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Masters & Markoe records
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Masters & Markoe records

Accession 0189

Manuscripts and Archives Department, Hagley Museum and Library


PO Box 3630
Wilmington, Delaware, 19807
302-658-2400
askhagley@hagley.org

This finding aid was produced using the Archivists' Toolkit 2019-03-07T08:11-0500

Finding aid prepared using best local practices and Describing Archives: A Content Standard

Cite items for this collection in the following format:
[Description and dates], Box/folder number, Masters & Markoe records (Accession 0189), Hagley Museum and Library, Wilmington, DE 19807

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Descriptive Summary

Title: Masters & Markoe records
Dates: 1800-1855
Accession Number: 0189
Creator: Masters & Markoe.
Extent: 5.5 linear feet
Language of Material: English
Repository: Hagley Museum and Library: Manuscripts and Archives Department
Abstract: Masters & Markoe was a mercantile house which operated throughout the early nineteenth century. Most of the records date from the period 1810-1814 and document the West Indian trade of Markoe & Masters. The collection shows that the firm was primarily involved with the importation of sugar from Santa Cruz (St. Croix). The personal papers include letters of Thomas Masters' wife and children (1811-1848). There is also a family journal.
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Administrative Information


Access Restrictions

This collection is open for research.

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Historical Note

Thomas Masters (d. 1844) was a British merchant who established himself in the United States about 1803. By 1807 he was a clerk in the mercantile house of Pratt & Kintzing. The next year he left to establish his own mercantile house. In 1810 he formed a partnership with his brother-in-law, Francis Markoe. Much of Markoe & Master's business involved the West Indian trade. Severe losses caused by the War of 1812 caused the dissolution of the firm on November 14, 1814. Thomas Masters then associated himself with the New York merchant Divie Bethune.

Masters & Markoe then operated in New York from about 1825 until 1836, when the firm became Masters, Markoe & Co. Thomas Masters and Francis Markoe were joined, at different times, by their sons, Samuel Caldwell Masters and Francis Markoe, Jr., and by Jeremiah Wilbur, a son-in-law of Masters. The firm of Masters, Markoe & Co. continued until 1846, when it became Markoe, Wilbur & Scott.

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Scope and Content

Most of the records date from the period 1810-1814 and document the West Indian trade of Markoe & Masters. The collection shows that the firm was primarily involved with the importation of sugar from Santa Cruz (St. Croix). The company also imported molasses, rum, coffee, mahogany, and logwood. Letters include correspondence between the partners Thomas Masters and Francis Markoe as well as between the firm and prominent New York, Baltimore, and Philadelphia merchants.

Also included are accounts, bills and receipts documenting trade with Germany, France, and the West Indies.

Personal papers include letters of Thomas Masters' wife and children (1811-1848). There is also a family journal. Thomas Masters' son, Wilbur, helped found the Young Men's Christian Association of New York and the New York Bible Society.

Outbound correspondence of Masters & Markoe: Generally these letters are drafts in the hand of Thomas Masters.

In file of correspondence addressed to Thomas Masters and/or Markoe and Masters: The chief correspondent was Masters' partner, Francis Markoe.

A collection of business and personal papers of Thomas Masters, merchant of Philadelphia and New York, and members of his family. Apprx. 4150 items, c. 1800-1850. Masters was an English merchant who left London about 1800 and was supercargo on a ship (owned by F. Dusar of Pbiladelphia) bound for,the Mediterranean. In 1802-03 he came to Philadelphia and was associated with Florimond Pusar, merchant, also formerly of London, but their ventures ended in controversy. By 1807 Masters .becaN,e a clerk (salary - $1000 a year) with the mercantile house of Pratt & Kintzing, a firm with much foreign trade.

During the spring of 1807 he married Isabella Caldwell, the daughter of Samuel Caldwell, and by 1810 established a commission business with his new brother-in-law Frands Markoe (who was married to Sally, another daughter of Samuel Caldwell). Though Markoe continued to reside in Philadelphia, the firm operated from New York under Masters' direction.

The new firm of Markoe and, Masters had a large volume of its trade w:ith the Wes t Indies, c') stemming from a close connection with Abraham Markoe (founder . .of the Philadelphia branch of the family) w~o was prominent in the sugar trade in Santa Cruz during the eighteenth century. 'f The firm also had ties with the,Heyligerfamily in St. Croix, who were important agents in· the Wes t Indian tr~de. The maj or imports were sugar, molas ses, rum, coffee, logwood, and mahogany.

