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Collection Number: 03165

Collection Title: C. B. Mallett Papers, 1829-1954

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 section for more information.


Funding from the State Library of North Carolina supported the encoding of this finding aid.

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Size 1.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 750 items)
Abstract C. B. (Charles Beatty) Mallett (1816-1872), of Fayetteville, N.C., was a manufacturer, merchant, and the president of the Western North Carolina Railroad. With James Browne of Charleston, S.C., he formed the partnership Mallett and Browne. The Mallett family is descended from Peter Mallett (1744-1805). The collection consists primarily of business papers and family correspondence of C. B. Mallett. Included are antebellum correspondence, bills, and accounts related to a textile mill; letters, contracts, bills, accounts, and other records pertaining to the operation of coal mines in Chatham County, N.C., during the Civil War by Mallett and Browne and and of the partnership's supplying the Confederate War Department with coal, iron, nails, and other materials; a volume with accounts, 1845-1854, for cotton bales, cotton cloth, cotton sheeting, meal, and miscellaneous merchandise, a daybook of a kerosene oil works, 1864-1865, and a daybook of a river freight firm, 1867-1868; and miscellaneous records of Mallett and Browne, the Union Manufacturing Company, the Western North Carolina Railroad, and Saint John's Episcopal Church, Fayetteville, N.C. Also included are correspondence and other family papers, chiefly letters from the family of C. B. Mallett's father, Charles Peter Mallett, in North Carolina and in Balstrop, La., in the 1870s. Of particular interest are letters by Charles Peter Mallett in Chapel Hill, N.C., during the town's occupation by Union forces in the spring of 1865.
Creator Mallett, C. B. (Charles Beatty), 1816-1872.
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 C. B. Mallett Papers #3165, Southern Historical Collection, Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Alternate Form of Material
Typed copies of Charles Peter Mallett's letters concerning the Union occupation of Chapel Hill, N.C., in 1865 are available.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Mrs. C. Beatty Overman of Falls Church, Va., in September 1955, August 1969, and September 1976.
Additional Descriptive Resources
An old description (folder 44) gives genealogical information about the Mallett family and a detailed inventory of the collection's correspondence.
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

C. B. Mallett was born in Fayetteville, N.C., on 8 June 1816, the second child and eldest son of Charles Peter Mallett (1792-1873) and Sophia Sarah Beatty (1796-1829). Sometime in the 1830s, Mallett attended Kenyon College at Gambier, Ohio, where he majored in engineering and scientific subjects.

On 17 November 1841, Mallett married Margaret Winslow Wright, only child of John Winslow Wright (1791-1854) and Margaret Ann Anderson (1800-1823). The couple's children were John Wright (1842-1917), Charles Peter (1844-1900), William Anderson (1846-1847), Caroline Green (1848-1924), Margaret Anderson (1850-1907), Charles Beatty (1851-1902), Mercer Wright (1854-1875), and Alice Hazelton (1857-1955). Margaret died in August 1859, and Mallett married Marion Winslow, Margaret's relative, in February 1862.

C. B. Mallett very early associated himself with his father in cotton manufacturing, both at the Rockfish Manufacturing Company in Cumberland County, N.C., and at the Phoenix Company in Fayetteville. In 1848, Mallett organized the Union Manufacturing Company, another cotton factory. In 1852, a group of Fayetteville citizens obtained a charter from the State Legislature or organize and construct a railroad from Fayetteville to the coal fields in Chatham County, N.C. Mallett was one of the first subscribers to the capital stock of the Western North Carolina Railroad and was elected its second president in 1855, a position he held until 1868. Problems attending the contracts for construction delayed the project. It was not until 1858 that the first rails were laid, and it was not until the Civil War had begun that the railroad was completed. In the meantime, Mallett had acquired the major interest in the Union Manufacturing Company, controlling 75% of the capitol stock.

When North Carolina joined the Confederacy and the Civil War began, the Egypt coal mines, which were owned by a Philadelphia-based company, were placed in receivership by the Confederate government. In 1862, Mallett, in partnership with James Browne of Charleston, S.C., successfully bid for the management and operation of the mines and was under contract with the Confederate government throughout the war to deliver coal at Wilmington, N.C. The facilities of the Western Railroad were used to transport coal to Fayetteville from which the coal was moved by river steamer and flat boat down the Cape Fear River to Wilmington. One of the steamers, the Chatham, and several flat boats were built and owned by Mallett and Browne.

