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John B. Fairbank (AC 1867) Family Papers

Identifier: MA.00104

Scope and Contents

The papers document John Barnard Fairbank's activities as a soldier during the Civil War and as a lawyer in Deadwood, South Dakota, and also the social and financial activities of several family members (his sisters, particularly Susan Fay Fairbank and Maria Thatcher Fairbank Rugg, his parents, Lurana Robinson Fairbank and James Chandler Fairbank, and others), spanning a period of slightly more than a century. The box includes photocopies of oversize documents and cross-references to the originals, which are stored separately.


  • Creation: 1817-1922


Conditions Governing Access

There is no restriction on access to the John B. Fairbank (AC 1867) Family Papers for research use. Particularly fragile items may be restricted for preservation purposes.

Conditions Governing Use

Requests for permission to publish material from the John B. Fairbank (AC 1867) Family Papers should be directed to the Archives and Special Collections. It is the responsibility of the researcher to identify and satisfy the holders of all copyrights.

Biographical / Historical

John Barnard Fairbank (1840-1908) was born in Oakham, Massachusetts, where his parents, James Chandler Fairbank and Lurana Robinson Fairbank owned a farm. He enrolled in Amherst College in 1861 but left in 1862 to fight in the Civil War, serving in the 36th Regiment Massachusetts Volunteer Infantry and attaining the rank of Brevet Colonel before returning to college in 1865. Fairbank graduated from Amherst College in 1867 and went on the study law at Columbia. He was admitted to the bar in 1869 and practiced law in New York, Kansas, Massachusetts, and South Dakota. He settled in Deadwood, South Dakota in 1881. He was elected to the legislature in Massachusetts (1878-1879) and South Dakota (1896). Fairbank died on April 29, 1908 in Portland, South Dakota.


0.5 Linear feet (1 archives box)

Language of Materials



The John B. Fairbank (AC 1867) Family Papers contain miscellaneous documents relating to John Fairbank's life and career, including as a soldier and a lawyer, and those of his parents, sisters, and other members of his family.


This collection is organized into five series:

  1. Series 1: John B. Fairbank (AC 1867), 1864-1909
  2. Series 2: Family Correspondence, 1817-1920
  3. Series 3: Financial Records, 1832-1922
  4. Series 4: Deaths
  5. Series 5: Clippings

Immediate Source of Acquisition

The collection was acquired by purchase in April 2003 from Charles Apfelbaum, Rare Manuscripts and Archives, Watchung, New Jersey.

Related Materials

Alumni Biographical Files - 1867 - Fairbank

Processing Information

2003 Apr
Christine Fernsebner Eslao, Intern, Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science
Finding Aid:
2003 Apr
Prepared by:
Christine Fernsebner Eslao, Intern, Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science
Edited by:
Daria D'Arienzo, Head of Archives and Special Collections
Peter A. Nelson, Assistant Archivist
Christine Fernsebner Eslao, Daria D'Arienzo, and Peter Nelson.
Language of description
Script of description
Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Repository Details

Part of the Amherst College Archives and Special Collections Repository

Amherst College Archives & Special Collections
Robert Frost Library
61 Quadrangle Drive
Amherst MA 01002-5000
(413) 542-2299