A Guide to the Nicholas A. Davis Papers, 1835-1893
Born to legislator Nathaniel Davis in Limestone County, Alabama, Nicholas A. Davis (1824-1894) was ordained in the Cumberland Presbyterian Church. In 1852, he married Nancy Worthington in White Plains, and the couple had two daughters before moving to Bastrop, Texas, in 1857. The next year, Nancy bore a son, but both she and the child died before the start of the Civil War. In 1861, Davis became a chaplain of the 4th Texas Infantry Regiment in Hood's Brigade of the Confederate Army. While serving in Virginia, he established the Texas Hospital to care for wounded soldiers and praised Hood’s Brigade in his book Campaign from Texas to Maryland, with the Battle of Fredericksburg (1863). Upon returning to Texas in 1865, he married the widow Eliza Elizabeth Coley Radford, with whom he had four children. While continuing to preach, Davis also founded a commercial peach orchard in Jacksonville and served as a trustee of Trinity University for twenty years.
Everett, Donald E. "Davis, Nicholas A."Handbook of Texas Online. Accessed May 17, 2011. http://www.tshaonline.org/handbook/online/articles/fda46.
Comprising photocopies of a diary, financial and legal records, correspondence, and newspaper clippings, the Nicholas A. Davis Papers, 1835-1893, document Davis’ career as a minister, farmer, and chaplain of the 4th Texas Infantry of the Confederate Army during the Civil War. Davis’ diary, 1861-1866, describes his activities as a Confederate chaplain, identifies the names and injuries of soldiers, lists his financial accounts, and contains the text of sermons and funeral orations. Bills, account statements, tax receipts, and other financial documents illuminate his farming activities, insurance, and family expenses. Deeds, surveys, grants, agreements, and other legal records chronicle the transfer of land in Texas. Additionally, correspondence discusses Davis’ business and family affairs, while newspaper clippings pertain to farming innovations, events of the Civil War, the Cumberland Presbyterian Church, and his life.
This collection is open for research use.
Nicholas A. Davis Papers, 1835-1893, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.
Basic processing and cataloging of this collection was supported with funds from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC) for the Briscoe Center’s "History Revealed: Bringing Collections to Light" project, 2009-2011.
Detailed Description of the Papers