Special Collections
LSU Libraries
Home / Online Catalog Site A-Z Help    





(Mss. 4795)






Compiled by

Catherine G. Jones




Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections

Special Collections, Hill Memorial Library

Louisiana State University Libraries

Baton Rouge, Louisiana








Contents of inventory



Biographical/Historical Note                                        

Scope and Content Note                                             

List of Series and Subseries                                         

Series and Subseries Descriptions                                

Index Terms                                                                

Container List                                                              


Use of manuscript materials.  If you wish to examine items in the manuscript group, please fill out a call slip specifying the materials you wish to see. Consult the Container List for location information needed on the call slip.


Photocopying.  Should you wish to request photocopies, please consult a staff member before segregating items to be copied.  The existing order and arrangement of unbound material must be maintained.


Publication.  Readers assume full responsibility for compliance with laws regarding copyright, literary property rights, and libel.


Permission to examine archival and manuscript materials does not constitute permission to publish.  Any publication of such materials beyond the limits of fair use requires specific prior written permission.  Requests for permission to publish should be addressed in writing to the Head, LLMVC, Special Collections, LSU Libraries, Baton Rouge, LA 70803-3300. When permission to publish is granted, two copies of the publication will be requested for the LLMVC.


Proper acknowledgement of LLMVC materials must be made in any resulting writing or publications.  The correct form of citation for this manuscript group is given on the summary page.  Copies of scholarly publications based on research in the Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections are welcomed.





Size.                                        .6 linear ft. (2 boxes, 1 OS folder)


Geographic Locations.           Natchez, Mississippi


Inclusive Dates.                     1846-1878; 1942, n.d.


Bulk Dates.                            1856-1868


Language.                               English


Summary.                               Correspondence, newspaper clippings, printed items, photographs,

                                                and miscellaneous items of the McMurran family of Natchez,

                                                Mississippi, and Austen family of Baltimore, Maryland. Items

                                                pertain principally to family life, with many concerning antebellum

                                                Natchez and the U.S. Civil War. 


Access.                                   No restrictions


Copyright.                               Physical rights are retained by the LSU Libraries. Copyright of the

                                                original materials is retained by descendents of the creators of the

                                                material in accordance with U.S. copyright law.


Citation.                                  McMurran-Austen Family Papers, Louisiana and Lower

                                                Mississippi Valley Collections, LSU Libraries, Baton Rouge,



Stack Location.                      U:298, OS:M




Biographical/Historical Note


John T. McMurran (1801-1866), a lawyer and state senator in Natchez, Mississippi, was married to the former Mary Louise Turner (1814-1891), and they built Melrose near Natchez, Mississippi in 1845.  Together they had two children, John T. McMurran, Jr., and Mary Elizabeth McMurran (1835-1861).  Melrose passed from the family during the U.S. Civil War.  John Jr. married Alie Austen (d.1899) of Baltimore County, Maryland, in 1856, and they resided at Riverside Plantation in Wilkinson County, Miss., until the Civil War.  During the war, John enlisted in a local artillery unit but was discharged in 1862 for deafness.  In 1864 he worked as a clerk for the federal war department in Washington D.C.  John Jr. and Alie had two daughters, Caroline (Carrie) and Alice (Alie), who moved with their mother from Riverside to her family home, Filstone Farm in Baltimore County, Maryland, during the Civil War. Mary Elizabeth married Farar Conner and lived in Natchez before moving to New Orleans, Louisiana, in 1857. They had two children, a son, Farar (Fazee), and a daughter.  Farar remarried after Mary Elizabeth’s death from a spinal disease in 1864. 



Scope and Content Note


Personal correspondence among John T. McMurran, Mary Louise McMurran, Alie McMurran, John T. McMurran, Jr., Mary Elizabeth Conner, George Austen, Caroline Austen, John Austen, Colgate (Coly) Gilbert, Edward Turner, Elizabeth Turner, Fanny Conner, Duncan McCulloch, the Austen family, and several unidentified correspondents. Correspondence relates primarily to family matters, including the Civil War and home life.  Included is a telegram notifying John Jr. of his father’s death and requests he go to Natchez (1867).  Printed items and graphic materials contain a number of newspaper clippings concerning John T. McMurran Sr.’s death in a steamboat accident, Mr. and Mrs. J. T. McMurran Jr.’s calling cards and photographs of Alie and Carrie, John Jr. and Alie’s daughters.  Miscellaneous items include, a household inventory, an invoice, J. T. McMurran, Jr.’s discharge from the Confederate army in 1862, military passes, , a composition by Carrie A. McMurran, a printed wedding invitation for Carrie McMurran to LT F. L. Dodds, U.S.A., and several written poems. 






