Furman and Le Conte family papers
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Furman and Le Conte family papers

Descriptive Summary

Repository: Georgia Historical Society
Creator: Furman, Farish Carter, 1836-1883.
Creator: Le Conte family.
Creator: LeConte, Emma.
Title: Furman and Le Conte family papers
Dates: 1810-1896
Extent: 0.45 cubic feet (3 folders, 3 volumes)
Identification: MS 0488

Biographical/Historical Note

Emma Florence Le Conte Furman (1847-1932) married Farish Carter Furman (1846-1883) in 1869. They lived on the family plantation at Scottsboro, near Milledgeville, Georgia. Her diary of Columbia, South Carolina before and after the devastation by Sherman's forces was edited by E.S. Miers and published as When the World Ended (N.Y.: 1957). Farish Carter Furman was probably a grandson of Dorothea McDonald Furman and the Rev. Dr. Richard Furman (1755-1825), Baptist minister. Farish Carter Furman was apparently named for his grand-uncle, Farish Carter (1780-1861), the wealthy planter and husband of Eliza McDonald. Another McDonald sister, Ann, first married a Mr. Martin and later married the Rev. Dr. William T. Brantly (1787=1845), Baptist minister. The McDonald women were sisters of Governor Charles J. McDonald.

Emma Le Conte Furman's father was Joseph Le Conte (1823-1901). Her uncle was John Le Cont (1818-1891), a noted physicist, chemist and teacher. Both John and Joseph Le Conte were physicians and scientists; they taught at the University of Georgia, the University of South Carolina, and the University of California, Berkeley. During the Civil War, John Le Conte was Superintendent of the Confederate Niter Works in Columbia, and Joseph Le Conte was the chemist for the Confederate Niter and Mining Bureau. John Le Conte was President of the University of California for many years. Both were contributors to scientific magazines in their fields. Joseph Le Conte was author of A Compend of Geology (N.Y.: 1884) and Autobiography, ed. by W.D. Armes (N.Y.: 1903). Joseph Le Conte's account of the last days of the Confederacy, ' Ware Sherman, ed. by his daughter, Caroline, was published at Berkeley, California, in 1938.

Scope and Content Note

This collection consists largely of the letters of Emma Florence Le Conte Furman and Farish Carter Furman. Also included are a letter of Dorothea Maria McDonald Furman, Farish Carter Furman's grandmother; letters of Mrs. Joseph L Conte, Louis Le Conte, Joseph Le Conte, Jr., Jane Le Conte, and John Le Conte. Also included in the collection are legal papers regarding the estate of George W. Murray, 1836 (Farish Carter was one of the executors), pamphlets and addresses both by and about Joseph Le Conte, an account book containing the estate papers of Farish Carter Furman, 1883-1884, and a ledger and account book of plantation, estate, and household accounts belonging to Emma Le Conte Furman, 1884-1885 and 1887-1896.

Index Terms

Decedents' estates.
Furman, Farish Carter, 1836-1883.
LeConte family.
LeConte, Emma.
LeConte, Joseph, 1823-1901.
Legal documents.
Letters (correspondence)
Love letters.
Plantation life--Georgia.

Administrative Information

Custodial History

Purchased from Stuart Miller.

Preferred Citation

[item identification], Furman and Le Conte family papers, MS 488, Georgia Historical Society, Savannah, Georgia.

Acquisition Information

Purchased, 1960.


Access Restrictions

Collection is open for research.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the Georgia Historical Society. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Division of Library and Archives. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the Georgia Historical Society as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.


Encoding funded by a 2012 Documenting Democracy grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Container List




11Items 1-14: Correspondence, 1810-1868
Correspondents: Dorothea Maria McDonald Furman (Mrs. Richard Furman) to her sister, Mrs. Ann Brantly, 1810, part missing; Jane Le Conte to her brother William, 1832-1834 (3) regarding family; R.E. martin (son of Ann McDonald Martin Brantly by her first marriage?) to his daughter, Julia, 1844, regarding news of family and friends; W.R. Hall to Charles J. McDonald, 1853, regarding Farish Carter; Julia Martin Brown to her father, R.E. Martin; love letters of Emma Le Conte and Farish Carter Furman before their marriage, 1868 (7).
2Items 15-35: Correspondence, 1869-1883
Correspondents: love letters of Emma Le Conte Furman and Farish Carter Furman, before an dafter they were married, 1869-91882 (13); letters from Mrs. Joseph Le Conte to her daughter, Emma L. Furman, 1869, 1878; Bessie to Emma Le Conte Furman, 1869; Louis Le Conte to Emma Le Conte Furman, 1876, regarding his impending marriage; Caroline Le Conte to Kate Carter Furman, with note by Joseph Le. Conte, Jr., 1877; John Le Conte to Emma Le Conte Furman, 1883, on death of her husband; Rebecca Shand, 1883, letter of condolence.
3Items 36-40: Legal papers and pamphlets
Papers regarding the estate of George W. Murray, 1836, of which Farish carter was one of the executors: list of notes, amounts, dates, credits, money paid out and money received. Pamphlets: Plato's Doctrine of the Soul, and Argument for Immortality, In Comparison with the Doctrine and Argument Derived from the Study of Nature, by Joseph Le Conte, 1890; Address of Professor Joseph Le Conte, President of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, 1893; Joseph Le Conte, by Andrew C. Lawson, 1901.


2Item 41: Estate of Farish Carter Furman. Account book "A", 1883 September 14-1884 January 1
Item 42: Emma Le Conte Furman. Ledger "A", 1884-1885
Plantation, estate, and household accounts.
Item 43: Emma Le Conte Furman. Account book, 1887-1896
Plantation, estate, and household accounts.