Ruffin, Roulhac, and Hamilton family papers, 1784-1957 (bulk 1823-1890).

Creator: Ruffin, Roulhac, and Hamilton family.
Collection number: 643
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Abstract: Ruffin, Roulac, and Hamilton family members resided chiefly in eastern and central North Carolina, but also in Florida, Tennessee, and Alabama. Prominent among them were Thomas Ruffin (1787-1870), Anne M. Kirkland Ruffin (b. 1794), Joseph Blount Gregoire Roulhac (1795-1856), Catherine Ruffin Roulhac (b. 1810), and Daniel Heyward Hamilton, Jr. (b. 1838). The collection includes correspondence, financial and legal papers, account books, photographs, and other items, chiefly 1823-1890, relating to members of the Ruffin, Roulhac, and Hamilton families and their friends and associates. The papers relate to routine family matters and everyday life, and, to a lesser extent, to business matters, including the Ruffin plantations in North Carolina and Joseph Blount Gregoire Roulhac’s career as a merchant in Raleigh, to the Civil War and Reconstruction, and to various public concerns. There are few items relating to Thomas Ruffin’s legal and judicial career. The collection also contains photographs, carte-de-visite photographs, ambrotypes, daguerreotypes, tintypes, and sketches of members of the Ruffin and Roulhac families, friends, unidentified people, buildings, and Civil War naval engagements. There is also a mid-1850s daguerreotype of the sophomore class at the University of North Carolina, the earliest known image of a group of students at UNC.

Repository: Southern Historical Collection

Collection Highlights: In Series 1, beginning after 1836, there are numerous letters between Catherine Ruffin Roulhac and her husband Joseph discussing various topics including slaves.

Throughout the 1830s and into the 1850s, correspondence also includes discussion of difficulties with slaves and fears of abolitionists.

Volume S-1 in Folder 166 includes records of cotton picked as well as clothing allotments for enslaved individuals.