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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Andrews, John. Letter, 1811 April 23. 1 letter. Location OS:A. John Andrews was a sergeant stationed at Fort Claiborne in Natchitoches, Louisiana. Andrews writes to his parents of his service and the events surrounding the acquisition of Baton Rouge by the Americans. The letter mentions Col. Pike and Col. Covington. Mss. 5173.

Referenced in Guides: Baton Rouge

Anonymous account book (M), 1748. 1 volume. Location: Vault:1. Account book for Baton Rouge merchant containing entries for mercantile items, loans, and passage and shipping to the West Indies (Jan. 1-March 20, 1748). For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 519.

Referenced in Guides: Transportation, Business, Baton Rouge

Anonymous Civil War letter, 1863 April 18. 1 item. Location: Misc:A Letter from a Union camp in Baton Rouge describing camp life and mentioning the siege of Port Hudson. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2824.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Baton Rouge

Anonymous prescription book, 1900-1902. 1 volume. Location: F:4. Volume containing approximately 6,000 prescriptions principally from Baton Rouge medical doctors. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 893.

Referenced in Guides: Baton Rouge, Medicine

Arceneaux, William. Papers, 1964-2007 (bulk 1972-2007). 15 linear feet and 20 volumes. Locations: 4:36, 4:43, 110:4-11, OS:A, Vault:2. Louisiana higher education official. Papers consist of correspondence, business papers, photographs, printed items, and scrapbooks related to the professional, civic, and personal activities of William Arceneaux. A small amount of correspondence is in French and Spanish. For further information, see online catalog Mss. 4107.

Arndt, Hilda C. M. and Harrison A. Dobbs Papers, 1946-1956. 242 items. Location: D:94. Faculty members of the School of Social Welfare, LSU, Baton Rouge. Correspondence, records of Arndt's and Dobbs' community and public service activities, reports, and newspaper clippings. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2508, 2518.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Baton Rouge, LSU

Aswell, James B., Jr. Letters, 1954-1955. 16 items. Location: MISC:A. Author and resident of Natchitoches, Louisiana; son of James B. Aswell (1869-1931), educator and U.S. congressman. Letters of James B. Aswell, Jr. to Charles East pertain to book reviews written by Aswell for the MORNING ADVOCATE, to other writings, and to personal matters. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3048.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Baton Rouge

Augur, Christopher Columbus, 1821-1898. Photograph, undated 1 item. Location:E:73. Union general and commander of the District of Baton Rouge (1862) and of troops attacking Port Hudson. Carte-de-visite photograph of Augur in uniform. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3538.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Baton Rouge

Avery, Dudley. Letters, 1815 January. 2 items [photostats]. Location: Misc.:A. Physician, resident of Baton Rouge, and speaker of the house in the West Florida legislature. Letters from Dr. Avery to Mrs. Mary Ann Avery during his service as a volunteer medical doctor with the Louisiana militia in New Orleans. Letters contain an account of the Battle of New Orleans. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1874

Bacon, Albert C. Photographs and Papers, 1916-1963, undated (bulk 1948-1955). 0.75 linear ft. Location: UU: 108. World War I veteran, photographer, and musician from Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Primarily consists of photographic negatives and prints on subjects such as Baton Rouge, the Mississippi River, the LSU campus, chemical plants and oil refineries, local parades, and area flooding circa 1950. Writings include an account of Bacon’s service as a United States Marine in France during World War I. Printed materials include Baton Rouge postcards, LSU ephemera, Delta Zeta publications, and a scrapbook about Huey P. Long. Mss. 1625.