Digital Commonwealth

Nathaniel Maynard Exercise and Account Book, 1801-1862

University of Massachusetts Amherst Libraries Special Collections and University Archives

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The farmer Nathaniel Maynard was born in Marlborough (Worcester County), Mass., on Feb. 27, 1780, the eldest of four children of Joseph Maynard and Lovina Barnes. By 1804, when he married Rachel (Hill) of North Brookfield, Nathaniel was already a resident of Leverett, where he had apparently moved with his brother William. Nathaniel and Rachel had four children: Ira B. Maynard (1810-1896), Alvin (1813-1818), Emeline Dudley (1815-1901), and Joseph Bartlett Maynard (1817-1881). This small volume is a hybrid production. Roughly the first half of the volume consists of relatively standard exercises for learning arithmetic and business activities, including calculating weights, measures, currencies, finances, and interest rates. The remainder consists of accounts, recording a variety of work performed by Maynard, ranging from farm labor (sale of potatoes, plowing and planting, working with oxen, slaughtering, and chopping wood) to weaving ("sheeting") and especially mending or making shoes.

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