Lemon & Mary Hine Correspondence Collection, 1855-1993

Lemon & Mary Hine Correspondence Collection, 1855-1993

Finding Aid

Collection No. 76 (4 Linear Feet)
D.C. Community Archives

Provenance

Frederick F. Wright, a descendant of Lemon and Mary Hine, donated the collection to the D.C. Community Archives. The donation was originally made in 2004, with subsequent additions made in 2005 and 2006.

Biography

Lemon G. Hine was born in Berlin Heights, Ohio, on April 14, 1833. Mary Tillinghast’s birthday is unknown. It is also unknown how the couple met, but their correspondence shows that they courted for more than five years. During their courtship, in the late 1850s, Lemon moved to Iowa to establish a town, which he called Lawrence. Publications prepared by Lemon suggest that the lumber trade was what would make the town most profitable. He offered cheap plots of land, and offered to assist in the building of structures on these plots.  

By the early 1860s, Lemon was no longer living in Iowa, and it is assumed that the venture failed. Lemon finally married Mary Tillinghast in 1861 and they moved to Coldwater, Mich. With the outbreak of the Civil War, Lemon joined the 44th Illinois Infantry, Company B, made up of only Michigan men, 1861. In 1862, after participating in western campaigns in Missouri, Arkansas and Mississippi, Lemon resigned from the Army with the rank of Lieutenant. 

Later accounts of Lemon’s life state that it was a loss of voice that caused his resignation. However, a close inspection of his correspondence shows that it was his belief that the war would soon be over, coupled with his desire to return to his wife, that were the actual reasons for his resignation. His loss of voice may have been attributed to his constant requests and arguments with his superior officers over his resignation.

In late 1862, after spending time with his wife and their new son, Charles L. Hine, Lemon moved to Washington, D.C. to work on Army pension cases. He worked with local judges and studied for the Bar, all the while sharing a rooming house with other lawyers and constantly writing home to his wife. In 1863, Mary moved to Washington, D.C. The Hine family then made Washington, D.C., their permanent home.  

Lemon and Mary had five children: Oliver, Charles, Blanche, Mary, and Mollie. Oliver Cromwell Hine studied law at Columbian School (George Washington University) and served in the Spanish-American War and World War I. He retired as a Major. 

Charles L. Hine was a lawyer and publisher in Washington, D.C.  Charles Hine is not mentioned in D.C. City Directories after 1889. It is unclear as to where he moved. 

Blanche Hine grew up in Washington, D.C., and later married Frederick A. Fenning, a prominent lawyer and D.C. Commissioner. She stayed in Washington until 1949, when she moved to Princeton, N.J., to move in with her daughter. She had five grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Mary lived in Washington as well. She married James Ramsey Nevitt in 1894. Nevitt was District Coroner from 1900 to 1931. He was on the scene to rescue the injured after the Knickerbocker Theatre disaster and he gained his notoriety combating a smallpox epidemic in the early 1890s. Mary and James had a son and a daughter.

Mollie Hine lived in Washington and married J. Milton Boone. She left Washington with her husband and settled in Sweet Briar, Va.

Shortly after the Civil War, Lemon began his career as a man of distinction in Washington, D.C.  He became a member of the common council of Washington, D.C., and served from July 1, 1868 to June 30, 1869. Next he was selected a member of the board of alderman and served from July 1, 1870 to June 30, 1871. During this time, Lemon continued to practice law. He was elected president of the Bar Association and served for two years and did not abandon his practice until 1883, when his voice began to fail. His failing health did not, however, stop Lemon from serving as a D.C. Commissioner from May 21, 1889 to Sept. 30, 1890.

In the late 1800s, Lemon joined a local Linotype company. The company established a Linotype system that was used almost exclusively by the Washington Star.  Eventually Lemon was sued by his partner and the stock and the company was split up.

Later in his life, Lemon’s health began to deteriorate. At stake was the problem that he was losing his voice. He began to make frequent trips to Florida to health resorts, many to no avail. Finally, Lemon died in Battle Creek, Mich., on Jan. 19, 1914. He was interred in Washington, D.C.

Scope and Content Note

The collection consists of the incoming and outgoing correspondence of both Lemon and Mary Hine. The letters begin in the 1850s and continue to the late 1880s. Most of the letters are paired with their individual envelopes. There are also letters to and from their children and other descendants of the Hine family.

