A Guide to the

Blackley Family Papers, 1830-2016

SC 0232

Compiled by: Jake Harris, Summer 2016; Joel Webster, May 2017

 

Descriptive Summary

 

Repository: Special Collections, Carrier Library, James Madison University

Title: Blackley Family Papers, 1830-2016

Collection No.: SC 0232
Creator: Blackley Family

Extent: 28 boxes, 2 flat folders, 13.57 cubic feet

Language: English

Abstract: The Blackley Family Papers, 1830-2016, consists of hundreds of letters that span from 1830 to 2011; diaries; official United States, Confederate, and Texas documents; literary works; newspaper clippings; postcards; ephemera; and photographs. These papers document the related Scott, Bassett, Blackley, Hoge, Matthews, and Nix families of Texas and Staunton, Virginia.

 

Administrative Information

 

Access Restrictions: Portions of the collection marked as restricted are inaccessible to researchers until January 1, 2035. Until the restriction is lifted, the materials will be housed in the collection control file. Additionally, an 8mm roll of film documenting Stuart Hall’s 1954 May Day celebration from Series 4 is housed in freezer storage as it awaits reformatting. Researchers must register and agree to copyright and privacy laws before using this collection. Please contact Research Services staff before visiting the James Madison University Special Collections library to use this collection.

Use Restrictions: The copyright interests in this collection have been transferred to the James Madison University Special Collections Library. For more information, contact the Special Collections Library Reference Desk (library-special@jmu.edu).

Preferred Citation: [identification of item], [box #, folder #], Blackley Family Papers, 1830-2016, SC 0232, Special Collections, Carrier Library, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA.

Acquisition Information: Charles P. Blackley Jr. of Staunton, Virginia donated this material in various accretions throughout 2015 and 2016.
Other Formats Available: Digital images of nineteenth-century correspondence and papers are available upon request.
Processing Information: The collection as a whole required only limited preservation treatment. Some of the correspondence and papers did require Mylar sleeves. The 3D objects are housed together in one box with special housings created to protect them long-term. Most of the nineteenth-century letters required flattening to make them more accessible and to allow for proper digitization as per the donor agreement. Also, many of the diplomas and older photographs were removed from their frames for proper storage. Original order of materials was maintained wherever possible, taking into account provenance, storage needs, and accessibility for researchers.

Bio/Historical Note:

The Blackley Family Papers document the related Scott, Bassett, Blackley, Hoge, and Nix families of mostly Texas and Staunton, Virginia between 1830 and 2016. James Scott (1799-1856) was a Tennessee native and former Mississippi Supreme Court chief justice who married Sarah Lane (1803-1880) and settled in Anderson, Texas. James was a prominent Texas judge who was friends with Davie Crockett. While in Mississippi and Texas, James and Sarah had six children. The eldest, Elizabeth “Lizzie” (1833-1917), was born in Mississippi in 1833, Sarah “Sallie” (1843-1914), born April 9, 1843 in Texas, and one of their brothers, Garrett (1838-1862), born in 1838, contribute the most to this collection of letters.

Lizzie married William H. Neblett (1826-1871), a farmer and attorney, in 1852. He eventually left her to go fight for the Confederacy. Her domestic struggle on the home front during the Civil War is the subject of Erika L. Murr’s book, A Rebel Wife in Texas: The Diary and Letters of Elizabeth Scott Neblett, 1852-1864 (2001).

In 1862, Sallie married Robert Houston “R.H.” Bassett (1836-1870). R.H. went on to enlist and serve in the famed Hood’s Texas Brigade from 1861 to his wounding in 1864. He worked briefly as the adjutant general to Major General John Bell. While leading the regiment, he was wounded at the Battle of Chickamauga by an artillery shell fragment that lodged in his shoulder. This would effectively end his role in the war. Following the conclusion of the conflict and his recovery from the wound, R.H. tried his hand at politics in a bid to represent Grimes County, Texas in Congress. Their first child, Robert, died tragically in 1864 at only eight months old. R.H. died in 1870 because of health complications that appear related to edema.

R.H.’s brother, Noah (1839-1886), also served in the Texas Brigade. The correspondence between R.H., Sallie, and Noah provides a lucid account of the Army of Northern Virginia’s major campaigns and operations, including developments related to the Battles of Antietam, Chancellorsville, Gettysburg, and Chickamauga.

Garrett Scott, Sallie Scott’s brother, died in action at the Battle of Antietam September 17, 1862 while serving in the Texas Brigade. His letters from the early years of the war offer yet another perspective of campaign and camp life.

R.H. and Sallie’s daughter, Barbara “Belle” Bassett (1865-1958), married William Mason Blackley (1863-1898) in 1884 and lived in Staunton, Virginia before moving to Washington, D.C. Research suggests they only had one child, Belle Blackley (1890-1967), whom never married and lived out her life in Washington, D.C. However, an 1888 letter contained in this collection written by Ida Carter, the Blackley’s “Black Mamy,” is addressed to a Col. Bassett Blackley, in care of W. M. Blackley. Carter begins the letter “Dear Little Bassett.” This letter seems to suggest that the Blackleys did in fact have another child, Bassett Blackley, prior to Belle who may have died in childhood.

The bulk of the twentieth-century material concerns William’s nephew, Charles “Chas” Blackley Sr. (1909-1999), his wife Catherine Matthews Blackley (1914-2010), and their son and daughter-in-law Charles “Chuck” Phillips (b. 1951) and Patricia Fry Blackley (b. 1952).

Charles “Chas” Phillips Blackley Sr. was born in Staunton, Virginia in 1909. His parents died from the Spanish Flu when he was 10. Their deaths required Chas and his sister Mary Gilkeson Blackley to move in with their aunt, Fannie Blackley Cushing in Staunton. These materials cover his travels throughout the Pacific and Asia aboard a “tramp steamer” with boyhood friend, George Earman in 1930, his 1927-1929 military training in the little discussed Citizens Military Training Camps (CMTC), time at the Virginia Military Institute (VMI), his 1934 travels in Europe, World War II military service, and ownership and operation of WSVA, the first radio station in Harrisonburg, Virginia. Chas sold his share in WSVA and moved to Staunton, Virginia where he started the WTON radio station. Beyond his official jobs, Chas spent much of the early 1930s as an amateur playwright and author. Chas and Catherine Matthews were married in 1938.

