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Special Collections Online at UT

F. S. Heiskell Scrapbook

Identifier: MS-2190

  • Staff Only

This collection contains a F. S. Heiskell's scrapbook of 1840s newspaper clippings, mainly about the government, the economy, agriculture, and the Mexican War. Some articles include The Railroad System of the United States -- Its Rapid Progress,General Statistics / Popular vote for President of 1840, events and laws of the Tennessee Legislature, Mexican Population and Resources, etc. The last six items were loose in the scrapbook, taken out, and placed into a separate folder in the order they were removed from front to back of the book. Four (about Democratic Conventions and elections) date between 1847 and 1851; the other two (recipes for leather varnish and curing cholera) have no dates.


  • circa 1840-1851

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.


0.2 Linear Feet


This collection contains a F. S. Heiskell's scrapbook of 1840's newspaper clippings, mainly about the government, the economy, agriculture, and the Mexican War.

Biographical/Historical Note

Frederick Steidinger Heiskell (1786-1882) was born in Maryland and raised in Virginia. He learned the printer's trade from his brother John and then moved to Knoxville in December 1814. In 1816, he married Eliza Brown and established the Knoxville Register with his brother-in-law Hugh Brown, who left the paper in 1829.

Politics intrigued Heiskell and he used the columns of the Knoxville Register to champion both candidate and cause. As a result, he became a close friend and political ally of Andrew Jackson, Henry Clay and James K. Polk. Although supporter of Andrew Jackson against John Quincy Adams, Heiskell supported Hugh Lawson White for president rather than Jackson's hand-picked successor, Martin Van Buren, in the 1836 election. Heiskell campaigned relentlessly for White in the editorial columns. When the election was over, White had 39,500 Tennessee votes, Van Buren 21,500.

Heiskell became a tireless campaigner for public education and civic improvement, with service on countless boards and commissions. He was co-founder and treasurer of the Knoxville Public Library. He served as a trustee of the Knoxville Female Academy and its successor, the East Tennessee Female Institute, from 1827 until his death. He was also a trustee of East Tennessee College, now the University of Tennessee, and served on the Knoxville Board of Mayors and Aldermen from 1825 until 1831 and in 1835 for a brief period as mayor of Knoxville. In 1847, Heiskell was elected to the Tennessee State Senate.

In addition to his political activities, Frederick Heiskell was the president of the Tennessee Press Association in 1836 and was referred to as the father of Tennessee journalism.

In 1837, Heiskell sold the Register to Col. W. B. A. Ramsey and Robert Craighead. He then moved west of Knoxville to Fruit Hill farm, where he lived until 1880. His wife died in 1851, and he married the widowed Alice Gale (Armstrong) Fulkerson two years later. He died on November 29, 1882, in Rogersville, Tenn.


Collection consists of two folders.

Acquisition Note

Collection was acquired in May 1989.

Repository Details

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

University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Knoxville TN 37996 USA