The contents of Stevenson's letter books are shown in some detail as they are not strictly chronological. Unfortunately the books for his period as Surveyor General are missing and a search for them in Fredericton yielded no result. One wonders if they ever existed, as notes indicating the tenor of the reply appear on some letters. Stevenson's correspondence is vast, considering that everything is written in his own hand and there is no indication that he ever employed a secretary. letters that one might have expected to find in the Crown Land Office remain among his private papers. Quite a number are addressed to people other than Stevenson.
Stevenson's legal papers indicate that he was interested only in civil law. However, his one venture into criminal law attracted a good deal of attention at the time. He defended his friend, Dr Robert Thomson of St George in a malpractice suit brought by John B Key. Stevenson kept his own extensive records of this case, and account of which appears in the New Brunswick Law Reports.
The financial difficulties of the time are well illustrated in the estate papers which in the estate papers which include records of transaction carried out on behalf of previously well-to-do persons forced to leave the Province. Other papers came to him through the Probate Court, including those of Wellington Hatch, clerk of the Charlotte County Court prior to 1864. These are of sufficient importance to be considered as a separate collection.
Another collection of B.R. Stevenson items include water-damaged letters which concern a project to consolidate the St. Andrews railway and port, Danish immigrants arriving in Saint John, and other business and legal affairs that B.R. Stevenson was involved with, as well as some of his personal correspondence. Correspondence between the Charlotte County Historical Society and the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick concerning this collection of letters is also included.
Stevenson, Benjamin R.