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Meriwether Papers
Southern Historical Collection
Wilson Library, UNC
Recorded 8/15/1997.

Abstractor's Notes:

The items abstracted below, except the first one, were given to the University of North Carolina by Margaret Meriwether McCuddy of Adairville, KY in 1950. The first item in Folder # 1 was donated by The Rev. T. M. Parker of Oxford, England in 1983. Dr. Parker was a descendant, through his mother, of the Francis Meriweather mentioned in the certificate. In receiving the certificate for the Library, the Director assured Dr. Parker that Meriwether Lewis was a descendant of the said Francis Meriweather!!!

Original spellings were retained in quoted material. Any other creative spelling is due to the abstractor. Some of the letters, particularly those of William Douglas Meriwether, were hard to decipher and so transcription errors should be expected. The purpose of the abstracts is to give an idea of the contents for further research. The information in the brackets [..] following the title of each item relates to additional addressees or the person(s) delivering the letter. Editorial notes, enclosed by brackets [..], have been added in a number of places.

The appendix contains letters, descriptions and an overview pertaining to the collection and were copied verbatim (scanned) from the documents accompanying the Meriwether Papers. These were produced by the Library Staff at the University of North Carolina. Please note the copyright statement if the reader plans to use that material.

The file consists of 62 items in 5 folders. An index of the items follows. The first number is the folder number followed by the item number. Click on a line to see the item.

Guy Meriwether Benson
Raleigh, NC
April 22, 2000

INDEX

1-1.Certificate of Freedom of the City of London issued to Francis Merriweather in 1737.

1-2.Letter from W. Anderson to Mr. Charles Meriwether, Student at the University, Edinburgh datelined London 20 Sept. 1791.

1-3. Letter from David Hutcheson to Dr. Charles Meriwether - 1793.

1-4. Letter from David Hutcheson to Dr. Meriwether (but no address given) dated 21 March 1795.

1-5. Letter from David Hutcheson to Dr. Meriwether datelined Edin 3 Sept 1795.

1-6. Letter from Patrick Laurie to Doctor Charles Meriwether Albemarle County - 1795.

1-7. Commission as Surgeon in the 69th Regiment, Virginia Militia issued to Charles Meriwether - 1803.

1-8. Tennessee land warrant originally issued to Thomas Morris - 1795.

1-9. Land Warrant Granted to Charles Meriwether 1807.

1-10. Letter from Henry Minor to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1808.

1-11. Letter from W. Warslaw (?) to Doct. Charles Minor - 1808.

2-1. Letter from Dabney Minor to Doct. Charles Meriwether - 1809.

2-2. Kentucky Land Grant to Charles Anderson - 1808.

2-3. Tennessee Land Grant assigned to Charles Meriwether - 1809.

2-4. Letter from William D. Meriwether to Doctr. Charles Meriwether - 1809.

2-5. Deed dated Feb 26, 1810, Charles Anderson to Charles Meriwether.

2-6. Letter from D. Minor to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1811.

2-7. Letter from Nicholas L. Meriwether to Doct Charles Meriwether - 1812.

2-8. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether (Death of N.L.M.) - 1813.

2-9. Letter from Willis Wells (or Mills, or Wily) to Dr. Charles Meriwether - 1813.

3-1. Land Grant dated July 15, 1814 to A. Davis.

3-2. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether - 1814.

3-3. Letter from F. Dabney to Doct. Charles Meriwether - 1815.

3-4. Land Grant dated August 14, 1815 - Charles Meriwether & others assignees.

3-5. Land Grant dated August 14, 1815 - Charles Meriwether & others assignees.

3-6. Letter from F. Dabney to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1815.

3-7. Land Deed date Nov 17, 1815, Elias Fort, Sr. to Charles Meriwether.

3-8. Land deed dated Jan 29, 1816, James Hurling to Charles Meriwether.

3-9. Letter and account statement from William Norwood (?) to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1816(?).

3-10 Letter from James Ragland to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1816.

3-11. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to doctor Charles Meriwether - 1816.

3-12. Letter from Dabney Minor to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1816.

4-1. Letter from Sam Dabney to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1817.

4-2. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether - 1817.

4-3. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether - 1818.

4-4. Letter for unknown to Uncle (presumably Charles Meriwether) - 1818. Describes trip on Missouri and Mississippi Rivers.

4-5. Letter from J. W. Overton to Doct. Charles Meriwether - 1818.

4-6. Letter to from R. Lewis Doctr. Charles Meriwether - 1818.

4-7. Bond of James Huling to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1819.

4-8. Land Deed dated April 21, 1819 from Samuel G. Whyte to Charles Meriwether.

4-9. Letter from unknown to Charles Barker - 1823. Describes trip up Arkansas River.

4-10. Land Deed dated July, 1825 from the heirs of William Moore to Charles Meriwether.

4-11. Letter from Carter Berkeley to Doctor Char. Meriwether - 1828.

4-12. Letter from William Meriwether to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1828.

4-13. Letter from William Meriwether to Doctor Charles Meriwether -1829.

4-14. Letter from John Lewis to Doctor Charles Meriwether - 1829.

4-15. Land Warrant to Charles Meriwether dated June 8, 1830.

4-16. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether - 1830.

4-17. List of 21 Negroes by name giving (probably) birth dates. Gift by Charles Meriwether to his son William Douglas Meriwether - 1830.

4-18. Letter from Richard Anderson to Doctr. Charles Meriwether - 1832.

5-1. Tennessee Land Grant to James McClure dated Nov 17, 1832.

5-2. Letter from W. Meriwether to Doct Charles Meriwether - 1840.

5-3. Letter from Warrick Miller to Dr Charles Meriwether - 1843.

5-4. "W. D. Meriwether Platt" signed by Nathl Burray (?) and dated Dec. 7, 1851. Shows 8 adjacent tracts

5-5. Letter from "L.N.L. (?)" to Mrs Mary Meriwether - 1852.

5-6. U. S. Land Certificate (No. 4753) dated 7/10/1848 to Peter R. Johnson.

5-7. U. S. Land Certificate (No. 4962) dated 11/1/1848 to James H. Meriwether of Crittenden County Arkansas.

5-8. U. S. Land Certificate (No. 4963) dated 11/1/1848 to James H. Meriwether.

