University of Delaware Library

Special Collections Department


Samuel M. Donnell
Insurance Records
for Newark, Delaware

1888 - 1914

Manuscript Collection Number: 96, item 66
Accessioned: Gift of Mr. Groff, 1976
Extent: 1 linear ft. (9 volumes)
Content: Ledgers, registers
Access: The collection is open for research.
Processed: Sally W. Donatello, May 2001

for reference assistance email Special Collections
or contact:

Special Collections, University of Delaware Library
Newark, Delaware 19717-5267
(302) 831-2229


Table of Contents


Biographical Note

Samuel Mathewson (S.M.) Donnell was a realtor, insurance agent, and notary in the small college town of Newark, Delaware, in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century. The registers comprising this small collection indicate that S.M. Donnell sold insurance policies in Newark, Delaware, on behalf of two companies, the Fire Association of Philadelphia and the Royal Insurance Company of Liverpool, between 1888 and 1914. Donnell had a keen interest in his community, and served it through political and social activities. In 1882 he was the warden master for the Mason's Hiram Lodge, No.25, A.F.A.M. Donnell became president of Newark town council in 1885 and was a member of that same body in 1887.

S. M. Donnell owned many properties in the city of Newark. Some of his land holdings, dating from 1909 to 1935, can be found in the Wilbur T. Wilson Map Collection. His real estate holdings included a farm near Main Street and New London Road. A Royal Insurance Company policy (Volume 1) described the farm as a "stable, wood house, corn crib and contents, dwelling, water closet, and poultry house."

Donnell was the son of Andrew and Rosa (Mathewson) Donnell. He married Mary Bedford, who was the daughter of Levi G. Cooch and Sarah Conant Wilkins.

 

Sources:

Cooch, Frances A. Little Known History of Newark, Delaware and its Environs. Newark, Del.: The Press of Kells, 1936.

Scharf, J. Thomas. History of Delaware: 1609-1888, Vol. 2. Philadelphia: L.J. Richards & Co., 1888.

Hanby, Egbert G. and Jas. L. Vallandigham, Jr. Newark, Delaware: Past and Present. Newark, Del.: Delaware Ledger Print, 1982.

Philadelphia Business Directory, 1899-1900.

R.L. Polk & Co.s Peninsula Directory of Delaware Eastern Shore of Maryland and Virginia, 1908-1909.

Bell Telephone Co., April 1, 1897.

Ms 377 Wilson, Wilbur T., map collection

Note: Historical and biographical information obtained from the collection. Scope and Content Note


Scope and Content Note

The Samuel M. Donnell Insurance Records for Newark, Delaware, spans the dates of 1888-1914, and provides a wealth of information about property holders and building structures in the town around the turn of the century. The Insurance Records will be particularly useful in conjunction with the Wilbur T. Wilson Map Collection (Ms 377). The collection consists of nine volumes, which were related to Donnell's job as agent for two insurance companies: Fire Association of Philadelphia (407-409 Walnut Street) and Royal Insurance Company of Liverpool, England (306 Walnut Street, Philadelphia). The Fire Association of Philadelphia was incorporated on March 27, 1820. The Royal Insurance Company of Liverpool was founded in the midnineteenth century in Liverpool, England.

The nine-volume registers are divided into two series. Series I, spanning the dates 1897-1911, includes three volumes of insurance records (one for the Fire Association of Philadelphia and two for the Royal Insurance Company of Liverpool) that include policies and descriptive information about the people, places, fees, and dates of transactions. Series II, spanning the dates 1888-1914, is a six-volume set of S.M. Donnell's check registers for his insurance business. Each of the nine volumes is housed individually.

The registers were printed for the insurance company's agents to record details of their clients' premiums. Two clients are listed per double-page spread. The Royal Insurance Company's register was printed by Hofstetter Bros. Blank Book Manufacturers of Philadelphia. The second volume of this set has a letter to its agents tipped into the verso of the cover. It is laid on top of the label of the manufacturer of the register.

