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Winsor (Daniel L.) Papers

(Mss. 4740)



Biographical/Historical Note

Scope and Content Note

List of Series and Subseries

Series Description

Container List


Size. 1 linear foot.

Geographic Locations. Louisiana, Massachusettes, England, Russia, Denmark, Cuba.

Inclusive dates. 1826-1851.

Bulk dates. 1832-1850.

Languages. English.

Summary. Personal and financial records, bills of lading, and invoices of Daniel L. Winsor, ship captain and agent.

Source. Purchase, 1999.

Copyright. Physical rights are retained by the LSU Libraries. Copyright of the original materials is retained by the creators, or their descendants, of the materials in accordance with U.S. Copyright law.

Citation. Daniel L. Winsor Papers, Louisiana and Lower Mississippi Valley Collections, LSU Libraries, Baton Rouge, Louisiana.

Stack locations. Mss. S-127, OS:W.

Biographical/Historical Note

Daniel Loring Winsor was a ship captain and agent for Magoun & Son, Boston shipowners. Winsor operated mainly out of Boston but spent considerable time trading in New Orleans. He owned, commanded, or had some type of interest in the ships Astracan, Coliseum, Deucation, Jacob Perkins, Java, Medford, Maulius, Pharsalia, Prairie, and Timoleon. Winsor sailed to New Orleans; Liverpool, England, Elsinore [Helsingor], Denmark; St. Petersburg and Cronstadt [Kronhshtadt], Russia; and Havana and Matanzas, Cuba.

Winsor and his wife, the former Sally B. Sampson, lived in Duxbury, Massachusetts, a community thirty miles southeast of Boston. Beginning in 1848 and for each year thereafter, they also rented a home in New Orleans from January through late spring. The Winsors had at least two children, a girl named Mary Ann and a boy.

Scope and Content Note

Personal and financial receipts, ship manifests, ship accounts, bills of lading, payments to seamen, and other matters related to Winsor's maritime business. The largest portion of the collection consists of financial papers that reflect the activities of Winsor as a sea captain who sailed primarily out of Boston and New Orleans. In the late antebellum period he became heavily involved in the cotton trade from New Orleans to Liverpool. Numerous invoices, freight lists, and manifests detail the workings of the cotton trade. Other shipping material reflects the payments to crew members, costs associated with provisioning and maintaining ships, and other material connected with maritime commerce. The personal papers detail the costs associated with the Winsor family's attempts to establish a household in Duxbury, Massachusetts and are chiefly concerned with buying groceries, contracting for work on their house, and attending to other personal affairs. Another portion of the personal papers show Winsor's activities in New Orleans, where the family lived for a portion of each year after 1847. Winsor also purchased personal items from the various ports he visited.

List of Series and Subseries

I. Personal Papers, 1826-1851 (box 1, oversize folder 1)

II. Shipping Financial Material, 1830-1851 (box 2, oversize folder 2)

III. Shipping Records, 1829-1850
             Subseries 1. Crew Material, 1830-1839 (box 3, oversize folder 3)
             Subseries 2. Ship Disbursement Accounts, 1829-1849 (box 3, oversize folder 4)
             Subseries 3. Freight Lists and Invoices, 1835-1849 (box 3, oversize folder 5)
             Subseries 4. Maritime Commerce Material, 1832-1850 (box 3)

IV. Correspondence, 1833-1850 (box 3)

V. Legal Material, 1836-1848 (box 3)

Series Descriptions

I. Personal Papers, 1826-1851 (356 items)

The early financial documents of Daniel L. Winsor relate chiefly to the purchase of food and supplies for the household and payment for work done on the home. Winsor and his wife purchased most of their goods from Duxbury, Massachusetts, merchants and there is, for example, a bill from Martin Winsor for a looking glass, sugar, soap and other household goods (3/19/1832). An itemized bill from L. S. Sampson, another local retailer, includes such items as shoes, calico, linen, silk, buttons, and gingham (1830-1831). There are also receipts for The Olive Branch of Boston starting in 1844 and running through 1850.

