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William D. Simpson Papers, 1850-1897; bulk 1861-1868

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This collection is arranged by types of material, with the correspondence arranged chronologically.

Scope and Contents

The collection consists of correspondence, a will, a deed, a petition, a purchase log and invoice.

The correspondence consists of twenty-seven letters, with sixteen letters recipient copies to Simpson or his brother, John Wistar Simpson (1821-1893), or his son, Henry Y. Simpson (1852-1937). Six letters are from Simpson to his wife, Jane and one to his brother written 1860-1863.

There are two letters from T[homas] J[efferson] Arnold (1832-1878) to his sister, Susan E. Arnold where he mentions Dogtown and Our Horsetown mining towns in California. Arnold was a Laurens District native who became the City Engineer of Oakland, Cal. The Arnold’s mother was Mary Saxon Arnold [married Ira Arnold], sister of Hugh Saxon (1798-1851).

Of interest is a Petition for Sequestration, The Confederate States of America vs. Joel Smith of Laurens, SC, copy [1861].

The handwritten Last Will and Testament of John Garlington [died March 1, 1866], names all of his slaves [neighbor of Dr. John Barksdale (married to T.J. Arnold’s sister Nancy) and Dr. John W. Simpson whose son-in-law, Richard W. Simpson, was cousin of William D. Simpson]. The Deed is between Francis Thomason to [William?] Aaron Hill paid November 22, 1856, and certified by John Garlington, witnessed by J. Wistar Simpson.

There are no documents from the period when Simpson was appointed Chief Justice of the state Supreme Court.