Huntington, Henry William, 1789-1854.
Laurel Hill Plantation (Miss.)
Mercer, William Newton, 1792-1874.
Merrill, A. P. (Ayres Phillips), 1793-1873.
Natchez (Miss.) -- History -- 19th century.
New Orleans (La.) -- History -- 19th century.
Physicians -- Louisiana -- New Orleans.
Plantation owners -- Southern States.
Plantations -- Mississippi -- Adams County.
This collection is comprised of letters written to William Newton Mercer and assorted ephemera from 1829-1841, with one anonymous poem from 1854. Three aspects of Dr. Mercer's life are consistently mentioned throughout the collection: his business, his family and friends, and his politics.
Business transactions and invoices compose the largest part of Mercer's papers. As the head of a plantation he was in business with N. & J. Dick and Co. for years, a company whose letters deal with the fluctuating market prices of the goods coming from the Mercer plantation.
Several letters were written informally to Dr. Mercer by friends and relatives. Notable correspondents include Henry W. Huntington and Ayers P. Merrill for their large quantity of letters. Also of note is a cordial letter written to Mercer by esteemed Senator Henry Clay.
Mercer's political beliefs are mentioned in several letters. His relationship with Senator Clay was fitting given that Mercer identified as a member of the Whig party. Furthermore, he saved the transcript of a speech delivered by Powhattan Ellis, a senator from Mississippi who supported the political causes of Southern plantation-owners against the Jacksonian Democrats.