About The NYSPCC Archive Holdings

About The NYSPCC Archive Holdings

The NYSPCC, incorporated in 1875 and now in its second century of continuous service, is the first and the oldest child protection service in the world. From 1875 through 1975, The NYSPCC was the principal child protection agency in New York (Manhattan) County, receiving and investigating all reports alleging child maltreatment or violations of child protection laws.

Additionally, there is a collection of photographs (some in print, some on glass slides), including several NYSPCC buildings and persons of historical importance to The NYSPCC such as Etta Wheeler, Elbridge T. Gerry, Henry Bergh, and Mary Ellen, before and after her rescue, and later with her children.

Archival ephemera include the dress worn by Mary Ellen at the time of her rescue, professionally mounted in a museum display case, the badges or shields worn by The NYSPCC president, directors and special officers, and the original cast iron seal of The NYSPCC.

About Society Collections

  • Annual Reports

    Years – 1875 to Present

    Description – Wealth of child protection statistics, detailed case summaries, membership and donor information, the expansion of organized protection, and miscellaneous significant events and issues

    Access – No restrictions on access

    Format – Digital

  • Case Records

    Years – 1874-Present

    Description – Records of cases referred to the NYSPCC for investigation or services

    Access – Access may be granted to a researcher if the Case Files are 75 years or older with redactions to maintain confidentiality. Please contact The NYSPCC’s Archivist for questions about these exceptions.

    Format – Digital

  • Child Performer Clipping Books

    Years – 1890-2011

    Description – Clippings of contemporary newspaper reportage of the efforts of The NYSPCC and other such societies to enforce the laws regulating both the participation of children in public entertainment and the conditions of such employment

    Access – no restrictions on access

    Format – Digital (Material is fragile)

  • Children’s Court Clipping Books

    Years – 1901-1904

    Description – Scrapbooks of newspaper clippings relating to the establishment of the first Children’s Court in New York City, the role of The NYSPCC in that undertaking

    Access – no restrictions on access

    Format – Limited to digital (Material is fragile)

  • Convention Minutes

    Years – 1890-1904

    Description – The minutes of annual conventions published by each of 14 conventions held annually from 1890 to 1904. Participation was voluntary and included organizations incorporated in the State of New York for the purpose of preventing cruelty to children, to animals, or to both

    Access – no restrictions on access

    Format – Digital

  • Court Decision Clipping Books

    Years – 1880-1919

    Description – The Court Decision Clipping Books cover a vast range of court decisions, from such matters on the setting of bail, the justification of NYSPCC officers in the making of an arrest, precedent-making decisions and the very nature of The NYSPCC.

    Access – no restrictions on access

    Format – Digital

  • Employee Registers and Personnel Files

    Years – 1874 to Present

    Description – A series of documents that contain the names of former employees of The NYSPCC

    Access – Confidential records and are not available for browsing or searching, except that current and past employees may view the contents of heir own personnel file on request.

    Format – Need to make request to Executive Director

  • Historical Records

    Years – 1874 to Present

    Description – An eclectic collection series of handwritten and typewritten documents, papers, correspondence, notices, reports, contracts, forms, booklets, pamphlets, statistics, and newspaper clippings relating to the operation of The NYSPCC from its founding up to the present

    Access – Both items that are public and have no restriction on their access intermixed with items of a sensitive and private nature that may not be accessible. Please contact the archivist for more information.

    Format – Digital

  • Manuals for Officers

    Years – 1875 to Present

    Description – A series of eight handbooks prepared from time to time for the use of The NYSPCC’s Special Officers, Officers and Investigators, employees expressly invested with the legal authority to investigate, intervene, initiate court proceedings and enforce the law in matters relating to child protection

    Access – no restrictions on access

    Material is fragile. Limited capability for photocopying of material.

  • NYSPCC Minute Books

    Years – 1874 to Present

    Description – The official corporate record of the regular, special and annual meetings of the officers and directors of the NYSPCC and of its founders and incorporators

    Access – Restricted to the Society.

    Format – Digital

  • Selected Cases

    Years – 1881-1912

    Description – Documents eight selected NYSPCC interventions, in the form of newspaper clippings, notes, and in some instances, court transcripts

    Access – no restrictions on access

    Format – Digital (Material is fragile)

  • Visitors Books

    Years – 1877-1960

    Description – A general registry of visitors

    Access – no restrictions on the material

    Format – Digital (Material is fragile)


Click the links below to continue learning about The NYSPCC’s history or contact The NYSPCC Archivist at redele@nyspccdev.munroe.com

The NYSPCC Archives

The NYPSCC Archives serves as one of the nation’s most valuable repositories of original and compiled material on the child protection movement.

Contact The Archives

Archive Location - The NYSPCC Archive The New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NYSPCC) 520 Eighth Avenue, Suite 1401 - NYC

Historical Timeline

View the compelling story behind The NYSPCC’s founding and early history!

125th Anniversary Booklet

Click here to view The New York Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children's 125th Anniversary Booklet.

Need to Report Child Abuse?

Report Child Abuse