Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library,
Robert W. Woodruff Library
Atlanta, GA 30322
.75 linear ft. (ca. 502 pieces and 1 reel of microfilm).
Alexander Means, clergyman, inventor, and poet was born in Statesville, North Carolina, on 6 February 1801, married S.A.E. Winston on 25 December 1827, and died in Oxford, Georgia, on 5 June 1883. Licensed to preach in the Methodist Church in 1828, Means was also the first rector (1834-1838), professor of natural science (1838-1846), and president (1854-1855) of Emory College; president of Masonic Female College in Covington, Georgia (1853); lecturer in chemistry at Augusta Medical College (1840-1860) and Atlanta Medical College, (1855-1868), where he demonstrated incandescent electrical lighting equipment in 1857. He was the Confederacy's official inspector of munitions during the Civil War and examining chemist for the State of Georgia (1868-1877) as well as a member of various scientific organizations, and the author of sermons, addresses, and verse. Correspondence, poems, reviews, diaries, photocopeis, biographies, clippings, a photograph, a family Bible, and a portrait, relating to the life and career of Alexander Means or to his family. Correspondence includes originals and typed copies; a journal of Minnie E. Capers, Means' grandaughter, and letters of Frances Means are photocopied; the poems and diaries for 1861, 1873, 1874, and 1879 are by Alexander Means; clippings and biographies relate to him; reviews are of Ross McLean's book publication of Means's 1861 diary; the photograph is of electric lighting equipment used by Means; and the portrait of Means is by Lewis Gregg. A Means family recipe book and family Bible complete the collection. Means diary, Jan 1875-Jan 1876, available on microfilm only. Original Means diary, Jan 1875-Jan 1876, in private hands, 1964. Journal of Minnie Eloise Capers, ca. 1877-1885, available in photocopy only. Original journal of Minnie Eloise Capers, ca. 1877-1885, in the Winthrop College Archives, Rock Hill, South Carolina. Records and other items related to Alexander Means's service as president of Emory College are located in the Emory Archives.