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A. S. Williams III Americana Manuscript Collections

Guide to the Mobile, Alabama, business correspondence, W.0098

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Publication:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Box 870266
Tuscaloosa, Alabama, 35487-0266
205.348.0500
archives@ua.edu

February 2014

Creation:

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2014-02-18T11:07-0600

Language Usage:

English

Description Rules:

Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Collection Title:

Mobile, Alabama, business correspondence

Unit ID:

W.0098

Repository:

University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

Quantity:

0.1 Linear feet

Dates:

1821-1838

Abstract:

Letters, dated between 1821 and 1838, describing business conditions in Mobile, Alabama, written by Mobile lawyers to northern merchants Enoch Silsby and William R. Bowers, updating them on the status of legal cases they had filed in Mobile and updates on the sale and production of cotton.

Location:

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library, The University of Alabama

creator

Bowers, William R.

creator

Silsby, Enoch

creator

Williams, A. S., III

Acquisition Information:

Gift of A. S. Williams III, 2010

Related Archival Materials note

Records of William R. Bowers and Co., Manuscripts Collection, G. W. Blunt White Library, Mystic Seaport Museum, Mystic, Connecticut.

Enoch Silsby Collection, Manuscripts Collection, G. W. Blunt White Library, Mystic Seaport Museum, Mystic, Connecticut.

Biographical/Historical note

Enoch Silsby was born on September 29, 1778, in Lynn, Massachusetts. A successful merchant shipper who resided in Boston and Bradford, Massachusetts, Silsby forged business connections between large port cities, including Boston, New York, Savannah, and Mobile. He married Alice Needham on May 30, 1799; the couple had six children: Alice, Caroline, George Enoch, Sarah Needham, Emma, and Emeline. Silsby died on November 4, 1850, in Roxbury, Massachusetts.

William R. Bowers was one of the owners of William R. Bowers & Company, a merchant shipping firm in Providence, Rhode Island.

Sources: Cutter, William Richard. Genealogical and Personal Memoirs Relating to the Families of Boston and Eastern Massachusetts. (New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, 1908), 737.

Scope and Contents note

This collection contains eighteen letters related to business in Mobile, Alabama, written from 1821 to 1838. The bulk of the collection consists of correspondence sent to Enoch Silsby and William R. Bowers, northern merchants with legal and financial interests in Mobile.

Six letters addressed to Rhode Island merchant William R. Bowers are dated between December 1833 and February 1838. The letters relay news related to Bowers's shipping business, telling him what to ship to Mobile and providing information the rates of cotton production and sale.

The ten letters addressed to Massachusetts merchant Enoch Silsby are dated between February 1821 and May 1824. The majority of Silsby's correspondence consists of letters written by Mobile attorneys updating him about his lawsuit filed against Thomas L. Hallett.

This collection also contains two letters unrelated to Silsby and Bowers. The first letter, written by tax collector Henry V. Chamberlain and dated March 9, 1822, addresses unpaid taxes. The second letter, from J. B. Toulmein to A. Bell Company, provides news on a financial dispute with a third party.

Access Restrictions:

None

Processing Information:

Processed by

Haley Aaron, 2013

Preferred Citation:

Mobile, Alabama, business correspondence, A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama

General note

Title on phase box spine: Mobile Business Conditions, 1822-1839

Source(s)

Williams, A. S., III (local)

Correspondence (aat)

Cotton (lcsh)

Law--Alabama--History--19th century (lcsh)

Merchants (lcsh)

Mobile (Ala.) (lcsh)

Enoch Silsby correspondence, 1821-1824 Box W0098.01 Folder 1

William R. Bowers correspondence, 1833-1838 Box W0098.01 Folder 2

Miscellaneous correspondence, 1822,1839 Box W0098.01 Folder 3