5-9. U. S. General Office Land Warrant (No. 10524) dated 1/20/1851 to Nathaniel L. Ragland.

5-10. Two Plats for Charles N. Meriwether dated April 13, 1860.

5-11. Letter from C. N. M. to "My Dear Cousin Jessi - 1870. Comcerns R. E. Lee funeral.

5-12. Genealogy chart showing the ancestors of Hunter M. Meriwether of Kansas City - 188_.

APPENDIX

 

Folder 1.

1. Certificate of Freedom of the City of London issued to Francis Merriweather in 1737. Moved to the North Carolina Collection.

"No. 609. Francis Merriweather Son of Samuel Merriwether Late the App of Edmund Merriweather Citizen & Blacksmith of London was admitted into the Freedom aforesaid and sworn in the Mayoralty of Sr John Barnard Knt Mayor and John Bosworth Esq Chamberlain and is entered in the book signed with the Letter W relating to the purchasing of Freedoms and the Admissions of Freemen (to wit) The 12th day of January in the Eleventh Year of the reign of King GEORGE the Second And in the Year of our Lord 1737 In Witness thereof the Seal of the Office of Chamberlain of the said City is hereunto affixed Dated in the Chamber of the Guild-hall of the Same City the day and Year abovesaid."

Parchment 16 1/4" wide by 2 13/16" high. Shield printed on the left side (possibly of the City of London or England) -- Shield with sword pointed up in upper left corner, head of a knight above and dragons on each side. Motto is 'DomineïDirigeïNos' (hard to read). Seal imprinted on the right side - can't read. Housed in a wooden cylinder 1 5/8" in dia by 4 1/16" long with label "COPY of FREEDOM City of London." Cylinder may not be original but it is definitely old.

2. Letter from W. Anderson to Mr. Charles Meriwether, Student at the University, Edinburgh datelined London 20 Sept. 1791. Mentions 1200 #'s of Tobacco shipped by Charles' brother Thomas but not yet received. Discusses status of various drafts drawn on Mr. Anderson's firm's account, at least, one of which was by a Mr. Meriwether of Louisa.

3. Letter from David Hutcheson to Dr. Charles Meriwether, care of Mr. Alex (or Alan) McCaul, Mercht, Glasgow. [Ed Note: Mercht is probably an abbreviation for merchant] dated Sept 2, 1793. Hutcheson doesn't indicate where he is located but mentions having visited Charles at Glasgow. Mentions bills (including one to Mr. Martin) he will pay and a picture of Mrs. Meriwether that he will forward. Gives Charles approval to draw 40£'s on him at Greenock (Scotland). Remainder of letter discusses Charles desire, in the event of the death of himself and his daughter, to leave his daughter's fortune to her mother's friends. Hutcheson is apparently a lawyer. Hutcheson says he saw Miss Bell "within these two days."

4. Letter from David Hutcheson to Dr. Meriwether (but no address given) dated 21 March 1795. Answering Charles's letter of 15 January. Mentions Charles having left Scotland and the loss of Charles' daughter. Hutcheson mentions that he had lost his pregnant wife to consumption and his youngest daughter leaving him with only one daughter. Discusses Charles' daughter's estate and bills to be cleared up. Sending Powers of Attorney by London, Liverpool and Clyde to make sure they get to Charles. Also mentions sending the picture. Other names mentioned are Mr. Hawthorne, Mr. Laurie, Mr. McCall and Mr. Brown.

5. Letter from David Hutcheson to Dr. Meriwether datelined Edin 3 Sept 1795. Includes copy of above letter (#3) and another one datelined Edin 3 April 1795 which discusses Mr. Laurie's proposal to pay his debts and encloses the POA's. Hutcheson says he never received an answer to either letter. Sending another copy of the POA and again asking for agreement to Mr. Laurie's proposal. If Charles agrees he can draw on Hutcheson in November which is when Laurie will make the first payment. Hutcheson keeps mentioning that "money is scarce here."

6. Letter from Patrick Laurie to Doctor Charles Meriwether Albemarle County Virginia datelined Larg (?) 22 Apr 1795. Received Charles' 15 Jan letter on 18 March. Expresses sympathy on death of Charles' daughter. Gives same proposal that Hutcheson mentioned to repay debt. Thanks Charles for inviting his son David, then in school at Abercorn, to come to America and awaits directions on where to send him. Apologizes for the conduct of a Scot, Mr McMillan, who had gone to America (Charles must have complained). Mentions the Barwhenock family and that his wife is expecting. Gives "respectful compliments to your mother, Sister & Brother not forgetting the old Parson."

7. Commission as Surgeon in the 69th Regiment, Virginia Militia issued to Charles Meriwether , Gent. dated 1 May, 1803. Signed by Berryman Green Lieut. Colonel Commandant 69th reg. Virg. Militia. Headlined The Commonwealth of Virginia Halifax County.

8. Execution of a land warrant originally issued to Thomas Morris for military services performed for the State of North Carolina dated 28 November 1795 and entered 13 August 1796. 274 acres is granted to David Jones assignee of Thomas Morris by the State of Tennessee. "....Lying in Montgomery county, in the first District, on both sides of Spring Creek of the west fork of Red River - Beginning on the East Side of the said creek, where the Kentucky line crosses it ...." Gives Metes and bounds. Surveyed Dec 29, 1807. Signed by John Sevier, Governor of the Sate of Tennessee. Registered in Book I, page 24, Clarksville, Tennessee, 4th of Dec 1809.

9. Land Warrrant (?). 117 acres issued "by virtue of part of certificate No. 250 dated the 15th day of August 1807 obtained from the board of Commissioners for West Tennessee by John Gray Blount and Thomas Blount on the 21st day of September 1807. Granted to Charles Meriwether assignee of the above Blounts. Adjoins the previous tract. Metes and Bounds. Surveyed 29th day of December 1807. Signed by Sevier. Registered in Book M, page 240, Clarksville, Tennessee, June 21, 1809.

10. Letter from Henry Minor to Doctor Charles Meriwether "near Halifax Court House" datelined Clarksville, November 18, 1808. Minor has heard that Charles is going to Richmond and plans himself to go to Virginia "...as soon as I am disengaged from the business of our next County Court..." (Letter in bad shape but a copy is provided).

