Hamilton-Barrow Family Papers

(Mss. 4458)

Inventory

Compiled by

Andrea Ellis Weddle

Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections

Special Collections, Hill Memorial Library

Louisiana State University Libraries

Baton Rouge, Louisiana State University

2007

CONTENTS OF INVENTORY

CONTENTS OF INVENTORY.........................................................................................2
SUMMARY........................................................................................................................3
BIOGRAPHICAL/HISTORICAL NOTE..........................................................................4
SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE.......................................................................................5
LIST OF SUB-GROUPS, SERIES, AND SUBSERIES....................................................6
SERIES DESCRIPTIONS..................................................................................................7
Series I. Correspondence, 1831-1943, undated
Series II. Legal Papers, 1789-1878, undated
Series III. Financial Records, 1820-1895, 1937, undated
Series IV. Newspaper Clippings, 1884-1965, undated
Series V. Miscellaneous (obituaries, poetry, etc.), 1781-1846, undated
INDEX TERMS.............................................................................................................9-10
CONTAINER LIST..........................................................................................................11

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SUMMARY

Size.

0.3 linear feet

Geographic Locations.

Pointe Coupee Parish, La.; West Feliciana Parish, La.; New Orleans, La.

Inclusive Dates.

1781-1965

Bulk Dates.

1820-1945

Languages.

English, Spanish

Summary.

Personal correspondence, legal and financial records pertaining to Bennett I. (James) Barrow of West Feliciana Parish and his descendents.

Reproduction Note.

Copying is permitted.

Copyright.

Copyright of the original materials is retained by descendants of the creators in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

Related Collections.

Barrow (Abram F. and Family) Papers, Mss. 3696, 3745

Bennett H. Barrow Diary, 1833-1846, Mss. 2978

Turnbull-Bowman-Lyons Family Papers, Mss. 4026

Turnbull-Bowman Family Papers, Mss. 4452

Turnbull-Allain Family Papers, Mss. 4261

Citation.

Hamilton-Barrow Family Papers, Mss. 4458, Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections, LSU Libraries, Baton Rouge, La.

Stack Location(s).

Range UU:253

BIOGRAPHICAL/HISTORICAL NOTE

The Barrow family moved to the area of Spanish Louisiana known as New Feliciana in 1799 and built several plantation houses in the area. They were one of the wealthiest families in Louisiana during the antebellum period. Bennett I. (James) Barrow (1811-1873) was the fourth child of Bennett Barrow (1777-1833) and Martha Hill Barrow (c.1780-1829) of Rosebank. On August 22, 1818, Bennett Barrow purchased Rosebank, which was located across Little Bayou Sara Creek from the lands of his brother, William Barrow III of Highland Plantation.

Bennett I. (James) Barrow was born in North Carolina but moved with his family to Louisiana in 1818. He was born Bennett James, but nineteenth century script formed “J” and “I” interchangeably, so he changed his name to Bennett I. to avoid confusion. He married Caroline Eliza Hall (1827-1892), daughter of Nicholas C. and Caroline M.V. Hall of New Orleans in 1840. In 1856, Bennett I. purchased Live Oak Plantation, but due to financial burdens, he lost the plantation for a brief period during Reconstruction. With the help of his son, Stephen Decatur Barrow, Live Oak was purchased again in 1870. After the death of Bennett I. in 1873, his widow remained at Live Oak until her death. The plantation stayed in the family, becoming the home of their son, Nicholas Hall Barrow.

Bennett I. (James) Barrow and Caroline Hall Barrow had ten children: Caroline Eliza Barrow (1845-1903), Stephen Decatur Barrow (1846-1900), Venetia Barrow Ioor (1849-1920), Page Walker Barrow (1851-1903), Nina Olivia Barrow (1853-1866), Martha Eudora Barrow Hamilton (1856-1917), Benjamin Franklin Barrow (1857-1922), Nicholas Hall Barrow (1860-1928), Marian Barrow (1864-1868), and Bennett I. Barrow, Jr. (1869-1927). The children and their families remained in Louisiana, living in West Feliciana and Pointe Coupee Parishes.

Martha Eudora Barrow married Calhoun Barrow Hamilton (1854-1906). The Barrow Family Papers passed to their daughter, Florence Lewis Hamilton McIntyre (1891-1965).

SCOPE AND CONTENT NOTE

The Hamilton-Barrow Family Papers are comprised primarily of documentation and correspondence involving land in West Feliciana Parish along the Mississippi River. Personal correspondence contains a letter from a Confederate soldier during the Civil War (1862) as well as a letter from Ruffin C. Barrow who was stationed in London during the Second World War (1943). Other letters discuss land in West Feliciana Parish (1831-1870), family history (1933) and daily hardships (1945). A number of legal papers are found in the collection, most of which deal with land surveys, claims, and disputes. Of note are original land claims signed by Governors Miró and Carondelet (1789, 1793). Financial papers include statements of account, receipts, and bills of sale. A number of these documents relate to William and John Fort, as Bennett Barrow was the administrator of their estates (1820-1832).

Other papers in the collection include a number of newspaper clippings of obituaries of friends and family members, news relating to agriculture and medical products, and various church announcements and articles. Also included is a great deal of poetry, most of which was written by Bennett Barrow, and a small printed map of the coast of Texas (1846).

