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


July 11, 1705
Letter from Robert Carter to Philip Ludwell, July 11, 1705

     Robert Carter writes to Philip Ludwell of Green Springs, James City County, July 11, 1705, that he cannot attend either of two scheduled meetings. He informs Ludwell that Joshua Moore, captain of H.M.S. Oxford, plans to sail on the 20th, and that their letters may safely be sent by him. He assures Ludwell that "my Lord Orkney is Govr. of Virginia" because he has learned it from a letter brought in by a Scot named Chartres who arrived two days earlier, and who had told Carter that he saw the news in the press in London which he left in April; Carter sends Ludwell a copy (not present) of the letter. Chartres also has told Carter that Commissary Blair was coming to the colony in a naval vessel that would soon arrive. Carter counsels Ludwell to be patient because it appears that their problems (referring to their strife with Lt. Gov. Francis Nicholson) will soon be over.

Letter from Robert Carter to Philip Ludwell , July 11, 1705

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Rappa [hannock, Lancaster County, Virginia]

July the 11th: 1705

Hond. Sr.

     Last Thursday as I remember I acknowledged the receit of
yours & thn upon your proposal appointed to meet you & the rest
of the Gentlemen at Major Burwells on the 20th which suppose before
now you have for I have since heard it went to Carters Creek
by Mr. Berkeley's Overseer on Sunday last. Two hours ago I
received yours of Yesterday's date inviting me to a meeting on
Tuesday next at Green Spring , for the reasons you give, I would
undergo the tediousness of the Journey, but I have others so pressing
(which it is not proper here to give the Detail of) forces me to hurry
this away to let you know, 'tis near an impossibility for me,
to comply with either time or place. Captain Moore lay at my
house last Fryday night, he would indeed hear of no longer
stay than the 20th Yet am I well Satisfied upon several accounts if our
Letters are ready by the 25th. we shall have time enough to get
them on board him, he has promised me all the Security imagi=
=nable & I believe we may confide in him (as for Quarry he
says shall not go in him), I am still Strongly of the opinion
[fo] r a meeting if it is to be r [ . . .] at the time & place I've before set
[If that] Commission cant come there, I shall be glad to see you &
[ . . . mu] st be I shall readily
[join] & give my [n] ame to what y [o] u do, I have herein sent my
thoughts of the points most necessary to be insisted on, if we
must not meet together nor write j [oi] nt, let everyone do his
part single, though know beforehand tht. will be but a lame way.

     I remember out of the Apocalyps we are told that Beelzebub
near the end of his Reign will arm himself with double furies
for the destruction of his enemies, & just such I take the violences
of our Devils to be, for I'me now near as well satisfied (what ever
they are) tht. my Lord Orkney is Governor of Virginia as that you are
master of Green Spring, that you may be so too, I herewith send you
a copy of a written Letter of News brought in by one Cha [r] tres, a
Scot, who arrived here the day before [yeste] rday, & left [London the ?]
th of April he affirms he saw the [news? i] n print [ . . . ]
[ou] r Naval officer & Collector. I was not [ . . . ]
[ . . . ] n, but had the Story from one I sent abo [ard . . . ]
[ . . . ] the Original Letter I had sent me a Shoar, & could [have?]
kept it, but dont know how soon an Express may be sent [for?]
it, The said Chartres further says he was Credibly inf [ormed that]
Commissary Blair was coming in the men of War, , so that [ . . . ]
all concerned have reason to bear their present suffer [ing]

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with patience seeing they are like to be but for a moment &
let the fiends grate their teeth if they will, tw [il] l be but like a
dog in a Chain Notwithstanding all this I [do] mightily desire
of a meeting to give the finishing Stroke to [ . . . I] have sent the
bearer on purpose to know your resu [ . . . will] shape [our?]
course accordingly; Methinks it will [matter no] t much
when you have got the Gentlemen togethe [r at y] our house to
perswade them to spend a day extraordinary [in Co] ming a little
further especially when we have it in that our troubl [es]
of this nature are near at an end, I wish you all the blessing [s]
of this life & those of a more peacefull regi [g] n being real [l] y

Your most humble Servant.



Source copy consulted: Carter Papers, Virginia Historical Society, Richmond, Mss1L51f62. Printed Virginia Magazine of History and Biography , 5(1897): 42-43. This is the recipient's copy signed by RC (Indicated by italics) and is in very bad condition with stains and portions of the paper missing along the folds.

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] "Carter's Creek," the Burwell home, was in Gloucester County about two miles up the stream of this name from "Rosewell."

[2] "Green Springs" was located in James City County about eight miles from Williamsburg, and five from Jamestown. Originally, it was the home of Sir William Berkeley, and passed into the Ludwell family when Philip Ludwell (1638-1717) married Berkeley's widow.

[3] Joshua Moore, captain of H.M.S. Oxford in 1705. ( Executive Journals of the Council. . . . 3(1721-1739): 20, and Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, 9(1901): 262. )

[4] Robert Quarry served as surveyor general of customs for the colonies, and, although he was made a member of the Council of Virginia in 1702, he was frequently away in England or another of the colonies. (Tyler. Encyclopedia of Virginia Biography. I, 148. )

This text revised July 8, 2008.