This charming colonial tavern or bar tab does not indicate place, but most likely was kept in or near Danvers, Massachusetts. Item #44074
AD (unsigned), 4pp (lettersheet), 4 3/4" X 7", n.p., January and February 1799. Very good. Lightly age toned, with a few inoffensive faint spots that are surely ale or grog or some such brew. Penned large and bold in a somewhat legible but scrawled barkeep's hand. First three pages are headed "January 1799" and the fourth leaf "February 1799." Each page simply lists a customer's name and below that the one or two drinks on their tab, often citing popular colonial-era drinks such as "flip" or "sling" no longer in use today (although recipes for these may easily be found online!). First page, for instance, records "Oliver Humbolt / to 1 Jill of Brandy" followed by price, while on the second leaf we see that Enoch Greenwood consumed "to 1 glass of sling / to 1 glass of Brandy / to 1 half mug of flip," and so on. Name spellings are quite phonetical; other names include Levey Thurston, Aaron Sharman, Ebenezer Cutler, Joseph Pritten, Samuel Harrington, Solomon Halden, John Rice, Artimay Ward (could this be Continental Army General Artemas Ward, 1727-1800?), a couple others. Some of the entries bear a large inked "X" to the right, surely indicating the patron's tab was paid. Some of these names appear in the historical record (variant spellings) of Danvers and other surrounding towns in this area at this time. A delightful and fascinating relic of the young republic's drinking heritage -- and a rare survivor. Few of this type of document exist, there being little reason to preserve such temporary records.