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Joseph Plauche Papers


(Mss. 944)




Biographical/Historical Note                                        

Scope and Content Note                                             

Series and Subseries Descriptions                                

Index Terms                                                                

Container List                                                              





Size.                                        1.8 linear ft., 77 manuscript volumes


Geographic Locations.           Natchez, Louisiana; Natchitoches Parish


Inclusive Dates.                     1901-1946


Bulk Dates.                            1909-1938


Language.                               English


Summary.                               Business papers and a few personal letters of Joseph Plauche,

                                                African American planter in Natchez of Natchitoches Parish,

                                                Louisiana.  Items pertain principally to farming and farm matters. 

                                                The business papers include bills from merchants, blacksmiths,

                                                doctors, and others; bank statements; contracts; insurance policies;

                                                tax receipts, federal income tax returns, and bills of sale;

                                                checkbooks, time books, daybooks, and ledgers. 


Access.                                   No restrictions


Copyright.                               Physical rights are retained by the LSU Libraries. Copyright of the

                                                original materials is retained by descendents of the creators of the

                                                material in accordance with U.S. copyright law.


Citation.                                  Joseph Plauche Papers, Louisiana and Lower Mississippi

                                                Valley Collections, LSU Libraries, Baton Rouge, Louisiana      


Stack Location.                      O:58





Biographical/Historical Note


Joseph Plauche was an early twentieth century African American planter in Bayou Natchez near Natchez, Louisiana, in Natchitoches Parish.  He rented his farmland from J. Lawrence Prudhomme, and Mrs. A. J. (Estelle) Plauche, who had moved to New York.  The plantation was located about twelve miles from Natchitoches, La on the west bank of Cane River and about one mile southeast of Natchez, La.  Among other activities, Plauche grew cotton and bred horses.  He had at least one daughter, Queen.  Plauche also employed a number of former soldiers, returning from World War I, as field hands.



Scope and Content Note


Plantation account books, financial papers, printed items and graphic materials, and correspondence pertaining to early twentieth-century Louisiana farming.  Manuscript volumes include ledgers, time books, and checkbooks. Financial papers are comprised of bills for merchandise, blacksmithing, and medical expenses; receipts for cattle, lumber, and farm equipment; bank statements, insurance policies, and federal income tax returns.  Correspondence includes letters from banks relating to his accounts and a few personal letters from friends and family.  Printed and graphic materials include advertisements, agricultural pamphlets, and a photograph, probably of Plauche himself.





I.                      Manuscript Volumes, 1903-1944, n.d.


Manuscript volumes include checkbooks with detailed check register (1903-1931), ledgers containing accounts of laborers (1902-1935), record books summarizing assets and expenses (1912-1931), and time books showing working hours and wages of field hands and annotating those who were former soldiers returning from World War I. (1910-1944, n.d.).  Items removed from manuscript volumes are located in Boxes 1,2, and 3.


II.                    Financial papers, 1902-1944, n.d.


Financial papers include bills for merchandise, blacksmithing, and medical expenses, receipts for cattle, lumber, and farm equipment, bank statements, insurance policies, and Federal income tax returns.


III.                   Correspondence, 1909-1946, n.d.


Business correspondence includes letters from banks, merchants, medical personnel, and attorneys, and notes from employees.


Personal correspondence relates primarily to family news of health and visiting and crops.  Also included are love letters to Marcelette Johnson from Plauche.  Of note is a V-mail letter from Plauche’s son-in-law, who was in Italy with the army (1944), a letter from a nephew in North Carolina concerning health and his opinion of the army (1943), and a letter outlining custody of an unidentified Robert William until his eighteenth birthday (1911).


IV.                   Printed Items and Graphic Materials, 1909-1946, n.d.


Printed items include sales circular from a wholesale liquor store and other advertisements (1909), hunting license (1922), war ration stamps booklets (1942), card from Parish Agricultural Administration concerning crop insurance (1946), card explaining why summer legumes should be planted (1946), and a card addressing super phosphate and pasture mowing prices (1946).  One black and white Photograph is also included.







The Roman numerals under each term indicate in which series materials relating to that topic can be found.


African-American farmers—Louisiana


Agricultural workers—Louisiana


Bayou Natchez (La.)


Cotton growing—Louisiana


Louisiana—History—20th Century


Natchez (La.)

            I, II, III

Natchitoches Parish (La.)—History—20th Century


Peoples Bank of Natchitoches

            I, II, III


            I, II, III

Plauche, Estelle (Mrs. A.J.)


Plauche, Joe


Prudhomme, J. Lawrence


Prudhomme, M.E.









Stack Location           Box                 Folders                        Contents______________________


Series I.  Manuscript Volumes


O:58                  1                    N/A                Checkbooks v.1-39 (1903-1931)


            O:58                  1                    1-58                Items removed from manuscript volumes

                                                                                    41-47  (1902-1918)                              


            O:58                  2                    1-92                v.49 Ledger (1918), v.52 Ledger (1919-

1921), v.56 Ledger (1934-1935), Items

 removed from manuscript volumes 48-56

(1916-1935) [Volumes and items removed

from volumes are filed in volume number



            O:58                  3                    1-29                v.58 Record Book (1914-1929), v.60 Time

Book (1910), v.61 Time Book (1920), v.62

Time Book (1920), v.63 Time Book (1923),

v.64 Time Book (1922), v.65 Time Book

(1922-1923), v.66 Time Book (1925-1926),

v.67 Time Book (1926-1941), v.68 Time

Book (1931-1934), v.69 Time Book (1939),

v.70 Time Book (1935-1937), v.71 Time

Book (1940-1941), v.72 Time Book (1942-

1943), v.73 Time Book (1943), v.74 Time

Book (1944), v.75-77 Time Books (n.d.),

Items removed from manuscript volumes

57-77 (1912-1944, n.d.) [Volumes and items removed from volumes are filed in volume number order]


            O:58                                        v.40                Ledger (1902-1909)


            O:58                                        v.41                Ledger (1902-1909)


            O:58                                        v.42                Ledger (1908-1910)


            O:58                                        v.43                Ledger (1910)


            O:58                                        v.44                Ledger (1911-1944)


O:58                                        v.45                Ledger (1913)


            O:58                                        v.46                Ledger (1914)


            O:58                                        v.47                Ledger (1915-1918)


            O:58                                        v.48                Ledger (1916-1917)


            O:58                                        v.50                Ledger (1918-1922)


            O:58                                        v.51                Ledger (1918-1932)


            O:58                                        v.53                Ledger (1922-1927)


O:58                                        v.54                Ledger (1928-1938)


O:58                                        v.55                Ledger (1931-1939)


            O:58                                                                                                                                                    v.57                Ledger (1912)


O:58                                                                                                                                                    v.59                Record Book (1918-1931)




Series II.  Financial Papers


O:58                  4                    1-4                  1904-1912


            O:58                  5                    1-5                  1913-1925


O:58                                                                                                                          6                        1-4                  1926-1943, n.d.


Series III.  Correspondence


O:58                                                                                                                          6                        5                     1912-1945


Series IV.  Printed Items and Graphic Materials


            O:58                  6                    6                     Photograph (1922)


            O:58                  6                    7                     1909-1946, n.d.