LIST OF SERIES

I. Correspondence, 1831-1943, undated

II. Legal Papers, 1789-1878, undated

III. Financial Records, 1820-1895, 1937, undated

IV. Newspaper Clippings, 1884-1965, undated

V. Miscellaneous (obituaries, poetry, etc.), 1781-1846, undated

SERIES DESCRIPTIONS

Series I. Correspondence, 1831-1943, undated

Correspondence of the Bennett I. (James) Barrow family and of the family of his daughter Martha Eudora Barrow Hamilton includes letters primarily concerning land disputes and resolutions in West Feliciana Parish (1831-1870). Personal correspondence consists of a Civil War letter dated February 12, 1862, in which a soldier in the Confederate army writes to his mother explaining the destruction taking place in Tennessee and Kentucky and the rumors of Yankee barbarities. A letter of recommendation of A.A. Smith as an instructor by J.B. Patch, an associate professor in the Natchez High School and tutor in the B.I. Barrow family, is also included (undated).

Later correspondence includes an Easter card to Miss Nina Hamilton (1933) as well as a letter to Nina discussing some family history (June 5, 1933). A letter to Florence McIntyre from her cousin Nellie discusses the daily hardships due to the war, including the fact that her servant is away fighting in India (May 25, 1945). Another World War II letter (October 28, 1943) comes from Ruffin C. Barrow to his aunts and uncles back home. Writing from England where he served in a Bombardment Group, Barrow describes the countryside, blackouts in London, and the young pilots flying in the war. He expresses his sadness to be away from home and his family, but praises the citizenry of England for their effort throughout the war.

Series II. Legal Papers, 1789-1878, undated

The earliest documents in the collection are original land claims and surveys signed by Governors Miró and Carondelet, dated 1789 and 1793, respectively. Other legal papers include a letter recommending William M. Bryant as an overseer (1829), a survey of land near Alston’s Bayou (1830), and a survey of land in West Feliciana Parish (1848). Legal papers involving the Office of the Interior and the General Land Office deal with land claims and disputes (1858-1859). Other documents include a letter granting permission to Caroline E. Barrow to travel to New Orleans (1865) and a permit for her to have cotton transported to Como Landing (1865). Also included is a letter documenting the seizure of Live Oak Plantation and the surrounding property (1869) and the receipt for the subsequent repurchase of the property in 1870. Finally, statements signed by Caroline, Venetia, Eudora, B.F. Barrow promise to comply with the wishes of their father’s will leaving his property to his wife (1873), and certificates of redemption of forfeited land deal with property in West Feliciana Parish (1878).

Series III. Financial Records, 1820-1895, 1937, undated

Financial records include statements of accounts and bills for merchandise, including clothing and furniture (1820-1895), a bill of sale from the purchase of slaves (1842), and a tax list documenting slaves as well as mules and horses (1862). A large amount of receipts are included that document payments of taxes, sales of cotton, payments of medical treatments and legal counseling (1820-1895), and a newspaper subscription to the Daily Crescent for Mr. B.I. Barrow (1867). Many of the account sheets, bills, and receipts concern William and John Fort, as Bennett Barrow was the administrator of their estates (1820-1832).

Series IV. Newspaper Clippings, 1884-1965, undated

Newspaper clippings include an assortment of obituaries of friends and family members, church announcements and religious articles, news relating to agriculture, medical product advertisements, and an assortment of local news. There is an article documenting the death of Stephen Decatur (S.D.) Barrow after the boilers in his gin house exploded while he was inside (1900).

Series V. Miscellaneous (obituaries, poetry, etc.), 1781-1846, undated

A handwritten excerpt from Blackstone’s Commentaries is found in the collection (1781), as is a large amount of poetry, most of which was written by Bennett I. Barrow. Also included are funeral notices, such as those for Anna King Bowman, Martha Barrow, and Caroline Elizabeth Barrow, poetry clippings from newspapers, and a map of the coast of Texas entitled “A Correct Map of the Seat of War” (1846).

INDEX TERMS

Materials pertaining to the topics below may be found in the series indicated by their respective numbers.

Barrow, Bennet I., 1811-1873.

I-III, V

Barrow, Caroline Eliza Hall, 1827-1892.

II

Barrow family.

all

Barrow, Ruffin C.

I

Bayou Sara (La.)

I-IV

Carondelet, Luis Héctor, barón de, 1748-1807.

II

Cotton trade--Louisiana.

III

Fort, William, d.1819.

III

Hamilton family.

all

Hamilton, Martha Eudora Barrow.

I

Hamilton, Nina.

I

Land grants--Louisiana.

I-III

Live Oak Plantation (La.)

I-III

McIntyre, Florence.

I

Miró, Esteban, 1744-1795.

II

Plantation life--Louisiana.

I-III

Plantations--Louisiana--West Feliciana Parish.

I-III

Pointe Coupee Parish (La.)--History--19th century.

I-IV

Slave bills of sale.

III

Tunica (La.)

I-III

United States. Dept. of the Interior.

II

United States. General Land Office.

II

United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Personal narratives, Confederate.

I

West Feliciana Parish (La.)--History--19th century.

I

World War, 1939-1945--Personal narratives, American.

all

CONTAINER LIST

Stack

Location

Box

Folder(s)

Contents (with dates)

UU:253

1

1

Series I, Correspondence, 1831-1867

2

Series I, Correspondence, 1870-1943

3

Series II, Legal papers, 1781-1858

4

Series II, Legal papers, 1858-1869

5

Series II, Legal papers, 1870-1878, undated

6

Series III, Financial records, 1820-1829

7

Series III, Financial records, 1830-1859

8

Series III, Financial records, 1860-1869

9

Series III, Financial records, 1870-1895, 1937, undated

10-11

Series IV, Newspaper clippings (copies), 1884-1965, undated

12

Series V, Miscellaneous (obituaries, poetry, etc.)

13

Series IV, Newspaper clippings (originals)