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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Herrin, Edmund. Papers, 1849-1891. 83 items, 1 vol. Location: E:39, G:11. Planter of St. Helena Parish, Louisiana. Papers include tax receipts, promissory notes, and bills; personal letters from the Roddy family, relatives, and from Herrin's brothers; an oath of allegiance to the United States and registration certificates; and a currency bill issued by Louisiana. Included is a fee book of Thomas H. Roddy, Sheriff of St. Helena Parish (1849-1855). For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 711.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Civil War

Hicky, Daniel and Philip. Papers, 1667, 1762-1846 (bulk 1814-1815). 33 items, 1 microfilm reel. Location: U:103, OS:H, Vault:1, Vault:8, MSS.MF:H. Planters of East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana. Papers of Daniel Hicky include a land grant, a deed, and a passport. Papers of Philip Hicky mostly pertain to his involvement in the West Florida Rebellion and the Battle of New Orleans. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 720.

Hicky, Daniel. Letter, 1793 April 10. 1 item. Location: MISC:H. Planter of District of Manchac, West Florida, Louisiana. Letter sent from Baton Rouge, Louisiana, and addressed to his son, Philip Hicky, in New Orleans. Daniel Hicky mentions his painful gout, tells of the destruction wrought to levees and land by a Mississippi River flood, and remarks how the indigo crop was hurt by bad weather. He also gives an affectionate reminder to Philip to conduct himself properly. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3430.

Hicky, Daniel. Letter, 1867. 1 letter. Location: MISC:H. Letter from Daniel Hicky, Baton Rouge, La., to Judge D.D. Avery, requests a payment be made to R. Walsh from the estate of Philip Hicky and discusses plantation matters. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 238.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Baton Rouge

Hicky, Philip and Family. Papers, 1769-1901 (bulk 1769-1835). 20 items, 1 letter file book, 1 microfilm reel. Location: VAULT:8, OS:H, MSS.MF:H. Planter and colonel of East Baton Rouge Parish. Unbound and bound (in a letter file book) personal and official papers of Philip Hicky and the Hicky family. Papers pertain chiefly to the West Florida controversy and the Battle of New Orleans but also pertain to family matters and family history of the Hicky family. Some items pertain to the Walsh and Morgan families. Mss. 2007, 2035.

Hicky, Philip. Letter, 1815 February 28. 1 item [photocopy]. Location: MISC:H. Planter of Hope Estate Plantation, East Baton Rouge Parish, Louisiana. Letter from Hicky to Major Charles Tessier concerning the latter's appointment to the office of East Baton Rouge Parish judge. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2704.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Baton Rouge

Hilliard, Isaac H. (Isaac Henry) and family. Papers, 1756-1924 (bulk 1845-1920). 173 items, 12 volumes. Location: E:50, H:21, OS:H. Isaac Hillard was a planter of Grand Lake, Chicot County, Arkansas. The Hillard family were merchants in Grand Lake Arkansas, Collection includes legal papers, correspondence, cashbooks, and diaries that document the personal, agricultural, and business activities of the Hilliard family. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1236, 1347.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Business

Hilliard, Isaac H. (Isaac Henry), Mrs. Diary, 1849-1860 (bulk 1849-1850). 1 vol. Location: U:239, Mss. Mf:H. Wife of Isaac H. Hilliard, plantation owner of Grand Lake, Chicot County, Arkansas, originally of Henry County, Kentucky. Mrs. Hilliard was related by marriage to Leonidas Polk. Diary depicts plantation life from an affluent woman's perspective, describing family holidays, social occasions, steamboat travel, and trips to Louisiana, Mississippi, and Kentucky. Includes her son's expenses at Kentucky Military Institute (1866). Available on microfilm 5750: University Publications of America Southern Women and Their Families in the 19th Century: Papers and Diaries Series E, Reel 13. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 178, 762.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Transportation, Women

Hillin, James. Document, 1791. 1 item. Location: Misc. Planter in the District of Baton Rouge, Louisiana. Will of James Hillin, planter in the District of Baton Rouge, La., and the attestation.. In Spanish. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 179.

Referenced in Guides: Spanish, Plantations, Baton Rouge

Hines, Betty, 1948, interviewee. Oral history interview, 1993. 1 sound cassette (45 minutes), Index (3 pages). Location: L:4700.285. Resident of Four Corners, an unincorporated community south of Franklin, St. Mary Parish, Louisiana. Hines was the foster child of a sharecropper. Hines' memories of childhood as the daughter of a sharecropper; sugarcane growing; the recollections of her great-grandparents' enslavement; difficulties of her early work with foster children; birth customs; and traditional foods. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4700.285.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations, Women, African Americans