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Pierre Gentieu papers

1858-1911
 Collection
Identifier: 0503

Abstract

Pierre A. Gentieu (1842-1930) was a photographer and a long-term employee of E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company, a chemical company more commonly referred to as the DuPont company. Gentieu's papers include correspondence with du Pont family members and coworkers, an account book of powder packed at the Hagley Yard (1858-1902), a record book with lists of explosions (1882-1909), time work sheets of powdermen during the 1890s, and a list of the principal events in the powder yards from 1882 to 1911.

Dates

  • 1858-1911

Creator

Extent

0.2 Linear Feet

Biographical Note

Pierre A. Gentieu (1842-1930) was a photographer and a long-term employee of E.I. du Pont de Nemours & Company, a chemical company more commonly referred to as the DuPont company. Gentieu was born in France in 1842. He immigrated to the United States in 1860. As a member of the local militia in New Orleans, Gentieu refused to swear allegiance to the Confederacy. In July of 1862 he enlisted with the 13th Regiment of Volunteers of Connecticut, which was formed in Louisiana.

He began working for DuPont in 1877 and remained a loyal employee until his retirement in 1911. In 1879, while on a lunch break, Gentieu painted the Lower Yard. The painting impressed his direct supervisor, Lammot du Pont (1831-1884), who requested that Gentieu photograph it so that various members of the du Pont family could have a copy. Shortly thereafter, Gentieu was promoted to making sieves for separating powder grains. In 1881, he was promoted to yard clerk, and then later store keeper at the mills.

Drawing and photography were among Gentieu’s favorite pastimes. The du Ponts allowed Gentieu to photograph the DuPont Co. plant, property, family members, and their homes. He created an invaluable photographic record of the company's Brandywine Mills at the turn of the twentieth century.

Scope and Contents

Pierre Gentieu's papers include an account book of powder packed at the Hagley Yard (1858-1902), a record book with lists of explosions (1882-1909), time work sheets of powdermen under his supervision during the 1890s, and a list of the principal events in the powder yards from 1882 to 1911. This document describes the work process to manufacture black powder at Hagley, as well as several accidents that took place during this period.

Existence and Location of Copies

View this collection online in the Hagley Digital Archives.

Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

Related Materials

Pierre Gentieu family archives (Accession 2019-206), Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department, Hagley Museum and Library.

Pierre A. Gentieu Brandywine River Valley photographs (Accession 1970.001), Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department, Hagley Museum and Library.

Pierre and Frederic A. Gentieu photographs (Accession 1989.280), Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department, Hagley Museum and Library.

Pierre Gentieu Hagley area photographs and DuPont Company ephemera (Accession 1995.261), Audiovisual Collections and Digital Initiatives Department, Hagley Museum and Library.

Frank P. Gentieu papers (Accession 717), Manuscripts and Archives Department, Hagley Museum and Library.

Pierre Gentieu family material (Accession 1101), Manuscripts and Archives Department, Hagley Museum and Library.

Language of Materials

English


Additional Information

Related Names

Creator

Finding Aid & Administrative Information

Title:
Pierre Gentieu papers
Status:
Author:
John Beverley Riggs
Date:
1970
Description rules:
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description:
English
Script of description:
Latin

Revision Statements

  • 2020: Laurie Sather

Repository Details

Repository Details

Part of the Manuscripts and Archives Repository

Contact:
PO Box 3630
Wilmington Delaware 19807 USA
302-658-2400