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Special Home > Guide to the Richardson Family Papers, 1806-1855

Guide to the Richardson Family Papers, 1806-1855

Collection number: MC 67

Size: 2 boxes (0.66 cu.ft.)

About Richardson Family

The Richardson family ran a set of successful businesses in Dover, New Hampshire. The patriarch of the family, James Richardson was born in Woburn, Massachusetts on July 7, 1779. He married Tammy Tibbets of Dover on December 21, 1808. They would have five children: Charlotte King Atkinson, Augustus, John Tibbets, James, and Lydia Ann. Richardson was also active in local government. He served as the town clerk from 1820-1835. Later in his life, his children would continue to run the businesses he began. The beginnings of Augustus and James’s machinist business are evident in the later records. James Richardson died almost a year after the death of his wife on March 26, 1847 at the age of 68. Augustus and James continued the business until at least 1854.

About the Richardson Family Ledgers

This collection consists of nine ledgers of varying shape and size. These ledgers chronicle the Richardson’s business interests from 1806 to 1855. The Richardson’s were involved in a variety of business ventures. They had space in a warehouse that they would lease to others for storage. In addition to this they ran a general store, a saw and grain mill and a machine business. Three of the books in this collection pertain to warehouse storage, two to the general store business and four contain account information about the lumber and grain mill business. Information pertaining to the machine shop can be found in the second day book for the general store. This collection also consists of 12 pieces of paper: business card, paper scraps, letters, and invoices. They were found by the seller between the pages of the ledgers.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

This collection is open.

Copyright Notice

Contents of this collection are governed by U.S. copyright law. For questions about publication or reproduction rights, contact Special Collections staff.

Preferred Citation

[Identification of item], Richardson Family Ledgers, 1807-1854, MC 67, Milne Special Collections and Archives, University of New Hampshire Library, Durham, NH, USA.

Acquisitions Information

Purchased: Carmen D. Valentino, Sept. 2005 (Accession number: 2005.06)

Collection Contents

Series I: Ledgers

Box 1
Box 1, Folder 1 Richardson’s Storage Book, November 1806–March 14, 1808

James Richardson leased warehouse space for storage. Many of his customers are sea captains. Some of the items in storage include: grain, fruit, rock, alcohol, spices, crackers, fish, molasses, tea, cotton, tools, coffee, flax seed, salt, paint, steel, furniture, soap, head stones, bedding, oil, tobacco, potash, etc. Daily entries include name, item stored and delivery status. The last pages of the book include an alphabetical listing of each customer’s account. These entries include amounts due.

Box 1, Folder 2 Richardson’s Lumber Book, March 13, 1807–September 2, 1843

James Richardson keeps track of his sales of lumber and saw mill services. He mentions selling a wide variety of woods including pine, spruce, hemlock, ash, maple and oak. Each entry records the date, what was ordered, the price and repayment.

Box 1, Folder 3 Storage Ledger, March 26, 1811–March 21, 1812

James Richardson leased warehouse space for storage. Many of his customers are sea captains. Items in storage include many from the list above plus seed, medicine, plaster of Paris, scythes, mahogany and leather. Daily entries include name, item stored and delivery status. The last pages of the book include an alphabetical listing of each customer’s account. These entries include amounts due.

Box 1, Folder 4 Storage Ledger, March 1816–February 1817

The first page of the ledger chronicles some of the weather for that year. There is a doodle of Jack Frost blowing ‘famine’. The entries are very much in accord with the storage books of 1807 and 1811. Customer names, dates, items stored and delivered are all noted in the ledger. New items in storage include beef, grindstone, logwood, anvil, rolls of leather and bay spice. The last pages of the book include an alphabetical listing of each customer’s account. These entries include amounts due.

Box 1, Folder 5 Day book, January 28, 1825–April 30, 1830

This ledger records the daily business of the general store. Richardson records customer purchases and business expenditures. Entries detail customer name, item, price and repayment information. Customers include the Town of Dover, sea captains and many of the prominent men of Dover.

Box 2
Box 2, Folder 1 Saw and Grain Mill Cash Ledger, January 1838–December 1846

This account book records wood orders and requests for grain milling. There are three sections to this account book. The first keeps track of cash accounts and individual accounts. The second acts like a day book. The third records individual accounts. There are many blank pages in between each section. These entries note the customer’s name, date of order, what was ordered, price and when account was settled.

Box 2, Folder 2 J.G.T. Richardson and Company Day Book, September 19, 1840–October 2, 1843

This book details the daily business at the saw and grain mill, including daily expenditures. It mentions the milling of rye, corn, barley, meal and the sawing of wood. Each entry notes the date, the customer, the item in question and the price.

Box 2, Folder 3 Day Book, April 1847–May 5, 1849

This account book records the daily business of the Richardson General Store. It records both business expenses and store sales. It is the most detailed of the day books. Each entry records the date, customer name, order or expenditure, credit or debit and the monetary amount. This account book was kept after the death of the family patriarch James Richardson. James and Augustus ran the business after his death. Their names are mentioned in entries throughout the ledger. Prominent customers of the general store include the Town of Dover and the Concheco Manufacturing Company. Machine work is also noted in this account book.

Box 2, Folder 4 Saw Mill ledger, April 8, 1850–March 27, 1855

This account book chronicles daily business at the saw mill. Entries include customer name, items ordered, price and repayment information. This account book is only half full.

Series II: Miscellaneous

Box 2, Folder 5

Business card for Richardson and Co., Machinists (date unknown).

Invoice from James Richardson to Stephen Twombly, 1827, for building supplies, flour, and grindstone at $36.08.

List of names.

Letter to James Richardson from Wentworth Hayes, September 21, 1826 (?). Doodles and adding tables on the back of the letter.

Letter to James Richardson from P. W. Chamberlin, August 29, 1870 (?) Adding tables on back of the letter.

Letter to J Richardson from John H. Shortridge, October 13, 1819, concerning the sale of fish. Doodles and adding tables on the back of the letter.

Note to James Richardson from John Wingate, October 26, 1824.

Iron order from Nathaniel Jones, Charles Nuker (?) and John Kinon (?) Jr., May 22, 1824.

Letter to James Richardson from Paul G. Rollins (?), December 27, 1828, regarding the sale of goods with adding tables and doodles.

Three scraps of paper.