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Collection
James Buchanan Family Papers
Object ID
JBFP
Description Level
Fonds
Collection
James Buchanan Family Papers
Description
The James Buchanan Family Papers collection is organized into eight parts: Part 1 Papers of James Buchanan, Part 2 Papers of Harriet Lane Johnston, Part 3 Papers of James Buchanan Henry, Part 4 Papers of Edward Young Buchanan, Part 5 Papers of Other members of the Buchanan Family, Part 6 Papers of Hiram B. Swarr, Part 7 Papers of Jonathan Messersmith Foltz, and Part 8 Papers of Others (Not Part of the Family). The papers are arranged by category within each part.
The correspondence is both professional and personal. The letters provide information about family and social events, business and military affairs, social and political history, health and illnesses, religious beliefs, education, friendships, domestic staff, and Wheatland. Political letters specifically highlight the Democratic Party in the United States in the early to mid-nineteenth century, as well as foreign policy and politics while Buchanan was the ambassador to Russia and England. Personal letters share family, local, regional, and international news between family members and friends.
Financial and legal documents include business papers, property records, estate papers, plans for James Buchanan's tomb, and investments. James Buchanan's 1856 presidential campaign and 1857 inauguration are captured in campaign ephemera, political cartoons, Democratic tickets, invitations to the inaugural ball, newspaper articles, and a political song. Other items in the collection include speeches, ephemera, genealogy, diplomas and certificates, account books, scrapbooks, newspaper articles, invitations, programs, pastoral records, and poetry.
Admin/Biographical History
James Buchanan was born on April 23, 1791 to James Buchanan and Elizabeth Speer. He was the second child born out of ten children, and he would go on to outlive all but one of his siblings. Most popularly remembered as Pennsylvania's only President and as a lifelong bachelor, Buchanan committed a lifetime to politics. In 1821, he left his law practice and embarked on his political career after having been voted into the U.S. House of Representatives. He would remain in the House for five consecutive terms before serving as the U.S. Minister to Russia, a Senator in the U.S. Senate, the U.S. Secretary of State, the U.S. Minister to Great Britain, and finally, the 15th President of the United States. He died in his bedchamber at Wheatland at 8:30 AM on June 1, 1868. He was 77 years old. [https://www.lancasterhistory.org/about-wheatland, accessed 10/24/2019]
Custodial History
The James Buchanan Family Papers were collected by the James Buchanan Foundation for the Preservation of Wheatland. This collection was relocated from the Wheatland mansion to the LancasterHistory archives in the Spring of 2009. Digitization of the James Buchanan Family Papers was funded by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, PHMC Appl ID # 201808013051, 2019-2020.
System of Arrangement
The James Buchanan Family Papers collection is arranged in eight parts:
Part 1 James Buchanan
Part 2 Harriet Lane Johnston
Part 3 James Buchanan Henry
Part 4 Edward Young Buchanan
Part 5 Other members of the Buchanan Family
Part 6 Hiram B. Swarr
Part 7 Jonathan Messersmith Foltz
Part 8 Papers of Others (Not Part of the Family)
Creator
Buchanan, James, 1791-1868
People
Buchanan, James
Johnston, Harriet Lane
Henry, James Buchanan
Swarr, Hiram Behm
Buchanan, Edward Young
Foltz, Jonathan Messersmith
Other Creators
James Buchanan Foundation for the Preservation of Wheatland (Lancaster, Pa.)
Search Terms
James Buchanan
Harriet Lane Johnston
Buchanan Collections
James Buchanan Presidential Library
Extent
20 cubic ft.
Object Name
Fonds
Language
English, French, German, Spanish, Swedish, Latin, Italian
Object ID
JBFP
Location
LancasterHistory
Room
Archives South
Wall
Side 18
Associated Material
James Buchanan Papers, Dickinson College Archives & Special Collections http://archives.dickinson.edu/collection-descriptions/james-buchanan-papers
James Buchanan and Harriet Lane Johnston Papers, Library of Congress https://www.loc.gov/collections/james-buchanan-and-harriet-lane-johnston-papers/
James Buchanan Papers, Historical Society of Pennsylvania, http://www2.hsp.org/collections/manuscripts/b/Buchanan0091.html
James Buchanan Papers, Penn State University Libraries, https://libraries.psu.edu/findingaids/1458.htm
Related Item Notes
James Buchanan Collection, MG0096
Historical Society of Pennsylvania microfilm
Photograph collections
Curatorial collections
Wheatland Mansion
Access Conditions / Restrictions
Please use digital images and transcriptions when available.
