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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Evans, J. Bruce, Papers, 1614-2005 (bulk 1930-1990). 31.5 linear ft., 26 v. Location: 92:82-109; OS:E; J:34-35; Vault:1. Baptist minister, religious counselor and civil rights activist. Correspondence, church records, sermons, workshop materials, printed items, photographs and audio tapes reflect Evans's ministerial career in Baton Rouge, La., at First Baptist Church and Fellowship Church. Personal papers [some items in French], business records and genealogical material document the ancestry of Evans and his wife, Anita Louise, and provide insight into the personal lives of family members. Papers also furnish histories of Bienville and Natchitoches parishes and Saline, La., and relate to Caroline Dormon Nature Preserve and to Dormon's activities as a naturalist. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4664.

Evans, Simeon A. Letters, 1861-1864. 93 items. Location: U:239. Union assistant surgeon in the 14th Maine Regiment. Letters relate to Evans' experiences in the Civil War in Mississippi, Louisiana, and the Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. His assignments included New Orleans (1862-1863), Port Hudson (1863), and Camp Bisland (1863). For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1845.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Medicine

Facsimile Collection. 52 items, 1215-1865 (bulk 1832*1865). Location: OS:F. Facsimile copies of important documents from American history including the Declaration of Independence and other Revolutionary-era documents; the Louisiana Purchase treaty; mid-nineteenth century political posters for the Democratic, Republican, and Whig parties; and numerous political, military, and personal documents produced before and during the Civil War, especially the letters of Alexander Farnsley of Kentucky. A facsimile copy of the Magna Carta is also included. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 893, 1327, 1680, 1687, 1878, 2003, 2600.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Civil War

Fairbank, Luther M. letters, 1862-1893 (bulk dates 1862-1863). 35 items. Location: T:90; OS:F. Letters describes the Union bombardment of Fort Jackson in 1862; the arrival of Union forces in New Orleans, their looting of the post office, reception by civilians and their soliciting soldiers for food, and Union employment of slaves on a nearby sugar plantation. Fairbank condemns northern newspapers for inaccurate reporting. His letters further relate camp life. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4909.

Farno, Henry. Papers, 1837-1861. 6 items. Location: Misc. Colonel, United States Army. Papers include personal letters (typed copies) to Farno's wife, Molle, regarding family affairs (1837-1849) and two sketches of tactics of engagements in Virginia, 1861. Two letters were written during the period of the Mexican War. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 627.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

Farrar, B.G. Papers, 1863-1870 (bulk: 1863-1865). 13 items. Location: Misc:F. Brevet Brigadier General Bernard G. Farrar, Colonel of the 6th U.S. Colored Artillery (Heavy). Letters, orders, and affadavits relate to recruiting African-American soldiers, anticipated attacks, and plundering of plantations in the Natchez and Vidalia area. An 1870 letter to Farrar from J.W. Alfvord, General Superintendent of Education, Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands relates to the education of the freedmen. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4764.

Favrot, Joseph St. Clair, 1872-1943. Family Papers, 1900-1924. 25 items. Location: UU:73. The Favrot family (Joseph, Beverly, and Joseph, Jr.) was active in amateur theater productions in Baton Rouge. Papers include Baton Rouge theater programs and other ephemeral printed material; and six photographs, some by A. D. Lytle, depicting Baton Rouge scenes, including some Civil War scenes. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3317.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, Civil War, Baton Rouge

Felton, H. H. Letters, 1862-1869. 21 items. Location: Misc:F. Midwestern Union soldier involved in the Vicksburg campaign during the Civil War. Letters to Felton's wife and family, written during the Vicksburg campaign, originate from Helena, Arkansas, and Rocks Springs, Mississippi. They discuss living conditions, personal finances, troop movements, and close with the march towards Vicksburg. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3635.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

Ferguson, Kate Lee, b. 1841. Papers, 1858-1911. 38 items; 7 vols. (1 ms. Vol. and 1 printed vol.). Location: S:28, 65, 98. Available on microfilm 5750: University Publications of America Southern Women and Their Families in the 19th Century: Papers and Diaries Series E, Reel 10. Novelist, poet, and composer of Mississippi. She married Confederate general Samuel Wragg Ferguson in 1862. Papers include personal letters from friends and family members; a Spanish land grant for property in Texas of Nathaniel A. Ware (Ferguson's grandfather); manuscripts by Ferguson, including prose, poetry, and music; Ferguson's memoirs; and photographs. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1416, 1576.

