Manuscripts: Dabney - Durgin
Dabney, Mrs. Charity, papers, 1873–1898. 24 items. Mss2D1123b.
Most of these papers are tax receipts of Charity Dabney, an African American property owner of Jackson Ward in Richmond.
Dabney, Charles (1744–1829), commonplace book, 1811–1825. 150 pp. Mss5:5D1124.1. Photocopy.
The contents of this volume are nearly illegible because of the fragile condition of the original. Scattered entries refer to spinning
cloth; the amount of cloth needed to make jackets, pantaloons, petticoats, shifts, dresses, and shirts; charges for having clothing
made in bulk; and clothing distributions. Some lists of slaves also appear.
Dabney family papers, 1742–1928. 4,012 items. Mss1D1124b. Microfilm reels C328–332.
The items of African American focus in this collection relate to Charles William Dabney, a lawyer and planter of Aldingham
plantation in Hanover County. Most of the items concern estates administered or settled by Dabney.
Jesse Mallory executed an 1822 deed to Charles Dabney for Candis, a slave girl (section 16). A deed of trust, 1833, of
Henry King and Abner Robinson to Charles Dabney involves land in Richmond and the slave George. An 1855 deed records
the sale of Edith and her two children, John and Charlotte, from W. C. Shelton to George Doswell for $700 (section 64).
An 1867 agreement with John Tyler, a freedman, his wife Winney and her son Moses concerns work and provisions for the
family (section 65). In the same section, an 1850 agreement between Dabney, Shelton, and Puryear provides values for six
slaves, while a detailed 1866 agreement covers the hiring of John Wyatt, a freedman, to farm at Aldingham in Hanover County.
A number of activities are concerned, such as fencing and care of the ice house, tools, fuel, livestock, and buildings. In section
67 is an estate inventory of Samuel R. Jones, naming sixteen slaves and their values and indicating two family groups. In section
68 are several notes for hire of slaves by J. Thacker. In particular, an 1828 bond to Barbara Pettus promises payment for
the hire of Sary, in addition to midwife's fees for her. An 1859 broadside announcing the sale of property belonging to the
estate of Mrs. Nancy Rountree mentions land, livestock, and "2 men slaves," one being Edmond, a miller, and the other
Shadrack, a blacksmith.
Daily Danville News, Danville, "Public (Colored) Schools: A Visit to the Colored School Monday—How it is Progressing," 1877. 1 p. Mss9:3LC2771D237:1. Photocopy.
Article appeared in the 20 November 1877 issue of the Daily Danville News concerning a visit to the school conducted by Alfred H. Jones under the auspices of the Friends' Freedmen's Association of Philadelphia, Pa.
Dame family papers, 1836–1901. 436 items. Mss1D1825a. Microfilm reels C454–455.
Papers of George Washington Dame (1812–1895), an Episcopal minister affiliated with Danville Female Academy, and his
wife, Mary Maria (Page) Dame (1813–1895). Section 3 includes newsy letters written to Mrs. Dame from her children while
at school. Notable items are a letter, 28 August 1851, from Jonathan Cushing Dame describing the escape of the fugitive slave
James by ferry and another letter, 14 August, of William M. Dame, reporting an incident involving a free African American who
shot the owner of his wife and child.
Damerel, John E. (1905–1995), compiler, "Pressures and Reactions: Documents Relating to the Employment of
Negroes by the City of Richmond, 1952–1966." 493 pp. Mss7:2R4155:40.
