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This collection was processed with support from the Randleigh Trust Foundation. Funding from the State Library of North Carolina supported the encoding of this finding aid.
|Size||12.5 feet of linear shelf space (approximately 7,000 items)|
|Abstract||Patterson family members were merchants, manufacturers, and public officials. Family members included General Edmund Jones (1771-1844) of Wilkes and Caldwell counties, N.C.; Samuel Finley Patterson (1799-1874) of Salem, N.C., banker, merchant, railroad president, state official, and son-in-law of Jones; Rufus Lenoir Patterson (1830-1879), merchant manufacturer, state official, and son of S. F. Patterson; Samuel Legerwood Patterson (1850-1918), another son of S. F. Patterson, farmer and North Carolina commissioner of agriculture; and Lindsay Patterson (b. 1858), lawyer and son of R. L. Patterson, and of his wife Lucy (Patterson) Patterson, clubwoman, writer, lecturer, and Republican National Committeewoman for North Carolina. The collection includes personal, business, and political papers, chiefly 1800-1880, of the Patterson, Jones, and related families. Volumes include account books from 1796 of merchandising, lumbering, and lands of General Edmund Jones; mercantile account books and a variety of other business records, 1830-1870, of Samuel Finley Patterson; account books, before and after the Civil War, of Rufus Lenoir Patterson, including records of a textile mill in Salem, 1855-1866, of merchandising and personal business, and of dealings with slaves, and with African American laborers and servants after the Civil War; personal account books; a diary, 1887-1894; a notebook of political speeches, 1890, of Samuel Legerwood Patterson; and other family records including a law student's diary at Yale, 1840. Correspondence, chiefly 1833-1880, concerns a wide variety of family and business matters of the Pattersons and of other prominent persons to whom they were related, and their political activity throughout the nineteenth century, including many state and local offices they held. There are a few papers of Lindsay Patterson and of his wife Lucy (Patterson) Patterson.|
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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Edmund Jones (1771-1844) of Wilkes County, N.C., and later Caldwell County, was a state legislator almost continuously from 1798 to 1838. Jones was a general in the state militia and married Ann Lenoir, daughter of General William Lenoir. After his marriage he built his home, Palmyra, on land Ann Lenoir Patterson received from her father as a wedding gift. The children of Edmund and Ann included: Ann Eliza, William Rufus, Phoebe Caroline, Martha Myra, Edmund Walter, John Thomas, Sarah Lenoir, and Newton.
Jones's daughter, Phoebe Caroline, married Samuel Finley Patterson in 1824. Samuel Finley Patterson (1799-1874), planter and politician, was born in Rockbridge County, Va., of Scotch-Irish parents. In 1811, he went to live with his uncle in Wilkesboro, N.C., where he became a clerk at Waugh and Finley's. When he turned 21, he started his own business, which he pursued until 1840. In 1848, Patterson, his brother-in-law Edmund Jones, and James C. Harper started the first cotton factory in Caldwell County.
Samuel F. Patterson had a lifelong interest in politics. At the age of 22, he won the position of engrossing clerk of the House of Commons; he continued in that capacity for 14 years in the state legislature. In 1835, he became chief clerk of the Senate, and, from 1835 to 1837, he served as treasurer of North Carolina. He was a Whig with a strong interest in internal improvements. Patterson also served as chair of the county court, 1844; in the House of Commons, 1864; and as a state senator 1846, 1848, and 1864. In 1866, he served as a delegate to the second session of the state's constitutional convention. Other offices Patterson held included clerk of the Superior Court, justice of the peace, Indian commissioner, trustee of the University of North Carolina, and various positions with the Masons. Patterson was active in the Episcopal church, serving as a lay delegate to the General Convention in Baltimore in 1871.
Patterson was also an enthusiastic farmer. At Palmyra, where he and his wife moved in 1844, he introduced new seeds, improved implements, and experimented with better methods of cultivation. He and his wife had several children, including Rufus Lenoir (1830-1879) and Samuel Legerwood (1850-1918).
Rufus Lenoir Patterson was the eldest son of Samuel Finley and Phoebe Caroline Patterson. He was educated at the Raleigh Academy and then the school of the Reverend T. S. W. Mott, an Episcopal minister in Caldwell County. He attended the University of North Carolina and was graduated in 1851. He studied law under John A. Gilmer, although he never practiced.
Rufus L. Patterson married Marie Louise Morehead, daughter of Governor John M. Morehead. Patterson preferred business to an agricultural life and moved to Greensboro to study banking under his wife's uncle, Jesse H. Lindsay. Soon, with financial aid from his father-in-law, Patterson went into business for himself, becoming owner and manager of a cotton, flour, and paper mill in Salem. He also became active in county politics, serving as chair of the Forsyth County Court from 1855 to 1860 and as mayor of Salem for several years.
