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ISBN 0-86526-189-X 

Publication of Volume IV of The John Gray B'/ymt 
Papers brings to a conclusion the series begun \>:>. ;952. 
Alice B. Keith edited Volumes I and II, publish/4 v% 1952 
and 1959, respectively; William H. Master -;r: edited 
Volume III, published in 1965; and David T. 'fcgan has 
completed the series with this volume. 

The fourth volume covers the years ' " > to 1833, a 
period in which John Gray Blount ar/; \'M close-knit 
family exercised considerable infto%p over the 
political and economic life of North Carolina and Ten- 
nessee. His half-brother Willie served as governor of 
Tennessee during the War of 1812, while his brother 
Thomas, perhaps his favorite, endured tempestuous 
electoral campaigns to serve in Congress when he was 
not minding the family store in Tarboro. Among the 
political elite of the early nation who appear in the 
Blount Papers are such figures as Andrew Jackson, 
Nathaniel Macon, and Edward Livingston. 

Though in his later years John Gray Blount rarely left 
his home in Washington, North Carolina, the orbit of his 
business, land, and political interests, as reflected in his 
papers, encompassed cosmopolitan ports from New 
York to the Caribbean as well as incalculable acres of 
land in North Carolina and Tennessee. The Blount 
family was deeply involved in land speculation, which 
kept John Gray Blount's agents and his sons John Gray, 
Jr., Thomas Harvey, and William Augustus on a con- 
stant circuit of Tennessee towns and courts to buy, sell, 
swap, and generally protect the family's land interests 
while Indian lands and Spanish territories to the south 
and southwest beckoned them further. 

Besides owning or claiming extensive lands in Ten- 
nessee, eastern North Carolina, and the mountains of 
western North Carolina, Blount or his family and 
business partners operated stores in Washington and 
Tarboro along the Tar-Pamlico River, in rural Hyde 
County, and at Shell Castle. An outcropping of oyster 
rock off Ocracoke Island, Shell Castle served as a deep- 
water entrepot for seagoing trade before it shoaled up. 
In addition to his extensive agricultural operations in 
Hyde County, Blount's lumber mills exploited the thick 
forests of the Coastal Plain. 

A privileged member of the southern gentry, John 
Gray Blount enjoyed the deference of humble, am- 
bitious, and prominent alike. Local magistrates, militia 
officers, legislators, governors, congressmen, and 
senators curried his favor, listened to hiss counsel, and 
sought his support. Blount used his network of associa- 
tions to good advantage. When pressed for payment of 
notes he owed the State Bank of North Caro-Uafc, for ex- 
ample, he had state treasurer John Hay wood intervene 
in his behalf to extend the loans. His political mlluence 
helped secure remunerative government officer ar\? con- 
tracts for himself, business associates, and fy.uv'iv as 
well as military appointments for his sons durix *$ the 
War of 1812. Indeed, the Blount Papers give an um\s\K\l 

Digitized by the Internet Archive 

in 2012 with funding from 

LYRASIS members and Sloan Foundation 


John Gray Blount 

North Carolina State Library N. Q 

Raleigh Doc. 

The John Gray Blount Papers 

Volume IV 


Edited by 
David T. Morgan 


North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources 

Division of Archives and History 



Sara W. Hodgkins 



William S. Price, Jr. 


Suellen M. Hoy 

Assistant Director 


Mrs. Frank A. Daniels, Jr. 


T. Harry Gatton 


Dick Brown 
Gertrude S. Carraway 
Raymond Gavins 

Samuel W. Johnson 

Harley E. Jolley 


Sarah M. Lemmon 

Clyde M. Norton 

John E. Raper, Jr. 

Copyright, 1982, by the North Carolina Division of Archives and History 

ISBN 0-86526-1 89-X 


List oflllustrations 






Chronological Listing of the John Gray Blount Papers 
(1 803-1 833) Included in This Volume 


The John Gray Blount Papers 



John Gray Blount Frontispiece 

Hugh Lawson White 49 

William Polk 62 

Willie Blount 112 

Robert Love 147 

William Augustus Blount 1 84 

William Hawkins 207 

Nathaniel Macon 224 

1815 Map of Tennessee 294 

John Gray Blount, Jr. 335 

John Branch 397 

Edward Livingston 407 

Timothy Pickering 419 

Richard Dobbs Spaight, Jr. 458 


With the publication of the fourth volume of The John Gray Blount Papers, 
a project spanning three decades is being brought to fruition. Begun by 
the late Alice B. Keith of Meredith College, the first volume was published 
in 1952. It was followed by a second, also edited by Dr. Keith, in 1959. She 
found it necessary to relinquish the editorship because of ill health, and 
the work was assumed by William H. Masterson of Rice University, who 
was the biographer of William Blount. Dr. Masterson completed the third 
volume before moving to Tennessee. His administrative responsibilities as 
chancellor of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga allowed no time 
for editorial work, and he resigned from the project. 

David T. Morgan expressed interest in the Blount series, and arrange- 
ments were made for him to edit the last volume. Dr. Morgan, a 
colonialist, is professor and chairman of the Department of Social Sciences 
at the University of Montevallo; his doctorate is from the University of 
North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is known for his research and writing in 
North Carolina's early history. The Division of Archives and History is 
grateful to Dr. Morgan for assuming the work begun by others and for 
bringing it to a successful conclusion. 

This volume could not have been published had it not been for the help 
of several present and former members of the staff of the Historical 
Publications Section. Dr. Jeffrey J. Crow, historical publications editor 
and head of the General Publications Branch, was responsible for seeing 
the volume through the press. He did needed research to supplement and 
verify information in footnotes, checked transcriptions against original 
documents in the State Archives, prepared the index, and proofread the 
book. Assisting him in footnote research was Terrell Armistead Crow, for- 
merly proofreader in the section and now an editorial assistant. Blair Gib- 
son, a former member of the staff, and John Harrington, a Dartmouth 
College student who worked as an intern in the fall of 1979, helped proof 
transcriptions against original documents. Patricia R. Johnson, the sec- 
tion's proofreader, read the book in its entirety in both galley and page 
proof. Appreciation is hereby expressed to each of these individuals who 
played a part in making this volume a reality. 

Memory F. Mitchell 
Historical Publications Administrator 
July 1, 1981 


When a project goes on for almost eight years, as the editing of Volume 
IV of The John Gray Blount Papers has, the editor necessarily becomes 
indebted to numerous people who provide help along the way. This editor 
is certainly indebted to many different people who furnished various kinds 
of assistance. I take this opportunity to express my deep gratitude to a 
number of people. Dr. William H. Masterson, who did such an able job 
editing Volume III of The John Gray Blount Papers and who started work on 
Volume IV, graciously turned over to me many documents on microfilm 
and countless typescripts of letters. His generosity saved me much work. 
Professor Al Chalk, who was chairman of the Mini-Grant Committee at 
Texas A & M University in 1972, helped me secure travel funds through 
his committee, and without this financial assistance it would have been 
most difficult for me to visit the North Carolina State Archives and the 
Tennessee State Archives to do necessary copy work and research work on 
identifications. After I left Texas A & M University and became affiliated 
with the University of Montevallo in 1973, further financial assistance was 
made available to me through the kind efforts of Dr. John B. Walters, dean 
of the College of Arts and Sciences; Dr. Kermit Johnson, president of the 
University of Montevallo until August 1, 1977; and Dr. James F. Vickrey, 
Jr., president of the University of Montevallo since August 1, 1977. 

The respective staffs at the North Carolina State Archives in Raleigh 
and the Tennessee State Archives in Nashville have been very kind and 
cooperative. Specifically, Mr. C. F. W. Coker, former North Carolina state 
archivist, and Dr. Thornton W. Mitchell, who succeeded him, made it 
possible for me to have free access to the Blount collection. Mr. George 
Stevenson, supervisor of the Search Room at the North Carolina State 
Archives, has patiently given abundant assistance in my research. Mrs. 
Linda Anderson has helped much with the xerox and microfilm copying of 
documents. In the Tennessee State Archives good advice and help in 
locating obscure information were kindly given by Mrs. Cleo Hughes, Mr. 
John Thweatt, and Mrs. Jean Waggener. Although they are not directly 
connected with the North Carolina State Archives, I often received good 
advice and help in locating obscure items from Dr. Jerry C. Cashion, 
supervisor of the Research Branch in the Archaeology and Historic 
Preservation Section of the North Carolina Division of Archives and 
History, and from Professor William S. Powell of the Department of 
History at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

Last, but by no means least, the women who work in my office have 
given invaluable help with typing and copy work, and I would be remiss if 
I failed to thank Mrs. Jacqueline Battle, Miss Joan Barrett, Miss Dale 

xii John Gray Blount Papers 

Burch, Miss Doreen Cofer, Miss Becky McCulley, and especially Mrs. 
Martha Hassett Taft who worked steadily with me for a year or more on 
the typing. Her efforts were virtually indispensable. While putting the 
manuscript in final shape for the printer, I was ably assisted by Mrs. Jean- 
nie Masters and Mrs. Carlye C. Best. For the tremendous help I received 
from each and every one of them, I am most grateful. 

No doubt I am overlooking others who have helped in one way or 
another. The omission of their names is due to failure of memory, not to 
lack of appreciation. To all those, named and unnamed, who helped me in 
any way, I offer my sincere thanks. 

David T. Morgan 

University of Montevallo 
November, 1979 


In some ways Volume IV of The John Gray Blount Papers was more dif- 
ficult to put together than the first three volumes. The fourth volume 
covers a period of thirty years, or twice as many years as Volume I and six 
times as many as Volume II and Volume III. This means that the editor of 
this latest volume was compelled to be more selective and to exclude 
numerous documents that would have been included if fewer years had 
been covered. Therefore, a decision was made to choose, when possible, 
letters that refer to national, regional, or state concerns rather than local 
concerns, but some letters dealing with strictly local matters have been in- 
cluded. Letters pertaining to mercantile orders and price lists were inten- 
tionally held to a minimum number All documents are from the John 
Gray Blount collection in the North Carolina State Archives unless 
otherwise specified in a footnote. 

All in all, the other problems remained essentially the same as those 
that confronted Dr. Alice Keith, editor of Volumes I and II, and Dr. 
William H. Masterson, editor of Volume III — problems such as decipher- 
ing misspelled words and cryptic statements, reading illegible 
handwriting, and identifying obscure references contained in the letters. 
As the reader will soon discover, many of John Gray Blount's correspon- 
dents were semiliterate. In wrestling with such problems this editor more 
or less followed the pattern established by his predecessors on the project. 
As a rule, misspelled words have been left as they were written, and where 
the editor thought the reader could figure out the word intended, he has 
not inserted the correct spelling in brackets beside the misspelled word. 
Occasionally, where it was obvious that a word or part of a word had been 
left out (in some cases inadvertently, in others ignorantly), the editor has 
inserted the word or missing letters in brackets. Sometimes the editor has 
inserted in brackets what he thinks the writer intended to say, but he has 
elected to do so only in those cases where the reader might have serious 
difficulty drawing the conclusion for himself. Sic has by design been used 
sparingly. In most cases, omitted punctuation by the original writer has 
not been inserted by the editor. Extremely erratic punctuation such as ex- 
cessive dashes, commas, and periods as well as unintentionally repeated 
words have been eliminated without destroying the "flavor" of the docu- 
ments. For consistency most salutations, dates, and closings have been 
positioned in standard places, though they often vary widely in form, in- 
dentation, and appearance. Angle brackets indicate the page number in 
the original document. Footnotes are numbered consecutively through 
each year. Because of numerous cross references, citations to earlier infor- 

xiv John Gray Blount Papers 

mation are to the year and footnote number, not to a specific letter or 
page. Hence, the following designation: 1803, n. 1. 

The problem of identifying obscure references in the correspondence 
has been a perplexing one. An attempt was made to identify approx- 
imately 1,500 items. Perhaps as many as one half of that number have 
been identified or partially identified. Generally speaking, those items not 
identified have been passed over without note, but the reader can be 
assured that a reasonable effort was made to identify every reference to 
people, places, and events mentioned in every letter. In many cases items 
have been noted several times in different parts of the text, with the second 
or third note referring the reader back to the original note of identification. 
Several people were identified through census records as heads of 
households in the counties in which they lived, and that was the only infor- 
mation about them that could be found. 

The kinds of letters John Gray Blount received and wrote after 1802 
were little different from those that have appeared in the first three 
volumes of this series. Among the subjects frequently mentioned in the 
correspondence are: the buying and selling of land, ships and cargoes, 
highly publicized events of the time, and above all politics. John Gray 
Blount continued his deep interest in land, particularly the lands he 
claimed in western North Carolina and Tennessee. When his sons grew to 
manhood, he sent them to Tennessee to locate properties he claimed but 
knew little about, to save lands from the tax collector who was on the verge 
of confiscating them for delinquent taxes, and to sell property to raise 
money in times of financial troubles. Thus, Thomas Harvey Blount, John 
Gray Blount, Jr., and, to a lesser extent, William Augustus Blount made 
trips to Tennessee to handle business relating to Blount land. To keep 
track of his properties in western North Carolina, John Gray Blount con- 
tinued to rely on Robert Love, his agent for so many years. 

The Blount mercantile business, with headquarters in Washington on 
the Tar River and branch operations at Tarboro and Shell Castle, l con- 
tinued to flourish in the opening years of the nineteenth century. Shell 
Castle, however, began to decline after 1810 when "Governor" John 
Wallace, John Gray Blount's partner who ran the Shell Castle operation, 

1 Shell Castle, a twenty-five-acre oyster rock, was located in Wallace's Channel near Ocra- 
coke Inlet. In 1800 twenty-five people lived on it, and it was a thriving depot of trade with 
docks and warehouses. Its importance as a trading center declined after John Wallace's 
death in 1810. During the War of 1812 Wallace's Channel began to shoal up. Today Shell 
Castle is a small, uninhabited island. William P. Sharpe, New Geography of North Carolina 
(Raleigh: Sharpe Publishing Company, 4 volumes, 1954-1965), II, 583, hereinafter cited as 
Sharpe, New Geography of North Carolina; David Stick, The Outer Banks of North Carolina, 
1584-1958 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1958), 83, hereinafter cited as 
Stick, The Outer Banks. 

Introduction xv 

died. During the War of 1812 Wallace Channel, which made it possible for 
ships to approach the oyster rock, began to shoal up, and Shell Castle 
ceased to be a thriving mercantile depot. Even so, Blount ships continued 
to engage regularly in the American coastal trade, in the West Indian 
trade, and in the European trade, though perhaps to a lesser extent than 
in former days. A goodly number of letters in this volume, as in the 
previous volumes, are about ships, cargoes, and trade. For example, John 
Gray Blount, like other merchants, suffered losses during the wars of the 
French Revolution and the Napoleonic era. From 1823 until his death in 
1833 he, along with other claimants, worked through James H. Causten, a 
Baltimore and Washington merchant and lobbyist, to gain compensation 
from the French through diplomatic action by the United States govern- 
ment. Although a Franco-American treaty providing for compensation 
was ratified in 1831, France paid nothing until 1836, three years too late 
for John Gray Blount. 

Highly publicized events like the Louisiana Purchase, the successful 
launching and use for commercial purposes of the steamship, the War of 
1812, various presidential elections, and numerous other newsworthy 
items found their way into the Blount correspondence. A detailed account 
of the trials and tribulations of Robert Fulton, pioneer in the development 
of steamships for commercial use, is included. This information is found in 
the correspondence because of John Gray Blount's dealings with a New 
York lawyer and promoter, John Devereux DeLacy, who also worked for 
Fulton. And, too, there is considerable commentary on the War of 1812, 
mainly because his sons Thomas Harvey, John Gray, Jr., and William 
Augustus all served as officers in the army, and Willie Blount, John Gray's 
half-brother, was governor of Tennessee during the war. 

The most discussed subject throughout the correspondence is politics. 
For nearly as long as he lived John Gray Blount continued to be well con- 
nected politically, principally through his brother Thomas and his close 
friend William Blackledge, both of whom were active in North Carolina 
and in Washington, D.C. Thomas Blount often created controversy in 
political campaigns, as he did on one occasion when he ran against 
William Kennedy for a seat in the United States House of Representatives. 
At one point in the campaign Kennedy asserted that the Blounts 
recognized as legitimate the Granville family's claim to the Granville Dis- 
trict, in spite of the fact that the state of North Carolina had confiscated it. 
He charged further that the Blounts had attempted to purchase the claim 
from the Granvilles. Thomas Blount emphatically denied both charges 
and took strong exception to Kennedy's tactics. In later years John Gray's 
political contacts were limited primarily to North Carolina through his 
friend Joseph B. Hinton and through his prominent son, William 

xvi John Gray Blount Papers 

Augustus Blount, who became a general of militia in 1816 and later a 
member of the state legislature. But these men were by no means John 
Gray's only political allies in Raleigh. 

Occasionally the correspondence offers something entirely unexpected, 
such as a discourse by Willie Blount in a letter to Andrew Jackson in 1809 
on why eastern Indians should be removed west of the Mississippi River. 
It was Jackson, who, as president of the United States a quarter century 
later, effected the removal of most eastern Indians to the trans-Mississippi. 
Equally fascinating is a series of letters attempting to arrange duels be- 
tween various New Bern gentlemen, including Richard Dobbs Spaight, Jr. 
How these letters found their way into the Blount collection has not been 
ascertained by the editor. 

Much happened to John Gray Blount and his family between 1803 and 
1833. There were, as always, marriages and deaths. One daughter, Polly 
Ann, married William W. Rodman of New York, and the Rodman name, 
like the Blount name, remains prominent in North Carolina until this day. 
Reading Blount, John Gray's brother, died in 1807, and John Gray Blount 
served as executor of Reading's estate. In 1810 Sharpe Blount, a half- 
brother, died. Two years later in 1812 Thomas, who was probably John 
Gray's favorite brother, died in Washington, D.C., while serving in the 
United States House of Representatives. The correspondence dealing with 
his sickness and death provides an example of the fascination with which 
many nineteenth-century Americans regarded the morbid details of a fatal 
illness. For the next twenty years John Gray Blount's family situation 
remained fairly stable, and he continued to be active, engaging in business 
affairs and keeping up with politics. In the last few years of his life he 
bought stock in the Plymouth Turnpike Company and contracted to build 
part of the turnpike. He was also elected by the state legislature to the 
Council of State, but through his friend Joseph Hinton he turned down the 
honor because of his "advanced age" of nearly eighty years. On January 4, 
1833, John Gray Blount died in his eighty-first year and was buried in a 
local cemetery in Washington, North Carolina. Because it took months for 
his sons to settle his affairs, Volume IV does not stop immediately after 
John Gray's death. 

Alice Keith, the editor who began this series, asserted in the introduc- 
tion of Volume I that John Gray Blount "was one of the most important 
figures in North Carolina in his day," in spite of the fact that he held no 
high office and is less well known now than his brothers, William and 
Thomas. Because he was directly or indirectly involved in most of the 
significant national as well as state developments during his time, Keith's 
assertion remains valid. For over fifty years John Gray Blount was vitally 
involved in such matters as the Revolutionary War, the ratification of the 

Introduction xvii 

Constitution of 1787, the westward movement (through his heavy specula- 
tion in western land), the "Revolution of 1800," which put Thomas Jeffer- 
son into the president's office, the War of 1812, the French spoliations 
issue, and the struggle by southerners to preserve the institution of slavery. 
In the four volumes of The John Gray Blount Papers the reader finds informa- 
tion about these and many other important developments. And, too, 
because of John Gray Blount's connections with leading Americans 
throughout his eighty years, the reader should not be suprised to encoun- 
ter the names of such people as George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, 
Patrick Henry, Robert Morris, James Wilson, Timothy Pickering, An- 
drew Jackson, John C. Calhoun, John Randolph, Nathaniel Macon, Felix 
Grundy, John Sevier, James Robertson, John Armstrong, John H. Eaton, 
Churchill C. Cambreleng, Willie Blount, plus numerous other national 
leaders and most of the leading men of the states of North Carolina and 

On the other hand, the four volumes of the Blount Papers introduce the 
reader to unimportant matters and obscure people as well as to significant 
events and people in high places. One can find references to the first 
names of slaves, names that can be found nowhere else — not even in the 
census records. Obscure relatives and lifelong friends who made no history 
appear in print in these volumes solely because of their personal connec- 
tion with the Blounts. Commonplace matters of everyday life, having 
neither national nor state significance, abound. 

Thus the four volumes contain something for every person interested in 
history. There is information useful to the national, state, and local 
historian, the antiquarian, and the reader who just enjoys learning more 
about the past. Collectively, the four volumes recreate the world of John 
Gray Blount, a time when North Carolina passed from a colony in the 
British empire to independence and to statehood in a new nation. 

Chronological Listing of the 

John Gray Blount Papers (1803-1833) 

Included in This Volume 

Letters for 1803 

1. Ira Hollowell to John Gray Blount, January 4, 1803 

2. Benjamin Woods to Thomas Blount, January 5, 1803 

3. Gavin Alves to John Gray Blount, January 7, 1803 

4. John Wallace to John Gray Blount, January 10, 1803 

5. Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount, January 12, 1803 

6. William Shannon to John Gray Blount, January 31, 1803 

7. Benjamin Blackledge to John Gray Blount, February 7, 1803 

8. James Armstrong to John Gray Blount, February 22, 1803 

9. John Grimes to John Gray Blount, March 23, 1803 

10. Sharpe Blount to John Gray Blount, April 8, 1803 

11. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, April 16, 1803 

12. Peter Mallett to John Gray Blount, April 30, 1803 

13. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, May 12, 1803 

14. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, May 30, 1803 

15. Peter Schermerhorn & Son to John Gray Blount, June 20, 1803 

16. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, June 21, 1803 

17. Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount, June 26, 1803 

18. Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount, July 13, 1803 

19. William Ross to John Gray Blount, July 26, 1803 

20. Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount, July 30, 1803 

21. David Clark to John Gray Blount, August 6, 1803 

22. Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount, August 26, 1803 

23. James Turner to John Gray Blount, October 10, 1803 

24. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, October 18, 1803 

25. Henry Selby to John Gray Blount, October 25, 1803 

26. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount], November 3, 1803 

27. John Roulhac to John Gray Blount, November 12, 1803 

28. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, December 27, 1803 

Letters for 1804 

1. John G. L. Schenck to John Gray Blount, January 3, 1804 

2. Ann Harvey to John Gray Blount, August 3, 1804 

xx John Gray Blount Papers 

Letters for 1805 

1. John Gallagher to John Gray Blount, January 10, 1805 

2. David Pidge to John Gray Blount, February 2, 1805 

3. John Gaylard to John Gray Blount, February 2, 1805 

4. William Sheppard to John Gray Blount, February 7, 1805 

5. Samuel Gerock to John Gray Blount, February 19, 1805 

6. Taylor & Justice to John Gray Blount, February 26, 1805 

7. John Gaylard to John Gray Blount, April 14, 1805 

8. John Gray Blount to John Haywood, April 15, 1805 

9. Richard Tuck to John Gray Blount, April 20, 1805 

10. William Polk to John Gray Blount, April 26, 1805 

11. Thomas Richards to John Gray Blount, May 4, 1805 

12. James S. Ritchie to John Gray Blount, June 19, 1805 

13. William Richard to John Gray Blount, June 26, 1805 

14. Alexander Miller to John Gray Blount, July 2, 1805 

15. John Mayo to John Gray Blount, July 9, 1805 

16. John Gaylard to John Gray Blount, August 2, 1805 

17. John Gaylard to John Gray Blount, September 2, 1805 

18. John Gaylard to John Gray Blount, October 21, 1805 

19. John Gaylard to John Gray Blount, November 3, 1805 

20. David Greene & Son to John Gray Blount, November 16, 1805 

21. John Gaylard to John Gray Blount, December 30, 1805 

Letters for 1806 

1. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, January 2, 1806 

2. Richard Tuck to John Gray Blount, January 28, 1806 

Letters for 1807 

1. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, January 17, 1807 

2. G. Toole to John Gray Blount, February 7, 1807 

3. Benjamin Tyler, Jr., to Thomas Blount, February 13, 1807 

4. William Tatham to John Gray Blount, February 19-20, 1807 

5. Samuel Pate to John Gray Blount, February 22, 1807 

6. William Tatham to John Gray Blount, March 4, 1807 

7. Thomas Trotter to John Gray Blount, April 14, 1807 

8. William McKenzie to John Gray Blount, May 6, 1807 

9. Benjamin Tyler, Jr., to John Gray Blount, May 25, 1807 

10. Peter Lalanne & Co. to John Gray Blount [printed form letter], July 
1, 1807 

Chronological Listing of the Papers 

11. Kimbro Jones to John Gray Blount, July 5, 1807 

12. Stephen Miner to John Gray Blount, July 22, 1807 

13. John McDonnold to John Gray Blount, August 23, 1807 

14. Thomas Blount to Nathaniel Alexander, August 29, 1807 

15. Richard Tuck to John Gray Blount, September 22, 1807 

16. Richard Tuck to John Gray Blount, October 8, 1807 

17. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, October 25, 1807 

18. Richard Tuck to John Gray Blount, December 2, 1807 

Letters for 1808 

1. William Blackledge to Thomas Jefferson, February 2, 1808 

2. John Gray Blount to William Buck, February 10, 1808 

3. Nathaniel Blount to John Gray Blount, March 31, 1808 

4. James B. White to John Gray Blount, December 2, 1808 

Letters for 1809 

1. J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount, January 29, 1809 

2. Marshall Dickinson to John Gray Blount, February 18, 1809 

3. W. Bradley to John Gray Blount, February 21, 1809 

4. J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount, May 20, 1809 

5. John Gray Blount to J. H. Blount, July 2, 1809 

6. William Woodfork to Josiah Collins, July 10, 1809 

7. J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount, July 19, 1809 

8. Joseph Coppinger to John Gray Blount, October 19, 1809 

9. Willie Blount to Andrew Jackson, December 28, 1809 

Letters for 1810 

1. William Jones to John Gray Blount, January 1, 1810 

2. Hugh Jones to John Gray Blount, January 3, 1810 

3. Charles Gobert & Co. to John Gray Blount, January 6, 1810 

4. George Gordon to John Gray Blount, January 26, 1810 

5. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, February 4, 1810 

6. William Bell to John Gray Blount, February 21, 1810 

7. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, June 14, 1810 

8. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, June 27, 1810 

9. Samuel Topping to John Gray Blount, July 1, 1810 

10. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, July 9, 1810 

11. John Gray Blount to John Wallace, July 11, 1810 

xxii John Gray Blount Papers 

12. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, July 15, 1810 

13. William Tatham to John Gray Blount, July 28, 1810 

14. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, August 6, 1810 

15. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, August 12, 1810 

16. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, September 1, 1810 

17. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, September 12, 1810 

18. Samuel Topping to John Gray Blount, November 16, 1810 

19. Josiah Bradley to John Gray Blount, November 30, 1810 

20. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, December 4, 1810 

Letters for 1811 

1. W. S. Biddle to John Gray Blount, January 1, 1811 

2. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, January 10, 1811 

3. W. Barrow to Willie Blount, February 14, 1811 

4. Solomon M. Joseph to John Gray Blount, March 7, 1811 

5. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, March 18, 1811 

6. J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount, May 15, 1811 

7. J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount, May 18, 1811 

8. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, May 20, 1811 

9. Reading Blount Estate Paper, June 8, 1811 

10. William Woodfork to Josiah Collins, August 26, 1811 

11. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, September 2, 1811 

12. J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount, December 18, 1811 

Letters for 1812 

1. J. B. Borland to John Gray Blount, January 7, 1812 

2. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, February 2, 1812 

3. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, February 8, 1812 

4. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, February 10, 1812 

5. J. B. Borland to John Gray Blount, February 17, 1812 

6. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, February 20, 1812 

7. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, February 21, 1812 

8. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, February 23, 1812 

9. Josiah Bradley to John Gray Blount, February 26, 1812 

10. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, March 18, 1812 

11. Henry I. Toole to John Gray Blount, April 6, 1812 

12. Thomas Bell to John Gray Blount, April 24, 1812 

13. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, April 25, 1812 

14. Henry I. Toole to John Gray Blount, April 30, 1812 

15. W. S. Biddle to John Gray Blount, May 5, 1812 

Chronological Listing of the Papers xxiii 

16. William Augustus Blount to John Gray Blount, May 7, 1812 

17. William Blackledge and William Augustus Blount to John Gray 
Blount, May 18, 1812 

18. James Taylor to John Gray Blount, May 19, 1812 

19. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, May 23, 1812 

20. Ed m Burr to John Gray Blount, June 1, 1812 

21. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, Jr., June 19, 1812 

22. Jos. R. Dickinson to Josiah Collins, July 5, 1812 

23. W. S. Biddle to John Gray Blount, July 7, 1812 

24. William Blount to John Gray Blount, July 20, 1812 

25. Nathan Tisdale to John Gray Blount, August 3, 1812 

26. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, August 20, 1812 

27. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, September 18, 1812 

28. W. S. Biddle to John Gray Blount, September 28, 1812 

29. Frederick Brooks to John Gray Blount, October 14, 1812 

30. William Augustus Blount to John Gray Blount, October 21, 1812 

31. John Hill Bryan to John Gray Blount, October 22, 1812 

32. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, November 6, 1812 

33. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, December 6, 1812 

34. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, December 9, 1812 

35. Ansell E. Cushman to John Gray Blount, December 17, 1812 

36. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, December 26, 1812 

Letters for 1813 

1. P. Nesty to John Gray Blount, January 19, 1813 

2. John Owens to John Gray Blount, January 30, 1813 

3. William McPheeters to John Gray Blount, February 6, 1813 

4. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, February 10, 1813 

5. Peter Schermerhorn & Sons to John Gray Blount, April 24, 1813 

6. James Hoskins to John Gray Blount, May 5, 1813 

7. Charlotte Murren to John Gray Blount, May 12, 1813 

8. John Gray Blount to William Hawkins, May 25, 1813 

9. Enoch Sawyer to John Gray Blount, May 28, 1813 

10. John Gray Blount to J. O. K. Williams, June 12, 1813 

11. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, June 18, 1813 

12. Thomas H. Blount to William Hawkins, June 29, 1813 

13. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, July 2, 1813 

14. Richard Winslow to John Gray Blount, July 8, 1813 

15. Samuel Topping to John Gray Blount, July 19, 1813 

16. William Hawkins to John Gray Blount and Thomas Singleton, July 
23, 1813 

xxiv John Gray Blount Papers 

17. Ben B. Hunter to John Gray Blount, July 26, 1813 

18. Andrew Joyner to John Gray Blount, August 5, 1813 

19. Edward Young to John Gray Blount, August 7, 1813 

20. Moses Mordecai to John Gray Blount, August 7, 1813 

21. William Watson to John Gray Blount, August 11, 1813 

22. Samuel Topping to John Gray Blount, August 27, 1813 

23. Josiah Bradley to John Gray Blount, September 26, 1813 

24. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, September 29, 1813 

25. John Gray Blount, Jr., to Thomas H. Blount, October 7, 1813 

26. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, December 17, 1813 

Letters for 1814 

1. Ira Hollowell to John Gray Blount, March 4, 1814 

2. Nathaniel Macon to John Gray Blount, March 5, 1814 

3. William Augustus Blount to Thomas H. Blount, March 23, 1814 

4. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, April 14, 1814 

5. John Strother to [John Gray Blount?], April 26, 1814 

6. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, May 22, 1814 

7. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, May 23, 1814 

8. Jacob Swindell to John Gray Blount, June 14, 1814 

9. John Strother to John Gray Blount, June 14, 1814 

10. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, June 14, 1814 

11. John Fries to John Gray Blount, July 9, 1814 

12. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, July 21, 1814 

13. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount?], July 28, 1814 

14. John Fries to John Gray Blount, August 24, 1814 

15. William Augustus Blount to Thomas H. Blount, August 31, 1814 

16. William Augustus Blount to John Gray Blount, [August, 1814] 

17. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, October 6, 1814 

18. William Kennedy to John Gray Blount, October 23, 1814 

19. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, October 26, 1814 

20. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, October 31, 1814 

21. William Kennedy to John Gray Blount], November 25, 1814 

22. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, November 27, 1814 

23. John McNairy to John Gray Blount [with enclosure], November 28, 


Letters for 1815 

1. William Watts Jones to John Gray Blount, January 16, 1815 

2. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, February 3, 1815 

Chronological Listing of the Papers 

3. Hugh Williamson to John Gray Blount, March 22, 1815 

4. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, April 17, 1815 

5. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, August 3, 1815 

6. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, October 4, 1815 

7. Edmund Hopkins to John Gray Blount, November 18, 1815 

Letters for 1816 

1. William Augustus Blount to William Miller, January 24, 1816 

2. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, February 15, 1816 

3. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, April 2, 1816 

4. John Washington to John Gray Blount, April 27, 1816 

5. Everard Hall to John Gray Blount, May 25, 1816 

6. J. W. Worthington to John Gray Blount, July 2, 1816 

7. William Vines to John Gray Blount, November 21, 1816 

8. J. W. Worthington to John Gray Blount, November 23, 1816 

Letters for 1817 

1. William Clark to John Gray Blount, January 7, 1817 

2. William Gaston to John Gray Blount, January 17, 1817 

3. James Trumble to W. G. Blount, February 10, 1817 

4. Edward Pasteur to John Gray Blount, February 18, 1817 

5. Jacob N. Gordon to John Gray Blount, March 20, 1817 

6. Willie Blount to William Augustus Blount, June 3, 1817 

7. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, June 14, 1817 

8. James Trumble to John Gray Blount, July 26, 1817 

9. Eli Smallwood to John Gray Blount, September 1, 1817 

10. Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount, December 10, 1817 

Letters for 1818 

1. Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount, January 24, 1818 

2. John Gray Blount to Benjamin Robinson, February 19, 1818 

3. Joseph Blount to John Gray Blount, [February] 22, 1818 

4. Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount, February 28, 1818 

5. Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount, April 22, 1818 

6. Burns & Sugg to John Gray Blount, June 14, 1818 

7. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, June 14, 1818 

8. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, July 9, 1818 

9. William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, July 26, 1818 

xxvi John Gray Blount Papers 

10. Ann C. Blount to Polly Ann Rodman, August 26, 1818 

11. John Gray Blount, Jr., to Thomas H. Blount [with enclosure], Sep- 
tember, 1818 

Letters for 1819 

1. Jonathan Price to John Gray Blount, January 1, 1819 

2. J. W. Worthington to John Gray Blount, January 9, 1819 

3. Thomas Love to John Gray Blount, January 16, 1819 

4. William Matthews and Company to John Gray Blount, February 22, 

5. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, March 20, 1819 

6. Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount, March 26, 1819 

7. Sarah Fullington to John Gray Blount, May 24, 1819 

8. Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount, July 24, 1819 

9. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, October 3, 1819 
10. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, October 21, 1819 

Letters for 1820 

1. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, January 2, 1820 

2. William Holmes to John Gray Blount, January 2, 1820 

3. J. C. Stanly to John Gray Blount, April 23, 1820 

4. Charles Moules to John Gray Blount, September 6, 1820 

5. Blount & Jackson to John Gray Blount, September 11, 1820 

Letters for 1821 

1. John Haywood to John Gray Blount, January 6, 1821 

2. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, January 11, 1821 

3. John Haywood to John Gray Blount, January 13, 1821 

4. Thomas S. Singleton to John Gray Blount, January 13, 1821 

5. Michael King to John Gray Blount, January 15, 1821 

6. Thomas H. Hall to John Gray Blount, January 23, 1821 

7. J. R. Donnell and J. Stanly to John Gray Blount, January 30, 1821 

8. John Haywood to John Gray Blount, February 1, 1821 

9. Blount & Jackson to John Gray Blount, February 15, 1821 

10. Thomas Ruffin to John Gray Blount, February 15, 1821 

11. Lovett Bell to John Gray Blount, February 16, 1821 

12. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, February 23, 1821 

13. Arnold Gray to John Gray Blount, February 28, 1821 

14. John Hardeman to John Gray Blount, February 28, 1821 

Chronological Listing of the Papers xxvii 

15. John Stanly to John Gray Blount, May 4, 1821 

16. Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount, May 10, 1821 

17. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, May 12, 1821 

18. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, May 18, 1821 

19. Josiah Collins to John Gray Blount, May 19, 1821 

20. Henry Smith to John Gray Blount, May 21, 1821 

21. William Polk to John Gray Blount, May 25, 1821 

22. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, May, [1821] 

23. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, June 4, 1821 

24. Wilson B. Hodges to John Gray Blount, June 5, 1821 

25. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, June 15, 1821 

26. Wright C. Stanly to John Gray Blount, June 18, 1821 

27. C. C. Cambreleng to John Gray Blount, June 21, 1821 

28. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, June 27, 1821 

29. Hamilton Fulton to John Gray Blount, July 13, 1821 

30. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, August 3, 1821 

31. Joseph Blount to John Gray Blount, August 4, 1821 

32. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, September 4, 1821 

33. John Hogg to John Gray Blount, September 9, 1821 

34. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, Jr., October 12, 1821 

35. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, October 21, 1821 

36. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, November 28, 1821 

37. Thomas Hamilton to John Gray Blount, December 6, 1821 

38. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, December 11, 1821 

39. Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount, December 12, 1821 

40. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, December 23, 1821 

41. Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, December 26, 1821 

Letters for 1822 

1. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, January 6, 1822 

2. Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount, January 9, 1822 

3. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, January 26, 1822 

4. Swepson Whitehead to John Gray Blount, March 12, 1822 

5. John Gray Blount to Swepson Whitehead [copy], March 23, 1822 

6. Swepson Whitehead to John Gray Blount, April 6, 1822 

7. Eli Smallwood to John Gray Blount, May 1, 1822 

8. Richard D. Spaight to John Stanly [copy], August 16, 1822 

9. John Stanly to Richard D. Spaight, August 16, 1822 

10. John Haywood to John Gray Blount, August 16, 1822 

11. Richard D. Spaight to John Stanly [copy], August 17, 1822 

xxviii John Gray Blount Papers 

12. Michael Hollowell to John Gray Blount, September 10, 1822 

13. William Hill to John Gray Blount, September 21, 1822 

Letters for 1823 

1. Archibald D. Murphey to John Gray Blount, March 9, 1823 

2. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, March 21, 1823 

3. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, April 7, 1823 

4. Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount, April 28, 1823 

5. Craven Dickinson to John Gray Blount, May 12, 1823 

6. John Hogg to Gavin Hogg, May 15, 1823 

7. Michael Hollowell to John Gray Blount, June 4, 1823 

8. Gavin Hogg to John Gray Blount, June 9, 1823 

9. John Gray Blount and Partners to James H. Causten, October 1, 1823 

10. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount, November 8, 1823 

11. John Gray Blount and Partners to Nathaniel Macon and John 
Branch, November 18, 1823 

12. John Gray Blount to James H. Causten, November 18, 1823 

13. Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount, December 15, 1823 

Letters for 1824 

1. John Gray Blount to Calvin Jones, January 30, 1824 

2. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount, February 12, 1824 

3. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, March 16, 1824 

4. Edward Livingston to John Gray Blount, March 25, 1824 

5. Thomas Turner to John Gray Blount, April 3, 1824 

6. John Haywood to John Gray Blount, April 8, 1824 

7. Edward Livingston to John Gray Blount, April 18, 1824 

8. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, July 20, 1824 

9. Hugh Jones to John Gray Blount, August 9, 1824 

10. John Hogg to John Gray Blount, August 18, 1824 

11. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, September, 1824 

12. Ann [Blount?] to Lucy Olivia Blount, September 29, 1824 

13. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, October 29, 1824 

14. Timothy Pickering to James H. Causten [printed copy], November 
19, 1824 

15. John Hogg to John Gray Blount, December 30, 1824 

Letters for 1825 

1. Robert Jeter to John Gray Blount and C. S. Shepard, February 26, 


Chronological Listing of the Papers xxix 

2. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, March 8, 1825 

3. W. Higson to John Gray Blount, April 12, 1825 

4. Samuel Leigh to John Gray Blount, May 19, 1825 

5. Redding Shipp to John Gray Blount, June 16, 1825 

6. Stow & Whittier to John Gray Blount, August 3, 1825 

7. W. R. Swift to John Gray Blount, August 9, 1825 

8. Peter Lohra to John Devereux DeLacy, October 25, 1825 

9. W. R. Swift to John Gray Blount, November 7, 1825 

10. Edward Livingston to John Gray Blount, December 8, 1825 

Letters for 1826 

1. Willie Blount to Olivia Blount, January 1, 1826 

2. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount, January 24, 1826 

3. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount [printed copy], March 27, 

4. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, June 26, 1826 

5. Thomas Brown to John Gray Blount, August 15, 1826 

6. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount, October 18, 1826 

7. Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount, December 6, 1826 

Letters for 1827 

1. Wesley Brake to William Augustus Blount, February 22, 1827 

2. Joseph Gales to John Gray Blount, March 20, 1827 

3. Edward Livingston to John Gray Blount, April 7, 1827 

4. Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount, April 23, 1827 

5. Richard D. Spaight, Jr., to John Burgwyn, Thomas S. Singleton, and 
Edward Graham, April 27, 1827 

6. Nathaniel Smith to Isaac W. Hughes (Copy), April 30, 1827 

7. Isaac W. Hughes to Nathaniel Smith, May 1, 1827 

8. Nathaniel Smith to Alexander Gaston, May 6, 1827 

9. Arnaud Rambie to John Gray Blount, May 13, 1827 

10. Nathaniel Smith to Thomas L. Carthy (Copy), May 21, 1827 

11. James J. Sanford to John Gray Blount, May 25, 1827 

12. Isaac W. Hughes to Richard D. Spaight, May 31, 1827 

13. Richard D. Spaight to Thomas W. Blackledge, June 10, 1827 

14. Richard D. Spaight to Isaac W. Hughes [copy], June 10, 1827 

15. John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount, June 21, 1827 

16. Isaac W. Hughes to Richard D. Spaight, June 24, 1827 

17. Richard D. Spaight to Isaac W. Hughes [copy], June 28, 1827 

18. Isaac W. Hughes to Richard D. Spaight, June 29, 1827 

19. Richard D. Spaight to Isaac W. Hughes [copy], June 29, 1827 

xxx John Gray Blount Papers 

20. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, June, 1827 

21. Nathaniel Smith to Isaac W. Hughes (Copy), July 2, 1827 

22. Isaac W. Hughes to Nathaniel Smith, July 3, 1827 

23. Richard B. Blount to John Gray Blount, Jr., October 5, 1827 

24. Thomas S. Singleton, John Burgwyn, and Edward Graham to 
Richard D. Spaight, October 16, 1827 

25. William Gaston and Others to John Gray Blount, November 7, 1827 

26. William Augustus Blount to John Gray Blount, November 23, 1827 

27. Thomas S. Singleton to Richard D. Spaight, November 26, 1827 

28. Nathaniel Smith to Thomas L. Carthy, December 5, 1827 

29. Thomas L. Carthy to Nathaniel Smith, December 5, 1827 

30. Benjamin F. Blackledge to Josiah Barker, December 7, 1827 

31. Josiah Barker to Benjamin F. Blackledge, December 7, 1827 

32. Benjamin F. Blackledge to Josiah Barker, December 7 1827 

33. Josiah Barker to Benjamin F. Blackledge, December 7, 1827 

34. Richard D. Spaight to Thomas S. Singleton, John Burgwyn, and 
Edward Graham (Copy), December 14, 1827 

35. William Augustus Blount to John Gray Blount, December 15, 1827 

36. John Gray Blount to William Augustus Blount, December 16, 1827 

37. Joseph B. Hinton to Thomas W. Blackledge, William Augustus 
Blount, and James O. K. Williams, December 17, 1827 

38. Nathaniel Macon to John Gray Blount, December 31, 1827 

Letters for 1828 

1. Isaac W. Hughes to Nathaniel Smith, January 6, 1828 

2. Isaac W. Hughes to Richard D. Spaight, January 21, 1828 

3. Richard D. Spaight to Isaac W. Hughes [copy], January 22, 1828 

4. Isaac W. Hughes to Richard D. Spaight, January 24, 1828 

5. John Gray Blount to Patsey Blount, February 1, 1828 

6. B. W. Daniel to William Augustus Blount, February 8, 1828 

7. John Gray Blount to William Gaston, March 3, 1828 

8. John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Coffee, March 15, 1828 

9. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount, March 29, 1828 

10. Thomas S. Singleton, Edward Graham, and John Burgwyn to 
Richard D. Spaight, April 7, 1828 

11. Richard D. Spaight to Thomas S. Singleton, Edward Graham, and 
John Burgwyn (Copy), May 17, 1828 

12. Edward Livingston to John Gray Blount [?], May 20, 1828 

13. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount [printed copy], May 26, 1828 

