Gresham Family Papers

A Guide to the Gresham Family Papers 1825-1940 Ms.1988.096


[logo]

Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech

Special Collections and University Archives, University Libraries (0434)
560 Drillfield Drive
Newman Library, Virginia Tech
Blacksburg, Virginia 24061
specref@vt.edu
URL: http://spec.lib.vt.edu

John M. Jackson

Repository
Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech
Identification
Ms.1988.096
Title
Gresham Family Papers1825-1940
Quantity
0.5 Cubic Feet 1 folder
Creator
Gresham family (Burke County, Ga.)
Language
The materials in the collection are in English.
Abstract
This collection includes photocopies of papers of the family of John Jones Gresham, a Macon, Georgia attorney, businessman and politician. Includes correspondence, notes on Confederate memorabilia, legal and financial papers, and biographical materials.

Administrative Information

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use

The copyright status of this collection is unknown. Copyright restrictions may apply. Contact Special Collections and University Archives for assistance in determining the use of these materials. Reproduction or digitization of materials for personal or research use can be requested using our reproduction/digitization form: http://bit.ly/scuareproduction. Reproduction or digitization of materials for publication or exhibit use can be requested using our publication/exhibition form: http://bit.ly/scuapublication. Please contact Special Collections and University Archives (specref@vt.edu or 540-231-6308) if you need assistance with forms or to submit a completed form.

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open to research.

Preferred Citation

Researchers wishing to cite this collection should include the following information: [identification of item], [box], [folder], Gresham Family Papers, Ms1988-096, Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, Va.

Source of Acquisition

The Gresham Family Papers were temporarily lent to the Special Collections in 1988. Photocopies of the papers were made at that time and the original materials returned to the owner.

Processing Information

The processing, arrangement and description of the Gresham Family Papers commenced and was completed in February 2006.


Biographical Note

John Jones Gresham was born in Burke County, Georgia, January 21, 1812, the son of Job and Mary Jones Gresham. He attended school at Waynesboro and Richmond Bath, Georgia before entering the University of Georgia in 1830. After a private study of law, he was admitted to the Georgia bar in 1834 and opened a practice in Waynesboro but soon moved to Macon. In the 1840s, Gresham relinquished his law practice to devote more attention to other matters, including his farm. He was elected mayor of Macon in 1843 and 1847. A Presbyterian, Gresham was made a ruling elder in 1847. In 1850, he established the Macon Manufacturing Company and served as its president.

Following the Civil War, Gresham briefly practiced law with his son Thomas but soon turned his attention to politics and business. He was elected to the state senate in 1865 and to two terms in the state house of representatives. He was heavily involved in education at the local and state level, serving as treasurer of the Macon Free School, president of the Alexander Free School, member of the Macon County Board of Education, president of the University of Georgia board of trustees, director of the Theological Seminary at Columbia and trustee and treasurer of Oglethorpe University. He also served as director of the Southwestern Railroad and the Central Georgia Bank.

Gresham married Mary E. Baxter (daughter of Thomas W. Baxter of Athens, Georgia) on May 24, 1843. They had five children: Thomas B., Minnie Gresham Machen, LeRoy W., and two sons who died in infancy. Gresham died on Octobert 16, 1891, while visiting his daughter in Baltimore. His wife preceded him in death. They are buried in Macon's Rose Hill Cemetery

Thomas B. Gresham married Tallulah (or Lula) A. Billups on October 15, 1869 in Morgan County, Georgia. By 1891, Gresham was living in Baltimore with his second wife, Bessie Johnston Gresham, and practicing law.

LeRoy Gresham, the son of Thomas B. and Lula Billups Gresham, was reared in Baltimore. He studied law and briefly practiced in Baltimore before entering Union Theological Seminary in Richmond in 1903. He married Mary Jessie Rhett in Baltimore that same year. In 1909, Gresham became pastor of Salem (Virginia) Presbyterian Church, a position he would hold through 1946. He died in 1955.

Scope and Contents

This collection contains photocopies of papers of the family of John Jones Gresham, a Macon, Georgia attorney, businessman and politician. The collection includes personal and business correspondence addressed to Gresham, as well as a few letters addressed to his son, Thomas B. Gresham, and grandson, LeRoy Gresham.

Also contained in the collection are correspondence and notes of Bessie Johnston Gresham, largely devoted to various pieces of Confederate memorabilia, including the death mask and uniform buttons of "Stonewall" Jackson, the sword of Joseph Johnston, the last Confederate flag to fly over Fort Sumter, a horseshoe from Turner Ashby's horse, and the origin of the song "Maryland, My Maryland." The correspondence contains several letters from Mary Anna Morrison Jackson, widow of "Stonewall" Jackson.

Apart from personal letters from friends and relatives, the miscellaneous correspondence folder also contains copies of post-war letters from James Longstreet and Jubal Early and to John S. Mosby. Included here also is a letter from Lt. Elliott Johnston, aide to General Garnett, written from Richmond in July 1862.

The collection also contains biographical materials on John J. Gresham, a few military documents of Capt. Elliott Johnston, newspaper clippings regarding the trial of Jefferson Davis, and family information from a Gresham family Bible.

Arrangement

The collection is arranged by type, then chronologically.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

  • Civil War
  • United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865

Rights Statement for Archival Description

The guide to the Gresham Family Papers by Special Collections and University Archives, Virginia Tech, is licensed under a CC0 (https://creativecommons.org/share-your-work/public-domain/cc0/).

Container List

Letters to John J. Gresham
box-folder 1 folder: 11834-1889
Letters to Thomas B. Gresham from John J. Gresham
box-folder 1 folder: 21861-1864
Letters to Thomas B. Gresham from Mary Baxter Gresham
box-folder 1 folder: 31864
Letters to Thomas B. Gresham from LeRoy W. Gresham
box-folder 1 folder: 41864
Letters to Thomas B. Gresham from LeRoy W. Gresham
box-folder 1 folder: 5n.d.
Letters to Thomas B. Gresham from Minnie Gresham
box-folder 1 folder: 61863-1864
Miscellaneous letters to Thomas B. Gresham
box-folder 1 folder: 71862-1924, n.d.
Bessie Johnston Gresham correspondence
box-folder 1 folder: 81898-1904
Bessie Johnston Gresham correspondence
box-folder 1 folder: 91905-1921, n.d.
Letters to LeRoy Gresham
box-folder 1 folder: 101911-1940
Miscellaneous correspondence
box-folder 1 folder: 111862-1897, n.d.
Legal and financial records
box-folder 1 folder: 121825-1943
"Testimonials to the Life and Character of John Jones Gresham"
box-folder 1 folder: 131892
Handwritten childhood reminiscences of unidentified man (probably John J. Gresham)
box-folder 1 folder: 14n.d.
Bessie Johnston Gresham notes on Confederate memorabilia
box-folder 1 folder: 151897-1921, n.d.
Over Yonder: a novelette; translated from the German of E. Marlitt (by Bessie Johnston)
box-folder 1 folder: 16n.d.
General materials
box-folder 1 folder: 171842-1906, n.d.