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Jacob Barker Papers: Finding Aid
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Collection Details
Table of contents What's This?
  • Overview of the Collection
  • Access
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Note
  • Scope and Content
  • Indexing Terms

  • Overview of the Collection

    Title: Jacob Barker Papers
    Dates (inclusive): 1813-1863
    Bulk dates: 1813-1823
    Collection Number: mssBarker
    Creator: Barker, Jacob, 1779-1871.
    Extent: 163 pieces in 2 boxes.
    Repository: The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens. Manuscripts Department
    1151 Oxford Road
    San Marino, California 91108
    Phone: (626) 405-2129
    Email: reference@huntington.org
    URL: http://www.huntington.org
    Abstract: This collection contains letters and documents relating to war loans to the United States Government made by New York financier and state senator Jacob Barker (1779-1871) in 1814 and subsequent claims by Barker about them. Correspondents include American statesman George Washington Campbell (1769-1848).
    Language: 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]. Jacob Barker Papers, The Huntington Library, San Marino, California.


    Purchased from C. W. Unger, dealer, of Pottsville, Pennsylvania, in 1926.

    Biographical Note

    American financier Jacob Barker (1779-1871) was born in Maine to Quaker parents. At sixteen, Barker moved to New York City and embarked upon what was to be a tempestuous business career; his enterprises ran the gamut in shipping, oil, the press, banking, insurance, and the stock market. Barker served in the New York State Senate in 1815-1816 and was one of the founders of Tammany Hall; he was a recognized political power in the Democratic Party party.
    In 1814, Barker was actively involved in raising a war-loan of five million for the United States government. This was accomplished at the cost of his own bankruptcy, and he is often referred to as the Robert Morris of the War of 1812. Subsequent claims against the government, in an attempt to recover personal losses, extended over a period of forty years.
    Having made and lost a series of fortunes, Jacob Barker died in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, at ninety two years.

    Scope and Content

    This collection contains letters and documents relating to Jacob Barker's share in War loans to the United States Government in 1814 and his later claims against the U.S. government about the loans. Correspondents include George Washington Campbell.
    Persons represented by three or more pieces:
    • Anderson, Joseph. 3 pieces
    • Barker, Jacob. 36 pieces
    • Campbell, George Washington. 18 pieces
    • Hazard, Thomas R. 3 pieces
    • Homans, Benjamin 4 pieces
    • McEwen, Hale, & Davidson 14 pieces
    • Prime, Ward, & Sands 3 pieces
    • Smith, R. D. 23 pieces
    Some notable items include:
    • Jacob Barker to Joseph Anderson, Comptroller of the Treasury Department. New York, Dec. 15, 1815. "...I exhausted all my resources in furnishing funds to the government when it was in distress, so much so that I had not a single thousand dollars at command to support my family, and if I had possessed the Indies, the whole would have been devoted to the use of my Country..."
    • Ward, Halleck, & Little, assignees of Jacob Barker. Petition to the U. S. Congress. Washington, July 4, 1861.
    For the most part these papers are unpublished, but some have been printed in American State Papers (Financial) and in the House of Representatives, Report C. C. no. 258.

    Indexing Terms

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


    Barker, Jacob, 1779-1871 -- Archives.
    Campbell, George Washington, 1769-1848 -- Correspondence.
    United States -- History -- War of 1812 -- Claims.
    United States -- History -- War of 1812 -- Finance.


    Personal papers United States 19th century.
    Letters (correspondence) United States 19th century.

    Alternate Authors

    Campbell, George Washington, 1769-1848.