Records in North Carolina State Archives


From time to time, while doing a search on the NC State Archives MARS Catalog, I've come across caches of records which may be valuable sources of information for those researching the names or subjects contained in them. This page contains some of those records along with the Catalog references to better enable those interested to locate them at the State Archives.


Joseph E. Elmore Collection (of Louisburg, NC)
Years: 1861-1864; 1879
James M. Cook, 1821-1862
Creators: Lewis Henry Jones, 1836-1901, Robert D., Jones, 1842-1909
Call Number: PC.1861
Location: 3B ( Archive Stacks)
MARS Id: 5255 (Record Group)

This collection of 15 items is made up primarily of three small groups of letters written by three Confederate soldiers: James M. Cook (1821-1862) of Franklin County; Lewis Henry Jones (1836-1901) of Lenoir, then Franklin County; and Robert D. Jones (1842-1909), of then Craven County. There is one receipt dated 1879; and two United Confederate Veterans ribbons pinned together as a single item (UCV ribbons transferred to Museum of History).

James M. Cook (1821-1862) of Franklin County was a wheelwright by occupation. He married Sarah Jane Evans of Franklin County in 1853, and had by her sons Archibald, Isaac, and Charles A. Why Cook decided at age 40 to enlist in Company E, lst North Carolina Cavalry is not made clear in his few surviving letters, but he remarks in a note to his sister that he can't think she would choose as a husband a young man that had stayed at home and let the married men go fight for their liberties. There are four letters written by Cook to his parents or to his wife, all dating between November 10, 1861, and January 27, 1862, while his regiment was at Manassas Junction, Virginia, on duty on the advanced line in front of Centreville. He speaks of a few skirmishes while observing that the Federal soldiers will not fight, and describes the devastation of the countryside caused by the presence of the two armies. Some of the letters speak of the capture of Yankee prisoners, and his letter of December 1, 1861, describes the taking on two separate occasions of civilian prisoners by his regiment. His last letter, January 27, 1862, speaks of his winter quarters, sickness and death in the camp, and the fact that he was suffering from risings, On February 26, 1862, Cook was reported as having been sent indefinitely to the hospital at Manassas, and by the first of March he was reported as having died in the General Hospital at Richmond.

Lewis Henry Jones (1836-1901) may have been a native of Lenoir County where he was, in 1850, overseer on the plantation of Bryan C. Murphy. Before the end of the decade he was overseer on the Franklin County plantation of Burwell Perry. In 1858 he married Elizabeth Woodley of Franklin County by whom he had two sons before enlisting on April 4, 1862, in Company A, 3d North Carolina Infantry Regiment. After a year as an infantryman, Jones was sent from his company on detail as a teamster in April, 1863; he continued with the wagon trains throughout the remainder of the war. Jones was captured by Sheridan's forces at Waynesboro, Virginia, during the Shenandoah Campaign and was confined at Fort Delaware until June 19, 1865. Seven of the letters Jones wrote to his wife survive in this collection. The first, July 11, 1862, was written after the Battle of Gaines Mill which he describes as "one of the hardest fought battles that was ever known," and prior to which, he says, General McClellan warned the U.S. soldiers that the Confederates were fighting under a "black flag" and would kill all prisoners they took.
His letter of August 12, 1862, mentions news from his sister that the federal forces occupying New Bern had made a feint within four miles of Kinston on the previous Thursday that had driven the Confederate outposts back into town and had frightened the townsmen. Even a large landowner halfway between Kinston and Goldsboro, Benjamin Rouse, had been so frightened that he "was about to leave his fort." His letter of May 10, 1863, describes the Battle of Chancellorsville.

Jones's letter of July 11, 1863, was written from the commissary train during the retreat from Gettysburg, and he seems less well informed about the battle there than he had been about Chancellorsville. Other Lewis Henry Jones materials in the collection include an 1879 receipt to Jones from a Raleigh merchant and two Confederate veteran's ribbons. One of them is for the sixth annual reunion of the United Confederate Veterans held at Richmond, Virginia, in conjunction with the laying of the corner stone of the monument to Jefferson Davis in 1896; the other is a pale green silk ribbon having printed on it, "Joe Davis Camp, Confederate Vets., Franklin Co., N.C.". (The two ribbons have been transferred to the Museum of History.)
Robert D. Jones (1842-1909), a native of Bay River, Craven County (now Pamlico County) enlisted on January 24, 1862, in Company D, 3d North Carolina Artillery Regiment, and was stationed at Fort Holmes, Smith Island, during 1863 and until November 22, 1864. He is represented in this collection by a single letter written from Fort Holmes to an unnamed sister on May 10, 1864, in which he mentions a hopeful (but false) rumor that the Yankees had evacuated New Bern.



Records of Slaves and Free Persons of Color--See Also Miscellaneous Records
Years: n.d., 1783-1869
Creator: Clerk of Superior Court; Clerk of Court of Pleas and Quarter Sessions; Register of DeedsC.R.103.928.2-C.R.103.928.5
Location: Archive Stacks
MARS Id: 303.103.2 (Box)

Box C.R.103.928.2 contains Affidavit testifying to the freedom of Elich James of Halifax County, 1832; Affidavits testifying to the freedom of Phereby Simmons, 1853; Bill of sale for negroes, John Everett to Levi D. Howell, 1859; Civil Actions concerning slaves and free persons of color, 1854-1869; Court order concerning fees for keeping negroes in jail, n.d.; Criminal Actions concerning slaves and free persons of color, n.d., 1793-1837. Box C.R.103.928.4 contains Criminal Actions concerning slaves and free persons of color, 1843-1866; Deposition of Joseph Jordan re: a negro woman named Moll, 1792; Deposition of Sarah Bennett re: Isaac Edins, free born son of Ann Edins, 1799; Detention of Hardy Carrol, free person of color, 1842; Division of slaves, n.d., 1829-1864; Hire of negroes belonging to Louis Williams and Thomas Uzzell, 1841: Hire of negroes belonging to William B. F. Fort, 1845-1849; Hire of negroes, 1849-1850; Hire of negroes belonging to Elizabeth Atkinson, 1863; Indenture of Howell Combon to serve as slave to Burwell Mooring for 99 years, 1793; Inquest for negro George, 1828; Inquest for slave belonging to Dr. John Hooks, 1846; Levies on slaves, n.d., 1801-823. Box C.R.103.928.5 contains Levies on Slaves, 1824-1862; List of free negroes receiving corn, 1867; List of John Everett's negroes in Alamance, n.d.; List of A. B. Thompson's negroes in Mecklenburg County, n.d.; Order to the sheriff to take a negro to Montgomery Bridges of Hertford County, 1842; Patrol records, n.d., 1815-1862; Petition of William Newsom for liberating Negro Charles, n.d.; Petition of Joshua Fletcher for liberating Negro Sippeo, 1783; Petition of Robert Fellow for liberating Negro Rose, 1792; Petition of Thomas Outland for liberating Negro Hannah, 1799; Petition of Simon Peacock for liberating Negro Cato, 1800; Petition of Joseph Everett for liberating Negroes Tom and Peggy, 1805; Petition of William Outland for liberating Negro Joe, 1805; Petition of Benajah Herring for liberating Negro Willis, 1823; Petition of Hilary Coor, a free man of color, for a gun license, 1841; Petition of Willis, a free man of color, to use a gun, 1841; Petition of Stephen Evans, a free man of color, to hunt with a gun, 1854; Warrant of negroes accused of unlawful assembly, 1802.