Lyman Family Papers
00128

Summary Information

Repository
Michigan State University Archives and Historical Collections
Creator
Lyman family, (Lucinda Sikes Lyman)
Title
Lyman family papers
ID
00128
Date [inclusive]
1812-1910
Extent
1.0 Cubic feet
Language
English

Preferred Citation

Researchers wishing to cite this collection should include the following information: "Item title, Collection title, Collection Identifier, Michigan State University Archives & Historical Collections, East Lansing, Michigan."

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Biographical Note

After their marriage Liberty and Lucinda Lyman settled in Blanford, Massachusetts where they had ten children. Their sons were Sylvester, Romanzo, Sereno, James, Pliny, Edson, and Calvin. The daughters were named Catherine, Arua, and Lucinda.

In the spring of 1837 the entire family as well as Lucinda's mother, Lucina Sikes, moved to Shiawassee County in Michigan. The Lymans established a farm southeast of Bancroft on government land.

In 1849 Sylvester and Romanzo traveled overland to California during the Gold Rush. Sylvester was involved in both mining ventures and agriculture, eventually setting up a farm in Santa Clara. Romanzo returned east in 1856 to marry Mary Alderman and subsequently returned to his farm in Forest City, California. In 1858, the two brothers were joined by Sereno who also settled in California.

Lucinda Lyman attended school in Ann Arbor in the early 1850s and eventually taught at an Indian school in Shiawassee County in 1852. She was the last teacher to receive pay from the United States government in Shiawassee County. Lucinda married Russell J. Hastings and settled in Guliford, Ohio.

Pliny Lyman became a businessman in 1844 when he established the "Corunna Woolen Factory" in Corunna, Michigan. He served as the first town clerk of Corunna as well as having two terms as county treasurer. He was also active in local politics until his death in 1868.

James Lyman enlisted as a member of the Third Michigan Cavalry during the Civil War. His regiment saw action in the Western theatre at the siege of Corinth and the battles of Iuka and Corinth. In the later stages of the war the Third was involved in several skirmishes in Tennessee, Mississippi, Arkansas, Alabama, and Texas. While in the service, James rose in rank from Sergeant to Second Lieutenant. The Lyman brothers in California drilled in militia units but saw no actual fighting.

In 1863, Liberty Lyman died. Edson Lyman succeeded him in running the farm by purchasing most of the original land from the other family heirs.

Romanzo moved from California to Illinois in 1870. He lived on a farm in Lemong, Illinois until his death in 1887.

Sylvester remained in California and became part owner in the Arrowhead Lodge, a spa in San Bernadino, California.

In 1910 Edson Lyman became a member of the Michigan Historical Commission. His application and correspondence with the Historical Commission is shown in the final correspondence folder.

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Scope and Contents note

The Lyman family papers include correspondence, diaries, property deeds, newspapers, photographs, and other materials for the family of Liberty Lyman and Lucinda Sikes Lyman covering the years 1812-1910.The bulk of the family correspondence consists of letters to Lucinda Lyman from her sons and daughters, as well as letters from friends and relatives in Massachusetts. Especially interesting are the letters of the Lyman sons in California. Many vivid details are given on life in California during the Gold Rush. Comments on mining and agricultural activities are also of interest. The correspondence of the Civil War years reveal the Lyman's strong Unionist sentiments in their observations on social issues of the era.

The entries in the diaries are often sketchy and difficult to read but they convey many useful details of the family farm. James Lyman's diary of 1863-1864 is useful for details on Civil War campaigns.

The folders of land deeds are useful in showing the gradual expansion of the original family plot and the consolidation of the land by Edson Lyman. Of particular interest is the original federal grant of land dated 1837.

Three newspaper clippings deal with the deaths of Liberty and Romanzo Lyman and the fire in Forest City, California which destroyed Romanzo's home.

Miscellaneous materials of special interest are a poem by J. Garagen of the Third Michigan Cavalry dealing with the Battle of Corinth and an 1822 silhouette of Liberty and Lucinda Lyman.

Sources for biographical information: Vol. 32 Michigan Pioneer and Historical Collections articles on the early history of Shiawassee County; Clinton and Shiawassee Counties Chicago Chapman Brothers 1891 p. 416 article on Burt Lyman, a son of Pliny Lyman; Biographical information in donor correspondence file.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

Michigan State University Archives and Historical Collections May 1978

Conrad Hall
888 Wilson Road, Room 101
East Lansing , MI, 48824
517-355-2330
archives@msu.edu

Revision Description

  February 2010

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research.

Legal Status

Copyright: Michigan State University. Property Rights: Michigan State University.

Conditions Governing Use

Permission to publish material from this collection must be obtained from University Archives & Historical Collections, Michigan State University.

Custodial History

Gift of R.G. Curtis

Eloise Lyman, 1977-08-30, 1978-04-11.

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Controlled Access Headings

Corporate Name(s)

  • Corunna Woolen Factory (Mich.).
  • Michigan Historical Commission.
  • United States. Army. Michigan Cavalry Regiment, 3rd (1861-1866).