Winsor purchased many gifts for himself, his wife, and his family during his travels. In Havana, he bought "sweet meats" (6/29/1835), in St. Petersburg he spent 180 rubles to buy ladies slippers and a drawing of the "monuments" (10/1/1835), while in Liverpool he purchased white calico and a satin vest (8/17/1840). Winsor also bought a speaking trumpet, a tea kettle, a coffee pot, a leather trunk, and a squirrel skin for himself in Cronstadt (5/18/1832). In the late 1830s, receipts for more expensive items may be found in Winsor's financial papers. He acquired, for example, a "dining set of crockery" (5/8/1839), a seven year old bay horse for $144 (5/16/1842), a $30 set of temporary teeth for Sally Winsor (10/3/1846), and an eighteen foot sail boat (4/1/1848).

In 1847 the Winsors began to spend January through late spring in New Orleans, and more material from Louisiana may be found after this date. Receipts indicate they paid $110 each month for room and board. There is a bank statement from the Louisiana State Bank (5/21/1850), a bill for five shares of the bank bought at auction (12/818/32), a list of railroad stocks (5/19/1837), and a "list of notes" (n.d.). Also included are receipts for local and state taxes and canceled checks. Winsor, for example, paid $3.36 in Louisiana state tax in 1851 as well as buying into the Lafayette Corporation (5/24/1851). Doctors' bills from Duxbury and New Orleans may also be found.

The lone personal correspondence in the collection is from Sally Winsor in New Orleans to her nephew Granville Sampson in Boston (1/19/1850). It is mainly concerned with consoling Granville after the death of his mother but also mentions the prospect of two relatives moving to California, presumably in search of gold. Among the undated material there is a memo of expenses for an 1847 trip to New York, Philadelphia, Wheeling, Baltimore, Cincinnati, Pittsburgh, and New Orleans. Another undated item is a list of possessions, including clothing, gold watch, smoking cup, hair brush combo, and the Holy Bible, possibly in preparation for a trip. There are also several undated and assorted pieces of material that relate to the Winsors' personal life.

II. Shipping Financial Material, 1830-1851 (192 items)

The bills and receipts included here reflect the scope of Winsor's activities as captain and owner of various ships. Early surviving receipts are primarily from foreign ports. Winsor, for example, bought a body coat, two pantaloons, a waistcoat, and three handkerchiefs in Hamburgh (3/29/1830). He also purchased "congo tea," soap, pepper, clothing, and other supplies for the crew of the Pharsalia in Elsinore, Denmark, situated at the entrance to the Baltic Sea (10/25/1835). There are several receipts for work done on the ships themselves, including a bill for five dollars to unbend the sails and trim the rigging (10/6/1830), a receipt for $141.09 for a 2,555 pound anchor, rigging, and two masts purchased at a U.S. Marshal's sale (12/23/1841), and a statement of repairs made to several ships (9/30/1848).

Beginning in the early 1840s, more material survives from New Orleans. There are numerous bills and receipts reflecting Winsor's activity in the Crescent City, primarily payments regarding several ships. There is, for example, a payment of $600 to Anthony Blake on behalf of the Pharsalia(7/10/1847) and a bill of $54.25 from Edward Bourgeios for piloting a vessel in the Mississippi River (1/31/1842). James D. Keith of New Orleans has fourteen receipts for his drayage, or unloading, of pork in 1850. That same year marks the inclusion of many receipts for the Maulius, including one to make the top sail (3/14/1850).

Other bills and receipts deal with assorted features of the maritime trade and include itemized lists of expenses for various ships. Winsor purchased $1991.56 of supplies for the Medford in 1849, including potatoes, macaroni, eggs, beef, brandy, paint, pitch, and a harpoon. A receipt from the Customs House in Richmond certifies that the captain of the Equator paid the duty on an anchor cable (9/18/1833). There is a bill from John Haskins to the owners of the ship R. C. Winthrop for $51.50 to press 103 bales of cotton (2/14/1839). In 1845 Winsor refunded $8.75 from a cargo because rats had damaged it (2/25/1845), while two years later he gave $6.25 to the New Orleans City Police prison for the jail fees and bond money of seaman Robert Lee (12/7/1847).

