Rutherford B. Hayes Collections

Collection ID: HAYES-4
Location: HAYES-4

(Description ID: 594047)

Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Library & Museums

Webb C. Hayes


Biographical Sketch
Scope and Content

An extensive photograph collection complements the manuscript holdings, providing a visual record of Hayes’ activities and world travels. Further information on Colonel Hayes may be found in the Mary Miller Hayes Collection (Hayes-5), the president’s papers, and those collections belonging to other Hayes family members. The Center’s biographical files provide additional documentation of Hayes’ life. Typed transcripts exist for all of Hayes’ outgoing correspondence and his twenty-six diaries.

Biographical Sketch
Webb C. Hayes, second son of Rutherford B. Hayes and Lucy Webb Hayes was born in Cincinnati, Ohio on March 20, 1856. At the age of ten, Webb joined his older brother, Birchard, at Spiegel Grove, Fremont, Ohio, the home of their great uncle, Sardis Birchard. Webb attended Cornell University from 1873 to 1875, leaving to serve as his father’s secretary during his third term as governor of Ohio. Following the presidential election, Webb again served as his father’s secretary. In 1881, Webb moved to Cleveland, Ohio where he began his business career as treasurer of the Whipple Manufacturing Company. Six years later, in association with Myron T. Herrick, James Parmelee, and W. H. Lawrence, he organized the National Carbon Company (later known as Union Carbide). Hayes continued for many years as the vice president of the corporation. However, Webb’s greatest interests included military affairs, hunting, and outdoor life. As a child, Webb was frequently present in the Civil War camps of his father’s regiment. Here he met General George Crook whom Webb considered his godfather. Crook taught Hayes to hunt the wild game of the Rocky Mountains during their annual fall hunts that continued for nearly a decade.

Hayes was a veteran member of the First Cleveland Troop, later known as Troop A, Ohio National Guard. He served with Troop A as the personal escort of all United States presidents from Hayes to Taft, and at the funeral ceremonies of three Ohio presidents (Hayes, Garfield, and McKinley). At the outbreak of the Spanish American War, Hayes was commissioned a major in the First Ohio Cavalry and mustered into the United States service May 9, 1898. He accompanied Major General W. R. Shafter as part of the First Expedition against Havana. Later, he joined his regiment at Chickamauga Park until he embarked with the Fifth Army Corps for Santiago, Cuba. He served through the campaigns of Santiago de Cuba and the invasion of Puerto Rico. Despite wounds received during the crossing of the San Juan River, Hayes took part in the assault on San Juan Hill on July 1, 1898. On the breaking out of the insurrection in the Philippines, Hayes was commissioned lieutenant colonel of the 31st U.S. Infantry. After a harrowing thirty-three-day voyage aboard the Manauense, Hayes arrived in Manilla in late November of 1899. Within hours after landing, Hayes led a rescue party to free the U.S. soldiers garrisoned at Vigan Island. He was awarded the Medal of Honor for this act of heroism. Colonel Hayes also participated in the Boxer Rebellion, the China Relief Expedition, and the Russo-Japanese War. He was instrumental in commemorating numerous Cuban and Chinese battlefields where American soldiers had lost their lives. In WWI, Hayes served as a special agent for the State Department until the French government’s withdrawal from Paris. Commissioned a full colonel when the U. S. entered the war, Hayes was sent to the Italian front where he served as a regional commander of the American Expeditionary Force.

In 1912, Hayes married Mary Otis Miller Brinkerhoff, daughter of Anson and Nancy Otis Miller of Fremont, Ohio. Prior to the United States’ involvement in WWI, Mrs. Hayes worked extensively with the Red Cross. In addition to his world travels, Hayes took an active interest in community affairs. He established Memorial Parkway, a living monument to Fremont, Ohio’s WWI war dead. The Hayeses also donated funds and land to help found the Memorial Hospital of Sandusky County and the Mary Miller Hayes School of Nursing Home. Mrs. Hayes gave her home on Court Street to the Fremont Federation of Women. Colonel Hayes had many careers: soldier, adventurer, world traveler, philanthropist, and businessman. However, he is be best remembered for his role as the moving force behind the founding of the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center, the first presidential library in the United States. He died July 29, 1934 at the age of 78. Mrs. Hayes followed in death less than a year later.

