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Henry S. Leverich checkbook

Creation: 1830-1837
Accession: 2097


Henry S. Leverich (1804-1885), along with his brothers, was a merchant and financier in New York City. The checkbook contains annotated stubs for checks drawn on the Merchants' Bank in the City of New York and several blank checks.


  • Creation: 1830-1837



1 volume(s)

Biographical Note

Henry S. Leverich (1804-1885), along with his brothers, was a merchant and financier in New York City.

Leverich was born July 22, 1804, in Newtown, New York, to Edward Leverich (1763-1835) and Elizabeth Palmer (1771-1827). He received a common school education and left his home about 1820 to enter the then-largest mercantile house in New York City, that of Peter Remsen & Co., as a clerk. The company dealt in a variety of products, including those southern commodities that Leverich and his brother would later specialize in trading.

About 1835, as Peter Remsen & Co. started to wind down their business, Leverich and his brother, Charles P. Leverich (1803-1876), formed a partnership called Leverich & Co. in New York. The brothers in New York and New Orleans worked closely together in building a commission and factorage business. Initially, Leverich & Co. dealt in the products that commission merchants regularly dealt in during the nineteenth century, such as tobacco, foodstuffs, spices, glass and glassware, and soap. The company also dealt in industrial products, such as hemp, hides, and bulk chemicals (specifically brimstone, saltpeter, and indigo). In this early period, most of Leverich & Co.'s bulk trade in Southern produce was in sugar and sugar products, such as molasses and rum. The company expanded to handle all the produce of Southern plantation agriculture, including cotton, sugar, molasses, rice, and occasionally tobacco.

Throughout the Civil War, Henry and Charles Leverich remained loyal to the union. Their elder brother William Leverich (1797-1881), who had lived in New Orleans for over thirty years, sided with the Confederacy due to his sympathy for southern demands regarding slavery and the economy. Family and business ties prevailed over political beliefs, as William Leverich swore he would do anything to protect Leverich & Co. interests. Eventually, northern and southern banks were able to reconcile their differences and continued to operate through the war, despite potential currency issues.

Henry Leverich married Margaret Duncan Gustine (1818-1885) in 1836 in Philadelphia. The couple had three children: Mary Ann (1818-1879), Edward (1839-1886), and James Gustine (1841-1848). Henry's brother, Charles, would marry Margaret's sister, Matilda Duncan Gustine (1816-1896), three years later. Charles would later become the president of the Bank of New York.

Scope and Contents

Henry S. Leverich's (1804-1885) checkbook contains annotated stubs for checks drawn on the Merchants' Bank in New York City and several blank checks. The account was a secondary account, with money being regularly transferred to an account at the Bank of New York, in which the Leverich family held stock. There are no entries for the period from April 1832 to September 1835.

The annotations record the arrival of shipments of sugar and other products from New Orleans, loaning money, discounting bills, and other mercantile transactions. Leverich had dealings with many eminent New York houses, including John Jacob Astor (1763-1848), Phelps, Dodge & Co., Grinnell, Minturn & Co., G.G. & S. Howland, Brown Brothers & Co., and the brokers Cammann & Whitehouse. The stubs also record several transactions with Israel Cook, a butter merchant whose sons attempted to corner the sugar market. Leverich was also involved in placing several hundred shares of the New Orleans Canal and Banking Co. with New York investors.

Access Restrictions

No restrictions on access; this collection is open for research.

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Finding Aid & Administrative Information

Henry S. Leverich checkbook
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Revision Statements

  • 2021: Ashley Williams

Repository Details

Repository Details

Part of the Manuscripts and Archives Repository

PO Box 3630
Wilmington Delaware 19807 USA