French-Language Manuscript Materials

The imprint of French culture on Louisiana and the Lower Mississippi Valley has been deep and long lasting. French explorers and colonists were among the earliest Europeans to arrive in the region, beginning in the seventeenth century. Louisiana, named for Louis XIV, belonged to France for much of the 1700s and again from 1800 until it was sold to the United States in 1803. French settlers came to Louisiana both directly from France and indirectly from other areas. The latter included Acadians expelled from present-day Nova Scotia in the mid-eighteenth century and refugees from St. Domingue (present-day Haiti) in 1804. Some followers of Napoleon arrived in Louisiana after their leader's defeat in 1814. Other French immigrants came to Louisiana for a variety of reasons throughout the nineteenth century.

The French-language manuscript resources in the Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections (LLMVC) at LSU touch upon all these sources of French cultural influence. This guide to these resources includes descriptions of the papers of early colonists, French-speaking planters and free people of color in the nineteenth century, and residents of cities and towns like New Orleans and Natchitoches. The documents it describes came from farmers and merchants, writers and artists, women and men, the famous and the anonymous.

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Guion, Lewis. Record books, 1859-1865. 2 volumes, 1 microfilm reel. Location: U:238, MSS.MF:G. Lawyer, Confederate officer, sugar planter. Francis T. Nicholls. Two record books, one containing law examination questions from the University of Virginia, French language notes, and cash entries. The second is an official record book of Louisiana 26th Infantry Regiment, Col H. Some notes in French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1903.

Guiramand, Morel. Papers, 1821, 1825. 2 items. Location: Misc. Judge and resident of St. Charles Parish, Louisiana. Correspondence of Judge Guiramond of St. Charles Parish, Louisiana, regarding serving papers to witnesses and defendents. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 222.

Referenced in Guides: French

Habert receipt, 1830. 1 item. Location: Misc. Receipt from C. Genois, Faubourg, Louisiana. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1361.

Referenced in Guides: French

Hacker, P. Correspondence, 1830-1831. 2 items. Location: Misc. Resident of New Orleans. Letter from Hacker written from St. James Parish and Iberville Parish, Louisiana, to his wife, Emilie, telling of sending money and produce; commenting on business conditions and the high rate of interest in the city; and requesting news of his family. Included is a letter from Charles Maillot to P. Hacker requesting permission to marry Hacker's daughter. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1171.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans to 1861, French

Halgan, Etienne. Papers, 1834-1837. 5 items. Location: Misc. Resident of Paris, France. Papers pertaining to Halgan's marriage to Adeline Wilson and including a property settlement, marriage contract, and powers of attorney. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 168.

Referenced in Guides: French

Hall, Edward. Papers, 1826-1829. 7 items. Location: Misc. Resident of New Orleans. Letters to Hall from friends. Some items in French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 222.

Referenced in Guides: New Orleans to 1861, French

Hall, George Otis and family. Papers, 1856-1900, 1990 (bulk 1856-1880). 0.7 linear ft., 1 volume. Location: T:54, J:21. George Otis Hall and his wife Charlotte Emma LeDoux Hall, owners of Magnolia Mound, a sugar and indigo plantation in Baton Rouge. From 1860 on they lived in England and Europe. Papers include correspondence, photographs, social invitations, and newspaper clippings. Topics include the education of the Hall children in Louisiana and Europe, the family's resettlement in Europe, and Magnolia Mound. Partly in French. Available on microfilm 5750: University Publications of America Southern Women and Their Families in the 19th Century: Papers and Diaries Series E, Reels 12-13. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4320.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations, Women, Baton Rouge, French

Hamilton, William S. Papers, 1780-1930 (bulk 1807-1861). 3 linear ft., 14 manuscript volumes, 16 microfilm reels. Locations: T:81-87, H:21, OS:H, MSS.MF:H. United States Army officer under General Wade Hampton; slave owner and planter of Holly Grove Plantation, West Feliciana Parish; and politician who served on the first board of trustees for the College of Louisiana and a term in the Louisiana Legislature. While most papers pertain to William S. Hamilton's social, political, and professional life, some papers also pertain to John Hamilton (William S.'s father) and the children of William S. and Eliza C. Hamilton. Papers reflect the administration of United States Army troops in the Territory of Orleans and Mississippi and give an inclusive picture of national and Louisiana politics. Included are descriptions of Southern college facilities and curricula and early medical treatments in hydropathy (hydrotherapy). The papers also document conditions in the United States Army during the Mexican War, land speculation in Texas, and various aspects of plantation life and economy (including purchasing and treatment of slaves). Part of the George M. Lester Collection. Mss. 1209.

Hansen, Eduard T. (Eduard Theodor). Diary and writings, 1864-1868. 2 vols., 1 microfilm reel. Location: M:20, Mss. Mf:H. Native of Luxembourg who was discharged from the Confederate army in the Civil War and subsequently joined the U.S. Army as a member of the 2nd Missouri Light Artillery, stationed in Louisiana and then as part of the Powder River Expedition. Diary records Hansen's enlistment and service in the U.S. Army in Louisiana and in the Great Plains. It includes copies of letters received by Hansen as well as prose and poetry. In English, German, and French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 758.

Referenced in Guides: Civil War, French, German, Literature

Hardin, J. Fair, 1893-1940. Collection, 1718-1939. 2,225 items, 17 vols. Location: S-29-36, P-2, 78:66, OS:H, Map Cage, 98:H, Vault:3, Mss.Mf:H. Shreveport attorney, vice president of the Louisiana Historical Society, and author of historical articles and a three-volume history of Northwest Louisiana. Collection contains correspondence, articles, copies of speeches, research materials and related papers pertaining to historical sites or events. Included are Civil War letters, Confederate money and notes, and research notes on the Red River campaign. Also included are two bound manuscript volumes: J. W. Sims letter book (1863-1864) and a minute book (1904-1911). Earlier materials relate to Indian agents and the Caddo Indians in northwest Louisiana and settlement and land claims in the area. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1014.

Referenced in Guides: Spanish, Civil War, French, Jewish Community