Lexington Public Library Collection

Descriptive Summary

Title
Lexington Public Library Collection
Date
1796 Jan. 2-1796 Oct. 1
Extent
0.45 Cubic Feet
Subjects
Business names--Kentucky--Lexington.
Business records--Kentucky--Lexington.
Businessmen--Kentucky.
Small business--Kentucky--Lexington--History.
Finding Aid Author
Finding aid prepared by Courtney N. Murphy
Repository
University of Kentucky

Contents of the Collection

Hunt ledger, 1796 Jan. 2-1796 Oct. 1

Biographical note

John Wesley Hunt was a general store owner that moved to Lexington, Kentucky, from Trenton, New Jersey, in 1795. He was the first millionaire west of the Allegheny Mountains and considered to be a founding member of Lexington. His father was also a merchant. The majority of his business dealt with general supplies that would have been needed throughout the frontier, sold to immigrants and the army. The store first started out as a general store, but soon Hunt expanded his business to include slave trade, horse breeding, land speculation, hemp and cotton manufacturing, banking, and insurance. He was a very wealthy and profitable man when he died in 1849. Hunt was also the postmaster of Lexington in 1799 and built the Hunt-Morgan house in 1814.

Scope and Contents note

The Hunt ledger contains a list of patrons of Hunt's store. Followed each name is a list of what was purchased. The right hand column contains each customer's remaining balance at the store. The majority of the names have been crossed out or have an "x" beside them, which would mean that Hunt received a payment in full from that particular patron. Based on entries in the ledger, Hunt sold linen, whiskey, horses, silk, ribbon, and sugar. Occasionally Hunt would take an item in trade; to note this, Hunt would list the traded item underneath the name of the patron.

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You may come across language in UK Libraries Special Collections Research Center collections and online resources that you find harmful or offensive. SCRC collects materials from different cultures and time periods to preserve and make available the historical record. These materials document the time period when they were created and the view of their creator. As a result, some may demonstrate racist and offensive views that do not reflect the values of UK Libraries.

If you find description with problematic language that you think SCRC should review, please contact us at SCRC@uky.edu.