James Wood Colt Papers

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James Wood Colt papers
Creator: Colt, James Wood, 1858-1941
Call Number: A.C73
Dates: 1908-1923
Physical Description: 1 box
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Table of Contents:

Biographical/Historical Note
Scope and Content
Subject(s)
Immediate Source of Acquisition
Access
Use
Citation
Content List
Series I: Arghana copper mines, 1908-1911
Series II: Ottoman-American Development Company, 1910-1923
Series III: Spanish rifles, 1915
Series IV: Russia, 1917
Collection Overview
Title: James Wood Colt papers
Creator: Colt, James Wood, 1858-1941
Call Number: A.C73
Dates: 1908-1923
Physical Description: 1 box
Language(s): Materials are in English
Repository: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester

Biographical/Historical Note
James Wood Colt was born in 1858 in Geneseo, New York. He moved to St. Paul, Minnesota at age 21, and soon became a partner of Shepard, Selmes and Company, a contracting firm specializing in railroad construction. Colt was in charge of construction of parts of the Great Northern Railway, the Northern Pacific Railroad, and the Chicago, Milwaukee, St. Paul & Pacific Railroad for Shepard, Selmes & Co. Later, Colt oversaw construction on the Chicago & Great Western Railroad for A.B. Stickney, and as vice president of MacArthur Brothers oversaw construction on parts of the Western Maryland Railroad system.

In 1908, Colt took his railroad expertise to Turkey, where he planned and began construction of a line from Constantinople through Asia Minor to Baghdad. This railroad aroused international curiosity, especially in Germany, where Kaiser William II attempted to tie the railroad into his proposed "Berlin to Baghdad Railway". The first railway proposal was rejected by the Turkish government in 1911, although it later succeeded under a modified version. At the same time, Colt also helped to begin modern development of the legendary Arghana Copper Mines in Asia Minor, using the mining concessions to help fund the railway. These various concerns were loosely tied together under a corporation called the Ottoman-American Development Company.

Colt spent much of the next decade traveling through Europe on railway business, as well as pursuing independent financial ventures. He also was a part of a U.S. Government Railway Commission; under their auspices, he traveled to Russia in 1917 to report on the effect of the Revolution. When he returned to the United States, he moved to Santa Barbara, California until his retirement. Colt was prominent in horse racing circles; he raced horses in America, England and France, and his horses won the American Grand Steeplechase three times. Colt moved back to Geneseo in 1938 and died in 1941.

Scope and Content
The papers in the Collection fall into four categories. The first set relates to the development of the Arghana Copper Mines between 1908 and 1911. The second set is mainly correspondence written between 1911 and 1923 concerning the Ottoman-American Development Company. These papers deal with the Company's original (rejected) railway and mining proposals as well as the revival of the Company in 1922-1923 under General Goethals. The third set of papers is a series of correspondence and telegrams concerning a 1915 arms deal where Colt acted as an agent to sell Spanish Mauser rifles to the Russian military via a neutral government. The final set of papers is a series of eyewitness accounts and business/resource evaluations of Russia during the 1917 Revolution. All the papers in the collection are in English, with the exception of some of the Ottoman-American Development Co. letters, which are in French, and a few of the telegrams concerning the Spanish arms deal, which are in French on Italian forms. Approximately half the collection (papers relating to Turkey) were microfilmed in 1966 for the Turkish Historical Society; these papers also have penciled numbers in their upper right-hand corner, which corresponds to the microfilm list included in this register.

Subject(s):
Turkey
Soviet Union
Russia
Railroads
Mines and mineral resources
Revolution (Soviet Union : 1917-1921)
World War (1914-1918)
Correspondence
Colt, James Wood, 1858-1941
Ottoman-American Development Company
Immediate Source of Acquisition
The papers were a gift of Sylvia Colt, Henry Francis Colt and Charles Cary Colt, August 1947.Access
The James Wood Colt papers is open for research use. Researchers are advised to contact Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation prior to visiting. Upon arrival, researchers will also be asked to fill out a registration form and provide photo identification.Use
Reproductions are made upon request but can be subject to restrictions. Permission to publish materials from the collection must currently be requested. Please note that some materials may be copyrighted or restricted. It is the researcher's obligation to determine and satisfy copyright or other case restrictions when publishing or otherwise distributing materials found in the collections. For more information contact rarebks@library.rochester.eduCitation
[Item title, item date], James Wood Colt papers, A.C73, Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
Administrative Information
Author: Finding aid prepared by Rare Books and Special Collections staff
Publisher: Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
Address:
Rush Rhees Library
Second Floor, Room 225
Rochester, NY 14627-0055
rarebks@library.rochester.edu
URL:


Content List
Series I: Arghana copper mines, 1908-1911
Box 1, Folder 1Report of the economic conditions of the interior of Asia Minor from investigations made during a recent journey there, August 20, 1908
Box 1, Folder 1Confidential report on the copper mines of Arghana-Maden (Turkey), June 1906
Box 1, Folder 1Confidential report on the copper mines of Arghana-Maden (Turkey), June 1906
Photocopy of report

Box 1, Folder 1Engineering Journal of J.W. Colt, survey of possible rail line from Harpout to Diabekr
Box 1, Folder 1Proposal for construction and operation of a railroad line (Cahier des Charges) in Turkey
Box 1, Folder 1Proposal for construction and operation of a railroad line (Cahier des Charges) in Turkey
Carbon copy with some hand-written corrections

