Currently our collection listings can be searched using the Source List browsing the Collection Guides below, and looking through our Subject Files.
Please take time to search the Source List to discover what information we have available prior to your visit.
You can also discover what sources we have in our repository by viewing our Topical Guide or Primary Sources documents.
Be specific when filling out our online Research Request Form or contacting the Elkhart County Historical Museum directly.
We are in the process of updating the Source List and have materials or additional dates that have not yet been added.
Search Our Small Manuscript Collections
ECHM Small Manuscript Collections Finding Aid
Explore our Finding Aid for Small Collections at the Elkhart County Historical Museum. The materials contain a variety of historical information on Elkhart County topics.
MS-004 Atherton Club Records
The Atherton Club was started in November, 1904 by eleven young men as a club to advance social, fraternal and literary issues. They met twice a month, sponsored plays and took up charity work.
Subject Area(s): Clubs, Organizations, Literacy, Theater, Playbook
MS-008 Coming to Elkhart: Oral History Interviews and Project Files
The purpose of the Coming to Elkhart study conducted by the Goshen College, Department of History, was to investigate and document the history of the migration and immigration of various cultural and ethnic groups to Elkhart County beginning in the nineteenth century and continuing through World War II. The first focus group was the African American Community. The collection includes audio recording interviews of individuals and groups, as well as corresponding scanned documents for certain interviews.
Subject Area(s): African American, Segregation, Migrants, Community, Schools, Red lining, Railroads, Booker T. Washington Community Center, South Side Elementary School, St. James AME, Oral history interviews
MS-001 ESL Partners Records
English as a Second Language (ESL) Partners began when Charlotte Holsopple Glick, an Indiana-Michigan Conference Minister, met with a group of people from Elkhart Mennonite and Church of the Brethren congregations to explore ways of relating to and assisting Hispanics who were moving into the Elkhart community. Meeting minutes and correspondence are included in this collection and tell the story of the growth of a program as well as giving examples of barriers the Hispanic community faced.
Subject Area(s): Immigration law, Hispanic heritage, Hispanic issues, Assimilation, ESL (Language study)
MS-002 Jack Cooper World War II Collection
The Jack Cooper World War II Collection consists of documents and artifacts that tell the story of how 23 year-old Jack Cooper of Elkhart, radioman/gunner on a naval torpedo plane, joined the Navy and his subsequent death in 1944 after drifting in a life raft for more than a month. What happened to him is revealed in a log he etched on his wallet during the time he was adrift. The collection also includes research notes of step-brother Robert Anderson as he worked to secure the Indiana Distinguished Service Medal honors for Cooper more than 50 years after the incident.
Subject Area(s): Jack Cooper, Robert Anderson, Jeanne Harmon, American Coating Mills (Elkhart, Ind.), Martin Clothing Stores (Elkhart, Ind.), Elkhart, Indiana, Jacksonville, Florida, Military decorations, Congressional reports, World War II, Navy, Military, Torpedo planes
MS-003 Earl Sears Jr. Collection
The Sears family collection consists of documents and photographs accumulated by three generations of Sears men in Elkhart, Elkhart County, Indiana. Earl S. Sears, Jr lived in Elkhart all of his life. His grandfather, Samuel Sears founded Sears Leather Goods store at 200 South Main Street in Elkhart. Earl’s father, Earl S. Sears, Sr. succeeded his father in the business and continued the business until his death in 1970. The Sears family lived above the store for a few years during which time Earl Jr. began his lifelong interest in the downtown area, Elkhart businesses, and the city of Elkhart. A large portion of the collection is photographs both vintage and contemporary of buildings in and around Elkhart.
Subject Area(s): Samuel Sears, Earl Samuel Sears, Earl Sears Jr., American Coating Mills, Continental Can Company, Federal Paper Board, Clay Coated Folding Boxboards & Printed Cartons, Train Town, City of Elkhart, Sherman Street Bridge, Rice Field, Manufacturing Industry
This finding aid is a listing of scrapbooks that contain personal, club, business, subject, and event related information.
Subject Area(s): Bristol Public Library, Elkhart County Historical Society, World War II Draftees, Bristol High School, Bonneyville, Washington Twp. Home Ec. Club, Elkhart Centennial, Tornado 1965, American Legion Convention
2013.012, Martha M. Pickrell Papers.pdf
The Martha M. Pickrell Papers (MMPP) consists of documents created by the donor during her time with the Elkhart County Historical Museum (1978-2011). The finished product gives excellent information about events, issues and people in Elkhart and Elkhart County due to her meticulous research. Research notes and sources are included to assist future researchers.
