Robert Carter writes to London merchant, William Dawkins, May 27, 1721, reporting that freight rates on ships in the York River have been lowered to £8 and those in the James River to £7. The Carter must look for freight at £8 if she is to be loaded, but she is doing well thanks to his assistance. He wishes her captain, Bailey Kent, were more aggressive in seeking cargo. He complains about the pirates and the Crown's apparent lack of interest in protecting the colonial trade.
My Last went from Wms.burg this comes via Leverpool
and letts You know That the York river Freight Tother Day was Struck to
£8. The James River to Seven, The Carter must come to the York Termes
If She be loaded. she is as forward at this day considering the time She
came in I believe as any of them, but Kent must own 'tis oweing in
a great Measure to my Assistance, I hope by the last of this month or
Some few days in June, She will have above 300 hogsheads on board.
We have a Swarm of ships in all our Rivers, It's Impossible I think they
Should all find Tobo. I have loaded 30 hogsheads on board Chandler and have
bin passive as to my freit , wish I do not Suffer for my lasieness
we Shall Struggle hard to fill the Carter I wish Baily Kent had
a little more Mercury in the head of him and could undergo fatiegue
with a greater briskness,
Wharton by Standing for £10 per Tun I'm affraid will fool himself.
The Storey of the pyrates Threatning of our Harbours You will have
at Large, It's a miserable case the Crown takes no more care of so
vast a fleet of ships as uses this Bay, for the rest refr You to my other
Two Leverpool ships in our river take a freit for London
I Shall Conclude at Present. --