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|Size||13.0 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 9000 items)|
|Abstract||Elijah Fuller of Fayetteville, N.C., was active in the mercantile firm of Hart & Fuller, circa 1834 until his death in 1853. In addition to his activities as a merchant, Fuller was a Revolutionary War pension agent and an assignee in bankruptcy court for Cumberland County, N.C. Elijah Fuller married Mary Ann McKay, daughter of Edward and Ann McKay, in 1846. They had two children, Edward P. and Sallie. Business papers and personal correspondence, chiefly of Elijah Fuller. The business items include account books, receipts, promissory notes, and other materials relating to Hart & Fuller as merchants and cotton factors and to other business ventures. At some point, Fuller's partner, James Hart (d. 1840), relocated to Mobile, Ala., and opened another drygoods business, called Hart, Anderson, & Co., in Mobile. Several items relate to trade between Hart & Fuller and the new Alabama firm. Many items pertain to Fuller's pension agent and bankruptcy work. There are also some business records for other Fayetteville merchants: Mary Ann McKay Fuller's grandfather, William MacLennan (d. 1819), chiefly from the 1780s to around 1820; Thomas Curtis, who served as mayor of Fayetteville after the Civil War and who may have worked for Hart & Fuller, 1840s-1860s; and an unknown blacksmith, 1820s-1850s. Also included are a few items relating to the temperance movement in Fayetteville and to the militia. Personal correspondence includes letters from Fuller and his wife to family members, including Fuller's brothers and various nieces and nephews in Franklin and Wake counties, N.C. These letters focus on family activities. McKay family mateirals are chiefly from the 1820s.|
|Creator||Fuller, Elijah, 1810-1853.|
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Elijah Fuller was born in 1810 to Bartholomew Fuller of Franklin County, N.C., Revolutionary patriot and Baptist preacher, and Sarah Cooke Fuller. He probably grew up in the area around Louisburg, N.C.
Fuller apparently moved to Fayetteville, N.C., and was a partner in the mercantile firm of Hart & Fuller by 1834. Fuller's partner James Hart (d. 1840), relocated to Alabama and opened another dry goods business called Hart, Anderson, & Co. in Mobile. Fuller continued to run Hart & Fuller until his death in 1853. In addition to his activities as a merchant, he was a Revolutionary War pension agent and an assignee in bankruptcy court for Cumberland County.
Fuller married Mary Ann McKay, daughter of Dr. Edward and Ann McKay in 1846. They had two children, Edward P. and Sallie.
(Genealogical information from Theodore A. Fuller's Early Southern Fullers.)Back to Top
Business papers and personal correspondence, chiefly of Elijah Fuller. The business items include account books, receipts, promissory notes, and other materials relating to Hart & Fuller as merchants and cotton factors and to other business ventures. At some point, Fuller's partner, James Hart (d. 1840), relocated to Mobile, Ala., and opened another drygoods business, called Hart, Anderson, & Co., in Mobile. Several items relate to trade between Hart & Fuller and the new Alabama firm. Many items pertain to Fuller's pension agent and bankruptcy work. There are also some business records for other Fayetteville merchants: Mary Ann McKay Fuller's grandfather, William MacLennan (d. 1819), chiefly from the 1780s to around 1820; Thomas Curtis, who served as mayor of Fayetteville after the Civil War and who may have worked for Hart & Fuller, 1840s-1860s; and an unknown blacksmith, 1820s-1850s. Also included are a few items relating to the temperance movement in Fayetteville and to the militia. Personal correspondence includes letters from Fuller and his wife to family members, including Fuller's brothers and various nieces and nephews in Franklin and Wake counties, N.C. These letters focus on family activities. McKay family mateirals are chiefly from the 1820s.Back to Top
Business and family correspondence, printed pension forms and advertisements, bound letter books, and an album. This series contains the business correspondence of Fayetteville, N.C., merchants William MacLennan, Elijah Fuller, and Thomas Curtis in both loose and bound forms. Also included is correspondence of the McKay and Fuller families.