Scope and Content
The Webb C. Hayes Papers document the life and activities of President Rutherford B. and Lucy Webb Hayes’ second son from childhood until his death in 1934. To some degree, Colonel Webb C. Hayes’ life reflected national attitudes during the late nineteenth century: his participation in American expansionism in Cuba, Puerto Rico, the Philippines, China, and Japan, commemoration of foreign battlefields, entrepreneurial interests, and philanthropic activities. Although apolitical, Hayes was acquainted with many of the period’s important political and military figures. Comprising nearly forty linear feet, the collection is the most extensive of the Hayes children. Of primary importance is Hayes’ incoming and outgoing correspondence. Arranged chronologically, it makes up the largest portion of the collection. Some forty subject folders exist for Hayes’ most frequent correspondents. These include topics: as varied as the National Carbon Company, Ohio National Guard, Memorial Hospital, and the China Relief Expedition. An alphabetical index to both the incoming and outgoing correspondence exists in the library’s reading room. The index contains the name of the correspondent, the date of the letter, and the location from which it was written. Boxes 14 and 15 contain a second set of subject folders, including biographical information, military records, school papers, travel journals, real estate documents, and genealogical material. Personal financial records begin in 1898 and extend to the time of Hayes’ death. Although Hayes began keeping annual diaries as early as 1870, they have limited value as only s few of the twenty-six volumes contain entries that extend beyond several weeks or months. However, the journals provide some insights in Hayes’ early hunting trips, his military career, and his travels to China, Cuba, and South America. The collection also contains a series of miscellaneous notebooks associated with his education at Cornell, improvements at Spiegel Grove, the First Cleveland Troop, and the 31st U. S. Infantry, as well as Hayes’ efforts to establish commemorative monuments to U. S. veterans. Other ledgers focus on Hayes’ financial investments, activities at Spiegel Grove, and his efforts concerning the founding of the Rutherford B. Hayes Presidential Center. A dozen scrapbooks hold mementoes and memorabilia from Hayes’ days at Cornell, White House social functions, his military career, and world travels.


Box 1
1 - 45 Incoming Correspondence 1864 - 1879

Box 2
1- 37 Incoming Correspondence 1880 - 1896

Box 3
1 - 35 Incoming Correspondence 1897 - July 1900


  • Printer’s Proof: An Index and List of the Letters and Papers of Rutherford Birchard Hayes
  • Ledger of the Hayes Historical Society Trust 1926 - 1932
  • Scrapbook 1899 - 1901
  • Scrapbook Seals of the States

Box 4
1 - 47 Incoming Correspondence Aug. 1900 - June 1906

Box 5
1 - 33 Incoming Correspondence July 1906 - 1911

Box 6
1 - 33 Incoming Correspondence 1912 - 1915

Box 7
1 - 35 Incoming Correspondence 1916 - June 1919

Box 8
1 - 34 Incoming Correspondence July 1919 - 1922

Box 9
1 - 34 Incoming Correspondence 1923 - 1925

Box 10
1 - 31 Incoming Correspondence 1926 - 1929

Box 11
1 - 9 Incoming Correspondence 1930 - 1935
10 - 34 Outgoing Correspondence Undated - 1909

Box 12
1- 30 Outgoing Correspondence 1910 - 1931

Box 13
1 - 20 Incoming Correspondence Undated (sorted alphabetically)
21 Christmas Cards, etc. Anonymous-G
22 Christmas Cards, etc. H-N
23 Christmas Cards, etc. O-Z

