The Accounting Historians Journal
Vol. 12, No. 1
Louis Goldberg UNIVERSITY OF MELBOURNE (EMERITUS)
Williard E. Stone
UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA (EMERITUS)
JOHN CALDWELL COLT: A NOTORIOUS ACCOUNTANT
Abstract: John C. Colt was the author of a successful bookkeeping text which had many school adoptions and at least 46 editions. During an argument with Samuel Adams, his publisher, over the cost of his 5th edition, Colt killed Adams with a hatchet. Convicted of murder and condemned to execution by hanging, Colt com-mitted suicide in prison in 1842. His text, The Science of Double Entry Book-keeping, first published in 1838, continued in print until 1856.
John Caldwell Colt was the author of a very successful book-keeping text which was published from 1837 to 1855 in at least 46 editions (so designated, although "printings" would have been more appropriate). He was born in Hartford, Connecticut in 1810 and died November 8, 1842.
The Colt Family
Colt was descended from John Coult who, with his wife Mary Fitch, emigrated from Colchester, England, and landed at Boston on September 4, 1633. He settled in Cambridge, Massachusetts (then Newton) and had a son John Colt (the name alteration appeared at this point) in 1658.
Benjamin Colt, the son of John, served in the Revolutionary War and later became a farmer in Hadley, Massachusetts. He married Lucretia Ely to whom Christopher Colt was born in 1780. Christo-pher left the family farm and sought his fortune in Hartford, Con-necticut, where he married Sarah Caldwell, the daughter of Major John Caldwell, a wealthy leading citizen of Hartford.
Christopher and Sarah had six children: Margaret, 1806, Sarah Ann, 1808, John Caldwell, 1810, Christopher, Jr., 1812, Samuel, 1814