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Place Made:
Gaston County North Carolina United States of America
Date Made:
ink –paper
Accession Number:
DESCRIPTION: A handwritten indenture between the cabinetmaker Peter Eddleman and John Henry White. John Henry’s father William White also signed the indenture.

CABINETMAKER: Peter Eddleman (1764-1845) was born in Bucks County, PA, and came to Rowan County, NC, when he was a very young boy (whether aged 2 or 10 is unclear). During the Revolutionary War he fought in the place of his brother-in-law Leonard Clifford for five months, then served two more tours of duty between 1780 and 1781, figting in the place of Michael Holdshouser.

After the war, he moved to Lincoln County (he bought property on Leepers Creek, an area that is now part of Gaston County), where he was a resident the rest of his life. A Peter Eddleman is listed in the 1790 Lincoln County census, but not in the 1800 census. In 1803 Peter was recorded in the Lincoln County estate records for James Abernathy as having purchased iron. He was listed in the 1810, 1820, 1830 and 1840 Lincoln County Census records. He took at least two trips west, one to TN in 1809, where he was recorded as having purchased an item at an estate sale, and another to Cape Girardeau, MO, in 1817, when he bought a horse (the receipt, along with other family papers, is now part of the MESDA Collection: 5750.6). In 1821 he took John Henry White as an apprentice “to learn the art trade and mystery of a Shop joiner,” as this indenture proves.

In 1830 at age 65, Peter Eddleman married Dicia Swanson Clippard, a widow with three young children. Peter and Dicia had two sons of their own: David Franklin (1831-1904) and William Peter (1833-1862). Peter Eddleman made his will in 1847, the year he died. Both of Peter’s sons fought in the Civil War in Company H, 52nd Regiment, NC Troops, known as the Spring Hill Guards. This regiment was raised in Lincoln County and enlisted in Lincoln County on March 25, 1862. Their 1862 daguerreotypes hang below the apprenticeship indenture. William Peter died in hospital at Petersburg, VA, Oct. 16, 1862, of “gastritis acuta.” David Franklin survived the war, and he and his wife had four children. A chest of drawers in the Catawba Parlor, also given to MESDA by the Eddleman family (Acc. 5750.1), probably descended from David Franklin’s wife, Louisa F. Summerow Eddleman (1833-1921).

Whether John Henry White completed his apprenticeship with Peter Eddleman and practiced as a “shop joiner” is unclear.

MESDA owns a desk and bookcase made by Peter Eddleman for Thomas Rhyne, Acc. 2564.2.

Descended in the Eddleman family along with a chest of drawers (Acc. 5750.1) and portraits of Peter Eddleman’s sons, William Peter and David Franklin (Acc. 5750.2 and .3).
Credit Line:
Gift of John Eddleman and Edith Robinson Eddleman, great great grandchildren of Peter Eddleman, in honor of thier parents John Holland Eddleman and Virginia Murphy Eddleman