Robert King Carter's Correspondence and Diary

   A Collection Transcribed
        and Digitized
   by Edmund Berkeley, Jr.

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Electronic Text Center , University of Virginia Library


Robert Carter to John Carter, February 14, 1721

     Letter from Robert Carter to his son, John Carter, then in Londonstudying, February 14, 1721, asking him to pay close attention to theproprietors' affairs of which he has written in other letters. Hetells John that his sisters and their husbands are well, reports thatMicajah Perry has sent gloomy news about the South Sea bubble, andits effects on trade. He closes by chiding John for not writing.

Letter from Robert Carter to John Carter, February 14,1721

-1 -

Rappahannock, [LancasterCounty, Virginia]
Febr. 14th.1720/21

Dear Son John -- --

     I have writ to You at Some Length bythis post
Concerningthe Proprietors affair which I Would have You per
=sue with theutmost Dexterity, This is cheifly to lettYou
know That Yor.Sisters and their Husbands are both of thm.
now here in verygood health, and have all their proper
Remembrances to You,Mr. Perry Tells me many a
Mellancholy Storey [sic] of the ruinous Effects of the South Sea
and other Bubles, and what is worse the fatal
consequences to Trade & particularly Tobo. which looks wth.
but a Dark Aspect all that I can say is we must haul
in ourhorns and live as we can afford, Mr. Perry mentions
the Swellingof Yor. legg Some time ago but that you were
better, when Youcome to live an Active life in Yor. own
Country I hope thatMalady will wear away, It had not
bin amiss If You had taken theopportunity of Some of
these Ships, to lett me hear from You,pray God preserve
You and keep You under his awe I am


Source copyconsulted: Robert Carter Letter Book, 1720 July-1721 July,BR 227, Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens,San Marino, California. Printed: Wright. Letters of Robert Carter. . . . p.79.

Robert Carter generally used a return address of"Rappahannock" for the river on which he lived rather than"Corotoman," the name of his home, on his correspondence, especiallyto merchants abroad. The county and colony have been added forclarity.

[1] Carter refers to the scandal of the value of thestock of the South Sea and other companies which wild speculation haddriven enormously high in June 1720, and which was nearly worthlessseveral months later. Many fortunes were made and lost. Perhaps themost succesful speculator was Sir Robert Walpole who made a fortune,retired, and then was called to save the nation as prime minister, apost he held from 1721 until 1742. ( Goldwin Smith. A History of England. Chicago, etc.: Scribner's, 1949.pp. 422-424. )

This text revised March 9,2009.