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Oscar James Averell letters

 Collection — Folder: 1
Identifier: MSS 9051

Scope and Contents

Two handwritten letters from Averell while he was serving as a clerk of the Utah Territorial Supreme Court. The letters are orders for six cases of wine from William W. Allen, a merchant in Steuben County, New York, to be sent to Colonel Michael Shaughnessy, U.S. Marshal in Salt Lake City, Utah. Letters were written from Salt Lake City, Utah Territory, and are dated September 7 and 8, 1881.


  • 1881 September 7-8


Conditions Governing Access

Open for public research.

Conditions Governing Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances. Permission to publish material from the Oscar James Averell letters must be obtained from the Supervisor of Reference Services and/or the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Coordinating Committee.

Biographical / Historical

Oscar James Averell (1834-1892) was a public servant in New York and Utah.

Oscar James Averell was born on the 15th of July, 1834 in Cameron, Steuben County, New York to parents Hiram Averell and Huldah Hemenway. He married Helen C. Thompson on November 19, 1862. They had four children together, Julia Thomas Beekman, William, Edward, and Belle Averell Wynkoop. There is not much known for certain about Mr. Averell, but it is known that he worked as a public servant at the city, county, and territorial levels of government for most of his professional life. There is record of him serving as County Clerk in Steuben County, New York in 1962; as well as the Internal Revenue Assessor and Collector in Bath, Steuben County, New York and Elmira, New York during 1867 to 1868. Then in 1880 and 1881 we find him in Utah as the clerk of the Utah Territorial Supreme Court, until at least 1889, when he became the subject of the national court case, United States vs Averill. A few years later, Mr. Averell passed away on December 20, 1892 in Washington D.C.


1 folder (0.1 linear ft.)

Language of Materials


Custodial History

Purchased from Rick Grunder on August 16, 2017.

Immediate Source of Acquisition

Purchased; Rick Grunder; August 16, 2017.


Utah and the American West cultural, social, and religious history (19th Century Mormon and Western Manuscripts collection development policy IV.a.i.4, November 2013).

Processing Information

Processed; Jace Packer, student manuscript processor, and Ryan K. Lee, curator; 2017.

Register of Oscar James Averell letters
Jace Packer
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid written in English in Latin script.

Repository Details

Part of the L. Tom Perry Special Collections Repository

1130 HBLL
Brigham Young University
Provo Utah 84602 United States