Original documents may be used by appointment. Please contact archives@lancasterhistory.org at least two weeks prior to visit.
Copyright
Images have been provided for research purposes only.
LancasterHistory retains the rights to the digital images and content presented. The doctrine of fair use allows limited use of copyrighted material without permission from the copyright holder. Fair use includes comment, criticism, teaching, and private scholarship. Any images and data downloaded, printed or photocopied for these purposes should provide a citation. All other uses beyond those allowed by fair use require written permission.
Permission for reproduction and/or publication must be obtained in writing from LancasterHistory. Some items are photocopies from other collections--researchers must obtain permission for reproduction and publication from the owner of the original material. Persons wishing to publish any material from this site must assume all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of copyright or other use restrictions. Publication fees may apply.
Please contact archives@lancasterhistory.org for a high-resolution image and permission to publish.
Credit
Courtesy of LancasterHistory, Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Less detail
Collection
James Buchanan Family Papers
Object ID
JBFP Part 7 Series 1
  1 document  
Description Level
Series
Collection
James Buchanan Family Papers
Description
James Buchanan Family Papers, Part 7 Papers of Jonathan Messersmith Foltz, Series 1 contains the correspondence of Jonathan Messersmith Foltz, from 1831 to 1858.
This collection contains correspondence from Dr. Jonathan M. Foltz-the majority of which are addressed to James Buchanan. There are no items from Foltz's childhood or later years (after retirement), nor materials from the early parts of his Naval career. The collection documents two of Foltz's deployments in some detail-his time on the Mexico-Texas border and the three years spent in South America. When writing to Buchanan, Foltz focused more on the political details he observed, rather than military activities. Some letters in the years and months leading up to the 1848 election document Foltz's involvement in the selection of a Democratic candidate for President. The materials do not include much about Foltz's family life, other than a few mentions of his wife and their wedding.
Admin/Biographical History
Jonathan Messersmith Foltz was born in Lancaster in 1810, the son of Jonathan and Elizabeth Messersmith Foltz. He studied medicine with Dr. William Thompson in Lancaster before attending Jefferson Medical College in Philadelphia. He was commissioned as an assistant naval surgeon in 1831. He reached the rank of surgeon in 1838.
As Naval Surgeon, Dr. Foltz served on the Raritan at the beginning of the Mexican-American War, where he witnessed battles at Palo Alto and Resaca de la Palma. About five years later, Foltz was deployed again-this time to South America aboard the Jamestown. He arrived in South America during the second half of the Platine War, fought by Brazil and Uruguay against the Argentine Confederation, from August 1851- February 1852. He also watched as the United States and Great Britain exerted their influence on the new nations and their often corrupt and ineffective governments. Through his service in the Navy and his trips to remote places (at that time), Foltz became an expert on exotic diseases. He published a number of articles on the subject. Prior to his service in Mexico and South America, Foltz also spent time in Asia, Europe and Northern Africa. Foltz served during the Civil War, participating in a number of campaigns and battles. Specifically, he served as Fleet Surgeon under Admiral David Farragut. He continued to serve in the Navy, eventually rising to the positions of Chief of the Bureau of Medicine and Surgery and Surgeon General of the Navy. In 1872, Foltz was put on the retired list, but continued to serve as Inspector General of Hospitals and Fleets, as well as Chief Surgeon of the Philadelphia Naval Hospital. Officially, he retired in 1873, after serving for forty-two years. He had reached the rank of Commodore.
Foltz married Rebecca Steinman (1830-1904), also from Lancaster, in 1854. They had three sons: Frederick Steinman (born Frederick Buchanan), Charles Steinman, and Jonathan Clinton Foltz. He lived with his family in Philadelphia. Foltz died at the age of 66 in 1877.
Not much is known about Foltz's relationship with James Buchanan, especially its origin. However, Foltz often called Buchanan his best friend and seemed to be a constant support of Buchanan for President, campaigning heavily for him leading up to the 1848 and 1856 elections (Foltz was stationed in South America in 1852).
