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 Samuel Hallows, Esq., May 30, 1728

     Robert Carter writes to an English correspondent, Samuel Hallows, Esq., May 30, 1728, that he will not pay the price that John Randolph has set on Hallows' Virginia land.

Letter from Robert Carter to Samuel Hallows, Esq., May 30, 1728

-1 -

Rappahannock, [Lancaster County, Virginia]     
May the 30th, 1728

Samuel Hallows,

Sir --

     You would go near to condem me of di [s]
respect if I did not return an answer to yors: of the 24th: Novr.
Mr. Randolph hath indeed valued your Lands at £700. but
I dare Say it is a price he will never be able to procure for you
If he can I am Sure I must not be the Purchaser The price what
I offerd is the utmost I will give. As for Clilton he did not dye
worth 500 Groats more then what he had in Virginia. I
have a debt owing from that Estate which I am forced to Sue
his Son for and do not yet See when I shall get my money who that other Gent is I can only guess. If you
find his money better then mine I am very apprehensive
you will think it proper to take it. Mr. Randolph is now
coming for England, as for his Judgemt. of yor. Estate I shall
not find fault with but from my information which I believe is rather better than his of the Cir=
cumstances of it I cannot Set it at so high an Esteem as he
hath done. Money is very hard to be raised in Virginia
at this day Our Tobbo: runs very Extream low and wee have no other way
to re turn any Income from our Lands but by [illegible] that trade
I hope if you have bin under a misinformation as to the
Value of yor. Estate you will not deem me ingracious when
I tell you I cannot come up to your price Termes I am

              Sir --
                  Yor. most humble Servt:

per Denton


Source copy consulted: Robert Carter letter book, 1727 May-1728 July, Robert Carter Papers (acc. no. 3807), Albert and Shirley Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia. There is a 19th-century transcript of the letter in the Minor-Blackford Papers, James Monroe Law Office and Museum, Fredericksburg, 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 persons abroad. The county and colony have been added for clarity.

[1] John Hallowes (Hallows) (1615-1657) had come to Maryland as an indentured servant, but later moved to Westmoreland County where he acquired extensive tracts of land. Some of that land was purchased in 1733 by Thomas Lee from Samuel Hallowes of County Lancaster, England, who "as a great newphew of Major John Hallowes," had acquired title in an important legal case decided in 1722. This land became part of Stratford. Carter may have hoped to acquire a tract from Samuel Hallowes to add to Nomini as John Hallowes had lived near that plantation of Carter's. John Randolph sailed to England in 1728 to become the colony's agent, and represented Hallowes futher in negotiations with Carter. ("Major John Hallowes. 1615-1657." Norris. Westmoreland County, Virginia. pp. 99-103.)

[2] "The English groat coined in 1351-2 was made equal to four pence. This ratio between the groat and the penny continued to be maintained. . . . The groat ceased to be issued for circulation in 1662" ( Oxford English Dictionary Online . Oxford University Press. )

[3] The John & Betty was a Liverpool ship owned by merchant John Pemberton; she often carried slaves into the colony. In 1726 the captain was John Gale, and in the next year, she was commanded by a Captain William Denton. The ship would be lost in 1729. (Wright. Letters of Robert Carter. . . . p. 18, n. 23 ; Carter to P3mberton , December 18, 1727; Carter to Pemberton, April 15, 1730; and Carter to William Dawkins, June 28, July 26, and August 22, 1727, for Denton's first name. )

This text, originally posted in 2004, was revised November 3, 2014, to add footnotes and strengthen the modern language version text.