14. John Gray Blount to William Augustus Blount [copy], November 28, 


Chronological Listing of the Papers xxxi 

Letters for 1829 

1. Jesse Speight to James Manney (Copy), March 30, 1829 

2. Michael Hollowell to John Gray Blount, June 16, 1829 

3. Jesse Speight to James B. Laroque (Copy), July 26, 1829 

4. S. Brown to Richard D. Spaight, August 9, 1829 

5. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, August 19, 1829 

6. Thomas Turner to John Gray Blount, November 4, 1829 

7. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, November 6, 1829 

Letters for 1830 

1. Thomas Turner to John Gray Blount, January 21, 1830 

2. Thomas Turner to John Gray Blount, January 21, 1830 

3. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, February 16, 1830 

4. Thomas Turner to John Gray Blount, February 25, 1830 

5. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount, March 3, 1830 

6. Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, March 18, 1830 

7. Thomas Turner to John Gray Blount, March 27, 1830 

8. Thomas Turner to John Gray Blount, April 14, 1830 

9. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, April 26, 1830 

10. Edward Livingston to John Gray Blount, June 26, 1830 

11. Joseph B. Hinton to William Augustus Blount, July 10, 1830 

12. David Barnes to John Gray Blount, July 17, 1830 

13. Joseph B. Hinton to William Augustus Blount, July 28, 1830 

14. Robert Love to John Gray Blount, September 8, 1830 

15. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, September 21, 1830 

16. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, October 7, 1830 

17. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount, November 30, 1830 

18. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount, December 7, 1830 

19. John Gray Blount to Joseph B. Hinton, December 13, 1830 

20. John Gray Blount to Joseph B. Hinton, December 14, 1830 

21. Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount, December 20, 1830 

22. Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount, December 23, 1830 

23. John Gray Blount to Joseph B. Hinton, December 28, 1830 

Letters for 1831 

1. Joseph B. Hinton to the Speaker of the Senate [copy], January 3, 1831 

2. Joseph B. Hinton to William Augustus Blount, January 7, 1831 

3. J. R. Donnell to John Gray Blount, January 10, 1831 

4. Eli Smallwood to John Gray Blount], January 23, 1831 

xxxii John Gray Blount Papers 

5. Joseph B. Hinton to William Augustus Blount, February 11, 1831 

6. Eli Smallwood to John Gray Blount], February 20, 1831 

7. William R. Gaston to Samuel Smallwood, February 26, 1831 

8. James S. Clark to John Gray Blount, March 2, 1831 

9. Edmund P. Gaines to John Gray Blount, March 14, 1831 

10. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, March 27, 1831 

11. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, April 25, 1831 

12. Edward Livingston to [John Gray Blount] (Copy), May 5, 1831 

13. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, May 23, 1831 

14. John Wolfenden to John Gray Blount, May 26, 1831 

15. J. B. Beasley to John Gray Blount, August 10, 1831 

16. B. W. Daniel to William Augustus Blount, September 16, 1831 

17. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, October 16, 1831 

18. James H. Causten to John Gray Blount, October 22, 1831 

19. G. Dutton to John Gray Blount, November 9, 1831 

20. Willie Blount to John Gray Blount, November 24, 1831 

21. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, December 3, 1831 

22. Form Letter from James H. Causten, December 22, 1831 

23. A Form Letter to Congress about French Spoliation Claims, Decem- 
ber 30, 1831 

Letters for 1832 

1. Isaac Simpson to John Gray Blount, January 22, 1832 

2. B. W. Daniel to William Augustus Blount, January 24, 1832 

3. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, February 23, 1832 

4. John Gray Blount to John G. Roulhac, March 10, 1832 

5. James Caruthers to John Gray Blount, March 22, 1832 

6. Form Letter from James H. Causten, June 18, 1832 

7. John S. Barbour to Thomas H. Blount, July 3, 1832 

8. James R. Hanrahan to William Augustus Blount, July 7, 1832 

9. Joseph B. Hinton to William Augustus Blount, July 17, 1832 

10. James Iredell to William Augustus Blount, July 30, 1832 

11. Joseph R. Lloyd to William Augustus Blount, August 4, 1832 

12. Samuel Dean to William Augustus Blount, August 23, 1832 

13. John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount, October 19, 1832 

14. James Alves to John Gray Blount, November 12, 1832 

Letters for 1833 

1. Ezekiel Hutson to Thomas H. Blount, January 8, [1833] 

2. John W. Guion to Thomas H. Blount, January 18, 1833 

Chronological Listing of the Papers 

3. Jabez K. Harris to Thomas H. Blount, January 20, 1833 

4. Robert Love to William Augustus Blount, February 9, 1833 

5. John R. Donnell to William Augustus Blount, February 13, 1833 

6. John M. Roberts to Thomas H. Blount, February 20, 1833 

7. Richard D. Spaight to Thomas H. Blount, February 20, 1833 

8. Robert Love to William Augustus Blount, March 26, 1833 

9. Ben M. Jackson to Thomas H. Blount and William Augustus Blount, 
April 2, 1833 

10. John Catron to Thomas H. Blount, April 10, 1833 

11. Robert Love to William Augustus Blount, May 18, 1833 

12. John Owen to William Augustus Blount, June 14, 1833 

13. John Gooch to William Augustus Blount, July 10, 1833 

14. William Hill to William Augustus Blount, July 22, 1833 

15. Robert Love to William Augustus Blount, September 6, 1833 

16. Gavin Hogg to William Augustus Blount, November 15, 1833 

17. Robert Love to Thomas H. Blount and William Augustus Blount, 
November 29, 1833 

Other Papers for 1803-1833 

1. A Contract between Mildred Neale and John Gray Blount, June 12, 

2. Will of John Strother [copy], November 22, 1806 

3. A Contract for Hiring a Slave, January 1, 1808 

4. A Decree Pertaining to Reading Blount's Estate, October 29, 1809 

5. John Hill Bryan's Power of Attorney to John Gray Blount, October 
21, 1812 

6. Articles of Agreement between John Gray Blount and Abraham Sat- 
terwhite, January 26, 1814 

7. Thomas H. Blount's Bill of Sale to William Augustus Blount, Decem- 
ber 7, 1817 

8. John Gray Blount's Power of Attorney to Benjamin Robinson, 
February 27, 1818 

9. Jackey S. Blount's Bill of Sale to John Gray Blount, December 30, 


10. William Augustus Blount's Purchase of a Slave, March 25, 1819 

11. William S. Holmes's Contract with John Gray Blount, January 6, 

12. John Gray Blount, Jr.'s Bill of Sale from Willie Barrow, January 21, 


13. John Gray Blount's List of Taxable Property, April 1, 1822 

xxxiv John Gray Blount Papers 

14. Sarah Ball and Samuel Richards 's Receipt to John Gray Blount, 
November 7, 1822 

15. James Maxwell's Bill of Sale to William Ross, May, 1823 

16. Contract between John Gray Blount and William Vines, November 
21, 1823 

17. Thomas H. Blount's Bill of Sale to John Gray Blount, Jr., February 
19, 1824 

18. A Circular by William Augustus Blount, October 26, 1824 

19. John Gray Blount's Instructions to William Williams, December 4, 

20. William Augustus Blount's Conveyance of Property to William W. 
Rodman, July 23, 1826 

21. An Offer of Mediation to Richard D. Spaight, April 19, 1827 

22. Articles of Agreement between Richard D. Spaight and Alexander 
Gaston, May 5, 1827 

23. Benjamin F. Blackledge's Account of an Abortive Duel, December, 

24. Articles of Agreement between Richard D. Spaight and Isaac W. 
Hughes, January 18, 1828 

25. H. B. Croom's Account of Smith-Hughes Duel, February 22, 1828 

26. Agreement between John Gray Blount and the Heirs of John Wallace, 
September 12, 1829 

27. Shell Castle Accounts, September 12, 1829 

28. Agreement between John Gray Blount and the Heirs of John Wallace, 
September, 1829 

29. Agreement between William Augustus Blount, B. Runyon, and Bryan 
Grimes, January 2, 1830 

30. Agreement between John Gray Blount and the Heirs of John Wallace, 
January 12, 1830 

31. Report on a Meeting of the Plymouth Turnpike Company, January 
16, 1830 

32. Report on a Meeting of the Plymouth Turnpike Company (Copy), 
April 24, 1830 

33. Receipt to William Augustus Blount, January 26, 1832 

34. Receipt to John Gray Blount from John D. Toomer, March 26, 1832 

35. Agency at Washington City, James H. Causten, July 1, 1832 

36. Report of the Jackson-Barbour Committee, August 5, 1832 

37. Samuel Dean's Bill of Sale to William Augustus Blount, August 27, 

38. John Gray Blount's Receipt from Dr. William A. Shaw, October 3, 




Ira Hollowell 1 to John Gray Blount 

at plantaishon Jan 4 th 1803 

M r JG Blount 

D r Sir 

by m r Benston I reced your Letter Date Dec 1 * 31 After waiting for 
Danils I tried to write you word that I Could git the Corn Down the 
Dich to Ingls landon [landing] by m r Jas Gibbs I rote you the l d of Jan 
1803 which he told me he was Going to washing [ton] the next day to see 
you on tusday th 4 I heard he was not Gon I then rote this by way of 
Curretuk I also tride to Get Cap 1 williams 2 to take the Corn up he Could 
not until he went to Washington I also spoke to m r Emery to Go & see 
you as his Boat was largier than Danils I entended to have trid to [illegi- 
ble] out all the Corn but the snow and rainey wether purvented me in 
that as I had to work out Dors therefor I wish you to send a Boat that 
will Cary 100 ble at once if to be had it I can git 4 Canos [canoes] I can 
put on Board 16 ble pur Day you Can send the rice Down by the Boat 
that Corns after Corn if you think best to save it tho it Cannot be Don til 
Corns Drier for all the lower side of the Field next to the road is under 
water & seams likely to Continue which put me behind Hand in my Bis- 
ness for I cannot Burn the Brush or split out the reails I want or make no 
hand of raling of the logs I now see the want of the mill Dich (2) being 
Don so as to Dreain the plantashon therefore I wish you to be redy when 
Ever it lise Drie so as I Can work to advanteg to send me all the help you 
Can spar tho I hope to see y[ou] at Tab Cort [Tarboro court?] as m r 
Bell 3 has apeld [appealed?] on 2 warints about the road I shall Do the 
best I Can with my bisnes until I hear from or see you I shal give m r Bell 

*Ira Hollowell was overseer of John Gray Blount's plantation near Lake Mattamuskeet. 
Alice Barnwell Keith and William H. Masterson (eds.), The John Gray Blount Papers 
(Raleigh: State Department of Archives and History, 3 volumes, 1952-1965), II, 254, herein- 
after cited as Keith and others, Blount Papers. 

2 Hollowell was probably referring to William Williams, a ship captain who seems to have 
been reared as Thomas Blount's ward. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, 226; II, 326-328, 
329-331, 334n, 613-614. 

3 This probably refers to Sheriff Elijah Bell, whose county has not been identified. Keith 
and others, Blount Papers, III, 404. 

2 John Gray Blount Papers 

orders when he finds any one of the subscribers willing to pay & has not 
the money to take ther nots in your naime on Demand 10 days after Date 
as I think the money will be much Easer got som soposes this is only to 
[illegible] them that you will not make a ginerel warent of the hole of 
them I [illegible] m r Bell in his adver ts [advertisements] to give 10 days 
notis for payment & that it was the last time of as[k]ing & that they mite 
Expe[c]t to be delt as the law should direct — 

meley 4 has got a Child Eady will want som old Cloths & a blank [et] 
by the oppertunety plese to send som [illegible] in the bags you send for 
the rice 

Yours to sorve 
Ira Hollowell 

Addressed: M r JG Blount 

Benjamin Woods 5 to Thomas Blount 

Raleigh January 5 th 1803 

Dear Sir 

Since I came to this place M r John Hogg 6 has informed me that it has 
been proposed between you and him that a friendly Suit should be 
brought in Newbern Superior Court upon two of the bonds given to 
Joseph Ball 7 which are now due — that judgment should be confessed at 
the enssueing term with stay of execution 12 months and that I should 
act as Attorney for M r Ball — And I have rec d a letter from J G Blount 
Esqr stating the same arrangement and giving his conssent to it — M r 
Hogg has accordingly put into my hands the two first bonds and I have 

4 Although Meley and Eady have not been identified, they were probably slaves on 
Blount's plantation. 

5 Benjamin Woods was a lawyer and a merchant. At one point in his career he was 
United States district attorney for North Carolina. He frequently represented the Blounts 
in legal cases. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 14, 20, 28, 432, 440, 453, 460, 467-469, 486, 

"John Hogg of Hillsborough was a merchant. He, along with his brother James and his 
cousin Robert, ran a firm that had offices in Fayetteville, Hillsborough, and Wilmington. 
John also served several terms in the North Carolina House of Commons during the 1790s. 
Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 103n, 565. 

7 Joseph Ball appears to have been a land speculator who was closely associated with the 
Blounts and their business partner David Allison. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 368n, 
467-468, 496, 515, 532, 565. 

Letters for 1803 3 

filled up and here enclosse a writ the [illegible] of which I must request 
you to acknowledge and by the first opportunity transmit it to J. G. 
Blount for his and Sharp [e] 8 Blounts acknowledgement 

(2) With a view to Save unnecessary costs I have included both bonds 
in one writ but if it should be preferred to have a separate judgment 
upon each bond I can see no objection on the part of Ball altho I can not 
perceive any advantage to the defendants — 

I am dear Sir with respect 
your Ob 1 Servant 
Benj n Woods 

Thomas Blount Esqr 

Addressed: Thomas Blount Esquire 

M r Simpson 

Gavin Abes 9 to John Gray Blount 


Hillsborough Jany 7 1803 


In performing my duty to the Trustees of the University, 10 there is no 
part of it which gives me so much uneasiness, or which I execute with 
such reluctance as the collection of their monies by compulsory means; 
and more especially where such means may be the cause of much in- 
convenience or distress to the party concerned, or in any way hurtful to 
his feelings — The step which I have been obliged to take with regard to 

8 Sharpe Blount (1771-1810) was a younger half-brother of John Gray, Thomas, and Wil- 
liam Blount. In 1794 he married Penelope Little and farmed on the family estate. Keith and 
others, Blount Papers, I, xxix-xxx. 

"Gavin Alves was originally Gavin Hogg. He was the son of the merchant James Hogg. 
Gavin's and his brother Walter's surnames were changed in 1786 by the General Assembly 
of North Carolina, at the request of their father, to their mother's maiden name — Alves. 
The two brothers established a business at Hillsborough. Gavin was treasurer of the Uni- 
versity of North Carolina from 1795 to 1809. R. D. W. Connor (ed.), A Documentary History of 
the University of North Carolina, 1776-1799 (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2 
volumes, 1953), I, 187n. 

10 The university referred to is the University of North Carolina where John Gray 
Blount's sons attended college. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 232-233, 269n, 276, 
286-287, 332n, 337, 378n, 398, 406. 

4 John Gray Blount Papers 

your debt has placed me therefore in a very disagreeable situation; but 
necessity compelled me to sacrifice inclination to duty. 

In reporting upon this business to the Trustees at their last Meeting, 
which I was necessarily obliged to do, as also to state to them the returns 
made by the Sheriffs, I was directed to suspend, for the present, the is- 
suing of more Executions, and in the mean time to write to yourself & 
M r Harris 11 on the subject, as it is altogether against the inclination of 
the Trustees to subject you to difficulties: they wish only to be secure as 
to the debt — I spoke to M r Harris at Raleigh, who told me he made no 
doubt you would in a short time be able, without much inconvenience, to 
discharge the debt. Of this he said he could not speak with certainty; but 
should it happen to be otherwise, he himself would without failure pay it 
during the year — 

I would now beg leave to be informed from you, at what time you can, 
with certainty, make payment, as it is my earnest wish to be relieved 
from the necessity of again having recourse to the disagreeable measures 
already taken — You will oblige me by an answer as soon as convenient — 

I have paid the costs incurred in I am Sir 

this Suit, amounting to £4.17.4 — your's respectfully 

Gavin Alves 

Hillsborough Feby 20 1803 


The foregoing is a copy of a letter I wrote you by Post about the begin- 
ning of January; but fearing you may not have received it, as I have not 
been favored with an answer, I now take the liberty of sending the Dupli- 
cate — As all delays in the money matters of the University are highly in- 
jurious to that Institution, I must again request the favor of an answer by 
first Mail, as I must remain uncertain how to act until I hear from you — 
I can entertain no doubt of the I am Sir 

Costs being speedily refunded — yours respectfully 

Gavin Alves 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 
Beaufort County 

11 Mr. Harris probably refers to Edward Harris, longtime friend of the Blounts and some- 
times their business partner. In 1802 and 1803 Harris served in the House of Commons for 
New Bern. He was also a judge in the superior court of law and equity from 1812 to 1813. 
John L. Cheney, Jr. (ed.), North Carolina Government, 1585-1974: A Narrative and Statistical His- 
tory . . . (Raleigh: North Carolina Department of the Secretary of State, 1975), 245, 247, 360, 
hereinafter cited as Cheney, North Carolina Government. 

Letters for 1803 5 

John Wallace 12 to John Gray Blount 

January 10, 1803] 

John G. Blount Esq r 

Dear Sir, 

your Several Letters came to hand, I Should wrote you by John hall. 13 
But had previously wrote Per Salter for every thing I wanted by him — 
Respecting Grove Wright 14 and our coffe I had heard nothing of it at 
that time, Since then your Letters Informed me he had Sold at 22-100 
Pble a 60. days [22 cents per barrel @ 60 days?]. I have therefore drawn 
in your favour for $750 Payable at 30 days as you informed me Such a 
Bill can be negotiated for cash; I wish Something else Beside Lumber to 
Put on Board of Lingo 15 I Shall have here for his cargo from 25 to 30 m 
[thousand] Staves, half red and half white with an equal Proportion of 
heading also 111 be able to Procure from 10 to 12 Barrils of oyl in the 
room of fish wich is not to be had [Illegible proper name] will give you 
130 dollars 30 for Lingo and 100 for your Self if Lingo reced any further 
Sum youll be please to Lett him have it or if he wishes to have Some in 
newyork 111 furnish him with a draft when he comes, Please to have Pro- 
cured and Sent 30 oyl Barrils to cape hatteras I have coopers here and 
can have all the barrils we need for our fisheries made here Pinckhams is 
all ready as the cape will need the Barrils Soon any ale I may receive of 
wright will communicate the same to you reffers for Particulars to the 
Bearer, all the family is well, hope this will meet yours the same 

I am respectfully 
John Wallace 

10th January 1803 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 

12 John Wallace was a business partner of the Blounts. He managed a store and ware- 
house and directed a lightering operation at Shell Castle, on Shell Island near Ocracoke In- 
let. Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 97n; III, 59n. 

13 John Hall was a big-time land speculator. He and John Gray Blount worked together 
in the buying and selling of huge tracts of land. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 43n. 

14 Grove Wright was a merchant in Greenville, North Carolina. He and the Blounts were 
involved in numerous business dealings with each other. Keith and others, Blount Papers, 
III, 242n. 

15 Captain Cornelius Lingo, who appears frequently in the Blount papers, was a ship cap- 
tain for the Blounts. No other information has been found about him. 

6 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount 

Tarborough 12th Jan y 1803 

Dear Sir, 

My Cotton Gin, which is now cleverly at work, & has, as yet, work 
enough to do, has so engaged to my attention that I have not been able 
to gratify the strong desire I had to see you — the reason why I cannot 
now leave home is, that I have no person to attend at my Gin & receive 
Toll in my absence — & besides I have undertaken to repair the old land- 
ing leading up the Street on which I live, for which I am to get SI 33, a 
Sum that I am in great want of, & my logs being already cut & part of 
them on the Spot, I expect, by remaining at home, to accomplish the 
work by the middle of the week after next. The Information given me by 
William Person 16 concerning your Land in Tennessee is this — He says 
you have a Tract on Spring Creek cont. 7000, or 7200 acres on a part of 
which lives a M r Roseberry who derived his title from Major Buchan- 
nan 17 — that Roseberry told him, (Person) not knowing that he was of 
your acquaintance or would ever See you, that he knew the Land be- 
longed to you, but he did not care for that as you never could get it be- 
cause you could not establish your Beginning corner, which Should be 
Sixty poles from a large spring, & there were on the land two Springs of 
that description — So that you would never find out which you (2) ought 
to begin at, as the corner Tree was actually cut down & there existed but 
one man besides himself who knew & could tell where it had Stood and 
that man, whose name was Jennings, would not tell for less than $1000. 
Person says the Tract is very valuable, & particularly the part claimed 
by Buchannan, who lays claim to, & has possession of a considerable 
part besides that Sold by him to Roseberry; and that Roseberry appears 
to be an honest man whose Simplicity & good nature have made him a 
fit tool for a Set of the basest Rascals he ever knew. He believes from 
what he saw & heard of Jennings that he is also a tool to the Same party, 
but of that he is not Sure; & supposes it would be well to make timely & 
proper application to him for the important Secret which he possesses. 
Person Says that the practice of cutting down old corners & making new 
ones is a very common one; that most of the men best acquainted with 
old corners are kept in pay by those Rascals whose Interest it is that they 

16 William Person was apparently a brother of the famous North Carolina political leader 
Thomas Person. William was obviously involved in Tennessee land speculation. Keith and 
others, Blount Papers, I, 387n. 

17 This is probably a reference to John Buchanan, a member of the Loyal Land Company 
and an early Tennessee pioneer. Thomas P. Abernethy, From Frontier to Plantation in Tennes- 
see: A Study in Frontier Democracy (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 1932), 
202, hereinafter cited as Abernethy, From Frontier to Plantation. 

Letters for 1803 7 

Shall not be found — and that every owner of Land in that Country who 
does not reside there must expect to be defrauded in that, or Some other 
way — Major Gaton made a Similar observation to me & Swore that 
every non-resident who did not regularly visit the Country & see his 
Lands once a year would, sooner or later, be cheated out (3) of every 
acre. John Hogg desired me ask you to inform him at what price you 
would engage to deliver him 500 or 1000 Barrels of Tar & Staves enough 
to Store with them, at Wilmington — and what would be the difference in 
price if delivered at Washington, or Shell Castle — I don't recollect the 
time within which he wished them delivered but I know it was Soon — 
Public employment really is far from being an object of my desire — 
indeed I am Solicitous to avoid it. but I am sensible that I must either 
offer for Congress — go to the assembly — or loose the little Influence I 
have heretofore had at all Kinds of Elections; & to preserve the latter, 
which I consider necessary to my Country's good, I suppose I must de- 
termine to do the former — I however do not wish to commit myself by a 
public Declaration until I shall better See how I am to extricate myself 
from my present pecuniary difficulties which are great & encreasing — for 
to-day I have been notified that the other $200 borrowed to pay Turner 
must be returned at our Feb ry Court and I can raise no Cash on Notes, 
negroes, Lands, or any thing else. It will take my Cotton to pay E. Hall 18 
the money I borrowed of him to pay Ross & Parker — & I owe money to 
M r G — who is really in great want of money & therefore cannot accept a 
payment in Notes pay ble 1 Jan y next & it is for Such Notes only that I 
can sell land. (4) at this moment I am distressed beyond measure by my 
inability to comply with my promise to H. Hill, who is about to remove 
to Georgia & therefore can no longer indulge me — If he would take 
negroes I should be easy — but he has already purchased as many of 
them as he will want, & nothing but money will Satisfy him — In order to 
meet the Judg 1 which Ball is to get, is it not proper & necessary for us to 
take measures in time for disposing of some of our western Lands? and if 
you Shall be of opinion it is, how can that matter be best managed? I 
have yet many things to talk about with you, but my Letter is already 
too long & I must close it. We are all well & send Love, Comp t8 &c. 

Yours as heretofore 
Tho. Blount 

[No address] 

18 This was Edward Hall, wealthy planter and sometimes merchant of Tarboro. Accord- 
ing to the 1790 census he owned eighty-six slaves. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 282n; 
Heads of Families at the First Census of the United States Taken in the Tear 1790: North Carolina 
(Washington: Government Printing Office, 1908), 55, hereinafter cited The First Census of 

8 John Gray Blount Papers 

William Shannon 19 to John Gray Blount 

Philad* January 31 1803 

Esteemed friend 

Herewith inclosed is an account current between us; which would 
make me more happy if it was more advantageous to you. Lumber of 
late, and particularly Shingles have been very low here for a considerable 
time — It is at no time advisable to send small shingles here as they are 
not consumed in this country, & seldom exported in large quantities — 
the 3 feet will do again at some period not very remote if we could learn 
to make them as good as they do in some other places. I have made every 
attempt to find out your runaway Negroes, but have not yet succeeded, I 
have still some hopes if they are not left this place of finding them. Your 
Oil Stone is undergoing a trial, of this you will be informed probably in 
my next. I have spoken to M r Ball since you last wrote me & from all I 
can learn things will remain in Status quo this Winter. I hope your 
family are recovered from the calamatous visitation of last summer, and 
that this will find you all happy & well — I have nothing new or 
strange — Please make my compliments to all friends & believe me to be 

Your real friend 

& very Hb e Servant 
W m Shannon 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 

Mail North Carolina [Attached account omitted] 

Benjamin Blackledge 20 to John Gray Blount 

Batscherre 21 [illegible] Feby 7 1803 

Dear Sir 

In the months of August and September last I wrote you — under cover 
to Jno Wallace Esquire — the first I presume is to hand — having rec d an 

19 William Shannon, Philadelphia businessman and modest speculator in land, did con- 
siderable business with the Blounts and participated with them in a number of commercial 
ventures. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 220n. 

20 The families of Richard Blackledge and of the Blounts were closely associated in many 
business enterprises. Benjamin Blackledge was one of the sons of the Richard Blackledge 
who started a mercantile business with Jacob Blount, John Gray's father, on the site of 
Washington in 1791. Benjamin Blackledge's two brothers were Richard and William. The 
two families maintained their close relationship for years. Benjamin Blackledge was active 

Letters for 1803 9 

answer from the Governor to the one wrote him by the same oppty — 

Since that time we have had but few changes — or not so many as 
might be expected in a Colony in State of Revolution — The whites have 
been gaining ground continually — and at this time is in general posses- 
sion of all the Low Country — there is yet a few negroes in the moun- 
tains — but without force to do any great injury — and Security is so much 
established — that Commerce (tho yet dull) begins to wear a better 
aspect — and the Lumber of your State in tolerable demand — and great 
quantitys wasted for repairs of the Estates — and will in Six or Eight 
Months be in greater [demand] than now — by that time the present 
Crops will be made (2) and the planters have means of payment — at 
present they are very poor — the Lumber Shipped here should be princi- 
pally Boards & Shingles — with a small part Scantling of different Sizes — 
Inclosed you have a price Current of this day — The Colonial produce 
is much higher now than it will be in Two Months — as the New Crop is 
now commencing — In the mean time remember me to M 1 * 8 Blount & 
family in particular — with my Compliments to my friends in general — 
accept Sir my best wishes for your wellfare — and believe me 

Yours Sincerely 
Ben Blackledge 

John Gray Blount Esquire 


N° Carolina 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 
N° Carolina 

P r favour of 

Cap 1 S. Jasper [Attached price list omitted] 

in business in the West Indies, apparently serving as the Blount brothers' agent there. 
Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 3n, 86n. 

21 Basseterre, incorrectly spelled Batscherre, refers to one of the principal cities on the West 
Indian island of St. Christopher (called St. Kitts by the British), for the island does have a 
mountain range, and Blackledge refers to mountains in this letter. The great slave revolt 
led by Toussaint L' Ouverture in Saint-Dominque (1791-1804) resulted in an end to slavery, 
the elimination of French control, and the restoration of the ancient Indian name of Haiti 
for part of the island country. In all likelihood the slave revolt of Saint-Dominque had 
spilled over into St. Christopher where Blackledge was. carrying on his mercantile activities. 
Carl and Roberta Bridenbaugh, No Peace beyond the Line: The English in the Caribbean, 
1624-1690 (New York: Oxford University Press," 1972), 31, 182; Richard S. Dunn, Sugar and 
Slaves: The Rise of the Planter Class in the English West Indies, 1624-1713 (Chapel Hill: Univer- 
sity of North Carolina Press, 1972), 31-32; Eric Williams, From Columbus to Castro: The His- 
tory of the Caribbean, 1492-1969 (New York: Harper & Row, Publishers, 1970), 194. 239-254. 

10 John Gray Blount Papers 

James Armstrong 22 to John Gray Blount 

Feb y the 22 ed 1803 

M r Blount 

I am informed by my brother that you are much in want of mony at 
this time & I am sorry that it is not in my power to be upon any cer- 
tainty about haveing of any by the time you want it tho I am so anxious 
to take my Note up that I would Let a Negro boy to pay you as it ap- 
pears to be hard to get money at this time by Labour a lone, I am in 
hopes that you will take my boy as I have not the mony and cant know 
where I could borrow it, you shal have the Boy at three hundred & Fifty 
Dollars which I think is a reasonable price for such a boy, he is a good 
tractable boy of sixteen years oald and well grown I hope you can make 
some turn If you take the boy to sattisfy M rs Harvey, I hear that Herri- 
tage has try d to get our note purely for the purpose of Distresing of us, 
tho I hope M r Blount you will not Let it go where that is the case as I 
shall not mind a disadvantage to pay you — I have no more to add, only 
remain yr 8 resp 1 

respectfully &c 
James Armstrong 
M r John G. Blount 

Addressed: M r John G. Blount 

p d 

by Caswell 

John Grimes to John Gray Blount 

[March 23, 1803] 

M r John Blount 


M r8 Thomas Worsley 23 had stuck a penknife into her hand, just above 
her pulse, and Bleeds to such a degree that she cannot stop it, she re- 
quest me to inform you of it, and to be so kind as to send the Doctor that 

22 This might have been the same James Armstrong who served one term in the North 
Carolina House of Commons (1789) and one term in the North Carolina Senate (1790). 
Cheney, North Carolina Government, 223, 224. 

23 Mrs. Thomas Worsley, mentioned several times in the Blount papers, was obviously a 
friend of the family. Her husband is listed in the federal census of 1820 as the head of a 

Letters for 1803 1 1 

you may approve of, Imediately to her relief — your Compliance will Ob- 
lige your (2) Obed 1 Serv 1 

Jn° Grimes 


23 March 1803 

Addressed: M r John Blount 

Merch Washington 

Sharpe Blount to John Gray Blount 

Blount Hall April 8 th 1803 

Dear Sir/ 

I have to inform you that I have been served with the Writs for the 
Money due from you to the Estate of John Porterfield, 24 writs to be 
returned to the next Court at Fayetteville — You are I hope prepared to 
meet the Debt, and I suppose that you and Reading 25 have both been 
Served with them also before this time — As to the business which M r 
Woods had to do and you wrote me respecting of, I Saw Woods but he 
had not the papers, but said he would send up the Writ to me which 
However he has not done If you are not prepared to meet the Debts you 
owe to Porterfields Estate — I hope you will make such arrangements as 
will Secure me at all events — which I am certain I need not mention to 
you If you live and have no disappointments — We are all well and join in 
Compliments to you and family — 

I am Dear Sir 

Yours &c 

Sharpe Blount 
M r John G Blount 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blount 

household of four in Beaufort County. Dorothy Williams Potter (comp. and ed.), 1820 North 
Carolina Census: Supplemented from Tax Lists and Other Sources (Tullahoma, Tenn.: Published 
by Dorothy Williams Potter, 1970-1974), Beaufort County, 48, hereinafter cited as Potter, 
1820 North Carolina Census with appropriate county and page number. 

24 John Porterfield of Fayetteville was associated with the Blounts as one of their land 
agents. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, In. 

25 Reading Blount was a younger brother of John Gray Blount. He had a distinguished 
military record as an officer in the Continental army during the Revolutionary War. In 
1800 he was elected a major general of the North Carolina militia and was usually called 
"General Blount." Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xiv-xvii, xxiv-xxv. 

12 John Gray Blount Papers 

Pleasant M. Miller 26 to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville April 16 th 1803 

D r Sir 

Nothing coud have happened more unexpectedly than your letter, I 
had supposed you woud have writen, but had given out that Idea, how- 
ever I hereby acknowledge the Recept of yours of the 21 8t of March 1803. 
and do by these Presence, release and quit claim, to, and discharge you 
from any farther claim or demand either in law or equity, either that I 
now have or might have had by virtue of my said first letter dated March 
21. 1801. I have given this formal release altho I believe you might have 
pleaded the statute of limitations, so far then sir we are as we began the 
world even — you ask me what the western people will do in case the 
Spaniards shoud continue their present conduct I answer by what they 
have done, conduct themselves as good citizens shoud do. go to war 
when ever no other alternative is left us, we are not so hot for war as to 
take any decisive steps without the approbation of the general Govern- 
ment, I believe there is not a thought to the contrary in this Government, 
the poor Feds [Federalists] if we do nothing that is reprehensable will be 
wofully disappointed, they come (2) compleatly within Tom Pains de- 
scription of Prophets — the death of M rs Blount 27 & its consequences as it 
respects me can best be told by them who have Experen d the like — 
however I believe I can weather it as well as most people, tis one of my 
creeds to do what I am bound to do either from propriety or necessity 
with dispatch and cheerfulness. I think it sets easiest that way — In the 
course of Eighteen months I shall pay a visit to the North State, I believe 
I can settle my claims best in that quarter myself, or shall I leave it untill 
I put things in some tolerable arrangement give my kind love to your 
wife & children, I think really you had better all bundle up & come out, 
this Country bids far for Excellence, who knows what may happen if the 

26 Pleasant M. Miller was a Knoxville businessman and politician. He was closely asso- 
ciated with the Blounts through his marriage to William Blount's daughter. After 1815 
Miller led the faction in Tennessee politics that promoted the political fortunes of Andrew 
Jackson. In 1823 Miller was in the Tennessee House of Representatives. When Jackson be- 
came president in 1829, he appointed John H. Eaton as secretary of war, and this appoint- 
ment turned Miller into a Jackson opponent. Besides his political activities, Miller is re- 
membered for selling a forty-acre site in 1825 that became the campus of the University of 
Tennessee. Stanley J. Folmsbee, Robert E. Corlew, and Enoch L. Mitchell, History of Ten- 
nessee (New York: Lewis Historical Publishing Company, Inc., 4 volumes, 1960), I, 293-294, 
312-313, 446, hereinafter cited as Folmsbee and others, Tennessee. 

"William Blount's wife, Mary Grainger Blount, died in November, 1802. Keith and 
others, Blount Papers, III, xvi. 

Letters for 1803 13 

French take possession of the west? — your fears are I assure you ground- 
less, I do not believe there are a people on earth so firmly attached to 
their government as the people of this state are their can be no danger 
from intrigue on that ground — 

(3) We in this state are making great Exertions toward schools — we 
shall have one at this place in a short time upon an Excellent plan — 
suppose John 28 Finishes Education here — 

Pleasant M Miller 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 
North Carolina 

Peter Mallett 29 to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville April 30 th 1803 

Dear Sir 

I received your letter by the Docter as I am Just leaving this place. I 
thought it best to inform you that I shall be at Wilmington all the Sup e 
Court term, and Suppose you will Judge it best that I have that old 
paper then to shew as if Settled long ago. M r Jones to whom alone I have 
Spoken to on the Subject will perhaps write you he thinks I cannot with 
Safety pay you the balance but I dont see so great a danger yet. 

I have discover 41 an account made up between your brother & myself 
1789 makeing a balance then £827. 12 dottars [sic] of you will without 
doubt find that with the rest the papers, we calculated Interest the old 
way. I think a payment to Tewkes or Burgwin of about £300 depreciated 
money & that to James Moore 30 may be all that is not included in your 
Statement. I shall be unwilling to take the new mode of Interest untill 
the time it become custom by the Federal Court which formed the 
present mode. I hope y r will find all the Statements I have mention d and 
in case I can be Safe am willing to become your Debtor if so little time 

28 This seems to be a reference to John Gray Blount, Jr., who, along with his brother 
Thomas Harvey Blount, was attending the University of North Carolina about this time. 
See 1803, n. 10. 

29 Peter Mallett was a Wilmington merchant involved in numerous mercantile ventures. 
Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 35n. 

30 James Moore was a member of the prominent Moore family that lived near Wilming- 
ton. His father, James, Sr., was one of the heroes of the Battle of Moores Creek Bridge in 
1776. Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 170. 

14 John Gray Blount Papers 

(2) must be lost, the first bargain with James Moore was 1000 Dollars but 
if I remember their was more land then your brother expected and that 
James & himself settled it with W.B. 31 that I was to pay 200 more and 
that I accordingly gave him Moore, an order on the Clerk Hillsboro for 
that Sum — all these things are only from memory I may be mistaken and 
my papers mostly lost — if M r Blackledge 32 comes you will please to au- 
thorise him to act. perhaps some obligation may be required that you re- 
fund should Toomes or Ancrums heirs recover from me or serve letter of 

Sincerely I am yours & c 
P Mallett 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r P. M 

Willie Blount 33 to John Gray Blount 

Nashville May 12 th 1803 

Dear Sir, 

I have received of Robert Searcy two hundred dollars being the 
amount of the Bill which M r Oliver Smith 34 drew in my favor, and hav- 
ing a use for one hundred and fifty dollars more to pay your taxes, and 
M r Smith saying he could with convenience advance that sum I have re- 
ceived it of him here and have drawn a Bill of this date on you in his 
favor for the one hundred and fifty dollars — I shall write you in the 
course of a few days by Cap 1 Maderis or Major Davis when I think I can 
say something of a tolerable straight way of finding the beginning of the 
7,200 acre tract: at present I can only say that Jennings is in Town on 
the Jury and Gen 1 Robertson 35 is to talk with him, I have informed the 

31 This reference is to William Blount, who had made a bargain for western land with 
General James Moore's heir, also named James Moore. Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 

32 This reference could be to any one of the three Blackledge brothers (Benjamin, Rich- 
ard, or William), but here it is probably to William, who was the most active in land spec- 
ulation with the Blounts. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 86-87. 

33 Willie (pronounced Wylie) Blount was half-brother to William and John Gray Blount. 
After serving as William's secretary in Tennessee, he became a prominent lawyer, gover- 
nor, and political leader. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 94n. 

34 This might refer to Oliver Smith of Greenville, a merchant with whom the Blounts had 
some business dealings. Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 186. 

35 James Robertson (1742-1814) was born in Virginia and was a prominent figure in the 
early settlement of Tennessee. Moderately active in politics, he served two terms in the 
North Carolina General Assembly and was appointed by William Blount (while Blount 

Letters for 1803 15 

Gen 1 what M r Person 36 told respecting it — I do not think the land con- 
veyed to my sister Harvey 37 by Armstrong 38 has any spring on it, the 
large spring you supposed was on it is very near to the North East corner 
of the tract granted to Gen 1 Armstrong, his grant includes it only a few 
poles — Please say to my nephew Thomas that I have received his letter 
and will answer it soon — our young friends 39 at Knoxville are well, they 
are all at school — Present me affectionately to my sister family and rela- 
tions and believe me to be 

yours with gratitude 
Willie Blount 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

Hon'd by 
Cap 1 O. Smith 

William Blackledge 40 to John Gray Blount 

New Bern May 30 th 1803 

Dear Sir, 

Having entered into business with which I am but little aquainted, & 
having an adversary possessed of great art considerable information & 

was governor of the Southwest Territory) as a brigadier general of militia. Governor Blount 
was aided several times by Robertson in negotiating treaties with various Indian tribes. In 
1798 Robertson served in the Tennessee Senate. At the time of his death in 1814 he was 
serving as an Indian agent to the Chickasaw. Allen Johnson, Dumas Malone, and others 
(eds.), Dictionary of American Biography (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 20 volumes, 
1928; index and updating supplements), XVI, 24-25, hereinafter cited as DAB. 

36 For William Person see 1803, n. 16. 

37 Ann Blount Harvey was John Gray Blount's sister and Willie's half-sister. Keith and 
others, Blount Papers, I, xxx; 97n. 

38 This was probably Martin Armstrong, a surveyor and land speculator in Tennessee. 
Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 115n. 

39 This reference is probably to the children of the deceased William Blount. 

40 William Blackledge, in addition to working with the Blounts on many business ven- 
tures, served in the United States House of Representatives from 1 803 to 1 809 and from 1811 
to 1813. As a member of Congress he showed great concern for Blount business interests 
and wrote long reports to John Gray Blount on political developments in Washington. In 
this letter it is obvious that Blackledge was critical of some of President Jefferson's pro- 
French policies, although he was a Republican. Blackledge died in 1828. Biographical Direc- 
tory of the American Congress, 1774-1971 . . . (Washington: United States Government Printing 
Office, 1971), 598, hereinafter cited as Biographical Directory of Congress. 

16 John Gray Blount Papers 

but little Candor, I feel myself frequently at a loss how the objections he 
makes to some of the measures of the present administration ought to be 
answered, and as I am convinced your brother Thomas is master of the 
subject & expect you will probably soon see him at Washington have 
ventured to trouble you with a request to get him to inform me upon 
what principles M r Jefferson 41 justifies his conduct in repairing the Cor- 
vett Barceau, 42 for M r Stanly 43 says the repairs of this vessel Cost more 
than, M r Jefferson sold some of our vessels of the same size for, that she 
was at the time of repairing a french vessel, & M r J. under no obligations 
to repair her, & that it was in plain English a present of so much to his 
friends the french, further that there was no appropriation for the pur- 
pose, objections are made to his turning men out of Office for differing in 
political opinions with him — Tench Cox 44 a Tory is put into an Office in 

41 Blackledge is referring to President Thomas Jefferson. 

42 Le Berceau, a French corvette, was captured on October 12, 1800, by the American vessel 
Boston at the tail end of the undeclared naval war with France (1798-1800). The French ship 
was taken to Boston, condemned in the district court in December, 1800, and auctioned off 
on January 15, 1801, to Stephen Higginson and Company, which had secretly purchased 
the vessel for the federal government at a cost of about Si 3,000. However, under the terms 
of the Convention of 1800, signed in Paris on September 30, 1800, France and the United 
States agreed to restore or pay restitution for all vessels of war captured or destroyed after 
the date of the signing. Accordingly, Jefferson had the Le Berceau restored, but the costs, 
totaling over $32,000, far exceeded the value of the ship anterior to its capture. In addition 
Jefferson agreed to pay the French officers their daily pay during their captivity instead of 
the subsistence normally allowed prisoners; he did so with assurances from the French gov- 
ernment that the United States would be reimbursed. Bewildered as to why the United 
States should pay to have a French naval vessel restored and reequipped, the House of 
Representatives asked the president for an explanation in 1802, which he provided. Walter 
Lowrie and others, American State Papers: Documents, Legislative and Executive oj the Congress oj 
the United States (Washington: Gales and Seaton, 38 volumes, 1832-1861), class 1 [6 vols.; 
Foreign Relations], II, no. 172, pp. 428-439. 

43 John Stanly (1774-1834), a Federalist politician from Craven County, served numerous 
terms in the state legislature and was a member of the United States House of Representa- 
tives from 1801 to 1803 and from 1809 to 1811. Stanly killed the prominent Richard Dobbs 
Spaight in a duel in 1802. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1743; Keith and others, Blount 
Papers, III, 28 In. 

44 Tench Coxe (1755-1824) was a government bureaucrat who was loyal to Alexander 
Hamilton in 1790 but who switched his allegiance to Thomas Jefferson by 1791. Thus he 
was prominently involved in the in-fighting of the first Washington administration. At the 
time of the American Revolution Coxe had been reluctant to join the patriot cause and for 
a time had been considered a loyalist. Leonard D. White, The Federalists (New York: Free 
Press, 1965), 225, 288-290. Coxe's most recent biographer, Jacob E. Cooke, was among the 
first historians to have access to the Coxe papers, which have long been withheld from 
scholars. See Jacob E. Cooke, Tench Coxe and the Early Republic (Chapel Hill: University of 
North Carolina Press for the Institute of Early American History and Culture at Williams- 
burg, Virginia, 1978). 

