March 07, 2019 12:00 PM EST Cincinnati
Ends March 18, 2019


Business Ledger, Mecklenburg Co., VA, 1775 - 1833

Ledger, pages with red-line columns, three on the right, two on the left side of each page. Originally leather bound. Front board has only fragments of board present. Rear board has leather remaining. The ledger was cut along the bottom. It is now approx. 6.5 x 8 in. This has destroyed entries at the bottom of a few pages, especially at the beginning of the volume.

The ffep has the name Edward R. Yates, Mecklenburg Co., VA (a couple times) and the date 1784. However, the first entries are from Norfolk, 1775 and Northampton in 1776. There are a few entries from 1805 squeezed onto what was probably a blank page. About page 11 the entries from 1784 begin and are fairly continuous up to 1833. The early entries are in Pounds, Shillings, Pence. Accounts begin being kept in dollars in 1806.

The goods in the personal accounts are typical of a pioneer area - everything from building materials (boards, oyster shell for chimney construction, etc.) to alcohol (brandy, whiskey) to foodstuffs (corn, potatoes, lamb, oats) to cash crops such as cotton to materials to make other necessities. There are several account pages for Emanuel Lewis, noted as being a freeman. Mr. Lewis is buying leather various weights), cloth remnants for lining, shoe thread, and shoe lasts. He is getting account credits for shoes (although only names, not products, are recorded - D. Glover, Mr. Daris, Robt. Shanks, etc.). Mr. Lewis also has more personal accounts - bacon, beef, salt, corn, soap, brandy, wheat, brown sugar, vinegar, butter, etc. Jacob Fain is noted as a "man of coular," and also seems to be a cobbler. His first credit is for "making 1 pr. shoes for Jno. B."

Besides salt, whiskey, brown sugar and coffee, Ahab Overby is purchasing powder and shot.

Mrs. Elizabeth Twisdale has account credits for "making 2 shirts for S.B.," "3 fine waistcoats for boys," "3 pr. breaches" and "2 round coats."

The last pages keep track of other endeavors, especially horse breeding. "Bay mare Pigeon had a bay Horse Colt the 19th May 1830 got by Col. William Hunt, Horse Retrenchment." The following year, "Bay mare Pigeon had a Sorrel Mare Colt Folded [sic, foaled] 25th April 1831 and was got by Mr. Clacks Horse Canon." The following year she had a black Horse colt, also went to Mr. Clack. There are a number of other equine entries scattered over the back pages.

The third from last page is dated 1821 Feb. 25th. "Memoriam of Negroes know in the possession of Mrs. Tabitha Marshall Warren County, N.C." It is not clear why these are listed, but at one point the owner of this ledger is paid for his services in another estate. It is interesting that these are from the neighboring state. Mecklenburg County adjoins Granville, Vance and Warren Counties in North Carolina, with Warren being the easternmost of the group. Since we don't know exactly where Mr. Yates was operating within Mecklenburg County, this is as likely an area as any - somewhere in the southeastern part of the county. There may be other clues buried in these accounts.

Among the names of his customers are: Hanserd, Walls, Baskervill, Burwell, Jeffries,Dedman, Camp, Boyd, Montgomery, Love, Marable, Lewis, Russel, Saunders, Nelson, Dunn, Norman (Major Thomas), Blackwell, Grisham/Gresham, Recks, Mathis, Norman, Kelly, Burge, Dr. Charles Sturdivant, Hamilton, Twisdale, Hutchins, Field, Jinkins, Twitchell, Glover, Revan, and more. Spelling can vary throughout ledger.


In rough condition. Well-used, cut down, and it was wet at some point (or at least the covers were). Fraying and scuffing of some page edges. Most still readable.

Estimate: $100 - $200
Price Realized Including Buyer's Premium


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