Isaac Fontaine Hite Papers

Stewart Bell Jr. Archives Room
Handley Regional Library
Winchester-Frederick County Historical Society

P.O. Box 58, Winchester, VA 22604
(540) 662-9041 ext. 17
archives@handleyregional.org
www.handleyregional.org

251 THL 

Inventory Created by Archives Staff 9/2018 

ACCESS RESTRICTIONS: Collection is open to all researchers.

USE RESTRICTIONS: Restrictions may apply concerning the use, duplication, or publication of items in this collection. Consult a member of the archives staff for information concerning these restrictions. The user assumes all responsibility for identifying and satisfying any claimants of copyright.

EXTENT: 0.21 linear feet

DATE: 1832-1907

SCOPE AND CONTENT: This collection contains the correspondence and personal papers of Isaac Fontaine Hite of Frederick County, Virginia written between 1832 and early 1880s. The correspondence between Hite and friends, family members and business acquaintances covers a range of topics including personal and family matters, his studies at the University of Virginia, antebellum politics and the Civil War, financial concerns and prospects for moving westward. 

Of note are letters written to Hite by Emmanuel Jackson of Pennsylvania. Jackson was a free Black man who fathered five children with Hannah, an enslaved woman at Belle Grove. Over the course of his later life, Jackson was able to purchase and manumit four of his children and some grandchildren from the Hites. The letters from Jackson to Hite show Jackson’s efforts to purchase and free his son Daniel and Daniel’s family. Little is known about Jackson’s early life, his occupation, or how he was able to fund the manumission of his family members. Additionally, there is a later letter between Hite and a slave catcher named Joseph Kinsel which concerns another African American named Daniel. It is not clear if this Daniel is the son of Emmanuel.

The collection also includes receipts and banking documents and a letter to Ann Hite. There are also articles, newspaper clippings and miscellaneous notes. Some of the items in this collection belong to Louise Cooley, a granddaughter of Isaac.

Isaac F. Hite’s correspondence and business papers are arranged chronologically. The last folder in this collection contains miscellaneous items and papers of Louise Cooley. 

BIOGRAPHICAL/HISTORICAL: Isaac Fontaine Hite was born May 7, 1807 in Middletown, Frederick County, Virginia, to Major Isaac Hite Jr. and his second wife, Ann Tunstall Maury. Major Hite (1758-1836 ) was a grandson of Joist Hite (d. 1761), who emigrated to the American colonies in about 1710 and later settled in the Shenandoah Valley after obtaining a land grant from Virginia’s Governor and Council in 1731.

Isaac Hite Jr. served in the Army during the Revolutionary War and was the builder of Belle Grove, a large stone house just south of Middletown. Upon marriage to his first wife, Hite gained several enslaved persons, and acquired many more during the course of his life at Belle Grove to work the plantation. He applied himself to agriculture and made numerous improvements to his estate, making the Belle Grove plantation a very successful operation. His descendants benefitted from this legacy and prospered, and they are prominent in the history and development of Frederick County and surrounding areas.

Isaac Fontaine Hite grew up at Belle Grove. In 1827 he went to the University of Virginia and later returned to Frederick County to take up farming. He and his brother Walker inherited property from their father. Isaac Hite Jr.’s will described the Rockville tract of land as standing at about 1700 acres. Isaac married Maria Louisa Davison (1805-1889) and they had two children, Anna Jacqueline Hite, who would later marry John William Wright, and Isaac Fontaine Hite, Jr. Anna and John’s daughter married W. S. Cooley, and had six children, including Louise. Isaac and Ann’s son enlisted in the Confederate Army at the age of 17 under Colonel William Morgan. He was killed during a military engagement at Beverley, West Virginia in January 1865. Isaac Fontaine Hite Sr. died in 1884 and is buried in the Hite Family Cemetery in Warren County, Virginia.

ARRANGEMENT: Chronological

RELATED MATERIAL: Belle Grove Collection, 890 THL; Hite Family Association Collection, 1465 THL, Hite-Bowman-Hall Family Papers, 168 WFCHS; John P. Hite Diary, 191 THL MMF.

BIBLIOGRAPHY: Cartmell, Thomas Kemp. Shenandoah Valley Pioneers and their Descendants: A History of Frederick County, Virginia from its Formation in 1738 to 1908. Berryville, VA; Chesapeake Book Co., 1963; National Trust for Historic Preservation, ed. Historic Preservation: Special Issue on Belle Grove 20, nos. 3-4. Washington, D.C.: National Trust for Historic Preservation, 1968; Cooper, M. Frances, Joist Hite and Some of His Descendants. Cullman, AL: The Gregath Company, 1983.

CITE AS: Isaac Fontaine Hite Papers, 251 THL. Stewart Bell Jr. Archives, Handley Regional Library, Winchester, VA, USA.

ACQUISITION INFORMATION: Acquired as a gift.  