Letters for 1803 17 

Pennsylvania in place of some good old Continental officer — M r Bishop 45 
of New Haven in place of some person much more suitable, seven eighths 
of the Merchants of the place having petitioned in favor of the man M r 
Jefferson turned out — I should also be glad to be informed where I can 
get a statement of the am 1 collected on the different objects of direct tax- 
ation the last year they were collected, & the sum collected on each arti- 
cle in each State if possible — Request him to inform me where I can get 
Documents, to support the truth of what I am to assert if any are to be 
had, & to let me hear from him as soon as possible by post or otherwise. 
I paid while at Greene 46 the Costs (2) of the two Suits against W m Pope 47 
amounting to £3*13*8 for which please give me credit — and I instituted a 
suit the security of T. Hall, 48 Col. Ruffin 49 upon the note you put into my 
hands to Collect — With respects to M r8 Blount and family I remain 

your Obd 1 Serv 1 
W m Blackledge 

P.S. M r Harris 50 has in his hands a grant to Corner for five thousand 
Acres of land which he said he had reed from you and should return to 
you, unless you dire [c] ted the Contrary — M r H. is now employed 
against those who Claim under the grant & I am employed by them & 
want it — will you be so good as to send it to me by him if he has re- 
turned it, & if he has not please direct him to deliver it to me, & I will 
have it taken care of 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 


45 Samuel Bishop was appointed collector of the port of New Haven in 1802, but he died 
in 1803 and was succeeded by his son, Abraham Bishop, who held the post until 1829. 
Leonard D. White, The Jeff ersonians (New York: Macmillan Company, 1951), 150. 

46 Blackledge was probably referring to Greenville, North Carolina, which is the county 
seat of Pitt County. However, he could be referring to Greene County which adjoins Pitt 

47 William Pope of Greene County was later a member of the North Carolina House of 
Commons, serving from 1813 through 1820. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 264, 266, 267, 
269, 271, 273, 275, 276. 

48 T. Hall probably refers to Thomas Hall, an Edgecombe County lawyer. Albert Ray 
Newsome (ed.), "Twelve North Carolina Counties in 1810-1811," North Carolina Historical 
Review, VI (January, 1929), 90. Also see 1812, n. 21, as this T. Hall could have been 
Thomas H. Hall. 

49 This probably refers to Henry J. G. Ruffin, also of Greene County, who served in the 
North Carolina House of Commons. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 253, 255, 257, 289, 

50 In all likelihood this would be Edward Harris. See 1803, n. 11. 

18 John Gray Blount Papers 

Peter Schermerhorn & Son 51 to John Gray Blount 

New York 20 th June 1803 

John G Blount Esq r 

We duly received yours of 7 th Ins 1 ppost. enclosing a Bill Lading for 
Twenty puncheons Rum shipped by Cornelius Lingo pBrig Little Sarah 
from St Kitts 52 — We wrote you 4 th Ins 1 advising of the arrival of the 
Rum, & desiring your instructions respecting it — As we have not re- 
ceived any directions from M r John Wallace we shall dispose of it in con- 
formity to your Letter of the 7 th Ins 1 — 

We are with Respect 
Your Ob 1 Servants 

Peter Schermerhorn & Son 

Lard 2.75 

Pitch 3,37 

Turpentine — 4$ brisk 

Sp Turpe e — 60 Cents — In consequence of present Scarcity 

Rosin — 4.25 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 


Willie Blount to John Gray Blount 

KNOxviLL E June21 8t 1803 

Dear Sir, 

I received your letters & their inclosures by Oliver Smith and two 
since by M r Lawson — their contents shall be attended to without delay 
so far as they can be effected by my writing to Cumberland from which 
place I have only a few days since returned and whither I do not calcu- 
late on going until the latter end of Summer or fall. When at Nashville I 

51 Peter Schermerhorn was a New York merchant with whom the Blounts did a great 
deal of business over a period of many years. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 24n. 

52 St. Kitts was the British name for the West Indian island of St. Christopher. See 7803, 
n. 21. 

Letters for 1803 19 

saw John and William Donelson 53 made known to them your proposal 
about the Duck river lands holding your instructions in my hand at the 
time indeed I read the following extract with the preface thereto to them 
"Extract from Jn° G. Blount's letter of instructions to Willie Blount Aug 1 
12 th 1800 respecting a settlement with the Donelsons which I have twice 
written them shortly after the above date which they say they never re- 
ceived, that is Col. W m Donelson told me they had not received" 

"With respect to the settlement with the Donelsons, I hold the old 
man's bond for title to 66.666 2/3 acres, and his note for the purchase 
money of his parts and he owes on account of the Indian purchase about 
two hundred pounds, that account I always supposed W. Blount had 
closed as he wrote me — know of Jn° & W. Donelson if any arrangements 
were made and what — If W m Blount has not settled as above supposed, 
give them up the note for certificates — give them a discharge against the 
old man's bond for title to land — give them a discharge against my de- 
mand for Indian Goods, and give them all the title I have to the 10,000 
acres of land on the main west fork of Stone's river which was granted to 
me on duplicate warrants — these are terms they cannot object to" — 
neither did they object to, they thought them fair, but after they had so 
said and I was to execute these instructions on your part William Donel- 
son said, John not being present, that he wished to know of me whether 
you considered them liable to you for damages in case the land or any 
part should be lost meaning liable for so much as should be lost as I 
understood by older titles, locations & c & indeed generally he Stated it 
was their father's and not their contract and he did not wish to make 
himself liable for damage which perhaps he should by receiving a deed 
for the locateing — he asked me my opinion as to his & his brother's lia- 
bility to you after receiving the (2) deed for so much land on account of 
locating under his father's contract with you — I answered that I did not 
know your ideas on that head and I would say nothing about it without 
your instructions — but as this business had been long laying open you 
were extremely anxious to have it closed — He said he would sooner 
abandon the idea of receiving any thing for the trouble he had been at 
than make himself responsible for damages altho' he believed the land 
clear of dispute — He was willing to leave the matter unsettled until I 
knew your wish and if you said or assured them after settling in the way 
above proposed you would acquit them from being further responsible 
for any loss you might sustain that they would accede to your proposal 
as above and look for nor expect any thing more of you than now pro- 

53 John and William Donelson were surveyors and land speculators. Their sister, Rachel 
Donelson, married Andrew Jackson. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 192n. 

20 John Gray Blount Papers 

posed — I engaged to make this known to you and to inform them of your 

I made known to Gen 1 Robertson what you communicated as from M r 
Person — he immediately spoke to Jennings who was in Town but got lit- 
tle or nothing by the inquiry, he says he will be very attentive to it — I did 
not see M r Lawson as he went thro' here, which was a few days ago — I 
will write Gen 1 Robertson by post on that subject. 

M r Dillon says that he does not know where a sufficiency of John 
Rice's 64 lands lie which are unincumbered to satisfy your demand and 
that he does not know how you can better get the amount than by trying 
John Rice's security who I believe was Jesse Benton 65 — him I don't know 
any thing about, except that he is John Rice's security as appears by the 
bond — 

The man who gave me the following memorandum says he sold a tract 
of 640 acres to one whose name I do not now recollect but which I can at 
any time know from him, which he thinks is within your 7200, he asked 
me if it would not be well to bring an ejictment [ejection suit] against 
him merely to try the title, if you succeed he will expect the offer from 
you of the 640 of his which he has sold at the price of unimproved land, I 
think he meant for less — I told him I should submit his information to 
you and you would if you established your title thereby do what was 
right toward him and he need not doubt that — he then gave me the fol- 

"Gen 1 James Robertson will observe when he goes to make search for 
John Patten's 66 7,200, that a spring marked C.R.T. stands about 96 poles 
north of where the experimental line passed Parson Donald's (Robertson 
had before been up the [re] and made some experiments) and perhaps 
the same spring where old M r Donald lives — the tree is a sycamore and 
is burnt into the ground, old M r Donald and his son that married M r 
Foster's daughter can establish that — that tree had the marks C.R.T. — 
and John Payton and Robert Thompson if sworn will be obliged on oath 
to establish the spot, where the marked tree that calls for John Patten's 

54 John Rice was an early pioneer in west Tennessee, where he acquired 180,000 acres of 
land for himself, his two brothers, and Jesse Benton, Sr. Rice was killed by Indians in 1791. 
Andrew Jackson and John Overton bought a claim to some of the Rice land and a lawsuit 
resulted. Samuel Cole Williams, Beginnings of West Tennessee (Johnson City, Tenn.: 
Watauga Press, 1930), 124. 

55 Jesse Benton was an early Tennessee settler and was the father of the famous Thomas 
Hart Benton. Thomas Hart and his brother Jesse, Jr., were involved in a fight with Andrew 
Jackson during the War of 1812, and Jackson was seriously wounded. In later years, how- 
ever, Thomas Hart Benton became Jackson's political ally. Folmsbee and others, Tennessee, 
I, 126, 259. 

56 This was probably Captain John Patton, who had been county surveyor in Buncombe 
County, North Carolina, in 1797. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 128. 

Letters for 1803 21 

entry stands — they both well know, (3) and so does John Buckhannon, 57 
but Thompson is prevailed on thro' interest and promise to Buckhannon 
to keep the thing secret — Payton by promise to Buckhannon" — I ought 
not yet to name the man who gave me the above, I will only remark that 
he knows all those men well and fully believes all he has stated in that 
memorandum — I gave it to Gen 1 Robertson. 

Judge McNairy 58 wants to know if you can't get grants from your 
State on those seven missing warrants located on Spring Creek the plots 
of survey of which are returned to the Secretary's office as you know — he 
married Mark Robertson's 59 widow who had those warrants to locate — 

I have several other letters to write by Major Davis who goes from this 
in the morning therefore I must as usually is the case with me when I 
write you promise further communication at another time — Please pre- 
sent me affectionately to your family and Reading's and to my late 
brother Jacob's who I hear live at Washington — I am with gratitude 


Willie Blount 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 
North Carolina 

Hon'd by 
Major Davis 

"John Buckhannon (Buchanan) was possibly the son of the early pioneer who had the 
same name. See 1803, n. 17. 

58 John McNairy studied law in the law office of Spruce McCay, a Salisbury, North Caro- 
lina, attorney, along with Andrew Jackson in 1784. About four years later McNairy became 
superior court judge of the Western District of North Carolina, which included all of Ten- 
nessee. He named Jackson to the post of prosecutor for the district, and together they mi- 
grated to Tennessee. Later McNairy was appointed to a federal judgeship by President 
George Washington. McNairy and Jackson's friendship ended around 1797, when McNairy 
did not side with Jackson in a quarrel between Jackson and John Sevier. Robert V. 
Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of American Empire (New York: Harper & Row, Publish- 
ers, 1977), 29, 34-37, 41, 44, 51, 53, 75-76, 98, 102, 124, 138, hereinafter cited as Remini, 
Andrew Jackson and the Course of American Empire. 

59 Mark Robertson was a brother of James Robertson and apparently accompanied him 
on his first trip to Tennessee. Samuel Cole Williams, Dawn of Tennessee Valley and Tennessee 
History (Johnson City, Tenn.: Watauga Press, 1937), 342. 

22 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount 

Tarborough 26 th June 1803 

Dear Sir, 

M r Hughs shewed me your memorandum concerning the purchase of 
Herrings at Plymouth & I conversed on the subject with Rob 1 Armstead 
who offered Herrings at $3 — and said he would take good 3 d proof S l 
Kitts Rum at 80 Cents but had rather have Cash; and I declined making 
a Contract with him, because I supposed such a bargain would not suit 
you or, if it would, that you might make it at any time. Col. E. Blount, 60 
Levi Blount, 61 Ben. Blount, 62 David Clark, 63 John & R. Armstead, 64 & 
others, are of opinion that the votes of Washington County will be pretty 
equally divided between M r K. 65 & myself — William Blount, 66 who is 
said to be great at Elections, & who has been considered by M r K. as 
one of his warmest supporters, is a decided & very active friend of 
mine — the people in & about plymouth are almost unanimous in my 
favor (2) and I was told that the people of Tyrrel would divide pretty 
equally — I did not see Trotter, he left Washington Court before I got 
there, but I have reason to believe he was told by K, or some of his 
friends, that H.S. Bonner 67 was in his Interest. I shall go to Tyrrel Court 
which will sit the 4th Monday in July — should you send your Rum to 

60 Colonel E. Blount probably refers to Edmund Blount, wealthy member of the Blount 
family who lived in the Edenton area. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 422n. 

61 Levi Blount was a politician from Tyrrell County. He served one term in the North 
Carolina House of Commons. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 232. 

62 The only thing known of Ben. Blount is that he was living in Pitt County in 1790. Keith 
and others, Blount Papers, III, 437n. 

63 David Clark appears to have been a merchant of Williamston, North Carolina, and a 
political ally of Thomas Blount. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 309n. 

64 John Armistead was a merchant in Plymouth, North Carolina. He owned 200 acres of 
land in Tyrrell County. He died in "the Epidemic" that swept part of eastern North Caro- 
lina in May, 1816. Robert was presumably his brother. Sarah M. Lemmon (ed.), The Petti- 
grew Papers, 1685-1818 (Raleigh: State Department of Archives and History, projected 
multivolume series, 1971-), I, 414-415, 418, hereinafter cited as Lemmon, Pettigrew Papers. 

65 This is a reference to William Kennedy, a Pitt County lawyer who ran against Thomas 
Blount for a United States House of Representatives seat in several elections. In this partic- 
ular election Kennedy defeated Blount and took his seat as a member of the Eighth Con- 
gress in 1803. He was also elected to the Eleventh Congress. When Blount died in office in 
1812, Kennedy replaced him. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1 156; Keith and others, Blount 
Papers, III, 393n. 

68 This is probably the William Blount who served a term in the North Carolina legisla- 
ture as a representative from Perquimans County. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 136n. 

67 This reference is probably to Henry Bonner of Beaufort, who had been an army officer 
in the American Revolution. The Bonner family was very prominent in Beaufort County. 
C. Wingate Reed, Beaufort County: Two Centuries of Its History (Raleigh: Printed by Edwards 
and Broughton Co., 1962), 98, 102-106, 109-110, 115, 117, 120-121, 124, 132, 139, hereinafter 
cited as Reed, Beaufort County; John Hill Wheeler, Historical Sketches of North Carolina (Balti- 
more: Regional Publishing Co., 2 volumes in one, 1964) I, 84, hereinafter cited as Wheeler, 
Historical Sketches. 

Letters for 1803 23 

New York I wish you also to send my Cotton unless you should know of 
some better Market for it — I wish it sold for Cash & the nett proceeds 
held Subject to my order — I have here a few Bags more but know not 
when I shall be able to send them down — please send up my wine when 
you shall think the opportunity favorable I wish I had requested Schenck 
to have it put into his Boat, as I know not when another opportunity 
may offer — we are all well & offer Comp ts & 8 

Tho. Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq re 

Negro Boy 

Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount 

Tarborough 13 th July 1803 

Dear Sir, 

The King of England declared War against the French Republic in 
form on the 18th day of May — Copy of his declaration, w h was brought 
to New- York by the Ship John Morgan, is in this town — this will doubt- 
less tend to enhance the value of our Exports but we have better news 
than this — our Executive have rec d official Information that a Treaty was 
signed on the 30 th April between the Ministers Plenipotentiary & 
Extraordinary of the United States, and the Minister Plenipotentiary of 
the French Government, by which the United States have obtained the 
full Right to and Sovereignty over New-Orleans, and the whole of Loui- 
siana as Spain possessed the same — This fortunate & important negocia- 
tion was completed in 51 days from the day of M r Monro's 68 departure 

68 When James Monroe, who would take office as fifth president of the United States in 
1817, finished his third consecutive term as governor of Virginia in 1802, he resolved to prac- 
tice law in Richmond, hoping to make enough money to get himself out of debt. In Janu- 
ary, 1803, before Monroe could settle down to his law practice, he received word from Pres- 
ident Thomas Jefferson that he had been nominated envoy extraordinary to France to help 
Minister Robert Livingston purchase a site at the mouth of the Mississippi to be used as a 
place of deposit for American merchandise being shipped down the river. Jefferson, dis- 
satisfied with Livingston's efforts and convinced that the ex-governor of Virginia was the 
only suitable choice as envoy extraordinary, made the appointment without waiting for 
Monroe's consent. Monroe was chosen because he had the ''unlimited confidence" of the 
administration, all Republicans, and, most of all, the western people who were so disturbed 
by the prospect of the French controlling Louisiana. Harry Ammon, James Monroe: The 
Quest for National Identity (New York: McGraw-Hill Book Company, 1971), 201-205, herein- 
after cited as Ammon, James Monroe. 

24 John Gray Blount Papers 

from N. York (2) Let the advocates for war say if they can that the navi- 
gation of the Mississippi could have been sooner obtained and as well 
secured by force of arms — surely this must open the eyes of some of the 
deluded ones who for want of Information, have called themselves feder- 
alists, and enable them to see that the administration of the Government 
is where it ought to be. . . . 69 

[Manuscript torn] 

William Ross 10 to John Gray Blount 

Liverpool 26 th July 1803 

My dear Sir 

From the state of warfare we are in you will naturally expect much 
news, but really in times of most profound peace their never was a 
greater dearth — You no doubt are acquainted with Citizen Buonapartes 
intention to invade this Country and on your side the Water are all look- 
ing forward with much anxiety for the event, but really it is my opinion 
he will never attempt it, every one here appears in a perfect state of tran- 
quillity and you seldom hear the circumstance of invasion mention 'd but 
in the way of burlesque — Government however are taking very active 
measures to prevent it, encampments are forming all along the W'ern 
Sea Coasts and the Fleets are all in motion, the people are unanimously 
invited to come forward, in consequence of which a number of Volunteer 
Corps are form'd and in case of invasion all must come forward betwixt 
the years of 17 & 55 "en masse," to refill them — all appear quite (2) confi- 
dent they will give them a compleat drubbing and rather wish, if it is to 
be, that it happen now as it [will] bring about in all probability a lasting 
peace — Russia within these few days has began to express its disappro- 
bation at this Country blocking up the Elbe, they will get no satisfaction 
from this Government it is suppos'd, as it is generally believ'd they might 
as well fight all the powers of Europe at once as France only in its 
present state — A serious alarm took place in Dublin a few days since, a 
number of persons ab l 3000 assembled broke open the L d Mayors house 

"The remainder of this letter is about Thomas Blount's cotton. He asks John Gray 
Blount's advice on the best markets and tells him the price he wants for the cotton. 

70 William Ross was a Washington merchant. When he wrote this letter he must have 
been on business for John Gray Blount. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 151n. 

Letters for 1803 25 

and took out all the arms and ammunition, they then attempted to storm 
the Castle but were repuls'd and on the Troops being beat to arms were 
shortly subdued, in consequence numbers were kill 'd; by the exertions of 
the military another plot of Rebellion has been discover'd, the ringlead- 
ers apprehended and a large quantity of their arms (ab l 30,000 Stands) 
and ammunition have been found — by Ten yesterday all is again quiet — 
Owing to the rivers on the Continent being declared in a state of 
Blockade all export vent is done away and business in general is very 
languid, and it is my opinion (3) that Buonaparte is taking a more effec- 
tual method for the reduction of this Government, by depressing its 
Commerce and the amazing expence of arming for defence which he is 
obliging them to run to by his threats, than he could ever effect by an at- 
tempt at invasion — I deliver'd your letter to M r Lake, 71 he is well and 
begs I will make his best respects to you, he declines writing you until 
my return — I had a most tiresome passage to this place, being three 
months from the time I left you until my arrival, I had the satisfaction 
however to find all Friends well, and the state of my affairs to exceed my 
utmost expectation — am in hopes to be with you early in November and 
to find you all have enjoyed hea[l]th during the Summer You will please 
present my respects to M rs Blount and to the younger branch of your 
Family and accept yourself the best wishes of 

Dear Sir 

Your mo. Ob 1 
William Ross 

Jn° G. Blount Esq r 

[No address] 

Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount 

Tarborough 30 th July 1803 

Dear Sir, 

On Monday last M r Kennedy, his friend Miles Hardy, 72 M r John 

71 William Charles Lake of Liverpool was a merchant with whom the Blounts did busi- 
ness for many years. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, 199n; III, 36n. 

"Miles Hardy of Washington County was a member of the North Carolina House of 
Commons from 1800 to 1803, and again in 1814. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 242, 243, 
245, 247, 266. 

26 John Gray Blount Papers 

Roulhac, 73 & M r Jer. Slade, 74 dined at the House of a M r Wood, 8 Miles 
from Tyrrel Court House to which place they were all going — and as 
they sat at Dinner M r Hardy told M r Wood that you had purchased, or 
attempted to purchase, the claim of Lord Granville, 75 & that I was con- 
cerned with you in the Business & M r Kennedy added that it was true, 
& he could prove it — of this I was told the same Evening at M r Ben. 
Spruills 76 by a M r Mariner of Washington County who was present 
when the conversation passed & reproached his neighbour Hardy for 
being a slanderer — on Tuesday Morning, after getting to the Court 
House, where I found Kennedy & Hardy extremely industrious, I was 
again told by my friends, who were both numerous & respectable, that 
such a Report was in circulation & had been circulated by Kennedy 
himself — whereupon I hastily sketched out the declaratory part of the 
address which I herewith send you, and after having so done, I went very 
coolly into the piazza of the Tavern, called the (2) attention of the people 
and read it to them, prefacing it with an observation, that my name was 
Tho Blount, that I lived in Edgecombe County which belonged to the 

73 Letters from the records of the High Court of Admiralty in the British Public Record 
Office reveal that the Roulhacs were a merchant family from Bordeaux, France, and first 
appeared in North Carolina for purposes of trade during the Revolutionary War. Psalmet 
Gregoire Roulhac, patriarch of the North Carolina Roulhacs, owned a plantation and 
slaves in Beaufort County. John Roulhac was one of his sons. His daughter, Elizabeth, 
married into the Blount family. From Beaufort County the Roulhacs spread out through 
eastern North Carolina and later into the Hillsborough area. Beaufort County, Old Will 
Book, 440-444; H.C.A. Correspondence, 32/277 Pt. 1, Bundle 8322, xerox copies, Archives, 
North Carolina Division of Archives and History, Raleigh, hereinafter cited as North Caro- 
lina State Archives. 

74 Jeremiah Slade was a politician from Martin County. He served several terms in the 
North Carolina House of Commons and the North Carolina Senate. He was an ardent Fed- 
eralist. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 236, 238, 241, 245, 246, 251, 258, 260, 262, 263, 265, 
267; Delbert Harold Gilpatrick, Jeffersoman Democracy in North Carolina, 1789-1816 (New 
York: Columbia University Press, 1931), 208, 213. 

"The dispute over Lord Granville's claim had troubled North Carolina politics since the 
early days of the Revolution. When North Carolina became a royal colony in 1729, George 
II bought each of the Lords Proprietors' shares with the exception of the earl of Granville's. 
His share was marked off in land, an area that roughly covered the upper half of North 
Carolina and that became known as the Granville District. During the Revolution all of 
this land was confiscated by the state. After the war the Granville heirs brought suit for its 
recovery, but to no avail. Obviously, it would have been political suicide for the Blounts to 
suggest that the Granvilles had a legitimate claim to the land. Thomas Blount, as well as 
his brother John Gray, was particularly vulnerable to allegations regarding shady land 
dealings. They had been implicated in land frauds in 1798. Tried in New Bern in 1800, they 
were acquitted, but suspicions remained about their land dealings. Keith and others, Blount 
Papers, III, xv-xvi, 372n; Hugh Talmage Lefler and Albert Ray Newsome, North Carolina: 
The History of a Southern State (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, Third Edi- 
tion, 1973), 145-146, hereinafter cited as Lefler and Newsome, North Carolina. 

76 Benjamin Spruill of Tyrrell County was a member of the North Carolina House of 
Commons for several terms. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 202, 203, 205, 206, 213, 215, 

Letters for 1803 27 

same Election district with Tyrrel, that I was a Candidate for the honor 
of representing that district in the next Congress, had appeared at that 
place to shew myself to the people & afford them an opportunity to form 
an acquaintance with me & jud[g]e of my pretensions, and that since my 
arrival among them I had been told that such a Report was in circula- 
tion — and then I proceeded to state what my sentiments & conduct in 
respect to that claim had been, were & would be — I did not mention the 
name of Kennedy or any other person — but M r Kennedy, as soon as I 
concluded, commenced an address to the people in which he declared 
that he did suspect that you had purchased or, attempted to purchase 
Lord Granville's claim & that I was concerned with you in the Business, 
because I was concerned w h you in commercial Business — he said his 
reasons for suspecting you were' many & strong — first he knew (3) you 
wished Lord Granville's Heirs to recover, because he had himself heard 
you say words to that effect, & you had often been heard to say so by 
others — that you would be benefitted by his recovering in this way — if 
you had not purchased the whole claim, it was presumable you had pur- 
chased his right to the part you had taken up — & if he recovered, his re- 
covery would give you a claim upon the State for the amount of money 
you had paid into the Treasury — which was in itself a large fortune — 
2 ndly that arthur Forbes had told him that about 6 or 7 years ago, I asked 
him, in a conversation about Granville's claim, what he would think of 
the matter if any man was actually to purchase it — and thirdly that a 
man of respectability known to all the people of Tyrrel County & then 
not a mile off — whose name he afterwards at my request, & after much 
hesitation, said was Jeremiah Slade, was told by Edward Harris, who 
was largely concerned with you in your land speculation in Hyde 
County, that the Blounts had sent an agent to England to buy the claim 
of Lord Granville & that he (4) Harris was to be a partner in the pur- 
chase if it should be made — He also spoke of the frauds committed on 
the Land office & of the suspicion that had attached to us in that Busi- 
ness, but acknowledged we had been tried & acquitted; & that he did 
not mean to insinuate that He thought us guilty — with the same coolness 
that I commenced, & proceeded with, my first Harangue, I answered &, 
I think, satisfactorily refuted & exposed every thing he had said — He 
then gave another Harangue & I again answered — the result of all our 
Speeches as well as I could ascertain it was an opinion among the best 
informed and most respectable people at least that neither you nor I was 
guilty as charged, & that he had disgraced himself & his friends by mak- 
ing so dirty an attempt to acquire popularity by ruining or injuring our 

These proceedings have suggested to me the propriety of publishing & 
distributing the enclosed hand Bills — some of which you will please send 

28 John Gray Blount Papers 

to proper persons — persons who will most actively use them — in Hyde, 
& the lower part of Pitt, & different parts of Beaufort — I shall bring (5) 
with me to Pitt Court, on Monday, many other copies of it; and as I ex- 
pect to have much speechifying there on the subject, I wish you could 
make it convenient to attend — I shall there investigate the charge made 
against us by E. Harris who I hope will be on the spot. I have more to 
say to you than can be comprised in a Letter, & I am in haste to attend 
a muster today in that part of our County which joins Pitt & where all 
my opposers in this County, if I have any, live, therefore I hope you will 
come up to Pitt Court on Monday Evening or Tuesday morning — M r 
Wood, the man at whose House M r Kennedy first came openly out & 
talked of proving (which by the bye he never afterwards openly talked 
about) is the relation of my friend Patrick, of Neuse, who ought, if he 
goes down, to know what has passed, you can cause to be made as many 
Copies of my hand Bill as you may think necessary & sign my name to 
them — I doubt not but (6) I shall get a majority of the votes of Tyrrel, as 
B. Spruill, Sam Spruill, 77 Hoskins, 78 Trotter, Clayton, 79 Norman, 80 John 
Murphy, Jackson & many other respectable men there are in my favor, 
& were highly pleased with the discussion that took place — and I think I 
may reasonably expect to get half the votes of Washington as M r Hardy 
has, by ruining his own popularity, much assisted my friends there — we 
are all well, & send Love to your family with a hope that they are so — I 
have sent down my Cotton, 2 Bags w l 528. te by Brickell's flat, but forgot 

to send a Cask for some good Rum which I think you promised me & 
I very much want, as my stock is quite gone, have you written as I re- 
quested concerning the disposition of my other Cotton? Schenck 81 starts 
on Monday next at farthest — adieu — 


Tho. Blount 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blount 

M r Brickell 

77 Samuel Spruill was apparently a surveyor who plotted some land for the Blounts. Keith 
and others, Blount Papers, II, 536-537. 

78 This was probably James Hoskins of Tyrrell County, who had served a couple of terms 
in the North Carolina House of Commons. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 237, 238. 

79 More than likely this was John Clayton of Tyrrell County. He, too, served several 
terms in the North Carolina House of Commons. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 240, 
242, 243, 245, 247. 

^Nehemiah Norman of Tyrrell County had served in both houses of the North Carolina 
legislature. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 209, 210, 217. 

81 John G. L. Schenck was a native of Russia who became a merchant in Tarboro and 
was sometimes associated with the Blounts in business. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 

Letters for 1803 29 

David Clark to John Gray Blount 

Plymouth 6 th Aug 1 1803 

Dear Sir 

I to day received your favor of the 4 th Ins 1 covering Certificates 
respecting the report in circulation about M r Thomas Blounts being 
interested in purchasing the Claim of Lord Granville — We had a Muster 
at this place to day — I read the Certificates to the Company — I am sure 
the report circulated, has injured in some measure the Election of Mr. T 
Blount — 

From M r Kennedys general acquaintance in this County he will have 
a Majority in it — I suppose from 50 to 100 votes — 

I remain with regard 
yours Sincerely 
David Clark 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
Post Master 

Thomas Blount to John Gray Blount 

Tarborough 26th Aug 1 1803 

Dear Sir, 

I have determined to prosecute M r Kennedy for slander if I can find 
that he has used words respecting the Granville claim that are actiona- 
ble — and therefore wish you to inquire of M r Harris what words are 
actionable, & to instruct Tom to inquire whether proof can be had of his 
having spoken such words in Hyde — I could wish that M r Orr 82 would 
go to Tyrrel for me on similar Business if he is perfectly at leisure, as it is 
more probable that he can get full & correct Information on the subject 
than myself — I would furnish him with a Horse and instruct him where 
to go & who to inquire of — this sort of action must be brought, if I am 
not mistaken, in 6 months — and as M r K. will leave the State early in 
October & remain out of it 4, 5, or 6 months, I have no time to lose. I 
give you on the other side a Copy of M r Jer. Slades reply to my Letter re- 

82 In all probability this is a reference to William Orr, who worked for the Blounts as a 
supercargo, agent, and clerk in the store in Washington. Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 
94; III, 299n. 

30 John Gray Blount Papers 

questing him to state to me, in writing, the precise words used by M r E. 
Harris to him at Woodstock — by (2) which you will see what a dirty 
quibbling fellow he is — 


July 29th 1803 

I rec d your note of 27 th Ins 1 by M r M Crae and by the earliest opper- 
tunity I take the liberty of stating to you as correctly as my memory will 
permit what I heard Edw d Harris Esq. say at M 1 ' 8 Daleys in Woodstock 
concerning the purchase of the claim of the Heirs of Granville to lands in 
N° Carolina. 

In a conversation with Edw d Harris Esq r on the measures of the for- 
mer administration and the claims of the heirs of Granville, "he said he 
was concerned with a Company who had or was about to send an agent 
to purchase the claim" — or that, "he was concerned with the Blounts 
who had sent an agent, or that they were about to send an agent to pur- 
chase the claim" — 

I am sorry that a confidential communication should be made use of 
to answer Electioneering purposes, But since M r Kennedy hath made it 
public with my name, it is not to be expected that I will deny it 

I am Sir, 

(3) yo. mo. Ob 1 
(signed) J. Slade 

Thomas Blount, Esq 1 " 

Shew this to M r Harris & know of him whether I cannot prosecute 
him (JS) likewise — I have been informed that the K's have threatened to 
mob me whenever I come to Washington & as soon as I can find leisure, 
which I hope will be shortly, I shall afford them an opportunity to carry 
their threat into execution — It is insisted on that I shall continue a Can- 
didate at the next Election & I have consented to do so — M rs Harvey & 
Polly Ann 83 have started this Evening for Bertie with Intention to be 

83 This refers to both Ann Blount Harvey (Polly Ann), sister of John Gray and Thomas 
Blount, and probably to her mother-in-law, widow of Colonel John Harvey, a prominent 
leader during the Revolutionary period. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xxx. 

Letters for 1803 31 

absent from here 'till next monday week — they were quite well as are 
Jackey 84 & myself whose best wishes you will please offer to your family, 
Suckey [Sukey]& c85 — 

yrs & c 

Tho. Blount 
Alston's 86 majority was 823 — let me hear from you soon as possible 
[No address] 

James Turner* 1 to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh 10 th October 1803 


Knowing you to have an extensive acquaintance in the lower parts of 
this State, has induced me to inclose to you the Copies of two letters, one 
from the Governor of Virginia, and the other from a person who writes 
under the signature of John Robertson, for the purpose of getting you to 
assertain, whether the person calling himself John Robertson, is really 
the person he represents himself to be. If he is, the President of the 
United States will certainly adopt measures to have him restored to his 
friends and Country. To obtain proof on that subject was the induce- 
ment of the governor of Virginia to forward his letter to me, and is the 
motive for my troubling you at this time. 

If on enquiry it shall appear that such a person as John Robertson 
describes himself to be, has left the neighbourhood he mentions, which 

"Thomas Blount's second wife was Mary Sumner, daughter of Brigadier General Jethro 
Sumner of the Revolutionary War. Thomas often called his wife Jackey. Keith and others, 
Blount Papers, I, xxv. 

85 Jacob Blount, Jr. 's (youngest son of Jacob and Barbara Blount and brother of John 
Gray and Thomas) second wife was Susan Harvey Blount, widow of Augustus Blount. 
Susan was nicknamed Sukey. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xxviii. 

86 Willis Alston (1769-1837) of Halifax County, North Carolina, was a farmer and a politi- 
cal leader among Jeffersonian Republicans. He served in the North Carolina House of 
Commons (1790-1792, 1820-1824), the North Carolina Senate (1794-1796), and the United 
States House of Representatives (1799-1815, 1825-1831). Biographical Directory of Congress, 511. 

87 James Turner, an educated and able politician from Warren County, was governor of 
North Carolina from 1802 to 1805. This letter was recorded in the governor's letter book 
and does not appear in the Blount papers. James Turner to John Gray Blount, October 10, 
1803, Governors Letter Books, James Turner, North Carolina State Archives; Lefler and 
Newsome, North Carolina, 286. 

32 John Gray Blount Papers 

can be assertained by the parents he mentions; I must request you to 
have Affidavits procured, describing and Identifying him, as fully as pos- 
sible, and forward them to me for the purpose of my transmitting them 
to the President of the United States. 

I am well assured that aiding a fellow citizen in recovering his liberty, 
will be an agreeable part for you to act, and I hope you will in (2) a man- 
ner answer as an Apology, for me, in troubling you, especially when I 
recollect your polite attention & kind proffer of service on a former oc- 

Should any affidavits be taken I will thank you to direct, that, the 
Clerk of the County in which the magistrate resides, Certify under the 
seal of his County, such magistrate to be an Acting Justice of the peace 
in said County, at the time of taking the same. 

Any expence attending having the enquiry made, or procuring the 
necessary affidavits & their attestation, shall be punctually paid so soon 
as I am informed of the amount 

I am with Sentiments of esteem 
John G. Blount Esquire your ob 1 Serv 1 

Washington J. Turner 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
N. Carolina 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

Washington Oct r 18 th 1803 

John G. Blount Esq r 

D r Sir/ 

Your favor of the 2 d ins 1 Covering your brother Readings Grant for 
lands in the state of Ohio, & also the one of the 6 th I have had the plea- 
sure of receiving — Col. Worthington 88 Member from Ohio has promised 
to give me all the information & directions necessary on the subject of 
the Gen 18 land, & have no doubt of his candor, as soon as the hurry of 
looking out for lodgings is a little off & we get setled I shall urge his com- 
pliance & communicate the amount of his information — 

"Thomas Worthington (1773-1827), an Ohio politician affiliated with the Jeffersonian 
Republicans, served in the Ohio legislature and as governor of that state. From 1803 to 1807 
and from 1810 to 1814 he represented his state in the United States Senate. Biographical Di- 
rectory of Congress, 1958. 

Letters for 1803 33 

As to your old friend Abisha Thomas 89 I am fearful that nothing can 
be got from him though have not seen him nor has the person with 
whom I have talked lately, but the best which can be done with him, I 
will endeaver to effect — 

I intend starting to George town tomorrow with a view to obtaining 
the information you wish as to shingles &c & if it can be got before the 
mail starts you shall have the prices at the foot of this — 

The Inclosed will not give you great satisfaction I make no doubt, as it 
shews how illy the Feds 90 have Calculated, not only about the two mil- 
lion, but also about New Orleans & several other important subjects, I 
therefore forward it to you, as I fear your immediate representative does 
not feel quite so strong a desire to communicate grateful information to 
you as I do — The treaty with France about Louisiana is now before the 
Senate, but the doors are (2) Closed, and it is whispered that the Court of 
Spain has objections to our geting the Country from France, because the 
latter has not Complied with Certain Conditions or the putations which 
she had entered into with the former respecting the transfer between 
them — But you may be assured the treaty between us & France will be 
ratified by our Government — I assure you that I can but pity your friend 
M r K for as I live in the Same house & have a good opportunity of seeing 
how he is situated, & also hear the remarks of those who are really his 
friends — I can only say that as to myself I would not feel the tortures he 
must undergo in the day for any pleasure which he can possibly enjoy at 
night — There are living in the same house with us — Macon, 91 Alston, 

89 Abishai Thomas was a close friend of the Blounts and served them many times as a, 
land agent. Because of his connections with the Blounts he became a claims agent in North 
Carolina and chief clerk in the United States Navy Department (1798-1801). His fondness 
for strong drink and his compulsion to gamble seem to have kept him from furthering his 
career. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 3 In. 

90 This is a reference to the Federalist party, which opposed Jefferson's policies in 
general. On the purchase of Louisiana, however, the Federalists divided, with many of their 
leaders eventually supporting the popular acquisition. Marshall Smelser, The Democratic Re- 
public, 1801-1815 (New York: Harper & Row, Publishers, 1968), 97-99, hereinafter cited as 
Smelser, Democratic Republic. 

91 Nathaniel Macon (1757-1837) was a wealthy planter from Warren County, North Caro- 
lina. This Jeffersonian Republican was one of the most prominent political figures in the 
history of the state. Macon served in the North Carolina Senate, the United States House 
of Representatives (1791-1815), and the United States Senate (1815-1828). During his career 
in Congress he was for a time Speaker of the House and later president pro tempore of the 
Senate. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1324. 

34 John Gray Blount Papers 

Wynns, 92 Stone, 93 Doctor Alexander 94 Also Jno Randolph 95 of Virg a 
C. A Rodney 96 of Delaware, & a M r Richards 97 of the Same State or 
Pennsylv* & Col. Wad[e] Hampton 98 of S° Carolina & Doctor Tucker 99 
the Treasurer — M r K his Wife & family have but one Room, & that the 
same size of the one I occupy, the rooms are good — but as there is no 
place to receive company we may conclud none is intended to be seen, 
therefore except the hous hold I presume no others will be able to im- 
prove much by their social dispositions, and I really fear that any which 
we shall derive will not be great enough to entitle us to Congratulation, I 
shall be particular in giving you from time to time an account of them as 
I see you feel concerned for them, but as he & myself keep on good 
terms, you will keep me out of sight — He still affects to be very much 
Concerned least [lest] the heirs of Granville or rather the speculators 
should succeed in recovering their lands, while Macon, Alston & Alex- 
ander laugh at the idea & beg him not to give himself any uneasiness 
about it — excuse this scrall for it is written in a hurry, & be assured, that 
you cannot write me oftener than you shall be answered, not because I 
shall feel my consequence increased, by the number of (3) Cor- 

92 Thomas Wynns (1764-1825) of Hertford County, North Carolina, was an active Feder- 
alist, serving in the North Carolina House of Commons, the United States House of Repre- 
sentatives (1802-1807), and on the North Carolina Executive Council (1818-1824). He was 
also a brigadier general of militia. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1963. 

93 David Stone (1770-1818) of Bertie County, North Carolina, was a lawyer, judge, and 
politician. Among the posts he held were governor (1 808-1 81 0), judge on the North Carolina 
Supreme Court, state legislator, member of the United States House of Representatives 
(1799-1801), and member of the United States Senate (1801-1807, and 1813-1814). Biographi- 
cal Directory of Congress, 1762. 

94 Nathaniel Alexander (1756-1808) was a physician and a Republican politician from 
Mecklenburg County, North Carolina. During the Revolutionary War he served as a sur- 
geon. In addition to serving several terms in the North Carolina legislature he was twice 
elected to the United States House of Representatives, serving in the Eighth and Ninth con- 
gresses. He resigned his seat in Congress in 1805 to become governor of North Carolina. 
Biographical Directory of Congress, 502. 

95 John Randolph (1773-1833), a kinsman and onetime political lieutenant of Thomas Jef- 
ferson's, was among Virginia's most colorful political leaders in the early part of the nine- 
teenth century. During his long career in politics he served in the United States House of 
Representatives almost continuously from 1799 to 1825, and again in 1833 until his death in 
that year. He was also in the United States Senate from 1827 to 1829 and for a short time in 
1830 was minister to Russia. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1584-1585. 

"Caesar Augustus Rodney (1772-1824), nephew of the famous Caesar Rodney of Revolu- 
tionary War fame, was a Republican politician from Delaware. He was a member of the 
United States House of Representatives (1803-1805, 1821-1822) and of the United States Sen- 
ate (1822-1823). From 1807 to 181 1 he served as attorney general of the United States, first in 
Jefferson's administration and then in Madison's. He was also minister to Argentina from 
1823 to 1824. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1625. 

"Jacob Richards (1773-1816) of Delaware County, Pennsylvania, was a lawyer and a Jef- 
fersonian Republican. He served in the United States House of Representatives from 1803 
to 1809. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1605. 

98 Wade Hampton (1752-1835) was born in Virginia, but he moved to South Carolina be- 
fore the Revolutionary War. He served as an officer in the military during that war and as 

Letters for 1803 35 

respondents, but because the pleasure I feel in executing any Commis- 
sion you may confide to me, & the instruction I derive from your Cor- 
respondence far over balance any trouble they occasion — Present me in 
the most friendly manner to M rs Blount & all the family, and believe me 
as I am 

yours in sincerity 
W m Blackledge 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
Beaufort County 
N° Carolina 


Henry Selby 100 to John Gray Blount 

Lumberton — October 25, 1803 

John G. Blount esquire 


Some of my enemies hath endeavoured to fix upon me the guilt of hav- 
ing played a double game in the preceding Election — that while I was 
openly professing to befriend Mr T. Blounts election — I was secretly aid- 
ing the Election of Mr Kennedy. That such Men as John Jordan 101 and 
others of his grade, who are eternally seeking every stratagem in their 
power to lessen my reputation should take hold of this occasion to 
destroy my popularity affords to me no matter of surprise — and as far as 
it has originated or progressed with them is with me a subject of the 
greatest indifference — but what hath awakened my astonishment and 

a general during the War of 1812. He also served in the Fourth Congress (1795-1797) and 
the Eighth Congress (1803-1805). The owner of some 3,000 slaves in 1830, he might have 
been the wealthiest planter in the United States. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1061. 

"Thomas Tudor Tucker (1745-1828), of South Carolina, was related to the socially 
prominent Tuckers of Virginia. He studied medicine at the University of Edinburgh and 
served in the American army as a surgeon during the Revolutionary War. After the war he 
entered politics, serving as a member of the Continental Congress during 1787 and 1788 and 
as a Federalist congressman from 1789 to 1793. In 1801 President Jefferson appointed 
Tucker United States treasurer, a post he held until his death in 1828. Biographical Directory 
of Congress, 1834. 

100 Henry Selby was a politician from Hyde County who represented his county in the 
North Carolina Senate between 1797 and 1808. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 439n. 

101 John Jordan of Hyde County served in the North Carolina House of Commons from 
1799 to 1803. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 232, 234, 235, 239, 242, 244, 246, 247, 251, 
253, 254. 

