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George W. McNeill Papers, 1931-1946

Manuscript Collection #492

Descriptive Summary Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Title: George W. McNeill Papers
Creator: McNeill, George W.
Repository: ECU Manuscript Collection
Languages: English
Abstract: Papers (1831-1946) including correspondence, legal and financial papers, newspapers, articles on local business, hotels, banks, and miscellaneous.
Extent: 5.16 Cubic feet, consisting of correspondence, legal and financial papers, and newspapers.

Administrative Information Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Accessions Information

September 12, 1984, ca. 2,100 items; Papers (1892-1937) of a Moore County, N.C., attorney and Democratic Party official, including correspondence, legal papers, and miscellaneous. Gift of Miss Meade Seawell, Carthage, N.C.

January 5, 2007, (unprocessed addition 1), 428 items, 1.25 cubic feet; Papers (1880-1946, n.d. [Bulk: 1900-1905]) of a Carthage, Moore County, North Carolina attorney, Democratic Party political activist, and real estate developer, including business, political and personal correspondence, financial papers, legal papers, and printed materials. See preliminary inventory attached. Donor: George Stevenson, Private Manuscripts Archivist, N.C. State Archives.

Access Restrictions

No restrictions

Copyright Notice

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

Preferred Citation

George W. McNeill Papers (#492), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.

Acquisition Information

  • Gift of Miss Meade Seawell

Processing Information

  • Processed by M. Boccaccio, October 1985

  • Encoded by Apex Data Services

Biographical / Historical Note Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

A native of Carthage, N.C., George W. McNeill, the son of Alexander Hamilton McNeill, was a lawyer and Moore County Clerk of Superior Court. McNeill attended the University of North Carolina and Wake Forest College Law School. He began his practice in Carthage in 1900 and at the same time managed real estate in the county. McNeill was chairman of the Democratic Executive Committee of Moore County and served in that capacity during the 1910s. He was related by marriage to the Blue family and the Seawell family. For information about these families and life in Carthage, see Meade Seawell, Edgehill Entry: Tale of a Tarheel Town, Edwards and Broughton, Raleigh, 1970. For related materials see the Herbert Floyd Seawell, Jr., Papers, #496, and the Herbert Floyd Seawell, Sr., Papers, #497.

Description Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

A file of Blue correspondence contains an 1874 letter from M. J. Blue, at school in Cool Springs, to his brother. In 1881 there is a note on the sale of rosin and in 1891 a letter from H. F. Seawell to John King regarding the bill for the charter of the Brownstone and Encampment Company.

The George W. McNeill correspondence has a substantial amount of material concerning the Democratic Party in the state and in Moore County. Correspondence (1909-1926) concerns the appointment of postmasters, election campaigns (1910-1914), applications (1913) for cotton statistician and county cotton agent, and Moore County political activities in general. Other political correspondence concerns an act to protect Moore County forests from fire (Feb. 1911), the W. W. Kitchin senatorial contest (July 1911), requests of various candidates for support (1911), a letter from Walter Clarke(Aug. 22, 1912), and information on the presidential campaign of Woodrow Wilson (Sept.-Oct. 1912). Much of the latter material is from the various members of the Campaign Committee discussing strategy: Josephus Daniels (Sept. 9, 1912) regarding the Democratic National Textbook, Thomas P. Gore (Sept. 14, 1912) on the campaign, letters on how to make a successful campaign, and various pamphlets and publications (Oct. 19, 22, 1912). The Women's National Wilson and Marshall Organization (Oct. 23, 1912) discusses their activities, and other letters concern poll holders (Oct. 23, 1912), speaking engagements (Oct. 29, 1912), the Negro vote (Oct. 30, 1912), and Rule 11 governing Senate primaries (Nov. 7, 1912). Other political correspondence (1912-14) concerns appointments for U.S. District Attorney for Eastern and Western North Carolina, allotment of judges at the Senate primaries, poll holders and registrars, and primary expenses. A letter from Thomas D. Warren (Aug. 22, 1914) concerns election law and poll books. Correspondence for 1915 concerns the candidates for State Attorney General, while a letter from J. Bryan Grimes (Oct. 4, 1915) discusses his candidacy for Secretary of State, and a letter from Thomas D. Warren (Oct. 26, 1915) is concerned with the equalization of taxes. The political correspondence decreases substantially from 1916 on, though there is one letter from Thomas D. Warren (Oct. 24, 1916) concerning the Democratic administration in Moore County.