The two volumes of registers for the Fire Association of Philadelphia include the following information: company logo, policy number, name of assured, commencement of risk, term, expiration of risk, amount insured, old rate, new rate, premium, copy of policy, and remarks. Across the top of the page, beginning on the left side, are the words: Policy Register. On the right side is the company's name.

Donnell filled each register with descriptive materials, receipts, and signed policies that are tipped into the pages along with the line items and monetary notations. The records have the names of nineteenth- and early twentieth-century Newark residents; each register has an index. Donnell's clients included local businesses, Delaware College, and the local school district.

The six volumes of check registers, some of which have his initials on the spine, span the dates 1888-1914. The collection consists of volumes two, five, six, eight, nine, and fourteen of an unknown number of the set.


Contents List

Volume -- Contents

	Series I  	S.M. Donnell, agent for the Fire Association of Philadelphia 
				and the Royal Insurance Company of Liverpool, registers, 
				1897-1911


1	Fire Association of Philadelphia, register, 1897-1905
	Records of insurance policies with an alphabetical listing of the clients, 
	businesses, institutions, and other policyholders. Contents include policy number,
	name of assured, commencement of risk, term, expiration of risk, amount insured, 
	old rate, new rate, premium, copy of policy, and remarks; the register is filled
 	(99 pp)


	Names of assured:


	Artisans Savings Bank of Wilmington, Delaware 
	Armstrong John H. & Co.
 	Armstrong, John P.

	Beltz, Norah
	Blandy, Elizabeth P. 
	Blandy, May E. 
	Blandy, T. Bridgman 
	Bonsall, Ephraim 
	Bowen, Levi K. 
	Brown, Daniel F. 
	Brown, Newton H. 
	Bryson, Benjamin N.

	Chambers, Gilbert W. 
	Campbell, Benjamin 
	Campbell, Harry M. 
	Chillas, Arthur, deceased, the heirs of 
	Choate, D.L.
	Choate, Stephen R., Jr.
	Cooch, J.W.
	Cook, William H.
 	Cornog, Isabella 
	Cornog, Stephen L. 
	Daniel, Walter C. 
	Delaware College, the trustees of
	Donnell, Mary B.
	Donnell, S.M. and George W. Marshall, executors
	
	Evans, Charles B.
 	Evans, Edw.
	Fisher, Andrew, Jr. 
	Fisher, Mary E. Series I 
	
1	
	Gray, W.C., estate of
	Haines, Eri W.
 	Hart, W.B.
	Harrigan, William
	Harkness, Wilmer E. Haudy, L.I.
	Henry, Agnes E.

	Jervis, Frank H. 
	Johnston, I.C., estate of 
	Kane & Griffin
 	Keeley, Michael, Jr.
	Kelley, Elizabeth, et al 
	Kelley, William H. 
	Kennedy, William R.

	Lewis, J.E.
	Lilley, Thompson L. 
	Logan, William G. 
	Lovett, Leonard W.
	Lutton, Joseph B.
 	Lyons, Thomas
	Maxwell, Charles R. 
	McDonald, William G. 
	McGonigal, Thomas H. 
	McKinsey, Fred E. 
	McKinsey, Harry A. 
	Miller, Rev. Nelson H. 
	Moore, Annie W. 
	Morrison, J.C. and E.S.
 
