Poate Family Papers,1935-1993
Collection Number: 4417
Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections
Poate family papers, 1935-1993.
.7 cubic ft.
Forms of Material:
Correspondence, photographs, map, ephemera, and bulletins.
Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library
Frederick William Poate papers include correspondence, photographs, map, ephemera, and bulletins of the Old Comrades Association.
Collection material in English
Frederick William Poate was born of missionary parents in Japan in 1882. In 1893, the family moved to the United States and settled in Allegany County, N.Y. He entered Cornell University in 1900, and after spending a year in Shanghai working for his uncle at Mackenzie & Co., graduated in 1905. While at Cornell, he excelled at track. He returned to China to work as Chief Engineer at Mackenzie Co.'s Tientsin branch. During World War I, he went to France and commanded armored cars attached to the First Cavalry Division at Samer. After the war, he returned to China, becoming head of Mackenzie & Co. when his uncle retired. He served on the Municipal Council and the Shanghai Volunteer Corps, and was chairman of the tramways, Lester Hospital, and the Union Church. He was also active in Rotary. After Pearl Harbor, he and his wife were interned in Yangchow for four years. He then returned to England, continuing his interest in political, economic, and military affairs, as well as long distance running. He was also active in the Old Comrades Association of the Machine Gun Corps. He died in 1971.
Belle Marsh Poate was born in Truro, Nova Scotia in 1847. She went to Japan in 1876 under the auspices of the Presbyterian Board. For three years, she worked in the Yokohama area. In 1879, she married Thomas Pratt Poate and transferred to the American Baptist Missionary Union. They had five children: Frederick William, Ernest Marsh, Lucy Marsh ("Daisy"), Clara Elizabeth ("Bessie"), and Edith. The family remained in Japan until 1892, when they returned to the United States. Belle Marsh Poate died in 1896.
Clara Elizabeth Fleming was born in Morioka, Japan in 1888; married John Lewis Fleming; had two children; and died in 1985. She wrote children's books and stories about her childhood experiences in Japan.
Lucy Marsh Poate was born in Portsmouth, England in 1886; married Howard L. Stebbins; had three children, Richard, Elizabeth, and Marabelle; and died in Boston in 1958.
Frederick William Poate papers include correspondence, photographs, map, ephemera, and bulletins of the Old Comrades Association. Letters are mostly written to his sister Bessie (Mrs. Elizabeth Poate Fleming) and his nephew, her son Thomas. Other correspondents include Bessie's husband John, their daughter Edith, Cornell track coach Lou Montgomery, and runner Robin Day. Correspondence for the years 1935 to 1948 documents events in China; later letters concern the family business, with some reminiscences. Also, a set of letters written to his nephew and nieces, Richard, Elizabeth, and Marabelle Stebbins, 1951-1968, and one to his sister Lucy, 1940. Photographs of bombings in China, and family and friends; booklet "Scenic Shanghai"; and road map of China.
Also, "Japanese Encounter: The Missionary Letters of Belle Marsh Poate, 1876-1892," edited by Richard Poate Stebbins, 1989, including typescripts of Belle Marsh Poate's letters and appendices of biographical information; and copies of Trailblazer for Juniors, 1956-1957, with a series of articles, "The Mikado's Cabinet," by Elizabeth Poate Fleming.
Also, "The Japanese Experience: The Missionary Career of Belle Marsh Poate and Thomas Pratt Poate, 1876-1892" by Richard Poate Stebbins, a preliminary draft, 1990.
Detailed item list available in accession folder.
Fleming, Elizabeth Poate.
Fleming, John(John A.)
Fleming, Tom P.
Poate, Belle Marsh.
Poate, Frederick William, 1882-1971.
Mackenzie & Company (Shanghai, China)
Old Comrades Association.
China--Description and travel.
Japan--Description and travel.
Poate family papers, #4417. Division of Rare and Manuscript Collections, Cornell University Library.
Letters of Frederick William Poate to sister Bessie and other members of her family
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Letters of Frederick William Poate to his nieces and nephews, children of Lucy Marsh Poate Stebbins (Daisy)
Additional correspondence of Frederick W. Poate and correspondence of Thomas P. Fleming about Poate
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Japanese Encounter - The Missionary Letters of Belle Marsh Poate
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"The Mikado's Cabinet" by Elizabeth Poate Fleming, in Trailblazer for Juniors
The Japanese Experience: The Missionary Career of Belle Marsh Poate and Thomas Pratt Poate, 1876-1892" - by Richard Poate Stebbins, a preliminary draft