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Collection Number: 02104

Collection Title: Nicholas Philip Trist Papers, 1765-1903

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.


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Size 6.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 6000 items)
Abstract Nicholas Philip Trist, student at West Point, 1818-1821; Louisiana planter, 1821-1824; United States State Department clerk, 1828-1834; consul to Havana, Cuba, 1834-1840; State Dept. chief clerk, 1845-1847; and chief negotiator of treaty ending Mexican War, 1847. Trist was also a lawyer and worked as paymaster for the Philadelphia, Wilmington and Baltimore Railroad Company, and postmaster at Alexandria, Va. He married Virginia Jefferson Randolph (fl. 1818-1875), Thomas Jefferson's granddaughter, in 1824 and lived at Monticello. Other Trist family members were his grandmother, Elizabeth House Trist (d. 1828); his brother, Hore Browse Trist (1802-1856), sugar planter of Lafourche Parish, La.; Virginia's mother, Martha Jefferson Randolph (1772-1836); and Nicholas and Virginia's children, Martha Jefferson Trist Burke (Pattie) of Alexandria, Va.; Thomas Jefferson Trist of Philadelphia, Pa., who was deaf; and Hore Browse Trist, physician of Baltimore, Md., and Washington, D.C. The collection contains chiefly family correspondence of the Trist and Randolph families. Especially prominent among the correspondents are Elizabeth Trist and the Randolph women, Martha Jefferson and her daughters and her granddaughter, Martha Jefferson Trist Burke. Most letters relate to family life, but Nicholas Trist's career as a West Point cadet; the functioning of the family plantations in Lafourche Parish, La.; the education of the Trist children, including that of Jefferson, who attended the Philadelphia Institute for the Deaf and Dumb, and Nicholas's various professional activities are covered to varying degrees. Also included are letters between Virginia's sister Cornelia and her literary agent, Thomas Bulfinch (1796-1867). Correspondence also documents life in the various locations where the Trists lived: from 1765 to 1828 in Louisiana and Charlottesville, Va., including Nicholas and Virginia's early married life at Monticello; from 1828 to 1833 in Washington, D.C.; from 1834 to 1845 in Havana, Cuba; and, in later years, in New York, Philadelphia, and Alexandria, Va. There are also some letters addressed to Thomas Jefferson. In addition to correspondence, the collection contains small numbers of financial and legal papers, school materials, genealogical information, and other items.
Creator Trist, Nicholas Philip, 1800-1874.
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 Nicholas Philip Trist Papers #2104, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Harry Randolph Burke of Alexandria, Va., in 1939 and subsequent purchase in 1968.
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

Thomas Jefferson became acquainted with the Trist family during the Continental Congress in Philadelphia while boarding at the home of Mary House. Her daughter, Elizabeth Trist, assumed the role of a surrogate mother to Jefferson's daughter Martha on their visits to Philadelphia. After the death of Elizabeth Trist's husband, she and her son, Hore Browse Trist, moved to Charlottesville, Va. There he practiced law and married Mary Brown. Nicholas Philip Trist was born in Charlottesville in 1800.

In 1802, Jefferson appointed Hore Browse Trist to be customs collector at Natchez in the Louisiana territory. Mary Brown Trist remained in Charlottesville with her young sons Nicholas and Hore Browse while their father moved to the Louisiana territory to assume his post and establish a plantation. The Trists were reunited early in 1803, but Hore Browse died of yellow fever a few months later. Mary Brown Trist remarried two more times. Her second husband, Philip Livingston Jones, was a prominent lawyer from New Orleans who enrolled Nicholas and his brother in school there. When Nicholas was about ten years old, Jones died and his mother married a wealthy cotton and sugar planter named Tournillon.

Nicholas graduated from the College of Orleans in 1817, and, at the invitation of Thomas Jefferson, moved to Monticello to study law. There he became reacquainted with Jefferson's daughter Martha, who had married Thomas Mann Randolph. Nicholas fell in love with the Randolphs' daughter, Virginia Jefferson Randolph, and, at the age of eighteen, he proposed marriage. The family urged him to postpone the marriage because of his youth and financial instability.

Nicholas entered West Point in 1818, but chafed at the military lifestyle. In 1821, he left West Point and returned to Louisiana to earn enough money to marry. He helped his brother Hore Browse manage the family plantation and resumed his law studies. From Louisiana, Nicholas continued his courtship of Virginia Randolph, who refused to leave her home in Virginia. Nicholas finally returned to Monticello in 1824 to marry her and finish his studies with Jefferson. During this time, he worked closely with the aging statesman, who appointed Nicholas an executor of his estate. When Thomas Jefferson died, Nicholas Trist found himself in charge of a heavily indebted Monticello and was forced to sell the estate piecemeal.

