Department of Special Collections and University Archives
McFarlin Library. University of Tulsa.  2933 E. 6th St.  Tulsa, OK.  74104-3123 (OKT - OkTU)


Ira Hobart Evans papers

Collection  1976-019

Dates:  c1850s-1900s.

Extent:  (23 boxes; 8 oversized)

Level of Description:  Item level.

Name of creator(s):   Ira Hobart Evans.

Date of creation:  Undetermined.

Scope and Content:   The papers consist of handwritten and typed business correspondence dating from 1872-1913; financial records and ledgers including land purchases, expenditures, leases, interest earned, etc.; lists of stockholders, land scrip holders, and certificates; and meeting minutes of the Executive Committee, Board of Directors, and/or Stockholders.  The papers are organized into 6 series. 

  • Series 1: Brazos Internal Improvement and Navigation Company (1867-1897).  Articles of incorporation.  Meeting minutes of Board of Directors.  Reports of land purchases.  Lists of financial accounts, deed holders, etc., in reference to the Brazos lands and the Patton plantation.

  • Series 2: Espuela Land and Cattle Company of Fort Worth, Texas (1884-1892).  Map of company property and the description of the character and condition of the land, ranch and herd.  Documents in reference to the company’s satisfaction of mortgage to the New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd.

  • Series 3: International and Great Northern Railroad Company (1871-1909).  Company circulars, meeting notices, and general information to stockholders.  Reports on lands.  Financial information including company accounts, earnings and expenses, stock certificates issued and cancelled, etc.  Lists of stockholders.  Documents involving the Juan Gonzales suit.  Agreement for the reorganization of the company.

  • Series 4: The New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd. (1872-1913).  Correspondence:  The New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd. figured prominently in a majority of the transactions between the various land companies; therefore, in order to maintain continuity, correspondence from all land companies represented in this collection have been filed here, chronologically by date.  Bylaws and meeting minutes for the Executive Committee/Board of Directors/Stockholders.  Lists and ledger of stockholders, stock certificates, and land scrip.  Annual reports (1881-1893).  Reports on lands.  Price lists for lands (1890-1894).  Treasurer’s reports (1879-1905).  Pay vouchers and deeds (1898-1906).  Legal documents, agreements, contracts, and documents pertaining to the International and Great Northern Railroad Land Grant. 

  • Series 5: Texas Land Company, Inc.  Articles of incorporation.  Meeting minutes of the Executive Committee and Board of Directors.  Circulars, meeting notices, and general information to stockholders.  Stock certificates and stock transfer documents.  Pay vouchers and deeds (1875-1877). 

  • Series 6: Texas Land Syndicate.  Interest computations, trial balance ledger, and bank statements.  3 oversize ledgers containing a variety of the company’s financial records including land purchases.  Meeting minutes, resolutions, voting lists, and election of general manager (c1888-1894).  In addition to, and directly following this guide, is a copy of the original inventory that will provide a more detailed description and explanation of individual items. 

Administrative/Biographical History:  The papers document the negotiation for, and the acquisition and disbursement of Texas lands from the 1850s through the early 1900s by land companies such as the New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd., the Texas Land Company, Inc., the Texas Land Syndicate, the International and Great Northern Railroad Company, the Brazos Internal Improvement and Navigation Company, and the Espuela Land and Cattle Company.

Access and Copyright:  This material is housed off-site and will require special arrangements for anticipated use. Contact the Department of Special Collections.

Language and Scripts:  English.

Finding aid/Inventory:  Finding aid is available online.

Provenance/Source of Acquisition:   Acquired prior to 1980, provenance unknown.

Date(s) of description:   Milissa Burkart, Mar 1992.

