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Guide to the Ephraim W. Morse Papers MS 144
MS 144  
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Series I: Correspondence

Box-folder 1:1

Correspondence, 1857 May 18-December 21

Scope and Content

Business related to Morse’s copper mines: a test is done on a sample of ore, and G.W. Barnes reports troubles at the mine.
Box-folder 1:2

Correspondence (some in Spanish), 1858 January 16-May 18

Scope and Content

Business related to Morse’s copper mines, including San Antonio and Jesus Maria: G.W. Barnes relates a series of accidents and trouble brewing due to a lack of provisions. A.J. Chase and J.C. Cissna report the status of shipments of supplies and metal samples sent for testing.
Box-folder 1:3

Correspondence, 1858 June 2-December 18

Scope and Content

A.J. Chase and J.C. Cissna respond to Morse’s attempt to sell his share in the Jesus Maria mine. D.C. Breed requests updates on his suit against Louis Rose for an unpaid debt. A.J. Chase writes repeatedly encouraging Morse to start up a sheep business, and demanding he collect money on overdue accounts.
Box-folder 1:4

Correspondence, 1859 January 1-December 17 and undated

Scope and Content

A.J. Chase helps make arrangements for a sheep business, including a potential partnership between Morse and Merritt. He continues to inquire about the overdue accounts of Lyons and Captain Eastman, and about Morse’s progress with his sheep herd.

Includes:

Sept. 19, 1859: A.J. Chase recounts the funeral of Senator David Broderick in San Francisco.
Box-folder 1:5

Correspondence, 1860 January-December 22

Scope and Content

Breed writes to Morse on behalf of “Breed & Chase” while A.J. Chase is out of town. He repeatedly inquires about Morse’s failure to make payments on his account or reply to all their letters. A.J. Chase returns from a tumultuous trip to the Utah Territory and takes over as primary correspondent again. His letters indicate Morse’s sheep business is not going as well as they all hoped.
Box-folder 1:6

Correspondence, 1861 January 21-December 19

Scope and Content

A.J. Chase writes on a near monthly basis, relaying the impatience of his partners over Morse’s financial troubles and avoidance of his debt. He encourages Morse to sell his sheep, and offers congratulations upon hearing Morse has taken up the role of San Diego City Treasurer again and moved back into the city.
Box-folder 1:7

Correspondence, 1862 January 18-December 24

Scope and Content

A.J. Chase writes of shipping arrangements, fluctuating market prices of wool and other goods (including the declining value of legal tender), news of his own family, and news of the Civil War. Breed & Chase write of more financial matters, including payments on Morse’s account, money collected from federal certificates, and the correct way to file a soldier’s discharge paperwork.

Includes:

July 5, 1862: A.J. Chase encourages Morse to obtain an Indian servant for his wife. "Mrs. C. called on a friend of hers a few days since who has got an Indian girl. She thinks the world of her. So I shall hold you accountable for supplying a want which I am unable to do. Of course an Indian girl you must get or suffer the loss of reputation as a procurer in the estimation of my better half."
August 2, 1862: A.J. Chase explains the recent financial panic in New York which drove up the price of gold. He blames this on trade conditions with England and recent events in the war including conflict in Richmond.
Box-folder 1:8

Correspondence, 1863 January 7-June 26

Scope and Content

A.J. Chase continues to report on the shipping of Morse’s orders and the government’s continued insistence on paying in greenbacks rather than gold, and he suggests Morse try mining again. Breed & Chase write of shipments, the poor quality of Morse’s hides, and the continued effect the war is having on the market and currency.

Includes:

March 28, 1863: Breed & Chase write: “The Union cause looks brighter & government finances are improving. Mexico and Lower Cal. are attracting much attention here, think there will be considerable emigration South this season.”
Box-folder 1:9

Correspondence, 1863 July 2-December 25

Scope and Content

Letters from D.C. Breed, A.J. Chase, and Breed & Chase continue to document the effect of the war on market values, the sale of Morse’s goods in San Francisco (hides, wool, copper, quartz), and difficulty convincing steamships to land in San Diego.

Includes:

September 2, 1863: Breed & Chase write: “We are today in the midst of election. Stored closed & business mostly suspended. Hope you are taking care of the Copperheads in your part of the country.”
September 29, 1863: Breed & Chase lament a recurring problem, steamers do not find it lucrative to carry freight all the way to San Diego.
Box-folder 1:10

Correspondence, 1864 January 2-June 30

Scope and Content

Letters from A.J. Chase and Breed & Chase describe continued efforts to get regular steamer service between San Francisco and San Diego, details about shipments of goods, the fluctuating value of greenbacks, Morse’s debt, and continued efforts to collect on the debt of Abel Stearns. In June, Breed & Chase refuse to fill Morse’s full orders because his debt is too high, and urge him to collect money on his customers’ accounts. After repeated request, Morse sends A.J. Chase a young Indian girl.

