Manuscript Resources on Business History

This guide describes collections documenting business history in the Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections (LLMVC) at LSU. It includes the business papers of merchants; manufacturers; planters; factors; commission brokers; and lawyers. It also contains business records of stores; companies; plantations and plantation stores; banks; hotels and inns; restaurants and taverns; and blacksmiths and livery stables. There are also materials on cotton and sugar; national and international trade; and shipping, often by steamboat. Finally, there are materials relating to labor including information about wages, contracts, and conditions.

Formats represented in these collections include account books and ledgers; bills and receipts; business correspondence; and advertising. Most of the collections are from Louisiana and Mississippi, but there are also materials from other areas of the Lower Mississippi Valley. Several collections deal with business relations between the South and the Northeast, and include records of New York, Massachusetts, Maryland, Rhode Island, and Connecticut firms.

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Exxon Mobil Corporation. ExxonMobil Baton Rouge historic collection, 1924-2016 (bulk 1950-1999). 9 linear ft., 1 manuscript volume. Location: 76:1-8; 104:-105:; OS:E. The collection consists of printed materials (1924-2016) created by or about Exxon Baton Rouge, its predecessors or divisions, and the oil industry, and photographs (bulk 1950-1999) related to the production of Exxon Baton Rouge’s and its predecessors’ in-house print media, especially the Baton Rouge Record. Photographic materials are arranged as they arrived from the corporation in two large divisions-one identified by the publication in which the images were used and the other by topic. Mss. 5030.

Referenced in Guides: Business, Baton Rouge

A. Bell and Company. Papers, 1835, 1836. 2 items. Location: Misc.:B. Cotton broker of New York City. Letters from factors at Petersburg, Virginia, and Fayetteville, North Carolina, regarding the cotton market and amount of cotton expected from Tennessee and North Alabama. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2356.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Business

A. C. Skiles Lumber Company. Records, 1895-1942. 5 linear ft., 38 volumes. Location: 1:24-31. Retail lumber dealer in Opelousas, St. Landry Parish, Louisiana. Business records consist chiefly of correspondence with suppliers and customers and include bills, receipts, and printed items. Manuscript volumes include a letterpress copy book, ledgers, sales books, journals, cash books, an index, and day books. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3143.

Referenced in Guides: Business

A. F. Cochran & Co. Letter, 1848 Mar. 10. 1 letter. Location: MISC:A. A. F. Cochran & Co. of New Orleans, La., writes Messrs. Silas Peirce & Co. of Boston, Mass., regarding the sale of wine and fruit in New Orleans. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4039.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans to 1861, Business

A. Ledoux and Company. Record book, 1856-1857. 1 volume (110 pages). Location: W:53. Plantation record book kept by Samuel Leigh and Lewis F. Pulliam, overseers of the sugar plantation owned by A. Ledoux and Company, Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana. Available on microfilm 5322: University Publications of America Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations Series I, Part 1, Reel 9. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 964.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations, Business

A. M. & J. C. Dupont (Firm). Account books, 1887-1933. 78 vols. Location: L:16-20. Retail and wholesale merchants of Houma, Terrebonne Parish, Louisiana. Directors of the firm included Albert M. Dupont, Sr., Ernest D. Dupont, Julius Dupont, and Lawrence H. Dupont. Records include daily accounts of sales; current and monthly customer accounts; records of purchases and other expenses; out-of-date and unpaid accounts; records of profits and losses; payroll records; and check book stubs and cancelled checks. Included in the miscellaneous volumes are minutes to meetings of the Parish Sunday School Association of Terrebonne and Lafourche Parishes. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 511.

Referenced in Guides: Education, Business

Abadie, Joseph Ferdinand. Abstract, 1900-1938. 1 item (150 pages). Location: U:91. An abstract of the title of lands situated in St. John the Baptist Parish, La., belonging to Joseph Ferdinand Abadie. Information was taken from original parish records by Claude H. Levet and signed by him at Edgard, La. The abstract enumerates all financial instruments dealing with the sales and successions of the property for fifty-five years. Mss. 1.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Abe Mayer and Brother. Account books, 1876-1878. 2 vols. Location: G:1, Box. General merchants of Clinton, East Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. Record of account of Mrs. M. A. Silliman with Abe Mayer and Brother. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 391, 1100.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Business

Abraham Bell & Co. Letters and receipts, 1841-1844. 5 items. Location: Misc:A. Quaker-owned shipping merchant company of New York City, with business interests in New Orleans, Louisiana. Two receipts document cotton purchased in , for Abraham Bell & Co. One letter discusses American and English cotton and freight prices, and social matters. A bill of lading and a letter document the shipment of personal goods from New York. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4675.