I.          Correspondence, 1846-1878; 1942, n.d.


II.         Printed Items and Graphic Materials, 1856-1878, n.d.


III.       Miscellaneous, 1862-1881, n.d.







I.                      Correspondence, 1846-1878; 1942, n.d.


Correspondence, primarily written by Mary Louise McMurran and John T. McMurran, Jr. to Alie Austen McMurren, pertains to John and Alie’s wedding (1856); planters and plantation life (1855-56); a slave wedding (1856); ambrotypes and daguerreotypes (1856); the yellow fever epidemic (1856); the Know-Nothing National Convention in Baltimore (1856).  Correspondence also includes a description of Riverside Plantation’s slaves (1857); details of Mary Elizabeth Conner’s death (1864); comments about the war, its leaders, and current operations (includes negative comments about the South from John Jr.) (1864); love letters from John Jr. to Alie (1864); details of a non-fatal shooting of John Sr. (1865); description of the post-war south (1865); account of bitterness with Yankees (1866); remarks and details of the death of John Sr. (1867); and a response to John Jr.’s request for forgiveness for his absence and work for the federal government (1868).


II.                    Printed Items and Graphic Materials, 1856-1878, n.d.


Graphic materials are comprised of two undated photographs of Alie and Carrie McMurran.  Printed Items contain calling cards of John and Alie McMurran (1856), a printed invitation to Carrie McMurran’s wedding (1880), wedding invitation for Mary S. Fackler to John Torrey, Jr. (1869), a poem (1878), and an obituary for Major General John Anthony Quitman, U.S.A., member of Congress from Mississippi (n.d.).



III.                   Miscellaneous Items, 1862-1881, n.d.


Miscellaneous items include the military discharge of John T. McMurran, Jr., for deafness (1862), military pass allowing Alie McMurran to pass through the lines with her children and baggage (1863), military pass allowing John T. McMurran to pass through the lines with his silver and baggage (1864), inventory of an unidentified home (n.d.), several poems (1881, n.d.) and the Turner family genealogy (1879).





American Party


Austen, Caroline (d.1864)


Austen Family

            I, II, III

Austen, George (d.1876)


Conner, Farar


Conner, Mary Elizabeth McMurran (1835-1864)




Filstone Farm (Md.)




McMurran Family

            I, II, III

McMurran, Alie Austen (d.1899)


McMurran John T. (1807-1866)

            I, III

McMurran, John T., Jr.

            I, III

McMurran, Mary Louise (1814-1891)


Melrose (Natchez, Miss.)

            I, II

Military Passes


Mississippi—History—19th Century

            I, III

Mississippi—History—Civil War, 1861-1865—Personal Narratives


Mississippi—Politics and Government—to 1865

            I, III

Mississippi—Social Life and Customs—19th Century


Natchez (Miss.)—History—19th Century

            I, III

Natchez (Miss.)—Social Life and Customs—1:.5in'>Photoprints


Plantation Owners—Mississippi

            I, III


            I, II



Riverside Plantation (Miss.)





            I, III

United States—History—Civil War, 1861-1865—Military Life


Women—Mississippi—History—19th Century







Stack Location           Box                 Folders                        Contents______________________


Series I.  Correspondence


U:298                 1                    1-7                  1846-June 1864.


            U:298               2                    1-4                  July 1864-1878, n.d.                             


Series II.  Printed Items and Graphic Materials


U:298                 2                    5                     Photographs of Carrie and Alie McMurran,



U:298                2                    6                     At Home announcement, 1869; Carrie

McMurran printed wedding invitation, 1880

John T and Alie McMurran calling card, n.d.; Major General John Anthony Quitman, U.S.A. obituary, n.d.


            OS:M               N/A                 N/A                 newspaper article about Natchez, n.d.;

newspaper articles about steamboat accident

that killed John T. McMurran, Sr., 1867.


Series III.  Miscellaneous Items


U:298                 2                    6                     John T. McMurran, Jr. military discharge

1862; written military passes, 1863-64;

poems, n.d., 1878;  Turner family genealogy, 1870; notes, n.d.; unidentified household inventory, n.d.


OS:M               N/A                 N/A                 Invoice, 1858; poem, 1872.