Referenced in Guides: Performing arts, Women, Civil War, Literature

Ferguson, Percy. Papers, 1864, 1899-1916. 9 items and 1 ms. vol. Location: OS:F, O:16. Daughter of Confederate general Samuel Wragg Ferguson. Scrapbook of manuscript poems by Percy Ferguson; a letter from her cousin, U.S. Senator LeRoy Percy of Mississippi, pertaining to national politics; and published music by Regina Morphy Voitier of New Orleans. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1416.

Ferguson, Samuel Wragg, 1835-1917. Papers. 1857-1915, undated 61 items. Location: T:13. Confederate general and lawyer of Charleston, South Carolina, and Greenville, Mississippi. During the Civil War Ferguson served as aide to General P. G. T. Beauregard and was commander of the 28th Mississippi Cavalry Regiment in the Atlanta Campaign. Letters, memoirs, and writings describe student life at West Point; the settlement of Kansas; religious missions and the life of missionaries in the Oregon territory; and the hostility of Indians and the fate of settlers bound for California and Oregon. Civil War materials include records of Ferguson's Confederate military service, descriptions of participation in several battles, and a description of the collapse of the Confederate government. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1416, 1576.

Referenced in Guides: Religion, Politics, Civil War, Education

Fern, A. Letter: Natchez, Miss., to George P.? James, 1863 August 28. 1 item (2 leaves). Location: Misc:F. Union soldier in the Civil War stationed with a regiment camped in Natchez, Mississippi, in August 1863. Letter written while Fern was on guard duty. Topics discussed include the draft in the eastern states; the French and English stances on the Civil War; the fighting at Charleston, South Carolina; and General Meade's campaign along the Rappahannock River. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3404.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Natchez, Mississippi

Fessenden, Anson D., b. 1839. Papers, 1862-1863, undated 82 items, 1 ms. vol. Location: W:36. Captain in the 53rd Massachusetts Infantry in the Civil War and resident of Townsend, Massachusetts. Letters to Fessenden's family describe camp life in New York and New Orleans, the sea voyage to New Orleans, and the Port Hudson campaign. A diary records experiences in that campaign. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3137.

Referenced in Guides: Transportation, Civil War

Fisk, Clinton B., 1828-1890. Letter, 1865. 1 item. Location: Misc. Union general in the Civil War, assistant commissioner of the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands at Nashville, Tennessee. Letter to a Dr. Kirk contains an optimistic report on Reconstruction in the South, and describes his work in rehabilitating freedmen and his educational plans. He refers the South's opposition to Northern clergymen. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1428.

Fitch, Henry B. (Henry Bates). Hermitage Plantation pay and muster roll, June 1864. 1 item. Location: OS:F. Pay and muster roll for contraband slaves working on Hermitage Plantation. The pay and muster roll lists 118 named slaves and records the hours they worked, their monthly pay, the amount paid, amount due, etc. These freedmen are listed with their adopted surnames. Plantation was operated by Henry B. Fitch. Mss. 4881. 

Fitz, Charles. Letter, 1865 November 28. 1 item. Location: Misc. American lawyer. Letter to Edwards Pierrepont dealing with a claim made by an ex-Confederate Louisiana planter against the U.S. government for property confiscated during the Civil War. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2564.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Civil War

Fitzpatrick, John. Letterpress copybook, 1875-1878. 1 ms. vol. Location: M:21. Secretary of the Division of the Association of the Army of Northern Virginia. Correspondence concerns veterans' reunions and raising money to erect a monument and tomb in Metairie Cemetery, New Orleans, for use of the association's members. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1482.

Flanders, Benjamin F., 1816-1896. Papers, 1827-1889 (bulk 1864-1875). 863 items. Location: U:109-112, Vault:1. Governor of Louisiana and mayor of New Orleans during Reconstruction. Flanders came to New Orleans from New Hampshire in 1843, left at the outbreak of the Civil War, and returned in 1862. Official papers and letters, including Civil War correspondence with a variety of Union military and political leaders. Collection also documents other federal posts held by Flanders, including U.S. representative and U.S. assistant treasurer. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 671.

