Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Shumpert Plantation Cotton Receipt: February 28, 1854

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During antebellum times, up-country cotton was grown in Itawamba County with some of the larger plantations of the county being situated in the southwestern section of the county west of the Tombigbee.

During 1853 the George Shumpert plantation consisting of 1,440 fertile acres along Boguegaba Creek (the SW ¼ of Section 7, Township 11, Range 8, the SE ¼ of Section 6, Township 11, Range 8, the N ½ of Section 6, Township 11, Range 8, the NW ¼ of Section 18, Township 11, Range 8 and all of Section 12, Township 11, Range 7) was the home to the 63 year old George Shumpert, his wife Rhoda Conwill, sons and thirty-two slaves. The Shumpert family had come to Itawamba County from Newberry District, South Carolina shortly after the county was organized.

The above receipt for cotton grown on the plantation during the 1853 season was from the commission merchant firm of Toomer and Bates at Number 11 Commerce Street in Mobile. Toomer and Bates served as the agent for Alex Short, a 43-year-old Mobile, Alabama cotton broker. Cotton was shipped from the plantations in Itawamba County on flat boats via the Tombigbee River downstream to Mobile.

According to the receipt dated February 28, 1854, George Shumpert’s family sold 27 bales of cotton to Alex Short for the sum of 8 and 3/8 cents per pound. With a total of 13,812 pounds, he received a total of $1,156.75 for the cotton. Taken from this amount were fees for flat boat freight, wharfage, weighing, drayage, storage, mending and the commission agent’s commission.

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