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Finding Aid to the Marsh Family Papers , 1815-1960
BANC MSS C-B 879  
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Collection Overview
 
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Description
The Marsh family papers, 1815-1960, reflect the life of California pioneer John Marsh and his wife, Abigail Smith Tuck Marsh; their daughter, Alice Marsh Cameron; her husband, William Walker Cameron (also referred to as Camron); and their daughter, Amy Gertrude Cameron; as well as other Marsh and Tuck family members. The collection contains correspondence with prominent figures in California history, including John Augustus Sutter, Charles David Maria Weber, and Thomas Oliver Larkin; writings; materials relating to family genealogies; notes on family histories; scrapbooks; diaries; legal documents; and newspaper clippings.
Background
John Marsh was born in South Danvers, Massachusetts in 1799. Following his graduation from Harvard University in 1823, Marsh moved to the Michigan Territory, where he studied medicine with a post doctor at Fort Snelling. He became an avid supporter of the Sioux during tribal difficulties and compiled the first dictionary of the Sioux language in 1831, with the help of his common law wife, Marguerite, who was half French and half Wahpeton. Marsh left her behind with their son, Charles, and eventually moved to Independence, Missouri, where he met Captain John Augustus Sutter, John Bartleson, and other prominent pioneers. Marsh decided to go westward to California. Without much money, he arrived in Los Angeles, where he set up a practice as a doctor, displaying his Harvard B.A. diploma, thus becoming Californias first Anglo American doctor. There was great demand for his services and he collected fees mainly in the form of livestock, which he could sell for gold. Abigail Smith Tuck Marsh was born in Massachusetts in 1818. She taught school in Raleigh, North Carolina before she moved to California, where she also was a teacher in Santa Clara. She and John Marsh were married in 1851 and their daughter, Alice, was born in 1852. After a long illness, Abigail Marsh died in 1855.Abigail Smith Tuck Marsh was born in Massachusetts in 1818. She taught school in Raleigh, North Carolina before she moved to California, where she also was a teacher in Santa Clara. She and John Marsh were married in 1851 and their daughter, Alice, was born in 1852. After a long illness, Abigail Marsh died in 1855.William Walker Cameron was born in Iowa in 1843 and was orphaned at the age of eleven. He was raised in California by his uncle and eventually became a real estate dealer, landowner, and politician. He married Alice Frances Marsh in 1871. After their daughter, Amy Gertrude, was born in 1872, Cameron built a mansion, now known as Camron-Stanford House, on Lake Merritt in Oakland. He later married Viola J. Babcock in 1877 and resumed his political career in the State Legislature. William Walker died in Palo Alto in 1912 after a long illness.Amy Gertrude Cameron was born in Martinez, California in 1872. Her father and mother were William Walker and Alice Marsh Cameron. Her grandfather was John Marsh. She lived in Oakland for a brief time and when her parents separated, she moved to Santa Barbara with her mother.
Extent
Number of containers: 6 boxes, 1 volume Linear feet: 2.5
Restrictions
All requests to reproduce, publish, quote from or otherwise use collection materials must be submitted in writing to the Head of Public Services, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, 94720-6000. Consent is given on behalf of The Bancroft Library as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission from the copyright owner. Such permission must be obtained from the copyright owner. See: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/reference/permissions.html.
Availability
Collection is open for research.