BOX 1 

Correspondence and business papers, 1830s, 10 leaves, manuscript (folder contains the following):

To

From

Date

Place of Origin

Notes

Isaac Hite

John B. D. Smith

Jan. 1832

Richmond

Mentions Slave Question and Formation of a New County

Isaac Hite

 

Sept 16,1835

Baltimore

Re: Flour & Salt

Isaac Hite

William H._____

Oct. 29,1835

Baltimore

Flour Sales Accounting

Isaac Hite

 

Nov. 14, 1835

Baltimore

Accounting

Isaac Hite

Brother

Dec. 14, 1835

Charlottesville, VA

Writes of his studies at UVA, school issues and his dislike of the medical students

Isaac Hite

 

May 2, 1836

Baltimore

Accounting of sale

Isaac Hite

Wm. A. Davison

June 16, 1837

Wheeling, VA (Postmark Winchester)

Content is both business and personal. First of several postings from Davison.

Isaac Hite

______ Baldwin

May 6, 1838

Augusta, Georgia

Personal letter describing Augusta and asking about family

Isaac Hite

George Wm. Ivory

Oct. 15, _____

Stevensburg, VA.(Stephens City)

Writes of a horse “Galtram” being boarded at Isaac’s farm.

Correspondence and business papers, 1840-1844, 11 leaves, manuscript, dated 1840-1844

To

From

Date

Place of Origin

Notes

 

 

Isaac Hite

Mark Bird

Feb 2, 1840

Woodstock, VA

Writes of statement in action between Hite and Thomas Brownfield

 

Isaac Hite

Rhodes & Dannes

Aug. 11, 1840

Winchester

Accounting of Flour Sales

 

Isaac Hite

J. M. Daniel

Jan. 5, 1842

Columbia, SC (postmarked Middleburg, VA)

Personal letter dealing with death of Isaac’s brother

 

Isaac Hite

P. Williams

July 6, 1842

Winchester

Money owed to the sender by a Mr. Yates.

 

Isaac Hite

____________

Sept. 26,1842

Baltimore

Re. Flour Sales Accounting

 

Isaac Hite

 

Oct. 20,1842

 

Promissory Note $177.55

 

Isaac Hite

 

March 29, 1843

 

Promissory Note $5.00 Payable to G.L.White from _______ Grove & Thomas Middleton.

 

Isaac Hite

 

April 21,1843

Winchester

Receipt for $6.43 for goods purchased by Isaac Hite from H.B. & M.H. Streit

 

Isaac Hite

A.S Rhodes

June 17, 1844

Cloverdale Hotel

Re: Closing account of __ __ Davison

 

Isaac Hite

 

Sept. 5, 1844

 

Promissory note $13.50 (on demand) Names unreadable

 

             
               

Correspondence and business papers, 1845-1846, 5 leaves, manuscript, (folder contains the following):

To

From

Date

Place of Origin

Notes

Isaac Hite

S.C. Foulk & Co.

Sept. 11,1845

Philadelphia, PA

Receipt for purchase of 40yds. of floor oil cloth $20.00

Isaac Hite

Wm. R. Blakeslee

July 15,1845

 

Receipt for purchase of book “Josephine”

Isaac Hite

Robert S____ Thomas _____

And John M. Perry

Sept. 16, 1845

 

Promissory note for $8.93 payable to Robert J. & Lewis F. Glass

“Dear Friend”

Isaac Hite

January 20, 1846

Rockville

Concerns Mr. Rorker

Isaac Hite

Manuel Jackson

Dec. 6, 1846

Birmingham, PA

Bank draft of $650.00 for Daniel.

Correspondence and business papers, 1847-1849, 9 leaves, manuscript (folder contains the following):

To

From

Date

Place of Origin

Notes

Philip Williams

 

Estimated 1847

 

Concerns dissolution of connection between Christ Church, Frederick Parish and St. Thomas

Isaac Hite

Samuel Williams

Jan. 2, 1847

 

Williams is requesting the estate of his father be settled as soon as possible.

Ann Hite

Bishop Meade

Feb. 9, 1847

Mountain View (postmarked Millwood)

Personal letter dealing with local church issues. Instructs Ann to share letter with her son, Isaac.

Isaac Hite

 

March 28,1847

 

Notice of stud service by Hite’s horse ‘Young Elegant’. Prices for services listed.

Isaac Hite

J. M. Danier

June 30, 1847

Jacksonville, Fla.

Personal letter dealing with several subjects.

Isaac Hite

Manuel Jackson

Oct. 16, 1847

Birmingham

Negotiations for payment to release Daniel’s family.

Isaac Hite

 

July1,1847-March 12,1848

 

List of subscriptions for support of Re. Rooker & Rev. Wm. F. Bryant

Isaac Hite

 

July 16, 1848 – Feb. 11.1849

 

Subscription list for support of Rev. Wm. F. Bryant. Donors listed.

