Avery Insurance, Inc. Records, 1889-1948

Descriptive Summary

Title
Avery Insurance, Inc. Records, 1889-1948
Creator
Avery Insurance, Inc.
Extent
9.75 linear feet
Finding Aid Author
Archives Staff; machine-readable finding aid modified by Michele Lai-Fook
Repository
University of Louisville

Collection Overview

Scope and Content
The records date from 1889 to 1948 and occupy 9.75 linear feet.
Account ledgers and packets of correspondence created by the Avery Insurance Company (under a number of different names) were discovered on the otherwise empty second floor of the building at 515 West Market that housed Avery Savings & Loan Association until demolition in August 1980. The insurance company had occupied that site from 1924 to 1966. Both companies were offshoots of B. F. Avery & Sons, one of the foremost manufacturers of plows and other farm implements in the United States.
Accounting records in various formats from 1889 to 1936 comprise the first series. There are no years for which some kind of account has not survived. The decision to keep the cash books (which are summarized elsewhere) was made because they neatly bracket the Stock Market Crash and document some of the effects of the Depression on an important Louisville insurance company's clients. Among the Policyholders ledger cards retained in sample are the Avery Building & Loan and B. F. Avery & Sons records for 1922 to 1942. Earlier accounts also include these major clients.
The correspondence series consists of two subseries. Documenting some of the company's activities in the 1930s are 2.5 linear feet of correspondence of W.H.Williamson, the Kentucky Agent for one of Avery's important insurance companies, Caledonian of Scotland. Williamson traveled the state from a base in the Avery office, but his salary was paid by Caledonian. Another 2.5 feet of general correspondence (mostly with Caledonian, Sun, London, Queen and a few other companies whose policies Avery sold) sheds light on the activities of the company in the 1940s.

Contents of the Collection

General Accounting Ledger, 1889-1892

  • Box 1
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Loose Trial Balance sheets, 1892-1897

  • Box 1
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Monthly Statement Ledger, 1892-1894 (including attachments summarizing 1893-1907 transactions)

  • Box 1
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Balance Ledger, 1895-1897

  • Box 2
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Trial Balance, 1897-1898

  • Box 2
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Trial Balance, 1898-1902

  • Box 2
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Trial Balance, 1902-1912

  • Box 2
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General Accounts Ledger, 1910-1922

  • Box 3
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Policyholders Accounts sample (the A's), 1922-1942

  • Box 4
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Monthly Account Summaries, 1930

  • Box 5
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Monthly Account Summaries, 1931-1932

  • Box 6
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Monthly Account Summaries, 1933-1934

  • Box 7
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Monthly Account Summaries, 1935-1936

  • Box 8
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Cash Book, 1929-1931

  • Box 9
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Cash Book, 1932-1933

  • Box 9
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Cash Book, 1933-1934

  • Box 10
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Cash Book, 1935-1936

  • Box 10
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W. H. Williamson (Caledonian State Agent) Correspondence, 1935-1938

  • Box 11
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W. H. Williamson Correspondence, 1940-1941

  • Box 12
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General Correspondence, 1940-1944

  • Box 13
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General Correspondence, 1945-1948

  • Box 14
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