Box 1 - Papers, 1816-1849

Folder 1

21 August 1816 - ADS - Indenture for land in Sparta, Georgia, between George Bruce, Jr., (the buyer) and Henry Mitchell and James H. Jones (the sellers). Witnessed by Phil. L. Simms, John Benion [?], and Thomas Foster, Justice of the Peace. Later note on back of document by Henry Bruce, Jr., "At this home was the birth place of Mary E. Bruce My wife."

Folder 2

24 September 1821 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Lucy L. Bruce Porter [Fleming Co., KY]. Bruce gives his newly married daughter advice on attaining a happy and successful life, including how to treat her husband, her children, and her slaves. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 3

15 July 1822 - ALS - George Bruce, Jr. [Fleming County, KY], to his wife. Describes his move over the mountains, family status, and corn prices.

Folder 4

22 February 1831 - AN - Note dated Apalachiacola Bay, Florida. A column of numbers with amount received, paid out, and balance left. Names on the note are: Henry Bruce, H. Bruce, G. L. Bruce, James D. Bruce, James D. Bruce, and G. L. Bruce. Signature of Henry Bruce, Jr., appears under the final balance.

Folder 5

4 November 1831 - ADS - Legal document [Columbus, GA] filed by Henry Bruce, Sr., and Thomas Porter against Mills & Perry for the sum of $1,615. Their promissory note had gone unpaid by 1 November 1831.

Folder 6

15 January 1832 - ADS - Henry Bruce, Sr.'s receipt for his room and board at the United States Hotel, Augusta, GA. The receipt is signed by the proprietor, William G. Grimes.

Folder 7

10 December 1832 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. [Sparta, GA]. Conveys the news of the death of Mary Ann Bruce, discusses other local news (cholera has subsided) and business concerns, and cautions on traveling with money. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 8

ca. 1830's - ALS - Jane Chambers [Paris, KY] to Ann Lashbrook forgiving her for not writing a longer letter because she had a toothache. She discusses drinking eggnog and making candy and cakes for Christmas.

Folder 9

ca. 1830's - ALS - Jane Chambers [Paris, KY] to Ann Lashbrook discussing her trip to Lexington and that someone might think her to be a "material girl" which she certainly is not. Other miscellaneous news.

Folder 10

January 1833 - ALS - Jane Chambers [Paris, KY] to Ann Lashbrook [Washington, KY]. Chambers states she is coming to Washington in eight or ten days. News of Mr. Hull lecturing at the Methodist church this night.

Folder 11

26 March 1834 - ANS - Thomas T. Arnold to Henry Bruce. Receipt of $97.40 from Bruce through John S. Morgan.

Folder 12

19 April 1835 - ALS - Henry Bruce, Jr. [Charleston, SC] to Mary Bruce [Sparta, GA]. Written prior to their marriage, he discusses his journey from Sparta to Charleston. News of his sister Elizabeth's marriage to W. B. Morgan, brother of John S. Morgan who married his sister, Eleanor. Marriage proposal by Henry with indication of a rival, Lewis H. Mentions his bacon shipment being delayed due to ice in the Ohio River.

Folder 13

May 1835 - ALS - Jane Chambers [Paris, KY] to Ann Lashbrook [Washington, KY]. News about visitors, a party, and a knife fight between J. J. Key and William Rannells.

Folder 14

3 July 1835 - ALS - Nancy T. Bruce [Sparta, GA] to Mary Bruce [Fleming County, KY]. A mother's direction to Mary and her sister Eleanor to be on good behavior while in Kentucky. She tells them to mind the Sabbath and read the Bible. News of fishing, two marriages, a death, and the illness of Mary's brother Henry.

Folder 15

25 August 1835 - ALS - Letter addressed to Mary E. Bruce, Fleming County, KY from Eleanor Threlkeld Bruce. Though the letter appears to have been partially burned, some portions are readable. The pieces of the letter were later stored in an envelope marked "Queen Anne's Mansion, S.W." on which is written "Letter written by my Grand Mother to my Mother 1835". The letter has not been transcribed.

Folder 16

4 December 1835 - ALS - Henry Bruce, Jr. [Washington, GA], to Mary Bruce [Elizaville, KY]. Love letter from Henry. Response from him of her news of weddings of several of his friends. News of two weddings in Sparta, Georgia. Financial prospects for selling his hogs and horses; the horses are ill and he is not hopeful of selling them.

Folder 17

24 July 1836 - ALS - Charlotte J. Duke [Scott County, KY] to Ann S. Lashbrook [Washington, KY]. News of a July 4th ball in Georgetown. News of three weddings within the last three weeks; one of which she attended. The letter also mentions a possible visit to Cincinnati by way of Maysville and Washington.

