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W. & S. Bradley general store account books, 1795-1851

Library Call Number Copy Material Location
Vermont Historical Society Library  MSA 264:1-5  Manuscript  Vault-Manuscript 
Vermont Historical Society Library  XMSC 16-17  Manuscript  Vault-Manuscript 

Title : W. & S. Bradley general store account books, 1795-1851 (bulk: 1819-1851).
Physical Description : 23 volumes.
General Note : Continued in: MSA 264:1-5.
Summary :

The collection includes eleven daybooks and three ledgers from the W. & S. Bradley general store in Wheelock, Vermont, spanning the years 1819 to 1850. The first daybook, which dates from the purchase of the Clark, Fairbanks & Co. in 1819, also contains accounts from Ward Bradley's cooperage business in Claremont, New Hampshire from 1795 to 1800. The rest of the daybooks span the dates 1821 to 1845 with a few gaps. The three ledgers date from 1822 to 1851 and refer back to entries in the daybooks. All three ledgers have indexes.

The collection also contains supporting financial records, including "Minute of demands due...", "Bill book", "Minute of debts due", and"Vendues". There is also a folder (MSA 264:3) containing ledger indexes dating from 1833 to 1842, and a small account book with both ledger and daybook entries dating from 1827 to 1840. There is also a single ledger relating to Ward Bradley's tannery dating from 1842 to 1849.

Biographical or historical data :

Ward Bradley was born in Haverhill, Massachusetts on February 16, 1772, the son of Jonathan and Hannah (Nutting) Bradley. The Bradley family moved to Claremont, New Hampshire around 1790, and Ward worked as a cooper until around 1797. He then clerked in a general store in Corinth, Vermont. In 1800, Ward moved to Wheelock, Vermont to open his own general store. He married Hannah Nutting on April 27, 1803 in Corinth, Vermont. In 1819 he bought a general store in Wheelock Village, which he ran in partnership with his son, Sewall under the name W. & S. Bradley. The firm purchased stock from Boston, as well as locally. The partnership between Ward and Sewall Bradley was dissolved in June, 1848 and the store was then called S. & H. Bradley, a partnership between Sewall and his brother, Hiel, which lasted until Hiel's death in 1850. As well, Ward built the first tannery in Wheelock. Hannah Bradley died on July 23 1843 in Wheelock, Vermont. Ward married second Mrs. Judith Hoyt on March 12, 1845 in Danville, Vermont. Ward Bradley died on July 5, 1865 in Sheffield, Vermont.

Ward and Hannah (Nutting) Bradley's oldest son, Sewall, was born on October 24, 1803 in Wheelock, Vermont. He married first Eliza Chase (1807-1844) and second, Sally Townsend on November 14, 1844, in Sheffield, Vermont. They had five surviving children: Emily E. (b. 1829), Abigail C. (b. 1830), Mariah C. (b. 1833), William C. (b. 1835), and George L. (b. 1837). Sewall built the first hotel in Sheffield, Vermont, and sometime after 1832, he moved to Wheelock to help run the general store in partnership with his father until 1851. He served in the Vermont House in 1835, 1843-44, 1853, and 1865-66. Around 1870 he moved to Lyndonville, Vermont, where he served as the president of the Lyndonville National Bank. Sewall died in Lyndonville, Vermont on September 8, 1885.

Hiel (sometimes spelled Hial), Ward and Hannah Bradley's second son, was born on November 4, 1805 in Wheelock, Vermont. He married Caroline Page on March 22, 1827. They had four children: Ward, Horace, Mary, and Warren. Hiel farmed as well as being involved in the store, and was known for his excellent farming techniques. He died on October 29, 1850 of consumption.

Related Collections : The VHS also holds other material relating to the W. & S. Bradley general store, which may be found in the Wheelock-Mathewson Collection (MSC 54-56, MSC 178, and MSC 206). Also, some of the material has been published in Town of Wheelock: Vermont’s gift to Dartmouth College by Eleanor Jones Hutchinson (974.31 W57).
Personal Subject : W. & S. Bradley (Firm)
Subject Term : General stores Vermont Wheelock.
Tanneries Vermont Wheelock.
Leather industry and trade Vermont Wheelock.
Coopers and cooperage New Hampshire Claremont.
Geographic Term : Wheelock (Vt.) Commerce.
Caledonia County (Vt.) Commerce.
Genre/Form : Ledgers.
Financial records.
Added Author : Bradley, Ward, 1772-1865.
Bradley, Sewall, 1803-1885.
Bradley, Hiel, 1805-1850.