In 1830, Otis M. Conkey moved to Illinois from Massachusetts with his parents. He farmed and operated a general store with his son Morton in Homer, where his younger brother, William A. Conkey, a doctor and farmer, also lived.
The Conkey family papers contain the financial records of Otis M. and Morton Conkey, 1856-1899, including bills, receipts, and promissory notes for freight charges, taxes and merchandise; a memorandum book of accounts due O. M. Conkey and Sons; a notebook listing purchases and expenses; and correspondence with banks and commission merchants regarding accounts and grain prices. In addition, the collection contains four letterbooks, 1844-1854, concerning James McCulloch's business transactions as the operator of a general store in Clinton, Ind. McCulloch was Otis Conkey's mother's cousin.
The Library acquired the collection in 1977.