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Fisher & Metcalf, Metcalf & Fisher Account Book

A description of the item at Syracuse University

Finding aid created by: LMD
Date: 5 Apr 2010

Biographical History

Milton M. Fisher (1811-1903) and Elias Metcalf were both businessmen from Medway, Massachusetts. In 1841, Fisher was business partners with another man, S-L(?) Metcalf, forming the firm of Fisher & Metcalf. In 1842, Fisher partnered with Elias Metcalf, and they renamed the business Metcalf & Fisher.

Massachusetts had a strong cottage industry in straw goods in the nineteenth century. Individuals would braid straw at home and sell the braids to manufacturers like Fisher and Metcalf, who would then use them to create goods like straw bonnets, umbrellas, and baskets.

Scope and Contents of the Collection

The Fisher & Metcalf, Metcalf & Fisher Account Book spans the years 1841 to 1844. It actually documents two different business. The first is Fisher & Metcalf formed by M. M. Fisher and S-L(?) Metcalf in 1841. The second is Metcalf & Fisher, formed by M. M. Fisher and Elias Metcalf in 1842. The book records names of customers, lists of items purchased, prices, and dates of payment.

Some of the early pages of the account book were used as a scrapbook and have been pasted over with illustrations cut from Harper's Weekly. A long poem has also been copies into the last pages of the book -- "On the Shores of Tennessee" by Ethel Lynn Beers.

Arrangement of the Collection

Single item.


Access Restrictions:

The majority of our archival and manuscript collections are housed offsite and require advanced notice for retrieval. Researchers are encouraged to contact us in advance concerning the collection material they wish to access for their research.

Use Restrictions:

Written permission must be obtained from SCRC and all relevant rights holders before publishing quotations, excerpts or images from any materials in this collection.

Subject Headings


Fisher, Milton M. (Milton Metcalf), 1811-1903.
Metcalf, Elias.
Metcalf, S. L.

Corporate Bodies

Fisher & Metcalf.
Metcalf & Fisher.


Straw industries -- United States -- History.


Medway (Mass.) -- History.

Genres and Forms

Account books.

Administrative Information

Preferred Citation

Preferred citation for this material is as follows:

Fisher & Metcalf, Metcalf & Fisher Account Book,
Special Collections Research Center,
Syracuse University Libraries

Acquisition Information

Purchased, 1968.

Table of Contents

Account Books