Lucien Alexander papers  1901-1913
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Collection Scope and Content Note

This account book (approximately 130 pages) pertains to Abraham B. Smedes's work as a cooper in Shawangunk, New York, in the late 1700s and early 1800s. Additional entries concern education, surveying work, and shoe repair in the early to mid-1800s.

Abraham B. Smedes recorded most of his accounts from 1793-1805 (bulk 1795-1805), documenting his work as a cooper and laborer in Shawangunk, New York. He laid hoops, built or repaired containers such as flour casks, and (occasionally) wrote deeds or other legal documents. One entry concerns the sale of a house to William Hamilton in the spring of 1779 (page 43). Smedes most often received payments in corn, meats, or other foods or goods. He noted that some accounts had been settled "by a course of law." A record with the president and directors of the Ulster & Orange Turnpike Branch Co. concerns surveying work done in 1809 and 1812 (page 95), and Smedes or a later owner of this account book received money for several scholars' tuition in October 1815 (pages 102-121, 124-125).

Later accounts appear on the bottom half of many pages, particularly between pages 7 and 37 and on pages 126-128. These accounts, dated 1821-1842, with the bulk dated 1835-1841, pertain to a cobbler who repaired and made shoes and insoles. Customers paid with foods, goods, and cash. The records on page 128 mention factory labor by Peter, Georgiana, William, Blandina, and Elsie in March 1823. A few additional accounts cover the intervening years between Smedes's entries and the shoemaking records, many pertaining to the sale of vinegar in the 1810s.

The final pages contain financial accounts from 1809-1810 (page 132) and money received from [1801?]-1802 (page 133). The volume includes a 9-page index, organized alphabetically by surname (pages numbered 1-4). Additional pages of accounts are laid into the volume; several pages toward the end have been torn out of the book.

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