Ledgers : Hazen, White Company : 1785 - 1829

Call Number: HIL-MICL FC LFR .H3W4L4
Category: Family
Creator: Hazen, William, 1738-1814, and White, James, 1738-1814.
Description: 1 microfilm textual records () ; 35 mm
            William Hazen was the son of Moses Hazen and Abigail White of Haverhill, Massachusetts. His brother was Moses Hazen (1733-1827), who chose the rebel side in the American Revolution and became a colonel in the American army. In 1759, William Hazen served under General Amherst during his campaign in Canada and the capture of Quebec. After the war he became a merchant in Newburyport, Massachusetts, and later joined his two cousins, James Simonds (1735-1830), Richard Simonds (d.1765), and others in a business enterprise at Portland Point (Saint John), New Brunswick. 

James White was born in Haverhill, Massachusetts, in 1738 and was a descendant of William White, one to the founders of the community. He had been an officer in a Massachusetts regiment during the Seven Years War. When he retired from active service at the end of the war in 1763 he was employed by Boston merchants, William Tailer and Samuel Blodget. In early 1764, he became involved with the Hazen/Simonds Company in Haverhill and Salem Massachusetts, but came to Portland Point in April of 1764 where he was one of the original partners in the first company. In later years, James White held several public offices including sheriff of the old Sunbury County, Nova Scotia, collector of customs, and magistrate licenced to solemnize marriages. He was the chief agent in bartering with the Mi'kmaq (Micmac) and Wolastoqiyik (Malisset/ Malecite) Indigenous (Indian), and also kept the company books.

The first partnership involving William Hazen and James White was formed on 1 March 1764, and consisted of three senior partners: Samuel Blodget, James Simonds, and William Hazen, each with one-quarter interest in the business; and three junior partners: Richard Simonds, James White, and Robert Peaslie, who was Hazen's brother in-law, each with one-twelfth part in the company. Two partners remained in Massachusetts and handled the business there while the others operated out of Portland Point. The company exported fish, furs, feathers, lime, and lumber, and supplied the garrison at Fort Frederick with limestone. They imported supplies for the settlers and the garrison, as well as goods for trading with the Indians. In 1765, Richard Simonds was killed by the Indians while trying to prevent them from carrying off company property, and soon after Peaslie and Blodget retired from the company. These changes resulted in a new partnership being formed in 1767 with William Hazen, Leonard Jarvis (b.1742), James Simonds, and James White. The company operated their trading routes very profitably, including the West Indies trade, until 1775 when it became too dangerous and expensive during the early years of the American Revolution. When American privateers raided the company stores at Portland Point, complaints to the British Government about the lack of protection resulted in the construction of Fort Howe by British troops under the direction of Gilfred Studholme. In 1773, Leonard Jarvis left the company, and in 1778 James Simonds retired from the firm and moved inland. A new partnership was in place by 1781 between Hazen, White, and Michael Franklin who was able to gain government masting contracts, and Halifax became the firm's centre for overseas trade. With the arrival of the Loyalists in 1783, Hazen became a Loyalist agent and was the only pre-Loyalist chosen to sit on the Council when New Brunswick was created a separate colony from Nova Scotia in 1784. The coming of the Loyalists created a need for lumber and manufactured goods, and the end of privateering made it possible for the company to resume both the coastal and the West Indies trade routes. The business prospered and their future was secure. Several members of the large Hazen family became leading citizens of the community. William Hazen's daughter, Elizabeth, married Ward Chipman, and his daughter Sarah, became the wife of William Botsford, the son of Amos Botsford. A grandson, Robert Leonard Hazen, was a prominent lawyer and New Brunswick politician.

            Contains three account books - 27 October 1785-circa 9 November 1807, 27 October 1785-17 January 1797, 1816-1829; and a list of vessels cleared at the Port of Saint John, 27 November 1784-5 January 1785. 


The first items on the reel are two surname indexes: 1785-1787 and 1825-1828. The indexes are typed and the names are alphabetically arranged, but lack page references or any indication of their relationship to the company ledgers that follow. A study of the 1785-1787 Index reveals that it relates to the first three years of the first ledger on the reel. The next item on the reel is a hand written index, including page references, which provides access to the company ledger that follows. The ledger begins on 27 October 1785 and the last entries are circa, 9 November 1807. Entries in the ledger are recorded under the names of the individuals who had business dealings with the company. The details include dates, transaction amounts, and remarks. 

Following the ledger is a List of Ships and Vessels Cleared at the Naval Office at the Port of St. John, N.B. with the Amount of the Exports Commencing 27 November 1784 and Ending 5 January 1785. The List contains thirty-nine vessels which were mostly schooners, brigs, and sloops. Information about each vessel includes: date, master's name, vessel's name, kind built, tons, guns, men, when and where registered, when and where built, owner's names, voyage to, and details of the cargo which included lumber, lime, bricks, fish, and general cargo or ballast.

There is a space in the reel at this point, a new target was inserted during filming, and the account books which follow were microfilmed on the same reel as the Hazen and White Ledger and the other material just described. The first account book has the following title:  John Hazen's Account Book, No 3. Burton, 27 October 1785. John Hazen & Co. Journal. The last date in the account book is 17 January 1797. Each transaction was given a number, and the person's name is recorded along with details of the merchandise and the amount. The pages of the account book are in chronological order, and from 17 October 1785 until 30 July 1787 the heading of each page gives the location as Oromocto. From that date until 6 August 1787 the location is Burton. The first page of the last account book begins immediately after the last page of the previous book, but is quite different in format. It contains sixty-eight pages of accounts which record business transactions from 1816-1829. The accounts are arranged by surname. All manner of goods and supplies are listed along  with their costs. The transactions are recorded chronologically under each person's name and there is a personal name index at the end of the volume.            
Originals: The original records are held by the Archives of the New Brunswick Museum in Saint John, New Brunswick.
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Finding Aids:

Alphabetical surname indices available: 2 found at the start of the reel; 3rd is available at the end of the last ledger.

Electronic Finding Aid Record:
Notes: There are two typewritten targets on the reel and both targets contain inaccurate information.
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