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Evertson Familiy Papers
mssHM 70414-70462  
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Descriptive Summary
  • Access
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content
  • Arrangement
  • Indexing Terms

  • Descriptive Summary

    Title: Evertson Family Papers
    Inclusive Dates: 1832-1897
    Bulk Dates: 1847-1866
    Collection Number: mssHM 70414-70462
    Creator OR Collector: Evertson (Family)
    Extent: 56 items in 2 boxes
    Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Manuscripts Department
    1151 Oxford Road
    San Marino, California 91108
    Phone: (626) 405-2191
    Email: reference@huntington.org
    URL: http://www.huntington.org
    Abstract: This collection contains the papers of John R. Evertson, of Poughkeepsie, New York, and his family, chiefly dating from 1847-1866. Includes correspondence between Evertson family members with three distinct sections: Mexican-American War, Civil War, and California.
    Language of Material: The records are in English.


    Open to qualified researchers by prior application through the Reader Services Department. For more information, contact Reader Services.

    Administrative Information

    Publication Rights

    The Huntington Library does not require that researchers request permission to quote from or publish images of this material, nor does it charge fees for such activities. The responsibility for identifying the copyright holder, if there is one, and obtaining necessary permissions rests with the researcher.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item]. Evertson Family Papers, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.


    Gift of Ellen H. Ellis, November 26, 2007.

    Biographical Note

    John R. Evertson, of Poughkeepsie, New York, and Laura Morin, of Savannah, Georgia, were married in the 1830s. The couple had four children: John Jr., Clinton, Evert and Laura. Evertson spent some time in Camargo, Mexico, during the Mexican-American War (his exact business is unclear). In the 1850s, the family moved to Los Angeles, California, where Evertson took a job as a census enumerator. In 1862, Laura, by that time a widow, tried to secure properties in New York and Georgia. She sent her son Evert back East to look out for the family properties. While in New York he stayed with a family friend, William H. Richards. On Evert's way to Savannah, however, he was arrested by federal troops and spent the next two years as a citizen prisoner in federal prisons, first in Carroll (Old Capitol Prison, Washington, D.C.) and then Point Lookout, Maryland.
    John R. Evertson, Jr., remained in Los Angeles and ran, unsuccessfully, for the office of the county of assessor. Evertson, Jr., moved up north first to Havilah, Kern County, where he tried, also without visible success, to practice law and pursue "mining interests," and then on to San Francisco where he held a string of various low paying jobs (he never kept one for very long). Laura C. Evertson married Andrew Jackson King, one of the proprietors and editors of the Los Angeles Times, City Attorney and County Judge. She wrote a number of sketches of life in San Gabriel Valley for the Historical Society of Southern California.

    Scope and Content

    The collection is arranged chronologically and includes 56 items including 7 pieces of ephemera. The first four items are land grants and plats for land in Georgia (1832-1843). The majority of the rest of the collection is correspondence between Evertson family members with three distinct sections: Mexican-American War, Civil War and California. There are four letters concerning John R. Evertson's work which was somehow related to the Mexican-American War. In his letters he talks about the war, General Zachary Taylor, Antonio Santa Anna, and the battle of Buena Vista. These letters also discuss family matters and there are letters by John R. Evertson to two of his sons warning them to be diligent, do their school work and listen to their Mother while he is away. The second section consists of twelve letters from various correspondents to Evert C. Evertson while he was being held as a political prisoner in Carroll and Point Lookout prisons in Washington, D.C. and Maryland from 1863 to 1865 (there is one note by Evert). The letters by family friends, mostly William H. Richards, discusses their attempts to free Evert from prison and clear his name and express their sympathy with his situation. Richards also talks about the family situation in California at the time. (The collection also includes three documents related to Evert's release from prison including a letter of exemption from the Confederate States of America's War Department Bureau of Conscription, a parole and a pass for Evert issued by the United States' Office of the Provost Marshal General - all dated 1865). The third section of correspondence relates to John R. Evertson, Jr.'s life in Havilah and San Francisco, California in April-December 1866. These letters which are written to his mother, sister and brother-in-law in Los Angeles, talk chiefly about Evertson's search for stable employment, his attempts at mining (gold and quartz), his bad health and his general depression about his current situation. He often mentions Los Angeles in his letters. The last few items of the collection include documents about real estate in Los Angeles and a letter related to the estate of John R. Evertson.


    The collection is arranged chronologically, followed by ephemera.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the Huntington Library's Online Catalog.  

    Personal Names

    Evertson family
    King, Andrew Jackson, 1833-1923, addressee
    Santa Anna, Antonio López de, 1794?-1876
    Taylor, Zachary, 1784-1850

    Corporate Names

    Confederate States of America. Bureau of Conscription
    Old Capitol Prison (Washington, D.C.)
    Point Lookout Prison Camp for Confederates
    United States. Office of the Provost Marshal General


    Buena Vista, Battle of, Mexico, 1847
    Gold mines and mining -- California
    Mexican War, 1846-1848
    Quartz mines and mining -- California
    Real property -- California
    Real property -- Georgia

    Geographic Areas

    Havilah (Calif.)
    Los Angeles (Calif.)
    San Francisco (Calif.)
    United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865 -- Prisoners and prisons


    Deeds -- United States -- 19th century
    Letters (correspondence) -- United States -- 19th century
    Plats (maps) -- United States -- 19th century