Isaac Hite

 

July 17, 1849-July 28,1850

 

Subscription list for support of Rev. Wm. Irish Donors listed.

Isaac Hite

Cedar Creek Council Note

March 30 ____

 

Handwritten note of selection of Isaac as delegate to state legislature.

Correspondence and business papers, 1850, 6 leaves, manuscript, 1 leaf, printed (folder contains the following):

To

From

Date

Place of Origin

Notes

Isaac Hite

 

185_

 

Blank check from Bank of the Valley

Isaac Hite

R. Blyeers (sp)

June 4, ____

Turtle Lake, Texas

Mentions Isaac’s son

Isaac Hite

James Madison Hite (half-brother)

April 7, 1850

Winchester, VA

Discusses funds owed James’ niece, E____ Davison

Isaac Hite

A. M. Davison

May 29, 1850

Jefferson City, MO.

Writer invites Isaac to move West. Mentions 100 wagons leaving for the Gold Rush in California.

Joseph Kinsel

Daniel Miller

July 11, 1850

Shippensburg, PA

Letter concerns a possible runaway slave.

Isaac Hite

Joseph Kinsel

July 15, 1850

Clearspring, PA.

Kinsel is slave catcher. Requesting expense money. And a $100 reward if capture and return of slave.

Correspondence and business papers, 1851-1853, 7 leaves, manuscript (folder contains the following):

To

From

Date

Place of Origin

Notes

Isaac Hite

Brother

Undated

 

Lists statement of Daniel Thompson’s land

Isaac Hite

A. M. Davison

Set. 27, 1850

Jefferson City, MO.

Writer seeks to have Isaac sell Rockville and journey West.

Isaac Hite

John A. Smith

Feb. 11,1851

St. Martinsville

Smith offers sympathy for loss of Isaac’s Mother.

Isaac Hite

_____Maury

Nov. 16, 1852

Bowling Green, VA.

Four page personal letter

 

Isaac Hite

Undated

 

Hite wishing to move West and sell farm

Isaac Hite

E. C. Maury

Jul. 24,18[53]

Berryville, VA

Mentions friend Dr. Cyrus McCormick

Isaac Hite

A.M. Davison

Aug. 6, 185[3]

Missouri River, MO.

Writer has returned from trip to Sioux City Urging joint business plans to Isaac.

Correspondence and business papers, 1855-1858, 9 leaves, manuscript (folder contains the following):

To

From

Date

Place of Origin

Notes

Isaac Hite

A. M. Davison

Feb. 18, 1955

Hazelwood, MO

Personal and family business

Isaac Hite

A. M. Davison

Mar. 5, 1855

Hazelwood, MO.

Long personal letter

Isaac Hite

 

April 20, 1855

Cedar Grove

Receipt for 40 bushels of wheat

Isaac Hite

A.M. Davison

May18, 1855

Cambridge, MO.

Letter regarding long dry spell

Isaac Hite

 

August 4,1855

Alexandria, VA

Receipt for purchase of plaster

Isaac Hite

Baker & Bros.

August 22, 1856

 

Receipt

Isaac Hite

W. B. Miller

Feb. 21, 1857

Winchester, VA.

Receipt

Isaac Hite

James T. Taylor

June 15, 1858

Palmyra Mansion, VA.

Writes about Power of Attorney and seeks assistance

Isaac Hite

 

Sept. 16, 1855

Baltimore, MD

Receipt

Correspondence and business papers, 1860-1884, 4 leaves, manuscript, 1 leaf, printed (folder contains the following):

To

From

Date

Place of Origin

Notes

Isaac Hite

J. S. Davison

Jan. 12, 1861

Winchester, VA

Promissory Note

Isaac Hite

Taylor & CO.

May 8, 1861

Winchester, VA.

Receipt

Isaac Hite

Mark Bird

August 3, 1861

Woodstock, VA

Letter about Battle of Bull Run

Isaac Hite

J. Taylor Clark

Dec. 3, 1863

Staunton, VA.

Long personal letter about war issues.

 

H.C. Dean

 

Chicago, IL

Saw Company

             
             

Miscellaneous, 1889-1907, 10 leaves, manuscript, 2 leaves, printed, photocopy, plus ephemera, (folder contains the following):

History of Hite’s Chapel, 1889,1 leaf, manuscript, fragment
Empty envelope addressed to Arthur Cooley, March 27, 1905, 1 item
“Grandmother’s Story of Bunker Hill,” by Louise Cooley, April 16, 1907, 6 leaves, manuscript
“Notes on the History of England,” 1 leaf, manuscript
Program, Grand Masquerade Ball, 1 item, manuscript
Article, “General Jackson on the Tariff,” 1844, Winchester Republican, 1 leaf, printed, photocopy
News Clippings, 1 leaf, printed, photocopy
Pierce’s Memorandum and Account Book, 1 item
Postcards to Louisa Cooley, circa 1900, 5 items
12 buttons in Sisco Brothers envelope