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Samuel McIntire (1757-1811) Papers

Samuel McIntire (1757-1811) Papers

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SAMUEL MCINTIRE (1757-1811) PAPERS, 1749-1822

Collection Summary

Repository:The Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum 161 Essex Street Salem, MA 01970 Phone: 978-745-9500 Fax: 978-948-6012
Creator:McIntire, Samuel, 1757-1811
Title:Samuel McIntire (1757-1811) Papers
Quantity:2.5 linear feet (3 boxes, 1 oversize folder)
Abstract:The Samuel McIntire Papers consist mainly of business receipts and bills relating to the work done by Samuel; his father, Joseph; his two brothers, Joseph and Angier; his uncles, John and Robert; his nephews, Joseph and Thomas; and his son, Samuel Field.
Collection Number:MSS 264

Series List

SERIES I. Bills and ReceiptsSERIES II. Legal Papers and Correspondence
SERIES III. Architectural Drawings
SERIES IV. Miscellaneous Papers

Scope and Content Note

The Samuel McIntire Papers consist mainly of business receipts and bills relating to the work done by Samuel; his father, Joseph; his two brothers, Joseph and Angier; his uncles, John and Robert; his nephews, Joseph and Thomas; and his son, Samuel Field. The collection also includes architectural drawings and plans, many drawn by McIntire, some by other identified architects and builders, and others drawn by unidentified designers. It has been organized into four series.

Series I. Bills and Receipts consists of business bills and receipts for the work done by Samuel McIntire and his family members. It is divided into five subseries.

Subseries A. Samuel McIntire and McIntire Family is arranged by billing date, and in the case of the absence of a billing date, by the payment date, or the last active date on the account. It is important to note that bills often include a span of dates--the dates the work was done, the date the bill was submitted for payment, and the date that the payment was received. Some bills and receipts list the amount of days various McIntires worked. Some bills and receipts list the work completed or the supplies used for the project by the various members of the extended McIntire family including such projects as "schooner joyner [joiner] work" (1766), "finishing three rooms and two stair cases" (1778), "mending garden fence...& making a seat...for wagon" (1784), "finishing the entries in the brick house" (1785), "finishing the Grand Turk's [a vessel] cabin" (1791), "repairing a hobby horse" (1801), "composition ornaments for a chimney piece" (1801), "a drawing for a coach house" (1803), "work on fluting capitols for the Tabernacle" (1803), "drawing ground plan for a building intended for a Registers Office" (1807), "making a dresser and shelves" (1812), etc.

Subseries B. Non-McIntire Individuals consists of material that seems to be from the two scrapbooks and one portfolio from which much of this collection came. Of note are bills and receipts relating to Daniel Bancroft, a carpenter and builder, who was involved in the building of Elias Hasket Derby's mansion. Bancroft's "estimate for work on new House on Essex Street," (undated, B1 F12) seems to refer to the Derby mansion project. This portion of the collection has other material related to the building of Elias Hasket Derby's mansion, including accounts with Thomas Robie, a hardware store owner, listing many items purchased for the construction of the mansion, and bills paid to George Heussler, who worked on the gardens of some properties owned by the Derby Family (see B1 F14).

Subseries C. Photocopies of S. McIntire and McIntire Family Within Other Phillips Library Collections and Subseries D. Photocopies of S. McIntire and McIntire Family in Other Libraries are comprised of photocopies that have been stored with, and compliment, the original McIntire manuscript material. Subseries E. Photocopies of Samuel McIntire and McIntire Family Bills and Receipts in this Collection contains acid-free copies of the original manuscript bills and receipts within this collection. All photocopies will be found in Box 2. The photocopies in Box 2, Folders 1-4, are filed by Norton #, which refers to a numbering system for a planned book on McIntire and his work that was never published.

Series II. Legal Papers and Correspondence includes an indenture of Samuel Luscomb Junior with Joseph Mackintire [McIntire], photocopies of a case heard by the Essex County Court of Common Pleas between Samuel McIntire and Thomas Thomas regarding the payment of a job, a letter from James Sheaf to Ichabod Nichols asking about how to contact a carver in Salem named "Mr. McIntyre," and two letters written by Sarah Field McIntire. Sarah Field McIntire was the daughter of Samuel Field McIntire and the granddaughter of Samuel McIntire. In these letters, written in 1819, Sarah writes to her friend Preserved Bullock (of Salem) about her life, her impressions of Hampton, New Hampshire, her studies, and some thoughts on religious issues.

Series III. Architectural Drawings include plans and elevations for a variety of projects. (See Appendix I for a complete list describing the drawings.) The drawings are arranged in numerical order corresponding to the numbers that are stamped in the corners of the documents. Not all of the plans within this collection of architectural drawings were drawn by Samuel McIntire. Appendix I indicates if the drawing was done by a different individual or if the authorship is unknown. Architectural drawings by (or attributed) to Samuel McIntire include elevations for the turnpike tavern in Lynn, the Stearns Block (a commercial building in Salem), architectural ornamentations and floor plans for the Elias Hasket Derby Mansion, elevation for the Salem courthouse, and the floor plan of the John Gardner House. The architectural drawings by Samuel McIntire also include sketches for vessels and designs for furniture carvings.

