Creator

Date Original

1877 February 21

Description

Letter from Johnie and Louis Rector to their sister, Annie Rector Copeland. The letter talks about the wedding of Charlotte Stephens, whom they call Lottie. Charlotte Stephens was the first African American teacher in Little Rock.

Biographical/Historical Note

Charlotte "Lottie" Andrews Stephens was born a slave in 1854 in Little Rock, Arkansas. She became the first African American school teacher in the Little Rock school district. She began her teaching career in 1869 at the age of 15 and taught for 70 years, retiring in 1939. Annie M. Rector was born in July 1855, the daughter of W.A. (William) Rector of Little Rock, Arkansas, and Martha Hinston, who died in 1858. W.A. Rector was born a slave of Chester Ashley, United States Senator from Arkansas, 1844-1848. During Reconstruction, W.A. Rector was elected city collector, city marshal, and constable. He was also a member of the famed Ashley Band of Little Rock. Annie married William L. Copeland on October 22, 1874, in Pulaski County. Copeland, a lawyer, was born in 1845 in Oberlin, Ohio, and served in the Union Army during the Civil War. He also served in the Arkansas Legislature from 1873-1875, representing Crittenden County. The family moved back to Little Rock at the end of his legislative career. Copeland worked for the postal service before becoming a Little Rock policeman. He died in the line of duty on December 30, 1885, from wounds received in an attempt to apprehend a convict. Annie Rector Copeland died on May 12, 1915, in Hot Springs, Arkansas. She is buried with members of the Rector family in Fraternal Cemetery, Little Rock, Arkansas.

Transcription

Little Rock Ark. Feb 21 1877
Dear Sister, You
must excuse me for not writing
to you before now. I think
that you should have writ-
ten first, but as you did not
I will endeavor to write to
you and let you know about
every thing [sic] No news[;] only wh-
at Pa has told you. I just
came from the wedding. Old
Stevens thought some
body would get to kiss Lottie
before he would[;] that he
kissed her nearly before the
ceremony was over. They have
taken our teacher away from
us and gave us another
one. We are progressing fast.
I think I will get
grade honors this time.
You must excuse bad
writing as I was sleepy
and had nothing but a busi-
ness pen. Great excitement
over the Presidents [sic] Electi-
on. All are well at present.
Write soon yours
Truly Johnie

Dear Sister I am very
well and I am going to
school and will soon be in
th
I think I will get
grade honors this time.
You must excuse bad
writing as I was sleepy
and had nothing but a busi-
ness pen. Great excitement
over the Presidents [sic] Electi-
on. All are well at present.
Write soon yours
Truly Johnie

Dear Sister I am very
well and I am going to
school and will soon be in
the first Reader. tell Mr.
Copeland to send me ten cts.
I want to see you very bad.
I am crying(?) as usual Yours Louis

Physical Description

Letter, 10" x 8"

Subjects

Correspondence; Family

Contributor

Johnie and Louis Rector

Geographical Area

Little Rock, Pulaski County (Ark.)

Language

English

Identifier

MS.000541, Box 1, Folder 2

Resource Type

Text

Collection

Rector-Copeland family collection, MS.000541

Publisher

Arkansas State Archives

Contributing Entity

Arkansas State Archives

Recommended Citation

Letter, Johnie and Louis Rector to Annie Rector Copeland, Rector-Copeland family collection, Arkansas State Archives, Little Rock, Arkansas.

Rights

Use and reproduction of images held by the Arkansas State Archives without prior written permission is prohibited. For information on reproducing images held by the Arkansas State Archives, please call 501-682-6900 or email at state.archives@arkansas.gov.

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Letter, Johnie and Louis Rector to Annie Rector Copeland

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