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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Baker, Sarah. Oral history interview, 1974. 2 sound cassettes. Location: L:4700.2. Sarah Baker was born and raised on the Magee Plantation in Woodville, Wilkinson County, Mississippi, and was 113 years old at the time of the interview, which discusses plantation life and the end of the Civil War. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4700.2.

Baldwin & Co. Records, 1879-1928. 7 vols. Location: G:22. Plantation store of Old Johnson Plantation in Baldwin, Louisiana. Ledgers, receipt book, payroll accounts, and records of cane produced for John Baldwin and Baldwin & Co. Available on microfilm 6061: University Publications of America Records of Southern Plantations from Emancipation to the Great Migration, Series B, Part 3, Reel 4. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4597.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations, Business

Balmer Plantation account, 1778-1782. 1 item (13 pages). Location: Misc.:B Indigo plantation located at Mirebalois, Haiti. Receipts and expenditures made by the manager of the plantation, and prepared by the firm of J. M. Leremboure, Lassale, and Company, representatives of Mr. Balmer on the island. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2270.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, French

Bannon, Lois Elmer. Research Papers, 1983 ca. .5 linear ft. (115 items). Location: U:154, Misc:B. Papers pertaining to the history, structure, and National Register nomination of Magnolia Mound Plantation and the history of the Louisiana State Penitentiary, both in Baton Rouge. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2810.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, Baton Rouge

Barbier, Charles. Correspondence, 1806-1831. 11 items [photocopies]. Location: Misc:B. Planter in Assumption Parish, Louisiana. Letters discuss family matters, planting conditions in Lafourche and Assumption parishes, and social and economic conditions in France. In French. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 2831.

Referenced in Guides: Plantations, French