Folder 18

28 December 1837 - ALS - J. Thorp [Sparta, GA] to his sister, Nancy Bruce [Fleming County, KY ?]. Thorp laments the fact that preachers do not stay long in Sparta. News of deaths and some residents moving to Alabama.

Folder 19

25 December 1838 - ALS - Mary E. Bruce to Nancy T. Bruce. Note of regret from Mary that she cannot dine with her mother today. The weather is extremely cold. Christmas wishes.

Folder 20

11 January 1838 - ANS - Promissory note of John S. Morgan to Henry Bruce, Jr., for $300. A later addition notes that the loan was never repaid.

Folder 21

December 1838 - ANS - James B. Shockey & Co. to Henry Bruce, Sr. Receipt for $20.84 1/2 for lumber purchased on December 11 and December 27, 1838. Notes of other financial transactions are written on the reverse.

Folder 22

8 October 1841 - ALS - Mary E. Bruce [Fleming County, KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. [Nashville, TN]. Illness of one of the cows. Mentions her two widowed sisters (not by name), a house guest (Elizabeth Dewey), and a camp meeting at Bethel. The death of James Galiger [sic].

Folder 23

28 May 1844 - ADS - Indenture for 239 1/2 acres of land in Fleming County, Kentucky, between Henry Bruce, Sr., and Henry Bruce, Jr. Signed by Henry Bruce, Sr., although the document is not in his hand.

Folder 24

2 November 1844 - ALS - E. M. Burtone [Washington, GA] to Henry Bruce, Jr. [Flemingsburg, KY]. Complains about Henry's brother, James, for bringing inferior horses to sell in Washington. Prices for "our staple commodity" in "square bales" [probably hemp]. Political news about Georgia sending Democrats to Congress and fear that Georgia will support James K. Polk. Not concerned about his area of Kentucky in politics, but worry over the western and southern portion of the state. Strong belief in Henry Clay's ability to become President. Lengthy description for a pair of bay horses he wants to purchase from Bruce and when he needs them.

Folder 25

24 November 1844 - ALS - Henry W. Bruce [Warrenton, GA] to Ann T. Bruce [near Elizaville, Fleming County, KY]. News to his mother that he has entered into a business with "an irishman By the Name of Rache". Political excitement high in the area, and he is upset that the Whigs have taken the county (himself being a Democrat). Pleasure at the election of Polk. Thinks that Clay would ruin the country and that it will take "at least twenty years" to revive religion in the country the way it was before the last election. Concern that Christianity has become corrupt. Methodists have built a new church in town. Worried about his failing eyesight, graying hair, and lack of proper education. News of family health and marriages.

Folder 26

21 February 1845 - ADS - Legal settlement between Henry Bruce, Jr., and George G. Lowry. Mentions legal cases involving Jack Downing and William D. Hasper [?]. Bruce is being released from all liabilities for costs involved in the suit.

Folder 27

24 October 1845 - ADS - Copy of a bond between Dr. George G. Lowry and Henry Bruce, Sr. Henry, Jr., had sold the farm he purchased from his father to Lowry. The bond was against the dowry of Mrs. Henry Bruce, Sr., in the event of his death.

Folder 28

3 September 1847 - ALS - John Green [Philadelphia, PA] to Ann Green [Washington, KY]. Tells his wife how much he misses her and of a dream he had while at Wheeling that she was sick. He has purchased a cloak, bonnet, and shoes for her; he has not found a dress to buy her nor has he had the time to purchase a bed stead.

Folder 29

6 September 1847 - ALS - John Green [Philadelphia, PA] to Ann Green [Washington, KY]. Foresees difficulty in getting home as the [Ohio ?] river is getting low, and he may have to return home overland. All other content is love letter.

Folder 30

24 February 1848 - ALS - Photocopy of original. John Green [Cumberland, MD] to Ann Green [Washington, KY]. Some mention of the boat on which he is traveling and its passengers. Other news about his difficulty getting to Philadelphia. Location of original unknown.

Folder 31

27 February 1848 - ALS - John Green [Philadelphia, PA] to Ann Green [Washington, KY]. Love letter.

Folder 32

27 August 1848 - ALS - John Green [Philadelphia, PA] to Ann Green [Washington, KY]. Social commentary on the city of Philadelphia. Love letter. Expresses concern to his wife about her potential problems of being left alone with their son, Dick.

Folder 33

14 June 1849 - ALS - Henry W. Bruce [Warrenton, GA] to William M. Bruce [Mayslick, KY]. Concern that he will not be able to support his family because of poor business in the area. Mentions his failing eyesight. Considering giving up tanning for farming. Asks William not to go to Texas, but to come to Georgia to settle. Local chapter of the Sons of Temperance mentioned; 160 divisions in Georgia with 12,000 members. Henry tells of his involvement with the Masons. Snow storm on April 15th, which killed all vegetation and raised the prices of corn and flour.

