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Henry DeBardeleben business records

 Collection
Identifier: W-0052

Scope and Contents

This collection includes meeting minutes, stockholder letters, stock certificates, and legal documents produced by the DeBardeleben Coal Corporation, the Bessemer Land and Improvement Company, and the Bessemer Coal, Iron and Land Company. While materials date from 1886 to 1953, the bulk of the material is dated between 1886 and 1905. Two minute books document the director and stakeholder meetings of the Bessemer Land and Improvement Company. Entries are dated 1886 to 1900, and the earliest entries discuss the founding of Bessemer. The collection also contains stock certificates issued by the Bessemer Land and Improvement Company in 1887, legal documents issued between 1886 and 1905, letters sent to stockholders between 1886 and 1903, and two copies of a DeBardeleben Coal Corporation financial report, dated 1939-1948.

Dates

  • 1886 - 1953
  • Majority of material found within 1886 - 1905

Creator

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection. Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations. Due to the nature of certain archival formats, including digital and audio-visual materials, access to certain materials may require additional advance notice.

Biographical / Historical

Henry Fairchild DeBardeleben was born on July 22, 1840, in Autauga County, Alabama. After the death of his father, DeBardeleben and his family moved to Montgomery, Alabama, where they lived with cotton gin manufacturer Daniel Pratt. DeBardeleben left school to supervise one of Pratt's factories and soon became Pratt's trusted business partner. DeBardeleben married Pratt's daughter, Ellen, in 1863.

After the Civil War ended, Pratt began to invest in mining ventures in Birmingham, Alabama. In 1872, he gained control of the Red Mountain Iron and Coal Company and placed DeBardeleben in charge of the newly acquired business; DeBardeleben, however, proved to be an unsuccessful manager and resigned in 1873. DeBardeleben continued to invest in the emerging coal and iron industry in Birmingham, partnering with Truman H. Aldrich to found the Pratt Coal and Coke Company in 1878. In poor health, DeBardeleben sold the company to Enoch Ensley in 1881 and moved to Mexico. DeBardeleben continued to invest in Birmingham's industry, founding the DeBardeleben Coal and Iron Company in 1886 and founding the city of Bessemer. The company merged with Tennessee Coal, Iron, and Railroad Company in March 1892. DeBardeleben remained on the board of directors until he resigned in October 1894. DeBardeleben died on December 6, 1910, in Birmingham.

Source: Rikard, Marlene Hunt. "Henry Fairchild DeBardeleben." American National Biography Online.

Extent

0.5 Linear Feet

Language of Materials

English

Overview

Official meeting minutes, stockholder letters, stock certificates, and legal documents produced by the DeBardeleben Coal Corporation, the Bessemer Land and Improvement Company, and the Bessemer Coal, Iron and Land Company.

Physical Location

The A. S. Williams III Americana Collection, Amelia Gayle Gorgas Library, The University of Alabama

Provenance

Gift of A. S. Williams III, 2010

Related Materials

The W. S. Hoole Special Collections Library holds additional collections of Bessemer Coal, Iron and Land Company records. See Bessemer Coal, Iron, and Land Company Records, University Libraries Division of Special Collections, The University of Alabama.

General

Title on phase box spine: Papers of Henry DeBardeleben

Processed by

Haley Aaron and Martha Bace, 2013

Creator

Source

Title
Guide to the Henry DeBardeleben business records
Status
Completed
Date
October 2013
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
English
Script of description
Latin
Language of description note
English

Repository Details

Part of the The University of Alabama Libraries Special Collections Repository

Contact:
Box 870266
Tuscaloosa AL 35487-0266
205.348.0500