Includes:

January 5, 1864: Henry Suverkrup asks Morse for help after his wife receives a blackmail letter from William Vettigar .
March 19, 1864: A.J. Chase mentions some state politics: “I see by the papers that [Senator] Conness is making an effort to get the harbors of the Pacific Coast fortified, especially those on the Southern Coast.”
April 30, 1864: Breed & Chase comment on federal taxes: “Congress has just added 50% to all duties to take effect immediately, consequently foreign goods go up… It is hard to keep track of the Liquor market. Whiskey seems to be a favorite article of taxation with the government.”
May 17, 1864: A.J. Chase insists on keeping his wife’s Indian servant: “We want the Indian girl until she is of age. We wish to treat her well & give her a good English education. We should not consent to any dictation from her Father as to the mode of her Education, either domestic or religious.”
June 25, 1864: D.C. Breed reports another gold market panic in New York, and further decline of greenbacks.
Box-folder 1:11

Correspondence, 1864 July 7-December 31

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase continue to send updates about market prices, the state of Morse’s account, his orders, and sale of his goods. Morse writes to Henry Hannsmann, Consul for Prussia, acting as probate agent for Ludwig F.C. Martin. A.J. Chase advises Morse to give up the mining business. Judge Benjamin Hayes writes about the ongoing attempts to file suit against Abel Stearns.

Includes:

November 12, 1864: Breed & Chase comment on the presidential election. “Hope your county has given Uncle Abraham a good majority… The administration have a strong endorsement, and ought now to crush the rebellion.”
Box-folder 1:12

Correspondence, 1865 January 6-June 30

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase continue to send updates on market prices (including ramifications of the war ending), the state of Morse’s account, his orders, and sale of his goods (primarily hides, wool, copper, and gold dust). Judge Hayes continues to provide legal advice in the suit of Morse vs. Stearns.

Includes:

February 9, 1865: Breed & Chase write of a break in communication with the East. “The overland line has been down for ten days, hence we are without advice from the East, and know not whether we have a country or not, or if peace has been made with the Reb commissioners.”
April 1, 1865: Breed & Chase write: “Capt Winder was into the store yesterday, he said he believed Gen McDowell was going down that way next week. If he visits San Diego, you must give him a proper reception and impress upon him the advantages of S. Diego as a military point, and the necessity of fortifications in case of a foreign war.”
April 22, 1865: Breed & Chase write about the end of the Civil War: “Our rejoicing over the fall of Richmond was suddenly turned to mourning a week ago today, by the terrible news of the assassination of our beloved President. The feeling was intense for several days, but little business has been done during the week, all talking over the sad news. Nearly every building in the city is draped with mourning. Mercy towards the South must now give place to stern justice.”
Box-folder 1:13

Correspondence, 1865 July 13-September 28

Scope and Content

Judge Hayes introduces Mr. Benzen and recommends he be embraced as resident lawyer of San Diego. He also relates further progress claiming and selling Abel Stearns’ property to pay his debts. Breed & Chase continue to send updates on market prices, the state of Morse’s account, his orders, and sale of his goods.
Box-folder 1:14

Correspondence, 1865 October 2-December 30

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase continue to send updates on market prices, the state of Morse’s account, his orders, and sale of his goods. A.J. Chase returns from Nevada. Judge Hayes continues to report limited progress on the matter of Abel Stearns. D.B. McKee makes arrangements to procure a Controller’s Warrant.

Includes:

October 7, 1865: In a note added to the letter on October 8, Breed & Chase recount San Francisco’s great earthquake of 1865 .
October 14, 1865: Breed & Chase report the “terrible steamboat explosion of the Sacramento.”
November 7, 1865: A.J. Chase describes the education of their Indian girl, Emma, who has become a close member of the family.
Box-folder 1:15

Correspondence, 1866 January 4-March 25

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase continue to send updates on market prices, the state of Morse’s account, his orders, and sale of his goods (with an emphasis on mining rather than ranching). They indicate economic troubles in San Diego, and difficulty sorting out some bills on Morse’s account due from Mr. Eastman and Captain Winder. Judge Hayes reports further delays in collecting Morse’s money from the Abel Stearns suit. D.B. McKee sends Morse several powers of attorney to procure Controller’s Warrants from Sacramento.
Box-folder 1:16

Correspondence, 1866 April 5-June 30

Scope and Content

Judge Hayes writes of continued delays in collecting the Abel Stearns settlement, and advises Morse to sell off Stearns’ San Diego property. Breed & Chase write of continued trouble collecting money from Mr. Eastman and Captain Winder, as well as the usual details related to Morse’s account. D.B. McKee continues to deal in Controller’s Warrants. Morse arranges the sale of eight barrels of whale oil on behalf of John Hyde.

Includes:

April 27, 1866: Breed & Chase speculate about economic possibilities in San Diego, including potential daily steamship service and an extension of the Southern Pacific Railroad.
May 31, 1866: Judge Hayes relates the necessity of installing a Court Commissioner in San Diego County, to be appointed by the District Judge.
June 2, 1866: A.J. Chase writes to arrange the acquisition of another young Indian girl for one of his friends.
Box-folder 1:17

Correspondence, 1866 July 4-September 25

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase report further delays collecting money from Captain Winder for Morse’s account. Judge Hayes reports further delays collecting money from the Abel Stearns settlement. J.T. Harrison writes on behalf of several Delfina miners who are owed money. D.B. McKee continues to deal in Controller’s Warrants. In August A.J. Chase informs Morse that his debt has surpassed $15,000 and they are opposed to sending him any more goods for fear they will be sent to the mines.
Box-folder 2:1

Correspondence, 1866 October 2-December 11

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase continue in their efforts to get their money back from Captain Winder, but fear he will never pay his debt. They send goods to Morse reluctantly, and insist he not use any of them for his mines. Morse begins to collect large sums of money to pay on his account.

