Manuscript Resources on The Sugar Industry

This guide describes manuscript collections documenting the sugar industry in the Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections (LLMVC) at LSU.  The records and personal papers of sugar planters and others whose livelihood came from growing sugar provide a wealth of documentation supporting research in agriculture, sociology, economics, history, and politics.

Researchers should also consult:

Sugar at LSU: Cultivating a Sweeter Future (Online Exhibition)

Documenting Louisiana Sugar 1845-1917

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Landry family. Papers, 1831-1903, undated. 0.5 linear ft. Location: U:198, G:15, OS:L. Residents of Paincourtville, Assumption Parish, Louisiana. The majority of letters are personal and are written by various members of the family, including some relatives from Quebec. The later correspondence has a good percentage of business letters. The documents include bills, receipts, and sugar sales. Some in French. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm 5322: University Publications of America Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations Series I, Part 1, Reel 8. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 731.

Landry, Charles. Mortgage, 1860. 1 item. Location: Misc. Mortgage on a sugar plantation in St. Martin Parish, Louisiana, giving the size of the plantation and names and ages of slaves. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1927.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations, African Americans

Landry, Elu. Estate record book, 1848-1851. 1 ms. vol. (on microfilm). Location: Mss. Mf.:L. Louisiana sugar planter.Record book kept by the administrator of Elu Landry's Louisiana sugar plantation includes accounts of money paid and received by the estate, a list of debts, and a plantation diary (1848-1850) describing daily work assignments, sugar harvest, levee construction and maintenance, and a cholera epidemic. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3106.

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

Landry, Severin. Family Papers, 1838-1887 (bulk 1843-1882). 148 items, 2 vols. Location: U:199, G:15. Sugar planter of Assumption Parish, Louisiana. Collection includes personal and family correspondence, business and financial records, plantation regulations, and a daybook (1846-1849) and journal (1846-1865) kept by Dufossard Landry recording sales of plantation produce. Chiefly in French. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm: University Publications of America Records of Ante-bellum Southern Plantations Series I, Part 1, Reel 8. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 210.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations, French

Landry, Shirley, 1926-, interviewee. Shirley and Reed Landry oral history interview, 1993. 1 sound cassette (45 minutes), Index (3 pages). Location: L:4700.0221. Resident of Four Corners, a community south of Franklin, St. Mary Parish, Louisiana, and the daughter of a sugarcane farmer. She married Reed Landry, also a sugarcane farmer. Shirley Landry recalls early life on a farm near Jeanerette, Louisiana; Four Corners in the 1930s-1950s; the local general store and dance hall; relations with African Americans; and Sunday traditions. Reed Landry describes technological changes in sugarcane farming; modern planting and harvesting routines; and modern varieties of sugarcane planted in Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4700.0221.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Women, African Americans

Latimer, George. Letters, 1836. 6 items. Location: Misc.:L. Sugar merchantof the firm of Latimer & Fernandes in Mayagüez, Puerto Rico. These six letters from George A. Latimer and the firm of Latimer & Fernandes to Sidney Mason concern the Puerto Rican sugar trade with the United States. They were written from various locales in Puerto Rico and the Northeastern United States and date from the period Aug. 8-Nov. 26, 1836. Mss. 3858.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Business

Lazell, Perkins & Co. Correspondence, 1839-1845. 3 items. Location: Misc. Letters from clients in New Orleans, La., request the forging of sugar mill shafts and discussing other business. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1404, 1417.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Business

Leche, Richard W. Papers, 1804, 1889-2008, undated. Approximately 100 linear ft., 155 volumes. Location: 80:-81:, 85:, 98:L, MAP CAGE, OS:L, VAULT:1, VAULT:21, VAULT MRDF 15. Orleans Parish native and 44th governor of Louisiana from 1936-1939. Collection is comprised of Leche's gubernatorial papers, which include chiefly office files of correspondence and a variety of printed materials; pre-gubernatorial and gubernatorial campaign papers; post-gubernatorial papers; and a variety of other materials, in large part photographic items and scrapbooks, spanning the three aforementioned eras. Collection also includes papers of Elton Reynolds Leche and Richard W. Leche, Jr. Mss. 2060.

Letter to Chs. [Charles] Biberon, 1856, Dec. 1. 1 item. Location: Misc:L. Anonymous letter (in French, with English translation) that refers to the hurricane that struck Last Island, a barrier island south of Houma, La., in August 1856. Letter mentions the effect of the storm on families, and cane and cotton crops. Appears to be the first page of a longer letter, since it bears no closing or signature. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4936.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, New Orleans to 1861, Business, French

Leverich, Charles P. Correspondence, 1834-1847. 81 items. Location: A:56. Factor of New York City associated with J. H. Leverich and Company of New Orleans. Correspondence consists of letters from New Orleans merchants, factors and Louisiana and Mississippi planters discussing the sguar trade. Letters from St. Mary Parish planters refer to shipping sugar and other cargo, a mortgage on Leonidas Polk's plantation, floods, and the parish's health. Letter from William J. Minor of Natchez mentions his interest in horse racing and his son's finances. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 1078, 1220, 1352, 1506, 2418.

