1.   Historical note

2.   Scope and content

3.   Provenance

4.   Processing note

5.   Inventory

6.   Subjects

    List of finding aids

    R.I.H.S. Library page

    R.I.H.S. home page

 Augustus F. Rose Family Papers

 Metal craftsman and educator, of Providence, R.I.

 Family papers, 1873-1994. Bulk, 1917-1959.

 Size: 1 linear foot

 Catalog number: MSS 875

 Processed by: Harold Kemble, 1985; Rick Stattler, December 2002

©Rhode Island Historical Society

Manuscripts Division


Historical note:

            Augustus Foster "Gus" Rose (1873-1946) was born in Hebron, Nova Scotia, the son of George M. and Elizabeth A. (Perry) Rose. He came with his parents to Boston, Mass. in 1887, and graduated from the Massachusetts School of Art in 1896. He was an art teacher in Providence, R.I. for most of his life: at Providence Technical High School, 1896-1907, at the Rhode Island School of Design, 1910-1925, and as Director of Manual Arts for the Providence public schools from 1925-1943. He was an active freemason.

            Rose married Josephine Angell Beane (c1876-1959) in 1903. They had at least two children, Elizabeth Angell Rose (1907-2001) and Margaret Perry Rose (1911-1994). The family owned a summer vacation house in Oquossoc, near Maine's remote northwestern corner.

            Through 1918, Augustus Rose designed hammers and anvils that were marketed through Belcher & Loomis Hardware Co. of Providence. In 1917, he founded the Metal Crafts Supply Company, which sold specialized tools for craftsmen in metalwork and jewelry. Many of the tools were designed and produced by Rose. The related Metal Crafts Shop opened in 1925, selling fine metalwork, porcelain and ivory. Rose also conducted his own summer school for training craftsmen. The Metal Crafts Publishing Company published books and pamphlets by Rose on metalworking subjects. All three concerns were continued by his daughters after his death.

            The Metal Crafts Supply Company was located at 17 Exchange Place from 1918 to 1923, and at 36 North Main Street from 1923 to 1957. The Metal Crafts Shop was at 37 Aborn Street from 1925 to 1940, and at the Providence Art Club building at 10 Thomas Street from 1940 to 1957.


"Augustus Foster Rose," in Masonic folder, Augustus F. Rose Family Papers.

"Metal Crafts Supply Company: A Brief History, from Beginning to End," Augustus F. Rose Family Papers

1920 U.S. Census, Rhode Island E.D. 189, page 13

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Scope and content:

            This collection consists primarily of the records of the Metal Crafts Supply Company and related businesses operated by Augustus F. Rose, and later by his widow and daughters through 1957. The records include inventories, financial records, and limited correspondence.

            Also included are miscellaneous family and personal papers, including a small collection of postcards that were apparently gathered by a stamp collector in the family. Some are of interest as correspondence, including an 1888 letter to an early Armenian immigrant to Providence.

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            These papers were donated by Margaret and Elizabeth Rose in 1984 and 1985; and by their executor in 2002.

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Processing note:

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Beane Family

Box 1, folder 1. Wedding invitations:

                                    George F.A. Beane to Abbie L. Angell, 1873

                                    Ednah Beane to P. Herbert Smith, 1883

Augustus F. Rose

Box 1, folder 2. Article on the Rhode Island School of Design, undated

Box 1, folder 3. "The Development of the Jewelry Industry in Rhode Island," 1936

Box 1, folder 4. Masonic, biographical, and correspondence, 1904-1983

Box 1, folder 5. Summer school accounts, 1935

Box 1, folder 6. Wedding file, 1903

Elizabeth A. Rose

Box 1, folder 7. Correspondence, 1958 and undated

Oversized folder 1. Diplomas: Hope Street High School, 1925; R.I. Honor Society, 1925; Brown University, 1929

Margaret P. Rose

Box 1, folder 8. Autograph book, 1924-1928

Box 1, folder 9. Certificates and correspondence, 1911-1943

Box 1, folder 10. Jewelry sales, 1974-1991

Box 1, folder 11. Memorial service, 1994

Oversized folder 1. Diplomas: John Howland School, 1925; Hope Street High School, 1930; R.I.S.D. (honorary), 1990

Rose Family

Box 1, folder 12. Account book for vacation home in Oquossoc/Rangely, Maine, 1946-1955

Metal Crafts Publishing Co.

