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Salem India Rubber Company Records, 1814-1843, undated

Identifier: MSS 240

Scope and Content Note

The Salem India Rubber Company Records contain financial papers, legal papers, insurance policies, correspondence and other company records. They are divided into two series.

Series I. Administrative Records contain the financial and legal papers. The treasurers' cashbook and the financial papers, including promissory notes, reflect the company's financial affairs. The legal papers include indentures, fire insurance policies, insurance policies covering shipment of property on various vessels, and legal protests relating to non-payment of various notes, drafts, etc.

Series II. Business Records documents the scope of the company's activities. It contains correspondence with agents, suppliers, and customers; invoices; bills of lading that list the merchandise, the vessel on which it was shipped, the master, the destination, and the customer; and day-to-day financial records, such as ledgers, daybooks, cashbooks, payroll books, and accounts of sales. The company's factory store or outlet is documented in the "Account of Stock in the India Rubber Store" (Box 2, Folder 6). The miscellaneous papers include an 1814 printed booklet "Act of Incorporating the Merrimack Insurance Company," which was found in the cashbook.


  • Creation: 1814-1843, undated


Restrictions on Access

This collection is open for research use.

Historical Sketch

Little is known about the beginnings of the Salem India Rubber Company. An indenture, dated 22 July 1835, indicates that the Salem Union Street Corporation leased a part of the Union Building in Salem to John F. Andrew for his use and benefit, and that of Joseph G. Waters, John Winn Jr., Larkin Thorndike, and their associates. On the reverse is a note "Lease to India Rubber Co.," and a statement that John F. Andrew conveyed to the Salem India Rubber Company "all my rights to the interests...," dated 2 May 1837. Joseph G. Waters served as the treasurer of the company and John Winn as the agent.

The company was incorporated in March 1836, and was active until at least 1843, manufacturing all kinds of rubber goods, such as shoes, hats, capes, and life preservers. The records are quite substantial through 1839 but begin to peter out after that point in time. The business apparently failed in the mid-1840s, and was replaced by another firm by 1847.


2 linear feet (3 boxes; 2 volumes)

Language of Materials



The Salem India Rubber Company Records contain financial papers, legal papers, insurance policies, correspondence and other company records.

Series List

SERIES I. Administrative Records

SERIES II. Business Records

Physical Location

Phillips Library Stacks


The Payroll Book (Vol. 2) was given to the Essex Institute in 1902. The provenance of the rest of the collection is unknown.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Donald Gleason, January 1994.

Processed by: Donald Gleason; machine-readable finding aid created by: Rajkumar Natarajan.
Language of description
Script of description

Repository Details

Part of the Phillips Library Repository

Peabody Essex Museum
306 Newburyport Turnpike
Rowley MA 01969 USA