While traveling Europe via train in 1934, Chas met David Kahn, a young Presbyterian judge of Indian descent. They would become lifelong friends. Mr. Kahn went on to become a governor of an Indian province under British rule and later head the Department of Sanitation for Calcutta. He and his wife visited their children, who had moved to the United States, and Mr. and Mrs. Blackley often until his health would not allow it. Evidence of their lifelong friendship can be found most clearly in this collection’s correspondence and photographs.

Chas’ WWII experience saw him drafted at age 35 and shipped to Camp Crowder, Missouri for training. He would eventually be transferred to Washington, D.C. where he worked as a private in the basement of the Pentagon. According this son, his superiors frequently called him upstairs to request autographed photos of American Broadcasting Company (ABC) celebrities. He was able to oblige them because of WSVA’s status as an ABC affiliate.

Catherine Matthews Blackley was originally from Cambridge, Maryland and came to the Shenandoah Valley to attend the State Teacher’s College at Harrisonburg (now James Madison University). She graduated in 1935 with a degree in home economics. For a short time she taught in Norfolk, Virginia before marrying Chas Blackley in 1938 and buying a home on Port Republic Road in Harrisonburg. After Chas was drafted and shipped to Camp Crowder, Mrs. Blackley traveled to Neosho, Missouri to be with her husband. While in Missouri, she volunteered with the Red Cross to help care for wounded soldiers. She continued this service after Mr. Blackley was transferred to Washington, D.C. After the war, they returned to the Valley and Catherine became a member of the Staunton School Board and was very active in volunteer work.

Charles “Chuck” Phillips Blackley Jr. was a professional engineer and graduate of Virginia Tech. He provided services in Virginia, West Virginia, and Maryland. Chuck married Patricia Fry in 1971. At the time he sold his office it was the largest engineering company in the region outside of Richmond, Roanoke, and Northern Virginia.

Patricia Fry Blackley graduated from James Madison University in 1987 and became a licensed real estate appraiser. After Chuck stepped away from his engineering office he teamed up with his wife and the couple became full-time photographers and writers. Their work can be found in hundreds of magazines, books, and calendars.

Scope and Content:

The Blackley Family Papers, 1830-2016, consists of hundreds of letters that span from 1830 to 2011; diaries; official United States, Confederate, and Texas documents; literary works newspaper clippings; postcards; ephemera; and photographs. These papers document the related Scott, Bassett, Blackley, Hoge, Matthews, and Nix families of Texas and Staunton, Virginia.

Arrangement:
The collection is arranged in five series:

1. Correspondence 1830-2011
2. Personal Papers 1857-2016
3. Ephemera, 1856-2004
4. Photographs, ca.1861-1989
5. Scrapbooks, 1862-1931

Series 1 is arranged chronologically by the individual who penned the letters with some overlap of dates for those individuals that require multiple folders.

Series 2 is arranged chronologically by individual and with items being authored by or specifically connected to the individuals.

Series 3 is arranged chronologically. This series contains many objects that have been removed to oversize to better protect and preserve them. These items are described at the folder level.

Series 4 is arranged chronologically by individual or groups of photos as they were found. They are described at the folder level.

Series 5 is arranged chronologically.

Bibliography:
Murr, Erika, L., ed., A Rebel Wife in Texas: The Diary and Letters of Elizabeth Scott Neblett, 1852-1864. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2001.

Related Material: Charles C. Phillips Civil War Papers. MS 0327. Virginia Military Institute Archives.

Erika L. Murr, ed., A Rebel Wife in Texas: The Diary and Letters of Elizabeth Scott Neblett, 1852-1864. Baton Rouge: Louisiana State University Press, 2001.

Lizzie Scott Neblett Papers, 1848-1935, Dolph Briscoe Center for American History, The University of Texas at Austin.

Yourself and family are invited to attend the feast of Mondamin corn festival. n.p.: Staunton, Va.: J. Harry Drechsler, pr., [1890], 1890. JAMES MADISON UNIV's Catalog, EBSCOhost (accessed May 2, 2017).

Separated Material: All published monographs have been cataloged individually and placed in Special Collections’ rare book collection. A Cine-Kodak Kodachrome Safety Color Film 8mm roll containing Stuart Hall May Day, 1954 photographs has been placed in freezer storage and is currently inaccessible while it awaits reformatting. Catherine Matthews Blackley’s Schooma’am yearbooks were removed and housed with the yearbook collection. They are retained due to heavy annotations.

Contents:

Series 1: Correspondence, 1830-2011

Series 1: Correspondence, 1830-2011, is comprised of more than 300 individual letters with the majority of the earlier ones involve Sarah “Sallie” Scott Bassett and/or her husband R.H. Bassett. Together their combined correspondence comprise eight folders and spans the years 1850-1913.

These letters cover the years of the American Civil War and shed light on how the conflict affected their lives. In addition to letters from Captain R.H. Bassett, there are dozens of notes written home to Sallie from her brother Garrett Scott, brother-in-law Noah Bassett, and her cousin John Nix. All of these men spent time serving in the 4th Texas Regiment of the famed Texas Brigade. While their letters contain minimal military focused discussions, they do highlight camp life, personal struggles of being separated from each other, personal and public incidents, and family news. The military discussion is really limited to mention of the dead and wounded from battles and engagements. However, R.H. does write a letter to Sallie as he arrives on the battlefield at Gettysburg. He expresses excitement to build off the Confederates successes that afternoon. Battles and engagements discussed include Antietam (September 17, 1862), Chancellorsville (April 30 to May 6, 1863), Gettysburg (July 1-3, 1863), and Chickamauga (September 18–20, 1863).

