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Collection Number: 04604

Collection Title: Galyean and Munchus Family Papers, 1793-1890s

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Wilson Library at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the World Wide Web. See the FAQ section for more information.


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Size 0.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 140 items)
Abstract The Galyean and Munchus families of Surry County, N.C., including James Munchus (d. circa 1850), and James C. Galyean (d. circa 1890). There are also a few items relating to James's wife Elizabeth; to Samuel Galyean, who appears to have been James's father, 1840s; and to Ephriam Galyean, who may have been James and Elizabeth's son, 1880s. Family letters, financial and legal materials, and other papers relating to the Munchus and Galyean families. Letters are mostly from relatives, who were either travelling on business or settled in Alabama or Georgia. Letters show relatives selling brandy in Georgia in 1842. Two letters, 1855 and 1860, urge James Munchus to move west. The 1860 letter also mentions humorist and local color writer Hardin E. Taliaferro, who left Surry County for Tennessee and Alabama in the late 1850s. Also in the 1860s, there is an unsigned note that laments the writer's having lost his slaves and investments during the Civil War and bad luck working with freedmen after the war. An undated letter, probably from the 1870s, is from a homesick acquaintance of James C. Galyean in Winston, N.C., to Galyean, complaining about her loneliness in town. The greater portion of the collection consists of indentures, bills, receipts, plats, summonses, and other financial and legal materials relating to both families. In 1844 and 1847, there are deeds conveying land from the Munchuses to the Galyeans; these are the only materials linking the two families. Also included are four small notebooks, two of which contain extensive printed discussions of the efficacy of various patent medicines.
Creator Galyean family.



Munchus family.
Language English
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Restrictions to Access
No restrictions. Open for research.
Copyright Notice
Copyright is retained by the authors of items in these papers, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.
Preferred Citation
[Identification of item], in the Galyean and Munchus Family Papers #4604, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Dennis Bowlin of Dobson, N.C., in January 1992.
Sensitive Materials Statement
Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations, the North Carolina Public Records Act (N.C.G.S. § 132 1 et seq.), and Article 7 of the North Carolina State Personnel Act (Privacy of State Employee Personnel Records, N.C.G.S. § 126-22 et seq.). Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual's private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill assumes no responsibility.
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The following terms from Library of Congress Subject Headings suggest topics, persons, geography, etc. interspersed through the entire collection; the terms do not usually represent discrete and easily identifiable portions of the collection--such as folders or items.

Clicking on a subject heading below will take you into the University Library's online catalog.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Biographical Information

The Galyean and Munchus families appear to have lived in the Haystack section of Surry County, N.C., in what is now called Stewarts Creek, an area bordered by the towns of Franklin, Mount Airy, and Dobson.

Not much information can be gleaned about either family from the materials in this collection. It appears that both were farming families, involved in buying and selling land; planting and harvesting crops, chiefly cotton and corn; and routine activities, like raising children, supervising the work of slaves, paying taxes, and suing and being sued by their neighbors. It also appears that both families were involved in making brandy, which they sold or used in payment of debts.

Most of the Munchus family material involves James Munchus (also spelled Munkus, Munker, Muncus, Munkess) and dates from the 1810s through the 1840s; there is no Munchus family material after 1850. Most of the Galyean family material relates to James C. Galyean (also spelled Gallyean, Galion, Galyen) and begins around 1841. There are also a few items relating to James's wife Elizabeth; in the 1840s, to Samuel Galyean, who appears to have been James's father; and, in the 1880s, to Ephriam Galyean, who may have been James and Elizabeth's son.

The collection contains a few family letters, most of which were from Munchus or Galyean family relatives, who were either travelling on business or settled in Alabama or Georgia. There are two letters, 1855 and 1860, from J. K. Munchus in Alabama to James Munchus in which James was urged to move west and to remember the importance of educating his children. The 1860 letter also mentions humorist and local color writer Hardin E. Taliaferro, who left Surry County for Tennessee and Alabama in the late 1850s. Also in the 1860s, there is an unsigned note that laments the writer's having lost his slaves and investments during the Civil War. An undated letter, probably from the 1870s, is from a homesick Mary Teague in Winston, N.C., to Galyean, complaining about her loneliness in town, but saying that her companions, who seem also to be from Surry County, were unalterably opposed to returning home.

