Shipley, Joseph, 1795-1867.

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Joseph Shipley of Wilmington, Del., and Liverpool, England, was a merchant and banker and a partner in the Anglo-American banking houses later known as Brown Brothers & Company and Brown, Shipley & Company.

Joseph Shipley was born in Wilmington, Del., on December 4, 1795. His great-grandfather, William Shipley, had come to Philadelphia from Leicestershire in 1725. In 1735 he settled in Wilmington. His only son, Thomas Shipley, purchased a part of the Brandywine water power and established the flour mills that were the foundation of the family fortune.

Joseph Shipley's business career began in 1813 in the Philadelphia counting house of his cousin, Samuel Canby, Jr. In 1819 he went to Liverpool as an agent for John Welsh, a Philadelphia merchant. By 1822 the firm of Shipley, Welsh & Company was active in financing Anglo-American trade, particularly the shipment of cotton to England. Shipley attained a high reputation, which resulted in his being offered a partnership in the house of William & James Brown & Co. in 1826.

Alexander Brown, the father of Sir William and James Brown, had established Alexander Brown & Sons in Baltimore in 1800. Branches were established as William & James Brown & Co. in Liverpool in 1810, John A. Brown & Co. in Philadelphia in 1818, and Brown Brothers & Co. in New York in 1825. William Brown was in poor health, and Shipley handled most of the day-to-day management of the Liverpool office. He was rewarded by being made a partner of all four Brown firms in 1836. In recognition of his services during the Panic of 1837, particularly in negotiations with the Bank of England that saved the credit of the firm, the Liverpool office was renamed Brown, Shipley & Co. in 1839. Brown Brothers emerged from the crisis as one of the strongest Anglo-American banking houses, rivalled only by the Barings.

Joseph Shipley retired in 1850 and returned to Delaware, where he constructed a country estate, Rockwood, in Brandywine Hundred north of Wilmington. He resided there until his death on May 9, 1867.

From the description of Papers, 1741-1898 [photoprints and microfilm]. (Hagley Museum & Library). WorldCat record id: 122333726

Archival Resources
Role Title Holding Repository
creatorOf Shipley, Joseph, 1795-1867. Papers, 1741-1898 [photoprints and microfilm]. Hagley Museum & Library
Role Title Holding Repository
Relation Name
associatedWith Alex. Brown & Sons. corporateBody
associatedWith Andrews, Robert, 1772-1842. person
associatedWith Bringhurst, Edward, 1809-1884. person
associatedWith Bringhurst, Edward, 1835-1912. person
associatedWith Brown, Alexander, 1764-1834. person
associatedWith Brown Brothers & Company. corporateBody
associatedWith Brown, James, 1791-1877. person
associatedWith Brown, Shipley & Co. corporateBody
associatedWith Brown, William, 1785-1864. person
associatedWith Canby, Benjamin, 1704-1748. person
associatedWith Canby, James, 1781-1858. person
associatedWith Canby, Merritt, 1787-1866. person
associatedWith Canby, Samuel, 1751-1832. person
associatedWith Canby, Samuel, 1811-1875. person
associatedWith Canby, Thomas, b. 1702. person
associatedWith Cope, Caleb, 1797-1888. person
associatedWith Dixon, Mary Shipley, d. 1844. person
associatedWith Du Pont, Henry, 1812-1889. person
associatedWith Du Pont, Samuel Francis, 1803-1865. person
associatedWith Ferris family family
associatedWith George Wildes & Company. corporateBody
associatedWith Peck, Elisha, 1798-1863. person
associatedWith Peck & Phelps (Liverpool, England). corporateBody
associatedWith Pennsylvania Railroad Company. corporateBody
associatedWith Philadelphia Literary Association. corporateBody
associatedWith Potter, Howard, 1826-1897. person
associatedWith Price, Richard, 1795-1865. person
associatedWith Ridgway, Thomas, 1797-1887. person
associatedWith Rockwood (Brandywine Hundred, Del.). corporateBody
associatedWith Rushton, Edward, 1796-1851. person
associatedWith Shipley family. family
associatedWith Shipley, Hannah, 1801-1891. person
associatedWith Shipley, John, 1782-1863. person
associatedWith Shipley, Joseph, 1752-1832. person
associatedWith Shipley, Samuel, 1777-1844. person
associatedWith Shipley, Thomas, b. 1718. person
associatedWith Shipley, Welsh & Company. corporateBody
associatedWith Thomson, J. Edgar (John Edgar), 1808-1874. person
associatedWith Welsh, John, 1770-1854. person
associatedWith William & James Brown & Company. corporateBody
associatedWith Wistar, Siter & Price. corporateBody
Place Name Admin Code Country
Great Britain
Liverpool (England)
United States
Banks and banking
Banks and banking, International
Cotton trade
Flour and feed trade
Society of Friends
Grain trade
International finance
International trade
Merchant banks
Panic of 1837
Port Royal (S.C.) Expedition, 1861


Birth 1795

Death 1867


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Ark ID: w6vb2z3q

SNAC ID: 67015239