Woodward Family Manuscript Collection, MS 3177

Finding Aid to the Woodward Family Manuscript Collection ca 1899-2004, MS 3177

H. Furlong Baldwin Library, Maryland Historical Society

Download a PDF version of the finding aid 

Collection summary 

Title

Woodward Family Manuscript Collection

Creator

Thomas M. Bancroft, Jr.

Call number

MS 3177

Inclusive dates

Ca 1899-2004

Bulk dates

Ca 1929-1940

Extent

9 scrapbooks and 2 boxes

Abstract

The Woodward Family Manuscript Collection consists of publications, manuscripts, scrapbooks and other materials related to the Woodward family’s involvement with thoroughbred horse racing. From 1898 – 1957, the family owned Belair Mansion and estate, an important site for thoroughbred horse breeding for three centuries. Items include a family history, a Belair mansion guest book, newspaper and magazine articles, programs, manuscripts, and other memorabilia. Related Photographs can be found in PP305, Woodward Family Photograph Collection.

Administrative summary

Repository

H. Furlong Baldwin Library

Maryland Historical Society

201 W. Monument St.

Baltimore, MD 21201

www.mdhs.org

specialcollections@mdhs.org

Access restrictions

Open to the public without restrictions.

Use restrictions

Permission to quote must be received in writing from the Special Collections Librarian.

Provenance

Gift of Mr. Thomas M. Bancroft, Jr.

Accession number

7009

Processing note

Processed by Nicole Wise and Damon Talbot, October 2015

Related Collections

Woodward Family Photograph Collection, PP305

Historical Note

The Belair Mansion in Bowie, Maryland was built for colonial Governor Samuel Ogle around 1745 and encompassed nearly 2,500 acres. New York banker and President of Hanover Bank James T. Woodward purchased the estate in 1898 and immediately revitalized it by including a new addition of the Belair stable building. James T. Woodward's nephew, William Woodward, Sr. inherited Belair after James’ death and continued the family's involvement in thoroughbred horse racing. Raising multiple prize thoroughbreds during this period, the Belair Estate was home for the 1930 and the 1935 Triple Crown winners, father and son Gallant Fox and Omaha, and the 1955 "Horse of the Year," Nashua. The Belair Mansion was sold by the Woodward family in 1956, placed on the National Registrar of Historic Places in 1977, underwent restorations in the 1980s, and opened as a museum in 1995.

Scope and Content 

The Woodward Family Manuscript Collection contains various materials documenting the Woodward family and their involvement with the horse racing industry, the historic Belair Estate in Bowie, Maryland, horse racing in Maryland, and thoroughbred horse racing of the twentieth century. Thomas M. Bancroft, Jr., grandson of William Woodward, collected and donated the collection to the Maryland Historical Society. 

The Collection is broken down into three series. 

Series I: Scrapbooks 

This series consists of 9 scrapbooks, organized chronologically and arranged alphabetically from A to I. The scrapbooks contain newspaper clippings about horseracing, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

Series II: Manuscript Materials 

This series includes correspondence, a journal, histories of Horseracing in America and England written by William Woodward, a guest book for Belair Mansion, and horseracing thoroughbred fact sheets. These materials are located in Box 1.

Series III: Publications 

This series consists of published materials about horseracing, the Woodward family, and the Belair Estate, including The Red Polka Dots, a book detailing the horse racing involvement of the Woodward and Bancroft families during the twentieth century written by Thomas M. Bancroft. These materials are located in Box 2. 

Container List 

Series I: Scrapbooks

 

 

 

Title

Description

Date

Box

Book A

Scrapbook featuring horse racing newspaper article clippings, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

1909-1913

n/a

Book B

Scrapbook featuring horse racing newspaper article clippings, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

1912-1916

n/a

Book C

Scrapbook featuring horse racing newspaper article clippings, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

1916-1919

n/a

Book D

Scrapbook featuring horse racing newspaper article clippings, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

1931

n/a

Book E

Scrapbook featuring horse racing newspaper article clippings, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

1932

n/a

Book F

Scrapbook featuring horse racing newspaper article clippings, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

1933, 1939

n/a

Book G

Scrapbook featuring horse racing newspaper article clippings, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

1935-1935

n/a

Book H

Scrapbook featuring horse racing newspaper article clippings, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

1936-1938

n/a

Book I

Scrapbook featuring horse racing newspaper article clippings, racing results, photographs, receipts, correspondence, advertisements, postage stamps, postcards, programs, and other memorabilia

1935-1937

n/a

 

 

 

 

Series II: Manuscript Materials

 

 

 

Title

Description

Date

Box

"Belair"

Belair guest book containing the date, the signatures, the residence, and other remarks of guests

c. 1899-1939

1

[Letter from James W. Fitzsimmons to Thomas M. Bancroft Jr.]

