1.   Historical note

2.   Scope and content

3.   Provenance

4.   Processing note

5.   Inventory

6.   Subjects

    List of finding aids

    R.I.H.S. Library page

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 George Thurston & Son Records

 General store, Hopkinton, R.I.

 Records, 1794-1869

 Size: 2.5 linear feet

 Catalog number: MSS 753

 Processed by: Rick Stattler, January 1999

©Rhode Island Historical Society

Manuscripts Division


Historical note:

            George Thurston (1741-1827) was born in Hopkinton, R.I., the son of George and Keziah Thurston. He served as an officer in the Revolution, and after the war rose to the rank of brigadier-general in the state militia. He also operated a general store in the village of Hopkinton City, which in 1794 became the partnership of George Thurston & Son in conjunction with his son Jeremiah Thurston (1768-1830). Jeremiah served a term as lieutenant-governor of Rhode Island in 1816. By that time, the firm was called Jeremiah Thurston & Co. After Jeremiah's death in 1830, the firm became B.B. Thurston & Co., run by Jeremiah's son Benjamin B. Thurston (1804-1886). Benjamin also served a year as lieutenant-governor, in 1837, and served four terms as a U.S. Representative between 1847 and 1857. He spent his later years in New London, Connecticut.


Rogers, L.E., ed. Biographical Cyclopedia of Representative Men of Rhode Island (Providence: National Biographical Publishing, 1881), 175, 303.

Thurston, Brown. Thurston Genealogies, 2nd ed. (Portland, Me.: Published by author, 1892), 545, 577, 617.

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Scope and content:

         This collection includes many of the store's ledgers and daybooks from 1794 to 1869. Other records from the firm appear to have been scattered prior to their arrival at the R.I.H.S. This records show general store purchases for a large number of Hopkinton-area residents. Also of interest are the weaving ledger, which tracks the home weaving done by customers in exchange for merchandise; and the tavern ledger, which for the most part details alcoholic beverages sold on credit.

            At least two early daybooks dated 1800-1801 and 1806-1808 are in the private collection of Betsey Butts of Salem, Connecticut.

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         The bulk of this collection was purchased from the Old Mystic Book Store in 1973. One additional volume (the 1832-1835 daybook) was purchased from Nino Scotti in 1974, for $25.

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Processing note:

         This collection was originally catalogued by Nathaniel N. Shipton in 1973. The volumes were boxed, and this finding aid compiled, in 1999.

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Box 1. Ledger #1, 1794-1800

Box 1. Ledger #3, 1801-1807

Box 1. Ledger #4, 1804-1809

Box 1. Ledger #5, 1810-1816

Box 1. Ledger #6, 1814-1821

Volume 1. Ledger, 1837-1848

Volume 2. Ledger, 1849-1869

Box 1. Small accounts ledger, 1828

Box 2. Tavern ledger, 1804-1822

Box 2. Weaving ledger #9, 1813-1814


Box 2. Daybook, 1803-1805

Box 2. Daybook, 1814-1816

Box 2. Daybook, 1826-1829

Box 2. Daybook, 1832-1835

Volume 3. Daybook, 1840-1842

Volume 4. Daybook, 1849-1852

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General stores - Rhode Island - Hopkinton

Hopkinton, R.I. - General stores

Hotels, taverns, etc. - Rhode Island - Hopkinton

Textiles and fabrics - Rhode Island - Hopkinton

Thurston, Benjamin B. (1804-1886)

Thurston, George (1741-1827)

Thurston, Jeremiah (1768-1830)

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