Texas Archival Resources Online

TABLE OF CONTENTS


Descriptive Summary

Biographical Note

Scope and Content Note

Organization of Collection

Restrictions

Index Terms

Related Material

Administrative Information

Description of Series

Series 1: Correspondence

Series 2: Property records

Series 3: Legal documents

Series 4: Financial records

Series 5: Personal papers

Series 6: Photographs

Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library at the Alamo

A Guide to the Riddle and Eagar Families Papers, 1840-1945



Descriptive Summary

Creator: Riddle and Eagar Families
Title: Riddle and Eagar Families Papers
Dates: 1840-1945
Creator Abstract: The roots of the Eagar family go back to the early days of Anglo-American settlement in San Antonio, Texas. Wilson I. Riddle first came to the city in 1839, returning in 1841 with his wife, Elizabeth Mary Menafee. The couple's first child, Sarah, was reputedly the first Anglo child born in San Antonio. Sarah Riddle married Robert Eagar in 1866 and had three children. Mrs. Eagar and her daughters were early members of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas and among the first Custodians of the Alamo after the DRT was granted custody of the site in 1905.
Content Abstract: Correspondence, property records, legal and financial documents, and personal material in the Riddle-Eagar family papers are associated with several family members, dating from soon after the arrival of Wilson I. Riddle in San Antonio, Texas.
Identification: Col 7426
Extent: 0.83 linear feet (2 boxes)
Language: Materials are in English.
Repository: Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library at the Alamo, San Antonio, Texas

Biographical Note

The roots of the Eagar family go back to the early days of Anglo-American settlement in San Antonio, Texas. Wilson I. Riddle, born in Ireland about 1812, immigrated to the United States as a child with his family and settled in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Riddle moved to Tennessee and from there went to Texas in 1839, working as a merchant and land speculator. He returned to Tennessee briefly in 1840 and while there married Elizabeth Mary Menafee (1820-1890). The couple returned to Texas, where their two children Sarah Elizabeth (1842-1947), reputedly the first Anglo child born in San Antonio, and James W. Riddle were born.

Wilson Riddle was taken prisoner during the invasion of San Antonio by a Mexican force under Adrian Woll in 1842 and was imprisoned in Mexico until 1843. His health damaged by the experience, he died in San Antonio in 1847. His widow married Harvey Canterbury in 1851 and had at least three more children: John W., Mildred L., and Harvey Canterbury. Elizabeth's second husband died in 1859.

In 1866, Sarah Elizabeth Riddle married Robert Eagar (1830-1883), a native of Canada who had lived in San Antonio since 1850. The couple's three children, Fannie and twins Florence and Blanche, were born in a house on South Alamo Street that would remain the family residence for over one-hundred years. Robert Eagar was involved in real estate, freighting, and other business ventures in San Antonio prior to his death in 1883.

The Eagars were socially active and involved in a number of organizations. Mrs. Eagar and her daughters were early members of the Daughters of the Republic of Texas (DRT) and active in the organization. Florence Eagar was one of the first Custodians of the Alamo after the DRT was granted custody of the site in 1905. Her mother, Sarah Eagar, took over the position when Florence married Major Harris L. Roberts in 1907 and followed her husband to his assignment in the Philippines. Roberts' Army assignments later took him to Ft. Bliss in Texas, Hawaii, and Detroit before his death in 1918. Harris and Florence Roberts had one child, Robert Pierpont Eagar Roberts.

Both Sarah Eagar and Florence Roberts remained active in the community throughout their long lives. Mrs. Eagar died in 1947 at the age of 105. Mrs. Roberts lived in the family home until the HemisFair project forced her to move in 1967. She died in 1969 at the age of 102.

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Scope and Content Note

Correspondence, property records, legal and financial documents, and personal material in the Riddle-Eagar family papers are associated with several family members, dating from soon after the arrival of Wilson I. Riddle in San Antonio, Texas.

Correspondence is the most significant part of the papers, much of it associated with Sarah Riddle Eagar. Most of the early letters are personal and include several from family in Mississippi, where Sarah Riddle attended school; letters from Robert Eagar’s family in Nova Scotia; and members of the King family of south Texas, in addition to other friends and acquaintances. Business-related letters are associated with various of Wilson Riddle’s and Robert Eagar’s business ventures and land dealings, particularly Eagar’s ranch and quarry properties, legal matters associated with family property, and financial matters. A small number of letters are specifically connected with Sarah Eagar’s involvement in the Daughters of the Republic of Texas and the organization’s custodianship of the Alamo.

