Guide to the Early Documents Collection, 1665–1827

This is a finding aid. It is a description of archival material held in the Research Library at the Nantucket Historical Association. Unless otherwise noted, the materials described below are physically available in our reading room, and not digitally available through the internet.

Collection Details

Collection Number:
Early Documents Collection
Nantucket Historical Association
Nantucket Historical Association
Material is in English.

Information for Users

Restrictions to Access: No restrictions. Open for research.

Restrictions to Use: No usage restrictions.

Copyright Notice: Copyright is retained by the authors of items in this collection, or their descendants, as stipulated by United States copyright law.

Preferred Citation: [identification of item], in the Early Documents Collection, Nantucket Historical Association.

Acquisitions Information:

Gift of Mrs. Austin, Elizabeth G. M. Barney; Mrs. William C. Folger; Mrs. Joseph Macy; Mary Morselander Macy (Acc. 1082); and Mrs. Mary B. Plaskett.

Sensitive Materials Statement:

Manuscript collections and archival records may contain materials with sensitive or confidential information that is protected under federal or state right to privacy laws and regulations. Researchers are advised that the disclosure of certain information pertaining to identifiable living individuals represented in this collection without the consent of those individuals may have legal ramifications (e.g., a cause of action under common law for invasion of privacy may arise if facts concerning an individual’s private life are published that would be deemed highly offensive to a reasonable person) for which the Nantucket Historical Association assumes no responsibility.

Subject Headings

  • Personal Name
    • Worth, William, 1640-1724.
  • Topical Term
    • Indians of North America—Massachusetts—Nantucket Island—History—Colonial period, ca. 1600-1775.
    • Land titles—Massachusetts—Nantucket.
    • Local government—Massachusetts.

Biographical Information

This is an artificial collection of early documents assembled by the Nantucket Historical Association. The collection encompasses various materials pertaining to the early history of Nantucket, Mass. A portion of the documents were possibly collected by Benjamin Franklin Folger (1777–1859) and given to Eliza Starbuck Barney (1802–1889) upon his death, later being passed through her descendants to the Nantucket Historical Association.

Both volumes were preserved by the Emery Process and bound in 1916.

Scope and Content

The Early Documents Collection consists of two volumes of seventeenth- and eighteenth-century documents concerning the Wampanoags and early English settlers of Nantucket. Records include bills of sale, apprenticeship contracts, deeds, letters, marriage certificates, and wills. Collection includes a Permit to Pass for the brigantine Eunice signed by President George Washington.


  • SV-17/1 Volume 1, 1665–1827
    Contains 79 documents in total. Consists primarily of deeds.
  • Folder 1 Volume 2, 1662–1728
    Contains book of William Worth (1640–1724) as well as a record of births, deaths and marriages.

Items Separated

  • Separated Volume (SV-17/1)

Processing Information

Processed by NHA staff.

Finding aid by Abbie Minard and Amelia Holmes, July 2018, with additional description by Sarah Lerner in September 2018.

Materials in this collection were digitized with support from Connie and Tom Cigarran.

The Nantucket Historical Association preserves and interprets the history of Nantucket through its programs, collections, and properties, in order to promote the island’s significance and foster an appreciation of it among all audiences.

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