John Damerel served as director of personnel for the City of Richmond during the 1950s and 1960s. Included in this compilation
are memoranda, correspondence, city employee registers, and newspaper clippings concerning the attempts of various parties to
effect change in policies regarding the hiring of African Americans by the City of Richmond. A 29 May 1952 listing showed 807
African Americans employed by the city, primarily as cooks, assistant cooks, kitchen helpers, maids, and janitors. The compilation
also contains documents pertaining to the hiring of African Americans as fire fighters and police patrolmen. There is significant
correspondence on reaction to the city's pledge to employ fairly all qualified persons, which was enacted in June 1962. A complete
listing of all persons employed by the city in 1963 is also contained in the compilation. Correspondents include Roy West
(a future mayor of Richmond), Horace H. Edwards, Richmond city manager, and numerous organizations, including the
Richmond Urban League, Virginia Union University, Ebenezer Baptist Church, and the Right Worthy Grand Council
of the Independent Order of St. Luke.
Dandridge, Julia Burbidge (1770?–1828), letter, 1796. 1 p. Mss2 D19978a1.
Letter, 8 April 1796, Richmond, to William Branch Giles, Philadelphia, concerning Amos, Giles's slave currently hired to
Major Watts. Watts wants to buy Amos; Amos does not want to be sold to Watts.
Daniel, Robert Williams (b. 1936), collector, papers, 1776–1882. 26 items. Mss1D2266a.
Collector of early Virginia manuscripts. Included in section 8 is a receipt, 1827, issued to Samuel Hawkins of Richmond
by Mrs. Eliza Dandridge for purchase of the man Emanuel, age fifty, and a girl Beck, age two.
Daniel, William V., papers, 1977–1984. 92 items. Mss1D2270a.
The papers of William V. Daniel of Richmond in part concern his involvement with the Citizen's Legislative Committee (CLC),
1982–1984 (4 folders). The Richmond City Council created the CLC in September 1981 upon the recommendation of the
Capital City Government Commission to help advance the city's agenda before the Virginia General Assembly. The collection
also reflects Daniels leadership with the Metropolitan Richmond Chamber of Commerce's "Dialogues on Racial Relations,"
1977–1982 (3 folders). The Chamber of Commerce sponsored a series of dialogues in 1981 between African American and
white civic, religious, and business leaders. These dialogues were prompted by the report of the Richmond Commission on
Human Relations on "Racial Polarization in the City of Richmond" in March 1981. A copy of this report is included. The
Chamber wanted to find a role for itself in "promoting better understanding among Whites and Blacks as we live and work
together under White economic power and Black political control." These dialogues served as the first steps in this endeavor.
Daniel served as moderator for these sessions and summarized the proceedings in memos to the executive committee of the
Chamber of Commerce. These memos and supporting materials comprise this portion of the collection. Other than discussing
the troubled state of race relations in general, participants specifically addressed the issues of education, the local press, city
council, and jobs. Also included is a report by J. John Palen and Richard D. Morrison, both of Virginia Commonwealth
University, on the representation of African Americans and women in positions with policy-making potential. This report
is dated spring 1982, after Daniel and John Howlette made their final report to the executive committee.
Daniels, Edward (1828–1916), diary, 1888.  pp. Mss5:1D2283:1.
Daniels, a native of New York, former Wisconsin state geologist, and veteran of the 1st Wisconsin Cavalry Regiment, became a newspaper editor in Washington, D.C., after the Civil War and purchased Gunston Hall, the plantation home of George Mason and his descendants in Fairfax County. He restored the house, got the plantation operating again, and owned the estate until about 1891. His diary, kept between 1 January and 6 December 1888, records his various activities, including his involvement with the Republican Party and an address he made to African American delegates to a party convention in June at which he urged support for racial intermarriage.
Darby, Thomas F., letters, 1861–1863. 17 items. Mss2D2425a.
A series of letters written by a Union soldier of the 29th Massachusetts Infantry Regiment while serving in Kentucky, Mississippi,
and Virginia. The letters contain many details of army life and various battles and Darby's impressions of the South,
including samples of seed and flora for those at home with a horticultural interest. In his descriptions of the South are
several references to slaves, mostly playing with the children, to his desire to send one back to tend the garden (July 1861
letter to his niece, January 1862 letter to Ellen), and to a comparison of slave cabins (July 1861 letter to his niece).
