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A Guide to the B. S. Hile Correspondence

Finding aid created by Dept. Staff

University of Florida Smathers Libraries - Special and Area Studies Collections

August 2007

Descriptive Summary

Creator: Hile, B. S.
Title: B. S. Hile Correspondence
Dates: 1861-1862
Abstract: Letters written by B. S. Hile to his family while he is living and employed in Havana, Cuba.
Extent: 0.2 Linear feet. 1 box.
Identification: MS Group 227
Language(s): English
Note: This guide is available in Spanish at
Online ContentItems from this collection have been digitized and are available online in the UF Digital Collections. For more information please see the note below.

Scope and Content

The majority of the B. S. Hile letters were written to his wife, and a few were written to his son and daughter. The letters are dated from August 1861 to July 1862. In the earliest letter, Hile is still in New York preparing to travel to Cuba and he briefly discusses troop movement during the U.S. Civil War. After that, all of the letters are from Havana, Cuba. He discusses daily happenings and describes people, the land, disease, food, and drinks. He promises to send sugar, expressing amazement at its low price and availability. He discusses his employment at the Gas Works, which was part of Piena Del Ray Gas Co. He describes laying pipe underneath streets to connect to house lights and street lamps. He also discusses contracts for that type of work in Mexico. In earlier letters he discusses the possibility of his own business, possibly as a dry goods store owner. The letters provide information about life in Havana in the 1860s, from the perspective of an American living in Cuba. All of the letters have been transcribed.

Access or Use Restrictions


The collection is open for research.

Administrative Information

Alternate Form of Material

Digital reproductions of items in the Hile collection are available online via the University of Florida Digital Collections (UFDC). Please read the Permissions for Use statement for information on copyright, fair use, and use of UFDC digital objects.

Alternate Form of Finding Aid

This guide is available in Spanish at

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], B. S. Hile Correspondence, Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida.

Contents List

1 August 1861 - December 1861.
1 December 1861 - February 1862.
1 February 1862 - May 1862.
1 July 1862.
1 Not dated.

Selected Subjects and Access Terms

Cuba -- Havana.
Nineteenth century.

For further information, please contact: Special Collections Access Services.

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