Freedmen’s Bureau Records

Queen's University Belfast, Special Collections | M752; M843; M869; M1909; M1910 |
M752 - Records of the Commissioner's Office (Genl. OO Howard) - Extract from Index of Letters Received, 1862 - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

M752 - Records of the Commissioner's Office (Genl. OO Howard) - Extract from Index of Letters Received, 1862 - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

M843 - Records of the Assistant Commissioner for the State of North Carolina - Extract from Records of Letters Sent 04/07/1865 - 13/07/1867 - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

M843 - Records of the Assistant Commissioner for the State of North Carolina - Extract from Records of Letters Sent 04/07/1865 - 13/07/1867 - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

M869 - Records of the Assistant Commissioner for the State of South Carolina. Letter Book. Affairs of Freedmen, Refugees & Abandoned Lands, Cover - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

M869 - Records of the Assistant Commissioner for the State of South Carolina. Letter Book. Affairs of Freedmen, Refugees & Abandoned Lands, Cover - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

M1909 - Records of the Field Offices for the State of North Carolina, 1865 - 1872 - Extract from North Carolina Register of Destitute Freedmen - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

M1909 - Records of the Field Offices for the State of North Carolina, 1865 - 1872 - Extract from North Carolina Register of Destitute Freedmen - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

M1910 - Records of the Field Offices for the State of South Carolina, 1865 - 1872, Extract from Endorsements Sent 02/1867 - 12/1868 - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

M1910 - Records of the Field Offices for the State of South Carolina, 1865 - 1872, Extract from Endorsements Sent 02/1867 - 12/1868 - Image courtesy of National Archives and Records Administration ©

Collection of Records of the Assistant Commissioners for the states of North Carolina (M843) and South Carolina (M869) between 1865 -1872, along with Records for the Field Offices for the States of North Carolina (M1909) and South Carolina (M1910) between 1865-1872 and the Records of the Commissioner’s office including letters sent by General O.O Howard between 1865-1872 (M742). The Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned lands, more commonly known as the Freedmen’s Bureau was set up in the aftermath of the American Civil war to undertake the relief effort after the unprecedented levels of devastation caused by the war. The Freedmen’s Bureau helped former slaves and those who were adversely affected by the war in the Southern States and District of Columbia. General Howard was made Commissioner of the Freedmen’s Bureau after the war.

 

Many of the records of the Assistant Commissioners are summaries and reports, but they also include letters and labour contacts and can provide useful and detailed information on certain individuals. The Field Office reports contain letters and contracts but also the personal experiences of many individuals and contain information on the racially divided society in which the freedmen were attempting to live self-sufficiently. The Records of the Commissioner’s office contain letters sent by general O.O Howard and give insight into the concerns of those in charge of the Bureau.

 

Strengths

This collection contains digitally photographed images of the original record books of the Freedmen’s Bureau. The microfilm reels are in excellent condition. The first reel of each series provides a description of exactly where certain information can be found. This collection provides a valuable insight in to the affairs of the Freedmen’s Bureau, its staff and those freedmen who had been emancipated after the Civil War. A valuable resource to anyone studying the period immediately after the American Civil War.

Physical characteristics

Approx. 270 reels of microfilm

Created

1865
1872

Collected

1865
1872

Coverage

1865
1872
Custodial History

NARA began the process of transferring these records onto Microfilm in the 1970s, the full collection has been available on microfilm since 2006. These microfilms are available for purchase from NARA. The microfilms at Queen’s were deposited with Special Collections & Archives following completion of a research project.

Accrual
Accrual Policy
Closed
Accrual Method
Donation
Accrual Periodicity
Closed
Added by Queen's University Belfast | Last updated on: 21 May 2018