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Collection Number: 04325

Collection Title: James Spencer Worth Papers, 1849-1969

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


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Size 0.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 85 items)
Abstract James Spencer Worth, son of David Gaston Worth and Julia Stickney Worth, was active in the insurance business and other enterprises in Wilmington, N.C. Correspondence, printed material, and photographs of James Spencer Worth. Most items are letters, 1893-1899, from Worth to his wife, Josephine McBryde Worth, concerning family matters. Also included are letters about personal matters from family friends Cornelia Phillips Spencer and June Spencer Love, and correspondence, 1920s, from Frances McBryde Worth, about her missionary activities in Africa. Photographs include pictures, 1920s, of Frances Worth and Africans in the Congo region.
Creator Worth, James Spencer, 1869-1900.
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 James Spencer Worth papers #4325, Southern Historical Collection, The Wilson Library, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Acquisitions Information
Received from Frances McBryde Worth, Greensboro, N.C., in September 1982; with three additions, also from Worth, one in October 1982, one in March 1983, and one in September and October 1986.
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

James Spencer Worth, son of David Gaston and Julia Stickney Worth and grandson of North Carolina governor Jonathan Worth, was born on 6 December 1869, in Wilmington, North Carolina. He was named for his father's friend and UNC classmate, then deceased, James M. Spencer. He attended Bingham School, a military academy in Mebane, North Carolina and, later, the University of North Carolina. Returning to Wilmington, Worth became involved in banking and insurance sales, and shortly thereafter, he and Frank H. Stedman, a local businessman, formed the insurance firm of Stedman and Worth. In December 1893, Worth married Josephine McBryde, of Little River Academy, Cumberland County, North Carolina. To them were born three children--David Gaston Worth, II, Frances McBryde Worth, and Katharine Worth. From 1895 to 1898, JSW served as deputy collector of customs in Wilmington; he then became a large shareholder in the Worth Company, a mercantile firm owned by the family. He also was actively involved in other public and private businesses, notably the Wilmington Seacoast Railroad where he served as director. James Spencer Worth died on 13 May 1900, at the age of 30.

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Scope and Content

Correspondence, printed material, and photographs of James Spencer Worth. Most items are letters, 1893-1899, from Worth to his wife, Josephine McBryde Worth, concerning family matters. Also included are letters about personal matters from family friends Cornelia Phillips Spencer and June Spencer Love, and correspondence, 1920s, from Frances McBryde Worth, about her missionary activities in Africa. Photographs include pictures, 1920s, of Frances Worth and Africans in the Congo region.

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Contents list

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series Quick Links

expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 1. Correspondence, 1884-1956.

About 216 items.

Arrangement: chronological.

Primarily letters from James Spencer Worth to Josephine McBryde (Worth) immediately before and during their marriage. They chiefly concern family and personal matters. There are also several letters to and from other family members, as well as letters during the 1880s and after JSW's death, from family friends, especially Cornelia Phillips Spencer, wife of James M. Spencer, from whom JSW was named, and CPS's daughter, Julia "June" Spencer Love. Also included is correspondence of Frances McBryde Worth relating to her missionary activities in Africa in the 1920s.

Folder 1

1865-1887 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 1

Folder 2

1888-1890 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 2

Folder 3

1891-1890 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 3

Folder 4

March-October 1893 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 4

Folder 5

November-December 1893 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 5

Folder 6

1894 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 6

Folder 7

1895 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 7

Folder 8

1896 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 8

Folder 9

1897 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 9

Folder 10

1898 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 10

Folder 11

1899 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 11

Folder 12

1900-1910 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 12

Folder 13

1924-July 1925 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 13

Folder 14

August-December 1925 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 14

Folder 15

1926 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 15

Folder 16

1927-1930 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 16

Folder 17

1952-1953 #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 17

Folder 18

1954 and undated #04325, Series: "1. Correspondence, 1884-1956." Folder 18

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 2. Other Papers, 1893, 1897, 1900, 1954, 1969.

20 items.

Other papers include financial and legal items, genealogical material, and other material. The financial and legal items consist primarily of stock certificates belonging to various members of the Worth family. The printed material consists chiefly of newspaper clippings concerning the James Spencer Worth family. Included is a booklet memorializing David Gaston Worth (1831-1897), the father of JSW.

Folder 19

Financial and legal material #04325, Series: "2. Other Papers, 1893, 1897, 1900, 1954, 1969." Folder 19

Folder 20

Printed material #04325, Series: "2. Other Papers, 1893, 1897, 1900, 1954, 1969." Folder 20

Folder 21

Miscellaneous #04325, Series: "2. Other Papers, 1893, 1897, 1900, 1954, 1969." Folder 21

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expand/collapse Expand/collapse Series 3. Pictures, 1875-1962.

49 items.

Mainly cabinet cards and other family photographs of James Spencer Worth and members of his family as well as photographs of Frances Worth's mission in the Congo. Also included are some special format materials. An item list follows.

