The Ward M. Canaday Center

for Special Collections

The University of Toledo

Finding Aid

 

Navarre-Williams Family Papers, 1815-1980s

MSS-042

 

Size: 1.5  lin. feet

Provenance: Helen Williams Lang inherited the material in this collection from her father and mother and, probably in a few cases, from her father’s first cousin Gabrielle Navarre Houk.  She donated part of this collection to The Ward M. Canaday Center of The University of Toledo Libraries in 1983.  In 1989, Helen Lang’s daughter, Judy Lang, donated the remainder of the collection to The Canaday Center.

           

Access: open

Collection Summary: Collection includes deeds, other land and property documents, marriage and religious records, tax receipts, school memorabilia, a few Civil War and Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) documents and letters, newspaper clippings, and photographs.

 

Subjects:  Social Life and Customs

Related Collections: 

Copyright: As copies of Federal records, copyright probably does not apply to entries in this volume. The original application files are part of Record Group 15, Records of the Veterans Administration, in the National Archives.  Researchers bear full legal responsiblity for the acquisition to publish from any part of said collection per Title 17, United States Code.  The Ward M. Canaday Center for Special Collections may reserve the right to intervene as intermediary at its own discretion.

 

Completed by:  Processed by Paul M. Gifford April 1986, and Nola Skousen, September 1989

 

Reformatted by: Arjun Sabharwal, September 2009; last updated June, 2014.

 

Introduction

 

            This collection consists of material relating to the family of Alexis (Alexander) Navarre (1800-1868) and his descendents.  The Navarre family was among the earliest settlers of Oregon Township, and was prominent in the history of northwest Ohio and southeast Michigan.  The collection includes deeds, other land and property documents, marriage and religious records, tax receipts, school memorabilia, a few Civil War and Grand Army of the Republic (GAR) documents and letters, newspaper clippings, and photographs.

 

            These papers would be useful to the researcher interested in the early settlement of Oregon Township and Toledo, in land tenure among the early French-Canadian settlers, and in 19th century life in and around Presque Isle.

 

Scope and Content Note

 

            Toledo has long held Peter Navarre (1788-1874) in esteem as a symbol of the city’s beginnings and as a hero of the War of 1812.  Members of the large Navarre family also were among the original settlers of Monroe and Detroit, Michigan.  This collection is significant as documentary evidence of one of the best-known families in southeast Michigan and northwest Ohio.

 

            Original copies of warranty deeds comprise a large part of the collection.  Although the chain is broken in some cases, the deeds (and mortgages) document the transfer of title between owners.  The deeds concern three nearby tracts, all in the northwest corner of what is now the City of Oregon.  The first is a sixty acre parcel, originally part of the Navarre Tract, sold by Alexis (Alexander) Navarre, brother of Peter, to his brother James in 1840.  The second is a twenty-eight acre parcel, originally part of a tract granted to an Ottawa woman, Pe-tau.  This parcel has remained in the hands of descendants of Mary Elizabeth (Navarre) Williams, daughter of Alexis Navarre, ever since.  The third tract is a five acre parcel owned by Peter Momany, great-grandfather of the collection’s donor.

 

            Although the deeds themselves are duplicated in the records of the Lucas County Recorder, other documents sometimes accompanying the deeds -- loans and receipts -- are not.  These additional documents are valuable as evidence for methods of selling land in 19th century Lucas County.

 

            Other documents are legal and financial records, including 19th century tax receipts.  One document, the marriage certificate of James (Jacques) Navarre to Catherine Couture, deserves special notice.  Signed by Father Gabriel Richard, early religious and intellectual leader of territorial Detroit, it was probably printed on Richard’s press, the second one in the frontier city.

 

            Another significant part of the collection is the photographs.  Many of these were taken by Cleo Keller, a friend and neighbor of the Navarre and Williams families; they provide good informal views of late 19th century life.  There are also tintypes and ambrotypes dating from the Civil War.

 

            Also of interest are a few Civil War letters that describe events in camp, mention the capture of a Colonel, and discuss the practice of paying for a substitute to serve in the army.

