includes George Bowman, Frank Dangler, Paul Johnston, Josephine Curtis Bergin, Judith Kent Bergin, George Morse, Charles Gilbert
Box 1 / Folder 146
Zenas Kent, illustrated plate, undated
Box 1 / Folder 147
Unidentified house, Shaker Heights, undated
Box 1 / Folder 148
Unidentified male, undated

Series 5: Publications and Writings, 1855-1949
Box 1 / Folder 149
"Bill of Fare", June 4, 1869
Box 1 / Folder 150
"Biographical Encyclopedia", excerpt on Marvin Kent, undated
Box 1 / Folder 151
"Biographical Encyclopedia", excerpt on Zenas Kent, undated
Box 1 / Folder 152
"Catalogue of the Teachers' Institute", March17-28, 1856
Box 1 / Folder 153
Comic Valentine by T. W. Strong, undated
Box 1 / Folder 154
Grace Kent, composition journal, undated
Box 1 / Folder 155
Kent National Bank, souvenir book, 1918
Box 1 / Folder 156
"Life Sketches of Zenas and Marvin Kent", undated
Box 1 / Folder 157
"Life Sketches of Zenas and Marvin Kent, Esqs.", undated
Box 1 / Folder 158
Marvin Kent birthday commemoration, undated
Box 1 / Folder 159
"Ohio's Progressive Sons", excerpt on Marvin Kent, undated
Box 1 / Folder 160
"The Ohio Story" script, No. 413 " Marvin Kent's Footnote", August 24, 1949
Box 1 / Folder 161
"Panorama of the Seat of the War", undated
Physical Location: Filed in oversized box
Box 1 / Folder 162
"Peter Coddle's Trip to New York, Three Games in One", 1858
Box 1 / Folder 163
Photograph booklet of Kent Landmarks, undated
Box 1 / Folder 164
Poem, G. E. Kent, undated
Box 1 / Folder 165
Poem, unidentified, undated
Box 1 / Folder 166
Poster, Franklin High School, April 12, 1859
Box 1 / Folder 167
"Rocks of Melchior Islands, Antarctica", Duncan Stewart Junior, August 1947
Box 1 / Folder 168
"Sketch of the Life of Marvin Kent with Portrait", undated
Box 1 / Folder 169
"Thanksgiving Tempus", November 26, 1867
Box 1 / Folder 170
"Third Annual Report of the President, Directors, and Secretary of the Atlantic and Great Western Rail Road Company with the Report of the Chief Engineer", July 10, 1855

Series 6: Reports and Certificates, 1849-1871
Box 1 / Folder 171
Grade reports from Union College for George L. Kent, 1847-1849
Box 1 / Folder 172
Induction certificate into the Sons of Temperance for Frank Rumrill, February 8, 1854
Box 1 / Folder 173
Cleveland Female Seminary report of Miss J. Collins, June 29, 1859
Box 1 / Folder 174
Induction certificate into the Supreme Council for Henry L. Kent, March 9, 1871