Badger Neal Locke Collection, 1831-1877  – MS132

Provenance: The materials descended in the Neal and Badger families through the line of John Robert Neal (1814-1898), one of the original authors of materials in the collection, and his wife Ann Maria Badger (1818-1903). Ann Maria Badger and John Robert Neal’s daughter, Alvina Neal, married James W. Locke, a US District Judge in Florida. James and Alvina Locke had three daughters, Annie, Carrie and Allison. None of the three Locke daughters had children, so the collection descended in the family of their uncle, Eugene O. Locke, the great-grandfather of the donor. 

Citation: Badger Neal Locke Collection (MS132), Manuscript Collections, Portsmouth Athenaeum

Size: 1.5 Hollinger Boxes & 7 Bound Volumes

Access: No restrictions

Processed by: Susan Stowe Kindstedt, 2019

Scope and Content

The Badger-Neal Collection consists primarily of financial records belonging to several generations of the Badger and Neal families. The families were connected by the marriage of John Neal and Ann Maria Badger ca. 1839. Both families have long histories as merchants and ship builders in the Piscataqua region. The records have been divided into four subgroups: Records of Pray & Neal, Samuel Augustus Badger, Samuel Badger Neal and John Neal. The first group of records belonged to the partnership of Pray & Neal, including the brothers William Neal and James Neal. The Neals were shipbuilders and merchants, with a ship chandlery, grocery and hardware store. The second group of financial records belonged to Samuel Augustus Badger who was also engaged in shipbuilding. The records show his business transactions, often with other shipbuilders, selling lumber and other wood products as well as grocery items. The third group belonged to Samuel Badger Neal and are for the most part personal papers while he was a student at Phillips Exeter Academy and Portsmouth Academy. The fourth group includes items connected to John Neal, father of Samuel Badger Neal and son of William Neal. The items related to John Neal are from the 1870s including wage records for the construction of the Ship Granite State in 1877 (built by John Neal) and records of the Piscataqua Marine Railway.


Series List

I. Pray & Neal
II. Samuel Augustus Badger
III. Samuel Badger Neal
IV. John Robert Neal
V. Miscellaneous


Historical Note – Pray & Neal

The partnership known as Pray & Neal was between William Neal and Samuel Pray and was established in 1829. An advertisement in the Portsmouth Journal dated June 6, 1829 stated that Pray & Neal had taken the store formerly owned by Thomas Haven and would be a grocery, ship Chandlery and hardware store. On January 14, 1832 an article in the Portsmouth Journal announced that the partnership was dissolving and on March 17, 1832 it was announced that James Neal (brother of William) would be taking over the store. In April 1832 William Neal opened up his own ship chandlery, grocery and hardware store at 8&9 Merchants Row, formerly operated by E. Q. Sheafe. This business was taken over by his son, John Neal in 1838. In addition to his store, William Neal was also in a shipbuilding partnership with George Raynes. George Raynes continued the shipbuilding business following the end of the partnership.


Timeline – Pray & Neal

___-1838 William Neal & George Raynes – partnership – shipbuilding
6/1829-1/1832 Samuel Pray & William Neal – partnership – ship chandlery, hardware, grocery
3/1832-1832 James Neal (brother of William) takes over Pray & Neal (above), James Neal died ca. 1832
1832-1838 William Neal – new store at 8-9 Merchants Row – ship chandlery, hardware, grocery
1838 John Neal (son of William) takes over William Neal store (above)

Biographical Note

William Neal (1790-1843) was born October 31, 1790 in New Castle, New Hampshire, the son of Dorothy (Roberts) and James Neal and brother of James Neal (born in 1793). He married Jane Jones (1790-1852) and the two had ten children including their oldest child, John Robert Neal (1814-1898) who married Ann Maria Badger, daughter of ship builder, Samuel Badger. An April 7, 1832 notice in the Portsmouth Journal announced that William Neal would be operating a Ship Chandlery, taking over the store formerly occupied by E. Q. Sheafe at 8 & 9 Merchants Row. Therefore a month after William dissolved his partnership with Pray, turning that business over to his brother, he opens his own Ship Chandlery at a new location.

James Neal (1793-1832ca.) was born October 12, 1793 in New Castle, the son of Dorothy (Roberts) and James Neal and brother of William Neal (1790-1843). It is presumed, although not certain that James Neal, brother of William Neal, was the individual who took over the store of Pray & Neal when that partnership dissolved in March of 1832. It appears that James Neal died in 1832.

