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 John Pemberton, February 14 andMarch 28, 1721

     Robert Carter writes to Liverpool merchant, John Pemberton,February 14, 1721, that he has received the shoes, but they are notas strong as he desires. He orders more, and is quite specific thatthey are not to be black because those rot quickly in Virginia. He alerts Pemberton to a bill of exchange drawn on him to Samuel Bousch,and notes that he would have sent tobacco on board Captain Hancock'sship but the freight rate was too high. He encloses a bill of lading for 30 hogsheads of tobacco sent on this ship. In a brief postscript,he reports a bill of exchange. In a longer postscript dated March 28,1721, Carter orders 3-400 bushels of salt and 4-500 yards of strong Liverpool linen. He expects to ship 30 or 40 hogsheads of tobacco on the Content if Capt. Stephenson will accept£9 per ton freight charge. In his own hand, Carter adds another postscript requesting Pemberton find two indentured servants to replace John Babe, a clerk, and Marget Upton, the best female servantCarter has ever had.

Letter from Robert Carter to JohnPemberton, February 14 and March 28, 1721

-1 -

Rappahannock, [LancasterCounty, Virginia]

February 14.1720/21

Mr. John Pemberton

Sir -- --

     Your Goods in Hancock came Safe Your shoes are
not half sostrong as I would have them & made of black leather
which always proves rotten Such as Your Carrmen and Plowmen
wear are the fittest for us I would desire You to take the first
opportunity You meet with to Send me 6 dozen more of the
best plain shoes You can buy, 2 dozen of the 16s. 2 dozen of the 14s. & 2 dozen
of the 12s. and let them not be made of black Leather
Your per [s] onal care in this matter will very much oblige me

     The 24th of December I drew a bill on You for £55"17"9
payable to Colonel Samuel Boush which I must desire You to answer
when It comes to hand but that I reckon will not be until
towards the later End of the Summer,

      I would have put Some Tobacco on board Hancock
but nothing less than £10 per Tun would be Accepted by him
which I could by no means give, I have met with a stranger
[who] has been a little more Moderate, herewith I send You a
bill of Lading for 30 hogsheads of stripped Leaf Tobacco my own Crop
which God sending It safe I hope you will have no reason to
Complain of I conclude at present

Yor Very humble Servt
I have drawn on [you] toCapt. Nat. Milby for
£3"1 shillings the impost of the Tobacco

     A Postscript to Mr Pemberton's Lettr.

     Dated Feb. 14th. 1720/21

     Mar. 28. 1721

     Sir -- --

     The above is a copy, of mine per Milby the chief [sic] end of this
is to Desire You to take the first opportunity You meet with not only to
Send me in the above shoes but also three or four hundred bushels
of Your Salt andlikewise four or five hundred Yards of Your Strong
Liverpool linen I am in Treaty with Captain Stephenson the
present master of the Content for some freight if he will take £9
per ton I design You 30 or 40 hogsheads more of my Stemmed Tobacco I request
Your Care of the Letters that accompany this and am


     Your humble Servant

Twenty Odd Years ago You sent me by Captain
Woodward two very good servants John Babe
an extraordinary good writer & Marget
Upton the best woman servant I ever had in
my Family Since I was Master of one
she married very well after she was free
if You could recommend two Such Servts
now It would be a very acceptable Favor.


Source copyconsulted: Robert Carter Letter Book, 1720 July-1721 July,BR 227, Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens,San Marino, California. Printed: Wright. Letters of Robert Carter. . . . pp. 76-77. The postscript of March 28th appears on page92.

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, especiallyto merchants abroad. The county and colony have been added forclarity.

The post script to the March 28, 1721, addition to the letterof February 14, 1721, is entirely in Carter's hand as is indicatedby the use of italics.

[1] Samuel Boush (d. 1739) was a justice and sheriffof Norfolk County for many years, and a large landowner (Torrance. Virginia Wills and Administrations,1632-1800. p. 44; and McIlwaine. Executive Journals of the Council. . . . , 3(1705-1721): 171, 180, 543, etc.

[2] The impost was the duty imposed by Britain on imported tobacco, and the cocket, for which a fee was charged, was the document bearing a cocket or seal issued by the "King's Customs House" that the impost had been paid. (See the definitions of each word in Oxford English Dictionary Online. )

This text revised March 10, 2009, and again on May 20, 2016, to add footnotes and strengthen the modern language version text.