Manuscript Resources on The Civil War

This guide describes collections documenting the Civil War in the Lower Mississippi Valley, including the states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Arkansas, Tennessee, and Texas, in the Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections (LLMVC) at LSU. The guide includes not only materials from the war years (1861-1865) themselves, but also materials from later periods containing manuscript sources for Civil War history. Thus such sources as post-war reminiscences and records of veterans' groups--materials dealing with the war as memory and experience--will be found alongside soldiers' and civilians' letters, diaries, and daybooks from the war itself. In addition, the guide includes collections of papers of Louisiana and other area soldiers who fought outside of the Lower Mississippi Valley.

LSU's holdings of Civil War manuscripts make LLMVC a rich treasure-trove for researchers. Many researchers are studying these documents from new perspectives, to see what they have to tell us about women's experiences on the home front and about Louisiana's African Americans, a significant number of whom fought for the Union. Louisiana played a central role in the war, with the fall of Port Hudson in July 1863 a critical event. Much of the state was long occupied by Union forces, and LLMVC contains the papers of numerous Union as well as Confederate soldiers. Other areas of strength include materials documenting the siege of Vicksburg, the Battle of Shiloh, and the Red River campaign.

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Brown, Sarah Goodwin. Collection, 1840-1944. 31 items. Location: U:181. Materials documenting the history of Baton Rouge and Clinton, Louisiana. Included are two letters referring to the enlistment of a Northern school teacher in the Confederate army. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1573, 1986.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Civil War, Education, Baton Rouge

Brown, Silas H. Letter, 1863 May 22. 1 item. Location: Misc:B. Civil War soldier. Letter written at an unnamed army camp in Baton Rouge to his family. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4573.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Baton Rouge

Browning, Orville Hickman, 1806-1881. Speech, 1862 March 10. 1 printed item. Location:E:Imprints. U.S. Senator from Illinois. Speech delivered before the United States Senate during debate on a bill to confiscate Confederate property and slaves discusses various implications of the bill. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2918.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Civil War, African Americans

Bruce, Seddon, and Wilkins Plantation Records, 1741-1865 (bulk 1847-1854). 607 items, 6 ms. Vols. Location: S:124-125, J:20. William Webb Wilkins, James Coles Bruce, and James Alexander Seddon, partners in the ownership of sugar and cotton plantations, a saw mill, and a cooper's shop in Saint James Parish and Carroll Parish, Louisiana. Papers include legal documents, bills and receipts, correspondence, and manuscript volumes related to plantation operations and slave matters. Included are photocopies of a Union Army-issued circular and broadsides regarding slave employment and the subsistence of federal troops. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm: University Publications of America Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations Series I, Part 1, Reels 9-10. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2668.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations, Civil War

Brusle, Charles A. Papers, 1854-1905. 32 items (includes 3 vols.). Location: U:20, F:11. Sugar planter of Plaquemine, Iberville Parish, Louisiana; and Confederate army officer; state legilator; tax collector; and sheriff. Papers include a diary, a record book, and scrapbook, primarily concerning Brusle's activities in the Civil War and in politics. Diary contains an account of his trip to the Creek Nation, Indian Territory, to muster a regiment of Creeks into the military service of the Confederacy under orders from General Benjamin McCulloch. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm 5735: University Publications of America Confederate Military Manuscripts Series B, Reel 3. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 558, 1605, 1627.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations, Civil War

Buck-Ellis Family Papers, 1812, 1826-2000. 14 linear ft and 27 volumes. Location: 16:1-14, OS:B, J:27, Vault 1. Family of educators, lawyers, and public officials. Of Tangipahoa Parish, Louisiana. Ellis family papers (1812, 1826-1987) are comprised almost entirely of personal correspondence relating to daily activities, politics, health, religion, employment, military service, education and travel of five generations. Other material includes financial papers, legal documents, speeches and lectures related to the study of law, printed items, account books, diaries, inventories, family scrapbook and minute books of United Daughters of the Confederacy, Blue Cross Chapter. The Carroll and Martina Ellis Buck papers (1922-2000) consist primarily of personal correspondence from family and friends, but include some professional correspondence, primarily from his legal and public career. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4820.

Buman, A. W. Letter, 1865 February 18. 1 item. Location: Misc.:B. Union soldier during the Civil War. Letter from Lincoln Hospital, Washington, D.C., describes the routines and privileges at the hospital, and mentions visits to the public buildings in Washington. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2425.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Medicine

Burguières, Jules M., Jr. Papers, 1699, 1816-1957 (bulk 1911-1915). 2.5 linear ft. Locations: 78:1-2, OS:B, J:30, E:65. Sugarcane planter and researcher, land developer. Papers consist of correspondence, research notes, clippings, photographs, and financial records relating primarily to Jules M. Burguières, Jr.’s involvement in the sugar and timber industries of Louisiana and Florida. Some research material in French and German. The estate papers of Joseph E. Burguières are also included. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1927, 2026, 2134, 2264, 2525.

Burnett family. Papers, 1778-1862. 6 items. Location: Misc.:B, OS:B. Papers include bills of sale of slaves; two pieces of private script; one piece of Continental currency for eight dollars; and an 'extra' edition of the RICHMOND ENQUIRER, giving the text of Confederate President Jefferson Davis' inaugural address. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 901.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, African Americans

Burnham, B. Letters, 1863 January 4-May 23. 2 items. Location: MISC:B. Union soldier in a regiment stationed at Camp Parapet, near New Orleans, and Fort Butte-a-la-Rose (also called Camp of Fort Burton), Louisiana. His regiment was brought to Louisiana by transport ship. Letters describe the conditions of the regiment's camp, Confederate attacks on transport boats, and a African American regiment stationed near Camp Parapet. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3443.