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Charles Henry Allen (1810-1899) Papers

Charles Henry Allen (1810-1899) Papers

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CHARLES HENRY ALLEN (1810-1899) PAPERS, 1829-1875

Collection Summary

Repository:The Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum 132 Essex Street Salem, MA 01970 Phone: 978-745-9500 Fax: 978-531-1516
Creator:Allen, Charles Henry, 1810-1899
Title:Charles Henry Allen (1810-1899) Papers
Quantity:3.5 linear feet (4 boxes)
Abstract:The Charles Henry Allen Papers contain the shipping and business papers of Charles Henry Allen (1810-1899).
Collection Number:MSS 385

Series List

SERIES I. Ships' Papers
SERIES II. Business Correspondence
SERIES III. Accounts and Receipts

Scope and Content Note

The Charles Henry Allen Papers contain the shipping and business papers of Charles Henry Allen (1810-1899). The bulk of the papers date from 1835-1855, and the collection has been arranged into 3 series.

Series I. Ships' Papers includes invoices, shipping and crew manifests, receipts, and customs and port documentation for ships Charles mastered or on which he shipped cargo. Of special interest in Allen's ships' papers are log extracts he kept while on the ship George.

Series II. Business Correspondence includes letters to and from Charles Henry Allen as well as two letters between other individuals discussing cargo, financial transactions, and insurance arrangements for ships Allen captained. Names appearing frequently include William B. Davis, Stephen Clarendon Phillips, Thomas Saunders, and Robert Williams.

Series III. Accounts and Receipts includes accounts and receipts for unknown ships, as well as any materials not accounted for in the previous series such as bills, lists, accounts of labor, and notes. This series also includes two newspapers, a photograph of Nehemiah and Isaac Marshall, insurance policies, and a dog license (1863).

Biographical Sketch

Charles Henry Allen (1810-1899) was born in Salem, Massachusetts to William and Mary (Hunt) Allen. He began his shipping career in 1827 as cabin boy on the brig Midas. He also worked on the ship Leander as a boy in 1830. Rising through the ranks on the ships George and Brookline, Allen eventually mastered the Brookline from 1836-1844. During this time he also was master on the ship Eliza in 1838. After his time on the Brookline, Allen mastered the ship St. Paul from 1844-1851. He retired from the sea in 1860 after commanding the ship Shirley for Stone Silsbee and Pickman, a prominent commercial shipping firm in Salem.

Allen married Mary Penniman Wright in 1836. They had five children. Their son, George Henry Allen, an assistant for Benjamin H. Silsbee of Stone Silsbee and Pickman, later became a partner in the company under the name Silsbee Pickman and Allen.

Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in Philcat. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

Allen, Charles Henry, 1810-1899
Auckland (Ship)
Brookline (Ship)
Carolus (Ship)
Douglass (Ship)
Eliza (Ship)
George (Ship)
Leander (Ship)
Mindoro (Ship)
Peele, Hubbell and Company
St. Paul (Ship)
Stone, Silsbee, and Pickman
Syren (Ship)
Vigilant (Ship)
United States--Commerce--Belgium
United States--Commerce--Philippines


Restrictions on Access

This collection is open for research use.

Administrative Information


Requests for permission to publish material from the collection must be submitted in writing to the Manuscript Librarian in the Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum.

Preferred Citation

Charles Henry Allen (1810-1899) Papers, MSS 385, Phillips Library, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass.


This material is an integration of two purchases made by the Phillips Library in 2006 and 2007 (acc 2006.013 and 2007.016). It also includes a number of folders pertaining to the business practices of Charles Henry Allen from the Allen Family Papers (MSS 1). Materials in Box 2, Folders 5-6 and Box 3, Folders 6-9 are a gift from Joan Vaughan Ingraham.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Rachel Jirka, November 2008.

Related Material

Hutchinson, Frank Allen. Genealogical and Historical Sketches of the Allen Family of Dedham and Medfield, Mass., 1637-1890. Lowell, Mass.: Privately printed, 1890.

Price, John. "Genealogy of the Allen Family of Manchester, Mass., From the Earliest Settlement to the Year 1886." Essex Institute Historical Collections, Vol. 24, July-Sept 1887.

Putnam, George Granville. Salem Vessels and Their Voyages, Series I-IV. Salem, Mass.: The Essex Institute, 1925.

[Articles of agreement, ship St. Paul, of Salem, Chas. H. Allen, master, bound eastward of the Cape of Good Hope], 1849, Broadside, VK211.A45 A785 1849

[Articles of agreement of ship St. Paul, Chas. H. Allen master, now bound from the port of Salem to ports eastward of the Cape of Good Hope], undated, Broadside, VK211.A45 A785

Allen Family Papers, 1817-1890, MSS 1, contains Charles Henry Allen's personal correspondence.

Stone, Silsbee, and Pickman Records, 1816-1903, MSS 63

Phillips Family Papers, 1636-1897, MH 4 and MSS 58

For logbooks and additional Charles Henry Allen material, please see Philcat, our online catalog.

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