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Huff Family Correspondence and Reciept

Identifier: ahc.MSS682f

Scope and Content

The collection contains twenty-three letters and one receipt written by and to the members of the Huff family and their friends. Included are letters written between 1853 and 1855 by Albert, Green, Jackson, Zipporah, and Monroe Willis. The young men wrote about traveling to Quitman, Texas to open a mercantile business. Their letters cover topics including the quality of the land, their trouble in finding spouses, the integrity of the locals, and the purchasing of goods for their business. While in Quitman, Albert Wells died from a fall into a river, Jackson succumbed to malaria, and Monroe contracted typhoid and died.

The bulk of the letters are written during the Civil War. William Norton and C. V. Henry, wrote about their experiences as Confederate soldiers from camps in Virginia and Savannah, respectively. Both mentioned pride in their fellow soldiers and discussed the scarcity of supplies, especially weaponry. At the same time, Jeremiah Huff was in Amherst County, Virginia. He wrote that he was away from much fighting after his horse, Nellie Gray, had been injured hauling ammunition to Manassas while fighting with Cobb’s Legion. Margaret and other Henry family members wrote to C. V. Henry updating him on the town news. Some events included the Battle of Chickahominy in Virginia, 1862 and the hanging of James Andrews, a northern spy who was leader of Andrews’ Raiders. Margaret Henry, Elizabeth Huff, J. F. and C. Henry, and Sarah Norton wrote to each other and to C. V., William, and Jeremiah about issues facing Atlanta, including news about family and friends who still resided in the city. Elizabeth Huff wrote specifically about the Atlanta Campaign; her flight from the city on July 20, 1864 after a month of bombings; and the loss of her property to Union soldiers. She wrote that Jeremiah used his twenty-four day furlough to relocate the family to his sister and brother-in-law’s home in Conyers, Georgia. In her letters, she discusses the battles and the damage to the neighboring homes of Irvin Hudson, Betsy Ann Kerring, Dr. William Gilbert, and Mr. Willis’ mill.


  • 1853-1869


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Reproduction and Use

Unpublished manuscripts are protected by copyright law. (Title 17, U.S. Code) Permission for use must be cleared through the Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center. Licensing agreement may be required.

Administrative and Biographical History

The Huff family was centered around Elizabeth Norton Wells Huff. Elizabeth’s first husband, Thomas Wells died in 1847, leaving her with his four children from a previous marriage: Albert, Green, Jackson, and Zipporah who married Monroe Willis. Elizabeth and Thomas also had three children: Margaret (Wells) Henry, Montgomery, and Warren. After Thomas’ death, Elizabeth married Jeremiah Huff and had three more children: Sarah (a prominent Atlanta writer), Cordelia, and Silas Clayton Huff. Elizabeth’s sister was Sarah A. Norton and her brother was William F. Norton. Jeremiah also had a sister, Palantine, who married William Miles Penn with whom Elizabeth and her family moved in when she fled the fighting in Atlanta.


24 item(s) (23 letters, 1 reciept)



Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased from Historical Collectible Auctions in 2004.


America's Turning Point: Documenting the Civil War Experience in Georgia received support from a Digitizing Historical Records grant awarded to the Atlanta History Center, Georgia Historical Society, Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library, and the Digital Library of Georgia by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Processing Information

Collection reprocessed in 2010


Huff Family Correspondence and Receipt
Inventory prepared by Laura Starratt
Description rules
Finding Aid Prepared According To Dacs
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Kenan Research Center at the Atlanta History Center Repository

130 West Paces Ferry Road
Atlanta GA 30305