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Within this Collection:

All accounts at the Barton general store

Mrs Wilks

John D Warnick

Dr Boucher

Wm Rogan

Mrs Patterson, Henry Creutzburg

John Barnes, Jos Andrews, Theo George

J J McDonald, A B Shaw, A Ritzell

Denlinger Bros

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Allegany County
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Barton, Allegany County, Store Ledger 1895-1897

This ledger, lent to the George’s Creek Library by Mary Meyers of Lonaconing, contains the purchases and payments of a community in the period 1895-1897. From the names of the purchasers, it is probable that the store was in Barton, between Lonaconing and Westernport along George’s Creek in western Allegany County, Maryland. There were a number of general stores in Barton at that time. Samuel Bradley, Henry Creutzburg, J. Henry Schramm, Theo George and George E. Williams were all listed in the 1900 census as proprietors of stores in Barton. The notation at the front of this ledger reads Ledger #3, Geo W. It is possible that this ledger belonged to George Williams for his store in Barton.

At the beginning of the ledger is an index, with the names of 272 accounts and the pages where their purchases are recorded. Items purchased ranged from potatoes and peas to salmon and chocolate. The store also sold shoes, mittens, shirts, handkerchiefs, ribbon, velvet, buckets, handles, matches, hay, and oats. Shingles, flooring, nails and hinges were sold as well, and shot, powder and shells. Many of the items are familiar but some are not common today, for example linsey, c oil (coal oil, like kerosene?) m oil, and JB and PB that were bought by the barrel. Tob is presumably tobacco, tom tomatoes, crack crackers, c drops cough drops, and h ache cure head ache cure.

Most people made purchases and then paid off all or part of their account. William Rogan was somewhat different. His balance in July 1896 was $132.56. The next entry in the account book reads, July 12 1911. Work done on Flat Rock Bridge and cash in full for the above amt. J. J. McDonald paid off some of his bill with bushels of apples, John Barnes may have paid off 50 cents of his bill with cherries, and Joseph Andrews received 55 cents of credit for cabbage (items marked with crfor credit)

In addition to the purchasers, there is a listing for Denlinger Bros, distributors of oils and grease of various types, based in Pittsburgh, Pa. It appears that the general store served as a distributor for them, for the Winter Weight Oil and the Zero Cold Test Oil, used for heating. James and William Denlinger were listed in the Pittsburgh City Directory of 1895 as secretary and vice president of Interstate Oil Co, as Oil Dealers. The company was out of business by 1910. Their territory in 1895 covered a wide area, and the names in this ledger stretch from Elk Garden, WV to Frostburg, MD.

Only a small number of the 720 pages of the ledger have been included on this site. The ledger remains in the George’s Creek Library, and is available for research in the History Room. The spelling of names and items purchased was not always clear, and while every effort was made to interpret the writing accurately, corrections are welcomed.

Thanks to Mary Meyers for use of the ledger; Buddy Duckworth and Walt Warnick for their knowledge of the people and history of western Allegany; Carol Askey for information on Barton and the Shaw family; Sara McBeth and Robert Andrews for permission to use the Andrews family pictures; John Brode for the use of his picture of Barton; and the Pennsylvania Department of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and Duke University for information on Denlinger Bros.

Western Maryland Regional Library
100 South Potomac Street
Hagerstown, Maryland 21740

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