As a result of the severe bUSiness losses caused by the war with Great Britain, the partnership was forced to dissolve, 14 Nov 1814, and Masters associated himself with David Bethune of New York.' Although the correspondence sheds little light on this point, a. new firm called Masters and Markoe was again in operation by 1825, with headquarters in New York. Once again Thomas Masters and Francis Markoe were the principals, but they seemed to have been joined by tl(& sons (at differ"ent t:i,enls),Samuel Caldwell Masters, Francis Markoe, Jr., and by Masters' son-in-law Jeremiah Wilbur. Correspondence indicates this firm was in existence at least through 1839.

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Access Points

Merchants--Pennsylvania.
Wormser, Richard S.
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Series Descriptions and Inventory

I. Business correspondence
Scope and Content
* Major correspondents. Correspondents include: Samuel Abbot (1816) Adamson & Osgood (1813) New York Agnew & Campbell (1813) Philadelphia & Baltimore Wm. Allibone~ Jr. (1813) Philadelphia. Allibone & Keim (1812) Phila. Jeremiah Anders6n (1809)· Maracaibo. T. H. Bacher (1813) Amsterdam' Bainbridges & Brown (1810) London Elijah K. Bangs (1812-13) Phila. John Banners (1810) St. Croix *John H. Barnes (1810-13) Phila. Jeremiah Batley (1816) England George Beckel (1810-13) Phila. *David Bethune (1810-20) New York Thos. Bedwell, Jr. (1810-11) Rio de Janeiro Edward Blockford (1811) Newark Hugh Boyle (1813-14) Baltimore Robert P. Brame [?] (1811-13) New Bedford & Phila. Robert Brown (1811) Wilmington, N. C. G. Buchan (1813) New York Joseph Cabot (1813) Boston David Caldwell (1808-32) Phila. Samuel W'; Caldwell (1808-32) Phila. *Peter Care, Jr. (1811-14) Phila. John Chambers (1812) New York Edmund Chapman (1814) Gustavus & Hugh Colhoun (1813) Phila. Francis S. Coxe (1812-13) Phila. Cranston & Shaw (1814) Newport Charles W. Cummins (1815-19) Florida *Arthur Dalton (1824-27) London, Bristol, Liverpool Thos. Dary (1814) London Cap~. Wm. Davis (1813) Phila. John Dayton (1811) Phila. *Florimond Dusar (1802-16) Phila. John F. Dyer (1835-36) Providence Wm. F. Elder (1812) New York Wm. Elliot (1812) New York George Erich (1808) New York Henry Eubank (1820, 22) Liverpool Charles Field (1813) Phila. *David Finlay (1810-13) St. Croix Samuel J. Fisher (1810-14) Phila. Friendly Christian Society (1812-13) New York Henry Gardiner (1812) Phila. V. M. Garesche (1811) Sandy Hook Light House Richard George (1811) Baltimore Johan Gerhard Graepel (1810, 1815-16) Hamburg John Gibson (1810) M. & H. Gilroy (1837-38) Castleton Richard Grahme (1808) New York Rev. Ch. Gutzluff (1834) China Vincent Gray (1812-16) Havana Gysbert & Behagen, (1811) John Hamilton Hancock & McCormick (1811) St. Croix Dan Harris (1813) Phila. Francis Harris (1816) Kingston, Jamaica *Harris & Donaldson (1811-13) Baltimore Henry Harrison (1811-12) Phila. James Hart & Co. (Philadelphia) Thos. & Wm. H. Hart (1810-11) Philadelphia Thos. Haskins (1810) Phila. Sam. Hazlehurst (1812-13) Phila. J. W. Helme (1836) Abraham Heyliger (1811) Plymouth Mrs. Elizabeth Heyliger (1811) St. Croix Wm. Heyliger (1811) St. Croix O. H. Hicks (1811) New York Patrick Hogan (1811-12) Phila. Wm. B. Holmes (1813) New York Benj. B. Howell & Co. (1811) Phila. Wm. Howell, ,Jr. (1813) Middletown, Del. Charles S. Hughes & Co. (1812) Puerto Rico & Phila . ,John Hughes, Jr. (1812) Phila. Samuel R. Hughes (1812-13) Phila. &' Puerto Rico Hull & Griswold (1813) J. R. Ingersoll (1813-14) Phila. Jacobsen & Kintzing (1812) Phila. Henry ,Johnson (1837) Williamsburg Jones & Chinch (1809) New York Thos. P. Jose (1828, 34) Bristol, England *Abraham Kintzing (1813-17) Phila. *Benj. H. Kintzing (1812-14) Phila. *Tench C. Kintzing (1813-17) Phila. John Knowles (1816) Darby, Pa. Benj. Kugler (1814) Phila. Wm. Lawson (1813) New Brunswick *James McCrea, Jr. (1813) Phila. *John McCrea (1813) Phila. John McHenry (1811-12) Baltimore T. McKean, Jr., (1812) Phila. McKean & Pratt (1811) Phila. Peter Malibraux (1816) Trinidad Mareilhac & Co'. (1811) Bordeaux Abraham Markoe (1811) St. Croix *Francis Markoe (1809-28) Phila.; New York