Box 1, folder 13. Copyright, 1906-1942

Box 1, folder 14. "Jewelry Making and Design" publication, 1946-1947

Box 1, folder 15. Miscellaneous, 1932-1962

Metal Crafts Shop

Box 1, folder 16. Inventory notes, 1919-1957

Box 1, folder 17. Personnel - Weekly payroll books, 1948-1957

Box 1, folder 18. Personnel - Loose papers, 1950-1954

Box 1, folder 19. Providence Art Club - Lease and related papers 1939-1957

Box 1, folder 20. Special orders, 1943-1956

Oversized folder 2. Ledger of the supply company and shop, 1953-1959

Metal Crafts Supply Co.

Box 1, folder 21. Cash book, 1917-1919

Box 1, folder 22. Closing documents, 1957-1963

Box 1, folder 23. Closing - Sale of stock to Allcraft, Inc., 1957-1959

Box 1, folder 24. Correspondence, 1928-1954

Box 1, folder 25. Financial reports, 1920-1959

Box 1, folder 26. History, 1919-1957

Box 1, folder 27. Inventory cards, 1946-1957; and ledger book, 1917-1944

Box 1, folder 28. Partnership papers, 1919-1947

Box 1, folder 29. Purchases, 1919-1933

Box 1, folder 30. Sales book, 1957-1959

Box 1, folder 31. Summary of business, 1932-1956

Box 1, folder 32. Tax returns, 1930-1956 (incomplete)

Oversized folder 2. Ledger of the supply company and shop, 1953-1959

Postcard collection

Box 1, folder 33. Miscellaneous postcards, 1874-1938:

            Andrews, Mrs. F. W., of Prov. One card addressed at Montreal, undated.

            Briggs, Mrs. Jennie, of Prov. One card by Minnie --- at St. John, NB, 7/4/1895.

            Browning, Mrs. Natalie A., of Cambridge, Mass. Two cards from M.S. in Canada, 1913.

Cleaves, Dr. A.W., of Prov. Two cards, from R. Richardson in France, 1925; and P.B. Upchurch in Palestine, 1933.

            Eagle Stamp Co., of Prov. Three cards from stamp collectors, 1894.

            Guild, Dr. R.A., of Prov. One card, from E.G. Allen in London re book order, 1890.

Hammond, Thomas A., of Prov. One card, from T.B. Prentiss in Quebec, cancelling Masonic subscription, 1881.

            Jones, Dorothy E., of Prov. One card, from A.G.H. in Finland,, 1938.

            Krekorian, K.A., of Prov. One card, written in Turkish/Armenian script, 1888.

            Providence Journal. One card, from George Harris in London, ending subscription, 1881

Retort Gas Stove Co., of Prov. Seven order cards, mostly from Joseph Hoffman in Germany, 1879-1881.

Reynolds, Mrs. Abel, of Saunderstown, R.I. One card from Gus and Josephine Rose, in Prague, undated

Rose, Ella J., of Prov. and Minnesota. Relation unknown. Eight cards, mostly from Gus and Josephine Rose, in Europe, circa 1923-1928.

Tibbitts & Preston, booksellers of Prov. Eight cards from Stevens's American Library, London, 1886.

            Webosky?, F.O., of Prov. One card from A. Beamer? in Ontario, returns goods, undated.

            Whipple, W.W., of Prov. One card from H. Farrow in Summerside, 1885

            Unidentified card in German, 1874.

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Armenian Americans - Rhode Island - Providence

Art metalworkers - Rhode Island - Providence

Autograph books

Eagle Stamp Company (Providence, R.I.)

Jewelry trade - Rhode Island - Providence

Krekorian, K.A.

Maine - Buildings, structures, etc.

Metal Crafts Publishing Company (Providence, R.I.)

Metal Crafts Shop (Providence, R.I.)

Metal Crafts Supply Company (Providence, R.I.)

Providence, R.I. - Commerce

Providence Art Club (Providence, R.I.)

Rhode Island School of Design (Providence, R.I.)

Rose, Margaret P., 1911-1994

Stamp collecting - Rhode Island - Providence

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