Access Points:

Subject Headings 

 
Personal names 

  • IRA HOBART EVANS (1844-1922).  Born in Piermont, New Hampshire.  He enlisted in Vermont Volunteer Infantry, Jul 1862 and was appointed Acting Assistant Adjutant General of the 25th Army Corps in 1865.  He was later sent to Texas as a member of the occupation force of Maj. Gen. Philip Henry Sheridan.  That same year, Evans was selected as one of members of the honor guard to march in President Abraham Lincoln’s funeral cortège.  After completing his military service in January 1867, he worked as a cattleman in an area near Corpus Christi, Texas.  He was also active with the Freedmen’s Bureau and served with the Internal Revenue Service for a short while.  Evans won a seat in the Texas House in 1869 as a representative of the Western District of Texas and served as Speaker of the Texas House from 1870-1871.  Following his political career, Evans entered business as the General Manager of Texas Land Company of Houston 1872.  He also served as Secretary of the Houston and Great Northern Railroad Company (which later merged into the International-Great Northern Railroad Company) from 1873-1874 and was the Company’s Director from 1875-1908.  He also served as President of New York and Texas Land Company Ltd., 1880-1906 and as President and Director of the Austin Electric Railway Company, 1902-1903.  Ira Hobart Evans died in San Diego, California.  For further information about Ira Hobart Evans, see The New Handbook of Texas.  Austin: Texas State Historical Association, 1996; or on the web, keyword search “Handbook of Texas online:  Evans, Ira Hobart.”  See also, Texas Legislative Council.  Presiding Officers of the Texas Legislature 1846-1991: Austin: Texas House of Representatives, 1991, p127.  Additional information about Evans’ colleagues can be found in the biographical notes following this introduction.

  • BAKER, WILLIAM R. (1820-1890).  Member of the Board of Directors of the Houston and Texas Central Railroad in 1852.  Also served as Mayor of Houston from 1880 to 1886.

  • ENNIS, CORNELIUS (?).  Operated a general trade store.  Dennis served as Mayor of Houston in 1856 and 1857 and was one of the incorporators of the Great Northern Railroad.  He was also involved in the Houston and Texas Central Railroad, serving as General Superintendent, Comptroller, and financial agent.

  • GROW, GALUSHA A. (1822-1907).  Politician and congressman.  Also known as the father of the Homestead Act.

  • HUTCHINS, WILLIAM J. (1813-1884).  A private banker, Hutchins also conducted an extensive mercantile business.  He was one of the incorporators (along with David H. Paige) of the Brazos Plank Road Company and the Buffalo Bayou, Houston and Texas Central Railroad (1861) for which he served as President and General Manager for 7 years.  Hutchins was elected Mayor of Houston in 1861.

  • PHELPS, WILLIAM WALTER (?).  President of the Texas Land Co., Inc.

  • PIERCE, ABEL H. (1834-1900).  Cattleman; formed the Pierce-Sullivan Pasture Company.

  • RICE, WILLIAM MARSH (1816-1900).  Merchant; founder of the William Marsh Rice Institute.

  • THORN, SAMUEL (?).  Vice President of the Texas Land Co., Inc.

  • WETMORE, JACOB S. (?).  Treasurer of the Texas Land Co., Inc.


Corporate names

Places
 


Inventory

Series 1: Brazos Internal Improvement and Navigation Co.
1:1 Articles of Incorporation, 10 Jan 1867.    
       
  Board of Directors meeting minutes, 1869-1875; includes statement by Captain C.W. Howell, U.S. Engineers (pasted in) in reference to improvements at the mouth of the Brazos River, 1872, 13p.    
       
1:2 Report of Galusha A. Grow in reference to the Brazos land purchases, 10 Jun 1875, 7p.    
       
1:3 Records of land purchases and deeds in a small notebook, 1872.    
       
  Draft resolution by Texas Land Co., Inc. Board of Directors in reference to 50,000 acres in Brazoria County, Texas, and debentures used to purchase them, 1p.    
       
  Handwritten and signed certificate of Galusha A. Grow (trustee and president of Brazos Internal Improvement and Navigation Co.) as to his ownership of 60,000 acres in Brazoria County, Texas, 25 Apr 1872, 1p.    
       