Letter from James W. Fitzsimmons, attorney of Bancroft, to Thomas M. Bancroft Jr. with copies of photos of William Woodward; Copy of reply letter from Thomas M. Bancroft Jr. to James W. Fitzsimmons.

June 17, 1989; June 27, 1989

1

Yearlings at Belair; Racing totals in England Account, William Woodward; Racing Results in United States Account Belair Stud

Typed material of thoroughbred details, stats, and description of 1950/1 racing season

not dated

1

Yearlings Sent to England

Typed material of thoroughbred fact sheet

not dated

1

[Journal by Unknown]

Typed journal that includes some newspaper clippings and photos on thoroughbred horse racing

1929-1933

1

Story of American Racing

Bound manuscript by William Woodward, 117 pages

not dated

1

Story of English Racing, Beginning in Year 1928

Bound manuscript by William Woodward, 130+ pages

not dated

1

 

 

 

 

Series III: Publications

 

 

 

Title

Description

Date

Box

The Red Polka Dots

Book detailing the horse racing involvement of the Woodward and Bancroft families during the twentieth century. Written by Thomas M. Bancroft, Jr. Copyrighted 2003 by Thomas M. Bancroft, Jr. Printers' Printers, Inc. Easton, Pennsylvania. Signed to the Maryland Historical Society T.M.B. Jr. 3/21/2015

2003

2

Off to the Races

Article by John Eisenberg, Smithsonian Magazine. Illustrations by William H. Wilson.

Aug. 2004

2

The Woodward Sales

Photocopied Chapter Eight from Fair Exchange, Unknown Author. Pages 73 - 85

not dated

2

Triple Crown Winners

Informational pamphlet of Triple Crown Winners from 1919 to 1978. Features William Woodward's Gallant Fox 1930 and Omaha 1935. Belmont Stakes Charts, Copyright 1979 by Daily Racing Form, Inc.

1979

2

Belair Museums Preserve Glorious Era in Maryland

Article by Cindy Deubler, Mid-Atlantic Thoroughbred magazine

May. 2002

2

[Cartoon of Woodward]

Cartoon, possibly a political cartoon sketch, printed in an unknown newspaper featuring William Woodward

not dated

2

Woodward's Belair is Sold; Zeckendorf Pays 1 1/4 Million

Article by Judith Crist, the New York Herald Tribune

Oct. 12, 1956

2

Belair Stud: Maryland's hallowed breeding ground

Articled by Edward L. Bowen on the 250th anniversary of Belair, The Maryland Horse Magazine. Photographs courtesy of the City Bowie Museums

Dec. 1996/ Jan. 1997

2

The Great Race: On the eve of the 125th running of the Preakness, we celebrate its 10 most memorable moments

Article by Sondra Guttman, Baltimore Magazine. Features William Woodward's 1930 Triple Crown winning horse the Gallant Fox

May. 2000

2

Newly-Elected Officers of the Jockey Club for 1943

Photocopy of a newspaper photo showing Newly-Elected Officers of the Jockey Club for 1943: A.H. Morris, vice-chairman; William Woodward, chairman; J.E. Davis, secretary-treasurer; and Marshall Cassidy, assistant secretary-treasurer and steward

c. 1943

2

The Blood Horse

A weekly magazine featuring William Woodward on the cover as the Guest of Honor at the Fourth Annual Dinner of the Thoroughbred Club of America. Published by the American Thoroughbred Breeders Association, Lexington, Ky. Photo courtesy of The Morning Telegraph

Nov. 23, 1923

2

William Woodward

Section of The Monumental City: Its Past History and Present Resources. Pages 663-666

not dated

2

Games