Lizzie Scott Neblett was the older sister of Sallie Bassett and many letters between the sisters not previously examined, both before and after the American Civil War, can be found within this collection. Their letters shed light on relationship struggles, farm life, local news, and family connections.

While few in number, the surviving letters of Lizzie and Sallie’s father, James Scott, provide significant insight into Texas prior to its in 1846. In the first, James writes his wife, Sarah, from the convention in Austin, Texas, where the debates about joining the United States were taking place. He offers few specifics as “Nothing in which you would take any interest has occurred here and therefore I will not say anything about the proceedings…” In second of these letters, James is writing to a Colonel B. Rush Wallace and gets far more political in discussion and tone. He talks at length about concern over the merits of becoming Whig or Democrat once they are thrust into the existing political climate of their new nation.

Of particular interest is an 1888 letter written by Ida Carter, presumably William M. and Belle Bassett Blackley’s “Black Mamy,” is addressed to a Col. Bassett Blackley, in care of W. M. Blackley. Carter begins the letter “Dear Little Bassett.” This letter seems to suggest that the Blackleys did in fact have another child, Bassett Blackley, prior to Belle. If that is the case, Bassett Blackley may have died in childhood.

Of the twentieth-century correspondence, most of it was sent or received by Chas Blackley. While his letters span most of the century, the bulk are centered between the years 1930-1944. The letters that Chas Blackley wrote while visiting Europe in 1934 are of particular interest due to the changing political climate with the rise of the Nazis in Germany. Through his correspondence, diaries, and photographs there is an opportunity to see an American view of this transformative time. In one letter to his sister, Mary, dated August 21, Chas Blackley writes of the hanging of Nazis in Vienna, Austria for a failed coup that took place mere weeks before his arrival and that it “has retarded history making considerably.” He also spoke of the Heimwehr, the home guard, patrolling the streets with their rifles and “keeping a sharp to windward.”

