Table of Contents
A Guide to the collection at the Connecticut Historical Society
Samuel Arnold, a resident of Haddam, Connecticut, and a Democrat, was elected to the U.S. Congress in 1857. In addition, he served as president of the Bank of East Haddam; he owned two sailing vessels, the Schooners J. Cone and James McCloskey; he served as an agent for the town fund; and he ran a farm. The Company of J & GC Arnold operated a quarry in Haddam.
The collection consists of eight account books arranged in chronological order. All but one of the volumes document the activities of Samuel Arnold. These activities include trade in textiles, stone, timber and foodstuffs and services such as dressing cloth at the Buckley & Arnold factory, framing a barn, or carting men and material for the new courthouse. He noted when he lent or borrowed cash, what New Year’s presents he gave family members, and the execution of several land transactions, some involving land in Brooklyn, NY.
The earliest volume dates from 1824-1836. Starting in the next volume, dated 1856, Arnold made notes about daily activities. He mentioned trips he made to New York, Philadelphia and Chicago, noted visits to the theater, documented when he made court appearances and attended political conventions, and he noted particularly severe weather. He also mentions sending a horse to a racetrack. In 1867, he noted paying for music lessons for Anna, and remarked on his daughter (Anna?) attending Miss Payne’s School in Middletown.
Arnold’s interest in politics is demonstrated through entries in which he described town meetings, presidential, state and local elections, a Buchanan Festival on January 15, 1857, meetings of the State Central Committee, the Democratic Congressional Convention, his own election to Congress in 1857, and a Washington birthday supper. Unfortunately, volumes covering his term in Congress are not part of this collection; there is a gap between 1857 and 1864. On a local level, Arnold was also involved in presenting several petitions from the town to the state legislature protesting plans to move the county courthouse and jail to Middletown.
In 1864, he noted three instances of assisting someone in purchasing a substitute for the U.S. Army. These occurred on August 3, November 1, and December 11, 1864.
The one volume not exclusively belonging to Samuel Arnold records the labor accounts and trade of J and GC Arnold & Co., from 1827-1837. The firm operated a quarry in Haddam and the owners recorded the number of days individuals worked for the company or boarded with the family. The company delivered stone for building the new courthouse and there are other notations for loading ships and drawing stones. Scattered among the expenses for the company are some personal accounts.
There are no restrictions on access to the collection.
Use of the material requires compliance with the Connecticut Historical Society's Research Center regulations.
J. & G.C. Arnold & Co.
Quarries and quarrying -- Connecticut -- Haddam..
Connecticut -- History -- Civil War, 1861-1865.
Haddam (Conn. : Town) -- Business and industry.
Haddam (Conn. : Town) -- History.
Haddam (Conn. : Town) -- Politics.
Item, Collection Title, Collection number (Box #, Folder #). Connecticut Historical Society, Hartford, Connecticut.
EAD Finding Aid created February 2011.