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    Bennett General Store ledger containing the purchases of Jim Bowie

    [James "Jim" Bowie] Bennett General Store Ledger listing Bowie's purchases while he lived along Bayou Boeuf in central Louisiana, with entry dates from May 29, 1817, to July 6, 1819, 6.5" x 15", 101 pages. Written on the front free endpaper of this bound manuscript account ledger is the name of the store owner, "Jos. B. Roberts/ March 26, 1818". Robert's general store, located in a sparsely settled region near modern Cheneyville, was built in 1817 and was originally called Bayou Boeuf Store, as recorded at the top of each page of this ledger. Ezra Bennett bought the store in 1836 and changed the name to Bennett's Store. The Bayou Boeuf Store was a place for the settlers to receive mail, read a newspaper, talk to neighboring settlers, and buy goods like sugar, medicines, alcohol (lots of alcohol, according to the ledger), cloth, and fish hooks. Bowie, whose plantation was just a few miles from the store, traded there in 1817 and 1818. The ledger records five entries for him: page 31 (August 4, 1817); page 32 (August 6, 1817); page 51 (October 23, 1817); page 67 (December 18, 1817); and page 91 (February [?], 1818). Each entry records the items he purchased, such as combs, thread, "1 cake shaving soap", tobacco, and on August 4, 1817, one quart of Madeira wine.

    Though born in Kentucky, James Bowie (1796-1836) and family moved to the Louisiana Territory in 1802, one year before the Louisiana Purchase. In 1815 at the age of nineteen, Bowie settled alone on the border of modern Rapides Parish and Avoyelles Parish and began carving his plantation out of the wilderness. It was here, a region with little law enforcement near the Bayou Boeuf Store, that the future hero of the Texas Revolution gained a reputation for his recklessness and adroitness with a knife. The ledger cover has various pen strokes and is worn as expected; a section of the back cover is missing. The pages are age-toned, but intact--as is the spine--and still bound. The text is large and easily read. Good condition.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2009
    16th-17th Tuesday-Wednesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 1,996

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