In the beginning, the Tirocchi sisters used one large ledger to record all aspects of their business–customer orders, orders placed with vendors, inventory lists, etc. As their business grew, or perhaps when a bookkeeper appeared on the scene, the sisters began keeping more specialized records.

Inventory books contained listings of their stock of fabrics, trims, notions (buttons, etc.), and findings (snaps, zippers, etc.). Some of the books contain very minimal information, such as a stock number and the price of the stock. Evidently as textiles came into the shop, they were tagged with a number and this number was recorded in the inventory book. These records are very difficult for the curators to interpret except in the rare cases in which remaining stock is still tagged with a stock number.

Sometimes the inventory lists are more complete, giving the quantity on hand, a brief description, the cost of the item, and the extended price (quantity x cost). These records, needless to say, are more useful in interpreting just what kind of inventory the shop kept and how it changed through the years.

There are also loose inventory lists that are more specific, such as:

1 Angelo [Harry Angelo Co.] White Georgette, 3-piece. $89.50

Another loose page is devoted solely to hats in the inventory. Yet another lists "Things smoked up" in a fire that occurred in the house. This last listing would have been important for insurance purposes as well as for inventory control.

Most of the inventories are undated. Cross-checking with vendor records helped place them in the chronology of the shop. The curators are interested in analyzing the inventory sheets to discover what type of stock the shop had at different periods in its history. They can use the inventory records to verify copies of orders in the file, and vice versa. This cross-checking is part of what researchers do to verify their understanding of a certain situation or their theories about it.

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   Sources and Methods
   The People
   The Business
      Address Books
      Shop Announcements
      Bills   |   Day Books
      Employee Address Book
      Inventory   |   Ledgers
      Letters   |   Payroll
      Time Books
      Travel Records
      Vendor Account Books
      Vendor Invoices
      Vendor Letters
      Vendor Promotions
   Custom Dressmaking