Acadia Plantation records, 1809-2004 (bulk 1940-1979). 49 linear ft., 30 volumes, 8 rolls. Location: 93:7-30; J:4; 75:; MAP CAGE (UNNUMBERED CASE); 1 NORTH (ON TOP OF MICROFILM CABINET). A working sugar plantation, Acadia Plantation of Lafourche Parish, Louisiana is comprised of three major properties originally known as Acadia Plantation, St. Brigitte Plantation, and Evergreen Plantation. It was acquired in 1875 by Edward J. Gay, became the residence of Representative Andrew and Mrs. Anna Gay Price. Records are comprised of correspondence, financial and legal documents, printed items, volumes, maps, plats, and photographs. Papers document business and legal affairs of the plantation owners and operators, as well as plantation operations such as sugar cane farming, the crops of tenant farmers on the property, and the planning and development of the plantation lands throughout the 19th and 20th centuries. Mss. 4906.

Account book, 1796-1799. 1 ms. vol., 1 mf reel. Location: Vault, Mss. Mf.:A. New Orleans, Louisiana, merchant. Account book recording names and accounts of customers. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1054.

Account Book, 1847-1848. 1 volume. Location: N:1. This account book contains transactions for clothing, shoes, and boots. It also includes transactions for fabric and blankets. The transactions took place in New Orleans, Louisiana.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans to 1861, Business

Account book, 1888-1890. 1 vol. (513 p.). Location: B:72. Account book of printing or stationery business, probably located in New Orleans, Louisiana. Entries relate to stationery and printed products. Pages 1-134 contain general entries; pages 351 to 410 contain entries for Joseph J. Hooper; pages 451-477 contain entries for George Ellis. For further information, see online catalog. Mss.4541.

Adams, Israel L., 1801-1860. Family Papers, 1813-1890 (bulk 1852-1866). 0.5 linear ft. (505 items, 1 ms. Vol.). Location: Y:83, Mss. Mf.:A, E:Imprints. Merchant and farmer of Natchez, Mississippi. Collection consists of correspondence, bills, receipts, and printed items. Letters of the Adams children and others describe the Civil War in Arkansas and Mississippi. Some letters describe experiences of an immigrant cotton farmer in Sao Paulo, Brazil; other papers relate to German immigrants. Some letters in German. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm 5735: University Publications of America Confederate Military Manuscripts Series B, Reel 1. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3637.

Adler, Inc. Discount Card, 1926-1927. 1 item. Location: E:Imprints. Silk and woolen store, Chicago, Illinois. Card, issued to Mrs. E. Petterson, worth ten percent discount on all goods and materials purchased during 1926-1927. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2600.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Affleck, Thomas. Papers, 1807-1935 (bulk 1842-1868). 12 linear feet, 43 manuscript volumes, 6 printed volumes, 26 microfilm reels. Location: W:110-121, J:25, OS:A, MSS.MF:A. Native of Scotland who established one of the first commercial nurseries in the South and published widely on scientific and agricultural subjects. He also published the Southern Rural Almanac and Plantation Garden Calendar from 1845 to the 1860s. Early papers concern Affleck's family in Scotland. Papers from 1842 to 1859 pertain to the management of Affleck's wife's plantation near Natchez, Mississippi, his commercial nursery, and his service as agricultural editor of several newspapers. Civil War letters by Affleck's sons describe battles, camp life, and troop movements. Post-Civil War papers describe Affleck's agricultural and speculative enterprises. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3, 4, 1110, 1263, 1264.

Alabama cotton sales and shipping statements collection, 1834-1927. 53 items. Location: A:55. Collection consisting of statements from cotton factors of Mobile, Alabama, which show freight and related charges for handling and commissions. Included are waybills for the steamers Magnolia, Lucy E. Gastrell, Hard Cash, and Nettie Quill. Also included is a manifest for the steamer Peri. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1717.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Transportation, Business

Alexander, William H. Papers, 1949-1983. 3 linear ft. Location: 110:20-21. William H. Alexander was a professor in the Department of Agricultural Economics and Agribusiness at Louisiana State University. The papers consist of research materials and writings concerning his research on the economic aspects of dairying and the trade in milk. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4456.

