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Natural Resources and Agriculture Sources in the Special Collections Research Center

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Manuscripts and Archives

Carter Family Papers, 1667-1862, Mss. 39.1 C24

Dunmore Family Papers (I), 1650-1899, Mss. 65 D92

  • Folder 74: December 15/27, 1875 -- Alexander [II], St. Petersburg, to Karl Alexandrovitch. Re: thank you note for a gift of two ponies. 3 pp. ALS.

Jerdone Family Papers, 1753-1890, Mss. 39.1 J47

  • 1785-1788 letters of Donald and Burton (London) and A. Donald (Richmond, VA) to Francis Jerdone concerning the importation of two chariot horses into Virginia (Box I, folders 4, 6 and Box II, folder 1)

Garth Family Papers, 1798-1872, Mss. 65 G19

  • Some letters concerning sale of horses (Box I, folders 2 and 3), purchase of a mare, possibly for stud service (Box III, folder 3)

Robert William Hughes Papers, 1818-1900, Mss. 39.2 H87

  • 1887 letters concerning death of a horse, Gabriel and the pedigree of “Skidaddle”(folder 3 and oversize), numerous articles about horses in publications in 1829, 1881 and 1887 , including January 20, 1881 letter about “where to breed the Thoroughbred Horse” (folder 4)

Joseph E. Johnston Papers, 1825-1891, Mss. 39.1 J63

  • J.E. Johnston to Beverly R. Johnston, Sept. 23, 1935, telling of a horserace in which he lost $750 and explaining why he needs a horse for fox hunting (Box I, folder 1)

Archibald McCall to Robert Hunter Letter, 1794, Mss. Sm Coll McCall

  • March 11, 1794 – gives prices for horses

John Marshall Papers, 1755-1835, Mss. 39.1 M34

  • 1815-1830 letters discussing horses and prices paid

William and Peyton Short Papers, 1783-1825, Mss. 65 Sh9

  • 1802 – receipt of two sorrels and sale of grey (folder 2)
  • 1809 – horses sell easier…in Kentucky (folder 3)

Skipwith Family Papers, 1760-1977, Mss. 65 Sk3

  • Dates in inventory that mention horses:
  • 3/20/1775 about a particular horse
  • 5/1/1799 breeding horses
  • 7/18/1780 mating several mares
  • 5/10/1780 horse breeding
  • 5/13/1780     
  • 5/17/1780
  • 4/12/1785 colts for turf racing laws
  • 4/10/1785 horse for breeding
  • 1786 horses delivered to Sir Peyton Skipwith
  • 1/10/1786 offer of a horse
  • 9/28/1786 sale of 21 horses and colts
  • 7/30/1789 purchase of a horse
  • 1/6/1790 purchase of a colt
  • 5/14/1793 purchase of a horse
  • 4/29/1797 pay debt with a horse
  • 2/29/1799 request use of a horse
  • 9/25/1805 regarding a mare

Virginia Counties Collection, 1600-2000, Mss. 39.4 V82co

  • Warwick County:
  • (box 2, folder 2) 10/3/1729 – payment of a wager…race between “Dixon Brown’s grey horse” and … “Fox hunter”.

Woolfolk Family Papers, 1775-1893, Mss. 39.1 W88

  • References to horses (not necessarily racing or thoroughbreds)
  • Folder 7 – purchase of horses used for stage line

Tucker-Coleman Papers, 1664-1945, Mss. 40 T79

  • A few subject items on horses

Jonathan Boucher Paper,1759-1803, Mss. 93 B66

  • Box-folder: 1:1
  • 3 pp. ALS. Medium oversize file. (A/1/3). Americans have no notion of the Art of letter writing to preserve friendship. Has started his school and foresees no lack of pupils, although their dispositions are unpleasing. Account of Mr. Giberne, a clergyman [Rector of Hanover Parish, King George's County]. His attendance at a horserace and the balls following. Asks for mathematical books.

McGavock Papers, 1760-1888, Mss. 39.1 M17

  • Folder 13:  “Pedigree and description of Manassas, a Thoroughbred Horse”  1863

Adams Papers, 1782-1890, Mss. 39.2 Ad1

  • $5 reward for a stolen horse, 1782

Buford Family Papers,1845-1895, Mss. Acc. 2009.132

Woolfork Papers, 1775-1893, Mss. 39.1 W88

  • Box III, f. 7
  • Papers relating to the purchase of horses probably used for the stage line

Specifics from some Collections

Carter Family Papers, 1667-1862, Mss. 39.1 C24

  • W. R. Johnson, at Washington, to Col. Robert W. Carter, Richmond County, Virginia, 7 Oct 1842. Folder: 30
  • 1 item. 2 Enclosures: A sheet giving speed records of certain horses, 1802-1823, and a newspaper clipping concerning the Mount Vernon Races, 1842.
  • Stable accounts and correspondence of Robert W. Carter, concerning the horse, "Senator," 1844-1856. Folder: 82
  • Fairfield races, 1836-1839. Folder: 106
  • 1 item. Memorandum giving dates of the Fairfield races.

