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Kelly family papers, 1831-1982

Overview of the Collection

Creator
Kelly family
Title
Kelly family papers
Dates
1831-1982 (inclusive)
Quantity
2 cubic feet, ( (3 document cases, 2 card file boxes, 1 oversize folder))
Collection Number
Mss 871
Summary
Papers of the Kelly family of Oregon, primarily Clinton Kelly (1808-1875), Albert Kelly (1814-1873), Plympton Kelly (1828-1906), Penumbra Kelly (1845-1928), and Silas Gilby Kelly (1848-1920), and the related Plummer, Niblin, and Povey families. Included is family correspondence, genealogical materials, land records, Plympton Kelly's Yakima war diary, extensive diaries of Silas Gilby Kelly of Hillsdale, Oregon, and documents relating to the Willamette Steam Ferry Company, 1854-1868.
Repository
Oregon Historical Society, Davies Family Research Library
Davies Family Research Library
Oregon Historical Society
1200 SW Park Avenue
Portland, OR
97205
Telephone: 503-306-5240
Fax: 503-219-2040
libreference@ohs.org
Access Restrictions
The collection is open to the public.
Languages
English

Biographical NoteReturn to Top

The present collection is related primarily to the descendents of Samuel Kelly (1776-1834) and his wife Nancy Kennedy Kelly (1781-1841) who lived in Virginia and Kentucky. Their son Clinton Kelly (1808-1875) was a Methodist preacher and an anti-slavery advocate. A native of Kentucky, he came overland to Oregon with his family in 1847 and took a donation land claim on the east side of the Willamette River, opposite Portland. He platted the land in 1872, and the area was eventually annexed by the city. Clinton's oldest son (by his first wife, Mary Bastin), Plympton Kelly, fought in the Yakima Indian wars of 1855-1856. Another son of Clinton Kelly (by his third wife, Moriah Maldon Crain) was Penumbra Kelly (1845-1928), who lived much of his life in Portland, Oregon, and married Mary Marquam in 1875. He served as a member of the Oregon House of Representatives, County Commissioner, and Sheriff of Multnomah County.

Clinton Kelly's younger brother, Albert Kelly, (1814-1873) was born in Clifty Creek, Pulaski County, Kentucky. In 1837 he married Nira Chandler Bingham (1816-1898) in Athens, Ohio, and in 1847 they traveled overland to Oregon with Kelly's family. They settled eventually on a donation land claim southwest of Portland, an area that now includes Albert Kelly Park. In the early 1870s the Kellys moved to Yakima County, Washington, where Albert died in 1873. His wife Nira moved to Portland around 1886.

A son of Albert and Nira Kelly, Silas Gilby Kelly (1848-1920) was a farmer of Hillsdale, Oregon, and married Nellie Griffith Baker. A daughter of Albert Kelly, Martha Elizabeth Kelly Plummer (1850-1935), married Orlando Pleasant Shields Plummer (1836-1913), a physician of Portland, Oregon. Their daughter, Marian Lee Plummer Povey (1885-1975) married John Harold Povey (1884-1964). Another daughter of Orlando and Martha Plummer was Agnes Plummer Burns (1877-1975), who married William Wesley Burns (1861-1937) and lived in Troy, Oregon.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The collection includes family correspondence, genealogical materials, land records, Plympton Kelly's Yakima war diary, extensive diaries of Silas Gilby Kelly of Hillsdale, Oregon, Laura Kelly papers, and documents relating to the Willamette Steam Ferry Company, 1854-1868. An unidentified woman's diary, 1858-1876, is probably that of Nira Bingham Kelly, wife of Albert Kelly. Other diaries include those of Dr. Orlando Plummer and Harold Povey. The family correspondence includes letters from family members in Kentucky, and branches of the Kelly family, including the Niblins, the Binghams, the Plummers, and the Poveys. Among the Plummer materials is a day book containing financial records and other data, 1833-1888, of J. B. Plumer [sic], a store keeper of North Liberty, Pennsylvania. Among the land records are title abstracts relating to the Plummer Building in Portland, Oregon, located on the north-west corner of SW Madison St. and SW Third Avenue. Genealogical and biographical materials include the 1940 reminiscences of Maria Kelly Delashmutt, daughter of Albert Kelly; and reminiscences of Agnes Plummer Burns.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Alternative Forms Available

Photocopy and transcript of the Plympton Kelly's Yakima War diary is included in the collection.

Restrictions on Use

The Oregon Historical Society is the owner of the materials in the Research Library and makes available reproductions for research, publication, and other uses. Written permission must be obtained from the Research Library before any publication use. The Society does not necessarily hold copyright to all of the materials in the collections. In some cases, permission for use may require seeking additional authorization from the copyright owners.