In 1828, Henry Clay offered Nicholas a clerkship in the State Department to relieve the financial difficulties of Jefferson's daughter, the recently widowed Martha Jefferson Randolph, who was dependent on Nicholas for support. Nicholas worked in the State Department from 1828 to 1833. The Trist household in Washington included the three Trist children--Martha Jefferson (Pattie); Thomas Jefferson (Jefferson), who was deaf; and Hore Browse (Browse)--as well as Martha Jefferson Randolph, whose unmarried daughters, Mary and Cornelia, paid extended visits.

In 1834, the family was separated when Nicholas moved to Havana, Cuba, to begin his duties as Consul. Virginia spent the first two years of her husband's tenure at Edgehill in Albemarle County, Va. Jefferson Trist was enrolled in the Philadelphia Institute for the Deaf and Dumb. Martha Randolph died in 1837, soon after her daughter moved to Cuba. From 1839 to 1841, while Nicholas continued his work in Cuba, Virginia took Pattie and Browse to school in France. Trist was removed from office by the Whigs in 1840, but the family decided to make their home in Havana, where they stayed until 1845, living on a small farm overlooking the harbor, taking in boarders, and receiving a small income from Hore Browse Trist, who managed the family sugar plantation in Louisiana.

In 1845, Nicholas returned to Washington to work in the Polk administration as chief clerk of the State Department under James Buchanan. It was in this role that, in 1847, he received the fateful commission to negotiate the treaty to end the war with Mexico. During that mission, Nicholas defied a presidential recall, thereby ending his political career and condemning the Trists to a nomadic, debt-ridden life.

After 1848, Nicholas worked as an attorney in the firm of Fowler & Wells in New York City and made several unsuccessful business investments. The family achieved a semblance of stability when they moved to Philadelphia in 1854. Nicholas went to work for the Philadelphia, Wilmington, and Baltimore Railroad Company, and Virginia contributed to the family income by taking in boarders and attempting to open a school for girls. During the Civil War, the Trists were Unionists, although they maintained ties with Randolph relatives who served the Confederacy, and Browse worked briefly as a surgeon in the Confederate army. After the war, Browse became a doctor in Washington, D.C.

In 1870, Nicholas received an appointment as postmaster at Alexandria, Va., where his daughter Pattie lived with her husband John Burke and their children. This appointment helped to relieve the desperate financial conditions Nicholas and Virginia had long endured and seemed to Trist a kind of vindication of his actions in Mexico. Nicholas died in 1874.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

This collection consists chiefly of family correspondence of the Trist and Randolph families. Especially prominent among the correspondents are Elizabeth Trist (grandmother of Nicholas Philip Trist) and the Randolph women: Martha Jefferson and her daughters--Virginia, Cornelia, Mary, and Ellen--and her granddaughter, Pattie Trist Burke. Family members typically wrote long, detailed letters about their lives, experiences, and opinions. Nicholas Trist's letters are equally long and informative, but usually contain only brief references to his professional activities in the United States State Department. There are very few business letters in the collection.

The correspondence has been arranged chronologically, and the chronology has been broken into subseries corresponding to the geographical movements of the Trist family. Thus, correspondence from 1765 to 1827 concerns life in Charlottesville, Va., and Monticello, as well as in Louisiana; letters from 1828 to 1833 contain much information about the new city of Washington, D.C.; those from 1834 to 1845 concern life in Havana, Cuba; and much of the correspondence thereafter deals with life in New York, N.Y., Philadelphia, Pa., and Alexandria, Va. In addition to correspondence, the collection contains financial and legal papers, school materials, genealogical materials, and other items.

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Contents list

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series Quick Links

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 1. Correspondence, 1765-1903.

About 5,000 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818.

About 400 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

There are three major streams of correspondence for this period: early Randolph family correspondence, including letters from Governor Thomas Mann Randolph at Tuckahoe and members of the family living at Monticello; letters of Elizabeth Trist, Nicholas's grandmother, to various family members including Thomas Jefferson; and Louisiana correspondence from Nicholas's parents Hore Browse and Mary Brown Trist.

Randolph family letters contain a variety of information about life at Monticello and in Charlottesville, Va.

The Elizabeth Trist letters show her as a powerful force in the family. In addition to dispensing frequent advice to Randolph and Trist kin, she wrote several times to Thomas Jefferson during his presidency, offering political advice and requesting political favors. Her influence is further attested to by the letters of introduction she wrote during this period for various people.

Nicholas's father, Hore Browse Trist, spent several months in England during 1796 apparently visiting kin and conducting business. Trist seems to have owned a dry goods store in Virginia, but, in 1802, he moved from Charlottesville to Louisiana. He bought a plantation near Natchez in Adams Parish and was appointed "Collector of the Mississippi District and Inspector of the Revenue of Port Adams." From Louisiana, Hore Browse Trist wrote frequently to his family in Virginia, where they remained until he could afford to move them west. His letters home are full of political opinion and reveal his strong anti-Federalist position. He died in 1804, but the Louisiana correspondence continues from Nicholas Trist at school in New Orleans and grandmother Elizabeth, who had moved to Louisiana. Her letters from 1811 reveal her efforts to clear title to the Trist plantation near Natchez.