Includes:

October 5, 1866: Breed & Chase mention a new law has gone into effect, requiring that all canned goods must be stamped.
Box-folder 2:2

Correspondence, 1867 January 1-June 11

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase continue to lament the matter of Captain Winder, who has now been avoiding payment for a year. Morse regularly sends large sums of money to pay on his account, and regular shipments continue. The prospect of a railroad line is now speeding up real estate business in San Diego. Breed & Chase begin to discuss the plans of Alonzo Horton, who is buying real estate in San Diego and selling it to families in San Francisco.

Includes:

April 23, 1867: In an addendum to a business letter D.C. Breed writes, “P.S. The splendid Cosmopolitan Hotel building is now on fire. The roof is entirely burnt off. But I think the fire will be confined to the two upper stories. The loss must be large.”
May 28, 1864: Breed & Chase first mention the plans of Alonzo Horton: “We were much pleased with Mr. Horton’s account of San Diego and to hear that he had purchased land. Mr. Horton says some 25 families have promised to move to San Diego & they are persons of means.”
Box-folder 2:3

Correspondence, 1867 July-December 30

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase continue to send updates on market prices and Morse’s orders, and ask repeatedly for payments on his account. They describe the ongoing efforts of Alonzo Horton to colonize San Diego, and say they have it on good authority Pacific Railroad will be extending their line.

Includes:

October 14, 1867: Breed & Chase write of Horton’s return to San Francisco to spread word of San Diego. Horton says that “he would give a lot to everyone who would put a house on it worth $500 or more.”
December 5, 1867: Breed & Chase report that Horton has sold a considerable number of lots in New San Diego. He also received word from Washington that the mail route from Fort Yuma to Los Angeles would be discontinued, and a triweekly service to San Diego would be instituted instead.
December 16, 1867: Breed & Chase report that Horton has contracted to build a wharf at New San Diego, and they noticed that on Horton’s application to Sacramento for the building franchise he listed Lansing Haight and E.W. Morse as his partners.
Box-folder 2:4

Correspondence, 1868 January 3-April 30

Scope and Content

In addition to their usual updates on Morse’s account, Breed & Chase respond excitedly to developments in San Diego. These include the government’s intention to build a Naval School, surveys by Pacific Railroad, and land sales by Horton.

Includes:

February 9, 1868: Breed & Chase inform Morse that according to the government greenbacks can no longer be redeemed for their full value if they are not wholly intact.
April 20, 1868: Breed & Chase lament the fact that there is no hotel in San Diego, where the beautiful climate would definitely attract vacationers if accommodations existed.
Box-folder 2:5

Correspondence (some in Spanish), 1868 May 11-August 28

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase continue to send updates on Morse’s account and speculate there will soon be a population boom in San Diego. They request that Morse buy them several more lots of land in New Town, and pass along the discontent of San Franciscans who purchased city bonds from San Diego and never received their payout. Jose Godoy, Mexican Consul, writes about establishing a road in Lower California. One of Morse’s customers, J.B. Hyde, writes of some conflict with his father, Judge Hyde, after charging too many items to his account. Breed & Chase encourage the construction of a road between San Diego and Fort Yuma to lure Arizona traffic.

Includes:

July 7, 1868: Breed & Chase write, “Elder Jacob Knapp, the celebrated revival preacher (of whom you have doubtless heard) visits the Southern country by this steamer, and will probably extend his trip to San Diego.”
July 31, 1868: Breed & Chase write a letter of introduction for Major Levi Chase, a lawyer and former Union soldier. He is in San Diego for the purpose of buying the “El Cajon” Ranch.
Box-folder 2:6

Correspondence (some in Spanish), 1868 September 1-December 25

Scope and Content

D.N. Breed dies after a protracted fever. A.J. Chase carries on the usual business correspondence related to Morse’s account, and also requests more Indian girls – they are becoming a popular household addition in San Francisco. He asks Morse’s advice on how best to develop the firm’s San Diego lots to later sell. Morse considers selling out of the trade business entirely before all the new stores appearing in San Diego make competition impossible.

Includes:

December 18, 1868: Breed & Chase have heard rumors Morse might sell out of the trade business and partner up with Horton for other enterprises. They encourage him to do so.
Box-folder 2:7

Correspondence, 1869 January 1-April 30

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase continue to urge Morse to sell out of the trade business. John Van Alst sends Morse a power of attorney to sell off his San Diego lots for him. Breed & Chase write more frequently and urgently through the end of January about Morse’s failure to make payments or answer their letters. Morse at last makes a remittance and continues to negotiate San Diego real estate on the firm’s behalf, and in late February Morse sells out his business. He subsequently turns his attention wholly to real estate.

Includes:

February 13, 1869: Breed & Chase hear rumors that “a claim had been set up to Horton’s land, based on an old Mexican grant. Is there anything in it? Horton of course has his title from the city pueblo title. I supposed the pueblo would cover all other titles.”
Box-folder 2:8

Correspondence, 1869 May 7-July 30

Scope and Content

Breed & Chase ask Morse to facilitate their San Diego real estate arrangements, including selling Philip Crosthwaite’s ranch and fencing off their New Town and Middle Town lots to protect against jumpers. A.J. Chase decides to move to San Diego to aid to his wife’s health. Partly as a result, Breed & Chase is selling out their business and write repeatedly for Morse to pay up on his account. Morse also receives letters from John Bleecker, Clayton, J. Sloane, and John Doyle regarding taxes and property sales in San Diego.

