Table of Contents
Inventory of the White Family Papers
In the New Bedford Whaling Museum Research Library
The American progenitor of the White family of Freetown and Acushnet, Massachusetts, William White, was a passenger on the Mayflower and an early settler of Rochester, Mass. The Freetown branch of the family, headed by Thomas White (1722-1799), principally consisted of yeomen farmers, although one member, Marchant White (ca. 1795-1880), served as a Massachusetts state legislator in 1856. William White (1721-1817) was the head of the Acushnet branch of the family whose most notable members, William White (1757-1865) and his sons, Phineas White (1785-1877), William White Jr. (b. 1787), and Benjamin White (b. 1798), owned and operated a cotton mill from about 1800-1844 in a part of Fairhaven which later became the town of Acushnet. The mill was built near the site of a sawmill and between 1800-1814, several other buildings were added to the complex including a gristmill, dye house, and dwellings for operatives. Before the company was sold in 1844, it was known as William White Jr. & Company until 1841 and then as Phineas White & Company from 1841-1844.
Scope and Content Note
Of primary importance among the materials in this collection are the business records of William White Jr. & Company and its successor, Phineas White & Company, cotton manufacturers at Fairhaven, Mass. The records of the former company encompass a ledger, 1815-1845, labor records, 1822-1831, and deeds, 1777-1841. The latter company is represented by financial records, 1841-1845, including a day book, and incoming correspondence, 1842-1844.
Other papers in this collection reflect the activities of members of the Acushnet and Freetown, Mass., branches of the White family from 1746-1916, and include correspondence; deeds, estate records, guardianship papers, and similar legal documents; general and tax receipts, bills, promissory notes, and similar financial records; and personal papers. Family members represented by the largest amount of material are William White, 1780-1829, his son Phineas White, 1828-1907, and his grandson, Augustus White, 1853-1916.
Arrangement of Collection
Information for Researchers
Access to Collections
Unrestricted. Consult librarian for an appointment.
New Bedford Whaling Museum Research Library Mss 37, [sub-group, series, sub-series, folder/volume as appropriate], [item]
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Removed to Photographs Collection
Photograph of house of William White (1721-1817), built in 1741 in Acushnet, ca. 1950. 1 item.
Materials in this collection were given to the Old Dartmouth Historical Society by Miss Emma L. White in 1957 and on 21 September 1966.
Processed by: Barbara B. Austen ca. 1982
Encoded by: Robbin Smith, 09 January 2012
Funds for processing this collection were provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Please Consult Research Library for Detailed Description of Collection
Account books--Fairhaven, Mass.--1815-1845
Distribution of decedents' estates--Mass.--Acushnet
Phineas White & Company, Fairhaven, Mass.
Taxation of personal property--Mass.--Acushnet
Taxation of personal property--Mass.--Fairhaven
White, Ansel, 1796-1871
White, Augustus, fl. 1853-1916
White, Benjamin, b. 1798
White, Hannah B, b. 1804
White, Hannah Brown, b. ca. 1775
White, Henry C, b. 1877
White, Henry, fl. 1867
White, John, fl. 1819-1831
White, Joseph, b. 1755
White, Marchant, d. 1802
White, Marchant, d. 1880
White, Melora, fl. 1880-1890
White, Phineas Jr., fl. 1860-1877
White, Phineas, 1785-1877
White, Thomas Jr., fl. 1806-1841
White, Thomas, 1722-1799
White, William Jr., b. 1787
White, William, 1757-1835
William White Jr., & Company, Fairhaven, Mass.