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Collection

Finding Aid for Tyler-Montgomery-Scott Family Album, ca. 1870-1938

approximately 275 items in 1 album

The Tyler-Montgomery-Scott family album chronicles multiple generations of the Tyler, Montgomery, and Scott families of the Philadelphia area from the 1860s through the 1930s. It includes approximately 275 items including studio portrait photographs, informal snapshots, newspaper clippings, postcards, letters, and other ephemera.

The Tyler-Montgomery-Scott family album chronicles multiple generations of the Tyler, Montgomery, and Scott families of the Philadelphia area from the 1860s through the 1930s. It includes approximately 275 items including studio portrait photographs, informal snapshots, newspaper clippings, postcards, letters, and other ephemera.

The album (33 x 25.5 cm) is string-bound with grey cloth covers. Most photographs in the album have detailed handwritten captions identifying people, often with their middle or maiden names as well as the location and date. The presentation of the album is not strictly chronological, especially in the latter half. The early generations of Tylers are represented in photographic formats such as cartes-de-visite, tintypes and cabinet cards, while later generations are represented in snapshots and postcards. When the album reaches the mid-twentieth century, it begins to resemble the modern family album with various forms of ephemera (newspaper clippings, drawings, letters, Christmas cards, etc.) supplementing the photographs of family and friends.

The album begins with a portrait of Frederick Tyler, his daughter Sarah Sophia Cowen, granddaughter Kate “Gwen” Cowen Pratt, and great-granddaughter Kate Pratt. George F. and Louisa R. Tyler as well as their children (including Sidney F. and Helen Beach Tyler) are also featured in the initial section of the album, along with many extended family members, friends, nurses, and pets. Among the family friends pictured are painter Frederick Church, writer Bret Harte, Leonor Ruiz de Apodaca y Garcia-Tienza, Gen. William Buel Franklin, patent lawyer and historian Woodbury Lowery, and the Duke and Duchess of Arcos (Jose Ambrosio Brunetti and Virginia Woodbury Lowery Brunetti). Several interior views of rooms in George F. and Louisa R. Tyler’s home on 201 South 15th St. taken in 1896 are also present, including a photograph of the “Children’s play room” that features their granddaughter Hope Binney Tyler Montgomery holding a doll. Hope, her parents Mary W. and Sidney F. Tyler, her husband Robert “Bob” L. Montgomery, and their children Mary, Ives, and Alexander are well-represented in the album.

Of particular interest are a number of photographs in different sections of the album that depict Theodore Roosevelt and his family. Some of these images are formal studio portraits, while others are more candid snapshots of Roosevelt with other people. One snapshot shows the family at play on the grounds of Sagamore Hill in 1897. Two photos taken at the White House including Helen Beach Tyler, daughter of George F. and Louisa R. Tyler and second cousin to Edith Kermit Carow Roosevelt, are labelled “taken by Ted Roosevelt,” possibly referring to President Roosevelt’s son Theodore Roosevelt III. Helen Beach Tyler may be the “Nellie” who was the recipient of a partial letter included in the album which describes conditions at a wartime hospital (most likely in Italy) in 1915. Only the first two pages of this letter are included, and there is no indication of the identity of the writer. Helen Beach Tyler may also have been the principal compiler of this album. Supporting this possibility is the presence of an interior view of a bedroom at 201 South 15th St. (George F. and Louisa R. Tyler’s home) captioned as “Mother’s bedroom,” a signed portrait of Englishman Lytton Sothern captioned “Given to me by Mr. Sothern June 1872. Mr. Edward Sothern & his son Lytton Sothern sat at our table on ‘Oceanic’ my first trip to Europe,” and a portrait of Sara Schott von Schottenstein, Baronin von Prittwitz-Gaffron, bearing the inscription “to her friend Helen Tyler 1880.”

Other items of interest include portraits of Col. August Cleveland Tyler; several portraits of Brig. Gen. Robert Ogden Tyler; a portrait of French pianist Antoine Marmontel captioned “Mr. Marmontel Professor au Conservatoire gave us music lessons in Paris 1873-74”; a group portrait of Helen Beach Tyler, Mary L. Tyler, Alice Seward, Kitty Seward, and Ida Vinton posing with a silhouette of Sidney F. Tyler; photographs of painted portraits of George F. Tyler and Hope Binney Tyler Montgomery; a series of photos taken at the Spanish Embassy in Mexico City, some of which include the Duke and Duchess of Arcos, Woodbury Lowery, and Archibald Lowery; portraits of the Prittwitz-Gaffron family in Germany; photos taken around the world in various locations including Egypt, India, Germany, and Italy; images taken during an exhibition of sculpture by Stella Elkins Tyler (wife of George Frederick Tyler, Jr.), as well as a program from the event; and photos showing the family of Helen Hope and Edgar Scott.