 

 

Folder List

 

Box

Folder

Description

       

1

 

Marriage and Religious Records

   
 

1

 

Marriage Certificate: Jacques Navarre-Catherine Couture,

     

20 Feb. 1815

     
     

Marriage Announcement: Guy K. Houk-Gabrielle Navarre,

     

30 Jun. 1897

     
     

Confirmation Certificate: Elmer Lang, 23 Apr. 1916 (with

     

photographs of Lang and Pastor Schuh)

 
 

OVERSIZE #1

 

Marriage License: Exivia Navarre-Anna McCarty,

     

22 Jan. 1871

     
 

OVERSIZE #1

 

Baptismal Certificate: Elmer Lang, 30 Mar. 1902

               
 

2

Estate Records

     
     

Will: James Navarre, 1855

   
     

Quitclaim: James Navarre, 1858

 
     

Will: Catherine Navarre, 1858

   
               
 

3

Land Records

     
     

1830s

       
       

Pe-tau (Indian woman) to Marquis Baldwin,

 

OVERSIZE*

 

Stephen G. Austin et al. to James Navarre, 7 Nov. 1837

               
 

4

 

1840s

       
       

Alexander and Mary Ann Navarre to James Navarre,

       

27 Jul. 1840

   
       

(Bill of Sale) Alexander Navarre to James Navarre,

       

27 Jul. 1840

   
       

(Property) Francis Navarre to Exivier Navarre,

       

9 Sep. 1841

   
       

Lucas County to Daniel F. Cook, 11 Jan. 1848

 

OVERSIZE*

 

Marquis Baldwin and wife to John Fitch, 18 Oct. 1844

               
 

5

 

1850s

       
       

(Lease) James Myers to Antoine Berdioux,

       

18 Mar. 1853

   
       

John Fitch to Warren Salsbury, 13 Jul. 1853

       

Alexander Navarre to James Navarre, 17 Jun. 1854

       

Sheriff, Lucas County, to Alexander J. Navarre,

       

25 Mar. 1859

   
       

Stephen and Harriett Arquett to Peter Momany, 23 Apr. 1859

 

6

 

1860s

     
       

Alexander J. Navarre to Exivia Navarre, 24 Aug. 1860

       

Jonathan Wynn et al. to Cadwalader M. Williams,

       

4 Sep. 1865

   
               
 

7

 

 1870s/80s

     
       

Exivia D. and Anna Williams to Cadwalader M. Williams, 23 Aug 1871

       

(Quitclaim) C. M. and Elizabeth Williams to Exivia D. Navarre, 28 Mar. 1874

       

(Mortgage) Cadwalader M. and Elizabeth Williams to

       

James Dupont, 3 Sep. 1880

 
               
 

8

 

1900s

     
       

(Mortgage) Peter Momany to Peter B. Bogart, 8 Oct. 1900

       

Cadwalader M. and Elizabeth Williams to Thaddeus

       

Williams, 2 Jan. 1912 (with copy)

       

(Life lease) Thaddeus and Rena Williams to

       

Cadwalader M. and Elizabeth Williams, 2 Jan. 1912

       

(Receipt) Nora Smith to Thaddeus Williams, 23 Jan. 1912

       

(Receipt) Alta Liedel to Thaddeus Williams, 23 Jan. 1912

       

(Real estate option) Cad M. and Elizabeth Williams to

       

Thaddeus Williams, 4 Mar. 1919

       

(Real estate option) Thaddeus and Rena Williams to

       

Walker Montgomery, 4 Mar. 1919

               
 

9

 

 1930s/40s

     
       

Thaddeus Williams to Rena A. Williams, 12 May 1930

       

C. Archie Williams to Helen W. Lang, 16 Aug. 1948

               
 

10

 Other Legal Records

     
       

Summons, to Alexander Navarre et al., Lucas County

       

District Court, 10 Apr. 1857

 
       

District Court, 10 Apr. 1858

 
       

District Court, 10 Apr. 1859

 
       