36 John Gray Blount Papers 

with me real matter of regret proceeds from quite a different ground — I 
have been informed that you have contributed to the circulation of the 
same charge — Mr Richard Jordan hath said that you had given an un- 
equivocal assent to the accusation, and insisted upon it that you were in 
possession of such circumstances that proved, undeniably, the certainty 
of the fact — Having always view'd you as my Friend, and believing that 
you neither possess that prejudice or ill-nature towards me, that would 
incline you to cherish suspicions either injurious or dishonorable to my 
reputation I am compell'd to go into an investigation of the subject upon 
the presumption that you may have consented to the slander, from Testi- 
mony either absolutely false, or from such (2) presumptive evidence as 
ought not to have been relied upon. But before I proceed permit me to 
arrest your patience for although it may be an immaterial subject with 
you, it is of the greatest importance to me and my feelings that every 
thing should be rightly understood. To effect this it will be necessary to 
travel over considerable ground, and to shew plainly the relative situa- 
tion I stood in with regard to all the Characters that may necessarily 
come on the stage: 

As to yourself your conduct hath been uniformly marked with great 
kindness — At a period when I could have no claim upon you — you stood 
forward as my firm advocate — although you resided in the County of 
Beaufort — you interested yourself zealously in my Election — Scarcely 
[manuscript torn] Boat or a Canoe that landed at your wharf from this 
County during the times of Election but brought home some mark of the 
interest you took in my success — when I was elected and come forward 
to the seat of Government your attention was equally pointed — Your 
conduct with regard to pecuniary considerations were generally Friend- 
ly — it was such as I was well Satisfied with — if there was any exceptions 
they were of a trivial nature and such as I would not have remembered 
when considering your claim upon me — 

Mr Thomas Blount I became acquainted with by your introduction — I 
served with him one Assembly and have frequently seen (3) him in my 
excursions abroad — I have always entertained the highest respect for 
him both as a Statesman — and a Gentleman — was well satisfied with his 
preference over his opponent, and was always firmly determined to give 
him my vote — and to support his Election — as far as I thought it was my 
duty — considering my dependant situation with regard to my own popu- 
larity — 

Mr William Kennedy observing something like an intimacy subsisting 
betwixt you and me — it was quite sufficient to arouse his prejudice 
against me — He interested himself warmly in our County Elections — 
Talk'd frequently with the People and magnified the pretensions of my 

Letters for 1803 37 

opponent and lessened mine — merely because I was Friendly with you 
and because he presumed that upon the casualty of Hyde County's being 
added to the same district with Beaufort that I should be devoted to the 
election of Mr Blount — who he was well aware stood in the way of his 
preferment as a Member of Congress — And that by destroying my in- 
fluence He was advancing his own Election — 

In this situation stood things when the Election commenced — The first 
I heard positively on the subject was from Mr Kennedy He made known 
to me that he was a Candidate, and ask'd my Support in the Election I 
told him frankly that I should vote for Mr Blount — He then pray'd that I 
would not violently oppose his Election — I observed that it was neither 
my duty or (4) inclination to enter violently into the Congress Election, it 
was not usual for me to do so — That I was bound to give my vote as my 
conscience approved, and if any of my Friends ask'd my opinion I should 
freely give it — but further It was not my duty to interfere. 

The chief reasons insisted upon, as I have understood — in support of 
the charge were because Major Wilkins 102 — Capt Chambers Mr R. 
Martin and some others that have been uniformly in my Election was in 
favour of Mr Kennedy — Does it follow that because those Men have uni- 
formly supported my Election that they are bound to resign all priviledge 
of choosing for themselves — Those Men are as independent in their opin- 
ion as Men generally are, and I have greatly doubted whether a pride 
they had in being thought independant had not too much influence in their 
determination — For I am well assured that Mr Kennedy did not hesitate 
to point out to some who profess 'd to be his Friends that he much feared 
the influence I had among the People, would serve to make them re- 
nounce him. with regard to those Men I was placed in a delicate situ- 
ation — Had I have opened my Mouth they would have seen my 
object — they would have immediately perceiv'd that I wished them to re- 
linquish there opinion and adopt mine — Some of them pretended to ad- 
vise with me on the subject — I told them how I intended to vote, and 
impress 'd the reasons by which I was influenced — And this I uniformly 
did when I was spoken to on the subject (5) And this was as much as I 
did do except when I come athought [across?] Persons going against the 
Character of Thomas Blount — The calumny made use of by Mr Ken- 
nedy & Friends — I did at all times oppose, and explained to the People 
how it had got abroad — In the mean time I never did speak first to any 
Person on the subject of elections with an intention to change his 

102 This was perhaps William Wilkins of Edgecombe County, who served in the North 
Carolina House of Commons from 1820 to 1823. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 276, 278, 
280, 282. 

38 John Gray Blount Papers 

mind — this I carefully avoided being as I conceiv'd improper — How far a 
Silence of this kind is criminal — impartial judges must determine — 

From the foregoing you will be able to see the situation I was placed in 
with regard to the Candidates and their Friends — On the part of Mr 
Blount I was bound in the strongest chains — The evidence in my own 
conscience were not to be resisted — no personal considerations could 
have made me hesitate — Even the obligations I owe you which are con- 
fessedly greater than I owe any Man or even any Ten Men on the other 
side — who were deeply concerned in the Election would not have made 
me hesitate — had the weight thereof been in the opposite balance — 

On the part of Mr Kennedy I had no inducement — except to repay the 
ill services he had previously done me. From my Frankness towards him 
I had nothing to hope — I had no doubt added a Ten Fold chain to his 
former prejudices — My opinion was as decidedly express'd to all his 
Friends — To Mr Kennedy and his Friends I appeal for the Truth of the 
foregoing — defying the power of Malice envy & Hatred — arrayed with 
all its injenuity to bring to the ground a single word 

(6) Before I dismiss the subject I must say that notwithstanding the 
politeness and Friendship with which you have so generally treated 
me — that had Mr Kennedy in my estimation been a greater and Better 
Man — than Mr Blount, conceiving that no personal considerations ought 
to influence a Mans vote — I should certainly have voted for him nor 
should I have kept my intentions concealed — but would have openly 
avow'd them — And the Idea that seems to be convey 'd in the charge 
against me — That I was so dependant — we will say on you for I know no 
other person to whom I am particular [l]y bound — that notwithstand- 
ing — I was inclined towards Mr Kennedy's election, and secretly aided 
it — yet I dare not openly declare against Mr Blount — This is but a fair 
translation of the charge — and it presumes so great a share of servility 
and dependance that it serves to lessen me greatly in my own estima- 
tion — That Men who best know, should set so low a price upon me — 

You are here presented with a view of the whole ground and will 
determine for yourself — and let your conclusion be what it may — as no 
(7) Personal obligations to you should make me vote for Thomas Blount 
against my own opinion — so no ill treatment that I could receive from 
you should make [me] vote against him contrary to that opinion — 

I have the Honor to be 
Sir yr mo. obt Servt 
Hen. Selby 

Addressed: John G. Blount esquire 

Letters for 1803 39 

William Blackledge to [John Gray Blount] 

Washington Nov° 3 d 1803 

Dear Sir/ 

I have made every possible inquiry for your old acquaintance Thomas, 
& from the best accounts which can be got of him he is gone to Balti- 
more where he is not able scarcely to get along — he is very poor indeed 
and I fear from his charcter will never be in a better situation — Not 
being able to learn any thing by the members from Ohio, either of the 
value or quality of the Generals lands in that State I have wrote on to the 
Sheriff of the County of Fairfield in which it lies for information, as to its 
quality, situation as regards water & water Courses, the price it would 
sell for in Cash, & whether it is like to rise much in value & from what 
Causes, also to know whether any taxes are due upon it, & how much if 
any & have promised to transmit the am 1 by Col Worthington one of the 
Senators who has appeared to be very desirous of serving me, this I attri- 
bute to the Friendship he has for Macon who introduced me to him. 

The papers have no doubt given you an account of our having ratified 
the treaty & passed all the laws necessary for carrying it into effect — 
And according to your predictions the Feds opposed the passage of every 
law necessary to that purpose almost to a man, there was not any great 
deal of shouting in our house upon the subject, but in the Senate they 
have disputed every inch of ground, not one of the Bills but (2) was op- 
posed, the Bill making the appropriations & for establishing the Stock in 
particular was opposed with great warmth — They urged in the first 
place that though by the Constitution we were allowed to add new states 
to the Union that still it was only [illegible] for New States to be 
[ejrected within the limits of the 13 United State as they were then 
understood — Hon Major Butler 103 contradicted them by shewing that he 
was in the Convention when the Constitution was formed, & asserted 
that that article in the Constitution was proposed by Governeur Mor- 
ris 104 of New York that the middle & some of the Southern members did 

103 Pierce Butler of Charleston, South Carolina, was born in Ireland and came to America 
before the Revolution as an officer in the British army. He was a member of the Conti- 
nental Congress for two years, was a delegate to the Constitutional Convention in 1787, and 
served in the United States Senate during the 1790s. In November, 1802, he was elected to 
the United States Senate to complete the term of John Ewing Colhoun, who had died. But- 
ler resigned his seat in 1804. He died in Philadelphia in 1822. During his career in the Sen- 
ate he was a Jeffersonian Republican. Biographical Directory of Congress, 682. 

104 Gouverneur Morris of New York, a lawyer by profession, had a long and distinguished 
career as a political leader. He signed the Articles of Confederation, served in the Conti- 
nental Congress, and performed diplomatic service on several occasions. He was a member 
of the Constitutional Convention and helped draft the Constitution. A Federalist, he served 
in the United States Senate from April, 1800, to March, 1803. He died in 1816. Biographical 
Directory of Congress, 1440. 

40 John Gray Blount Papers 

not like the Article, when it was used expressly as an Argument in favor 
of it, that in the event of Canada throwing off her allegiance & become- 
ing independant of Britain, it would Certainly be good policy in us to re- 
ceive them into the Union if they were desirous of it & every Eastern 
member advocated the Clause upon that very principle — It was next ob- 
jected that by the Constitution the duties imposts &c were to be uniform 
throughout the states, & no preference is to be given to the Ports of one 
state over those of another — and by the Treaty French & Spanish vessels 
were to be admitted into the ports of the ceded territory on better terms 
than they were to have in the other ports of the U.S. & French & Span- 
ish goods of course might be imported there on better terms for twelve 
years at least — The first reply to this was that these ports were not ports 
of any of the United States forming the Constitution nor within their 
limits, that true they were ports in a territory acquired, & this preference 
was properly to be considered as a part of the consideration which we 
gave for the Country, and we were not by the treaty bound to incorpo- 
rate the inhabitants & admit them to all the rights advantages & im- 
munities of Citizens of the United States, till by the principles of the (3) 
Constitution it could be done, & if it should be found that the constitu- 
tion forbade it, then it might be amended, & there was no doubt but all 
the states would agree to make the amendment, if it were for no other 
purpose than to secure to us the benefit of the treaty — But in Order to 
shew what had been the opinion of the former Administrations upon this 
subject — The 3 d article of Jays treaty 106 was read whereby British sub- 
jects are permited to import goods into the Ports upon the lakes upon the 
same terms that American citizens can, in this treaty as also by the 
Treaty with Spain it was shewn we had acquired citizens, who were en- 
joying all the rights advantages & immunities of American Citizens with- 
out passing any particular act of incorporation other than adopting the 
treaty — It was next objected that we were giving 1 5 Millions for a terri- 
tory which France had not a right to convey, for the treaty of S l Idel- 
fonzo 106 [sic] refered to in our treaty it appeared there was only a promise 

105 During the European wars that erupted as a result of the French Revolution, trouble 
emerged between Great Britain and the United States over neutral rights. The disputes ap- 
peared to be leading the two nations into war. John Jay, chief justice of the United States 
Supreme Court and a seasoned diplomat, was sent in 1794 by President George Washing- 
ton to treat with Great Britain for a settlement of differences. On the key issue — Britain's 
recognition of the American position on neutral rights — Jay won no concessions. He did, 
however, conclude a treaty, which, although it kept the United States out of war, was un- 
popular with most Americans, especially the followers of Thomas Jefferson. Thomas A. 
Bailey, A Diplomatic History of the American People (New York: Appleton-Century-Crafts, Inc., 
Sixth Edition, 1958), 73-80, hereinafter cited as Bailey, Diplomatic History. 

106 The Treaty of San Ildefonso (October 1, 1800) was a secret arrangement by which 
Spain returned to France the Louisiana Territory, which France had ceded to Spain in 

Letters for 1803 41 

on the part of Spain to cede to France, and that upon Conditions re- 
lating to the Duke of Parma 107 which were nof complied with. The 
answer to this was that on application to the King of Spain about the in- 
fringement of the treaty in our right of deposit our minister was informed 
that Louisiana was ceded to France & liable to our treaty, that in a 
subsequent treaty between France & Spain the latter speaks of the terri- 
tory as ceded to France, and further that the French Minister near our 
Government was now actually in possession of the Orders, under the 
Signature of the King of Spain, directed to the Governor of Louisiana di- 
recting the Country to be delivered; all which went to prove that the 
King of Spain either Considered the Conditions of the treaty of S l Idel- 
fonso fulfilled or had rec d some recompence for it. It was then urged that 
though this was true yet it was equally so, that Spain was very averse to 
our geting the Country & had it was said, protested ag l our taking pos- 
session & a war with her woud probably be the result — Here it was 
asked what was the language of gentlemen last year? What had made 
Spain so much more formidable? What had made the right of deposit so 
much more valuable, then than it is now? What had lessend the value of 
our (4) Western Country so much since last Session? that we should now 
let go the security we had procured for this right which then to them was 
"too valuable to be held by a tenure so slender" — Was it of no impor- 
tance that if we must fight for it that we should at least have by the 
treaty & our money, removed France from the list of our enemies — Last 
session Spain was represented as a weak & dastardly nation, & France 
as one of the most formidable & ambitious upon earth, & therefore we 
ought by all means to prevent the latter from getting foot hold & be- 
coming our neighbor — It was then a degradation of national character to 
submit to insults from a power so comtemptable as the Spanish — Now 
we ought not to inforce our rights for fear of affronting them. The Presi- 

1762. Richard B. Morris (ed.), Encyclopedia of American History (New York: Harper and Row, 
Publishers, Revised Edition, 1965), 132, hereinafter cited as Morris, Encyclopedia of American 

107 The duke of Parma was a Spanish Bourbon prince who ruled over the Duchy of Parma 
in northern Italy. In March, 1801, Napoleon Bonaparte awarded the Grand Duchy of Tus- 
cany, also in northern Italy, to the duke of Parma's son. Tuscany was henceforth to be 
called the kingdom of Etruria and the duke of Parma's son was to be its king. Thus 
Tuscany was to serve as compensation to Spain for the retrocession of the Louisiana Terri- 
tory that Spain had agreed to the year before. In the bargain of 1801 France was also sup- 
posed to acquire Parma. The aging duke of Parma refused to accept the agreement, and 
Napoleon did not make an issue of it until after the old duke died. The matter was settled 
in 1802, but word of the settlement apparently had not reached some members of Congress 
at the time Jefferson purchased Louisiana, as was indicated by their contention that Louisi- 
ana was not Napoleon's to sell. Georges LeFebvre, Napoleon from 18 Brumaire to Tilsit, 
1799-1807 (New York: Columbia University Press, 1969), 104, 172; Julius W. Pratt, A History 
of United States Foreign Policy (Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, Second Edition, 1965), 

42 John Gray Blount Papers 

dent I understand has sent an express to Gov r Claybourn 108 of the Mis- 
sissippi Territory to receive possession, & authorised him to call Gen 
Wilkerson 109 to his aid should the Spaniards refuse (as it is rumored they 
will) to give possession — By a dispatch from Capt n Bainbridge 110 to the 
Secretary of State we learn that about the 29 th Aug 1 he captured a 22 gun 
ship belonging to the Emperor of Morocco, which had a few days before 
taken a ship from Boston he also retook the prize & was carrying them 
into Jabrator [Gibraltar?] — times look a little Squaly, but I hope when 
the Spaniards find we are not to be Scared they will not reduce us to the 
necessity of using force My respects to M r8 Blount & family & connec- 
tions — & accept the best wishes of your trouble some correspondent 

W m Blackledge 

I dont think that this place will afford you a good market for lumber, as 
it improves but slowly, I will let you know in my next the best which can 
be done 


[No address] 

John Roulhac to John Gray Blount 

November 12 th 1803 

D r Sir— 

I take the liberty to adress you this to inform you that a number of us 
here, have undertaken to get the former law passed in 1796 for cutting a 

108 William C. Claiborne was the first governor of the Louisiana Territory, being formally 
installed on October 1, 1804. He and James Wilkinson were the two American commission- 
ers who had taken formal possession of the territory on December 20, 1803. Ray Allen 
Billington, Westward Expansion (New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., Inc., Fourth Edition, 
1974), 238, hereinafter cited as Billington, Westward Expansion; Morris, Encyclopedia of Ameri- 
can History, 133. 

109 General James Wilkinson of Kentucky was a "colorful scoundrel" who, both before 
and after he entered the United States Army, conspired with Spanish officials in Louisiana 
to start a revolution in American territory between the Appalachians and the Mississippi 
River and ostensibly to establish an independent western republic. Despite his involvement 
in intrigue with foreign powers Wilkinson managed to hold on to his position in the army. 
Billington, Westward Expansion, 226-227, 229, 232-233, 238, 271. 

110 Captain William Bainbridge was a naval officer who distinguished himself in the War 
of 1812. During the early years of the nineteenth century the United States was engaged in 
the Tripolitan War against North African pirates who raided American shipping. Morris, 
Encyclopedia of American History, 131, 142. 

Letters for 1803 43 

Canal from Plymouth to the head of Pungo river, 111 revived & amended 
this Session. I wish'd to have had Some conversation with you on the 
Subject last Court, but my Short Stay there, & your being detained very 
late in the Court-house the last evening I was there deprived me of that 
pleasure, the Bill is now going up, with all the other necessary papers by 
Col 1 Ed d Blount 112 one of the members from Washington County, he has 
got also a map of the Country, drawn by M r Trotter from Prices plate, & 
actual Surveyes furnished by the Company, the Bill is drawn for a fee 
Simple, which all the friends of the measure, are anxious to See granted, 
if possible, by the Assembly, as on those terms there is no doubt but it 
will be undertaken & carried into effect. Some observations on that head 
to obviate the objections to Such grant, have been drawn, at the request 
of Several friends of the Bill, & will be communicated by Col 1 Blount, to 
any of the members disposed to favour the measure in either house, lay- 
ing aside the great public benefit which must be derived from carrying 
this canal into effect. I have Supposed that all the holders of lands inter- 
sected by the Same, or contiguous to it, would be ready & willing to give 
the Bill thro' their friends in either house, all the Support in their power; 
I know that String Should not be touched to the members for your 
County, as the measure, has been Supposed to be prejudicial to your 
town, but with others, the Same reasons do not exist. I Should wish you, 
[manuscript torn] contrary to your inclination, (2) to Secure to the Bill in 
its present form, the Support of your friends there, but above all to en- 
gage M r Edward Harriss not to oppose the fee Simple; as very likely we 
will not be able to fill up our Subscription without that requisite. I 
Should have applyed to him myself, & craved his Support for the Bill, 
had I not been assured that it Should not pass in that Shape if intro- 
duced by any gentleman of the profession, we expect from the Situation 
of your lands up the river that you will be one of the greatest holders in 
the Company; I was up to your place over the Bridge last week, I went 
by water, as far as the widow Davis, & then went up by land, to asser- 
tain the quantity & depth of the water, & the practicability of the Busi- 
ness, & collect other information; I have no doubt that it can be done, & 

111 The Pungo River begins in Washington County, flows southward through part of 
Beaufort County, and empties into the Pamlico River. The Pamlico River eventually emp- 
ties into Pamlico Sound. William S. Powell, The North Carolina Gazetteer (Chapel Hill: Uni- 
versity of North Carolina Press, 1968), 398, hereinafter cited as Powell, North Carolina 

112 For Edmund Blount see 1803, n. 60. 

44 John Gray Blount Papers 

that there will be plenty of water any where between the Bridge & the 
fork of the river; Excuse my Hurry & believe me with Esteem 

your Most Ob 1 Serv 1 
John Roulhac 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
Washington N.C. 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

City of Washington Dec r 27 th 1 803 

Dear Sir/ 

Inclosed I send you the answer of the Sheriff in Ohio to my letter re- 
specting the General's land, I shall by return of the Mail inclose to him a 
five dollar bank bill, or send it him by Col. Worthington if he will be so 
obliging as to forward it to him, but he is so frequently troubled with 
business of this kind that I feel an un willingness to impose upon his 
good nature — Agreeably to the request of M r Kratzer I shall write him 
on the subject he wishes to be informed of, & in my letter shall request 
particular inquiry as to the actual value of the lands — 

We this day have rec d letters from Natchez of the 10 th Dec 1 " stating that 
at the time the Presidents dispatches reached that place Gen 1 Wilkerson 
one of the Com rs appointed to take possession was at Tombigby, and 
from the highth of the waters between those two places was obliged to 
return to Natchez by New Orleans, where he was assured by the Mar- 
quis de Casa Calva 113 who had been appointed Commissioner to deliver 
possession to the French that possession would be del'd without any 
unnecessary delays & that our commissioners had left fort adams a few 
days before (2) in order to take possession — By another letter of the Same 
date from the Same place, we are told that information was rec d the day 
before from L. Assatt 114 the French Prefect stating that he was in posses- 

113 Sebastian Casa Calvo de la Puerta y O'Farrill was one of two Spanish commissioners 
appointed to transfer Louisiana to the French. A former governor of the province, the mar- 
quis de Casa Calvo resented both the French and the Americans and tried desperately to 
protect the integrity of Spain's Florida boundaries after the cession of Louisiana. Alexander 
DeConde, This Affair of Louisiana (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1976), 204, 209, 
220-221, hereinafter cited as DeConde, This Affair of Louisiana. 

114 Pierre Clement de Laussat, a thirty-six-year-old politician, arrived in New Orleans in 
March, 1803, as colonial prefect for Louisiana; his job was to prepare the colony for French 
occupation. When rumors of the sale of Louisiana from France to the United States 
reached New Orleans later that spring, Laussat was stunned. He had received no official 

Letters for 1803 45 

sion & waiting the arrival of our Commissioners to deliver possession — 
So much for this Subject — As to Congressional business we rally have 
nothing of importance before us, in the course of this week we expect a 
bill reported for establishing a government for the Ceded territory — We 
have already passed a bill through our house for applying the revenue 
laws to the Country, and it is now before the Senate — There is but one 
port of entry established & that at New Orleans, the president is how- 
ever authorised if it should be found necessary to establish one on the 
Mobiel — It is much desired by the merchants at Natchez to have that a 
port of entry, but as it usually takes a month & often two to go in Sea 
Vessels from N. Orleans to Natchez, it is feared that it will give too great 
facility to smuggling & therefore it is not likely it will be established, it is 
however made a port of delivery — An attempt has been made by the Re- 
pubs to abolish the offices of the commissioners of loans, & transfer the 
duties of these offices to the depart(3)ment of State — In this neither my- 
self, Doctor Alexander nor your representative could join them — The 
opinion of the house on the measure was tried on a resolution stating 
that it would be expedient to do it, & was carried by a majority of two 
votes only — from whence we may conclude it will not be carried this Ses- 
sion — My own reason for opposing it was first that it would be attended 
with the effect of depreciating the value of the Stock in all the States 
North of Pennsylvania & South of Virginia, as no trasfer [sic] could after- 
wards be made without sending on to the City of Washington by mail or 
private conveyance the old certificate with a power of Attorney to some 
person to transact the business for the holder of the stock — who would 
thus be subjected to considerable delay, some expence, as well as risque 
of loss of his certificates in the mail. These reasons satisfied my mind 
that a depression in the value of the stock would be a consequence of the 
measure, but it does not seem to have satisfied most of the republicans, 
for they all agreed that if they thought it would have this effect they 
would not support the measure. The object of the measure was to save 
about 18 or 20,000$ a year, a thing I should be very proud to see effected, 
if it could be without being attended by Consequences likely to do much 
more harm both to the Administration and the government in general, 
than this saving would do good — The administration you know have 
been accused of possessing principles unfavorable to the Credit of the 
United (4) States, heretofore their measures and the price of stock under 
them have given the lye to the accusation — Government may again be 

word from Paris and did not until August when Napoleon ordered him to deliver Louisiana 
to the United States after accepting the colony from Spain. The transfer of Louisiana to the 
Americans took place on December 20, 1803. During the ceremony Laussat broke down and 
cried. Lamented he: "What a magnificent New France we lost!" DeConde, This Affair of 
Louisiana, 103, 150-152, 196-197, 204-206. 

46 John Gray Blount Papers 

compelled to borrow money & to open offices in all the states of the 
Union in order to raise the Sum wanted, & then in order to get the 
money upon as low terms as possible they will have to offer all the con- 
veniences of transfering the stock & paying the Interest at the offices 
where they subscribe the loans, which were offered to the Subscribers of 
the present debt — But will the people believe that the government in- 
tends to perform its engagements when they see how they have treated 
those who have formerly loaned them money? In addition to these cir- 
cumstances, as a representative of N.C. I was convinced that after the 
whole of the direct tax was collected — our state would be put to consid- 
erable trouble, risque & expence in sending to some one of the Collectors 
three or four times a year for the interest & reimbursment of that part of 
the Stock which they hold, as after that the US. will not have money at 
any other place in the state to pay it — Please to present my most friendly 
respects to M rs Blount & the whole of your family in & about Washing- 
ton, & accept the best wishes of your Obd 1 Serv* 

W m Blackledge 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 
Beaufort County 
N Carolina 


John G. L. Schenck to John Gray Blount 

Tarborough 3 d January 1804 

Dear Sir 

I received your favor by M r Stuart 1 & am much obliged by your atten- 
tion in the inquiries you made respecting M r Hyslop, I begin to fear that 
my money in his hands is in Jeoperdy, inclosed is a letter for him in 
which I have requested if he has not sent the money by Captain M c Keel 
to send it on by Captain Lingo, I will thank Capt n L. if he goes to Kings- 
ton to deliver the letter to him in person & know of him if the remmit- 
tance has been made & should he goe to the North side he will oblige me 
in forwarding it — 

I could not get the Pork for the Navy ready to goe this time, but have 
sent down 50 barrels of Cargoe Pork in good order & ready pickled and 
50 bags each bag containing 3 bushels white peas, I am perfectly willing 
to risque these articles to any market that you think proper to send Cap- 
tain Lingo too, and will thank you to instruct Capt n Lingo to act with 
the proceeds in the like manner that he is directed to do with yours If he 
makes remittances to the Northward I will thank him (2) to place my 
part in the hands of Mess 1-8 Benjamin & John Cemegys of Baltimore or 
M r Grove Wright of New York as the opportunity may offer & in case of 
his arrival at Norfolk I will thank him whatever he may have for me to 
place it in M r John Granbery's hands I shall be most obliged by your at- 
tention and remain with much esteem and Respect 

Your Obt Servant 
Jn° G. L. Schenck 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 

pm Dupree 

^ohn Stuart was a businessman whose dealings with the Blounts went back at least as 
far as 1790. Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 637. 

48 John Gray Blount Papers 

Ann Harvey 2 to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville August 3 the 1804 
Dear Brother, 

since I wrote you last post, thare came a man from Comberlin, who 
says he saw Mr Strawther [Strother], 3 & John, 4 both well, & that Mr 
Strawther told him, that John would return to NC in September, I have 
not had a Letter from John since he left this, I suppost both him & 
Strawther has written you often since being thare I told them both at 
parting thay ought to do so as it mite of much Consiquence to you to 
know what thay were at bout to do — I have heard nothing from Willie 
since I wrote you I expect him here this mounth — its said the Assembly 
will rise tomorrow thay have appointed John Overton 5 Judge in the room 
of Andrew Jackson, 6 who sent on his Resignation, with the Members 
from that place, Judge White 7 also ressign'd the first day the Assembly 
meet, its thought he will accept again, if thay raise the salary of the 
Judges which its said thay are about to do before it was only six hundred 
Dollars White said, as he was poor he could not do his family justuice to 
continue office any longer — I feel myself in better Health this last week 
than I have since being here I am now well as are all the family here — 
Barbaraly 8 has this week began her Inglish Grammer with Parsson Cor- 

2 For Ann Blount Harvey see 1803, n. 37. 

3 John Strother of Orange County was a mapmaker and surveyor who worked as a 
Blount land agent for many years. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, lOn. 

4 John Gray Blount, Jr., occasionally helped his father in managing the Blounts' extensive 
Tennessee landholdings. 

5 John Overton was a lawyer, bank president, planter, and land speculator. Perhaps the 
wealthiest man in Tennessee, he was deeply involved in politics. His friendship with 
Andrew Jackson began in 1789, and he was long identified with the Blount faction, which 
was later led by Jackson. Overton and Pleasant Miller were among those who promoted 
Jackson for president of the United States and planned the strategy of his campaign. 
Folmsbee and others, Tennessee, I, 293. 

6 Andrew Jackson, who would be elected president of the United States in 1828, was 
already a prominent military and political figure in Tennessee by 1804. By the time he was 
elected a major general of the Tennessee militia in 1802, he had already served one term in 
the United States House of Representatives and part of a term in the United States Senate, 
and at the time he was elected to his military post he was a judge of the supreme court of 
Tennessee. In July, 1804, Jackson left the bench and went to the "Hermitage," near Nash- 
ville, to engage in planting and mercantile pursuits. A year later he fell victim to the 
charms of Aaron Burr and almost became directly, if inadvertently, involved in the Burr 
conspiracy. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1176; Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of 
American Empire, 119, 144-164. 

7 Hugh Lawson White, son of a prominent early Tennessee pioneer, was elected in 1801, 
at the age of twenty-eight, as a judge of the superior court of Tennessee. He held a number 
of other political posts and was a candidate for president of the United States in 1836. 
Folmsbee and others, Tennessee, I, 293-294, 322-325; Nancy N. Scott (ed.), A Memoir of Hugh 
Lawson White (Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott and Co., 1856), 1-18. 

8 This was Barbara Blount, a daughter of William and Mary Grainger Blount. She later 
married General Edmund P. Gaines. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xixn. 

Letters for 1804 


Hugh Lawson White (1773-1 H40) was 
born in Iredell County, North Carolina, 
but moved to what later became Knox 
County, Tennessee, in 1785. His long and 
successful political career culminated in 
his candidacy for president in 1836; he 
was defeated by Martin Van Buren. Pho- 
tograph from S. G. Heiskell, Andrew Jack- 
son and Early Tennessee History (Nashville: 
Privately printed, Second Edition, 2 vol- 
umes, 1920), I, facing p. 641. 

righ 9 who is said to [be] a very good teacher, she had made as great 
progress as any one of his scholars has before done the first week, as the 
School is broke up, that they both went to, when I come here. I have 
undertaken to larn Eliza 10 at home, as she appears to be very willing to 
larn, & I have a good room up stairs, she spells 4 lessons & reeds 4 every 
day, & writs a coppy each day Mary 11 joins me in Love to you & family 
all a round, I should be very glad to hear from my Relations in NC I 
have had 1 Letter Nancy Toole 12 sine which is the only one from NC 
thare on one last post for John 13 which I sent on to him I supposd it to be 
from his brother Thomas 14 I am affectinately yours 

Anne Harvey 

I write to Nancy this post 

Addressed: John Gray Blount 
Post Master 
Washington NC 

9 This is probably a reference to "the Reverend Mr. Carrick," who had a school and 
taught the Blount children. William H. Masterson, William Blount (Baton Rouge: Louisi- 
ana State University Press, 1954), 327, 343, hereinafter cited as Masterson, William Blount. 

10 Eliza Blount was a daughter of William Blount. She later became the wife of Dr. Edwin 
Wiatt. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xixn. 

"Mary Blount was another of William Blount's daughters. She married Pleasant Miller, 
the Knoxville political leader. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xixn. 

12 Ann ("Nancy") Blount, the oldest of William Blount's daughters, first married Henry 
Toole. Her second marriage was to Weeks Hadley of Edgecombe County. Keith and 
others, Blount Papers, III, 97n, 42 In. 

13 For John Gray Blount, Jr., see 1803, n. 28. 

14 For Thomas Harvey Blount see 1803, n. 28. 


John Gallagher to John Gray Blount 

PmLAD a Jan y 10 th 1805 


With regret I have to inform you that after I had got the Vessel up to 
Reedy Island & had went by Land to Philad a leaving Orders with the 
Pilot to proceed up if possible I settled the Pilotage with M r Shannon 1 
and contrary to what I wrote you last had determined to proceed to New 
York as soon as I went down but the Pilot had her under way five Hours 
before I got there and arrived in Philad a shortly after I left it indeed the 
People were not in a proper State to proceed to Sea and the Strong 
North and N E gales we had directly after made me not to lament get- 
ting up James was frosted that he could scaresly walk Tom had his feet 
likewisse frosted the Boy not being used to the Sea and the severe cold 
would have been of little use and I Really think I should have been ob- 
liged to have put in to the Capes again indeed it was as much as the 
Pilot could do to get her up with them M r Wallace 2 has been in the same 
condition as in the former Voyage Sick as soon as at Sea and so remain- 
ing till into Port I hope [he] will amend coming home no Vessel has got 
out since I come up Day before Yesterday they were Skeating on the 
River since that we have had a Steady rain and East Wind if this 
Weather hold a few Days longer we shall again have the Navigation open 
if I was in any Port but Philad a my mind would be more at ease but I 
know that you will dome the Justice to think that no Motives of Kindred 
would make me detain my Vessel one Moment (2) Freight is scarce I 
have on Board One Box of Merchandise three of Sadlery three thousand 
Bricks twenty thousand Lathes and ten Bbls Bread I shall tomorrow ad- 
vertise for freight to New Bern or Washington I shall do all in my power 
to get a full Vessel and shall think myself satisfied as long as I can pre- 
serve a place in your good opinion which I am confident I could have 
done if this cursed River had kept open a short time longer — there is not 
remembered a Winter those many Years that set in so sudden and severe 
nor of so many Vessels lost on the Coast as this 

x For William Shannon see 1803, n. 19. 

2 There were a number of Wallaces connected with Shell Castle and the Blounts. The 
most prominent of the Wallaces was John, a business partner of John Gray Blount, who 
usually was referred to as "the governor." The reference here is certainly not to John, but 
might be to David Wallace, John's brother, or to Reuben Wallace. Keith and others, Blount 
Papers, II, 288, 310. See also 1803, n. 12. 

52 John Gray Blount Papers 

I shall conclude with my best wishes for the Health of You and Yours 
that I Remain Sir 

Your Most Obedient 
Humble Servant 
John Gallagher 

John G Blount Esq 6 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq' 
N C 

David Pidge 3 to John Gray Blount 

Shellcastle 1 9 th Jan y 1805 

D r Sir, 

This is to inform you of the unhappy affair that took place at this Of- 
fice on Sunday — night last, there was a Sloop belonging to New York by 
the name of the Jackall Joseph Hulett master Stranded on the Swash on 
the 21 st of Dece r last and her sales was conducted by M r Mayo 4 which 
after collectin nearly all the money to the amount of Sales it was deposit- 
ed in the office here, M r Mayo had occation to go to his Trunk Soon 
after candle light on the night before mentioned and upon opening his 
trunk he discovered the money was gone, upon which there was an im- 
mediate search made and a great number of Strangers on the Castle at 
the time, the amount of the money taken was 259 Dollars consisting of 16 
American Eagles 6 a number of Bank Bills & forty Eight Dollars in Silver. 
the people were all called in to M r Pinkhams 6 Tavern and a number of 
them were Stripped & Searched but no discovery made, In this state of 

3 It is obvious from the letters that David Pidge wrote to John Gray Blount that he was 
an employee who worked at Shell Castle. Other than this, no information on Pidge has 
been located. 

4 John Mayo was an associate of John Wallace and of the Blounts at Shell Castle. He 
served as the administrator of Wallace's estate in 1810, selling all of the deceased's perish- 
able property and hiring out several of his slaves. Stick, The Outer Banks, 83. 

5 American Eagles were $10 gold coins. The Liberty Cap Eagle was minted between 1795 
and 1797; the Heraldic Eagle from 1797 to 1804. No eagles were minted from 1805 through 
1837. Chester L. Krause and Clifford Mishler (comps.), Standard Catalog of World Coins (Iola, 
Wis.: Krause Publications, 1972), 730-731. 

8 This was probably Nathaniel Pinkham, who had earlier sailed for the Blounts as a crew 
member of the sloop Beaver. By 1805 he was apparently running a tavern at Shell Castle. He 
represented Carteret County in the General Assembly at various times between 1798 and 
1819. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 238, 239, 249, 251, 252, 258, 262, 264, 271, 273, 275; 
Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 296, 310. 

Letters for 1805 53 

confusion they Generaly began to censure me as being accessary to the 
affair and [I] became the only object of suspition. I therefore was keep in 
custody the best part of the night and notwithstanding I made every dec- 
laration of my innocence in the matter I was Still held as the criminal, 
this Originated as I afterwards found by my Good friend M r Pinkham in 
a great measure, who was in all company that was collected for the most 
part of the time useing every method & scheme to Distroy my character 
& reputation, declaring that I was the person that robbed the office and 
that he thought it the most propper (2) to put me into Jail and make up 
the money to M r Mayo, but M r Mayo and Others would not hear to the 
proposal, and by their Unity I was keep out of Jail The day after the 
money was taken there was a search warrant Issued every chest & trunk 
to a very few was opened but no discovery made, at this time M r Mayo 
had nearly dispared of finding any part ever again he thin Sat up an Ad- 
vertisement which was wrote in a very moveing manner requesting the 
persons who had taken the money to replace it again [and they] might 
keep all the Silver money and no questions would be asked, the money 
was brought in the course of the night and laid on one of the seats in the 
piazza of the office and found the next morning by M r Pinkham — the 
night that it was brought I have proved by Cap 1 Voorhees that I went to 
bed with him about Eight-OClock in the Evening and continued in bed 
with him till the morning following and likewise by another person — A 
number of things about the same time occurred that gave the people to 
think more favorable of me and the censure shifted another way — The 
Governor 7 & M r Mayo I can say thinks favorable of me and I hope that I 
shall soon convince the world that I am innocent of the affair — I shall re- 
quest M r Mayo to write you upon the Subject and let you know what his 
Opinion is — And what I have to request of you after being abused 
beyond measure is to inform me how I shall seek redress for the injury I 
have sustained by M r Pinkham who did assert upon all Occations that I 
was the person that robbed the office when at the same time he could not 
(3) bring forward the least circumstance that could prove me a person of 
that character. I shall refer you for further particulars concerning the 
proceedings with respect to M r Pinkham and the Tavern of to those who 
have been here which I presume you are no Stranger too — 

Sir please to send me a line On the subject by the first conveyance — I 
remain dear Sir with profound respect your Obde 1 Serv 1 

David Pidge 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 

7 This reference is to John Wallace. See 1803, n. 12; 1805, n. 2. 

54 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Gay lard 8 to John Gray Blount 

Broad Creek, Satterday 2 th Fe ry 1805 

M r Blount 

Sir, Last Night I Re d your Letter, and Strickly Observed its contents, I 
with Reluctions answer it, as I fear it will not be Sattisfactory to you, tho 
I ought not to be blam d , I not as yet got to work on the vessels, thoe it 
has been my wish to have don it Long ago, but M r Lacey has never as 
yet com over, God only knows what detains him, for I dont, I have wrote 
him twice requesting him to ralley up his hands & Com on as soon as 
possable as I wanted the vessels don & off a hand, I fear he is sick, and 
the Other hands dont Like to go to work without him as foreman, I this 
day Starts two hands over in a Canoe after him & others — & shud it so 
happen that he cant Com, I shall ameadently proceade to som Other 
Sutiable person to carrey her on, no time Shall be Lost in making Every 
dispatch in my power — In respect to the things Sent by M r Wilkinson he 
left them at the Loghouse Landing, & I thursday Last sent my Oxen & 
Cart after them, & Last night they fetch d up, but as they said cudnot 
fetch the hole therefore left the varnish, but M r H. Selby 9 who attended 
to it wrote me that he wood Send it to me in a few days — But as soon as 
conveant after we git to worke, which I hope will be next week, He write 
you, and shud it be conveant He thank you to Let me have the Cotten 
wrote for, and also Eight or ten Barrels of Corn, as I cant git what I 
want here, I am your 

Obd 1 & MH Servant &c 
John Gaylard 

(2) my hands couldnot git over the river after the Carpenters when Send 
on Satterday 2 th Fe ry 1805 — But the Letter is sent on to them as be- 
fore — He thank you to Send me the first oppurtunity 50 blls Nales, a pro- 
poshon of tens & twenty peneys & Charge them to the a/c of your Obe 1 
& MH Serv 1 

John Gaylard 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 

"John Gaylard, an overseer, lived for a time in Hyde County. Later he moved to Broad 
Creek in Beaufort County and became a shipbuilder. Broad Creek was also known as 
Lower Creek. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 504n; Reed, Beaufort County, 165. 

9 This was probably Henry Selby. See 1803, n. 100. 

Letters for 1805 55 

William Sheppard 10 to John Gray Blount 

New bern 7 th February 1805 
Dear Sir/ 

I beg you to accept my thanks for your kindness in communicating to 
me the information brought by M r Keias 11 — the Widows son is a very 
unfortunate Vessel She sailed from Newbern for Jamaica on the 18th 
June where she arrived safe, on her homeward bound passage she was 
captured by a French privateer, then recaptured by a British Cruizer 
and carried back to Jamaica where the Salvage and other expences 
amounted to 1400 Dollars which I have paid here to Bills drawn on me, 
she is now captured again by the same Devils which will probably close 
the Account, as it is not very likely that any satisfaction will be ever ob- 
tained from the prosecution at Orleans (2) Since it appears Bell has left 
that place — 

I have heard from Charleston that the same Schooner was loading at 
Havanna for that or some other southern port — if she comes within my 
reach I shall take the liberty of enquiring by what title they hold her — 

I am with great regard 
Y r Obt Servant 
Wm. Shepard 
John G. Blount esq're 

[No address] 

Samuel Gerock 12 to John Gray Blount 

Newbern Feby 19 th 1805 


Your Brother M r Sharpe Blount, who has been very Sick here, for this 
fortnight past, with a violent and most painful attack of the Gravel, set 

10 William Sheppard was the man who would later erect the first "steam Mill" in New 
Bern on the Trent River. He financed the building of the mill with money he made through 
privateering in the War of 1812. He operated the mill profitably until a competitor built a 
larger mill where the Trent and Neuse rivers flow together. Stephen F. Miller, Recollections 
of New Bern Fifty Tears Ago (Columbus, Ga.: n.p., 1873), 47, hereinafter cited as Miller, Rec- 

"William Keias was at one time a customs officer in Washington, North Carolina. Keith 
and others, Blount Papers, III, 112n. 

12 Samuel Gerock was a bookkeeper in the Bank of New Bern. He was known as "a 
gentleman of the olden school, who wore breeches and cocked hat." Miller, Recollections, 35. 

56 John Gray Blount Papers 

off for home in a Stage waggon along with M r8 Blount, on Sunday last 
7 th Ins 1 in a very infirm State indeed, hopeing by a slow journey to reach 
his home, by their mutual request send you this information, your very 
worthy Brother may be pronounced a much enfeebled, & Sick Man, his 
disorder being Complicated. M r Potter 13 had it in charge to inform you. 
Your [Br] other apprehends, he may have forgot so to do — 

very respectfully 
your M° hble Serv 1 
Sam 1 Gerock 

John G. Blount Esquire 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 * P. M 

Taylor & Justice 14 to John Gray Blount 

Newbern 26 February 1805 
John Gray Blount Esq r 

It is rather a disagreeable task which the nature of the business im- 
poses on us, that causes this appeal to your Judgment — But as it is a 
duty, we have no doubt of your adopting such measures, as will leave us 
no room to complain 

We shall therefore briefly recite the Circumstances and leave them to 
your decision — About the 20 th of December last a Spanish Brig called 
the Carmine was cast away on one of the Shoals of Wallaces Channel, 
her Cargo consisting principally of Raw Hides, and Twenty four Casks 
of molasses, together with such of her Sails & rigging as were saved, was 
deposited at Shell Castle, the Captain Shortly after applied to us to se- 
cure the duties, And to Act as Agents, for the Owners, Underwriters and 
all Concerned which we accepted — In pursuance therof, our Isaac Tay- 
lor 15 went to Shell Castle, and on the 18 th In 1 exposed the Cargo for Sale, 

13 This might possibly have been Judge Henry Potter of New Bern, who would later pre- 
side over the district court for North Carolina's eastern district. Miller, Recollections, 55. 

14 John Justice had "a large country trade" in New Bern during the 1820s and the 1830s. 
Perhaps his establishment had previously been known as Taylor and Justice. Isaac Taylor 
probably was his partner. Miller, Recollections, 58. 