11. Letter from W. Warslaw (?) to Doct. Charles Minor Halifax (also mentioned W.S.Combs in the address) datelined Richmond Dec 20, 1808. 600 £'s of Minor's tobacco is unsold due to the "....prospect of a nonintercourse law with G.B. & France...." Mentions that he did not receive his (Minor's) package from Mr. D. Minor although he had been there. (This letter is definitely addressed to Charles Minor while the previous one is addressed to Charles Meriwether).

 

Folder 2.

1. Letter from Dabney Minor to Doct. Charles Meriwether Halifax datelined Orange March 26, 1809. Thanks him for his letter of the 10th and is gratified for his safe arrival "...with our dear Charles..." (may explain letter #10 above). Lucy (his wife?) sends regards to Mrs. Meriwether. Mrs. Anderson is very ill. Discusses selling 9 slaves to Thompson to pay debt. Richard Anderson is handling.

2. Land Grant to Charles Anderson by the Commonwealth of Kentucky for a certificate issued by the Christian County Court in August 1802. Grant for 200 acres is dated 3rd February 1808. On Spring Creek. Metes and bounds. Mentions Anderson, Killabrew and William Gibson. Signed by Governor Charles Scott on June 8, 1809. Recorded Book 6, page 331.

3. Land Grant issued for part of a warrant to Samuel Jackson dated May 14, 1803 and entered Feb 13, 1808 and assigned to Charles Meriwether. 94 acres in Montgomery County in the First District on Spring Creek. Begins on the Kentucky line and adjoins Charles' 117 acre tract (see above). Metes and bounds. Signed by Governor Sevier Aug 12, 1809 and recorded in Book I, page 190 on Sept. 31, 1811.

4. Letter from William D. Meriwether to Doctr. Charles Meriwether, Clarksville, Tennessee datelined September 17, 1809 and mailed from Milton 20 Sept 1809. They are Brothers. Complains that Charles has not answered his letter. Mentions "our aged mother" and, later, Mr. Terrel [Ed Note: Chiles Terrel who married their widowed mother], and sons Thomas and Nicholas both of whom are ill. Says that Mrs. Walker had died and that Mr. Walker had left Belvoir for Philadelphia to get help for his ulcer but he wasn't expected to return [Ed Note: This would be John Walker, son of Dr. Thomas Walker. John never made it to Philadelphia. He died at the Orange County Court House on the way.] Mentions poor crops and an increasing interest in manufacturing. He has a machine for cording cotton and is getting one to do spinning as well. Mentions "Bety" [his wife?].

5. Deed dated Feb 26, 1810. Charles Meriwether of the County of Christian in the State of Kentucky buys 2 200 acres tracts from Charles Anderson and his wife Sarah, Montgomery County, Tennessee for $1600. Both in Christian County, Kentucky near the state line on Spring Creek. Both are land grants to Anderson including # 2 above. Metes and Bounds on both. Recorded (about) March 17, 1810 in Book B, page 400.

6. Letter from D. Minor to Doctor Charles Meriwether, Christian County, Kentucky - Care of Douglass Meriwether datelined Charlottesville, Nov 26, 1811. Minor (Dabney?) is considering moving west and wants to know if Charles can advise him on suitable land in his area. Says he will be with him next Spring. Mentions his friends T.(?) C. Minor and Harry Minor who, apparently live near Charles.

7. Letter from Nicholas L. Meriwether to Doct Charles Meriwether, Clarksville Tennessee datelined Richmond, March 30, 1812. To "Uncle Charles." Advises that "we" arrived safely in Albemarle 18(?) days after leaving Charles' house. Some lists on the back of clothes and watermelons (14 - one weighed 30 lbs.).

8. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether, D C M Kentucky datelined October 30, 1813. Advises of the death of his son Nicholas on July 25 after an illness of 2 days. Capt. Alcock [Ed Note: name is difficult to read here but there was a Capt Alcock that was said to have married Elizabeth Walker, Dr. Walker's second wife] is moving to Tennessee to take up 100 acres in Tennessee promised him by William's son Nicholas. Asks Charles to mark off 100A. Richard Meriwether [Ed Note: probably Richard Terrell Meriwether son of Thomas Meriwether and Anne Minor] is bringing $100 that William got from Dabney Minor to help pay taxes and expenses on the land. Includes list of charges and payments - not clear what for.

9. Letter from Willis Wells (or Mills, or Wily) to Dr. Charles Meriwether, Merryville near Clarksville Ten datelined Fair Haven Nov 21, 1813. Concerns a bond executed by Douglas Meriwether (Copy included) for Negroes delivered to Douglas for security by Wells who was administrator/executor of several Bernard estates. Douglas' wife was Judith Bernard. Wells says the conditions of the bond have been satisfied and he wants his Negroes back.

 

Folder 3.

1. Land Grant dated July 15, 1814 and signed by Governor Isaac Shelby (CoK). Original certificate granted by Christian County Court April, 1803 to Azariah Davis, Sen who assigned it to Azariah Davis. 400 acres surveyed February 17, 1808 in Christian County on Spring Creek. Metes and Bounds. Mentions "David Davis's corner on the State Line," "corner of a military survey known by the name of Shelby's Station," Hannaniah Davis's line," "Hesiah Davis's line," and "Charles Andersons corner." Doesn't say where it was recorded.

2. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether, Tennessee dated September 28, 1814. Has sent $20 by Mr. Barker which is all he can afford. Times are very difficult. All he can sell is bacon and whiskey. Very concerned about the military situation with Great Britain. His overseer has been called off on a tour of duty leaving all of his work to William. Sends respects to Capt. Alcock(? - see 2-8) and Mary.

3. Letter from F. Dabney to Doct. Charles Meriwether, Port Royal, Tennessee datelined Danville, Va, May 13, 1815 [Mail]. Dabney's business has dropped off so much he isn't attending to it anymore and has taken up visiting friends and relatives. His father died 3 years before. His mother who used to be "sickly, lean & emaciated" has become "at the age of 57 a large, fat & healthy woman." Mentions L. Minor's family. Hopes to visit Charles in the fall. His brother Samuel's wife is near death and will leave half a dozen children. Filed Charles' answer to Siamone's (?) bill and Doct. Hopson's deposition with the Halifax Court and employed Mr Leigh to defend him. Dabney is 3 years behind in his books - apparently he is handling Charles' property/business in Halifax County. Mentions Mr. Barker.

