This collection includes the personal and professional papers of members and relatives of the Richardson family including Lucy Richardson Furber, Robert Dale Richardson, Sr., Holden Furber, Emmet Lee Richardson, and Harriet Fyffe Richardson. Additionally, it contains papers and genealogies of the Arnold, Bollman, Brown, Cherrill, Fell, Furber, Fyffe, Marsh, Richardson, and Van Meter families. Materials include correspondence, financial papers, journals, keepsakes, photographs, news clippings, genealogies, speeches, books, and other related items. Robert Dale Richardson, Sr. and Lucy Marsh Richardson were friends with prominent Unitarian minister and peace activist Dana McLean Greeley and his wife Deborah Webster Greeley throughout their adult lives. Correspondence and a variety of mementos of the friendship may be found throughout the collection. Robert Dale Richardson, Jr., a frequent correspondent of his parents, is a well-known literary biographer. His subjects have included Ralph Waldo Emerson, Henry David Thoreau, and William James. Of particular note is the family's historic connection to Abraham Lincoln. Jesse W. Fell (Robert Dale Richardson, Sr.'s great-grandfather) was a friend and colleague of Lincoln's in Illinois. In 1859, he solicited a handwritten, 500-word autobiography from Lincoln so that the American people on the east coast might come to know him as a potential presidential candidate. That handwritten letter, signed by Abraham Lincoln, remained with the family (initially with Jesse Fell's daughter Fannie, and then with Harriet Fyffe Richardson and Robert Dale Richardson, Sr.) until it was donated to the Library of Congress in 1947. The collection contains letters, newspaper clippings, legal documents, photographs, and a book about the autobiography. Other items of note include a hand-illustrated letter by children's illustrator Charlotte Ware, letters from prominent author Annie Dillard, who married Robert Dale Richardson, Jr., a 1909 letter written by R.M. McClaughrey -- who fought in the Civil War and went on to serve as Chief of Police in Chicago -- to John W. Marsh praising Mr. Marsh's recently deceased mother, United States fractional currency of the 1860s, tickets to the Republican National Convention in 1892 and 1896, and to the Democratic National Convention for 1892, an 1864 land grant signed by President Lincoln or on his behalf, and a Civil War promotion document for James R. Fyffe dating to 1861. Series I. Lucy Richardson Furber papers, 1909-1998: This series contains the personal papers of Lucy Richardson Furber. Documents in this series include correspondence, travel journals and travel memorabilia, address books, speeches, newspapers, clippings, financial papers, and family materials. Series II. Robert Dale Richardson, Sr. papers, 1901-1974: Materials in this series include correspondence, financial papers, and professional and church related materials. Series III. Lucy and Robert Dale Richardson, Sr. papers, 1934-1975: This series contains materials generated and obtained by Lucy and Robert Dale Richardson, Sr. as a couple. Series IV. Holden Furber papers, 1924-1989: This series contains the personal papers of Holden Furber, Lucy Richardson's second husband. Series V. Lucy and Holden Furber papers, 1976-1991: This series documents the shared life of Lucy and Holden Furber.Series VI. Harriet Fyffe and Emmet Lee Richardson papers, 1883-1976: This series includes the papers of Emmet Lee Richardson and his wife Harriet Fyffe Richardson. Series VII. Family history and genealogy, 1807-1977: This series contains personal papers as well as genealogical and historical materials relating to the relatives of the Richardson family and other families connected by marriage (Arnold, Bollman, Brown, Cherrill, Fell, Furber, Fyffe, Marsh, Richardson, and Van Meter). Series VIII. Family library, 1889-1981: This series includes books collected by the Richardson family, a significant portion of them consisting of prayer books and hymnals used by Reverend Robert Dale Richardson, Sr. Series IX. Family photographs, 1883-2000: This series contains family photographs depicting individuals documented throughout the collection.