Dashiell, Mrs. Segar, "Isham Jordan." 13 pp. Mss7:1J7635:1.
Concerns the life of Isham Jordan (1769–1837) of Isle of Wight County. Included is a copy of Jordans will, dated 19
July 1834, which lists slaves left to his wife.
Davidson, Charles E. (d. 1870), papers, 1850–1870. 21 items. Mss2D2815b.
Papers of a Confederate Army surgeon. Section 3 contains a commission, 2 November 1865, of Davidson as an agent
of the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands in Buckingham County.
Davis, Daniel Webster (1862–1913), papers, 1900–1959. 52 items. Mss1D2915a.
These papers contain notes for speeches and lectures of this prominent African American educator from Richmond. Geographically
his appearances ranged from Toronto, Canada, to Georgia and Kentucky. As a minister and educator, most of his lectures focused
on family, religion, and education as the answer to the problem of racial inequities. Davis's lectures were humorous and anecdotal;
he frequently drew on customs and practices of the daily life of slaves.
In a series of lectures given at the Hampton Normal Institute (now Hampton University) in 1902 (section 2), he laid a foundation
for a plan to improve the life of African Americans through the home, church, and school. He stressed the need to be proud of
African American culture and the unnecessary practice of imitating white culture. He reminded his audience of African American
history and accomplishments.
In addition to lectures, Davis also wrote poetry (section 4). Drafts of published and unpublished poems are also included in
this collection. Among them are "The Negro Meets to Pray" and "The Black Woman's Burden." The typescript of "Daniel
Webster Davis," a biographical sketch of his life (section 8), is also available in published form in The Negro History Bulletin
18 (1954): 5557. In 1959 Richmond dedicated a new school to the memory of Daniel Webster Davis. Several of the programs
and letters in sections 7 and 9 pertain to this event.
Davis, Daniel Webster, papers, 1970–1973. 32 items. Mss2D29145b.
This collection consists chiefly of correspondence between Joan R. Sherman and Lottie (Davis) Harrison generated while Sherman conducted research for her doctoral dissertation on Lottie’s father, African American minister, educator, and poet D. Webster Davis. Also, includes several of Davis's unpublished poems and copies of some of his best-known lectures.
Davis, Sallie Ann Lucy Smith (1827–1900), account book, 1852–1858.  pp. Mss5:3D2975:1.
A ledger kept at Vernon Mills in Fauquier County prior to and just after her marriage by Sallie (Smith) Davis, this volume contains, among other records, accounts concerning the services of blacksmiths and teamsters and the sale and hiring out of African American slaves. Also, includes notes that may indicate the gift of slaves by Davis to her daughters in 1850.
Dawson, John (1762–1814), letters, 1788–1794. 3 items. Mss2D3253b.
Letter, n.d., of John Dawson to Larkin Stanard of Fredericksburg requests Stanard to send two slaves, Sal and Sam, to
Augusta County with Abraham Lymon, who is taking other slaves to Augusta to be sold.
Deans family papers, 1794–1863 and 1955. 30 items. Mss1D3464a.
Concerns the Deans family of Gloucester County. Section 1 contains an essay entitled "A Disregarded Contribution to American
Civilization Taken from Plantation Notes of the Deans Family of Gloucester County, Va.," by Anna Maria Dandridge Yeatman.
This essay concerns, in part, slave life and relations between African Americans and whites on the Deans' family plantation.
Deneale, George (1776–1818), papers, 1792–1842. 319 items. Mss1D4116a.
Papers of an Alexandria lawyer and clerk of the Fairfax County court. Include correspondence, 1805, of Deneale, Richard
Bland Lee, Nathaniel Pendleton, and Thomas Pollard concerning the sale of slaves at Langley, Fairfax County, belonging to
Daniel McCarty Fitzhugh and Henry Lee (1756–1818); bonds issued to Thomas Pollard to cover losses in the sale of the
slaves; and an agreement concerning the sale of fifteen slaves in the state of New York and the settlement of a debt
between Henry Lee and Philip Fitzhugh (section 40).
