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New Hampshire bookseller and printer's ledger


Held at: University of Delaware Library Special Collections [Contact Us]181 South College Avenue, Newark, DE 19717-5267

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Overview and metadata sections

This ledger was kept between 1822 and 1828 by Tobias Ham Miller, a printer and bookseller from Portsmouth, New Hampshire. Miller was born in Portsmouth on August 10, 1870, and trained as a printer in New Hampshire and Massachusetts. He established a print shop and book shop on Congress Street in Portsmouth in the early 1820s, where he advertised his ability to "execute various kinds of Book and Job Printing, with accuracy, neatness and expedition." He began publishing a weekly paper entitled

The Evening Visitant in 1823. His ledger shows that he sold subscriptions to other local newspapers, as well as a variety of religious and educational publications, stationery, and other goods. An undated slip of paper laid into this volume described Miller as the editor of the New Hampshire Observer. His obituary identified him as "Reverend Tobias Ham Miller," a printer and preacher of the Universalist faith. It also noted that he was "a rigid Republican, he knew no ground of compromise, and was to the last a determined opponent of what he conceived to be 'disloyalty.'" Miller died in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, on March 30, 1870.

"Advertisement." New-Hampshire Gazette. Portsmouth, New Hampshire, February 19, 1822. "Advertisement." New-Hampshire Gazette. Portsmouth, New Hampshire, September 22, 1822. "Advertisement." New-Hampshire Gazette. Portsmouth, New Hampshire, January 14, 1823. "Rev. Tobias Ham Miller." The Farmer's Cabinet. Amherst, New Hampshire, April 7, 1870. 1860 Federal Census (accessed via on June 18, 2018)Information derived from the collection.

This ledger was kept by bookseller and printer Tobias Ham Miller of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, between 1822 and 1828.

Although Miller was based in Portsmouth, he transacted with individuals and firms throughout southern New Hampshire, as well parties in Boston, Massachusetts, and Berwick, Maine. Many of the account holders in his ledger were other booksellers and printers, with whom he exchanged stock. For instance, Miller bought reward books and Biblical catechisms from Samuel T. Armstrong of Boston, Massachusetts, and paid him in both cash and a large quantity of arithmetic primers. Miller sold subscriptions to several newspapers, including

The Evening Visitant, The Chronicle, and Zion's Herald. He had a large selection of religious and educational publications, which he frequently sold to local academies, religious societies, and Sabbath schools. It also appears that he operated a lending library. In addition to cash, Miller's customers paid him in foodstuffs, textiles, paper products, coopering, and other goods and services.

Miller printed a variety of documents, including voting ballots, funeral notices, business invoices, and bank certificates. He printed copies of the local fire laws for the town of Portsmouth and published reports from the New Hampshire State Congress. In 1825, he printed a large number of advertising bills for Richard Potter of Andover, New Hampshire, whom he identified in the ledger as a ventriloquist.

This volume is bound in brown leather with tooled decoration on the front and back cover and spine. A handwritten inscription on the front cover reads "T.H. Miller's Ledger C" in black ink. An inscription on the spine reads "Ledger C." On the first page of the ledger there is an inscription reading "T.H. Millers Ledger." The volume contains 366 pages of lined laid paper with handwritten notations in black ink.

Item 0019: Shelved in SPEC MSS 0096

Purchase, 1958

Processed by Marrette Pearsall, 2012. Further processing and encoding by Elizabeth Jones-Minsinger, June 2018.

University of Delaware Library Special Collections
Finding Aid Author
University of Delaware Library, Special Collections
Finding Aid Date
2018 June 18
Access Restrictions

The collection is open for research.

Use Restrictions

Use of materials from this collection beyond the exceptions provided for in the Fair Use and Educational Use clauses of the U.S. Copyright Law may violate federal law. Permission to publish or reproduce is required from the copyright holder. Please contact Special Collections Department, University of Delaware Library,

Collection Inventory

New Hampshire Bookseller and printer's ledger, 1822 April 6-1828 January 1.
Item 0019

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