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Ziba B. Oakes Papers

Overview

Abstract

Scope and Contents

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

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Ziba B. Oakes Papers, 1852-1857 | Boston Public Library Archival and Manuscript Finding Aid Database

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Collection Overview

Title: Ziba B. Oakes Papers, 1852-1857Add to your cart.View associated digital content.

Collection Identifier: MS Am. 322

Primary Creator: Oakes, Ziba B., 1806-1871

Extent: 652.0 Items

Arrangement: Original order of the correspondence has been maintained.

Subjects: McElveen, A. J., d. 1874 -- Correspondence., Oakes, Ziba B., 1806-1871 -- Correspondence., Slave trade -- South Carolina -- Charleston -- History -- 19th Century., Slave traders -- South Carolina -- Charleston -- Correspondence.

Languages: English

Abstract

The 652 letters in this collection document the business of Ziba B. Oakes, a slave broker, who lived in Charleston, South Carolina. The letters were written by business associates and cover all aspects of the slave trade business including pricing, selling instructions, and resolving problems with runaways. Oakes’s real estate business and other financial matters are also documented.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The 652 letters in this collection document the business dealings of Ziba B. Oakes, a slave broker, who lived in Charleston, South Carolina. The letters were written by several business associates and cover all aspects of the slave trade such as pricing, selling instructions, and resolving problems with runaways. Oakes’s real estate business and other financial matters are also documented. There is no correspondence from Oakes.

The majority of the letters in the collection are from brokers, agents, and clients from different parts of South Carolina and other southern states with whom Ziba Oakes did business. For example, there are fifty-eight letters written to Oakes by William Wright from Savannah, Georgia; thirteen letters by Burch Kirkland and Company, from Montgomery, Alabama; and twenty-three letters by Thomas Limehouse, from Goulding, South Carolina. In addition, there are letters from traders from Richmond, Virginia and New Orleans, Louisiana. These contain specific details about slaves bought and sold, and give market prices for each city.

Of the approximately 480 letters written by slave traders, 135 were written by A. J. McElveen, whose job it was to travel throughout South Carolina’s Sumpter District and purchase slaves for Oakes. The letters include details about the number of slaves that were purchased on each trip, their gender and physical descriptions, and where on the plantation they should work. Other matters include the problems he had with selling certain slaves and his dealings with other traders. McElveen’s letters also provide insight into the relationship he had with Oakes.

Additional letters document Oakes’s real estate and other business ventures such as the buying and selling of plantations and railroad stock.

Subject/Index Terms

McElveen, A. J., d. 1874 -- Correspondence.
Oakes, Ziba B., 1806-1871 -- Correspondence.
Slave trade -- South Carolina -- Charleston -- History -- 19th Century.
Slave traders -- South Carolina -- Charleston -- Correspondence.

Administrative Information

Repository: Boston Public Library Archival and Manuscript Finding Aid Database

Access Restrictions: Collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions:

Items in this collection may be subject to copyright restrictions. The Boston Public Library does not hold copyright on the material in this collection. Researchers are responsible for identifying and contacting the persons or organizations that hold copyright.

When reproducing material from this collection please include the credit line "Courtesy of the Trustees of the Boston Public Library/ Rare Books."

Acquisition Method: The Ziba Oakes papers were found in a slave pen in Charleston, South Carolina, on February 20, 1865 by James Redpath. In April 1865, Redpath presented them to William Lloyd Garrison. The collection was donated to the Boston Public Library on November 11, 1891 by Francis Jackson Garrison.

Related Materials: Slave Trade Letters, 1839. MS fAM 1034

Related Publications: Drago, Edmund L. ed. Broke by the War: Letters of a Slave Trader. University of South Carolina Press. 1991.

Preferred Citation: Ziba B. Oakes Papers. MS Am. 322. Rare Books and Manuscripts Department, Boston Public Library. Courtesy of the Trustees of the Boston Public Library/Rare Books.

Processing Information: Finding aid written by Rare Books and Manuscripts staff.

Finding Aid Revision History: Updated by Kimberly Reynolds, April 2011.