Correspondence concerning McNeill's land activities and real estate concerns span the length of his correspondence, 1906-1941, from the sale of timber in 1906 to the purchase and sale of various tracts of land in Moore County to the establishment of George W. McNeill Real Estate ca. 1909, which deals with town lots, hardwood, pine timber, and farm and grazing lands. In this real estate capacity, McNeill arranged the sale of some of his sister's land (July 1911) as well as that of other relatives (July 1921, April 1924, April 1927). Sale of timber and rosin were regular concerns and McNeill was occasionally confronted with the theft of these items from his lands (April 1914). In terms of land development, McNeill was continually involved in activities to increase the value of his holdings. In 1912 he investigated ducks as egg producers; in June of 1914, he investigated stocking the ponds and streams on his land with goldfish and sunfish, applying to the Bureau of Fisheries for the original stock; through 1915 and into the early 1920s, McNeill continually purchased agricultural fertilizers and chemicals; and in 1917-1918, there is a substantial amount of correspondence relating to purebred Angus cattle, bulls, sow pigs, and Duroc hogs.

The rest of the correspondence pertains to McNeill's law cases and includes guardianships, collection of debts, settlement of estates, sale and purchase of tracts of lands, deeds, moonshining, claims, murder, transfers of property, debts and mortgages, and the foreclosure on McNeill's land in 1934-1935. Some of the more extended cases involve the Wadsworth guardianship of the Upchurch children (1906-1907) and the death of Moses Wadsworth in 1907, with the settlement of his debts and estate; the settlement of the Alexander H. McNeill estate (1908, 1912-1913); the commutation of sentence forGrady Lane (June 26, 1914), who was sentenced for murder; the transfer of property of the Bethel A.M.E. Church of Buffalo, N.Y., to C. S. Palmer (March-June 1915); the foreclosure on the Wilcox property; and the Silkworth interest in the Roseland property (Jan.-Oct. 1919) and Denton property (July 1923-May 1924).

One letter from McNeill (April 21, 1931) comments on the effects of the Depression, new buildings, and activities in Carthage.

A file on George W. McNeill's finances includes an account book for 1901-1903 with income and disbursements, promissory notes, tax receipts, bills, bank statements, and a book listing trees by type (undated) cut and/or sold.

McNeill's legal files include land surveys of various tracts, court term calendars, contracts, summonses, promissory notes, indentures, bills, deeds, agreements, and tax receipts. Some of the more extensive materials include the settlement of the A. H. McNeill estate (1907-1909) and McNeill el al vs. Graves (1913); State vs. John Kelly (1911), State vs. Luck, (1911), and U.S. vs. Garner (1916), concerning bootlegging; and various railway accidents and fires, including J. D. McDonald vs. Railway (1911), Ritter vs. Foster Co. and Norfolk-Southern R.R. (1920), and McQueen vs. SAL Railway (undated). A file of miscellaneous legal finances includes receipts, promissory notes, and accounts, which are not McNeill's personal receipts and are likely to pertain to some case.

A file of A. H. McNeill correspondence includes information on deeds, balances on notes, estates, and cases. A file of his legal cases concerns indentures, receipts, deeds, judgments, wills, and estates. A legal notebook for 1877 details various cases and notes and maxims of land. A file of financial papers includes promissory notes, accounts, and receipts, and is an accompanying file to the legal file.

Several miscellaneous volumes include a Civil and Criminal Docket, 1887-1903, before M. M. Frye, Mayor; a letterpress book belonging to Charles A. McNeill, brother of George and also a lawyer, with information about cases, estates, briefs, politics, and primaries; a book of postal regulations for 1889, belonging to R. L. McNeill; and a book of pathology lectures (undated) which includes diagnosis and treatment for typhoid, typhus, scarlet fever, chicken pox, and sunstroke, as well as a number of other illnesses.

A file of political items includes Democratic primary results for Moore County, Mineral Springs, and Greenwood Township, 1914. Other materials include a brochure on Joseph W. Folk for President, proposed amendments to the N.C. Constitution for 1914, a synopsis of the Primary Law and Criminal Provisions by the Election Law, broadsides for Thomas H. Calvert for Attorney General (1915), a Plan of Organization of the Democratic Party of North Carolina State and District Committees, and the 7th District Rules and Regulations for holding a primary (1912).

An agricultural file includes a notebook listing trees on the Glascock tract and cotton picked on the McNeill farm, a fertilizer account book, cattle and fishery booklets, and issues of Farming and Banking Monthly and of Woods Crop Special.

