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The 1820 Settler Correspondence
 as preserved in the National Archives, Kew
 and edited by Sue Mackay

pre 1820 Settler Correspondence before emigration

ALL the 1819 correspondence from CO48/41 through CO48/46 has been transcribed whether or not the writers emigrated to the Cape. Those written by people who did become settlers, as listed in "The Settler Handbook" by M.D. Nash (Chameleon Press 1987), are labelled 1820 Settler and the names of actual settlers in the text appear in red.


330/331 (see also John CAMPBELL 2)


By Lochgilphead

7 Sept 1819

Dear Sir,

The encouragement held out by Government to settlers who wish to emigrate to the Cape of Good Hope has made a strong impression on the minds of several respectable persons in this quarter and is keenly enquired into by the lower classes, who are eager to engage in it, but they will never do so unless they have some leader under whose protection they would wish to embark. These men from their industrious habits are the fittest persons for establishing a colony in a distant quarter, and not the discontented clamorous weavers who would always be better within reach of the strong arm of Government to check their irregular proceedings. As a number emigrated from this quarter to British America (that are now very comfortable) when you acted as Government agent the people look up with great confidence to you for information respecting the views of the Ministry in peopling the Cape. Under this impression I take the liberty of addressing myself to you to request that you may have the goodness to transmit to me such information as may have come to your hands connected with this business, for the people in the Highlands will place more confidence in any explanation given by you than in all the newspaper information they would obtain for a twelvemonth. I have some thoughts myself of heading a party of emigrants if suitable encouragement should be given. My experience as an agriculturalist would I hope be of import to myself and others at the Cape, and my being in the commission of the [militia?] and holding a captain's commission in the local force of this country would I think likewise be a recommendation. I therefore beg leave to subjoin a few queries which I trust you will have the goodness to obtain answers from the Foreign Office for my own and other people's information.

I am with respect dear Sir

Your most obdt sevt



1 What encouragement would Government be inclined to give to a person heading a party of emigrants from the Highlands, for tho' 100 acres is mentioned for each of the settlers there is nothing allotted for the person acting as their leader?

2 Would Government dispose of land near the Colony to a person bringing out emigrants and possessed of some capital? If so at what rate per acre?

3 At what distance is the proposed Colony to be established from Cape Town, and what is the name of the spot selected for the purpose?

4 As the present breed of sheep at the Cape are of the worst description, would Government furnish an improved breed on being paid the prime cost by the settlers? For wool it is probable may in process of time form one of the staple articles of exportation from the Colony?

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