William Fleming Little Collection

Manuscript Collection #316
Little, William Fleming
Physical description
0.22 Cubic Feet, 89 items , consisting of correspondence, wills, deeds, receipts, promissory notes, summonses, a bill of sale, estate inventory, accounts, road overseers appointments, a history of Pactolus, and miscellaneous items.
Preferred Citation
William Fleming Little Collection (#316), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.
ECU Manuscript Collection
No restrictions

Collection (1892-1953) relating to the Hodges and Little families of Pitt County, NC, consisting of correspondence, wills, deeds, receipts, promissory notes, summonses, a bill of sale, estate inventory, accounts, and overseers appointments, a history of Pactolus, and miscellaneous items.

Scope and arrangement

Correspondence in the collection is between 1815 and 1864 and primarily concerns the Hodges and Little families of Pitt County, N.C. Four letters are written by relatives who emigrated to Twiggs County, Georgia, and these letters are primarily concerned with crop prices in Georgia and land treaties with the Indians in Georgia. A letter written in 1864 was written by a Confederate soldier at Williamston, N.C. He comments in detail about the execution of deserters and his feelings about this, about fighting and about the 17th Regiment. Legal records in the collection include Pitt County wills of George E. Little and W.W. Little. Eight deeds (1879-1914) pertain to property in Pactolus belonging primarily to members of the Little family and to the East Carolina Land and Improvement Company.

Receipts, promissory notes, and summonses cover a period from 1795-1901. Up through 1811 pounds, shillings, and pence are still used in these papers. One undated receipt lists schooling and boarding costs. Store receipts fall into two categories. The earlier ones dating from 1836 to 1860 deal with general store items, while the later ones dating from 1899 through 1901 deal with purchases made by George H. Little and Brother of Pactolus from wholesalers in Baltimore, Richmond and Norfolk in Virginia, Wilmington and Washington in North Carolina, and Chicago. The wholesalers dealt in drugs, footwear, fruit, glassware, crockery, dry goods, and dolls.

The oldest item in this collection is a document formalizing the sale of a Negro slave in 1792. Also dating from the 1700's is an account of Robert Hodges's purchases from Thad Van Noorden covering the years 1788-1799. The purchases are general store items and the prices are given in pounds and shillings. Also included is an inventory (1802) of Robert Hodges's estate. A marriage license included among these papers is dated 1831 and was issued to Washington Vinters and Sophia Ann Buck in Beaufort County.

Miscellaneous materials include two notices (1843, 1868) which served to inform individuals that they had been appointed overseers for building certain public roads in Pitt County. These provide details of the specifications for the road and the penalties for refusing to participate in the construction.

Also of interest is a map of the town (1892) and a 17 page history of Pactolus written by Mrs. W.F. Little in 1953. The history covers from the 1700's up to 1953.

Administrative information
Custodial History

October 27, 1976, 86 items; Pitt County, N.C. Family papers (1792-1953), including correspondence, land records, accounts, receipts, estate papers, and miscellaneous. Deposited by Mrs. William F. Little, Greenville, N.C.

Source of acquisition

Gift of Mrs. William F. Little

Processing information

Processed by M. Elmore, December 1976

Encoded by Apex Data Services

Copyright notice

Literary rights to specific documents are retained by the authors or their descendants in accordance with U.S. copyright law.

Key terms
Family Names
Hodges family
Little family
Corporate Names
Confederate States of America. Army. North Carolina Infantry Regiment, 17th
Agriculture--Economic aspects--Georgia
Deeds--North Carolina--Pitt County
Receipts (Acknowledgments)--North Carolina--Pitt County
Slave bills of sale
Soldiers--Confederate States of America--Correspondence
Wills--North Carolina--Pitt County
Pactolus (N.C.)--History
United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865--Desertions