Two elevations and two plans for the Elias Hasket Derby Mansion are attributed to Charles Bulfinch (drawings 109, 110, 123, 124), and possibly a third elevation (drawing 114). The verso of drawing 109 has the notation, "Mr Bulfinshs," presumably written by Elias Hasket Derby's wife, Elizabeth (Crowninshield) Derby. Other plans not drawn by McIntire but included in the collection are the elevation of the Salem courthouse drawn by Joseph True (drawing #165), and the plan of the first floor of the Derby Mansion drawn by Daniel Bancroft (drawing #105). Negative photostats of some of the architectural drawings will be found in Box 3, Folder 1.

Series IV. Miscellaneous Papers consist of materials relating to the lawsuit of Eben Lemon vs. Elias Hasket Derby, 1796-1798. It is not clear what connection this suit may have had to McIntire, but the papers apparently were collected into the McIntire scrapbooks. Also included in Miscellaneous Papers are an 1806 plan of a lot on the south side of Chestnut Street, Salem, surveyed by G. Foster, and an unidentified drawing, both found in Box 3, Folder 1.

Biographical Sketch

Samuel McIntire, the son of Joseph and Sarah (Ruck) McIntire, was baptized in the First Church of Salem on January 16, 1757. Joseph and Sarah had three daughters (Sarah, Ruth, and Deborah) and two other sons, Joseph (bp. Jan. 24, 1747/8-June 10, 1825) and Angier (bp. May 20, 1759-circa May 27, 1803). (Joseph and Sarah also had one other child, whose name is not known.) Joseph McIntire Sr. was a housewright, and his three sons all learned this trade and continued the family business. In addition to being carpenters, Joseph Jr., Samuel, and Angier became skilled wood-carvers, and Samuel became a skilled architect.

Samuel McIntire's work falls into three major categories: architectural design (of buildings and details), architectural woodwork (for buildings), and woodcarvings (including decorative carvings on furniture and ships, wooden figures, and some wooden sculpture). Samuel McIntire's architectural designs ranged from houses (including his own house on Summer Street, Jerathmiel Peirce's house, John Gardner's house, Francis Boardman's house, three houses for Elias Hasket Derby, and Oak Hill in Peabody, Massachusetts) to civic buildings (most notably the Salem Courthouse, which was built in 1785-86 and demolished in 1839, and Hamilton Hall) to churches (including the South Church, the cupola of the North Church in Salem, and the steeple of the Branch Church in Salem) to commercial buildings, stables and summerhouses. The architectural ornamentations he completed were known for their quality and style. Some motifs McIntire incorporated into these designs were baskets of fruit, sheaves of wheat, swags, and decorative moldings, columns and pilasters. The woodcarvings he completed included furniture, eagles, ship figures, portrait figures (including a bust of Governor John Winthrop), and a medallion of George Washington.

Samuel McIntire married Elizabeth Field on October 31, 1778. Their first child, Samuel Field McIntire, was baptized on August 29, 1779, but died in infancy. Their second child, also named Samuel Field McIntire, was baptized in November 1780. Samuel Field McIntire continued the family business, working mainly as a wood-carver. When Samuel McIntire died on February 6, 1811, his obituaries praised him for his skills as an architect, sculptor, and musician, and commented upon his fine character.

This collection also contains material relating to the following relatives of Samuel McIntire:

Joseph McIntire (1727-1776), Samuel's father, worked as a housewright.

Joseph McIntire (1748-1825), Samuel's brother, worked as a housewright, shipwright, and carver.

Angier McIntire (1759-1803), Samuel's brother, worked as a housewright, shipwright, and carver.

Robert McIntire (1727-1769), Samuel's uncle, worked as a housewright.

John McIntire (1729-1785), Samuel's uncle, worked as wheelwright, carpenter, and mariner.

Nathaniel McIntire (bp. 1744- ?), Samuel's uncle, worked as a housewright.

Samuel Field McIntire (1780-1819), Samuel's son, worked as a carver.

Joseph McIntire (1779-1852), Samuel's nephew, worked as a housewright and carver.

Thomas McIntire (circa 1784-1870), Samuel's nephew, worked as an organ builder and woodworker.

Sarah Field McIntire (1804-?), Samuel's granddaughter, married Eliphalet Page in Salem in 1828, moved to New Hampshire, and had two daughters.

Index Terms

This collection is indexed under the following headings in Philcat. Researchers desiring materials about related topics, persons, or places should search the catalog using these headings.