Box 14 - Miscellaneous Files by Subject:
1 Lucy W. Hayes & Rutherford B. Hayes
2 Biographical Information
2-A Genealogical Chart
3 Newspaper Clippings
4 Medical
4-A School Papers n.d.
5 School Compositions 1868 - 1872
6 Cornell
7 Receipts 1903
8 Receipts 1904
9 Receipts 1905
10 Receipts 1906
11 Receipts 1907
12 Receipts 1908
13 Receipts 1909
14 Receipts 1910
15 Receipts 1911
16 Income Tax 1913 - 1922 Returns, Correspondence, etc.
17 Income Tax 1923 - 1925 Returns, Correspondence, etc.
18 Income Tax 1926 - 1935 Returns, Correspondence, etc.
19 Personal Property Taxes (with Mary Miller Hayes)
20 Property Tax Receipts 1913 - 1924
21 Real Estate
22 Real Estate - Wood County
23 National Carbon Company
24 Fremont Street Railway
25 Whipple Manufacturing Co./Note to L. Austin
26 Pleasant Hill Land Co.
27 Omaha & Sioux City Extension
28 Cleveland Stone Co.
29 Cleveland Trust Co. Statements
30 Citizens Savings Statements
31 Albert Keep Last Will & Testament
32 Ohio Historical Society v. Fremont Home Telephone
33 Perry’s Victory Memorial (Centennial Commission)

Box 15 - Miscellaneous Files - Military:
1 Campaign Journals of Joseph Gaspard Chaussegros de Lery 1749 - 1758
2 Military Service (Copies of Records & Letters)
3 Military Service
4 Military Pension
5 First Cleveland Troop (Troop A)
6 Stations of U.S. Volunteer Troops 1899
7 Santiago de Cuba (Battle & Monument)
8 Society of the Army of Santiago de Cuba
9 Santiago de Cuba (Rosters, Casualty Lists)
10 Diary of T. R. Rivers 1898
10-A Cuba/Philippines 1898 - 1899
10-B Cuba/Philippines 1898 - 1900
11 Philippine Islands
12 China Relief Expedition & Memorial
13 China Relief Expedition & Memorial
14 Military Order of the Dragon
15 Military Decorations, Badges
16 Congressional Medal of Honor
17 World War I
18 Transcriptions Aug. 1918 French Morocco
19 Lists of WW I Official Photographs
20 Markings for American Soldiers Interred in Foreign Lands
21 Women’s Relief Corps.
22 American Memorial Highway Commission
23 Military Rosters, Requisitions, etc.
24 Military - Misc. Notations
25 Military - Printed Material
26 "Nation’s Monuments on Cuban Battlefields", Army & Navy Life, April 1906

Box 16 - Miscellaneous Files by Subject:
1 Memorial Hospital
2 Birchard Library
3 Fort Sandoski (Sandusky)/Fort Stephenson
4 Croghan Victory Centennial
5 Bronze Tablet Honoring Soldiers of Sandusky County
6 Changing of Street Names Near Spiegel Grove
7 Fremont Corp. Limits, Parks, Real Estate, Streets
8 Passports
9 Itineraries
10 Foreign Travel - Misc. Papers
11 Spiegel Grove
12 Tree Planting at Spiegel Grove June 30, 1899
13 Guest Lists/Seating Charts/Room Assignments at Spiegel Grove
14 Hayes Home Water System
15 Spiegel Grove Household
15-A Kenyon College
16 Japanese Design for Silver Service
17 U.S. National Museum Blueprints
18 Coins, etc. on Display in Museum
19 Autos, Registrations
20 Horses
21 Power of Attorney, Trust for Fanny Hayes
22 Wills
23 Death, Funeral
24 Estate
25 Miscellaneous Pamphlets, Brochures, Magazines
25-A Cartoons of Webb C. Hayes - Sketches by Mcauley 1878
26 Unidentified Miscellaneous
27 Miscellaneous
28 Miscellaneous Invitations
29 Miscellaneous Calling Cards, Tickets, Programs, etc.
30 Collection of Cigar Bands
31 Programs, Souvenir Cards, etc.
32 Calling Cards A-D
33 Calling Cards E-H
34 Calling Cards I-N
35 Calling Cards O-Y
35-A Calling Cards Webb C. Hayes
36 Admission Cards
37 Cards, Tickets, etc.
38 Cards - Advertising
39 Cards - Valentines & Christmas

