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Collection Number: 00948

Collection Title: John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872.

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.


This collection was processed with support from the sponsorship of a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Office of Preservation, Washington, D.C., 1990-1993.

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Size 1.0 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 663 items)
Abstract John Rutledge (1766-1819) of South Carolina was the son of Governor John Rutledge (1739-1800). He studied in Charleston and Philadelphia and traveled in Europe in 1787 through early 1790. His wife was Sarah Motte Smith. He practiced law in Charleston, was a planter in the Savannah River area, served in the South Carolina legislature, was a member of the United States House of Representatives, 1797-1803, and was an officer in the South Carolina militia. The major portion of the papers consists of letters written to Rutledge and is most detailed for his years in Europe and his period of political activity. There are letters in the earlier period from friends in England and Europe and from prominent persons he met while there. There are a few letters from his brothers in Charleston, but none from his father. Later letters deal primarily with politics and the Federal Party and are from political leaders and government officials. There are also a number of letters from Rutledge to his father-in-law, Bishop Robert Smith, written during the period 1797-1803. Rutledge and his wife were separated in 1804 and there is some discussion of divorce law about this time. After 1808 there is little political material and the papers deal largely with business and plantation affairs. Later items include scattered business papers of Hugh Rose, a South Carolina planter whose daughter married Rutledge's son; papers of Abram A. Massias, major and paymaster in the United States Army; and scattered papers of later members of the Rutledge family. Also among the major correspondents are William Short, with reference to the French Revolution, and Harrison Gray Otis.
Creator Rutledge, John, 1766-1819.
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 John Rutledge Papers, #948, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Alternate Form of Material
Microfilm copy available.
Acquisitions Information
Purchase 1944
Additional Descriptive Resources
A copy of the original finding aid for this collection is filed in folder 1a.
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

John Rutledge (1766-1819) of South Carolina was the son of Governor John Rutledge (1739-1800). He studied in Charleston and Philadelphia and traveled in Europe in 1787 through early 1790. His wife was Sarah Motte Smith. He practiced law in Charleston, was a planter in the Savannah River area, served in the South Carolina legislature, was a member of the United States House of Representatives, 1797-1803, and was an officer in the South Carolina militia.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

The major portion of the papers consists of letters written to Rutledge and is most detailed for his years in Europe and his period of political activity. There are letters in the earlier period from friends in England and Europe and from prominent persons he met while there. There are a few letters from his brothers in Charleston, but none from his father. Later letters deal primarily with politics and the Federal Party and are from political leaders and government officials. There are also a number of letters from Rutledge to his father-in-law, Bishop Robert Smith, written during the period 1797-1803. Rutledge and his wife were separated in 1804 and there is some discussion of divorce law about this time. After 1808 there is little political material and the papers deal largely with business and plantation affairs. Later items include scattered business papers of Hugh Rose, a South Carolina planter whose daughter married Rutledge's son; papers of Abram A. Massias, major and paymaster in the United States Army; and scattered papers of later members of the Rutledge family. Also among the major correspondents are William Short, with reference to the French Revolution, and Harrison Gray Otis.

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Contents list

expand/collapse Expand/collapse John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872.

About 663 items.
Folder 1a

Original finding aid #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 1a

Folder 1

1782-1788 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 1

Folder 2

1789 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 2

Extra Oversize Paper XOP-948/1

Surveyor's map, 1789 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." XOP-948/1

Shows the boundary between land belonging to William Elliott and land belonging to James Passot.

Folder 3

February-June 1790 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 3

Folder 4

July-December 1790 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 4

Folder 5

1791-1797 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 5

Folder 6

January-June 1798 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 6

Folder 7

July-December 1798 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 7

Folder 8

1799 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 8

Folder 9

January-May 1800 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 9

Folder 10

June-December 1800 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 10

Folder 11

January-May 1801 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 11

Folder 12

June-December 1801 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 12

Folder 13

January-March 1802 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 13

Folder 14

April-May 1802 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 14

Folder 15

June-December 1802 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 15

Folder 16

January-April 1803 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 16

Folder 17

May-December 1803 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 17

Folder 18

1804 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 18

Folder 19

January 1805-August 1806 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 19

Folder 20

September-December 1806 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 20

Folder 21

1807 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 21

Folder 22

1808 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 22

Folder 23

1809 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 23

Folder 24

1810-1812 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 24

Folder 25

1813-1815 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 25

Folder 26

1816-1819 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 26

Folder 27

Undated #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 27

Folder 28

1820-1829 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 28

Folder 29

1830-1835 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 29

Folder 30

1836-1839 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 30

Folder 31

1840-1843 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 31

Folder 32

1844 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 32

Folder 33

1846-1847 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 33

Folder 34

1848-1872 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 34

Folder 35

Papers of Hugh Rose and Abram A. Massias, undated #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 35

Folder 36

Duplicate photostats #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 36

Folder 37

Volume 1: Letter copies, 22 September 1809-20 October 1810 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 37

Folder 38

Volume 2: Miller's Planters' and Merchants' Almanac..., 1856 #00948, Series: "John Rutledge Papers, 1782-1872." Folder 38

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Processing Information

Processed by: SHC Staff

Encoded by: Noah Huffman, December 2007

Updated by: Kathryn Michaelis, March 2011

This collection was processed with support from the sponsorship of a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Office of Preservation, Washington, D.C., 1990-1993.

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