4. Land Grant dated August 14, 1815 and signed by the Governor Isaac Shelby (CoK). Original certificate granted by the Christian County Court dated August, 1804. Previous assignees (starting with the first): Hengh McWilliams, Azariah Davis, Charles Meriwether. 32 acres surveyed June 20, 1812 on in Christian County on Spring Creek. Metes and Bounds including ".... Beginning corner of Charles Andersons additional Head right claim of 200 acres ..." Also mentions "Charles Anderson's Original claim of 200 acres." Recorded Book 17, page 173.

5. Land Grant dated August 14, 1815 and signed by the Governor, Isaac Shelby (CoK). Original certificate granted by the Christian County Court dated May 1803. A String of assignees (starting with the first one): John Gibson, Arzariah Davis, Charles Meriwether, John W. Baker and Doctor Charles Meriwether. 400 acres surveyed March 11, 1813 in Christian County on the waters of Spring Creek. Metes and Bounds including "....the West line of Charles Anderson's Original Survey of 200 acres...." Recorded Book 17, page 172.

6. Letter from F. Dabney to Doctor Charles Meriwether, Christian County, Kentucky datelined Danville, Nov 10.1815 [Sending via Mr. Baxter]. Mentions his brother Samuel is sending some Negroes to Kentucky. Discusses status of suit against Charles in Halifax Chancery Court. Mentions Layton Yancey (Constable), Mr. Leigh (Attorney handling suit), John Barker and his old friends Mr. & Mrs. Barker. Now less likely to visit Charles. Planning on moving to Richmond. Sends respects to Doctor Hopson and "his lady."

7. Land Deed date Nov 17, 1815. 51 2/3 acres from Elias Fort Sr.(?), Robinson County, State of Tennessee to Charles Meriwether of Commonwealth of Kentucky (CoK) for $155. In Montgomery County, Tennessee on Spring Creek. Part of a Grant from the State of Tennessee to Elias dated Oct 31, 1809. Adjoins a 133 acre tract granted to Charles Meriwether (doesn't match any of those listed above) and Kentucky line. Mentions Harris' line. Metes and Bounds. Witnesses: Joseph Woolfolk, Carter T. Wood, Abner Hampton. Registered June 10, 1816.

8. Land deed dated Jan 29, 1816. Charles buys 186 3/4 acres from James Hurling for $744. Both men in Christian County. Land Granted to Henry Gibson Oct 19, 1813. Land in Christian County near Renfroe's Pond. Metes and Bounds. Witnesses: Ambrose Dudley, O. Robbins, Jno Shields(?), Azariah Davis. Recorded April 5, 1814 in Book 6 (?).

9. Letter and account statement from William Norwood (?) to Doctor Charles Meriwether, Christian County, Kentucky undated but probably 1816 [By W. E. Walton].

10. Letter from James Ragland to Doctor Charles Meriwether, Brookhill, Kentucky datelined Carthage Sept. 1, 1816 [Mail, Barker, John T. Chiles, Louisa County, Virginia]. Has visited Charles. Will not be able to move down as soon as he said due to his Negroes coming down with bilious fever. Some may die. Asks for help in getting planks to build 2 cabins.

11. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to doctor Charles Meriwether, Brookhill, Montgomery Cty, Tennessee dated Oct 8, 1816 [Mail, N. Forau, M. Mansfield]. Discuss Bell (?) debt and problems with his crops. Thinks that they will give up tobacco farming in his area in a year or two.

12. Letter from Dabney Minor to Doctor Charles Meriwether, Brookhill, Montgomery County, Tennessee datelined Orange, Oct 13, 1816 [David Hackny, Charles Moriur]. Mr. N. Poindexter handed him Charles' favor at the Louisa Court. Minor complains about not hearing from him. The state of Virginia passed a law which gives the state right to appropriate lands with unpaid taxes. The Sheriff of Louisa was auctioning some for the taxes owed. Dabney bought one that Charles had sold to Thompson, also mentions that Harvey and John Moore previously owned this land.

 

Folder 4.

1. Letter from Sam Dabney to Doctor Charles Meriwether, Montgomery, Tennessee datelined Pitsylvania, March 12, 1817 [Mr. Ligan, Sarah Walton, Caroline H. Barker]. Has written 3 or 4 times without receiving a reply. Would like to have ..."some information with respect to my business in that Country (i.e., in Charles' area)." Handling Mr. Lewis' estate after his death. Lewis had no wife or overseer. Expects to finish up by May. Brother Frank is in poor health and Sam thinks he will die if he remains in Richmond. Land has risen in value 100% in Dabney's area and 1000% in Danville in the last 12 months due to the prospects of making the Roanoke navigable. Danville will soon be equal or superior to Lynchburg in commerce. Some gossip: Mrs. Glen and Mr Chalmers are courting but have not yet made a match, however, young Mr. Glen and Miss Chalmers are married. Thinking of "....getting another wife myself..." Sends respects to Cousin Mary and "your children."

2. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether, Montgomery Cty, Tennessee dated May 8, 1817. Sends Charles a note on the bank of Virginia for $100 (something to do with James Lutch) and asks him for an account of taxes he may owe on land in Charles' area. Thinks that tobacco would be abandoned except that the wheat crop has been devastated by the Hessian fly. Corn is also scarce. Tobacco prices are high. Starting to use plaster of Paris to improve his crops. Plans to buy 20 "tuns" at $17 per tun. Mentions nephew Peter Meriwether "...who will deliver you this..." "Bety" and he send "sister" Mary and Charles their best wishes.

3. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether, Christian Cty, Kentucky from W. D. Meriwether dated April 3, 1818 [Miss Ann M. Barker, Miss Caroline H. Barker, Mary A. Barker, Daniel Barry, Charles N. Meriwether, Mary B. Overton]. Nephew Samett(?) Meriwether is delivering this note. Things are improving. The "cloruning and plastering" are helping their worn out lands. The improved husbandry has increased the land values 100%. The Hessian fly is still a problem but less so because of a new wheat - Lawles Wheat - from the North. Mentions a new Agriculture Society that has been established "and the president of the united States (Monroe)and two of his predecessors (Jeferson and Madison?) are members." "Our relation" Nicholas Lewis visited last fall and "Robert" is coming in May or June. Asks Charles to come to Virginia for a visit.

