TABLE OF CONTENTS
Description of Series
James Franklin Barry diaries, 1872-1873
James Franklin Barry (1848-1943) was a carpenter and timber framer from Belleville, Michigan. From 1872 to 1873, he worked for the American Bridge Company in Houston, Texas, constructing bridges for the first railroads in the Houston area. For his work, he received wages of $3.50 per day, much more than wages for comparable work in Michigan. Barry's diaries describe his homesickness and bouts of malaria while working to save money to buy a farm in Michigan. At the conclusion of his work in Houston, Barry returned to his Michigan home. He is buried in Flat Rock, Wayne County, Michigan.
The James Franklin Barry diaries, 1872-1873, consist of typed transcripts of two diaries written by James Barry of Belleville, Michigan. Volume 1, which covers life in Houston in 1872, is enscribed "Incidents in Every Day Life by James F. Barry, B.B." Volume 2 is enscribed "James F. Barry, Born at Belleville, Wayne County, Michigan, April 14, 1848; 1872 and 3, Houston, Texas, Bridge Builder."
Barry's diaries provide a northerner's perspective on social and economic conditions in Texas soon after the close of the Civil War.
Conditions Governing Access
This collection is open for research.
Conditions Governing Use
There are no use restrictions on this collection. Publisher is responsible for complying with copyright law.
James Franklin Barry Diaries, 1872-1873, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
This collection was processed by Colleen Hobbs, March 2019.