Rufus Patterson was a Jacksonian Democrat, but became disenchanted with his party after the 1860. As a delegate to the North Carolina Constitutional Convention, he voted for and signed the state's ordinance of secession. In 1865, he served as a delegate to the Constitutional Convention, a member of the Conservative Party, and a staunch supporter of Jonathan Worth.
Patterson's first wife, Marie Louise, died in 1862. In 1864, he married Mary E. Fries, daughter of Francis Fries, a successful Salem merchant and manufacturer. After the war, Patterson entered into business with H. W. Fries. At the time of his death, he and Fries owned several cotton and paper mills and a general merchandising firm. Patterson actively supported railroad development and other internal improvements. He also served as a trustee of the University of North Carolina (1874).
Rufus Patterson had five children from his first marriage and six children from his second. Among these children were Rufus Lenoir Patterson, Jr., inventor and businessman, and J. Lindsay Patterson, attorney. Although raised Episcopalian, Patterson converted to the Moravian religion.
Samuel Legerwood Patterson (1850-1918), farmer and legislator, was born at Palmyra, another son of Samuel Finley and Phoebe Caroline Patterson. Samuel L. Patterson was educated at Faucette's school, Bingham's, and Wilson's Academy. He entered the University of North Carolina in 1867, but the school closed the following year. He then attended the University of Virginia for one year before taking a clerking job in Salem. In 1873, he married Mary S. Senseman, daughter of a Moravian minister from Indiana.
Although a Republican, Patterson was appointed county commissioner and district superintendent of the census in a Democratic county. He served in the state House of Representatives in 1891 and 1898 and in the state Senate in 1893. In the legislature, he was chair of the committee on agriculture and member of many other committees. He was a trustee of the University of North Carolina. Patterson was commissioner of agriculture from 1895 to 1897, when he was removed by the Fusion Party. He was reappointed in 1899 and then elected by popular vote through 1908. Patterson Hall at North Carolina State University is named in his honor.
Jesse Lindsay Patterson (1858-1922), attorney, was born in Greensboro, N.C., the son of Rufus Lenoir and Marie Louise Morehead Patterson. Lindsay Patterson received his education in the primary schools in Salem and, in 1872, enrolled in the prestigious Finley High School in Lenoir. Two years later, he entered Davidson College from which he graduated in 1878 with a B.A. degree.
Patterson went to Chapel Hill after graduation and read law with Judge W. H. Battle. Later, he moved to Greensboro and studied under Judges Robert P. Dick and John H. Dillard. In 1881, he was admitted to the North Carolina bar and immediately relocated to Winston, where he practiced law for 41 years.
Lindsay Patterson served for two years (1882-1884) as solicitor of the Forsyth County Criminal Court. The capping legal experience in Patterson's career came in 1901, when he was defense attorney in the impeachment trial of two Supreme Court members, Chief Justice David M. Furches and Justice Robert M. Douglass. The justices were Republicans and party lines showed in the charges against them, charges judged sufficient by a Democratic General Assembly. It was to the credit of Patterson and his associates in the trial that the justices were acquitted of all charges. Another earlier case brought Patterson local and statewide recognition. He was the successful counsel in the case of Whitfield v. Byrd (158 N.C. 451), which established title to Pilot Mountain (the knob, not the town) after a long trial and several arguments before the state Supreme Court.
In 1888, Lindsay Patterson married Lucy Bramlette Patterson (1865-1942). She was an organizational leader, literary figure, and Republican National Committeewoman. She was born in Castle Rock, Tenn., daughter of Colonel William Houston and Cornelia Humes Graham Patterson. In 1882, she was graduated from Salem Academy.
Beginning in 1904, Lucy Patterson began writing gardening columns for the Progressive Farmer. She also published articles inr the Charlotte Observer and an article on her grandfather, Major General Robert Patterson, which appeared in the Journal of American History around 1907. She also had a regular column in the Winston-Salem Journal-Sentinel. Lucy Patterson is perhaps best remembered for her annual award for literary achievement in the state, the Patterson Memorial Cup. Thirteen writers received the award from 1905 to 1933.
Lucy Patterson had wide-spread interests. After World War I, she visited the former Balkan states and worked with a relief effort for war widows and orphans. She was decorated by King Alexander of Yugoslavia for her work in Serbia. In North Carolina, she was organizing president and president for the first three years (1902-1905) of the State Federation of Women's Clubs. She was also organizing regent (1902) of the Centennial Chapter of Salem, later renamed the General Joseph Winston Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution. She was active in the Southern Woman's Interstate Association for the Betterment of Public Schools, the Jamestown Historical Commission, the Shakespeare Tercentenary Celebration, and Work for Relief in Belgium. An effective party worker on the national level, she served on the Republican National Executive Committee from 1923 until her death.
Lucy Patterson and her husband, Lindsay, never had children, but reared two nieces, Margaret and Catherine Miller.
