S. A. Dorsett Papers, 1918-1958

KC Manuscript Collection 548


Title: S.A. Dorsett Papers

Collection Number: Kingsport Community Manuscript Collection (KCMC) #548

Physical Description: 2 boxes, 1 linear foot

Creator: S.A. Dorsett

Repository: Archives of the City of Kingsport



Provenance: The S. A. Dorsett Papers collection was donated to the Archives of the City of Kingsport by Mike Morison in August, 2012.

Access/Restrictions: There are no restrictions on use of this collection for research purposes. The researcher assumes full responsibility for observing all copyright, property, and libel laws as they apply.

Processed by: This collection was processed by Brianne Wright and Kari Roueche and opened for research in April 2013.



This collection should be cited as:


S. A. Dorsett Papers, 1918-1958. KC Manuscript Collection 548, Archives of the City of Kingsport, Tennessee.




Stephen Asbury Dorsett was born in North Carolina on November 24, 1862. He was one of four children born to William F. and Lydia Caroline Dorsett. He was first married to Hattie Higgins in 1884 in North Carolina. The couple had four children together; Otho, Claire, Walker, and Jackson. Hattie passed away in 1911. Tax records show Dorsett and his second wife Josephine English Dorsett residing in Kingsport as early as 1918. Stephen’s brother Franklin Arthur Dorsett had ties to Greensboro, NC where he owned a bicycle and repair shop called F. A. Dorsett, Son, & Co. Dorsett kept in close contact with his brother as is reflected in the frequent correspondence between them.


In Kingsport, S. A. Dorsett pursued several business interests in Kingsport. He owned rental properties, a service station on Hillcrest, and we worked as a freight agent for both American Railway Express and Clinchfield Railroad Company. He was also a founder of the Kingsport Industrial Finance Corporation and served as its vice-president.


In the community, S.A. Dorsett was a charter member of the Kingsport Kiwanis Club, a member of the Appalachian Traffic Club, and dedicated many hours toward the establishment of a local airport. He passed away on July 12, 1958 at the age of 95.




This collection is comprised of correspondence, receipts, financial documents, invoices, contracts, and other records in relation to S. A. Dorsett’s business endeavors and his personal accounts. Mr. Dorsett owned several properties and, therefore, many files document communication with his tenants, payment of property taxes and repair bills, etc. His employment included owning a filling station and staff positions with American Railway Express and with the Clinchfield Railroad Company. Much of the files record transactions and communication with business entities that had dealings with these firms. Included in this collection are files relating to prominent businesses that operated in early Kingsport for many years, such as the Kingsport Improvement Co., and Bennett & Edwards, Inc., insurance.



 This collection consists of two boxes and no series or subseries. The folders are arranged alphabetically by business name or by the name of an individual.


Box 1

1. American Railway Express, 1924-1925

2. Appalachian Traffic Club, 1940

3. Ernest Atkins, 1944

4. Bennett & Edwards, 1930-1957

5. Charles Service Station, November 1951-January 1952

6. Citizens Supply Corporation, 1924-1926

7. Clark-Jones-Sheeley Co., 1925

8. Clinchfield Railroad Company, 1924-1935

9. Community Fire Department, Inc., 1952

10. Dobyns-Taylor Hardware Company, undated

11. S. A. Dorsett to/from F. A. Dorsett, December 1921-October 1922

12. Duffer-Taylor Tire Service, Inc., 1952

13. Farmers & Merchants Bank, 1925-1931

14. First National Bank, 1920-1952

15. First National Bank, Jonesboro, re: Albert Abel, 1946-1949

16. Everett Fisher, re: Airport, 1930

17. Hal-A-Fum Co., 1925

18. Harris & Graves, 1925

19. Hayes Service Station, 1926-1927

20. Hillcrest Service Station, 1947-1952

21. Thomas F. House, eight essays, undated

22. Income Tax, 1918-1922

23. International Grapho Analysis Society, 1954

24. International Typewriter Exchange, 1925

25. J. Fred Johnson & Company, Inc., 1924-1933


Box 2

1. Kingsport Building & Loan Association, 1930

2. Kingsport Grocery Co., 1944

3. Kingsport Motor Co., 1924-1926

4. Kingsport Plumbing & Heating Co., 1927

5. Kingsport Press, 1924-1928

6. Kingsport Improvement Co., 1921-1954

7. Kingsport Industrial Bank, 1931

8. Kingsport Tire Company, undated

9. Kiwanis Club, 1931-1956

10. Loan Payments on Land Sale, W. B. Smith to B. C. Pendleton, 1923

11. J. A. McCurry Auto Parts, 1952

12. Michigan State Aviation School, 1929-1930

13. S. C. Minnich, re: rent negotiations & repairs, 1952

14. Miscellaneous, 1924-1954

15. Motor Finance Corp., re: H. F. Meade, March 1924-March 1925

16. Property Taxes, city & county, and car permits, 1927-1958

17. Republic Truck Sales Co., Inc., 1924

18. Salyer Candy Company, 1951-1952

19. Spiegel Check Forgery, 1955

20. Staunton Military Academy, 1923-1925

21. Survey of the S. A. Dorsett Property, July 2, 1950

22. Tennessee Motor Co. 1926

23. Tipton & Reed, doctors, 1926-1927

24. White Motor Co., 1926-1927