To: UI Special
To: Recent Acquisitions List
Recent Acquisitions, December 2001
Manuscript Letter, Hiram Barney to David Kilbourn[e], 1844
The Friends of the Libraries have made possible the purchase of a letter from Hiram Barney to David Kilbourn[e], Esq., dated "New York, September 3,1844." The letter traveled from New York via steam boat, and bears an unusual red handstamp at the address. It was docketed upon receipt in Fort Madison, Iowa, on September 19. David W. Kilbourne was a significant figure in the history of Keokuk, Iowa. In 1837, he and Isaac Galland laid out the platting of Keokuk, and Kilbourne later became mayor. This letter from Kilbourne's business partner, Hiram Barney, concerns the sale of lands in Keokuk and makes indirect reference to tensions with the Mormons in nearby Nauvoo, Illinois. They were reluctant to purchase land from Kilbourne, as they considered him an enemy of Joseph Smith, their prophet who had been killed only two months earlier. Therefore, Barney mentions the need for careful timing of the sale of lands, and encourages Kilbourne in his decision to "...keep matters as quiet as possible until after the first of October...". The letter continues with a detailed description of a business transaction.