Lilly Library Manuscript Collections


The Huntington mss., 1841-1862, are paper of Elisha Mills Huntington, 1806-1862, lawyer, judge.

Career: born in Butternuts, Otsego County, New York, 1806; came to Indiana, 1822, to join his older brother, Nathaniel, at Fort Harrison, Vigo County; studied law in his brother's law office and in that of Moses Tabbs of Vincennes, Indiana; representative from Vigo County in Indiana state legislature, 1831-1837; Presiding Judge of Seventh indiana Circuit in which he lived, 1837-1841; U.S. Commissioner of the General Land Office, April 1841-May 1842; Judge of the U.S. District Court of Indiana, May 1842 until his death; twice married, 1st to Jane Lane, youngest daughter of Amos Lane, member of Congress from Indiana, 2nd on November 3, 1841, to Mrs. Susan Mary (Rudd) Fitzhugh, 1820-1853, daughter of Dr. Christopher Rudd of Springfield, Washington County, Indiana.

The second Mrs. Huntington was a sister-in-law of Hamilton Smith, 1804-1875, businessman of Cannelton, Indiana. Huntington became associated with business enterprises of Hamilton Smith including the Cannelton (later Indiana) Cotton Mills, both men being among the incorporators of this company in 1848.

Biographical material relating to Huntington is to be found in T.J. De la Hunt, "Judge Elisha Mills Huntington," Indiana Magazine of History, xxiii, p. 115-129, June 1927; T.J. De la Hunt, Perry County: a History (Indianapolis, 1916), p. 127-129; Proceedings in the United States Court in memory of the late Judge Huntington, [1863/], p. 102; and L.J. Monks, ed., Courts and Lawyers of Indiana II (1916), p. 411-412.

All of the letters in this collection were written by Elisha Mills Huntington. With one exception, a draft of a letter of May 15, 1850, to Daniel Webster, they are all addressed to members of Huntington's or his second wife's family. These include Mrs. Susan Mary (Rudd) Huntington, 1820-1853, wife of Elisha Mills Huntington; his children, Anna, Marie Louise, and Robert Palmer; his mother-in-law, Mrs. Anne Benoist (Palmer) Rudd; his wife's sisters, Mrs. Louisa E. (Rudd) Smith and Mrs. Hetty Ann (Rudd) Key, and their husbands, Hamilton Smith, and John J. Key; his nephew, Huntington Smith; and his niece, Martha Smith, later Mrs. Alfred Hennon.

In addition to personal and family news the letters contain political news, both state and national, on the elections of 1840 and 1860, on the Civil War, references to cases being tried before Judge Huntington, and to business matters of Huntington and Hamilton Smith.

The collection also includes the following material relating to Elisha Mills Huntington and his family: an autobiographical account of Huntington's early life; a copy of a biography of him by L.H. Scott; a copy of a genealogy of the Huntington family; and a portrait of Elisha Mills Huntington.

The papers in the collection are mounted in a bound volume which carries the signature "Louise Huntington, 1866" on the front flyleaf.

Collection size: 166 items

For more information about this collection and any related materials contact the Public Services Department, Lilly Library, Indiana University, Bloomington, IN 47405. Call (812) 855-2452 or send an email using our Ask a Question form.