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 William Dawkins, July 30, 1731

     Robert Carter writes to William Dawkins, July 30, 1731, concerning debts due to Dawkins from Isaac Lee's estate.

Letter from Robert Carter to William Dawkins, July 30, 1731

-1 -

Rappa[hannock, Lancaster County, Virginia]

July 30th: 1731

Mr: Wm: Dawkins


     We are now upon yr: Acct: agt: Isaac Lees Estate & yr:
Acct: Currt: wth: yr: letters Relating to Hancock Lees Estate Orphs:, the
State of wch: affair stands thus after Rob: Carters Debts paid
you owe to that Estate 8£:11S :2d this Balla: we order'd you to
carry to Isaac Lees Acct: We Sent you last year 6 hhds. of stem'd
Straight laid Tobacco the produce of this also we order'd to be carried
to [illegible] that Acct: You give Crt: [illegible] for payments made [illegible] upon our
orders amounting to 25:10:10 We now send you 1 hogshead more
of Stem'd Tobacco in the Bailey & a bill of Exch: of Jno: Lees for
6:1:0 Isaac Lees Debt is 94:0:6 when all these matters are
adjusted if the Tobacco Sells but tolerably suitably to other mens Sales of Such Tob: We cant but reckon
yr: Debt will be near accomodated, & Dos not Deserve the
hard expression you use (that it will be long a Discharging
at this rate) If you will hasten the Acct: of Sales, those
concern'd promise to pay off what may remain due to you
& they Seem eager to do it, that the Brothers & Sisters
may divide what is due to them may make a Division of what will be left

     As to yr: [illegible] other Debts we have done you all the Service in
our power there is not above 3 or 4 [illegible] but what their Debts
have been Demanded by Some of us excepting Such that we
never have nor can hear of. We have Inclos'd Sent you a Copy
of yr: list with our Observations on those what we can do
towards [illegible] recovering of those of all that we have any hopes of you may depend on; You
have herein a bill of lading & a first bill of Exchange
for the Tobacco & mony already mentioned We are

                  Yr. most humble Servts.


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.

[1] Isaac Lee (1700-1727) was a son of Hancock Lee and his second wife, Sarah Allerton. Isaac was a resident of Westmoreland County but died in England. (Descendants of John Lee .)

[2] Hancock Lee (1653-1709) was an intimate friend of Robert Carter who was named in Lee's will as "a good friend," and appointed one of the trustees of his children. (Lee. Lee Chronicle . . . pp. 33-35. )

[3] The Bailey was a London ship owned by William Dawkins and commanded at various times by Adam Graves (1725-1730) and by Thomas Dove 1730-1732. 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 to Dawkins May 12, 1732, refers to "your ship Bailey." as does a letter of August 10, 1733, from Carter's executors to Dawkins. [ Lloyd T. Smith, Jr., ed. The Executors' Letters of Robert Carter of Corotoman, 1732-1738. (Irvington, VA: Foundation for Historic Christ Church, 2010) p. 76]. )

[4] 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. )

[5] 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 2006, was revised February 18, 2016, to add footnotes and strengthen the modern language version text.