Box 17 - Diaries:
1870 Diary
1872 Diary
1877 Diary
Real Estate Journal 1877
1878 Diary
1878 Diary
1879 Diary
1879 Hunting Trip
1880 Journal
1880 Western Trip
1881 Journal; Smallpox Hospital & Detention Camp, California (1900?)
1898 Messages & Roster 31st U.S.V.
1898 Extracts from Diary of Stephen Foote
1900 Philippines Diary
1900 Diary
1900 Boxer Rebellion
1900 Imperial English & Chinese Diary & Almanac
1902 Diary, Addresses, List of Photos
1904 Diary of Russo-Japanese War
1904 Misc. Notebook; Russo-Japanese War
Notebook & Diary 1908 - 1909
Mary Miller Hayes Diary of Trip to Cuba, Central & South America 1913
Mary Miller Hayes Diary 1913 - 1914
Mary Miller Hayes War Diary Aug. - Sept. 1914
Mary Miller Hayes Diary 1913 - 1917
Mary Miller Hayes Diary 1916
Mary Miller Hayes Diary 1918 - 1922
Mary Miller Hayes Diary 1923 - 1927
Mary Miller Hayes Diary 1928 - 1930
North Cape Cruise Log Book 1921
West Indies & South American Cruise Log Book 1923
Mediterranean Cruise Log Book 1925

Box 18 - Miscellaneous Notebooks - Spiegel Grove & Cornell University:
1 WCH Guest Register Aug. 9, 1909 - Oct. 4, 1925
2 Spiegel Grove "House and Grounds" Dec. 1911
   "...my last plans for the improvements to be made at Spiegel Grove. Webb C. Hayes"
3 Party Book 1895 - 1925 (incl. menus/guest lists)
4 Notes on Museum Building
4-A Notes on Museum Building/Alcoves
4-B Notebook with diagrams of residence, some with inventories
5 Cornell University "Account Book" Fall trimester 1872 - Spring trimester 1875
6 List of plants studied at Cornell May 11 - June 17, 1874
7 "Excelsior diary for 1872" - misc. notes, names. etc.
8 Notebook "Webb C. Hayes K.E. Fremont, Ohio Cornell '76"
9 Cornell autograph book
9-A Cornell University President's Report 1917 -1918

Box 18-A - Miscellaneous Notebooks - Addresses/Autographs & Misc. Notebooks:
10 Address Book 191?
10-A Address Book, Misc. Notes 1903
11 The Ghosts of My Friends "To Colonel Webb Hayes from Ruth. Bill"
12 Autograph Address Book n.d.
12-A Address Book in notebook with title "Exercises " n.d.
13 Notebook - 23rd Reunion
14 Notes - Croghan Celebration 1906
15 Notes of Fort Sandusky, Fremont, local history, etc.
16 List of coins, stamps, and state seals "J. Webb Hayes"
17 Notebook Sept. 1877 (RBH's Southern Tour)
18 Notes on plantings, possibly Spiegel Grove 1879
19 "Webb C. Hayes" misc. notes n.d. - incl. itinerary, guest lists, travel accounts, daily records
20 Lists of names (guests?) and flowers for each
21 Notebook incl. misc. notes, addresses n.d.
22 Empty bank book

