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James W. Steele Papers

Creator: Steele, James W. (James William), 1840-1905

Date: 1863 - 1906

Level of Description: Coll./Record Group

Material Type: Manuscripts

Call Number: Manuscripts Collection 508

Unit ID: 40508

Biographical sketch: James William Steele was born in Grandview, Sangamon County, Illinois on 9 November 1840. Sometime during his childhood his parents moved to Kansas, but Steele returned east to finish his schooling in Indiana. When war broke out in 1861, he joined the army with the rest of his class, joining the 38th Indiana Infantry Volunteers, Co. H out of New Albany. After receiving a major wound and being discharged from the 38th Indiana Infantry, Steele volunteered again and was commissioned as a second lieutenant with the 43rd Regiment of U.S. Colored Troops, receiving another wound.

Returning to Topeka after the war, Steele took up the study of law. In 1866 he married Augusta Butterfield, and he spent some time in New Mexico and Arizona as a captain in the U.S. Cavalry. He helped establish the Kansas Magazine in 1871 and was its editor by 1873. From 1874 to 1877, Steele served as consul at the Matanzas, Cuba consulate. Sometime thereafter he moved to Chicago, Illinois, editing a magazine until his death there in 1905. In his writings he sometimes signed himself as Deane Monahan.

Abstract: The collection includes documents from Steele's service with the Army during the Civil War, including pension paperwork, as well as correspondence and materials from his time with the Matanzas, Cuba consulate. Also in the collection are certificates regarding Steele's legal work in Kansas and some miscellaneous outgoing correspondence.

Space Required/Quantity: .25 cubic feet (1 box)

Title (Main title): James W. Steele Papers

Scope and Content


Locator Contents

Index Terms


    United States. Army. Indiana Infantry Regiment, 38th (1861-1865)
    United States. Army. Infantry. Colored Infantry Regiment, 43rd (1864-1865)
    Matanzas (Cuba)
    United States -- History -- 1861-1865
    Steele, James W. (James William), 1840-1905
    Diplomatic and consular service, American -- Cuba
    Lawyers -- Kansas

Creators and Contributors