Box and Folder Listing


Browse by Box:

[Box 27],
[Box 28],
[Box 29],
[Box 30],
[Box 31],
[Box 32],
[Box 33],
[Box 34],
[Box 35],
[Box 36],
[Box 37],
[All]

Box 27Add to your cart.
Folder 1: McElveen, A. J.  A.N.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumpterville, S.C., 5 June 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Request delivery to J.A. Garrett the girl Nancy and help in selling her.  2 p.
Folder 2: Barnes, James. A.N.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Charleston, S.C., May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
On collection of debt from T.N. Gadsden.  2 p.
Folder 3: King, Jesse. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Milledgville, Ga., 30 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
On proposed purchase of lot of young male Negroes; enquires about J.M. Gilchrist.  1 p.
Folder 4: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 30 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Buisness brisk, prices low; discusses J.J. Richardson.  1 p.
Folder 5: Scranton, Johnston & Co. Ms. L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 8 February 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Has forwarded Negro Lewis for sale, describing him.  1 p.
Folder 6: Barber, F. C.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Augusta, Ga., 17 February 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks advice on sale of remaing slaves, and obtaining money at New Orleans.  1 p.
Folder 7: Whaley, William T., Jr.  A.L.S.to Ziba B. Oakes; John's Island, S.C., 5 June 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks help in locating runaway, Caleb, sold him by Oakes.  1 p.
Folder 8: McElveen, A. J.  A.N.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 4 June 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Has not yet sold Henry; difficulty in making purchases; proposes to go to Richmond.  1 p.
Folder 9: Wylly & Montmollin. Ms.N.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 19 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Report decline in sales and prices of Negroes.  1 p.
Folder 10: Bass, N.  A.N.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Macon, Ga., 26 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks if mechanic advertised for sale can work in both wood and iron.  1 p.
Folder 11: McKnight, W. H.  A.N.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumpter District, S.C., 25 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks about sale and payment for boy left with Oakes.  1 p.
Folder 12: McElveen, A. J.  A.N.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumpterville, S.C., 27 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Henry still unsold, after unsatisfactory offer; asks if Garrett has collected girl; J.S. Richardson must raise money.  2 p.
Folder 13: Independent Order of Oddfellows. A.L.S. to Ziba Oakes; Charleston; S.C.., 17 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Resolve addressed to Z.B. Oakes requesting that Lodge remove present hall.  1 p.
Folder 14: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; Kingstree, S.C., 29 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Joe's physical condition when McRae sold him; two Negro children offered at $900.  1 p.
Folder 15: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 18 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Favorable statements on Garrett's character.  1 p.
Folder 16: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville. S. C., 16 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Trouble about Joe; desire for Dr. McRae's testimony; purchase of Nancy.  2 p.
Folder 17: Martin, W. J.  A.L.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; New Orleans, 15 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Information on Charleston market.  1 p.
Folder 18: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 15 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Reports purchase of Negro and intention of sending him direct to Oakes; nothing to be done about Joe till Dr. McRae interviewed.  1 p.
Folder 19: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 13 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Intends thorough investigation about Joe; chance to exchange woman and child for prime young man.  1 p.
Folder 20: Hill, A.  A.L.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; Shreveport, La., 5 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks cost of buying and shipping to New Orleans a few young Negroes.  1 p.
Folder 21: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Darlington Court House, 10 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Unable to sell Henry; offers 16 year old Negro boy and $100 in exchange. 1p.
Folder 22: DeLorme, A. A.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Darien, Ga., 9 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks information on swamp lands. 1p.
Folder 23: Limehouse, Thomas A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Goulding, S.C.[?], 3 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Instructions concerning bank note. 1p.
Folder 24: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 3 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Burkett's Negro boy not good investment; Herriot promises mcElveen refusal of girl if not sold; plans for Henry. 1p.
Folder 25: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 1 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Unfavorable state of market; Burkett's offer for boy; intends taking Henry to Wilson; chance to buy fine 16 year old girl. 2p.
Folder 26: Weatherby, T. C.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Bennettsville, S.C., 3 May 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks girl Ellen sent to Bennettsville, with any additional bills. 1p.
Folder 27: Wylly & Montmollin.  Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 23 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks for Francis Nipson be given money by Oakes for purchase of Negroes when necessary. 1p.
Folder 28: Prentiss, W. O.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Buzzard Roost,  Ala., 30 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
On dangerous condition of Oakes's property due to runaway slaves; two prospective purchasers. 2p.
Folder 29: Wright, William.  Ms. L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 22 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks man Bob owned by Wright delivered to W. H. Falbird.  In hand of Wm C. Dawson. 1p.