Folder Title
Box:Folder
Grandfather Lane, 1830
1:1
James Scott, 1845-1856
1:2
Sallie Scott, 1851-1858
1:3
Event Invitations, 1856-1888, undated (folder 1 of 2)
1:4
Event Invitations, 1856-1888, undated (folder 2 of 2)
1:5
Hawthorn, 1857-1858, 1862
1:6
Alice Scott, 1857, 1861, undated
1:7
Amanda B. White, 1858
1:8
R.H. Bassett, 1858-1862
1:9
Sallie Scott, 1858-1860
1:10
Garret Scott, 1859-1862
1:11
John L. Nix, 1861-1863
1:12
Sallie Scott, 1861-1865
1:13
Wedding Invitations, 1861-1894, 1938, 1971, undated (folder 1 of 3)
1:14
Wedding Invitations, 1861-1894, 1938, 1971, undated (folder 2 of 3)
1:15
Wedding Invitations, 1861-1894, 1938, 1971, undated (folder 3 of 3)
1:16
John H. Fanthorpe, 1862
1:17
J. Roishin, 1862
1:18
JNO Lovejoy, 1900-1904
2:1
JN Scott, 1903-1908
2:2
Lizzie Neblett, 1903-1915
2:3
JNO Lovejoy, 1904-1909
2:4
Marion Fry, 1907-1922
2:5
Nora Boylor Fry, 1907-1921
2:6
E.F. Phillips, 1908
2:7
Legal Correspondence to JNO Lovejoy, 1908
2:8
Mrs. L.M. Sherrard, 1908-1909
2:9
Sallie Scott, 1910-1913, undated
2:10
Bettie "Lizzie" Neblett, 1912
2:11
Lonnie Bassett, 1913-1914
2:12
Chas Blackley, 1919
2:13
Chas Blackley, 1922
2:14
Chas Blackley, 1923
2:15
Chas Blackley, 1924
2:16
Chas Blackley, 1925
2:17
Annie Funkhauser, 1925
2:18
Mrs. Richard Ker, 1925
2:19
Chas Blackley, 1926
2:20
R.H. Bassett, 1858-1862
3:1
Noah Bassett, 1862-1864
3:2
Empty Envelopes, 1862-1969, undated
3:3
R.H. Bassett, 1863
3:4
G.M. Patrick, 1863
3:5
R.H. Bassett, 1863-1864, 1867, 1870
3:6
Correspondence concerning death of son Robert Bassett, 1864
3:7
J.E. Carver, 1864
3:8
John Q. Yarborough, 1868, undated
3:9
J.L. McCormick, 1869
3:10
G. Robinson, 1870
3:11
Margaret Hoge Blackley, 1871
3:12
R.I. Teel, 1873
3:13
Belle Bassett Blackley, 1877-1912, 1957, undated
3:14
R.P. Halliburton, 1878
3:15
Mary Marie Young and Nellie Thatcher, 1879
3:16
Bettie A. Halliburton, 1880, 1888
3:17
John Halliburton, 1883
3:18
Wedding Regrets for Belle and Wm Blackley, 1884
3:19
Miss Florence Satterwhite, 1884
3:20
Grandpa, 1885
3:21
J.L. Gray, 1886
3:22
Ida Carter ("Black Mamy"), 1888
3:23
James H. Blackley, 1888, 1895-1898, undated
3:24
Carrol, 1891
3:25
Miscellaneous Correspondence, 1891-1937, undated
3:26
Grandmother Bassett, 1892
3:27
Jesse L. Henry, 1893
3:28
G.L. Scott, 1894
3:29
William M. Blackley, 1895
3:30
Wm. Alsobrook, 1900
3:31
Jesse, 1900
3:32
W. Neblett, 1900
3:33
Mrs. Richard Ker, 1928
4:1
Chas Blackley, 1927
4:2
Chas Blackley, 1928
4:3
Mrs. Richard Ker, 1928
4:4
Chas Blackley, 1929
4:5
Chas Blackley, 1930 (folder 1 of 3)
4:6
Chas Blackley, 1930 (folder 2 of 3)
4:7
Chas Blackley, 1930 (folder 3 of 3)
4:8
Chas Blackley, 1931
4:9
Manuscript rejection letters, Chas Blackley, 1931-1933
4:10
Chas Blackley, 1932
4:11
Mary Blackley, 1932
4:12
Catherine Blackley, 1932
4:13
Chas Blackley, 1933
4:14
Mary Blackley, 1933
4:15
Chas Blackley, 1934 (folder 1 of 3)
4:16
Chas Blackley, 1934 (folder 2 of 3)
4:17
Chas Blackley, 1934 (folder 3 of 3)
4:18
Chas Blackley, 1935
5:1
Catherine Matthews, 1935
5:2
Legal Correspondence related to WSVA with Attorney Lavenstein, 1935-1937
5:3
WSVA, 1935-1938, undated
5:4
Chas Blackley, 1936
5:5
Correspondence related to WSVA with Attorney Lavenstein, 1936
5:6
Kidnapping Correspondence, 1936-1937, 1970, undated [RESTRICTED]
5:7
Chas Blackley, 1937 (folder 1 of 2)
5:8
Chas Blackley, 1937 (folder 2 of 2)
5:9
Chas Blackley, 1938 (folder 1 of 4)
5:10
Chas Blackley, 1938 (folder 2 of 4)
5:11
Chas Blackley, 1938 (folder 3 of 4)
5:12
Chas Blackley, 1938 (folder 4 of 4)
5:13
Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1938
6:1
Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1939
6:2
Chas Blackley, 1939
6:3
Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1940
6:4
Chas Blackley, 1940
6:5
Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1942
6:6
Chas Blackley, 1942
6:7
Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1943
6:8
Chas Blackley, 1943
6:9
Chas Blackley, 1944 (folder 1 of 2)
6:10
Chas Blackley, 1944 (folder 1 of 2)
6:11
Chas Blackley, 1946
6:12
Chas Blackley, 1947
6:13
Congratulatory Letters Regarding the Births of Children, 1947, 1951, undated
6:14
Chas Blackley, 1948
6:15
Chas Blackley, 1949
6:16
Chas Blackley, 1950
6:17
Chas Blackley, 1951
6:18
Chuck Blackley, 1951
6:19
Chas Blackley, 1952
6:20
Chas Blackley, 1953
6:21
Chas Blackley, 1956
6:22
Chas Blackley, 1957
6:23
Chas Blackley, 1958
6:24
Chuck Blackley, 1958
7:1
Mary Taylor, 1958
7:2
Chas Blackley, 1960
7:3
Thank you Letter from White House and President Eisenhower, 1958
7:4
Chas Blackley, 1961
7:5
Chas Blackley, 1963
7:6
Chuck Blackley, 1963
7:7
Chas Blackley, 1964
7:8
Chuck Blackley, 1964
7:9
Chuck Blackley, 1965
7:10
Chas Blackley, 1966
7:11
Mary Taylor, 1966
7:12
Chas Blackley, 1967
7:13
Mary Taylor, 1967
7:14
Chas Blackley, 1968
7:15
Mary Taylor, 1968
7:16
Chas Blackley, 1970
7:17
Chas Blackley, 1971
7:18
Chuck Blackley, 1971
7:19
Patricia Blackley, 1971
7:20
Chas Blackley, 1973
7:21
Chuck Blackley, 1973
7:22
Chas Blackley, 1974
7:23
Chas Blackley, 1975
7:24
Chuck Blackley, 1977
7:25
Chas Blackley, 1978
7:26
Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1979
7:27
Chuck Blackley, 1980
7:28
Chuck Blackley, 1982
7:29
Chuck Blackley, 1983
7:30
Chuck Blackley, 1984
7:31
Chuck Blackley, 1986
7:32
Chuck Blackley, 1987
7:33
Chas Blackley, 1988
7:34
Chuck Blackley, 1988
7:35
Patricia Blackley, 1988
7:36
Chuck Blackley, 1990
7:37
Chuck Blackley, 1991
7:38
Chuck Blackley, 1992
7:39
Chuck Blackley, 1993
7:40
Chuck Blackley, 1995
7:41
Chuck Blackley, 2006
7:42
Chuck Blackley, 2010
7:43
Chuck Blackley, 2011
7:44
Catherine Matthews Blackley, undated
7:45
Chas Blackley, undated
7:46
Chuck Blackley, undated
7:47


Series 2: Personal Papers, 1857-2015

Series 2: Personal Papers, 1857-2015, is comprised of personal papers, diaries, and other documents that highlight the careers and interests of the family members. R.H. Bassett’s papers include Confederate government and military documents pertaining to promotions, recruitment, and resignation.

Another unique piece of this collection from the early period is the Belle Bassett Diary, 1873-1879, which offers a glimpse of the post-war years for a child growing up in the South.

Chas Blackley, in addition to his letters from the trip to Europe, also kept a diary of his experiences. This diary covers the personal and public incidents of his travels.

More information about individual members of family is available here in the form of detailed histories of specific family lines (Blackley, Bassett, Hoge, etc.), through family trees, and biographical information.

Other items of note from Chas Blackley are the many manuscripts of novels and plays that he wrote in the early-to-mid 1930s.