Fleming, Walter L. (Walter Lynwood). Manuscript, 1912. 0.5 linear ft. Location: A:6. Walter Lynwood Fleming served on the faculties of several universities in the South as a professor of English and history, including Louisiana State University from 1907 to 1917. This is the edited typescript and copies of illustrations for Walter L. Fleming's "General W.T. Sherman as College President." For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4211.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Education, LSU

Fleming, Walter L. and family. Papers, 1861-1973 (bulk 1894-1963). 2.25 linear ft. Location: Z:6-7; OS:F. Educator and historian who wrote about the Civil War and Reconstruction history. He also fought in the Spanish-American War. Scrapbooks, correspondence, educational materials, photographs, and postcards document Fleming's personal and professional life. Among the photographs are portraits of Fleming and photographs of Ku Klux Klan members in Klan regalia. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3530.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Education, LSU

Fleming, Walter L. Collection, 1848-1914 (bulk 1860-1890). 2 linear feet. T:64-65. Collection consists of transcriptions of material pertaining primarily to the organization, history, and administration of Louisiana State University. Correspondence relating to official University business comprises bulk of the collection. Some early correspondence reflects political views at the time of the Civil War, and later correspondence of Walter Fleming and Leroy S. Boyd, son of David F. Boyd, relates to the history of the LSU. Other material consists of reports, printed items, writings, and the research notes. Also included are photographs of early LSU Boards of Supervisors, faculty, and other persons associated with the University. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 890, 893.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Civil War, Education, Baton Rouge, LSU

Fletcher, Joseph C., Papers, 1864. 4 items. Location: F. Union soldier in the 3rd Regiment, Iowa Cavalry, Co. J. Joseph C. Fletcher informs his parents of his capture and gives an account of conditions at Andersonville Prison, Ga. His captain, C. A. Stanton writes to Fletcher’s parents about his capture and imprisonment. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4546.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

Flournoy, Alfred. Papers, 1824-1936. 1 vol. Location: G:6. Medical doctor and cotton planter of Pulaski, Tennessee, and after 1838, cotton planter of Greenwood Plantation in Caddo Parish, Louisiana, and leader in the Democratic Party. Bound typewritten copy of a scrapbook, containing papers of Dr. Flournoy, Civil War letters to and from Flournoy's sons Alfred, Jr., and Alonzo, and related newspaper clippings and family histories. For further information, see online catalog.Mss. 628.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Plantations, Civil War, Medicine

Folwell-Curtis Family Papers, 1849-1912, undated .1 linear ft. Location: C:73. George W. L. Folwell moved to Mississippi from Pennsylvania in the late 1840s. One of his sisters, Rebecca McComb Folwell Curtis, lived in Wisconsin; Natchitoches, Louisiana; and Handsboro, Mississippi. Nathaniel B. Folwell was their brother. Correspondence relating family news and activities among various members of the Folwell and Curtis families and some friends. A printed booklet includes several excerpts from the Official Records of the Union and Confederate Navies regarding Nathaniel B. Folwell, who was captured during the Civil War. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4503.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

Fontenot, Ozemé and family. Papers, 1834-1949. 5 linear ft., 54 volumes. Location: UU:190-194; O:21; OS:F; 98:F. Planter of Grand Prairie, St. Landry Parish, Louisiana. Plantation, business records, correspondence of Ozemé Fontenot and family. Some relate to the marriage and divorce of daughter Alma Parker, and to her hospitalization in New Orleans. Papers also deal with United Confederate Veterans activities. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm: University Publications of America Records of Southern Plantations from Emancipation to the Great Migration, Series B, Part 2, Reels 3-6. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3248.

Fort Jackson engineering sketches, 1841-1858, 51 items. Location: OS:F. Fort Jackson is an historic fort located 40 miles from the mouth of the Mississippi River in Plaquemines Parish, Louisiana. Engineering sketches of Fort Jackson in Plaquemines Parish, which were sent to Major P. G. T. Beauregard in 1858.  Sketch (1856) shows the shoreline of the Mississippi River near the fort drawn under the direction of Major Beauregard. Although the sketches predate the Civil War, the fort played a significant role during the war. Mss. 1343.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

Fort Pulaski. Roster of prisoners, 1866 April 20.1 item. Location: MISC:F. Roster of General Prisoners received by Union occupation officers from the commanding officer of Fort Pulaski, Georgia. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2918.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

Fort Smith, Ark., Civil War letter, 1861 Apr. 9. 1 item. Location: MISC:F. Letter written from Fort Smith, Arkansas, during the Civil War. Discusses family matters and social activities. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3868.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

Foster, Freeman, Jr. Letters, 1862. 3 items. Location: Misc. Sailor in the Union navy in the Civil War. Letters written from the Mississippi River describe preparations for the naval assault on New Orleans, contact with slaves, and shipboard life. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3170.