A miscellany of items related to land and property include an abstract of title to land in Medina County originally belonging to John Riddle, deeds, leases, and documents concerning the development of a quarry in Medina County. Legal documents are an assortment of items including petitions in court cases and before government entities and Robert Eagar’s certificate of registration with the Mexican government in Matamoros. Financial documents include various bills, receipts, and account records for several individuals; tax receipts; bills of lading for goods shipped by Robert Eagar; promissory notes; an inventory of Wilson Riddle’s store; and an insurance policy. Personal items consist of several prescriptions for Robert Eagar, some genealogical notes, military records of Harris L. Roberts, and a few clippings, invitations, and other printed matter. Photographs are of family members.

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Organization of Collection

This collection is organized into six series.
Series 1: Correspondence
Series 2: Property records
Series 3: Legal documents
Series 4: Financial records
Series 5: Personal papers
Series 6: Photographs

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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.

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Index Terms

Personal Names
Riddle family.
Eagar family.
Eagar, Robert, 1830-1883.
Eagar, Sarah, 1842-1947.
Riddle, James Wilson, b. 1845.
Riddle, Wilson I., 1812-1847.
Roberts, Florence Eagar, 1867-1969.
Organizations
Daughters of the Republic of Texas.
Subjects
Quarries and quarrying--Texas--Medina County.
Real property--Texas.
Locations
San Antonio (Tex.)
Alamo (San Antonio, Tex.)
Medina County (Tex.)
Genres/Formats
Family papers.
Correspondence.
Financial records.
Legal documents.
Photographs.
Property records.

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Related Material

Eagar Family Papers, 1866-1966, Col 885, Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library, San Antonio, Texas.

Sarah Eagar and Florence Eagar Roberts Alamo Papers, 1905-1913 and undated, Doc 14408, Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library, San Antonio, Texas.

Florence Eagar Roberts Papers, 1905-1944, Doc 6074, Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library, San Antonio, Texas.

Aline B. Carter Family Papers, 1823-2003, MS 94, University of Texas at San Antonio Libraries Special Collections.

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Riddle and Eagar Families Papers, 1840-1945, Col 7426, Daughters of the Republic of Texas Library, San Antonio, Texas.

Acquisition Information

Some materials purchased from the Tarnished Turkey, 1994 March.

Remaining documents donated by Ralph Moore, owner of the Tarnished Turkey, 2006 June.

Mr. Moore acquired the collection from antiques dealer Ed Finn, who had apparently obtained the papers from the family and had earlier given a portion to the DRT Library. For this material, see the Eagar Family Papers (Col 885).

Processing Information

Processed by Warren Stricker, 2002 and 2006.

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

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Detailed Description of the Collection

 

Series 1: Correspondence

Box Folder
1 1 Wilson I. Riddle, 1841-1847
2 Harvey and Elizabeth Canterbury, 1857-1890
3 Sarah Eagar, 1856-1863
4 Robert and Sarah Eagar, 1866-1876
5 Robert and Sarah Eagar, 1877-1882 and undated
6-7 Robert Eagar, ranch correspondence, 1878
8 Sarah Eagar, 1883-1889
9 Sarah Eagar, 1890-1899
10 Sarah Eagar, 1901-1909
11 Sarah Eagar, 1911-1918
12 Sarah Eagar, 1920-1945
13 Sarah Eagar, birthday telegrams, 1930-1945
14 Sarah Eagar, undated
15 Florence Eagar Roberts, 1875-1907
16 James W. Riddle, 1885-1890
17 Alamo correspondence, 1908 and 1915

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Series 2: Property records

Box Folder
1 18 Deeds, 1849-1896
19 Leases, 1851-1884
20 Affidavits, 1879
21 Abstract of title: surveys no. 185, 243 1/2 and 244, Medina County, Texas, 1888
22 Medina County rock quarry: prospectus and related papers, 1878 and undated
23 Notes

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Series 3: Legal documents

Box Folder
2 24 Agreements, 1879 and undated
25 Petitions and citations, 1872-1891 and undated
26 Powers of attorney, 1867, 1871, and 1894
27 Release, 1894
28 Certificate of registration: Matamoros, 1865

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Series 4: Financial records

Box Folder
2 29 Bills, receipts, account statements: Wilson I. Riddle, 1840-1844
30 Bills, receipts, account statements: Eagar, Canterbury, and Riddle families, 1862-1916
31 Tax receipts, 1874-1918
32 Promissory notes, 1865-1933
33 Inventory, 1840
34 Bills of lading, 1881
35 Insurance documents, 1914
36 Assessment certificates, 1915
37 Notes

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Series 5: Personal papers

Box Folder
2 38 Prescriptions
39 Military records, 1914 and 1918
40 Genealogical material
41 Notes and miscellaneous papers
42 Song sheets, Sarah Eagar birthday, 1939
43 Greeting cards
44 Clippings
45 General printed material
46 Printing plates, Harris L. Roberts calling cards

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Series 6: Photographs

Box Folder
2 47 Identified people
Pictured: Blanche Eagar, Florence Eagar, Sarah Eagar, James W. Riddle, and Robert P. Roberts.
48 Middle East, Africa, and Greece
49 Unidentified

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