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Albert C. Janin Correspondence

An inventory of his correspondence at Syracuse University

Overview of the Collection

Creator: Janin, Albert.
Title: Albert C. Janin Correspondence
Inclusive Dates: 1888-1889
Quantity: 1 folder (SC)
Abstract: Letters written by Janin to his wife, Violet "Vivie" Blair, in Maryland, while he was in New Orleans running a rice farm and building a canal. The letters discuss his work, her health, their relatives, local events, and gossip.
Language: English
Repository: Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries
222 Waverly Avenue
Syracuse, NY 13244-2010

Biographical History

Albert Covington Janin (1844-1928) was a New Orleans attorney and business entrepreneur. Violet Blair (1848-1933) was a socialite from a prominent Washington, DC family. The two married in 1874 and had a highly unconventional marriage for the times. They generally lived in separate places without a shared household, and remained financially independent from one another. For more information about Janin and Blair, see Virginia Jeans Laas's research, especially her book Love and Power in the Nineteenth Century: The Marriage of Violet Blair.

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Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Albert C. Janin Correspondence consists of a series of 20 letters written by Janin to Blair from May 1888 to April 1889. At the time, Janin was in New Orleans while Blair was staying in Washington, DC and Montgomery County, Maryland with her family. Much of the letters are concerned with Janin's rice farm and his fears that the weather will destroy his crop. Along with his farm, Janin discusses his investment in the construction of a canal in Louisiana. The letters also discuss Blair's health, their family members, local events, and general gossip.

The letters also shed light on Janin and Blair's relationship. For example, in his 31 Dec 1888 letter, Janin writes to Blair " are a wonderful creature in many way and, perhaps, nothing proves it more than the fact that I, cool and unimpassioned being that I am, after fourteen years of marriage, love you as much as ever, though you and others don't believe it. Respect and love for you are what attach me to the world of men and women. But for that I would, soon after having brought my enterprise to a peaceful termination, become a hermit."

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Arrangement of the Collection

Items are arranged in chronological order.

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Access Restrictions

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

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Subject Headings


Blair family.
Blair, Violet, 1848-1933.
Janin family.
Janin, Albert.


Agriculture -- Louisiana -- Orleans Parish.
Canals -- Louisiana -- New Orleans.
Marriage -- History -- 19th century.


Montgomery County (Md.) -- History -- 19th century.
New Orleans (La.) -- History -- 19th century.
Washington (D.C.) -- History -- 19th century.

Genres and Forms



Rice farmers.

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Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Albert C. Janin Correspondence,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Finding Aid Information

Created by: [Summit record]
Date: 2001-01-01
Revision history: 12 Mar 2007 - converted to EAD (MRC); 10 Feb 2010 - updated EAD (LMD)

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SC 385 May 1888-April 1889

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