[Biographical source: William S. Powell, ed., Dictionary of North Carolina Biography, Volume 5 (Chapel Hill, N.C.: The University of North Carolina Press, 1994): 33-37.]Back to Top
The collection includes personal, business, and political papers, chiefly 1800-1880, of the Patterson, Jones, and related families. Volumes include account books from 1796 of merchandising, lumbering, and lands of General Edmund Jones; mercantile account books and a variety of other business records, 1830-1870, of Samuel Finley Patterson; account books, before and after the Civil War, of Rufus Lenoir Patterson, including records of a textile mill in Salem, N.C., 1855-1866, of merchandising and personal business, and of dealings with slaves, and with African American laborers and servants after the Civil War; personal account books; a diary, 1887-1894; a notebook of political speeches, 1890, of Samuel Legerwood Patterson; and other family records including a law student's diary at Yale, 1840. Correspondence, chiefly 1833-1880, concerns a wide variety of family and business matters of the Pattersons and of other prominent persons to whom they were related, and their political activity throughout the nineteenth century, including many state and local offices they held. There are a few papers of Lindsay Patterson and of his wife Lucy Patterson.
Papers are separated into two main sections, Personal and Political Papers and Business and Legal Papers, both of which overlap at times in regards to political and business papers. The former include many of the private letters to family members within both the Jones and Patterson families, especially among female members. Political papers include materials relating to positions held by Edmund Jones, Samuel F. Patterson, Rufus L. Patterson, and Samuel L. Patterson. Business and legal papers include receipts and accounts from the plantation and agricultural endeavors of the family, land grants and other legal papers, and information about the business transactions of the family. The Wilkes County, N.C., papers include receipts from Edmund Jones's brother Larkin Jones's position as sheriff of Wilkes County and other county receipts. Volumes are primarily account books or arithmetic books of the Patterson children.Back to Top
Correspondence dealing with family life; travels; love affairs; deaths; and local, state and national politics. Included are a vivid account of a southern Christmas, 1862; discussions on religion (see especially 1830); the growth of southern cities; and medical practices in 1820. There are also school compositions, primarily of Samuel L. Patterson, on a variety of historical and political topics. Many of these are undated. Descriptions of university and school life, especially at the University of North Carolina, are found in letters from 1833 to 1836, 1848 to 1850, and 1866 to 1869.
Political letters include discussions on the increase in tariff duties during the 1820s and the subsequent crisis of nullification in South Carolina in 1832 and 1833, especially in December 1832. A letter in 1836 from Thomas Jones to his brother Edmund Jones discusses nullification, Calhoun, abolitionists, the French question, and surveys for building a railroad in South Carolina. Other items discuss Samuel L. Patterson's appointment to district superintendent of the census in 1880; there are also numerous letters petitioning appointments to enumerator positions and other correspondence dealing with the census. Also included are letters relating to Patterson's position as North Carolina commissioner of agriculture, 1895-1897 and again 1899-1908.
Military events are also documented. There are, for example, a description of North Carolina state militia and camp life in the War of 1812; a vivid account of the victorious campaign of General Macomb in the Lake Champaign region in August and September 1814; discussions of the Battle of Manassas; and materials relating to other battles, problems of military supplies, and army and life on the homefront, 1862-1865.
Mainly bills of sale, deeds, warrants, summons, notes, price lists, land entries, tax payment delinquent lists, wills, inventories of the various Patterson estates, bills of sale of slaves (1808, 1822-1823), and lists of debts due the estates. Many letters discuss agricultural concerns of the estates and the running of the estates when the Pattersons were in Raleigh for political reasons. From 1797 to 1860, the family was largely engaged in agriculture, land speculation, and the production of horses, mules, and lumber. From 1861 to 1890, there is information on the Patterson and Fries Co., merchants of Winston-Salem. Lindsay Patterson wrote to his uncle, Samuel L. Patterson, often about business matters in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
Tax lists and receipts from government activities in Wilkes County and receipts from Sheriff Larkin Jones, brother of Edmund Jones. Other Wilkes County receipts with the signature of Samuel Patterson are filed in Series 2.
Account and tax listing books of Edmund Jones showing names of taxable persons in Wilkes County, number of acres owned, number of poles, tax on studs, and amounts due in pounds and shillings with districts listed by names of captain. There are also mercantile blotters; records from Edmund Jones's saw mill; account books of Samuel F. Patterson; ledgers from Shelly and Patterson cotton mill and R. L. Patterson and Co.; and arithmetic and other school exercise books of Edmund Jones's sons, Rufus and William, and his daughter, Phoebe Caroline. Also included is a diary of John T. Jones, brother of Edmund W. Jones, while he was a student at Yale, where he died before finishing his law degree.
Items separated include oversize volumes (V-578/S-39 and V-578/S-46), pictures (P-578/1-3), and oversize papers (OP-578/26).Back to Top
Processed by: Carolyn Hamby, Abigail Peoples, and Suzanne Ruffing, March 1996
Encoded by: Mara Dabrishus, September 2004
This collection was processed with support from the Randleigh Trust Foundation.
Funding from the State Library of North Carolina supported the encoding of this finding aid.Back to Top