Folder Title
Box:Folder
Sallie Scott Poetry, 1855-1858, undated
8:1
Sarah Scott, 1857, 1929, undated
8:2
C. C. Phillips, 1859
8:3
R. H. Bassett, 1861-1870
8:4
Marriage Licenses, 1862, 1884, 1938
8:5
Miscellaneous Family Papers, 1865-2009, undated
8:6
Obituaries, 1868-2010, undated
8:7
Sallie S. Bassett, 1870-1916
8:8
Belle Bassett Diary, 1873-1879
8:9
Belle Bassett Autograph Books, 1881-1882
8:10
Belle B. Blackley, 1882, undated
8:11
Wesleyan Female Institute, 1882-1886
8:12
Corn Festival Pamphlet, ca. 1890
8:13
Military Discharge, 1898
8:14
E.J. Cushing, 1900
8:15
Geo. W. Blackley, 1911
8:16
Birth Certificates, 1913, 1931, 1951, 1964
8:17
Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1914
8:18
James H. Blackley, 1919
8:19
Wills, 1919, 1927, 1949, 1956
8:20
Chas Blackley, 1922
9:1
Mary Blackley, 1922
9:2
Chas Blackley, 1924
9:3
Chas Blackley, 1926
9:4
James H. Blackley, 1926
9:5
Catherine Matthews School Related Materials, 1927-1944, undated
9:6
Chas Blackley, 1927
9:7
James H. Blackley, 1927
9:8
Chas Blackley Diary, 1928
9:9
Chas Blackley, 1929
9:10
Chas Blackley Diary, 1929
9:11
Smoke Screen, Fort Eustis, Virginia, 1929
9:12
Chas Blackley, 1930
9:13
Chas Blackley Journal, 1930
9:14
Chas Blackley, 1931
9:15
The Commonwealth Club, 1931-1938
9:16
Estate of George W. Blackley, 1931-1937
9:17
Chas Blackley, 1932
9:18
Chas Blackley Diary, 1932
9:19
Edited "Between Two Fires" Script, Chas Blackley, 1932
9:20
Edited "Echo" Manuscript, Chas Blackley, 1932
10:1
Mrs. E.J. Cushing, 1932
10:2
Samuel Travers Phillips, 1932
10:3
Chas Blackley, 1933
10:4
Chas Blackley Diary, 1933
10:5
Edited "Full Cargo" Manuscript, Chas Blackley, 1933
10:6
Edited "Yellow Cargo" Manuscript, Chas Blackley, 1933
10:7
"Full Cargo" Manuscript Draft, Chas Blackley, ca. 1933
10:8
"The High Road" Manuscript Draft, Chas Blackley, 1933
10:9
"Yellow Cargo" Manuscript Draft, Chas Blackley, 1933
10:10
Chas Blackley, 1934
10:11
Chas Blackley Diary, 1934
10:12
Edited Incomplete Manuscript, Chas Blackley, 1934
10:13
Novel Outlines, Chas Blackley, 1934
10:14
Passports, 1934, 1968-1969, 1975, 2000, 2013
10:15
The Staunton Players, 1934-1935
10:16
Catherine Matthews, 1935
10:17
Chas Blackley, 1935
10:18
Mary Blackley, 1935
10:19
WSVA Shares, Chas Blackley, 1935-1938
10:20
Catherine Matthews, 1936
10:21
Chas Blackley, 1936
10:22
Chas Blackley, 1937
10:23
Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1938
10:24
Chas Blackley, 1938
10:25
Household Inventory, Chas Blackley, 1938-1944
11:1
Ration Books, 1940-1946
11:2
Catherine Blackley, 1942
11:3
Chas Blackley, 1942
11:4
Catherine Blackley, 1943
11:5
Chas Blackley, 1943
11:6
Catherine Blackley, 1944
11:7
Chas Blackley, 1944
11:8
Catherine Blackley, 1945
11:9
Chas Blackley, 1945
11:10
Chas Blackley, 1946
11:11
Chas Blackley, 1947
11:12
Catherine Blackley, 1948
11:13
Chas Blackley, 1948
11:14
Chas Blackley, 1949
11:15
Chas Blackley, 1950
11:16
Chas Blackley, 1951
11:17
Chas Blackley, 1952
11:18
Chas Blackley, 1953
11:19
May Day Pamphlets from Stuart Hall, Susan Blackley, 1954
11:20
Transcription of Signalman Charles Coatesworth Phillips' 1864 diary and message book, 1955
11:21
Chas Blackley, 1956
11:22
Catherine Blackley, 1957
11:23
Chas Blackley, 1957
11:24
Glamour Manor - Beverly Hills, 1956, 1957-1961
11:25
Belle Blackley Trust (folder 1 of 3), 1958-1968
11:26
Belle Blackley Trust (folder 2 of 3), 1958-1968
12:1
Belle Blackley Trust (folder 3 of 3), 1958-1968
12:2
Chas Blackley, 1961
12:3
Associated Press Bulletin concerning JFK Assassination, 1963
12:4
Chuck Blackley, 1964
12:5
Shenandoah Discount Inc. Bankruptcy, 1964
12:6
Susan Blackley, 1966
12:7
Chuck Blackley, 1969
12:8
Chuck Blackley, 1970
12:9
Chas Blackley, 1971
12:10
Chuck Blackley, 1971
12:11
Pat Blackley, 1971
12:12
Chuck Blackley, 1972
12:13
Chuck Blackley, 1973
12:14
Death Certificates, 1974, 1999, 2010
12:15
A Salute to Senator Harry T. Byrd Jr., 1975
12:16
Chas Blackley, 1976
12:17
Chuck Blackley, 1980
12:18
Chuck Blackley, 1981
12:19
Chuck Blackley, 1982
12:20
Chuck Blackley, 1983
12:21
"I Remember It Well" Drafts, Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1983
12:22
Chuck Blackley, 1984
12:23
Pat Blackley, ca.1984
12:24
Pat Blackley, 1985
12:25
Chuck Blackley, 1986
12:26
Pat Blackley, 1986
12:27
Chuck Blackley, 1987
12:28
Chas Blackley, 1989
12:29
Chuck Blackley, 1989
12:30
Chas Blackley, 1990
12:31
Examples of projects undertaken under Charles P. Blackley Jr. PE, ca. 1990s
12:32
Chuck Blackley, 1992
12:33
Chas Blackley, 1993
12:34
Chuck Blackley, 1993
12:35
Chuck Blackley, 1994
12:36
Chuck Blackley, 1998
12:37
Chuck Blackley, 1999
12:38
Chuck Blackley, 2000
12:39
Catherine Blackley, 2010
12:40
Chuck Blackley, 2010
12:4
Chuck Blackley, 2015
12:42
Blackley Family Bios, 2016, undated
12:43
"Between Two Fires" Script, Chas Blackley, undated
13:1
Catherine Blackley, undated
13:2
Chas Blackley, undated
13:3
Chuck Blackley, undated
13:4
Drafts of Multiple Incomplete Manuscripts, Chas Blackley, undated
13:5
Duplicate of Blackley Family Bible, undated
13:6
John McNair and Associates, undated
13:7
Radio Broadcasting Scripts, undated
13:8
Notes of story of blind boy, Chas Blackley, undated
13:9
"The story about the war" by Catherine Blackley, undated
13:10