15 For Isaac Taylor see 1805, n. 14. 

Lktters for 1805 57 

which was accomplished on that and the two succeeding days — 
previously, however, to the Sale, he frequently applied to John Wallace 
esq r for the amount of the wharfage, and Storage; but without effect, un- 
till the evening, previous to his departure which was on the 23 d — But 
Governor Wallace had previously agreed that shoud there be any dis- 
agreement as to the charge, that the matter should be left to reference — 
When the charge was at length exhibited, which was 25 Cents p r hide 
amounting to $857 50/100 — (2) exclusively of charges for other things: it 
appeared so excessively high that our Isaac Taylor then applied for the 
naming of the referees — a M r Pinkham, M r Mayou and M r Pedge — were 
successively named by the Governor, but it is Confidently submited to 
you, with what propriety they were objected to, at length the Governor 
agreed that John Devereux 16 esq r of this Town, should solely determine 
the business, and that afull statement of the transaction should be made 
out, and submitted to him, for this purpose he applied to Captain James 
Taylor, 17 and as he was pursuing the Instructions of John Wallace Esq r , 
M r Pinkham intefered, and had influence sufficient with him to prevent 
that measure being resorted to 

Seeing every mode of equitable adjustment fail, our Isaac Taylor left 
the Governor without any arrangement taking place, and we see no 
probability of bringing the business to any close but through you, permit 
us then to make some remarks relative to the trouble and care exercised, 
towards the cargos — there were nearly Two thousand of the hides landed 
dry, the rest had to be frequently handled to preserve and dry them, The 
loft in his warehouse held between twenty seven, and twenty eight 
hundred, three hundred were still hanging in his new house, at the day 
of the sale exposed to the weather & c the molasses was not in any house, 
added to which no receipts for the Cargo or Material were given, as the 
Governor refused to become responsible, indeed the reason he assigned 
for not producing the account at an earlier period than he did, (3) was 
that He should only charge for what he actually delivered 

He made purchaces and assured for others to the amount of 620 dol- 
lars or thereabouts, We are ready to admit, that taking all circumstances 
into consideration as much care was taken of the Hydes as could be ex- 
pected, and the loss in numbers being so small, that it is not worth no- 
tice, the molasses it is true was not Stored, but these circumstances we 
are ready to admit may be overlooked, the principal objection we offer is 

16 John Devereux was a wealthy and highly respected merchant of New Bern who origi- 
nally came from Ireland. Miller, Recollections, 58; Beth G. Crabtree and James W. Patton 
(eds.), "Journal of a Secesh Lady": The Diary of Catherine Ann Devereux Edmondston, 1860-1866 
(Raleigh: Division of Archives and History, 1979), xix-xxi, hereinafter cited as Crabtree and 
Patton, "Journal of a Secesh Lady." 

"Captain James Taylor was inspector of the revenue and surveyor of customs for Beacon 
Island at Ocracoke Inlet. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 440n. 

58 John Gray Blount Papers 

to the charge on the Hydes, which for Storage alone, amounts to nearly 
one third of the neet proceeds of the sales — 

To your decision then Sir we with confidence appeal, as in your recti- 
tude of Judgment we have the most perfect relyance — requesting your 
early answer we are with greatest respect — your Obd 1 Servt 8 

Taylor & Justice 

M r Bernadou one of the owners has just arrived from Philade a he writes 
you by this conveyance — 

[No address] 

John Gaylard to John Gray Blount 

Broad Creek Sunday 1 4 th April 1 805 

Friend Blount, 

my Dear Sir, we are at Last going on very well with the vessel, we 
want a Calker as soon as you can send him, and all Other things that 
you are to Send for the benefit of the vessel — I have no Smiths Shop of 
my own, & Cant git your rod reducs d for Less than 6 d [illegible] in any 
Shop that I know of, and I Send & fetch it back, for they say that they 
had reather make [illegible] rod out of squire Bars, then reduce yours — 
But if you say drive them as they are we will, if possable, and do good 
work — I hope we shall drive on now with the vessel & make a finish be- 
fore we brake off again, they have worred my pations all most thread 
bare, but they now have got their fanny underway, & I hope will Stay 
with me untill I finish & Lanch — I know that I am not intitled to Call on 
you for any thing on my Own a/c, But as I am Short of Cash, & such 
articles as I want very Scarse to be got here — shud it be Conveant with 
you to Send me Six or Eight Barrels of Corn, and Som Baken, & a few 
pounds of Nails, for my own use, as I am out, and often wanting som, 
Sixes Eights & tens, Provided you can with Conveantcy & weight with 
me, untill I can Conveantly pay you; I am your Ob 1 & H Servant & c 

John Gaylard 

NB M r Lacey Says he can drive the [illegible] rod as they are, but that 
he wants an other augor, Say Longr Inch, or reather one inch & half 
Eighth, which youel please to Send me — and also two Bushels of Irish 
potators to plant — and the residue of the Cotten, whrote for hereto- 

Letters for 1805 59 

fore — Give my Compliments to Cap n Jn° Alderson, 18 and tell him, that if 
heal Send me one or two good [manuscript torn] He give the highest 
wages and pay for the time coming & going [manuscript torn] and also 
that I have no water as yet to Saw, the residue of his [manuscript torn] 

your Ob* JG 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 

John Gray Blount to John Haywood 19 

Washington April 15 th 1805 

John Haywood Esquire 
D r Sir 

Yours of the fifth march I rec d & was glad to find that my indent 
toward your man Luke met your approbation; I think he will be more 
fond of home & the treatment there in future. 

The Friends & Heirs of Reading Blount have abundant cause to thank 
you, for the lenity shuon them on account the public debt I suppose 
them in about enough of his Estate to pay the debt without injuring the 
securities if well managed but that consists in piney Lands except two 
Negros and heretofore I have had hopes that them two Negros & two 
small Plantations some improved might [illegible] for the Son & 
Daughter my only two [illegible] but my situation has been such that I 
have not been or am I yet able to run the Lands to their [illegible] am 
but five People want them & they want them for nothing If good piney 
Lands within two to four miles of [illegible] would command one Dollar 
per Acre the money (2) might be raised out of the Lands as well as about 
600$ he owed me & for which the Lands in part were mortgaged to me 
and as the People of that neighbourhood have now began & but now be- 
gan to make Turpentine I have no doubt the Lands will soon sell for a 

"Captain John Alderson of Hyde County was a prominent planter and shipper. Keith 
and others, Blount Papers, III, 62n. 

19 John Haywood was treasurer of North Carolina from 1787 to 1827 and a close friend of 
the Blounts. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 16n. This letter is located in the Ernest 
Haywood Papers, Southern Historical Collection, University of North Carolina Library at 
Chapel Hill and is published with the kind permission of Dr. Carolyn Wallace, the director 
of the collection. 

60 John Gray Blount Papers 

much higher price such lands as them in Bertie County would now sell 
for 2 to 4 $ pr Acre If you will have the Execution sent down I will sell 
either by [illegible] sale [illegible] the two Negros & the Nett proceeds of 
them shall be sent at or before the next Assembly which will I hope pres- 
ent [illegible]. I am geting through my difficulties as well as I can but 
now & then Missfortune runs in my way so that I have been obliged to 
sacrifice some Lands here and have given orders for as much to be sold 
in Tennessee as will pay all I owe and that will be done as soon as 
money can be had for Land at any price, and I hope I may be a gainer 
by it, as such Sums as I can then raise- may be appropriated to the im- 
provement of my Lands here & make them not only valuable but pro- 
ductive in my day and that I may live to see the day when I am clear of 
debt is the sincere prayer of 

Your Friend & obliged 
Humble Servant 
J. G. Blount 

Addressed: Free 

J. G. Blount PM 
Washington N. C. 

John Haywood Esquire 

Richard Tuck 20 to John Gray Blount 

Shell Castle April 20 th 1805 

Dear Sir 

On the 17 th inst there was an arrival here from Kingston (Jamaica) in 
31 Days. Every enquiry relative to Capt Lingo 21 proved fruitless, as no in- 
formation could be had — Nor has the Gov heard of him since he left 
this — 

As it is absolutely necessary that the Bar & Store Rooms for the Tav- 
ern, should be places of safe deposit. I therefore annex a memorandum of 
articles essential to that end and which escaped my notice when at 
Washington, viz — 

20 As revealed in his correspondence with John Gray Blount, Richard Tuck was an em- 
ployee at Shell Castle. No other information has been uncovered. 

21 For Captain Cornelius Lingo see 1803, n. 15. 

Letters for 1805 61 

3 Iron Bars for the windows of those Rooms, of the following dimention 

3 ft. 1 1/2 in length. 

6 Bolts for D° 8 1/4 inch in length. Keys for Do. 

6 Hasps 1 [illegible] Hinges 

1 Iron Latch for Kitchen similar to those already had. 

2 Sliding Bolts for Doors — 

3 ft 1 1/2 in is the breadth of the windows including the frames — 

8 1/4 Inches, the thickness of the frame & Casing therefore the length of 
the Bolts must exceed that of 8 1/4 inches so much as is necessary to re- 
ceive the Bars & Keys — 

The Gov 1 * family is well as usual, 
with due respect 

Your Obd 1 Sev 
Rich d Tuck 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 
Merch 1 

William Polk to John Gray Blount 

Ap 1 26 1805 

Dear Sir: 

I have this day received your letter of the 16 h current & hasten to give 
you the information requested. 

The Sale of the Lands took place in the County of Buncombe in the 
Month of March 1804; yours was sold on the 24 h of that Month from 
which, an equity of redemption runs for two years — the payment is to be 
made to the Sup r or person acting as such in case of his removal, with 25 
Per Cent Interest p r Annum on the purchase money — The Collectors 
Return on the sale runs thus — viz — (2) "746880 Acres of Land, situated 
generally in the mountains throughout the County, and claims an ex- 

22 William Polk (1758-1834) was an officer in the Revolutionary War and a Federalist who 
held a governmental post during the administration of John Adams. Prior to his appoint- 
ment by Adams, Polk had served two terms in the North Carolina House of Commons as a 
Davidson County representative (1785 and 1786) and two terms as a Mecklenburg County 
representative (1787 and 1790). He was also an active land speculator. Cheney, North Caro- 
lina Government, 216, 218, 219, 225; Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 225n. 


John Gray Blount Papers 

William Polk (1758-1834), a Revolutionary 
War officer, moved to Raleigh about 1800 and 
served as president of the State Bank from 
1811 to 1819. Although originally a Federalist, 
he was a longtime friend of Andrew Jackson 
and organized the military hero's presidential 
campaign in North Carolina in 1824. Engrav- 
ing courtesy of the North Carolina Collection, 
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. 

emption for 98798 Acres; sold to sundry persons 3198, & 85360 as lying 
within the Indian boundery exempt by the State, and 10240 reverted to 
the State by a former Law. 648082 Subject to Tax as per Assessment 
List" "Sold for $167.24 Purchaser, Richard Thomas." 

There appears to be an error in the quantity sold as mentioned, for de- 
ducting from 746880 Acres, the quantity on which an exemption is 
claimed viz 98798 there would remain 549,284 Acres — however I do 
apprehend that the amount of Tax is correct & that if instead of the 
errnous am* being offered for Sale, the actual one had been, the purchase 
money would have been as stated. 

There has been also sold in the County (3) of Cumberland for non pay- 
ment of Direct Tax 87870 Ar. lying on both sides of C [ape] F[ear] & Lit- 
tle River &c am 1 of Tax $35.42 bought by Thomas Mathews, these 
Lands were sold on the 14 of Feb r 1804. 

I am very respectfully 
Dear Sir 

Your ob 1 Serv 1 
Will: Polk 

John G Blount Esq. 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 
N Carolina 

Letters for 1805 63 

Thomas Richards to John Gray Blount 

Lake Mills May 4 1805 

Sir there being no conveyance to Washington i concluded this morning 
to send one of the Carpenters with this few Lines to inform You that by 
the ll d Int We shall have the gates framd and the piling Plank will be 
ours next work to go Upon, as to found the gates is a matter of Much 
Consideration as M r Hawaloy is 15 days Now from reaching the Mills 
and as the foundation will be Under Water Mr Hawoley Caries the Can- 
all onley 4 feet Lower as when you Where Last if we found the gates we 
shall have to pump Nearly 4 feet of Water Every Morning before begin- 
ing to put the hands to do any Work to Advantage as i am willing to 
Compleat them on any terms the ground is very dry and to Carry on the 
Canall to render a pasage sufficent for the Mills will not be Compleated 
by the time the Mills is going to Work without 5 or 6 Other being im- 
ployd with the Other Negros We have two of Mr Swindle 23 young men 
imployd I think it will be as Cheap to spike the whole of the Sheeting as 
to trunall all the Differen will be in the Expence (2) the Mens Labour in 
boring and Making Trunalls you are Sir to Consider wich will be the 
best mode of Compleated the gates Whether to finish the gates or to re- 
main here and found the gates in a body of Water wich to opinions here 
they will not be Safe 

Sirs I Rem Yours R 
Tho Richards 

To J G Blount Esq r 

Addressed: J G Blount Esq r 
by Negro 

"This is probably a reference to Jacob Swindell, who worked for the Blounts as an agent 
and supervisor. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 495n. 

64 John Gray Blount Papers 

A Contract between Mildred Neale 24 and John Gray Blount 

[June 12, 1805] 

State of North Carolina 
Halifax County — 

Know all men by these presents that I Isaac Hilliard 25 for and in con- 
sideration of the sum of eight hundred and eight Dollars & 12 Cents to 
me in hand paid by Mildred Neale the receipt whereof I do hereby ac- 
knowledge hath bargained and sold and by these presents doth bargain 
sell and convey unto John Gray Blount his Heirs, Exor 8 and Admr 8 to 
the only proper use benefit and behoof of the said Mildred Neale her 
Heirs, Exor 8 Admr 8 & assigns the following negroes, to wit, Nelley, Mil- 
ley, Betty, Moses — Charles, Eady, & David — To Have and to hold unto 
the said John Gray Blount his Heirs, Exor 8 & Admr 8 in trust and for the 
sole benefit and advantage of the said Mildred Neale her Heirs, Exor 8 
Admr 8 and Assigns — 

And the said Isaac Hilliard the same will warrant and forever defend 
against the claim of all others claiming from through by or under him — 
In Witness Whereof he hath hereunto set his hand and Seal this Twelfth 
day of June 1805 — 

Signed sealed & 

del d in presence of & Isaac Hilliard (Seal) 

MW Truan 

Rec d of Mildred Neale the sum of Eight hundred & eight Dollars 12 
Cents being infull for the consideration money above expressed this 
Twelfth day of June 1805— 

MW Truan Isaac Hilliard 

"Mildred Neale was the wife of Abner Neale, a merchant, planter, and minor politician 
of New Bern who often sought John Gray Blount's help and advice. After Abner 's death 
Mildred married Benjamin Coakley of Northampton County. Coakley was a business asso- 
ciate of the Blounts. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 12n, 24n. 

25 Isaac Hilliard, a resident of Halifax, North Carolina, represented that town in the 
North Carolina House of Commons in 1801. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 244. 

Letters for 1805 65 

James S. Ritchie to John Gray Blount 

PHiLAD e 19Junel805 

M r John G. Blunt 


A Brig owned by me, called the Augustus & commanded by John 
Gantlet on her passage from Havana to this port was cast away on the 
shoals of Hatteras the l 8t of May last, laden'd with a cargoe of [illegible] 
sugars a part of which with some of the materials of the vessel was I 
understand by the Mate (now here) saved & sold on the Beach that the 
Cap 1 Jn° Gantlet applied to you to assist him in his business & did place 
it under your direction & management, I am therefore constrained to 
take this liberty and to request from you all the information in your 
power on the subject which I trust you will give and excuse, when I as- 
sure you to this hour the Captain has never made his appearance or ac- 
counted in any shape or fashion for the proceed sales of the property — no 
doubt a copy of their sales can be procured from the Marshall or sheriff 
and an account of the monies & how disposed of and I shall take it ex- 
treemly friendly if you will make the application & forward the sales, 
what expence you may be at I will chearfully repay — a line from you as 
early as possible will much oblige 

Sir Your Mos 1 Ob 1 Sert. 
James S. Ritchie 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blunt 

North Carolina 

William Richard to John Gray Blount 

Nashville 26 th June 1805 

Dear Sir 

I have often written to you, Doctor Williams and M r Ralston on the 
subject of my Watch which I left with M r Speir 26 and I believe had my 
letters reach 'd you, I should have received an ansswer — The old story 
runs thus — 

26 This could refer to William Spier, who owned Spier's Landing on the Tar River in Pitt 
County. The landing, designated an inspection station by the North Carolina legislature, 
was a mercantile center. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 345n. 

66 John Gray Blount Papers 

When last at M r Speirs house, he observed I had better leave my 
watch with him untill my return — I well knew he had a predilection for 
it — I offered the watch to him as a mark of my gratitude and Esteem — 
he replied he intended sending for one by M r Stewart to Philadelphia 
and would only keep it for me — as he conceived it was too valuable to 
travel in the woods with — I insisted on his receiving it — he then accom- 
panied me to the ferry and tendered me a roll of money — I could not, as 
I did not accept it; he then insisted again on delivering the said watch to 
me should I ever return, and obliged me to receive a small gold watch as 
a present — (I wish it valued) (2) which I did — It was of little value as it 
would not keep time — it was a french trincket. the value of that watch 
was known to Captain William Gorham 27 perticularly — My watch cost 
fifty guineas in London — I wrote to M r Dickerson 28 of Greenville about 
her — he answered that previous to his receiving my letter, that he had 
sold her to Doctor Magempsy and that the Doctor asked SI 05 for it — 
Now Sir — as M r Speir retreated with full coffers — I ask you and the 
other gentlemen executors to buy up my watch, and for you to keep her 
in your possession untill my arrival in Washington — and in case of my 
death or desertion, you are requested by me to present it to John Gray 
Blount jun r as a mark of my friendship for him and his fathers family — 
to whom you will please to tender my most Respectful regards — 

Jack 29 is some times hear but more with his uncle Willie 30 at Major 
Bakers — he behaves well, and, I feel a degree of pleasure in telling you 
he is very judicious and conducts himself with great propriety — he hath 
sence and forbearance which is more than young lads of his age can 
boast of any where — I mean generally speaking — I think he will do you 
justice. (3) I have recovered most of Captain Thomas Armstrongs 31 land 

"Captain William Gorham was a ship's captain who worked for the Blounts. Keith and 
others, Blount Papers, II, 546, 573-575, 583, 629; III, 113n. 

28 This is probably a reference to Joel Dickinson, a merchant of Greenville, North Caro- 
lina. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 505. 

29 Jack was a nickname for John Gray Blount, Jr. 

30 For Willie Blount see 1803, n. 33. 

31 Captain Thomas Armstrong enlisted in the North Carolina Continental Line on April 
16, 1776, as a first lieutenant. He was promoted to captain in 1777. In 1782 he received his 
discharge. The fact that he purchased Sergeant Patrick Ryan's land warrant indicates that 
he had some interest in Tennessee land. See "Copy of a Register showing the names alpha- 
betically, rank, dates of Commissions and enlistments, periods of service and occurrencies, 
taken from the original muster and pay rolls of the North Carolina Line of the late Army of 
the United States" (prepared at Philadelphia, 1791), copy in the North Carolina State 
Archives, hereinafter cited as Register of the North Carolina Continental Line; North 
Carolina Military Land Warrant number 301, Tennessee State Archives, Nashville, herein- 
after cited as Land Warrant (s), Tennessee State Archives, with appropriate number (s). 
(These land warrants are listed alphabetically and are cross-referenced in the files of the 
Tennessee State Archives. They can be found under the names of the persons who received 
them or the names of the first persons to whom they were assigned by the original recipi- 
ents. For each recipient or assignee there is a number, and each warrant is made readily 
available by calling for it by that number.) 

Letters for 1805 67 

but by loosing Gerrards 32 list of them — I still am defficient $800 — I wish 
you could render information — I have his Military grant & lands thus 

Also on the north side Cumberland river — 1000 

Also on overalls Creek W l fork Stones' R. 640 and a warrant assigned 
by Serj* Patrick Ryan 33 1000 I expect the warrant from its age has been 
laid and removed — 

I have recovered jugement against Col 1 Jessee Bentons 34 heirs at our 
last sup r court $4000 — a purchase I made of [manuscript torn] Camp- 
bell, 35 he of Jn° Rice 36 — Benton [manuscript torn] this tract or rather 
Bond, Gov r Blount 37 tried to purchase in 1796 — he recommended the 
thing to me — 

Armstrong may have more tracts possibly known to you — if so I will 
thank you to render me information of them — 

We have great crops of Cotton — if the rain don't repeat too often — 
(prices $26 to 27 at Orleans) — 

I am with Friendship as usual 
W m Richard- 
John G. Blount Esquire. 

P. S. M r Strother 38 keeps Jack close at writing — I send my Profile en- 
closed — put it where you think meet 

NB — Jacob B — is amiable and promising — R - d ! ! ! 

The county of Rutherford settles rapidly and is the best Cotton 
ground in the state — 

32 Major Charles Gerrard acquired land warrant number 1284 for 274 acres in Tennessee 
from Private James Southerland. He also received land grant number 1767 in 1807. Land 
Grant 1767, Tennessee State Archives, Nashville. (The Land Grants are organized exactly 
the same way as the Land Warrants; see 1805, n. 31); Land Warrant 1284, Tennessee State 

33 Sergeant Patrick Ryan received land warrant number 301 for 1,000 acres in Tennessee 
on November 10, 1783. He later assigned it to Captain Thomas Armstrong. Land Warrant 
301, Tennessee State Archives. 

34 For Jesse Benton see 1803, n. 55. 

36 This was probably George Washington Campbell (1768-1848), a prominent Tennessee 
political figure. He served in both houses of the United States Congress, was secretary of 
the treasury, and for three years was minister to Russia. Keith and others, Blount Papers, 
III, 386n. 

36 For John Rice see 1803, n. 54. 

37 William Blount, governor of the Southwest Territory and a United States senator from 
Tennessee, was the older brother of John Gray Blount. He became the most famous of the 
Blount brothers. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xviii-xxi. 

38 For John Strother see 1804, n. 3. 

68 John Gray Blount Papers 

Gen. Blounts 39 land is highly valuable — I often ride tho' it. 

We have plays & Physio gnotrists 
& Vice Presidents [illegible] 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
North Carolina 

Alexander Miller* to John Gray Blount 

Edenton 2 nd July 1805 

Yours of the 25 th ulto I received but not in time to get a letter in the 
mail & I wrote you by the ferry boys who promised to hand it to the post 
boy but M r Collins 41 tells me he dont think that you had rec d it & for 
fear that you have not, I now again mention that Cap 1 Williams in- 
formed me that he is well acquainted with Cap 1 Lingo but that he has 
neither seen or heard any thing of him on his last Voyage — I am sorry 
that I could not convey to you more agreeable information, and am 

Sir most respectfully 
your ob l ser 1 
Alex r Miller 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 


30 For Reading Blount see 1803, n. 25. 

40 Alexander Miller was a citizen of Edenton, North Carolina. His will, made in Chowan 
County in 1807, indicates that he was a close associate of Josiah Collins, Sr., who was, in 
turn, a good friend of the Blounts. Will of Alexander Miller, Chowan County (Original) 
Wills, 1694-1904, North Carolina State Archives. 

41 This refers to Josiah Collins, Sr., or Josiah Collins, Jr. They were prominent merchants 
of Edenton and were connected with the Blounts by marriage. The younger Jacob Blount's 
(John Gray Blount's younger half brother) first wife, Nancy Collins, was the elder daughter 
of Josiah Collins, Sr. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xxvii-xxviii; III, 22n, 527-528. 

Letters for 1805 69 

John Mayo to John Gray Blount 

Portsmouth July 9 th 1805 


At the time Lingo Went Out last he left his boy bill here to board 
With me & to go to Schoole when I set up for Six months, he then said if 
any thing should happen so that he did not return, I must call upon you 
for payment who he said Was due him a Considerable of money, if this is 
the case I will thank you to let me know, as I have been under the neces- 
sity to advance money to get the boy clothes, as he had not a second shift 
to his back, this Lingo requested me to do — but did not think he was so 
bad off for clothes — the Money I have advanced, for clothes — lent Lingo 
at the time he went out — board of Bill &c — up to the 20 th ins 1 will am 1 to 
about forty Dollars, the boy having been with me five months up to the 
above day. I would also thank you to say (2) what I shall do in future 
with Bill whether he is to continue on the six months or not Lingo 
agreed to pay me five Dolollars per month for his Board, washing, & 
Lodging. & two Dollars & fifty Cents per quarter for Schooling. 

The Sherriff left a list of Taxes for me to receive for him for year 1804 
you are on the list of this district, the Taxes is 8/6 p r poll. I am to make 
returns to him at Our next Election, in the mean time I am appointed to 
take a list of the Taxables for this District for year 1805. this I thought 
proper to inform you of as you can perhaps make it more convenient to 
pay & give in here than else where. 

I am Sir Most respectfully 
Your Most Obed 1 

John G Blount Esq 1 " 

[Manuscript torn] 

John Gay lard to John Gray Blount 

Broad Creek, 2 th Aug 1 1805 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Dear Sir, we yesterday made a fine Lanch, Lanch the vessel clear a 
float, and realy She Looks well on the water, their is yet Som work to do 

70 John Gray Blount Papers 

to her besides the Calking — and if you had reather take her on to Wash- 
ington and finish her their, I am willing — But if you had much reather 
have her finished heir He git the Carpenters at it again as soon as possa- 
ble and finish her, which can be don in two weeks, Except the Calk- 
ing — Com down & See her and Let me know what you wish if you 

I am your Ob 1 Hb le 
John Gaylard 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 

P r 

M r Smith— 

John Gaylard to John Gray Blount 

Broad Creek, 2 th Sep tr 1805 

John Gray Blount Esquire 

Dear Sir, it appears from your Letter to me, and to M r Lacey also, 
that you and he hath had Som Conversation, Respecting the getting up 
& finishing the New vessel, But Your plans we are at a Loss to know 
how to carrey into Execution for M r Lacey cannot be got by me, the 
cause I am at a Loss to know, I have went after him twice myself, and as 
soon as your hands com after the vessel, I Sent a Canoe & hands after 
him Tuhey & others, But M r Lacey put the boys off as you [illegible] 
and the others wold not com without him as foreman — and we being not 
able to do any thing for want of Carpenters & Meterels, as at present I 
cant git Either — your hands has goan home — I was intended up to your 
Court myself, But from this disappointment I have declin d — and Start 
over myself onece more to Currituck after hands, and I Entend not com- 
ing back myself untill I git hands and meterels also — to git her up and 
then to finish — and when this is don He Send you word — She then will 
be in order to be Settled for — and carried away if you Like — and cold 
She now have ben carred away I Should have Let her goan — 
notwithstanding all that I have heard — for I cant beleave it without 
further proof — I am told that you Exspect me to pay you for her Deten- 
shon &c — which I Shall never agree to do — I want nothing but what is 
right with you, and all the world — I think that its best for us to under- 
stand Each Other better before the property is (2) Deliverd by Either of 

Letters for 1805 71 

us — I wish the true Sprit and meaning of the Contract to be full fild — 
But no dispute, nor Misunderstanding — Provided that a friendly and 
Easey Settlement Shud take place I ask nothing for detenshon on your 
part — for not furnishing us better — nor I am not willing to pay any thing 
for the Same — realey my thoughts is that there wood be more Justice in 
your paying me for Detenshon — then for my paying you — But I am will- 
ing for us both to say nothing about it — as it appears to be Small and 
trifiling — But those are the Tirms that I am willing to, not wishfull of 
deviating from our Bargon — If you take the vessel I am willing to allow 
the one foot in addition to the Contract — as you say it was an Omishon 
of yours But the other foot and a half I Shall Exspect to be paid for, at 
twelve Dollars p r ton, or the custom that is to say in her depth of hole — 
and if you wish keep the Mill &c — and allow me for what I have had 
don to her, and for her benifit — and let me keep the vessel and pay you 
for your Advances &c which appears to me wood be Just — If you think 
that you have a hard bargain — But we will have no misunderstanding — 
if you want the vessel I am willing you Shud have her — But as there is a 
Dispute in [illegible] Hollowell mind wheare the divishon Line is — I 
think you had better com down yourself when she is don — and form a 
Settlement with me — and Establish the divishon Line between the Mill 
Lands, and Said Hollowells Land — and make me the Deeds &c, for Said 
Mill & Lands — and give up the Lease &c also — 

I am your Ob 1 Friend &c 
John Gaylard 

NB please to Send me answer by the return of M r Smith 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 

P r 

M r Smith 

John Gaylard to John Gray Blount 

[October 21, 1805] 

M r Blount 

My Der Sir, I am doing nothing to the vessel at present — nor can I, 
without her pumps, and at Least a good takel fall and blocks, then I 
think with what Riggin I already have I can git up the vessel and git out 
the water — so that she can be finished — Either here or at Washington as 

72 John Gray Blount Papers 

you please, if you are in a hurrey for her & we can agree on what is right 
for her defishonce, I shall be willing to allow it to you, and com to a close 
& Settlement for her, & Let you have her as she is — or if youel Send me 
such things as I have nam d He go about to work on her & git her up and 
then finish her as soon as possable — I no very well that I am blamed for 
her being Down & all this [illegible] in gitting her up &c — But I think 
that if its rightly considered I am not blameable — for if she had been se- 
cured with the anker & Cable with her the Night of the Lanch, its pro- 
verable that she wood — not sunk — she then, nor never was in my 
Charge, But in the charge of the man that you approved of as foreman, I 
nam d making her fast — but was hooted at — But now, no one knows what 
to do with her, she is considered at my charge — I have bin already at a 
great Exspence in triing to git her up But as yet it has not bin in my 
power — I wish her up & at Washington, But that wont git her there — or 
if she had bin Calke d up to her gunel she wood not have Sunk — I am not 
Sertain but what — (2) She wood have Sunk, had She bin Secured with 
the anker & Cable, at the Lanch, for the Cable was rotten — But had it 
hilt her we cold not prevent its raining, and all the water that fell on her, 
went into her, and then there was no way to git it out — you talk of buck- 
ets &c to free her, Surely you have not considred that her Lower Deck is 
Layrd, & no way only at her hatch to free her, and that at such a Dis- 
tance from the water in her hole, over her gunel — I woodnot fear betting 
a [illegible] wagon, that all Hyde County & Washington to assist them 
cold not dischar[g]e water out of her with tubs, half as fast as one hand 
cold, cud he git at it, and work to advantage, But all this amounts to 
nothing, I am willing to do what is right, if you want & intend taking the 
vessel doo Send on the things necessary to my assistence — & if you dont 
I must Send up myself after her pumps &c. I am as usel your Friend &c 

21 th Oct r 1805— John Gaylard 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 

John Gaylard to John Gray Blount 

Broad Creek 3 th No vr 1805 

John Gray Blount Esquire 

Dear Sir, I Re d yours p r M r Wilkinson Dated the 28 th Oct r Last— and 
have observed its contents &c — and Surely you have Miscontrude Som, 

Letters for 1805 73 

or all of my Letters, for I never Sayd, thought, or wrote that you Shud 
not have the vessel — for it wood denote Ignorence in me to Say that you 
Shud, or Shud not have the vessel, as I cant, nor dont wish to command 
you; But to Leave that to yourself — you have a Contract by which we are 
both bound, I dont wish to deviate from the contract, nor never did, all I 
want or Exspect is to have a Deed for the Mill & Land with her, Accord- 
ing to the boundry pointed out by your Brother — General Blount, at 
your house, in your presents, & at your Request, and the Lease as p r 
contract, and pay for her Exstrey additions & alterrations made at your 
request — and the devishon Line made publick betwen the Mill Land & 
Benj n Hollowells Land, as you know that he pretends to clame two 
hundred Acres of Land within the boundry pointed out by General 
Blount — wheather his title is good or not I cant Say, as I never See 
either — this is Sertainly nothing new, nor any more then contain d in the 
contract — I am sure that there is no dispute between us, nor can there be 
when we com togather for I want nothing but whats right, and I am Sure 
in my mind that you dont, nor no man of your Rectitude — my wish is for 
you to have the vessell if you will, as it is a Bargain, be it good or bad — I 
never made a bargain in my Life that I attempted to fly from — and to 
call me whimical you dont do me Justice — her Sinking is a misfortain, & 
two late to grive about — and youel not be ask d (2) to have any more of the 
Exspence in getting up the vessel then you please to bestoe — thoe I am 
pore Enough, I have more pride, thoe it has bin to me a hard bargain 
from first to Last, I dont ask you to Soften it — you appear to be vext be- 
cause your Rigging is damaged, I cold not avoide using of it as I had not 
half Enought with it, the damage I am willing to pay if ask d and so I am 
for all I do, to meterels Sent down to my assistence for her — I want no 
more, that I no of to git her up & freed then the pumps and a good Long 
creaning fall & Blocks which I hope youel please to Send, if you have not 
a good fall & blocks of your own please to git me one on the best tirms 
you can, as my famile is so & has bin for a Long time that I cant leave 
home therefore I cant com up to See to my busness, therefore request 
you to, and dispatch the flatt off as Soon as posable, as I am in a great 
hurrey to have her up and finished before it gits two cold — But I cant 
finish her according to contract without being furnished with her in & 
out knee boults & cam &c and a Calker, if you wish to furnish him as 
usel — unless you had reather all this Shud be don at Washington — if so I 
think that you shud board the Calker &c at your Own Exspence to finish 
her — M r Lacey never so much as told me that he had drove all the bolt 
rod, untill Since at getting her up I found it out, there is Som few of her 
in and out bolts drove but not many — I am a fraid that She has som hole 
in her bottom, for the tide appears to Ebb & flow in her very quick with 

74 John Gray Blount Papers 

it on the out Side — and Shud that be the case, I cant heave her over so as 
to Examon her bottom without her side being first Calked — further you 
wrote me that I wood not Let the vessel com up, nor assist in getting her 
up when you Sent down hands for that purpos &c — But realey you are 
mistaken in each — it is not so — (3) for I don all that I cold & shud have 
Let her com notwithstanding I was told on the day before your hands 
Started home, that you entended getting the property in procession & 
then taking the advantage in the Settlement with me, for I wrote you 
then that I didnot beleave it — you also Speake of a Reference which I 
dont understand, I dont know what they can have to do or say — for I no 
of no dispute between us — and I am sure that there cant be aney, nor 
wont be at all, for I feal two Liberel about the busness to admit of aney 
dispute — for if you have the vessel you are willing to pay for her I am 
sure, and if you wish not to take her you are at liberty as I wrote you be- 
fore, so I am Sure that there cant be any dispute — But Shud there be 
any thing to Referre, I shall have do Objettions, for I never had a dispute 
but I was willing to have it Referred — But we shall want non and can 
settle our own busness ourselves — Cap n W m Ponnunk 42 has had or his 
Brother for him your flat a week putting Lumber on board of his vessel, 
and is intitled to pay you for the Same, his Brother com up with hands 
after about 20 M Shinglis and brung no craft to carrey them in, and was 
willing to run the risk of taking your flat if I was willing — I didnot objet 
to it suposeing that you had as leave git wagons for her, as for her to ly 
idle — 

I am your Ob 1 HSer 1 
John Gaylard 

NB I am willing that you Shud take her when up & freed, which I Ex- 
spect will be in a Day or two, after I git her Pumps & a takel fall &c — 
Provided that youel have her Deficency of work valued here before She 
goes — also please to Send me five or Six Bushels of Salt, if you have any 
for Sale 


Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 

p r 

M r Joh n Wilkinson 

"Captain William Pennock was a partner in the mercantile firm of Pennock, Nicholson, 
and Skipwith. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 17n. 

Letters for 1805 75 

David Greene & Son to John Gray Blount 

Boston Nov r 16 th 1805 

M r J. G. Bland 43 
N° Carolina 


We have been favoured with your letter of October 11 th — Your Naval 
stores have arrived & you may rely on our exertions to make the most of 
them — Tar is now, quite brisk — At foot are the various prices — 
Agreeably to your orders, we will ship you the brown Soap & New Eng- 
land Rum — We cannot but smile at the information you have received of 
Rum's being cheaper & better in Charlestown than in Boston — 
Charlestown is a snug Town adjoining this, but which gets its supplies from 
Boston — You may feel easy about your Rum's being purchased reason- 
ably — 

It will be gratifying to us, to support a lively correspondence with 
you — We beg leave to refer you for any information you may wish re- 
specting us, to our mutual Friend David Clark 44 of Plymouth (2) or to 
any respectable Merchant of this Town — 

We are very respectfully 
your ob Serv 1 

David Greene & Son 

Tar $3.50 @ 3.75 

Pitch 4.00@ 4.25 

Rosin 3.00 @ 3.25 

Sp'ts Turpentine .30@.33 

Corn 1 @ 10 @ 1.15 

Staves Hh'dW.O $38 @ 39 

do Pipe 60 @ 61 

Addressed: M r J. G. Bland 
N° Carolina 

43 John Gray Blount did not have a good, clear handwriting. Greene must not have been 
able to read the spelling of Blount's last name. 
44 For David Clark see 1803, n. 63. 

76 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Gay lard to John Gray Blount 

Broad Creek 30 th De r 1805 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Dear Sir, I now Send up in the vessel all the things belonging to her 
and you that are here — and also the takel fall & Blocks that Cap n Aldor- 
son 45 Sent down to me, which I wish him to receive the blocks, and also 
the fall provided he is willing to take thirty Dollars for all the use of the 
fall & Blocks — and if not, please to have it taken care of, and furnish it 
with Blocks yourself if you please, and give my Compliments to Samuel 
Topping 46 & tell him to take care of it for me if he pleases, as it will be of 
no determent to his Bisness, and hire it out, and of the first money pay 
for the Blocks, the vessel also lining up a Capson which will do to work it 
with — I am your 

Obe 1 HSer 1 
John Gaylard 

[No address] 

45 This was probably Captain John Alderson. See 1805, n. 18. 

48 Samuel Topping is listed in the federal census of 1820 for Hyde County as the father of 
five children. He was probably the son or brother of Thomas Topping, a slave overseer who 
lived in the same area as John Gaylard. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 601 n; Potter, 
1820 North Carolina Census, Hyde County, 15. 


Roulhac 1 to John Gray Blount 

H E RMiTAGEjan y 2 d 1806 

Dear Sir 

Give my leave to recommend to your humanity a poor Widow, my 
neighbour, the Bearer of y e Present, M rs Steward; She was Lately In- 
formed that her land had been Sold for the Direct tax & that you had 
Bought it; She applyed to me to Know what She had best do, & was 
very allarmed at the Information being a Simple woman very Industrious 
& loaded with a family of Small children; I told her She Should not 
make herself uneasy, as I imagined the time allowed for the owners of 
Land Sold for that, to redeem it, was not expired, & that I presumed 
your purchasing was merely to Save the land & put it in her power to 
take advantage of the provision in the Law; I advised her to go up as 
Soon as possible to See you about it; & at her desire give her these few 
lines. I presume She will be able to Settle this matter with you as the 
Sum can not be much; Should it exceed her present ability, I will chear- 
fully Suply y e deficiency. I remain with respect 

D r Sir 

Addressed: Jn° Grey Blount 
Esq re 

fav d By M rs 

El. Steward 

Yours Sincerely 

'This was probably John Roulhac. See 1803, n. 73. 

78 John Gray Blount Papers 

Richard Tuck to John Gray Blount 

Shell Castle Jany 28th 1806 

John G Blount Esqr 

Capt Midget 2 in the Sloop Swift goes to Washington with a load of 
Salt from your Brig. He will take part of a Load down if to be had Please 
have the Goodness to Supply him with as much Wood as will Compleat 
his Lading if no freight is to be had he will take a full Load of Wood He 
is much in want of Boalt Rope Sufficient for a new Jib Supply him with 
it if to [be] had at Washington 

Yours with Respect 

For Rich d Tuck 

Ellen Tuck 3 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 

Will of John Strother 4 [copy J 

[November 22, 1806] 

I John Strother of the County of Buncombe and State of North Carolina 
being of sound & perfect mind and memory do make this my last will 
and Testament in manner and form following that is to say first, I give 
and bequeath to my beloved friend John Gray Blount Sen r of the Town 
of Washington and State of North Carolina and his heirs and assigns for- 
ever the following real estate (that is to say) all the lands which I own or 
hold claim to by virtue of a Sheriffs Deed situate lying and being in the 
County of Buncombe aforesaid on big Pigeon river and its waters also all 
the lands I hold or lay claim to by virtue of a Sheriffs Deed situate lying 
and being in said County of Buncombe in the vicinity of Ashville also on 
big Ivy river and its waters also on big laurel river and its waters also on 

2 The records of the Midget family of Dare County date back to a Matthew Midget in 
1772. He had four sons whose descendants were numerous. Members of the Midget family 
still live on the Outer Banks in North Carolina. Exactly which Captain Midget this letter 
refers to remains unclear. Stick, The Outer Banks, 32, 33, 65, 73, 170, 223, 266, 277, 318. 

3 Ellen Tuck was apparently the wife of Richard Tuck. See 1805, n. 20. 

4 For John Strother see 1804, n. 3. 

Letters for 1806 79 

French Broad river and all its waters and also all the lands I hold or lay 
claim to in said County of Buncombe on Caney River and its waters — I 
also give and bequeath to my said friend John Gray Blount his heirs and 
assigns all the benefits and profits arising out of a contract I made with 
Micajah Williamson, Buckner Harris and Samuel Gardner all of the 
County of Jackson and State of Georgia when the contract was made 
which contract lies with my papers in the State of North Carolina in 
Buncombe County — I also give and bequeath to my Brother George 
Strother one half of all the lands (2) I hold in the County of Buncombe 
and State of North Carolina by virtue of Entries made in the Entry office 
of said County in my own name or in the name of myself & Joseph Dob- 
son 5 or any other person — the other half of said lands I will to be sold to 
the best advantage and after paying all my just Debts out of the proceeds 
of said sale if any should be left I will the same to Flora Inman — I also 
give and bequeath to my Brother George Strother and my Step Brother 
James Lockhart 6 whatever real property I may be entitled to in the State 
of Tennessee with a lien thereon of a Legacy to my mother except one 
thousand acres to be of an aggregate quality with the rest of my lands in 
said State, which one thousand acres I give and bequeath to two children 
which Flora Inman has laid to my charge (but whether proper or not she 
only Knows) by name Polly and Caroline, and if either of those children 
should die without issue the surviving one is to inherit the one thousand 
acres given as aforesaid and should both the said Children to wit Polly 
and Caroline children of the said Flora Inman's charged to me die with- 
out issue then the aforesaid thousand acres of land is to revert to and be- 
come the property of my Brother George Strother and James Lockhart 
their Heirs and assigns 

I refer my Executors to William P. Anderson 7 of (3) Tennessee and 
Colonel William Polk of Raleigh N Carolina for the particulars of what 
interest I may be entitled to in the State of Tennessee 

I give and bequeath unto my mother Mary Lockhart an annual legacy 
of one hundred & fifty Dollars during her life to be paid to my said 
mother by my Brothers James Lockhart and George Strother out of my 
Tennessee Estate; and lastly as to all the rest residue and remainder of 

5 Joseph Dobson of Burke County was a surveyor and land speculator who surveyed 
much of Buncombe County. He allegedly acquired a great deal of land by questionable 
means. Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 658-659. 

6 James Lockhart, stepbrother of John Strother, was assigned nine acres of land in June, 
1819, by John King. These nine acres were part of an eighty-acre land warrant that John 
King received from John Strother. Land Warrant 3198, Tennessee State Archives. 

7 William P. Anderson was a Tennessee land speculator who bought up numerous land 
warrants. Land Warrants 3196, 4612, 4649, 5219, and others, Tennessee State Archives. 

80 John Gray Blount Papers 

all my personal or real estate of what kind so ever I give and bequeath 
the same to my said Brothers George Strother and James Lockhart 
whom I hereby together with John Gray Blount Sen 1 " appoint my Execu- 
tors of this my last will and Testament hereby revoking all former wills 
by me made 

In witness whereof I have hereunto set my Hand and seal this 22 d day 
of November One thousand eight hundred and six 

signed John Strother (Seal) 

Declared by the said John Strother to be his last will and Testament in 
presence of us— and acknowledged the Signature to be his hand & Seal 

James Hawkins 8 
John Drake 9 
(4) The foregoing is a copy from the original 

W. G. Blount 10 


Will of Jno Strother 

"James Hawkins, like the other witness John Drake, was probably a land surveyor. On 
April 2, 1784, he acquired land warrant number 507, which contained 640 acres. Land War- 
rant 507, Tennessee State Archives. 

