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Orton Family papers

Identifier: BUSC-2018-003


The collection consists of personal documents of Dr. John G. Orton, his daughter Helen D. Orton, and his grandson Orton Spaulding Barnes. Documents include two indentures, dated December 7, 1897 and July 11, 1898 with Dr. Orton as guarantor of the promissory note payments; detailed account of work completed on Dr. Orton’s house and accompanying bill, November 1, 1875; Memorandum written by Dr. Orton and dated October 7, 1920 to be read in connection with his will; copy of will of Helen D. Orton, daughter of Dr. Orton, dated October 30, 1925; service record of Orton Spaulding Barnes, grandson of Dr. Orton, dated 1917-1918.


  • Creation: 1875 - 1930


Biographical Note

Dr. John Gay Orton (December 5, 1827 - April 21, 1924) was a Binghamton physician, called the "dean of Binghamton medicine" in his Binghamton Press obituary. A native of Seneca Falls, Orton was educated in the local schools and studied medicine at the University of New York, graduating in 1853. He relocated to Binghamton the following year, where he was a founder of the Binghamton Academy of Medicine; he was that institution's secretary for many years, and was elected president in 1889. He was also a member of the Broome County Medical Society from 1854, serving as president in 1856-1857 and as secretary from 1863 through 1879. During the Civil War he served as examining surgeon for Broome County draft applicants. He was later active in state and national medical organizations, including the American Association for the Cure of Inebriates, the New York State Medical Association, the International Medical Congress, and the American Public Health Association. He served as trustee or officer of the New York State Inebriate Asylum, the New York State Asylum for the Blind, the Susquehanna Valley Home, and the Home for Aged Women, as well as the Binghamton City Hospital and the Binghamton Academy of Science.

Orton also was involved with the Binghamton Savings Bank, the Chamber of Commerce, and the Binghamton Board of Education.

Orton married Helen M. Doubleday, daughter of Dr. Ammi Doubleday of Binghamton. They had three daughters, including Helen, whose will is in this collection. A second daughter, May I. Orton, married Frederic Emerson Barnes; the WWI service record of their son Orton Spaulding Barnes (1897-1954) is also in this collection.


.25 Linear Feet

Language of Materials


Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchase, 2018.


Obituary of Dr. John G. Orton. Binghamton Press, April 21, 1924, p. 10.
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Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Binghamton University Libraries Special Collections Repository

Binghamton NY 13902 USA