The Ward M. Canaday Center

for Special Collections

The University of Toledo

Finding Aid

William and Priscilla Brown Letters, 1830-1876

MSS-256

Size: 50 letters (1/4 linear foot)

Provenance: Gift of Donald Duhaime. Toledo, OH.

Access: Open

Collection Summary:  Consists of letters between William and Priscilla Brown and members of their family of Bremen, state unknown.  Many letters discuss the Civil War from the perspective of Northerner sympathizers.  Also included are miscellaneous letters with unknown connections to the Browns. 

Subjects: War, Soldiers, and Veterans ; Social Life and Customs

Related Collection(s):

Processing Note:  This collection of letters was found with other materials donated by Donald Duhaime. Provenance beyond that is unknown. They were likely purchased by Duhaime, but are not known to have any other relationship to Duhaime. Duhaime was a collector of Civil War and 19th century America materials, and the Canaday Center has several collections of these materials in its holdings.

Copyright: The literary rights to this collection are assumed to rest with the person(s) responsible for the production of the particular items within the collection, or with their heirs or assigns.  Researchers bear full legal responsibility 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: Mariah Startzman, 2012.

Biographical Sketch/Scope and Content

 

            This collection mostly contains letters from members of the Brown family of Bremen, state unknown. The Brown family includes William Brown (husband), Priscilla Brown (wife), Willie and Lucy (children). The letters describe life in the mid to late 19th century, much of which addresses the Civil War. During the Civil War, the Browns were either Northerners or sided with the North. William served on the U.S. Steamer Oneida and the U.S. Steamer Virginia and in the Galveston blockade. Priscilla wrote to William often when he was away. A large part of the collection consists of letters written to Priscilla before or at the beginning of the relationship with William. She regularly corresponded with members of her family, including her brother Charles and cousins, Emma and Sue. This collection also contains letters that are not or do not seem connected to the Brown family.
            The collection is arranged in four series by correspondent, and then chronologically.

Series List

Series

Description

S1

Outgoing Correspondence: William Brown

S2

Incoming Correspondence: William Brown

S3

Incoming Correspondence: Priscilla Brown

S4

Miscellaneous Letters, etc

Folder List

Box

Folder

Item

 

 

S1. Outgoing Correspondence: William Brown

 

 

 

1

1

To Priscilla Brown (October 1, 1865). George Irish (friend) returned from war.

1

1

The Priscilla Brown (October 31, 1875). Ship ready in two weeks, gives him two months on board.

1

1

To Priscilla Brown (January 2, 1876, Liverpool). Just made it to Liverpool, passage took thirty days.

1

1

To Priscilla Brown (January 11, 1876, Liverpool). On 19th, ship to sail to New Orleans; given two passes to go ashore.

 

 

 

 

 

S2. Incoming Correspondence: William Brown

 

 

 

1

2

From Priscilla Brown (N.d.). Priscilla has diphtheria.

1

2

From Priscilla Brown (N.d.). Sherman and the rest will “wind up” Jeff Davis’s confederacy; draft commenced in state.

1

2

From Priscilla Brown (January 5, 18xx, Bremen). William may be on his way to New York.

1

2

From Priscilla Brown (October 23, 1864, Bremen). Persuades him to vote for Lincoln. 

1

2

From Priscilla Brown (November 3, 1864, Bremen). Fleet to go to Wilmington.

1

3

From Priscilla Brown (January 21, 1865, Bremen). Jefferson Davis believes half of his soldiers are absent without leave; Wilmington is taken.

1

3

From Priscilla Brown (January 29, 1865, Bremen). Irish and Perkins help take care of their farm; Perkins drafted.

1

3

From Priscilla Brown (February 12, 1865, Bremen). One of children gets diphtheria.

1

3

From Priscilla Brown (February 21, 1865, Bremen). News from Sherman, making rebels “suffer” in South Carolina.