9 John Drake was a land surveyor in Tennessee who bought up some land warrants. 
Land Warrant 3188, Tennessee State Archives. 

10 W. G. Blount could represent a misreading of Strother 's handwriting, or it could refer 
to William Grainger Blount, who might have copied the Strother will for John Gray 


Pleasant M. Miller 1 to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville January 17 th 1807 

D r Sir 

The Bearer of this letter as far as Raleigh is a messenger from this 
State, for the Book containing the Entries &c in Armstrongs office, I 
presume that he will bring them & Such other documents as will 
Authorize the issuing of grants from this State. I have spoken to 
M c Clellan 2 on the subject of your Entries he says he got his information 
from M c Clung 3 I have no doubt the fact, Wou'd it not be well to Au- 
thorize some person here to obtain the warrants from the office by power 
of attorney, I hear also of a number of warrants in circulation assigned 
by yourself & Thomas Blount perhaps some of those assignments were 
forgeries 'woud it not be well to shape a power of attorney to meet such a 
case — I have not seen any of the persons concerned in the Duck river 4 
Lands so can give no information on that head — in case it Shoud turn 
Out that the supposed number of warrants are really in the office, I want 
two or three thousand acres of them (2) I want to know on what Terms 
they can be procured — a speedy attention to those warrants will be 
necessary on your part by Our Law — I arrived at home on the 26 th of 
December & found all well Since my arrival I had the misfortune to have 
my left hand badly cut with a cotton Machine it is on the rcovery per- 
haps indeed it pretty certain I shall Loose the use of one of my fiddle 
fingers my family are all well. I have not heard from Cumberland since 

'For Pleasant M. Miller see 1803, n. 26. 

2 This was probably Sergeant John McClellan, a Revolutionary War soldier, who bought 
up several land warrants in Tennessee. Land Warrant 3343 and others, Tennessee State Ar- 

3 Charles McClung was a friend, political lieutenant, and business associate of William 
Blount. He lived in Knox County, Tennessee. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 184n. 

4 The Duck River originates in present Coffee County, south of Nashville, and meanders 
through central Tennessee before emptying into the Tennessee River. 

82 John Gray Blount Papers 

my arrival, Burrism 5 gains no ground here, tis said he has frinds in Cum- 
berland, we know nothing hear but from the papers which you will see 
remember me respectfully to your family & Mrs Blount & Eliza & 
Reading & his family, tell Orr. & his Richmond companions I had a 
hard time of it coming out 

Pleasant M. Miller 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 
Post Master 
North Carolina 

G. Toole to John Gray Blount 

[February 11, 1807] 

Dear Sir: 

I have not yet Received the sugar [illegible] I wrote to you for. If you 
Cannot make it [illegible] to send me the Coffe & sugar at this time, you 
will oblidge me in sending the balance of the Corn money by the Return 
of Mr OBryan. If you send the sugar & Coffee let it be [manuscript torn] 
as I am quite without, say one barrel of best brown sugar & fifty pound 
W 1 of Coffee — I am yours Respectfully 

G. Toole 
Feby. 11 th 1807 

5 This reference is to Aaron Burr and his famous "conspiracy." Burr (1756-1836) was a 
United States senator from New York (1791-1797) and vice-president of the United States. 
While still serving as vice-president in 1804, Burr made an unsuccessful bid to be elected 
governor of New York. Charges made against Burr by Alexander Hamilton during the gu- 
bernatorial campaign brought on a duel between the two. Burr killed Hamilton and fled to 
South Carolina to keep from being indicted for murder in New Jersey. Although he re- 
turned to Washington and completed his term as vice-president, Burr was totally discredit- 
ed politically. This led him in 1805 and 1806 to plan some sort of western adventure, the 
nature of which is not clear to this day. He apparently planned to restore his political for- 
tunes by seizing territory west of the Mississippi River, but he told different stories to dif- 
ferent people concerning his plan. Several prominent Americans indicated support for 
him — Andrew Jackson among them. But in 1807 Burr was captured in the Mississippi Ter- 
ritory and taken to Richmond, Virginia, where he was tried for treason. He was acquitted 
in a trial presided over by Chief Justice John Marshall. Biographical Directory of Congress, 675; 
Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of American Empire, 144-164. Also, see William 
Tatham's reference to Burr's capture below. William Tatham to John Gray Blount, Febru- 
ary 19-20, 1807. 

Letters for 1807 83 

If you send the sugar & Coffee let it be to the Care of Mich 1 Hearne 
Merch 1 Tarbo — 

I have 3 or 400 Barrels of Indian Corn, & 2 or 300 bushel of Cow pees for 

G. Toole 

Addressed: M r John G Blount 
Merch 1 


M r OBryan 

Benjamin Tyler, Jr., 6 to Thomas Blount 

ClaremontN. Hampshire Feb, 13 th 1807 

Hon d Sir- 

I received your letter on the ninth instant bearing Date 7th December 
last directed to my Father, he being absent and my Brother & my self 
now owning the Patent. I take the liberty of giving an answer. You wish 
for our opinion concerning our consstructed Grist-mill — we can recom- 
mend them with safety on streams of your discription, as you have five 
feet head & fall at most, but sometimes less, a mill of this construction 
can perform business well when the wheel is drounded in back-water — I 
wish you to write whether it would be convenient for you to wait until 
October or November and whether it is a healthy place that we might 
from our Nothern Climate tarry with safety through the summer seas- 
son. Mills on this consstruction are not so expensive to build and much 
less expensive to keep in repair than the ordinary construction. If you 
wish to proceed to erect your mill sooner you will be so good as to state 
the time, also to state the number of runs of stones you wish to put in 
operation — then I will give you the size of the Mill-House Gate-way free, 
as for the price we have here two Dollars per Day and all found but 

6 In 1767 Benjamin Tyler, Sr., built the first dam across the Sugar River at Claremont, 
New Hampshire, and erected a small grist- and sawmill. He also started a forge and smelt- 
ing works. In 1775 he erected another gristmill and in 1800 a flax mill. No information has 
been found on his son, Benjamin, Jr. Written by Workers of the Federal Writers' Project, 
New Hampshire: A Guide to the Granite State (Boston: Houghton-Mifflin Company, 1938), 128. 

84 John Gray Blount Papers 

should not think it an Object to go such a distance for that price — wish 
you to state the price workmin at that business have in your Country 
and what you would be willing to give then I will give you a [illegible] 
answer and Bill of timber — Please to write immedeately on receiving 
this, the Patent right is thirty Dollars for each run of stones 

I have the Honor to be your &c 
Benjamin Tyler Junior 

Hon. Thomas Blount 

Addressed: Hon. Thomas Blount 
Member of Congress 
from North Carolina at the City of Washington 

William Tatham 7 to John Gray Blount 

[February 19-20, 1807] 

D r Sir/ 

Every day sence I came here (on Christmas day) I have expected to 
get a Sum of Money from the Treasury & return to your country. I have 
waited for an answer from M rs Merry, 8 who is at Alexandria, touching 
the Costs of Suit stated in your Son's letter, & which I transmitted. She 
has not sent the money, & the severity of this day's rain has prevented 
my getting the thirteen Dollars odd cents in time for this post; but will 
endeavour to send it next mail. (2) I am allso under acceptance to you for 

7 William Tatham, a friend of Thomas Jefferson and James Madison, was an inventor, 
surveyor, and scientist. In the autumn of 1806 he made a careful survey of the Outer Banks 
from Cape Hatteras to Cape Lookout using a whaleboat. All of his notes, along with his 
baggage, charts, and instruments, were swept away by a hurricane. G. Melvin Herndon, 
"The 1806 Survey of the North Carolina Coast, Cape Hatteras to Cape Fear," North Caro- 
lina Historical Review, XLIV (Summer, 1972), 242-253; Stick, The Outer Banks, 80-82. 

8 The Merrys referred to were probably Sir Anthony Merry and his wife. Sir Anthony 
was England's minister to the United States at this time. He and his wife despised Wash- 
ington, and both were appalled at President Jefferson's failure to show proper deference to 
the British diplomat. Merry apparently had several conversations with Aaron Burr about 
the latter's western scheme. Merrill D. Peterson, Thomas Jefferson and the New Nation (New 
York: Oxford University Press, 1970), 731-734, 794, 797, 823, 832, 842, 843, hereinafter cited 
as Peterson, Thomas Jefferson. 

Letters for 1807 85 

M r Reintzels Bale 6 of One hundred Eighty odd Dollars which I hope will 
come next mail as I only wait for M r Gallatin's 9 Attention to it. 

Your Bro* & myself have had jarrings: I am ill treated, which would 
not have happened with you; but I understand the Shell Castle interest 
better than he does, & am acting right for y r interest, as well as the pub- 

I beg, if any Accident delays me you will not let the triffle of Costs 
stand against me (3) in M. Merrys case — [manuscript obscured by wax] 
Shall be immedeately [manuscript obscured by wax] whether M r Merry 
sends it or not. 

Burr is taken [illegible] Express came in before him this morning — 

Y rs Wm Tatham 

19 th to 20 th Feby. 1807 
City of Washington 

J. G. Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
Post Master 
Washington, Tar River 
N. Carolina 

Samuel Pate to John Gray Blount 

[February 22, 1807] 

State of North Carolina Beaufort County M r John G Blount Sir this 
Comes with My former Respects to you to let you know that it has ever 
bin out of my power to git The land Run out that I agreed with you for 
But now george Farris is at home and he Says he will Run it out in Short 

9 Albert Gallatin (1761-1849) was born in Geneva, Switzerland. He immigrated to the 
United States in 1780, ultimately settling in Pennsylvania. After serving several terms in the 
Pennsylvania legislature, he was elected as a Jeffersonian to the Fourth, Fifth, and Sixth 
congresses as a member of the House of Representatives. In 1801 Thomas Jefferson ap- 
pointed him secretary of the treasury, a post he held until 1814. For the next thirteen years 
he held various diplomatic posts. Biographical Directory of Congress, 981. 

86 John Gray Blount Papers 

and Sir then I Shall Come up immediately and See you So I Subscribe 
my Self your Well wishing friend 

Samuel Pate 

February the 22 d 1807 

Addressed: M r John G. Blount 
State of North 
Carolina Beaufort 

William Tatham to John Gray Blount 

1807 — 4 th March City of Washington 

D r Sir 

Your Brother 10 & M rs Blount left this place this Morning — you will re- 
ceive, by them, Valentine Reinzels Balance — M r Merrys Costs vs Robin- 
son for your Son ($13-61/100,) of which please inform him, & some small 
Charge which I think he told me he paid postage at Tarborough for me. 

I regret that Your Brother (& M rs B. whom God knows I never offend- 
ed) have been of a Congress party, to suppress my prosperity in life, for 
reasons unknown to me — I will give you the detail, not them: I never de- 
served ill of anyone. 

We have had Sudden deaths here: two appoplexies yesterday — M r 
Hamilton 11 & one other & M r Baldwen 12 of the Senate dead to day, & to 
be buried to morrow, at the same house. 

Both the Randolphs, 13 are very ill, & the President unwell. — Y 1 

Wm Tatham 
J. G. Blount Esq r 


10 Thomas Blount was, at this time, a member of the House of Representatives. In busi- 
ness with his older brother John Gray Blount, Thomas was in charge of the Blount store at 
Tarboro. He was also prominent in politics at the local, state, and national levels. Keith 
and others, Blount Papers, I, xxv-xxvii. 

u John Hamilton was a Democratic-Republican member of the United States House of 
Representatives for a Pennsylvania district during the Ninth Congress (1805-1807). He did 
not die at this time but lived until 1837. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1057. 

12 Abraham Baldwin was a Georgia Federalist who served his state in both houses of 
Congress. From 1799 until his death on March 4, 1807, he was in the United States Senate. 
Biographical Directory of Congress, 544. 

13 For John Randolph see 1803, n. 95. Thomas Mann Randolph, also from Virginia, was 
the son-in-law of Thomas Jefferson. He served in the House of Representatives during the 
Eighth and Ninth congresses (1803-1807). He did not die until 1828. Biographical Directory of 
Congress, 1584-1585. 

Letters for 1807 87 

(2) P.S. My losses &c are some how allowed in the appropriation bill, & I 
shall be with you as soon as possible — 


Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
(Post Master) 
N. Carolina. 

Thomas Trotter 14 to John Gray Blount 

Lake Phelps 15 14 th April 1807 


Inclosed is the dimentions of a Rice machine house, a threshing Ma- 
chine, house & one for a Grist & flour mill, the Rice Machine, and 
threshing Machine houses are as small as they will Ansure, the threshing 
Machine I have here is 30 feet by 25, which affords room to fill in as 
much Grain, when there is any prospect of Rain as I can thresh in two 
thirds of a day, when it rains, which saves me a deal of time, the Size of 
the one recomended to you, is Just the size required to work a 6 feet 
drum in the upper Story, in the lower Story will only stand a fan where 
the Grain runs through a greating in the floor from the threshing Ma- 
chine, into it, The Grist & Flour Mill the size of it will depend much on 
the way it is put to work, whether by undershot or Tub Wheels but the 
Size I mention, I expect will ansure both ways, as there is requird a great 
deal of Room for Botling & packing flour, as to the Cotten Machine I 
am but little acquainted with it, to give any dimentions, 

Should you want a draught or any instructions that I am able to give 
you, at any time I shall always be ready to serve you, 

When you come to look at these Machines here, I will inform you of 
the different, manner and ways they may be work'd, after knowing the 

14 Thomas Trotter apparently lived in Washington, North Carolina (Beaufort County), 
or lived at Lake Phelps in Washington County and attended the First Presbyterian Church 
in Washington. He was appointed to the building committee of that church in 1824. Reed, 
Beaufort County, 146. 

15 Lake Phelps, located in Washington County, is bordered on the east by Tyrrell 
County. Powell, North Carolina Gazetteer, 270. 

88 John Gray Blount Papers 

high of live water at the head, and also the length of the Canal, and the 
difference of the level between the water in the Lake, and the River, 

I am Sir Your Most Obd 1 Serv 1 
Tho s Trotter 

(2) Dimentions of a House for a Rice Machine 
Length 40 feet 

Breadth 35 ditto three Storys high 

1 st Story 9 feet, 2 d ditto 8 feet, 3 d ditto 8 feet pitch 
it will require a Sett of posts & interstices in the middle as it requires 
two setts of Joists to reach across the House. 

Dimentions of a House for a threshing Machine 
Length 25 feet 

Breadth 20 feet two Storys high 

1 st Story 8 feet, 2 d ditto 8. feet pitch 

Dimentions of a House for a Grist & flour Mill 
Length 40 feet 3 Storys high 

Breadth will be to allow 12 feet for every pair of Stones 
1 st Story 9. feet 2 d ditto 8 feet & 3 d 8 feet pitch- 
Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
Washington N.C. 

William McKenzie 16 to John Gray Blount 

6 th May 1807 

Dear Sir 

I am sorry I was not at home when your note of 1 st of May came. I 
fear the Person you sent for Fish got disappointed, the Seins hereabouts 
have been very unsuccessful. 

I saw Thomas B. Hill a few Days ago, some Person has lately been 
telling him of a Place called new Currituck where large quantities of very 
fine Cattle are raised & sold at a very moderate Price, as I presume you 
are well acquainted with the place & can give the necessary Information, 
I beg the Favour of you at your Leisure to inform me whether you sup- 
pose about a hundred Stears from five years old and upwards could 

16 William McKenzie of Martin County was a friend of John Gray Blount and also a col- 
league in the North Carolina Senate in 1797. He died in 1810. Keith and others, Blount 
Papers, III, 106n. 

Letters for 1807 89 

readily be procured & at what Prices M r Hill proposes if he meets with 
Encouragement to go down in the month of July to purchase & bring off 
the Stears. I confess I have not much Faith in his Information but he is 
very full of it & I am to be concerned in the purchase if made, we want 
the Stears to stallfeed. Be pleased to present my best Respects to M r8 
Blount & Family & I am with Esteem 

Dear Sir yr Ob 1 Ser 1 
W m M c Kenzie 

NB The note brought by your little Son was mislaid before I got home I 
suppose he was on the same Business with the other Person & I fear had 
the same Luck 

Addressed: John G Blount Esquire 

Benjamin Tyler, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Claremont New Hampshire May 25 th 1807 

M r Blount, 

Sir I Receiveed your letter some time since & my time being much 
taken up with bussiness I have neglected to write you an answer much 
longer than I had ought to, but now I will give an answer as fully as I 
can Respecting your mill, our mills with four feet head and fall Clear 
from back water she will go with suffishent power to Grind ten bushels 
per hour, I think 3 or 4 bushels per hour she will grind with four feet 
head and fall and two feet of water on the sheeting below, with three feet 
head and fall without back water I think she must grind four or five 
bushels per hour each run of stones, on placees of your Disscription we 
put the water on the wheel in two placees I think that sixteen inches 
square of water will be suffishent on each place, that will make four gaps 
16 inches square to turn two run of stones I think that your canal or race 
wil not be wide a nough to vent the water that it will take to turn two 
run of stones but you can try the experiment and satisfy your self wether 
it is wide a nough or is not, in this way by leting as much water from 
your head as I have above stateed that it will take to turn two run of 
stones that will show you at once how high the water will rise when your 
mills are in action, I think that mills on our plan on a place like yours 
will do better than any other plan that I know of, they answer a valuable 
purpose for tide mills they will run in back water better than any other 

90 John Gray Blount Papers 

wheel that I know of, I will give you Dementions for your mill house so 
far as will be nessesary to convene our kind of mills, the sisze of the mill 
house you will Dictate as will best suit your self, your mill (2) house will 
want to stand end ways to the front of your floom where the water is 
taken from to carry the mills, the house will want to be thirty feet wide 
and as much wider as you think will be proper and as long the other way 
as you think best the upper end of the house next the front is where the 
wheels will stand and there want to be twelve feet space left between the 
upper outside sill to the first cross sill your sills will want to stand five 
feet above the bottom of your race the under side of the sills so as to give 
room for the wheels under the floor, I do not think that a mill on any 
plan can be made to do Business on your place with a canal so narrow as 
yours the water must pile up strangely in the distance of three miles 
haveing no fall, if you conclude to build on our plan you will inform as 
soon as may be convenient and we will be on in the month of October or 
november Next 

I am your servent ser nt 
Benjamin Tyler, Jun r 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blount 

Washington North Carolina 
Post master 

Peter Lalanne & Co. 11 to John Gray Blount 
[printed form letter] 

New- York, 1st July, 1807 

WE take the liberty of informing you, that we have entered into co- 
partnership, under the firm of Peter Lalanne, & Co- as Commission 
Merchants, at St. Pierre, in the Island of Martinique. 

James Lalanne, Esq. the chief of the house of Lelanne & Pitault 
Freres, of that place, will guarantee the due performance of our engage- 
ments. Our capital and resources being ample, we have no doubt of 
being able to render our friends every service. 

17 There was a James Lalanne who was an adventurer in the West Indies in 1788. He had 
owed John Gray Blount money. If that was the same James Lalanne mentioned in this let- 
ter, his luck had apparently changed for the better. Peter Lalanne must have been a rela- 
tive, perhaps the son of James Lalanne. They seem to have operated mercantile firms in 
both New York City and Martinique. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, 282, 421-422. 

Letters for 1807 91 

Those who are unacquainted with our characters and responsibility, 
we beg leave to refer to 

His Excellency, Governor TOMPKINS 18 





New- York 


JOHN CARRERE, 19 Baltimore 

Subjoined are our respective signatures, and should you be disposed to 
favor us with your business, no exertion shall be wanting on our part, to 
give you entire satisfaction. 

We remain very respectfully, 
Your most obedient Servants, 

Signature of Peter Lalanne. P re Lalanne &c 

Signature of Archd. Mne. Cock. Peter Lalanne & C° 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
Merch 1 

Wasshington NC 

> Jones 20 to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh July 5 th 1807 

Sir With Pleasure I meet the favour of this opportunity in Rendering 
you my Service. & wou d be A still Greater Satisfaction if I Cou d Rinder 

18 Daniel D. Tompkins (1774-1825) was governor of New York from 1806 to 1817, when he 
became vice-president of the United States. He was elected to the Ninth Congress but re- 
signed before the term started so that he could serve as an associate justice of the New York 
Supreme Court. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1823. 

19 John Carrere was a Baltimore resident who in 1810 had a three-story brick house on 
the east side of Harrison Street. The house was frequently used as a point of reference by 
the city commissioners. Records of the City of Baltimore City Commissioners, 1797-1813 (Balti- 
more: City Library, 1906), 103, 158, hereinafter cited as Records of Baltimore. 

20 Kimbrough Jones represented Wake County in the North Carolina House of Commons 
from 1809 to 1812, and in 1819. In 1854 he became a member of the Council of State. 
Cheney, North Carolina Government, 178, 257, 259, 261, 263, 275. 


John .Gray Blount Papers 

you A favour. Agreeable to my promise I mentiond to Col Cooke 
whether it woud be Convenient to take Another Boarder. & then In- 
formed him who. he replyd that he Coud not take him for Less than 
Seventy five Dollars or At the rate of Seventy five p r year. Tuision de- 
pends on the Studies but any Branch of the Studies will be taught as 
Reasonable as in any part of the State where the Same Care & Attention 
is paid to the Student, it is quite probable that Board might be had for 
Sixty Dollars at Respectable Houses. And if you think proper to Send 
the young Gentleman to Raleigh & wish to Board him for less than Col 
Cookes terms I will Sertainly Aid him in Seeking Some Agreeable place. 
Col Cooke further observd that if you thought proper to board him At 
His House it woud be necsary to mention that he must Have twenty five 
or thirty Dollars in Advance or at the Commencement of Boarding, the 
number in School is Dayly Increasing and the order of her Disciplin is 
much approved of. No vacation will take pace [sic] I Suppose untill the 
first of November next — 


I am your most obliging 
Ser 1 &C Kimbro Jones 

John Grey Blount 
N° Carolina 

Stephen Miner to John Gray Blount 

[July 22, 1807] 

John Gray Blount Esqr 
D r Sir 

last September when I was in Turkes Island, 21 I left in the hands of M r 
William Dean the money for two hundred & fifty three Bushels of Salt 
that was Put onboard a Vessel that he was loading $75-90 — When I 
Called at Turk Island last Voyage to Jamaica, he was in Providence his 
Brother Michael informed me that he had money in your hands, and 
that he would write you and Desire you to Pay me that amt. 

21 Turk's Island was a West Indian island owned by Great Britain and best known as the 
major salt market in the West Indies. Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 308n. 

Letters for 1807 93 

Please Sir to inform me if you have Received any Such orders from M r 

I am Sir your 
Obdiant Servant 
Stephen Miner 

New Bern July 22 d 1807 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esqr 

John McDonnold 22 to John Gray Blount 

Overton Courthouse Tennessee Steate 
August 23 th 1807 

Sir, I take the liberty of informing you that some time ago I became in- 
terested — in some land that lies in this County, ajoining lands as I am 
Informed that you Purchased from a Mr Oliver Smith 23 of your Steate 
which lands, cannot be astablished at this time in this Steate Moses Fisk 
informs me that you was to give him a Six hundred and forty acres lott 
for astablishing of Shappars Claim of land in this County — him and my- 
self has Taken Considerable troble in searching — but without suckses, 
one of the corners is cartainly Known to be Shappars Corner of the 
above lands — but not Known which — now Sir the only Remedy is to 
Send for the Chain bearers Who are noted woodsmen in this Steate I am 
informed that they are living in Massicipi Country some where and Can 
be had — 

the Claim of land that is held by Shappard in this County will now 
Strike the vary Sentree of the County and of Cource will be valuable I 
think Sir, that the way now to do is, to write to the Chain bearers and 
offer them somethinge that will make it worth theree adtention to Com 
and Show the biggining Corner, I think that the Six hundred and forty 
offered Mr Fisk for astablishing of the land Which he Cannot do, had 
better be given to the Chain bearers to Come and Show the Corner — the 

22 All that is known about John McDonnold is that he was a citizen of Overton County, 
Tennessee. He inherited some land in that county in 1832. Edythe Rucker Whitley (comp.) 
Tennessee Genealogical Records: Overton County (Nashville, Tenn.: Privately printed by the com- 
piler, 1967), 15, 17. 

23 For Oliver Smith see 1803, n. 34. 

94 John Gray Blount Papers 

men are well Known in this state and are of the Names of James Char- 
ningham and Andrew Reed — I believe that they are marked to all of the 
pattens at least all of them that I Seed if you will write to me and give 
me instrutions how to write to them, I, can and, I will write at any time 
by post — the lands Sir are worth your adtention This from your humble 

John M c Donnold 

To Mr John G Blunt 

Addressed: Mr John Gray Blunt in the 
Steate of North Carlinea 
Pitt County at or near 
greevill Town 

Thomas Blount to Nathaniel Alexander 2 * 

Tarborough 29 th Aug. 1807 


There are in Edgecombe County a number of Gentlemen, who, feeling 
as Americans should do in the present situation of our affairs, desire to 
place themselves in the Detachment of Militia lately called for by the 
President of the United States, but they are unwilling to serve under 
some of the Militia officers that may happen to be drawn into Service by 
the principle established to govern appointments, and entertain some 
doubt whether, if they should turn out voluntarily as they wish to do, in 
sufficient numbers to form one or two Companies, your Excellency 
would grant Commissions to men chosen by themselves to command 
such Company or Companies. I have expressed to them an opinion 
founded upon what I think a fair construction of the 3 d Section of the act 
entitled "An Act authorizing a Detachment of the Militia of the United 
States," that you may exercise such power and the object of this Letter is 

"Nathaniel Alexander was governor of North Carolina, 1805-1807. This letter is in the 
Governors Papers, XXX, Nathaniel Alexander, North Carolina State Archives. It refers to 
the diplomatic crisis provoked in 1807 by the British ship Leopard's attack on the American 
naval vessel Chesapeake. The American public, almost as one voice, clamored for war against 
Great Britain. From this letter it is obvious that not a few North Carolinians along with 
other Americans appealed for action and expected something to be done. Instead of war 
Jefferson decided on the ill-fated embargo policy. Peterson, Thomas Jefferson, 875-882; 
Smelser, Democratic-Republic, 158, 159. 

Letters for 1807 95 

to know whether you concur with me in that opinion or, in other words, 
whether, if such Company or Companies, either Infantry or Cavalry, 
should be formed, you will grant Commissions to such Persons to com- 
mand them as they themselves may make choice of & recommend to 

Should you answer to this Question, which I will thank you to give as 
soon as convenient (2) and in an explicit manner, be favorable to their 
wishes, I have reason to believe that it will give us not only more Volun- 
teers, but more of that Class of our Citizens who are best qualified to 
form such an army as would be most useful at the commencement of a 
War — I mean genteel, active, bold & enterprizing young men who have 
been well educated, and who in the Event of a War would probably be 
willing to accept appointments in a regular army, if such an army should 
become necessary, as men of that description generally hereabouts ex- 
press aversion to putting themselves voluntarily under the command of 
some of the Militia officers who may be entitled by Seniority to com- 
mand the Troops directed to be raised, although their Bosoms burn with 
ardour to avenge their Country's wrongs. 

I have the honor to be 
with very great Respect 
Yo. h & Ob 1 

Tho. Blount MGen 1 
3 d Division N° Ca. 

His Excellency 

Governor Alexander 
Addressed: His Excellency 

Nathaniel Alexander 

Governor & c & c 

Raleigh N° Caro. 

Richard Tack to John Gray Blount 

[September 22, 1807] 

M r John G. Blount 

D. Sir 

Last week the Gov 25 sent after the Nun Buoy after placing the relieving 
Buoy at the NW point and taking the other away the Wind increased so 

25 For John Wallace, the "governor," see 1803, n. 12. 

96 John Gray Blount Papers 

much that the Boys left it on the shoal anchored by a grapling a few 
nights after it drifted away and lodged down about cedar inlet where it 
now remains — The Buoy at the Bluff shoal is nearly sunk has never been 
moved since it was placed there in consequence of the Govenors neglect a 
general murmer prevails — And Cap 1 Wallace declares that if the Gov- 
enor does not pay more attention he shall be under the necessity of com- 
plaining that he is confident some accidents will take place in conse- 
quence of the Buoys being out of place and the want of stakes also — 
Wallace requ[es]ts me to write you — 

I have sent to several places for Weather boarding, have been myself to 
Skeet and can not procure it — If you can furnish it please inform me and 
at what place and time in order that I may send a lighter for it — Or 
please inform me where and of whom it is probable that it may be had 

Sept 22 1807 your obed* serv 1 — 

Shell Castle Rich d Tuck 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 

Richard Tuck to John Gray Blount 

[October 8, 1807] 

M r Blount— 
D Sir 

This day on my way home call'd at Harbour Island to make some in- 
quiry after the Nun Buoy that drifted to Styrons Creek. 26 but could learn 
nothing of it — However found part of the Deck and pump of the one that 
was planted on the Bluff shoal It has been there several days — I heard a 
few days after date of my last letter to you that it had sunk and that the 
mast remain'd out of water but that the Cage had wash'd off — At pres- 
ent the Bluff and S.W poi[n]t remains without Buoys — 

26 Styron is one of the old family names of Ocracoke Island and eastern North Carolina, 
although this creek's location has not been pinpointed. A Styron Bay existed in Carteret 
County on the west side of Core Sound, approximately 1.3 miles southwest of the town of 
Atlantic. Sharpe, New Geography of North Carolina, II, 583; Powell, North Carolina Gazetteer, 

Letters for 1807 97 

Please send by first convenient opportunity a cask of Lime — The Gov- 
enor has requested me to wait untill he burnt some, but he has relin- 
quished the idea of Doing that this Winter — The House is much expos 'd 
for want of Lime much of the plaistering has fallen down — When it rains 
the water comes in by the sides of the Chimneys and makes it way to 
every part of the House — Which must be a great injury to the frame — 
The Stakes have been plac'd within a few days on the Swash and 
through the Navigation in general — Please make my compts to your 
family — 

Your Obdt. Sevt 
Rich d Tuck 

Shellcastle. Oct. 8 th 1807 

(2) The Juniper came safe please send me 2 b Country mustard 


October 13 th my Boat returnd this day from Cedar Island 27 M r Gaskins 28 
inform 'd them that the Buoy had Lodged on Store's Shoal — Where it 
now remains — 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 " 
Mech 1 

Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville October 25 th 1807 

D r Sir 

I rec d your letter dated august. I now write to inform you of our 
health, Jacob 29 is with us & going to the college here, he will probably 

27 Cedar Island is located between the Carteret County mainland and Ocracoke Island. 
Sharpe, New Geography of North Carolina, I, 52; Powell, North Carolina Gazetteer, 96. 

28 This reference is probably to Adam Gaskins, a friend of John Wallace who lived on or 
near Shell Castle. Gaskins unsuccessfully attempted to secure the job as caretaker of the 
proposed lighthouse on Ocracoke in 1793. Also during that year he sailed as a crew mem- 
ber on the Beaver, one of the ships belonging to the Blounts. Keith and others, Blount Papers, 
II, 268, 296. 

29 Jacob Blount was one of the sons of William Blount. Jacob was probably named for his 
paternal grandfather or uncle. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xixn. 

98 John Gray Blount Papers 

continue one year longer, he is perhaps the most Studious young man in 
the world. Richard 30 was near loosing his life by a fall from his horse 
about the middle of September last, I do not know that he is yet perfectly 
restored to his senses, but bid fair to be so when I last hearded from him, 
Eliza 31 goes also to college, she studees Geography &c — I rec d the Barrel 
of fish in good order, but they have created a continual drought I can not 
for my life help thinking of the old Jamacee we spoke of, when this is 
started you may draw in favour of John, 32 it will help pay taxes — with re- 
spect to the land of Salters 33 1 know nothing, I believe the man (2) himself 
does not know on what lot he leives if I shoud however obtain such infor- 
mation as will enable you to fix a price, I shall let you know, Willie 34 is 
also in Town, being a member of the general assembly & is well, we do 
not know here what William 35 is about as he has not written any body in 
this quarter, will you let me know as far as you may be informed, Robert 
Houston, 36 is now made Secretary of State, a man by the name of 
Powell 37 is judge in the room H L White 38 resigned, 

I am with respect 
P M Miller 

remember me to the family, & to Reading & his family. & M rs Blount & 
her family. Mary 39 & the girls Joins, & may grace & truth rest & abide 
with you all (3) I forgot to mention that the colledge for East Tennessee 
is fixed at or near say 1 1/2 miles of Knoxville with an appropriation of 
fifty thousand dollars, tell general Blount, 40 if he wants his son to live to 

30 Richard Blount was another of William Blount's sons. Keith and others, Blount Papers, 
I, xixn. 

31 Eliza Blount was the youngest of William Blount's daughters. She, Jacob, and Richard 
were taken in by their older sister, Mary Louisa, wife of Pleasant M. Miller, after the death 
of William Blount and his wife. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xixn; see also 1804, n. 10. 

32 For John Gray Blount, Jr., see 1803, n. 28; 1804, n. 4. 

33 This was probably John or Washington Salter, whose father, Robert Salter, had been 
involved in the Transylvania Land Company. Much confusion developed over the Salters' 
land titles. John Gray Blount became involved in this as a result of his association with the 
Transylvania Company. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 162n. 

34 For Willie Blount see 1803, n. 33. 

35 William Grainger Blount was the oldest son of William Blount. Keith and others, 
Blount Papers, I, xixn. 

36 Robert Houston was secretary of state in Tennessee during the period between 1807 
and 1811. Rita A. Whitfield, Tennessee Blue Book (Nashville: State of Tennessee, 1976), 35. 

37 Samuel Powell served as judge of the first circuit court of Tennessee during two sepa- 
rate periods, from 1812 to 1813, and from 1819 to 1836. Joshua W. Caldwell, Sketches of the 
Bench and Bar of Tennessee (Knoxville, Tenn.: Ogden Brothers and Co., Printers, 1898), 17. 

38 For Hugh Lawson White see 1804, n. 7. 

3y For Mary Louisa Blount Miller, wife of Pleasant M. Miller, see 1804, n. 11. 

40 For Reading Blount see 1803, n. 25. 

Letters for 1807 99 

a good old age to send him here, I will see that he gets enough to eat, 
clothes he can do without, except Indeed that he may now & then wear 
a little Linsey Woolsy 

PM Miller 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
North Carolina 

Richard Tuck to John Gray Blount 

[December 2, 1807] 

Dear Sir 

Every information relative to the Brig Exchange you will be able to 
learn from the bearer — The object of this letter is to request that you 
would be so good as to write you[r] Brother M r Thomas Blount and rec- 
ommend Alexander Henderson 41 for our Collector — should it be found 
necessary to recommend any person I know of no man better calculated 
to give general satisfaction and more worthey the confidence of the Gov- 
ernment — Taylor 42 has already swindled the Government enough I have 
forwarded to the Secretary a Statement of such frauds as Taylor has 
been practicing on him for a long time — corroberated by such testimony 
as I could collect and from concuring circumstances have reason to sup- 
pose that Taylor will be ousted — Taylor is an injury to this place, a ma- 
terial one to Shell Castle — entirely governd by the New bern interest — If 
Taylor should be removed Mr Blackledge 43 may recommend some per- 
son from Newbern unless some caution be taken we may have a collector 
from that place with whom we shall receive Newbern prejudices. New- 
bern principles impart a Newbern standard by which every thing is to be 
determin'd here — The selfishness and sufficiency with which that people 

41 Ironically, this was probably Alexander Henderson, who became an officer in the Bank 
of New Bern. Miller, Recollections, 35. 

42 For Captain James Taylor see 1805, n. 17. 
43 For William Blackledge see 1803, n. 40. 

100 John Gray Blount Papers 

are so strongly markd renders it almost impossible to find a man amont 
them suitable for this office — 

I remain your Obd 1 Servt 
Rich d Tuck 

December 2 d 1807 — 
Shell Castle- 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 * 
Merch 1 


A Contract for Hiring a Slave 

[January 1, 1808] 

Twelve Months after date we promise to pay or cause to be paid unto 
John Gray Blount Guardian to Eliza Harvey 1 or order the sum of Thirty 
two Pounds ten Shillings It being for the hire of negro Dave for one year 
ending on 1 st January 1809 we also promise to pay the Taxes of said 
negro and furnish him with sufficient Clothing & diet (Agreeable to cus- 
tom) and at the Expiration of the term of time return the said negro to 
the Guardian or other person or persons that may be authorized to re- 
cieve & include in his Clothing a Blanket 

Witness our Hands & Seal this l 8t day 

January 1808 John M Kerr (Seal) 

William Augustus Blount 2 W Harvey (Seal) 

William Blackledge 3 to Thomas Jefferson 4 

City of Washington February 2 d 1808 

To the President 
of the United States 


Inclosed I have the honor to forward you a memorial of a number of 
the citizens of the town of Beaufort of the County of Carteret in its vicini- 

^ohn Gray Blount had many ties with the Harveys through marriage. For example, 
both he and his brother Reading Blount married Harveys. Eliza Harvey was probably the 
child of a relative through marriage, but which relative it was has not been determined. 

2 William Augustus Blount (1792-1867) was a younger son of John Gray Blount, Sr. Dur- 
ing the War of 1812 he served in the Eighteenth Infantry Regiment stationed in South 
Carolina. Although his regiment never engaged in combat, he was elected major general of 
the sixth division of the North Carolina militia after the war. From 1825 through 1827 he 
represented Beaufort County in the North Carolina House of Commons, and he served as a 
trustee of the University of North Carolina from 1826 until his death. Samuel A. Ashe and 
others (eds.), Biographical History of North Carolina: From Colonial Times to the Present (Greens- 
boro: Charles L. Van Noppen, 8 volumes, 1905-1917), I, 164-166, hereinafter cited as Ashe, 
Biographical History of North Carolina; Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 107n. 

3 For William Blackledge see 1803, n. 40. 

4 This letter came originally from the Thomas Jefferson Papers, Library of Congress. A 
xerox copy of it is located in the John Gray Blount Papers, North Carolina State Archives, 
but why a letter from William Blackledge to Thomas Jefferson shows up in any form in 
Blount's papers has not been ascertained. For a discussion of what happened in the wake of 
the Leopard and Chesapeake incident and the implementation of the embargo policy see 1807, 
n. 24. 

102 John Gray Blount Papers 

ty praying that they may have some portion of the gunboats sent to 
them, & a battery erected for at the point of the Inlet for the protection 
of that town and harbour — The laws on the Subject of Gunboats & forti- 
fications having already passed through Congress, and the money appro- 
priated to these objects being placed at the disposal of your Excellency I 
have deemed it unnecessary to lay the inclosed before Congress — 

In addition to what is stated by the memo (2) rialists I will just remark 
that in the event of a war, the port of Beaufort immediately becomes of 
immencely greater importance to the Commerce of North Carolina than 
it has heretofore been in peace owing to the fineness of its inlet & harbor 
when compared with Ocracock. During the Revolutionary war all vessels 
of heavy burthens as well as others which fill to the Southward of Cape 
Lookout ran into Beaufort rather than run the risque of being taken 
while lig[h]tering at Ocracock or weathering Cape Look Out, & from 
Beaufort sent their Cargoes in lighters to such ports on the waters dis- 
charging at Ocracock or they saw proper. And should a canal be com- 
pleted which is begun for the purpose of connecting the waters of Neuse 
river below Newbern with the waters discharging through Beaufort Har- 
bour at Old Topsail Inlet, as it easily may be and no doubt will be, it 
will render Beaufort a very important port in peace as well as war. If 
nothing is done towards the protection of this place, a privateer or trader 
well manned may at pleasure lay (3) it under Contribution, & from the 
country around it abounding in Cattle sheep & Hogs they must be in- 
vited frequently to visit it for supplies of fresh provisions for their block- 
ading squadron if for no other purpose — 

With the highest respect I have the honor to be 

Your Excellency's 
very Obd 1 Serv 1 
W m Blackledge 

John Gray Blount to William Buck 

Washington Feby 10 th 1808 

Cap 1 William Buck 

Herewith you have the following notes which have been long due but 
as I hope the men who owe them have become rich in Georgia they will 
not now hesitate to pay me should you receive the whole or any part 
please write me and send an Order for me to receive as much of your 

Letters for 1808 


money due here or if none owe you here I can give an order to some man 
about to remove to Georgia & take their notes due here 

I am with much esteem 
Your most Obed 1 
JG. Blount 

Lockland Meleny note 
dated 18 July 1795 
paid in Act. Origy 

In 1 from Origy — 
Ja 8 Morse note ) 
dated 25 May 96 J 
In 1 

Cha 8 Whilifreed note ) 
dated 19 June 1784 J 
In 1 


32:6:1 ball 1 

23.2.11 on [illegible] 

9.6.1 1/2 

Ja 8 Morse I believe was a Bastard Son of some of the Brooks & used to 
live up in Pitt & sometimes go by water 

Addressed: M r William Buck 

Washington County 
State of Georgia 

Nathaniel Blount 5 to John Gray Blount 

[March 31, 1808] 


My Charge for attending the funeral of General Blount 6 is forty shill- 
ings, your sending it by my Son Levi, will much 

Oblige your Most Obed 1 
N Blount 

6 Nathaniel Blount, an Episcopal minister, was a native of Beaufort County. He officiated 
there and in Pitt County. He was ordained in England. Reed, Beaufort County, 139. 
6 For Reading Blount, who died October 13, 1807, see 1803, n. 25. 

104 John Gray Blount Papers 

31 st March 1808 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 " 

[Written on reverse side] Red d of John Gray Blount forty 
shillings in full of the within order 
March 31 8t 1808 
Levi Blount 

James B. White 1 to John Gray Blount 

Decemb 2 1808 

D r Sir/ 

I was in hopes to have seen you at this place during the Asemly Re- 
specting a Survy of land you Own in Bladen on the South West Side of 
South River & Both Sides of Moores Swamp the Courses of Which I 
suppose you have Be pleased to write me to Elizabeth town Bladen 
County informing me If you would Sell the Same and the price the Survy 
Contains Seventy Acres the land is of Verry little Value But Joins Som I 
own therefore would like to purchs your answer as Soon as posible will 
(2) be Exspected by post 


James B White 

Addressed: John G. Blont Esqr 

M r Grist North Washington 

7 James B. White of Bladen County represented his county in the North Carolina House 
of Commons in 1806 and in 1807. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 251, 253. 


J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

[January 29, 1809; 


have Sent by the Flatt 2982 feet Sheething boards & 2677 feet of 
weather-boarding have had so much water coud get no more Sawd and 
four barrels Flour, the planks you mentioned that was over mark'd must 
have been mark'd by the Negroes with out my Knowledge 

your &c 
J H Blount 

29 th Jany. 1809 

Addressed: John G Blount Essquire 

Marshall Dickinson 1 to John Gray Blount 

[February 18, 1809] 

D r Sir, 

On enquiry respecting the piece of land which M r Willis is about ob- 
taining a lease, it is believed that no man can afford to put the plantation 
in order by fences &c for less than two years use, whereas I am told you 
proposed to give one. M r Jackson & other neighbours of the place are of 
that opinion. I am willing to be security for Jos. Willis Jr for Such a con- 
tract should it be made between you, because I believe him to be honest 
& industrious, and because I have known him to perform a Similar en- 
gagement last year with good faith — and should that agreement be en- 
tered into you may consider me as bound on his part — 

y r ob l ser 1 

Marshal Dickinson 

1 Marshall Dickinson represented Pitt County in the North Carolina House of Commons 
in 1819, from 1826 to 1831, and from 1850 to 1851. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 275, 
288, 290, 294, 319. 

