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Francis William Crosby papers

Identifier: MC-0082

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The papers of Francis William Crosby consist primarily of correspondence with Crosby's family during the Civil War in which he tells of his travels and experiences, including Sherman's March to the Sea; the letters include a map of the march and a railroad map of Georgia. Also included is biographical information; a eulogy for Crosby; and 1881 patent records for an electrical voting recorder.


  • Creation: 1861 - 1909


Access note

This collection is open.

Conditions Governing Use

Access to collections in the Department of Distinctive Collections is not authorization to publish. Please see the MIT Libraries Permissions Policy for permission information. Copyright of some items in this collection may be held by respective creators, not by the donor of the collection or MIT.


Francis William Crosby, 1822-1909, was a geologist and inventor who built and operated boats and worked as a builder and bridge contractor before the Civil War. As a member of the Union Army, 1861-1865, he took part in Sherman's March to the Sea and was wounded at the Battle of Corinth. After the war he managed, then owned, silver and gold mining properties in North Carolina, Michigan, and Colorado. Among his inventions are the Ballard furnace for use in mining, which he developed with the help of his son, William Otis Crosby, and the Westinghouse air-brake.


0.2 Cubic Feet (6 folders)

Language of Materials



Materials are stored off-site. Advance notice is required for use.

Processing Information note

Some collection descriptions are based on legacy data and may be incomplete or contain inaccuracies. Description may change pending verification. Please contact the MIT Department of Distinctive Collections if you notice any errors or discrepancies.

Guide to the Papers of Francis William Crosby
Ready For Review
Mary Jane McCavitt
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Processing of the collection was funded by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.

Repository Details

Part of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Libraries. Department of Distinctive Collections Repository

Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries
Building 14N-118
77 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge MA 02139-4307 US