A file of miscellaneous N.C. materials includes a 1912 booklet on Raleigh, another on Bat Cave and Chimney Mountain, and one on the Yarborough Hotel. Also included in the file are short history of the Worth family; a representative list of Southern buildings, birds, and game of North Carolina; a brochure, "Some facts concerning Moore County" ; a clipping on Joyland orphanage; the street plan for the Glenwood subdivision in Greensboro; and a draft of a pamphlet on Carthage by George H. Humber.

A file on the McNeill genealogy includes a list of relatives living outside of Moore County.

A file on religion includes an extract of a meeting of the Carthage Presbyterian Church (1895), subscriptions to the Carolina YMCA, tracts, and hymns.

A miscellaneous file includes a book of quotations, a composition book of Evaline McNeill, liquor advertisements, poems, and clippings.

A file of post cards include Efird's Marble Works in Monroe and the B.N. Duke residence, the New Academy of Music, and the Stagg residence in Durham.

A file of photographs includes two of the Neenah Reynolds family, but the rest are not identified.

Numerous North Carolina, Moore County, and Carthage newspapers are included in the collection (492.10, 492.10os2-3).

Oversize materials include the Southern Pines Tourist, c. 1900, which has sections on Carthage, Sanford, Niagara, Southern Pines, and the school system. It includes photographs of people, homes, views, and has articles on local businesses, hotels, banks, and so on. An unidentified ledger for 1877-1881 has various accounts. A Criminal Docket for the Superior Court of Moore County, August Term 1886, is also included. This volume gives name of party, nature of action, names of sureties, and amount of bail, as well as the names of the state's witnesses. A 1921 crop census map shows acreage and number of livestock. Several indentures and one plot from the 1800s are also filed with these materials.

For further McNeill land holding information, see the H. F. Seawell, Sr., Papers.

Card Catalog Entries Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Reading Room's card catalog. This system is no longer maintained, but it is left in place to help on-site researchers locate particular topics in the collection.

Geographic Entries :

  • North Carolina, Carthage
  • North Carolina, Moore County

Autograph Entries :

  • Clark, Walter [McKenzie] 1911
  • Daniels, Josephus 1912
  • Gore, Thomas P[ryor] 1912
  • Grimes, J[ohn] Bryan 1915
  • Page, Henry A[llison] 1911
  • Page, Robert N[ewton] (25) 1910-1914
  • Warren, Thomas D. 1914, 1916
  • Webb, Charles A. 1912

Subject Entries :

  • AGRICULTURE— Animal Culture— 1917-1918
  • AGRICULTURE— Livestock
  • AGRICULTURE— Lumber Trade
  • AGRICULTURE— Publications
  • BUSINESS AND COMMERCE— Advertising— Distilling
  • BUSINESS AND COMMERCE— Manufacturing— Carriage Industry
  • BUSINESS AND COMMERCE— Manufacturing— Cotton Textiles
  • BUSINESS AND COMMERCE— Real Estate Business— Moore County, N.C.
  • CARTHAGE, N.C.— General Description and History
  • CONSERVATION— Audubon Society— Birds
  • CONSERVATION— Fisheries— Moore County, N.C.— 1914
  • COURTS— N.C. Superior Court— Moore Co., N.C.
  • DURHAM, N.C.— General Description and History
  • ELECTIONS— Moore County— 1910-1915
  • ELECTIONS— N.C. Attorney General— 1915
  • ELECTIONS— N.C. Lieutenant Governor— 1912
  • ELECTIONS— N.C. President— 1912
  • ELECTIONS— N.C. Secretary of State— 1915
  • GREENSBORO, N.C.— Planning
  • HEALTH AND MEDICINE— Diseases— 1800s
  • HOTELS, INNS AND TAVERNS— Yarborough House
  • LAND— Deeds and Sales— Moore County, N.C.— 1800-1940s
  • LAND— Speculation— Moore County, N.C.— 1900-1940s
  • LAW AND LAWYERS— Carthage, N.C.— 1900-1934
  • LAW AND LAWYERS— Carthage, N.C.— 1880s-1900
  • MOORE COUNTY, N.C.— Publications
  • N.C.— CONSTITUTION— 1914
  • POLITICS— Democratic Party— 1912
  • POLITICS— Democratic Party— N.C.— 1910s
  • POLITICS— Democratic Party— Organizations
  • POLITICS— Negro Vote
  • POLITICS— Organizations— Women's National Wilson and Marshall Organization— 1912
  • POLITICS— Republican Party— 1913
  • PROHIBITION— Bootlegging
  • PUBLICATIONS— Southern Pines Tourist
  • RALEIGH, N.C.— 1912
  • RELIGION— Churches— New York
  • RELIGION— Presbyterian
  • TRANSPORTATION— Railroads— 1911-1920