Folder 34

2 September 1849 - ALS - John Green [Cincinnati, OH] to Ann Green [Washington, KY]. Sorry to hear of the death of Mrs. Lyle and "hopeless condition" of Mary Chambers due to cholera. Purchased twenty-four chairs and a wash stand.

Folder 35

9 September 1849 - ALS - John Green [Philadelphia, PA] to Ann Green [Washington, KY]. Shipped their new carpets the day before to be in Pittsburgh when he arrives there. Purchased knives, forks, candle sticks, and china. Love letter content. Regrets hearing of cholera in Paris [KY] and the deaths of Mrs. Lyle and Mary Chambers. Wants to hear from Ann soon so that he can find out if anyone in the family is ill with cholera.

Box 2 - Papers, 1850-1854

Folder 36

12 August 1850 - ALS - Mary Bruce [Covington, KY] to Nancy T. Bruce [Mayslick, KY]. Loss of several area children due to cholera. Complains of a toothache and the number of mosquitoes this month. Mention of a new milk cow and calf. Butter making, pickling, black berry cordial making, and jelly making mentioned.

Folder 37

7 April 1851 - ANS - Notice of a deed for 239 1/2 acres from Henry Bruce, Sr., to Henry Bruce, Jr., dated October 1845 in the [county ?] clerk's office.

Folder 38

4 December 1851 - ALS - Nancy T. Bruce [Fleming County, KY] to Henry and Mary Bruce [Covington, KY]. Complains of odd spells and a cold for the last three or four weeks. News of the health of some children [unclear whether they are family or not]. Concern for the failing health of their child, Fannie ["Frank"].

Folder 39

26 December 1851 - ALS - Nancy T. Bruce [Fleming County, KY] to Henry and Mary Bruce [Covington, KY]. Condolences on the death of Fannie ["Frank"].

Folder 40

3 March 1852-15 July 1890 - Cancelled checks and receipts of Henry Bruce, Jr. as follows:

  • Three checks drawn on Ellis & Morton [Cincinnati, OH] dated 3 March, 16 March, and 5 December 1852
  • Five checks drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 23 March, 24 July (2 checks), 8 August, and 14 August 1854
  • Five checks drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington and Branch Farmers' Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 13 September, 25 September, 9 October, 24 October, and 28 October 1854
  • Three checks drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 29 November, 1 December, and 8 December 1854
  • Three checks drawn on Branch Farmers' Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 11, 25 and 31 January 1855
  • One check drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 31 January 1855
  • Four checks drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 3 February, 13 March, 28 March and 29 March 1855
  • Four checks drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington and Branch Farmers' Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 5 April, 24 April, 6 August, and 25 August 1855
  • Three checks drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington and Branch Farmers' Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 19 September, 22 September, and 15 October 1855
  • One check drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 23 October 1855
  • Two checks drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington and Branch Farmers' Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 3 and 15 November 1855
  • Three checks drawn on Branch of the Northern Bank of Kentucky, at Covington dated 28 June, 1 July, and 3 July 1857
  • Three checks drawn on the Deposit Bank of Covington and an unknown institution dated 4 February, 5 April, and 6 August 1858
  • One check drawn on the Commercial Bank of Cincinnati dated 17 February 1859
  • One check drawn on an unknown institution dated 19 September 1866
  • Three checks drawn on Third National Bank of Cincinnati (paid to the Ocean National Bank) and unknown institutions dated 22 September, 24 September, and 8 October 1866
  • Three receipts dated 25 October (two receipts) and 5 December 1866
  • One check drawn on the National Bank of Commerce [Kansas City, MO], deposited with the Bank of Grand Avenue [Kansas City, MO], and dated 15 July 1890
  • n.d. - Bottom piece of a document signed and sealed by a notary public.

Folder 41

9 April 1852 - DS - Deed for family burial plot in Linden Grove Cemetery, Covington, Kentucky. Plot was from the land owned by the Western Baptist Theological Seminary, Covington, Kentucky.

Folder 42

12 April 1852 - ALS - A. Beatty to William Lashbrook [Washington, KY]. Beatty is a stone cutter and is asking about the appropriate composition for the tombstone of John Green.

Folder 43

14 July 1852 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. [Covington, KY] Mentions paperwork necessary for handling the estate of J.S. Morgan. Also mentions the latest outbreak of cholera in Flemingsburg, KY. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 44

18 [no month] 1853 - NS - Eli Metcalfe Bruce [Clinton, ?] to Henry Bruce, Jr. [Covington, KY]. Telegraph note through the firm of the National Telegraph. E. M. Bruce tells Henry Bruce that they must purchase the Bright farm for their iron furnace "now or never get it at fair price".

