Manuscript Group 1108, Hopler General Supply Store Records (Chester, NJ) 1851 – 1945
Archives Documents, Manuscripts, Maps, & Photographs
Guide # 1108
General Supply Store Records
Scope and Content Notes:
The Hopler General Supply Store Records
spans the years 1851-1945 and consists of ledgers, account books,
freight and wholesale bills, correspondence and other materials
pertinent to the general supply store of Chester, New Jersey.
The bulk of the records pertain to the years when Hedges and Burd
controlled the store (1868), and also contain assorted documents
relevant to the operations of the Post Office.
There is a gap in the records that stretches
from 1874 to 1911. By the later date the Hopler family
owned the store. Correspondence for the Hopler period
extends through 1919 and thereafter, sporadically, until 1928.
Another gap follows for the depression years and no materials
exist until the outbreak of the Second World War. The
documents included after 1941 are chiefly from Office of Price
Administration materials which the General Store received. The
records end in 1945.
The strength of the collection lies in the
years surrounding the Civil War. The documents shed light
on the economic and social history of Morris County during the
Civil War period. Because the store did so much of its
business with the nearby mining firms, the records supplement
other New Jersey Historical Society manuscript collections
dealing with the mining industry (See MGs 24, 205, 249,
409, 740). The records contain detailed information that
historians interested in quantification will find useful for
various aspects of business, economic, and social history. These
records will also aid genealogists in researching the family
pasts of past and present Morris County families.
Of particular interest are the indexes that
have been prepared by Dr. and Harriet Stryker-Rodda for some of
the materials in this collection. Kenn Stryker-Rodda
prepared an index for the store book of Daniel Budd (1851-52) as
well as for the blotter of Budd and Dunham (1851-1853). Harriet
Stryker-Rodda transcribed the private notes and orders to the
store, 1861-1873, and indexed this material. These indexes
are on file in the office of the Keeper of manuscripts. The
researcher should inquire.
This collection contains daybooks, account
books, cash books, blotters and letter books pertaining to a
general supply store in Chester, N.J. The earliest records in the
collection were generated by Daniel Budd who owned the store in
1851. Budd’s store book contains a running account of dry
goods, groceries, hardware, crockery, and other items bought and
sold at his store. A detailed index has been prepared for
this volume. Additional store records were maintained by
subsequent proprietors A. and C. Hardin, Budd and Dunham, Hedges
and Burd, and Gilbert Young Hopler. The blotter of Budd and
Dunham, 1852-1853, has been indexed as well as the orders to the
store, 1858-1873, then run by Hardin & Hedges. The collection
also includes Chester Post Office records from 1860-1866
including a schedule of the mail route from Morristown to
Chester, N.J., accounts of mail sent and received and quarterly
reports. Twentieth century materials include the business
correspondence to and from Gilbert Young Hopler and
communications from the U.S. Price and Wage Controls (Office of
Price Administration), 1941-1945, to the Hopler Store.
Miss. Theresa Hoplers family came into
possession of the store, located at the intersection of Hillside
and Main Streets of Chester, New Jersey, on April 1, 1909. By
that time the store had already existed for more than half a
century, serving local residents with consumer goods and
materials needed for operations in nearby mines. In
addition to being a thriving general store, the building also
housed the Chester Post Office.
In 1851 the store belonged to Daniel Budd.
During the subsequent decade it changed hands several times
until, by 1862, it was under the joint proprietorship of A. and
C. Hardin. In 1868 a new partnership, Hedges and Burd, took
The Hopler General Supply Store Records
collection was donated to
Documents, Manuscripts, Maps, & Photographs by
Miss. Thersa Hopler of Morristown in January, 1980.
On March 4, 1980, Mrs. Harriet Stryker Rodda
delivered an additional body of material pertinent to the Hopler
Supply Store of Chester, New Jersey. Since these records
were added since the time of the collections initial processing,
they have been grouped collectively in series 1108.21.