Includes:

July 16, 1869: Breed & Chase learn that many San Diego property owners are donating land to the Southern Pacific Railroad Company to help pay for construction. They object strongly at Morse’s suggestion they donate ten acres of their lot.
July 30, 1869: Breed & Chase are in the process of selling out the business. One member (“the writer of this [letter]”) will stay in San Francisco and run a commission business filling direct orders for goods to customers in San Diego.
Box-folder 2:9

Correspondence, 1869 August 5-November 25

Scope and Content

After some disagreement, Breed & Chase come to a settlement on Morse’s account: he pays them about $6,000 of his $14,000 debt and deeds them an 80-acre plot of land to offset the rest. They then turn their attention to the upcoming railroad construction and Morse’s lawsuit against J.B. Bidleman. A.J. Chase continues to make plans to move to San Diego. John Bleecker sends Morse a list of property and a power of attorney so that Morse can act as a commissioned agent on his behalf.

Includes:

September 14, 1869: A.J. Chase reports that a number of dignitaries are on their way to San Diego by steamer to attend the groundbreaking of the railroad line: Hunter, Sedgwick, Axtell, and Seward.
Box-folder 2:10

Correspondence (some in Spanish), 1870 January 3-June 22

Scope and Content

J.B. Bleecker writes with requests for Morse to administer his property in San Diego. William Keighler writes regarding the sale of the Rancho Jamacha property and his business dealings with Wetmore and Sanborn. Ed Heuck sends an itemized bill for Morse’s expenses in E.W. Morse vs. J. & Co. E. Edmunds writes with an order for goods and a request that Morse look after his teamster. Also included are letters between C. Judd and John Doyle discussing how to handle the property of Major Ed. Fitzgerald.
Box-folder 2:11

Correspondence, 1870 July 11-December 31

Scope and Content

E. Edmunds describes his freight route and his contract for hauling lumber from Crittenden to Tucson. J.B. Hyde claims poverty and asks if Morse will accept a large quantity of salt as payment on his debt. M. Sexton requests that Morse sell his San Diego property for him so he can focus on pocket mining for quartz in Sonora. William Keighler continues to request Morse’s aid in sorting out his San Diego property conflict.

Includes:

July 11, 1870: E. Edmunds describes the security measures he takes on his freight route to defend against potential Apache attacks.
Box-folder 2:12

Correspondence, 1871 January 5-May 6

Scope and Content

J.B. Bleecker writes from New York in regard to his San Diego property: he requests that Morse handle his taxes and speculates on the success the railroad will bring them. Major H. Eddy writes to William Keighler, and William Keighler writes to Morse regarding their payments on the Rancho Jamacha mortgage. Keighler also writes about leaving his Baltimore copper business, and his strong desire to buy the property up for auction from the estate of A. Ames.
Box-folder 2:13

Correspondence, 1872 January 22-December 16

Scope and Content

Judge Hyde announces he will travel to San Diego and attempt to settle the debt his son owes Morse. J.B. Bleecker continues to write updates on the state of the Texas Pacific Railroad and concerns about the motivations of its new president, Thomas Scott. Bleecker also stresses his interest in purchasing more lots of land, particularly ones close to the proposed Railroad. In October he learns his lots may be condemned and handed over to the Texas Pacific Railroad. He files a protest with the company and demands an exchange for lots in Horton’s Addition. Lawyer W. Lowry writes to F. Covert accepting a retainer to litigate the results of a survey of Mission land.
Box-folder 2:14

Correspondence, 1873 January 11-June 27

Scope and Content

Lowry requests further paperwork from Covert to aid in their case. William Keighler continues to write Morse about his mortgage payments on the Rancho Jamacha land. Bleecker continues to request his tax return and demand recompense for his condemned lands. In March, Bleecker agrees to trade lots with McLellan to settle the matter. In June, James M. Pierce writes several long updates on San Diego politics and the Bowler estate to Morse, who is on vacation with his wife in Acapulco.

Includes:

June 22, 1873: J. Pierce describes how C.P. Taggart and his “tideland ring” (longtime competitors of Horton and Morse on the matter of selling certain lots) are again trying to gain control of the city’s tide lands by having them declared part of the original pueblo lands.
Box-folder 2:15

Correspondence, 1873 July 4-December 31

Scope and Content

William Keighler writes that he is anxious to officially divide the Jamacha Ranch with Major Eddy and end their troubles with the mortgage. F. Covert writes about his ongoing difficulties and requests that Morse help him obtain legal aid.
Box-folder 3:1

Correspondence, 1874 February 18-October 15

Scope and Content

William Keighler pays Morse for services rendered. William Bates writes on behalf of Mary Gould on an unresolved matter concerning the estate of O.W. Gould, which Morse administered. John Doyle inquires about Major Fitzgerald’s estate and how he should select an agent in San Diego. Keighler inquires after the sale of land from the Magruder estate.
Box-folder 3:2

Correspondence, 1875 February 23-June 30

Scope and Content

Alex Smith writes repeatedly from the Oak Glen Apiary with updates about the bees. He requests construction supplies and describes building hives, swarm behavior, brood frames, and honey comb retrieval. S. Davis writes from Pennsylvania with a sales pitch for his hives.
Box-folder 3:3

