Robert King Carter's Correspondence and Diary

   A Collection Transcribed
        and Digitized
   by Edmund Berkeley, Jr.

List of Letters | About This Collection

Electronic Text Center , University of Virginia Library


Letter from Robert Carter to Andrew Ramsay, July 9, 1731

     Robert Carter writes to mechant Andrew Ramsay in an unidentified port, July 9, 1731, to comment on the sale of his tobacco and to notify Ramsay of a bill of exchange that he has drawn to the full amount of his balance in Ramsay's hands.

Letter from Robert Carter to Andrew Ramsay, July 9, 1731

-1 -

Rapp [ahannock, Lancaster County, Virginia]

July 9, 1731

Mr Andrew Ramsay


     I received your favour of the 12th of March last
your sales of my four hogsheads Tobacco is but a poor Story as you your
Self Own but seeing it keeps pace pretty well with the other markets
I have had from your Port I will not Complain the times are so --
[. . .] I cannot afford to indulge myself in generous lig [. . .] money is
[. . .] and you must believe at such prices is a very difficult

-2 -

Commodity to raise

     I have there fore [sic ] this day valued myself upon you
by a bill of Exchange payable to Colonel George Braxton for the balance that
you are pleased to say is between us vizt twenty three pounds Six Shillings
& a penny which I desire you to answer upon my Account

     I shall go near to give you the trouble of another line
before this Season is over and if my business jumps Will think
to make you another small Consignment to keep up the former acquain
tance between us I am

                  your humble Servt

Copy, Per Dove


Source copy consulted: Letter book, 1731 July 9-1732 July 13 , Robert Carter Papers (acc. no. 3807), Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia.

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. The first page of this draft has considered considerable water damage making much of it very difficult to read .

[1] Ramsay's name is too common for him to have been identified although he certzainly a Scot, probably of Edinburgh.

[2] 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. )

[3] Vizt. is the abbreviation for the Latin word "videlicet"; it means "that is to say; namely; to wit: used to introduce an amplification, or more precise or explicit explanation, of a previous statement or word." ( Oxford English Dictionary online. )

[4] The Bailey was a London ship owned by William Dawkins and commanded at various times by Adam Graves (1725-1730) and by Thomas Dove (1731-1732). She was a vessel of some 250 tons and carried 15-17 crew members. ( Survey report 6801 summarizing Adm. 68/195, 156v, and other data in Adm. 68/194 and /196, found in the microfilms of the Virginia Colonial Records Project, Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia; A letter of Carter's executors to Dawkins 1738 May 10 refers to "your ship Bailey.")

This text, originally posted in 2006, was revised November 3, 2015, to add footnotes and strengthen the modern language version text.