William Weaver papers, 1809-1885
Navigate the Collection
- Weaver, William, 1780-1863
- William Weaver was the owner of the Bath Iron Works (Buffalo Forge, Va.), which made use of enslaved laborers. Collections includes correspondence and business papers documenting the iron industry in antebellum Virginia; the use of enslaved laborers, including lists of enslaved persons; life among laborers; the supply of iron to the Confederate government; the iron industry in the Confederacy; and industrial conditions in Virginia during Reconstruction. Personal correspondence discusses the progress of the Civil War in Virginia and Confederate politics.
- 4 Linear Feet
- Material in English
- Collection ID:
- Scope and content:
Collection contains business papers of William Weaver (1781-1863?), owner of the Bath Iron Works, dealing with the iron industry in Virginia, and containing information on types of items in demand; collection of debts; prices of iron, land, crops, and livestock.
Materials document the hiring and use of enslaved labors in the iron industry, including diet, clothing, wages, and prices of enslaved laborers. There are several lists of enslaved persons with brief physical descriptions and comments on their reliability as workers.
Personal correspondence discusses cholera in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, and Baltimore, Maryland, 1832; smallpox in Lexington, Virginia; typhoid in Texas, 1853; the activities and pension of a Revolutionary soldier; state and national politics, especially under Andrew Jackson; the completion of the canal from the mouth of the Brazos River to Galveston, Texas, 1853; the election of 1860; vigilance committees in Virginia; the use of substitutes; troop movements through Lynchburg and Richmond, Virginia; food prices; the death of Thomas Jonathan Jackson; and the iron industry during the war.
Letters, 1861-1863, from John Letcher (1813-1884), U. S. congressman, 1851-1859, and governor of Virginia during the Civil War, discuss his message to the Virginia General Assembly concerning state and Confederate affairs in 1861; rumors; the failure of the legislature to provide replacement troops; military actions at Gordonsville and Fredericksburg, Virginia; various Confederate and Union generals; the unlikelihood of European intervention; military activity in North Carolina; and public opinion in the North.
- Biographical / historical:
William Weaver was the owner of the Bath Iron Works (Buffalo Forge, Va.), which made use of enslaved laborers.
- Acquisition information:
- The William Weaver Papers were acquired by the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book Manuscript Library from 1956 to 1957. The collection originally formed part of the Don Preston Peters Collection.
- Processing information:
Processed by Rubenstein Library Staff
Encoded by Abraham Lee, January 2010; description updated by Noah Huffman in September 2021.
- Rules or conventions:
- Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Click on terms below to find related finding aids on this site. For other related materials in the Duke University Libraries, search for these terms in the Catalog.
- Iron industry and trade -- Virginia
Reconstruction (U.S. history, 1865-1877) -- Virginia
Iron and steel workers -- Virginia
Iron industry and trade -- Confederate States of America
Bath Iron Works (Buffalo Forge, Va.)
Industries -- Confederate States of America
Industries -- Virginia
Slavery -- Virginia
- Confederate States of America -- Politics and government
Virginia -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865
Using These Materials
- Using These Materials Links:
Using These Materials
Collection is open for research.
- Terms of access:
The copyright interests in this collection have not been transferred to Duke University. For more information, consult the copyright section of the Regulations and Procedures of the David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library.
- Before you visit:
- Please consult our up-to-date information for visitors page, as our services and guidelines periodically change.
- Preferred citation:
[Identification of item], William Weaver Papers, David M. Rubenstein Rare Book & Manuscript Library, Duke University