Contains letters from Jacob H. Bechtel to his brother George in Philadelphia, who also worked as a merchant. The majority of the letters are written from New Orleans between 1843 and 1850, and the remaining letters are from Richmond, where Jacob had relocated by 1854. Several letters from the late 1840s pertain to financial difficulties. The letters also give insight into Jacob's relationship with his wife and children. A few letters contain pen and ink drawings of New Orleans landmarks.