He earned an A.B. from Columbia University in 1891, an A.M. in 1892, a Ph.D. in 1893, and an LL.B. in 1894. In 1893 he published a book on American colonial voting practices.
As president of the Aero Club of America, Bishop offered a $250 prize in 1909 to the first four persons who could fly one kilometer.
Auction of the Cortlandt F. Bishop collection was an important bookselling event.