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A scrapbook compiled by Major Erastus W. Everson, an agent of the Freedmen’s Bureau, included accounts and observations made while on assignment as well as special orders mandated to guide his duties. Everson recorded observations on the conditions of freed persons, the return of refugees and enslavers, starvation, crimes, contract disputes, and violent eruptions between Black and White citizens. Everson’s scrapbook sheds light on the work of the Freedmen’s Bureau in Charleston, James Island, Mount Pleasant, Greenville, Columbia, Newberry, Anderson, as well as the sea islands of Folly, Morris, and Wadmalaw.

Erastus Everson papers, courtesy of the South Carolina Historical Society

This map of the state of South Carolina illustrates the locations of Freedmen’s Bureau field offices and jurisdiction in the post-emancipation era.