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Charles S. Colden Papers

Identifier: SCA-0031

Scope and Contents Note

The records of the Charles S. Colden Collection include correspondence, organizational records, newspaper clippings, scrapbooks, photographs, awards/honors, and ephemera. The strength of the collection is found within the organizational records series, including the formation of Queens College. This series gives a historical overview of the involvement and impact of Charles S. Colden on the Queens Community.


  • 1933 - 1987
  • Majority of material found within 1952 - 1960



Collection is open for research. Staff may restrict access at its discretion on the basis of physical condition.


The Charles S. Colden Collection is physically owned by the Queens College Libraries. Literary rights, including copyright, belong to the authors or their legal heirs and assignees. The collection is subject to all copyright laws. Queens College assumes no responsibility for the infringement of copyrights held by the original authors, creators, or producers of materials.

Biographical Note

Born in 1885 to David and Harriet Colden of Whitestone, New York, Charles S. Colden graduated from Jamaica State Normal School and New York University. After five years of practicing law, he was appointed an assistant district attorney in Queens where he served from 1918 to 1921. Colden went on to serve as President of the Flushing Savings Bank from 1929 to 1935. Colden also served as district attorney of Queens from 1932 to 1935.

As the organizer of the Queens College Association in 1935, which campaigned for a college in the county, Colden is often called the father of Queens College. From 1943 to 1956, Colden was Justice of the New York State Supreme Court and in 1945 he became President of the Bowne House Historical Society.

In 1956, Colden moved on to become the official referee of the New York State Supreme Court. Queens College presented him with an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws that same year. In September of 1960, Charles S. Colden passed away in Flushing Hospital in Queens. He is buried in Flushing Cemetery.

Source consulted:

Charles Colden, ex-justice, dead. (1960, September). The New York Times, 37.


11 Linear Feet (10 document boxes and 7 flat boxes)

Language of Materials



This collection contains the professional and personal papers of Charles S. Colden, founder of Queens College. This collection includes correspondence, legal records, print materials, newspaper clippings, photographs, awards/honors, and various papers. Also included are minutes, speeches, invitations, and various papers pertaining specifically to Queens College and the Queens College Association.

Arrangement Note

The collection is organized into twelve series.


Some items donated by Samuel Tripp. Other items accumulated by Queens College.

Processing Information Note

Print finding aid created by Carmen Cowick and approved by Alexandra Dolan-Mescal, Spring 2014. Machine readable finding aid created by Carmen Cowick, Spring 2014

Carmen Cowick, Spring 2014
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Code for undetermined script

Repository Details

Part of the Queens College (New York, N.Y.) Special Collections and Archives Repository

Queens College Library, CUNY
Benjamin Rosenthal Library RO317
65-30 Kissena Boulevard
Flushing 11367 USA us