Chiefly family correspondence and land papers re property in the area of Boggy Gully, Darlington District, S.C., involving members of the Oates, Grantham, and Register families and friends who had migrated to Florida, Alabama, Georgia, and elsewhere for work on farms or in factories; topics include crops, weather, family news, employment at a saw mill, a wild fire, and other topics.
Early materials include letter, 1 May 1841, Dale County, Ala., from Matthew and Martha Grantham, re local crops, family news, and financial difficulties, "money is very hard to rais[e]" and requesting collection of a debt; letter, 12 May 1843 (Richmond Factory P.O., Augusta, Ga.) from Henry Gibbs to James Oat[e]s (Darlington District, S.C.) asking for news of friends in Boggy Gully, S.C., and inviting him to "Come and See the girls for we have likely ones here"; 2 manuscripts, Jan. 1853 - Dec. 1854 and Jan. - Mar. 1860, Mineral Springs, Fla., W.J. Oates' account with T.D. Dexter for household supplies; letter, 31 Mar. 1855 (Gully P.O., S.C.), R.S. Josey to William J. Oat[e]s, Mineral Springs, Fla., re news of family and friends, re a recent destructive wild fire and reporting that he and his neighbors were late in planting corn because of a "tremendious wind ... which done the most damage by burning fence fodder corn and dwelling houses that you ever heard of," mentioning that some people had lost all possessions, and expressing disapproval of the gossip and behavior of Harriet, whose "tong and actions is not only a disgrace to herself but a laughing stock for all that knows her"; document, 22 Nov. 1855 conveying James Oat[e]s' livestock, farm implements, and household possessions to Mathew Oat[e]s for $500.
Post-Civil War items include document, 19 June 1865, Johnson's Island, Ohio, discharging Lt. William J. Oat[e]s from confinement as a prisoner of war; contract, 22 Aug. 1882, Darlington County, between W.J. Oates and J.H. Moore for building the "Oates cross roads School house"; assessment, 11 Feb. 1895, by Farmers Mutual Fire Insurance Association (Darlington County) appraising property owned by W.J. Oates ; and typescript, 12 Apr. 1926, agreement for organizing and operating the Oates pharmacy.
Also includes genealogical information and family Bible records, 1753-1849 and 1798-1938, of James Oates and others; and correspondence of Mathew and Martha Grantham, Henry Gibbs, Patience Loyd, and R.S. Josey.
Other places represented include Gully P.O. and Gum Branch P.O., Darlington District, S.C., Dale County Ala.; Richmond Factory, Augusta, Ga.
Oates family Papers, South Caroliniana Library, University of South Carolina.