Early letters, 1810-1829, are primarily those of William MacLennan and the McKay family. William MacLennan was Mary Ann McKay Fuller's grandfather. From the 1830s to 1853, correspondence consists primarily of business letters of Elijah Fuller and Fuller family letters. After his death in 1853, Elijah Fuller's business was taken over by J. & T. Waddill. Family letters after 1853 are primarily to Elijah's widow.
Loose business and family correspondence, business advertisements, and pension forms. The material in this subseries falls roughly into three time periods: 1811-1829, 1830-1853, and 1853-1911.
Letters, 1811-1829, are those of William MacLennan and the McKay family. William MacLennan was a Fayetteville, N.C., merchant. His daughter Anne married Dr. Edward McKay. Letters about notes due MacLennan, cotton shipments, and requests for dry goods make up the bulk of the business correspondence. The majority of letters in the 1820s are between Edward McKay and his brother John McKay.
Letter, 1830-1853, relate chiefly to the business and personal life of Elijah Fuller. Fuller corresponded with his partner James Hart; his brothers Bartholomew, Jones, and William; creditors, debtors, shippers, other cotton factors, and other business associates.
James Hart left the firm of Hart & Fuller and moved to Mobile, Ala., sometime before 1834. There are a number of letters from James Hart to his partner telling him how much better the business opportunities were in Mobile than in Fayetteville. On 1 June 1838, Hart wrote, "I have no idea of ever returning to Fayetteville to live. I think it about the poorest place that I have ever seen. ... I do think you ought to get away form there as soon as possible--it is throwing time away for any young man of your capacity and business habits to remain in such a place as Fayetteville."
Two of Fuller's brothers also went further South. Bartholomew eventually settled in Forkland, Ala.; Jones lived for a time in Mobile, but later moved back to North Carolina. Jones worked for James Hart in his new mercantile firm of Hart, Anderson & Co. Fuller's older brother, Willie remained near the Fuller homestead in Louisburg, N.C. Fuller corresponded primarily with Jones. His letters include items about business between the firms of Hart & Fuller and Hart, Anderson & Co. and about family concerns.
Fuller apparently longed to leave North Carolina, but was never able to do so. On 1 December 1838, he wrote to Jones, "I was in hopes that I could have so managed my affairs in Carolina so as to have left this season but of that I see no chance and have accordingly abandoned the idea for the present." A recurring theme in all of the letters to Fuller from family members was the request for money.
Fuller also corresponded with various nieces and nephews until his marriage in 1846. He seemed to be particularly close to his niece Sarah Fuller, daughter of his deceased brother Thomas and his wife Catherine. Fuller was not only executor of his brother's estate, but also a surrogate father to his niece. In response to one of Fuller's letters giving her advice on men, Sarah Fuller wrote on 22 August 1842, "I do thank you most sincerely my dear uncle for the kind & fatherly care you have always exerted over me."
As a businessman, Fuller worked not only in his mercantile house, but also as a pension agent and an assignee in bankruptcy court for Cumberland County. As pension agent, Fuller received many letters granting him power of attorney. As an assignee in bankruptcy court, his letters focused on trial dates and notes owed. Fuller's mercantile firm served as a bank for many people and their requests for renewals of notes are also included. As cotton factor, Fuller corresponded with firms such as Leland Bros. in Charleston, S.C., and Richard Irvin in New York City. On 30 January 1847, Richard Irvin wrote to Fuller rejoicing over the rise in cotton prices, "... cotton has again advanced 1/2 cent this week and there is great excitement in the market. Fair uplands [cotton] are worth 13 at 13 1/4 cent and the market is still going up."
After Elijah Fuller's death in 1853, his business affairs were handled by D. A. Ray, nephew Thomas C. Fuller, and his widow Mary Ann. By 1855, the business had been succeeded by J. & T. Waddill. After this date, there are decreasing numbers of letters, including some Waddill business correspondence and a few family letters.
Note that a few business letters that are written on bills of sale, account statements, invoices, etc., are filed with financial materials in subseries 2.1.
Letterbooks of William MacLennan, Elijah Fuller, and Thomas Curtis, and a personal album of Mary Ann McKay. William MacLennan was a Fayetteville, N.C., merchant and Mary Ann McKay Fuller's grandfather. Thomas Curtis, who became mayor of Fayetteville after the Civil War, was a merchant who may have worked for Fuller & Hart.
