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COLLECTION Identifier: Mss:766 1797-1802 A524

Thomas Coffin Amory papers

Overview

Thomas Coffin Amory, merchant and store owner, was born in 1767 in Boston, Massachusetts, to Thomas and Elizabeth (Coffin) Amory. The Thomas Coffin Amory papers consist of a letter book, and copies of correspondence removed from a letter book, from Amory to other merchants, ship captains, agents, and associates, most likely in the hand of a clerk, dated 1797 to 1802. Letters relate to foreign trade, import, and consignment of assorted commodities and goods like New England rum, molasses, coffee, firearms, and cochineal, as well as politics and economic conditions.

Dates

  • 1797-1802 (inclusive)

Conditions Governing Access

Collection is open for research. Materials stored onsite. Please contact specialcollectionsref@hbs.edu for more information.

Extent

1.2 linear feet (1 volume, 1 box)
The Thomas Coffin Amory papers consist of a letter book, and copies of correspondence removed from a letter book, from Amory to other merchants, ship captains, agents, and associates, most likely in the hand of a clerk, dated 1797 to 1802. Letters relate to foreign trade, import, and consignment of assorted commodities and goods like New England rum, molasses, coffee, firearms, and cochineal, as well as politics and economic conditions.

Amory's letters mention voyages to Halifax, Liverpool, Havana, Martinique, Teneriffe, Vera Cruz, and Spain. In addition to business matters, letters reference British and French privateering, the French Revolutionary Wars, and the Quasi-War.

The Newburyport, Massachusetts, firm of Farris & Stocker was a frequent correspondent, and after that partnership dissolved, Amory continued doing business with mariner and merchant Ebenezer Stocker (circa 1753-1816.) Stocker and Amory chartered a number of mercantile voyages together. Other correspondents include Portland, Maine, merchants Samuel Waldo (1762-1798), James Deering (1766-1850), and Thomas Hodges, Robert Hazlehurst & Co. of South Carolina, Israel Thorndike (1755-1832) of Beverly, Massachusetts, and Samuel Breck, Jr. (1771-1862) of Philadelphia, as well as William Codman and Captain Joseph Tilden.

Amory's letters often contained news of the arrivals and departures of vessels owned by other merchants, updates on the market in Boston for various imported goods and prices current, and information regarding business associates and their activities. There are also letters to Ruth Jewet (or Jewett) of Portland, Maine, regarding the consignment of her sugar and cotton and her stake in a voyage to Calcutta.

Biographical Note:

Thomas Coffin Amory, merchant and store owner, was born in 1767 in Boston, Massachusetts, to Thomas and Elizabeth (Coffin) Amory. He sold goods that he imported at retail, and goods on consignment for others at standard commercial rates. Amory partnered with his cousin, William Payne, and later with his brother, Jonathan Amory (1770-1828; Harvard AB 1778). He owned stakes in voyages, frequently chartering vessels with Newburyport businessman and mariner Ebenezer Stocker (circa 1753-1816) to the West Indies and Calcutta, India. Amory imported or traded commodities and goods including molasses, flour, fish, rum, coffee, firearms, and pearl and pot ashes. In addition, he acted as an agent for merchants in other parts of the country and overseas and provided banking and money lending services. Amory also offered apprenticeships to many local young men in his counting house.

Amory married Hannah Rowe Linzee (1770-1846) in 1795, and they had eight children. He died after suffering a stroke in 1812.

Physical Location

MANU

Provenance:

The Thomas Coffin Amory papers were a gift of Mary L. Amory in 1934.

Processing Information

Processed: February 2017

By: Brooke McManus

Preservation and description of the Thomas Coffin Amory papers were supported in part by the Colonial North America at Harvard Library Project.
Link to catalog
Title
Amory, Thomas Coffin, 1767-1812. Thomas Coffin Amory Papers, 1797-1802 (inclusive): A Finding Aid
Author
Baker Library
EAD ID
bak00018

Repository Details

Part of the Baker Library Special Collections, Harvard Business School, Harvard University Repository

Baker Library Special Collections holds unique resources that focus on the evolution of business and industry, as well as the records of the Harvard Business School, documenting the institution's development over the last century. These rich and varied collections support research in a diverse range of fields such as business, economic, social and cultural history as well as the history of science and technology.

Contact:
Baker Library | Bloomberg Center
Soldiers Field Road
Boston MA 01263 USA
(617) 495-6411