Also in this collection are financial records, photographs, publications, articles, and invitations. The materials are divided into three series:
  1. Correspondence
  2. Photographs
  3. Ephemera

Series Descriptions

Series I: Correspondence
This series is made up, almost entirely, of the correspondence to and from Lemon and Mary Hine.  There also letters to and from their children and one postcard from their descendant Richard Wright.  Some correspondence contains items sent to the recipient and remained in the envelope with the letter.  These items include: an 1883-dime, swatches of fabric, and locks of hair.

Series II: Ephemera
This series contains financial records, calling cards, articles, and Lemon Hine’s Last Will and Testament.

Series III: Photographs
Series III consists of images of both Lemon and Mary Hine, as well as an image of their Washington, DC home “Prospect Hill.”  There is also an image encased in a frame that is decorated with the image of the Monitor and the Merrimac.  The case is made of an early form of plastic, during the Victorian era.  The man in the image is unidentified, though it may be Lemon Hine or a relative of his.

Restrictions

There are no restrictions to this collection.

Related Collections

Collection 74, Karl Fenning Collection, DC Community Archives, Washingtoniana Division, DC Public Library.

Box List

Series I: Correspondence

Box 1
FF 1        Della to Lemon, September, nd
FF 2        Frank Hemenway to Lemon, August 13, 1861
FF 3        B. L. Hill to Lemon, May 11, 1855
FF 4        D. M. Hine to Lemon, December 13, 1856
FF 5        H. S. Hine to Lemon, September 28, 1856
FF 6        [H. Franklick] to Lemon, September 15, 1856
FF 7        W. C. McGouigal to Lemon, January 16, 1858
FF 8        Marnie to Lemon, September 5, 1885
              Mary to Lemon
FF 9        June 16, 1857
FF 10      July 18, 1857
FF 11      September 15, 1857
FF 12      October 1857
FF 13      November 26, 1857
FF 14      January 4, 1858
FF 15      May 19, 1858
FF 16      April 17, 1858
FF 17      June 8, 1858
FF 18      July 4, 1858
FF 19      July 10, 1858
FF 20      July 27, 1858
FF 21      August 1858
FF 22      August 11, 1858
FF 23      September 17, 1858
FF 24      September 19, 1858
FF 25      September 30, 1858
FF 26      October 30, 1858
FF 27      November 20, 1858
FF 28      January 3, 1859
FF 29      January 8, 1859
FF 30      January 18, 1859
FF 31      March 1, 1859
FF 32      March 8, 1859
FF 33      September 28, 1859
FF 34      October 14, 1859
FF 35      November 11, 1859
FF 36      November 26, 1859
FF 37      December 19, 1859
FF 38      December 24, 1859
FF 39      December 29, 1859
FF 40      January 4, 1860
FF 41      January 12, 1860
FF 42      January 19, 1860
FF 43      January 26, 1860
FF 44      February 2, 1860
FF 45      February 10, 1860
FF 46      February 16, 1860
FF 47      March 6, 1860
FF 48      March 12, 1860
FF 49      March 17, 1860
FF 50      March 21, 1860
FF 51      March 28, 1860
FF 52      April 1, 1860
FF 53      April 6, 1860
FF 54      April 10, 1860
FF 55      April 14, 1860
FF 56      April 19, 1860
FF 57      April 22, 1860
FF 58      November 20, 1860
FF 59      December 6, 1860
FF 60      December 8, 1860
FF 61      March 7, 1862
FF 62      March 18, 1862
FF 63      April 15, 1862
FF 64      July 31, 1864
FF 65      August 7, 1864
FF 66      August 15, 1864
FF 67      October 9, 1864
FF 68      October 15, 1864
FF 69      October 16, 1864
FF 70      October 28, 1866
FF 71      August 8, 1885
FF 72      August 17, 1885
FF 73      August 25, 1885
FF 74      September 4, 1885
FF 75      Mollie to Lemon, May 10, 1858
FF 76      Mollie to Lemon, December 11, 1859
FF 77      Lt. James S, Ransom to Lemon, January 11, 1862
FF 78      Mary (and Bessie) to Marnie, July 27, 1885
FF 79      Mary to Marnie, August 1, 1885
FF 80      Mary to Marnie, August 11, 1885
FF 81      Mary to Marnie, September 7, 1885

