John Hough James Collection

John Hough James

ABOUT THE COLLECTION

John Hough James (1800-1881) was a native of Urbana, Ohio and a graduate of Cincinnati College.  He was a lawyer, banker, railroad builder, scientific farmer and stockbreeder, legislator, politician, editor, lecturer and writer.

A friend of Henry Clay and William Henry Harrison, James utilized his work as a lawyer and legislator in advising Whig leaders in Congress and the General Assembly of Ohio.  As a banker and railroad builder, James was a pioneer in the development of western banking and transportation.  He was treasurer and president of the Mad River and Lake Erie Railroad, building one of the earliest railroads of the country.  He also pursued farming and stockbreeding.  James founded Urbana University, the first Swedenborgian college in the world, giving the land for the campus and serving as a lifelong trustee for the institution.

John H. James Collection: Diaries and Family Correspondence Finding Aid

This collection features the diaries of John H. James beginning in 1821 and concluding in 1881 and correspondence sent and received by members of the John H. James family from 1814-1863. The letters describe James’ life as a student, his experiences in the Ohio State Senate, the creation of the Urbana Banking Company, and finally, various trips and excursions taken by James and his family.

John H. James Collection: General Correspondence, 1814-1836 Finding Aid
John H. James Collection: General Correspondence, 1837-1871 Finding Aid

These two collections feature correspondence sent and received by John H. James, his business associates, friends, acquaintances, and clients.

John H. James Collection: Business and Family Papers Finding Aid

This collection features correspondence, account books, photographs, and financial and legal documents belonging to John H. James and various James family members.  John Hough James, Abigail Bailey James, Ellen Rachel James, Gertrude James, and John Henry James are featured.  Much of the correspondence is related to James’s business interests in the Urbana Champaign Mutual Bank Co., the Urbana Banking Co, and the Mad River Railroad.  Various bound manuscripts, including account books, ledgers, and journals, provide insight into James’ life as a student, his experiences in the Ohio State Senate, the creation of the Urbana Banking Company, and finally, various trips and excursions taken by James and his family.  Also included are letters and documents related to James’ son John Henry James’s service in the Civil War.

About the Library

(513) 529-3323
SpecColl@MiamiOH.edu
8:00 am - 5:00 pm
Monday - Friday
321 King Library
Location | Services | Staff

News and Events

Our Spring 2015 exhibit will be titled The Ready Ones: American Children, World War II, and Propaganda. The exhibit will be guest curated by Katherine Wills, a graduate student in the History Department, and will run January 26 - May 15.

Our current and recent past exhibits are now available as digital stories in the style of the New York Times' Snow Fall project.

Announcing a new digital collection: the WMUB Archives, featuring student-produced radio and television programs from the late 1960s.