Box 1, Folder 1Notes on the Arghana Copper Mines, Vilayet of Diabekr, Asia Minor, by M.E. Coulant, State Engineer of Mines
Series II: Ottoman-American Development Company, 1910-1923
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from Arthur Edwin Harper to J.W. Colt, with report of roadbed route from Mezrah (Mamouret-Ul-Aziz) to Sivas, September 9, 1910
Box 1, Folder 2Report of A. Kieschke, mining engineer, September 21, 1910
Box 1, Folder 2Notes by J.W. Colt while traveling through Asia Minor, 1910
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from G. Pasdermadjian to J.W. Colt, memorandum attached, June 11, 1912
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from G. Pasdermadjian to J.R. Carter, memorandum attached, June 12, 1912
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from G. Pasdermadjian to J.R. Carter, June 25, 1912
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from C.M. Chester, Jr. to J.W. Colt, September 11, 1912
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from J.W. Colt to C.M. Chester, Jr., November 4, 1922
Carbon copy

Box 1, Folder 2Letter from C.M. Chester, Jr. to J.W. Colt, Telegram from C.M. Chester, Jr. to J.W. Colt, attached, November 17, 1922
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from C.M. Chester, Jr. to J.W. Colt, December 29, 1922
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from C.M. Chester, Jr. to J.W. Colt, January 16, 1923
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from F.C. Hitchcock to C.M. Chester, Jr., September 1, 1923
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from F.C. Hitchcock to J.W. Colt, September 1, 1923
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from Arthur Chester to J.W. Colt, September 10, 1923
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from Arthur Chester to Leonid, enclosed in letter from Arthur Chester to J.W. Colt, September 10, 1923
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from C.W. Chester, Jr. to J.W. Colt, September 10, 1923
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from J.W. Colt to Henry F. Colt, September 18, 1923
Box 1, Folder 2Letter from J.W. Colt to C.M. Chester, September 19, 1923
Box 1, Folder 2"The Chester Project -- The Postponement," editorial from Le Jeune Turc, July 3, 1911
Carbon typescript copy

Box 1, Folder 2Mosul Oil Report
Box 1, Folder 2Copy of preliminary contract for Ottoman-American Company
With notations in Colt's hand

Box 1, Folder 2Copy of convention for Ottoman-American Company
Box 1, Folder 2Copy of convention for Ottoman-American Company
With notations in Colt's hand

Box 1, Folder 2Copy of convention for Ottoman-American Company
With notations in Colt's hand (red ink)

Box 1, Folder 2Copy of convention for Ottoman-American Company
Final draft, combining corrections of items listed above

Box 1, Folder 2Report on the Ottoman-American Development Company, by J.W. Colt
Box 1, Folder 2Report on Ottoman-American Development Company, by J.W. Colt, October 1, 1910
Box 1, Folder 2Memoir re: Ottoman-American Development Company, by J.W. Colt
Draft with some corrections

Box 1, Folder 2Project of a railway system in Anatolia with mining concessions
Historical account of the project, by G. Pasdermadjian

Series III: Spanish rifles, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Memo of Interview Between J.W. Colt and the Grand Duke Michael at 3 Whitehall Court, Noon Today, July 24, 1915
Carbon copy with corrections in Colt's hand

Box 1, Folder 3Note from Colt to General Ruban of the Russian Commission, July 28, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Telegram from Charles H. Whiting to J.W. Colt, [August 9, 1915]
Box 1, Folder 3Telegram from J.W. Colt to Gaston, August 10, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Telegram from Charles H. Whiting to J.W. Colt, [August 13, 1915]
Box 1, Folder 3Telegram from J.W. Colt to Charles H. Whiting, August 13, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Telegram from Gaston to J.W. Colt, [August 15, 1915]
Box 1, Folder 3Letter from J.W. Colt to Charles H. Whiting, August 16, 1915
Carbon copy

Box 1, Folder 3Letter from J.W. Colt to F.B. Locker, August 20, 1915
Carbon copy

Box 1, Folder 3Letter from G. Ward Price to J.W. Colt, August 31, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Telegram from G. Ward Price to J.W. Colt, [September 10, 1915]
Box 1, Folder 3Letter from G. Ward Price to J.W. Colt, October 3, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Copy of letter from Morrice A. Edwards to G. Ward Price, October 7, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Letter from G. Ward Price to J.W. Colt, with clipping about the Argana Mine attached, October 12, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Letter from J.W. Colt to G. Ward Price, October 20, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Telegram from ______ MacArthur to J.W. Colt, [December 10, 1915]
Box 1, Folder 3Letter from Morrice Edwards to J.W. Colt, December 16, 1915
Box 1, Folder 3Typescript of cablegram from Gaston to [Colt], undated
Box 1, Folder 3Typescript of cablegram from Gaston to [Colt], undated
Photocopy

Box 1, Folder 3Contract between P.B. Locker and J.W. Colt, [1915]
Box 1, Folder 3Letter from [Colt] establishing means to purchase rifles, [1915]
Series IV: Russia, 1917
Box 1, Folder 4Report by J.W. Colt on supplying Russia with troop and supplies, November 16, 1917
Box 1, Folder 4Report by J.W. Colt on supplying Russia with troop and supplies, November 29, 1917
Photocopy

Box 1, Folder 4Record of trip to Murman, June 19-July 1, 1917
Undated composition

Box 1, Folder 4Private News Letter (Translation from Russian Newspapers), published by H. Custis Vezey
Three copies: All are attached by a note from Francis B. Colt to ______ Remington dated May 10, [1917]. The issues of Private News Letter are for 4 (O.S.)/17 March 1917, No. 533; 5 (O.S.)/18 March 1917, [No. 534]--missing page 1; and 2 (O.S.)/15 March 1917, No. 531



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