Referenced in Guides: Business, LSU

Alexandria, Louisiana photographs, 1920-1921. 5 photographic prints. Location: 65:5. Prints depict scenes around Alexandria: the Bolton High School girls' basketball team (1920); a state meeting of officials in protest of a phone rate raise (originally created by Bridendall, 1921); a truck owned by H.T. Cottam & Co. (1920); the Bernstein Buick Co. dealership displayng Franklin and Buick models (circa 1920); and a carnival in front of Alexandria City Hall. Mss. 3691.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Transportation, Women, Business

Alleman, Narcisse. Ledger, 1892-1893. 1 vol. Location: F:16. Owner of a general mercantile store in Centerville, St. Mary Parish, Louisiana. Ledger recording items purchased and prices charged for items at the store. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2799.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Ambrose Lanfear & Co. letter, 1856 May 3-10. 1 letter. Location: Misc. Ambrose Lanfear & Co. of New Orleans, La., writes the Pastré brothers of Marseilles, France, regarding the lumber and cotton trades. In French. Mss. 3916.

Referenced in Guides: Business

American Life Insurance Company. Pamphlet, 1872. 1 pamphlet. Location: E:Imprints. Pamphlet advertising the American Life Insurance Company of Philadelphia, Pa., printed especially for its office in Canton, Miss. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1198.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Amite Navigation Company. Articles of Agreement, 1818 March 29. 1 item [copy]. Location: Misc:A. Established in 1817 to open the Amite River of Louisiana for navigation. Articles of agreement executed in 1817 outlining the company's objective of opening the Amite River to navigation by boats from the confluence of its branches to Galveston, Ascension Parish, Louisiana. Provisions of the article are listed along with names of subscribers and the number of shares underwritten by each subscriber. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1032.

Referenced in Guides: Transportation, Business

Anderson, Decatur C. Papers, 1876-1892. 6 items. Location: Misc.:A, OS:A. Mortgage deed of Anderson to Kate Ketchum for property located in Montrose, Baldwin County, Alabama (1874); statements of Anderson's accounts with Mobile merchants and contractors (1890); and a tax receipt (1892). For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 913.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Business

Andrew Clow and Company. Papers, 1790-1863, 1873. 36 items. Location: A:26. Merchant of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Papers of Andrew Clow and Co. are comprised of personal and business correspondence, promissary notes, receipts, and legal documents. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 850.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Annual report of the New Orleans Belt and Terminal Co. to the Interstate Commerce Commission of the United States, 1903. 2 v. Location: J:25. The New Orleans Belt and Terminal Company was formed in 1901 to operate the property of the New Orleans and Western Railroad Company. Annual reports to the ICC report the company's history, officers, assets, expenditures, earnings, and traffic and mileage statistics, as well as describe its equipment and relationship to the New Orleans and Western Railroad Company and the New Orleans Terminal Company. For more information, see the online catalog. Mss. 4871.

Referenced in Guides: Transportation, New Orleans 1866-, Business

Anonymous account, 1786-1788. 1 item. Location: Misc:A. Account of an unidentified merchant in New Orleans, Louisiana. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 133.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans to 1861, Business, French

Anonymous account book, 1858-1866. 1 volume. Location: F:3. Anonymous account book of a Scottish firm engaged in the making and repair of furniture and in general carpentry work. Among the accounts is one for James Robert Hope-Scott of Abbotsford, grandson-in-law of Scottish novelist Sir Walter Scott. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2600.

Referenced in Guides: Business, Literature

Anonymous account book, 1903-1916. 1 volume. Location: N:2. Account book most likely from Vermilion Parish, Cameron Parish, or Jefferson Davis Parish. Includes a list of subscribers, mostly in Gueydan but also in Kaplan, Grand Chenier, Lake Arthur, and Pecan Island. Items charged to accounts include coal, rice, oats, corn, and mixed feed. Services charged to accounts include storage, bridle repairs, and cash advances. Mss. 3942.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous account book (C), 1834-1836. 1 volume. Location: F:1. Ledger of a general merchandise store in St. Helena Parish, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 58.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous account book (E), 1866-1870. 1 volume. Location: F:1. Record book of an unidentified general merchandise store in New Orleans, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 312.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans 1866-, Business

Anonymous account book (F), 1891. 1 volume. Location: F:1. Unidentified ledger of cash accounts. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 218.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous account book (H), 1866-1879. 1 volume. Location: F:1. Journal lists food, fuel, and beverages purchased for a restaurant in France. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 458.