	Newark M.E. Church, trustees of 
	Nicholls, Harry A.
	O'Donnell, John, estate of

	Pemberton, Pusey, estate of
	Pilling, John, estate of
	Pilling, John, Jr.
 	Pilling, Thomas
	Powell, George
	Praul, J.W.
	Presbyterian Congregation of White Clay Creek

1

	Raub, A.N.
	Robin, Dr. A.
 	Rowan, Rev. W. I.
	Rupp, J.C.
	School District No. 110 
	Singles, William T. 
	Steel, Hudson
	Steel, W.H.
	Stewart, Rufus

	Thompkins, Sarah D. 
	Thompson, Elmer M. 
	Tyson, Herman R. 
	Underwood, James

	Wiegand, Adam E. 
	Williams, John T. 
	Willis, J. Frank 
	Wilson, James A 
	Woolaston, Albert. 
	Wright, Hugh B.
 	Wright, Sarah L., estate of

2	Royal Insurance Company, 1899-1908
	Records of insurance policies with an alphabetical listing of the clients,
	businesses, institutions, and other policyholders. At the top of each left page and
	extending to the right side is the following line: Register of Fire Policies Issued 
	and Renewed for the ROYAL INSURANCE COMPANY of Liverpool, by S.M. Donnell 
	(handwritten in the space), Agent at Newark, Delaware (handwritten in the space). 
	Contents include no. of policy, no. of renewal, name and residence of assured, 
	commencement of risk, term, expiration of risk, amount insured, rate, amount of 
	premium, copy of policy, and location of risk and memoranda of external exposure.

	Names of assured:

	Armstrong, J. Rankin
 	Barton, William H.
	Bowen, Levi K. 

2	
	
	Bowman, Bettie
	Brown, Daniel F.
 	Brown, George J.
	Brown, J. W.
	Burnite, Martha J. (?) 
	Butler, Dr. J. B.

	Chester, F. D.
 	Choate, C. C.
	Cooch, Francis A. 
	Cooch, J. W. 
	Cooch, J.W. and Griffin, George W. 
	Corbit, Patrick
	Curtis, W. C.

	Day, Howard
	Delaware College
	Donnell, Mary B.
 	Donnell, S. M.
	Donnell, S. M. executor of George M. Bradford
	Doyle, John
	Doyle, John B.

	Evans, Charles B.

	Fader, Gotlieb
	Fisher, Pamela W.
 	Fisher, William H.

	Goldey, H. S. 
	Gregg, Annie 
	Griffin, George W.
 
	Hamilton, Charles W. 
	Hargan, Mary C. 
	Harkness, Wilmer E. 
	Harrigan, William 
	Harter, George A. 
	Heptasophes
	Husler, George M. estate of
	Husler, Mary

2

	Jacobs, L. B
 	Johnson, Jonathan

	Lewis, John E. 
	Lewis, Reuben G.

	Mackie, M. Helen 
	Manuel, Charles 
	McDougall, George, executor
	McPike, Edward
	Miller, John B.
 	Mote, Eliza
	Murphy, Kate

	O'Donnell, John
	
	Pennington, Thomas, estate of 
	Penny, Charles L.
 	Phoebus, Esther A.
	Pilling, John 
	Porter, Helen C.

	Raub, A. N. 
	Roberts, Maria 
	R[oman] C[atholic] Church, trustees of 
	Rose, D. C. Jr.
 	Rose, Mary

	Saunders, Anna E.
	Sherwood, Peter M. 
	Shreve, Martha 
	Singles, John M. 
	Smith, Anna M. 
	Smith, Charles W.
	Smith, Nathan K. 
	Steel, Hudson 
	Steel, Lucille A. 
	Steel, Mary L.
	Steel, William H. 
	Strahorn, Frederick W.

2

	Thompkins, Sarah D. 
	Thompson, Rachel A.
 	Tyson, Herman R.

	Whitcraft, Sarah A. 
	Whittingham, R. A. 
	Willis, John F.
	Wright and Son Co.
	Wright, H. B. 
	Wright, Isabel P.
 
3	Royal Insurance Company, register, 1903-1911
	Records of insurance policies with an alphabetical listing of the clients, 
	businesses, institutions, and other policyholders. Contents include policy number,
	name of assured, commencement of risk, term, expiration of risk, amount insured,
	old rate, new rate, premium, copy of policy, and remarks; the register is filled 
	(99 pp)

	Names of assured:

	American Vulcanized Fibre Co.
	Anderson, Martha L.
 	Avis, Fanny C.

