American Silversmiths

Jonathan Cary
Mary Harris
William Harris Cary


Family Links


1. Maria Hastings

William Harris Cary
  • Born: 23 Dec 1798, Boston MA
  • Marriage (1): Maria Hastings on 4 May 1828
  • Died: 27 Feb 1861, Brooklyn NY

  General notes:

Jeweler and merchant

  Events in his life were:

  • He worked circa 1833 as a jeweler in Boston MA as a member of I. H. CARY & Co.
  • Letter From John Nathaniel Olcott to CORNELIUS & Co, Philadelphia
    Private Collection


    New York May 29 . 1848

           Mesr Cornelius & Co


    I have recd yours of 27 last – Since I wrote to you I have seen Mr Warner and he makes out a list of losses of $100,000. Starting upon the basis that these are total losses, he says he can pay only 25 cts cash or 30 c in goods – He owes about $40,000 – One of his clerks told me he had a very large stock of goods on hand – now he must have book debts owed to him and notes etc; and I cannot imagine how he can offer but 25c – He says that a friend is to advance him the money to pay even this [inserted above : & he will not have a cent to begin again with] – now I have no wish to injure Mr W nor to prevent his getting a discharge but if he owed me I do not think I could confidently sign off – Among his losses, he puts down $5200. Loss in Broad Way Store Now the B.W. Store made money & how do you suppose the loss occurs – He sold out to "Allcock & Allen" who gave their note payable ahead some as long to run as 2 years – These were shaved by W. H. Cary at 1 1/2% per month and the $5200 is shave money – That he lost money, there can be no doubt and that he will not pay over 25c if the majority of the creditors sign off there can be no doubt either – But if my advice is worth any thing to you; do not sign off until the majority do – I have entered into the spirit of this joke and mean to give you all the information I can get, unless you say I need not: (which I know you will not) – Now gentlemen I must beg of you never to mention my name in this matter to Mr. W nor believe that I have any malice or desire to injure Mr W. in what I have written – All I have said is only in answer to a question put me (and that question having been put by mistake, does not alter my position) I would have answered a sharper as I have you (except in giving advice). But about 3 of his creditors have signed off and these for small amounts – W. H. Cary has not signed off and report says he owes him $20,000 – I believe he has made enough by exch'd interest to pay him in full – 'Twas he who off'd to buy Warner's paper for me without my name: that induced me to offer to guarantee the sale spoken of in my last – If either of the firm come to N. Y. I shall be glad to see you and talk more freely over his matter – Mr. Hyde [likely John James Hyde] is here and will in a few days go to your city to order goods

                              I remain

                              Yours etc

                              John W. Olcott

  • He appeared on the 1850 census taken at Brooklyn NY, listed as a merchant with holdings valued at $448,000.

William married Maria Hastings on 4 May 1828. (Maria Hastings was born on 1 Mar 1801 in Lexington MA.)

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