A. M. Elder ledgers

Collection 3680

(0.2 Linear feet ; 3 volumes, 1 folder)

Summary Information

The Historical Society of Pennsylvania
Elder, A. M.
A. M. Elder ledgers
Date [inclusive]
0.2 Linear feet ; 3 volumes, 1 folder
Finding aid prepared by Weckea D. Lilly
Mixed materials [Volume]
A. M. Elder was a surveyor and farmer in Half Moon, Juniata County, Pennsylvania. Elder was evidently an accomplished surveyor and also recorded deeds and wrote contracts and agreements. Much of his work was paid for by barter; he seems to have been more of a trader of farm commodities than a working farmer, using his fees for surveys as an edge in the business. There is also a stock book of the Philipsburg and Glade Turnpike Company, 1853 - 1858, which records stock purchases and some expenses. Elder was treasurer for the company, and kept this record book. A route from Philipsburg to Glade goes across the grain of the Appalachian Mountains, a very difficult problem for transportation in 19th century Pennsylvania.

Preferred Citation note

[Indicate cited item or series here], A. M. Elder ledgers, 1841-1858 (Collection 3680), The Historical Society of Pennsylvania.

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Biographical/Historical note

Alvin Maze Elder was born in 1880 in New Castle, Lawrence County, Pennsylvania to Arther and Elizabhet Elder. In 1901 he married Elizabeth McCurdy and in 1905 they had their daughter, Gladys.

Alvin worked in several capacities as a farmer and surveyor. He served as an agent/foreman for the Manufacture Light and Heat Company, and treasurer for the Philipsburg and Glade Turnpike Company, which may have originally been the “Bellefonte, Walkerville, and Warriors’ Mark Turnpike Road Company” The Pennsylvania General Assembly commissioned Elder among twenty-five others to establish the company and begin constructing the turnpike.

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Scope and Contents note

This collection consists of one folder and three volumes which record the stock amounts paid by the subscribers of the Glade and Philipsburg Turnpike Road Company. The folder contains three letters (1862, 1863, and n.d.) addressed to Elder regarding surveying and accounts. There are also treasury receipts all dated 1853. The first ledger (1830 – 1854) records individual transactions and accounts of each investor. The second ledger (1853 – 1869) contains similar information but for a different set of account holders. The third volume is the treasure and stock book that records accounts dating from 1852 to 1868. Later entries in the volume are for Elder family members – Robert and George – who might be among Alvin’s four siblings. Another interesting notation at the rear of the volume describes Alvin as the “guardian of minor children of [illegible (name)],” which explains why there is another child listed in his household in the 1840 census.

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Administrative Information

Publication Information

 The Historical Society of Pennsylvania August 2012

1300 Locust Street
Philadelphia, PA, 19107

Revision Description

  June 2014

Conditions Governing Access note

This collection is open for research.

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Controlled Access Headings


  • Receipt books--19th century.
  • Turnpikes--Pennsylvania--19th century

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Collection Inventory

Box Volume

Ledger I (1830 - 1854) 

1 1

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Ledger II (1853 - 1869) 

1 2

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Treasure and Stock Book (1852 - 1868) 

1 3

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Box Folder

Correspondence and Receipts (1853 - 1863)   1 Folder

1 1

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