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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


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[Box 27],
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Box 32Add to your cart.
Folder 301: Brown, George L. A.L.S. to George L. [i.e. Ziba B. Oakes]; Newnansville, Fla., 30 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks prices of boy for plowing and girl for farm work. 1 p.
Folder 302: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 5 December 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks price of a Negro he can sell on commission. 1 p.
Folder 303: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 4 December 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Negro prices low; enquiries from client wanting 80 to 150 Negroes; will buy families. 1 p.
Folder 304: Wright, William. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 2 December 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Full description of Cyrus.  In hand of Wm C. Dawson. 1 p.
Folder 305: Wright, William. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 1 December 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Directions for sale of Cyrus.  In hand of Wm C. Dawson. 1 p.
Folder 306: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 1 December 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Offers $1800 and expenses for last lot bought; intends buying girl with poor title; will buy family with seamstress. 2 p.
Folder 307: Bryant, J.W. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Jacksonville, Fla., 6 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Recommends John D. McKinlay as Florida agent for Oakes. 1 p.
Folder 308: Buck, James. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Laurel Grove, [Va.?], 23 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Reward for Cox for securing runaway Negro Arch, alias Isaac Johnston. 1 p.
Folder 309: Scranton Johnston & Co. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 21 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Difficulties over Lewis. 1 p.
Folder 310: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 11 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Prices of boys high; chance to sell blacksmith. 1 p.
Folder 311: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 9 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks Doss sent to Sumterville for examination by possible client; intends buying several Negroes. 1 p.
Folder 312: Scanton Johnston & Co. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savanna, Ga., 16 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks whereabout of Lewis; offer made for him. 1 p.
Folder 313: Wright, William. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 17 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Plans for sending Rober to Charleston; asks about Georgetown climate.  In hand of Wm C. Dawson. 1 p.
Folder 314: Wright, William. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 18 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks market value of Negro described. 1 p.
Folder 315: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 18 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Still trying to sell Doss; offered $850 for Mahoney's boy; will send 5 Megroes to Charleston. 2 p.
Folder 316: Hury [?], Isaac L. to Wylly & Montmollin. and Wylly & Montmollin. to Ziba B. Oakes; Bryan Co., Ga. and Savannah, Ga., 13 November 1854, [November 1854]Add to your cart.View associated digital content.

Asks about sale of his Negro. 1 p.

Forwarding preceding for comment.