4. Letter datelined Orleans, April 17, 1818 (No address or signature-must have used an envelope). To Uncle (presumably Charles Meriwether). He didn't travel between Cape Girardeau and the Arkansas as previously planned. Gives a second hand, unflattering account of the country. Mentions Spring River. Visited the Apple River country which was shown to him by a Judge More. While tobacco could be grown there he didn't regard it as favorably as did "your Connerly did." Saw some fair woodlands which is located conveniently to Orleans. St. Louis is striking with 6000 inhabitants. The land around Florissant "which you saw" is equal to any. Timber first rate to St Charles and then thins out. The 20 mile area around Franklin is first rate and the country along the edge of the prairies particularly desirable. In going back down the River (Mississippi?) he notes good land but which is subject to flooding - particularly below the Ohio. There is a good wooded highland just below the mouth of the St. Francis. The land below Cape Girardeau (spelt "guardau") is hilly and looks healthy and fertile. Natchez is a "handsome town" of 3000. Richard Terrell has sold his farm. Mentions Mr. Brand(?) and "Dr. James M. Morris, of Louisa who is here now." Describes New Orleans which is "a very thriving city, and business extremely brisk." About 35,000 inhabitant. (It appears that part of the letter is missing as their is no closing).

5. Letter from J. W. Overton to Doct. Charles Meriwether, Montgomery Coty, datelined Travellers Rest __, Aug 2, 1818 [Thos Minor, judge Overton, Caroline H. Barker, Samuel Jones]. Says that W. Henry Minor of Huntsville(?) wishes to have a trust set up to help his aging father take care of his wife and daughters. Overton encloses a blank trust document and gives instructions for it and the making of a will. Has urged Minor (the older one?) to "make up the unhappy affair with W. Johnson" and Minor agrees. Asks Charles to help. Has also communicated with Firth Hurling, attorney.

6. Letter to Doctr. Charles Meriwether, Clarksville, Tennessee from R. Lewis datelined Chickasaw Agency, December 30, 1818 [apparently directed through New Orleans, Louisiana State]. Replying to Charles' letter of Jan which he just received. Brings him up to date. Ascended the Missouri River after leaving Charles' house, returning in May 1813 when "the company" dissolved due to the war with Great Britain. Returned to Virginia where he served 6 months in the Militia - until June 1816. Went to St. Louis where he was employed for awhile and then was appointed to the Chickasaw Agency. He and Glen have bought 600 acres around Davidson Villle (also "or Lawness(?) as(?) Court House"). Plan to lay off lots adjoining the present town. Located on the Black River which is navigable for the largest boats. Discusses value of the land and the prospects for cotton. Long letter. Asks the doctor to write often and gives his address as: "Cadron(?) post office Arkansas County, Missouri Territory. Mentions cousin Talley(?).

7. Bond of James Huling to Doctor Charles Meriwether in the amount of $1008 dated April 3, 1819. Involves 45 acres and 9 acres that Charles obtained from Samuel G Whyte. Mentions John Gray and Azand Davis. Witness Daniel Mayes.

8. Land Deed dated April 21, 1819 from Samuel G. Whyte, Logan County, Ky to Charles Meriwether, Christian County, Ky, 54 acres and 72 poles on Spring Creek for $150. Metes & Bounds. Witnesses: Henry C. Ewin, Charles Barker, John Mi(?)nfield. There is also a release from Azeriah Davis relinquishing claim to the above property in consideration of $150. Witnesses: Charles Barker, Henry C. Ewin. Both recorded Book K, page 287.

9. Letter to Charles Barker datelined State of Mississippi, Wilkinson County, April 8, 1823 (Part of the letter, including the signature and address, are missing). Writer says that he also is forwarding with this letter one to Doct. Meriwether. The writer recounts his trip 650 miles up the Arkansas River and describes the River. Hypothesizes that it is , at least, 2500 miles long. Bottom lands are rich and 4 miles wide as far as Fort Smith which is 600 miles upriver. Good cotton growing for the first 150 miles. Highlands poor but good for stock. He wouldn't personally want to live there because of the lack of good water and the climate but thinks that it would be attractive to settlers and perhaps speculation. Thinks that one should make 1000% in 10 years. Only passed within 70 miles of Hot Springs but adds some description and comment. Lengthy comment on Indians, particularly the Osage which he says "act up to their principals (though different) ... more rigidly, than the whites do to those which they profess." The end of the letter is missing. Asks Barker to write to him at St. Francisville, Louisiana.

10. Land Deed dated July, 1825 from the heirs of William Moore, Montgomery County, Tennessee to Charles Meriwether, Tod County, Kentucky, 29 acres in Montgomery County on Spring Creek, originally granted to William Moore and allotted to Jane Moore as her part of the estate. In consideration of one slave girl named Mary Ann valued at $300. Moore heirs included in the deed, in addition to Jane Moore, are: William Claborn Moore, Morgan Moore, Stephen Terry and his wife Demaris Terry, formerly Demaris Moore and Sally Collier all of the County of "Carrel", State of Kentucky Witnesses: same as the list of heirs. Recorded Book l, Page 111.

11. Letter from Carter Berkeley to Doctor Char. Meriwether, Care of Mr. Barker, Merchant, Clarksville, Tennessee datelined Edge Wood, Hanover Co. Virg., Sept. 12, 1828. Has heard of Charles, an acquaintance of 15 years ago, through Mrs. Barker. He is looking to move because there are too many MD's in his area which is too expensive, his large family and because "....Justice at least seemed to have taken her leave of the state, and Democracy, -- I mean Mobocracy -- misrule and Anarchy almost to have occupied her seat . . ." Looking for a place where his slaves can be put to more productive use. He has a family of 10-12 whites and 40-50 blacks. Asks about land, crops, climate, etc in Charles' area. Very concerned about whether he can keep his slaves "in line" and prevent and their getting "off to Ohio, under a hope of freedom and if so how are they recovered . . ." Can he practice his profession near Clarksville (Doctor, Apothecary, Druggist). Has 4 sons and 3 daughters, 4 grandchildren. Asks about prospects for his sons also. Very detailed list of questions.

