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Barney (Hiram) Papers
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Collection Overview
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This collection contains the political, business, legal, and family papers of lawyer and collector of the port of New York Hiram Barney (1811-1895) and concern a wide variety of subjects including real estate, primarily in Iowa, and New York; court cases (often pertaining to the debt collection) and other legal services; politics generally, but especially patronage distribution; family affairs, business transactions concerning the Erie and other canals; small railroads (largely in the Lake Plains region); Mexico and Mexican-American relations; the Civil War; and the U.S. Customs Service.
Hiram Barney, lawyer and collector for the Port of New York, was born in Henderson, New York, on May 30, 1811. After graduating from Union College in 1833, he held a law clerkship and was admitted to the New York bar in 1836. Barney's legal career began with the firm of William Mulligan in 1836. In 1838, he entered into a partnership with William D. Waterman and in 1841, with William Mitchell. During the early years of his career, Barney, largely engaged as a "collections" lawyer, did much of his business in the West, especially Iowa. In 1849, Barney formed yet another partnership with Benjamin F. Butler and his son, William Allen Butler. After the retirement of the elder Butler and the arrival and departure of James Humphrey, the firm became known as Barney, Butler, and Parsons. Barney remained with his firm until 1874, when he was retained as special counsel. Barney's final legal partnership began in 1878 with Edward D. Cowman.
22 Linear Feet (45 boxes, 12 volumes, 1 oversize folder)
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