Correspondence, 1875 July 8-December 29

Scope and Content

Alex Smith continues to send updates about the Oak Glen Apiary and orders supplies. He describes a conflict over pasturage with nearby sheepherder Mr. Preston and repeated offers from an unnamed Irishman to sell them additional hives. He has several problems: ants, skunks, moths, and “robber” bees; a fire accidentally sweeps through the bee feed; concerns that laying lead pipe might poison his water supply; and a brief boundary dispute with his neighbor, Wheeler. E. Kennedy, George Storie, the Landendales, and John Doyle write Morse with questions about their San Diego real estate.
Box-folder 3:4

Correspondence, 1876 January 12-March 26

Scope and Content

Alex Smith continues to provide updates from the Oak Glen Apiary, including an ongoing hive construction project and difficulties getting some of the hives to make queen cells. William Keighler writes of his financial problems and intention to sell his interest in the Rancho Jamacha land.
Box-folder 3:5

Correspondence (some in Spanish), 1876 April 3-December 27

Scope and Content

Alex Smith continues to provide updates from the Oak Glen Apiary, particularly concerning swarming season and necessary supplies. William Keighler continues to stress his intention to sell his interest in the Rancho Jamacha land. General Brown writes to check on his San Diego property and pay his taxes. Pierce writes to G. Geddes about the honey market and his trip to Philadelphia.

Includes:

September 17, 1876: Letter from Pierce to G. Geddes describing 1876 Centennial International Exposition in Philadelphia. He describes the strengths of each nation and an elaborate musical machine.
Box-folder 3:6

Correspondence, 1877 January 3-December 24

Scope and Content

Alex Smith continues to provide updates from the Oak Glen Apiary, including a visit from the tax assessor an wildcat problems. R.D. Doyle follows up on the matter of the Fitzgerald property after the death of his father, John Doyle. J. Cuaig describes his trip to New Zealand. Edwin Bailey writes with news from the Oriflamme Mine. Winfield Curtis requests help to determine the integrity of his Lower California land titles.
Box-folder 3:7

Correspondence, 1878 January 3-December 25

Scope and Content

Alex Smith continues to provide updates from the Oak Glen Apiary. Winfield Curtis continues to seek legal advice in the matter of his land titles. J. Cuaig continues to conduct business from New Zealand., where he has serious financial trouble after a large check from San Diego bounces.

Includes:

June 1, 1878: Letter from William Gardner handing over all funds and official documents to newly elected City Treasurer, Morse.
Box-folder 3:8

Correspondence, 1879 January 3-November 11

Scope and Content

R.D. Doyle requests that Morse sell off the property belonging to John Doyle’s heirs. J. Cuaig continues to conduct business from New Zealand, where his financial troubles worsen. J. Wescott turns over to T. Griffith the remaining money from the sale of the Florence & Globe stage route. George Wetherbee responds to a complaint about the hives he built for Morse. E. Tullman writes to S. Hoffman claiming Hoffman owes him money on note; Hoffman writes back to deny this.
Box-folder 3:9

Correspondence, 1880 January 4-March 25

Scope and Content

Morse writes to L. Pratt and Wilbur urging them to build a direct rail line to San Diego; Pratt promises they will consider it after choosing a Board of Directors for the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad Co. William Keighler requests that a mortgage be extended him on his Rancho Jamacha land. C.J. Burleson writes from Fallbrook with updates on the Woodland Apiary, including wax collection and comb vs. strained honey. A. Root, G. Wetherbee, T. Bingham, and F. Dunham write to Rufus Morgan about the honey business.
Box-folder 3:10

Correspondence, 1880 April 3-June 24

Scope and Content

William Keighler sends his power of attorney to Morse and receives the money from his mortgage. C.J. Burleson continues to send updates from the Woodland Apiary. Mrs. Robinson writes from Peoria to request clarification on the state of her Consolidated Bank of San Diego stock. Mary Morgan requests that Morse be made executor of her late husband Rufus Morgan’s estate. E. Lovett now sends updates from the Oak Glen Apiary.
Box-folder 3:11

Correspondence, 1880 July 24-September 28

Scope and Content

C.J. Burleson continues to send updates from the Woodland Apiary, and E. Lovett from the Oak Glen Apiary. C.B. Culver sells out of the honey business. E. Lovett buys bees and hives from Burleson and Burleson quits when Morse refuses to pay him their pre-agreed amount. Mrs. Robinson continues to enquire about her account with the Consolidated Bank of San Diego. William Keighler accepts on offer of $2,000 for part of his Rancho Jamacha property.
Box-folder 3:12

Correspondence, 1880 October 11-December 21

Scope and Content

Mrs. Robinson requests and receives a draft for most of her money from the Consolidated Bank of San Diego. William Keighler transfers his deed to W.W. Stewart and pays his debt to Morse. R.D. Doyle protests the large commission Morse wants to help the Doyle heirs reclaim their late father’s property. E. Lovett continues to send updates from the Oak Glen Apiary.

