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Manning Family Papers

Manning Family Papers

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Collection Summary

Repository:The Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum 161 Essex Street Salem, MA 01970 Phone: 978-745-9500 Fax: 978-948-6012
Creator:Manning family
Title:Manning Family Papers
Quantity:4.5 Linear feet (8 boxes, 4 volumes)
Abstract:The Manning Family Papers contain the business, legal, and personal papers of Richard Manning Jr. (1755-1813), Richard Manning (1782-1830), Robert Manning (1784-1842), and miscellaneous other family members.
Collection Number:MSS 143

Series List

SERIES I. Richard Manning Jr. (1755-1813) Papers
SERIES II. Richard Manning (1782-1830) Papers
SERIES III. Raymond Town (Raymond), Maine Records
SERIES IV. Robert Manning (1784-1842) Papers
SERIES V. Manning Family Papers
SERIES VI. Manning Family/Hathorne (Hawthorne) Papers

Scope and Content Note

The Manning Family Papers contain the business, legal, and personal papers of Richard Manning Jr. (1755-1813), Richard Manning (1782-1830), Robert Manning (1784-1842), and miscellaneous other family members. Also included are records of the Manning family's investments in Raymond Town (Raymond), Maine, and papers relating to the Mannings' relatives, the Hathornes (Hawthornes). The collection has been divided into six series. Not included in the collection are the business records of the Salem and Boston Stage Company, owned and operated by the Mannings (see MSS 142).

Series I. Richard Manning Jr. (1755-1813) Papers include correspondence (except that relating to Raymond Town), deeds, estate and other legal papers of Manning and his wife, Miriam. (Of interest in the legal papers is a transfer of "a certain pew adjoining the southerly wall in the east meeting house in said Salem" to Richard Manning Jr. by Nathaniel Bowditch in 1804.) Business and financial transactions of a routine nature are included, as are ledgers and daybooks relating to the operations of his blacksmith shop and livery stable. Of interest is the memo book “An Account of the Expance of North Fields” dated 1788 which shows paid labor for Primus (a “negro” of the Manning family according to William Bentley’s diary).

Included in his estate papers are Volumes 3 and 4, Estate Account Books, prepared by his son Richard of Raymond, Maine. Each of these two volumes has a separate booklet containing an alphabetical listing of accounts. Volume 3, considered the "rough" volume, and Volume 4, considered the "finished" volume, are basically duplicates. Loose papers in Volume 4 were removed from the volume and placed in Box 2, Folder 5. There are some references in these loose papers to the Hathornes (Hawthornes).

Series II. Richard Manning (1782-1830) Papers contain a small amount of business and legal papers, mostly relating to land transfers. However, most of Richard's work will be found in the estate account books (Volumes 3 and 4) in Richard Manning Jr.'s papers. Acting under power of attorney granted by Miriam Manning, widow of Richard Manning Jr., and the other heirs, Richard kept a detailed record of the estate of his late father, found in these volumes.

Series III. Raymond Town (Raymond), Maine Records contain papers of the Proprietors of Raymond Town. The records include bills, tax assessments, correspondence, drawings, lot assignments, and material on the founding of the town. Some correspondence of Richard Manning Jr., a proprietor, relating to taxes, and other items concerning land holdings in Raymond Town are included here. A number of prominent Salem residents, including Richard Manning Jr. and Elias Hasket Derby, purchased land and invested in Raymond Town.

Series IV. Robert Manning (1784-1842) Papers contain primarily business and financial records, much of them bills and receipts, with a significant section relating to his activities as a pomologist. Included in the references to pomology is a large part of the correspondence, together with the pomology record books (Nursery Book and List of Peach Trees). In his business and financial records, there are items relating to pomology, such as the cashbook, which includes pomology records, and the daybook, with a major reference to pomology itemizing various accounts relating to fruit trees. The bills and receipts are grouped chronologically by year, or by a set of months in the year, but are not necessarily in strict chronological order within those groupings.