106 John Gray Blount Papers 

Feby 18 1809 

John G. Blount Esq 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 

W. Bradley to John Gray Blount 

Bladen County 21 8t Feby 1809 

Jno. G. Blount esq r 
Dear Sir 

I duly received yours which related to M r White & your Land, I have 
sold the land to B. White for your old Friend Beaty for One Dollar p r 
Acre the Money will be paid on your Executing a Deed, I have Inclosed 
you the Sherriffs recept for the past years Taxes — the Deed will be made 
to Beaty 

their appears to be tax money on hand, I will send you an a/c when I 
send the Money for your land 

I am Sir with due 
respect your H S l 
W Bradley 

Addressed: John G. Blount esq r 

J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

[May 20, 1809] 


have Sent 1607 feet plank 955 feet Cypress Scantling 3621 do pine 
Scantling & 400 do quarterd boards 6 inches wide for Thomas H Blount 
all your Flour one barrel 108 lb8 Superfine 61 lbB Seconds & 7 lb8 Thirds 

Letters for 1809 107 

one The wings of the Grist mill was discovered last night about mid- 
night to be caving in & the water running through I had it Stop'd but 
never coud find where the water made through 

yr &c 

J H Blount 

May 20 th 1809 

Addressed: John G Blount Esquire 

John Gray Blount to J. H. Blount 

[July 2, 1809] 

I send up a Bill of Flooring Plank say 1500 feet 1600 feet long 700 feet 
Inch Boards 16 feet long 2000 feet of 3/4 Inch quartered 16 feet long & 
2000 feet [illegible] without saying what thickness but I suppose Inch 16 
feet long the above Bill is for Tho 8 Stewart 2 of Tarb° and if you have 
water I wish it compleated as near as may be without too much trouble 
to come down when the hands can conveniently bring it 

I wish the Sheathing for Redmond brought down as soon as possible 
and with it as much as convenient of the Lumber most in the way other 
than the flooring and last Inch Plank sawed I suppose it will be Plank, 
Scantling & Boards assorted and so wish I wrote you to the same effect 
by Jerry but have received no answer when it will probably be down 
please let me hear by Frank in the morning 

Yours & c 
JG. Blount 

July 2 d 1809 

Addressed: M r JH Blount 

2 There was a Thomas Stewart of Tyrrell County who served in the North Carolina legis- 
lature. He was a merchant and a currency speculator. This could be the same man men- 
tioned in the letter. Keith and others, Blount Papers, II, 35n, 36. 

108 John Gray Blount Papers 

William Woodfork 3 to Josiah Collins 

Jackson County, Ten. July 10 th 1809 

Dear Sir I had a power of attorney made to me by Colo. Murfree 4 by vir- 
tue of one you made him, and I went to Overton County in the month of 
February to reedeem your Land that was Sold for tax 1807 and Could 
not See the high Sheriff, as he was gone to Kentucky at that time and be- 
fore I had the opportunity of going again the Colo, died and of course 
the power Ceased, and I Called on M r Dickinson, 5 Col. Murfree's Son in 
law, who wrote to me to Continue to do the Col's heirs bussiness, as I 
had been in the habit of doing it. I then asked him what about your 
Land, he said he knew nothing about it but Stated he would write to 
you, nominating me as a proper person to transact that business I told 
him not for fear I would not Redeem it. It was then about the l 8t of June 
and I was then at Nashville and had Some bussiness to do there and 
Overton County was a Considerable distance off. But as the Col. in- 
formed me you was one of his old friends, he and myself was on good 
terms. I went to Overton County in the last week in June, as the 1 st mon- 
day in July the time of Redemption was out, and the amount was for Re- 
deeming 2300 acres, $22.30 3/4 cents the tax for 1808 is due, and I 
promised to pay it at august Court I gave the Land in for 1809. There 
never was any money put into my hands, to pay Tax or Redeem the 
Land you will be good enough to Send on money. I have Some papers in 
my hands given to me by Murfree, I must inform you that Some of your 
5000 acre Tract was Sold for Taxes Several years ago in the (2) Name of a 
M r Johnson, 2700 acres By a Conveyance from Gaddy to him the Said 
Johnson, and the purchasers informs me that Johnsons Deed from 

3 William Woodfork, who also spelled his last name Woodfolk, served as a first major in 
the Eighteenth Regiment of Tennessee militia in 1807. From 1813 to 1815 he represented 
Jackson County in the Tennessee General Assembly. There is little doubt that the two 
spellings, Woodfork and Woodfolk, belong to the same man. Mary Brown (Daniel) Moore, 
Records of Commissions in the Tennessee Militia, 1796-1811 (Nashville: Tennessee Historical 
Commission, 1947), 41; Robert M. McBride (ed.), Biographical Directory of the Tennessee Gener- 
al Assembly (Nashville: Tennessee State Library and Archives, 1975), 818, hereinafter cited 
as McBride, Directory of the Tennessee General Assembly. The county tax records, on file in the 
Tennessee State Archives, also show the different spellings of the name. 

* Hardy Murfree, considered a hero of the Revolutionary War, was a major and then a 
lieutenant colonel in the Second Regiment of the North Carolina Continental Line. After 
the war he became a land speculator in Tennessee, and the town of Murfreesboro in that 
state is named for him. Second Regiment, Register of the North Carolina Continental 
Line; Carlton C. Sims, A History of Rutherford County (Murfreesboro. Tenn.: n.p., 1947), 27, 
119, hereinafter cited as Sims, Rutherford County. 

6 David Dickinson, whose estate Grantland (located on Stone's River northwest of Mur- 
freesboro) was well known, married Hardy Murfree's daughter Fanny. Sims, Rutherford 
County, 27, 33, 119. 

Letters for 1809 109 

Gaddy is Registered in Hawkins County this State. And bears date 
Shortly after the issueing of Gaddy 's Grant, they proffer to give up the 
Land, by paying them Something, the Beginning Corner of the 5000 
acres I have not found, but I believe it to be Settled, and you Can give 
me Such information as you think propper. I have received no directions 
Since I received the papers, and I will do as you direct me until you Can 
get an Agent 

Yours &c 

William Woodfork 

Josiah Collins Sen 1 " 6 

Addressed: M r Josiah Collins Sen 1 " 
Edenton N. Carolina 
Chowan County 

per mail 

J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

[July 19, 1809] 


I dont think I can get Mr Stewarts & Mr Ross['s] 7 Bills Sawd & Sent 
down before the latter end next week we have had so much water that I 
have Just got to Sawing. 

I expect there is about 20 M plank & boards 35 M Scantling & 7 or 8 
M quartered plank exclusive of what I Shall take to make up Mr Ste- 
warts & Ross['s] Bills 

your &c 
JH Blount 

19 th July 1809— 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq re 

6 For Josiah Collins, Sr., see 1805, n. 41. 

7 For Thomas Stewart see 1809, n. 2; for William Ross see 1803, n. 70. 

110 John Gray Blount Papers 

Joseph Coppinger to John Gray Blount 

Baltimore 19 th October 1809 


Having lately done the needful In order to take out two Patent Rights 
the one for a simple and cheap construction of a Machine for Making 
shingles by which it is expected from 15 to 20'000 shingles p r Day may be 
produced in the rough by the labour of two Men suppossing the blocks 
to be allready sawd and the wood Pine, cypress or cedar to be operated. 
The other is a Plaining Mill by means of which and a four ox power it is 
expected from 15 to 20'000 square feet of plank may be plained p r Day 
with the labour of two Men and a boy. One or both these Machines as 
appendages to a lumber yard might I should suppose be made abun- 
dantly productive in your neighbourhood in the supply of the West India 
Islands with lumber and plained boards 

Should you or any of your respectable acquaintance think proper to 
Purchasse the single right of either of these Machines the Cost for each 
will be $50 Drawings and references $4 — for your whole state the rate 
will be $500 (2) for each Machine And I doubt much If capital can be 
vested in a more profitable or secure operation. Here it may be proper to 
remark that the Shingle machine with a Slight variation of its parts can 
be applied to cutting Nails from sheet Iron. I calculate it may cost in 
erection about $300 — The plaining Mill without a house $500 praying 
you to excuse the freedom of this communication 

I remain Sir Very Respectfully — 
Your Ob 1 Serv 1 
Joseph Coppinger 

Addressed: John Gray Blunt Esq r 
North Carolina 

Letters for 1809 111 

A Decree Pertaining to Reading Blount 's Estate 

[October 29, 1809] 

Edward R. Byrd 

by his Father and next 

friend Martin R. Byrd 8 ) Decree 

Redding Blounts Adm r 

This cause comeing in to be heard the 29 th day of October in the year 
of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and nine, exparte, upon the Bill 
and Report, of the Clerk & Master, before his Honor Chief Justice 
Taylor, 9 wherein it charges that Silas Niles left, Edward Racer Byrd, by 
Will, Five hundred dollars & that Redding Blount administrator of said 
Silas Niles, admitted the legacy by Letter, and promised payment, and 
John Gray Blount, administrator of said Redding Blount has not filed 
any Answer thereto or applied to Counsil to defend the same, Therefore 
it is Ordered Adjudged and Decreed that the report of the Clerk & Mas- 
ter be confirmed and that the Deft, pay to the Comp 1 according to the 
above Report with lawful Costs, and it is ordered, adjudged and decreed 
accordingly — 

Decree filed October 29 th 1 809 John Welet C & ME 

I Hereby Certify the above to be a true copy of a decree filed in the 
Equity Office of Washington County the 29 th Octob r 1809 — 

John Welet C & ME. WC 

8 Martin R. Byrd represented Tyrrell County in the North Carolina House of Commons 
in 1797. Beyond the fact that Edward Byrd was Martin's son, he has not been identified. 
Cheney, North Carolina Government, 238. 

9 John Lewis Taylor of Fayetteville was a judge of the superior court and chief justice of 
the state supreme court from 1818 until his death in 1829. Keith and others, Blount Papers, 
III, 145n. 


John Gray Blount Papers 

Willie Blount (1768-1835), the half-brother 
of William and John Gray Blount, served as 
governor of Tennessee during the War of 
1812. His attitudes toward the removal of In- 
dians to west of the Mississippi won a sym- 
pathetic hearing from Andrew Jackson, who 
in effect began the process with the subjuga- 
tion of the Creek Indians during that war. 
Photograph from the files of the North 
Carolina Division of Archives and History. 

Willie Blount 10 to Andrew Jackson n 

Knoxville Dec r 28 th 1809 

Dear Sir, 

It would be to the interest of the United States to accede to the pro- 
posal of this State respecting an exchange of territory with the Cherokees 
and Chickasaws agreeably to the plan proposed by me to the legislature 
on the 16 th & 30 th Oct 1 " last, that is, to give them lands west of the Mis- 
sissippi in exchange for their claim — the time seems to be fast approach- 
ing when it will be indispensably necessary for the general government to 

10 For Willie Blount see 1803, n. 33. This letter comes from the Andrew Jackson Papers in 
the Library of Congress. A xerox copy of it is located in the John Gray Blount Papers, 
North Carolina State Archives. The letter deals with a subject — Indian removal — which is 
closely associated with the name of Andrew Jackson. What Jackson's thoughts were on this 
matter in 1809 has not been ascertained, but it is clear that in subsequent years he was in 
complete sympathy with the views expressed by Willie Blount in this letter. Jackson did 
more than anyone else to "extinguish" Indian land claims east of the Mississippi River (be- 
ginning in 1817) and to send the Indians westward. Among those affected by his commit- 
ment to the policy of removal were the Cherokees of North Carolina. Morris, Encyclopedia of 
American History, 171; Edward Pessen, Jacksonian America: Society, Personality, and Politics 
(Homewood, 111.: The Dorsey Press, Revised Edition, 1978), 296-301; Remini, Andrew Jack- 
son and the Course of American Empire, 332-333. 

"Thoroughly disgusted with President Jefferson's handling of the "Burr conspiracy" 
(especially his defense of General James Wilkinson), Jackson refused to support James 
Madison, Jefferson's handpicked candidate for president in 1808. Instead he supported 
James Monroe. Disenchanted with the political situation, Jackson retired to his farm for 
the next several years, managing its affairs and improving his racing stable. Remini, Andrew 
Jackson and the Course of American Empire, 158-159. 

Letters for 1809 113 

have Nations of friends settled on that their frontier — I mean by it, that 
the conduct of the european nations is such, that neutral rights are now 
and have been long disregarded, and if the United States should in sup- 
port of their rights have to contend with those Nations, it would be 
sound policy in us to gain strength in that quarter of our territory, for it 
is not unreasonable to suppose that a part of foreign policy would be to 
get possession of that part of the territory of the United States — 

The State of Tennessee having an undivided interest in the vacant 
lands west of the Mississippi held in common with the other States has 
an undoubted right to propose an exchange of territory situate there for 
such part of our territory as the Cherokees and Chickasaws claim near 
us; it would be better for her now to surrender her right to a certain por- 
tion of that territory for the accomplishment of so great a good to this 
State, than hereafter to use it in any other way — we really do own the 
lands claimed by those Nations within our limits, the uncontrouled juris- 
diction over it we must sooner or later have and exercise, to exchange 
with them is an act of liberality on our part — Tennessee in aid of the 
policy of the United States towards Indians has as yet acquiesced in con- 
sidering them as tenants at will, but for this state to think of raising a 
sufficient sum of money by tax on the people to purchase their claim, say 
at an expense of hundreds (2) of thousands of dollars would be but an 
idle thought — those Nations of Indians are now friendly to the United 
States and the liberal policy of the latter towards the former will, and I 
wish it may preserve the friendship and secure the attachment of those 
Nations for the United States for ever — but for our benefit and accom- 
modation as a State, I wish them led away from us — I am willing to act 
justly towards them — it would be promotive of their interest as Nations 
to settle over the Mississippi — game is there very abundant, the climate 
friendly to their constitutions, and much of the country is inhabited by 
people (Indians) whose manners and customs are more assimilated to 
their's than those of the people where they now live — at present they are 
surrounded by States thickly populated by people who have different in- 
terests — their friendship for the United States being firm (bottomed on 
their interest) they could assist in protecting the citizens of the general 
government over there, could longer preserve their national character, 
more easily and conveniently supply their individual wants, and by their 
intercourse with the neighbouring Indians could by precept and example 
civilize them faster and make more favorable impressions on them of the 
friendship of the United States towards Indians in general than could be 
effected in any other way with ten fold the expense to the United States 
who have for many years thought it good policy to cultivate the friend- 
ship of Indian tribes & they have done it at very great expense to the 
government attended with much individual sacrifice — 

1 1 4 John Gray Blount Papers 

The best exertions of every citizen of the State should be used in en- 
deavoring to accomplish the views of the State in relation to this ex- 
change of territory — I am convinced yours will not be withheld — this let- 
ter contains the outlines of what would probably be a conversation be- 
tween us if together — should be glad to hear from you occasionally and 

your friend 
Willie Blount 

Major Gen 1 
Andrew Jackson 


William Jones to John Gray Blount 

BALTiMOR E Jan y l 8t 1810 

J G Blount Esqe 
Esteemed friend 

I duly rec d your fav r of the 28 th Nov 1 * last; am Sorry the Iron which had 
been Sent was not assorted to Suit you 

As to Castings it has been impossible for me to procure them, No per- 
son in this place except W m Matthews 1 has lately been furnished any 
considerable quantity, and even he has not had more than half the usual 
Supply in, We hope to have other arrangements in the Spring 

This will I expect be handed you by John Reece, 2 who has been partly 
brought up in my family and possesses my Confidence Having letters of 
Attorney to act for me in the Collection of debts & in purchasing a Car- 
go for and loading the Schooner Little Will — any Civilities you may find 
it convenient to shew him, or assistance which you can render him in the 
objects that may engage his attention while at your place, will be grate- 
fully acknowledged by 

Your assured friend 
W m Jones 

NB your Son Thomas is personally acquainted with JR — 
The ace 1 Spoken of is forwarded — See over — 

(2) P.S. I have not Seen A C Schnuman to deliver your letter of the 
20 th Aug 1 last, he has not returned, from a voyage to Lisbon under- 
taken about five months ago 


Addressed: J. G. Blount Esq r 


J Reece 

"^William Matthews was a prominent citizen of Baltimore. He was named to several Bal- 
timore commissions charged with solving some city problems. Records of Baltimore, 115, 116, 
138, 139, 205. 

2 John Reece lived in Baltimore in 1809 and had a house on Howard Street. Records of Bal- 
timore, 117-118. 

1 1 6 John Gray Blount Papers 

Hugh Jones 3 to John Gray Blount 

Mattamu — 

Lake View 

January 3 rd 1810 

Dear Sir 

I received your letter of the 29 th yesterday evening, & regret much that 
you should have met with any delay in getting your money M r Biddle 4 
must have misunderstood me, I left a note^of $800 in his hands with a re- 
quest to pay to your draught. I saw M r Neal at the Castle, he mentioned 
that you had empowered him to receive your money, & I told him then 
the money would not be due when he got there. The 10 th of January the 
note is payable, so that you may draw at sight. The sum you paid Jar- 
row appears by his receipt (which I enclose you to be $34. Our wheat fell 
short 37 bushels. The quantity of wheat you had on board was, as M r 
Hollowel 6 wrote to me 434 bushels. When in Philadelphia I was much in- 
disposed & requested W m Biddle to make a statement of the account, & 
I had such an entire reliance upon his accuracy that I never even ex- 
amined it, but I now see the eror in the Weight. I send you Biddies state- 
ment. The error in the Weight is the only one — You will however at 
present if you please draw at the rate of 89 cents p r bushel the ballance I 
will pay you the first time I see you. Your Wheat 434 bushels at 89 Cts I 
believe, amounts to $386"26 Cts to which add $34. the amount is $420 "26 
Cts (2) You observe your wheat weighd upwards of 60 before it was 
shipped, & therefore it must have held out; but if you will recollect it 
was on board a leaky vessel upwards of 40 days, so much injured by fly 
& weavel you will not be surprised that it fell short. Enclosed you will re- 
ceive a blank paper with my name signed to it you can fill it up in form 
of letter or bill as best suits you — I remain 

Your ser 1 
Hugh Jones 

3 This was probably Dr. Hugh Jones of Craven County. He married Ann Marie Guion in 
that county in 1804. Marriage Bond of Hugh Jones and Ann Marie Guion, Craven County 
Marriage Bonds, August 4, 1804, North Carolina State Archives; Miller, Recollections, 49, 56. 

4 William Biddle, a Philadelphia lawyer, was the older brother of the famous Nicholas 
Biddle. Nicholas Biddle later served as president of the second Bank of the United States 
during President Andrew Jackson's squabble with that institution in the 1830s. Thomas P. 
Govan, Nicholas Biddle: Nationalist and Public Banker, 1786-1844 (Chicago: University of 
Chicago Press, 1959), 4, 9, 12, 18, hereinafter cited as Govan, Nicholas Biddle. 

6 This could be Ira Hollowell. See 1803, n. 1. 

Letters for 1810 


Addressed: John G. Blount Esqr 
North Carolina 

[Enclosed account omitted] 

Charles Gobert & C° to John Gray Blount 

M r John Gray Blount 
Washington, N.C. 


Amelia-island 6 January 6 th 1810 

The letter which Captain Thomas Smith 7 wrote to you by the mail of 
yesterday, has, we doubt not, reached Washington already & informed 
you of our being the purchasers of your brig Exchange. Tho' our agree- 
ment with that gentleman, respecting that brig, took place on the 30 th ul- 
timo, It was, from various circumstances, concluded & signed only yes- 
terday late in the afternoon. It then became impossible to us, from want 
of time before the closing of the mail of that day, to address to Mess r8 
J. E. & J. F. Caldwell the circumstantial letter of advice which we 
wanted should accompany our bill of 7000 D rs on them, in payment of 
said brig. We have now wrote it & will send it, with this, to the post of- 
fice of S l Mary's. We therefore request of you to send our bill on for ac- 
ceptance as soon as this reaches you, & to empower the gentlemen to 
whom you will forward it for presentation, to give to Mess rs J. E. & J. F. 
Caldwell, after our said bill of exchange is honoured, a bill of sale (2) of 
brig Exchange if those gentlemen wish to receive it themselves at New- 
York, tho', from other considerations, they may wish that the said bill of 
sale should be tendered to us here, in which case we are ready to receive 
it in this place. 

We doubt not but Captain Smith will send you by the mail of the 12 th 
instant (by which this will go) a copy of our articles of agreement with 

6 Amelia Island was a nesting place of pirates and smugglers in East Florida, not far from 
the Georgia border. Approximately two hundred American "insurgents" aided by Ameri- 
can gunboats captured the island in 1812 in an effort to wrest it from Spain. The Madison 
administration disavowed the whole affair. Bailey, Diplomatic History, 166. 

7 Captain Thomas Smith was a ship captain who sailed for the Blounts over a period of 
many years. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 8n, 70-71, 73-74, 111-112, 132, 333. 

1 1 8 John Gray Blount Papers 

him. they were, at first, seven in number, which we approved of. Your 
friend M r Hanson Kelley, then suggested an 8 th one, which says — that a 
letter from you or your agent in New- York, approving or disapproving of 
our bill of exchange shall be deemed sufficient to confirm or annull the 
agreement of sale of brig Exchange. We objected at first to that article 
being inserted, as being inadmissible, but M r Kelly having assured us of 
your integrity, we assented to it. We expect, therefore, from your justice 
& liberality that you will not suffer this clause, subscribed by us, to go 
further than to insure your just rights & that you will order the bill of 
sale to be given, as soon as our said bill of exchange is accepted & found 
good by your correspondent. 

We are going to clean the brig's bottom & to put (3) other repairs on 
her, to make her ready for sea, & put 13000 D r8 worth of naval stores & 
cotton on board of her; we therefore hope to be treated by you in this 
business as we have aright to expect from the idea which we have been 
induced to form of your principles, in consequence of the high character 
which M r Kelly M r Smith & others agree to give you. 

We are respectfully 

Your very humble Serv t8 
Charles Gobert & C° 

our address is 
C. G. & C° 
Commission merchants 
Amelia island, near 
S l Mary's 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blount 
Washington (N. Carolina) 

George Gordon to John Gray Blount 

Murfreesborough January 26 th 1810 

M r John G. Blount 

Dear Sir 

Agreeably to your request I have purchased One thousand Bushels 
White Peas for you, and request you will Send a Vessel to this place to 
receive them as soon as possible — I should prefer a Bill on M r Theo. 

Letters for 1810 119 

Armistead of Norfolk for the peas — I do not recollect that you mentioned 
at what time the Bill would be payable, but I presume at Sight — 

Believing that my title to the lands, late the property of M r Hare, is 
unquestionable, and having nothing that I can employ my hands to ad- 
vantage about, I have concluded to send them on the land to make Tur- 
pentine — I shall want a few bushels of white peas and Some Corn, per- 
haps 10 or 12 barrells, for them which I beg you will furnish them 
with — As they will have no place to put that quantity in, if you would 
furnish them with a few bushels at a time as they may want it, you 
would very much oblige me — I shall be at your place in the Spring and 
will pay you the money — 

I suppose my hands will make 300 blls. Turpentine, perhaps more, 
would you like to engage it, to be delivered on the river near Capt. W m 
M c Keel's? My Waggon goes out with M r Joel Baker (who is to make 
my Barrells) and the hands, and Will return immediately — You will 
please write me by the Boy, whom I have directed to Call for the Letter, 
and inform me when I may expect your Vessel for the Peas, and whether 
you can furnish M r Baker & the Boys with the Corn & peas, also 
whether you are disposed to purchase the Turpentine & at what price — 

W m H Murfree Esquire being (2) Connected with me in Business, you 
will please draw the Bill for the peas payable to Murfree & Gordon 

I am very respectfully 
Dear Sir 

Your Ob 1 Ser 1 
Geo Gordon 
N.B. M r Baker will want a Grind Stone, will you furnish him with 
one? — 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 
Beaufort County 

Thomas H. Blount 8 to John Gray Blount 

Washington Feby. 4 th 1810 

Hon'd papa, 

M r Macon 9 yesterday handed me yours inclosing a [illegible] of ex- 
change on London, which will not sell at this place — have therefore, 

8 Thomas Harvey Blount was one of the sons of John Gray and Mary Harvey Blount. 
Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 107n. 
9 For Nathaniel Macon see 1803, n. 91. 

120 John Gray Blount Papers 

written [manuscript torn] to Baltimore to know if they will answer 
them — I brought in with me a [illegible] for W. [illegible] who ordered 
me not to sell unless at par, they are over the U. States 3 pCent below 
par, and the merchants say as soon as Macon's bill 10 passes the senate, 
they will be still lower the cause must be obvious; too much of our pro- 
duce in their ports — 

Since my last I have again conversed with Gallatin on the subject of 
your claim, who after examination says no return has ever been made to 
the office of the business, that if the Vessell has been condimned the of- 
ficers at Orleans have retained the proceeds, the Capture was illegal, & 
of course condemnation, that the Captured have not applyed to the U. S. 
for remuneration because they have violated the Embargo & [illegible] 
He has since my communication written to the U.S. Atty. at Orleans to 
know how the proceeds has been disposed of — He further informed me, 
that you must state your account with the War Department (that (2) 
having chartered the Experiment) & substantiate any loss or injury you 
may have sustained by the proper vouchers, present the same to the War 
Department, & if allowed to be correct he, (Gallatin) will pay you the 
Amount direct — This I suppose to be correct as to your sufficient reasons 
for it, & [manuscript torn] quite disposed to render me any service in his 
power — 

Macon's bill which no doubt you have seen in the Intelligence passed 
the house of Representatives by a majority of 21 votes & the Senate now 
have it under consideration — the Commons only amended it by authoris- 
ing the Pres. to call out the Navy of the U. S. to carry the law into ef- 
fect — 

Genl. Smith 11 is the only Senator whom I have heard speak against the 
bill — it no doubt will pass, but considerable opposition will be made to 
it — The Vice Pres. 12 who lives in the same house with me, thinks there is 

10 Nathaniel Macon's Bill Number 2 was the law that repealed the Non-Intercourse Act 
during the Napoleonic wars and opened United States trade with all nations. It contained a 
bargaining provision, however, that offered to suspend trade with Britain if Napoleon 
would withdraw his Berlin and Milan decrees, which forbade European countries to trade 
with Great Britain; or, to suspend trade with France if Britain would cancel its orders-in- 
council, which declared the entire coast of France to be under blockade. Bailey, Diplomatic 
History, 133-135. 

n This probably refers to Samuel Smith (1752-1833), a senator from Maryland, who made 
a long speech in the Senate against easing the nonintercourse policy then in force against 
Britain and France. Smith was a general in the Maryland militia. Annals of the Congress, 
Eleventh Congress, First and Second Sessions, 1809-1810 (Washington: Gales and Seaton, 
1834-1856), XX, 602-611; Biographical Directory of Congress, 1720. 

12 The vice-president referred to here was George Clinton (1739-1812) of New York. He 
had a distinguished career as a soldier in the Revolutionary War, as a multiterm governor 
of New York, and as vice-president of the United States for two terms. Biographical Directory 
of Congress, 754. 

Letters for 1 8 1 121 

no doubt of its passage, tho' few if any entirely approve of it, but they are 
all anxious to be released from the Non-Intercourse law — 

By this bill you can send your Schooner to any place you think proper, 
bringing home only the produce of the Island or place you send to — If 
you have not yet seen it, I must refer you to the Norfolk Herald of the lat- 
ter part of Dec r in which I saw it previous to my departure from Nor- 

(3) At present Congress, (I mean the house of Representatives) have 
nothing of consequence before them — [manuscript torn] doubtful how 
to act, & are in daily expectation [manuscript torn] from Europe; they 
think they will adjourn [manuscript torn] March but from their dilatory 
manner of [manuscript torn] they cannot adjourn before June — 

Your Schooner having returned I hope [manuscript torn] made a good 
voyage & that on this the Exchange has been sold & the proceeds [illegi- 
ble] — 

I shall leave this in about ten days for Carolina where on my arrival I 
hope to find the family in as perfect health as myself — 

I remain 

your Dutiful Son 
Thos. H Blount 

Mr. Kennedy 13 is here considered as a "violent Democrat" & to use the 
expression of his Colleague Stanly 14 (who is not partial to him) votes 
with the Dem. "thro' thick & thin" 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 
Washington N.C. 

William Bell 15 to John Gray Blount 

Beaufort February 2 1 st 1810 

Respected Sir 

Yours by John Gale came duly to hand which renders me under many 
Obligations] to you, for your perticular attention to me, in procuring 
some part of the freight due me for my part of the Schooner Hannah — 

13 For William Kennedy see 1803, n. 65. 
14 For John Stanly see 1803, n. 43. 

15 Several William Bells lived in Carteret County during this period. Which one wrote 
this letter has not been determined. 

122 John Gray Blount Papers 

I have drawn an Order on you in favor of M r William Ward, necessity 
Oblieges me to do it or I should not have been in so much of a hurry, 
Times are very dull here nothing a doing which makes me Scratch some 
times where it don't Itch, what to be at I know not, but still try to keep a 
good heart, as Pope 16 Said, what ever is, is right from yours most sin- 
cerely to serve in What I may 

W m Bell 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1- 


John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville June 14 th 1810 

D r Papa 

I delayed answering you letter which enclosed the bond on Col° Glas- 
gow 17 untill this mail with a wish to have it in my power to say what 
were the prospects of collection. I have seen the Col° to day & presented 
him the bond for payment, he did not say when he could pay it but ob- 
served that there were some conditions not expressed in the bond but 
were understood between the parties and not performed by M r Harris 18 
— I shall see him again tomorrow when I shall know more particularly 
what he will do. Among the number of tracts purchased from O Smith 19 
there was one sold for the taxes in Sumner County previous to your pur- 
chase (say 1798) and purchased by Rubin Cage who has obtained a cer- 

16 Alexander Pope (1688-1744) was the famous English poet best remembered as the chief 
exponent of the heroic couplet. Clarence L. Barnhart (ed.), The New Century Handbook of 
English Literature (New York: Appleton-Century-Crofts, Inc., 1956), 888, hereinafter cited as 
Barnhart, Handbook of English Literature. 

17 James Glasgow, secretary of state in North Carolina from 1776 to 1796, was a friend 
and business associate of the Blounts. His involvement in land frauds led to his indictment 
in 1796. He resigned his office and moved to Tennessee, where he died in 1820. Keith and 
others, Blount Papers, III, lOln. 

18 For Edward Harris see 1803, n. 11. 

19 For Oliver Smith see 1803, n. 34. 

Letters for 1810 123 

tificate on it — If any Papers should be wanting from this country to shew 
your right of recovery from the Heirs of Smith write me what and they 
shall be forwarded 

JG Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 
N° Carolina 


John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville June 27th 1810 

D Papa 

Col° Glasgow says he is not prepared to discharge the bond you for- 
warded on to this country but wishes to know if by paying five hundred 
dollars some time in the course of the next month he could get an in- 
dulgence for the ballance. I told him I had no authority to make him 
such a promis, but would write to M r Blackledge to know if he would 
consent to give him a credit for the ballance holding out to him at the 
same time that I was directed to commence suit on the bond in case it 
should not be immediately paid which instructions I felt myself bou[n]d 
to comply with but would postpone having it done untill within the num- 
ber of days required for the returning the writ to court — I think it prob- 
able from the resources he mentioned that he will be able to raise the 
money without a suit, in case of failure it is M r Blackledge 's wish that he 
should [be] sued — I have never received any of the papers which I wrote 
to you for, or information where they could be had — 

Your Obd Son 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 


N° Carolina 

1 24 John Gray Blount Papers 

Samuel Topping to John Gray Blount 

Prosspect Mills July 1 st 1810 

M r John G Blount 

D r Sir 

I Reeved your letter yesterday that you sent by Mr Balance Stating 
that you wished to Know the quantity of wheat that I Could Collect by 
the 20 th or last of July — I am very much at a loss to form any Kind of an 
opinion at preasant what I Can Collect for the balance Due the Store by 
the above time — Until I go around among those People that is oweing 
the Store and Know what Quantity they will have to Spare in payment 
of their Accounts — I will urge them to have their wheat Ready as Soon 
as possible — I have Once been Disappointed by the People in the Collec- 
tion of Corn — Tharefore I do not Know how to Calculate on their former 
promisses When they traded — The wheat is very much hurt on this Side 
of the lake with the Rust and on the Sound — on this Side of the lake 
thare was Some that Did not Reap their wheat at all — So much hurt — 
on the North Side of the lake the Wheat is very Good (2) and on Swan- 
quarter very good Wheat — Good Wheat may be bought for 1 Dollar per 
busshel and no less I dont think — Thare is Several that Owes the Store 
that is good pay. Cant pay no wheat but will pay the Corn as Soon as it 
Comes of — I am affraid that it will be late in July before the People gets 
Ready to Clean their wheat — for they will be later than usal hilling their 
Corn — as the Spring was So Backward — Tharefore it is out of my power 
to Say what Quantity — or what time the wheat Can be Ready — until I 
go around and Sea the Customers that owe — and make a memorandum 
of what they will have Ready — and then I will Write you by the boate or 
Some other passage as Soon as possible Thare is about a thoussand Dol- 
lars due the Store on the first Settlement besides Swindells 20 account and 
others — and the trade Since the l 8t day of Ap rl last is not Possted I Sup- 
pose thare must be 5 or 6 hundred Dollars due Since that time — Your 
wheat is hurt very much with the Rust Hollowell 21 Says (3) He Cant form 
any Kind of an opinion what Quantity of wheat will Be Raised from the 
plantation it is so hurt The Goods I Reeved all Safe by Capt migett 22 — 
the Rum is nearly out — Tobacco gone — the Salt and Sugar Sells Slow 
and Everything Else Except Rum & tobacco Some Cash Rum & Mo- 
lasses powder & Shott and Tobacco Would help the Collection of Wheat 
Very much — I will urge the Collection of Wheat as fast as possible — 

'This is probably a reference to Jacob Swindell. See 1805, n. 23. 
This was probably Ira Hollowell. See 1803, n. 1. 
'For the Midget family see 1806, n. 2. 

Letters for 1810 125 

thare is a Cossiderable of bees wax might be got by paying half Cash at 
3/ per lb — I am yours with much Esteem — 

Sam 1 Topping — 

NB I will thank you to Send me one barrel of good pork I want it for 
my Father — my father is down hear at this time at Work — and he would 
thank you to Send him the amount of his account that he owes you 

yours S. Topping 

Hollowell Requested me to give Gorge one Dollar to base his Expenses 
and the balance George will Return to you — 

It is Reported on this place that if M r Thomas Blount is Elected a 
member of Congress that he will Establish a Certain Religion among the 
people and all Shall be of that Religion and no other — In Haste — 

Addressed: M r John G Blount — 

Washington — 
By George 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville July 9 th 1810 

D Papa 

I have just got into possession the Grant for the land M r Harris is to 
convey to you & send you a copy of the Courses & c which will enable 
you to get the deed made — 

Grant N° 452 to Edward Harris as assignee of Robert Staples 23 war- 
rant N° 3596 for 228 acres lying in Rutherford County in the first district 
on the east waters of the West fork of Stones River — Beginning at a 
black Oak marked RW and white Oak on Reading Blounts south 
boundary line of his sirvice right of 4800 acres and runs south 13 poles to 
Bryan Smiths 24 north east corner and continued with his line south in all 
184 poles to two Dogwoods and small Elm on the north bank of a small 

"Robert Staples was a private in the North Carolina Continental Line. He assigned his 
Tennessee land to Edward Harris. He was first in Doherty's Company, Sixth Regiment, 
and then in the Fifth Regiment. Sixth Regiment, Register of the North Carolina Conti- 
nental Line. 

24 Bryan(t) Smith was a soldier in the North Carolina Continental Line. He enlisted in 
1778 and was in Shepherd's Company, Tenth Regiment. Tenth Regiment, Register of the 
North Carolina Continental Line. 

1 26 John Gray Blount Papers 

branch William Ponders 25 South West corner thence with Ponders line 
east 158 poles to two Dogwoods and a forked black Oak s d Ponders cor- 
ner on John Willises 26 line thence with s d Willises line North 51 poles to a 
large hickory and Dogwood s d Willises North West corner thence with 
his line east 57 poles to a large post Oak and Dogwood thence North 133 
poles to two Elms and Dogwood on s d Blounts line thence with his (2) 
line West 215 poles to the beginning — Surveyed April 6 th 1808 — Dated 1 st 
September 1808 — 

This day was determined the suits between Patton & Ervin 27 and the 
Occupants. The desicion was in favour of P. & E. but by the advice of 
theire Att° the Occup t8 1 believe intend earring it to the supreme court of 
the U.S. The reason of the appeal as stated to me by theire Att° is that 
the Judge permitted the deed to Allison 28 to be read as evidence of tittle 
when it was not proved by the subscribing witnessess nor acknowledged 
by the parties who made it — and unless this was done they contend it is 
of no validity. If this should ultimately prove to be correct I think it will 
considerably multiply your chances of geting once more into possession 
of them — Its possible as your acknowledgement has become so necessary 
that immediate steps will be taken to procure it & it is for this reason 
that I give you this early information in order that you may be on your 
guard in case of such an application 

your Ob 1 son 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 


North Carolina 

25 William Ponder was a soldier in the North Carolina Continental Line. He enlisted for 
three years in 1777. He was in Williams's Company, Fifth Regiment. Fifth Regiment Regis- 
ter of the North Carolina Continental Line. 

26 This was probably General John Willis, founder of Lumberton, North Carolina, who 
was deeply involved with the Blounts in land speculation. Keith and others, Blount Papers, 
II, 524-527, 607-608; III, 45n. 

27 James Patton and Andrew Erwin apparently were land speculators. Tennessee land 
warrant records show that they procured a Dugald Carmical's 640-acre tract in 1807. Land 
Warrant 4049, Tennessee State Archives. 

28 David Allison was a lawyer and friend of the Blounts. He lived in North Carolina and 
then in Tennessee before going to Philadelphia to sell western lands and becoming involved 
with James Wilson, Robert Morris, and the Blounts in land speculation. His reckless and 
questionable practices brought him to ruin in the financial panic of 1797. Keith and others, 
Blount Papers, III, xiii-xiv. 

Letters for 1810 


John Gray Blount to John Wallace 

Washington July 11 th 1810 

John Wallace Esq r 
D r Sir 

As we are both advanced in years and have each a Family for which 
we ought to make some arrangement And as we hold a Property jointly 
which we may wish to use for that purpose and have a long standing 
Ace 1 which none but ourselves can settle and perhaps even ourselves with 
some difficulty I have for some time past had it in contemplation to make 
you the following offer: to wit to draw a Line across the Castle at the 
East end of the old or large Ware House straight with the end of the 
House and give you the choice of ends of the Castle & Rock and I have 
no doubt you will choose the West end which I would prefer by 1000 $ 
but as your House is on it shall not object to your taking it. To let Per- 
sons be appointed to divide all the other Lands and Property owned by 
us jointly by reducing the same & drawing Lotts (2) who shall have the 
Lotts. And appointing a Person to collect all the outstanding Debts & 
pay all the Debts due and then divide the ballance or pay equally the 
ballance if the Sums due us will not pay. Say nothing of any ace 1 either 
of us have for anything whatever, as you have a claim for annual wages 
& c And I have a claim for Negro hire & c and I suppose you have no Ac- 
count of House expense Ace 1 a part of which has from time to time been 
supplyed from the joint Property no doubt, and of course the going into 
those Acct 8 would occasion much difficulty 

If you accede to this mode please have a List made of all joint Prop- 
erty and sign it, make to me a Deed to my half the Castle and Rock And 
appoint the Persons in Writing to [illegible] the other joint Property And 
this Letter shall oblige me to do the same to you. 

The Part of the Town to the time of division to be joint property as 
well as the profits of the undivided Hands until divided 

I hope this offer will be taken in the same frindly disposition in which 
it is offerd 

And am with sincere esteem 
your most Obed 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John Wallace Esq 1 " 
Shell Castle 

128 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville July 15 th 1810 

D Papa 

I wrote you last mail about the determination of the suits between Pat- 
ton & Ervin and the occupants who are settled on the lands on the three 
forks of Duck River. I neglected to keep a copy of it, but knowing the fre- 
quent miscarriage of letters have thought proper to forward the sub- 
stance by this mail — The suits were determined in favour of Patton & 
Ervin, but by the advice of the Occupant's council they have determined 
to carry it to the supreme court of the U. S. The reason of the appeal as 
stated to me by theire Att° is that the Judge of this court permitted the 
deed to D. Allison to be read as evidence of Patton and Ervin's tittle 
without its ever having been proved (he thinks) as the law requires — It 
was never proved by the subscribing witnesses and proving theire hand- 
writing or yours is stated by the Att° to be insufficient to permitt it to be 
recorded or to secure the tittle to the present claimants — The Judge here 
was very far from being possitive that it was sufficient, but eventually de- 
termined that it might be read (2) I think it probable since your acknowl- 
edging it has become so important, that immediate steps will be taken to 
procure it and that you may be on your guard, I forward you this infor- 
mation — The case will be tried next Feb r at Washington (Ct y ) and I be- 
lieve it is their present intention to employ L. Martin 29 to attend to it. If 
you should be of an opinion that the objections made is not merely a 
quibble you can take such measures as may seem to you best to have the 
question fairly investigated — I have understood that you never received 
any value for those lands nor were they disposed of as you contemplated 
at the time of making the deed; therefore neither justice nor morality 
would forbid your taking every legal method to regain possession. 

Your Obd 1 Son 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 

29 This reference is almost surely to Luther Martin, an eminent American attorney from 
Maryland. He was a member of the Constitutional Convention at Philadelphia in 1787, 
and, in that capacity, advocated in vain the doctrine of state sovereignty. Drunkenness 
eventually ruined his career, but he achieved brilliant heights as Justice Samuel Chase's at- 
torney during the latter 's impeachment trial in 1805 and as Aaron Burr's lawyer when Burr 
was tried for treason in 1807. Alfred H. Kelly and Winfred A. Harbison, The American Con- 
stitution: Its Origin and Development (New York: W. W. Norton & Company, Inc., Fourth 
Edition, 1970), 119, 234, 237-239. 

Letters for 1810 129 

William Tatham to John Gray Blount 

Portsmouth (Ocracock) 28 th July 


D r Sir/ 

I am thus far on my way to - Harbour Island; my stay will be short. 

The Governor's death 30 removes the objections you formerly stated to 
improvements at Shell Castile; and, if you will let me I have a fair inter- 
est, in a way to live by it, you will (no doubt) find your interest in my 
taking the matter [in] hand: I need not tell you, with more experience in 
these things than most men. 

The first thing to be done is a more compleat Survey & plan of the 
premises than Price, or any Surveyor in the common way, is capable of 
making. The Second point, is the design, looking forward to future pros- 
pects, with a regard to economy in the management of present resources, 
& their prompt remuneration. The third point is the progressive execu- 
tion of the design, so that it shall contemplate future certainty, steady in- 
come, & little risk. 

Last Fall, I explored Mattamuskeet; 31 & can double your powers and 
interest there. 

We have one difficulty to overcome: it is to avoid any Jarring between our- 
selves, on the painful Stab given to my feelings and my prosperity by your Brother 
Thomas at the City of Washington: a man for whom my all would have been 
chearfully sacrificed, is the last man I can forget for such an undeserved 
injury; howsoever, my Christian principles may forgive him — Nature 
never intended your interest and mine to Clash; and it is the interest of 
every one in Carolina that they accord in the Sounds & commercial 
avenues of Carolina: Let me hear from you speedily, & without reserve: I 
have much to communicate, & can do you & yours much good. 

In haste Yours 
Wm Tatham 

John Gray Blount Esq 1 

The whole of the U. States Naval force were to leave Norfolk about ten 
days ago: They turn to the North & South, in two divisions, and scour 

30 John Wallace died on July 22, 1810, between the time John Gray Blount wrote him on 
July 1 1 and the time that Tatham wrote this letter of July 28. Blount's letter of the eleventh 
must have been prompted by news that his partner was in failing health. 

31 Lake Mattamuskeet is in central Hyde County. Efforts to drain the shallow lake for 
farming purposes began as early as 1789. Powell, North Carolina Gazetteer, 269. 

1 30 John Gray Blount Papers 

the Coast to the extremes of the U. States: I hope they will sink all the 
Piccaroons ! 32 — W. T. 

Addressed: John Grey Blount Esq r 
Shell Castle or 

Care of 

Cap 1 d. Wallace 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

[August 6, 1810] 

Dear Sir 

I rec d the inclosed this morning from David Ware Merchant of Phila- 
delphia. By the P.S. you will see that a Captain Robert Barry is by this 
time, or shortly will be with you to bargain for my vessel — The near ap- 
proach of the election puts it out of my power to be over, & the seting of 
the Green Court next week & of Wayne the week after renders it ex- 
tremely probable that I cant come over at all to meet the gentleman who 
may be coming to see my vessel — As the vessel is known to be in your 
charge it is pretty certain he will call on you to know my terms of sale I 
have sent the bearer over express to you with the inclosed to apprize you 
of the terms he is likely to offer, and to get you to sell her to him pro- 
vided he will give $18 p ton for her as she lies with the spars on hand & 
the payment to be made as the letter proposes, the credit part to be se- 
cured to the satisfaction of M r Ware in Philadelphia unless you are ac- 
quainted with the House that employs him or M r Leroy or M r Ross in 
that case you may close the transaction at once & let her be at his risque 
from the time you bargain — In fact as to the securing the money I wish 
you to act for me as you would for yourself and as is usual on such oc- 
casions — 

As to the answer to be given John on the subject of the claim against 
Glasgow I am disposed to indulge him as he wishes provided John thinks 
the chance of his complying good — you will therefore write him to that 
effect or as you think likely to be most for my interest. If the spars and 

32 The correct spelling is picaroon, a word used to designate a pirate — either a man or a 
ship. Picaroon was first used for this designation during the seventeenth century. In 1624 
Captain John Smith of Jamestown, Virginia, fame seized a "French Piccaroune" and "took 
from them what hee liked." Oxford English Dictionary, VII, 816, s.v. "Picaroon." 

