Table of Contents
A Guide to the collection at the Connecticut Historical Society
Ernest Caulfield (1893-1972) was born in Hartford, Connecticut and received his medical degree at Johns Hopkins University in 1920. He moved to New Haven, Connecticut in 1921 for his internship and residency and by 1923 was a lecturer at Yale Medical School. He opened a pediatrics office in Hartford in 1924 and later chaired the Pediatrics Department at Hartford Hospital. He retired from his medical practice in the 1950s and moved to Old Lyme.
Caulfield developed an interest in gravestones after researching and writing on death in early New England. His first article on Connecticut gravestones appeared in 1951 and he published a series of articles in the Connecticut Historical Society Bulletin. The series continued and was edited after his death by Peter Benes. Caulfield was at work on a monograph before he became blind, which was never completed.
The collection came to this CHS library through the estate of Ernest Caulfield. James Slater used and added to the material for several years in his own research before turning it over to CHS. Ruth Shapleigh Brown of the Connecticut Gravestone Network added further clarification to the folders before turning them over the the CHS. The labels found on the outside of each envelope in which the materials were stored are transcribed exactly as found and the envelopes are kept in the same arrangement as when they were received. An Excel index for the folders, created by Ruth Brown, is available for researchers.
The files on individual carvers, arranged alphabetically in Series I, contain handwritten notes citing primary sources, genealogical research, analysis of carving styles, correspondence, articles (both manuscript and printed) and photographs. Series II consists of some of Caulfield’s writings including a speech, some biographical material, correspondence between Caulfield, CHS and Peter Benes and articles Caulfield wrote for the Connecticut Historical Society Bulletin.
Series III contains research on cemeteries organized by town while Series IV consists of some miscellaneous writings and papers found in the collection but not tied directly to any town or carver.
The final series encompasses photographic prints and negatives of headstones. Three photo albums contain images arranged by carver. Two boxes contain an odd assortment of envelopes holding negatives and some prints of headstones arranged by the name of the interred. Nothing was done to rehouse the negatives at this juncture.
There are no restrictions on access to the collection.
Use of the material requires compliance with the Connecticut Historical Society's Research Center regulations.
Caulfield, Ernest, 1893-1972.
Item, Collection Title, Collection number (Box #, Folder #). Connecticut Historical Society, Hartford, Connecticut.
Collection was processed by Barbara Austen in 2006.
EAD Finding Aid created September 2014.