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Series I. Correspondence: January 2, 1851 - March 31, 1852 (Box 12)

January 2, 1851 - February 6, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 1) : [72 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: materials and supplies, finances, office operations; New-York & Erie Telegraph Company.

HIGHLIGHTS:

1848-1851. Extracts from O'Reilly's letters to Delano.

January 21, 1851. J.J. Speed to Ezra Cornell discussing telegraph office operations, the possible dishonesty of an operator, and business with Hotchkiss.

February 4, 1851. J.J. Speed to Ezra Cornell concerning business with Faxton.

PLACES:

Detroit; Ithaca.

PEOPLE:

O'Reilly, Henry; Delano, W.J.; Speed, J.J.; Hotchkiss, S.W.; Ingersoll, C.M.; Faxton, Theodore; Cornell, Alonzo B.

February 7, 1851 - February 15, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 2) : [49 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: finances, office operations, salaries, patent rights.

PLACES:

Penn Yan, N.Y.; Detroit; Ithaca.

PEOPLE:

Tillotson, L.G.; Ingersoll, C.M.; Curtis, E.H.; Speed, J.J.

February 17, 1851 - March 4, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 3) : [49 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: office operations, finances, materials and supplies, consolidation of lines.

HIGHLIGHTS:

February 24, 1851. Ezra Cornell to J.J. Speed discussing Speeds experiments and proposing that a consolidation of lines be considered.

February 28, 1851. D.T. Tillotson to Ezra Cornell:
"I am getting very short for want of money. My rects. are light & what I have recd. I have been paying up old debts with. I want some clothes very much but can't get them. It is now nearly 2 years since I commenced working for you & for the first 6 months I have hardly recd. a cent & not much for the rest of the time."

March 4, 1851. J.J. Speed to Ezra Cornell from Detroit:
" I do not know but the cursed rascals will use us up at last. It is absolutely certain that some one is purposely interrupting our lines. It is utterly impossible for so many things to happen by accident without any apparent cause."

PEOPLE:

Speed, J.J.; Tillotson, D.T.

March 5, 1851 - March 25, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 4) : [54 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: finances, demands for payment, office operations.

HIGHLIGHTS:

March 18, 1851. C.M. Ingersoll to Ezra Cornell from Newburgh regarding payment of operators.

PLACES:

Cleveland; Ithaca.

PEOPLE:

Speed, J.J.; Wade, J.H.; Ingersoll, C.M.; Cornell, Alonzo B.; Cornell, E.B.

March 27, 1851- May 27, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 5) : [58 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: finances, office operations, demands for payment, materials and supplies.

HIGHLIGHTS:

April 18, 1851. J.J. Speed to Ezra Cornell from Detroit reporting on western lines (Zanesville & Wheeling, Zanesville & Pittsburgh) and possible agreements with railroads.

May 3, 1851. Alonzo B. Cornell to Ezra Cornell concerning the insurance sold by Alonzo.

May 13, 1851. Report of the Ithaca Falls Company.

PLACES:

Narrowsburgh, N.Y.; New York City; Honesdale, Penn.

PEOPLE:

Skinner, G.W.; Ingersoll, C.M.; Speed, J.J.; Tillotson, L.G.; Wheeler, M.; Cornell, Alonzo B.

May 29, 1851 - June 19, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 6) : [54 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: finances, office operations.

PEOPLE:

Speed, J.J.; Ingersoll, C.M.; Kendall, Amos; Shippen, W.

June 20, 1851 - July 19, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 7) : [54 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: finances, materials and supplies, office operations.

HIGHLIGHTS:

July 16, 1851. J. C. Woodruff to Ezra Cornell:
"The stockholders of your company are very much dissatisfied with your management from beginning to end, and are clamorous for a change in its management. Ithaca charges all its misfortunes upon you, and I do not see but you must stand Godfather to them all, fix it as you will. We have a line of telegraph that ought to pay well - substantially built - well arranged, and yet running into debt every day, and becoming a reproach and bye word among telegraphers and laymen... . In short, there is one general complaint - one outcry, and it is evident to me, that though you understand telegraphing well, you either have too much business in hand, or are short of capacity and concentration to manage such a line... .
"We stockholders lack confidence in your ability to do anything with it, and the people lack confidence in the line... ."

July 8, 1851. S.W. Hotchkiss to Ezra Cornell from Madison reporting of the reorganization of the Milwaukee, Galena & Chicago Telegraph Company under the name of the Northwestern Telegraph Company.

July 13, 19, 1851. J.J. Speed to Ezra Cornell concerning financial arrangements and operations of western lines.

PLACES:

Cleveland.

PEOPLE:

Speed, J.J.; Tillotson, L.G.; Shippen, W.; Ingersoll, C.M.; Hotchkiss, S.W.

July 20, 1851 - August 19, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 8) : [43 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: office operations, finances, offices in railroad depots (cooperation between the businesses), meeting of directors of the New-York & Erie Telegraph Association.

HIGHLIGHTS:

July 28, 1851. J.J. Speed to Ezra Cornell concerning finances and management of western lines.

PLACES:

Elmira, N.Y.

PEOPLE:

Tillotson, L.G.; Speed, J.J.; Woodruff, L.C.

August 27, 1851 - September 29, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 9) : [49 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: office operations, finances; New-York & Erie Telegraph Association; wheat.

HIGHLIGHTS:

August 27, 1851. L.C. Woodruff to Ezra Cornell expressing support of leasing the New-York & Erie line to Ezra Cornell.

September 6, 1851. Mckinney Irion to Ezra Cornell from Wolf River, Tennessee:
"My neighbour Mr. McNeal has received some of your beautiful wheat and I am so pleased with it causes me to ask the kind favour of you to send me a small quantity... ."

