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Elisha Oscar Crosby Papers
MSS 0654  
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Collection Contents



box 1, folder 1

Board of Trustees of the City of Alameda 1890


Handwritten report listing the number and determination of cases (June-September) handled by the Recorder's Court, by Crosby in his official capacity as city recorder.
box 1, folder 2

California State Assembly and Senate 1887


Handwritten copies, certified with the seal of California, of the archived pages of 1850 legislative acts authorizing reimbursement to Crosby for seventeen hundred dollars he spent as prefect (election overseer) of Sacramento county during the constitutional election of 1849.
box 1, folder 3

Certificate of search regarding title of land 1878


Two handwritten certificates of searches of Alameda county land records. The first confirmed Crosby's friend, Henry E. Robinson, as owner, and the second confirmed Crosby's clear title to his Alameda home. Includes receipt for payment by Stocker & Schramm, Searchers of Records for Alameda County.
box 1, folder 4

Certified Copy of Schedule A - Elisha O. Crosby vs. his Creditors 1874


Handwritten schedule of Crosby's indebtedness in connection with his bankruptcy, signed by the Clerk of the City and County of San Francisco.
box 1, folder 5

Contract of separation from Francis Ann Deer 1872


Handwritten single-page document evidencing the agreement of Crosby and Deer to their separation after living together unmarried for "many years." Signed by Crosby, Deer, and Deer's sister, Mary J. Field, as a witness. The document lists Crosby's then residence as Fremont, Nebraska.
box 1, folder 6

Free and Accepted Masons of California 1883


Handwritten correspondence to H.T. Graves regarding dues for Lodge No. 10 in San Jose and San Francisco Chapter No. 1. Crosby noted that in 1883, the Masonic Veterans Association of the Pacific Coast elected Crosby an honorary member "for his eminent services rendered to his country and to Masonry."
box 1, folder 7

Lincoln Grand Guard of Honor 1884


Correspondence from Edwin A. Sherman, chairman of the executive committee of the National Guard Commandery, appointing Crosby to a committee in celebration of the seventy-fifth birthday of Abraham Lincoln. Includes a letter to Crosby explaining the organizations' policy of openness to all citizens regardless of race.
box 1, folder 8

Miscellaneous materials 1862 - 1891


Includes Crosby's calling card as United States resident minister to Guatemala, a professional business card, an American Legion membership card, tickets to Pioneer banquets, and a handwritten note regarding his siblings' and parents' birth information.
box 1, folder 9

Newspaper clippings 1869 - 1895


Includes articles of interest to and about Crosby including his obituary from the ALAMEDA ENCINAL, dated June 21, 1895. Other articles are from the ALAMEDA ARGUS, the SAN FRANCISCO CHRONICLE, and a Fremont, Nebraska newspaper article crediting Crosby as being instrumental in the opening of the Opera House there.
box 1, folder 10

Photographs of documents 1849 - 1851


Includes appointment of Crosby as prefect of the Sacramento district (1849), an election notice signed by Crosby (1850), correspondence to Crosby to fill a vacant state assembly seat (1850), certificate of Crosby's participation in the Committee of Vigilance of San Francisco (1850), Crosby's admission to practice before the California Supreme Court (1851), and other official early California government proclamations.
box 1, folder 11

Ward, A.H. 1891


Handwritten correspondence detailing how Crosby became involved in the establishment of California government. Includes a glued-in newspaper clipping list of the California constitutional convention attendees and a biography of Crosby.


box 1, folder 12

Photographic portraits, Part 1 1850 - 1863


Includes a 2 1/2" x 4" carte-de-visite formal portrait of Crosby with an annotation that it was taken approximately 1850. Includes a carte-de-visite portrait taken in Guatemala in 1863, as well as multiple copies of the original Guatemala photograph.
box 1, folder 13

Photographic portraits, Part 2 1864 - 1866


Includes a 2 1/2" x 4" carte-de-visite portrait of Crosby in formal attire with a revenue stamp on the back. Also includes four copies of the same portrait dated 1872, and one copy dated 1892.
box 1, folder 14

Photographic portraits, Part 3


ca. 1880-1890s. Includes two 4 1/4" x 6" cabinet card portraits of a mature Crosby in formal attire. One portrait is of Crosby at age 68 in July, 1886. The other portrait was part of a special series entitled, "Taber's State Collection of Portraits of Representative Californians" that was presented to the State Library by photographer I.W. Taber. Included is Crosby's autograph as "Judge Elisha O. Crosby" below the portrait.
box 1, folder 15