Deupree, William (1759–1854), papers, 1818–1857. 90 items. Mss1D4885a.
Primarily correspondence of this merchant and tavern owner in Charlotte County with family members who moved south and west from Virginia. Many of their letters back contain news of slave families taken with them when they migrated (section 1). Among the letters is one from W. Crutcher concerning an 1835 slave insurrection scare in Mississippi, resulting in the hanging of five white men and a number of African Americans.
Dews, Julius C., letter, 1855. 1 p. Mss2D5191a1. Photocopy.
Letter, 16 August 1855, Wheeling (now W.Va.), to Arthur Emmerson, concerning the status of an unnamed slave woman
entrusted to Mr. Cooper for sale.
Dickerson, Nathan D., diary, 1846–1899. 1 vol. Mss5:1D5585:1. Photocopy of a typescript.
Nathan D. Dickerson kept this diary while he worked an overseer at various plantations in Charlotte, Halifax, and Mecklenburg counties. Early entries are chiefly lists of hogs killed, tobacco cut, and wheat and fodder sold. There is an occasional mention of the births of children to female slaves. Also, includes yearly tallies of the number of cattle, hogs, horses, and sheep on the plantations. Typical entries are monthly summaries of weather events and agricultural tasks (fields cleared, planted, weeded, and harvested). December entries often indicate Dickerson's move from one plantation to another as his employer changed. Persons for whom Dickerson worked include E. J. Dickerson (of Charlotte County), [J. W.] Elliott (of Charlotte County), Thomas E. Palmer (of Charlotte County), John B. McPhail (of Halifax County), William A. Smith (of Charlotte County), and Dr. George C. Venable (of Mecklenburg County).
Dickinson, Asa Dupuy (1816–1882), letter, 1859. 4 pp. Mss2D5606a1.
Letter, 21 October 1859, Prince Edward Court House, to William Purnell Dickinson about selling the slave Jim, whose
behavior with regard to suspected thievery has become an embarrassment to Asa Dickinson.
Dickinson family papers, 1805–1988. 339 items. Mss1D5607a.
A Plantation & Farm Instruction, Regulation, Record, Inventory and Account Book (Richmond, 1852) kept by John Fayette
Dickinson (section 2) for Berry Hill in King George County, 1855–1890, lists slaves' names, ages, occupations, and values,
and notes births, deaths, and sales (pages 8283). Also includes lists of clothing and bedding distribution (pages 9091).
Dickinson, Hill & Co., Richmond, receipts, 1856.  pp. Mss4D5605a1.
Receipts, dated 4 January 1856, issued to Dickinson, Hill & Co. for monies received from the sale of slaves. The receipts
bear the signatures of John M. Albright (for the sale of slaves Agnes and Edmund), F. S. Ayres (for the sale of the slave Aaron),
Lewis Dabney Crenshaw (for the sale of the slave Washington), H. I. McLewin (for the sale of the slaves Peter, Ailsey, and
Alleck), and William M. Sutton.
Dobyns, Thomas (d. 1845), register, [1795–1864].  pp. Mss2D6565a1. Photocopy.
This item records the births and some deaths of male and female slaves at Indian Fields in Richmond County, as well as providing references to slaves who were sold and to those who escaped to the Union Army during the Civil War. Some of the slaves listed were owned by Dobyns's son-in-law Reuben Lindsay Pitts after the older man's death. Original in private hands as of March 2006.
Doherty, James Louis (b. 1932), papers, 1969–1972. 155 items. Mss1D6805a.