Mallett had general superintendence of the mining operation at Egypt, getting the coal to Fayetteville, and reloading the flat boats. Browne was the agent at Wilmington, seeing generally to unloading and return of vessels upstream and to weighing and delivery of coal to the agents of the Confederate government. The firm was allowed, on special orders of the Confederate government, to sell coal privately, negotiating its own prices with several Confederate states, various railroad companies, and blockade runners. In addition to the coal mining operation and using an iron-stone band which overlay the coal seam, the firm also engaged in the extraction of crude oil and the distillation of kerosene. In 1863, to supply a need for railroad car wheels, Mallett bought a half interest and became a partner with his first wife's cousin, David Anderson, in the Eagle Foundry located in Fayetteville. In 1864, Mallett again negotiated a partnership for the construction of another iron works at Buckhorn Falls on the Cape Fear River, which was called the Ocknock Iron Works.

In March 1865, General Sherman's army reached Fayetteville and razed Mallett's businesses. Not only were the cotton factory and stores of cotton, the two iron works, and the steamboat and flat boats all burned, Woodside, Mallett's home in the country several miles north of Fayetteville, was destroyed with all its furnishings and provisions. The Western North Carolina Railroad, with rolling stock badly depreciated and some of its bridges burned, was out of operation. In the years following the Civil War, the partnership of Mallett and Browne continued and an attempt was made to reestablish river trade on the Cape Fear River, but, in 1868, Mallett was forced into bankruptcy. Until his death on 7 July 1872, Mallett attempted to raise grapes and manufacture wine on his plantation property.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

The collection consists primarily of business papers and family correspondence of manufacturer, merchant, and railroad president C. B. Mallett of Fayetteville, N.C. The collection includes antebellum correspondence, bills, and accounts related to a textile mill; letters, contracts, bills, accounts, and other records pertaining to the operation of coal mines in Chatham County, N.C., during the Civil War by Mallett and partner, James Browne of Charleston, S.C., and their supplying the Confederate War Department with coal, iron, nails, and other materials; a volume with accounts, 1845-1854, for cotton bales, cotton cloth, cotton sheeting, meal, and miscellaneous merchandise, a daybook of a kerosene oil works, 1864-1865, and a daybook of a river freight firm, 1867-1868; and miscellaneous records of Mallett and Browne, the Union Manufacturing Company, the Western North Carolina Railroad, and Saint John's Episcopal Church, Fayetteville, N.C. Also included are correspondence and other family papers, chiefly letters from the family of C. B. Mallett's father, Charles Peter Mallett, in North Carolina and in Balstrop, La., in the 1870s. Of particular interest are letters by Charles Peter Mallett in Chapel Hill, N.C., during the town's occupation by Union forces in the spring of 1865. Other persons represented include Alexander Fridge Mallett, a physician in the Confederate Army and younger brother of C. B. Mallett; Carrie Mallett, older sister of C. B. Mallett; Charles Peter Mallett, Jr., son of C. B. Mallett; Edward Mallett, younger brother of C. B. Mallett; John Wright Mallett, son of C. B. Mallett; Margaret Winslow Wright Mallett, first wife of C. B. Mallett; Marion Winslow Mallett, second wife of C. B. Mallett; Peter Mallett, younger brother of C. B. Mallett; William Peter Mallett, Chapel Hill, N.C., physician and younger brother of C. B. Mallett; Maria L. Spear (1804-1881), Englishwoman who was a private teacher for C. B. Mallett's children; John Winslow Wright, father of C. B. Mallett's first wife; and William Henry Beatty, maternal grandfather of C. B. Mallett.

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Contents list

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series Quick Links

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 1. Correspondence, 1829-1954.

About 350 items.

Arrangement: alphabetical.