Folder 45

4 January 1853 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. Discusses his ailing brother, the health of himself and his wife, cattle and livestock prices, and a disagreement between Woodson Morgan and Mr. Porter over the ownership of a farm. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 46

12 January 1853 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. Bruce discusses the illnesses and death among his neighbors, as well as where to inter his dying brother. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 47

1 March 1853 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. Most of this concerns the various notes held by Bruce, Sr. and on the possible interest due. An escaped slave is also mentioned. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 48

29 March 1853 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. The letter details all of Bruce, Sr.'s involvement in the property dispute between Mr. Porter and the estate of J.S. Morgan. Original believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 49

18 April 185[3] (date has been erased by scraping) - ALS - Mary E. Bruce [Covington, KY] to Sarah Tanner and Mary [unknown]. [Envelope has more recent pencil note: "Letter my Mother wrote to Better Colored woman belonging to my Grand mother and letter my mother wrote to neighbor she moved to Covington".] Mary Bruce is pleased with her new home in Covington. Her parents are also pleased with their new home.

Folder 50

1 May 1853 - ALS - Pauline Bruce [Covington, KY] to Nancy T. Bruce. Informs her grandmother of an "exhibition" coming up in which she will read a composition and play two pieces of music. Good description of the new home and its lot.

Folder 51

18 May 1853 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Flemingsburg, KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. Mentions a carriage he wishes to purchase, visits from friends and relatives, and what he wishes done with the payment for a note he holds for the late J.S. Morgan. Also mentions new rail lines to Maysville and a new section of turnpike to Flemingsburg. Original believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 52

21 September 1853 - ALS - James Artus [Maysville, KY] to Ann Green [Washington, KY ?]. Brief note informing her that she has two writs served on her on account of her late husband for $50.00 and $70.00. The debts were owed to E. D. Anderson and Mr. Scott.

Folder 53

31 October 1853 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. The rail line has been suspended due to lack of funds, but the turnpike to Helena is nearly finished. Bruce, Sr. also writes about the lawsuit involving Thomas Porter and the J.S. Morgan estate. Porter will get a valuable farm, but is suffering severe losses from a "House" failure in Cincinnati. News of friends, family and neighbors; livestock and crop prices, and Bruce, Jr.'s purchase of an Indiana ironworks are also mentioned. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 54

12 December 1853 - ALS - Pauline Bruce [Indiana Furnace, IN] to Nancy T. Bruce. Mentions that her father, Henry Bruce, Jr., and cousin Eli M. Bruce have gone down the Ohio River to look at some land. Description of the steamboat, 'J.G. Cline', and its passengers and cargo; description of train ride from Madison, Indiana, which gave her a headache. Travel through Indianapolis to Terre Haute. First iron run out of the furnace on December 13th.

Folder 55

31 March 1854 - ALS - Henry Bruce, Jr. [Covington, KY], to Robert S. Sayer and William H. Sayre [Sparta, GA]. Condolences on the death of their brother, Nathan Sayer. News of the death of his wife's father, George S. Bruce. Health of his own father mentioned.

Folder 56

12 April 1854 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. Conveys the news from Sparta, GA as well as the local news, including a neighbor who "talks of selling and going to Illinoise wher there is no Slaves". Thomas Porter has sold the Morgan farm. The current state of Ellen Bruce Morgan and her finances are discussed. Bruce, Sr. also mentions his slaves, including Gilbert, and his opinions on "Negros" overall. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 57

19 April 1854 - ALS - Unknown [Fleming County, KY] to Mother. Fragmentary letter in pencil mentions two children, Travis and Henry, and their progress. On reverse in ink is the "Travelers Prayer".

Folder 58

20 April 1854 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. Most of the letter concerns financial matters relating to the final disposition of the J.S. Morgan estate. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 59

29 April 1854 - TL - Henry Bruce, Sr. [Fleming Co., KY] to Henry Bruce, Jr. After mentioning the Morgan estate and crop prices, Bruce, Sr. writes extensively on the division between free states and slave states, the Missouri Compromise and the Fugitive Slave Act, before returning to the subject of the Morgan estate. The slave Gilbert is again mentioned. Original is believed to be housed in Virginia.

Folder 60

25 May 1854 - ANS - Dr. J. C. Thomas' receipt for medical attendance on Gilbert, a slave of Henry Bruce, Jr.

Folder 61

22 September 1854 - ALS - Pauline Bruce Duke [Covington, KY] to Nancy Bruce [Mayslick, KY]. News of the arrival of Mr. Helm, the new preacher from Mayslick. Mentions two of the Helm's slaves and the health of "Uncle Will" in Missouri. Hot and dry weather. Her mother attended the funeral of Mrs. Wither's baby.