Skip to main content

Emma Stevenson Black Collection

Identifier: MC 759

Scope and Content Note

The collection represents a sampling of papers from all the named families which Mrs. Black saved over the years. Dr. Homer C. Wheeler, Emma's cousin, had possession of some of the papers from 1984 to 1986, during which time he transcribed a few of the letters and made identifying notations about some others. Many of the correspondents and creators of other documents are related to either John Foster Wheeler or John Carnall, and a copy of a privately published genealogy book, This is the Story of John Foster Wheeler, has been retained with the printed materials in series 2 as an integral part of the collection to aid in identifying familial relationships. Other genealogical notes have been placed in Literary Productions, series 4. All of the materials have been arranged chronologically and by document type


  • Creation: 1829-1986


Language of Materials

Materials are in English.

Access Information

Please call (479) 575-8444 or email at least two weeks in advance of your arrival to ensure availability of the materials.

Use Information

RESTRICTIONS: Fragile originals, replaced by positive photocopies throughout the collection, have been indicated in the appropriate areas of this finding aid.

No Interlibrary Loan.

Standard Federal Copyright Laws Apply (U.S. Title 17).

Biographical Note

John Foster Wheeler (1808-1880) and John Carnall (1818-1891) were early pioneers of Arkansas and Oklahoma. Wheeler, born and educated in Kentucky, moved as a young man to Georgia to become a printer for the Cherokee Nation. When the tribe removed to Oklahoma in the 1830s, he followed them and continued acting as a printer at the new press established at Park Hill. Following a wave of violence between the Ridge and Ross factions of the tribe in 1839, Wheeler moved to Fort Smith, Arkansas, where he established several newspapers. In 1829 Wheeler married Nancy Paschal Watie, a sister of Stand Watie and Elias Boudinot, and the couple had eight children, one of whom was William Watie Wheeler (1848-1915), a cattle rancher in Sallisaw, Oklahoma, and Fort Smith Chief of Police from 1874-1880 and 1890-1892.

John Carnall was a teacher, newspaperman, and real estate broker in nineteenth century Fort Smith, Arkansas. He was a business associate of John Foster Wheeler, operating a newspaper with him in 1871 called the Western Independent. Later Carnall, along with his son, John Henry Carnall, started their own newspaper, the Fort Smith Elevator. Carnall married Frances Turner in 1843, and the couple had nine children, among whom were John Henry Carnall and Emma Columbia Carnall. Emma married William Watie Wheeler in Fort Smith in 1868. William and Emma Wheeler were pioneer residents of Sallisaw, Oklahoma, and had nine children. Their daughter Daisy married Edgar Stevenson in 1893, and they, too, made their home in Sallisaw. The Stevenson's second eldest child, Emma Wheeler Stevenson Black, is the donor of this collection. Another Carnall descendent of note, Ella Howison Carnall (?-1894), was a teacher at the Arkansas Industrial University at Fayetteville, Arkansas, in the 1890s. Carnall Hall on campus is named for her.


0.25 Linear Feet (1 Box)

Arrangement of the Papers

Material is arranged and described in six series:

  1. Correspondence
  2. Printed Materials
  3. Financial Documents
  4. Legal Documents
  5. Literary Productions
  6. Photographs

Acquisition Information

Correspondence, literary productions, photographs, legal and financial documents pertaining to the Wheeler, Carnall, and Stevenson families of Arkansas and Oklahoma were donated to Special Collections by Emma Stevenson Black of Sallisaw, Oklahoma, on February 18, 1988.

Processing Information

Processed by Kim Allen Scott, Special Collections Division, University of Arkansas Libraries, Fayetteville, Arkansas, in March, 1988.

Emma Stevenson Black Collection
Kim Allen Scott
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Finding aid is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Special Collections Department Repository

University of Arkansas Libraries
365 N. McIlroy Avenue
Fayetteville AR 72701 United States
(479) 575-8444