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Guide to the John W. F. Locke Papers, 1859-1870

Collection number: MC 55

Size: 1 box (0.25 cu.ft.)

About John W. F. Locke

John W. F. Locke was born on October 13, 1838 in Barnstead, New Hampshire to Eliphalet and Sally Locke. He grew up in the Barnstead area and was good friends with John Elkins, who later became a physician in Wilmot, New Hampshire. Locke helped out on the family farm and visited town often. When the Civil War began he was unable to join the New Hampshire Volunteers because he suffered from asthma. However, he made frequent visits to the volunteer regiment camps outside of Concord.

Locke was good with numbers. According to his diary entries, he spent his time “fixing accounts,” surveying land, “tending store” and “fixing pension papers.” He was also active in local government, serving as town selectman of Barnstead from 1867-1870 and as a Justice of the Peace. Not much is known of Locke after the death of his father on May 7, 1871.

About the John W. F. Locke Papers

The collection consists of six diaries for the years 1859, 1861, 1862, 1865, 1866 and 1870. The diaries contain detailed accounts of the weather and daily life in Barnstead, New Hampshire and refer to Locke’s involvement in local government. The diaries from 1861, 1862 and 1865 refer to Civil War battles, local troop movements, and political developments. The diary from 1865 refers to the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln. In addition, Locke used his diaries to keep track of important numbers: town ballots, land surveys, farm profits and accounting information. Included in this collection are several newspaper clippings, ballot scraps and a letter from his cousin, Dr. J. D. Stanton, who was working at Seminary Hospital in Georgetown, District of Columbia during the Civil War.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

This collection is open.

Copyright Notice

Contents of this collection are governed by U.S. copyright law. For questions about publication or reproduction rights, contact Special Collections staff.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], John W. F. Locke Papers, 1859-1870, MC 55, Milne Special Collections and Archives, University of New Hampshire Library, Durham, NH, USA.

Acquisitions Information

Purchased: Carmen Valentino, Oct. 25, 2005 (Accession number: 2005.02)

Collection Contents

Series I: Manuscripts

Box 1
Box 1, Envelope 1 Contains one diary, January-December, 1859

John W. F. Locke recounts daily life in Barnstead, New Hampshire with attention to weather, work, travel, and social activities. John notes that his friend John Elkin has left for Medical School in Maine.

Box 1, Envelope 2 Contains one diary, January-December, 1861

John W. F. Locke recounts daily life in Barnstead, New Hampshire with attention to weather, work, travel and social activities. John recounts news of the siege of Fort Sumter and the outbreak of the Civil War. He visits the camp of New Hampshire volunteers outside of Concord, notes soldier rations and soldier pay scales.

Box 1, Envelope 3 Contains one diary, January 1, 1862-February 22, 1863

John W. F. Locke recounts daily life in Barnstead, New Hampshire with attention to weather, work, travel and social activities. John recounts the news of the Battle of Pittsburg, Shiloh, the Merrimack’s destruction, and receiving a certificate of disability (asthma). Locke visits Boston with his “most respected and kind friend” John Elkins. He also notes the number of votes for several governing elected officials in Barnstead, New Hampshire. There is also a coded page towards the end of the diary.

Box 1, Envelope 4 Contains one diary, January-December, 1865

John W. F. Locke recounts daily life in Barnstead, New Hampshire with attention to weather, work, travel and social activities. John recounts the news of the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln. There are several notes about bounties taken out by relatives of missing men who served in the war. He helped arrange pension papers and bought a license to write deeds.

Box 1, Envelope 5 Contains one diary, January-December, 1866

John W. F. Locke recounts daily life in Barnstead, New Hampshire with attention to weather, work, travel and social activities. John continues to take applications for bounties, issues a warrant for someone’s arrest and records a statement of account for the Town of Barnstead. The bounty information is very detailed in this diary and makes note of men who died in battle. Includes detailed account records.

Box 1, Envelope 6 Contains one diary, January 1870- December 1871

This diary is kept sporadically and often reads like a notebook. It contains two poems, sales information, an entry about the death of his father and another about an earthquake that occurred while he was in Portsmouth, New Hampshire.

Series II: Letters

Box 1, Folder 1 From Dr. J.D. Stanton to John W. F. Locke, Barnstead, New Hampshire, April 21, 1863

Dr. Stanton, John’s cousin, writes from Seminary Hospital in Georgetown, District of Columbia. He relates opinions about New Hampshire Copperheads and the justifications for war. This was in the pocket of the 1865 diary.

Series III: Miscellaneous

Box 1, Envelope 7 Diary, 1859

Scraps of paper found in the pocket. Newspaper clipping advertising the Medical School of Maine. Scrap of paper with “Daniel Pratt, the Great-American Traveler” in pencil. Twelve ballots (?) with name Charles S. George. Charles S. George was a member of the New Hampshire State House of Representatives in 1860.

Box 1, Envelope 8 Diary, 1861

Scraps of paper found in the pocket. Newspaper clipping. New Hampshire Republican party resolutions adopted after the attack on Fort Sumter. Newspaper clipping. Democratic (?) party resolutions in regards to state secession, the slavery question, and non-partisanship.

Box 1, Envelope 9 Diary, 1862

Scraps of paper found in the pocket. Newspaper clipping. Advertisement for the annual meeting of stock holders for Northern Railroad and a Tax Receipt from Samuel D. Nutter to John W. F. Locke for $8.16

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