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MANUSCRIPTS COLLECTIONS

Iveson Lewis Brookes Papers (Addition), 1847-1876

Four manuscripts, 25 May 1847, 22 January 1849, 7 September 1850, and 18 June 1876, added to the papers of Iveson Lewis Brookes (1793-1865), Baptist clergyman, schoolteacher, planter, and proslavery apologist, who resided at Woodville plantation near Hamburg, consist of letters addressed either to Iveson's son Walker J. Brookes or to his future bride, Harriet Estes.

Walker's wife Harriet was a native of Barnwell District (now Allendale County), and place names from that region figure in some of the letters. In 1849, Harriet Estes's mailing address was Erwinton according to a letter her cousin Julia sent from Savannah, Ga. In 1876, Walker's son wrote him from Orange Grove plantation, the old Estes place, about plantation business and freedmen contracts; he posted the letter from Appleton.

One of the prewar letters reported political developments in Georgia relating to the unpopular Compromise of 1850-a target for extremist critics on both sides of the slavery issue. Daniel Webster's support of the compromise alienated his Massachusetts abolitionist constituency. In Georgia, Alexander H. Stephens campaigned in favor of the compromise and provoked the ire of proslavery advocates like Iveson Brookes, as revealed in the letter Brookes wrote his son on 7 September 1850-"On the subject of politicks I made it convenient to be at Macon at the meeting on 22 August. It was an enthusiastic meeting truly. And I supposed Georgia pretty nigh straight. But on my return I learned that...Alec Stephens was to address his constituents at Crawfordville on 3rd Inst & I arranged to be there and heard from him a mess of abolition poison about such as Webster or Clay would have delivered. I believe he is now on a mission by the abolition party to give a quietus to Georgia feeling & prepare the people in advance of the Act admitting California for abject submission. And such is the stupid reverence in which his Congressional District hold him that his dictum is their law. I never felt such an itching to make a political speech as I did to answer him. But it was his meeting & his constituents & no opening for any body else to say turkey once. If I had time I would write a few columns against him."

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