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Botsford Family Papers, 1769-1869

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This collection is divided into three series, with two further divided into subseries. Each contains folders organized chronologically, followed by folders containing undated items.

Series 1, Edmund Botsford

Subseries 1, Manuscript sermons, 1799-1819 and undated

Subseries 2, Essays/Writings

Subseries 3, Records

Subseries 4: Diary, 1769-1770

Series 2, Catherine McIver (Botsford) Fort

Subseries 1, Correspondence

Subseries 2, Manuscripts

Series 3, Edmund Park Botsford, journal, essays

Scope and Contents

The Botsford Family Papers consists of correspondence, sermons, essays, manuscripts, financial records, a diary and writings of Baptist pastor Edmund Botsford, his daughter, Catherine “Caty” McIver (Botsford) Fort, and his son, Edmund Park Botsford. Included are transcriptions by Dr. Glen Clayton, former Special Collections Librarian, of several sermons, essays, a journal and Botsford’s personal diary.

Series 1, Subseries 1, Edmund Botsford’s manuscript sermons record the date and place sermons were delivered, scripture reference and the text of the sermon. Several notebooks list scripture reference, along with the date and place of delivery.

Subseries 2, Essays/Writings include manuscript copies of his book, A Spiritual Voyage, as well as several manuscripts by Botsford given to his sister-in-law, Mary Ann (Williams) McIver.

Subseries 3, includes church meeting minutes, a record of deaths in George Town 1797-1800, a scrapbook/ledger that contains invoice records, short writings/prayers, and newspaper clippings. A journal Botsford kept when he travelled to Rhode Island, New York, Massachusetts, and New Jersey between July 4 and November 7, 1806, contains a record of his expenses, purchases, names of ministers he met, and accounts of his daily activities.

Correspondence is the bulk of the papers in Series 2, Subseries 1; the majority being recipient copies of letters to Catherine McIver (Botsford) Fort from friends and extended family, with a small number of letters from extended family to Edmund Botsford. These include two letters from Jas [James] Hinton who was related to Botsford’s sister’s husband. There are two letters from Edmund P. Botsford to his father, as well as eight letters to his sister during 1817-1818. There are seven letters from Botsford to his daughter Catherine between 1801-1818. There is one letter written to Catherine’s husband, Moses Fort.

Mrs. Fort’s frequent correspondents include:

  • Nieces, Sarah B. (Park) Peck [1803-1895]; Mary (McIver) Furman (1820-1892) [wife of Richard Furman 1816-1886];
  • Cousins, Susan (Evans) Mallary (1805-1835) [husband C.D.] and Lucy (McIver) Watson (1841-1916);
  • Aunt, Mary Ann (Williams) McIver (1772-1834) [husband John E. McIver, 1764-1802]
  • Friend, Mary (Brooks) Tuttle (1814-1835), her daughter Mary Anna Edwards (Tuttle) Stockton (1830-1906) along with siblings E. Benjamin and Elizabeth Tuttle;
  • Friend, Elizabeth (Witherspoon) Williams (1782-1840) [wife of S.C. Gov. David R. Williams]
  • Lizzie S C Evans [Elizabeth (Stockton) Evans 1817-1856, half-sister to Frank R. Stockton, husband of Mary A.E. Tuttle]

The manuscripts in Series 2, Subseries 2 include those authored or used by Catherine Mclver (Botsford) Fort. A journal by Lucy McIver attending the Barhamville Academy in Columbia in 1850 also records monies received by C.M. Fort 1857-1863 and family deaths 1860-1871. Manuscripts also include collected poetry and essays, records of expenses, records of sermons heard, and hymn and ballad lyrics by various composers. Of interest is an unsigned, undated manuscript of hymn lyrics for a hymn, “Now our days of cherished union . . . ,” [written by James C. Furman, c. 1846, used at the Furman Institution commencement.]

Edmund Park Botsford’s papers consist mainly of essays. According to Mallery’s Memoirs of Elder Edmund Botsford, Edmund was residing in Philadelphia as an apprentice in a printing office ca. 1816-1817, and this corresponds to Edmund’s notes regarding his printing projects in his journal 1816-1817.