This entire collection contains materials pertaining to the desegregation of schools in Richmond and the publication of Doherty's book Race and Education in Richmond (1972). Materials include correspondence of Doherty as chairman of West End Concerned Parents and Friends with local educators, community leaders and fellow citizens (section 1), a manuscript of the Doherty book, essays and reports concerning desegregation in Richmond schools (series 2), and some general letters about desegregation written by or to people such as Thomas J. Bliley, Harry F. Byrd, Jr., Clement F. Haynesworth, and Richard D. Obenshain (section 3).
Donaldson, John N., letter, 1863. 1 p. Mss2D7145a1.
This letter, written on 6 January 1863 from Fort Keyes on Gloucester Point to "brother Andrew," concerns Donaldson's service with the 169th Pennsylvania Infantry Regiment of the U.S. Army of Virginia and describes contraband African American slaves coming across Union lines.
Doswell family papers, 1815–1998. 345 items. Mss1D7424b.
Primarily concerns the family of Thomas Doswell (1792–1870) and his son Thomas Walker Doswell (1823–1890) of Bullfield plantation in Hanover County, renowned for its horse-breeding and horseracing history. A number of the Bullfield jockeys, referenced throughout the collection, were African American. Materials concerning the plantations at Bullfield and at New Market, also in Hanover County, include photographs of Emily Goodwin, an African American woman who was a cook for the family (section 16). The brief diary of Frances Anne (Sutton) Doswell (1837–1903), wife of Thomas W. Doswell, was kept during April 1865 and concerns the evacuation of Richmond and the ensuing fire, as well as the first arrival of African American troops in the city. She also comments on the behavior of newly freed slaves and the Union Army's efforts to restore order, in part by impressing freedmen to help with the clean up of the city (section 9).
Douthat, Robert William (1840–1925), papers, 1861–1995. 113 items. Mss1D7493a.
Materials compiled by Robert William Douthat, Confederate veteran of Morgantown, W.Va. Collection largely concerns
the battle of Gettysburg, Pa., and the charge of troops under command of General George E. Pickett. Section 4 contains
notes of Mary Jane (Wells) Douthat concerning a slave.
Douthat, William H. (1801–1858), account book, 1827–1835. , 71 pp. Mss5:3D7495:1.
Covers operations of a general store at Natural Bridge, Rockbridge County. Includes remarks of an unidentified author
concerning African Americans (p. 63).
Douthat family papers, 1795–1922. 1,432 items. Mss1D7495a. Microfilm reels C240–242.
Family members lived at Shirley and Weyanoke plantations in Charles City County. Section 4 includes an 1801 receipt
of William S. Peachy to Fielding Lewis for purchase of Milly and her son Richard; an 1826 certificate stating the wishes
of Rebecca Jones for John Lewis to have the slave Monmouth and for Aleck to be freed to be with his family and be
supported; and an 1833 list of thirty slaves at Belle Farm.
Dove, John (1792–1876), memorandum, 1856. 2 pp. Mss7:1W9974:3.
Memorandum concerning the deaths of George Wythe, an African American woman, Lydia Broadnax, and her son, Michael Brown.
Downing family papers, 1819–1940. 41 items. Mss1D7595a.
Papers of the Downing family of Lancaster Court House. Section 1 includes a report, dated 18 December 1830, of Robert
Alexander, J. Basye, and Thomas S. Sydnor concerning the division of slaves among Betsy Downing, Hannah Downing, and
William Hendley. The two slaves in question were to be purchased from Hannah Downing by Betsy Downing and her husband,
Downman, Rawleigh William (1762–1838), account book, 1814–1836. 180 leaves. Mss5:3D7596:1.
Kept by Downman as a planter and merchant at Belle Isle in Lancaster County, the ledger records, in part, services provided by blacksmiths, spinners and weavers, and midwives. It also includes references to the hiring out and sale of African American slaves.
Downman family papers, 1699–1909. 102 items. Mss1D7598a.