Subject Area(s): Charles Gerard Conn, 1844-1931/Maurice M. Frink Jr./Blanche Frink/Enock Hill Turnock/Cara Jean Baldwin/C. G. Conn, Ltd./Miles Laboratories, Inc./Elkhart County Symphony Orchestra and Choir/Elkhart (Ind.)/Elkhart County (Ind.)--History
This collection contains By-laws, meeting minutes, financial records, membership applications, newspaper clippings of programs, and photographs of members and projects of the Matinee Musicale Club of Elkhart, Indiana. A history of the Club and its predecessors, as presented at its 30th Anniversary, is also included.
Subject Area(s): Matinee Musicale Club, St. Cecilia Society, League of Women Voters of Indiana, Elkhart County (Ind.), Music, Club Records, Photographs, Scrapbooks
2013.005 Elkhart National Guard Collection.pdf
This collection contains photographic copies of newspaper clippings of Co. E of the Indiana National Guard in Elkhart and their involvement in building the Elkhart Armory in 1916. Items from the Indiana National Guard Co. H during World War II era include two black and white photographs of enlistees from the Elkhart area that include the donor and a book, Avengers of Bataan: 38th Infantry Division Historical Report.
Subject Area(s): William S.Van Patten, Jr./James Scoville/Indiana. National Guard/Elkhart Co., Ind./Bataan Province (Philippines)/Bataan, Battle of, Philippines, 1942/World War I/World War II/Vernon Ball Auto Dealer/Midway Airport/Military
This collection tracks the formation, operation and eventual sale of the Dunlap Mutual Telephone Union telephone service organized by farmers for the rural area around Dunlap, Elkhart, and Goshen in the early 1900s.
Subject Area(s): John Moyer/ William Nymeyer/Dunlap Mutual Telephone Union/Salem Bank and Trust Co. of Goshen/First Old State Bank of Elkhart, Indiana/Cleveland, Cincinnati, Chicago & St. Louis Railway Co./Indiana Telephone Association/Elkhart County Infirmary/Yellow Creek, Dunlap
This small collection contains term papers written between 1933 and 1945 by Goshen College students in Dr. Silas Hertzler’s Secondary Education class. The assignment was to research the history of a high school in Elkhart County. Schools cited were Bristol, Concord, Elkhart, Jefferson, Middlebury, Millersburg, New Paris, Nappanee and Wakarusa.
Subject Area(s): Silas Hertzler Ph.D./Goshen College, Goshen, Indiana/Elkhart County (Ind.)/Secondary Education/ Core curriculum/Teachers/School Administrators
This collection contains objects, books, photographs and papers that reflect life in the Elkhart area as experienced by James’ participation in Oslo Elementary School, Bristol High School, the Air Force in WWII, the Elkhart Police Department, and the Elkhart County Historical Society.
Subject Area(s): Fraternal Order of Police/Elkhart County Historical Society/Elkhart City Police Department/Elkhart/Indiana/Cuba/Marksmanship/WWII/Police
This collection was donated by Doloris Cogan, who was the first female Director of Public Relations for Miles Laboratories, Inc. of Elkhart, Indiana. The majority of this collection is made up of the Miles newsletter called The Alkalizer which was published for Elkhart area employees and retirees of Miles. The collection also includes her involvement with women's service clubs and books and poems written by John Collier about the handling of American Indian affairs, who she first worked under for the Institute of Ethnic Affairs in Washington, D.C. in 1946.
Subject Area(s): Miles Laboratories, Inc., Bayer, Institute of Ethnic Affairs, American Indians, League of Women Voters, Altrusa International, Inc.
The collection contains George H. Collier’s business records from the Dobbins Manufacturing Company, once located in Elkhart, Indiana. The documents consist of product catalogs and publications, distribution ledgers, address books, publicity and correspondence, and two photographs of the merchandise. The collection also includes financial ledgers, correspondence, and two postcards from when George H. Collier was on the American Legion, Thomas McCoy Post No. 74, finance committee and raised money to relocate the post in the City of Elkhart.
Subject Area(s): H.D. Hudson Manufacturing Company, American Legion, Dobbins Manufacturing Co., Agricultural equipment, Spraying and dusting in agriculture
This small but comprehensive collection includes government-issued military documents, from the turn of the century, of Leffy Jones from enrollment through discharge, and pension records. It also includes a tintype photograph with Lefty in uniform and a post card note from him to his parents.
Subject Area(s): YMCA/New Paris, Indiana/Wolcotville, Indiana/Spanish American War/Army Pension
The collection includes minimal business records on stores at the former Pierre Moran Shopping Mall, as also known as the Pierre Moran Shopping Center, located at 154 W Hively Ave (Ste 40) Elkhart, IN 46517. Other items include an oversized site plan/lease plan, photographs, and newspaper clippings.
