Nicholas D. Riccio Rare Books

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book (2)

Homesteading at Montana’s Sun River Project.

Montana Project]. Typed letter, possibly a carbon. On 8" X 10 ½" sheet, signed S.B. Robbins, Project Engineer, in type. On letterhead of the Department of the Interior, United States Reclamation Service. With original mailing envelope and a pre-addressed postcard to respond to the letter. Some aging and browning, crease at center fold; overall very good. Form letter writing to a possible homesteader, noting that additional information on the massive irrigation project was available, and that the recipient could request that information by using the enclosed postcard. The Sun River project was initiated to provide storage of Sun River water at Gibson Reservoir, Willow Creek Reservoir, and a few other reservoirs. On September 26, 1906, the Department of the Interior authorized the USBR's Sun River Project, under pressure from local residents, namely those of Great Falls, who wanted the irrigation of lands east of the Rocky Mountains along the Sun and Teton Rivers. Construction began on the Fort Shaw Division in May 1907 with the bulk of the work completed by July 1908. Water was first delivered to the lands in 1909. The main storage dam, Gibson, was constructed during 1926-1929 with the construction of lateral systems was finished in 1936.The author, S.B. Robbins, sometimes called the "father" of the Sun River project, was project engineer when the Fort Shaw division opened in 1908. Joining the Reclamation Service soon after its establishment in 1902, Robbins took part in the early surveys of the Sun River project and by 1904 was the engineer in charge of the project. He held that position until 1910.Through the cooperative advertising efforts of the Reclamation Service, the Great Falls Commercial Club, and the Great Northern railroad, people in other parts of the United States learned about the Sun River project. Notices in newspapers suggested that interested
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Virginia slave-trader’s business letter on the eve of Civil War.

Slave Document] Autograph Letter Signed. 2pp. To Davis, Deupree Co., Richmond, Virginia. Some light creasing in the middle of the document, stain near signature, normal aging; overall very good. Kind of scarce slave dealer letter, with a chilling business-as-usual tone, offering to be the slave auctioneers' scout and agent, Taylor had just received a letter from the Richmond firm, "revoking all letters of credit heretofore given me to draw on your firm for the purchase of negroes". Robert H. Davis and William S. Deupree opened their "Negro Bazaar" auction rooms in Richmond's Odd Fellows Hall in 1859 and briefly thrived until bankrupted early in the Civil War. Deupree then became an officer of the Confederate Torpedo Bureau and died in 1864 in a land-mine explosion. The short-lived firm is remembered by philatelic collectors because their advertising envelopes are among the few to survive with the motto, "[We] Sell Slaves".He objected that he had already "made arrangements to move to Lewisburg [200 miles each of Richmond] for the purpose of representing the interest of your house and employed three agents there to let me know where negroes were for sale and paid them in advance for work; but I intend to buy negroes now any where I can get them and ask no firm in Richmond no favours for money and as to my competitors I do not ask them no favours only an alliance to trouth which if it have been informed Right they have [messed?] and furthermore I intend to bring you the first lot I take down which will be as soon as the market gets better…please inform me of the prices and the tendency etc. and what you have done with the family I left at Mr. Johnstons…."
book (2)

Canadian Irish Catholic riots against anti-Vatican speeches by Italian ex-Priest — letter by American Emigrant.

Catholic Riots]. Autograph Letter signed, blue paper, 4pp plus another partial page. Fold creases, some minor aging, very legible, the last page is a partial, which looks like it was added because the author ran out of space; overall very good. The author of this letter was one M.A. Buck, an American emigrant to Canada. The letter starts out extolling the rapid growth and booming economy of Montreal, Canada., and he seems to believe it would become competitive with her "Yankee neighbors". But the document also describes the consequences of "that unfortunate Gavazzi affair" six months earlier â€" the Irish Catholic riot against speeches by Italian Monk Alessandro Gavazzi who left the Church to lead an international movement against Catholicism Gavazzi had gone into exile in England, eventually returning to Italy to join Garibaldi and establish his own "Free Church". Meanwhile, in 1853, he came to New York to give lectures in New York, which passed without serious incident. But when he went on to Canada, his speeches led to violent disturbances by Irish Catholic, first in Quebec, then in Montreal, where, the church where Gavazzi was speaking was attacked by rioters. After they were at first driven back by police, the Mayor of the city called out troops, who were ordered to fire on the crowd, leaving five men dead and many wounded. As Buck writes, the Mayor and officers of the troops were brought up on a charge of murder: "In anticipation of further difficulties during the trial" the authorities have got two hundred pensioners… sworn in as special constables" to assist the police "in keeping the peace of the City." He predicted â€" correctly - defendants would finally be acquitted . "I don't believe that they could get a Jury to condemn the prisoners, no matter how strong the evidence might be against them, for they would actually be afraid of losing their lives should they do so. Such is the state of things in ours which would be peaceable and quiet City were it not for a certain class of ruffians who are led on and encouraged by another much worse class, who put on their long faces and long gowns and go parading our streets with their bible under their arms. Styling themselves Roman Catholic priests, preaching to their poor and ignorant flock out of that book which they refuse their people the privilege of reading. Had they the power to do so I really believe that they would extinguish every protestant from off the face of the earth. They are now in the majority in our City but I think the time is soon coming when they will be the minority…" The letter is sent to his sister in Vermont.