12. Letter from William Meriwether to Doctor Charles Meriwether, Hadensville, Todd County, Ky datelined Wednesday, December 24, 1828. Charles disapproves of his son studying medicine. Son thinks it would improve his mind more than "keeping company with Negroes" (apparently referring to farming) but he agrees to give up this course of study. Mentions that his father was informed by "Edward" that he (William) was taking Mathematics, Chemistry and Modern Languages. This is a hard course and he is at a disadvantage but is doing well at Chemistry. Asks his father opinion on what branch of Mathematics he should concentrate on. Apologizes for his hand writing.

13. Letter from William Meriwether to Doctor Charles Meriwether, Clarksville, Montgomery, Tennessee datelined Moores brook(?), April 22, 1829 [via Washington, William D. Meriwether]. Based on his father's descriptions William thinks that the fevers raging at his University is typhus. School has recessed two months and the fever has disappeared. The professors won't refund any money for the lost time. Only about 12 of the students returned. He plans to board with Cousin Charles [Ed Note: possibly Charles James Meriwether, son of William Douglas Meriwether and Elizabeth Lewis]. Gives his father an estimate on the money he is going to need. On relatives: Uncle William "has become much more familiar in his manners" but is still strong in intellect and devotes his time to his mill. Says that Uncle William and his son William [William Douglas Meriwether and his son William Hunter Meriwether] both live with Cousin Charles. Both Williams interested in Mills but don't agree on what kind. Mentions Uncle James and Aunt Susan are well. Relations would like Charles to come to Virginia and Charles' son proposes an itinerary. Mentions Aunt Lewis and her daughter, Mrs. Latch who married Davy Anderson [Ed Note: Aunt is Elizabeth Meriwether wife of Thomas Walker Lewis. Her daughter is Mary Walker Lewis who married (1) James Leitch (not Latch) and (2) Capt. David Anderson]. Thinks Doctor Charles [Ed Note: Charles Hunter Meriwether son of Nicholas Hunter Meriwether and Rebecca Terrell] will move west in due course [Ed Note: according to NHM p.85 he never moved west]. Also mentions Aunt Becky [Ed Note: Rebecca Terrell] and brothers James and Charles [Dr. James Hunter Meriwether and Charles Nicholas Minor Meriwether].

14. Letter from John Lewis to Doctor Charles Meriwether, Kentucky, to the Care of Doctor John M. Daniel datelined Llangollen(?), Spotsylvania County, Virginia, June 8, 1829. Letter of introduction for Doctor John M. Daniel the son of Dr. J. M. Daniel.

15. Land Warrant from the Commonwealth of Kentucky to Charles Meriwether dated June 8, 1830 for 600 acres on Spring Creek in Todd County, Kentucky. Mentions Charles Barker's corner and state line. Recorded Book Y, page 310.

16. Letter from W. D. Meriwether to Doct. Charles Meriwether, Todd County, Kentucky dated July 14, 1830 [M. Tunlate (?) (?), N. Fer(?)]. Sending the letter by Mr. Tunstale. William is sorry to hear that someone was claiming Charles' dwelling and some of his land. Mentions that he took the Sheriff's place a second time. Term was completed last month. He had some problems with "returning executions" and had spent time straightening things out including paying some fines. William is glad that Charles is coming to Virginia. Son, William had been sick for 12 to 18 months but had taken a trip to White Sulphur Springs and was expected back that day. A turnpike from Charlottesville to Rockfish pass was just completed. "Dams and lock" on the Rivanna would be completed in two years which would improve navigation from Charlottesville to Richmond. Wheat crop was better. A bushel could get 90-95 cents at the Richmond market.

17. List of 21 Negroes by name giving (probably) birth dates. "I Give to my Son William Douglas Meriwether the above named twenty one Negroes as witness my hand the 30 th day of December 1830." Signed Charles Meriwether. A note on the front: "Given to W. D. Meriwether Decd (?) by his father Dr Chas Meriwether. 21 Negroes. Given in 1830." [Ed note. William died in 1878]

18. Letter from Richard Anderson to Doctr. Charles Meriwether, Albemarle datelined Elmingtin, Hanover County, 27th September 1832 [Mr. Barker]. Thanks Charles for his letter of the 25th delivered by Mr. Barker. Charles had told him that he could not take his (Anderson's) daughters in his carriage to Tennessee and Anderson says that he wouldn't have thought of troubling Charles. Apparently Anderson had a daughter, Marion, in Tennessee.[jmo note: Marion L. Anderson, wife of Edward Simpson Barker] Mentions a joint proposal with Mr. Barker to buy a carriage and horses which could be resold in Tennessee. However, his trip to Richmond to purchase same was unsuccessful, in part due to the Cholera "....which is increasing, and is generally spread through the City...."

 

Folder 5.

1. Land Grant to James McClure dated Nov 17, 1832 and surveyed Dec 10, 1834. 3900 acres in Humphreys County, Tennessee. Mentions land where Alexander Gwin lives and the Old Ridge Road. Signed by William Carroll, Governor of Tennessee on June 1, 1734. Registered in Humphreys County, Book F (?), pages 489 & 490, dated 9/19/1840. (A note on the front says that it was received by the register on June 1, 1735.)