Preferred Citation

Kelly Family papers, Mss 871, Oregon Historical Society Research Library

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Series A:  Correspondence and general files, 1831-1982Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Box/Folder
1/1
Inventories of Kelly family materials
Includes detailed calendar of letters.
1950
1/2
Family letters
1841-1859
1/3
Family letters
1860-1889
1/4
Family letters
1890-1928
1/5
Abstract of title, 2829 SE Clinton Street, Portland
1945
1/6
Address of Mrs. Plympton Kelly at public school at Lents
1903 May 12
1/7
Agnes Plummer Burns papers
1958-1961, undated
1/8
Albert and Nira Kelly family papers
1841-1898
1/9
Bills and receipts (primarily from Clinton Kelly)
1851-1876
1/10
Clinton Kelly papers
1862-1901
1/11
Ephemera and reminiscences
1852-1940
1/12
Eulogy of Plympton Kelly
1906
1/13
Genealogy of Thomas Kelly family
1904, 1948, undated
2/1
J. B. Plumer [sic] day book
1833-1888
2/2
Laura Kelly papers
1905-1970
2/3
Laura Kelly, high school graduation book
1917
2/4
Miscellaneous family correspondence, mostly Niblin family
1892-1937, undated
2/5
Miscellaneous papers
Includes account books, documents, indentures, and alcohol abstention pledge forms.
1831-1863
2/6
Orlando Plummer--Medical Society certificate
1872
2/7
Penumbra Kelly--Workers' time book
1870-1875
2/8
Plympton Kelly--Copy of diary of Yakima Indian War (manuscript)
1855 November 22-1856 March 16
2/9
Plympton Kelly--Yakima War diary (original)
1856 March 17-May 13
2/10
Plympton Kelly--Yakima War diary (photostat of above)
1856
2/11
Plummer and Povey family papers
1870-1960
2/13
Plummer Building, Portland, Oregon--Legal papers
1879-1911
3/1
Reunion announcements and family newsletters
1968-1982
3/2
Scrapbook
circa 1874-1888
3/3
Willamette Steam Ferry records
1854-1868

Series B:  Diaries and notebooks, 1855-1919Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Silas G. Kelly diaries and account books
Box/Folder
4/1
Diary
1868
4/2
Account book
1869-1874
4/3
Book of workers' hours
1871-1873
4/4
Account book
1873-1875
4/5
Diary
1875
4/6
Diary
1877
4/7
Diary
1880
4/8
Diary
1881
4/9
Diary
1884
4/10
Diary
1887
4/11
Diary
1889
4/12
Diary
1890, 1896
4/13
Diary
1891
4/14
Diary
1892, 1897
4/15
Diary
1893
4/16
Diary
1894-1895
5/1
Diary
1907
5/2
Diary
1909
5/3
Diary
1910
5/4
Diary
1911-1912
5/5
Diary
1913
5/6
Diary
1914
5/7
Diary
1916-1917
5/8
Diary
1918
5/9
Diary
1919
Orlando Plummer diaries
Box/Folder
5/10
Diary and medical notes
circa 1855
5/11
Diary
1910
5/12
Diary
1911
Box/Folder
5/13
Harold Povey diary
undated
5/14
Harold Povey autograph book
1892-1899
5/15
Nira Bingham Kelly diary
Entries are written in an 1858 diary book and include entries for 1858, then for 1874-1876. There is no name on this diary, but based on internal evidence it is probably that of Nira Bingham Kelly (1816-1898), wife of Albert Kelly.
1858, 1874-1878

Series C:  Certificates and maps, 1866-1919Return to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
Folder
Oversize folder
Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church--Membership of Philander B. Kelly
1866 January 22
Oversize folder
Missionary Society of the Methodist Episcopal Church--Membership of Lee W. Kelly
1866 January 22
Oversize folder
Marriage certificate for George W. Povey and Thirsa [?] J. Page
1873
Oversize folder
Donation land claim certificate for Plympton Kelly, Multnomah County, Oregon (signed by President Grant)
1873 July 24
Oversize folder
Certificate of marriage, O. P. S. Plummer and Martha E. Kelly
1874 July 4
Oversize folder
Olivet College--Diploma for Nannie L. Parsons
1876
Oversize folder
State of Oregon, Oregon Volunteers--Commission for George W. Povey
1898 May 15
Oversize folder
Commission of George W. Povey as Assistant Quartermaster of Volunteers (signed by President McKinley)
1899 August 28
Oversize folder
United States, Civil Governor of the Philippine Islands--Appointment Of George W. Povey as Treasurer of the Province of Isabela
1901 August 24
Oversize folder
Oregon State Board of Pharmacy--Certificate to Agnes Plummer
1906
Oversize folder
Plat map, area in southwest Multnomah County
1919.
Oversize folder
Plat map, Povey property in southwest Multnomah County, Oregon
undated