59 School Street, Box 1310, Edgartown MA 02539 - 508.627.4441
Martha's Vineyard Museum MV Museum

A Finding Aid to the William Worth Pease Diaries, 1853-1888

Descriptive Summary

RepositoryMartha's Vineyard Museum, Gale Huntington Research Library
59 School Street
P.O. Box 1310
Edgartown, MA 02539
Call NumberRU 317
Creator Pease, William Worth, 1847-1922
TitleWilliam Worth Pease diaries
Extent1 box
LanguageThe materials are in English.
AbstractThe collection contains six diaries, 1853 to 1888, kept by William Worth Pease of Martha's Vineyard and New Bedford, Massachusetts which describe the weather, Pease's household accounts, employment information, social encounters and family events.

Administrative Information

Access Restrictions

There are no restrictions.

Use and Reproduction Restrictions

Requests to reproduce material from this collection should be directed to the library's staff. Reproduction fees may apply.

Preferred Citation

Martha's Vineyard Museum, RU 317, William Worth Pease Diaries.

Acquisition Information

The immediate source of acquisition and date of accession are unknown.


Railton, Arthur R. "William Worth Pease (1847-1892): The Start of a Dynasty's Decline." In Dukes County Intelligencer 45:4 (May 2004): 199-204.

Publication Information

Martha's Vineyard Museum

Gale Huntington Research Library
59 School Street
P.O. Box 1310
Edgartown, MA 02539

Processing Information

Finding aid prepared by Insley Julier in January 2013. Machine-encoded by Nathaniel Janick April 2014.

 Processing of this collection and creation of this finding aid was sponsored by the towns of Aquinnah, Chilmark, Oak Bluffs, Tisbury, and West Tisbury through the Massachusetts Community Preservation Act. Machine-encoding of the finding aid was sponsored by the Council on Library and Information Resources (CLIR) funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation.

Index Terms


  • Diaries

Geographic Name(s)

  • Edgartown (Mass.)
  • Fairhaven (Mass.)
  • New Bedford (Mass.)--Social life and customs

Personal Name(s)

  • Pease, William Cooke, 1819-1865


  • Daily life
  • Revenue cutters
  • Voyages and travel
  • Weather

Biography/Historical Note

William G. Worth Pease was born on 1 October 1847 in Edgartown, Massachusetts, son of William Cooke Pease and Serena Pease. His father was an officer in the United States Revenue-Cutter Service, a forerunner to the United States Coast Guard. As a young man, William Worth Pease also served in the cutter service and he resided on Martha's Vineyard until the late 1860s. In 1870 Pease married Agnes (Aggie) M. Chivers of New Bedford, Massachusetts. Agnes had immigrated to the United States in 1860 from England. At the time of their marriage, William Worth Pease moved to New Bedford, where he made a living selling wood and coal. He also served on the police force in 1874 and later, in the 1880s was employed as a machinist. Agnes Pease and William Worth Pease had three children; William C. (Willie) Pease, Edith W. Pease and Cerena M. Pease, however all had died by the year 1900. William Worth Pease died in 1922.

Scope and Content of Collection

The collection consists of six diaries, 1866 to 1888, kept by William Worth Pease of Edgartown and New Bedford, Massachusetts. The 1874 diary, which was clearly re-used, also includes a few 1853 accounts kept by William Worth Pease's father, William Cooke Pease. The diaries contain brief daily entries detailing the weather, household and business accounts. Pease also records whether he worked each day and his hours, people he encountered in the city or guests to his home, family member's excursions, correspondence with his mother, activities such as, lobstering and fishing outings, visits to shops and occasionally, the arrival of new ships to the city wharf, the health of members of his family and other information.


The collection is arranged chronologically.

Contents of Collection


Diary, 1853, 1874 


Diary and Accounts, 1864-1871 


Diary, 1870-1871 


Diary, 1875 


Diary, 1877 


Diary, 1888