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Inventory of the Harby Academy Cashbook, 1819-1820

Descriptive Summary

Abstract: The collection consists of a cashbook for Isaac Harby's academy in Charleston, South Carolina, recording tuition payments for enrolled students, as well as costs for stationary and occasionally firewood, from January 1819 through May 1820.
Title: Harby Academy cashbook
Creator: Harby, Isaac, 1788-1828
Date(s): 1819-1820    
Extent: 0.25 linear feet
(1 flat box)
Repository: Special Collections, College of Charleston Libraries
66 George Street
Charleston, SC 29424
Phone: (843) 953-8016
Fax: (843) 953-6319
Call Number: Mss 1117
Language of Material: Materials in English

Biographical and Historical Note

Writer and teacher Isaac Harby (1788-1828) opened a private academy in Charleston on January 3, 1810. Within the first year enrollment, the school attracted over 50 students, both male and female. Its curriculum included elocution, arithmetic, penmanship, grammar, and geography. Additional education in the classics was also available to interested pupils. The academy closed between 1814 and 1817 when Harby chose to pursue an editorial career, purchasing the Charleston Investigator, which he renamed the Southern Patriot and Commercial Advertiser. Harby sold the paper in 1817 and reopened his academy, hiring assistants, including drawing master Joshua Canter, to teach additional subjects. After initial success, the school began to falter due to the city's economic decline and increased competition among academies. In February 1825, Harby decided to close the school and accept a well-paid teaching position in one of Charleston's four free schools.

Collection Overview

The cashbook contains entries for parents with enrolled pupils, showing tuition fees for each child, as well as charges for stationery, and at times, firewood. The book's entries span January 1819 through May 1820, tracking tuition and supply costs, recording when each account was paid in full and noting when students left the school.

Collection Arrangement

Collection described at the item level.

Search Terms

The following terms have been used to index this collection in the Library's online catalog. They are grouped by name of person, family, or organization, by topical subject, by place, and by types of material.


    • Harby, Isaac, 1788-1828


    • Private schools--South Carolina--Charleston--Costs
    • Education--South Carolina--Charleston--Finance

    Types of Material

    • Cashbooks

    Related Resources

    Related Material

    Related materials in Special Collections include the Harby family papers (Mss 1116), and the Octavia Harby Moses autograph album (Mss 1115).


    Harby Academy Cashbook, 1819-1820
    (Restricted vault)

    Administrative Information

    Access Restrictions

    This collection is open for research.

    Copyright Notice

    The nature of the College of Charleston's archival holdings means that copyright or other information about restrictions may be difficult or even impossible to determine despite reasonable efforts. Special Collections claims only physical ownership of most archival materials.

    The materials from our collections are made available for use in research, teaching, and private study, pursuant to U.S. copyright law. The user must assume full responsibility for any use of the materials, including but not limited to, infringement of copyright and publication rights of reproduced materials. Any materials used for academic research or otherwise should be fully credited with the source.

    Preferred Citation

    Harby Academy cashbook, College of Charleston Libraries, Charleston, SC, USA.

    Acquisitions Information

    Materials were donated in 2011 by Anita Rosenberg.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Amy Lazarus, April 2015.

    Encoded by Amy Lazarus, May 2015.

    Reviewed and uploaded by Joshua Minor, June 2015.

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