Box 2
FF 1        Lemon to James Dawson, September 11, 1865
              Lemon to Mary Tillinghast Hine
FF 2        April 9, 1855
FF 3        July 16, [1855]
FF 4        April 10, [1857]
FF 5        May 8, 1857
FF 6        July 25, 1857
FF 7        August 2, 1857
FF 8        August 10, 1857
FF 9        September 23, [1857]
FF 10      October 5, 1857
FF 11      October 27, [1857]
FF 12      December 20, 1857
FF 13      January 8, 1858
FF 14      January 18, 1858
FF 15      January 26, 1858
FF 16      February 26, 1858
FF 17      March 10, 1858
FF 18      March 28, 1858
FF 19      May 1, 1858
FF 20      May 9, 1858
FF 21      May 28, 1858
FF 22      June 20 & 27, 1858
FF 23      July 5, 1858
FF 24      August 5, 1858
FF 25      August 28, 1858
FF 26      September 2, 1858
FF 27      September 28, 1858
FF 28      November 6, 1858
FF 29      November 21, [1858]
FF 30      November 27, 1858
FF 31      December 12, 1858
FF 32      December 12, 1858
FF 33      January 24, 1859
FF 34      February 23, 1859
FF 35      October 23, 1859
FF 36      November 20, 1859
FF 37      December 4, 1859
FF 38      December 15, 1859
FF 39      December 27, 1859
FF 40      January 15, 1860
FF 41      January 21, 1860
FF 42      January 29, 1860
FF 43      February 5, 1860
FF 44      February 12, 1860
FF 45      March 7, 1860
FF 46      March 11, 1860
FF 47      March 16, 1860
FF 48      March 18 & 22, 1860
FF 49      March 25, 1860
FF 50      April 1, 1860
FF 51      April 6, 1860
FF 52      April 10, 1860
FF 53      April 13, 1860
FF 54      April 16, 1860
FF 55      April 17, 1860
FF 56      April 22, 1860
FF 57      October 3, 1860
FF 58      November 16, 1860
FF 59      November 21, 1860
FF 60      November 25, 1860
FF 61      December 1, 1860
FF 62      December 6, 1860
FF 63      December 9, 1860
FF 64      December 16, 1860
FF 65      December 16, 1860
FF 66      September 12, 1861
FF 67      September 14, 1861
FF 68      September 16, 1861
FF 69      September 19, 1861
FF 70      September 21, 1861
FF 71      September 25, 1861
FF 72      September 27, 1861
FF 73      October 1, 1861
FF 74      October 6, 1861
FF 75      October 9, 1861
FF 76      October 12, 1861
FF 77      October 18, 1861
FF 78      October 20, 1861
FF 79      October 27, 1861
FF 80      October 29, 1861
FF 81      November 3, 1861
FF 82      November 11, 1861
FF 83      November 21, 1861
FF 84      November 26, 1861
FF 85      November 30, 1861
FF 86      December 2, 1861
FF 87      December 9, 1861
FF 88      December 19, 1861
FF 89      December 22, 1861

Box 3

FF 1  Jan. 11, 1862
FF 2 Jan. 18, 1862
FF 3  Jan. 22, 1862
FF 4 Jan. 23, 1862
FF 5 Jan. 30, 1862
FF 6 Feb. 5, 1862
FF 7  Feb. 8, 1862
FF 8 Feb. 9, 1862
FF 9 Feb. 19, 1862
FF 10  Feb. 23, 1862
FF 11 Feb. 24, 1862
FF 12 Feb. 26, 1862
FF 13 March 11, 1862
FF 14 March 14, 1862
FF 15 March 29, 1862
FF 16 April 6, 1862
FF 17 May 2, 1862
FF 18 May 10, 1862
FF 19 May 18, 1862
FF 20  May 25, 1862
FF 21 June 7, 1862
FF 22 June 15, 1862
FF 23 [July 7, 1862]
FF 24  July 13, 1862
FF 25 Aug. 11, 1862
FF 26 Aug. 14, 1862
FF 27 Aug. 17, 1862
FF 28 Aug. 24, 1862
FF 29 Aug. 28, 1862
FF 30 Aug. 31, 1862
FF 31 Sept. 3, 1862
FF 32 September 5, 1862
FF 33 September 10, 1862
FF 34 September 15, 1862
FF 35 September 18, 1862
FF 36 September 24, 1862
FF 37 September 27, 1862
FF 38 October 2, 1862
FF 39 October 7, 1862
FF 40 September 1, 1864
FF 41 January 20, 1865
FF 42 June 13, 1866
FF 43 June 21, 1866
FF 44 July 2, 1866
FF 45 July 8, 1866
FF 46 July 23, 1866
FF 47 August 2, 1866
FF 48 September 6, 1866
FF 49 September 21, 1866
FF 50 October 2, 1866
FF 51 October 8, 1866
FF 52 October 24, 1866
FF 53 March 12, 1885
FF 54 March 14, 1885
FF 55 July 7, 1885
FF 56 n.d.

