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HIST 29633: Slavery & Antislavery in American Life

Online Archival Resources

The Fielding Lewis Papers (1783-1900): This collections is fully digitized and available online. Fielding Lewis, plantation owner. Papers contain business records, legal documents, tax receipts and other records that document the management of an ante-bellum plantation on the James River. The collection also includes receipts for purchase of slaves as well as daily expenses.

Jefferson Davis Trial Manuscript Collection online: MS 979 Jefferson Davis Trial papers. These fourteen documents indicate the legal entanglements, ambiguous delays, political floundering, and shifting of responsibilities that occurred during the period from Jefferson Davis' first indictment for treason, on May 10, 1866, through March 6, 1868, when the trial, finally set for March 26, 1868, was postponed again. The collection includes seven original letters and two copies of correspondence between L.H. Chandler, U.S. District Attorney for Virginia; Henry Stanbery, U.S. Attorney General; Edwin Stanton, U.S. Secretary of War; William M. Evarts and Richard H. Dana, assistant council for the prosecution; and Charles O'Connor, Davis' lawyer.

Lincoln Miscellaneous Manuscripts online: The Lincoln Miscellaneous Manuscript section of the William E. Barton Collection of Lincolniana contains an array of material relating to Abraham Lincoln, his parentage, the Civil War, and his presidency. This section includes briefs, pardons, and commissions in Lincoln's hand, original letters of Mary Todd Lincoln, one of the few extant letters written by Lincoln to his wife, and a letter written by Willie Lincoln while accompanying his father on a trip to Chicago. It also includes letters written by members of the Lincoln cabinet and other notable political and military figures of the time, material by Gideon Welles.

New York Public Library's African American Writers of the 19th Century: African American Women Writers of the 19th Century is a digital collection of some 52 published works by 19th-century black women writers. A part of the Digital Schomburg, this collection provides access to the thought, perspectives and creative abilities of black women as captured in books and pamphlets published prior to 1920.

Slavery and Indentured Servitude Collection (1752-1864): This collection contains seven documents pertaining to indentured servants (1766-1785). The remaining documents relate to slavery and include bills of sale, a memorandum describing the slave trade in Havana (1783), estate inventories, public notices, letters, deeds, a will, and indemnity bonds. Many of the documents are facsimiles.

Primary Sources in Special Collections

American Paper Currency Collection 1748-1871 American paper currency (1748-1871), including examples from the Colonial, Continental, and Civil War periods.

William Henry Campbell Correspondence 1855-1864 Letters (1862-1864) from William Henry Campbell, acting assistant surgeon aboard the U.S.S. Commodore McDonough during the Civil War, to his wife Mary Upham Campbell, Watertown, Massachusetts. Stationed most of the time in South Carolina, Campbell related what he observed of plantation and military life.

Stephen A. Douglas Papers 1764-1908 Stephen A. Douglas, lawyer, judge, politician. The Stephen A. Douglas papers document his professional and personal life from 1764-1908. The collection includes correspondence, speeches, reports, memoranda, notes, financial and legal documents, portraits, maps, ephemera, newspaper clippings, and artifacts. The largest portion of the collection consists of Senate and Constituent correspondence from 1844-1861.

Lincoln Collection American Political Cartoons 1754-1865 The American Political Cartoons forms part of the William E. Barton Collection of Lincolniana and contains an array of cartoons and drawings from the period prior to and during the political career of Abraham Lincoln. 

Lincoln Collection, Broadsides 1854-1922 This collection is made up of broadsides compiled by William E. Barton. A pastor in Oak Park, Illinois, Baron published and lectured on Lincoln extensively. He also maintained connections with fellow Lincoln experts and carried out multiple research projects that delved into the many different facets of Lincoln’s life, times and family history. The Broadsides section of the William E. Barton Collection of Lincolniana contains materials relating to the social and political atmosphere of the Civil War period.

Lincoln Collection, Cartoons, Drawings and Photographs 1860-1930 The Lincoln Cartoons, Drawings, and Photographs collection forms part of the William E. Barton Collection of Lincolniana. The vast majority of the collection consists of cartoons, drawings, and lithographs from the American Civil War period.

Lincoln Collection, Currier and Ives Lithographs 1844-1890 This collection of lithographs from the Currier & Ives Printmaking Company forms a portion of the William E. Barton Collection of Lincolniana. Images located here are related to Abraham Lincoln, the Civil War and issues in politics pertaining to this time and the antebellum north in the second half of the nineteenth century through caricatures of migrant African Americans.

Lincoln Collection. Publications and Newspapers 1831-1968 The Lincoln Collection Publications and Newspapers form part of the Barton Collection of Lincolniana. The collection contains newspapers, journals, essays, speeches, sermons, and other documents related to Abraham Lincoln and the American Civil War. The collection also contains brochures and pamphlets from libraries and societies dedicated to memorializing Lincoln.

Lincoln Collection, William E. Barton Papers 1780-1976 This collection is made up of materials compiled by William E. Barton. A pastor in Oak Park, Illinois, Barton published and lectured on Lincoln extensively. He also maintained connections with fellow Lincoln experts and carried out multiple research projects that delved into the many different facets of Lincoln's life, times, and family history. The collection includes correspondence, research notes, manuscripts, proofs, lectures, newspaper clippings, pamphlets, scrapbooks, magazines, and photographs.

Uncle Tom’s Cabin: or, Life Among the Lowly was an anti-slavery novel that profoundly affected American attitudes towards African Americans and slavery in the United States. The collection contains 23 documents, most of which are of British origin and describe or announce theatrical presentations of the tale.

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The Special Collections Research Center is located on the first floor of Regenstein Library: 1100 East 57th Street, Chicago, IL 60637

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