There is little information about Mary Brown Trist's second marriage to Philip Livingston Jones, a prominent New Orleans lawyer. However, many letters (some written in French) document her third marriage to a sugar planter named Tournillon, who owned a plantation near Donaldsonville in Lafourche Parish, La. In 1817, letters show that Nicholas returned to Charlottesville, Va., and fell in love with Virginia Jefferson Randolph, Thomas Jefferson's granddaughter. At the age of eighteen, he expressed his intention to marry her, but the family thought him too young and impecunious to seal the bond. Nicholas entered West Point in 1818.

Folder 1

1765-1789 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 1

Folder 2

1790-1799 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 2

Folder 3

1800-1801 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 3

Folder 4

1802 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 4

Folder 5

1803 January-June #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 5

Folder 6

1803 July-September #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 6

Folder 7

1803 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 7

Folder 8

1804-1806 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 8

Folder 9

1807-1809 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 9

Folder 10

1810-1811 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 10

Folder 11

1812-1813 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 11

Folder 12

1814-1815 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 12

Folder 13

1816 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 13

Folder 14

1817 #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 14

Folder 15

1818 January-July #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 15

Folder 16

1818 August-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. 1765-1818, 1765-1818." Folder 16

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827.

About 500 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Letters documenting Nicholas Trist's education at West Point, his courtship of Virginia Jefferson Randolph, and his early married years. Letters exchanged between Nicholas and his relatives reveal anxiety over the conflict between cadets and faculty at West Point. According to her letter dated 2 January 1819, Elizabeth Trist, once again in Virginia, worried that her grandson might even be expelled. In May 1821, Trist assured Thomas Mann Randolph that he was more interested in a legal career than in a military commission. Trist also received letters from his mother and stepfather (in French), documenting the financial straits of the family still in Louisiana. Also in Louisiana, Hore Browse Trist began what became a lifelong correspondence with his brother.

Virginia Randolph appears as a recipient of correspondence rather than a correspondent herself during this period. She received scattered letters from Randolph kin at Monticello, Charlottesville, and the Randolph plantation, Edgehill. There are no letters here Virginia to Nicholas during this period, but there is much correspondence between her suitor and her mother. On 9 July 1821, Nicholas again requested Virginia's hand in marriage. The family, including Virginia, seems to have been reluctant because of his financial difficulties and her desire to stay in Albemarle rather than move to Louisiana. The Randolphs had financial worries of their own, as shown in letters that discuss selling Monticello.

In 1822, Nicholas returned to Louisiana with the idea of making enough money to marry Virginia. His letters to her reveal the difficulties he and his brother experienced in their attempt to make the family plantation at Donaldsonville, in Lafourche Parish, profitable. In 1823, correspondence chiefly concerns Nicholas's unsuccessful attempts to sell the plantation in order to return to Virginia. Finally, in 1824, Nicholas left the plantation under his brother's management and returned to Monticello to marry Virginia. They lived at Monticello for the first few years of their marriage. Letters from Hore Browse Trist continue to document activities in Louisiana at the family sugar plantation.

Folder 17

1819 January-May #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 17

Folder 18

1819 June-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 18

Folder 19

1820 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 19

Folder 20

1820 May-August #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 20

Folder 21

1820 September-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 21

Folder 22

1821 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 22

Folder 23

1821 May-July #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 23

Folder 24

1821 August-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 24

Folder 25

1822 January #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 25

Folder 26

1822 February #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 26

Folder 27

1822 March-June #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 27

Folder 28

1822 July-August #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 28

Folder 29

1822 September-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 29

Folder 30

1823 January-March #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 30

Folder 31

1823 April-May #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 31

Folder 32

1823 June-August #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 32

Folder 33

1823 September-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 33

Folder 34

1824 January-June #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 34

Folder 35

1824 July-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 35

Folder 36

1825 January-June #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 36

Folder 37

1825 July-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 37

Folder 38

1826 January-June #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 38

Folder 39

1826 July-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 39

Folder 40

1827 January-May #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 40

Folder 41

1827 June-December #02104, Subseries: "1.2. Correspondence, 1819-1827." Folder 41

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833.

About 600 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

There are three major streams of correspondence during this time period: letters of Nicholas and Virginia Randolph Trist; letters of Nicholas and his brother, Hore Browse Trist, in Louisiana; and letters of Virginia and her Randolph relatives. The latter chiefly involves Virginia's mother, Martha Jefferson Randolph, who, after the family sold Monticello, lived for most of the year in Boston with the Coolidges, family of her married daughter, Ellen, who was also a significant family correspondent, and Virginia's sister Cornelia, who often lived with the Trists. The voluminous correspondence of Elizabeth Trist ended with her death in 1828.