Image P-4325/1

James Spencer Worth, at age 6, with pet dog, circa 1875. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/1

Image P-4325/2

JSW, 1889. Cabinet card. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/2

Image P-4325/3

JSW, 1900. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/3

Image P-4325/4

JSW, Mrs. D. G. Worth, Josephine Worth, and unidentified woman on front porch of David Gaston Worth residence, Wilmington, NC, circa 1895. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/4

Image P-4325/5

JSW and his son, David Gaston Wroth, II, 1895. Cabinet card. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/5

Image P-4325/6

Josephine McBryde Worth in her wedding dress, 1893. Cabinet card. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/6

Image P-4325/7

Josephine Worth and her son, David Gaston Worth, II, 1895. Cabinet card. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/7

Image P-4325/8

Nursemaid with children of James and Josephine Worth, 1900. Cabinet card. Info. on verso: "Children of J. S. Worth-1900--David Gaston Worth, II, 5 yrs. - Frances McBryde Worth, 3 yrs. - Katharine Worth, 18 mos. - Nurse: Liza Willis." #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/8

Image P-4325/9

Summer home of D. G. Worth, Greenville Sound, NC, circa 1894. Info. on verso: "'Shandy' - c. 1894. Summer home of D. G. Worth family on Greenville Sound (bet. Wilmington and Wrightsville Beach) - Left, Mrs. J. S. Worth. (In the Worth family until 1960)" #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/9

Image P-4325/10

David Gaston Worth, circa 1890. Cabinet card. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/10

Image P-4325/11

Home of David Worth and his wife, Eunice Gardner, 18--. Photo. of drawing. Info. on verso of frame: "..In the yard is a small house which was used for patients and was called the first hospital in North Carolina. This was in the Centre [?] Community.." #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/11

Special Format Image SF-P-4325/12

JSW and Josephine McBryde Worth, 1893. Tintype. Info. on mount: "..wedding trip to Key West, Fla. and Cuba." #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." SF-P-4325/12

Image SF-P-4325/13

JSW and JMW, 1893 (same session as P-4325/12 above). Tintype. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." SF-P-4325/13

Image P-4325/14

James Spencer Worth, at age 6, with pet dog, circa 1875. (same session as P-4325/1). Cabinet card. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/14

Image P-4325/15

Mary Crowly, Clara Hodges, Josephine McBryde Worth, Louise Saunders, 1894. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/15

Image P-4325/16

James S. Worth and Josephine McBryde Worth, 1894. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/16

Image P-4325/17

James S. Worth, George Clarkson Worth, Lacy L. Little and five unidentified young men, circa 1888. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/17

Image P-4325/18

George C. Worth, 2 August 1895. Cabinet card. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/18

Image P-4325/19

Josephine McBryde and Emma Chadbourn Worth, circa 1895. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/19

Image P-4325/20

George C. Worth, Emma C. Worth, William Worth, and Charles Worth, circa 1900. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/20

Image P-4325/21

Kathryn Worth, David Gustine Worth, II, Josephine McBryde Worth, and Frances McBryde Worth, 1917. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/21

Image P-4325/22

David Gustin Worth, II, with unidentified field artillery soldiers, 1918. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/22

Image P-4325/23

George C. Worth, Emma C. Worth, William C. Worth, Charles W. Worth, and Ruth Worth, circa 1920. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/23

Image P-4325/24

Kathryn Worth, 1920. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/24

Image P-4325/25

Kathryn Worth and Frances McBryde Worth, 1923. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/25

Image P-4325/26

Frances Worth and Marguerite Deland in the Congo, September 1924. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/26

Image P-4325/27

Frances Worth, Kabongo, and unidentified others, in the Congo, circa 1925. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/27

Image P-4325/28

Frances Worth, Marguerite Deland, and unidentified missionaries in the Congo, September 1924. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/28

Image P-4325/29

"The Lapsley," mission boat on the Congo River, September 1924. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/29

Image P-4325/30

Students and school in the Congo, 1925. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/30

Image P-4325/31

Passengers on a river boat on the Congo, circa 1927. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/31

Image P-4325/32

Riverboats on the Congo, 1927. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/32

Image P-4325/33

Kathryn Worth, 1941. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/33

Image P-4325/34

Kathryn Worth Curry, David Gaston Worth, II, and Josephine McBryde Worth, 1942. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/34

Image P-4325/35

Kathryn Worth Curry, Francis McBryde Worth, and Walter Clyde Curry, July 1959. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/35

Image P-4325/36

Walter C. Curry and Kathryn Worth Curry, 1962. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/36

Image P-4325/37

Davidson (N. C.) home of Josephine Worth, circa 1920-1930. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/37

Image P-4325/38

Frances McBryde Worth, 1918. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/38

Image P-4325/39

Little River Academy (N. C.) home of D. D. McBryde, 1893. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/39

Image P-4325/40

Little River Academy (N. C.) home of D. D. McBryde, 1920. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/40

Image P-4325/41

Frances Worth, George C. Worth, and Martha, January 1927. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/41

Image P-4325/42

Frances Worth and other missionaries on the Congo, 1927. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/42

Image P-4325/43

Princess Bulafe and her retainers in the Congo, 1924. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/43

Image P-4325/44

King Lukenga and unidentified others in the Congo, 1925. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/44

Image P-4325/45

Bulafe Station, the Congo, 1925. Photo.: 9 x 14.5 cm. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/45

Image P-4325/46

Bulafe Station, the Congo, 1925. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/46

Image P-4325/47

Frances Worth and unidentified others in the Congo, 1926. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/47

Image P-4325/48

Frances Worth and unidentified students at the Bulafe Station school, the Congo, 1927. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/48

Image P-4325/49

Josephine McBryde, May McAlister, Sallie Little, and Jennie Vardell at the Charlotte (N. C.) Female Institute, circa 1890. #04325, Series: "3. Pictures, 1875-1962." P-4325/49

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Processing Information

Processed by: Jane H. Odom, April 1983; Connie Cartledge, with processing assistance from Mark Beasley October 1986

Encoded by: ByteManagers Inc., 2008

Updated by: Kathryn Michaelis, January 2010

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