Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library at the Alamo

A Guide to the Victoria Thomas Polk Autograph Album, 1859-1875 and undated



Descriptive Summary

Creator: Polk, Victoria Thomas, 1841-1924
Title: Victoria Thomas Polk Autograph Album
Dates: 1859-1875 and undated
Creator Abstract: Victoria Thomas Polk (1841-1924) was a resident of San Augustine, Texas. Her father Iredell Dickinson Thomas (1805-1866) was an early settler in the area and soon amassed considerable wealth and land holdings as a merchant and planter. In 1860, Victoria married Charles Isaac Polk (1832-1889), a member of another prominent family in San Augustine.
Content Abstract: The autograph album is a copy of Cherished Fragments containing inscriptions from friends, usually in verse form, that bestow wishes for Victoria Thomas Polk's future happiness, ask for her remembrance, and praise her personal traits. The album also includes illustrations, primarily watercolors of flowers that accompany some of the inscriptions, but also engravings and ink and pencil drawings depicting other subjects.
Identification: Bound Doc 14770
Extent: 1 volume (approximately 140 pages)
Language: Materials are in English.
Repository: Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library at the Alamo, San Antonio, Texas

Biographical Note

Victoria Thomas was born in San Augustine, Texas, on 1841 January 30 to Iredell Dickinson Thomas (1805-1866) and his first wife Penelope Edwards (circa 1810-1844). Iredell Thomas was an early settler in the area, arriving in east Texas with his parents and siblings around 1828. He built the first store in the newly established town of San Augustine in 1833, and it became one of the largest mercantile businesses in town. A leading citizen of the area, Thomas amassed considerable wealth and land holdings as a businessman and planter. During the Texas Revolution he participated in the siege of Bexar and served as secretary of the San Augustine Committee of Vigilance and Safety.

On 1860 March 21, Victoria married Charles Isaac Polk, a member of another prominent family in San Augustine. Born on 1832 September 9 in Tennessee, Charles came to east Texas in early 1837 with his parents, Alfred (1808-1891) and Nancy McIvor (1810-1897) Polk, and siblings. Alfred Polk served as the county judge of San Augustine from 1845 until 1860. For many years Charles was a merchant in San Augustine; like his five brothers and two brothers-in-law, he served in the Confederate army during the Civil War.

Charles and Victoria Polk had three sons: Henry Kinsey (1861-1915), who served as county commissioner and judge in San Augustine; I. D. (1864-1914); and James V. (1866-1937). Charles died in San Augustine on 1889 March 30; Victoria died in Beaumont, Texas, on 1924 March 10.

References

Blake, Robert Bruce, Collection. Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library, San Antonio, Texas.

Byrne, Frank J. Becoming Bourgeois: Merchant Culture in the South, 1820-1865. Lexington, Kentucky: The University Press of Kentucky, 2006.

Ericson, Carolyn Reeves. Nacogdoches - Gateway to Texas: A Biographical Directory, 1773-1849. Volume 1. Nacogdoches, Texas: Ericson Books, 1991.

Ericson, Joe, comp., and Carolyn R. Ericson, ed. They Came to East Texas, 500-1850: Immigrants and Immigration Patterns. Westminster, Maryland: Heritage Books, 2005.

Johnson, Frank White, Eugene Campbell Barker, and Ernest William Winkler. A History of Texas and Texans. Volume 4. Chicago and New York: The American Historical Society, 1914.

Noble, Harry P., Jr. Texas Trailblazers: San Augustine Pioneers. Lufkin, Texas: Best of East Texas Publishers, 1999.


Scope and Content Note

The autograph album is a copy of Cherished Fragments that belonged to San Augustine, Texas, resident Victoria Thomas Polk. Approximately one-fourth of the pages in the volume contain inscriptions from friends, usually in verse form, that bestow wishes for Victoria's future happiness, ask for her remembrance, and praise her personal traits. At least some of the verses are sections of published poems of the period. Friends from San Augustine and New Orleans who signed the album include Rufus Price; E. W. Lovell; Mary and Anna W. Cartwright; A. R. Northrop; Lizzie and Kate Crocket; Charles Isaac Polk, Victoria’s soon-to-be husband at the time of the earliest messages; J. Blount; and Nettie Parr. The album also includes illustrations, primarily watercolors of flowers that accompany some of the inscriptions, but also engravings and ink and pencil drawings depicting other subjects.


Restrictions

Access Restrictions

No restrictions. The collection is open for research.

Usage Restrictions

Please be advised that the library does not hold the copyright to most of the material in its archival collections. It is the responsibility of the researcher to secure those rights when needed. Permission to reproduce does not constitute permission to publish. The researcher assumes full responsibility for conforming to the laws of copyright, literary property rights, and libel.


Index Terms

Personal Names
Polk, Victoria Thomas, 1841-1924.
Polk, Charles Isaac, 1832-1889.
Subjects
Teenage girls--Texas--San Augustine--Social life and customs.
Women--Texas--San Augustine--Social life and customs.
Locations
San Augustine County (Tex.)--History--Sources.
Genres/Formats
Personal papers.
Autograph albums.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Victoria Thomas Polk Autograph Album, 1859-1875 and undated, Bound Doc 14770, Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library, San Antonio, Texas.

Acquisition Information

Gift of Jeanie Travis, 2010 October.

Processing Information

Processed by Caitlin Donnelly, 2010 November.

Finding aid edited and encoded by Caitlin Donnelly, 2010 November.


Detailed Description of the Collection

 

Victoria Thomas Polk Autograph Album, 1859-1875 and undated

Volume
1 Cherished Fragments autograph album, 1859-1875 and undated