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B. S. Hile Correspondence

Identifier: MS Group 227

Scope and Content

The majority of the B. S. Hile letters were written to his wife, and a few were written to his son and daughter. The letters are dated from August 1861 to July 1862. In the earliest letter, Hile is still in New York preparing to travel to Cuba and he briefly discusses troop movement during the U.S. Civil War. After that, all of the letters are from Havana, Cuba. He discusses daily happenings and describes people, the land, disease, food, and drinks. He promises to send sugar, expressing amazement at its low price and availability. He discusses his employment at the Gas Works, which was part of Piena Del Ray Gas Co. He describes laying pipe underneath streets to connect to house lights and street lamps. He also discusses contracts for that type of work in Mexico. In earlier letters he discusses the possibility of his own business, possibly as a dry goods store owner. The letters provide information about life in Havana in the 1860s, from the perspective of an American living in Cuba. All of the letters have been transcribed.


  • Creation: 1861-1862



The collection is open for research.


0.2 Linear feet (1 box)

Language of Materials



Letters written by B. S. Hile to his family while he is living and employed in Havana, Cuba.

Physical Location

University of Florida Smathers Library Building

Alternate Form of Finding Aid

This guide is available in Spanish at

Alternate Form of Material

Digital reproductions of items in the Hile collection are available online via the University of Florida Digital Collections (UFDC). Please read the Permissions for Use statement for information on copyright, fair use, and use of UFDC digital objects.

A Guide to the B. S. Hile Correspondence
Finding aid created by Dept. Staff
August 2007
Description rules
Finding Aid Prepared Using Dacs
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is written in English.

Repository Details

Part of the Special and Area Studies Collections, George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida Repository

George A. Smathers Libraries
PO Box 117005
Gainesville Florida 32611-7005 United States of America