A Guide to the George Wallace Jones Papers, circa 1787-1840
George Wallace Jones (1804-1896), born in Vincennes, Indiana, was a prominent jurist and politician in the upper mid-west region of the United States. He graduated from Transylvania University in Lexington, Kentucky in 1825. After being admitted to the bar, Jones moved to Michigan Territory where he worked as a miner and storekeeper; served in the Black Hawk War; and was a judge of the county court. He served as congressman from Michigan (1835-1837) and as one of the state of Iowa’s first U. S. senators (1848-1859) after it was admitted as a state. Due to his close friendship with Confederate President Jefferson Davis, Jones was accused of disloyalty by Secretary of State William Seward and arrested in 1861. President Lincoln released him from jail after 34 days of captivity. He died and is buried in Dubuque, Iowa. Jones County, Iowa, is named in his honor.
Sources: Jones, George Wallace, Biographical Directory of the United States Congress [Online].
This collection of approximately 200 documents consists largely of letters sent to George W. Jones by his siblings: John Rice Jones, Jr.; A. Jones; Maria Jones; Myers Jones; and Will Jones.
In addition, the collection includes letters, receipts, and legal documents (some in French) belonging to George Jones’s father, John Rice Jones, Sr., who was a partner of Moses Austin in the lead mining business in Missouri. There are approximately 11 documents signed by Austin. This portion of the collection mainly documents a mine claim ownership dispute referred to as the “Renault Claim,” but it sheds light on Moses Austin’s business activities and the economic history of the upper Louisiana Territory.
George Wallace Jones Papers, circa 1787-1840, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Detailed Description of the Papers