Oliver Martin (1812) Bridgetown Francis R. Masters (1808-09) London Thomas Masters London M. Matthews (1809) Havana Mayer & Brantz (1811-16) Baltimore Mynard Mildeberger (1814-16) New York, Andrew Mitchell (1811) Holmesburg_& Phila. Samuel Moore - (1812-14) Bridge Point, Pa. Munn & Burton (1813) Lisbon-, Robert Munro (1811) Georgetown -Thomas Nugent (1811) St., Croix Franco Oller (1812)' Puerto Rico John Palmer (1808) Phila~ John Patterson (1811) New York P. Perit & Lathrop (1811, 13-14) New York *Henry Pratt (1811-14) Phila. I. Pratt (1808-09) New York Thomas Pratt (1811) Phila. *Pratt & Kintzing (1810-14) Phila. Andrew M. Prevost (1813) Phila. James Proudfit (1811) Troy B. E. Rainals & Co. (1810) Peter Remsen (1808-09) New York Thomas Richardson (1823) Richmond Maria Rivardi (1809) Germantown J. F. Robinson (1837-39) Sanadet & Cushing (1801) Marseilles Lucretia Sarazin (1814) Phila. John B. Schmetzel (1811-12) New York Robert Scot, Jr. (1813-17)Phila. & Rio de Janeiro James Seton (1813) John Curson Seton (1812) Havana Wm. E. Sherman (1810) Phila. Nathaniel Shutt (1814) Bordentown E. Sinclair (1816) New Haven L. Slade (1814) Phila. Francis Gurney Smith (1810-13) Phila. John Smith (1814) Hudson Richard S. Smith (1810-13)Phila. Joseph S. Snowden (1813) Phila. F. Wm. Sperr (1812-14) Phila. *John Sperry (1810-14) Baltimore Richard Steel (1832, 41) J. L. Sternbach (1805-10) New York Francis S. Symons (1810) Falmouth E. Tatten (1819) Santa Cruz Jeremiah Thompson (1831) John Towers (1810) Phila. RichardD. Tucker (1813) Boston *Charles W. Walker & Co. (1810-12) St. Croix J. Warder, Jr. (1810) Henry Werner (1832) New York John J. Werner (1832) New York Samuel Whiting (1812) Wickham & Co. (1812) Troupville James D. Wilson (1812) Phila. Charles & Peter Wirgman (1810) Baltimore E. J. Wise (1804) London *Broome P. Witts' (1803-15) London Witts, Dawkes & Co. (1818) London *Witts, Fisher & Co. (1807-12) London Wood & Skinner (1811) New York Benj. Woolston (1812) Phila.
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1 Outbound, 1801-1810; 321 items.
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2 Outbound, 1811-1843, undated; 645 items.
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3 Inbound, 1810; 254 items.
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4 Inbound, 1811; 266 items.
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5 Inbound, 1812; 132 items.
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6 Inbound, 1813; 258 items.
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7 Inbound, 1814-1841, undated; 324 items.
II. Accounts
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8 Bills and receipts, 1801-1847 [Principally of Markoe & Masters, with some personal.] ; 712 items.
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9 Accounts with Sanadet & Cushing, Marseilles, 1801-1802
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9 Papers of American Brig "Maria," 1801-1802
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9 Amsterdam trade receipts, 1802
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9 Bills of lading, 1803-1811
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9 Pratt & Kintzing trade with Germany, 1807-1809
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9 Invoices, 1807-1811
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9 Miscellaneous accounts, before 1810
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9 Miscellaneous accounts, 1810-1815
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9 Miscellaneous accounts, 1819-1831
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10 Suit of Witts vs. Dusar papers, circa 1808-1812
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10 Wreck of schooner Tartar, Jeremiah J, Glenn, Capt., documents, 1810-1811
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10 Ship "Feliz Innocencia" papers, 1811
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10 Insurance papers, 1805-1824
III. Family correspondence
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11 Letters from Isabella (Caldwell) Masters [Mrs. Thomas Masters], 1811-1840, undated; 31 items.