Papers that are not directly attributable to Robert Manning include bills and receipts and other items that may have been related to the stage business or related to persons who were associated with, or perhaps employed by, him. Robert's activities as an agent for the Salem and Boston Stage Company are located with that company's records, MSS 142. Bills and receipts relating to Nathaniel Hawthorne and other members of his family are located in Box 8, Folder 5.

The Robert Manning family papers include bills and receipts of Rebecca (Dodge) Manning (Robert's wife), and correspondence of two of Robert's children: Robert (1827-1902) and Rebecca (1834-1933).

Series V. Manning Family Papers include miscellaneous business, legal, and family papers. A large number of deeds to property in Salem will be found here. In this series are included the correspondence, business and financial records, and legal papers and agreements of William Manning (1778-1864). Also included are the business and financial records of Samuel Manning (1791-1833), including the cashbook of Samuel Manning & Company. William and Samuel Manning were sons of Richard Manning Jr. (1755-1813), and brothers of Richard (1782-1830) and Robert (1784-1842).

Series VI. Manning Family/Hathorne (Hawthorne) Papers include various pertinent items relating to the Hathorne/Hawthorne family that were extracted from the Robert Manning papers to form this series. They include bills and receipts covering various Hathorne/Hawthorne family members, particularly a number of bills and receipts of Robert Manning for Nathaniel Hawthorne's tuition and clothing. Also included is an interesting booklet, "Bon Jardinier," "translated by Miss E.M. Hathorne - Salem." for Robert Manning. Elizabeth Manning Hathorne was Robert Manning's niece, and Nathaniel Hawthorne's sister.

Biographical Sketch

Richard Manning, Jr. (1755-1813), the youngest son of John and Ruth Manning, was born in Ipswich, Massachusetts, on May 29, 1735. Early in his life he settled in Salem and remained there the rest of his life. He operated a blacksmith shop and livery stable, which eventually led to his founding the Salem and Boston Stage Company (see MSS 142, Salem & Boston Stage Company Records).

In 1795, Richard began purchasing land in Raymond, Maine. He rapidly expanded his investments there and became the owner of large amounts of land near Sebago Lake. He also served as a Justice of the Peace in Salem.

Richard Manning married Miriam Lord of Ipswich in 1776 and they had nine children: Mary, 1777-1841 (unmarried); William, merchant, Salem, 1778-1864 (unmarried); Elizabeth Clarke, 1780-1849 (married Capt. Nathaniel Hathorne and the mother of author Nathaniel Hawthorne); Richard, 1782-1830 (married Susan Dingley); Robert, 1784-1842 (married Rebecca Dodge Burnham); Maria, 1786-1814 (unmarried); John, 1788-ca. 1814 (presumably lost on the Great Lakes); Priscilla Miriam, 1790-1873 (married John Dike Jr.); and Samuel, 1791-1833 (unmarried).

Richard Manning Jr. died on April 19, 1813, in Newbury, Massachusetts, while on a trip to Raymond, Maine. His widow, Miriam, died on December 23, 1826 in Salem.

Richard Manning (1782-1830) was the second son of Richard Jr. and Miriam Manning. He was born in Salem, Massachusetts, on July 31, 1782. From early in his youth he was affected by ill health; because of this, he stayed for a while in New Hampshire and then moved to Raymond, Maine, where he managed the family's land holdings. He became a Justice of the Peace after moving to Maine. Elizabeth Clarke Hathorne (Hawthorne) (Richard's sister and the widow of Capt. Nathaniel Hathorne) and her family, including her son, Nathaniel, spent a great deal of time in Raymond, visiting Richard Manning.

In 1816, Richard married Susan Dingley of Raymond, Maine. They had no children. Richard died in 1830, sometime after July 31 it is believed, as notes he had made on the weather were found to be recorded up to that time in an old almanac.

Robert Manning (1784-1842) was the third son of Richard Jr. and Miriam Manning. He was born in Salem, Massachusetts, on July 18, 1784. When he was a young man he opened a broker's office in Salem and also was an agent of the Salem and Boston Stage Company, established by his father. As a brother to Elizabeth Clarke Hathorne, he took charge of her and her family after the death of her husband, Capt. Nathaniel Hathorne. Robert was especially concerned with the education of her son, Nathaniel, and was instrumental in sending him to Bowdoin College.

