RICHARDSON, J, 1826
National Archives, Kew, CO48/86, 330
Cape of Good Hope
10th January 1826
I have the honor to acknowledge the receipt of your letter of the 6th Oct 1825 relative to a claim made on me by the Revd J. SMITH for the board & education of my children, accompanied with a threat held out by that Rev'd gentleman that he would send the children to the Work House.
In reply I beg you will convey to the Right Honorable Earl BATHURST sincere thanks for the very considerate & humane manner His Lordship has viewed the subject. I shall ever feel sensible of the great obligation, nor am I deficient in parental & other proper feelings as regards the circumstances of the case, at the same time I cannot suppress the feelings of contempt I hold the conduct of Mr SMITH in, his having so misrepresented facts & keeping me in the dark as to his situation, & thereby preventing me taking the measures for the removal of the children long ago; his liberal idea of sending to the work house children far distant from their friends, entrusted to his charge, I should have supposed would have been repugnant to the feelings of any person possessing the least Christian [belief?] or charitable principle.
If he could not conduct his Academy he should have placed the children under the care of his son or some competent person & lost no time in informing me the measures he had adopted. I regret much this not having been the case for no doubt they must have been sadly neglected for a length of time. I shall immediately take measures to remove them from the charge & tuition of a person of Mr. SMITH's character, who appears so little deserving of such trust & confidence.
I cannot but observe I am not a little surprised at Mr. SMITH having presumed to trouble his Lordship with my private affairs without at least failing in his application to myself, misstate facts, withhold information & endeavour to blacken & vilify in the eyes of His Majesty's confidential Minister a person who had the honor to serve his Sovereign in a distant colony & unhealthy climate almost twenty years with fidelity & credit to himself & where he held for years one of the most trusty & most confidential situations under the Ceylon Government.
I beg leave further to state that Mr. SMITH having become a bankrupt I have lately had an application for this claim from a Mr. R. JONES, merchant here, Agent for Mr. SMITH's Assignees, to whom I am to pay the demand; as there is a difference in the amount (£50 paid by me not brought to my credit) Mr. JONES cannot finally settle it without reference to the assignees, but the other part of the account is so arranged to be paid here, which I shall punctually perform, therefore Mr. SMITH can have no manner of claim & doubtful if the sum now enclosed should not be received by the assignees.
As his Lordship has guarantyed the payment of the half year I shall take care to remit the amount as soon as I know what it is, in part payment of which I now take the liberty to enclose a bill for £60, the amount of the account rendered & beg the favor of you to apply as you think best.
As to the remark relative to my overdrawing in 1822, I beg to refer you to the letter to the agent for Ceylon, dated 21st Oct 1825, Cape of Good Hope, & to observe the pension for that year was paid as follows – first a draft for £200 & the £300 to my bankers Messrs T. COUTTS & Co on a power of attorney: being the balance of pension for 1822 by Mr. HUSKISSON under Mr. Sec'y LASIGH??'s letter dated the 17th December 1821.
While on this subject I take this opportunity to mention, in my letter to the agent of Ceylon above alluded to I took the liberty to notice to him that my health was perfectly recovered during my stay here & that I should be most happy to avail myself of leave to return to the service & standing on Ceylon if permission should be granted me by Earl BATHURST & on my arrival on the island to refund all the sums once paid me as pension.
I have the honor to be Sir
Your most obed't humble serv't