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|Abstract||James Henry Hammond was a lawyer and newspaper editor of Columbia, S.C. In 1831 Hammond married Catherine E. FitzSimons, daughter of a wealthy Charleston merchant, and acquired the "Silver Bluff" cotton plantation on the Savannah River in the marriage settlement. He was elected U.S. senator in 1834 and governor of South Carolina in 1842. He returned to the U.S. Senate in 1857 but resigned his seat when Lincoln was elected. The collection includes letters from Hammond to his wife, Catherine (FitzSimons) Hammond, chiefly about the politics influencing his unsuccessful bid for governor in 1840; social and household matters in Columbia; plantation life at Silver Bluff; and family affairs. Also included is a critique of the work of furniture designer Duncan Phyfe.|
|Creator||Hammond, James Henry, 1807-1864.|
|Curatorial Unit||University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Library. Southern Historical Collection.|
Processed by: Lisa Tolbert, June 1990
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Twelve letters, all from Hammond to his wife, Catherine E. FitzSimons Hammond.
The earliest letter, written in 1831, describes family tensions over Hammond's recent marriage and a disagreement over his father-in-law's estate. An 1834 letter was written during his campaign for the Senate seat he eventually won. In an 1836 letter Hammond mentions health problems and his desire to give up his Senate seat and go to Europe. Several letters, written in 1840, document Hammond's disgust with party politics during the South Carolina governor's election, which he lost. Hammond also spent time in New York that same year buying household furnishings, which he described in detail. These letters include a critique of the New York furniture maker Duncan Phyfe, whose designs Hammond declared overpriced and "behind the times." Letters dated 1842 to 1845 deal chiefly with plantation matters.Back to Top