Sometime before 1817 Robert became interested in the development and culture of fruits and started a collection that was the nucleus of his pomological garden that he established later on Dearborn Street in North Salem. Robert was among the foremost pomologists of his time (pomology is the science and practice of fruit growing). As a leader in this field, he proved and tested a greater number of fruits than anyone else at that time in either this country or Europe. Pears were his specialty but he did get involved with many different kinds of fruits--apples, cherries, peaches, and plums. It was estimated that, at the time of his death, his pomological garden was comprised of nearly one thousand varieties of pears and over five hundred of the other fruits. He was active in horticultural circles and was one of the original members of the Massachusetts Horticultural Society.

In 1824, Robert married Rebecca Dodge Burnham of Ipswich. They had four children: Maria, unmarried, born 1826; Robert, unmarried, 1827-1902 (at age 15, upon the death of his father, he took charge of the pomological garden, was active in the Massachusetts Horticultural Society and later its librarian); Richard Clarke, born 1830 (he married and had one child--he left school at 14 to help his brother in the pomological garden, and later became a successful businessman and a director of the Essex Institute); and Rebecca Burnham, unmarried, 1834-1933. Robert Manning died on Oct. 10, 1842. His widow, Rebecca, died on Dec. 24, 1869.

William (1778-1864) and Samuel (1791-1833) Manning were the eldest and youngest children, respectively, of Richard Jr. and Miriam Manning. Both had business connections of their own but were active in their father's business, the Salem and Boston Stage Company. William was manager of the business and Samuel had charge of supplying the horses. Both died unmarried.

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.

Hawthorne family
Hawthorne, Elizabeth Manning, 1802-1883
Hawthorne, Nathaniel, 1804-1864
Manning, Miriam, fl. 1818
Manning, Rebecca Burnham, 1834-1933
Manning, Rebecca Dodge, d.1869
Manning, Richard, 1755-1813
Manning, Richard, 1782-1830
Manning, Robert, 1784-1842
Manning, Robert, 1827-1902
Manning, Samuel, 1791-1833
Manning, William, 1778-1864
Samuel Manning & Co.
Account books--1775-1836
Account books--Massachusetts--Salem
Executors and administrators
Nurseries (Horticulture)--Massachusetts--Salem
Real estate investment--Maine--Raymond
Voyages and travels
Raymond (Me.)
Salem (Mass.)


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

Manning Family Papers, MSS 143, Phillips Library, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass.


All of the ledgers and daybooks relating to the blacksmith shop and livery stable of Richard Manning Jr. were donated on August 7, 1931. The letter from "R. B. Manning," dated March 30, 1919, to "Mary Cate" was given on May 3, 1971. In 2002, a land grant was purchased (acc #2002.070) and added to Box 7, Folder 9. The provenance of the rest of the collection is unknown.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Donald Gleason, 1984. Updated by Jane E. Ward, May 2002, and Tatiyana Bastet, July 2019.

Related Material

Foster, William H. The Salem and Boston Stage Company.

Loggins, Vernon. The Hawthornes. New York: Columbia University Press, 1951.

Manning, William H. The Genealogical and Biographical History of the Manning Family of New England and Descendants. Salem, Mass.: The Salem Press Co., 1902.

Mellow, James R. Nathaniel Hawthorne in His Times. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1980.

Vital Records of Ipswich, Mass., to the End of the Year 1849, 3 vols. Salem, Mass.: Essex Institute, 1910.

Vital Records of Salem, Mass., to the End of the Year 1849, 6 vols. Salem, Mass.: Essex Institute, 1916-1925.

Hawthorne-Manning Family Papers, 1683-1956, MSS 69

Richard Manning Papers, 1844-1873, Fam. Mss 591

Robert Manning Papers, 1829-1842, NH 22

Salem & Boston Stage Company Records, 1791-1840, MSS 142

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