Guide to the William Coffin Letter Book, 1811-1833

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:
William Coffin Letter Book
Coffin, William, 1756-1835
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: William Coffin Letter Book, Nantucket Historical Association.

Acquisitions Information:

Gift of Mrs. Maria L. Owens in 1906 (Acc. 1886).

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.

Related Collections

  • MS150 Coffin Family Papers, Nantucket Historical Association

Subject Headings

  • Personal Name
    • Coffin, William, 1756-1835.
  • Genre Term
    • Business records.
  • Topical Term
    • Business—Massachusetts—Nantucket—19th century.

Biographical Information

William Coffin (1756-1835) was born to Peter Coffin and Mary Currier. He married Mary Langdon of Boston, Mass., with whom he had ten children. William was a Nantucket businessman concerned with the shipment of provisions between Nantucket, Mass., and coastal cities.

Scope and Content

The William Coffin letter book contains entries concerning business matters, particularly the sale and shipment along the east coast of the United States of salt, rice, pitch, molasses, elephant oil, onions, fish, and shingles. There is a partial index made by Maria L. Owen (1825-1913), granddaughter of William Coffin, in January 1902.

Additional Descriptive Resources: Index to letter book by Maria L. Owens, granddaughter of William Coffin, 1902.


  • Folder 1 William Coffin letter book, 6 February 1811-16 October 1833

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.

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