  Handwritten and signed receipt in reference to the proportionate interest of Houston and Texas Central Railroad Co. in certain lands in Brazoria County, Texas, 26 Feb 1877, 1p.    
  Handwritten and signed receipt in reference to the proportionate interest of William Marsh Rice in Brazoria County lands, 26 Feb 1877, 1p.    
       
1:4 Lists of lands purchased, deeds and deed holders, and financial accounts, all in reference to the Brazos lands, the Patton Plantation, and lands owned by Brazos Internal Improvement and Navigation Co., c1871-1872; removed from a ledger notebook, 66p.    
       
Series 2: Espuela Land and Cattle Co., Ltd., Fort Worth
1:5 Map showing portion of Espuela Land and Cattle Co., Ltd., Fort Worth property, Nov 1884; on verso: reports describing the character of land and condition of ranch and herd.    
       
  2 documents in reference to the Espuela Land and Cattle Co., Ltd., Fort Worth’s satisfaction of mortgage to the New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd., 1892.    
       
  International and Houston and Great Northern Railroad Co.  (See Series 3:  International and Great Northern Railroad Co.)    
       
Series 3: International and Great Northern Railroad Co.
1:1 Company circulars, meeting notices, and general information to stockholders, 1871-1884.    
       
1:2 Secretary’s report on railroad lands, Jan 1877, 5p.    
  Secretary’s report in reference to land certificates issued and disposed of, 4p.    
       
1:3 Unbound ledger listing earnings and expenses, 1874-1909, 26p.    
       
  Record of second mortgage and convertible bonds of the company, 1878-1882, in 2 ledgers.  (Located in Oversize)    
       
1:4-5 Ledger of stock certificates issued and cancelled, c1875.    
       
1:6-2:1 Record book of company accounts, Executive Committee and Board of Directors meeting minutes, lists of stockholders, receipts, and other company business; also contains information on the New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd. and the Texas Land Co., Inc., 1874-1883.    
       
  Translation of the Title to Juan Gonzales, Eleven Leagues Grant On Piedra Pinta Creek, In Kinney County, Texas.  Pamphlet.    
       
2:2 Handwritten document in reference to the Gonzales suit and related matters in litigation, with press cuttings attached, c1886-1887, 2p.    
       
2:3 Agreement for reorganization of the International and Great Northern Railroad Co.; incomplete, 2p.    
       
  Indenture between the International and Great Northern Railroad Co. and John S. Kennedy, Samuel Thorne, and William Walter Phelps, 1879, 2 copies.    
       
Series 4: New York and Texas Land Co., Ltd.
  General Correspondence    
1:1 1872-1880.    
1:2 Jan-Apr 1881.    
1:3 May-Sept 1881.    
1:4 Oct-Dec 1881.    
1:5 Jan-Apr 1882.    
1:6  May-Jul 1882.    
1:7 Aug-Dec 1882.    
1:8 1883-1891.    
2:1 1892-1898.    
2:2 1900-1902.    
2:3 Jan-Jun 1904.    
2:4 Jul-Dec 1904.    
2:5 1905-1913.    
       
3:1  Bylaws, 1880 (amended in 1883).    
       
3:2 Executive Committee and Board of Directors meeting minutes, 1880.    
3:3 1881-1882.    
3:4 1883.    
3:5 1883-1899, no date..    
       
3:6 Stockholders meeting minutes, 1880-1905.    
4:1 Proxy statements.    
  Director’s ballots, Aug 1883.    
  Inspector of Election ballots, Aug 1883.    
       
4:2 Lists of stockholders and stock certificates issued, 1880-1884.    
4:3 1900-1905.    
  Leather bound alphabetical ledger.  (Located in oversize drop spine box)    
       
4:4 List of [outside] stockholders, no date..    
       
4:5 Land scrip alphabetical ledger, c1880s.    
  (See also  Land scrip holders ledger, c1880-1888 located in oversize drop spine boxes.)    
       