Includes:

October 26, 1880: S. Dougherty describes his preferred method of exterminating bees.
Box-folder 3:13

Correspondence, 1881 January 7-April 22

Scope and Content

E. Lovett forwards several bills to Morse to pay hired help at the Oak Glen Apiary. Mrs. Robinson continues to inquire about her account at the Consolidated Bank of San Diego and expresses her concerns about the undecided railroad terminus. Mrs. J.E. Corbet writes from Indian Falls to urge Morse to rent her San Diego property at a profitable rate. J.C. Keighler writes on behalf of his father, William Keighler, who is ill and wishes to sell the rest of his San Diego property.
Box-folder 3:14

Correspondence, 1881 May-July

Scope and Content

E. Lovett continues to send Morse bills for hired help at the Oak Glen Apiary. He relates the effect poor weather is having on honey production and the termination of Bell. Mrs. J.E. Corbet continues to ask why her property is lying idle, and Mrs. Robinson continues to ask about her account with the Consolidated Bank of San Diego.
Box-folder 3:15

Correspondence, 1881 September 11-December 30

Scope and Content

J.C. Keighler continues to write of his father’s ill health and strong desire to sell the rest of his San Diego property. E. Lovett continues to send bills and status reports from Oak Glen Apiary. Mrs. J.E. Corbet continues to write from Indian Falls, New York regarding her property and bank investments in San Diego. General Brown writes from the War Department in Washington D.C., inquiring about San Diego’s railroad prospects.
Box-folder 4:1

Correspondence, 1882 January 23-June 30

Scope and Content

J.C. Keighler continues to write on behalf of his ailing father to arrange the sale of their San Diego property. E. Lovett continues to send updates from the Oak Glen Apiary, including a shipment of queen bees and a discrepancy in the Morse-Lovett account at Hamilton & Co. R.D. Doyle informs Morse of his intent to sue the estate of E.H. Fitzgerald. William Bryce writes from London of his desire to import Morse’s honey into Glasgow and Liverpool. Henry Nichols writes on behalf of the National Anti-Monopoly League with instructions on how to open a local chapter.
Box-folder 4:2

Correspondence, 1882 August 13-December 24

Scope and Content

Mrs. J.E. Corbet continues to inquire about her income from property in San Diego. J.C. Keighler continues to inquire about progress in the sale of his father’s property. E. Lovett continues to send updates from the Oak Glen Apiary, including his efforts to fight a brush fire in October.
Box-folder 4:3

Correspondence, 1883 April 6-December 1

Scope and Content

J.C. Keighler continues to write on his father’s behalf, requesting that the rest of his San Diego property be sold. E. Lovett requests a loan of $275 so he can buy an apiary from and then sell it in parcels for a profit. E.G. Denniston provides information on silver-plated amalgamating plates for use in gold mining.
Box-folder 4:4

Correspondence, 1884 January 9-July 31

Scope and Content

G. Streeter writes repeatedly on behalf of Mary Gould to settle her financial matters in San Diego, but does not get a response from Morse. General Brown pays his property taxes. E. Rankin writes from Los Angeles about his persistent debts. E. Lovett continues to send updates from the Oak Glen Apiary, including the difficulty of harvesting honey in hot weather and getting good strong help at the ranch.
Box-folder 4:5

Correspondence, 1884 August 6-December 12

Scope and Content

E. Lovett continues to send updates from the Oak Glen Apiary regarding payments for hired help, honey deliveries, and profit margins. A. Spafford writes to Mrs. J.E. Corbet regarding a mortgage owed to her. General Brown pays his taxes. G. Streeter again requests information on Mary Gould’s San Diego interests.
Box-folder 4:6

Correspondence, 1885 October 20-November 20

Scope and Content

J.G. Martin writes to Morse requesting a note from “Mrs. C.” J.M Howard requests that Morse attend his San Diego property and sell if possible.
Box-folder 4:7

Correspondence, 1886 March 17-October 4

Scope and Content

G. Streeter accepts a settlement on behalf of Mary Gould for her interest in her brother’s estate. Mrs. J.E. Corbet requests information about her Fifth Street property and a note overdue from J. Martin, as she is trying to raise money to buy property in the East. J. Martin writes to Morse and T. Whaley requesting a cash order be filled for wages at the Temecula School District, and requesting an extension on his debt to Mrs. Corbet.
Box-folder 4:8

Correspondence, 1887 January 15-June 22

Scope and Content

H. Radcliffe sells his store to Morse and his associates. Mrs. J.E. Corbet requests information about her Fifth Street property. Miss E.M. Chapin collects rent from the tenants on her lot and sends it along to Morse, with apologies for being late.
Box-folder 4:9

Correspondence, 1890 October 31-1905 December 23

Scope and Content

Carlson writes about the difficulty of making a business arrangement involving the wharf, since it is part of a general bond mortgage. Carrie Williams writes to Mary Walker Morse regarding gardening and the silk industry. J. Atwood writes an account of his misadventures joining the 49’ers during the Gold Rush. Morse writes to his cousin about recent developments in San Diego.

Includes:

December 23, 1905: Morse describes recent developments in San Diego, including the proposed construction of a “suburb,” the construction of Silver Gate Park, a new school house, three new street car lines, and the County Hospital septic tank.
Box-folder 4:10

Envelopes (empty), 1865-1916

 

Series II: Letterpress Books

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Letterpress Book, 1870 March 11-1871 January 18

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Letterpress Book, 1866 May 19-1872 June 3

Box-folder 5:1

Letterpress Book, 1872 May 29-1874 January 28

Box-folder 5:2

Letterpress Book, 1873 June 25-November 29

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Letterpress Book, 1874 January 30-1875 April 15

Box-folder 5:4

Letterpress Book, 1874 June 18-1875 February 15

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Letterpress Book, 1875 April-1877 January

