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Collection Number: 00848

Collection Title: William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 (bulk 1917-1922).

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 rehoused and a summary created with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities; this finding aid was created with support from NC ECHO.

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Size 1.0 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 1200 items)
Abstract William Francis Stevenson (1861-1942) of Cheraw, S.C., was a lawyer, South Carolina state legislator, and United States representative, 1917-1933. The bulk of the collection is correspondence, 1917-1922, with constituents of the 5th Congressional District of South Carolina, concerning national questions and individual interests. There is some material relating to Stevenson's campaigns. Also included are a few papers relating to the Chesterfield and Lancaster railroad, 1901-1902, and correspondence reflecting Stevenson's interest in the Presbyterian church.
Creator Stevenson, William Francis, 1861-1942.
Language English
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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Information For Users

Restrictions to Access
No restrictions. Open for research.
Restrictions to Use
No usage restrictions.
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 William Francis Stevenson Papers, #848, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Mrs. W. F. Stevenson of Washington, D.C., April 1944.
Additional Descriptive Resources
A copy of the original finding aid for this collection is filed in folder 1.
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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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subject Headings

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

William Francis Stevenson (1861-1942) was a native of Iredell County, N.C. He attended public schools and was also tutored by his father, a farmer and school teacher, while working on the farm. He taught school for a while before graduating from Davidson College in 1885. He again taught school in Cheraw, S.C., while studying for the bar, to which he was admitted in 1887, practicing in Cheraw and Chesterfield, S.C.

Stevenson was active in legal and business activities, taking part in the direction of the Chesterfield and Lancaster Railroad and acting as a general counsel for the Seaboard Airline Railroad, 1900-1917. He was attorney for the state of South Carolina in the legal arguments before the Supreme Court over the State Dispensary. He held offices in the county and state organizations of the Democratic Party. He was in the state legislature, 1896-1902 and 1910-1914, being speaker of the House of Representatives, 1900-1902. Stevenson was a candidate for Congress against the incumbent David E. Finley in 1914, but was defeated. After Finley's death in 1917, Stevenson was elected to Congress after defeating a number of opponents in two primaries. He served in the House from the 5th District of South Carolina, 1917-1933, and was a member of the board of the Federal Home Loan Bank in Washington, D.C., 1933-1939.

Stevenson was an opponent of Coleman Livingston Blease in South Carolina politics and was dubbed "Seaboard Bill" by Bleasites. He was a supporter of Woodrow Wilson and favored prohibition. Stevenson was also a prominent Presbyterian layman. In 1888 he married Mary E. Prince, daughter of W. L. T. Prince, a prominent attorney of Cheraw, S.C.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

The collection includes William Francis Stevenson's correspondence. The bulk of the papers is correspondence, 1917-1922, with constituents of the 5th Congressional District of South Carolina, concerning national questions and individual interests. Among his correspondents were local officials, editors, and party workers, members of the state legislature, bankers, manufacturers, farmers, and other persons in his district and in South Carolina, and other congressmen, officials of federal executive departments, and national lobbyists. These correspondents were concerned with prohibition, women's suffrage, Catholicism, war, appointments, military service, war contracts, taxes, and numerous other matters.

Among topics that appear in the papers are Stevenson's successful negotiations with Claude Kitchin to join the Banking and Currency Committee, the feud between Benjamin Ryan Tillman and Ed Smith in March 1917, Stevenson's opposition to the pardon of Eugene V. Debs, the attack on the leadership of Camp Clark in the House in 1919, and the prosecutuion of Andrew Ward Knisley who allegedly received a fraudulent appointment to Annapolis, Md.

There is some material relating to Stevenson's campaigns; a few papers relating to the Chesterfield and Lancaster railroad, 1901-1902, and correspondence reflecting Stevenson's interest in the Presbyterian church.

Notable correspondents include Martin Frederick Ansel, Coleman Livingston Blease, James Beauchamp Clark, Braxton Bragg Comer, Eugene V. Debs, John Gary Evans, David E. Finley, Courtney Walker Hamlin, Paul Grier McCorkle, Claude Kitchin, Thomas Riley Marshall, Jeanette Rankin, Ellison D. Smith, Benjamin Ryan Tillman, Thomas Edward Watson, and John Skelton Williams.

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Contents list

expand/collapse Expand/collapse William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated.

Folder 1

Original finding aid #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 1

1861-1901 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 1

Folder 2

1902-1916 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 2

Folder 3

January 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 3

Folder 4

1 February 1917 and undated #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 4

Folder 5

2-4 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 5

Folder 6

5-9 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 6

Folder 7

10-17 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 7

Folder 8

18-19 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 8

Folder 9

20-21 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 9

Folder 10

22 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 10

Folder 11

22 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 11

Folder 12

23 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 12

Folder 13

24-25 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 13

Folder 14

26 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 14

Folder 15

27-28 February 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 15

Folder 16

1-4 March 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 16

Folder 17

5-9 March 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 17

Folder 18

10-14 March 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 18

Folder 19

15-21 March 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 19

Folder 20

22-26 March 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 20

Folder 21

27-31 March 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 21

Folder 22

1-8 April 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 22

Folder 23

9-16 April 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 23

Folder 24

17-21 April 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 24

Folder 25

23-30 April 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 25

Folder 26

1-7 May 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 26

Folder 27

8-14 May 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 27

Folder 28

15-22 May 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 28

Folder 29

23-31 May 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 29

Folder 30

1-8 June 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 30

Folder 31

9-13 June 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 31

Folder 32

14-24 June 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 32

Folder 33

25-30 June 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 33

Folder 34

1-11 July 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 34

Folder 35

12-19 July 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 35

Folder 36

20-31 July 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 36

Folder 37

1-19 August 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 37

Folder 38

20-31 August 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 38

Folder 39

September 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 39

Folder 40

October 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 40

Folder 41

November 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 41

Folder 42

December 1917 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 42

Folder 43

January 1918 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 43

Folder 44

February 1918 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 44

Folder 45

March-April 1918 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 45

Folder 46

May-December 1918 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 46

Folder 47

January-February 1919 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 47

Folder 48

1-17 March 1919 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 48

Folder 49

18-31 March 1919 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 49

Folder 50

1-11 April 1919 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 50

Folder 51

12-30 April 1919 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 51

Folder 52

May-December 1919 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 52

Folder 53

January-February 1920 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 53

Folder 54

March 1920 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 54

Folder 55

April-December 1920 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 55

Folder 56

January-May 1921 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 56

Folder 57

June-December 1921 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 57

Folder 58

January-February 1922 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 58

Folder 59

March-April 1922 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 59

Folder 60

May-December 1922, 1924 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 60

Folder 61

Undated #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 61

Clippings #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 61

Folder 62

Volume 1: Subscription and benevolence book, Cheraw Presbyterian Church, April 1916 #00848, Series: "William Francis Stevenson Papers, 1861-1924 and undated." Folder 62

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Processing Information

Processed by: SHC Staff

Encoded by: Noah Huffman, December 2007

Updated by: Kate Stratton and Jodi Berkowitz, July 2010

This collection was rehoused and a summary created with support from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

This finding aid was created with support from NC ECHO.

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