At the beginning of 1828, letters show that Nicholas was managing the Randolph farming interests in Virginia and studying law in hopes of becoming a professor. He even bought an interest in the Charlottesville Press. However, his life took an unexpected turn before the year was out, when Nicholas moved to Washington to work for the United States State Department. Virginia remained at Edgehill, the Randolph family plantation in Albemarle County, Va. Detailed correspondence between them documents the birth of their second child and Nicholas's life in the boarding houses of Washington, D.C. During this period, the Trists had three children: Thomas Jefferson (Jefferson), who was deaf; Martha Jefferson (Pattie), and Hore Browse (Browse).

Virginia and the children joined Nicholas in Washington in 1829. Her letters home to the Randolphs document the family's life in the capital. Although Nicholas's duties in the State Department required him to work closely with President Andrew Jackson, correspondence contains only fleeting references to his official duties. Instead, Trist and Randolph correspondents wrote long, detailed letters ranging through a wide variety of topics including health (for example, Nicholas took his daughter to Philadelphia in July 1830 to have her tonsils removed and described the procedure in a letter to Virginia), opinions of various cultural events, reading habits, social routines, scenes of the capital (including a detailed floor plan of the Trist residence near the White House, 8 May 1829), and other topics of family interest. In 1833, Nicholas was appointed consul to Havana and the family made plans to move to Cuba.

Folder 42

1828 January-March #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 42

Folder 43

1828 April-September #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 43

Folder 44

1828 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 44

Folder 45

1829 January #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 45

Folder 46

1829 February #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 46

Folder 47

1829 March #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 47

Folder 48

1829 April #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 48

Folder 49

1829 May #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 49

Folder 50

1829 June-July #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 50

Folder 51

1829 August #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 51

Folder 52

1829 September #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 52

Folder 53

1829 October #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 53

Folder 54

1829 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 54

Folder 55

1830 January-June #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 55

Folder 56

1830 July-December #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 56

Folder 57

1831 January-May #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 57

Folder 58

1831 June-July #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 58

Folder 59

1831 August-September #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 59

Folder 60

1831 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 60

Folder 61

1832 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 61

Folder 62

1832 May-August #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 62

Folder 63

1832 September-December #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 63

Folder 64

1833 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 64

Folder 65

1833 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 65

Folder 66

1833 July-August #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 66

Folder 67

1833 September-November #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 67

Folder 68

1833 December #02104, Subseries: "1.3. Correspondence, 1828-1833." Folder 68

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845.

About 850 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Letters relating to the life of the Trist family in Cuba and the early education of the Trist children. The Trists enrolled Jefferson in the Philadelphia Institute for the Deaf and Dumb, and family correspondence shows that Virginia, Pattie, and Browse lived at Edgehill for the first two years of Nicholas's tenure as United States consul in Havana. They joined him in Cuba in 1836. In March 1839, Virginia took Pattie and Browse to school in France. They stayed until 1841, and extensive correspondence to Nicholas documents their activities. Scattered correspondence from Philadelphia also documents Jefferson's progress. In 1841, the Whigs removed Nicholas from office, but the family continued to live in Cuba until 1845. According to family letters, they bought a farm on a hill overlooking Havana harbor. By mid-1845, the political winds had shifted, and Nicholas returned to Washington to work for the State Department. Virginia joined him after a visit to Edgehill and a shopping spree in New York to establish her new household in the capital.

Also included in correspondence from this period are letters from Hore Browse Trist containing much information about the family sugar plantation in Louisiana and letters from Randolphs in Virginia and Coolidges in Boston, chiefly about family matters.

Folder 69

1834 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 69

Folder 70

1834 March #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 70

Folder 71

1834 April #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 71

Folder 72

1834 May #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 72

Folder 73

1834 June-September #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 73

Folder 74

1834 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 74

Folder 75

1835 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 75

Folder 76

1835 March #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 76

Folder 77

1835 April #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 77

Folder 78

1835 May #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 78

Folder 79

1835 June-July #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 79

Folder 80

1835 August-November #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 80

Folder 81

1835 December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 81

Folder 82

1836 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 82

Folder 83

1836 March #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 83

Folder 84

1836 April #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 84

Folder 85

1836 May #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 85

Folder 86

1836 June-July #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 86

Folder 87

1836 August-October #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 87

Folder 88

1836 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 88

Folder 89

1837 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 89

Folder 90

1837 March-April #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 90

Folder 91

1837 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 91

Folder 92

1837 July-October #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 92

Folder 93

1837 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 93

Folder 94

1838 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 94

Folder 95

1838 March-April #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 95

Folder 96

1838 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 96

Folder 97

1838 July #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 97

Folder 98

1838 August-September #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 98

Folder 99

1838 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 99

Folder 100

1839 January-March #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 100

Folder 101

1839 April-May #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 101

Folder 102

1839 June-July #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 102

Folder 103

1839 August-September #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 103

Folder 104

1839 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 104

Folder 105

1840 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 105

Folder 106

1840 March-April #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 106

Folder 107

1840 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 107

Folder 108

1840 July-August #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 108

Folder 109

1840 September-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 109

Folder 110

1841 January-March #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 110

Folder 111

1841 April-May #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 111

Folder 112

1841 June-August #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 112

Folder 113

1841 September-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 113

Folder 114

1842 #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 114

Folder 115

1843 January-June #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 115

Folder 116

1843 July-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 116

Folder 117

1844 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 117

Folder 118

1844 May-July #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 118

Folder 119

1844 August-September #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 119

Folder 120

1844 October #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 120

Folder 121

1844 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 121

Folder 122

1845 January-June #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 122

Folder 123

1845 July-October #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 123

Folder 124

1845 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.4. Correspondence, 1834-1845." Folder 124

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854.