Folder 30: Briscoe, E. C.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Port Gibson, Miss., 30 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Illness of newly purchased Negroes; transaction with Weatherby; price fallen. 2p.
Folder 31: Cooke, James. R.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Berry Hill, 19 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Plans for transfer of stock to Hues. 1p.
Folder 32: Barton, J. C.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Augusta, Ga., 22 February 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Finances for several lots. 1p.
Folder 33: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 21 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Market in Sumterville dull. 1p.
Folder 34: Boston & Villomayo.  Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 11 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Description of several Negroes; asks market price at Charleston. 1p.
Folder 35: Scranton Johnston & Co.  Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 14 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks about sale of Lewis. 1p.
Folder 36: Wylly & Montmollin Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 17 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Price of family of 3 in Savannah. 1p.
Folder 37: Weatherby, T. C.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Bennettsville, S.C., 10 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks location of Negro girl Ellen.1p.
Folder 38: Lewis, John.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Ashepoo Ferry, S.C., 16 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Will send Negroes to plantation; wishes to buy Brutus; cannot catch runaway slaves on Schmidt plantation. 1p.
Folder 39: Wright, William.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 15 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks about Negro owned by Scranton Johnston & Co. 1p.
Folder 40: Randolph, E. G.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Winnsborough, 28 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Purchases to be made for  Grand Lodge, A.F.M. 1p.
Folder 41: Lewis, John W.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Ashepoo Ferry Post Office, S.C., 1 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Terms of sale of property bought from Dr. Schmidt. 1p.
Folder 42: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 3 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Market sales high; made one purchase; intends more. 1p.
Folder 43: Barnes, William.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Atlanta, Ga., 20 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks about Oakes's silence. 1p.
Folder 44: Limehouse, Thomas.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Goulding, S.C.[?], 24 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks Oakes to take care of note to be delivered by Mrs. Limehouse. 1p.
Folder 45: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 24 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks about Henry; doubts about prices for Negroes; value of railroad shares. 2p.
Folder 46: Gelzer, Thomas. L.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Summerville, 26 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Terms for disposal of woman. 1p.
Folder 47: Cooke, James R.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Rantowles, S.C., 25 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Hues's plan for receiving stock. 1p.
Folder 48: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 14 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Possible exchange of Henry for another Negro; conditions of railroad stocks. 1p.
Folder 49: Hanahan, John  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Edisto Island, S.C., 28 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
On vessel for sale. 1p.
Folder 50: Briscoe, E. C.   A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Port Gibson, Miss., 26 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Transfer of girl Ellen to J.C. Weatherby. 1p.
Folder 51: Gelzer, T.L.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Summerville, 12 April 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Unsound state of Dulcina; asks compensation. 2p.
Folder 52: DeLorme, A. A.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Darien, Ga., 21 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
On rice lands, for sale for cash. 2p.
Folder 53: McElveen, A. J.   A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 13 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
On trade of boy Ely; Wilson wishes to buy Henry. 1p.
Folder 54: McElveen, A. J.   A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Darlington, S.C., 15 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Offers $1000 for Henry. 1p.
Folder 55: Prentiss, W. O.   A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Buzzard Roost, 16 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Oakes's planting instructions recived too late. 1p.
Folder 56: Wright, William.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah?, n.d.Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks about escaped Negro Cupid; reward offered. 1p.
Folder 57: McElveen, A. J.   A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Darlington, 22 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Ryan unwilling to endorse Wilson's note in October to pay for Henry; can give good security. 1p.
Folder 58: McElveen, A. J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 6 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Will send Bob and Henry to workhouse as runaways; wishes price paid for Negroes kept secret. 1p.
Folder 59: Wright, William.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah?, n.d.Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Receipt for Oakes's $1660 check; boy Abram unsatisfactory; instructions about Bob. 2p.
Folder 60: Barber, F. C.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Augusta, Ga., 10 March 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Trouble about settlement for property. 1p.

Browse by Box:

[Box 27],
[Box 28],
[Box 29],
[Box 30],
[Box 31],
[Box 32],
[Box 33],
[Box 34],
[Box 35],
[Box 36],
[Box 37],
[All]


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