John Robert Neal (1814-1898) was born in 1814, the son of Jane and William Neal. In 1838 John Neal took over his father’s ship chandlery, grocery and hardware store located at 8&9 Merchant’s Row in Portsmouth. John Neal married Ann Maria Badger, the daughter of Samuel Augustus Badger, also represented in this collection. The two had five children, one of whom was Samuel Badger Neal, represented in this collection. Like other generations of the Neal and Badger families, John Neal was a ship builder as well as a merchant. John Neal was involved in the Piscataqua Marine Railway and was builder of the Ship Granite State in 1877.

Samuel Augustus Badger (1794-1857) was born in Kittery September 18, 1794, the son of Susannah and Samuel Emerson Badger. He married Apphia (or Sophia) Maria Fernald July 19, 1817. Samuel operated a successful shipyard in Kittery and erected forty-five vessels during his career. He died in Kittery on September 27, 1857, after a brief illness, just before his Ship New Hampshire was scheduled to be launched.

Samuel Badger Neal (1842-1901) was the son of Ann Maria Badger and John Neal. Born in April of 1842, Neal was the grandson of two ship builders and merchants represented in earlier volumes in this collection, William Neal and Samuel Augustus Badger. It appears that he may have been working as a clerk in his grandfather’s store at the time of Samuel A. Badger’s death in 1857, as his signature appears in a receipt book. Samuel attended Portsmouth Academy and Philips Exeter Academy.


Related Items

MS025 Wendell Papers Box 14 Folders 1-7 Samuel Pray Estate, Pray & Neal Records
MS025 Wendell Papers Box 21 Folder 20 James Neal Account Book, 1837-1843
MS025 Wendell Papers Box 21 Folder 21 Samuel Pray Account Books (2), 1834-1845


I. Pray & Neal

Volume 1: Pray & Neal Ledger, Feb 1831-1834 [bulk dates Feb 1831-Feb 1832] *Note this volume has been cataloged separately with an index of individuals – see MS132 V1
Ledger used by Pray and Neal, a ship chandlery, hardware and grocery store. The bulk of the dates are from February 1831 to February 1832, although some accounts appear to have been settled as late as 1834. The partnership of Pray and Neal dissolved in January of 1832 and the business was taken over by William’s brother James, while William opened up a new store at 8 & 9 Merchants Row. There is therefore a possibility that this ledger overlaps with one of those businesses as well. On page 150 the volume is connected to William Neal, based on records for his “private account.” The same entry, “private account” is recorded for Samuel Pray on page 157. Entries include ship names, individuals and businesses. On page 35 there is an entry for “Potato Account No. 2 Cellar” and on page 43 there is an entry for “Potato Account M. H. Cellar.” On page 54, Joshua Perkins is identified as the “potatoe man.” On page 92 there is an entry for the “Light House Contractors.” Page 101 is for the “Cider Account,” 134 is the “Overseers of the Poor,” 174 is the “Ship Yard” and 255 records the “Sale of Ship America.” There are 332 pages of entries. The final page is an entry reconciling the estate of James Neal, suggesting that the volume includes entries from when the store of Pray and Neal as well as when James Neal took over the location. [index completed]

Volume 2: Pray & Neal Ledger, Jan 1831-Jan 1832
*Note this volume has been cataloged separately with an index of individuals – see MS132 V2
Ledger used by Pray and Neal, a ship chandlery, hardware and grocery store, dated January 1831 to January 1832. The Ledger corresponds with S0104 Pray and Neal Daybook (entries by day) and Journal (description of item purchased). Entries include individuals, ships and business. On page 63 there is an entry for “House on Deer Street.” There are pages with specific sales of products – salt (16), anchors (13) and duck (12). On pages 88-89 there is an accounting of “Merchandise” and on pages 94-95 there is a “Petty Journal” followed by several pages of balancing accounts. There are 103 pages of entries. [index completed]

Volume 3: Neal [?] Daybook, November 1832- January 1833
Daybook likely used by the ship chandlery, hardware and grocery business of either William or James Neal, dated November 5, 1832 to January 23, 1833. Entries include sales of general household supplies and food as well as ship building supplies, paint and lead. On page 94 there is an extensive list of supplies to build and outfit the Brig Franklin, built by George Raynes in 1832. Included in the list is line, lead, nails, screws, chisels, dining plates and a speaking trumpet. Other ships included in the volume are: Schooner William (8-9), Schooner George and Mary (20, 22, 34, 36, 42, 55, 57, 59, 72), Ship Nestor – extensive list of food for a voyage (27) and Ship Rockingham (71). [not indexed]

Volume 4: Neal [?] Daybook/Wastebook, March 1833- August 22, 1833
Wastebook likely used by the ship chandlery, hardware and grocery business of either William or James Neal. There are also numerous references to George Neal, brother to William and James. There are fewer items related to ship building and supplies and more often groceries (rice, cheese, coffee, figs, butter, nutmeg, eggs) and household items (boots, nails, broadcloth, linen). The content does suggest perhaps a different business from the partnership of Pray & Neal above. [not indexed]


