Plantation Journal donated to Billups-Garth Archives

A plantation journal from the Billups family farm has been donated to the Billups-Garth Archives.  The journal begins in 1847 and ends in 1859. It belonged to either T.C. Billups or his son John M. Billups.

The journal covers a wide range of topics relating to pre Civil War farm life.  Information includes conditions relating to crops; contracts with overseers; weather; accounting of acreage, workforce, and supplies; crops successes and failures; and much more.

Another aspect of the journal is that it includes the lives of the slaves living on the Billups plantaion.  It records the slaves births, marriages, and deaths.  This is a rare Lowndes County record and an opportunity for African Americans to trace their ancestors when other information may not exist.

Below is an example:

Billups Plantation Record_back page002

Published in: on September 11, 2013 at 5:14 pm  Comments (1)  

Billups-Garth Archives Open this Saturday

The Billups-Garth Archives will be open this Saturday, September 7th from 10:00am-4:00pm.

It’s a great weekend to get started on your genealogy!!

Published in: on September 6, 2013 at 2:25 pm  Leave a Comment  

Local History Department Closed Monday

The Columbus-Lowndes Public Library and Local History Department will be closed this Monday, September 2nd for the Labor Day holiday.

We wish everyone a safe and happy holiday!

Published in: on August 30, 2013 at 3:44 pm  Leave a Comment  

Billups-Garth Archives Closed Monday Afternoon

The Billups-Garth Archives will be closed Monday, August 12th from 1:00pm-5:00pm.

We apologize for any inconvenience.

Published in: on August 10, 2013 at 5:58 pm  Leave a Comment  

Billups-Garth Archives Open this Saturday

The Billups-Garth Archives will be open this Saturday, August 3rd from 10:00am-4:00pm.

Stop by and get in some genealogy research!

genealogy cartoon

Published in: on July 30, 2013 at 9:32 pm  Leave a Comment  

Fun Photo Friday: Stuart’s Packing Company

This is an image of Stuart’s Packing Company in Columbus in the 1950s. It was a wholesale nursery managed by J.D. Heydens.  The building in this image was located at 601 Nineteenth Street South near Bell Avenue.

Stuarts Nursery c1950s_LH 417001

Published in: on July 19, 2013 at 7:21 am  Leave a Comment  

Archives Limited Hours this Saturday

The Billups-Garth Archives will be open limited hours this Saturday, July 20th.  The archives will only be open 10:00am-12:30pm.

We apologize for any inconvenience.

Published in: on July 18, 2013 at 3:40 pm  Leave a Comment  

Intern Records Runaway Slave Advertisements

IMG_20130710_164627The newest project underway at the Local History Department (LHD) involves documenting the plethora of advertisements on runaway slaves published in Lowndes County antebellum newspapers.  

Mississippi University for Women history major and LHD intern Chris is pouring over the more than twenty pre 1865 county newspapers both on microfilm and in hardcopy format.  She is creating a transcription of the advertisements text as well as capturing a scanned digital image of each entry.

The local project is conjunction with a larger research project called Documenting Runaway Slaves at the University of Southern Mississippi.

Documenting Runaway Slaves is a collaborative effort to document newspaper advertisements placed by masters seeking the capture and return of runaway slaves. Lead researchers, Dr. Max Grivno and Dr. Douglas Chambers, are focusing their pilot project on Mississippi, but have plans to expand the research to the larger Gulf South, the rest of the southern United States, the Caribbean, and Brazil.

Runaway slave advertisements personalize history, providing important clues about the lives of slaves, their efforts at self-emancipation, and the viewpoints of their masters. The ads often include first and last names of the slaves and their masters, where they lived, ages, and names of the current and previous slaveholder. They sometimes also include reasons why the slave fled, possible destinations, clothing, special skills or talents, and personality features.

This project will gather these documents and organize them into a full-text searchable online resource for academic researchers, genealogists and anyone who wants to learn more about this time period.

The Documenting Runaway Slaves research project has received generous support from the Mississippi Humanities Council, the U.S. National Park Service’s Lower Mississippi Delta Initiative, the National Underground Railroad Network to Freedom Program, and The University of Southern Mississippi, including the Department of History,  the Center for the Study of the Gulf South, and the College of Arts & Letters.

To find out more visit

Published in: on July 16, 2013 at 2:56 pm  Leave a Comment  

Fourth of July Holiday

The Columbus-Lowndes Public Library and the Local History Department will be closed on Thursday, July 4th and Friday, July 5th in recognition of Independence Day.

The library will reopen on Saturday, July 6th at 10:00 a.m.

We hope everyone has a fun and safe Independence Day!

Published in: on July 1, 2013 at 4:30 pm  Leave a Comment  

Billups-Garth Archives Hours

The Billups-Garth Archives will be closed tomorrow, Thursday, June 27th from 9:00am-3:00pm.  It will reopen from 3:00pm-6:00pm.

We apologize for any inconvenience.

Published in: on June 26, 2013 at 9:01 pm  Leave a Comment  
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