John H. Boyd
Papers, 1835-1863


Quantity: 2 boxes (0.50 cubic ft.)
Access: Open to research
Acquisition: Gift of Elizabeth Boyd Harding, December 1929
Processed By: Edna L. Jacobsen, Librarian, Manuscripts and Special Collections, ca. 1930; revised February 2011

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Biographical Note:

John Huggins Boyd was born July 31, 1799, in Salem, Washington County, New York. He graduated from Washington Academy in Salem in 1818, studied law, and was admitted to the bar in 1823. At first, he set up practice in Salem, but shortly afterwards moved to Whitehall, New York, which became his primary place of residence for the rest of his life. His career in politics and government began when elected in 1828 as justice of the peace. Later he would serve in other elected offices at all levels of government: local, state, and federal. He was a member of the New York State Assembly in 1840, supervisor of Whitehall in 1845, 1848, and 1849, and a representative to the Thirty-second Congress, where he served from March 4, 1851 to March 3, 1853. From 1857 to 1859 he served as special surrogate of Washington County. It appears that he was a member of the Whig Party for much of his political career. He died in Whitehall on July 2, 1868.

Scope and Content Note:

The papers consist chiefly of correspondence related to his career in law, politics, government, and business. Much of the correspondence covers the period of his term in Congress (1851-1853) and reflects the sentiments of his Whig constituents on the principal issues before Congress. The transportation infrastructure was of considerable interest to Boyd, particularly the routing and building of the railroad through Washington County. Plank roads were of interest to Boyd, too, and there are many papers related to the Whitehall and Granville Turnpike Company (1835-1856) and the Eastern Plank Road Company (1855-1861). Boyd also had extensive holdings of real property, as evidenced by land surveys, deeds, leases, mortgages, and bonds. Among these papers are accounts and receipts for wages paid to workmen that were probably hired on contract for building and construction projects.

Box and Folder List:

Box Folder Description
1 1 Biographical sketch of John H. Boyd and brief summary of collection

1 2 1837-1850
1 3 1851
1 4 January-February 1852
1 5 March-December 1852
1 6 1853-1854
1 7 1855-1863, n.d.

Business, legal, and financial papers
2 1 Papers relating to the Whitehall and Granville Turnpike Company (1835-1856) and the Eastern Plank Road Company (1855-1861)

Names mentioned in items bearing on the Whitehall and Granville Turnpike Company, 1835-1856. These are signatures except where otherwise noted: G. Barney, J.L. Billings, George Chandler, P. Curtis, Jehiel Dayton, Samuel Gordon, C. Halsey, Joseph Harris (no signature), Lucretia Harris, Warren Hitchcock (no signature), Ebenezer Ingalls (no signature), Taylor Manville, George Moore, John C. Parker, L.W. Pierce, Ebenezer Proudfit, Elizabeth Proudfit, Jno. W. Proudfit, Job Reynolds (no signature), C.L. Russell, Doty Shumway, Archibbald Smith, Samuel Standish, C. Stewart, Samuel Taylor, David Thomas (no signature), Isaac Thompson, Calvin Townson, George Vail, Charles Whiting, John Williams.

2 2 Financial papers - Accounts, bills, receipts, etc.
2 3 Land papers - Surveys, deeds, leases, bonds, mortgages, etc. Names found on land surveys, deeds, etc. in connection with testimony given under oath: Throop Barney, Charles S. Cary, Patrick Cassidy, John D. Dickinson, Joseph W. Egery, Chester L. Ellis, Charles Fisher, Jonathan R. Hall, Abraham L. Oakley, Alanson Swan, Thomas Walter
2 4 Briefs related to various court cases Names found in these legal briefs in connection with testimony given under oath: Cyrus Adams, Rufus Allen, Isaac V. Baker, William Bolton, William Boulton, Edward Boynton, Amos Collings, Amos Collins, John W. Collins, Peter Comstock, Jacob C. Dewey, Asa Eddy, H.D. Eddy, Hiram Eddy, Luther Eddy, Luther D. Eddy, Ezra Falken, Ezra Falkenberg, Bradshaw Goodale, George Goodale, Jacob Goodale, Joseph Goodale, Parkman H. Green, Peckham H. Green, Austin Hammerston, Joseph L. Harris, James B. Jermain, Randolph C. Johnson, Joseph Joslin, Curtis Luther, John E. Newcomb, Menasseh Richardson, Milton E. Shaw, Elisha Smith, Henry Smith, William Simpson, James Waters, William Well, Samuel Weller, William Weller, John Williams.
2 5 Miscellaneous
Last Updated: May 24, 2021