 

Box 4

FF 1 Alice to Mary, Oct. 25, 1885
FF 2 Alpha to Mary, March 31, 1861
FF 3  M. A. Bassett to Mary, Dec. 1, 1861
FF 4  M. A. Bassett to Mary, April 19, 1862
FF 5 M. A. Bassett to Mary, Sept. 17, 1862
FF 6 Julia T. Budfish to Mary, June 9, 1885
FF 7  Della to Mary, Dec. 3, 1866
FF 8 Della to Mary, July 8, 1885
  Emeline to Mary
FF 9 June 2, 1860
FF 10 Sept. 25, 1865
FF 11 Jan. 13, 1866
FF 12 Dec. 9, 1866
FF 13 March 23, 1885
FF 14 April 19, 1885
FF 15 May 17, 1885
FF 16 June 14, 1885
FF 17 June 18, 1885
FF 18  July 11, 1885
FF 19 September 1885
FF 20 May 3, n.d.
FF 21  Sept. 14, n.d.
FF 22 Frankie to Mary, Aug. 31, 1866
FF 23 Grandma to Mary, Dec. 13, 1866
FF 24 Laura to Mary, April 26, 1862
FF 25 Laura to Mary, Aug. 5, 1866
FF 26  Laurie to Mary, July 10, 1862
FF 27  Linda to Mary, April 6, n.d.
FF 28 Linda to Mary, n.d.
  Lirrie to Mary
FF 29 July 9, 1860
FF 30 Nov. 12, 1860
FF 31 Nov. 23, 1860
FF 32 March 6, 1866
FF 33 May 15, 1866 (and Oliver)
FF 34  March 30, 1885
FF 35 April 8, 1885
FF 36 Marnie to Mary, Sept. 11, 1885
FF 37  May to Mary, n.d.
FF 38 MJG to Mary, Feb. 26, n.d.
FF 39 Mother to Mary, n.d.
FF 40 Mother to Mary, n.d.
FF 41 Mother to Mary, July 12, n.d.
FF 42  OGY to Mary, June 1, 1860
FF 43 M. Otis to Mary, October 1850
FF 44 Phebe to Mary, Sept. 25, 1860
FF 45 Phebe to Mary, Sept. 28, 1862
FF 46 Sister to Mary, Dec. 23, 1866
  Ruth Tillinghast to Mary
FF 47 Aug. 27, 1860
FF 48 Jan. 10, 1861
FF 49 July 27, 1861
FF 50 April 25, 1866
FF 51  May 9, 1866
FF 52 Jan. 24, 1885
FF 53 March 9, 1885
FF 54 May 11, 1885
FF 55 June 22, 1885
FF 56 July 7, 1885
FF 57 Sept. 24, 1885
FF 58 Oct. 14, 1885
FF 59 Feb. 25, n.d.
FF 60 March 30, n.d.
FF 61 Aug. 5, n.d.
FF 62 Unknown to Mary, Feb. 20, 1862
FF 63 Blanche to Ollie Hine, July 29, 1885
FF 64 Mary to Ollie Hine, Aug. 3, 1885
FF 65 Mary to Ollie Hine, Aug. 28, 1885
FF 66 Will to Ollie Hine, Aug. 15, 1885
FF 67 Richard Wright to W. L. Wright, Jan. 18, 1993

Box 5

FF 1  Envelopes, 1858-1885
FF 2 Invitations, 1885, nd

Series II: Ephemera

FF 3 The Boy’s News by C. L. Hine, May-December 1875
FF 4  “A History of the City of Washington,” 1903
FF 5 Last Will and Testament, Lemon Hine, Oct. 9, 1901
FF 6 “The Old Songs Grandma Hine Sang…,” n.d.
FF 7 Prayer Card, n.d.
FF 8 Proceedings with Reference to the Death of Lemon G. Hine, Jan. 20, 1914
FF 9 Publications of C. L. Hine, 1876-1877
FF 10 Receipts, 1866
FF 11 Simpson and Hine Real Estate and Lumber, 1856

Series III: Photographs

FF 12 Lemon G. Hine, n.d.
FF 13 Mary Tillinghast Hine, n.d.
FF 14 Prospect Hill, Hine Residence, 1895

Box 6

Daguerreotype Case, with image of man (possibly young Lemon G. Hine), n.d.
 

---

Compiled by Ryan P. Semmes, October 2006

DC Public Library, Special Collections
D.C. Community Archives
901 G St. NW, Room 307
Washington, D.C.  20001
202-727-1213

Back to Special Collections Homepage