Foster, James. Family Papers, 1829-1904. 92 items, 7 ms. vols. Location: U:117. O:3. 1Medical doctor of Natchez, Mississippi, and owner of the Hermitage Plantation near Natchez. Correspondence consists chiefly of personal letters from family members concerning travel in the East; yellow fever in New Orleans; and plantation affairs. Some letters relate to student life at Oakland College (Mississippi) and Harvard University. Three manuscript volumes contain poetry and four record books concern a Confederate monument in Natchez, listing subscribers to a memorial fund (1888-1889). Available on microfilm 5735: University Publications of America Confederate Military Manuscripts Series B, Reel 6. Mss. 1705.

Foster, James. Family Correspondence, 1861-1866. 110 items, 1 ms. Vol. Location: B:41. Isaac G. Foster and John S. Foster were the sons of James Foster, a medical doctor of Natchez. Both served in the Confederate Army and died during the Civil War. Papers include letters from John Foster written in New Orleans (1861) relating his views on Louisiana's secession. Later letters describe First Bull Run, Chancellorsville, and other battles. Isaac Foster's papers deal with Shiloh and other battles. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2184.

"Frank Leslies's Illustrated Newspaper", 1862 May 24, 1875 Jan. 30. 3 items. Location:OS:F. Issues and supplement containing articles on and sketches of Baton Rouge and New Orleans. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1534, 2751.

Franklin, J. C. Letters, 1864. 2 items. Location: Misc:F. Confederate soldier during the Civil War. Letters written from Chimborazo Hospital, Richmond, Virginia, and Pratt Hospital, Lynchburg, Virginia, to Franklin's wife, S. W. Franklin ('Sookey'), describing conditions in the hospitals. Available on microfilm 5735: University Publications of America Confederate Military Manuscripts Series B, Reel 22. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2121.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, Medicine

Freedmen's Bureau document, 1864 Dec. 1. 1 item. Location: Misc.:F. Order by the Office of Superintendent and Provost Marshal of Freedmen, Natchez, Mississippi, signed by Lt. Col. A. L. Mitchell, for use of livestock on Home Farm. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3365.

Freedmen's Bureau circular, 1865 July 14. 1 printed vol. Location: E:Imprints. Photostatic copy of printed circular from Headquarters, Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned Lands, State of Louisiana, New Orleans, pertaining to freedmen and the circulation of Emancipation Proclamation. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 150.

Freemasons. St. James Lodge, No. 47 (Baton Rouge, La.). Records, 1819-1957. 6.5 linear ft., 4 microfilm reels. Location: 33:29-32, MSS.MF:F. St. James Lodge was formed in 1844 and operates under the jurisdiction of the Grand Lodge of Louisiana, New Orleans. Records include minutes, membership files, financial records, and correspondence between St. James and other lodges and related societies (such as Knights Templar and Odd Fellowships) throughout the United States, Mexico, and Canada. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2860.

Frierson, Jacob Alison correspondence and minutes, 1864-1865. 32 items. Location: T:89. Frierson was a private in Company G of the 27th Louisiana Infantry Regiment. Comprised of letters to and from Frierson and family members. From parole camps near Alexandria, La., Frierson writes about drilling, rations, and "vices of camp life." He describes the execution of deserters, refers to the devaluation of Confederate currency, and life at home in Kingston, La. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4209.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

Froisy, Godefroy Etienne, Jr. Papers, 1844-1864. 3 items. Location: MISC:F. A transcription made before her wedding in 1844 copies the baptismal record of Marie Marguerite Trègre, baptized at St. John the Baptist Parish Church on October 7, 1827. Godefroy Etienne Froisy Jr. of the 30th Louisiana Infantry Regiment writes two letters to his parents in St. John the Baptist Parish from Pascagoula, Mississippi on October 24, 1863 and from Mobile, Alabama on May 20, 1864. He relates news of his service in the war. Mss. 5085.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, French

Fryer, S. L. Letter, 1864.1 item. Location: Misc. Union soldier in the Civil War. Letter written to Fryer's father at Fort DeRussy, near Washington, D.C., describing a rough battle. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3328.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

Fuller, W. Arnold, 1838-1864. Letters, 1863-1864. 11 letters. Location: Misc. W. Arnold Fuller served as a private with the 114th New York Infantry Regiment during the Civil War. Fuller's letters describe family relations, camp life, battles, troop movements, and other news from various places in South Louisiana, including Port Hudson, between February 1863 and May 1864. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4509.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War

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