Paper Archives

Group of people sitting in church pews. Call number: Z/2312.000, Series 3 (MDAH)

Group of people sitting in church pews. Call number: Z/2312.000, Series 3 (MDAH)

The Thomas Foner Freedom Summer Papers (Z/2312.000) were recently digitized. A New York native, Foner volunteered in Mississippi during the summer of 1964. He worked on voter registration in Canton and as a project leader in Philadelphia. His collection includes correspondence, a report on voter registration work in Canton, photographs, and newsclippings.

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Gulf, Mobile, and Ohio Railroad timetable, part 1. From "Railroads Gulf Mobile Ohio" subject file, MDAH.

Gulf, Mobile, and Ohio Railroad timetable, part 1. From “Railroads Gulf Mobile Ohio” subject file, MDAH.

The Gulf, Mobile, and Ohio Railroad formed in 1940 when the Mobile and Ohio line merged with the Gulf, Mobile, and Northern. This brochure promotes travel between St. Louis, Missouri, and Mobile, Alabama. Trains stopped in Jackson, Meridian, Laurel, and many places in between. The cost for a seat from New Orleans to Jackson? Seventy-five cents (see page six of the brochure).1

This timetable brochure is housed in the “Railroads Gulf Mobile and Ohio” subject file. Click here to view the brochure through its catalog record.

1 James H. Lemly, The Gulf, Mobile and Ohio: A Railroad That Had to Expand or Expire (Richard D. Irwin, 1953), introduction, http://www.acmeme.org/gmo/introduction.htm.

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Circular, Jas. Monroe to secretary of Mississippi Territory. Call Number: Series 499, doc number 5 (MDAH)

Circular, Jas. Monroe to secretary of Mississippi Territory. Call Number: Series 499, doc number 5 (MDAH)

Series 499: Alien Enemies Documents (War of 1812), 1812-1815, contains documents relating to the monitoring of British subjects in the Mississippi Territory during the period when the U.S. was engaged in the War of 1812. A circular dated July 11, 1812, and signed by U.S. Secretary of State James Monroe declared that “all subjects of His Britannic Majesty, residing within the United States, have become alien enemies…” (See document # 5 above). As such, British subjects were compelled by law to report to their respective territorial secretaries, who in turn reported to the U.S. Department of State. The following information was required in the reporting process: age, length of time in the U.S., family description, place of residence, occupation, and whether or not application for naturalization had been made.

The documents include copies of the pertinent acts and instructions transmitted to and throughout the territories, individual reports of British subjects (many of which include place of birth – Great Britain, Ireland, and Scotland), and returns of county officials reporting in summary to the territorial secretary. Also included are a number of related documents such as accompanying cover letters and communications with the U.S. Secretary of State.

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This page shows 10 year old Elvis Presley. Series 21: Enumeration of Educable Children, Lee County, 1945, p 68 (MDAH)

Ten year old Elvis Presley is listed on this page of Series 21: Enumeration of Educable Children (Lee County, 1945, p 68, MDAH)

Genealogy researchers have another tool to locate ancestors in two recently digitized government records collections, Series 105, Educable Children Lists and Series 21, Enumeration of Educable Children. Educable children records have proven invaluable to researchers trying to locate elusive Mississippians, as some families missed by the state or federal census may be found in these records. They also include records from the 1950s which is useful to researchers because the most recent census available is the 1940 census.

The materials presented here include lists of educable (school age) children submitted by Mississippi counties to the state’s Secretary of State and Department of Education. The lists vary in content by year and may include such information as name, age, gender, race, election district or ward, name of parent or guardian, address, and reason for withdrawal from school. The records, which are not indexed, are grouped by county. Click here to learn more and browse the records.

Pictured above is the record of ten year old Elvis Presley in the Enumeration of Educable Children for Lee County in 1945. Elvis is listed with his father, V.E. (Vernon Elvis) Presley and was attending East Tupelo School.

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Letter, Governor Holmes, Washington, to Colonel McGahy, asking the result of his conversation with Major Gerald. Call number: Series 488, doc number 2562 (MDAH)

Letter, Governor Holmes, Washington, to Colonel McGahy, asking the result of his conversation with Major Gerald. Call number: Series 488, doc number 2562 (MDAH)

Now available online, Series 488: Administration Papers are loose documents related to all aspects of the administration of the Mississippi Territory (1798-1817). The series has been referred to as the correspondence of the territorial governors, including Winthrop Sargent, William C. C. Claiborne, Robert Williams, and David Holmes, but the scope is larger. The papers pertain to the workings of the territorial government (i.e., the duties of the governor, the legislature, the military, and the courts, as well as early county governments and individuals’ affairs), and touch upon most of the important themes in the government: Indian relations and lands, adjacent U.S. territories (particularly Louisiana), allegiance to the United States and duty to its service, and safe travel and trade for citizens.

Click here to browse the collection and learn more.

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