Lester-Gray collection of documents relating to Joseph Glover Baldwin, 1838-1949.

Creator: Lester-Gray collection of documents relating to Joseph Glover Baldwin.
Collection number: 2993
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Abstract: Joseph Glover Baldwin (1815-1864), was born in Virginia and lived in Alabama from 1836 to 1854, when he moved to San Francisco, Ca. He was author of Flush Times of Alabama and Mississippi (1853), Party Leaders (1855), and Flush Times of California (1966), and was a justice on the California Supreme Court. A reel of microfilm of papers, 1838-1949, of Joseph Glover Baldwin and the Lester and Baldwin families; an audiodisc; and a photograph album. The microfilm is a copy made from the Joseph Glover Baldwin papers at the New York Public Library in 1949. Microfilmed materials include correspondence relating to family life in California and Alabama, an 1863 meeting with Abraham Lincoln, and mining interests in Nevada Territory; clippings; writings; and other materials. Also included is some correspondence with Millard Fillmore and much correspondence of Robert M. Lester in connection with gathering Baldwin material for a biography (never completed) and the administration of the material collected beginning in the 1920s. Lester received the bulk of the Baldwin family papers from Joseph Glover Baldwin’s daughter, Cornelia Baldwin Gray, of California. An original audiodisc of WJZ coverage of part of a 24 June 1939 symposium relating to Robert M. Lester’s address “Is the Library Doing Its Job?” and an original photograph album labeled “Negroes, born and Bred on Gen. Lee’s Land, 1862” are also included. The photograph album holds 17 tintypes and one carte-de-visite picturing African Americans–women, men, and children–well-dressed and formally posed. Despite the label on the album, most of the images appear to date from 1880-1900, and there is no direct evidence of connection with Robert E. Lee..

Repository: Southern Historical Collection

Collection Highlights:┬áThe collection includes a photo album labeled “Negroes, born and bred on General Lee’s Land, 1862” and contains 17 tintypes and one carte-de-visite of well- dressed and formally posed black men, women, and children. There is no direct evidence of any connection with Robert E. Lee.

The photo album has been digitized and is available online. Click here to link to the finding aid for this collection and to access the digitized content.