1

3

From Priscilla Brown (March 12, 1865, Bremen). Expedition fitting out of New Orleans, William could take part.

1

4

From Priscilla Brown (March 28, 1865, Bremen). Many men have been drafted from the town; feels the war will be over soon.

1

4

From Priscilla Brown (April 23, 1865, Bremen).  Talks of Lincoln’s death.  Wants to send info to William.  Children sick, afraid of croup.  Mobile is taken and all Southern ports to be closed.  President Johnson’s inaugural.

1

4

From Priscilla Brown (April 30, 1865, Bremen). Johnson’s army surrendered; Jefferson Davis had gone to Texas to try and gather troops.

1

4

From Priscilla Brown (May 7, 1865, Bremen).  Have begun discharging troops; war could end soon if “rebels conclude not to
fight in Texas”.

 

 

 

 

 

S3. Incoming Correspondence: Priscilla Brown

 

 

 

1

5

From cousin Emma.  Talks of making and trimming dresses for themselves. 

1

5

From N/A.  Poem

1

5

From C.B. Irish (September 24, 18xx, Sherman).  Perkins expected to be drafted.

1

5

From cousin Mary (January 8, 1833, East Boston).  Brother, Charles, is sick; thanks for Christmas wishes).

1

6

From Emma (January 18, 1846, Bangor).  Going to singing school and looking forward to meeting a “certain gentleman” (William).

1

6

From Emma (April 4, 1849, Bremen).  Asked to go on trip to Boston after visiting home; talks about Priscilla’s child. 

1

6

From Nancy, a friend (March 16, 1853, Roxbury).  Priscilla had sent money; was going to give her back money but then came on hard times.

1

6

From John, a friend (March 31, 1853, Hollis?)

1

6

From Mother and brother, Charles (May 1, 1853)

1

6

From cousin Sue (September 23, 1853).  Asks Priscilla to join her on a trip. 

1

7

From Mother and brother (January 21, 1856, Bremen).

1

7

From Sue (August 31, 1858, Rockland)

1

7

From friend Bryon Libby (January 7, 1859, Roxbury).  Various talk of people mentioning Priscilla. 

1

7

M.T. Mitchell (August 15, 1861).  Heugh wants to stay in the Army after returning home; “blood thirty rebels so brutally murder every union man they can.”  Brother, Robert Mitchell, murdered. 

1

7

From Emma (October 12, 1862).

 

 

 

 

 

S4. Miscellaneous Letters, etc

 

 

 

1

8

Unknown Letter

1

8

Poem/ Prayer, by Priscilla

1

8

Emma Atchly to Nathaniel and Barbara Ann Atchly.  Worried about brother being drafted.

1

8

E.H. Page to Brother, Sister, and Family (October 2, 1830, Brooklyn).

1

8

Emery to mother (August 28, 1831, Chicago).  Minister/ministries.  Not in good health; chance of cholera. 

1

9

Emery to mother (September 27, 1833, Brooklyn). 

1

9

E.H. Page to brother (September 7, 1838, Brooklyn).  Death of sister. 

1

9

Emery to mother (August 3, 1847)

1

9

E.H. Page to Elisa (June 12, 1848, New York).

1

9

Emery to mother (October 2, 1848, New York). 

1

10

Wm L. Williams to Miss Rachel Franklin (October 12, 1862).  Soldier to his love. 

1

10

Wm C. Karschmer to father, Elias (October 24, 1862).  At a camp near Centerville, they’ve been waiting and looking for an attack.  Cold conditions. 

1

10

Sallie and Lewis Lawton to Mrs. Ralph Buckley (October 15, 1864).  Wishes for soldier’s safe return; Mr. Lawton was drafted but then was later exempt because of “physical inability.” 

1

10

E.H. Page to mother (October 26, 1866).

1

10

John F. Weisenborge to Mr. Young (May 25, 1868). 

 

 

 

 

 

Last Updated: 8/13/12