You are here


St. Catherine's Mine - Jack Wilkes near Charlotte, NC
St. Catherine's Gold Stamp & House
Dearest Jeanie: Highlights of the Wilkes-Smedberg Papers (1853-1913)

In late 1853, Charles Wilkes entered into an agreement with a firm in New York and established The Capps Gold Mine, Company. The property was part of the estate of his wife's uncle, James Renwick. It was decided that Jack Wilkes would manage the production at St. Catherine's Mill which was located just outside of Charlotte, North Carolina. At the time, the railroad finally reached what was then a small town with dirt roads that became impassable in bad weather. Jack took on the task of preparing the residence on the property for his new bride. He and Jane exchanged numerous letters about what they would need as well as instructions from Jeanie on how they house should be laid out for more convenience. The letters during this time are full of hope and love.

St. Catherine's Mill - This drawing was prepared by Jack Wilkes and included in a letter to Jeanie.

October 8, 1853 - Jack to Jeanie

February 26, 1854 - Jack to Jeanie