Box-folder 6:1

Letterpress Book, 1877 January 23-1878 March 22

Box-folder 6:2

Letterpress Book, 1878 March 30-1879 July 27

Box-folder 6:3

Letterpress Book, 1879 August 12-1880 July 12

Box-folder 7:1

Letterpress Book, 1880 July 11-1883 January 1

Box-folder 7:2

Letterpress Book, 1883 January 10-1884 August 19

 

Series III: Business Papers

Box-folder 7:3

Real estate: deeds, 1855 January 15-1884 December 2 and undated

Includes:

Deed transferred from Daniel C. Breed and Andrew J. Chase to Ephraim W. Morse, November 4, 1869 (in Oversize Collections D6)
Box-folder 7:4

Real estate: lease and mortgage agreements, 1858 February 11-1887 March 1

Box-folder 7:5

Real estate: powers of attorney, 1857 May 25-1886 October 4

Box-folder 7:6

Real estate: miscellanea, 1853-1886 and undated

Includes:

Robert Kelly and John Kelly’s pre-emptive claims
E.W. Morse’s notes and To-Do lists regarding property transactions
Lists of E.W. Morse and Lydia Morse’s property
Box-folder 7:7

Accounts Daybook, 1857 March 2-August 8

Scope and Content

A daily transaction ledger with unnumbered pages. Each page has the date written at the top, followed by transaction entries. Each entry consists of the customer’s name (or “Cash”), an itemized list of purchases, and the total cost of the purchases. When applicable, the customer’s account number is listed in the left margin.
Box-folder 8:1

Accounts Daybook, 1857 October 8-1858 July 18

Scope and Content

A daily transaction ledger with numbered pages. Each page has the date written at the top, followed by transaction entries. Each entry consists of the customer’s name (or “Cash”), an itemized list of purchases, and the total cost of the purchases. When applicable, the customer’s account number in listed in the left margin.
Box-folder 8:2

Accounts Daybook, 1863 October 1-1864 December 31

Scope and Content

A daily transaction ledger with numbered pages. The date is often listed at the top of the page, but more consistently noted in the left margin. Each entry consists of the customer’s name, account number when applicable, itemized list of purchases, and total cost.
Box-folder 8:3

Accounts Daybook, 1865 January 2-December 31

Scope and Content

A daily transaction ledger with unnumbered pages. Each page has the date written at the top, followed by transaction entries. Each entry consists of the customer’s name, an itemized list of purchases, and the total cost of the purchases. When applicable, the customer’s account number is listed in the left margin, or else the notation “Paid.”
Box-folder 8:4

Accounts "Ledger D," 1858 January 1-1859 June 8

Scope and Content

An account ledger with numbered pages. The first 13 pages are an alphabetical index, followed by individual account entries. Each entry lists the business or individual customer’s name at the top of the page followed by an itemized list of purchases with the date in the left margin and the running total in the right margin. There are gaps left after many accounts.
Box-folder 9:1

Accounts "Ledger E," 1859 July 1-1863 August 25

Scope and Content

An account ledger with some hand-numbered pages. The first section is an alphabetical index, followed by 73 pages of individual account entries. Each entry consists of the individual’s name and an itemized list of cash loaned, services rendered, or merchandise purchased. Additionally, pages 49-55 contain a list of Ranch expenses, and the last pages of the ledger contain lists of outstanding accounts and boarders.
Box-folder 9:2

Accounts ledger, 1861 October-1864 June

Scope and Content

An account ledger with hand-numbered pages. The first section is an alphabetical index, followed by individual account entries. Each entry lists the business or individual customer’s name at the top of the page, followed by an itemized list of purchases with the date in the left margin and a running total in the right margin.
Box-folder 9:3

Mining: finances, 1857 May 7-1877 November 16 and undated

Includes:

Receipts and records of provisions ordered from Morse for the Delfina, Jesus Maria, Orflamme, and San Antonio Copper mines, as well as money raised to aid three miners imprisoned by Mexican officials.
Box-folder 9:4

Mining: Diary, 1865 August 19-1866 February 27

Entries of interest:

September 2, 1865: The men are dissatisfied about their lack of wage arrangements. The foreman assures them that Captain Winder has promised substantial payment.
October 8, 1865: “Highest shaft is the Buena Vista – Delfina working shaft – Gallicia shaft. Zerrega came with the papers for the 1/2 league near the mine.”
November 10, 1865: “These d__d people are bringing liquor all the time now to sell to Indians, causing serious interruption to our regular work. The 1st families are the liquor sellers and everybody else uphold them.”

Scope and Content

A daily account of work at an unnamed copper mine. The foreman describes the construction of a supply road; hauling of ore; orders for provisions; correspondence with Captain Winder and Mr. Morse; and frequent injuries and ailments leading to a high employee turnover. He describes the frequent dissatisfaction of his miners as well as conflicts with his Indian workers.
Box-folder 9:5

Mining: notes and correspondence (some in Spanish), 1857-1859 and undated

Includes:

Morse’s notes and correspondence on Mexican mining laws, mine measurements, and potential new ventures.
Box-folder 9:6

Honey business: finances, 1867-1884 and undated

Includes:

Specific business accounts, expenditures, and sales
Box-folder 9:7

Honey business: management, 1875 February 15-1884 October 18 and undated

Includes:

Notes on employees and partners, supplies, laws, hive construction, and beekeeping techniques
Ledger page 193 dated June 5–September 2 from “Agreements with Employees, Notes on Production and Supplies” (in Oversize Collections D6)
Ledger page 186 dated June 5–September 9 from “Undated Notes 1” (in Oversize Collections D6)
Box-folder 9:8

