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A. Walton White Evans Family papers



Scope and Contents

Biographical Note

Administrative Information

Detailed Description

A. Walton White Evans Papers

Anna Zimmerman Evans

Evans & Zimmerman Family Letters

Anthony White Papers

Anthony Walton White Papers



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A. Walton White Evans Family papers, 1709-1891

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Collection Overview

Title: A. Walton White Evans Family papers, 1709-1891Add to your cart.

Primary Creator: Evans, A. Walton White (1817-1886)

Extent: 12.0 Linear Feet


The collection is arranged in six series.

Series I. A. Walton White Evans Papers. A. Letters Received (arranged alphabetically), B. Letters Sent (arranged chronologically), C. Letters Sent to Family (arranged alphabetically), D. Writings which is further divided into two sub-sub series, 1. Research Notes and Drafts (arranged alphabetically) and 2. Published Letters and Articles (arranged chronologically), E. Journals (arranged chronologically), F. Income Books (arranged chronologically) and G. Miscellaneous (arranged alphabetically).

Series II. Anna Zimmerman Evans Papers. A. Letters Received (arranged alphabetically)  and B. Letters Sent (arranged alphabetically by recipient).

Series III. Evans and Zimmerman Family Letters A. Eliza M. Evans, B. Thomas M. Evans, C. Anita A. Evans, D. Sarah Zimmerman, E. John C. Zimmerman.

Series IV. Anthony White Papers (arranged by material).

Series V. Anthony Walton White Papers (arranged chronologically).

Series VI. Photographs (arranged by form).

Languages: English

Collection processed by: A. Rupert


This collection documents the professional life of civil engineer  A. Walton White Evans. It also includes personal correspondence and family papers.

Scope and Contents of the Materials

The bulk of the A. Walton White Evans Family papers (MC 03) collection documents the professional life of civil engineer A. Walton White Evans. Correspondence, journals, reports and articles provide documentation of Evans' work as a civil engineer and a consultant on railroad projects from 1838 to 1886.  Family correspondence is dated primarily during the time of Evans' work in Chile and Peru from 1850 to 1860. His letters to his wife Anna are included in a series of her correspondence.The collection also contains a small amount of correspondence between Evans' parents Eliza and Thomas (1800-1815) and between Anna's parents Sarah and John Zimmerman (1841-1850).  Correspondence and records from A. Walton White Evans' grandfather Anthony Walton White and his great-grandfather Anthony White were apparently collected by Walton who had a particular interest in their careers.

Biographical Note

Anthony Walton White Evans was born in New Brunswick, NJ October 31, 1817, the son of Thomas M. Evans and Eliza M. White. His maternal grandfather was Brigadier General Anthony Walton White, a Revolutionary War veteran. Walton Evans (he dropped the Anthony early in life) attended local schools before entering the Rensselaer Institute in 1834.

Leaving the Institute in October 1836, he served as an assistant engineer on the Erie Canal. In 1845 he became an assistant to Allan Campbell in the construction of the New York and Harlem Railroad extension to Albany. The following year he became the resident engineer on the job but resigned in 1850 to join Campbell in building the Copiapo Railroad in Chile. Evans completed the road in 1853 after Campbell's departure. Evans served as Chief Engineer for the construction of the Arica and Tacna Railroad in Peru from 1853 to 1856.

Evans returned to the United States and married Anna Zimmerman on June 24, 1856. The Southern Railroad. That line, extending fifty miles south of Santiago, was finished in 1860. Evans gained a reputation for the bridges he designed to cross the numerous swift streams crossed by the railroad.

After his return to New York in 1860 Evans made extensive studies of public works and opened an office as a consulting engineer. He designed the Varrugas Viaduct on the Luna & Oroya Railroad and acted as agent for a number of foreign railways to purchase equipment and recruit staff. In his railroad work he championed the use of American locomotives and cars which he believed superior to those built elsewhere. In 1862-1864 he served as engineer of the defenses of the port of New York and in the latter year became President of the United States Petroleum Company. He also was President of the Spuyten Duyvil Rolling Mill.

Very interested in the projected inter-oceanic canal through Central America, he participated in the 1879 International Congress on the Canal at Paris. Evans collected books, works of art, and artifacts at his estate, Sans Souci, in New Rochelle, NY. He gave extensive collections to the Smithsonian Institution before his death on November 28, 1886.

Administrative Information

Repository: Institute Archives and Special Collections

Preferred Citation: A. Walton White Evans papers, MC 03. Institute Archives and Special Collections, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy, NY.

Box and Folder Listing

Browse by Series:

[Series I: A. Walton White Evans Papers],
[Series II: Anna Zimmerman Evans],
[Series III: Evans & Zimmerman Family Letters],
[Series IV: Anthony White Papers],
[Series V: Anthony Walton White Papers],
[Series VI: Photographs],
[Series VII: Oversize],

Series VII: OversizeAdd to your cart.
Drawer 16Add to your cart.
Folder 1: San Souci, 1st Floor PlansAdd to your cart.
Ground plan of San Souci, Residence of W.W. Evans near New Rochelle, New York. Five floor plans, one original and four are copies of tracings on blue proces paper.
Folder 2: Legal DocumentsAdd to your cart.
Item 1: Indenture between Benjamin Biles Esq., High Sherriff of Huntington County, New Jersey and Anthony White of New Brunswick, 1756Add to your cart.
Item 2: Indenture between Peter Nevius, David Nevius, and Luyeas Schenck, loceutors of the Last Will and Testament  of Johannes Nevius., July 25, 1752Add to your cart.
Item 3: Indenture, James Alexander and Robert Hunter to W. Anthony White, Sept. 7, 1769Add to your cart.
Item 4: Indenture, Henry Longfield, City of New Brunswick, Jan. 14, 1742Add to your cart.
Folder 3: Legal DocumentsAdd to your cart.
Item 1: Indenture between Hendricus Kuypco and Anthony White, March 7, 1765Add to your cart.
Item 2: Indenture between William Van Horne and Anthony White, May 1, 1765Add to your cart.
Item 3: Indenture between Reverand Gilbert Tennant and Cornelia Tennant of Philadelphia, May 11, 1752Add to your cart.

Browse by Series:

[Series I: A. Walton White Evans Papers],
[Series II: Anna Zimmerman Evans],
[Series III: Evans & Zimmerman Family Letters],
[Series IV: Anthony White Papers],
[Series V: Anthony Walton White Papers],
[Series VI: Photographs],
[Series VII: Oversize],

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