September 16, 1851. Ezra Cornell to Amos Kendall:
"My courage is fast failing. I have worked hard and incessently for the last nine years at the Telegraph business, practicing the most rigid economy, and I am now worse off than when I began. At the time I first embarked in the business I was worth five thousand dollars in real estate which rented for enough to support my family. Now that same real estate is encumbered with a mortgage for money invested in the telegraph business and I am in debt some $15,000 besides for cost of construction of the various lines, and I cannot get the first cent from any of them toards paying interest on what I owe, aside from this is the various claims of patentees for account of patent.
"...My wife well knows my ability to support my family by labour if properly directed. She feels that I have followed the Telegraph quite long enough, and that it would be for our interest to abandon it in toto and all claims upon it, and direct my energies in some more productive channel.
If I had been successful in the business I should not think of an appeal of this kind, but under the circumstances I think I have a claim to my devotion to the interest of Prof. Morse and his great invention entitles me to some concideration tin the settlement of this question of patent."

September 25, 1851. J.J. Speed:
"I can say now with great sincerity that I am used up - nothing under heaven but hope & that rather small...All I can say is I will keep trying & if I do not see a better prospect in 6 months, I will abandon the whole thing & try to get some squatters right in Oregon or elsewhere. Yours, busted all to hell, J.J. Speed Jr."

PLACES:

New York City.

PEOPLE:

Woodruff, L.C.; Pew, W.P.; Kendall, Amos; Wood, Otis E.; Speed, J.J.; Munn, Stephen B.; Irion, Mckinney.

October 1, 1851 - October 25, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 10) : [62 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: finances, office operations; meeting of New-York & Erie Telegraph Association.

HIGHLIGHTS:

October 5, 1851. J.J. Speed to Ezra Cornell:
"I think Faxton is trying to make an arrangement with the OR line to get their bus & give them half of his. As soon as he does so I will make a bargain with the House folks and give them & Bain our Eastern business this side of NY, and the NY bus until you get so you can do it..."

October 6, 1851. J.J. Speed to Directors and Stockholders of New-York & Erie Telegraph Company reporting on telegraph lines and the business they are doing, the problem of brimstone caps, and recommendations for improving the line and business.

PLACES:

Detroit.

PEOPLE:

Hopkins, P.A.; Wood, Otis E.; Munn, Stephen B.; Speed, J.J.; Finch, James; Tillotson, L.G.; Wade, J.H.

October 27, 1851 - November 22, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 11) : [47 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: finances, materials and supplies, office operations, New-York & Erie line.

PLACES:

Cleveland; Narrowsburgh.

PEOPLE:

Speed, J.J.; Munn, Stephen B.; Hopkins, P.A.

December 1, 1851 - December 31, 1851 (Box 12/Folder 12) : [35 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: office operations, finances, materials and supplies, New-York & Erie line, consolidation of lines.

HIGHLIGHTS:

December 21, 1851. John S. Bristol to Ezra Cornell expressing condolences on the death of Ezra Cornell's son Ezra.

1851. Petition for renewal of Patent for "Cornell's improved pipelayer."

PEOPLE:

Munn, Stephen B.; Livingston, Johnston; Speed, J.J.; Bristol, John S.; Beebe, Jeremiah S.; Cornell, Ezra (son of the Founder).

January 1, 1852 - January 30, 1852 (Box 12/Folder 13) : [43 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: office operations, New-York & Erie line, finances.

HIGHLIGHTS:

January 15, 1852. Ezra Cornell to J.J. Speed reporting the sale of the New-York & Erie line:
"I shall soon get the N.Y.&E. in good shape, and get up a good feeling, and I must have a chance at the western business."

PLACES:

Ithaca.

PEOPLE:

Smith, C.M.; Munn, Stephen B.; Speed, J.J.; Livingston, Johnston; Dunham, J.; Hopkins, P.A.; Cornell, Alonzo B.

February 1, 1852 - February 26, 1852 (Box 12/Folder 14) : [38 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: New-York & Erie line, office operations, finances.

HIGHLIGHTS:

February 10, 1852. Ezra Cornell to Edmond Coffin of Tarrytown, New York:
"If your self and friends should still be desirous of securing the facilities of an office at Tarrytown either with or without branches extending to your dwellings, I should be hapy of an interview with you on the subject."

February 15, 1852. Ezra Cornell to Orrin S. Wood:
"In regard to my affairs, it is difficult for me to place an estimate upon them. I may be worth an hundred thusand dollars if I live a year or two longer or I may not be worth a cent - it all depends upon the manner in which the Telegraph war which has raged so fiercely in the states the past three years is ended...I however do not despair my confidence is as firm as ever in the future of my enterprises..."

Also Ithaca real estate, Ithaca's growth.

PLACES:

Narrowsburgh.

PEOPLE:

Hopkins, P.A.; Coffin, Edmond; Wood, O.S.; Speed, J.J.

March 1, 1852 - March 31, 1852 (Box 12/Folder 15) : [51 digital images]

TOPICS:

Telegraph business correspondence: office operations, finances, New-York & Erie line.

HIGHLIGHTS:

March 20, 1852. J.J. Speed to Ezra Cornell discussing western business and Speed's proposal of a printing telegraph.

March 22, 1852. J.J. Speed to Ezra Cornell:
"What say you to making one desparate effort to retrieve the past, and provide for the future by going to California & building a line... ."

PLACES:

Detroit; Ithaca.

PEOPLE:

Speed, J.J.; Wood, Otis E.; Wood, Benjamin; Hopkins, P.A.