Genre(s)

  • Account books
  • Diaries
  • Legal instruments
  • Letters (correspondence)
  • Photographs

Geographic Name(s)

  • Shiawassee County (Mich.)
  • United States -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865

Personal Name(s)

  • Curtis, R.G.
  • Lyman, Edson
  • Lyman, James
  • Lyman, Liberty
  • Lyman, Lucinda Sikes
  • Lyman, Romanzo
  • Lyman, Sereno
  • Lyman, Sylvester

Subject(s)

  • Agriculture -- California
  • Frontier and pioneer life -- Michigan
  • Gold mines and mining -- California

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Collection Inventory

Papers 

Family Correspondence 

Box Folder

 1812 - 1814 

1 1

 1815 - 1817 

1 2

 1820 - 1823 

1 3

 1824 - 1825 

1 4

 1824 - 1825 

1 4

 1826 - 1829 

1 5

 1830 - 1839 

1 6

 1840 - 1845 

1 7

 1846 - 1849 

1 8

 1850 - 1852 

1 9

 1854 

1 10

 January - April 1855 

1 11

 August - December 1855 

1 12

 January - June 1857 

1 13

 August - December 1856 

1 14

 January - June 1857 

1 15

 July - December 1857 

1 16

 January - July 1858 

1 17

 September - December 1858 

1 18

 January - May 1859 

1 19

June - December 1859 

1 20

 1860 

1 21

 1861 

1 22

 1862 

1 23

 January - May 1863 

1 24

 August - December 1863 

1 25

 1864 

2 1

 January - July 1865 

2 2

 August - December 1865 

2 3

 1866 

2 4

 January - April 1867 

2 5

 July - December 1867 

2 6

 1868 

2 7

 1869 

2 8

 1870 

2 9

 1871 

2 10

 1872 

2 11

 1873 

2 12

 1874 

2 13

 1875 

2 14

 1876 

2 15

 1877 - 1878 

2 16

 1879 

2 17

 1880 - 1882 

2 18

 1883 - 1885 

2 19

 1886 - 1889 

2 20

 1890 - 1899 

2 21

 1904 - 1910 

2 22

 n.d. 

2 23 - 24

Diaries and Journals 

Box Folder

Diary 

2
Box Folder

Edson Lyman -- 1858 

2 25

 1860 

2 26

 1865 

2 27

 1869 

2 28

 1871 

2 29

James Lyman -- 1856 

2 30

James Lyman -- 1859 

2 31

James Lyman -- 1863 -1864 

2 32

Farm Journal -- 1835 - 1863 

3 1

Account Books - Edson Lyman 

Box Folder

 1861 

3 2

 1872 - 1875 

3 3

Miscellaneous Books 

Box Folder

Autograph Book Carrie Lyman -- 1890 

3 4

Recipe Book -- n.d. 

3 5

Legal Documents 

Box Folder

Land Deeds 

3
Box Folder

 1837 - 1847 

3 6

 1849 - 1861 

3 7

 1862 - 1899 

3 8

Will of Lucina Sikes -- 1850 

3 9

Business Papers 

Box Folder

Stock Agreement with Toledo Ann Arbor & Northern R.R. Co. -- 1870 

3 10

Business Receipts 

3
Box Folder

 1846 - 1855 

3 11

 1856 - 1900 

3 12

Work Contract - City Granite Works Owosso -- 1901 

3 13

Fire Insurance -- 1867 

3 14

Federal Tax Form -- 1865 

3 15

Farming Material 

Box Folder

Farm Manual "Annual Register of Rural Affairs" -- 1865 

3 16

Farm Manual "The Farmer's Garden" -- 1905 

3 17

Map of Lyman Farm in Shiawasse County -- n.d. 

3 18

Inventory of Lyman Farm -- July 27, 1863 

3 19

Order for Windmill Mast, Foos and Co., Springfield, OH by Edson Lyman -- n.d. 

3 20

Seed Grain Broadside -- n.d. 

3 21

Poetry 

Box Folder

"Our First Great Union Victory at Corinth" P. Garagen, 3rd Michigan Cavalry -- ca. 1862 

3 22

Poem "The New Born Christian" -- n.d. 

3 23

Newspaper Clippings 

Box Folder

Three newspaper clippings -- 1863, 1867, n.d. 

3 24

Miscellaneous Materials 

Box Folder

Application to Independent Order of Oddfellows -- 1851 

3 25

Funeral Sermon by Rev. Condit for Clara Montague -- March 16, 1845 

3 26

Silhouette of Liberty and Lucinda Lyman -- ca. 1822 

3 27

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Oversized Materials 

Drawer

The Country Gentleman April 28, 1864, June 9, 1864 

OS 22

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Photographs 

Drawer

Collection 

Collection Photos

Agriculture. Harvesting 

Engines 

Homes. Bradley-Martin house before remodeling -- 1935 

Homes. Liberty Lyman home -- circa 1912 

Mills. Mill at Knagg Town 

People. Lyman , Carrie Hoyt (Mrs. Edson Lyman) 

People. Lyman, Edson 

People. Lyman, J.H. 

People. Lyman, Jessie and 4th grade class 

People. Lyman, Liberty and Lucinda Sikes (Mrs. Liberty Lyman) 

People 

People Photos

People. Lyman, Pliny M. 

Postcards 

Postcards

Agriculture. Machinery 

Engines. 25 H.P. Peerless Engine 

Ambrotypes 

Box

Lyman Brothers: possibly James, Edson, and Pliny Lyman 

4

Edson Lyman 

4

James Lyman, 3rd Michigan Cavalry, Civil War 

4

unidentified woman (2 items) 

4

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