2. Letter from W. Meriwether (M12211) to Doct Charles Meriwether, Clarksville, Tennessee, datelined November 18, 1840 (& on the front: "Everettsville Va Nov 19th 1840"), ["To the Care of Mr. Barker"]. Charles letter of Oct 8 said that he had "recovered from a severe attack" by someone who had laid a Kentucky warrant on Charles' land and had lived on it for five years. Under Tennessee law the land would have been ceded to the person if he had remained on the land for 7 years. William wants to know whether the land in question was the land purchased for Capt. Alcock (see 2-8) or "....taken up and patented in my Son Nicholas (M1221111) name...." If the first case he has promised the land to his son William (M1221113) but doesn't have any papers on it so that a proper deed to William can be made. In the other case "....the representatives of my Decd Son Nicholas, My Son William will probably write to you...." Neighbors, Clark and Rogers' son John had died recently. Professor Davis at the University of Virginia was shot and killed by a student. The widow was a daughter of Richard Terrell. [Ed note: Davis owned "The Farm" and I believe, built the present house.] Son William [Ed Note: William Hunter Meriwether called Billy Fish] was building a mill at the mouth of Moore's Creek and was President of the Rivanna Company. Son Charles (M1221114) and his wife [Ed note: Charles James Meriwether and Louise Miller] were both in "delicate health." Son Thomas [Ed note: Dr. Thomas Walker Meriwether] "has a great practice" and just had another daughter. Peggy [Ed note: daughter Margaret Douglas Meriwether (M1221117)] and her two children were living "with us" as were Charles and Mary Walker (at "Cloverfields"). "....brother Jame (?) and family all well, there are four of Nicholas Seven Children with him, Jame, Eliza, Susan and Laura, the youngest is in Missouri I think his name is Nicholas...." Corn crop very good, Tobacco less so and the wheat "short and mean in quality." Congratulates Charles on the election of "Tip & Tie(?)" [Ed Note: a reference to Harrison and Tyler?]

3. Letter from Warrick Miller to Dr Charles Meriwether, Graysville, Todd Co Ky datelined Louisville, Ky Feb 18, 1843. Signed "Your affectionate Cousin." Long letter about improving the land for crops and feeding cattle.

4. "W. D. Meriwether Platt" signed by Nathl Burray (?) and dated Dec. 7, 1851. Shows 8 adjacent tracts:

78 acres Farm
32 acres "Brush"
32 acres "Woods"
63 acres Farm
92 acres Farm
175 acres Farm
27 acres Farm
232 acres Woods Total 751 acres including 296 acres Woods and Brush.

The south side is along the "State Line." Doesn't give any other information as to location.

5. Letter from "L.N.L. (?)" to Mrs Mary Meriwether, Meriville and datelined Hopkinsville, Dec 21--52 [Henry Zylphie (?)]. To his Aunt. Brother Sewell, a young preacher, was visiting. Thinks he is intelligent, will be "....very useful 'In the vinyard'" and "'not puffed up.'" Sister Hale is recovered and gone to upper Kentucky and will join Dr. Hale in Memphis in January. They will go to Texas. Mentions other "church" people. Suggests that "Mr Meriwether, or cousin Will (if he will allow me thus to speak)...." read a recent article in Harper's monthly on the increase in crime [Ed Note: what's new]. Thinks it will "convince him of the error of his course." Asks for his aunt to send him the "Wide Wide World." Mentions Fanny (not writing) and Dinah. [Ed note: Mary Meriwether was probably Mary Walton Daniel, the third wife of Dr. Charles Meriwether].

6. U. S. Land Certificate (No. 4753) dated 7/10/1848 to Peter R. Johnson of Union County Kentucky for 80 acres in the Helena Arkansas Land Office District. Registered at Helena. Johnson purchased the tract under an act of Congress dated 24th of April, 1820. Signed by James K. Polk, President of the United States. Recorded, Vol. 9 Page 388. Described by Township, Range, etc..

7. U. S. Land Certificate (No. 4962) dated 11/1/1848 to James H. Meriwether of Crittenden County Arkansas for 160 acres in the Helena Land Office district. The rest as above. Recorded, Vol. 10 Page 242.

8. U. S. Land Certificate (No. 4963) dated 11/1/1848 to James H. Meriwether of Crittenden County Arkansas for 580 acres in the Helena Land Office district. The rest as above. Recorded, Vol. 10 Page 243.

9. U. S. General Office Land Warrant (No. 10524) dated 1/20/1851 to Nathaniel L. Ragland private Captain Sneeds Company first Regiment Tennessee Cavalry and assigned to David T. Johnson for 160 acres in the Helena Land Office District. Township, Range, section given. Signed by Millard Filmore. Recorded, Vol. 58 Page 143.

10. Two Plats for Charles N. Meriwether dated April 13, 1860 as follows:

A. 44 acres in Montgomery County, Tennessee on the branches of Spring Creek. Bounded on the West by the road from Trenton to Clarksville.

B. 10 acres on the east side of the previous tract surveyed for Mrs. C. D. Sturdivant. Mentions Thomas L. Meriwether's old line.

11. Letter from C. N. M. to "My Dear Cousin Jessi (?)," datelined Washington and Lee College Va, Oct. 15th 1870. Tells of a "solumn and glorious funeral" of the "General (Lee)." Goes on at length about the general and the funeral. Calls the funeral "a victory for Christ." Describes the occasion that he heard of Lee's death. General Pendleton, spoke of Lee's reasons for coming to the college, the main one, of which, was to make the young men become "honest sincere Christians." A lot of details on the events but nothing else.

12. Genealogy chart showing the ancestors of Hunter M. Meriwether of Kansas City, Mo. Starts with Nicholas Meriwether and Elizabeth Crawford. There are many errors in the chart. For example, William Meriwether (M121), son of Nicholas Meriwether (M12) is shown as the father of the Thomas Meriwether (M1221) who married Elizabeth Thornton; Thomas was the son of David (M122), not William (M121). Shows Nicholas Hunter Meriwether as the husband of Margaret Douglas and shows them as the parents of the children of Thomas Meriwether and Elizabeth Thornton. No source is indicated and it is undated -- although on the reverse side Hunter's letterhead, as an attorney, has 188_ printed on it.

 

Appendix-- Summary Pages from the Southern Historical Collection entitled: "Meriwether Family Papers, 1737 - 1800s, Inventory." Compiled by Elizabeth Pauk, July 1991. No. 1800 - z.

 

Page 2.

Provenance: Received from Margaret Meriwether McCuddy of Adairville, Ky., in 1950, and from T. M. Parker of Oxford, England, in 1983.

Access: No restrictions

Processing Note: This Collection was rehoused under the sponsorship of a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Office of Preservation, Washington, D.C., 1990-1992.

Copyright: Retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Table of Contents:

Biographical Note........ 3

Description.......... 4

Page 3.

BIOGRAPHICAL NOTE

Charles Meriwether (fl. 1766-1843) (M122114), son of Col. Nicholas Meriwether (M12211) of Virginia and Margaret Douglas Meriwether of Scotland, was born in or near what is now Albemarle County, Va. A member of a prominent Virginia family, Meriwether was a first cousin of Meriwether Lewis (1774-1809), one of the commanders of the Lewis and Clark expedition and governor of the Louisiana Territory.

