Archive of Business and Personal Papers of the Delano Family, Kingston Mass. and Other Locations, 1794 – 1882.
This archive consists of business and family records of the Delano family, prominent merchants and ship owners of Kingston, Massachusetts. Benjamin Delano (1778-1868), was the patriarch of the family throughout the first half of the century, and is featured in the material gathered here (Delano’s Wharf, built by him in 1803, still stands today). Benjamins brother Joshua (1744-1816) was a sea captain, and much of the paper in this archive has to do with ships under his management and several of his voyages to southern ports and Cuba. People with whom the Delanos traded are numerous and include brother-in-law Peter Winsor, Luther Briggs, James Fuller, John R. Bradlee, Nathan Carruth, John M. Marston, William Fisk, George Dana, Solomon Washburn, Joseph Clark, Abner Alden, Rufus Ripley, Parker H. Pearce, Charles Cobb, Joseph Foster, Charles Bartlett, Josiah Robbins, Jacob Hall, Lysander Bartlett, Josiah Thatcher, Abraham Quincy, William Humphrey, and many others. At the heart of the collection are 15 daybooks, journals, ledgers, and sheets of accounts recording Delano commercial activities, spanning the years 1794 to 1882, and running to a total of about 4000 pages. These are supported by about 2500 invoices, receipts, accounts, promissory notes, financial records from various voyages, prices current, availability and disposition of various cargoes, charter parties, ship building and repair, reports on labor, sailing and political conditions, financial arrangements, and the myriad situations that occurred over nearly a century of trading activity. Cargoes mentioned include fish, timber, corn, rum, cotton, molasses, copper, cement, fruits and other agricultural products, and coal. There is also a file of about 200 pieces of correspondence, wills, and financial paper documenting Delano family domestic and business matters, letters from captains in their employ, various versions of Joshua Delanos will, at least one signed by him, as well as similar documents from other family members and associates. Contents are as follows: 1 – JOSHUA DELANOS BOOK. 1794. Stitched gathering, 4 leaves. Records transactions and results of Account of my adventure shipt onboard S(chooner) Harmony Demerara, Guyana, Capt. Lincoln. Rum. Copper, oranges; 2 – AN ACCOMPT OF CARGO DELIVERED FROM ON BOARD SCHOONER HARMONY IN DEMERARA NATHANIEL LINCOLN COMMANDER. July-Sept, 1794. 10 leaves, stab sewn. Daybook in Demerary Supplies taken onboard and goods sold. Bound with AN ACCOUNT OF SUNDRYS RECEIVED ON BOARD SCHOONER SALLY AS SHIPS STORES &C. 1795 and AN ACCOUNT OF SCHOONER SALLYS CARGO DELIVERED MR. WILLIAM THOMPSON IN PORT LA LIBERTY (GUYANA) 3 leaves. Bound with INVOICE OF SUNDRYS SHIPPED AS ADVENTURE ON BOARD SCHOO (? name illegible) COPY – BY AND FOR THE PROPER AMOUNT AND RISQUE OF JOSHUA DELANO. 1 LEAF, SIGNED AND DATED JOSHUA DELANO JUN, BOSTON 27TH JANUARY (1795?); 3 – JOSHUA DELANOS BOOK, KINGSTON 1796. Loose gathering, 9 leaves. Agreement with James Fuller fore his house and business at twenty dollars for one year. Records purchase of domestic goods and labor on Fullers house; 4 – ACCOUNT OF SUNDRIES DELIVERED FROM SHIP HOPE BY JOSHUA DELANO JR TO MR FRADA(?) IN ST JAGO. 1800. And other named accounts, receipts of goods, all 1800 voyage, 13 leaves with daybook for ship Hope and People of ship Hope 1800. 1 leaf; 5 – MAY 2 1804. BENJAMIN DELANOS BOOK NO. 2. 1804 1810. 180 i.e. 360 pp. Interesting note about a Delano woman laid in front. She need not think she is going to rule me Eliz is an old bitch Ledger with itemized individual and vessel accounts; 6 – BENJ. DELANOS DAY BOOK DAYBOOK, KINGSTON 1830 1842. Unpaginated about 500 pp. Payments to individuals and vessels for goods and labor, including returns of fishing trips; 7 – BENJ DELANOS DAYBOOK KINGSTON. 1828 1834. Unpaginated about 500 pp. 5 pp. Memoranda of agreement, followed by daily payments, 1828-34. Also vessel expenses and memoranda of cargo received; 8 – LEDGER, KINGSTON, 1831 1868. 185 i.e. 370 pp. Itemized accounts of vessels and individuals, with index laid in; 9 – DAYBOOK. KINGSTON, 1835 1868. Unpaginated, about 350 pp. Itemized payments and memoranda of goods shipped; 10 – LEDGER 1837 1847. 262 i.e. 524 pp. Itemizes vessel expenses and individual accounts of residents of Kingston, Boston, Sandwich etc.; 11 – LEDGER 1846 – 1868. 251 i.e. 503 pp. Individual accounts as above. With bills and invoices laid in; 12 – B. DELANO & SON DAYBOOK. KINGSTON. 1854 1864. 216, (3) pp. Mostly itemized expenses of vessels. With copies of 9 business letters; 13 – DAYBOOK. KINGSTON. 1864 1875. 360 pp. Itemized expenses of individuals and vessels, accounts of wages; 14 – DAYBOOK. KINGSTON. 1876 1895, pp. 3-210, 1877-1884, pp. 426 456. Blank pages in middle of book. With, 1881-82, records of named laborers and hours worked; 15 – TWO INDICES PERTAINING TO LEDGERS NOT PRESENT, BUT CONTAINING NAMES OF ACCOUNTS IN OTHER LEDGERS IN THIS LOT; 16 – MISCELLANEOUS SUPPORTING DOCUMENTS naming hundreds of individuals, dozens of vessels and firms, from locations such as Kingston, Boston, Halifax, Duxbury, Hyannis, New York, organized by date as follows: 1790-1799. 15 pcs. Receipts, Joshua and Benjamin Delano 1800-1810. 300 pcs. Invoices, promissory notes, receipts for payment, balance sheet entries removed or copied, pay receipts, settlement of Joshua Delano estate, notes, requests, and instructions to Delano, printed forms and billheads, small bundles of commercial paper from 1805 and 1808 voyages. 1811-1819. 380 pcs. As above. Plus daybook Boston Apr-Dec. 1818. 1820s. 180 pcs. As above, plus printed bond for duties, portage bill, insurance policy, and misc. bills relating to voyage of Sch. Massasoit to North Carolina, 1822. 1830s. 255 pcs. As above, plus more paper relating to Sch. Massasoit voyage to NC, 1835, Delano appointed surveyor of highways. 1840s. 400 pcs. As above, plus blank printed forms for duties, materials for building and furnishing a house. 1850s. 70 pcs. As above. Plus letter from Benj. Delano advising Taylen sisters of Boston about their mothers estate, 1856. 1860s. 375 pcs. As above. Many receipts with revenue stamps. Damages to Schooner Island Bell, New Orleans, 1864. 1870s. 125 pcs. As above. Various dates. Delano family papers. About 200 pcs. Family and personal correspondence, deeds, wills, etc. Misc. and undated about 165 pcs.