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Rudd family papers, 1842-1866

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Finding aid prepared by Dorothy Houston


Rudd family papers




University of Kentucky Special Collections


Collection is arranged by subject.

Location note

Housed with multiple collections.

Conditions Governing Access note

Collection is open to researchers by appointment.

Preferred Citation Note

2012ms456 : [identification of item], Rudd family papers, 1842-1866, University of Kentucky Special Collections.


0.2 Cubic feet

10 folders


Captain James Rudd (1789-1867) was an influential business man and statesman from Louisville, Kentucky. The Rudd family papers include personal, financial, and legal documents of James Rudd; his son, James C. Rudd of Owensboro, Kentucky; and youngest daughter, Anna Rudd.


Captain James Rudd was born June 13, 1789, and died May 8, 1867. As a young man in 1815, he volunteered for the War of 1812 and gained his official title of Captain. Captain Rudd moved to Louisville shortly after the war and eventually purchased large amounts of real estate, much of which he rented for income. In 1821, Captain Rudd married Nannie Phillips, and together they had thirteen children. Rudd suffered major financial losses in the crash of 1837 and later in a citywide fire. Despite these financial setbacks, Captain Rudd made many efforts to improve the city of Louisville, including helping with the planning and construction of a sewer system. He also represented Louisville in the state legislature, serving alongside two of his brothers: Dr. Christopher Rudd for Washington County, and Major Richard Rudd for Bardstown and Nelson Counties.

Towards the end of Captain Rudd's life, there was some strain between him and his son, James C. Rudd, over finances. James C. resided in Owensboro, the county seat of Daviess County, Kentucky, and owed his father a large amount of money. Captain Rudd took legal action in Daviess County, and James C. repaid his father a few months before Captain Rudd's death. Anna Rudd was Captain Rudd’s youngest living daughter. She was unmarried, and studying in Italy at the time of her father’s death.

Scope and Content

The Rudd family papers (dated 1842-1866; 0.2 cubic feet; 10 folders) comprise documents about Captain James Rudd of Louisville, Kentucky, his son, James C. Rudd of Owensboro, Kentucky, and youngest daughter, Anna Rudd. The three series, Captain James Rudd papers, James C. Rudd papers, and Rudd family papers, contain personal, financial, and legal documents. Most of the documents are financial, and pertain to purchases, accounts, bonds, and receipts for Captain Rudd, James C. Rudd, or Anna Rudd. The receipts and accounts pertaining to Anna Rudd contain specific financial information concerning the education of women during the 19th century. Other documents concern the legal conflict between Captain Rudd and his son, James, and there are four letters of personal correspondence: three belonging to Captain Rudd, and one letter belonging to James C. Rudd.


  • Financial statements.
  • Daviess County (Ky.)
  • Kentucky--History.
  • Louisville (Ky.)--History.
  • Rudd, James C.
  • Courts--Records and correspondence; Records of court.
  • Women--Education--Kentucky.

User Restrictions

Property rights reside with the University of Kentucky. The University of Kentucky holds the copyright for materials created in the course of business by University of Kentucky employees. Copyright for all other materials has not been assigned to the University of Kentucky. For information about permission to reproduce or publish, please contact Special Collections.

Collection Inventory

Series I. Captain James Rudd papers, 1842-1866
Scope and Content Note:

The Captain James Rudd series contains letters to Captain James Rudd and financial papers including receipts, accounts, and bonds.

Correspondence, 1846, 1862-1866
[Box: OS-11, Folder: 1, Box: MS-3, Folder: 1] browse
Financial papers, 1842-1862
[Box: MS-3, Folder: 2] browse
Series II. James C. Rudd papers, 1856-1865
Scope and Content Note:

The James C. Rudd series contains a letter to James C. Rudd from D.M. Naughton, receipts, and a writ of execution.

Correspondance with D.M. Naughton, 1865 May 29
[Box: MS-3, Folder: 3] browse
Financial papers, 1856-1864
[Box: MS-3, Folder: 4] browse
Series III. Family papers, 1857-1865
Scope and Content Note:

The Family papers series contains financial and legal documents for the general Rudd family, Anna Rudd, Captain James Rudd, and James C. Rudd. Anna Rudd's material includes a receipt for purchases and a store account for Anna Rudd, both paid by Captain Rudd. The legal document, a Daviess circuit court petition in equity and an indenture, concern the suit brought by Captain James Rudd against his son, James C. Rudd.

Financial papers, 1857-1863
[Box: MS-3, Folder: 5] browse
Anna Rudd financial papers, 1860-1865
[Box: MS-3, Folder: 6] browse
Anna Rudd account, 1863 August 14
[Box: OS-11, Folder: 2] browse
Captain James Rudd and James C. Rudd, Daviess Circuit Court, petition in equity, undated
[Box: MS-3, Folder: 7] browse
Captain James Rudd and James C. Rudd, Daviess County, indenture, 1863 August 22
[Box: OS-11, Folder: 3] browse