In the 1780s while studying medicine in Edinburgh, Scotland, Charles Meriwether married a Socttish couisn, Lydia Laurie, and had a daughter. His wife died before 1791, and his daughter died shortly after his return to Virginia around 1794. He remained in that state until 1809, serving as surgeon to the 69th Regiment of the Virginia Militia and farming in Halifax County. In 1809, he moved to Montgomery County, Tenn., purchasing land in that county and in neighboring Christian County, Ky. He remained in those counties, marrying a second and third time. His second wife was Ann "Nancy" Minor, a native of Virginia, with whom he had a son, Charles Nicholas Minor Meriwether (1801-1877). His third wife was Mary (Walton) Daniel, with whom he had two sons, William Douglas Meriwether (1809-1878) and James Hunter Meriwether (1814-1890).

 

Page 4.

This collection consists of correspondence and financial and legal papers of the Meriwether family of Virginia and Tennessee.

Correspondence consists chiefly of letters to Charles Meriwether from family and friends. During the 1790s, there are several letters to him on the subject of tobacco sales and the settlement of his wife's and daughter's estates. Correspondence from family and friends includes letters giving family news and discussing the possibilities of moving west, slave and tobacco sales, land disputes, and the expense of land in Virginia. There are many letters from his brother, William D. Meriwether of Virginia, regarding family matters and estates, economic conditions in Virginia, farming, the War of 1812, and the murder of a professor at the University of Virginia by a student: William is the most frequent correspondent from 1809 through 1840. In a letter of 3 April 1818, he described the agricultural improvements adopted by Albemarle County planters, who were growing wheat instead of tobacco, applying plaster and clover to the soil, and facing devastating attacks by the Hessian fly. He also mentioned the founding of the Albemarle County Agricultural Society.

Other letters include one from a nephew describing his journey down the Mississippi River in 1818, from relatives in the Arkansas Territory between 1818 and 1823, and several from his son William D. Meriwether, a student at the University of Virginia in the late 1820s.

Other correspondence includes a letter to Charles Meriwether's wife Mary, detailing family news, and a letter from his son Charles N. Meriwether, a student at Washington and Lee, describing the funeral of General Robert E. Lee in 1870.

Financial and legal materials, intermixed with the letters, include a certificate of admission to the freedom of the City of London (Note: transferred to the North Carolina Collection) to Francis Merriweather, ancestor of the Meriwether family in the United States, dated 12 January 1737; a letter of appointment to Charles Meriwether as surgeon to the 69th Regiment of the Virginia Militia in 1803; land grants for Montgomery and Todd County, Tenn., and Christian County, Ky ; indentures; federal land grants; a list of slaves given by Charles Meriwether to his son William D. Meriwether in 1830; survey maps; and a genealogical chart dating from the 1880s.

Folder 1 1737, 1791-1808

2 1809-1813

3 1814 1816

4 1817-1832

5 1840-1880s

 

Page 5.

Abstract: Meriwether family of Virginia, including Charles Meriwether (fl. 1766-1843), physician and farmer of Virginia, Montgomery County, Tenn., and Christian County, Ky.

Correspondence and financial and legal papers of Charles Meriwether and other members of the Meriwether family. The letters are chiefly to Charles Meriwether from business associates and family members, particularly from Charles's brother William D. Meriwether of Albemarle County, Va., describing family and neighborhood activities, tobacco and slave sales, experiments with wheat planting, family estates, farming, economic conditions in Virginia, and travels down the Mississippi River in 1818 and in the Arkansas Territory in 1823. Other family correspondence includes letters from a student at the University of Virginia in the late 1820s and a letter describing the funeral of Robert E. Lee in 1870. Financial and legal materials include indentures; land grants and survey maps for Montgomery County, Tenn. and Christian County, Ky.; a list of slaves; a genealogical chart; and a 1737 certificate of admission to the freedom of the City of London.

Online Catalog Terms:

Agriculture--Experimentation--History--19th century.

Agriculture--Virginia--History--19th century.

Albemarle County (Va.)--Social life and customs--19th century.

Arkansas Territory--Description and travel--19th century.

Christian County (Ky.)--Economic conditions--19th century.

Christian County (Ky.)--Social life and customs--19th century.

Lee, Robert E. (Robert Edward), 1807-1870.

Meriwether, Charles, fl. 1766-1843.

Meriwether family.

Mississippi River--Description and travel--19th century.

Montgomery County (Tenn.)--Social life and customs--19th century.

Montgomery County (Tenn.)--Economic conditions--19th century.

Physicians--Southern States- -History--19th century.

Plantations--Kentucky--Christian County.

Plantations--Tennessee--Montgomery County.

Plantations--Virginia--Albemarle County.

Slavery--Kentucky.

Slavery--Tennessee.

Slavery--Virginia.

University of Virginia--Students--Social life and customs-l9th century.

Wheat--Virginia--History--19th century.

Size: 61 items (5 folders)

 

Letter on Certificate of Freedom of the City of London issued to Francis Merriweather.

September 30, 1983
The Rev. Dr. T. M. Parker
2 Ritchie Court
Banbury Road
Oxford, ENGLAND

Dear Dr. Parker:

Dr. Richard Pfaff has brought to the Southern Historical Collection the copy of the Freedom of the City of London for Francis Merriweather. I understand that he was an ancestor of your mother and that the item has been preserved in your family since 1737. Dr. Pfaff tells me that the distinguished American, Meriwether Lewis was also a descendant of Francis. (TMSI Note: Not true)

We were unable to find that any repository in this country (that) has a group of Meriwether papers going back to Francis, but we do have in the Southern Historical Collection papers beginning in 1791 accumulated by Charles Meriwether and his family. According to a family chart received with the papers, Charles Meriwether and Meriwether Lewis were descendants of the same Meriwether ancestor, It is therefore appropriate that the document-of Francis be preserved with the Meriwether Papers in the Southern Historical Collection.

We are grateful to you for this interesting and valuable contribution to the. Southern Historical Collection and to Dr. Pfaff for his assistance in arranging this acquisition.

Sincerely , Carolyn A. Wallace Director CAW:eg

cc: Dr. Pfaff