Folder 317: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumter Discrict, S.C., 17 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Will send several newly bought Negroes to Charleston. 2 p.
Folder 318: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumter District, S.C., 19 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Will send Negroes by rail. 2 p.
Folder 319: Barber, F.C. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Augusta, Ga., 15 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Acknowledges payment. 1 p.
Folder 320: Wright, William. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 4 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
On reward offered by William D. Ellis for capture of runaway Robert, now in jail.  In hand of Wm C. Dawson. 1 p.
Folder 321: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes' Sumterville, S.C., 24 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Mahoney awaits higher prices for sale of boy; doss not sold; chance to get Negroes; if bought, will take them to Richmond. 2 p.
Folder 322: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Maysville, Ga. [?], 29 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Unable to buy boys; chance to buy woman and three children for $1400. 1 p.
Folder 323: Easterling, John A.L.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; [n.p.], 18 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks prices of 15 or 20 field hands. 1 p.
Folder 324: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 1 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Had not planned to send new Negroes to Charleston at time, but will if desirable. 1 p.
Folder 325: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 23 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Will send only boy he has to Mansur if possible; fever raging. 1 p.
Folder 326: Barr, James A. A.L.S. to [Ziba B. Oakes?]; Richmond, Va, 11 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Prices in Richmond. 1p.
Folder 327: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 29 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Mansur's transactions; attempt to sell boy at $750. 1 p.
Folder 328: Gilchrist, John M. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Charleson, S.C., 20 November 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Order to pay $3.75 to Eli Cohen. 1 p.
Folder 329: Womack & Martin. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; New Orleans, La., 18 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Acknowledges check; asks market prices in Charleston.  In hand of Jas E. Sutton.1 p.
Folder 330: Limehouse, Thomas. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Summerville, S.C., 12 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Commissions Oakes to do banking errand; asks about selling boy of 14.1 p.
Folder 331: Price, C.A. A.N.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Palatka, Fla., 27 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Will undertake collection of Robuck's note; asks about buying cook. 1 p.
Folder 332: Wright, William. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 31 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks enquiries about Negro in Savannah jail purposting to belong to Ellis; will buy some Negroes if cheap.  In hand of Wm C. Dawson. 1 p.
Folder 333: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to [-----] McBride; Sumterville, S.C., 30 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks about Oakes & prices of Negroes; Wright's family in New York due to fever prevalent.
Folder 334: Dawson, William C. A.L.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 16 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Sends check; yellow fever in Savannah abaiting.  On behalf of William Wright. 1 p.
Folder 335: Tharin, Theodore C. A.L.S. to [Ziba B. Oakes?]; Grumseville, S.C. [?], 16 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Negro hire arranged; Brownfield, inspector, away; inspection arranged for return. 1 p.
Folder 336: Wright, William. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 2 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Old Nelly sold for $250; will send check.  In hand of Wm C. Dawson. 1 p.
Folder 337: Stinebeck, A. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Aiken, S.C., 2 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Taxes on Oakes's farm. 1 p.
Folder 338: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 4 October 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Two Negroes have run away; Mansur's agreement to sell boy; plans for 5 Negroes if sold; wants second-hand piano. 1 p.
Folder 339: Mississippi Merchant Insurance Co. Ms.L.S. (M.I. Wicks, President) to Ziba B. Oakes; Aberdeen, Miss., 28 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks about cargo of boat "Star of the South", supposedly in distress at Charleston. 1 p.
Folder 340: Whaley & Rutledge. Ms.D.S. to [Ziba B. Oakes]; [Charleston, S.C. ?], 5 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Receipt for payment to F.C. Barber. 1 p.
Folder 341: Salinas, A.I. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Aiken, S.C., 6 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Interview with Stinebeck; hotel at Aiken; good prospects of buisness. 1 p.
Folder 342: Lesesne, Henry. A.L.S. to [Ziba B. Oakes?]; [Charleston, S.C. ?], 6 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Title to Stoney Landing Plantation uncertain. 2 p.
Folder 343: Barber, F.C. A.L.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; Augusta, Ga., 2 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Directions for rectifying imperfect title to real estate. 2 p.
Folder 344: McKay, A.N. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Grahams Turn Out, S.C. [?], 26 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Asks compensation for unsound Negro bought of Oakes. 1 p.
Folder 345: Walker, R.W. A.L.S. to A. Stinebeck; Barnwell Court House, S.C., 21 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Steps to prevent sheriff's sale in case of Eliza Ring. 1 p.
Folder 346: Stinebeck, A. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Aiken, S.C., 25 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Forwards preceding items. 1 p.
Folder 347: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Kingstree, S.C., 18 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Describes boy purchased; chance to buy 5 fellows; asks about fever. 1 p.
Folder 348: Tharin, T.C. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Grumsville, S.C. [?], 19 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Sends letter to be forwarded to President of the North Carolina Railroad; may sell stock; Dangerfield a treacherous swamp. 2 p.
Folder 349: Barber, F.C. A.L.S. to [Ziba B. Oakes?]; Augusta, Ga., 18 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Encloses draft; excitement over fever. 1 p.
Folder 350: Barber, F.C. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Augusta, Ga., 11 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
On difficulties over Barber's property. 1 p.
Folder 351: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 11 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Dr. Witherspoon's deception on soundness of woman sold McElveen; absence to attend sale. 2 p.
Folder 352: Wright, William. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 15 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Offer of $250 for Nelly.  In hand of Wm C. Dawson. 1p.
Folder 353: Stinebeck, A. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Aiken, S.C., 10 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Sends rent for farm. 2 p.
Folder 354: Witherspoon, I.B. to  A.L.S. Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 10 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
On conditions of Dulcina. 2 p.
Folder 355: Gelzer, Thomas. L. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 8 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Dr. Witherspoon thinks Dulcina unsound; wants compensation. 1 p.
Folder 356: McElveen, A.J. A.L.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes, Sumterville, S.C., 9 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
No recent purchases; queries state of fever and market; Bob Cook desires some Negroes; prices in Richmond; gale at Charleston; G.W. White's commission for second hand piano. 2 p.
Folder 357: Limehouse, Thomas. A.L.S.  to Ziba B. Oakes; Summerville, S.C., 5 September 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Sends renewal note; prime Negroes for sale. 1 p.
Folder 358: Wright, William. Ms.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Savannah, Ga., 30 August 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Unable to sell Nelly owing to fever.  In hand of Wm C. Dawson. 1p.
Folder 359: Adger, James. A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sullivan's Island, S.C., 26 August 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Complains about removal of fence between properties. 2p.
Folder 360: McElveen, A.J.  A.L.S. to Ziba B. Oakes; Sumterville, S.C., 30 August 1854Add to your cart.View associated digital content.
Believes fever retribution for sin; bought some boys; asks enquiries about boy owned by Delorme. 2p.

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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