Guide to the George Mason letters to John Augustine Washington III, October 25-November 2, 1859 C0315 George Mason letters to John Augustine Washington III

Guide to the George Mason letters to John Augustine Washington III, October 25-November 2, 1859 C0315

George Mason letters to John Augustine Washington III


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George Mason University. Libraries. Special Collections Research Center

Fenwick Library, MS2FL
4400 University Dr.
Fairfax, Virginia 22030
speccoll@gmu.edu
URL: https://scrc.gmu.edu

Finding aid prepared by Elizabeth Beckman

Repository
George Mason University. Libraries. Special Collections Research Center
Identification
C0315
Title
George Mason letters to John Augustine Washington IIIOctober 25-November 2, 1859
URL:
https://scrc.gmu.edu/finding_aids/masonwashington.html
Quantity
0.25 Linear Feet, (1 folder)
Language
English .
Abstract
Two letters from George Mason (the grandson of George Mason IV through his son William) to John Augustine Washington III (great-grandnephew of George Washington) after John Brown's raid at Harper's Ferry.

Administrative Information

Use Restrictions

There are no restrictions on personal use. Permission to publish material from the George Mason letter to John Augustine Washington III must be obtained from the Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University Libraries.

Access Restrictions

There are no access restrictions.

Preferred Citation

George Mason letter to John Augustine Washington III, C0315, Special Collections Research Center, George Mason University Libraries.

Acquisition Information

Purchased by the Special Collections Research Center before June, 2018.

Processing Information

Processing completed by Elizabeth Beckman in June 2018. EAD markup completed by Elizabeth Beckman in June 2018.


Biographical note

George Mason (1797-1870) was the grandson of George Mason IV of Gunston Hall (author of the Virginia Declaration of Rights and namesake of George Mason University in Fairfax, VA). He was the second son of William Mason, George Mason IV's fourth son, and was married to Virginia Mason. Many of the descendants of George Mason IV were plantation owners and slaveholders until after the American Civil War.

John Augustine Washington III (1821-1861) was the great-grandnephew of George Washington. He inherited Washington's Mount Vernon estate, and (as noted by Matthew Costello) was the last Washington to own the plantation. Washington III, a slaveholder, served in the Confederate Army in the Civl War and was killed in 1861 at the Battle of Cheat Mountain.

Scope and Content

The collection consists of a single letter from George Mason to John Augustine Washington III. The letter was written on November 2, 1859, a little over two weeks after John Brown attempted to begin a slave insurrection at Harper's Ferry in what is now West Virginia. The letter specifically addresses forming a Volunteer Company in the wake of John Brown's raid, and Mason inquires whether Upton Herbert, the Superintendant of Mount Vernon, would be willing to take command of it.

Arrangement

The letter is stored on its own in a folder.

Related Material

The Special Collections Research Center holds other collections from members of George Mason IV's family, including the Mason Family Manuscript Account Book, https://scrc.gmu.edu/finding_aids/masonaccountbook.html and documents from John M. Mason and Maynadier Mason in the Virginia historical documents collection https://scrc.gmu.edu/finding_aids/virginiadocuments.html.

Subjects and Indexing Terms

  • Harpers Ferry (W. Va.) -- History -- John Brown's Raid, 1859
  • Letters
  • Militia
  • Slavery -- United States
  • Washington, John Augustine, 1821-1861

Bibliography

Matthew Costello, "John Augustine Washington III," George Washington's Mount Vernon, https://www.mountvernon.org/library/digitalhistory/digital-encyclopedia/article/john-augustine-washington-iii/, accessed June 22, 2018.
Michael Robert Patterson, "Virginia Mason Mason," Arlington National Cemetery Website, http://arlingtoncemetery.net/vmmason.htm, accessed June 22, 2018.
"Upton Herbert." George Washington's Mount Vernon. https://www.mountvernon.org/preservation/preserving-his-legacy-past-directors-of-mount-vernon/upton-herbert/, accessed June 22, 2018.
"William Mason," Gunston Hall, http://www.gunstonhall.org/georgemason/mason_family/william_mason.html, accessed June 22, 2018.

Significant Places Associated With the Collection

  • Harpers Ferry (W. Va.) -- History -- John Brown's Raid, 1859

Container List

George Mason Letters to John Augustine Washington III
October 25-November 2, 1859
  • Mixed Materials folder: 1Mixed Materials box: 1
    Letter from George Mason to John Augustine Washington III
    October 25, 1859
  • Mixed Materials folder: 2Mixed Materials box: 1
    Letter from George Mason to John Augustine Washington III
    November 2, 1859