Photographic portraits - Crosby's son


Undated. Includes a 4 1/4" x 6" cabinet card of a young boy with tie and horseshoe-shaped pin, a cabinet card of a young unidentified boy in formal attire, a carte-de-visite portrait of two young men in suits, ties, and hankerchiefs in breast pockets, and a 4 1/4" x 6" cabinet card of a young man in a Zouave-style marching uniform with a bugle, tasseled helmet and sword. These may be portraits of Crosby's son, Edward, and of a nephew.
box 1, folder 16

Photographic portraits - Miscellaneous


Includes two 4 1/4" x 6" cabinet cards. One is a studio portrait of four women and one boy, possibly Crosby's son, Edward, and wife. Also is a portrait of a young man in a formal suit, identified as "Richard F. Dean," relationship unascertained.
box 1, folder 17

Printed portraits


Undated. Includes two copies of a printed formal portrait of Crosby and his signature, on pages torn from an unknown work. The portrait is signed by an artist named Gray.
box 1, folder 18

Tintype photographic portraits


ca. 1870-1880s. Includes two small tintype portraits of a mature Crosby: one in a plain suit and one in an elegant suit and pin. Includes the original paper envelopes the tintypes were kept in.


box 1, folder 19

"1849 election returns"


Undated, handwritten list of votes from the Sacramento district where Crosby was the election official. Includes returns from Sacramento, Green Valley, Weaverville, Mormon Island, and various ranches.
box 1, folder 20

"Capital Removal: Some Early Day Reminiscences by One of the Actors at the Time the State Capital was . .


Located at San Jose," 1893. Crosby's comments in a letter to the editor of the ALAMEDA EVENING TELEGRAM, March 15.
box 1, folder 21

"Death in the Air: Fatal Effects of the Climate of Guatemala - Americans Resting in Unmarked Graves" 1895


Article by Crosby printed in the ALAMEDA DAILY NEWS, February 16.
box 1, folder 22

"First discovery of gold" 1893


Handwritten draft of a letter dated October 27, to the president of the Society of California Pioneers, describing the first gold found at Sutter's Mill. Includes fifteen six by nine inch pages.
box 1, folder 23

"Great seal of the state of California"


Undated, handwritten manuscript describing why Minerva is a symbol on the seal. Handwritten in pencil on ten sheets of writing paper.
box 1, folder 24

"Letters which portray the life and experiences of H.E. Robinson" 1880 - 1881


Handwritten letters to the sister of Crosby's deceased, longtime friend, Henry E. Robinson. Robinson was a fellow California pioneer, a representative to the constitutional convention, and a member of the first three legislatures. Included are two letters to Mr. Roberts and a handwritten draft of Crosby's account of Robinson's parentage and early life.
box 1, folder 25

"Organizing a state government in 1849"


Undated, handwritten draft of Crosby's memories of the California constitutional convention. Fourteen pages written in pencil on yellow legal-size paper.
box 1, folder 26

"Reminiscences of E.O. Crosby"


Includes three draft manuscripts of autobiographical essays. One copy is handwritten in pencil on twenty-nine legal-size sheets and describes Crosby's involvement in the birth of the California state government. The second is a typescript in two sections, one describing Crosby's early life and passage to California via Panama. The other, annotated "taken by dictation August 12, 1887," describes Crosby's trip back to the east coast in 1859 via Guatemala, the election of and his meeting President Abraham Lincoln, and the circumstances surrounding his appointment as minister to Guatemala in 1861. These essays, along with other material, were posthumously published in 1945 as MEMOIRS OF ELISHA OSCAR CROSBY: REMINISCENCES OF CALIFORNIA AND GUATEMALA FROM 1849 TO 1864, edited by Charles Albro Barker in association with the Huntington Library.
box 1, folder 27

Writings case titled, "Original Manuscripts of Elisha Oscar Crosby"


Undated. Includes a hardbound case with an internal folder. Case has gold engraved titles of some of Crosby's writings identified on the front and a tipped-in photograph of Crosby and another man, possibly his friend Henry E. Robinson, mounted on mules, on the inner notebook.


box 1, folder 28

Originals of preservation photocopying