James Thompson papers
Group of six handwritten business letters to and from James Thompson of Pennsylvania from correspondents in Baltimore and Havre de Grace. One of the letters, written to James Thompson by Magrew and Virdin, gives details o fthe damage to the Tide Water Canal and of the accidental drowning of its superintendent William Boyd
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This collection is open for research.
James Thompson papers, Special Collections, University of Maryland Libraries.
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James Thompson was born on February 2, 1782, in Thompsontown, Pennsylvania. He was the son of William Thompson, who settled and laid out Thompsontown, Mifflin County, Pennsylvania, and Jane (Mitchell) Thompson. Thompson moved to New Mexico, Pennsylvania, in 1810 after his father completed building a stone gristmill there. He married Martha Allen on April 2, 1810. They had three sons, Charles A. (1811-1852), Allen A. (1814-1844), and Jerome (b. 1817). Thompson opened a store in New Mexico, Pennsylvania, in 1814. His brother Samuel joined him in this merchandising endeavor until about 1827. In 1821, Thompson became the first postmaster of New Mexico, Pennsylvania, and held that position until his death. His son Charles succeeded him. James Thompson died on December 14, 1847.
Scope and Contents of the Collection
The papers of James Thompson consist of five business letters and one document, dated 1808 to 1841, which relate to the trade of flour, plaster, and wheat. The correspondence includes discussion of the condition of the goods, prices, and commercial transportation via the Tidewater Canal. Correspondents include a Mr. Albers of Baltimore, Samuel Thompson, and Tiffany, Fite & Co. in Baltimore.
Custodial History and Acquisition Information
The University of Maryland Libraries purchased the papers of James Thompson from Charles Apfelbm in 1995.
Processed by Martha Hooker, November 2003
The letters were placed in and acid-free folder and stored in an acid-free box.
EAD markup created using EAD database in Microsoft Access. Markup completed by Jennie A. Levine, June 2006.
Arrangement of Collection
The collection consists of one series:
Detailed Description of the Collection
Series 1: Business Documents, 1808-1841 (6 items)
This series includes six handwritten business documents addressed to James Thompson by correspondents located in Maryland. A letter from a Mr. Albers in Baltimore concerns the condition and cost of one hundred barrels of flour. There is also an 1812 account of sales sent by Albers to Thompson. A letter from James Thompson's brother, Samuel, written in Baltimore in 1823 includes information on Albers' flour transaction and contemporary prices for wheat and rye. An 1841 invitation from wholesale clothier, Tiffany, Fite & Co., urged Thomspon to visit the firm's Baltimore store to view the stock. In addition, there are two letters from Magraw and Virdin of Havre de Grace, Maryland, that discuss the repair of the Tidewater Canal; the drowning of William Boyd, Superintendent of the Canal; and the going rate for staples such as flour, whiskey, cloverseed, and corn.
Arrangement is chronological.
|Description||Series||Box / Reel||Folder / Frame|
|Business Documents, 1806-1841||series 1||box 1||folder 1|
Researchers interested in James Thompson and his family may consult the following related collections and publications:
- Ellis, F and A. N. Hungerford, eds. History of that part of the Susquehanna and Juniata valleys, embraced in the counties of Mifflin, Juniata, Perry, Union and Snyder, in the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. Everts, Peck & Richards, Philadelphia., 1886.
- A History of the Juniata Valley, Vols.I, II, III. National Historical Association, Inc., 1936.
- History of the Susquehanna and Juniata Valleys. Counties of Mifflin, Juniata, Perry, Union and Snyder. Vols. I and II. Everts, Peck & Richards., 1886.
- Hollingworth, Levi, 1739-1824. Papers, 1811-1841. William L. Clements Library. The University of Michigan.
- Thompson, Edward Shippen, 1869. Collection, 1684-1941. Edward Shippen Thompson Collection, Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission.
- Thompson, James William. Descendents of John Thompson. Stevensville, MD, J. W. Thompson, 1994.
For other related archival and manuscript collections, please see the following subject guides.
Selected Search Terms
This collection is indexed under the following headings in the University of Maryland Libraries' Catalog. Researchers desiring related materials about these topics, names, or places may search the Catalog using these headings.
- Grain trade -- 19th century -- Archival resources
- Merchants -- Pennsylvania -- 19th century
- New Mexico (Pa.) -- Commerce -- History -- Archival resources
- Thompson, James, 1782-1847
- Thompson, Samuel -- Correspondence