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 Gale, July 9, 1728

     Robert Carter writes to Glasgow merchant John Gale, July 9, 1728, to inform the merchant that he was pleased with the sales of his tobacco, but as Gale has written that the market there is not good and no opportunities for shipping available, he will not send more. He reports bills of exchange.

Letter from Robert Carter to John Gale, July 9, 1728

-1 -

Rappahannock, [Lancaster County, Virginia]

July the 9th: 1728

Mr. John Gale

Sir --

     I received yours of the 6th: of October with yor: Account of
Sales of my 12 hogsheads per the Crown . which pleases me very well and
Seeing you discourage it and no freight offering to your Parts this year
I Shall go near to draw for my balance in your hands in a little time
notwithstanding when ever Opportunity offers I Shall Still be
desirous of Continuing a Correspondence with you. Captain Bow
now at my house gives me this Opprotunity The news
of the Country he will best tell you Our Vital Commodity is be be
come a very despicable one and yet we have no other way to
turn our Labours for our Subsistance I wish you happy & am

              Sir --
                  Yor: most humble Servt:


herein are to two [sic ] bills of
to wit Alexander Christie on James Blair & Company for £45
& John Steptoe on John Zuil for £7"10 which desire your
management of --

Copy Sent to York


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.

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 second post script was written in around the return address and salutation at the top of the page.

[1] John Gale (ante 1671-1729) was a Whithaven merchant whom Carter would write a number of times times between1720 and 1729. "Like his brothers John was engaged in maritime trade. Operating as John Gale and Company, he was named as the owner of the vessel Clotilda, built in England in 1726 and registered in Whitehaven in 1727 at 25 tons." The Gale family had many connections with the colonies, especially in Virginia and Maryland. (Gayle N.Mandell, "The Gale/Gayle Families," extensive genealogical and historical notes available online. )

[2] Gale was located in "Whitehaven [which] is a small town and port on the coast of Cumbria, England. Historically a part of Cumberland, it lies equidistant between Cumbria's two largest settlements, Carlisle and Barrow-in-Furness. . . ." ("Whitehaven" in Wikipedia.)

[2] Captain Samuel Bowman commanded the Lucia. Carter mentioned this vessel in his diary in June 1724, and again on 1726 March 4 when he wrote that she "came in had 20 Weeks Passage."

[3] 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. ( "Dictionary of Financial Scam Terms," 8/22/2005 )

This text, originally posted in 2004, was revised November 20, 2014, to add footnotes and strengthen the modern language version text.