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Derby Family Papers

 Collection
Identifier: MS-3221

This collection consists of a series of letters written between Colonel George McClellan Derby and his mother, Mary (Coons) Derby. At the time, Mary Derby was living in Chattanooga, Tennessee and George Derby was serving with the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers in such places as New Orleans, Louisiana; Smithville, Kentucky; and Louisville, Kentucky. Some letters are written on stationary from the Lookout Inn (a lodge on Lookout Mountain in Chattanooga) and from the Cranberry Inn in Cranberry, North Carolina. Most of the letters discuss such topics as the Derby family, their friends and acquaintances, George Derby's life and activities, events in Chattanooga, and Mary Derby's health.

Dates

  • 1894-1902

Conditions Governing Access

Collections are stored offsite, and a minimum of 2 business days are needed to retrieve these items for use. Researchers interested in consulting any of the collections are advised to contact Special Collections.

Conditions Governing Use

The copyright interests in this collection remain with the creator. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library.

Extent

0.1 Linear Feet (2 folders)

Abstract

This collection consists of a series of letters written between Colonel George McClellan Derby and his mother, Mary (Coons) Derby. At the time, Mary Derby was living in Chattanooga, Tennessee and George Derby was serving with the U. S. Army Corps of Engineers in such places as New Orleans, Louisiana; Smithville, Kentucky; and Louisville, Kentucky. The letters contain family updates and questions about George Derby's life and activities.

Biographical/Historical Note

Mary Angeline Coons Derby was born in 1827. She married George Horatio Derby (1823-1861), an engineer with the U. S. Army widely known for his humorous writings in California newspapers during the 1850s; together they had three children: Daisy (1854-1889); George (1856-1948); and Mary (1858-1893). Mary died July 25, 1906 and is buried in the West Point cemetery in New York.

George McClellan Derby was born at sea to Captain George H. and Mary A. (Coons) Derby on November 1, 1856. George M. Derby was educated in Paris, Dresden, Switzerland, and the United States and eventually graduated from the U. S. Military Academy (1878) and the U. S. Engineers School of Application (1881). He began serving in the U. S. Corps of Engineers in 1878 and worked primarily in river and harbor improvement. Derby was discharged from the Army at his own request in 1907, but returned to duty to supervise a project designed to improve the Mississippi River from 1917 to 1919. He was married twice: once to Clara Matteson McGinnis (1878) and once to Bessie Kidder (1894). George Derby died on October 24, 1948 and is buried in the West Point cemetery in New York.

Arrangement

This collection consists of two folders.

Acquisition Note

This collection is property of the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Special Collections Library

Repository Details

Part of the Betsey B. Creekmore Special Collections and University Archives, University of Tennessee, Knoxville Repository

Contact:
University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville TN 37996 USA
865-974-4480