Genealogy Entries :


Newspaper Entries:

  • The Telegram
    • July 1, 1898
    • July 18, 1902
  • The Asheboro Courier
    • Jan. 16, 1884
  • The Carthage Blade
    • April 20, 1887-January 12, 1911
  • The Carthage Republican
    • Oct. 12, 1895
  • The Carthaginian
    • Mar. 14, 1878
    • June 6, 1878
    • June 13, 1878
    • Aug. 22, 1878
    • Sept. 12, 1878
  • Moore County News
    • Mar. 21, 1905-Mar. 30, 1944
  • The Moore County Tribune
    • Nov. 6, 1900
  • The Carthage Gazette
    • Aug. 18, 1881
    • Sept. 15, 1881
    • Oct. 27, 1881
    • Nov. 3 1881
    • Mar. 16, 1882
    • Nov. 9-16, 1882
    • Nov. 30, 1882
  • Moore Index
    • Dec. 18, 1879
  • Pine Tree Blade
    • Aug. 26, 1886
    • Sept. 16, 1886
    • Oct. 12, 1886
    • Nov. 2-30, 1886
    • Dec. 7, 1886
    • Jan. 4, 1887
    • Feb. 8, 1887
  • The Charlotte News
    • May 19, 1935
  • The Western Democrat
    • Sept. 21, 1869
  • The Albemarle Enquirer
    • May 10, 1888
  • The Boys in Gray
    • June 1893
  • The Eagle
    • June 16, 1870
    • Oct. 26, 1871
  • North Carolina Baptist
    • April 24, 1895
  • North Carolina Gazette
    • April 19, 1877
    • May 3, 1877
    • May 17-24, 1877
    • June 14-21, 1877
    • July 12, 1877
    • July 26, 1877
  • The Daily News
    • Oct. 15, 1905
    • Oct. 20-21, 1905
    • Nov. 7, 1905
  • The Daily Workman
    • Jan. 23, 1886
    • Feb. 3, 1886
  • Greensboro North State
    • Jan. 17, 1889
  • Jonesboro Leader
    • Jan. 6, 1892
  • Herald of Health
    • Oct. 1892
  • The Orphan's Friend
    • Sept. 29, 1905
  • The Chatham Record
    • Jan. 28, 1886
    • Aug. 21, 1888
  • The Daily Sentinel
    • Dec. 7, 1870
  • The Morning Post
    • July 3, 1901
    • Oct. 15, 1905
  • The Observer
    • Mar. 18, 1880
  • The Observer and Gazette
    • Jan. 21, 1886
  • The Raleigh Evening Times
    • Dec. 19, 1904
    • Feb. 21, 1905
  • The Raleigh Evening Visitor
    • May 8, 1888
  • The Raleigh News
    • Mar. 17, 1880
    • May 2, 1880
  • The Raleigh Times
    • May 31, 1940
  • The Semi-Weekly Sentinel
    • May 28, 1870
    • June 8, 1870
  • The State Chronicle
    • Jan. 5, 1892
    • April 19, 1889
  • The Weekly Sentinel
    • Aug. 5, 1871
  • The Richmond Rocket
    • Feb. 28, 1884
  • The Rockingham Rocket
    • Dec. 15, 1887
  • Spirit of the South
    • Dec. 17, 1887
    • Mar. 3, 1888
  • The Central Express
    • Aug. 19, 1886
    • Sept. 2, 1886
    • Sept. 30, 1886
    • Oct. 29, 1886
    • Nov. 5, 1886
    • Sept. 8, 1887
    • Oct. 22, 1887
    • Mar. 15, 1890
  • The Sanford Express
    • Nov. 3, 1905
    • April 13, 1906
    • Jun. 8, 1906
    • Sept. 21, 1906
Southern Pines:
  • The Southern Colonist
    • Sept. 19, 1885
  • Southern Pines Tourist
    • Oct. 6, 1905
    • undated
  • The Pilot
    • Oct. 15, 1943
No location:
  • North Carolina Review
    • undated
  • Our Women in the War
    • Supplement
    • undated
Portsmouth, Virginia
  • Salmagundi
    • Feb. 1897

