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James Boon Papers


James Boon (1808-?), a free African American of Franklin County, N.C., was apprenticed to William Jones, a carpenter, June 16, 1827, and was freed from this apprenticeship in September, 1829. He thereafter worked as a carpenter in Louisburg, Littleton, Wilmington, and Raleigh.The papers include both professional and personal correspondence as well as accounts, bills, receipts, and other documents.

Title

James Boon Papers

Collection Number

PC.99

Date(s)

1829 - 1853

Language

English

Physical Description
Items
192
Abstract

James Boon (1808-?), a free African American of Franklin County, N.C., was apprenticed to William Jones, a carpenter, June 16, 1827, and was freed from this apprenticeship in September, 1829. He thereafter worked as a carpenter in Louisburg, Littleton, Wilmington, and Raleigh.

The papers include both professional and personal correspondence as well as accounts, bills, receipts, and other documents.

Physical Location

For current information on the location ofthese materials, please consult the Public Services Branch, State Archives of North Carolina.

Creator

Boon, James, b. 1808

Repository

State Archives of North Carolina


Arranged by type of materials.


Available for research.


Copyright is retained by the authors of these materials, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law (Title 17 US Code). Individual researchers are responsible for using these materials in conformance with copyright law as well as any donor restrictions accompanying the materials.


Processed by Betsy Fleshman, September, 1967

Encoded by Druscilla R. Simpson, April 25, 2000; additional encoding by Ashley Yandle, May, 2010


James Boon (1808-?), a free African American of Franklin County, N.C., was apprenticed to William Jones, a carpenter, June 16, 1827, and was freed from this apprenticeship in September, 1829. He thereafter worked as a carpenter in Louisburg, Littleton, Wilmington, and Raleigh. He cohabited with Sarah, a slave of Maria Stallings of Louisburg, as a common law wife from as early as 1838 until as late as 1850. By 1850 he was living with Mahalia Buffalo, a free woman of color from Raleigh, by whom he had a son and a daughter. These children were taught in 1851 by Isabella Hinton Harris, wife of James Henry Harris. Despite the protests of Sarah, Boon married Mahalia Buffalo in 1854. Boon owned land and property in Louisburg. For further information about him, see article by John Hope Franklin in  Journal of Negro History, XXX (April, 1945), 150-180.


James Boon (1808-?), a free African American of Franklin County, N.C., was apprenticed to William Jones, a carpenter, June 16, 1827, and was freed from this apprenticeship in September, 1829. He thereafter worked as a carpenter in Louisburg, Littleton, Wilmington, and Raleigh. He cohabited with Sarah, a slave of Maria Stallings of Louisburg, as a common law wife from as early as 1838 until as late as 1850. By 1850 he was living with Mahalia Buffalo, a free woman of color from Raleigh, by whom he had a son and a daughter. These children were taught in 1851 by Isabella Hinton Harris, wife of James Henry Harris. Despite the protests of Sarah, Boon married Mahalia Buffalo in 1854. Boon owned land and property in Louisburg. For further information about him, see article by John Hope Franklin in  Journal of Negro History, XXX (April, 1945), 150-180.


[Identification of item], PC.99, James Boon Papers, State Archives of North Carolina, Raleigh, NC, USA.


Presented by Mrs. Alfred Williams, (from Biennial Report, 1930-1932)


Additional information on topics found in this collection may be found in the Manuscript and Archives Reference System (MARS)  http://mars.archives.ncdcr.gov.


Much of the correspondence involves Boon's work as a carpenter, in which he hired both slaves and free African Americans to work for him. There are letters of recommendation from employers as to his character and his work. There are letters (1848) from his brother, Carter Evans, from Wilmington, which discuss the work and the men who are working for Boon, the scarcity of jobs, need for a protector for some of the men, etc., and asking Boon to come to Wilmington. (According to the above mentioned article in  Journal of Negro History, a Wilmington ordinance required that a free Negro have a protector.)

Other correspondence includes letters from the slave Sarah, Boon's common law wife to him in Raleigh which discuss instructions regarding his business at home, family matters, saying "if you should get down sick... I know doubt but what my owners would let me come and stay with you,"; and suggesting that he come nearer home if possible.

William Jones, to whom Boon was apprenticed, evidently helped Boon with his business, keeping his accounts for him, writing letters for him (Boon could neither read nor write), advancing cash to him and his wife. (This relationship is indicated in accounts.) In a letter to Boon (1850) he writes in regard to Boon's business affairs in Louisburg, stating "I have not been able to rent your shop yet."

Accounts, receipts, notes, bills, etc., relate also to his business as a carpenter, reflecting names of employers as well as names of men who worked for Boon and wages received, merchandise and construction materials bought, etc.

Boon's ownership of property is reflected in an agreement between him and Wm. H. Furman, a white man who was renting Boon's house (1848), and by three copies of a notice that proceedings would be instigated for sale of his property to cover debts (1849).

Also included in the papers is a statement signed by the Clerk of Court, Franklin County, September, 1829, that James Boon, "a boy of colour who was bound to William Jones by this court" was now 21 years of age and ordered to be set free.

Arranged by type of materials.


Much of the correspondence involves Boon's work as a carpenter, in which he hired both slaves and free African Americans to work for him. There are letters of recommendation from employers as to his character and his work. There are letters (1848) from his brother, Carter Evans, from Wilmington, which discuss the work and the men who are working for Boon, the scarcity of jobs, need for a protector for some of the men, etc., and asking Boon to come to Wilmington. (According to the above mentioned article in  Journal of Negro History, a Wilmington ordinance required that a free Negro have a protector.)

Other correspondence includes letters from the slave Sarah, Boon's common law wife to him in Raleigh which discuss instructions regarding his business at home, family matters, saying "if you should get down sick... I know doubt but what my owners would let me come and stay with you,"; and suggesting that he come nearer home if possible.

William Jones, to whom Boon was apprenticed, evidently helped Boon with his business, keeping his accounts for him, writing letters for him (Boon could neither read nor write), advancing cash to him and his wife. (This relationship is indicated in accounts.) In a letter to Boon (1850) he writes in regard to Boon's business affairs in Louisburg, stating "I have not been able to rent your shop yet."

Accounts, receipts, notes, bills, etc., relate also to his business as a carpenter, reflecting names of employers as well as names of men who worked for Boon and wages received, merchandise and construction materials bought, etc.

Boon's ownership of property is reflected in an agreement between him and Wm. H. Furman, a white man who was renting Boon's house (1848), and by three copies of a notice that proceedings would be instigated for sale of his property to cover debts (1849).

Also included in the papers is a statement signed by the Clerk of Court, Franklin County, September, 1829, that James Boon, "a boy of colour who was bound to William Jones by this court" was now 21 years of age and ordered to be set free.


  • Buffalo, Mahalia
  • Jones, William
  • Stallings, Maria
  • African Americans--North Carolina--1829-1853
  • African American businesspeople--North Carolina
  • Carpenters--North Carolina--Correspondence
  • Slaves--United States--Social conditions
  • Louisburg (N.C.)
  • Raleigh (N.C.)

Box: P.C.99.1  
1839-1851
1839-1851

16960
n.d.