This website uses cookies. Learn more via our web privacy policy. For questions, please email
Randolph L. Mott Papers (MC289) - Columbus State University

Archives and Special Collections

Randolph L. Mott Papers (MC289)

Biographical Note

Randolph Lawler Mott was born on August 9, 1799 in Fauquier County, Virginia. In his youth, he apprenticed as a tailor in North Carolina and was acquainted with Andrew Johnson, the future president, who was similarly employed. Mott moved to Augusta, Georgia in 1819, then to Milledgeville where he met and married Mary Jeter in 1830 . Mary's sister Julia married John L. Mustain the next year. The two brothers-in-law formed a business partnership that lasted many decades.

The Motts and the Mustains moved to Macon where the partners ran the Hotel Washington. Mustain also owned the Macon Race Course. Both were sold and the partners went into the stagecoach business. Mott moved to Columbus in 1843 and took over all the business operations when Mustain was elected to the state legislature in 1845. Mott became involved in the railroad business first as a stockholder and then as a director of the Muscogee Railroad Company. Mott also began buying real estate in and around Columbus at this time.

Mott's business interests were many and varied. He purchased shares in the Winter's Palace Mills in 1857 and owned over 80% of it, becoming its president in 1859. He owned a large plantation with slaves in Russell County, Alabama. The 1860 census listed him as a planter.

Although a slave owner, he was also a Unionist when the civil war broke out. In April 1865, he welcomed Gen James H. Wilson into his home after Columbus was captured.

After the Civil War, Mott continued in business and civic affairs, becoming mayor pro tem of Columbus and a trustee of the Freedman's Bureau. He also was a trustee of the insane asylum in Milledgeville. Because of this he was in Atlanta in July of 1881 for a trustee meeting where he fell in front of a train at the station and was killed. He is buried in Linwood Cemetery.

Scope and Content

This collection consists of one box of 22 folders containing legal papers, receipts, bills of sale, mortgages from R.L. Mott's properties, legal and financial transactions and an inventory of his home at his death. 1852-1904 1 box (.3 l.f.)


The items in this collection are part of a donation by Katherine Jordan Waddell in 2013.

Note to Researchers

Forl a layout of the the garden of the Mott House see the Joseph Mahan Papers (MC 32), Series 1, Box 6, Folder 26

Permission to Publish

Permission to publish material from the Randolph L. Mott Collection must be obtained from the Columbus State University Archives. Use of the following credit line for publication or exhibit is required.

Randolph L. Mott Collection, MC 289 Columbus state University Archives Columbus State University Columbus, Georgia

Box and Folder List

Box 1

Holdings in this box contain papers, receipts and transactions of Randolph L. Mott.

  • Folder 1: Checks (4) to agent J.C. Plant and L.G. Bowers, 1862
  • Folder 2: Checks and papers paid by R. L. Mott for F. J Mott, 1881
  • Folder 3: Checks written on “Agency of the Marine Bank of Georgia” by R. L. Mott, J.E. Appler, agent, October, 1861-March, 1862
  • Folder 4: Checks written on Chattahoochee National Bank by R.L. Mott to various people, 1875-1881
  • Folder 5: Estate of James Chapman, Russell County, Alabama, 1873
  • Folder 6: H.H. Epping, Columbus, Georgia, Administrator of R.L. Mott's estate. Includes inventory of R. L. Mott's residence
  • Folder 7: H.H. Epping obituary, news article, August 1, 1904
  • Folder 8: Hargraves vs. R.L. Mott and Davis Mulford, 1856
  • Folder 9: Indemnity bond of R.J. Moses and Indenture between Mott and Clayton: both in same envelope
  • Folder 10: Indenture between R.L. Mott and Timothy Markham, 1852
  • Folder 11: Indian Spring, Georgia property and the Varner family correspondence, 1858-1867
  • Folder 12: Mobile and Girard Railroad
  • Folder 13: Mortgage deeds to R. L. Mott lot 373, May 1858 and Russell County, Alabama, 1864
  • Folder 14: Mrs. John Mott: receipts from dry goods store, 1873
  • Folder 15: Mulford genealogy- handwritten, from Davis Mulford marrying Louisa V. Mott
  • Folder 16: Probate Court of Lee County, Alabama settlement of estate R.L. Mott, 1883
  • Folder 17: Randolph L. Mott, contents of leather wallet; receipts, letters, bills of sale
  • Folder 18: Receipt for cotton stored in Savannah, Edward Padelford, Savannah, 1865
  • Folder 19: Rock Island Paper Mill mortgage
  • Folder 20: Sale of Cleghorn Range, R.L. Mott to Geo. W. Winter, July, 1858
  • Folder 21: Steamer River Bride and owners, 1862-1863
  • Folder 22: Winter's Palace Mills, Columbus, Georgia and R.L. Mott

Ask Cody

Ask Cody