Works Cited:
Franklin and Marshall College Archives and Special Collections. Jonathan Messersmith Foltz Papers, MS 21 Finding Aid. Lancaster, PA: Franklin and Marshall College, 2013. Accessed June 9, 2015. http://library.fandm.edu/archives/mscoll/jmfoltz.pdf.
Foltz, Charles S. Surgeon of the Seas: The Adventurous Life of Surgeon General Jonathan M. Foltz In the Days of Wooden Ships, Told from His Notes of the Moment Indianapolis, IN: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1931.
"Foltz, Jonathan Messersmith." In Appletons' Cyclopædia of American Biography, edited by James Grant Wilson and John Fiske. New York: D. Appleton, 1900. Accessed June 9, 2015. http://en.wikisource.org/wiki/Appletons%27_Cyclop%C3%A6dia_of_American_Biography/Foltz,_Jonathan_Messersmith.
Custodial History
The James Buchanan Family Papers were collected by the James Buchanan Foundation for the Preservation of Wheatland. This collection was relocated from the Wheatland mansion to the LancasterHistory archives in the Spring of 2009. Digitization of the James Buchanan Family Papers was funded by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, PHMC Appl ID # 201808013051, 2019-2020.
System of Arrangement
James Buchanan Family Papers, Part 7 Papers of Jonathan Messersmith Foltz is arranged in one series. The series and subseries have been used to keep the consistency with cataloging throughout the James Buchanan Family Papers.
JBFP Part 7 Series 1 Correspondence
Subseries 1 Letters from Jonathan Messersmith Foltz
Year Range From
1831
Year Range To
1858
Creator
Foltz, Jonathan Messersmith, 1810-1877
People
Buchanan, James
Foltz, Jonathan Messersmith
Other Creators
James Buchanan Foundation for the Preservation of Wheatland (Lancaster, Pa.)
Subjects
Buchanan, James, 1791-1868
Foltz, Jonathan Messersmith, 1810-1877
Ship physicians
United States--Navy--Surgeons
United States--Politics and government--19th century
Mexican War, 1846-1848
South America--Politics and government--19th century
Search Terms
James Buchanan
Buchanan collections
Mexican War
Politics
United States Navy
Ship physicians
Surgeons
South America
Finding aids
Manuscript groups
James Buchanan Presidential Library
Extent
1 box, 49 folders, 58 items, .5 cubic feet
Object Name
Correspondence
Language
English
Object ID
JBFP Part 7 Series 1
Location
LancasterHistory
Room
Archives South
Wall
Side 18
Associated Material
Jonathan Messersmith Foltz Papers (MS 21), Archives and Special Collections, Franklin and Marshall College
http://library.fandm.edu/archives/mscoll/jmfoltz.html
[J. M. Foltz Medical lecture notes, 1825-1829], Health Sciences Library Historical Collections, Health Sciences Library, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, NC.
http://search.lib.unc.edu/search?R=UNCb1976055
Jonathan Messersmith Foltz papers, 1829-1871, Library of Congress, Manuscript Division, Washington, DC.
James Buchanan Papers, Dickinson College Archives & Special Collections http://archives.dickinson.edu/collection-descriptions/james-buchanan-papers
James Buchanan and Harriet Lane Johnston Papers, Library of Congress https://www.loc.gov/collections/james-buchanan-and-harriet-lane-johnston-papers/
James Buchanan Papers, Historical Society of Pennsylvania, http://www2.hsp.org/collections/manuscripts/b/Buchanan0091.html
James Buchanan Papers, Penn State University Libraries, https://libraries.psu.edu/findingaids/1458.htm
Related Item Notes
James Buchanan Family Papers
James Buchanan Collection, MG0096
Coleman Papers Collection, MG0275 Series 1
Andrew J. Steinman Collection, MG0066
Historical Society of Pennsylvania microfilm
Photograph collections
Curatorial collections
Wheatland Mansion
Charles S. Foltz, Surgeon of the Seas: The Adventurous Life of Surgeon General Jonathan M. Foltz In the Days of Wooden Ships, Told from His Notes of the Moment. Indianapolis, IN: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1931. Call # 923.5 F671f
Access Conditions / Restrictions
Please use digital images and transcriptions when available.
Original documents may be used by appointment. Please contact archives@lancasterhistory.org at least two weeks prior to visit.
Copyright
Images have been provided for research purposes only.
