Collection ASM0062 - Phanor James Eder papers

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Phanor James Eder papers


  • 1644-1971 (Creation)
  • 1880-1971 (Creation)


24 Boxes

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Biographical history

Phanor James Eder was born in Palmira, Colombia on December 11, 1880. He was the son of Santiago M. Eder, a lawyer and industrial pioneer in the Cauca Valley and Lizzie Benjamin, of London.

Phanor Eder completed his studies in public and private schools in London, New York and Belgium. He received his bachelor's degree from City College of New York in 1900 and graduated from Harvard Law School in 1903. That same year he was named special student assigned to the faculty at the University of Liege in Belgium, from 1903 to 1904.

He specialized in legal work associated with Latin America, concentrating on mining laws of Colombia. He devoted most of his work to his principal client, the South America Gold and Platinum Company, later the International Mining Company.

Mr. Eder was a former Colombian ad honorem vice-consul in New York in 1904. During World War I, he served as legal advisor to the Mercantile Bank of the Americas. From 1917 to 1922 he also served as secretary and vice-president of the Mercantile Bank of the Americas.

Later, he joined the New York law firm of Hordin and Hess, which afterwards became Hordin, Hess, Eder and Rashap, for which Eder continued as counselor after his retirement from active practice in 1969.

In 1947 Dr. Eder opened the legal program of the Inter-American Law Institute at New York University, of which he was adjunct professor of law.

In 1952, he was honored by the Institute for realizing three of his comparative law projects: the transformation of the American Foreign Law Association into a national body recognized by UNESCO as the official United States organization in comparative law; the establishment of the Inter-American Law Institute as a

permanent feature of the New York University Law Center and the founding of the American Journal of Comparative Law.

He was the author of Colombia, published in 1913; Comparative Survey of Anglo-American and Latin American Law, 1950; a book about his father published in Spanish in Colombia, Santiago M. Eder, El Fundador, and other works. Phanor J. Eder died at the age of 90 on March 5, 1971 in New York City while writing his memoirs.

Content and structure elements

Scope and content

The Phanor James Eder collection consists mainly of correspondence.  The letters are from the mid 1800's to the early 1900's.  The bulk of the correspondence is addressed to Santiago M. Eder, Dr. Eder's father.  These letters are divided into local and foreign correspondence and are addressed to Santiago M. Eder by businessmen who bought or sold some sort of merchandise to  him. Most of the letters deal with the sugar mills and other farm plantations owned by Santiago Eder. Although most of the correspondence belongs to Santiago M. Eder, there is some correspondence belonging to James Eder, Phanor's son and Charles (Chaz) and Henry J. Eder, Phanor's brothers. They all had a part in the Cauca Valley Agricultural Company. In this collection we also find correspondence dealing with the Cauca Valley Agricultural Company, a sugar mill owned by the Eder family.  Just a small portion of the correspondence deals with the Eder family's personal matters.

Two microfilms, manuscripts and ledgers are included in the collection.  The film and manuscripts are agriculturally related, dealing with the land of Colombia. The ledgers are records of businesses owned by the Eders.

The Eder Collection is primarily business related, but also has material which deals with the government of Colombia and some which deals with court cases in which Santiago M. Eder was one of the lawyers involved. The collection includes brochures and pamphlets about Colombia, which describe the land and the people. They seem to be commercially oriented. There are photocopies of material belonging to the United States National Archives which deal with legal matters. Most of these photocopies belong to group 59 of the National Archives in Washington, D.C.

The collection also includes a substantial number of maps, mainly of Colombia and the Caribbean/West Indies including one from a 16th Century atlas. The maps are housed separately from the rest of the collection.

System of arrangement

Boxes 1-7:  Correspondence File, 1868-1943.  2.94 lin. ft. Arranged in chronological order.  No index. This series contains the correspondence of Santiago M. Eder of both a business related and personal nature (1-6).    Box 6 also contains some correspondence of Charles J.Eder and the Cauca Valley Agricultural Company.  Box 7 contains the foreign correspondence of the Cauca Valley Agricultural Co. as well as A.L.S. Kathleen Rinoli, and two microfilms.

Boxes 8-12: Colombia Material, 1864-1969.  2.1 lin. ft. Arranged alphabetically.  No index. This series contains material related to and collected by Eder about Colombia and concerning his work there.  Includes act and deeds (8), court hearings (10), and government documents (11).

Boxes 13-23:  Bound Pamphlet Volumes, 1825-1956.  4.62 lin. ft.  Arranged by subject. Appendix I arranged alphabetically by title).  Indexed alphabetically by author. This series contains pamphlets collected and bound by Eder, about Colombia, arranged according to subject.  The subjects are listed in the series description for Appendix I.

Box 24: Folio Miscellanea, 1947-1960.  0.47 lin. ft. No index. This series contains miscellanea in folio size, including newspaper articles, a history of the United States, and calendars of Eder's company in Colombia.

Conditions of access and use elements

Conditions governing access

This collection is open for research.

Physical access

Items from this collection are kept on-campus and may be requested from the first floor Kislak Center in the Otto G. Richter Library at University of Miami.

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Conditions governing reproduction

Phanor James Eder Papers Finding Aid © 1982 University of Miami. Requests to reproduce or publish materials from this collection should be directed to

Languages of the material

  • English
  • Spanish

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Appraisal, destruction and scheduling information

The collection of Phanor James Eder, a distinguished

international attorney and author of several books were donated

by him to the University of Miami when he sought a doctoral

dissertation on the coffee industry in Colombia, by Dr. Robert

Carlyle Beyer, Associate Professor of Hispanic American History

at the University of Miami.


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129.4 KiB


May 18, 2018 2:56 PM

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