Date Original



This collection contains campaign materials, correspondence for James P. Eagle, Lillian Oldham Wills, William Kavanaugh Oldham, Mary Kavanaugh Eagle Oldham, and other family members, financial materials including ledger books, land documents for Union County (Ark.), military materials, personal materials, printed and typed ephemera, school and college materials, and handwritten and typed stories about the African American community on the Eagle Plantation.

Biographical/Historical Note

James Philip Eagle, born August 10, 1837, was the sixteenth governor of the state of Arkansas (1889-1893). Eagle was born to James and Charity Swaim Eagle, immigrants of German descent from Switzerland. His father bought farmland in Pulaski County (Ark.) before moving to the Richwoods Community in modern day Lonoke County (Ark.). Eagle was a deputy sheriff in Prairie County (Ark.) before serving in the Confederate Army as a private. He was elected to the House of Representatives in the Arkansas General Assembly in 1872 during the Brooks-Baxter War. He married Mary Kavanaugh Oldham in January 1882 and had no children. Eagle was elected as governor amid charges of election fraud in 1889 and served until 1893. He died on December 20, 1904. The Oldham family held many ties to Arkansas politics. William Kavanaugh Oldham, born on January 17, 1869, in Speedwell, Kentucky, moved to Little Rock, Arkansas, in 1884 to live with his sister, Mary Kavanaugh Oldham Eagle. Mary Eagle was wife to Arkansas governor, James P. Eagle. Oldham was the private secretary to Governor Eagle, and later, he earned a law degree from the University of Virginia in 1894. Oldham formed a law partnership with Henry M. Armistead for three years. When Oldham returned to Little Rock, he resumed his law practice and was elected to the Arkansas Senate from the Tenth District for two terms, in 1906 and 1908. While in office, Oldham authored legislation for completion of the State Capitol in 1907 and for establishing the State Tuberculosis Sanitorium at Booneville in 1909. Oldham died of tuberculosis on January 5, 1912, and was buried in Oakland Cemetery in Little Rock.

Physical Description

Document, 8.5" x 11"

Geographical Area






Resource Type



Eagle/Oldham papers, MS.000842


Arkansas State Archives

Contributing Entity

Arkansas State Archives

Recommended Citation

Eagle/Oldham papers, Arkansas State Archives, Little Rock, Arkansas.


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United States History