Manuscripts Division
William L. Clements Library
University of Michigan

Finding aid for
Henry Jackson McCord Journals, 1849-1864

Finding aid created by
Emiko Hastings, July 2008

Summary Information
Title: Henry Jackson McCord journals
Creator: McCord, Henry Jackson, 1827-1917
Inclusive dates: 1849-1864
Extent: Approximately 215 pages (4 volumes)
Henry Jackson McCord (1827-1917) was a California Forty-Niner who later fought in the Civil War with the 111th Ohio Volunteers, 1862-1865. His journals include two diaries describing his trip to California in 1849, a diary describing a return trip from San Francisco in 1853, and a duty roster from 1864.
Language: The material is in English
Repository: William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan
909 S. University Ave.
The University of Michigan
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1190
Phone: 734-764-2347
Web Site:

Access and Use
Acquisition Information:

Donated, 2006. M-4567.

Access Restrictions:

The collection is open for research.


Copyright status is unknown.

Processing Information:

This collection has been processed according to minimal processing procedures and may be revised, expanded, or updated in the future.

Alternate Format:

Transcriptions are available for the 1849-1850 and 1853 journals.


Gift of Rachel Bane, Alice Michaels, Mary Reinke, and William Whitney in August, 2006. Henry Jackson McCord was their great grandfather, and the journals have been kept in the family until the donation to the Clements.

Preferred Citation:

Henry Jackson McCord Journals, William L. Clements Library, The University of Michigan


Henry Jackson McCord (1827-1917) was a California Forty-Niner and later fought in the Civil War with the 111th Ohio Volunteers from 1862 to 1865. He was born in Sandusky, Ohio, on January 12, 1827. Leaving New York in 1849, he sailed around the Cape of Good Hope and reached California after a nine months voyage. He remained on the west coast for several years, then returned home and enlisted in the Civil War as a captain of Company G, 111th Regiment Ohio Volunteer Infantry on August 15, 1862. He mustered out on June 27, 1865, and was commissioned as Major McCord, having acted as a commander of the regiment. After the war, he moved to Iowa and married Rachel E. Howell in 1869. They had six children. In 1878 they moved to Kansas and settled on a farm. Henry McCord died on April 9, 1917.

Collection Scope and Content Note

The journals of Henry Jackson McCord include two diaries describing his trip to California in 1850, a diary describing a return trip from San Francisco in 1853, and a duty roster from 1864. The first, a diary and commonplace book, contains a few sketchy notes about the trip to California, some quotations, accounts, and lists of names. A second journal is a long account of McCord's voyage to California in the brig Orleans , in which he writes daily descriptions, and later account entries. The third journal has entries for the return trip from California by ship, but it is much shorter than the journal he kept on the outgoing voyage. A final journal contains accounts and duty rosters for 1864, during McCord's service with the 111th Ohio Volunteers in the Civil War.

Subject Terms

    • California--Gold discoveries.
    • United States--History--Civil War, 1861-1865.
    • Voyages to the Pacific coast.
    Genre Terms:
    • Account books.
    • Commonplace books.
    • Diaries.
    • Rosters.
    Contents List
    Container / Location Title
    Henry Jackson McCord journals, 1849-1864 [series]
    Volume   1  
    Diary and Commonplace Book,  1849-1850
    Volume   2  
    Diary and Account Book,  1849-1855
    Volume   3  
    Diary of a return trip from San Francisco,  1853
    Volume   4  
    Duty roster,  1864
    Additional Descriptive Data

    McCord, Henry Jackson, Richard, G. Young, Eleanor McCord Whitney, and Irene McCord Ackerman. The Detestable Voyage: Henry Jackson McCord's Journal of His Travels from Sandusky, Ohio, to the California Gold Rush, Aboard the Brig Orleans; also includes his account of his return trip by steamers and across Nicaragua. Fairfax, Virginia: Richard G. Young, 1996.