Leverich, Charles P., 1803-1876. Papers, 1832-1852. 16 letters. Location: Misc. Charles Palmer Leverich was a New York City shipping merchant, commission agent, and investment banker who acted as a sugar and cotton factor for planters in New Orleans, La., and Natchez, Miss. Letters received by Charles Leverich in New York from correspondents in New Orleans discuss business affairs, economic conditions in New Orleans, prices for various commodities, family news, illnesses and epidemics in New York and New Orleans, and social events. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4009, 4023.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, New Orleans to 1861, Business

Leverich, William. Letter, 1841 Oct. 7. 1 item. Location: Misc.:L. Cotton and sugar planter of West Feliciana and Lafourche parishes. Leverich discusses business loans and the repayment of these loans in cotton and sugar, and he mentions the debts owed by the estate of Judge Mathews. He also writes that it would be tiring for \"Fanny\" to travel from Pittsburg to New Orleans by way of railroad and river steamer. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3864.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Transportation, Women

Lewis, Irma Polidore, 1945-, interviewee. Oral history interview, 1993. 1 sound cassette (45 minutes), Index (3 pages). Location: L:4700.0219. Daughter of a sugarcane worker and life-long resident of Four Corners, a community south of Franklin, St. Mary Parish, Louisiana. Lewis recalls her childhood as the daughter of unwed parents; being trained in carpentry by her uncle; work as a child on a sugarcane farm; plumbing and other self-provisioning skills; and traditional foods and folk medicines. Lewis also discusses her inability to attend college; and her involvement in the Four Corners Community Center. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4700.0219.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Women, Medicine

Lockett, Noland, 1938-, interviewee. Oral history interview, 1993. 1 sound cassette (1.5 hours), Index (7 pages). Location: L:4700.284. Resident of Four Corners, a community south of Franklin, St. Mary Parish, Louisiana. Lockett, the great-grandson of a migrant sugarcane worker from the Caribbean, was a building contractor and former associate dean of a junior college. Lockett discusses the logging industry at Four Corners; the origin and history of the Lockett clan; local sugar growing and South Coast Plantation; service by African Americans in the Korean War; the plantation store system; and race relations. Lockett also discusses his seminary experience; plans for a private school in the area; and recalls childhood memories of Mardi Gras; gambling and his father; and social conditions of his community. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4700.284.

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

Louisiana sugar documents, 1859. 2 items. Location: Misc. Statement of account for shipment of molasses, by Hawkins & Norwood of New Orleans, and certificate of gauging for this shipment. Statement addressed to Jas. A. Brown, Manchac, Louisiana. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 3646.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, New Orleans to 1861, Business

Louisiana sugar and rice trade collection, 1884-1936. 175 items, 6 vols. Location: C:30, F:8. The Louisiana Sugar and Rice Exchange was a commodities brokerage concern in New Orleans. Raymond J. Martinez was the editor and publisher of THE RICE JOURNAL. Records consist of correspondence, form letters, announcements, financial reports, minutes of meetings, and broadsides. Papers of Raymond J. Martinez include correspondence; statistics of the rice industry; and items for publication. Photographs depict International Harvester Company equipment and some individuals; papers and letters concerning the photographs are included. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 784.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, New Orleans 1866-, Business

Louisiana Sugar Company (New Orleans, La.). Records, 1912. 2 reports. Location: Misc. The Louisiana Sugar Company, based in New Orleans, La., operated six sugar factories across Louisiana. A 1912 comparative laboratory report compares figures on the grinding of sugarcane, yield of sugar, amount of sucrose in the sugar, and oil burned for grinding. Cane value tables compare costs of sugarcane and manufacturing. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 4235.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Business

Louisiana Sugar Planters Association. Papers, 1877-1917.1 linear ft. Location: U:212-213, G:16. Sugar planters' association based in New Orleans. Correspondence pertains to meetings; statistics on production; cane cutting machine; Spanish, Italian, and German immigrants working as plantation laborers; and supervisors and funding needed for a molasses refining test. Papers include articles reviewed by the association, including N. A. Helmer's "Evaporation in Multiple Effects" (June 1907). Material includes a minute book (1877-1891), a bill for membership in he American Protective Tariff League (1908) and letters relating to the Association's dues and resignations. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 266, 1492.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations

Magruder, W.H. Nathaniel, Papers, 1921-1963. 0.3 linear feet. Location: 50:15, OS:M. Correspondence and other records related to W.H. Nathaniel Magruder's management of Central Hershey sugar refinery in Cuba. The records document Magruder's relationships within the larger management structure and his experience with organized labor interests. Mss. 3915.

Referenced in Guides: Spanish, Sugar, Politics, Business

Marshall, George B. (George Benoist). Family Papers, 1807-1900 (bulk 1850-1880). 0.5 linear ft. Location: B:41, J:7. Sugar and cotton planter of Crescent Plantation, Cheneyville, Rapides Parish, Louisiana, and captain in the Confederate army. Collection includes records, daybooks, bills, receipts, and other documents related to the plantation. Includes a 1866 record of fines imposed on African Americans for breaking the peace. Available (with some omissions) on microfilm 5735: University Publications of America Confederate Military Manuscripts Series B, Reels 12-13. For further information, see online catalog. Mss. 969.

Referenced in Guides: Sugar, Plantations, Civil War, African Americans

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