About 800 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Chiefly letters documenting a nomadic period in the life of the Trist family. Soon after returning to Washington, Nicholas was commissioned by the Treasury Department to conclude a peace treaty with Mexico. Except for instructions from the Treasury Department and a letter of introduction from the Secretary of State James Buchanan, there is little information about his official activities; there are no letters written from Mexico in this collection. However, letters of sympathy to the family demonstrate support for Nicholas's unauthorized actions that not only succeeded in ending hostilities, but also ended Nicholas's political career. He returned from Mexico in the spring of 1848. With the loss of his government position, family finances deteriorated dramatically. Letters reveal that family members were often separated from each other, living at various times in Pennsylvania or New York. Scattered business correspondence documents Nicholas's investment in risky projects, such as the Maryland Mining Company in 1848 and a washing machine business in England in the early 1850s. These ventures further undermined the financial stability of the family. Nicholas was also an apparently unsuccessful as an attorney with the firm of Fowler & Wells of New York City.

Correspondence during this period is chiefly between daughter Pattie and her parents and friends. Nicholas's letters show his attempts to help his children make an independent income. On 19 May 1849, he wrote a long letter to Major General Winfield Scott requesting a clerkship for Jefferson and describing his deaf son's training as an artist. At the same time Nicholas declared to Scott his own intention never to hold public office again. Jefferson's letters show that, instead of a Washington appointment, he was apprenticed to an artist named Cropsey and worked at the Philadelphia Institute for the Deaf and Dumb. Nicholas also assisted his brother, Hore Browse, in Louisiana in his attempts to educate his sons.

In 1850, the Trists moved to New York and Browse matriculated at the University of Virginia. The Trist's reestablished their connections to England when Nicholas visited his Pendarves cousins in Cornwall. In 1853, Virginia and Pattie wrote often from Bowden plantation in Louisiana where they lived much of the year.

Family correspondence in this period includes a letter in which Virginia diagrammed four floors of their house in New York, 3 March 1850; one from Virginia in New York voicing her opinion of a lecture by Ralph Waldo Emerson, 17 January 1852; and a letter from Nicholas about a pamphlet entitled "Woman and Her Wishes" that he had previously sent to female relatives, 5 November 1853. In the latter, Nicholas declared, "I am most decidedly a Woman's Rights man... ."

Nicholas's failure to provide for the family and the family's mounting debt compelled Virginia to take matters into her own hands. In 1854, she moved permanently to Philadelphia and opened a boarding school for girls. She wrote on 14 July of the family's desperate financial situation, having only a small income from Bowdon, the Trist plantation in Louisiana. "Our means were gradually melting away, and I thought while we yet had something left it was better to enter upon some plan of supporting ourselves. The school seemed to me the best, and that which pleased my friends most." Nicholas found work as a clerk at the Philadelphia, Wilmington, and Baltimore Railroad Company.

Folder 125

1846 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 125

Folder 126

1846 March #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 126

Folder 127

1846 April #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 127

Folder 128

1846 May #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 128

Folder 129

1846 June #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 129

Folder 130

1846 July #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 130

Folder 131

1846 August #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 131

Folder 132

1846 September #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 132

Folder 133

1846 October #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 133

Folder 134

1846 November #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 134

Folder 135

1846 December #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 135

Folder 136

1847 January-March #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 136

Folder 137

1847 April-July #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 137

Folder 138

1847 August-December #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 138

Folder 139

1848 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 139

Folder 140

1848 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 140

Folder 141

1848 July-August #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 141

Folder 142

1848 September-October #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 142

Folder 143

1848 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 143

Folder 144

1849 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 144

Folder 145

1849 May-July #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 145

Folder 146

1849 August-December #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 146

Folder 147

1850 January-May #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 147

Folder 148

1850 June-October #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 148

Folder 149

1850 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 149

Folder 150

1851 January-May #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 150

Folder 151

1851 June-August #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 151

Folder 152

1851 September-December #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 152

Folder 153

1852 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 153

Folder 154

1852 March-April #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 154

Folder 155

1852 May #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 155

Folder 156

1852 June #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 156

Folder 157

1852 July #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 157

Folder 158

1852 August-September #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 158

Folder 159

1852 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 159

Folder 160

1853 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 160

Folder 161

1853 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 161

Folder 162

1853 July-August #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 162

Folder 163

1853 September #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 163

Folder 164

1853 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 164

Folder 165

1854 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 165

Folder 166

1854 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 166

Folder 167

1854 July #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 167

Folder 168

1854 August-December #02104, Subseries: "1.5. Correspondence, 1846-1854." Folder 168

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859.

