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W. S. Hoole Special Collections Library Manuscript Collections

Guide to the John H. Adams papers MSS.0009


University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, 35487-0266

May 2009


This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2012-08-27T16:54-0500

Description Rules:

Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Collection Title:

John H. Adams papers

Unit ID:



University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama


1.2 Linear feet


Bulk, 1911-1936




The correspondence of a Birmingham, Alabama, mining engineer, businessman, poet, and public servant. The collection also includes a small group of papers of Adams' son, John R. Adams, an attorney and realtor.


Adams, John. H., 1857-1949

Scope and Contents note

The collection consists of John H. Adams's and his son, John R. Adams's business correspondence. For the most part the correspondence is typewritten and covers primarily the decade of the 1920s. The elder Adams's outgoing correspondence is about half the size of his incoming correspondence, with much of the latter from J. A. Curtis and C. H. Judkins, businessmen and attorneys at law in Cleveland, Ohio. His son, John R. Adams's outgoing business correspondence is about three times the size of his incoming correspondence. The correspondence pertains primarily to their mining interests and their company, O'Neals Lime Works Inc. There is a prominent and unexplained gap in both father and son's business correspondence between 1914 and 1922-23. The collection also includes mineral deposit maps of the Tuscaloosa - Birmingham area and material about the Vulcan statue and Vulcan Park in Birmingham. Miscellaneous items include a limited number of various personal and business bills and receipts, unidentified correspondence, credit and financial reports, abstracts, undated mining notes, and mimeographed reports.

Preferred Citation:

John H. Adams PapersScope and Contents note, W.S. Hoole Special Collections Library, University Libraries Division of Special Collections, University of Alabama


Gift of Mrs. J. B. Cooper and Mrs. Richard Petty, 1949

Access Restrictions:


Biographical/Historical note

John H. Adams (1857-1949) was a mining engineer, businessman, poet, and Birmingham public servant. His son, John R. Adams, known also as Jack Adams and J. Reese Adams, was an attorney, realtor, and businessman. The elder Adams was elected Director from Alabama of the Engineering Association of the Southwest in 1889, and also appointed member of the Standing Committee on Rooms and library of the same organization. That year he also became superintendent of the Sloss Iron & Steel Company. In 1906 he was chosen as Vice-president, Sayre Mining & Manufacturing Co., and his prominence in the Birmingham business community led to his selection as chairman of the city’s Chamber of Commerce. He was also associated with numerous other firms and civic organizations, among them the Birmingham Farm Garden (1913), the Northern Kentucky Coal Mining Company (Treasurer, 1913), the Birmingham Trussville Iron Company (General Manager, 1918), Alales Construction Company (1923), O’Neal’s Lime Works (President & General Manager, 1923), the Birmingham Zoning Board of Adjustment (Chairman, 1929), Birmingham College (Trustee, 1939), the Masons, Cleveland-Alabama Mining Company, and Republic Iron & Steel Company (General Manager). John R. Adams was an attorney for the Tioga Company, 1909-14, an Assistant Manager of O’Neals Lime Works (1923), Manager of the Shelby County Abstract Company (1924), a realtor in Calera, Alabama (1924), Alabama agent for Schaffer Engineering Co. of Pittsburgh (1925), and member of the law firm of Cooper, Knight, Adair, Cooper & Osborn of Jacksonville, Fla., (1926).

Usage Restrictions:



Alabama (Local)

Alabama Business and Industry (Local)

Civic Organizations (Local)

Iron and Steel Industry (Local)

Jefferson County (Local)

Mining (Local)

Real Estate (Local)

Tuscaloosa County (Ala.) (lcsh)

Correspondence, Business – Outgoing Box 1535 Folder 1-4

Correspondence, Business - Incoming Box 1535 Folder 5-17

John R. Adams Correspondence, Business - Outgoing Box 1535 Folder 18-26

John R. Adams Correspondence, Business - Incoming Box 1535 Folder 27-29

Poetry Box 1536 Folder 30

Vulcan Box 1536 Folder 31

Legal Documents Box 1536 Folder 32

Stockholder's Reports Box 1536 Folder 33

Tax Assessments and Returns Box 1536 Folder 34-36

O'Neal's Lime Works Inc. - Miscellaneous Financial Reports Box 1536 Folder 37

Tioga Company vs. James Henry Box 1536 Folder 38

Mining Reports Box 1536 Folder 39-44

Brookwood Coal Box 1537 Folder 45

Maps - Blueprints Box 1537 Folder 46-60

Miscellaneous Box 1537 Folder 61

Miscellaneous Bills and Receipts Box 1537 Folder 62

AlaKyVa Corporation Box 1537 Folder 63