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Guide to the James D.​R.​ Steven Papers,​ 1897-​1921

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Summary Information

Title: James D.R. Steven Papers

Inclusive Dates: 1897-1921

Creator: Steven, James D.R., 1872-1951

Call Number: Eau Claire Mss AO

Quantity: 0.6 c.f. (2 archives boxes)

Repository: Housed at the Area Research Center, William D. McIntyre Library, University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire; owned by the Wisconsin Historical Society, Library-Archives Division

Archival Locations: UW-Eau Claire McIntyre Library / Eau Claire Area Research Ctr.

Abstract: Correspondence of Steven, an Eau Claire, Wis., businessman involved in lumbering and retail selling. Letterbooks detail Steven's lumbering enterprises, land and lumber transactions, and deeds of sales. In May 1890, Steven began work in the office of Davis and Starr Lumber Company. In 1907, Steven organized the Steven and Jarvis Lumber Company, with Arthur Jarvis, to deal in wholesale lumber. Steven was also involved with the Eau Claire Book and Stationery Company, and became vice-president in 1917 and president in 1921, succeeding William J. Starr.

Language: English

Search Terms/Subject Terms

  • Land companies—Wisconsin—Eau Claire
  • Lumber trade—Wisconsin—Eau Claire

Biography/History

James David Ritchie Steven was born in Campbellton, New Brunswick, on February 20, 1872. His father, William, died when James was two years old. When he was 17, the family moved to Eau Claire, and in May 1890 Steven began work in the office of Davis and Starr Lumber Company. In 1907, Steven organized the Steven and Jarvis Lumber Company, with Arthur Jarvis, to deal in wholesale lumber. The firm became Steven and Utley (R.S. Utley) in 1925, and was liquidated two years later. Steven was also involved with the Eau Claire Book and Stationery Company, and became vice-president in 1917 and president in 1921, succeeding William J. Starr. Steven remained with the company for many years, acquiring principal ownership of it in 1947. Also, he was a charter member of the Eau Claire Kiwanis and served as director of the YMCA for 23 years. In October 1907, he married Merle Sears Pickford of Madison, and the couple had two sons, William P. and David R. The elder Steven died in 1951.

Scope and Content Note

The papers consist of one folder and four letterbooks detailing Steven's lumbering enterprises, land and lumber transactions, and recording deeds of sales. The two earliest letterbooks (dated 1901-1905 and 1905-1909) contain partially faded and illegible letters.

Administrative/Restriction Information

Acquisition Information

Presented by Mrs. J.D.R. Steven, Eau Claire, Wis., 1957.

Processing Information

Processed by Menzi Behrnd, November 17, 1978.

Contents List

Box/Folder 1/1Correspondence, 1897, January - 1898, January

Letterpress books
Box/Folder 1/2-41901 March - 1915 May
Box/Folder 2/11915 June - 1921 February

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