Box 18-B - Miscellaneous Notebooks - Military:
23 Time book Oct. - Nov. 1899
24 Telegraph Cipher of Words c1889
25 First Cleveland Troop, quartermaster-sergeant receipt book Oct. 6, 1884 - Sept. 12, 1885
26 Instructions for Mustering Officers c1898 bound with Price List of Ordnance and Ordnance
c 1891
27 Personal Sketches of the 31st U.S.V.I.
28 Bronze Tablets ... China Relief Expedition of 1900 with Military Order of the Dragon 1900-1911 
28-A Military Order of the Dragon 1900-1911 c 1912 bound with Bronze Tablets...China Relief 
     Expedition of 1900
with notations by WCH
29 A Manual for Guard Duty by Lt. L.W.V. Kennon c 1890 inside cover "Webb C. Hayes with
     the cordial regards of L.W.V. Kennon U.S. Army"
30 Scrapbook of clippings and notes of the First Cleveland Troop
31 Daily calendar 1901 used for misc. notes
32 Notebook "Society uniforms and paraphernalia" with misc. notes, incl. list of Kodak rolls
33 Notebook 1918
34 Notebook 1918
35 Address/calendar 1899 with misc. notation
36 Appropriated "Comandancia de Marina de la Provincia de Santiago de Cuba
     Pasaportes y Pases espedidos desde 1st de Enero de 1975"
37 New Testament "Maj Webb C. Hayes 1st Ohio Cav Presented by William McKinley
     26 May 1/98"
38 Book of Common Prayer "S.S. Verdi" Inside cover: "To Col Webb C Hayes from the purser
     of the "Verdi" James B. Jordan off Brazil Mar 16th 1913"
39 Cipher telegraph book, New Code, or Cipher, ... by Telegraph are by Albert Chandler 1879
40 Dedication ceremonies Feb. 14, 1906 at the Unveiling of the Battle Monument at Fort El Viso, El Caney,
; with Tablets and Monuments marking the battlefields of the campaign of Santiago de Cuba;
     with Society of the Army of Santiago de Cuba Dedication of the Battle Monument at El Cagey, Daiquiri,
     Cuba/Report of the Santiago Battlefield Commission

41 The Voyage of the Oregon from San Francisco to Santiago in 1898 as told by one of the crew
     (Privately printed, The Merry mount Press, Boston 1908)
42 Atlas Universal de GEOGRAPHY MODERN para use de los Ninos por D. Jose Reinoso,
     Madrid 1878. With notations by WCH.
43 Transcription of notations from #42
44 Telegraphic Cipher, April 1896

Box 19
1 Hotels - Brochures, etc.
2 Customs Receipts, Passports, Visas
3 Menus
4 Steamship Time Tables, Passenger Lists, Guide Books, Information Sheets
5 Railroad Time Tables, Maps, Tour Books
6 Motor Routes
7 - 24 Bills 1872 - 1929

Box 20 - Unsorted Financial Papers:
bank books, statements, returned checks, check stubs, ledgers, balance sheets, etc.

Box 21 - Returned Checks & Check Stubs

Box 22 - W.C.H. v Hocking Valley Railway:
1 Index
2 Notes, etc. with Reference to Law Cases
3 Notes, etc. with Reference to Law Cases
4 Bond
5 Clippings on City Ordinances
6 Articles of Incorporation of the Hocking Valley Railway Company
7 Blue Prints & Photos
8 Court of Common Pleas; Lucas County, Ohio
9 Court of Common Pleas: Lucas County, Ohio
10 Court of Appeals: Lucas County, Ohio
11 In the Supreme Court of Ohio
12 In the Supreme Court of Ohio
13 Supreme Court of the United States 1917
14 Supreme Court of the United States 1918 - 1919

Box 23 - Scrapbooks:
1 Scrapbook 1865 - 1874
2 Cornell Scrapbook
3 Cornell Scrapbook
4 Scrapbook 1877 - 1878 (photocopies & original cover, wrapped)
5 Scrapbook 1881 - 1886

Box 24 - Scrapbooks:
1 WCH Scrapbook
2 Mary Miller Hayes Scrapbook

Other Scrapbooks Individually Boxed:
1879 - 1885 (William Gaines, Ft. Stephenson)
1878 - 1880 Miscellaneous
1899 - 1901
Seals of the States