Pamphlet Entries :

Author Entries
  • Anheuser-Busch, Inc.
    • Herein is Proof that Beer and Light Wines... reduce crime and intemperance.... (undated)
  • Audubon Society of North Carolina
    • To All Persons Interested in Preservation of Birds and Game in North Carolina (undated)
  • Grantham, G. K.
    • When Did Mr. Bailey Become The Friend of the Farmer?  (1924)
  • Hammer, William C.
    • The Late Hon. Claude Kitchin (Jan. 9, 1924)
  • Kitchin, W. W.
    • Speech of W. W. Kitchin on the Record of Senator Simmons (Mar. 18, 1912)
  • Poe, Clarence
    • Sixteen Years of Democratic Administration bound with Has The Democratic Party Made Good? (undated)
  • Taylor Company, N. and G.
    • A Representative List of Southern Buildings (undated)
Title Entries
  • A Brief of the Most Beautiful Mountain Section... Bat Cave and Chimney Rock 
  • Farming and Banking Monthly 
  • Message of Governor Cameron Morrison to the General Assembly of North Carolina 
  • Plan of Organization of the Democratic Party of North Carolina 
  • Raleigh, The Capitol City of North Carolina 
  • Seventh District. Rules and Regulations for a voting primary... North Carolina 
  • Sixteen Years of Democratic Party Made Good? 
  • Some Facts Concerning Moore County, North Carolina 
  • Southern Pines Tourist 
  • Speech of Edward W. Pou 
  • Synopsis of Primary Law and Criminal Provisions of the Election Law 
  • Woods Crop Special 

Map Entries :


Date Entries :

  • 1831-1839
  • 1840-1849
  • 1850-1859
  • 1860-1869
  • 1870-1879
  • 1880-1889
  • 1890-1899
  • 1900-1909
  • 1910-1919
  • 1920-1929
  • 1930-1939
  • 1940-1946

Container List Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Box 1#0492.1
Blue correspondence 1874-1892
Box 1#0492.1
George W. McNeill correspondence, 1897-1912
Box 2#0492.2
George W. McNeill correspondence, 1913-1914
Box 3#0492.3
George W. McNeill correspondence, 1915-1922
Box 4#0492.4
George W. McNeill correspondence, 1923-1933
Box 5#0492.5
George W. McNeill correspondence, 1934-1946,and finances, 1901-1941
Box 5#0492.5
Land Surveys, 1833-1915
Box 5#0492.5
George W. McNeill legal cases, 1900-1909
Box 6#0492.6
George W. McNeill legal cases, 1911-1940s
Box 6#0492.6
miscellaneous legal finances, 1860-1937
Box 7#0492.7
Alexander H. McNeill: correspondence, 1849-1906
Box 7#0492.7
legal papers, and indentures, 1831-1924
Box 7#0492.7
legal cases, 1800s
Box 7#0492.7
legal notebook, 1880s
Box 7#0492.7
financial papers, 1853-1903
Box 7#0492.7
and account book, 1905-1906.Legal pamphlets, civil and criminal docket, 1887-1903
Box 8#0492.8
J. D. McIver, Probate of Deeds ledger, 1884-1885
Box 8#0492.8
C. A. McNeill letterbook, 1883-1900
Box 8#0492.8
R. L. McNeill postage regulations, 1889
Box 8#0492.8
pathology lectures; A. Myers ledger, 1877
Box 9#0492.9
Files: Moore County Medical Society, 1911-1917
Box 9#0492.9
Politics, 1920
Box 9#0492.9
Agriculture; land investments; miscellaneous N.C.; genealogy; religion; miscellaneous; post cards; photographs
Box 10#0492.10
Oversize Folder os1#0492.os1
Oversize legal documents; criminal docket for Superior Court of Moore County; indentures; surveys; maps

Preliminary Inventory Click here to collapse or expand the contents in this section of the finding aid

Below is material taken from a preliminary inventory and represents content from the collection that is unprocessed.

Online access to this finding aid is supported with funds created through the federal Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). These funds come through a grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services which is administered by the State Library of North Carolina, a division of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources. This grant is part of the North Carolina ECHO, Exploring Cultural Heritage Online, Digitization Grant Program.

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This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Special Collections Division, J.Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University. The materials described here are physically available in our reading room. None of the original documents in this collection are digitally available online at this time.
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