Honey business: Glen Oak (Oak Glen) Apiary, 1879 February 7-1884 December 8 and undated

Includes:

Receipts, ledger pages made to the accounts of Morse and Lovett, and a diary for the Glen Oak apiary.
Insurance policy from the Phoenix Insurance Company, August 29, 1884, from “Accounts of Morse and Lovett” (in Oversize Collections D6)
Box-folder 9:9

Honey business: "Diary, for Glen Oak Apiary," 1879 February 7-1880 April 3

Scope and Content

A daily account of working alongside Mr. Smith at the Glen Oak apiary from February 7, 1879 to April 3, 1880. The writer describes straining honey, rolling combs, building different styles of hives, and the resulting amounts of pollen from various flowers. 1879 is a poor year for honey, but production finally picks up in March 1880.

Entries of interest:

February 18, 1879: The writer describes a concoction of dried pumpkin root and soap root vine recommended by Dr. Woodson for use in the smoker.
June 9, 1879: After a worrying lack of honey production they finally see results from sage plants, but the majority is being used for brooding.
July 5, 1879: A note is written on the page by Dr. Woodson. “Mr. Morgan, We called on you today but as you were absent, we had dinner and rested awhile and will drive on.”
Entry after December 31, 1879: “Note for the old year / 79.” The writer summarizes that year’s experiments and the reasons for high loss.
Box-folder 9:10

Business licenses, 1862 January 13-1864 February 15

Includes:

Morse’s lawyer, liquor, and retail dealer licenses, as well as the application paperwork to obtain them.
Box-folder 9:11

Business expenses, 1856 August 1-1879 November 3

Includes:

Receipts and account ledger pages detailing payments for merchandise, construction supplies, and hired labor, often explicitly related to the honey business.
Box-folder 9:12

Business expenses, 1880 June 22-1889 January 1 and undated

Includes:

Receipts and account ledger pages detailing payments for merchandise, construction supplies, and hired labor, often explicitly related to the honey business.
Box-folder 9:13

Court cases, 1854 September 11-1887 June 11 and undated

Includes:

Documents related to the cases of Nathan W. Brown vs. W.W. Stewart; A.J. Chase vs. E.W. Morse; John Coltman vs. E.W. Morse and Daniel Breed; C.B. Culver vs. W.C. Howell and S.E. Howell; and San Diego Lumber Co. vs. W.H. Barnes and D.F. Mingus
Box-folder 10:1

Estate settlements, 1867-1879 and undated

Includes:

Documents related to the estates of William Vettigar and O.W. Gould
“E.W. Morse Administrator in a/c with the Estate of William Vettigar, dec’d,” dated December 21, 1868 (in Oversize Collections D6)
Box-folder 10:2

Miscellanea, 1863 October 28-1887 January 7 and undated

Includes:

Bills of sale for J. Ryan and Baltroux
Dissolution of the Chase-Tallman partnership
Tax documents of J.M. Howard
Grant of an exclusive gas franchise
Handwritten notes
 

Series IV: Civic Activities

Box-folder 10:3

Civic appointments, 1858 July 9-1862 May 30

Includes:

Appointments of Morse each as Deputy Post Master, County Surveyor, and Notary Public
Box-folder 10:4

City Treasurer, 1868 February 13-1880 March 3 and undated

Includes:

Notifications of delinquency and property redemption
Receipts of city bonds sold and dividends paid back to stockholders
“Report of the Treasurer of the City of San Diego for the Quarter ending March 1, 1878” (in Oversize Collections D6)
Box-folder 10:5

Court expenses ledger, 1858-1866

Scope and Content

Ledger with unnumbered pages, detailing the fees paid for paperwork and other expenses associated with court cases in Probate Court and County Court. There is no organization by account; each page lists several individuals and lawsuits. The expense is listed in the central column, with the date in the left margin and the cost in the right column.
Box-folder 10:6

Railroad promotion, 1872 January 22-1880 May 13 and undated

Includes:

Morse’s notes on San Diego’s need of a rail line
Set of telegrams
Notes for speeches on the topic
Article describing a bond measure for a rail line
 

Series V: Personal Papers

Box-folder 10:7

Associations: Anti-Monopoly League and Grant & Colfax Club, 1868 July 10-1882 October 30

Box-folder 10:8

Associations: San Diego Benevolent Association, 1878 October 2-1882 September 28

Includes:

Treasury report
Checks
Warrants
Box-folder 10:9

Associations: San Diego Lodge No. 35 F. & A.M., 1871 June 5-1876 May 26

Includes:

Receipts and cancelled warrants
Box-folder 10:10

Associations: San Diego Lodge No. 35 F. & A.M., 1876 March 7-1878 December 5

Includes:

Receipts and cancelled warrants
Box-folder 10:11

Associations: San Diego Lodge No. 35 F. & A.M., 1878 December 9-1882 December 6

Includes:

Receipts and cancelled warrants
Box-folder 10:12

Personal finances, 1854 June 21-1887 September 26 and undated

Includes:

Promissory notes to and from Morse
Tax paperwork
Personal checks
Certificates of stock
Box-folder 10:13

Miscellanea, 1854-1889 and undated

Includes:

Calling cards
Fourth of July song
Lists of San Diego residents
Handwritten notes