Manuscript Resources on Baton Rouge History

Baton Rouge, Louisiana, was first discovered and named by the French explorer Iberville in 1699, almost three centuries ago. In the eighteenth century, it was ruled successively by the French, British, and Spanish. Incorporated in 1817, Baton Rouge became the state capital in 1849, though it lost that status during the Civil War and would not regain it until 1882.

This guide to manuscript resources on Baton Rouge and East Baton Rouge Parish, of which it is a part, includes a wide variety of materials on the history of the area, among them the papers of Baton Rouge families; the records of businesses and organizations; photographs; newspapers; maps; and oral histories. Although Louisiana State University has been a major part of Baton Rouge for many years, collections relating to LSU are included only if they also relate explicitly to Baton Rouge--for example, the papers of an LSU professor who was also active in community organizations and whose papers documented those organizations. Similarly, the papers of individuals in state government are not included unless they also relate explicitly to Baton Rouge.

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Palfrey Family Papers, 1776-1918. (bulk 1806-1875). 388 items; 21 vols. Location: 77:89, H:22, Mss.Mf:P, 99. Family of planters, businessmen, politicians, public servants and author. Papers of John Palfrey (1768-1843) relate chiefly to the operation of Forlorn Hope Plantation, education of his sons, War of 1812, and reflect plantation life. Topics include the trade embargo, West Florida Controversy and the capture of Baton Rouge, War of 1812, slavery, cotton and salt production, and banking. Family papers pertain to Civil War battles, plantation economics, Confederate government, and Reconstruction. Papersof William Palfrey concern Ricahoc Plantation and a partnership David Weeks. They also discuss the Clinton and Port Hudson Railroad Company (1841-1842). Some items in French and Spanish. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm 6061 and 5322: University Publications of America Records of Southern Plantations from Emancipation to the Great Migration, Series B, Part 6, Reel 12; Records of Ante-Bellum Southern Plantations from the Revolution through the Civil War, Series I, Part 1, Reels 1-4. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 333, 334, 1409, 1442, 1632, 2076, 2580, 2773, 2857.

Palmer, J. Norris (John Norris). Papers, 1848-1969 (bulk 1921-1969). 15.25 linear ft. Location: 44:. Pastor of the First Baptist Church of Baton Rouge. Papers include church and personal correspondence (circa 1848-1967), newspaper clippings, photographs, scrapbooks, yearbooks, church bulletins, brochures, maps, datebooks, and financial records. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3070.

Referenced in Guides: Religion, Baton Rouge

Pegues, Mrs. R. W. Letter, 1924 January 19. 1 item. Location: Misc. Resident of Baton Rouge. Letter to Mrs. Pegues from Gloster, DeSoto Parish, Louisiana, discussing the weather, spread of the grippe, horticulture, poultry, and the poor road conditions to Stonewall, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2600.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Baton Rouge

Peirce, C. Letter, 1832. 1 letter. Location: Misc. Letter from C. Peirce of Baton Rouge, La., to the City Bank of New Orleans at Baton Rouge, requesting a loan of $3,200 on mortgage of his plantation south of Baton Rouge and on 14 slaves. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 238.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Baton Rouge, African Americans

Peirce-Haralson-Rumble. Family Papers, 1809, 1820-1931, undated. 0.5 linear feet. Location: 45:25, OS:P. Correspondence, legal papers, miscellaneous items, and genealogical materials documenting the lives of members of the Peirce, Haralson, and Rumble families, during their residence in Baton Rouge and West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana, and Natchez, Mississippi. The vast majority of correspondence involves communication between women discussing news of family and friends, domestic relations, marriage, and social activities. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4771.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Baton Rouge, Natchez, Mississippi

Pelayo, Mrs. Sidney M. Newspaper clipping collection, 1903-1965, undated 47 items. Location: Nsp., 99:. Newspaper clippings pertaining to Baton Rouge, the 1927 Mississippi River flood, LSU, people and places of historical interest in Louisiana, the United Confederate Veterans, the death of Franklin D. Roosevelt, and World War II. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2600-73.

Pelican Hook and Ladder Company. Charter and constitution, 1876, 1879. 2 printed vols. Location: E:Imprints. Baton Rouge fire company. Includes a copy of the revised constitution of 1879. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 893.

Referenced in Guides: Business, Baton Rouge

Pelican Hook and Ladder Company. Record book, 1893-1895. 1 ms. vol. Location: M:21. Baton Rouge fire company. Record of collection of dues, fines, and other monies from members kept by John Garvin, financial secretary. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1397.

Referenced in Guides: Business, Baton Rouge

Percy, J. H. (John Hereford). Papers, 1717-1978 (bulk 1905-1956). 2.5 linear ft., 23 manuscript volumes. Location: 48:3-4, OS:P. Author of The Percy Family of Mississippi and Louisiana, 1776-1943. Papers consist of genealogical research materials including correspondence, genealogy notes, family histories, transcriptions (mostly typescripts) of historical documents, and manuscript volumes created, compiled, and collected by J. H. Percy. Most genealogy research materials are related to Percy's creation of his book. There are also some business papers related to Percy's real estate, banking, development, and insurance activities in Louisiana and Mississippi. Mss. 4759.

