Finding Number (Click this to view full catalogue structure)MS14
TitleJournals and notebooks of Joseph Dixon
Extent6 volumes
Datec 1811-1840s
DescriptionPersonal and business journals and notebooks of Joseph Dixon (fl 1809-1847), mercer and haberdasher of Birmingham

Joseph Dixon had a shop in Great Hampton Street, Birmingham, and these volumes reveal all manner of information relating to his employment and business interests, and about his family and personal life. Several of the journals serve as both personal and business travel diaries.

The earliest notebook, for example, starts as a diary of a visit to Shrewsbury and North Wales in 1811; another begins with an account of a journey to Cornwall and his subsequent itinerary there in 1822; and a third relates to much more local journeys of only a few days to such places as Warwick, Henley in Arden, Coventry, Stourbridge, and Bromsgrove between 1822 and 1828.

The volumes also include details and accounts of the goods he sold on his travels, topographical, historical and statistical information about the places he visited, and much other incidental information. This ranges from medical and culinary recipes and other domestic and chemical formulae to acrostic poems written to celebrate such occasions as the births of his children, songs, hymns, epitaphs and sermon notes which he wrote or collected, and sketches and technical and other drawings. Some volumes also include copies of family letters which he wrote and received, and the earliest notebook contains a detailed financial account of the family and household expenditure between 1809 and 1821.
Access ConditionsAccess to all registered researchers
Finding AidsA catalogue of this collection is available on the online archive catalogue. Click on the Finding Number to display the summary contents list of the catalogue and to view the full catalogue. A paper copy of this catalogue is also available for consultation at Special Collections.
Access StatusOpen
Administrative HistoryJoseph Dixon (fl 1809-1847), mercer and haberdasher, had a shop in Great Hampton Street, Birmingham by 1820. There seems to be some discrepancy over the street number. Wrightson's Triennial directory for 1825 gives the number as 95, while the fourth volume of Dixon's journals states that his premises are at number 110 (p 62). A directory for 1847 has a J. Dixon living at 103 Great Hampton Street in the occupation of broker. Further information can be found in the journals. Dixon was living in Suffolk Street in 1813, and he worked for Mr Wareham from 1813-1816 (volume 1, p119). He married Bernice Barber in 1810, and they apparently had twelve children in all, 'eight daughters and four sons' (volume 5). The names of the first seven are mentioned in the diaries: Jemima b. 1811, Kezia b. 1812, Keran-Happuch b. 1814, Matilda Josephine b. 1816, (volume 1) d. 1819 (volume 3), Augustus, the unnamed son born in ?1818, named as Augustus (volume 2), Alexander, (volume 2), Hepzibah 1823 (volume 3).
AcquisitionPurchased at auction in Jun 1997


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