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

    R.I.H.S. home page

 William H. Perry Papers


Scrap iron dealer, Warwick, R.I.

 Account books, 1885-1917

 Size: 0.5 linear feet

 Catalog number: MSS 865

 Processed by: Rick Stattler, November 1997

©Rhode Island Historical Society

Manuscripts Division


Historical note:

            William H. Perry resided in Warwick, R.I., in the village of Apponaug, but did business as a scrap iron dealer as the W.H. Perry Company in Providence. He also owned several rental properties in Providence. He appears in the Providence city directory as late as 1915, and his account books are continued through December of 1917. According to Warwick tax books, his wife was Susan A. Perry. They apparently had a daughter named Elizabeth who attended Pembroke College. No other biographical or vital records could be found.

Return to top

Scope and content:

            The expense account book describes Perry's household expenses in great detail from 1903 to 1907. The expenses are arranged by category, including House, Personal, General, Stable, Farm, Repairs and Taxes, and Water Works. Individual entries show Perry's involvement in the Freemasons and the Pomham Club. The family also apparently owned vacation property at a location called "Council Bluff". In October of 1903 and 1904, Perry paid tuition for a daughter at "Women's College", almost certainly the Elizabeth Perry of Apponaug who graduated from Pembroke College in 1905.

            The other volumes document a similar range of Perry's personal finances. There is little information on his scrap metal firm, other than the transfer of funds between his personal and corporate accounts. The corporate stock share ledger is very brief, listing just a handful of transactions between five shareholders.

Return to top


            The first six volumes of this collection were donated by Mildred Longo in 1985. The provenance of the 1903-1907 ledger is uncertain. It was recovered from a box of unsorted books slated to be sold at our library book sale in 1997. Very likely, it was also a gift of Longo, a manuscripts dealer who remains a frequent donor of material to our collection. Longo probably purchased the collection at an estate sale, donated the bulk of it in 1985, and included the last volume in one of the many boxes of books she recently brought over for our book sale.

Return to top

Processing note:

Return to top


Ledger, 1907-1917

Expense book, 1903-1907

Account journal, 1894-1903

Account journal, 1907-1917

Stock investment ledger, 1885-1916

Notes and bills payable and receivable, 1894-1917

William H. Perry & Co. stock ledger, 1897-1908 (division of shares among family members)

Return to top


Account books - Warwick, R.I.

Warwick, R.I. - Social life and customs

End of finding aid - return to top