Series 3: Ephemera, 1856-2004

Series 3: Ephemera, 1856-2004, houses many unique items such as hundreds of stamps (U.S., Confederate, and international), brochures, certificates, awards, diplomas, and pamphlets from events such as the 1932 Los Angeles Olympics and the 1933 World’s Fair in Chicago, and dance cards. The aforementioned diplomas and certificates document the Blackley family’s achievements and graduations from various schools and universities, including the University of Virginia, the State Teacher’s College at Harrisonburg, and Virginia Tech. Many of the manuals and booklets used in Chas’ various military training can be found in this series.

There are also newspaper clippings that share stories directly related to family members or address significant events of the time. These include awards won by the family, news about new jobs or graduations, historic events like D-Day, and John F. Kennedy’s assassination.

One of the more locally relevant pieces is a pamphlet entitled “Dedication of the Shenandoah National Park” (1936). It lists the planned dedication speech from President Franklin D. Roosevelt given at Big Meadows as the key event.

This series also includes one oversize box of 3D ephemeral objects. Objects of interest include a Kodak No. 2 Folding Autographic Brownie camera (1917-1926) owned by Chas Blackley and inscribed with the names of Blackley and the SS Gertrude Kellogg, Dr. Charles Coatesworth Phillips' small leather medicine case with glass bottles that he took on house calls, several pairs of glasses, a glass plate photograph of Susie E. Phillips, and assorted World’s Fair ephemera.

Stored separately are multiple flags that are likely from Chas’ 1930 voyage in the Pacific. There is a large and small Japanese flag, a small Chinese [pre-communist revolution] flag, and a small Philippine national flag. An additional flag dates to WWI and features the United States flag surrounded by smaller flags of all our allies from that conflict.