Bancroft family
Bancroft, Daniel
Boardman, Francis
Bulfinch, Charles, 1763-1844
Bulfinch, Charles, 1763-1844
Derby, Elias Hasket, 1739-1799
Derby, John, 1741-1812
Heussler, George Jacob, 1751-1817
Lemon, Eben
Luscomb, Samuel, 1722?-1789
Mansfield, Jonathan
McIntire, Angier, 1759-1803
McIntire, John, 1729-1785
McIntire, Joseph, 1727-1776
McIntire, Joseph, 1748-1825
McIntire, Joseph, 1779-1852
McIntire, Nathaniel, b.1744
McIntire, Robert, 1727-1769
McIntire, Samuel Field, 1780-1819
McIntire, Sarah Field, b.1804
McIntyre family
Robie, Thomas, 1730?-1811?
Thomas, Thomas
True, Joseph
Account books--1787-1789
Account books--Massachusetts--Salem
Architectural drawing
Architecture--Designs and plans
Building trades
Historic buildings--Massachusetts--Salem
Inventories of decedents' estates
Hampton (N.H.)--Description and travel
Salem (Mass.)


Restrictions on Access

This collection is open for research use.

Administrative Information


Requests for permission to publish material from the collection must be submitted in writing to the Manuscript Librarian in the Phillips Library at the Peabody Essex Museum.

Preferred Citation

Samuel McIntire (1757-1811) Papers, MSS 264, Phillips Library, Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, Mass.


The bulk of the Samuel McIntire Papers consists of materials (bills, receipts and drawings) once mounted in two scrapbooks and a portfolio. The two scrapbooks were acquired by the museum in the mid or late nineteenth century. The portfolio of material (including drawings of the Derby Mansion and some bills and receipts) was donated to the museum before 1900 by Richard H. Derby. The scrapbooks and the portfolio were dismounted sometime prior to 1940. On some of the bills and receipts in the Samuel McIntire Papers a number written in pencil appears in one of the corners--this number probably indicates the scrapbook or portfolio page number upon which the document was previously mounted. The numbers (stamped in purple ink) on the architectural drawings within the Samuel McIntire Papers seem to be early accession numbers, and were probably placed on the drawings after the scrapbooks and the portfolio had been in the library collection for a period of time.

The collection also contains bills and receipts removed from other manuscript collections in the Phillips Library--including MSS 46 (Ward Family Papers), MSS 41 (Orne Family Papers), MSS 37 (Derby Family Papers), MSS 88 (Waite Family Papers), MSS 11 (English/Touzel/ Hathorne Papers), MSS 92 (Waters Family Papers), MSS 5 (Benjamin Pickman Papers), MSS 56 (Salem Atheneum Records), and the St. Peter's Church Records. The original bills and receipts were removed from their original collections in the late 1970s or early 1980s and photocopies were placed in their original locations. (The exceptions to this practice of filing a photocopy in the original location are a group of eight receipts that were removed from the Derby Family Papers while it was being processed, and the receipts removed from the St. Peter's Church Records. However, the Derby receipts are listed as a group on the separation sheet of the collection register for the Derby Family Papers.) The collection numbers of the original manuscript collections were written in pencil on the versos of all the receipts in the McIntire Papers that were removed from other locations.

Three receipts (one to Joseph McIntire, 1808, and two relating to the work of Samuel McIntire, 1792) were purchased from Robert W. Lull in 1950. One receipt, dated October 8, 1803, from the Committee of the Tabernacle Society to Samuel McIntire, was given to the library on December 2, 1982. The photocopies of the file papers relating to the McIntire vs. Thomas case (from the Essex County Court of Common Pleas) were given to the library in September 1971. The collection includes several small manuscript items that were previously filed and catalogued separately in the library's manuscript holdings.

Processing Information

Collection processed by Nancy Heywood, December 1993, Jane E. Ward, August 2002. Updated by Catherine Robertson, August 2014.

Related Material

Dictionary of American Biography, vol. XII, Dumas Malone, ed. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1933, pp. 65-69.

Kimball, Fiske. "The Elias Hasket Derby Mansion in Salem," Essex Institute Historical Collections 60 (October 1924): 273-92, with illustrations following.

Kimball, Fiske. Mr. Samuel McIntire, Carver: The Architect of Salem. Portland, Me.: Southworth-Anthoensen Press, for the Essex Institute, 1940; reprint, Gloucester, Mass.: Peter Smith, 1966.

Macmillan Encyclopedia of Architects, vol. 3. Adolf K. Plackek, ed. New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc., 1982, pp. 136-39.

McIntire, Robert Harry. Descendants of Philip McIntire, revised edition. Baltimore, Md.: Gateway Press, Inc., 1982.

"The Salem Cadets, Historical Record of the Corps for One Hundred Years..." [Clipping from] Salem Gazette, October 9, 1885. [call #E S1 S5 M1 S7 1885 4]

Samuel McIntire: A Bicentennial Symposium: 1757-1957. Salem, Mass.: Essex Institute, 1957. [A special issue of the Essex Institute Historical Collections 93, April-July 1957.]

Walker, Ambrose. "Samuel McIntire--A Sketch," Essex Institute Historical Collections 68 (April 1932): 97-116.

For the only known letters written by Samuel McIntire, see the Salem Female Charitable Society Records MSS 359, Box 2, Folder 6, and MSS 0.647, containing two 1807 letters by McIntire to Eliakim Richards of Boston.

Appendix I

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