Financial records

Collection Type

  • Manuscripts

Location Note

HGO-02-105-A-E-205; HGO-02-105-A-E-106



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Series II, Financial records, 1818-1878, undated (#2.3-2.17, 3.1-3.8, OB.1.1, OB.3.2-OB.3.3), contains an 1834 to 1878 account log of payments; bills and receipts received by individual Lyman members of both Boston and Waltham, Massachusetts; and other related financial papers. The bills and receipts reflect household expenses related to the Lyman family properties in Boston, Massachusetts, and the family estate, the Vale (also, the Lyman Estate), in Waltham, Massachusetts, and focus on building supplies; gardening and landscaping; groceries; ice; dishes; horses; carriage maintenance; medical expenses; church and property taxes; dog registrations; jewelry, fabric, and clothing; machinery repairs; and other services rendered. Companies represented within the bills and receipts include: A. Williams and Company (publishers, booksellers, and importers); Nathaniel C. Stearns (importer and dealer of household furniture); Clapp, Evans and Company (manufacturers of rubber goods); McDewell & Adams (groceries, wines, cigars, etc.); John P. Barnard and Company (boarding, hack, and livery stables); John E. McVey (plumbing and gas fittings); George H. Dean (dealer in flour, grain, hay, straw, etc.); Union Safe Deposit Vaults of Boston; and John B. Herreshoff (yacht and boat builder). The folder of municipal and related bills contains material related to taxes for church pews at King's Chapel in Boston, Massachusetts, and First Parish in Waltham, Massachusetts; other taxes (including water, town, county, etc.) in Boston and Waltham, Massachusetts; dog registration fees; the U.S. Internal Revenue Service; and two letters from the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts, regarding a subscription for $1,000. The series is arranged starting with the account log, followed by bills and receipts (arranged alphabetically by surname, and thereunder chronologically), then chronologically by other financial papers.


Descriptive Terms

financial records

Physical Description

Financial records (2 file boxes, 3 oversize folders)

Collection Code


Collection Name

Lyman family papers

Reference Code


Date Notes

1818-1878, undated

Credit Line

Gift of Martha Miller, 1988

Record Details

Material Type

financial records

Description Level


Location Note

HGO-02-105-A-E-205; HGO-02-105-A-E-106

Historical/Biographical Note

Historical/Biographical Note

In 1631, Richard Lyman (c.1580-1640) arrived in America with his wife Sarah (Osbourne) Lyman (died 1640) and their family. The Lymans settled first in Charlestown and Roxbury, Massachusetts, and later became proprietors of Hartford, Connecticut. After Richard Lyman's death, his son John (1623-1690) (from whom Historic New England's Lymans descend) moved to Northampton, Massachusetts. John's great grandson, Isaac Lyman, was born in 1725 in Northampton, Massachusetts. Isaac presided over a parish in York, Maine. In 1750, Isaac married Ruth Plummer (1730-1824); they had nine children. Theodore Lyman (1753-1839), son of Isaac and Ruth (Plummer) Lyman, worked as a clerk for Waldo Emerson, a store owner in Kennebunk, Maine. In 1776, he married Emerson's daughter, Sarah (1762-1784). After inheriting his father-in-law's fortune, Theodore commissioned the building of ships for his own use in the West India Trade and he built a mansion in Maine. In 1786, two years after Sarah's death, Theodore Lyman (1753-1839) married Lydia Pickering Williams (1763-1826) of Salem, Massachusetts. The Lymans lived in Kennebunk, Maine, for two years, and then established a residence in Boston on Bowdoin Square/ Tremont Street at Southack's Court (later Howard Street). Theodore continued his involvement with the West India Trade and had several ships built by John Bourn (dates unknown). In 1793, Theodore commissioned architect, Samuel McIntire (1757-1811) of Salem, Massachusetts, to design a country estate. Known as the Vale (also, the Lyman Estate), the estate was comprised of 450 acres, which Theodore had purchased in Waltham, Massachusetts. Following Theodore's death in 1839, the property was inherited by his eldest son, George Williams Lyman (1786-1880). After graduating from Harvard in 1806, George continued in the shipping business, trading in China and Europe. He also invested in textile mills in Waltham, Lowell, Lawrence, and Holyoke, Massachusetts; served as a director ofthe Boston and Lowell Railroad; was director of the Columbian Bank; president of the Massachusetts Hospital Life Insurance Company; and president of the Massachusetts Society for Promoting Agriculture. In 1810, he married Elizabeth Gray Otis (1791-1824), the eldest daughter of Harrison Gray and Sally Foster Otis (for whom Historic New England's Otis House was built). Three years after Elizabeth's death, he married his mother's niece, Anne Pratt (1798-1875). Arthur Theodore Lyman (1832-1915), son of George Williams and Anne (Pratt) Lyman, purchased his father's estate in 1880 from his half-brother, George Theodore Lyman (1821-1908) and other surviving heirs. Arthur trained as a lawyer but continued working in the textile industry in Lowell, Lawrence, and other nearby communities. He also held many notable positions on manufacturing, commercial, and institutional boards. In 1858, he married Ella Bancroft Lowell (1837-1894); they had six children. Following Arthur's death in 1915, his son, Arthur Theodore Lyman, Jr. (1861-1933) and his wife, Susan (Cabot) Lyman (1864-1951) inherited the estate. Arthur, Jr., held positions as director and officer of textile manufacturing companies, as well as the Massachusetts Life Insurance Company. He also served on the boards of the Boston Symphony Orchestra and the Waltham Hospital; was president of the Democratic Club of Massachusetts; chairman of the State Democratic Committee; director of finance for the Massachusetts branch of the National Democratic Committee; chair of the Board of License Commissioners in Waltham, Massachusetts, in 1894; and mayor of Waltham, Massachusetts, in 1896. Arthur and Susan were the last Lyman family members to reside at the Vale, in Waltham, Massachusetts.

*Sources: Material within MS017; Lyman Estate Research Files; Library of Congress. Library of Congress Authorities. Retrieved from http://authorities.loc.gov/; “Lyman Estate History,” Historic New England, last modified 2014, http://www.historicnewengland.org/historic-properties/homes/lyman-estate/lyman-estate-history.