Folder Title
Box:Folder
Blackley Family Newspaper Clippings, 1856-2012, bulk 1932-1938
13:11
Dance Cards, 1860, 1882, undated
13:12
Confederate States of America stamps, 1861-1865
13:13
Phillips Family diploma, VMI class poster, New Market cadet poster, 1861-1907, undated
Map Case 1:3, Folder 1
Phillips Family certificates and diplomas (folder 1 of 2), 1866-1867
14:1
Phillips Family certificates and diplomas (folder 2 of 2), 1866-1867
OV1:1
Currency, Bonds, and Certificates, 1861-1948, bulk 1861-1865
14:2
Set of Flower Picture Cards, 1870
14:3
George Washington Stamps, ca. 1880-1900
14:4
Assorted keychains and trinkets, 1881, undated
14:5
Benjamin Franklin Stamps, 1881-1889
14:6
United States Stamped Envelopes, 1801-1901
14:7
Assorted 3D objects, 1884-1982, undated
OV2
Assorted Booklets (folder 1 of 2), 1886-1984
14:8
Assorted Booklets (folder 2 of 2), 1886-1984
14:9
Parker County, Texas Immigrants Guide, ca. 1889
14:10
Ulysses S. Grant Stamps, ca. 1890
14:11
International Stamps, 1894-1974
14:12
Labor Day Ribbon, 1897
14:13
United States Commemorative Stamps, ca. 1900
14:14
Life Magazines, 1903
14:15
Miscellaneous Newspaper Clippings, 1907-1967
14:16
Assorted medals and awards, 1910, 1954, undated
15:1
The first capital of Texas, Newspaper Clippings, ca. 1913
15:2
Surety Coupon Collection Book, Mrs. E.J. Cushing, 1915
15:3
Assorted flags, ca. 1918, 1930, undated
Map Case 1:3, Folder 2
Army and Training Regulations, 1922-1930
15:4
Cigar Band Collection, Chas Blackley, 1922
15:5
Assorted Maps, 1925-1982
15:6
Catherine Matthews Blackley certificate and diplomas, 1927-1935
OV1:2
Chas Blackley certificates and diploma, 1927-1947
OV1:3
Military Manuals, Chas Blackley, 1928, 1941-1943
15:7
Box of matches from Darlen, Manchuria or Keelung, Formosa, 1930
16:1
Charles Blackley military hats, 1930, undated
16:2
Custom Christmas Cards, Chas Blackley, 1931, 1937, Undated
16:3
Assorted Event Tickets, 1931-1935
16:4
Airline Luggage Tags, 1932, undated
16:5
Assorted Brochures (folder 1 of 2), 1932-1992
16:6
Assorted Brochures (folder 2 of 2), 1932-1992
16:7
Assorted U.S. Destination Pamphlets and Cards, ca. 1932
16:8
Christmas Card Puzzle, Chas Blackley, 1932
16:9
Los Angeles Olympics Booklets and Brochures, 1932
16:10
The Press Club Heckler, 1932
17:1
Bert Cooklsey Poetry, Newspaper Clippings, 1933
17:2
World's Fair, Chicago, Brochures and Pamphlets (folder 1 of 2), 1933
17:3
World's Fair, Chicago, Brochures and Pamphlets (folder 2 of 2), 1933
17:4
European Ephemera, 1934
17:5
Pastel caricature, likely Chas Blackley, 1934
OV1:4
Dedication of the Shenandoah National Park Pamphlet, 1936
17:6
WSVA Newspaper Clippings, 1936
17:7
Miscellaneous pins, 1934, 1982-1984, undated
17:8
"Merry Christmas" charcoal drawing, Chas Blackley and Santa Claus, 1937
OV1:5
Military patches, ca. 1940s
17:9
Assorted military pins, 1943, undated
17:10
Chas Blackley Certificates, 1944, 1955
17:11
Major of St. Lo, Newspaper Clippings, 1944
17:12
Pass for Camp Crowder, MO, Catherine Blackley, 1944
17:13
Pocket Service Prayer Book and Military Missal, 1944
17:14
Stamp Collection, 1944-1988
17:15
Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Board Sales Permit No. 2, Civilian Registrants, 1944, 1946
17:16
Army Service Forces: Annual Report, 1945
18:1
War Department Signal Center Printouts, 1945
18:2
Campaign Buttons, 1950, 1976, undated
18:3
Life Magazine, April 16, 1951
OV1:6
Pencil drawing, Blackley Family residence at 317 E. Beverley St. Staunton, 1959
OV1:7
Civil War related color posters, 1963, undated
OV1:8
Chuck Blackley Certificates (folder 1 of 2), 1963-1998
18:4
Chuck Blackley Certificates (folder 2 of 2), 1963-1998
OV1:9
Assorted Engineering Calculators used prior to Computers, ca. 1965
18:5
Rotary International, Mexico City, 1968
18:6
Assorted Tokens and Coins, 1969, undated
18:7
Program, Robert E. Lee High School Graduation Exercises, 1969
18:8
Pocket Circular Slide Rule, Chuck Blackley, ca. 1970
18:9
Reprint of “Shenandoah, I Long to Hear You” article from April 1970 National Geographic Magazine, ca. 1970
18:10
Patricia Fry Blackley Diplomas, Elizabeth Brant School of Business, Blue Ridge Community College, 1971, 1986
18:11
Chuck Blackley Diploma, Virginia Tech, 1973
18:12
Marble Valley Pumped Storage Project, ca. 1975
18:13
Assorted Membership and Identification Cards, 1976-1997
18:14
Patricia Blackley Certificates, 1986, 1988
19:1
International Star Registry certificates and maps, 1990
OV1:10
Star Registry Documents and Maps, 1990
19:2
Rotary Foundation Award, Chas Blackley, 1993
19:3
Contents of Chas Blackley's Wallet, ca. 1999
19:4
White House Press Pass for Submarine Texas Christening, 2004
19:5
Assorted Business Cards, undated
19:6
Assorted Postcards, undated
19:7
Assorted United States Stamps, undated
19:8
Booklet of “The Eight Grand National Pictures in the Rotunda of the U.S. Capitol at Washington,” undated
19:9
Booklet of Washingtion Architecture, undated
19:10
Catherine Matthews Blackley sketch of monogrammed dinnerware, undated
OV1:11
Charles Blackley Custom Bookplates and Stamp, undated
19:11
Chesterfield Cigarettes Tin, undated
19:12
Coasters, undated
19:13
Cunard Line Labels and Tags, undated
19:14
Dallas Opera House “The Humming Bird” Play Advertisement, undated
19:15
Mary Blackley Silhouette, undated
20:1
Military Pins and Dog tags, undated
20:2
Miscellaneous Ephemera, undated
20:3
Rapid City, South Dakota Advertisements, undated
20:4
Sketches of People by [Catherine?] Matthews, undated
20:5
Small Fan, undated
20:6
“Story of Appomattox” Newspaper Clipping, undated
20:7
Toy Town Post Office, undated
20:8
United States Numerical Stamps, undated
21:1
Valentine Writer Booklets, undated
21:2
West Virginia "Coal Country" 3D Cast, undated
21:3
WTON Sugar Bowl Advertisement, undated
OV1:12

 

Series 4: Photographs, ca.1861-1989

Series 4: Photographs, ca. 1861-1989, includes a large number of pictures from both of Chas Blackley’s trips to Asia and the Pacific in 1930 and his journey through Europe in 1934.

There are also a number of rare pictures of the Civilian Military Training Camp (CMTC) experience at Ft. Eustis, Virginia, from 1928, and to our knowledge might be the only ones publicly available.

As Catherine Matthews Blackley was a graduate of the State Teacher’s College at Harrisonburg (now JMU), there many pictures from her time on campus during the early 1930s in this collection.

Another rare item housed here is an ambrotype of an unidentified woman which is located in Miscellaneous, 1884-1993 (folder 3 of 4). The subject’s identity is unknown, but the style of production dates the piece to around 1858. Given that date and the apparent age of the woman, it is plausible that the subject is Sarah Lane Scott, Sallie Scott Bassett’s mother.