  Record ledger of assignment or transfer of the Farmer’s Loan and Trust Co.’s certificate of proportion of land notes of the New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd.  (Located in oversize drop spine box)    
       
4:6 Lists and certificates in reference to the transference of proxy power and surrogate certificates from stockholders.    
       
4:7 Transfers of land scrip documents, 1883.    
       
4:8 Circulars, meeting notices, and general information to stockholders, 1880-1885.    
4:9 1886-1905.    
       
  Annual Reports    
5:1-2 1881.    
5:3 1882-1893.    
5:4-5 Report on lands, 1881.    
       
5:6 Report on Brazoria County lands owned by New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd., 3p.    
       
  Typed transcription of a [memo] in reference to New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd.’s attempt to develop oil on lands near Angleton in Brazoria County, Texas, Jun 1902, 1p.    
       
  Draftsman’s map of land survey of lands owned by New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd. as well as the ownership of surrounding land, c1881.    
       
  Typed transcription of [memo] in reference to the discovery of oil and gas while boring for water in Maverick County, Texas, 1903, 1p.    
       
  Report of land available for sale, listed by county, c1882.    
       
  Price List for Lands    
6:1 1890.    
6:2 1891.    
6:3 1892.    
6:4 1893.    
6:5 1894.    
       
  Treasurer’s Report    
6:6 1879-1880.    
6:7 1881.    
6:8 1882.    
7:1 1883.    
7:2 1884.    
7:3 1885-1905.    
       
7:4 Photocopy of original fragments of an alphabetical ledger, listing names and figures.    
  (See also Series 3: Record book, 1874-1883)    
       
7:5 Cheque book record of expenses, c1892-1896.    
       
7:6 Cheque book records in reference to Texas Land Syndicate and [remaining lands of the New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd.,] c1910-1913.    
       
7:7 Document to transfer the stock of Henry S. McComb to other parties, 1884; 1p plus 4 receipts.    
       
  List of refunds on bonds, 1887; 6p, 2 copies.    
       
  Statement of outstanding amounts on contracts assigned to New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd., 1896, 1p.    
  Statement of notes held by New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd., 1896, 4p.    
  Statement of contracts held by New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd., 1896, 7p.    
       
  Ledger listing tracts of land in Texas acquired by Messrs. Bond, Cox, and White from New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd.; listed by county, 1906.  (Located in Oversize)    
       
7:8 Lists of land scrip purchased, outstanding, fractional, and cancelled; 1887-1897, no date..    
       
8:1 Land leases paid, unpaid, and land for sale; 1882-1887.    
       
8:2-4 Reports of collections on bills received and held in trust by Lawyer’s Surety Co., 1897.    
       
8:5 Indenture between New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd. and Mark T. Cox and William E. Bond, 1897, 2 copies.    
       
8:6 Ira Hobart Evans in account with William E. Bond for the purchase of Texas lands, 1902-1904, 4p.    
       
8:7 Miscellaneous statements, memos, and lists in reference to New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd. lands.    
       
9:1 Documents in reference to the Farmer’s Loan and Trust of New York.    
       
  Agreements with the company for land-purchase notes, 1883.    
       
  3 Farmers Loan and Trust of New York account books.    
       
9:2 Draft application and agreements, some signed and/or amended, with Lawyer’s Surety Co. of New York and New York Life Insurance and Trust Co., 1894.    
  Draft contract between William E. Bond, New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd., and Thomas R. White, Jr.; 1901, 2 copies.    
       
9:3 Draft copy of a Bill addressed to the Judges of the U.S. Circuit Court, Northern District of Texas, in the case of New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd. versus W.C. Walsh, Land Commissioner, et. al.; in reference to the history of county jurisdictions in Texas, companies, and land grants, 1883, 60p.    
       
9:4 Subpoenas, various litigation documents, legal suits, c1887-1895.    
       
  Pay Vouchers and Deeds    
10:1-2 1898.    
10:3-4 1899.    
11:1-2 1899.    
11:3-4 1900.    
12:1-4 1901.    
13:1 1902.    
13:2-4 1902.    
13:5 1903.    
14:1-2 1903.    
14:3-4 1904.    
15:1-3 1904.    
15:4 1905.    
16:1-2 1905.    
16:3-4 1906.    
       
