Gale and Polk family papers, 1815-1895 (bulk 1815-1865).

Creator: Gale and Polk family.
Collection number: 266
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Abstract: Gale and Polk families of Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee. Chiefly personal correspondence of members of the related Gale and Polk families. Included are ante-bellum papers of Thomas Gale, physician of Davidson, Tenn., who owned plantations in Jefferson and Yazoo counties, Miss., concerning family affairs, politics, and epidemics in Tennessee, and agriculture in Mississippi; Civil War letters of Gen. Leonidas Polk (1806-1864) and of his son-in-law and aid, William Dudley Gale, concerning military affairs in Tennessee, Alabama, and Mississippi; recollections (1895) of W. D. Gale’s wife, Katherine (Polk) Gale, of her life during the Civil War in Nashville, Tenn., Yazoo County, Miss., and Asheville, N.C.; and diary (1873-1874) of L. Polk’s wife, Frances (Devereux) Polk, recording her activities in the Gale household near Nashville.

Repository: Southern Historical Collection

Collection Highlights: A letter from 26 May 1827, discusses the the sale of three slaves as part of the settlement of Joseph(?) Gale’s estate (Folder 2).

In a letter dated 6 May 1845, William D. Gale reported to his mother about various topics, including runaway slaves (Folder 3).

In the recollections of Katherine Polk Gale in Subseries 2.2, there are mentions of the loyalty of certain enslaved individuals as well as free people of color during and after the Civil War (Folder 11; transcriptions in Folder 12).

Materials from this collection have been digitized and are available online. Click here to link to the finding aid for this collection and to access the digital material.