Caswell County Historical Association collection, 1791-1960.

Creator: Caswell County Historical Association.
Collection number: 5401
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Abstract: The Caswell County Historical Association, headquartered in Yanceyville, N.C., was organized in 1954 to promote the study of local history and genealogy. The collection consists of four groups of materials collected by the Caswell County Historical Association. Series 1 contains correspondence and financial and legal documents of Joseph S. Totten (1806-1861), a slave trader in Yanceyville, N.C. Letters, 1833-1850s, are chiefly to Totten from associates in Caswell County and Mississippi regarding debts and suits, the price of slaves, financial conditions, and related business matters. Included are receipts for the sale of slaves and other financial and legal documents related to Totten’s business interests. There is also a photocopy of an account book kept by Totten, 1832-1858, recording credits and debits of the firm of Totten & Gunn, including lists of slaves bought and sold and other transactions. Other letters, 1850s-1876, are mostly to Totten’s son Leroy Logan M. Totten (1843-1903) and wife Amanda McAlpin Totten (1821-1890) from friends and family on subjects including postwar economic conditions and political attitudes in North Carolina, Alton, Ill., St. Louis, Mo., and Winchester, Va. Also included are records of the Yanceyville Plank Road Company, 1854-1861, and assorted personal receipts, 1835-1876. Series 2 principally contains correspondence of James A. Glenn (1765-1812), a tobacco planter in Halifax County, Va., his wife Isabella Wilson Glenn (1778-1846), and others regarding family news and domestic and plantation affairs, 1791-1815. Also included are business accounts of Isabella, 1816 and 1822; lists of slaves belonging to her estate, circa 1846; and accounts of 1847 tobacco sales of the Glenn’s son-in-law John T. Garland (d. 1874), a planter and physician in Milton, N.C. Series 3 consists of an account book with entries for tuition, board, schoolbooks, and supplies for students at Somerville Female Institute, Leasburg, N.C., 1856-1859, probably kept by principal Solomon Lea. Series 4 consists of a patent issued to Joseph Yarbrough of Milton for an “Improvement in Dressing Millstones,” 1860, and a mimeographed typescript of a paper read before the C

Repository: Southern Historical Collection

Collection Highlights: Series 2 contains an inventory of slaves (c. 1846) belonging to Isabella Glenn (See Folders 8-9).

Series 15 contains materials about the murder of John “Chicken” Stephens”, agent of the Freedman’s Bureau and member of the Republican party, by the Ku Klux Klan and others in 1870. (See Folder 24). There is also a brief video entitled “The Murder of John Stephens”.

Series 17 includes documentation about the purchase enslaved individuals from Joseph Totten, slave trader and planter.