Sara Holt Arthur Collection

Manuscript Collection #52
Arthur, Sara Holt
Physical description
0.108 Cubic Feet, 306 items , including correspondence, legal papers, military papers, financial papers, printed material, and miscellaneous.
Preferred Citation
Sara Holt Arthur Collection (#52), East Carolina Manuscript Collection, J. Y. Joyner Library, East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina, USA.
ECU Manuscript Collection
No restrictions

Collection (1816-1899) including correspondence, legal papers, military papers, etc. relating to William D. Holt and his cotton sales business, local policies, railroad construction, the Farmers Alliance, private debts, his service during the Civil War, and business records.

Biographical/historical information

The bulk of the items in the collection relate to the activities of William D. Holt, a businessman in Boonehill (now Princeton), N.C. Holt's business interests were varied but centered chiefly on the sale of cotton. Dry goods sales and farming represented other occupational activities.

Scope and arrangement

Correspondence (1868-1889) describes the local reaction to the election of 1868 in Newton, N.C., and comments on construction activities of the North Carolina Railroad in the Piedmont and Eastern regions of North Carolina. A letter from Troy G. Holt (April 25, 1889) to Leonidas L. Polk, noted North Carolina political figure, journalist, and founder of the Farmers' Alliance, describes the program and attitude of the local Princeton Farmers' Alliance. The letter contains a comprehensive statement of the Alliance philosophy.

Legal papers (1854-1871, undated) are concerned with private debts and consist primarily of warrants. A warrant dated October 18, 1859 reflects W. D. Holt's activity as Justice of the Peace during that year. Other material includes contracts and items relating to a case of bankruptcy involving W. D. Holt.

Military papers (1863-1865, undated) reflect W. D. Holt's activities in the North Carolina Home Guard (1st Battalion--Headquarters at Goldsboro, N. C.) as a quartermaster officer. Of interest are "ration returns,"dated December 4, 1863, which indicate the strengths of various companies of the Home Guard at the Smithfield Station. Also of interest is a ration receipt signed by Lt. J. W. Gastings of Colonel Whitford's North Carolina Infantry (67th Regiment), dated March 20, 1865, which falls in the time period of the Battle of Bentonville (March 20-21, 1865). Other items include statements (undated) of wages earned for service in the N. C. Home Guard.

Financial papers (1816-1875, undated) include several indentures, receipts, and statements of account of various categories. Of interest are indentures between William Holt and James Harmon accomplished in 1816 and 1825. Other items include a statement of cotton sales at Wilmington, N.C. (February 9, 1861) and a receipt for Direct Taxes collected from W. D. Holt under a law of the U.S. Congress entitled "An Act for the collection of direct taxes in insurrectionary districts within the United States"(June 6, 1866).

Printed material (1828-1868, undated) includes a number of books and school primers. Included are a bound collection of Youth's Friend and the Scholars Magazine (1828); The North American Arithmetic by Frederick Emerson (1838); Lectures to Youngmen by Joel Hawes (1848); and Music and Odes of the Sons of Temperance (1848). Two items relating to Reconstruction are included: "Suffrage: the Armor of Liberty"by General C. C. Andrews, U.S.A., contained in a Report of the Joint Committee on Reconstruction, 1st Session, 39th Congress, Part IV, March 14, 1866, and "Reconstruction"by the Hon. J. A. Logan, Representative from Illinois, July 11, 1867, printed by the Republican Congressional Committee. Also of interest are a "Review of the Wilmington Markets for Week Ending Thursday, January 2, 1869,"published by Worth and Daniels, shipping agents, and a "Weekly Cotton Circular,"printed by William Bryce and Company of New York (September 11, 1868). Undated items include "Home for the Homeless: What the Republican Party has done for the Poor,"published by the Republican Congressional Committee and sundry advertisement leaflets.

Miscellaneous items (1848-1880, undated) include a plat (1841), and account of local votes given for the gubernatorial election of 1860, a tool inventory for the N.C.R.R. (1870), and various poems (undated).

The oversize folder contains an 1816 Johnston County, N.C., deed between James Harmon, Jr., and William Holt.

Administrative information
Custodial History

March 19, 1968, Papers of the Holt family of Johnston County, N.C., consisting of correspondence, legal papers, military papers, financial papers, printed material, and miscellaneous. Loaned by Mrs. Sara Holt Arthur, Princeton, N.C.

Source of acquisition

Loaned by Mrs. Sara Holt Arthur

Processing information

Processed by D. Lennon, April 1968

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
Personal Names
Holt, William D.
Polk, L. L. (Leonidas La Fayette), 1837-1892--Correspondence
Corporate Names
Confederate States of America. Army
Farmers' Alliance (Princeton, N.C.)
North Carolina Railroad Company
North Carolina. Home Guard
Republican Party (U.S. : 1854- )
Businessmen--North Carolina--Princeton
Farmers--North Carolina--Princeton
Governors--North Carolina--Election
Reconstruction (U.S. history, 1865-1877)
Temperance--North Carolina
Johnston County (N.C.)--History
North Carolina--Politics and government--1861-1865
North Carolina--Politics and government--1865-1950

Container list
Box 1 Correspondence, legal papers, military papers, and miscellaneous
Box 2 Financial papers
Box 3 Printed material
Folder os1 Land record