A Collection in
Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State UniversitySpecial Collections
P.O. Box 90001
Blacksburg, Virginia 24062-9001
Phone: (540) 231-6308
Fax: (540) 231-3694
2011 By Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University. All rights reserved.
Processed by: John M. Jackson, Special Collections
Collection is open for research.
Permission to publish material from the William Thomas Account Book must be obtained from Special Collections, Virginia Tech.
Researchers wishing to cite this collection should include the following information: William Thomas Account Book, Ms1940-031, Special Collections, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, Blacksburg, Va.
The William Thomas Account Book was acquired by Newman Library prior to 1941.
The processing and description of the William Thomas Account Book commenced in October, 2011 and was completed in November, 2011.
The 1860 census records only one William Thomas in Blacksburg: a 64-year-old Maryland-born farmer. According to various sources, a Blacksburg merchant named William Thomas was born in Maryland on May 25, 1796. The son of Giles T. and Nancy Ann Wheeler Thomas, William Thomas moved to the Blacksburg area while in his late teens. In 1819, he married Rachel Montgomery Hoge (1800-1828), and the couple had three children. Following Rachel's death, Thomas married Lucretia Howe (1806-1889), with whom he had five children. Thomas served as Montgomery County sheriff and operated a successful mercantile business and tanyard, as well as a farm. He also had an interest in Montgomery White Sulphur Springs and served in Virginia's General Assembly, as clerk for Blacksburg's Presbyterian Church, and as a trustee of the Blacksburg Female Academy. William Thomas died on February 14, 1863 and is buried in Blacksburg's Westview Cemetery.
This collection consists of a single account book maintained by William Thomas, a merchant in Montgomery County, Virginia around the middle of the 19th century. Included are names of customers, itemized lists of goods purchased, dates of puchases, and amounts paid.