1400 Washington AveAlbanyNY
1400 Washington AveAlbanyNY

William Titus Papers


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The William Titus Papers collection contains a wide range of activities generally focusing on Titus' personal businesses including land ownership and his representation of clients before the US War Department's Pension Office. The collection also contains personal correspondence as well as some records from his role as warden of the Auburn Prison.


Titus, William
Date Coverage:
0.20 cubic ft. (about 0.20 boxes)

William Titus Esq. was born in Sempronius, N.Y. in 1803. Titus served many roles in the Cayuga County region, both as a businessman and public servant. He acted as warden of Auburn Prison from 1852 to 1854. He also worked as postmaster of Hannibal Centre, N.Y. and Auburn, N.Y. Titus was active in politics in Cayuga County and served as a New York State Assemblyman in 1845. Politically, he was known as a Barnburner Democrat. He owned two mills: one in Hannibal Centre, N.Y. and the other in Moravia, N.Y. He was also an officer of the Southern Central Railroad.

The papers of William Titus, Esq. span the years 1828 to 1914. The bulk of the collection, however, dates from the years 1837 to 1877. The collection consist of business, legal and personal correspondence, court and legal records, receipts, lists and advertising circulars. Much of the material relates to Titus’ private business ventures into land ownership, his work as a lawyer, representing clients in dealings with the United States War Department’s Pension Office during the late 1830’s and early 1840’s. Materials include government records explaining policies of pension distribution, numerous land deeds representing the transfer of property to Titus or indicate the ownership of other people. In addition, the collection contains some documents listing election results and correspondence addressing voting support from 1853 and 1867. Two documents address Titus as postmaster in Hannibal Centre, N.Y. in 1862 and Auburn, N.Y. in 1866.

There is correspondence and other materials relating to Titus’ role as warden of Auburn Prison from 1852-1854, as well as of correspondence between Titus and New York State’s Executive Branch regarding prisoners and a roster of prison guards and keepers and a description of events and requests occurring within Auburn Prison on unspecified dates. There is also personal correspondence including one from Titus’ sister, Betsy A. Titus and another from a nephew, signed Richard.

The collection is organized by the format of the records

All items in this manuscript group were transferred to the University Libraries, M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives, in 1970 from Knoblauch’s.

Processed by: Julia Hughes

Collection record created by: This finding aid was produced using ArchivesSpace on

Published: 2018-03-06 09:40:07 -0500

Encoded in EAD by Blair Williams, 2014

Archival materials can be view in-person during business hours in our reading room, located on the top floor of the Science Library on the Uptown Campus.

We can also deliver digital scans for remote research for a fee.

Access to this record group is unrestricted.

Copyright Statement

The researcher assumes full responsibility for conforming with the laws of copyright. Whenever possible, the M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives will provide information about copyright owners and other restrictions, but the legal determination ultimately rests with the researcher. Requests for permission to publish material from this collection should be discussed with the Head of Special Collections and Archives.

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Identification of specific item, series, box, folder, William Titus Papers, 1828-1914. M.E. Grenander Department of Special Collections and Archives, University Libraries, University at Albany, State University of New York (hereafter referred to as [shortened name]).

Contents of Collection



1 1Auburn Prison1852-1854


1 2Legal, Political and Civil Service Work1838-1868


1 3Personal Correspondence1853-1868


1 4Court Documents1828-1877


1 5Private Business Papers1841-1914