The greater portion of the collection consists of indentures, bills, receipts, plats, summonses, and other financial and legal materials relating to both families. In 1844 and 1847, there are deeds conveying land from the Munchuses to the Galyeans. These are the only materials in the collection that link the two families. Also included are a recipe for horse liniment, two advertisements, and four small notebooks, two of which contain extensive printed discussions of the efficacy of various patent medicines.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

Family letters, financial and legal materials, and other papers relating to the Munchus and Galyean families. Letters are mostly from relatives, who were either travelling on business or settled in Alabama or Georgia. Letters show relatives selling brandy in Georgia in 1842. Two letters, 1855 and 1860, urge James Munchus to move west. The 1860 letter also mentions humorist and local color writer Hardin E. Taliaferro, who left Surry County for Tennessee and Alabama in the late 1850s. Also in the 1860s, there is an unsigned note that laments the writer's having lost his slaves and investments during the Civil War and bad luck working with freedmen after the war. An undated letter, probably from the 1870s, is from a homesick acquaintance of James C. Galyean in Winston, N.C., to Galyean, complaining about her loneliness in town. The greater portion of the collection consists of indentures, bills, receipts, plats, summonses, and other financial and legal materials relating to both families. In 1844 and 1847, there are deeds conveying land from the Munchuses to the Galyeans; these are the only materials linking the two families. Also included are four small notebooks, two of which contain extensive printed discussions of the efficacy of various patent medicines.

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Contents list

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series Quick Links

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 1. Correspondence, 1842-1880 and undated.

12 items.

Chiefly family letters, most of which are from Munchus or Galyean family relatives, who were either travelling on business or settled in Alabama or Georgia.

On 25 November 1842, J. K. Munchus wrote from Columbus, Ga., where he was having good luck selling brandy. In a 12 December 1842 letter from Henry Lawless in the Anderson District, S.C., to his cousin James Munchus, Lawless inquired about the feasibility of selling cotton yarn in Surry County. There are two letters, 1855 and 1860, from J. K. Munchus, who had apparently settled in Russell City, Ala., to James Munchus in which James was urged to move west and to remember the importance of educating his children. The 1860 letter also mentions humorist and local color writer Hardin E. Taliaferro, who left Surry County for Tennessee and Alabama in the late 1850s. Also in the 1860s, there is an unsigned note that laments the writer's having lost his slaves and investments during the Civil War. An undated letter, probably from the 1870s, is from a homesick Mary Teague in Winston, N.C., to Galyean, complaining about her loneliness in town, but saying that her companions, who seem also to be from Surry County, were unalterably opposed to returning home.

Folder 1

Correspondence, 1842-1880 and undated #04604, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1842-1880 and undated." Folder 1

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 2. Financial and Legal Papers, 1793-1890s and undated.

About 120 items.

Arrangement: roughly sorted by decade.

Chiefly indentures, bills, receipts, plats, summonses, and other financial and legal materials relating to both families.

In 1844 and 1847, there are deeds conveying land from the Munchuses to the Galyeans. These are the only materials in the collection that link the two families. A 17 September 1852 receipt shows that James Galyean paid off a debt in brandy. There is a document, dated 28 October 1887, by which James Galyean, who was "...becoming feeble ... in consequence of old age and ... desirous of providing ... support and maintenance for himself and wife Elizabeth," deeded land and other property to Albert Hodges in exchange for caretaking. James Galyean apparently died in the early 1890s; there are two summonses, both dated 1892, calling Elizabeth Galyean and three members of the Hodges family to appear in court regarding a suit brought by G. S. Atkins on behalf of James Galyean's estate.

Folder 2

1793-1839 #04604, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Papers, 1793-1890s and undated." Folder 2

Folder 3

1840s #04604, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Papers, 1793-1890s and undated." Folder 3

Folder 4

1850s #04604, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Papers, 1793-1890s and undated." Folder 4

Folder 5

1860s #04604, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Papers, 1793-1890s and undated." Folder 5

Folder 6

1870s #04604, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Papers, 1793-1890s and undated." Folder 6

Folder 7

1880s #04604, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Papers, 1793-1890s and undated." Folder 7

Folder 8

1890s and undated #04604, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Papers, 1793-1890s and undated." Folder 8

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 3. Other Papers.

7 items.

An undated recipe for horse liniment; an undated handbill for R. R. Crawford's Hardware Store in Winston, N.C.; an undated deposit envelope with advertising for the First National Bank of Mount Airy, N.C.; and four small notebooks that seem to have belonged to James C. Galyean. The notebooks, probably from the 1850s through the 1880s, contain few entries, most of which are indecipherable. Two of the notebooks, however, contain extensive printed discussions of the efficacy of various patent medicines.

Folder 9

Other papers #04604, Series: "3. Other Papers." Folder 9

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Processing Information

Processed by: Roslyn Holdzkom, February 1992

Encoded by: ByteManagers Inc., 2008

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