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

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.


National Archives, Kew CO48/45, 454

Lombard Street

22 July 1819

My Lord,

The writer of the enclosed letter is a very respectable gentleman of fortune, about 75 years of age, who was for 25 years or more in Hindustan & a long time British resident at the City of Benares, where he made the English name and influence as much loved as respected. The people among whom he now lives in his native country are much poorer & more wretched than the natives of India and are ready & desirous to emigrate anywhere – 5/- a week now subsists them, a man his wife & two children, or 3/- with parish assistance and even without complaint if they could obtain

so much 10d a day for 12 hours measured field work, but 8d a day is more common or 7d to all certificates of their labour the 2d or 3d made up by the parish. Bread, meat, cheese, butter, beer or cow's milk quite unknown among them but by name – a goat & a very small hedgeside probably for a few potatoes are all the additions they have thro' the year to barley meal made into cakes by their own fires – this barley chiefly from Norfolk, the refuse only unfit for malting.

Mr. WILLIAMS was very anxious early last year for some relief by Emigration, where they would have gone on board any ship without enquiring where they were to be carried.

I have the honor to be very respectfully, my Lord

Your Lordship's most obedient humble servant


[Transcriber's Note: Thomas ROWCROFT was a prominent London merchant and alderman]

[enclosed letter, written to Thomas ROWCROFT]

Alderbrook Hall

Newcastle Emlyn

Near Carmarthen, S. Wales

16th July 1819

Dear Sir,

I have just received your favour of the 14th inst and forwarded its enclosure to Mr.BEWSON, his address is Llechryd near Cardigan. I have read with some attention Mr. OWEN's plan which I am apprehensive is too Utopian to succeed; however he has the merit of possessing a patient but determined perseverance which may in the end overcome obstacles which appear at this time insurmountable. His efforts and zeal are praiseworthy and I sincerely hope he will be enabled by a liberal subscription at the meeting to make a beginning, which may ultimately relieve us of some of the poor rate which is at present very heavy throughout the country. I have at this time, and have for this month past, some 60 to 70 people, men women & children employed on my farm (1000 acres) without any spade work. Our prospect of harvest is far better than last year tho' not quite so early. The barleys on high lands with us are always precarious as in cold seasons much of it never ripens. I have some [?talarna?] which promises to be a fine crop and early, as being the forwardest in the country. I am obliged to keep people to drive the birds from it or it would be all devoured before it is fit to eat. The season is now approaching when I presume you purpose paying another visit to Wales when I trust you will favour us with the pleasure of your company to spend a few days, when I shall be happy to show you all that is worth seeing in this neighbourhood. I am glad to find that encouragement is given to emigrants going to the Cape of Good Hope but the distance from the ships & expense of the passage will be insurmountable obstacles to any going there from this country; several hundreds have gone to North America this year & many more, from the favourable accounts they have received from them, are sure to follow.

I avail myself of this opportunity of thanking you for the many papers you have been so kind as to send me. There was one about ten days ago I thin the Morning Post) which contained the first part of a paper by yourself on the principles of vegetation or the universal food of plants, which I read with much pleasure and have been looking anxiously for a continuation of it, which I hope soon to see.

I am my dear Sir with great respect

Your much obliged and faithful humble servant


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