N. Russell Middleton papers, 1761-1919.

Creator: Middleton, N. Russell (Nathaniel Russell), 1810-1890.
Collection number: 507
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Abstract: Nathaniel Russell Middleton of Charleston, S.C., was a plantation owner, treasurer of the Northeastern Railroad Company, and treasurer of the city of Charleston. Other family members represented include Annie DeWolf Middleton (1815-1908) of Bristol, R.I., N. R. Middleton’s second wife; and the children bythis second marriage: Maria Louisa Middleton (b. 1844), Annie Elizabeth Middleton (b. 1847), Alicia Hopton Middleton (b. 1849), Nathaniel Russell Middleton, Jr. (1851-1896), and Charlotte Helen Middleton (b. 1854). The bulk of the collection consists of Middleton and DeWolf family letters, many between family members in Bristol, R.I., and Charleston, S.C. In addition to standard family matters and the peculiarities of life in a family divided between the North and South, these letters and the other papers deal with such topics as Middleton’s plantation, Bolton-on-the-Stono (apparently near Charleston), an 1849 slave insurrection, the College of Charleston, supply shortages during the Civil War, and selling rice and phosphate fertilizer during Reconstruction. Also included is “Narrative of his own Conversion” by Rev. John Joice, Darien, Ga., 1824.

Repository: Southern Historical Collection

Collection Highlights: In addition to standard family matters and the tensions of family life divided between North and South, letters and papers discuss managing the Middleton plantation, “Bolton-on-the-Stono”, particularly in 1842 (Folder 11 and 12);

In a letter dated 9 June 1845 Annie wrote to Russell about the death of a slave who was a carpenter at -Stono and the question of who would be trained to replace him (Folder 14).

Correspondence in 1849 discusses a slave revolt in Charleston.  In a letter dated 16 July 1849, Lesesne described a revolt of slaves who were in the Charleston work house. They beat several white men with sledge hammers before they were overpowered; several were tried and sentenced to death (Folder 16).

In a letter dated 6 August 1852, Annie described reading Uncle Tom’s Cabin and feeling she ought to give up her rights to slaves (Folder 18) In a letter dated 1 October 1860 Russell wrote that he did not think that the South could be united over the issue of Lincoln’s election to the presidency and that efforts to unite it should wait for some larger issue (Folder 25).