Folder Title
Box:Folder
R.H. Bassett, ca. 1861-1870
21:4
Great Grandfather and Grandmother Gilkeson, ca. 1862
21:5
Photo Album owned by Rev. Richard H. Phillips while in Civil War prison in Ohio, 1865
21:6
Belle Bassett Blackley, 1883, 1891, undated
21:7
Miscellaneous (folder 1 of 4), 1884-1993
21:8
Miscellaneous (folder 2 of 4), 1884-1993
21:9
Miscellaneous (folder 3 of 4), 1884-1993
22:
Miscellaneous (folder 4 of 4), 1884-1993
22:2
Assorted George W. Blackley, 1886, ca. 1890, undated
22:3
Assorted C.T. Phillips, ca. 1908, undated
22:4
Assorted Chas Blackley, 1910-1993, undated
22:5
Pictures sent to Mrs. M.E. Phillips, ca. 1914
22:6
Chas Hoge Portrait, 1919
OV1:13
Catherine Matthews Family, 1927, undated
22:7
Civilian Military Training Camp, Ft. Eustis, VA, 1928
22:8
Chas Blackley, Regimental Color Bearer, Church in the grove (1928); Staunton-Augusta County Agricultural Fair (September 1956), 1928, September 1956
OV1:14
Catherine Matthews, ca. 1930s
22:9
Commonwealth Club, Staunton, VA, ca. 1930s
22:10
Dixie Theater Fire, Staunton, VA, ca. 1930s
22:11
Manila and Manchuria, 1930
22:12
Negatives of SS Gertrude Kellogg, Panama Canal, China, Japan, Phillipine Islands, 1930
22:13
Car Crash, 1931
22:14
Catherine Matthews Blackley class photographs, 1931, 1938, undated
OV1:15
Catalinia Island, ca. 1932
22:15
Chas Blackley, Olympic Stadium, Los Angeles, Calif., 1932
22:16
Cheyenne, Wyo., ca. 1932
22:17
Cleveland, O., ca. 1932
22:18
Denver, Col., 1932
22:19
Detroit, MI, ca. 1932
23:1
Los Angeles, 1932
23:2
Niagra Falls, ca. 1932
23:3
Omaha, Neb., ca. 1932
23:4
Postcards with pictures of Woodrow Wilson and Staunton, VA, ca. 1932
23:5
Salt Lake City, 1932
23:6
San Francisco, Calif., ca. 1932
23:7
Yellowstone, ca. 1932
23:8
Yosemite, ca. 1932
23:9
Bert, 1933
23:10
Chicago, Ill., ca. 1933
23:11
Assorted European Cities, ca. 1934
23:12
Assorted European Cities Negatives, ca. 1934
23:13
Berlin and Brussels, 1934
23:14
Catherine Matthews, 1934-1938
23:15
Florence, Venice, Vienna, Munich, Oberammagon, Nuremberg, 1934
23:16
London, Liverpool, Oxford, R.M.S. Laconia, ca. 1934
23:17
Lucerne and Paris, ca. 1934
23:18
Passport Photgraphs, Chas Blackley, 1934
23:19
R.M.S. Laconia, ca. 1934
23:20
Rome, Fontainebleau, Lucerne, ca. 1934
23:21
Rome, Paris, Battlefields, 1934
23:22
Staunton Airport, 1934
23:23
Assorted Catherine Matthews Blackley, 1935-1968, undated
24:1
WSVA Antenna Tower, 1935
24:2
Assorted Chas and Catherine Blackley, 1937, 1982, undated
24:3
Chas Blackley Car Crash, 1937
24:4
A. David Khan, 1938, 1989, undated
24:5
Chas and Catherine Blackley Wedding, 1938
24:6
Assorted Mary Blackley Taylor, 1939, 1964, undated
24:7
Blackley Family Homes, 1944, 1958, undated
24:8
Camp Crowder, MO and Washington, D.C. during WWII, 1944, undated
24:9
Assorted Fannie Blackley Cushing, 1947-1952, undated
24:10
Assorted Susan Blackley, 1947-1992, undated
24:11
Assorted Blackley Family Group Photos, 1948-1993, undated
24:12
Assorted Chuck Blackley, 1951-1984, undated
24:13
Virginia Association of Broadcasters, 1951
24:14
WTON, 1951, 1970
24:15
Stuart Hall, May Day, 1954
24:16
Stuart Hall May Day, 1954 Cine-Kodak, Kodachrome Safety Color Film for 8mm roll Cameras, 1954
Freezer Storage
Dwight D. Eisenhower, 1960
24:17
Assorted Patricia Fry Blackley, 1963-1987, undated
24:18
Catherine Matthews Blackley High School Reunion, 1971
24:19
Chuck and Pat Blackley Wedding, 1971
24:20
National Association of Broadcasters, 1973
24:21
Chas and Catherine Blackley 40th Anniversary Party, 1978
24:22
Leckie Smokeless Coal Company Aerial Photographs, 1980-1981
25:1
Contact Prints for Patton, Harris, Rust, & Associates, 1986
25:2
Assorted Francis Matthews Stewart, 1987, undated
25:3
Chas and Catherine Blackley 50th Anniversary Party, 1988
25:4
Chas Blackley’s 80th Birthday Party, 1989
25:5
Assorted Albert Lemain Phillips, undated
25:6
Assorted Negatives, undated
25:7
Blackley Feed Store, undated
25:8
Catherine Matthews Negatives, undated
25:9
Chas Blackley Negatives, undated
25:10
Chas and Mary Blackley, undated
25:11
Dr. Chas C. Phillips, undated
25:12
John Matthews, undated
25:13
John Sewell Matthews, undated
25:14
Lillie Bennett Matthews, undated
25:15
Margaret Ester Dodson Matthews, undated
25:16
Mrs. C. C. Phillips, undated
25:17
Rev. Richard H. Phillips, undated
25:18
Robert and Mary Blackley Taylor Wedding, undated
25:19
Sallie Scott, undated
25:20
Slides of the Blackley Family, undated
25:21
Susie Phillips, undated
25:22
WSVA Office, undated
25:23

 

Series 5: Scrapbooks, 1862-1931

Series 5: Scrapbooks, 1862-1931, is comprised of four scrapbooks. In the aftermath of his wounding and the conclusion of the American Civil War, R. H. Bassett found a calling to participate in local and state politics. The majority of the first scrapbook contains newspaper clippings of news relating to his exploits and proclamations.

The CMTC and VMI scrapbooks highlight Chas Blackley’s time with both of these organizations and places. The CMTC material is rare as the military’s official website for the history of Ft. Eustis fails to even mention the fort’s role during in that capacity.

Finally, there are two scrapbooks document the journey that Chas Blackley and childhood friend, George Earman, made upon the steamer SS Gertrude Kellogg in 1930. Both scrapbooks chronicle Blackley and Earman’s travels through the Pacific and multiple Asian nations.

Folder Title
Box:Folder
R.H. Bassett Scrapbook, 1862-1869
26:1
Chas Blackley, CMTC and VMI Scrapbook, 1928-1931
26:2
Chas Blackley, S/S Gertrude Kellogg Scrapbook, 1930
26:3
S/S Gertrude Kellogg Scrapbook, 1930
26:4