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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Hubert, Louis A. Papers, 1832-1846. 10 items. Location: Misc., OS:H. Resident of Pointe Coupee Parish, Louisiana. Papers consisting of acts of sale for slaves and a plantation, and a commission appointing Hubert justice of the peace of Pointe Coupee Parish in 1846. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1724.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Plantations, African Americans

Hunt, David. Family Papers, 1803-1838. 20 items. Location: U:158. Planters of Natchez, Mississippi. Personal and business letters to Abijah Hunt, wealthy merchant and slave holder of the Natchez District, and to his nephew, David Hunt, who amassed a large fortune as his successor. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 517.

Hunt, David and Anne F. Memorial, [1874]. 1 item. Location: E:96, E:Imprints. Wealthy planters of Natchez, Mississippi. Biographical sketch of David Hunt (1779-1861) and of his wife Anne Ferguson Hunt (1797-1874). For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3256.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Natchez, Mississippi

Hunt, David, 1779-1861. Letters, 1803-1839 (bulk 1820-1829). 95 letters. Location: UU:288. With numerous cotton plantations and a significant number of slaves, David Hunt was one of the wealthiest cotton merchants in Mississippi, and indeed one of the wealthiest men in the United States. The David Hunt Letters consist of correspondence, both personal and business, between cotton merchant David Hunt and various family members and business associates. For further information, see online catalog, Mss. 4788

Hunter, Napoleon Bonaparte. Family Papers, 1841-1968 (bulk 1870-1937). 79 items, 28 vols. Location: T:87, P:19. Mayor and merchant of Waterproof, Tensas Parish, Louisiana. Papers include a ledger containing accounts with individuals and plantations in Tensas Parish and a Mayor's Record that extends through the administrations of Hartwig Moss, Joseph Gorton, and Napoleon B. Hunter. Also included are records and printed material of the Order of the Knights of Pythias, Tensas Lodge No. 84, and of the Woodmen of the World. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2360.

Referenced in Guides: Politics, Plantations, Business