About 500 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Chiefly letters to Pattie Trist documenting Virginia Trist's attempts to establish a boarding school for girls in Philadelphia, the continuing economic decline of the family, and the young adult lives of the Trist children.

Virginia wrote to her daughter often of the difficulties related to opening a boarding school, especially such problems as advertising and housekeeping. At the same time, Nicholas wrote of the hopeless indebtedness of the family; in a 11 November 1856 letter to William B. Randolph (Beverly), Nicholas declared that the family was in debt for "all of the common necessaries of life," including coal, bread, and "everything that we consume." Apparently, the difficulties of opening a school combined with the family debt compelled the Trists to take in boarders.

Letters from the Trist children indicate that Pattie had married John W. Burke and moved to Alexandria, Va., by 1859. Before settling in Alexandria, Pattie visited Bowden Plantation in Louisiana and reported to her father the death of his brother, Hore Browse Trist, in November 1856. Son Browse earned a medical degree from Jefferson Medical College in March 1857 and joined the Navy, writing many letters from Latin American ports about the local culture and his experiences on the sea. Nicholas's letters to William B. Randolph, a clerk in the Treasury Department in Washington, indicate continuing attempts to secure a clerkship for Jefferson, and contain accounts of various disastrous business investments that Nicholas had made on Randolph's advice. Letters also document Nicholas's partnership with Thomas Briggs Smith, inventor of a new kind of rail for railroads. Nicholas eventually became paymaster of the Philadelphia, Wilmington and Baltimore Railroad Company.

Also of note during this period are several long letters that Virginia wrote defending her husband's actions during his mission to Mexico in 1847. Correspondence about family matters continued from Ellen Coolidge in Boston and from Cornelia, who sometimes lived at Edgehill. Family letters contain little discussion of events leading up to the Civil War.

Folder 169

1855 January-May #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 169

Folder 170

1855 June-July #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 170

Folder 171

1855 August-September #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 171

Folder 172

1855 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 172

Folder 173

1856 January #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 173

Folder 174

1856 February #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 174

Folder 175

1856 March-May #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 175

Folder 176

1856 June-August #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 176

Folder 177

1856 September-October #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 177

Folder 178

1856 November #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 178

Folder 179

1856 December #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 179

Folder 180

1857 January #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 180

Folder 181

1857 February #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 181

Folder 182

1857 March #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 182

Folder 183

1857 April-May #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 183

Folder 184

1857 June-July #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 184

Folder 185

1857 August #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 185

Folder 186

1857 September-October #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 186

Folder 187

1857 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 187

Folder 188

1858 January-May #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 188

Folder 189

1858 June-July #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 189

Folder 190

1858 August #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 190

Folder 191

1858 September-October #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 191

Folder 192

1858 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 192

Folder 193

1859 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 193

Folder 194

1859 March-April #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 194

Folder 195

1859 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 195

Folder 196

1859 July-August #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 196

Folder 197

1859 September-October #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 197

Folder 198

1859 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.6. Correspondence, 1855-1859." Folder 198

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865.

About 400 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Letters documenting family life and the home front during the Civil War. With the exception of the Battles of Bull Run (21 July 1861) and Gettysburg (July 1863), there is little direct reference to the war or to sectional animosities. Letters contain detailed information about the Trist family, their social life, domestic concerns, personal health, and financial difficulties. The majority of the letters were written by the women of the family--Virginia, Cornelia, Ellen, and Pattie.

According to family correspondence, Browse married a Miss Waring of Savannah, Ga., in the spring of 1861 and moved with his wife to that state. He briefly enlisted in the Confederate army as a surgeon, but soon resigned his commission. There is no correspondence from him during the remainder of the war. Other members of the immediate Trist family were unionists, though many of their Virginia relations sympathized with the South. There appears to have been a tacit agreement not to discuss the divisive politics of the period in correspondence.

Included are descriptions of the northern homefront during the war. Letters were regularly exchanged between Philadelphia, Alexandria, Virginia, Boston, and, occasionally, New York. In addition to the usual family news, correspondents often commented on the economic well-being of their communities, the effects of the war, and the general mood of the times.

Letters show that Cornelia translated and, in 1861, published Parlour Gardens, a book about house plants. Thomas Bulfinch (1796-1867) served as her agent in this venture. The work was modestly successful. Cornelia also wrote several short stories and sought advice on their publication from Bulfinch and author Anne Brewster.