District Court, 10 Apr. 1860

 
       

District Court, 10 Apr. 1861

 
       

District Court, 10 Apr. 1862

 
       

District Court, 10 Apr. 1863

 
               
   

Financial Records

     
 

11

   

 Bills and receipts, 1832-1893

 
   

Tax receipts

     
 

12

   

James Navarre, 1838-1855

 
 

13

   

Alexander Navarre, 1842-1868

 
 

14

   

 Alexander J., Exivia, and David Navarre, 1856-1916

 

15

   

Miscellaneous, 1851-1857

 
     

Civil War/Grand Army of the Republic

 
 

16

   

Certificate of Muster (1981) and GAR memorabilia

 

OVERSIZE #1

   

 Discharge, Cawallader (sic) M. Williams, 21 Jul 1865

 

17

Letters, 1856-1898

     
               
 

18

 School related items

     
               
 

19

 Biographies

       
     

“Autobiography (sic) Cadwell A. Williams”

     

Drafts of autobiography, Helen W. Lang

 
               
 

20

Research and Speech Notes

   
               
 

21

 Newspaper clippings

     
               
 

22

 Miscellaneous

       
     

Inventory of “Relics”

   
     

Postcards

       
     

Peter Navarre’s portrait

   
     

Centennial Exhibition, Philadelphia, 1876

     

Boody house menu, Washington’s Birthday, 1912

     

Calling cards

     
       

Robert C. Navarre, U.S. Lighthouse Keeper

       

Mrs. C. M. Houk

   
     

Programs (2) for dedication of the Navarre Monument, 4 July 1914

     

Essay: “A Body That Cannot Contain Itself”

     

Obituary (handwritten speech) for Mrs. Elizabeth Kenan Houk, 1903

               
   

Photographs

     
 

23

 

 C. Archie Williams and Helen Williams Lang

 

24

 

Elmer Lang

     
 

25

 

Individuals and Small Groups

   
 

26

   

(1 of 2)

     
 

27

   

(2 of 2)

     
 

28

 

 Groups

       
 

29

 

 Places

       
 

30

 

Tintypes

       
     

35mm Slides (copies of Cleo Keller photographs)

       

see Oversize listing in Appendix

               
   

Photograph Albums and Scrapbooks

   
 

31

 

 Photograph Album/Music Box, ca. 1860s/70s

 

32

 

 Scrapbook: “The Girl Graduate,” Helen Williams, 1920-23

 

33

 

 Scrapbook: Greeting Cards and Postcards, ca.1910s/20s

 

34

 

Scrapbook: Picture Cards, 1884-early 1900s

     

see Oversize listing in Appendix

 
               
 

APPENDIX:  OVERSIZE ITEMS

     
               
 

OVERSIZE#1

           
   

Marriage and Religious Records

   
     

Marriage License: Exivia Navarre-Anna McCarty, 22 Jan. 1871

     

Baptismal Certificate: Elmer Lang, 30 Mar. 1902

               
   

Civil War

       
     

Discharge, Cawallader (sic) M. Williams, 21 Jul 1865

               
   

Photographs

       
     

Boody House Barber Shop, ca. 1910s

 
     

Boody House Office, ca. 1910s

   
     

Dinner Party [ca. 1920s?]

   
     

Military group

     
     

Homer Ramey

     
     

woman, 1934

     
     

house

       
     

Cased ambrotypes and tintypes, 1850s-70s

 

OVERSIZE#2

           
     

Photographs

     
       

taken by Cleo Keller

 
         

Individuals (one section)

         

Groups (three sections)

         

Buildings

   
         

Places

   
         

Events

   
         

Military

   
         

numbered (see 35mm slides; folder 29)

       

Tintypes

     
       

Miscellaneous

   
     

Photograph Album, 1860s/70s

   
 

OVERSIZE#3

           
     

Photographs: Individuals (4 ea)

 
 

OVERSIZE #4

           
     

Photograph Album, 1860s/70s

   
               
               

 

 

Last Updated: 6/19/14