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WHILBR - Western Maryland

About this collection

The 1875 edition of Boyd’s Business Directory for Maryland lists the occupations and businesses in the five largest cities in Maryland, and all the smaller towns. This website includes Cumberland, Hagerstown, and the smaller towns, but not Baltimore City. 

The book is organized by occupation. Many of the citizens were self-employed and so the list contains mostly individuals, rather than corporate entities. The exception is newspapers and hotels. John Gnagey of Accident is listed under Agricultural Implements. Charles Fisher of Brownsville was a blacksmith, as was William Chapman of Grantsville. Edward Callaghan of Mt. Savage, G. H. Murphy of Swanton and Henry Little of Smithsburg all made shoes. Hannekamp & Bro. of Lonaconing were brewers and Henry Rheis of Westernport a bottler. Joseph Cresswell of Keedysville was a broom maker, Joel Ward of Oakland a cabinet maker, James Thurley of Leitersburg made chains. John Miller ran the general store in Altamont, Mrs Eliza Newcomer ran the store in Benevola and Mrs Walter Steele ran hers in Deer Park. In effect most of the employed population are listed, with the exception of farmers and those who worked for others (like railway workers and clerks etc).  

Hagerstown Seminary for Young LadiesCumberland had many small businesses – Solomon Baer’s clothing store on N. Mechanic, Francis Blaw - butcher, Mrs. Bowen - Grocer, Thomas Cain - tailor, Richard Coulehan - boat builder, Island nr Basin Wharf. Mrs. J. W. Hahn and Miss Helen Mowery were dressmakers, 13 Charles. Levi S. Hilleary sold Cuban cigars and Elizabeth Loy had a boarding house at 3 Bedford. Donald Paisley was a dyer and scourer. Aaron Smith offered "hair cutting in the latest style of the art" in his Tonsorial Rooms.

Also in Cumberland were the coal company offices of Blaen Avon Coal Co., Consolidation Coal Co. of Maryland, Georges Creek Coal Co., Georges Creek Coal & Iron Co., Hampshire & Baltimore Coal Co., Maryland Coal Co.

Occupations in Hagerstown in 1874 included carriage maker, saddle and harness maker, bowling salon, homeopathic physician, plow maker, miller, and milliner. E. K. Harris was a segar manufacturer, Gambrill Harris & Co. had flour mills on the corner of Walnut and Church, W. D. Feigley ran a dollar store on N Potomac. The Hagerstown Bank, William S. Hamilton, president, Joseph Kausler, cashier, was located on West Washington Street, as was the law office of Henry Kyd Douglas, former Confederate soldier and author of I rode with Stonewall. Rev John McCron ran the young ladies' seminary and C. E. S. McKee was mayor of the city. Edward W Mealey, later President of the Board of Trustees of the Washington County Free Library, was a lawyer at 85 W Washington. B. W. T. Phreaner and E. M. Recher had established their photography studios. Matilda Taylor’s occupation was listed as "human hair” while F. F. Wilty was a watchmaker.

Boyd’s Directory also included a list of post offices and postmasters through the state. These are included too, as they add the names of towns and villages considered large enough to need a post office. A significant number of women were in charge of the post office: Allegany: Ellerslie, Mrs. Mary A. Shoup and Orleans, Miss Ellen A. Callen Washington: Boonsborough, Miss Eliza Beard; Ringgold, Miss Catharine A. Coover; Funkstown, Mrs. Elizebeth Grosh; and Sharpsburgh, Mrs. Harriet Benton. Garrett County had post offices in Deer Park, Grantsville, Hutton's Switch, and Altamont among other small towns. Among the list were post offices in Murley's Branch, Ocean, and Brady's Mills in Allegany and Fairplay, Fairview, Millstone Point, Eakle's Mills and Cearfoss in Washington County. 

Boyd planned a directory of Allegany County in 1877. The Cumberland Times of June 21 1877 noted "Col William H Boyd, who was stationed in Cumberland during the war, and now publishes city directories, will begin to canvass the county to publish a Directory of Allegany County." It is unclear whether he completed the task, but William Boyd produced directories of towns in New York, Pennsylvania, Delaware, New Jersey, Maryland, Virginia and the District of Columbia.


For Hagerstown and Cumberland the pages are similar to later City directories, with all people listed in alphabetical order, with their occupation and address. For smaller towns, the collection is organized by profession and then by town. There is therefore a listing of Boot and shoe makers listed by town, followed by Bottlers and Brewers. So a search for Keedysville will find 23 pages, from Blacksmith to Wheelwrights. To browse all of the collection, select the BROWSE ALL tab above. To search for a specific person or town, type the name into the SEARCH box. For example "Bowles Hancock" willl find S. Bowles of Hancock who worked in "Flour, Feed and Grain"

Western Maryland Regional Library is grateful to Helen Long, local historian, who gave this book to the Western Maryland Room of Washington County Free Library.

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