LancasterHistory retains the rights to the digital images and content presented. The doctrine of fair use allows limited use of copyrighted material without permission from the copyright holder. Fair use includes comment, criticism, teaching, and private scholarship. Any images and data downloaded, printed or photocopied for these purposes should provide a citation. All other uses beyond those allowed by fair use require written permission.
Permission for reproduction and/or publication must be obtained in writing from LancasterHistory. Some items are photocopies from other collections--researchers must obtain permission for reproduction and publication from the owner of the original material. Persons wishing to publish any material from this site must assume all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of copyright or other use restrictions. Publication fees may apply.
Please contact archives@lancasterhistory.org for a high-resolution image and permission to publish.
Credit
Courtesy of LancasterHistory, Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Documents
Less detail
Collection
James Buchanan Family Papers
Object ID
JBFP Part 8 Series 2
  1 document  
Description Level
Series
Collection
James Buchanan Family Papers
Description
James Buchanan Family Papers, Part 8 Papers of Others (Not Part of the Family), Series 2 contains financial and legal documents. Series 2 includes financial and legal documents within three subseries. Subseries 1 has bills, receipts, ledgers and accounts. Subseries 2 has deeds and land records. Subseries 3 has legal papers.
The financial and legal documents are arranged chronologically, spanning almost 100 years, from 1770 through 1866. The bulk of the items, dated between 1784 and 1790, are promissory notes, receipts of payment and rental slips. There is a large gap between 1790 and 1849. The items from the 1800s include bills of sale, accounts and receipts. The deeds and land records include one hand-drawn survey for an unknown location (1858) and a title report for property in Warren County, New York (1865). The legal papers include documents filed with the courts, transcriptions of a legislative act from Maryland, notes, purchase contract, as well as two foreign documents, possibly a German enlistment record and a Swedish passport, both for Eugene Francois Theodore de la Croix.
Admin/Biographical History
The origination of many of the items contained in this part of the collection are unknown. It is also unclear of the relationship they have with James Buchanan. In the first subseries, there are two names that reappear often from 1770 to 1790, Daniel McCausland and James Crawford. All of these items are either promissory notes, receipts of payment of loans or letters from Daniel to James requesting that he pay a certain sum to the bearer of the note and the reverse would show the receipt of payment of that loan. There is some mention of a Revolutionary War Colonel James Crawford from Lancaster and Daniel addresses one of the notes to "Col. Crawford" so this may be the same individual. (See 8.2.1.001) There is a gap in the receipts and promissory notes from 1790 to 1849. This is also where we see the money on the documents change from pounds and shillings to dollars and cents. There is a bill of sale of the Lancaster Intelligencer newspaper from Edwin W. Hutter by a S. Boyd Hamilton in July 1849, as well as some follow up correspondence regarding that sale. However, in an article published in the Intelligencer on August 7, 1849, Mr. Hutter states that his successor is Captain George Sanderson of Carlisle, Pennsylvania (Lancaster Intelligencer, August 7, 1849, p. 2), which is confirmed in the December 4, 1849 edition which names the editor as "Geo. Sanderson (Lancaster Intelligencer, December 4, 1849, p. 1). The name McCausland reappears in the next subseries for legal papers, however, it is not a William McCausland, Jr. This is in reference to a law suit he filed against James Crawford and William McCausland for money due to him in outstanding rents and profits. There is a deposition notice addressed to "Col. Crawford" so it is likely to be the same James Crawford who had business dealings with Daniel McCausland.
An interesting piece in this subseries is a large transcript of the Court Papers filed in the action by the stockholders of the Marietta & Susquehanna Trading Company against five of their Trustees. The Trustees were entrusted to resolve the company and collect all outstanding debts. However due to a robbery at the bank wherein all of the notes were stolen, they were unable to collect any of the debts. The background of this case is illustrated in Francis Lyman's A Mysterious Bank Robbery (LCHSR 905.748 HSP v. 94, p. 384-385), where it is alleged that one of the Trustees/Defendants, Jacob Grosh, committed the crime. The remaining items are random and vague in the origination and contextual relationship.