A series of letters written to Harriet Jane (Downman) Downman of Fauquier County includes a December 1863 letter from
her daughter, Lavinia Yates (Downman) Hamilton of Culpeper County, asking Harriet to send for Stanley and to provide
him with clothes and to hire out Mason as she cannot see to this herself because her residence is currently under Union control.
Dundore, John (d. 1863?), papers, 1791–1861. 10 items. Mss2D9163c.
Resident of Rockingham County. Include a certificate of emancipation, 1827, for Peggy Jones, age thirty-four, with
physical description, freed by will of Elizabeth Baker. Papers also include a deed of trust, 1827, of Armistead M.
Mosby to Jacob Swoop, for land in Staunton and seven slaves, most listed by name, including two brothers.
Dupuy, Emily (Howe) (1812–1883), papers, 1834–1883. 115 items. Mss1D9295b.
Emily Dupuy of Linden, Prince Edward County, wrote several letters to her kinswomen Sarah Howe and Anna (Howe)
Whitteker (section 1). In particular, on 4 January 1835, Anna wrote to Emily of cholera striking Stony Point, resulting in four
fatal cases among the local African American population. In May of the same year she described the emigration of a number
of Virginia landowners to plantations farther south and the process of moving their slaves with them, often involving large
numbers of people. In the same letter she detailed the development of her friendship with a slave woman and the
woman's change of roles from house servant to field hand to spinning, until her death while still young. In August
Emily wrote to Sarah about southerners' distrust of strangers from the North and concerns about abolitionists. In
February 1861 Emily wrote about secession from the perspective of a transplanted New Englander.
Dupuy, Emily (Howe) (1812–1883), letter, 1864. 2 pp. Mss2D9296a1.
In this letter of 19 May, Emily describes an incident of meat stolen from the smokehouse; two slaves were caught. One
of Emily's slaves was whipped by the owner of another slave, who maintained that Emily's slave was involved. Emily
is nonetheless convinced of her slave's innocence.
Dupuy family papers, 1781–1896. 38 items. Mss1D9295c.
The collection includes commonplace books kept by Joseph Dupuy (1797–1867) at Falkland, Prince Edward
County (sections 3–5). The volume for 1851–1869 (section 3) contains entries in 1856 and 1857 covering the hire
of Mary Eliza. Another volume (section 4), 1810–1865, serves as a slave register, recording births, deaths, and purchases
for about sixty-five slaves at Falkland. The 1845–1858 book (section 5) contains notes on the back pages concerning
allowances for meal and meat for the slaves, according to sex and age. Twenty slaves are listed.
Dupuy family papers, 1803–1890. 906 items. Mss1D9295a.
Include material pertaining to the Prince Edward County estates of Thomas Walton (d. 1817), John Purnall (d. 1825),
John Watson (d. 1856), William Purnell (d. 1808), and Jonathan Penick (d. 1845?). A sampling of sections 1–7 indicates
that the collection includes a number of accounts for slave hirings and inventories of estate slaves with values (sections 3, 5, and 7).
Correspondence, 1827–1830, of Asa Dupuy with John Jones Alston concerns transportation costs and hirings. Section 7
contains account information pertaining to Thomas Walton's estate. The 1817 tax form lists "Blacks" instead of slaves
(see folder 2), and an 1820 certificate of Nathaniel Jackson describes the low bidding for hiring the estate slaves
(see folder 6). Costs of transporting slaves from Kentucky are also included. Section 21 contains slave lists for Linden
in Prince Edward County. A slave register records approximately 140 slave births and deaths between 1799 and 1861.
The preceding description offers but a sampling of pertinent items in this collection.
Durgin family papers, 1849–1950. 40 items. Mss1D9345a.
Most of the papers in this collection are those of John Milton Durgin (1813–1887), a Baptist minister from New England and
chaplain in the Union army. Among his letters, 1861–1862, is an envelope used to write home on which a cartoon portrays
slaves fleeing as contraband to Fort Monroe.
Updated June 4, 2009
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