  Miscellaneous    
16:5 Blank company forms; photocopy of original press cutting of an article from Wall Street Journal, 5 Dec 1902; photocopy of the originals of various press cuttings.    
16:6 Unused bank cheques; various handwritten notes, receipts, and vouchers; fragment of a document in reference to the settlement of an unknown account.    
       
Series 5: Texas Land Co., Inc.
1:1 Articles of Incorporation.    
       
  Board of Directors and Executive Committee meeting minutes in an unbound notebook, 1870-1880, 30p.    
1:2 Nov 1879, 3p.    
       
  Handwritten and signed letter of resignation of Directorship by A.R. Howard, 1879.    
  Proposed resolution for the resignation of the president.    
       
1:3 Handwritten and signed circular letter to the stockholders, 12 Aug 1880, 9 copies.    
       
  List of Directors and stock certificate numbers, written on 2 envelopes.    
  20 stock certificates.    
  Document of stock transfer, 1883, 1p.    
  (See also Series 3: Record book, 1874-1883 located in oversize drop spine box)    
       
1:4 3 surrogate court documents in reference to the settlement of the accounts of William Marsh Rice, deceased, 1896-1903.    
       
1:5 25 handwritten pay vouchers, some with bank cheques attached, 1876-1880.    
       
  Payment Vouchers and Deeds    
1:6 1875.    
1:7 1876.    
2:1 1876.    
2:2-3 1877.    
  (See also Series 3: Record book 1874-1883 located in oversize drop spine box)    
       
  Miscellaneous    
2:4 Empty used envelopes with handwritten note pertaining to their original contents.    
  18 cancelled bank cheques made out to various individuals (Galusha A. Grow, William Walter Phelps, William Marsh Rice, etc.)    
       
Series 6: Texas Land Syndicate
1:1 13 handwritten receipts, some with bank cheques attached, for attorney fees paid by Thomas R. White, Jr. 1908-1913.    
       
1:2 Draft land purchase agreement, in 3 versions, between the Texas Land Syndicate and the New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd., Apr 1887.    
       
1:3 5 Handwritten and signed receipts for land scrip transactions between the Texas Land Syndicate (William Walter Phelps) and the New York and Texas Land Company, Ltd. (Ira Hobart Evans) in reference to surveys from the Houston and Great Northern Railroad Land Grant, c1887, 5p.    
       
  Interest computations on certificates of deposit on 7 pieces of note paper, c1903-1904.    
       
1:4 Trial balance in an unbound ledger, 1888-1913, 17p.    
1:5 Bank statements, 1894-1910.    
1:6 Hackensack Trust Co. account receipts; daily balances register; bank cheques; c1903-1904.    
1:7 Meeting minutes, resolutions, election of general manager, and voting lists, c1888-1894.    
       
  Proxy Statements    
1:8 1886-1888.    
1:9 1894.    
       
  Ledger 1 (1887-1913): William Walter Phelps authorized to purchase certain Texas lands from the Houston and Great Northern Railroad Land Grant.    
       
  Record of transferable certificates issued, showing proportionate interests in the land purchase that then became the Texas Land Syndicate.    
  List of original certificate holders and deeds cited.    
       
  Bills receivable, cash, loans, and expenses, from the New York office. (Located in oversize drop spine box)    
       
  Ledger 2 (1887-1913): Record of cash, receipts, and expenses in Texas, as well as the source and expenditure of funds.  (Located in oversize drop spine box)    
  Ledger 3 (1887-1913): Records of cash, profit and loss, accounts receivable, expenses, interest, rent, land, salaries, legal expenses, etc.  (Located in oversize drop spine box)    
       
  Miscellaneous    
1:10 Cancelled bank cheques.    
  Receipt for commission for Thomas R. White, Jr.    
 
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Revised: 12/08/11.

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