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 Robert Carter to Alderman [Micajah] Perry, June 20, 1729

     Robert Carter writes to Robert Carter to London merchant Alderman [Micajah] Perry, June 20, 1729, to report bills of excange and to enclose an order (not present) for his daughter, Elizabeth Burwell's family. He notes the shipment of the tobacco of the Burwell estate.

Letter from Robert Carter to Robert Carter to Alderman [Micajah] Perry, June 20, 1729

-1 -

Rappa[hannock, Lancaster County, Virginia]     
June 20th. 1729

Alderman Perry

Sir --

     This advises you of a bill of Exchange Colo Page &
my self have drawn on you to Mr: Emanuel Jones to be Paid out of
Eliza. Burwells money in your hands and to be Carryed to the Dt
of that Accot

      Herein I inclose to you an Invoice for some goods for
the Supply of Mrs. Burwells Family for the next year desiring yr care
in the well buying and Shipping them according to the directions there=
in given but more Especially the Medicins

      We have also drawn on you for £14.14.11 in paymt
of the Quit rents of Mr. Burwells land to Mr Grymes the Recr Genl:
and to be Charged to his Estate

     The Tobos orderd to be shipt consignd to you this year
b [e] l [o] nging to that Estate are as follows 15 hogsheads on board the Carolina
CaptHolliday 16 hogsheads on the Spotswood CaptBradby 9 hogsheads on board
the Micajah & Phillip Capt Bradby in all 40 hogsheads about the one
half that is made by that Estate

     We are very barren of news at this time we have
been long Expecting the Arrival of the Williamsburgh and with her
the result issue of many things Pray God grant they be Propitious to us

     Bills of Lading for the above Tobos will be sent
to you in the Several Ships I am

                  yr most Humble Servant


Source copy consulted: Robert Carter Letter Book, 1727 April 13-1728 July 23, Carter Family Papers, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond.

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, especially to merchants abroad. The county and colony have been added for clarity to the heading on the draft.

[1] A bill of exchange is a kind of check or promissory note without interest. It is used primarily in international trade, and is a written order by one person to pay another a specific sum on a specific date sometime in the future. If the bill of exchange is drawn on a bank, it is called a bank draft. If it is drawn on another party, it is called a trade draft. Sometimes a bill of exchange will simply be called a draft, but whereas a draft is always negotiable (transferable by endorsement), this is not necessarily true of a bill of exchange. (See "Bill of Exchange" in the online Dictionary of Financial Scam Terms: the Truth vs. the Scam. )

[2] Emanual Jones lived in Gloucester County.( Beverley Fleet. Virginia Colonial Abstracts . [Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., reprint, 2000, 2006. online at Google Books,] p. 14, abstracting Essex County Wills and Deeds, 1711-1714, includes "Emanuel Jones of the Parish of Petsworth in the County of Gloucester Colony of Virginia Clerk. . . . " as a party to a deed of patition in December 1712 ; and Polly Cary Mason. Records of Colonial Gloucester County Virginia: A Collection of Abstracts. . . . [Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., reprint, 2009, online at Google Books] p. 105 includes similar records for Jones.)

[3] Quit rent was the term used for "a (usually small) rent paid by a freeholder . . . in lieu of services which might otherwise be required; a nominal rent paid (esp. in former British colonial territories to the Crown) as an acknowledgement of tenure," in this case, to the proprietors of the Northern Neck. Carter as the proprietor's agent, collected these payments. ( Oxford English Dictionary Online . Oxford University Press. )

[4] "The receiver-generalship was a royal appointment" and the official was required to give bond both to the lord of the treasury and to the governor. "Those who filled the office of receiver-general were practially all councillors. . . . The duties of the receiver-general included the receiving of the quit-rents, the revenue arising from the export duty of two shillings per hogshead on tobacco, the one penny per pound on tobacco exported from Virginia . . . the port duty, which was the revenue arising from the fifteen pence per ton on all vessels arriving in the colony, and all funds of the colony not received by the treasurer. . . . He paid out of the revenue . . . the salaries of the officers of the colony, also those of the auditor-general of the colonies and the solicitor of Virginia affairs, both of whom lived in England. All the public expenses of the colony, except, of course, those paid out of the funds held by the treasurer, were paid out of the funds received in his office. . . . He of course reported to the lords of the treasury all payments made on the order of the governor. The accounts of the revenues and the reports of disbursements forwarded to the lords of the treasury were certified to by the auditor and the governor, and sent by the governor." (Percy Scott Flippin. The Financial Administration of the Colony of Virginia [Johns Hopkins Press, 1915.] 41-42.)

[5] William Holladay commanded a ship named the Princess Carolina , a ship owned by merchant John Pemberton of London. ( Survey Report 6800, found in the microfilms of the Virginia Colonial Records Project, Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia; and letter, Carter to Pemberton, March 25, 1724. )

[6] The Spotswood was a London ship commanded by James Bradby, 1727-1732, and was owned by Micajah Perry. ( Adm 68/195, 70r ff., found in the microfilms of the Virginia Colonial Records Project, Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia. See Carter to Micajah Perry April 16. 1730. )

[7] The Micajah & Philip was a large vessel of some 400 tons carrying a crew of 27. The captain's name varies from record to record as James Bradley or James Bradby. Thomas Jones wrote to his wife, then in England, concerning this ship in 1728, "The Micajah & Philip that comes to James River is as good as the best Ships that Comes hither, but Bradby the master seems to be a little conceited and prodigal." ( Adm. 68/194-196, found in the microfilms of the Virginia Colonial Records Project, Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia ; and Virginia Magazine of History and Biography. 26[1918]: 172, abstracting the Jones Papers at the Library of Congress . )

[5] The London ship Williamsburgh was a large vessel of 550 tons and carried a crew of 26 men. Isham Randolph was captain in 1725-26, and Charles Rogers commanded her in 1727-29. ( Adm 68/195, found in the microfilms of the Virginia Colonial Records Project, Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia. )

[9] A bill of lading is "an official detailed receipt given by the master of a merchant vessel to the person consigning the goods, by which he makes himself responsible for their safe delivery to the consignee. This document, being the legal proof of ownership of the goods, is often deposited with a creditor as security for money advanced." ( Oxford English Dictionary Online . Oxford University Press. )

This text, originally posted in 2005, was revised March19 , 2015, to add footnotes and strengthen the modern language version text.