Joseph-Victor Garnier correspondence, 1800-1871 | Southern Illinois University Special Collections Research Center
Letters to a French immigrant, Joseph-Victor Garnier, who was born on February 14, 1767 in St. Pierre, Isle d'Oleron, France and died September 11, 1851, in St. Louis, Missouri. The first 14 letters (1801 - 1805) find Garnier in New York City, as a "négociant", or wholesale merchant, and are from his sister Anne and her husband, Claude Vincent Polony of Rochefort, France. By August, 1805, Garnier is in "St. Louis, Louisiane", and letters are addressed to him there. In 1812, Garnier marries Marie Sanguinet. Included is the manuscript copy of the Marriage Contract between Garnier and Sanguinet, signed by several local witnesses as well as the local Notary Public ("Mary Philip Leduc").
The child of that marriage, Harriett Garnier, became the wife of one of St. Louis' notable citizens, the Honorable John Logan, Congressman from 1865-1866, Land Commissioner for Illinois under President Pierce, and Postmaster of St. Louis underPresident Buchanan; and the last several letters, increasingly sparse, are addressed to Logan from his trans-Atlantic cousin, Jules Polony, still in St. Pierre, Isle d'Oleron, still trying to maintain relations with his unresponsive American cousins.