SCUA

Newland, Jacob and John E.

Jacob and John E. Newland Account Book
1798-1849
1 vol. (0.25 linear feet)
Call no.: MS 197 bd

Jacob Newland and his son John Everit Newland were farmers in Mansfield, Mass., during the earlynational period. A Revolutionary War veteran, Jacob died in 1823, leaving much of his operation to John, his second son.

The account book kept by Jacob Newland and later John E. Newland of Mansfield, Massachusetts, details much about the work of these farmers and their interaction with neighbors in eastern Mansfield during the early nineteenth century. The customers, most of whom seem to have been fellow farmers, made frequent use of the Newlands’ animals and animal-drawn vehicles (carriage, “waggon,” “slay”) for riding and work, in addition to purchasing products, using the Newlands’ labor, and leasing pasture land. The book also served as a leaf press and scrapbook for newspaper items bearing upon the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union, mention of social events and anniversaries, children’s sayings, short romantic fiction, and as a copybook for poetry.

Background on Jacob and John E. Newland

A fifth generation of the Newland family in Massachusetts, Jacob Newland was born in Norton, Mass., on October 19, 1740, and lived most of his life in present-day Mansfield. He served several brief enlistments during the Revolutionary War, including four days during the Lexington alarm of April 1775. A farmer and owner of a blacksmith shop, he was twice married, first to Mary Mann of Wrentham on October 30, 1765, and second to Judith Newcomb on October 27, 1776. He had six children by his first marriage and five by his second.

John Everit Newland, the eldest child of Jacob and Judith, was born in Mansfield on May 4, 1778, and followed his father into farming. John married Hannah Keith on Sept. 18, 1802, with whom he had one son and one daughter. At his father’s death in August 26, 1823, John served as executor, receiving some of his father’s land. John died in Mansfield on Feb.28, 1852.

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Contents of Collection

The account book kept by Jacob Newland and later John E. Newland of Mansfield, Massachusetts, between 1798 and 1849, details much about the work of these farmers and their interaction with neighbors in eastern Mansfield during the early nineteenth century. The Newlands produced a range of goods on their farm, including “inglish hay,” linseed oil, “brown bred,” corn, pork, lamb pelt, butter, lard, vinegar, wood, “portaters,” oats, milk, white beans, and lime. Their customers, many of whom seem to have been farmers, also regularly hired out the Newlands’ livestock and vehicles (carriage, “waggon,” “slay”), hired the Newlands for farmwork such as plowing; shingling; splitting hoops; brick laying; drawing wood, stones, rails, dung, clay, or cider; “fetching”; killing hogs, calves, and cows; making nails; chopping wood; carrying a letter; and setting shoes for horses and oxen.

The accounts were settled variously, with some paying in cash and others bartering with goods or their own labor in plowing, shearing sheep, making shoes, haying, planting, hoeing, thrashing, picking, weeding, chopping wood, repairing chairs. Among the customers were several of Mansfield’s more prominent citizens, such as the physician Benjamin Billings, Ebenezer Williams, and Edward Kingman, a representative to the General Court, selectman, justice of the peace, and keeper of the Old Lamb Tavern in Boston.

Although most of the final two-thirds of the account book is blank, the last few pages include genealogical information and vital records for the Newland family and local residents of Mansfield, as well as significant dates for the Newlands’ business: “Black hors died August 29th, 1837, aged 14; bought my covered wagon March 1833; Simeon Snow (a major customer) moved away…; bought my ox waggon of Berude Drake October 3, 1846.”

The account book had a rather checkered afterlife, serving variously as a press for leaves and flowers (some vegetation remains) and as a scrapbook during the late 19th century, in which newspaper clippings were pasted in recording local social events and anniversaries, children’s sayings, short romantic fiction, and the Woman’s Christian Temperance Union. Among a handful of loose items tucked into the pages is a drawing of trim for petticoat and “draws.”

Residue

Administrative information

Access

The collection is open for research.

Language:

English

Provenance

Acquired from Charles Apfelbaum, 1987.

Processing Information

Processed by I. Eliot Wentworth, July 2017.

Copyright and Use (More informationConnect to publication information)

Cite as: Jacob and John Newland Account Book (MS 197 bd). Special Collections and University Archives, University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries.

Acquired from Charles Apfelbaum, 1987
Subjects
  • Farmers--Massachusetts--Mansfield
Contributors
  • Newland, John E. (John Everit)
Types of material
  • Account books

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