III. Shipping Records, 1829-1850 (117 items)

Subseries 1. Crew Material, 1830-1849 (35 items)

The Crew Material includes several receipts for wages, or advances on wages, for crew members of the Coliseum, Deucalion, Pharsalia, Prairie, Maulius, Medord, and Timoleon. One crewman, Nathaniel Smell, arranged for Winsor to pay $48.95 of attorney's fees on his behalf and then deduct that amount from his wages (4/13/1838). This document also specifies Smell's wages as $18 per month. The records also indicate that seamen used the promise of future wages to purchase material. Ten crewmen of the Timoleon purchased "goods" in Elsinore on the ship's credit. They agreed to have the amount of their purchases, figured in Spanish dollars, deducted from their wages (6/16/1836). There is also a loan from Edward Winsor for $1,000 to pay $896.16 worth of wages to sixteen crew members (1/6/1836). Of special note is the Seamen's Certificate of Thomas Sherman, Jr. In compliance with federal law, seamen carried certificates to prove they were United States citizens and not subject to impressment by the British Navy. This certificate lists Sherman's age, height, complexion, hair, and eyes (6/9/1832).

Subseries 2. Ship Disbursement Accounts, 1829-1849 (27 items)

The ship accounts render itemized lists of the charges and payments that affected Winsor's shipping business. Accounts exist for the ships Astracan, Coliseum, Dalmatia, Deucalion, Java, Pharsalia, Marius, and Timoleon. These vessels sailed to or from the ports of Boston, New Orleans, St. Petersburg, Matanzas, Havana, and Liverpool. They carried various types of cargo including coffee, sperm candles, lard, mackerel, and salt. The itemized charges include matters related to maritime commerce such as quarantine duty, customhouse charges, landing, delivery, brokerage, and commissions.

Subseries 3. Freight Lists and Invoices, 1837-1849 (16 items)

The freight lists and invoices give a detailed view of the goods carried in the various ships commanded by Captain Winsor. Records for the Deucalion, Jacob Perkins, Lochinvar, Maulius, Timoleon, and Pharsalia survive. Most of the freight lists show the workings of the cotton trade between New Orleans and Liverpool and are figured in pounds rather than dollars. The majority have a detailed rendering of consignees, goods, marks and numbers, quantity, weight, rate, freight, primage (a payment by the shipper to the ship's captain for special handling), and total commission. Other lists show goods shipped to or from Boston and Havana, including apples, mackerel, sugar, ink, oil, wine, paper, and anchors. Three of the freight lists also have disbursements for the ships (1/31/1835, 4/6/1837, 8/9/1839). These charges include dock dues, "victualling" bills, and duties.

Subseries 4. Maritime Commerce Material, 1832-1850 (39 items)

This series includes several different types of materials related to various aspects of maritime commerce. Four documents reflect informal notes between Winsor and his business associates. Nugent and Turpin of Liverpool, for instance, agreed to load the Timoleon (4/25/1838). There is also a list of vessels loaded in Havana and bound for St. Petersburg (3/23/1836) and a statement of negotiation between Winsor and L. and J. P. Whitney for service on board the Timoleon (2/9/1837). Some items detail the depth and breadth of ship provisions. There is a calculation of 10,500 gallons of water, which would supply 350 men for 30 days (6/10/1848), and a "List of Ship Stores" (5/1/1835). Included in the latter are twelve barrels of beef, a barrel of flour, a keg of lard, fifty boxes of dried apples, a bottle of ketchup, and two pigs. There are also numerous undated calculations, notes, and signatures.

IV. Correspondence, 1829-1850 (13 items)

There are several letters from Baring Brothers and others from various commercial houses in England. One letter from Edward Tobey gives a brief statement of Winsor's financial activities, including his purchase of railroad stock.

V. Legal Material, 1836-1848 (2 items)

In 1836-1837 Winsor paid $120.91 to defend himself in a court case involving his business. The money went for depositions, attorneys' fees, clerk's fees, and arguing the Ames v. Winsor case. The other item is an official notice from the Orleans Parish Sheriff's Office withdrawing the hold on the cargo of flour contained in the Medford.

Container List

Stack                       Folders
location        Box     Per box       Contents
S-127            1          9                 Personal Papers, (1826-1851, 350 items).

 S-127            2          8                 Shipping Financial Material (1830-1851, 185 items).

 S-127            3           5                 Shipping records (1829-1850, 102 items).
S-127            3           2                 Correspndence (1829-1850, 13 items).
S-127            3           1                 Legal Material (1836-1848, 2 items).

 OS:W           4           1                 Personal Papers (1830-1835, 6 items).
OS:W           4           1                 Shipping financial material (1844-1849, 7 items).
OS:W           4           3                 Shipping Records (1832-1848, 15 items).