The John S. Cripps collection (147 items) contains correspondence and documents related to Cripps, who was the secretary of legation for the United States in Mexico during the mid-19th century.
The Correspondence series (98 items) contains personal and professional letters to John S. Cripps, many of which concern his service in Mexico; some are written in Spanish. The incoming correspondence pertains to legal disputes involving United States citizens and companies, who requested assistance with matters such as property ownership and the receipt of compensation for seized goods. Cripps's correspondents in Washington, D.C., included General Carlos Butterfield, who had appealed unsuccessfully to the Grant administration to institute a steamship line between the United States and Mexico, and other writers sometimes commented on political issues. Cripps exchanged a series of letters with his mother in the late 1850s and also received letters from family and friends, particularly his nieces and nephews.
The Documents series (46 items) is comprised of legal and financial records, most of which pertain to John S. Cripps's legal career in Mexico; many are written in Spanish. Cripps represented both American and Mexican clients, and the series includes contracts, powers of attorney, a will, and financial records such as payment notices and accounts. One power of attorney relates to claims that residents of the United States made against the Republic of Mexico for property destroyed in Texas (August 11, 1869). The series also contains documents concerning the will of Esther Monk, Cripps's mother; an 1870 passport for John S. Cripps; and an investigation of George T. Ingraham, an American diplomat in Mexico.
The Ephemera series contains 2 newspaper articles and 1 note containing the address of a New York lawyer. One of the articles concerns U.S. Senate deliberations, including a pending Mexican treaty and the deferral of a bill proposing the Butterfield Gulf Mail Steamship Line.