Referenced in Guides: Business, French

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 account books, 1919-1920. 3 volumes. Location: J:10. Anonymous account books of a general merchandise store in Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 927.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous account books (G), 1869-1886. 4 volumes. Location: F:1. Unidentified ledgers of a general merchandise firm in West Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 485.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous account books (L), 1919-1920. 3 volumes. Location: J:10. Anonymous account books of a general merchandise store in Natchitoches Parish, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 927.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous cashbooks (K), 1867-1902. 3 volumes. Location: F:2. Accounts for a general store in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. Entries list the names of many of the prominent planters in the area and include some plantation records. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 848.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Business

Anonymous Charleston, South Carolina letter, 1839 Mar. 21. 1 letter. Location: Misc:A. An unknown scribe in Charleston, South Carolina, writes to Mr. S. Stocking of Chatham, Connecticut, describing his accounting work, his relationship with his superiors, the gift of an instrument shaped like a guitar with a bellows for the left hand and keys for the right, foreign members of the city's orchestra who board at the same hotel as he, his efforts to learn the trumpet, and his friendship with Louis Parocheau. Mss. 4099.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous commercial journal, 1836 July-August. 1 volume. Location: M:18. Journal belonging to a son of a New Orleans, Louisiana commission merchant, probably a schoolboy. Day-to-day entries made while he was working in his father's firm describe business transactions, office duties, and bank affairs; and record personal observations, descriptions of merchandise, and a few local incidents. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2168.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans to 1861, Education, Business

Anonymous diary, 1830-1847. 3 diaries. Location: 31:. A diary written by an anonymous author in three volumes between January 1830 and October 1847. The author wrote about a variety of topics pertaining to daily life including the weather, visitors, purchases, tasks, errands, elections, deaths, and burials. The author also discusses financial issues such as investment dividends, accounts with the Bank of Scotland, listing of shares of stock held by individuals, and prices of goods. Part of the George DeForest Collection, vols. 10-12. Mss. 1350.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous dry goods store ledger, circa 1920-1929. 1 volume. Location: N:2. Ledger contains records of customer accounts and lists of purchases from a dry goods store, most likely located in New Orleans. Customers listed include Mrs. Andrew Stewart of Oak Alley Plantation, Mrs. Harry P. Williams (Marguerite Clark Williams), and Mrs. E. A. McIlhenny. Items sold include women and children's clothing, luncheon and bridge sets, bolts of fabric, and napkins. Mss. 5341

Referenced in Guides: Women, New Orleans 1866-, Business

Anonymous lumber company account book, 1841-1842. 1 volume. Location: H:3. Unidentified lumber dealer, possibly Andrew Brown, in Natchez, Mississippi. Daybook of accounts of sales of lumber and shingles. Prominent purchasers include Thomas Affleck, B. L. C. Wailes, John A. Quitman, Francis Surget, John Jenkins, Stephen Duncan, and Samuel Postelwaite. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 259.

Referenced in Guides: Business, Natchez, Mississippi

Anonymous lumber company ledger, 1899-1900. 1 volume. Location: N:2. From a lumber company located in Gueydan, Louisiana, most likely the Gueydan Lumber Co. Entries include records of payments, customers' names, and materials purchased. Materials sold include lumber of various sizes and dimensions, shingles, and siding. Mss. 3942.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous lumberyard daybook, 1904 April-August. 1 volume. Location: G:2. Lumberyard, probably in East Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. Entries give date, name of person placing order, and itemized list of purchases. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1100.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous register, circa 1800-1899. 1 volume. Location: M:19. Record book probably of the French Consulate in New Orleans, perhaps constituting a register of French citizens, possibly ship passengers passing through the city in the antebellum period who visited the consulate regarding commercial matters. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 970.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous shipping record, circa 1900. 1 volume. Location: G:2. Shipping record of some kind of farm produce (probably potatoes) shipped in one-hundred pound sacks. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1100.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous tavern account books, 1817, 1818-1820. 2 volumes. Location: G:2. Daybook and ledger of an unidentified operator of a tavern at St. Francisville, West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana, giving place, date, name of customer, quantity and charges for purchases of liquors. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1100.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Anonymous. Account book (O), 1899-1900. 1 volume. Location: F:2. Anonymous daybook for a general merchandise store in Coushatta, Red River Parish, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 975.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Arbour, Sidney V. Jr. Family Papers, [1855] 1900-2011. 5.75 linear ft. Location: X:27-32, OS:A. Prominent Baton Rouge, La., resident, WWII veteran and realtor. Personal papers, business and legal papers, printed material, and photographs pertain to the personal activities and business affairs of the allied Arbour Bahlinger, Kornmeyer, and Wilbert families of Louisiana. Topics include student life, WWII, oil leases, Baton Rouge real estate, volunteerism, and genealogy. Mss. 5075.