Folder 1-5

Folder 1

Folder 2

Folder 3

Folder 4

Folder 5

Mallett, C. B., 1845-1868 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 1-5

Digital version: Excerpts from the letter of Charles P. Mallett to Charles B. Mallett, 18 April 1865

Documenting the American South

Folder 6

Mallett, Alexander Fridge, 1847-1874 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 6

Folder 7

Mallett, Carrie, 1847-1874 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 7

Folder 8

Mallett, Charles Peter, Jr., 1861-1899 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 8

Folder 9-11

Folder 9

Folder 10

Folder 11

Mallett, Charles Peter, 1848-1884 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 9-11

Folder 12-13

Folder 12

Folder 13

Mallett, Edward, 1856-1872 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 12-13

Folder 14

Mallett, John Wright, 1861-1908 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 14

Folder 15

Mallett, Margaret Winslow Wright, 1840-1861 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 15

Folder 16

Mallett, Marion Winslow, 1863-1872 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 16

Folder 17

Mallett, Peter, 1858-1885 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 17

Folder 18

Mallett, Dr. William Peter, 1851-1874 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 18

Folder 19-20

Folder 19

Folder 20

Spear, Maria L., 1866-1879, 1954 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 19-20

Folder 21

Wright, John Winslow, 1829-1856 #03165, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1829-1954." Folder 21

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871.

About 350 items.

Arrangement: by subject.

Letters, wills, contracts, bills, receipts, and accounts concerning estate management, business interests, and personal business of C. B. Mallett. Mallett was the co-executor of the estates of his father-in-law, Edward L. Winslow, and his grandfather, William Henry Beatty. Mallett's business interests included the Mallett and Brown coal manufacturing operation, the Union Manufacturing Company's cotton business, and the operation of the Western North Carolina Railroad.

Folder 22

Winslow estate, 1857-1866 #03165, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871." Folder 22

Folder 23-25

Folder 23

Folder 24

Folder 25

Beatty estate, 1848-1864 #03165, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871." Folder 23-25

Folder 26

Mallett and Brown, 1861-1868 #03165, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871." Folder 26

Folder 27-29

Folder 27

Folder 28

Folder 29

Union Manufacturing Company, 1856-1871 #03165, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871." Folder 27-29

Folder 30-32

Folder 30

Folder 31

Folder 32

Bills and receipts, 1853-1871 #03165, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871." Folder 30-32

Folder 33-35

Folder 33

Folder 34

Folder 35

Accounts, 1854-1870 #03165, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871." Folder 33-35

Oversize Volume SV-3165/1

Volume including accounts, 1845-1854, for cotton bales, cotton cloth, cotton sheeting, meal, and miscellaneous merchandise, a daybook of a kerosene oil works, 1864-1865, and a daybook of a river freight firm, 1867-1868 #03165, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871." SV-3165/1

Folder 36-37

Folder 36

Folder 37

Western Railroad, 1848-1871 #03165, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871." Folder 36-37

Folder 38-39

Folder 38

Folder 39

Tax, medical, and school bills, 1856-1870 #03165, Series: "2. Financial and Legal Materials, 1848-1871." Folder 38-39

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 3. Other Papers, 1860-1866, 1954.

About 50 items.

Arrangement: by subject.

Handwritten history, program, and newspaper clippings relating to Saint John's Episcopal Church located in Fayetteville, N.C.; miscellaneous papers, including a railroad ledger and documents concerning reimbursement of Confederate soldiers for travel expenses; clippings from Richmond, Va., Wilmington, N.C. and Fayetteville, N.C., newspapers; old collection description.

Folder 40

Saint John's Episcopal Church, 1860, 1917, 1954 #03165, Series: "3. Other Papers, 1860-1866, 1954." Folder 40

Folder 41

Miscellaneous papers, 1864-1865 #03165, Series: "3. Other Papers, 1860-1866, 1954." Folder 41

Folder 42-43

Folder 42

Folder 43

Newspaper clippings, 1865-1866 #03165, Series: "3. Other Papers, 1860-1866, 1954." Folder 42-43

Folder 44

Old description #03165, Series: "3. Other Papers, 1860-1866, 1954." Folder 44

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Processing Information

Processed by: Library Staff, January 1992

Encoded by: Peter Hymas, March 2005

Funding from the State Library of North Carolina supported the encoding of this finding aid.

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