Most of the letterbooks document arrangements for shipping cotton, trying to collect debts, and other related business matters. On 5 February 1846, Elijah Fuller wrote to a Mr. Sater "... please reply to this as early as you can as the account must be cleared in some way soon and it is an unpleasant matter to resort to the strong arm of the law."
The album belonged to Mary Ann McKay, Elijah Fuller's wife. The flyleaf of the album has the following inscription: "What is an album? 'Tis a book of foolish girls, for foolish boys to write in." The album contains sentimental sayings and poems, including one called "Mary" that was copied from The Southern Literary Messenger: "Mary!--A name in every age,/ Alike to saints and poets dear,/ Enshrined in many a holy page,/ Embalmed in many a tender tear."
Where new volume numbers have been assigned, old volume numbers are appended to individual volume descriptions.
Loose and bound business papers consist of bills of sale receipts, court cases, promissory notes, pension claims, checks, shipping statements, steamboat records, indentures, deeds, account books, barter books, bank books, day books, and other related material of William MacLennan, Elijah Fuller, and an unknown blacksmith.
Receipts, bills of sale, account statements, shipping statements, notes, bankruptcy cases, invoices, Revolutionary War pension claims, insurance policies, promissory notes, and other material relating to William MacLennan's and Elijah Fuller's business activities in Fayetteville, N.C.
Both MacLennan and Fuller ran small dry goods stores in Fayetteville, N.C. Both men were fairly typical examples of storekeepers in small interior southern towns. Their business operated both for the large planter and small farmer. They supplied not only dry goods, such as hats, farms tools, and clothing to the local farmer and planter population, but also performed banking functions, extending credit and dealing in promissory notes. An 1811 inventory of goods valued William MacLennan's stock at about 4,000 pounds. His store carried such diverse items as kid gloves, silk parasols, harness leather, farm chisels, ginger, and English teapots.
Hart & Fuller dealt with much the same clientele as MacLennan's. Also included are materials relating to Fuller's work as an assignee in bankruptcy court and a Revolutionary War pension claims collector.
Ledgers, daybooks, account books, bank books, invoice books, steam boat records, and other related material of William MacLennan, the firm of Hart & Fuller, Jones Fuller, other merchants in Fayetteville, and a blacksmith's business. There is also a list of Cumberland County paupers.
Volumes with page counts have numbered pages. Where new volume numbers have been assigned, old volume numbers are appended to individual volume descriptions.
Volume 7: 3 June 1813-October 1813. Daybook of William MacLennan. On loose sheets in back of book, inventory of W. MacLennan's goods and accounts in settlement of MacLennan's estate, 1814-1815. (Formerly volume 3.) #01573, Subseries: "2.2. Bound Financial and Legal Material, 1813-1905 and undated." Folder 204
Volume 14: 1835-1836. Account book and receipt book of auction sales from the estate of James Fuller. Also contains an undated journal of a voyage to the West Indies and back by Jones Fuller. (Formerly volume 12.) #01573, Subseries: "2.2. Bound Financial and Legal Material, 1813-1905 and undated." Folder 211
Volume 24: July 1846. Journal and expense account book for A. Gilchrist's trip in North Carolina and Virginia. (A. Gilchrist could possibly be Adam Gilchrist, minister of First Presbyterian Church in Fayetteville; or Alexander Gilchrist, a blacksmith in Fayetteville.) #01573, Subseries: "2.2. Bound Financial and Legal Material, 1813-1905 and undated." Folder 221
Volume S-34: 4 October-20 December 1855. Daybook, invoices of goods shipped by George Williams and Co., Fayetteville. 31 August 1857-23 July 1861; 1863. Naval stores; cotton accounts and a few business letters. (Formerly volume 42.) #01573, Subseries: "2.2. Bound Financial and Legal Material, 1813-1905 and undated." Folder 231
Processed by: Carolyn Hamby with assistance from Culley Holderfield, Abigail Peoples, and Alicia Reeves, October 1995
Encoded by: ByteManagers Inc., 2008
This collection was processed with support, in part, from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Division of Preservation and Access.Back to Top