Referenced in Guides: Education, Business, LSU

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.

Argyle-Crescent Company. Appraisal, 1918 September 1. 1 ms. vol. Location: M:21c. The Argyle-Crescent Company was located in Houma, Louisiana. Contains an appraisal invoice of the company by the American Appraisal Co. of Milwaukee, Wisconsin. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2556.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Armstrong, Frank B, Price List, ca. 1890s. 1 item. Location: A. Price list for a variety of wild birds that were stuffed by taxidermist, Frank B. Armstrong of Brownsville, Tex. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3870.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Arnold, Richard. Family Papers, 1852-1880. 0.25 linear ft. Location: 1:2. Richard Arnold and his family lived in Charleston, S.C. in the 1800s.  Papers consist of receipts, promissory notes, and tax receipts of Richard Arnold, and letters and invitations to and from his daughter, Alice.  Mss. 822.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Business

Aswell, James B., Jr. and Family. Papers, 1868-1961, undated (bulk 1930-1955). 9.75 linear, 22 manuscript volumes. Locations: 79:85-90, G:17, N:10, OS:A, T:103-106, Vault:1. Novelist, syndicated columnist, political writer, and Louisiana State Director of Public Relations (1940-1942) from Natchitoches, Louisiana. Papers contain correspondence, political materials, printed materials, photographs, and manuscript volumes relating to the careers and personal lives of James B. Aswell, Jr. and James B. Aswell, Sr. Mss. 2453.

Atchafalaya Rail Road and Banking Company. Letter, 1835 Apr. 15. 1 item. Location: MISC:A. Two-page letter written to "H. Niles" in which the author is requesting that Mr. Niles make mention in his newspaper of the steps Louisiana is taking to improve its railroad infrastructure, specifically mentioning the charter of the Atchafalaya Rail Road & Banking Company. The letter discusses the need for railroads in Louisiana to help farmers and ranchers with transportation, since back country roads are almost impassable.  It also goes into detail about the geography of the proposed rail site, local industry that would benefit, and the economic advantages to stockholders. Mss. 4930.

Referenced in Guides: Transportation, Business

Audubon, Victor Gifford. Letter, December 24, 1838. 1 letter. Locations: VAULT:53, MISC:A. Eldest son of John James Audubon. Letter from Victor, Edinburgh, Scotland, to Mrs. [Euphemia] Gifford in Dinton (near Aylesbury), England. Gives news of the Audubon family and Victor's return to the United States to see to his father's business. Mss. 5191.

Referenced in Guides: Women, Business

Austin, Moses, 1761-1821. Account, 1803-1804. 1 account. Location: Misc. Moses Austin was the founder of the American lead industry and the first man to obtain permission to bring Anglo-American settlers into Spanish Texas. This account itemizes purchases of dry goods from John Stewart by Moses Austin and his son, James Elijah Brown Austin, between December 14, 1803, and February 21, 1804, at Mine a Breton, Louisiana Territory. Mss. 3940.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Ayraud Brothers. Letterhead, 1899. 1 item. Location: Misc.:A. Merchants of Donaldsonville, Louisiana. Letterhead advertising 'Moss Ginnery.' For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2416.

Referenced in Guides: Business

Bailey, Albert. Account books, 1838-1847. 11 vols. Location: G:2. General merchant and cotton buyer of Clinton, East Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. Cashbooks, daybooks, a journal, ledgers, and a record book record Bailey's accounts. Also recorded are accounts of the Clinton Artillery Company and the newspaper Feliciana Whig. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1100.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Business

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