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Calvin Fletcher letter

 Collection — Folder: S0473
Identifier: S0473

Scope and Contents

This collection includes an autographed, signed letter from Calvin Fletcher in Indianapolis, Indiana on January 8, 1855 regarding the receipt of seeds and asking Thomas A. Hendricks to deliver a letter to John B. Dillon.


  • 1866/01/08


Conditions Governing Access

This collection is open for research.

Conditions Governing Use

Legal title, copyright, and literary rights reside with Rare Books and Manuscripts, Indiana State Library, Indianapolis, IN. All requests to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted to Rare Books and Manuscripts.

Biographical Note

Calvin Fletcher was born February 4, 1798 to Jesse (1762–1832) and Lucy (Keyes) Fletcher (1764–1846) in Ludlow, Vermont. He was the 11th of 15 children. Fletcher taught school in Urbana, Ohio to finance his study of law. He was licensed to practice law in Urbana in 1821. Fletcher married Sarah Hill (1801–1854) in 1821 and moved to Indianapolis, Indiana, where they had 11 children. He defended the persons accused in the Fall Creek Massacre and represented an African-American woman who sued for her freedom in the next few years. Fletcher practiced law with Ovid Butler, who founded the Northwestern Christian University (now Butler University), and Simon Yandes.

Fletcher was a township overseer of the poor, county prosecuting attorney, attorney for the fifth judicial circuit (1825-1826), and elected as state senator (1826-1833). Fletcher was elected by the Indiana General Assembly as one of the founding directors of the State Bank of Indiana in 1834. An opponent of Jacksonian Democrats, he was a Whig, and later, a Republican by 1855. An abolitionist, Fletcher was a founder of the Indiana Colonization Society in 1829. He also helped establish the Indiana Historical Society in 1830 and was active in many charitable organizations. He also served as a school superintendent for Roberts Chapel, a non-denominational church and school that was originally built in 1847 at Roberts Settlement, one of Indiana's early black pioneer communities.

His wife, Sarah Fletcher died on September 27, 1854. He married again, this time to Keziah Price Lister, on November 4, 1855 in Hall County, Maine. Also in 1855, Fletcher promoted canal and railroad construction and was appointed director and president of the Indianapolis and Bellefontaine Railroads. In 1857, he founded the Indianapolis Branch Banking Company with Thomas Sharpe and acquired banking interests in Madison, Indiana. Fletcher owned more than 400 acres of land in Marion County, Indiana and was very involved in farming and agricultural writing and organizations. Much of Fletcher's property holdings are now known as Fletcher Place Historic Neighborhood District. Additionally, Fletcher was a faithful correspondent and diarist throughout his life. He. died on May 26, 1866 and was buried in Crown Hill Cemetery in Indianapolis.

Sources: "Calvin Fletcher." Maine Marriages in 1875. Accessed December 22, 2014. "Calvin Fletcher." U.S., Sons of the American Revolution Membership Applications, 1889-1970. Accessed December 22, 2014. "Calvin J. Fletcher, Sr." Find a Grave Memorial. Accessed December 22, 2014.

Fletcher Place. "Neighborhood History." Accessed June 23, 2022.

Shepherd, Rebecca A., et al. "Fletcher, Calvin." In A Biographical Directory of the Indiana General Assembly, vol. 1, 128-129. Indianapolis, IN: Indiana Historical Bureau, 1988.

Vanderstel, Sheryl D. (1994). "Fletcher, Calvin." In The Encyclopedia of Indianapolis, 577-579. Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1994.


0.01 Cubic Feet (1 folder)

Language of Materials



This collection is arranged chronologically.

Custodial History

This collection was received by Rare Books and Manuscripts as a records transfer from Reference Division on 1932/09/27.


No further additions are expected.

Processing Information

Collection processing completed 2014/12/23 by Edythe Huffman. EAD finding aid created 2014/12/23 by Edythe Huffman. EAD finding aid revised 2022/06/23 by Brittany Kropf.
Calvin Fletcher letter
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Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
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Repository Details

Part of the Rare Books and Manuscripts Repository

140 North Senate Avenue
Indianapolis, Indiana 46204 U.S.A.