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


Letter from Robert Carter to Major George Eskridge, September 21, 1727

     Robert Carter writes to his friend, Major George Eskridge of Westmoreland County, September 21, 1727, concerning the sale of slaves that will prevent him from attending a survey, and calling on Eskridge to help him find buyers for the slaves. He informs Eskridge that the packet from the governor of Maryland that Eskridge has forwarded concerns a robbery committed in Virginia by Maryland citizens, and that he has forwarded it to the new governor of Virginia.

Letter from Robert Carter to Major George Eskridge, September 21, 1727

-1 -

[Corotoman, Lancaster County, Virginia]

Sepr: the 21st: 1727

Majr. George Eskridge

Sir --

     Yor: Son came to me last night on board
the Negro Ship and this morning I Send your Negroes away with
him to Colonel Balls one of them Since his coming a Shoar a fine
Youth proves a little lame in his knees as did two of my Sons
and one of my own which I reckon will Soon wear of I hope
they will please you to make you Easie in the Price I have
charged them, at £42 per pair.

     Under the Circumstances I am it is impossible
for me to attend the Survey I have met with a Slave Sale have
not yet disposed of Fifty of the Slaves I can by no means be ab=
sent from it and must Earnestly desire your utmost care in Car
rying on the Survey the best you can In which I have already
Given as full Instructions as I am Capable I know not many
of your Jury Several of them I take to be men of no great Experience
let them but do me Justice and I think I cannot fear of Success

     I [do not] doubt I must be forced to Sell a great many of the
Slaves for Tobbo: your Assistance may be of Service to me if you
can recommend to me any buyers that are good men and will
make ready pay I will take four thousand a Peice for women and
four thousand five hundred for men so proportionably

-2 -

for boys and Girls Be so kind to tell Meeks this Storey and let him
recommend also I would have the Tobbo: prized to at least Eight
hundred neat and to be paid of mens own Crops I should be glad
to See you after the Survey is over can hardly think it possible
it Should be finishd as Soon as you Say,

     The Packet you Sent me is from the Gor. of Mary
land relateing to a robbery Committed in this Govermt. by
Some Inhabitants there I dispatch it away to our Gor. and
herewith comes a Letter to Govr. Calvert which I desire yor. care
in forwarding as Soon as you can his hath bin travelling to
me ever Since the 22d. of last month I am

              Yor. Affecte: humble Servt: --

remember me to my Sons and
to your good family
Your Son will inform you how
likely the Slaves are if I could Sell
a Score in your Parts it would be a great
help to me


Source copy consulted: Robert Carter Letter Book, 1727 April 13-1728 July 23, Carter Family Papers, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond. There is a 19th-century transcript of the letter in the Minor-Blackford Papers, James Monroe Law Office and Museum, Fredericksburg, Virginia.

The name of Carter's home, "Corotoman," the county, and colony have been added for clarity to this unheaded draft.

[1] Benedict Leonard Calvert (1700-1732) was governor, 1727-1731, of the colony of Maryland. ( "Maryland at a Glance. Historical Chronology, 1700-1799." Posted on the web by the Maryland State Archives. )

[2] The online Encyclopedia Virginia has an illustration from William Tatham, An Historical and Practical Essay on the Culture and Commerce of Tobacco , (published in 1800) showing the steps in tobacco production, including prizing. There are many articles on tobacco and its production in the Encyclopedia .

This text, originally posted in 2004, was revised May 13, 2014, to add footnotes and strengthen the modern language version text.