Copies provided by Doug Lehman, owner of the collection.

NOTE: Jesse Tomlinson (b 1797) was the son of Joseph Tomlinson, Jr. and Elizabeth Harkness. Jesse married Mary Bell(e) Martin. See Descendants of Joseph Tomlinson.

Collection Described by Doug Lehman.

A few years ago I was fortunate enough to buy a lot of papers at auction relating to the Tomlinson Family of Moundsville. These were probably once in the collection of Delf Norona, since there was correspondence written to him, including an interesting letter on how these papers ended up back here from California. Anyway, I have a binder full of bills, receipts, contracts, etc., mostly from the 1830's - 1850's. There are also a few ledgers and some other miscellaneous items. Probably 150+ pieces.

Looking through some of the letters, it seems the papers were originally in the possession of a gr-granddaughter of Jesse and Mary Tomlinson who lived in the mountains near Los Angeles in the fall of 1954 or spring of 1955. According to a letter written to Delf Norona by H. E. Matheny of Akron, Ohio in 1958 (he must have been a dealer), he states that in her possession were the original Tomlinson papers as well as the Bakewell papers. He said, "A forest fire threatened the area and the old lady attempted to run down the road to safety but was burned to death. If she had stayed in her home she would have been safe, for it did not burn. The papers were turned over to her attorney and he disposed of them to a local book man. They came to me (Matheny) in 4 parts and I am not sure even now that I have them all. I suspect the attorney has the best of them..."

Other letters written to Delf are from Ernest Wessen, (and written to Wessen from Delf) whom I believe was a big time rare book and manuscript dealer. There are a couple of letters written to a Dennis Wright (a relative of Delf?) in 1974 from Matheny I think he was the consignor of this stuff to Hagadorn's auction.

These letters themselves are interesting reading.

Letter 1 - H. E. Matheny to Delf Norona
Letter 2 - H. E. Matheny to Dennis Wright
Letter 3 p1 - Letter 3 p2 - H. E. Matheny to Dennis Wright

There was a checklist included that listed all of the papers. I have all but about 20 pcs. I would guess the best ones are in the mound museum. I do have contracts for work done to the mound house, and lots of papers signed by local merchants, (Parriot, Cockayne, McMechen, McColloch, Dr. McCabe of Wheeling), plus many more.


Old Central School (1896-1954) at S. W. Corner of Tomlinson & Seventh Streets.
(According to "Schools, Churches & Cemeteries Of Marshall County.." by Dale & Naomi Lowe)

I believe this was originally a cabinet photo, but over time the image was peeled from the cardboard. There was a typewritten note with this photo: "School building, Moundsville, which formerly occupied site of present Central School, taken from S. W. corner of Tomlinson & Seventh Sts. Given to me Feb. 3 1947 by Earl Evans who states that he went to this school in about 1890, but when he attended he is positive there was no fence."

Coffin Receipt - Jesse Tomlinson's?
Receipt For Sale of Lot.
Two Receipts - Elizabeth Tomlinson
Two Receipts - Forsyth, Parriott
Two Receipts - Tomlinson, McClean
Document 1
Document 2
Document 3
Document 4
Document 5
Document 6
Document 7
Document 8
Document 9
Document 10
Document 11
Document 12
Document 13
Document 14
Document 15
Document 16
Document 17
Document 18
Document 19
Document 20
Document 21
Document 22
Document 23

I didn't find the name of the woman in California, but reading over one of Matheny's letters to Mr. Wright I found some interesting paragraphs.

"One of the most important things, if not the most important, concerning the Tomlinsons, was a pamphlet issued by them at the opening of the mound. I do not know just when it was issued but it was about the time of the opening. No copy was ever found, as far as I know. It is mentioned in one of the books on the Upper Ohio Valley, but only a mention. I put on quite a search for that one but I believe none has survived."

"I spent more than 40 years working on a card index of all material printed, books, pamphlets, broadsheets, broadsides, etc. relating to what is now the State of West Virginia. This index ran to somewhere between 15 and 20 thousand. They were triple indexed as to author, title subject, etc. I could not work without it. I had listed perhaps 500 items of which no copy was known, including the excedingly rare papers on the Central Committee of Wheeling, 1861-2 and all the papers on the restored government of Va. This index far surpassed all the information of Charleston, Morgantown and others. I had an idea to give it to the Wheeling Library but they were not interested. The woman there was not even cordial. I approached the other libraries and their enthusiasm was less than luke warm. I finally sold it to a bookstore for a large sum, with the understanding that I would never disclose it's location. What a loss for West Virginia. I worked for so many years on my books about General Harris and the one on Campbell as a Printer - Publisher, Bookseller,(not yet printed) that I became tired of the subject."

That letter was written in 1974. One can only wonder where that index is, and if a copy of the mound opening pamphlet has ever been discovered.

NOTES FROM PHYLLIS DYE SLATER, descendant of Joseph Tomlinson & Elizabeth Harkness:

"Jesse and Mary Belle Martin Tomlinson only had one daughter that lived. Their son died in infancy and the other daughter (Virginia) died young. Daughter Mary Belle married Richard Messick (lawyer) and moved to Ky. I found them there with one daughter Virginia (in 1860 census). They were not in a later census so that is as far as I got. They may have had other children but I don't know of them.

"Bakewell was a step father. Mary Belle Martin, who marred Jesse Tomlinson, married Theron Bakewell after Jesse Tomlinson died. So that where the Bakewell come in the family....

"Jesse Tomlinson inherited the mound from his mother and it went to his daughter Mary Belle Messick and she sold it when she married..."


This Richard Messing must have ended up being a minister. This is the 1880 census for Harrison, Daviess County, Missouri:

Richard MESSICK, Self, M, Male, W, 44, KY, Minister, KY, KY
Mary B. MESSICK, Wife, M, Female, W, 42, WV, Keeping House, WV, WV
Virginia E. MESSICK, Dau, S, Female, W, 21, WV, KY, WV
Bruice MESSICK, Son, S, Male, W, 17, KY, At School, KY, WV
Pyron MESSICK, Son, S, Male, W, 15, WV, At School, KY, WV
Irene O. MESSICK, Dau, S, Female, W, 13, KY, At School, KY, WV
Maggie T. MESSICK, Dau, S, Female, W, 11, KY, At School, KY, WV
Mary E. MESSICK, Dau, S, Female, W, 7, MO, KY, WV
Henry ALNET, Other, S, Male, B, 22, MO, Farm Laborer, KY, KY