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Duke Family papers, 1885-1992 (bulk 1892-1927) 9 Linear Feet — approx. 3,000 Items

James Buchanan (J.B.) Duke (1856-1925) was known for his business acumen, especially in national and international tobacco industries and hydroelectric power. He was married twice, first to Lillian McCredy, who he divorced in 1906 and then Nanaline Holt Inman, who was his spouse from 1907 until his death in 1925. This collection primarily documents James B. Duke's business and personal activities. Materials include business and personal correspondence, invoices and receipts for both business and personal purchases, financial and legal reports, the last will and testaments of both James B. and Nanaline Duke, and materials documenting the divorce proceedings of J.B. and Lillian McCredy Duke. Miscellaneous records include a booklet tracing the Duke family geneaology.

The Duke Family Papers (formerly DKFM) are part of the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation Historical Archives which were donated to the Duke University. David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation. The collection spans the years 1885 to 1992, although the bulk of the material dates from the 1890s to the mid-1920s. The collection is arranged into six series: Correspondence, Financial Records, Legal Records, Miscellaneous Records, the Divorce Proceedings of James B. Duke and Lillian McCredy Duke, and Architectural Records. The collection primarily documents James B. Duke's business and personal activities. The correspondence is a combination of business and personal letters, with many of the personal letters related to his philanthropy, such as requests from individuals for financial aid and other forms of assistance or favors, such as making investments and employment. Financial records include invoices and receipts for his businesses such as the British American Tobacco Company and the Raritan Power Co., and purchases for his Fifth Avenue mansion in New York City, Duke Farms in New Jersey, and other personal belongings such as furniture, clothing, and jewelry. The collection also documents the administration of the Estate of James B. Duke, including legal proceedings stemming from claims made against the estate after the will of James B. Duke had been executed. A quarter of the collection focuses on the divorce of J.B. Duke and his first wife Lillian, including statements and affidavits of witnesses involved in the divorce proceedings.Miscellaneous records include a booklet tracing the Duke family geneaology and the Duke Name Project including incomplete names of Duke family members. The architectural records include one drawing for J.B. Duke's home in Charlotte, North Carolina. The remaining architectural records document the residence of Walker P. Inman. The materials in this collection are arranged loosely in chronological order.

Lillian McCredy Duke was the first wife of James B. Duke. The two were married in 1904 and divorced in 1906. The papers in this collection are related to the divorce proceedings. The materials in this collection contain correspondence, newspaper clippings, case exhibits, trial transcripts, and envelopes. The material ranges in date from 1904-1906.

The Duke Divorce records span the years 1904 to 1906. The two boxes contain correspondence and media regarding the divorce trial between Lillian and James B. Duke and appear to have been part of the evidence submitted at the divorce trial. The bulk of the correspondence is letters from Lillian to both James and her aunt G. E. Townes. There is one letter addressed to Lillian sent by her aunt. The rest of the material includes clippings, exhibits from the trial, trial transcripts, a detective report, and a bill of sale to Lillian's brother John A. Fletcher. The collection is grouped into the following series: Correspondence, Clippings, Court Case Related, Exhibits, and Publications.