James Willard Carter Papers, 1861-1918

Manuscript Collection #264

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

Title: James Willard Carter Papers
Creator: Carter, James Williard, d. 1918
Repository: ECU Manuscript Collection
Languages: English
Abstract: Papers (1861-1918) including correspondence referring family papers, Civil War letters.
Extent: 0.22 Cubic feet, 22 items , copies, correspondence.

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

Accessions Information

July 1, 1974, 22 items; Correspondence (1831-1918) of Massachusetts soldier. Loaned for copying by Mr. David R. Pruette, Greenville, N.C.

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

James Willard Carter Papers (#264), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.

Acquisition Information

  • Loaned by Mr. David R. Pruette

Processing Information

  • Processed by R. Faulkner, May 1975

  • Encoded by Apex Data Services

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

This collection consists of correspondence (1861-1862, 1864) of James W. Carter, a Massachusetts soldier in the Civil War, with his cousin Lydia A. Goodnow.

Of particular interest are comments on camp life, the Battles of Big Bethel and First Bull Run (Manassas), General Benjamin Butler's role at Bethel, and General Winfield Scott's praise of Massachusetts troops (June, 1861). Other commentaries concern the disruption of camp routine by discovery of gold in a nearby creek, a visit by Governor John Albion Andrews of Massachusetts to their camp at Alexandria (July, 1861), a 4th of July celebration (1861), and the unsanitary conditions of Negroes. Battle information relates to an advance to Centreville, Union defeat at bull Run, and the effectiveness of enemy fire (July, 1861).

Letters from Camp Meigs mention possible assignment to General Nathaniel P. Banks for an expedition to Texas or New Bern, N.C. Also included is a report and newspaper criticism of a disorder involving the 47th Mass. Regiment. Apparently a small riot had erupted over the poor quality of food being furnished by food contractors (1862). The last Civil War letter comments on conditions in New Orleans and tells of Union troops rounding up and supervising Negroes on the plantations (1864).

The remaining correspondence (1888-1918) deals with family matters, the GAR (Grand Army of the Republic), the death of James W. Carter, and the disposition of his lands. One letter gives a detailed account of an East to West coast railway trip on the Canadian Pacific R. R. through Montreal to Vancouver and south to San Francisco. Particular attention is devoted to the growing of wheat in the midwest, cattle raising, midwestern Canada, and the Rocky Mountains.

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

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 Department, 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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