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Shriver family papers

Identifier: MS 2085.6


This collection consists of the papers of George M. Shriver, Vice-President of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Company, and his family, 1873-1908.


  • 1873-1908


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research use.

Conditions Governing Use

The reproduction of materials in this collection may be subject to copyright restrictions. It is the responsibility of the researcher to determine and satisfy copyright clearances or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information visit the MCHC’s Rights and Permissions page.

Biographical Note

The Shriver Family

George M. Shriver (1868-1942) was married to Elizabeth Chism Shriver (1866-1935) and lived in Baltimore, Maryland. George worked for the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Company where he served as Vice President until his death. They had five children: Helen C. Shriver, Elizabeth M. Shriver Moore, George M. Shriver, Jr., Samuel H. Shriver, and Charles M. Shriver.

Charles Mayer Shriver (1893-1949) was educated in the Baltimore public school system, Boys Latin School, and Lehigh University. He began working for the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Company in June 1910 as a machine apprentice. He gradually worked his way up and became trainmaster in May 1917. From July 1918 to May 1919 he served in the armed forces in Africa and France. Charles became the Superintendent of the Baltimore Division of the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad Company in December 1930, and Superintendent of the Cumberland Division in 1936. Charles married Ruth Lee French on October 8, 1917. Ruth Lee French Shriver was a graduate of Goucher College and a student at the Peabody Conservatory of Music. Charles and Ruth had one daughter, Ruth Lee French Shriver.

The Foster Family

Ruth Lee French Shriver married John Walter Smith Foster, Jr. (Wally) and they lived in Garrison Forest on Melinda's Hill Farm. French and Wally had three sons, Charles Shriver Foster (Shriver), JWS Foster III (Johnny), and Lee French Foster.


1.67 Linear Feet (4 full Hollinger boxes)

Language of Materials



The papers in this collection are grouped according to the primary individual associated with the materials. Individuals include George M. Shriver, Elizabeth Chism Shriver, Charles Mayer Shriver, Ruth Lee French Shriver, and French Shriver Foster.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Gift of Mrs. J. W. S. Foster, Jr., September 1976.

Related Materials

MS 750, Shriver collection, 1784-1944

MS 750.1, Shriver family papers, 1712-1876

MS 2085, Shriver family papers, 1774-1957

MS 2085.1, David Shriver, Jr., papers, 1794-1951

MS 2085.2, Shriver family papers, 1774-1894

MS 2085.3, David Shriver, Sr., papers, 1760-1800

MS 2085.4, Shriver family papers, 1764-1867

MS 2085.5, James Shriver papers, 1824-1916

MS 2085.7, David Shriver Jr., papers, 1812-1852

MS 2085.8, Louis E. Shriver papers, 1851-1945

MS 2085.9, A.K. Shriver and Sons Tannery papers, 1820-1889

MS 2650, Shriver genealogy, 1975

MS 2828, Shriver-Foster papers, 1764-1980

Scope and Contents

George M. Shriver Papers

George M. Shriver's papers are largely incoming letters from family members. There are letters from son Charles Mayer Shriver while at Lehigh (1911-1912), daughter Helen at the National School, Domestic Arts and Science in Washington, D.C. (1917), and son Samuel at Cornell (1923-1926). His son Charles M. followed George into the B&O, and Charles' letters (1917-1918) describe his railroad work in Portsmouth, Ohio and his army enlistment to do railroad work. Other family members writing to George (especially at Christmas and on birthdays) were his aunt Carrie [Caroline McCluskey?] (1917-1926), his sisters Mary Jane Shriver (1916-1933), Bessie (1913-1932), and Mary (Mrs. H. Wirt Shriver) (1913); his brothers William Payne Shriver (1888, 1932) and James Shriver (1931), and his cousin Louis E. Shriver (1927-1931). There are also letters (1918) from George's nephew William Shriver who was in the army. He was stationed in Ohio and wanted more active duty.

A non-family correspondent was John F. Stevens who was with the Inter-Allied Technical Board, Siberian Railway. A copy of Stevens' letter (1919) to Daniel Willard of the B&O is in Shriver's papers. The detailed letter contains Stevens' observations on and his dislike of the Bolsheviks.

There are 2 letters (1926) to George from a Rev. Theisinger in Alsenborn-Rheinpfalz, Germany. Alsenborn was apparently the Shriver ancestral home, and Theisinger writes of George's recent visit and the local church's financial straits due to German inflation.

George's papers also include his diary of 1887. In it he recorded his daily activities especially his courtship of Elizabeth M. Chism whom he married in 1888. There are also 3 of his notebooks and 2 memoranda (1913, 1916) concerning the B&O. Other items include wedding invitations and printed programs of railroad testimonial dinners.

Elizabeth M. Chism Shriver Papers

Elizabeth [Chism] Shriver (1866-1935) married George M. Shriver in 1888. Her papers include a few incoming letters (1881-1887, 1917-1933) from friends and a tribute to her work with the Woman's Auxiliary of Rosewood State Training School written after her death in 1935.

Charles M. Shriver Papers

Charles M. Shriver (1893-1949) was the son of George and Elizabeth [Chism] Shriver. Like his father Charles joined the B&O Railroad. Papers pertaining to him are letters he wrote to his father while at Lehigh University (1911-1912), working for the B&O in Portsmouth, Ohio (1917-1918), and enlisting in the army. These are in George M. Shriver's incoming letters. Other letters by Charles are in his wife Ruth Lee [French] Shriver's incoming letters. These 20 letters (1929) were written by Charles while attending a course on railway transportation at Harvard.

Charles papers also include a few letters (1937-1942) from his daughter French while she was at camp in New Hampshire and school in Massachusetts.

Ruth Lee French Shriver Papers

Ruth Lee [French] Shriver (1893-1973) was the wife of Charles M. Shriver. Her papers consist of letters to her from her husband while he was at Harvard (1929), and 30 letters (1937-1963) from her daughter French [Shriver] Foster. French's letters describe attending camp in New Hampshire (1937-1941), attending school and teaching at House in the Pines, Norton, Massachusetts (1941-1947), and traveling in California 1963. These is also a play (1939) written by Ruth for a church benefit.

French Shriver Foster Papers

French [Shriver] Foster was the daughter of Charles M. and Ruth Lee [French] Shriver. Her papers consist of incoming letters mainly from her uncle George M. Shriver, Jr. while he was in the army 1942-1945. Letters she wrote while at camp and at school are found in the incoming letters of her father and mother.

Other Material

There is a letter (1879) from Howard Shriver to Kate Shriver describing in detail a visit to her sister in Hanover, Pennsylvania. Also included is a copy of a poem by Rev. Samuel S. Shriver entitled The Old Homestead. Mrs. Foster also donated a copy of [her grandfather] R.A. French's reminiscences (1895) of forty-eight years of railroad life.

Guide to the Shriver family papers
Under Revision
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Revision Statements

  • 2020-01-13: Manually entered into ArchivesSpace by Mallory Herberger.

Repository Details

Part of the H. Furlong Baldwin Library Repository

H. Furlong Baldwin Library
Maryland Center for History and Culture
610 Park Avenue
Baltimore MD 21201 United States