The processing of this collection was funded
by gifts from the Pingree heirs.
The Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum 132 Essex Street Salem, MA 01970 Phone: 978-745-9500 Fax: 978-531-1516
Naumkeag Steam Cotton Company
Naumkeag Steam Cotton Company
0.75 linear feet (2 boxes, 1 flat file)
The Naumkeag Steam Cotton
Company records contain financial records and correspondence.
SERIES I. Financial Records SERIES II. Correspondence SERIES III. Other
Scope and Content Note
The Naumkeag Steam Cotton Company records contain financial records and
correspondence. This collection contains three series.
Series I. Financial Records contains accounts, bills,
receipts, and estimates for work.
Series II. Correspondence contains correspondence,
most of which is addressed to the president, David Pingree. The correspondence
discusses everyday matters of running the mill, sales, orders, finances, broken
equipment, stockholders, and meetings.
Series III. Other contains a copy of the
corporation's by-laws from 1845 and a list of statistics of Lowell manufactures in
The Naumkeag Steam Cotton Company was incorporated in
1839. Retired ship master, Nathaniel Griffin, raised a majority of the half million
dollars to build the mill along the water front in Salem, Massachusetts at Stage
Point, on the South River, directly opposite Derby Wharf. Griffin then served as the
first clerk and treasurer of the company until 1847. David Pingree (1795-1863) was
the first president of the company (Frayler 5-6). By 1845, production was in full
swing. The name "Naumkeag" came from the local Naumkeag Native American tribe, while
"steam" referred to the unique processing process used by the company (Jarvis 28),
originally powered by a 400-horsepower steam engine.
The primary, and later the exclusive, product of the company was cotton sheeting
(Frayler 4-7). The Naumkeag Steam Cotton Company operated the Pequot Mills, which
manufactured high quality Pequot bed sheets (Jarvis 7). By the beginning of the
twentieth century, the company continued steadily forward, with over twenty
buildings. In 1909, the Danvers Bleachery became part of the company (Frayler 7). On
June 25, 1914, the Great Salem Fire, which spread through the city of Salem,
destroyed all but a few of the Company's buildings. It was decided to rebuild the
company immediately, and by February 1916, the Company was up and running (Jarvis
Naumkeag Steam Cotton Company closed its Salem location in 1953, and moved south
for economic reasons. In February 1955, the company acquired Indian Head Mills,
Inc., and assumed the corporate name Indian Head Mills, Inc. and began operating out
of its facilities in Alabama and South Carolina (Frayler 4).
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.
Pingree, David, 1795-1863
F. Skinner and Company (Mass.)
Indian Head Mills
Cotton textile industry
Restrictions on Access
This collection is open for research use.
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
The Naumkeag Steam Cotton Company records contain financial records and correspondence.
F. Skinner and Company (Mass.); Indian Head Mills; Pequot Mills; Salem (Mass.); Salem (Mass.)--Business; Pingree, David, 1795-1863; Smith, Edmund; Corporation reports; Cotton textile industry; Industries--History; Textile factories
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.