Folder 199

1860 January #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 199

Folder 200

1860 February #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 200

Folder 201

1860 March #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 201

Folder 202

1860 April #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 202

Folder 203

1860 May #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 203

Folder 204

1860 June-July #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 204

Folder 205

1860 August #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 205

Folder 206

1860 September #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 206

Folder 207

1860 October #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 207

Folder 208

1860 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 208

Folder 209

1861 January-March #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 209

Folder 210

1861 April #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 210

Folder 211

1861 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 211

Folder 212

1861 July-December #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 212

Folder 213

1862 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 213

Folder 214

1862 March-April #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 214

Folder 215

1862 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 215

Folder 216

1862 July-August #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 216

Folder 217

1862 September-October #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 217

Folder 218

1862 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 218

Folder 219

1863 January-March #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 219

Folder 220

1863 April-June #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 220

Folder 221

1863 July #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 221

Folder 222

1863 August-December #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 222

Folder 223

1864 January-March #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 223

Folder 224

1864 April-June #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 224

Folder 225

1864 July-December #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 225

Folder 226

1865 January #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 226

Folder 227

1865 February #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 227

Folder 228

1865 March-April #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 228

Folder 229

1865 May-June #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 229

Folder 230

1865 July-August #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 230

Folder 231

1865 September-October #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 231

Folder 232

1865 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.7. Correspondence, 1860-1865." Folder 232

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869.

About 400 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Chief correspondents during this period include Virginia Trist, Pattie Trist Burke (who signed her letters M. J. Burke), Cornelia Randolph, Nicholas Trist, and, occasionally, Browse Trist and Pattie's husband, John Burke. Correspondence shows that Nicholas's job as paymaster of the Philadelphia, Wilmington and Baltimore Railroad Company required a great deal of travel. Letters from Pattie in Alexandria, Va., to her parents in Philadelphia contain comments on the growth of the Burke family, Pattie's onerous housekeeping duties, and her complaints about servants. Pattie employed Irish servants when possible, and her letters reveal dramatic changes in racial relationships brought about by the end of slavery. Indeed, the effects of Reconstruction in Alexandria are interpreted primarily through Pattie's letters. For example, on 21 February 1868, she wrote, "There are an immense number of idlers supported by the [Freedman's] 'bureau.' I think it a bad institution unless this abuse of it could be obviated."

During this period Browse started a medical practice in Washington, D.C. His brief letters to family members suggest some of the difficulties he encountered and the time-consuming nature of his profession. Correspondence between Cornelia and Thomas Bulfinch continues through about 1866. Family letters also continue to defend Nicholas Trist's activities in Mexico in 1847. Of particular interest during this period, is correspondence between Nicholas and James Cloke documenting Nicholas's investment in a cattle ranch in Illinois that was managed by Cloke. In 1869, Nicholas turned 69 and wrote to his children of his desire to relocate Cloke and his cattle operation to Florida. Concerns about his own and Virginia's health also prompted him to suggest they might move. By the end of the year, Nicholas and Virginia had moved to Alexandria.

Folder 233

1866 January-May #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 233

Folder 234

1866 June-September #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 234

Folder 235

1866 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 235

Folder 236

1867 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 236

Folder 237

1867 March #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 237

Folder 238

1867 April-May #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 238

Folder 239

1867 June-August #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 239

Folder 240

1867 September-October #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 240

Folder 241

1867 November-December #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 241

Folder 242

1868 January-February #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 242

Folder 243

1868 March-April #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 243

Folder 244

1868 May #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 244

Folder 245

1868 June #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 245

Folder 246

1868 July #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 246

Folder 247

1868 August #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 247

Folder 248

1868 September #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 248

Folder 249

1868 October-December #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 249

Folder 250

1869 January-May #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 250

Folder 251

1869 June-August #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 251

Folder 252

1869 September-December #02104, Subseries: "1.8. Correspondence, 1866-1869." Folder 252

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated.

About 300 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Chief correspondents for this period include Browse in Washington and Baltimore and Jefferson Trist in Philadelphia. Jefferson, who was an infrequent correspondent while his parents lived in Philadelphia, wrote many letters to them in Alexandria about his activities in Philadelphia and yearly vacations in Bar Harbor, Me. His wife, Ellen, experienced some kind of mental disease and, by 1873, Jefferson was living again at the Deaf and Dumb Institute in Philadelphia. Browse also had marital trouble during this period when his wife went blind in 1870, possibly because of a brain tumor.

There are letters of Virginia and Nicholas when they visited Rawley Springs in the Virginia mountains near Harrisonburg in 1870 and when Virginia briefly visited Philadelphia and Edgehill in 1872. Nicholas died in 1874. Thereafter, letters are chiefly to Virginia from Jefferson and Browse. Also among the correspondents during this period are Ellen Coolidge, Mary Randolph (Virginia's sister at Edgehill), and a cousin, Alice Mickleham. In 1884, Pattie's cousin, H. B. Trist, wrote from New Orleans about his attempts to reconstruct the family genealogy. (See Subseries 2.3 for information he apparently collected between 1884 and 1903).