II. Samuel Badger

Box 1 Folder 1: Samuel A. Badger Account Book, 1831-1836
Small volumes, entries include names of individuals and descriptions of services or goods purchased, including rum, wood chips and boards. There are numerous pages dedicated to what appears to be construction of a home, with entries titled “New House.” The end of the volume contains an entry for expenses related to timber lots in Kingston and York. [not indexed]

Box 1 Folder 2: Samuel A. Badger Loan Book, ca. 1842-1857
Small volume, including what appears to be loans extended by Samuel Badger to various merchants. Entries include the dollar amount extended, terms in days or months of loan and when paid.

Box 1 Folder 3-5: Samuel A. Badger Receipt Books, 1847-1856 [4 volumes] (Minimal mold) Entries are records of payment made by Badger to others with signature of individual receiving payment. [not indexed]

Box 1 Folder 3: July 1847-Oct 1847 & Jan 1857-Dec 1857
Box 1 Folder 4: Dec 1847-July 1848
Box 1 Folder 5: Sept 1853-Oct 1854
Box 1 Folder 6: Dec 22, 1855-Aug 1856 [end of volume has Samuel Badger Neal signature]

Box 1 Folder 7: Samuel A. Badger Receipt & Account
Dec 20, 1856-1858 Volume is general receipt entries, similar to previous entries, followed by what appears to be records for settling the accounts of Samuel Augustus Badger after his death in 1857. [not indexed]

Volume 5: Samuel A. Badger Ledger (Mold), 1849-1857
Ledger identified as belonging to shipbuilder Samuel A. Badger of Kittery with entries from December 1849 to July 1858. Most of the entries are for wood products, white oak timber, pine plank, cordwood and chips. Organized as a ledger with entries for individuals who held an account with Badger. There are also grocery items such as meat, corn and flour. Volume is indexed by name in the front and has 315 pages of entries. One of the final entries includes a charge of 1250.00 for “hull and spars of Ship New Hampshire,” the ship was under construction at the time of Samuel’s sudden death on September 27, 1857. [not indexed]


III. Samuel Badger Neal

Box 1 Folder 8: Samuel Badger Neal School Expenses, 1853-1856, volume appears to be a practice journal while Neal was attending Portsmouth Academy and Philips Exeter Academy.

Box 1 Folder 9: Samuel Badger Neal School Essays and Notes, ca. 1853-1856

Box 1 Folder 10: Samuel Badger Neal Diary, ca. 1853, describes going to Israel Kimball’s school in Portsmouth, includes daily events at school and order of instruction. Beginning of volumes appears to have been used by an individual inspecting schools and evaluating their performance.

Box 1 Folder 11: Samuel Badger Neal Transcriptions of newspaper articles including obituaries of various family members. [copy for vertical file]

Box 1 Folder 12: Samuel Badger Neal Essays including a history of the Second Christian Church in Kittery

Box 1 Folder 13: Samuel Badger Neal Account Book, ca. 1865, includes entries for miscellaneous expenditures including clothing items and charitable donations.


IV. John Robert Neal

Box 2 Folder 1:

Clerk’s Records Piscataqua Marine Railway Company, Kittery, Maine, ca. 1871-1898

Clerk’s Records Piscataqua Marine Railway Company, Kittery, Maine, ca. 1871-1888 (appears that book above was transcribed from this one

Volume 6: Piscataqua Railway (No mold), ca. 1871

Historical Note: The Piscataqua Marine Railway Company was formed in 1871. The organizing meeting was held at the home of John Neal of Kittery, Maine (father of Samuel Badger Neal). Officers included: Joshua H. Sanborn, James O. Trefethen, John F. Matthews, Joseph Cox, Horatio Trefethen (1833-1907) and John Neal.

Box 2 Folder 3: Granite State (Ship) Wage Ledger, 1876-1877

Historical Note: The Ship Granite State was built under the direction of John Neal, master builder, and David Badger, foreman, of Kittery in 1877. John Neal shared one quarter ownership with Peter Marcy, Daniel Marcy and Capt Ross. A previous ship by the same name was built in 1854 by Samuel Badger. The 1800 ton 1877 Granite State was the largest ship ever built at Portsmouth. For more on the Ship Granite State see “Tall Ships of the Piscataqua” by Ray Brighton, pages 332-335. [not indexed]


V. Miscellaneous

Volume 7: Household Account Book pasted over with newspaper clippings, ca. 1877

Box 2 Folder 3: Daniel Street Market House Share Certificates, ca. 1820