Skip to main content

Archbold, Gebauer and Dana families papers,

Identifier: 300-303

Scope and Contents

Isreal Archbold, born 1807, was an itenerant Methodist minister in Virginia in the early to mid 1800's. He married Frances F. Dana, born 1809, in September 1834. They had seven children, William Dana born 1835, James Edward born 1838, Phoebe Maria born 1840, Charles Wesley born 1843, Mary Elisabeth born 1845, John Dustin born 1848 and Frances Ann born 1852. William became secretary and treasurer of the Continental Oil Co., a division of Standard Oil in Denver. He married Martha Humaston in Farmington Ohio in 1857.

Charles spent his early life in Corry and Titusville Pennsylvania. He enlisted in the 7th Ohio Regiment during the Civil War. He was taken prisoner, later exchanged and returned to civilian life. In 1865 he married Emma O. Kibbee in Farmington Ohio. He engaged in some business venture with George Yost, inventor of the typewritter. In 1890 he became manager of the Camden Refinery of the Standard Oil Company of New Jersey operating in Parkersburg, West Virginia.

John Dustin Archbold was born in Leesburg Virgina and moved to Pennsylvania by 1864. He married Annie M. Mills in 1870. Together they had four children, Mary Lavina born 1871, Anne born 1873, Frances born 1875 and John Foster born 1877. He became president of Acme Oil company. In 1875 he connected with the Standard Oil Company as a director and vice president until 1911 when he took over as president. He held this position until his death in 1916.

Among his philanthopic endeavors was the establishment of the John D. Archbold Memorial Hospital in Thomasville, Georgia in 1924. The youngest child, Frances Ann, married Horace P. Chamberlain. Chamberlain also became involved in the oil business as manager of the Atlas Refinery at Buffalo, the Imperial Oil Refinery at Sarnia, Ontario and a branch of the Standard Oil Company at Havana. He also built a Standard Oil refinery in Bucharest, which was destroyed by the Germans in WWI.

John Foster Archbold, son of John D. and grandson of Isreal Archbold, had four children: John Dana who died young, Richard born 1907, Adrian born 1909 and Frances May born 1912. Adrian married Jessie A. Gebauer who was born in 1909. (It is this couple that is believed responsible for gathering this archival collection.) Richard Archbold, who never married, went on to become a noted naturalist, explorer and mountaineer. From 1933 to 1948, he joined or lead epeditions to Madagascar, New Guinea and one to the Cape York Peninsula of Australia. He pioneered the use of a PBY-1, flying boat.

His expeditions amassed an invaluable collection of plants and animal specimens entirely new to the scientific communty. Many of these are housed at the American Museum of Natural History. Richard is the author of several articles and books on biology and exploration. His lasting legacy is the Archbold Biological Station in Lake Placid, Florida.

Adrian Archbold, Richard's brother, lived in Millcreek Township adjacent to the city of Erie Pennsylvania. There he had considerable property, 186 acres, that he farmed. Some of it was grazing land, other parcels were used for grapes while other sections were left wooded. On the grazing portion Adrian raised about 36 registered American Hereford cattle. On the land dedicated to crops, Adrian grew corn, barley and hay. He also had 8 acres of apple trees, and 6 acres of grape vines. The farm was known as Westpenna Farms. Although owned by Adrian and his wife, the farm was managed by C.A. Dieffenderfer. The farm was parceled and sold to various interests. The 22 acres with the living quarters and outbuildings is today owned by Edinboro University. It is known as the Porreco Center.


  • 1838-1978.
  • Other: Date acquired: 2008-10-08

Conditions Governing Access

Available for use in the University Archive.


0.00 unknown


The collection represents a personal family collection of the Archbold, Gebauer and Dana families. It includes family history and genealogy information in a mixture of formats. Additional documents include information on the Westpenna Farm in Millcreek Township of Erie County, PA.


Organized into series: Family Documents and Photographs. Property and Business Files.

Custodial History

This is a legacy collection. Donor is unknown.

Source of Acquisition

Edinboro University

Method of Acquisition


Other Descriptive Information

Related URL:
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Edinboro University Archives Repository