MsC 48

Collection Dates: 1836 -- 1894
(Bulk Dates: 1862 -- 1864)
6 file folders

Collection Guide

This document describes a Manuscript Collection held by the

Special Collections Department
University of Iowa Libraries

Guide Contents

Administrative Information

Biographical and Historical Information

Scope and Contents of the Collection

Acquisition and Processing Information

Box Contents List

Administrative Information

Access and Restrictions: This collection is open for research.

Digital Surrogates: Except where indicated, this document describes but does not reproduce the actual text, images and objects which make up this collection. Materials are available only in the Special Collections Department.

Copyright:  Please read The University of Iowa Libraries' statement on "Property Rights, Copyright Law, and Permissions to Use Unpublished Materials"

Use of Collections:  The University of Iowa Libraries supports access to the materials, published and unpublished, in its collections. Nonetheless, access to some items may be restricted by their fragile condition or by contractual agreement with donors, and it may not be possible at all times to provide appropriate machinery for reading, viewing or accessing non-paper-based materials. Please read our Use of Manuscripts Statement.

Biographical Note

James Baird Weaver was born in Dayton, Ohio, on June 12, 1833. He moved with his parents to Michigan and then to Iowa, where they settled on a farm in Bloomfield. He studied law in Bloomfield from 1853 -- 1856. He apparently supported himself with clerk jobs at this time, because their granddaughter remembers the story of his meeting his wife. He was working as a clerk in Mannings store when Clara Vinson bought a spool of thread from him. He graduated from Cincinnati Law School in April 1856, and he and Clara were married on July 13, 1858 in Keosauqua, Iowa. He commenced the practice of law in Bloomfield.He enlisted as a private in the Second Regiment, Iowa Volunteer Infantry in April 1861, where he rose to the rank of Brevet Brigadier General of Volunteers. He was mustered out of the army on May 27, 1864.He was elected district attorney for the second judicial district in Iowa in 1866 and served four years. He spent his lifetime in politics and the law, running twice for president on third party tickets -- in 1880 for the National Greenback party (for which he received 350,000 votes) and in 1892 on the People's Party ticket (for which he received twenty-two electoral votes). He served a term in Congress from 1879 -- 1881; and again as a Democratic and Greenback-Laborite to the fiftieth congress from 1885 -- 1889. He was unsuccessful at running for re-election in 1888. He was mayor of Colfax, Iowa from 1901 -- 1903.

James Baird Weaver died in Des Moines on February 6, 1912, following several heart attacks.

Scope and Contents

This collection is comprised mostly of correspondence between James Baird Weaver and Clara Vinson Weaver, and most of the letters are from the Civil War period. There are a few letters from others in the Weaver family and a copy of a speech Weaver delivered in the House of Representatives.

JRoethler, January 2003

Photographs: Folder 6

Acquisition and Processing Information

These papers were given to the University of Iowa Libraries by Alice Evans Dannreuther in 1961.

Guide posted to Internet: January 2003



Clipping dated November 30, 1836. Newspaper not identified. Column headed "Trumpet of Liberty." Includes "Further Objections to Martin Van Buren for President," an article from the New York Advertiser and articles from other newspapers on various subjects.

Clipping dated September 22, 1836. Newspaper not identified. Column headed "Trumpet of Liberty." Contains a few articles concerning Martin Van Buren.


Personal correspondence of J.B. Weaver and Clara Vinson, 1858


Personal correspondence of J.B. Weaver to his wife Clara Vinson Weaver, 1860 -- 1864. Includes some letters with commentary on the war


Personal correspondence of Clara Vinson Weaver to her husband, 1862 -- 1864


Two letters from G. Vinson to his father (brother of Clara Vinson Weaver), August 19 and September 27, 1837. 4 pages each

A letter from Mr. Weaver to Julius Strouse, concerning war experience. Included are two typewritten copies of the letter

Two letters from Malechi Vinson, oldest brother of Clara Vinson Weaver
To Maude Weaver, his niece, January 22, 1892

To Clara Vinson Weaver, his sister, August 7, 1894
A letter to Maudie from "Papa", n.d.

Two unreadable love letters
From Mr. Weaver to Clara Vinson, n.d. 4 pages

From Clara Vinson to Mr. Weaver, n.d. 4 pages
A personal letter to "Clara" from S.M. Henry, n.d.


A copy of a speech delivered by Hon. J.B. Weaver in the House of Representatives, May 16, 1888, entitled "The Tariff and the Trusts". 8 pages

A photograph of a woman unname

return to inventory

Go to top of page

Return to Alphabetical Listing

Return to Top

The University of Iowa Libraries
2003. The University of Iowa. All rights reserved