Subject Area(s): Pierre Moran Shopping Center/Pierre Moran Shopping Mall/Shopping centers/Retail stores/Business records/Carson Pirie Scott/L.S. Ayres and Company/Elkhart, Indiana
This small collection is made up of business records and publications primarily from Adlake (Adams & Westlake Company), legal documents, and miscellaneous documents pertaining to the county and state. Edward Goodman grew up in Elkhart County and lived on S.R. 19. He had family members who worked at Adlake and started in 1945 and worked their over 25 years. When Adlake closed in the early 1970s Goodman went into van conversions. While at Adlake he worked in the metal department.
Subject Area(s): Adams and Westlake Company, Concord High School, Assembly-line methods, Business records, Technicians, Laboratory
The small collection represents the time period in C.G. Conn Ltd. history when the company diversified. The records include financial statements of H. & A. Selmer (1931-1933) when located in New York and musical instrument patent ledgers, perhaps of the Elkhart Band Instrument Company (1923-1930).
Subject Area(s): C.G. Conn (Charles Gerard), 1844-1931/ Carl Dimond Greenleaf/H. & A. Selmer Inc./C.G. Conn, Ltd./Elkhart/Indiana/New York/Instrument industry/Band (Instrumental group)
The Schenk Family Collection (SFC) consists of documents collected and donated by Maynard Schenk pertaining to family and business history. Maynard Schenk served as Elkhart County Engineer and the bulk of the collection is related to Elkhart County bridge inspection work from 1986 to 1995 including photographs, maps and standards manuals. Additionally, there are family photographs that span two generations, correspondence, and photographs that include members of the Schenk family that were employed at the Crow Carriage & Motor Car Company and the Buescher Band Instrument Company in Elkhart.
Subject Area(s): Elkhart, Indiana, Crow Carriage & Motor Car Company, Buescher Instrument Company, Wood Car Company, Kuert Concrete Company, Engineering, Bridges, Car Industry
This collection contains black & white photographs taken, by Thomas Bayless, during the Nürnberg, English conventional Nuremberg, Trial #6, a prosecution of the officials of the I. G. Farben industrial complex. Bayless was one of the official Army Signal Corps. photographers assigned to document the sixth trial at Nuremberg, Germany at the end of World War II. It also contains personal correspondence between Bayless and his mother during his World War II enlistment and the camera he used in his assignment.
Subject Area(s): Nuremberg War Crime Trials, Nuremberg, Germany, 1946-1949, I.G. Farben Trial, Nuremberg, Germany, 1947-1948, United States. Army. Signal Corps., Blazon Mobile Homes Corporation, Elkhart County (Ind.), Camp Hood (Tex.), Nürnberg, Germany, Nuremberg, Germany, Wiesbaden (Germany), Camera journalism, World war II, Linhof cameras, Robert H. Jackson, Thomas Bayless, Telford Taylor
This collection contains items created by Carrie (Amelia) Cooper Hartzler who grew up in
Goshen, Indiana and married John B. Hartzler in 1886. The collection consists of undated newspaper clippings in scrapbooks on events predominately in Goshen, some from Elkhart and some from national events. Three main areas that are covered are the Methodist Church in Goshen and its connection with Winona Lake, Elkhart County historian, H.S.K. Bartholomew columns, and “Stories in Stamps” clippings.
Subject Area(s): Carrie (Amelia) Cooper Hartzler, John B. Hartzler, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, Goshen, Indiana, Elkhart, Indiana, Winona Lake, H.S.K. Bartholomew
This collection consist of personal papers (scrapbooks, literature, booklets) created by Emma Bennett Kelley. Emma Bennett Kelley (1860–1938) taught at the Bristol school for 20 years before marrying Dr. Frank L. Kelley of Alba., Michigan in 1902. After his death in 1916 she returned to Bristol. She was active as a literary woman, as these papers demonstrate; was a charter member of the Bristol Literary Society, a leader in the Tuesday Study Club of Alba, and the Columbia Club of Bristol.
Subject Area(s): Columbia Club (Indianapolis Indiana), Bristol Literary Society, Temperance---Societies, Women’s issues
This collection contains items created by John D. Myers, during his time as an Elkhart County contractor/builder and as a soldier with Co. I 74th Indiana Volunteers in the Civil War. Of particular note is his diary kept during Sherman's march to the sea and his description of the 74th Indiana at the Battle of Missionary Ridge November 25, 1863.
Subject Area(s): John D. Myers Orville T. Chamberlain/Grand Army of the Republic Lowell Post 90/Elkhart Co., Ind./Civil War/Sherman's march to the sea/Methodist church/Bashor Chapel/Contractor and builder