1 Ellis, F & Evans, S. (1883). History of Lancaster County, Pennsylvania. Philadelphia: Everetts & Peck. Retrieved from https://books.google.com/books?id=WsQxAQAAMAAJ&pg=PA52&dq=%22James+Crawford%22+Lancaster,+PA&hl=en&sa=X&ved=0CDkQ6AEwBWoVChMIhPb155rHyAIVAV0eCh2FDgt6#v=onepage&q=%22James%20Crawford%22%20Lancaster%2C%20PA&f=false
Custodial History
The James Buchanan Family Papers were collected by the James Buchanan Foundation for the Preservation of Wheatland. This collection was relocated from the Wheatland mansion to the LancasterHistory archives in the Spring of 2009. Digitization of the James Buchanan Family Papers was funded by the Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission, PHMC Appl ID # 201808013051, 2019-2020.
System of Arrangement
JBFP Part 8 Series 2 Financial and Legal Documents
Subseries 1 Bills, Receipts, Ledgers, Accounts
Subseries 2 Deeds and Land Records
Subseries 3 Legal Papers
Year Range From
1770
Year Range To
1866
Creator
James Buchanan Foundation for the Preservation of Wheatland (Lancaster, Pa.)
People
Buchanan, James
Cameron, Simon
Curtis, George Ticknor
Drayton, John Grimke
Foltz, Jonathan Messersmith
Foster, Stephen Collins
Foster, Morrison
Johnston, Harriet Lane
Muhlenberg, Henry Augustus
Subjects
Buchanan, James, 1791-1868
Cameron, Simon, 1799-1889
Curtis, George Ticknor, 1812-1894
Drayton, John G. (John Grimke), 1815-1891
Foltz, Jonathan Messersmith, 1810-1877
Foster, Stephen Collins, 1826-1864
Foster, Morrison, 1823-1904
Johnston, Harriet Lane, 1830-1903
Letters
Muhlenberg, Henry A. (Henry Augustus), 1823-1854
Wheatland (Lancaster, Pa.)
Personal correspondence
Search Terms
Correspondence, Personal
Letters
Wheatland
Finding aids
Manuscript groups
Buchanan Collections
James Buchanan Presidential Library
Extent
1 box, 36 folders, 39 items, .5 cubic feet
Object Name
Archive
Language
English, German, Swedish
Object ID
JBFP Part 8 Series 2
Location
LancasterHistory
Room
Archives South
Wall
Side 18
Associated Material
James Buchanan Papers, Dickinson College Archives & Special Collections http://archives.dickinson.edu/collection-descriptions/james-buchanan-papers
James Buchanan and Harriet Lane Johnston Papers, Library of Congress https://www.loc.gov/collections/james-buchanan-and-harriet-lane-johnston-papers/
James Buchanan Papers, Historical Society of Pennsylvania, http://www2.hsp.org/collections/manuscripts/b/Buchanan0091.html
James Buchanan Papers, Penn State University Libraries, https://libraries.psu.edu/findingaids/1458.htm
Archives of Maryland Online. Session Laws 1862. (Vol 532. Pg. 267). Retrieved from: http://aomol.msa.maryland.gov/000001/000532/html/am532--267.html
Related Item Notes
James Buchanan Family Papers
James Buchanan Collection, MG0096
Historical Society of Pennsylvania microfilm
Photograph collections
Curatorial collections
Wheatland Mansion
Charles S. Foltz, Surgeon of the Seas: The Adventurous Life of Surgeon General Jonathan M. Foltz In the Days of Wooden Ships, Told from His Notes of the Moment. Indianapolis, IN: The Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1931. Call # 923.5 F671f
Access Conditions / Restrictions
Please use digital images and transcriptions when available.
Original documents may be used by appointment. Please contact archives@lancasterhistory.org at least two weeks prior to visit.
Copyright
Images have been provided for research purposes only.
LancasterHistory retains the rights to the digital images and content presented. The doctrine of fair use allows limited use of copyrighted material without permission from the copyright holder. Fair use includes comment, criticism, teaching, and private scholarship. Any images and data downloaded, printed or photocopied for these purposes should provide a citation. All other uses beyond those allowed by fair use require written permission.
Permission for reproduction and/or publication must be obtained in writing from LancasterHistory. Some items are photocopies from other collections--researchers must obtain permission for reproduction and publication from the owner of the original material. Persons wishing to publish any material from this site must assume all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of copyright or other use restrictions. Publication fees may apply.
Please contact archives@lancasterhistory.org for a high-resolution image and permission to publish.
Credit
Courtesy of LancasterHistory, Lancaster, Pennsylvania
Documents
Less detail