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 Duplication Policy 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.
|Size||3.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 3800 items)|
|Abstract||David Miller Carter was a lawyer and landowner of eastern North Carolina; Confederate colonel and military judge; legislator, 1862-1865; resident of Washington, N.C., until he moved to Raleigh in 1874. The collection includes papers relating to land ownership and legal business mixed, after 1849, with family and personal correspondence and letters from political leaders of both parties. Civil War items relate to Carter's activities as military judge and other matters. Scattered papers deal with the Bank of Washington, the Albemarle and Chesapeake Canal Company, the sale of slaves to Carter, and a wide variety of affairs in North Carolina. Correspondence of Carter's wife, Harriett Armistead Ryan Benbury Carter (1833-1877), is also included. Later papers are those of Carter's daughters, Sarah Lindsay Carter and Laura Armistead Carter (died 1935).|
|Creator||Carter, David Miller, 1830-1879.|
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.
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David Miller Carter (1830-1879) was a lawyer and landowner of eastern North Carolina; a Confederate colonel and military judge; a legislator, 1862-1865; and a resident of Washington, N.C., until he moved to Raleigh in 1874. Carter was the son of David Carter and Sarah Lindsay Spencer Carter of Hyde County, N.C. He was educated at the University of North Carolina, graduating in 1851. He practiced law in Washington, N.C., as the partner of Richard Spaight Donnell prior to the Civil War and after the war as the partner of Edward Jenner Warren.
Carter served in the Civil War as captain, later lieutenant colonel, in the 4th North Carolina Infantry Regiment. In June 1863 he was appointed provost marshal of the 2nd Corps, commanded by Richard S. Ewell, serving also as judge of the military court attached to that corps, and in July 1863 he was commissioned a colonel in the cavalry and assigned to serve as the presiding judge of the military court attached to the 3rd Corps, commanded by A. P. Hill. He resigned in August 1864 on the grounds of his membership in the North Carolina General Assembly.
Carter served as a member of the North Carolina House of Commons from Beaufort County in the legislatures of 1862-1863 and 1864-1865. He did not hold political office thereafter but for several years was interested in politics and corresponded with political leaders. In the years 1865-1867 his correspondents were chiefly Republicans, with whom he was evidently in sympathy, but he opposed Radical Reconstruction and the calling of the North Carolina constitutional convention of 1868 and broke with Republicans in late 1867. His political correspondence thereafter was chiefly with Democrats and Liberal Republicans. In 1872 he ran for United States Congress against the Republican incumbent, Clinton L. Cobb, of Pasquotank County, who won. Carter's active participation in politics seems to have ceased after this campaign.
Carter's first wife was Isabella Perry, daughter of David B. Perry of Rosedale, near Washington, N.C. She died in mid-1866 and in May 1869 he married Harriet Armistead Ryan Benbury, widow of John A. Benbury of Albania, N.C. She was the daughter of Emily Baker Turner and Joseph Jordan Ryan and the step-daughter of David Outlaw and grew up in the Outlaw home in Windsor, N.C.
Carter and his wife Isabella had three children, Sarah Lindsay, David Miller Junior, and one who died as an infant. The Benburys had a daughter Emily and an infant boy who died. Carter and Harriet had three daughters, Harriet, who died as an infant; Laura Lindsay; and Frances Spencer. Emily Benbury married Dr. Hubert Haywood and lived in Raleigh. David M. Carter Junior married Ella Mann and lived in Hyde County and later in Washington, N.C. Sarah L. Carter married Theodore F. Davidson of Asheville, N.C., in December 1893. Frances Spencer Carter married Martin Wilhelm Schaeffer of Dresden, Germany, in 1899.Back to Top
The collection is chiefly personal correspondence and other items related to David Miller Carter's legal practice, financial and business interests, land holdings, and military service. There are also papers and correspondence of Carter's wife, Harriett Armistead Ryan Benbury Carter, and his daughters, Sarah Lindsay Carter and Laura Armistead Carter. Antebellum papers are related to ownership of land and property including enslaved persons. Civil War items relate to Carter's activities as military judge and other matters. After the war, many of the items relate to North Carolina and national politics, including Carter's relationship with both the Republican and Democratic parties and his unsuccessful 1878 congressional bid. Scattered papers deal with the Bank of Washington, the Albemarle and Chesapeake Canal Company, and a wide variety of affairs in North Carolina.Back to Top
|Extra Oversize Paper Folder X-OPF-143/1|
|Image Folder PF-143/1||
Includes cartes de visite and albumen print.
Processed by: SHC Staff
Encoded by: Noah Huffman, December 2007
Updated by: Kate Stratton and Jodi Berkowitz, December 2009; Nancy Kaiser, October 2020
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.Back to Top