Folder 253

1870 January-April #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 253

Folder 254

1870 May-July #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 254

Folder 255

1870 August-December #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 255

Folder 256

1871 January-August #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 256

Folder 257

1871 September-December #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 257

Folder 258

1872 #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 258

Folder 259

1873 #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 259

Folder 260

1874 #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 260

Folder 261

1875-1891 #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 261

Folder 262

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 262

Folder 263

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 263

Folder 264

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 264

Folder 265

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 265

Folder 266

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 266

Folder 267

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 267

Folder 268

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 268

Folder 269

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 269

Folder 270

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 270

Folder 271

Undated #02104, Subseries: "1.9. Correspondence, 1870-1891 and undated." Folder 271

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 2. Other Papers, 1784-1903.

About 500 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 2.1. Financial and Legal Items, 1784-1882.

About 260 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Financial and legal papers of Nicholas Trist and members of his family from 1784 to 1882. Included are accounts and legal papers pertaining to the administration of the Trist plantations in Louisiana; bills, receipts, and promissory notes (including many in Spanish and some in French) dating from Nicholas's years as consul to Cuba; and other items chiefly concerning Trist's business and personal finances. (Note that although most items relating to the Louisiana plantations are in folder 272, some items in folders 274-278 may also relate to these plantations.)

Also included are the wills of Nicholas and Virginia Trist, which were written in Cuba; the will of Nicholas's grandfather, Nicholas Trist, written in Louisiana in 1784; and Nicholas's diplomatic commission to negotiate terms for peace with Mexico in 1847. A marital agreement of 1824 shows that Nicholas and Virginia were entitled to one fourth of the profits from the Louisiana plantations.

Folder 272

Louisiana plantations, 1826-1848 #02104, Subseries: "2.1. Financial and Legal Items, 1784-1882." Folder 272

Folder 273

Havana, Cuba, 1833-1841 #02104, Subseries: "2.1. Financial and Legal Items, 1784-1882." Folder 273

Folder 274

Miscellaneous financial and legal items, 1784-1827 #02104, Subseries: "2.1. Financial and Legal Items, 1784-1882." Folder 274

Folder 275

Miscellaneous financial and legal items, 1828-1836 #02104, Subseries: "2.1. Financial and Legal Items, 1784-1882." Folder 275

Folder 276

Miscellaneous financial and legal items, 1837-1845 #02104, Subseries: "2.1. Financial and Legal Items, 1784-1882." Folder 276

Folder 277

Miscellaneous financial and legal items, 1847-1849 #02104, Subseries: "2.1. Financial and Legal Items, 1784-1882." Folder 277

Folder 278

Miscellaneous financial and legal items, 1852-1882 and undated #02104, Subseries: "2.1. Financial and Legal Items, 1784-1882." Folder 278

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 2.2. School Materials, 1838-1852.

About 25 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Scholastic records of the children of Nicholas and Virginia Trist from 1838 to 1852. Included are certificates (in French) for their daughter, Pattie; progress reports (also in French) for their son Browse from the Pensionnat de M. Alphonse Briquet in Geneva; and class standing and attendance reports for Browse, from the University of Virginia.

Folder 279

School materials #02104, Subseries: "2.2. School Materials, 1838-1852." Folder 279

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 2.3. Genealogical Materials, 1884-1903.

About 50 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Information relating to the history of the Trist family, chiefly collected from 1884 to about 1903 by H. B. Trist of New Orleans, Nicholas Trist's nephew. Included are narratives of genealogical research in England, genealogical charts, extracts from legal documents, copies of correspondence, and other items.

Folder 280

Genealogical materials #02104, Subseries: "2.3. Genealogical Materials, 1884-1903." Folder 280

Folder 281

Genealogical materials #02104, Subseries: "2.3. Genealogical Materials, 1884-1903." Folder 281

Folder 282

Genealogical materials #02104, Subseries: "2.3. Genealogical Materials, 1884-1903." Folder 282

Folder 283

Genealogical materials #02104, Subseries: "2.3. Genealogical Materials, 1884-1903." Folder 283

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Subseries 2.4. Miscellaneous Items.

About 200 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Included are writings of Nicholas and Virginia Trist. Especially significant among these are their writings about Nicholas's mission to Mexico in 1847. Also included are poems, medical writings, remedies and recipes, a library inventory, newspaper clippings, and other items.

Folder 284

Miscellaneous items #02104, Subseries: "2.4. Miscellaneous Items." Folder 284

Folder 285

Miscellaneous items #02104, Subseries: "2.4. Miscellaneous Items." Folder 285

Folder 286

Miscellaneous items #02104, Subseries: "2.4. Miscellaneous Items." Folder 286

Folder 287

Miscellaneous items #02104, Subseries: "2.4. Miscellaneous Items." Folder 287

Folder 288

Miscellaneous items #02104, Subseries: "2.4. Miscellaneous Items." Folder 288

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Processing Information

Processed by: Lisa Tolbert, Scott Philyaw, Rebecca Hollingsworth, October 1991

Encoded by: T. Mike Childs, April 2008

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