The Capen family emigrated from Dorchester, Dorset, England in 1630 and settled in New England. Henry Capen (1832-1906) was a businessman, born in Seneca Fall, New York. He lived 50 years in Bloomington. He operated a crockery and china store in Bloomington, with his father, Luman W. Capen. His son, Fred B. Capen, and grandson, Henry W. Capen, founded the Capen Investment Company (c. 1925) which later became the Capen Insurance Agency (c. 1935).

This collection consists of original documents in the main, with only a few carbon copies and photocopies.