Pereboom, Margaret, 1928-2008. Papers, 1977-1988 (bulk:1979-1982). 3.5 linear feet. Location: U:313-316; OS:P. A child psychologist who served as a member of the East Baton Rouge Parish School Board and as chair of Louisiana Women in Politics. Consists of correspondence, legal files, office files and statistical reports related to the desegregation case, Davis vs. East Baton Rouge Parish School Board, as well as administrative files for Louisiana Women in Politics and research materials on the role of women in elected office. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4958.

Perkins, Huel D. Papers, 1952-1990 (bulk 1978-1990). 9 linear ft. Location: 33A:31-35, OS:P. Faculty member at Louisiana State University, where he served as Assistant Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs (1979-1990) and as Executive Assistant to the Chancellor and Special Assistant to the Chancellor (1990-1998). In 1988, Governor Buddy Roemer appointed him to the State Board of Elementary and Secondary Education (BESE). The collection documents the business affairs of BESE during Huel D. Perkins' tenure on the Board. Materials consist of minutes, correspondence, speeches, reports, and printed material. Subject matter relates to state and federal regulations, vocational/technical education, educational reforms, special education, and the Louisiana Quality Education Support Fund, also known as the 8(g) Fund.The collection also pertains to Perkins' involvement in higher education and the study of the humanities during his tenure as professor and administrator at Southern University and Louisiana State University. Mss. 4155.

Pershing, John J., 1860-1948. Scrapbook, 1931. 1 vol. Location: M:21. General in the United States Army during WWI. Newspaper clippings of serialized versions of Pershing's memoirs "My experiences in the World War." Photographs of Pershing and other notables. Maps and related military and civilian scenes. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2839.

Referenced in Guides: Baton Rouge, 20th Century Wars

Peterson, Pattie P. Papers, 1962-1977. 4.3 linear feet. Location: 43:1-4, OS:P. Correspondence, notes, logs, and printed materials of Pattie P. Peterson (1916-ca. 1977?), state employee, member of Baton Rouge Council on Human Relations, and an advocate of civil rights. Correspondence pertains to race relations in Baton Rouge and the state and efforts to establish charity and volunteer programs. Notes and logs seem to be her record of what her contacts in the African American community told her about their attitudes about race relations and events in Baton Rouge. Printed materials include the newsletters of the Baton Rouge Council on Human Relations and the Unitarian Fellowship of Baton Rouge, as well as articles, publications and pamphlets regarding African American education, race relations in Louisiana, the South, and the United States, and poverty.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Education, Baton Rouge, African Americans

Philip McHugh land surveyt, 1805 January 22. 1 item. Location: Misc.:M. Survey signed by Vicente Sebastian Pintado describes land held by Philip McHugh in the Baton Rouge vicinity of Spanish West Florida. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2834.

Referenced in Guides: Baton Rouge

Photograph of steamboat William Garig, circa 1904-1918. 1 photographic print. Location: MISC:P. Hand-colored mounted photographic print of the steamboat William Garig, a shipping vessel that plied between Melville, Baton Rouge, and New Orleans. Photograph shows the steamer docked with passengers aboard. Mss. 5116.

Referenced in Guides: Transportation, Baton Rouge, Acadiana

Piccadilly Records, 1930-2008. 10 linear ft. Location: 110:11-14, OS:P. Records of Baton Rouge-based restaurateur H.L. “Tandy” Hamilton and Piccadilly Restaurants, LLC. Includes correspondence, speeches, newsletters, manuals, financial documents, photographs, slides, and other records relating to the business and activities of Hamilton, Piccadilly, and their professional and personal associates.

Referenced in Guides: Business, Baton Rouge

Piccadilly Records, 1930-2008. 10 linear ft. Location: 110:11-14, OS:P. Baton Rouge-based restaurant chain, founded in 1944 by Tandy Hannibal Hamilton. Records consist of correspondence, speeches, newsletters, manuals, financial documents, photographs, slides, and other materials relating to the business and activities of Tandy Hamilton and the Piccadilly corporation. Mss. 5015.

Referenced in Guides: Business, Baton Rouge

Pike, George A. Scrapbook, 1855-1865. 1 vol. Location: H:22. Politician, printer and editor of the Baton Rouge 'Comet.' Scrapbook of newspaper clippings pertaining to state politics, the Know-Nothing Party, and the Masonic Order. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2835.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Baton Rouge

Pilot Club of Baton Rouge. Records, 1952-1995 (bulk 1976-1995). 2 linear feet. Location: 49:13. Women's service and social organization made up of business professionals performing charity work in nursing homes, fund-raising activities for the March of Dimes, and other community service work. Collection consists of minutes (1976-1995), correspondence (1975-1995), reports (1975-1995), brochures, newspaper clippings, newsletters and other printed items as well as scrapbooks, photographs and slides (1952-1977) pertaining to the club's activities, and communications with the international organization and state district. Unproc. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4630.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Baton Rouge

Pitts, Florison D. Diary, 1862-1864. 3 vols. (on microfilm). Location: Mss. Mf.:P. Union private in the Civil War and bugler for the Chicago Mercantile Battery. Stationed in Baton Rouge and near New Orleans, Pitts wrote about his contact with civilians and recorded his reactions to places and people. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 921.