Processed by: Archives Staff ; machine-readable finding aid created by:Eric Weig
William W. Ranney papers
1858-1927, 1858-1895 (bulk dates)
University of Kentucky Special CollectionsLexington, Kentucky 40506
Collection is open for research.
[Identification of item], William W. Ranney papers, 1858-1927, 1858-1895 (bulk dates), 1F59M-170, AAP0240LM, Special Collections, University of Kentucky.
1M59M36: 229 pieces, 1F59M-170: 1 Reel of microfilm.
Lawyer, druggist, stationer. Ranney served as an adjutant in the 26th Regiment of Kentucky Volunteers, Crittenden's Division. After the war, Ranney apparently moved to Wisconsin and then to Lansing, Iowa, where he was a druggist, stationer and attorney. In the 1880s, he practiced law in Grand Meadow, Mn, but finally settled in Austin, Mn. where he became a probate judge.
Comprised of letters of the Ranney family, this collection documents family life in the mid-nineteenth century in Boston, Kentucky and in the midwest. Descriptions of the problems facing those who moved West in the latter half of the nineteenth century are present in the correspondence as well as personal matters and business letters. Early letters are from relatives in Boston to George Ranney, a schoolboy in Livermore, McClean County, Kentucky. Correspondents during this period include Abigail C. Clark, Emma D. Sharp, Isabella Smith and Katie McClintock. After 1860 the majority of the letters are written by William W. Ranney to his mother, Susan Tanner or to his sister, Susan Atherton, both of Livermore.
Some of this collection includes Civil War letters from military camps in the deep South, one referring to the appointment of Stephen Burbridge as brigadier-general. Also included are letters from Viva Martin, Susan Atherton's daughter, who married into a tobacco manufacturing family from Greenville, Ky. Her letters mention some of the problems faced by her husband in the depressed agricultural economy after the Civil War, but are, for the most part, personal.
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