1819-1899; bulk: 1828-1899

Guide to the Collection

Collection Summary


This collection consists of the papers of merchant and mill owner George Howe of Boston, Mass., 1819-1899

Collection Description

Papers of merchant and mill owner George Howe of Boston, Mass., 1819-1899, pertaining to his business, George Howe and Co.; his role in the direction of New England textile mills, including Pemberton Manufacturing Company, Cocheco Manufacturing Company, Hooksett Mills, Massachusetts Mills, Blackton Mills, Stark Mills and Cordis Mills; interaction with other Boston merchants such as grocer S.S. Pierce Co.; real estate ventures in Boston and Roxbury, Mass.; cotton trade with cotton brokerage firms in the South; financial donations to Wesleyan University and Amherst College; and the settlement of his estate by B.M. Stillman. Business records include correspondence and letters, account books, 1828-1856, sales ledgers, 1828-1861, real estate notes, deeds, fabric samples, invoices, receipts, and memoranda books. Also includes ship agreements, 1819-1822, pertaining to trading voyages on the ship Mentor to China, the Pacific, and the western coast of the United States, listing name and rank of crew, duties and restrictions, and wages.

Acquisition Information

Gift of H. Hooper Lawrence, Dec. 1914.

Box / Volume List

Loose Materials

Box 1
Loose Materials, 1819- June 1858
Box 2
Loose Materials, Aug. 1858- 1893

Letterbooks kept by B.M. Stillman, pertaining to the estate of George Howe

Vol. 1
9 Jan. 1878- 7 Dec. 1886
Vol. 2
24 May 1880- 30 July 1887
Vol. 3
23 Oct.- 9 Nov. 1882
Vol. 4
20 Aug. 1886- 10 May 1887
Vol. 5
3 Aug. 1887- 4 Aug. 1890
Vol. 6
5 Jan. 1887- 6 Jan. 1899
Vol. 7
7 Dec. 1888- 15 Mar. 1892

Letterbooks, pertaining to Pemberton Mills Manufacturing Co. and the estate of George Howe

Vol. 8
31 Mar. 1858- 22 Feb. 1860
Vol. 9
24 Feb. 1860- 5 Mar. 1865

Account books, pertaining to Howe's account with S.S. Pierce Co

Vol. 10
13 Dec. 1828- 28 July 1829
Vol. 11
6 Oct. 1849- 16 July 1853
Vol. 12
1 Mar. 1854- 30 June 1856

Sales ledgers, pertaining to Pemberton Mills Manufacturing Co.

Vol. 13 XT
Vol. 14 XT
30 Apr. 1858- 31 Dec. 1861
Vol. 15
3 Jan.- 31 Aug. 1859
Vol. 16
Misc. ledger book, containing cotton invoices and sales, memos, and papers pertaining to the estate of George Howe

25 Nov. 1850- 3 Dec. 1858

30 July 1862


Volumes, pertaining to George Howe's real estate ventures

Vol. 17
May 1852- 55
Vol. 18
1 Jan. 1859- 1 July 1879

Volumes containing fabric samples

Vol. 19 XT
Vol. 20
n.d.(loose fabric in a narrow box)

Preferred Citation

George Howe papers, Massachusetts Historical Society.

Access Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in ABIGAIL, the online catalog of the Massachusetts Historical Society. Researchers desiring materials about related persons, organizations, or subjects should search the catalog using these headings.


Stillman, B. M.


Mentor (Ship).
Amherst College.
Wesleyan University.
George Howe and Co.
Pemberton Manufacturing Co.
S.S. Pierce Co.


Account books--1828-1856.
Administration of estates.
China trade.
Cotton textile industry--New England.
Cotton trade--New England--History--19th century.
Cotton trade--Southern States--History--19th century.
Merchant ships--Massachusetts--Boston.
Mills and mill-work--New England.
Real property--Massachusetts--Boston.
Real property--Massachusetts--Roxbury.
Ship's papers.
Textile fabrics--New England.
Textile fabrics--Sample books.
Textile industry--New England.
Textile manufacturers.
Boston (Mass.)--Commerce--China.