	Barton, W. H. 
	Blandy, Elizabeth P. 
	Bowen, Levi K. 
	Bowman, Bettie 
	Brown, D. F., estate of 
	Brown, John W.
 	Burnite, Martha J.

	Campbell, B.
	Campbell, Estella G. 
	Campbell, Harry M. 
	Chambers, John W. 
	Chambers, G. W. 
	Chester, F. D. 
	Choate, C. C.
	Co. "E." 1st Infantry et al
	Cooch, Edw. W.
 	Cooch, Francis A. 
	Cooch, J. Wilkins 
	Curtis, Walter C.

3

	Day, Howard
	Delaware College
	Donnell, Mary B. 
	Donnell, S. M. 
	Doyle, John 
	Doyle, John B.
	Dunlap, M. B.

	Evans, Charles B.
 	Evans, Harriet B.

	Fader, Gotlieb
	Ferguson, Howard 
	First Presbyterian Church, trustees of 
	Fisher, William H.

	Gould, Thomas and London Gould
	Grant, Clarence D.
 	Grier, John C.
	Griffin and Steel 
	Griffin, George W.

	H.B. Wright Company
	Harter, George A. 
	Heptasophes
	Hilton, W. H.
	Huber, George H. 
	Husler, George M., estate of 
	Husler, Mary

	Jacobs, Joseph
	James, James
	Jaquette, J. David
 	Jex, John
	Johnson, Jonathan
	Jones, Joseph G.
 	Jordan, Charlotte B.

3

	Lewis, John E.
	Lindsey, Samuel, estate of 
	Lutton, Frank M.

	McCaskey, E.W.
	Medill, Philena P.
 	Miller, J. B.
	Mote, Eliza
	Murphy, Charles A. 
	Murphy, Kate
 
	O'Donnell, John, estate of

	Parke, Frank
	Pennington, Thomas, estate of 
	Penny, C. L.
 	Phoebus, Esther A. 
	Pilling, John 
	Pilling, Thomas 
	Porter, Alpheus Lee
	Porter, Helen C. 
	Potts, Robert 
	Presbyterian Congregation of White Clay Creek

	Raub, A.N. estate of
 	Renninger, George S.
	Richards, Edward L. 
	R[oman] C[atholic] Church
	Rose, David C.
 	Rose, David Lee 
	Rose, Mary H.

	Saunders, Anna E. 
	Security, Trust and Safe Deposit Co. trustees of 
	Sentman, Clinton G.
 	Shapleigh, Fannie L. 
	Sherwood, Peter M. 
	Sloan, Alice R.
 	Smith, Anna M.
	Smith, Charles W. 
	Smithson, Elizabeth
	Steel, Hudson 
	Steel, Mary L. 
	Steel, Walter H.
	Steel, William H. 
	Strahorn, Frederick W.

3

	Thomas, Tillie
	Thompson, Rachel A. 
	Tyson, Herman R.

	Whitcraft, Sallie A. 
	Willis, Lee O.
 	Willis, Mary A.
	Willis, Victor G.
	Wilson, E. Clifford 
	Worrall, M.S.
	Wright, Samuel J.
 
	Series II 	Samuel Mathewson Donnells's check registers from the
				National Bank of Newark, 1888-1914
        Some of these bound volumes still have Donnell's initials (SMD) on the spine.

4	Check register #2, 1888-1891
	Records of checks numbered 1650-2649

5	Check register #5, 1896-1998
	Records of checks numbered 4650-5649

6	Check register # 6, 1998-1901
	Records of checks numbered 5650-6649

7	Check register # 8, 1902-1904
	Records of checks numbered 7650-8649

8	Check register # 9, 1904-1905
	Records of checks numbered 8650-9649

9	Check register # 14, 1913-1914
	Records of checks numbered 13650-14648



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