Manuscript Guide # 1108
General Supply Store Records
General Correspondence (approx. 25 items)
This consists chiefly of incoming business correspondence to the
proprietorship. One item of interest is a United States
internal revenue receipt for the special tax on
Freight Bills (approx. 1000 items)
Railroad freight bills to the store. These include dates of
railroad lines, lists of items shipped, and rates.
Bank Drafts (approx. 250 items)
Store payments by check to various wholesale firms, chiefly from
of the Hardin partnership.
Wholesale Bills (approx. 1000 items)
wholesalers for a wide range of products, chiefly to Hardin
Orders to the Store (approx. 500 items)
Notes and orders from customers to the general store. These
alphabetically ; each alphabetical unit is arranged
typescript copy of these notes and orders was prepared by Harriet
Rodda. Mrs. Stryker-Rodda also indexed these records.
Both the index
and the typescript copy are available in the Keeper of
Miscellaneous Correspondence (approx. 35 items)
Vacation postcards, assorted business letters to Gilbert Young
interest is a letter from J.C. Price, Director of New
Jerseys Department of
Health, to Hopler (December 2, 1918) concerning state policy
marketing of medicinal preparations (containing heroine and
United States Price and Wage Controls (O.P.A.) (approx 35
O.P.A. documents which the Hopler store received during World War
These documents include O.P>A. bulletins, forms, regulations,
Chester Post Office Quarterly Reports (5 items)
These are accounts between the United States and the Post Office
Chester. They document receipts and expenditures.
Schedule of Mail Route from Morristown to Chester (1 item)
Times of mail pick up and deliveries between Morristown and
Accounts of Mail Received (6 items)
Lists dates incoming mail was received, the post office from
which it arrived,
the dates of bills received, and records of payments of postage.
Accounts of mail Sent (5 items)
Lists dates of bills sent, to which post offices letters were
sent, the number
of letters, as well as postage payments.
Weekly Registers (approx. 115 items)
May 1863 – August 1865
Documents the precise times of daily arrivals to and departures
of mail from
the Chester Post Office.
Daniel Budds Store Book (1 volume)
This volume contains a running account and inventory of sales of
groceries, hardware, crockery, and other goods bought and sold by
Budd at his store. Also includes some cash disbursements
accounts. This volume was indexed by Dr. Kenn
index is available in the Keeper of Manuscripts Office.*
Budd and Dunham Blotter (1 volume)
This book consists of the chronological accounts of the sales
made by the
store under the Budd and Dunham partnership. Entries
include dates, items,
costs, amounts paid and owed, and customers names. This
indexed by Dr. Kenn Stryker-Rodda. The index is available
in the Keeper
of Manuscripts Office.*
Emmons Daily Account Book (1 volume)
April 1861-June 1861
A daily account of purchases made in Chester store of A.B. Emmons
April 9, 1981 to June 2, 1861. Entries include names of
items purchased, prices and cash payment or charge.
A. and C. Hardin Account Books (6 volumes)
Individual volumes cover: April 1861-October 1862; April
1863; August 1863-December 1863; March 1863-May 1863; January
1866-March 1866; April 1867-February 1868. Volumes include
purchasers, dates, items purchased, prices, cash payment or
Hedges and Burd Blotters (7 volumes)
Entries arranged chronologically. They include names of
items purchased, prices, cash payment or charge.
Hedges and Burd Cash Books (2 volumes)
Dated cash expenditures and receipts, balances. The rear of
contains lists of monthly store purchases with dates, names of
from which purchases were made, and credit terms.
Hedges and Burd Check Book (1 volume)
A Volume of cancelled checks, starting with #701, from Hedges and
Hopler Store Letter Book (1 volume)
Bound carbon copies of Gilbert Young Hoplers business
Mostly orders for delivery, complaints to wholesalers, often
particular sales items were not moving rapidly.
Assorted documents pertinent to the Hopler Store over a period of
decades. The series includes an inventory of G.Y.
Hoplers property at the
time of his death.
papers are contained in archival boxes, bound volumes follow
these on the shelf.*
special note, the New Jersey Historical Society has since changed
locations and also no longer employs a Keeper of
Manuscripts as such, thus making these dated references
difficult to support.
processed by __ A. Lane,
online by S. Sullivan