Albert and Ethel Herzstein Library, San Jacinto Museum of History

Powhatan Ellis Papers

Manuscript Collection: MC176

Collection Summary

Creator: Ellis, Powhatan, 1790-1863
Title: Powhatan Ellis papers
Dates: 1823, 1827
Abstract: Two letters to Powhatan Ellis concern politics and Indian agency affairs in the 1820s.
Identification: MC176
Quantity: 2 items
Language: Materials are in English.
Repository: Albert and Ethel Herzstein Library, San Jacinto Museum of History, La Porte, Texas

Creator Sketch

Powhatan Ellis was born in 1790 in Amherst County, Virginia. He was educated at Dickinson College in 1809-1810 and continued his studies at the College of William and Mary in 1814 to pursue a career in law. For four years he entered into private practice before becoming a judge of the Mississippi Supreme Court from 1818 to 1825. He was appointed by Andrew Jackson in 1825 to serve as the U.S. Senator from Mississippi, and also held the Senator's seat from 1827 to 1832. Ellis was the U.S. Charge D'Affaires to Mexico in 1836 and was the U.S. Envoy Extraordinary and Minister Plenipotentiary to Mexico from 1837 to 1842. He died in Richmond, Virginia, in 1863.

Scope and Content Note

The Powhatan Ellis Papers are comprised of two letters addressed to Judge Ellis dated in 1823 and 1827. The 1823 letter is from David Dickson of the Choctaw Agency to Mr. Ellis. The letter talks about local political news and then Dickson requests information from the Indian agent in order to educate six children. The second letter dated in 1827 is from Battle of San Jacinto veteran Benjamin F. Smith of Columbus, Mississippi, to Judge P. Ellis in which Smith asks Ellis to have him reappointed as Indian agent.


Arrangement is chronological.


Restrictions on Access


Terms Governing Use

Open for research by appointment.

Publication Rights

Copyright has not been assigned to the San Jacinto Museum of History. All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the Library Director. Permission for publication is given on behalf of the San Jacinto Museum of History as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained by the researcher.

Index Terms

Dickson, David
Ellis, Powhatan, 1790-1863
Smith, Benjamin Fort, 1799-1841
United States. Office of Indian Affairs. Choctaw Agency
United States--Politics and government--1815-1861

Administrative Information


[Identification of Item], Powhatan Ellis Papers, MC176, San Jacinto Museum of History, Houston, Texas.


Frank Glenn, August 1940.

Processing Information

Processed by Lisa M. Lomas, 2012.


"Ellis, Powhatan, (1790-1863)," Biographical Directory of the United States Congress.


box folder
168.1 1 David Dickson to Powhatan Ellis 1823 January 12

box folder
168.1 2 Benjamin F. Smith to Judge P. Ellis 1827 October 31