Ambler Papers, 1806-1836, Mss. 39.2 Am1

  • Letter, 20 May 1806, of Anthony Davis to John Ambler concerning horse-breeding.

Vaiden Family Papers, 1799-1901, Mss. Sm Coll Add.21

  • Folder 6: Henry M. Vaiden's journal of horse pedigrees, weather reports, crop records, and accounts, 1799-1837. MsV.2 (1 item)

Smith-Walker Papers, 1764-1916, Mss. 39.1 Sm8

  • Box 1, folder: 3: "Cure for Colic in Horse"

Richard Blow Papers, 1613-1960, Mss. 65 B63

  • Box 6: Correspondence, 1785
  • November 1st, A. Donald, Richmond to Richard Blow, Portsmouth; Re: Mr. Jerdones horses and (??) to be sent to him at Louisa if not, to A. Donald. Directions for putting off goods at Brandon; and to York County customers.
  • Box 14: Correspondence, financial papers, and legal papers, 1792-1793
  • Folder 1: Letters: (Foreign Correspondents)
  • March 20th, Joshua Fort, Tower Hill to Richard Blow, Portsmouth
  • Re: debts now due and (??) Rent for Princeton (house near Sussex County house) about Wm. Bland’s inability to pay for horse Aristotle

Merritt Family Papers, 1780-1909, Mss. 39.1 M55

  • Subjects covered by the collection include horses, the practice of law, Reconstruction, and slavery.

Overton Family Papers, 1727-1961, Mss. 65 Ov2

  • Box 4, f 74
  • Box 9
  • And other horse mentions in inventory

Crawford & Co. Account Book, 1865-1867, Mss. MsV Ali1

  • Subjects:  Horses-Virginia
  • Box 15

Fairfax Harrison Papers, 1736-1945, Mss. 65 H25

  • Box 12
  • Box 14

Rare Books, Theses, & Dissertations

On his high horse: riding, class, and training in the eighteenth century, by Stuart McCosh-Lilie; Swem Library Archives LD6051 .W5m Hist., 2005, L54

Famous horses of the American turf, by Neil Newman; Swem Library Rare Books 636.12 N46 oversize

The John's Island stud (South Carolina), 1750-1788, by Fairfax Harrison; Swem Library Rare Books 636.10822 H24

Gentlemen up, by William B. Strett; Swem Library Rare Books 798.4 St8 oversize

The Sporting magazine, London: Rogerson & Tuxford 1792; Swem Library Rare Books GV1 .S76

The colonial quarter race horse : America's first breed of horses, America's native breed of running horses, the world's oldest breed of race horses, prime source of short speed, by Alexander Mackay-Smith; Swem Library Rare Books SF357.55 U6 M33 1983

Life and sport in Aiken and those who made it, by Harry Worcester-Smith 1865-1945; Swem Library Rare Books F279 .A2 S65

Letters from an old sportsman to a young one, by A. Henry Higginson (Alexander Henry) 1876-1958; Swem Library Rare Book - Chapin-Horowitz SF301 .H45

Inside racing : sports and politics, by Gilbert L. Lycan; Swem Library Rare Book - Chapin-Horowitz SF335 .U5 L9

Memories of racing and hunting, by William John Arthur Charles James Cavendish-Bentinck Portland Duke of, 1857-1943; Swem Library Rare Books SF336 .P65 A32

Books from Stacks

Blooded horses of colonial days; classic horse matches in America before the revolution, by Francis Barnum Culber 1868-; Swem Library Stacks SF347 .C8

Their turf; America's horsey set & its princely dynasties, by Bernard Livingston; Swem Library Stacks SF336 .A2 L58 1973

What do you know about horses? Mecklenburg County and the aristocratic thoroughbreds, by Nathaniel Goode Hutcheson 1901-; Swem Library Stacks SF335 .U6 V56

The life and times of Sir Archie; the story of America's greatest thoroughbred, 1805-1833, by Elizabeth Amis Cameron Blanchard -1856; Swem Library Stacks SF355 .S5 B54

The thoroughbred in the lower Shenandoah Valley, 1785-1842, by Alexander Mackay-Smith; Swem Library Stacks SF283 .M2