Manuscript Resources on Plantation Society and Economy

This guide describes manuscript collections documenting plantation society and economy in the Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections (LLMVC) at LSU. The plantation records and personal papers of planters, factors, merchants, and others whose livelihood came from plantations provide a wealth of documentation supporting research in plantation economy, slavery, and the social history of Southern landholding elites.

The collections described below touch upon all facets of plantation life. They include the papers of tutors, preachers, lawyers, and doctors who provided services to planters. They include the letters of Northerners who visited plantations in the antebellum period and wrote home about them, and those of Union soldiers who marched past plantations and sometimes plundered them. While the majority of collections are from the prewar years, there are substantial holdings on postbellum plantations as well. The sugar and cotton plantation records in LLMVC are among its most noteworthy and famed collections, and among the earliest collections that LSU acquired.

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Evans, Nathaniel. Family Papers, 1791-1932 (bulk 1800-1850). 5 linear ft., 47 ms. vols. and 42 printed vols. Location: E:10-15, G:12, OS:E, 98:E, VAULT:6, VAULT:38, MICROFILM 5322. Postmaster and general merchant of Fort Adams, Wilkinson County, Mississippi; and owner of Oakland Plantation in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. Papers consist of business and family correspondence and plantation records. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm: University Publications of America Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations Series I, Part 2, Reels 1-10. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 670, 893, 913.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Business, Natchez, Mississippi

Evergreen Plantation. Painting, 1860. 1 item [photographic copy]. Location: E:65. Painting, gouache on paper, showing Evergreen Plantation, in West Feliciana or Iberville Parish, Louisiana. The artist is unidentified. Part of the Picture Collection. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3460.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations

Fair, James. Papers, 1833-1838. 4 items. Location: Misc:F. Owner of Grove Hill Plantation in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. Papers pertain to Fair's mortgage of Grove Hill Plantations and its slaves. Land conveyance documents the sale of the plantation by Mrs. Maria Jones to Fair and an appraiser's certificate. There is also a questionnaire for stockholders of Citizens' Bank of Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 668.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Women, African Americans

Farar, Benjamin. Papers, 1773-1826 (bulk 1820-1826). 56 items (on 1 microfilm reel). Location: Mss.Mf:F. Planter of Laurel Hill Plantation near Natchez, Mississippi. Papers include personal and business correspondence (1820-1826) related to family matters, plantation operations, and social life in New Orleans. Includes some land grants in Spanish. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1364.

Farrar, Alexander K. Papers, 1804-1931 (bulk 1831-1870). 2.25 linear ft. Location: UU:229-231; OS:F. Planter and lawyer of Kingston, Adams County, Mississippi, and Mississippi state senator. Personal, professional, and plantation papers concerning Farrar's law practice, including settlement of several estates, and his plantation and business interests. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm 532: University Publications of America Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations Series I, Part 3, Reels 6-10. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 782, 850, 1348.

Farwell, F. Evans, 1906. Lecture and narration, 1980. 1 sound cassette (45 minutes), Index (1 page). Location: L:4700.14. President of Millican and Farwell Shipping Line. Farwell discusses the establishment of Millican and Farwell Shipping and family sugar cane plantations in Louisiana. He narrates a slide show, not contained in the collection, about changes in farming technology, especially pertaining to sugar cane. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4700.14.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations

Faulk, John T. Papers, 1833. 2 items. Location: Misc. Planter of Bayou DeSiard, Ouachita Parish, Louisiana. Letter of John T. Faulk to Mr. Goodwin, teacher, outlining the course of study desired for his sons; and a contract with William Henderson to board Faulk's children in order that they could attend the public school house in Prairie Maroughe, Ouachita Parish, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 877.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Education

Ferris, Livingston Polk. Papers, 1920-1968. 3 linear ft. Location: 10:45-46.]. Electrical engineer of Ashton Plantation, Lecompte, Louisiana. Professional correspondence (1920-1968) pertains mainly to his work on electric railroads and experiments with electrical shock. Other papers include reports of experiments, lectures, technical papers, notebooks, films, and other materials. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2829.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations

Fischer, Max. Max and August Fischer Papers, 1881-1907. 136 items. Location: E:52, O:20. Max and August Fischer were wholesale and retail dealers in general merchandise in Bayou Sara, West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. They also operated Kenmore Plantation, Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana. Collection contains ledgers, journals, and other business papers related to Kenmore Plantation and to Fischer's merchandise dealings. Includes account and sales records of the Grace Episcopal Church in Bayou Sara, and of prominent families in West Feliciana Parish, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1259.

Referenced in Guides: Religion, Plantations, Business

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. 

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