Williamson family papers


MSS 122
3 linear inches (1 box)

Name of Creator(s):

Williamson, Thomas S.(Thomas Smith),1800-1879
Williamson, A. W. (Andrew Woods), 1838-1905


English, Dakota, Swedish


There are no restrictions on the use of this collection.

Access points:

Riggs, Stephen Return, 1812-1883.
Williamson, John Poage, 1835-1917.

Pogue family.
Bible--Manuscripts, Dakota.
Dakota language--Texts.
Dakota Indians -- Wars, 1862-1865.
Dakota Indians--Missions.
Missionaries--Dakota Territory.

Finding aid prepared by:

Kelsey O'Connell, 2009. Revised by Sarah Horowitz, 2011.


Augustana College Special Collections
Thomas Tredway Library
639 38th Street
Rock Island, Illinois 61201

Custodial History
Historical Note
Scope and Content
System of Arrangement
Related Materials
Container List


Materials received from Richard W. Oram, Special Collections Librarian at Washington and Lee University, December 14, 1982. The materials were apparently originally assembled by Sumner C. Williamson for a Pogue-Williamson genealogy, then given to a local public library, which gave them to Washington and Lee University. 


Thomas Smith Williamson,1800-1879
Thomas Smith Williamson was born in Union District, South Carolina on March 6, 1800. He received his bachelor’s degree from Jefferson College in 1819, and then studied medicine in Philadelphia and New Haven, receiving his medical degree from Yale in 1824. In August of 1832 he entered Lane Seminary, graduating the following year.  He spent most of the rest of his life as a Presbyterian missionary to the Dakota Indians of the upper Midwest.  He established the missions at Lac Qui Parle (in residence 1835-1846), Kaposia (1846-1852), and Pajutazee, or Yellow Medicine, (1852-1862), Minnesota.  Following the U.S.-Dakota War, Thomas Williamson met with President Lincoln and advocated for the release of the Dakota prisoners.  In the late 1830s, Thomas Williamson, with Stephen R. Riggs, began working on the first Dakota translation of the Bible.   The first sections were published in Cincinnati in 1839 by the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions. Williamson had two sons: Andrew Woods Williamson, a professor at Augustana College, and John Poage Williamson, a Presbyterian missionary to the Santee Sioux.  Thomas Williamson died June 24, 1879.

Andrew Woods Williamson (1838-1906)
 Andrew Woods Williamson was born January 31, 1838, in Lac qui Parle, Chippewa County, Minnesota. He enrolled at Knox College in 1853, graduated from Marietta College in 1857, and then went on to Yale University to receive his master’s degree in natural sciences. He was a member of the Union Army during the Civil War from 1861–1866 when he was honorably discharged after injuries and sickness.  He was first stationed at Fort Ridgely, Minnesota, where he took part in the Dakota Conflict, and then took part in the Vicksburg campaigns.  After he recovered from the war, he studied law in Minneapolis and then began to teach and/or act as principal at various schools and colleges from 1866–1880.   A.W. Williamson came to Augustana College as the chair of the Mathematics and Astronomy in 1880, following a conversion to Lutheranism. During his 26 years at Augustana, A.W. Williamson served as secretary of the general faculty and as vice president from 1887 to 1888. He was also very involved with the local community, serving as an alderman for the City Council of the seventh ward from 1887–1889 and was a supporter of Grace Lutheran Church in Moline, Illinois. He retired from Augustana in 1905 and passed away October 1, 1906, in Portland, Oregon due to years of failing health.  Williamson was the author of a number of publications, including The Descendants of the Robert and John Poage, Pioneer Settlers in Augusta County, VA; Is the Dakota Related to the Indo European Languages; and Plane and Solid Geometry on the Suggestive Method. 




The Williamson family papers date from 1854 to 1950 and measures 3 linear inches.  The collection is divided into the following series: Dakota Indians, genealogical research, personal papers, photographs, and biographical material

The Dakota Indians (1862-1914 and undated) includes information obtained from Indian prisoners at Camp McClellan about the Dakota Conflict, a letter about A.W. Williamson’s experience at Fort Ridgely, and parts of Thomas Williamson’s translation of the Bible into Dakota. 

The genealogical research materials (1854, 1950, and undated) contain genealogical notes on the Pogue-Williamson family taken by Thomas and A.W. Williamson and others, and correspondence about the publication of the Pogue family genealogy. 

The personal papers (1862-1907) include correspondence to and from A.W. Williamson, including letters from a number of family members, and materials relating to several of his jobs. 

Photographs (undated) includes several photographs of A.W. Williamson and members of the Pogue family. 

The biographical material (1880, 1906-1912 and undated) includes biographical sketches and remembrances written about A.W. Williamson after his death and information about the erection of a monument at his grave site and the pamphlet “A Memorial Discourse on Rev. Thomas S. Williamson” by Rev. S.R. Riggs.



Items are arranged chronologically within each series.



Thomas S. Williamson papers, 1839-1939, Minnesota Historical Society
Thomas Smith Williamson papers, 1858-1875, South Dakota State Historical Society
John Poage Williamson papers, 1866-1915, South Dakota State Historical Society
Stephen R.  Riggs and family papers, 1837-1988, Minnesota Historical Society
Alexander G. Huggins and family papers, 1833-1976, Minnesota Historical Society
Pond family papers, 1833-1970, Minnesota Historical Society




Dakota Indians (1862, 1914, and undated)
                Accounts of Dakota Conflict complied at Camp McClellan by Thomas S. Williamson, 1862               
                Letter regarding A.W. Williamson’s time at Ft. Ridgely, 1914
                Thomas S. Williamson translation of parts of the Bible into Dakota, undated
                “Their Traditions,” undated
Genealogical research (1854-1950 and undated)
                Pogue/Williamson family research notes, 1854-1908 and undated
                Correspondence about Pogue family genealogy publication, 1950
Personal papers (1862-1907)
                Personal Correspondence (1862-1907)
                Catalog for Academy of Central College, Ohio, 1869
                Methodist-Episcopal Church Call to Rev. Henry D. Bishop as Elder and Deacon, 1871-1905
                Augustana College Faculty Minutes, May 17, 1897
Photographs, undated
Biographical (1880-1912)
                Thomas S. Williamson, 1880
                A.W. Williamson, 1906-1912 and undated

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