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11 Letters from Martha C. (Masters) Taylor [Mrs. Henry W. Taylor], 1824-1848; 53 items.
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11 Letters from Henry W. Taylor, 1833-1849; 29 items.
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11 Letters from Samuel C. Masters & wife Martha (Caldwell) Masters, 1831-1847; 70 items.
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11 Letters from Mary Masters, undated; 3 items.
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11 Letters from Anna (Masters) Bulkley, 1842-1848; 8 items.
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11 Letters from Francis R. Masters & wife "Fanny," 1838-1848, undated; 8 items.
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12 Personal correspondence to members of Masters family, 1810-1847, undated; 38 items.
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12 Letters from Harriet L. Caldwell [Mrs. Samuel W. Caldwell], 1812-1843; 4 items.
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12 Letters from Mary H. Caldwell, 1828; 4 items.
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12 M. R. Caldwell, 1841-1844; 4 items.
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12 Sally (Caldwell) Markoe [Mrs. Francis Markoe], 1812-1842; 7 items.
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12 Francis Markoe, Jr., 1836-1837; 7 items.
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12 Scott family (Thomas Masters' sister), 1802-1845; 16 items.
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12 Taylor family, 1839-1848; 3 items.
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12 Family journals, 1832-1838 [Written by Henry W. Taylor, Martha C. Taylor, & Samuel C. Masters, containing letters and anecdotes.] ; 15 issues.
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13 Letters from Sarah (Masters) Wilbur, 1832-1853, undated; 68 items.
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13 Letters to Sarah (Masters) Wilbur, 1841-1843, undated; 11 items.
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13 Letters from Jeremiah Wilbur, 1830-1851; 38 items.
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13 Letters to Jeremiah Wilbur, business, 1927-1939 [Major correspondents: Antis, William, Jr.; Armstrong; Bissell, J. & Co.; Bloodgood, S. D. W.; Chislet, John (1835-59); Clark, W. S.; Colwell, S.; Cook, R. S.; Dyer, John; Ellis, Jacob; Ford, H.; Fravelli, Joseph S.; Gilroy, M. & H.; Grans, R., & Co.; Hamilton, John; Hammond, A. G.; Hatch, Timothy A.; Helme, J. W.; Hoe, R., & Co.; Leeds, Benjamin; McKean, A. P.; Okley, John Stewart, & Co.; Robinson, J. F.; Root & Taylor; Shern, John; Simmons, S. C.; Stone, William L.; St. John, E.; Tarston, Thomas; Throckmorton & Patterson; Wilbur, M.; and Wilde & Merriman.] ; 51 items.
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13 Letters to Jeremiah Wilbur, personal, 1823-1839 [Major correspondents: Beatty, Charles C.; Calkin, E. P.; Gelston, Elizabeth; Engel, T. G.; Hyatt, E.; Mason, John; Post, Alfred C.; Rimus E.F.; Roseburg, John R.; Logan, A.; Markoe, Hartman; Markoe, Peter; Smith G.;Taylor, E. W.; VanRensselaer; and Wright, James.] ; 109 items.
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13 Wilbur family correspondence, 1812-1853 [Correspondents include: Bachus Wilbur; Eliz. Magie (Mrs. Bachus Wilbur); Joseph Wilbur; Isabella (Wilbur); Catherine (Mrs. Marcus) Wilbur; Elizabeth F. Wilbur; Henry Wilbur; To Marcus Wilbur from Salome; Mary & Joseph Cox Wilbur; Mary L. Wilbur; Rodney Wilbur; Cousin Fanny Ford; Harriet A. Guggen; Elizabeth Wilbur Price & husband Wm. W. Price; Samuel Spencer & Sarah (Wilbur) Spencer, and unknown.] ; 59 items.
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13 Letters from Rachel (Wilbur) Lambdin, 1822-1840; 38 items.
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13 Letters from Sarah (Lambdin) Coffin, 1831-1862, undated; 76 items.
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13 Lambdin family correspondence, 1824, 1838-1843 [Correspondents include: Catherine Lambdin; Samuel Lambdin; R.W. Lambdin; and J.R. Lambdin.] ; 7 items.