The University of Massachusetts Amherst
Robert S. Cox Special Collections & University Archives Research Center
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Amherst (Mass.)?

Grocer's Daybook

1 vol. 0.25 linear feet
Call no.: MS 137 bd

Unnamed grocer who was possibly from the town of Amherst in either Massachusetts or New Hampshire. Daybook includes customers’ names, their account numbers, and the items that they purchased whether food or supplies.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

This unnamed grocer’s daybook covers the period of September 25, 1888 to February 13, 1890. Most of the customers make frequent, even daily, purchases, generally buying only a few items of food at a time, with occasional pairs of shoes, chimneys, or snow shovels in addition. Prepared foods, such as doughnuts, cupcakes, tumblers of jelly, cookies, and rolls were sold along with basic staples – apples, eggs, oranges, raisins, butter, salt, starch, lard, chocolate, cheese, milk. The entries are preceded by numbers which probably refer to the patrons’ accounts in the storekeeper’s ledger.

The inside front cover bears a dealer’s notation “Amherst ledger.” While the possibility exists that this is an Amherst, Massachusetts grocer’s account book (some of the family names are found in the Amherst Directory for 1895-Dickinson, Cowles, Doolittle, Knowlton, Pease, Rose, Hamlin, Hall, Holmes, Hunt, Parker), almost none of the particular members of the families listed in the account book matches a name in the directory. This seems to indicate it is unlikely that this is an Amherst, Massachusetts grocer. Perhaps the book was an item in a batch of materials from Amherst, New Hampshire, although very few of the family names appear in town histories. Further investigations might reveal this is from a town of another name altogether.

Information on Use
Terms of Access and Use
Restrictions on access:

The collection is open for research.

Preferred Citation

Cite as: Grocer’s Daybook (MS 137). Special Collections and University Archives, W.E.B. Du Bois Library, University of Massachusetts Amherst.

History of the Collection

Processing Information

Processed by Linda Seidman.

Additional Information

Encoding funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.



Amherst (Mass.)--HistoryConsumers--New England--History--19th centuryGroceries--New England--History--19th centuryGrocers--New England--History--19th centuryGrocery trade--New England--History--19th century

Types of material