Brian Schmult, a former Treasurer of the Friends of Hopewell Furnace and Accountant, performed a detailed review of the ledgers in 2010s.  Brian identified the nature and use of the various account documents that we refer to as 'the Ledgers'.  As an aid to understanding of these records, Brian prepared a paper to guide the user through the documents and provide an understanding of how the documents relate to each other.  A reading of Brian's guide is highly recommended to anyone viewing the document. 

Please note: that Brian refers to the entire collection as Books since some of the records strictly speaking are not all referred to as Ledgers.  Brian also prepared a map to show how information was recorded in the documents, many times initially in a daily journal (Day Book), then transferred to a General Journal and then into the General Ledger.  An example 'map' of this interaction is provided in the file linked below.
Interpretation of Ledgers
Click to see Brian Schmult research paper
Brians final version of the map of the books presented in an excel file
Hopewell Furn Records Master Index
Note:  The map in the excel file is extremely large and you will need to navigate either down or across to see the work.

An Index of of the various documents/books has been prepared which adds a Logical Identifier (LID) to each record.  The reason for adding a LID is that the SM identifiers were not assigned on a logical basis such as by date of creation.  The LID attempts to organize each record by the approximate date of creation.  This Master index also shows the current owner of the original record.
We will attempt to contact Brian Schmult with any questions or comments. 
Send them to:
The Friends of Hopewell Furnace National Historic Site
Version 3  Uploaded 2023 Nov 3  Appearance Improvments
Brians final version of the map of the books presented in a web page