Letters for 1810 131 

other work necessary to complete the furnishing (2) of the vessel accord- 
ing to the terms which you see he is authorized to offer will not cost over 
80S, I would not fail in the sale, no nor even if it will require $1 00 to com- 
plete her according to the terms he is directed to require 

I want the bearer to bring my longest X Cut saw the Smallest grind- 
stone and My large Shingle [illegible] as I have some hands getting 
shingles — Pray hurry him off. 

I wish if you bargain that you would be particular that the spars or 
work necessary be accurately defined, that there may be no misunder- 
standing with these twistical Philadelphians the Cross trus [?] &c ought 
not to be included, nor any of the [illegible] 

Every thing promises well except the town Election, in which I dont 
feel much interest as the Repubs run W m Sheppard 33 an Enemy to the 
Bank but violent Fed — I wish them success & shall do all I can but we 
are divided — There will not be much blood shed I hope & believe 

Yours truly 

W m Blackledge 
Newbern Monday afternoon 
Aug 1 6 th 1810 
If it be possible to fix the Credit at 6 instead of 8 months I should be 
glad, or even at a shorter period & probably if you seem pritty obstinate 
ag* falling, he may to get his terms as to the finishing come to 4 or 6 m° 
as to the payment of the other half or at least a fourth of it 


Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 

By man 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville August 12 th 1810 

D r Papa 

There is no necessity for sending the deed from Jonathan Loomiss 34 to 
this country as with the assistance of your Mem° I have been enabled to 
get a copy which answers every purpose — 

33 For William Sheppard see 1805, n. 10. 

34 Dr. Jonathan Loomis served from 1776 to 1782 as a surgeon in the North Carolina Con- 
tinental Line. He enlisted November 26, 1776, and resigned August 19, 1782. He was in the 
Eighth Regiment. Eighth Regiment, Register of the North Carolina Continental Line. 

132 John Gray Blount Papers 

I am much at a loss how I shall make euse of those warrants in the 
name of J & J Bonner 35 for your benifit. Alth° the agreement between 
Bonner & M r Harris contains the sweeping clause you have mentioned 
yet that will not be considered as a legal transfer, and not sufficient to 
authorise the Grants to issue to you or M r Harris. In order that this may 
be done it would be required that the warrants should have been par- 
ticularly mentioned, such as the number & c Agreeable to the will of J & 
J Bonner the transfers were made by theire Ex rs now whether have the 
Ex rB of an Ex r the same power the original Ex r possessed. If so, the Ex rs 
of Henry Bonner 36 & Joseph Bonner (altho sighned the transfer to E. 
Harris) could transfer the ballance of the warrants not particularly men- 
tioned by N° and [manuscript torn] can I could forward to you the dup- 
licate [manuscript torn] (2) my possession — There is also a tract of 1600 
acres warrant N° 287 ass d of John Allen 37 that has been located and sur- 
veyed but not granted, and stands in the same situation with your lands 
in the piney woods that is to say in file N° 29 for which there was par- 
ticular provision made by act of Assembly, and if the mode of transfer I 
have suggested should be found to be sufficent their warrant for this can 
also be obtained, as I believe there are no other claimants to the land by 
virtue of this warrant 

Please present my love Mama & family 

your Ob d Son 

JG Blount 

(3) I do not know any way that transfers can now be had unless the sur- 
viving executor of James Bonner will make them or unless the heirs of 
James Bonner would make them. Either would certainly do, but I believe 
old Wallace Harrison is surviving executor & doubt whether he would. 
One of the heirs is an infant but if a transfer could be obtained from 
them, I think it would be sufficient. 

E Harris 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 


N° Carolina 

35 James and John Bonner were land speculators who procured land warrant number 
3010 for 274 acres originally issued to Private Joseph Kelley in 1785. Their heir, and execu- 
tor of their will, Henry Bonner, later sold the warrant to Edward Harris. Land Warrants 
3000, 3010, Tennessee State Archives. 

36 Henry Bonner, heir of James and John Bonner, represented Beaufort County in the 
North Carolina Senate from 1799 to 1803. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 239-240, 242, 
244, 246. 

37 Captain John Allen, an officer in the North Carolina Continental Line, received land 

Letters for 1810 133 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville Sept r l 9t 1810 
D r Papa 

I have rec d yours of July 17 th and shall forward to you the papers re- 
quested as soon as they can be procured from the different Registers of- 
fices — At the request of Col° Weakley 38 1 examined the papers in his pos- 
session relative to an agreement between him & M r Harris but made no 
final settlement with him, in consequence of his claiming one half of a 
640 acre warrant which you wrote me M r Harris s d he Weakley had 
agreed to leave entirely out of the settlement as it had been drawn with- 
out either of theire consents. I offered to furnish another warrant of 640 
acres which he might locate on the land the other had been removed 
from and we would devide the land, He declined doing so, but agreed to 
take 320 acres of warrant from which I think it not improbable he has al- 
ready secured the land in his own name and if so I did not considder my- 
self authorised to pay him 320 acres of warrant — He talks strongly of 
suing for half (2) of whatever land that particular warrant may be located 
on, unless he is paid a warrant of 320 acres — Besides this warrant above 
mentioned there will be 160 acres only due Weakley which will come out 
of the tracts as assignee of Clemant Godfrey 39 on M c Adee [M c Ador?] 
creek — The followings a statement of all the warrants put into Weakleys 
hands & how they have been disposed of — 
N°3596 228— Granted to E. Harris 

1 85 228 — Transferred to Gab 1 Rowls on ace 1 of Weakley 

1123 228— ditto Conrad Coon ditto 

3598 274— Granted to E. Harris 

3274 640— Drawn by Strother 40 

2997 274— Granted to E. Harris 

3000 274— Redelivered to E. Harris by Weakley 

301 7 1000 — Drawn by Strother & settled for 

3146 acres 

warrant number 387 for 1,600 acres on December 15, 1783. He assigned the warrant to John 
Gray Blount. Land Warrant 387, Tennessee State Archives. 

38 Robert Weakley (1764-1845) was a surveyor, planter, and prominent political figure. He 
served numerous terms in the Tennessee General Assembly between 1796 and 1825 and was 
speaker of the Tennessee Senate in the thirteenth and fifteenth assemblies. He also served 
one term in the United States House of Representatives (1809-1811). McBride, Directory of 
the Tennessee General Assembly, 768-770. 

39 Clement Godfrey, a soldier in the North Carolina Continental Line, was assigned 274 
acres of land in Montgomery County, Tennessee. He later sold this patent to Edward Har- 
ris. North Carolina Land Grants, Book D-4, p. 312, Tennessee State Archives. 

40 For John Strother see 1804, n. 3. 

134 John Gray Blount Papers 

I wrote you sometime since that Loomisses deed would not be wanting, 
and least that letter may have miscarried I mention it again 

your Obd 1 
JG Blount 

[In John Gray Blount's hand] 

write John not to settle & examine if Weakly for himself or some other 
Person has [illegible] for us And to tender Him the 160 Acres out of the 
Godfrey Land 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 


N° Carolina 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville Sept r 12 th 1810 

D r Papa 

I am requested by M r Rob 1 Prince 41 to request you to obtain for him 
or rather for Uncle Willie M rs Oliver Smiths certifficate that she does not 
know where the following discribed tracts of land lie The warrants when 
obtained Uncle Willie has sold to Prince and that cannot be done untill 
her certifficate is had — They are lands purchased by W.B of O. Smith 
when he was last in this country — You know the form of the certifficate 
required as you once sent me one which answered the purpose in a simi- 
lar case — 

640 acres acres Granted to Nancy Shepherd 42 N° 2063 dated 20 th May 
1793 N° W l 1504 — 

640 acres Granted to Nancy Shepherd by Grant N° 2065 dated 20 th 
May 1793 N° W l 1494— 

41 Robert Prince procured land warrant number 1239, consisting of 274 acres, from Pri- 
vate John Pond. Land Warrant 1239, Tennessee State Archives. 

42 Nancy Shepherd procured a large number of land warrants in Tennessee — numbers 
1476, 1500, 1754, 1765, 1766, 2073, 2086, 2088, 2091, 2093, and 2097, to list a few. The unusual 
aspect about this name is its feminine connotation, as few women were involved in exten- 
sive land speculation. It is possible that this name was a pseudonym for a speculator inter- 
ested in shielding his true identity. An attempt was made to discover the subsequent dis- 
position of this land, but nothing was found. Land Warrants 1476, 1500, 1754, 1765, 1766, 
2073, 2086, 2088, 2091, 2093, 2097, and others, Tennessee State Archives. 

Letters for 1810 135 

I some time since forwarded to you a copy of a Grant to Edward Har- 
ris for 228 acres as ass n (2) of Robert Staples, since when I have sold the 
land to Gen 1 Joseph Dixon 43 at 3$ p r Acre and have promised to make 
him a title on or before the 25 th Decm r next you will pleas forward M r 
Harrises deed to you for that land regularly proved as soon as conve- 
nient — The law of this state requires it should be proved in open court 
by two subscribing witnesses — 

Your Obd 1 son 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 


N° Carolina 

Samuel Topping to John Gray Blount 

Prospect Mills November 16 th 1810 

M r John G. Blount 

D r Sir 

I Send you a List of What is due the Store and what goods is on hand 
and what the Store has paid Including what the Mill and plantation has 
had and been paid other people and your own Account altogether makes 
$2210"68 I Kept the Account Charged against you for what the mill and 
plantation had and what has been paid for them But in the new Books I 
will Keep the Accounts apart So that you Can Sea what Each has had 
and what has been paid for Each When you Come down — I dont think 
that I have made any Mistake in the Statement that I Send If there is I 
Shall find it when I bring all Accounts forward into the new Books — I 
have got all Hollowells Accounts made out that he has against Swindell 
and the mill and his own ac l — I wrote you the 15 th Nov by Joseph Maye 
the am 1 of Cash you paid hear — Your goods is wanted hear very Much 

43 Joseph Dixon was a land speculator. He was connected with a number of land deals in- 
volving North Carolina military warrants. Land Warrants 2593 and 2749, Tennessee State 


1 36 John Gray Blount Papers 

altho thare is So many on this place — If you have got my Note from M 1 
Boyd I will thank you to bring it down with you — 

I am yours with much Esteem 
Sam 1 Topping 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blount — 

Favoured by 
Capt Ashley 

Josiah Bradley to John Gray Blount 

Shell Castle Nov r 30 th 1810 
John G. Blount. Esq r 
some days past I had the partition Line taken down for the purpose of 
pracing it to the old place where it was in Tuck's time, so that there 
might be a clear passage to the Houses — Joseph express d a great dissatis- 
faction that he would not be cramp d & also and unwillingness to give up 
the priviledge of ketching water, as the excuse was that the cistern was 
out of order — but [manuscript torn] the fact is he has considerable in the 
Houses of one trumpery or other and expects the houses not to be want- 
ed in a short time, that he will have the same use as before I have agreed 
to let it stand a few days as he sais he wishes to write you — You will 
please write me the particulars of his agreement & I will try and stick 
him to it if possible — 

There is some stragling Negroes 44 passing here piloting without 
branch or responcibility. Captain Wallace & others are determined to 
prosecute them, would it not be as well to have branches for [illegible] & 
[illegible] for fear the masters of those negroes might serve all in the 
same way, sometimes, some Masters are particular in having pilots with 
branches— in haste I remain Dear Sir 

y r most Ob 1 Hum 1 Serv 1 
Jos. Bradley 

"Concern over the activities and economic competiton of black pilots, slave and free, had 
surfaced as early as 1773 when white watermen expressed their disapproval in a petition to 
the General Assembly. Jeffrey J. Crow, The Black Experience in Revolutionary North Carolina 
(Raleigh: Division of Archives and History, 1977), 32, hereinafter cited as Crow, Black Ex- 
perience in Revolutionary North Carolina. 

Letters for 1810 137 

Addressed: Jno G. Blount Esq 1 * 

fav d by— 
Thos. B. Wallace 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville December 4 th 1810 
D r Papa 

Richard 45 yesterday arrived at this place with the papers relative to the 
business in Kentuckey, where I entend seting out for tomorrow; though 
but half the object of my journey can be effected as the laws of that State 
require that a power of Att° should be proved by two witnesses. I dis- 
cover from your letters on the subject that there are some doubts about 
Gen 1 Hopkins relinquishing his claim to the lands purchased by him, 
and I have considered the procuring his quitclaim a sufficient induce- 
ment of itself to undertake the journey, and every exertion shall be made 
to obtain it — Should an opportunity offer of selling any of the lands, I 
shall do so and adopt the method pointed out in your letter of instruc- 
tions to M r Salter, 46 though I am unadvised whether you wish me to sell 
a part without the whole, or what must be the payments; in the latter 
however I cannot err if I exact the purchase money when the title is 
made — 

I have been at much pains to get M r Laniere 47 to take lands for the 
notes he had in possession, but he has purchased a small piece of land 
near this place & has no idea that any other part of the country is worth 
having, and has lately sold (2) the notes to two different men of this 
neighbourhood. One of the notes with the interest amounting to about 
SI 600 I have a prospect of geting, as the person who holds it is desirous 
of purchasing the place where I live. The owner of the other has gone to 
New Orleans & I had no opportunity of assertaining whether any thing 
short of the money would answer his purpose — I intend sending you by 
some trustey men who will leave this in the course of the next month 

45 This was probably Richard Blount. See 1807, n. 30. 

46 This was possibly Thomas Salter, who procured land warrant number 252 for 274 acres 
from Private John Stephens, a soldier in the North Carolina Continental Line. Land War- 
rant 252, Tennessee State Archives. 

47 James Lanier assigned a land warrant for 2,560 acres to John Gray Blount. Land War- 
rants 475, 1079, 3357, and 3475, Tennessee State Archives. 

138 John Gray Blount Papers 

about $3000, my boy & papers and perhaps some horses — If such a man 
cannot be procured on reasonable terms, I shall come myself. But it was 
my wish & intention to descend the river about the 10 th of January to 
Natchez, take a peep at the Missippee territory, travell over the Red 
River country and explore the Attacapes. 48 The latter from the discrip- 
tion I have had of it is the only country which can ever rival Matta- 
muskeet — From there I shall go to New-Orleans and take a passage for 
New York if one can be conveniently procured if not to the next port 
farthest North, and travel home by land — 

I am a little apprehensive this circuitous route may not meet your en- 
tire approbation, but when last at home I hinted such an intintion and 
you made no objection — I have long had a desire to see those parts of the 
continent, I have mentioned and believe so good an opportunity of doing 
so will never again present itself, and I sincerely wish my availing myself 
of it may meet your approbation — I should not however leave the coun- 
try so soon if M r Strother whos friendship and attention to business can 
(3) be equaled only by his honesty had not promised me to take on him- 
self the superintendance of your business — 

My love to family 
Your Obd 1 Son 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 

Mail N° Carolina 

48 The Attakapas formed a district within the Louisiana Territory in what is now the 
southwestern part of Louisiana. It was named for the allegedly cannibalistic Attacapa In- 
dians who once inhabited the area. W. Adolphe Roberts, Lake Ponchartrain (Indianapolis: 
Bobbs-Merrill Company, 1946), 49, 75, 110. 


W. S. Biddle to John Gray Blount 

Philadelphia Jan. 1, 1811 


Your Letter of the 27 Nov. to my Father M r Charles Biddle 1 came to 
my hands. I have seen John Thomas and Reuben Jopham and the 
amount of the information which I have been able to obtain is: That the 
property in question is a Farm in Passyunk township a few miles below 
this City. That it was devised by Andrew Rambo to his Nephew John 
Lord who died intestate leaving one child a daughter Eleanor who died 
in her minority. That John Lord had two aunts (Sisters of his Father 
Theodorus Lord) one of whom had a Son Edward Lord Chick. The 
other aunt under whom the Toppings claim it is said was never married 
and consequently that her descendants are illegitimate. In the year 1772 
Edward L. Chick recovered the property against a certain Henry Eleves 
who was in possession by a Judgment in the Supreme Court of this 
State. It has since passed into other hands by several conveyances. It was 
not until this day that I could obtain an interview with Reuben Jopham. 
He has some papers which he will not part with nor show until he is re- 
munerated for the trouble which he says he has had in the business. He 
estimates his Services at Thirty Dollars and he Says that on receiving 
that Sum he will deliver the papers to the order of Samuel Topping & 
exert himself to procure every information that may be wanted. (2) With- 
out satisfactory proof of Pedigree nothing can be done and even with that 
I am afraid that the Length of Time which has elapsed will be a bar to a 

Under present appearances, I Should not be inclined to undertake the 
prosecution, of the Claim upon the Terms which you mention. 

I take this opportunity to mention that several years ago, I obtained a 
Judgment in your favour against the Executors of D r John Hall upon a 
promissory note. No assetts however have yet come to their hand. 

I am very respy 
yr ob l Serv 1 
W S Biddle 

Charles Biddle, the father of William, Nicholas, and Charles Biddle, Jr., was a success- 
ful Philadelphia merchant. Govan, Nicholas Biddle, 2, 4-5; see also 1810, n. 4. 

140 John Gray Blount Papers 

J. G. Blount Esq. 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville January 10 th 1811 

By the last mail I received yours enclosing the deed from M r Harris, 2 
also one in which you suggest the expedientcy of purchasing yarn from 
the rope-walk at this place — On enquiry I find the establishment is on so 
small a scale that the supply of rope furnished from it, is not more than 
sufficent for neighbourhood euse; and either from the want of skill or at- 
tention that, which is made is not of a quality which would answer for 
riging — I have no doubt if a quantity could be procured and of a quality 
which would be considered merchantable in the northern ports, but that 
it would yeald a handsom profit to the purchaser at the present prices — 
But the manufactory is yet in its infantcy and not carried on with that 
spirit which alone I should think could render it profitable — 

The tract of land M r Sumner 3 mentioned to you as having been sold 
for the taxes is a 640 acres granted to Jesse Cobb 4 on Stones River — It 
was sold for (2) the taxes in 1804 in Rutherford county and in 1803 the 
dividing line between the counties of Davidson and Rutherford was run, 
leaving this tract within the limits of Rutherford — The taxes continued 
to be paid on it in Davidson, and it was not untill the time of redemption 
had expired that it was Known the land was sold or even liable for the 
taxes in Rutherford — I was in hopes as I could shew that the State had 
not been injoured inasmuch as the taxes for the land had been regularly 
paid (though in a different county) that the sale would be considered 
illegal — I procured all the necessary evidences and submitted them to 
Judge White 6 (previous to his reappointment) who was of opinion that 
the sale would be considered a valid one — I am in treaty with the pur- 
chaser and am in hopes if I do not get an entire relinquishment, to get at 

2 In all probability this reference is to Edward Harris. See 1803, n. 11. 

3 This probably refers to Francis Sumner, who served as a private in the North Carolina 
Continental Line. He assigned his land warrant, number 1097, to Jesse Cobb. Land War- 
rant 1097, Tennessee State Archives. 

4 Jesse Cobb was a Tennessee land speculator. Land Warrants 1097, 1178, 1234, 1487, 
4760, Tennessee State Archives. 

6 For Hugh Lawson White see 1804, n. 7. 

Letters for 1811 141 

least one half of his purchase — As respects the information given of the 
lands on Blounts creek, there is nothing serious in it — When I first went 
to survey them lands I found Felty Farmer (who formerly lived near 
Washington) and severall of his brothers in possession, and from its 
being a part of the country where the situation of old surveys was little 
known to the settlers, and civilization and honesty not in fashion among 
them, they pretended to claim by right of occupancy a right they ap- 
peared so determined to defend that forcable attempts were made to pre- 
vent my surveying them; I however compleated the (3) surveying and 
have since had them established as the law of this State directs, and to 
prevent all further disputes gave them the alternative of leasing or mov- 
ing off the land; they chose the former & are now settled as tennants 

In my last I wrote you I should go to Kentuckey in a few days. Pre- 
vious to my seting out I was informed Gen 1 Hopkins 6 was not at home. I 
am since informed he is now attending the Legislature and shall go im- 
mediately to Frankfort to see him — M r P. Henderson who formerly lived 
at the castle will return to Carolina in March I have therefore declined 
sending in untill he goes. From my acquaintance with him I think the 
additional security of the property which will be entrusted to his charge 
more than equivelent to the delay 

I have never completely assertained what were the views of the com- 
pany who have sent M r M c Lemore 7 to N° Ca r But if my memory serves 
me right I wrote you near twelve months since that he would be sent 
there by W. P. Anderson 8 (and perhaps others) to take such copys from 
the Secretarys office as would furnish the best information on the subject 
of the lands entered on the Missipee waters & to assertain the present 
claimants of those lands, and if they could be purchased on good terms 
to do so, if not to undertake the surveying & establishment of them on 
shares — This I am confident forms part of their plans (4) and I believe 
they have none that are not connected with this particular business 

My love to the Family 
Your Obd 1 Son 
JG Blount 

6 Samuel Hopkins (1753-1819) was a Revolutionary War officer, judge, and legislator in 
Kentucky. He was a major general in the War of 1812 and a Republican member of the 
Thirteenth Congress (1813-1815). His country estate, Spring Garden, was near Henderson, 
Kentucky. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1140. 

7 This was probably John C. McLemore, a very active speculator in Tennessee lands. 
Land Warrants 230, 396, 796, 1360, 2431, 3171, 3178, 3189, 3328, 4625, 5146, 5204, 5282, 
and others, Tennessee State Archives. 

8 For W. P. Anderson see 1806, n. 7. 

142 John Gray Blount Papers 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 


N° Carolina 

IV. Barrow to Willie Blount 9 

Nashville 14 th February 1811 

Dear Sir, 

I mentioned to you when I saw you last in this place that I expected to 
purchase a note on JG Blount & Reading Blount, from W m Lanier, the 
note I have Since purchased The amount of Prin ble and interest to the 
present date is $1630 I have Conversed with M r John G Blount, here, 
this day, and have offered to take from him $1000, Cash, And 1200 acres 
of land warrants, Giving him in thirty Dollars of the Am 1 , and warrants 
Can actually be bought in any quantities here @37 per Cent — Therefore 
I conceive I have made him a Generous offer — The other note Lanier has 
Sold to C. Stump, and (2) he has put into the hands of John Dickinson 10 
for Collection — Such steps for me to take would be Disagreeable — I hope 
Therefore that you will make some arrangement, through M r John G 
Blount here, or otherwise to Discharge this note, as necesaty Compells 
me to, ask of you to raise the amount for me, Some way or other — you 
will do me a singular pleasure to write me as early as Convenient, on the 
Subject and let me Know what Can be done 

I am your most Ob 1 
& Very Hum 6 Svt 
W. Barrow 

Addressed: His Excellency 

Willie Blount 


9 For Willie Blount see 1803, n. 33. 

10 John Dickinson, born in Charleston, New Hampshire, in 1781, moved to Nashville, 
Tennessee, and became a wealthy lawyer. He died of tuberculosis in 1815. Will T. Hale and 
Dixon L. Merritt, A History of Tennessee and Tennesseans (Chicago: Lewis Publishing Com- 
pany, 8 volumes, 1913), III, 725, 837, hereinafter cited as Hale and Merritt, Tennessee and 

Letters for 1811 143 

Solomon M . Joseph to John Gray Blount 

Shell Castle March 7 1811 
Jn° G. Blount Esq r 


It seems the avericious, and over grasping woaman, who is daily 
pleading distress and poverty, and has Lonely distressed situations, will 
not leave me undisturbed, on this small piece of ground which I hold at 
so high a price, her conduct appears like she'd wish to have the rent, and 
the place, She being without the least feeling of gratitude to any person 
but herself, I have no doubt She must disturb you among the rest, as I 
discover by a Letter you sent down respecting a Small piece of ground I 
have for a garden; during M r Wallaces 11 life time he promised me the use 
of that piece of Garden rent free, which I told you and *M rs Wallace 
when you were here; which I can avow to you to be true, when I agreed 
with you for the present year, you never mention 'd any thing respecting 
the Garden, I took it for granted it was no object to you, as it is im- 
possible to live here without Vegetables, It is only a power which M r8 
Wallace wishes to monopolys, that others may humble to her for a few 
Greens, it is well Known that She has as much Garden (2) Joining that of 
mine Exclusive of a piece as large as the whole of the pieces together, 
and does not improve that which she has, It is only Envy at seeing that 
little improved by M rs Joseph, which is her only amusement in this little 
piece of garden, neither M r8 Wallace or M r Bradey 12 mention'd any 
thing about the garden untill a few days past, which was after M rs 
Joseph has been at the trouble of Sewing Seed, and having the whole in 
order for the Spring and Summer, Yesterday M rs Wallace call'd on M r8 
Joseph and told her She could not think of her having the garden with- 
out pay as she was a poor woamen and had a Large family to Support, if 
She had the garden She could raise and Sell out of it, which would help 
in maintaining of her, why has She not done it before, and why does She 
not commence with what She has to cultivate, it is only Envy, there is no 
doubt M rs Wallace has, and Knows how to take care of herself without 
the production of the Garden, 

However I do not wish to trouble you with any thing more of the 
Kind, this is the first, I only wish to have one Land lord and under your 

11 For John Wallace see 1803, n. 12. 

12 This was probably Josiah Bradley, who is listed in the 1820 census of Carteret County. 
His family consisted of four males and two females. Potter, J 820 North Carolina Census, 
Carteret County, 16. See Josiah Bradley to John Gray Blount, November 30, 1810, above. 

144 John Gray Blount Papers 

direction, do not let me be under the controul & Whims of any other 
person, as I have but a few months to occupy this place, and am wishfull 
to live in peace that Short time, I am willing to Satisfy you M r Blount in 
(3) any thing that is within reason, I shall be up at Washington in a 
Short time, I Expect you have not been inform 'd that no repairs has been 
made Excepting a little plastering round one Chimeny, and that only 
Two or three weeks past, I remain with respect — 

y r Ob 1 Ser 1 
S. M. Joseph 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 " 

Willie Blount to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville March 18 th 1811 

Dear Sir, 

I received the inclosed the other day — money cannot be raised here — 
nothing will command it I wrote M r Barrow I would do every thing in 
my power and make your answer known to him — A gentleman directly 
from Nashville says John is well & will start down the river in a few days 
for home by way of Orleans & c — that will be a pleasing and useful trip 
to him — it will give him an idea of the Western & South western world 
and a very just idea — He is a young man of great observation and fond of 
travel — we hope to have a trade with Mobile before long tho' the Span- 
iard hold the fort there yet — things appear quiet in Florida — I have been 
laboring this winter to convince the general government that it would be 
politic in the government to settle the Southern tribes of Indians on the 
west of the Mississippi 13 the better to guard against foreigners tampering 
with them — that it would be better for the Indians to go there as here 
their game is in a great measure gone & there it is plenty — that it would 
cost the U.S. less to enforce their policy towards them there and more ef- 
fectually than it ever can be enforced here — that the situation of this 
State and the vast property of individuals held in their present hunting 
grounds here renders it indispensibly necessary to remove them away out 

18 For an earlier reference by Willie Blount to Indian removal see his letter to Andrew 
Jackson on December 28, 1809. As governor of Tennessee from 1809 to 1815, Willie Blount 
took a keen interest in the territories occupied by Indians and the Spanish to the south and 
west. DAB, II, 391. 

Letters for 181 1 145 

of the way of national conflicting claims and also out of the way of indi- 
vidual claims — I have addressed some long letters to our members in 
Congress on that subject copies of which I will send you when I have 
more time than now — to get those people settled west of Mississippi may 
be a hard job to effect but it is so important that it should be done that I 
could work chearfully to effect it — present me affectionately to the family 
& to friends say how do and am 

with affectionate gratitude 

Willie Blount 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 
Post Master 
Beaufort County 
North Carolina 

J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

[May 15, 1811 

Mr Blount 

have sent all W m Orrs 14 Bill 1632 feet flooring plank 2421 feet weather- 
boarding 344 feet Scantling 2000 feet Refuse boards all this at bottom 

have sent 2560 feet inch boards 160 feet small Scantling; there was 198 
feet Genl Blounts 15 flooring plank left through a mistake which I have 
sent this only makes the quantity I wrote 
15 th May 1811 — 

yr &c 

J. H. Blount 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 

14 For William Orr see 1803, n. 82. 

15 This probably refers to Thomas Blount, who, along with his brother Reading, was 
called General Blount. Reading Blount had died October 13, 1807, however. See 1803, n. 25; 
1807, n. 10. 

146 John Gray Blount Papers 

J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

M r Blount 

[May 18, 1811 

have sent in the flatt 2736 feet flooring plank for Gen 1 Blount all of it is 
not clear of sap & knots for it was impossible I coud git it so; have only a 
few barrels turpentine down for my horse wont work att all now. 

monday morning yr &c 

18 th May 1811 " J. H. Blount 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 " 

Robert Love 16 to John Gray Blount 

Wa ynesville 20 th of May 1811 


Your Letter to me with one to M r John Strother 17 1 have Rec d and the 
one for M r Strother I will forward to him by the Mail from Asheville; as 
respects the Suit Shuler v s Stiles on which I mentioned to you in my Let- 
ter, that Judge Henderson 18 had carried a question up to the Supreme 
Court whether any Entry west of pigion river could be Legall untill the 
Line was run; this I find on Examination was not correct, my informant 
had not understood the Judge as he himself had Varied the question 

18 Robert Love was a prominent citizen of Buncombe and Haywood counties. A veteran 
of the Revolutionary War, he became a land surveyor, a member of the North Carolina 
Senate, and he founded Waynesville (named for his friend General Anthony Wayne) in 
Haywood County. John Preston Arthur, Western North Carolina: A History, 1730-1913 
(Raleigh: Edward Buncombe Chapter of the DAR, Asheville, 1914), 124-127, hereinafter 
cited as Arthur, Western North Carolina; F. A. Sondley, A History of Buncombe County, North 
Carolina (Asheville: Advocate Printing Company, 2 volumes, 1930), I, 487, 491, 493, 625, 
649, 667, 801, hereinafter cited as Sondley, Buncombe County. 

"For John Strother see 1804, n. 3. 

18 Since this letter refers back to earlier land dealings, the reference is probably to Judge 
Richard Henderson, who, in 1763, along with eight other private citizens, bought a large 
tract of land in Kentucky and middle Tennessee from the Indians. The purchase was repu- 
diated by North Carolina and Virginia, both of which claimed the territories for them- 
selves. The land transaction was declared valid, however, by United States commissioners 
who ran new boundaries after the Treaty of Hopewell was signed in 1785 between the 
Indians and the United States. The Treaty of Hopewell restored Cherokee lands, claimed 
by white settlers, to the control of the Indians. Arthur, Western North Carolina, 85. 

Letters for 1811 


Robert Love (1760-1845), founder of 
Waynesville, North Carolina, acted as John 
Gray Blount's land agent in the mountain 
counties for many years. Photograph from W. 
Clark Med ford, The Early History of Haywood 
County (Waynesville, N.C.: Privately printed, 
1961), facing p. 65; reproduced with 

when he reduced the Same to writing, The Question as it is carried up 
merely concerns the Lands between the lines run by Pickins, 19 & 
Meigs. 20 the first comformable to Gov r Blounts Treaty 21 & the other in 
consequence of the Treaty held at Telico 22 in the year 1798 — in this case 
it will not affect any of the lands now held by Strother as I Expected 
therefore you may inform M r Harris that he not pay any attention to the 
Suit I have wrote the same to M r Henderson 23 — I am glad that the Busi- 

19 General Andrew Pickens of South Carolina, a Revolutionary War hero, was one of the 
United States commissioners who ran the boundaries between white and Indian lands after 
the Treaty of Hopewell. Arthur, Western North Carolina, 85. 

20 Return Jonathan Meigs was commissioned in 1802 by Secretary of War Henry Dear- 
born to oversee the running of a boundary in western North Carolina between the Chero- 
kees and white settlers in accordance with earlier treaties made between the Cherokees and 
the United States government. Arthur, Western North Carolina, 51-54. 

21 This is a reference to the Treaty of Holston, made in 1791 between William Blount, 
then governor of the Southwest Territory, and the Cherokees. Blount, interested in opening 
western lands to speculators, drove a hard bargain, forcing the Indians to cede most of 
eastern and middle Tennessee. Masterson, William Blount, 203-207. 

"The Treaty of Tellicoe Block House was concluded in September, 1798, between the 
Cherokees and delegates representing both the United States government and the state of 
Tennessee. It provided for more land cessions by the Indians. Masterson, William Blount, 

23 This was probably Judge Richard Henderson's heir, Judge Leonard Henderson 
(1772-1833), or Archibald Henderson (1768-1822), both of whom were lawyers. DAB, VIII, 
523-524, 529. 

148 John Gray Blount Papers 

ness as respects Ragsdales 24 Heirs are about being Settled — the Bills 
Drawn by Gov 1 " Blount on David Allison 25 which you Stipulated with me 
to account for if the men return'd to you, I have put into John Strothers 
hands to Convey to you, thinking it the Safest Conveyance, but if that 
mode is not agreeable to you I will bring them on this winter and make a 
finall Settlement, please write to me on the Subject; the sale of Land are 
in those two Counties (Buncombe & Haywood) Extremely Low & dull 

I am Sir your Ob 1 Serv 1 
R° Love 

John G Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 " 

Post Master Washington N° Carolina 
Beaufort County 

May 25 

Reading Blount 26 Estate Paper 

Washington June 8 th 1811 

M rs Blount 

Bal of John E. Young — 

To 3 Cotton Handkf 5/6 1.65. 

" 2yrsTape 1/6 ".30. 

1 1 yrs Gingham 5/ 5.50. 

1 l A ". Dimity 5/ ".62 Vz . 

" 2 oz Cotton Wire Thread 5/ 1. " 

" 3 Cotton Handkf 5/6 1.65. 

" 2 Balls Cotton 1/6 "JO. 

SI 1.02 Vi. 

"Gabriel Ragsdale was a land surveyor and a Blount agent. He also served in the North 
Carolina House of Commons for several terms. Shortly before his death he had a mental 
breakdown. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 86n, 127-129. 

26 For David Allison see 1810, n. 28. 

26 For Reading Blount see 1803, n. 25. 

Letters for 1811 149 

(2) Estate of RS Blount 

J E Young 
b r 

ent d being 
encluded in another 
Ace 1 

William Woodfork 21 to Josiah Collins 

August the 26 day 1811 Jackson County 
State of Tennessee — 

D r Sir I have rote to you and gets no anser and noss not the reason of it 
perhaps you have not got my Leteress. I must inform you that the money 
you sente me has not met with the Expence of your Land I have called 
on the administrator of Col Murfrees Estat for the mony you state he 
had r d of you but He would not pay me any but said it was just to [il- 
legible] If I had got it would have hope me for the tax in overton County 
is very high it is 37 Vi Cents pr hundred for the Corte hous Is bilt by a tax 
on the County and I have had to attende at Nashville in the month of 
June 1810 to prevent the drawing of 2750 acres of yor Land warent for 
they had perchased at sheriffs sale and it was sold in the name of 
Johnston one of the clamants has got considerable improvements on the 
Land as it joined him or clashed with his Land and if they could draw 
the warrent they would be safe I heer inclosed one of ther advertise- 
ments this Land was sold in the year 1805 I believe I hope you will send 
me money to pay the Expenc as I have had to advance the mony and if it 
was convenint for you to git an agent in the county that the Land Lies in 
as I have to goe the distance of about 45 or 50 [miles?] to overton Cort 
hous but I will still attend 

turn over — 
(2) to your Land if you will send me mony untill you can send and get 
some good man in the same county where the Land Lies for it will be 
more convenient if it was in the County that I live in it would be more 
convenient — 

For William Woodfork see 1809, n. 3. 

1 50 John Gray Blount Papers 

I am Sir your humble servent and well wisher &c 

Wm Woodfork 

M r J Collins 

Addressed: Josiah Collins 

N. Carolina Edentown 
Chowan County 

Robert Love to John Gray Blount 

WAYNESVILL E 2 nd ofSep t 1811 


enclosed is a Copy of a 640 acre & 25 acre Tract of Land in your Name 
on the head of Richland Creek 28 of Elk River; this Tract of 665 Acres has 
been offered to me by M r John Strother, for one & a half Dollar p r acre; 
I went on and Viewed the Land and think it not worth so much but as, 
the Situation of this Land Measureably answers my intention — (to wit) 
to make a Stock farm, I had come to a resolution of giving One Dollar & 
25 Cents p r . acre altho, it appears to be a Larger price than the in- 
habitants in the neighbourhood think it is actually worth, it Lyes so in 
the hills, the Survey might have been worth the one & a half Dollar p r 
acre what M r Strother Stated if it had been run advantageously, that is if 
it had been run agreeable to the dotted lines insstead of the Black lines 
the way that it is actually run, & other Small Surveys made on the Land 
it had Left out; the arrangement with M r Strother and myself are thus 
that I am to have the Land at all Events but he wish'd me to make my 
proposals in a Letter to you, which is as above Stated, that I was willing 
to give one Dollar & 25 Cents p r acre or otherwise I would take it at the 
Valluation of any two disinterested men — it is possible that M r Strother 
may see the Land himself whilst he is out on this tour having never Seen 
it after he Located it; but he says he had been inform 'd by two or three 
persons that the Land was not as he Expected at the time he Located it 
being much Narrower between the hills than he thought it was; these de- 

28 Richland Creek is in the Pigeon River country of Buncombe and Haywood counties 
and eventually feeds into Pigeon River. McCutchens Trace appears to have been a path or 
road in the same general area. Sondley, Buncombe County, II, 794; Powell, North Carolina 
Gazetteer, 412. 

Letters for 1811 151 

ceptions frequently takes place in Caney Countrys and Esspecially in the 
Summer Season when the Trees are full Leaf'd. I am making prepara- 
tions to Send Some of my people out to it this fall, so as to make Corn on 
it the Next Season, that I may Get my (2) Cattle there early the Next 
Summer, Should M r Strother See it on his tour he will write to you his 
Opinion which I urged him much to do 5,000$ worth of Land are Con- 
veyed to the heirs of Ragsdale & the Ballance with this Tract we are to 
buy off when I go out again myself in the winter, M r Strother having 
business Leading him to Kentucky & doth not Expect to return untill 
about December, be so good as to write to me the result of your Opinion 
as early as Convenient — 

as respects your Business in the Country I am not at present able to 
give a detail'd account off; altho M r Strother has requested me to do so; 
the Sales previous to my agency I Know but Little about. & untill I can 
procure a Statement from the Registers Books (and that cannot be fully 
depended on) I could do no more than merely State what Sales I had 
made which I Expect will be Triffling in comparison of what has been 
before that time Sold 

the amount of the Land which I returned the last year for Taxation I 
think is something over 70,000m acres and when I entered on the agency 
of the Business it amountd to I think 135,000m acres but by an arrange- 
ment with a Certain C. Whitson (with the approbation of M r Strother) 
40,000m acres was returned for Taxation in his name that is 20,000m in 
each of the Counties, of Such of the Craggy mountains as never in any 
human probability could be Sold and has gone to the State 20,000m acres 
more of the Same description I have Sold to a Speculating person for a 
reduced price & whether any thing will ever be had remains uncertain, 
and a Vast deal of what is Still on (3) hands Never can be Sold Not for a 
Cent an acre, in fact the Scarcity money & the opening to the westward 29 
has measurably put a Stop to the Sale of Land in this Country especially 
Such as yours [illegible] which is Now of a Very inferior quality & has 
been much Cull'd the Taxes have been high on such a Body of useless 
Land & without you have some View of foreign Sales it is my opinion it 
would be prudent to Get Clear of at the least 50,000 acres more on any 
terms that would Save the Taxes. I think the Taxes within the three last 
years has been between 600 & 800$ which together with a train of Law 

29 The reference here is probably to both the Louisiana Purchase and the liberalization of 
federal land policy by the Harrison Land Act of 1800 and the Land Act of 1804. The latter 
act made it possible for a person to buy as little as 160 acres at $1.64 per acre, if he paid 
cash. Credit on the purchase of 160 acres was available, but the minimum price per acre for 
land bought on credit was S2.00. Morris, Encyclopedia of American History, 132-133, 461-462. 

1 52 John Gray Blount Papers 

suits which have been continually on hand have taken all the money I 
have been able to Collect on Sales and more too — 

I am with due respect Your Ob 1 Serv 1 
R° Love 

John G Blount Esq r 

[Enclosure omitted] 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 

Town of Washington PM 
N° Carolina 

J. H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

[December 18, 1811 

Mr Blount 

please send by Jerry 5 or 6 bushells salt we are entirely without Iron if 
anything should brake which is very often the case 

yr &c 

J. H. Blount 

18 th Dec r 1811 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esqr 


J. B. Borland to John Gray Blount 

Boston Jan y 7 th 1812 

John Gray Blount Esq # 

Dear Sir 

Your esteem'd favor of 28 th Nov. advising of having shipt sundry Arti- 
cles p the Sch r Jane is received — but this vessel has not yet arrived — No 
opportunity before the present has offered for shipping the Glass which 
have now sent p Sch r Nicholls as p Bill lading inclosed 

5 Boxes 10 by 12 Window Glass each 

[illegible] 100feet-500feet at 12$ 60 

Truckage 25 cts — Wharfage 20 cts .45 

Commissions at 2 Vi p Cent 1.50 


I hope this Glass will suit you as it comes very much lower than the Eng- 
Fustic has declined & is now nominally 25$ but not in demand — I was 
not able to barter it for Salt as you requested (2) Salt is worth from 3 Vi$ 
to 3 1 2$ per Cadiz at St Abes &c Bonavista is a little cheaper — 

Corn is scarce little having yet come on from the Southward — such as 
in good order for shipping would bring 90 cent Tar is scarce & worth 
3 ' 4$ at this time Pitch 3 Vi to 3 Va $— Turp soft 2 h $ Rozin 2 Va to 3$— Spt 
Turp 35 Cts Tobacco dull 3 [illegible] 4 ! h $ as for quality Cotton 10 to 12 
cts— Rice 4>: $— 

I am Sir very resp y 
Your humble Serv 1 
J. B. Borland 

Addressed: John Gray Blount 
North Carolina 

SHIPPED in good Order and well conditioned, by J. B. Borland in and 
upon the Schooner called the Nicholls whereof is Master, for this present 
voyage, Isiah Rich — now in the Harbour of Boston — and bound for 
Washington To say, Five Boxes Window Glass being marked and num- 
bered as in the margin, and are to be delivered in like good order and 
well conditioned, at the aforesaid Port of Washington NC (the danger of 

154 John Gray Blount Papers 

the Seas only excepted) unto John Gray Blount Esq or to his Assigns, he 
or they paying freight for the said Goods — 

Eighty three Cents for the five Boxes with — no — Primage and Aver- 
age. In witness whereof, the Master of the said Schooner hath affirmed 
to three Bills of Lading of this Tenor and Date; one of which being ac- 
complished, the other two to stand void. 
Dated in Boston Jan y 7th 1811. 

Isaiah Rich 

William Blackledge l to John Gray Blount 

Washington City Feb y 2 d 1 81 2 

Dear Sir/ 

Your brother 2 since I wrote you yesterday has had a more severe fever 
than since he was attacked — at 10 in the morning when I left him for the 
Capitol he appeared to be evidently on the mend — on my return at 4 PM 
I found him very ill — instantly sent for the physician, who proposed to 
call in an assistant — Dotor Worthington 3 was called & their joint advice 
pursued — a tremendous blister was applied between the shoulders cala- 
plasters to his feet & by 9 he appeard to mend from this & the medicine 
given to open his pores & bowels; but at about 2 A.M. I was so alarmed 
that I sent for his Doctor, who found it necessary to begin to give wine 
and whsy & other more stimulating drinks than theretofore — at 5 we 
dressed his blister found it had performed its office pretty well — he had 
got into a persperation his pulse amended, but had not well recovered 
reason — at Vi past 5 I went to bed, rose at 10 & had the pleasure to find 
him returned to his senses for the first time in 5 days — I think however 
he will probably have (2) another [illegible] of the fever — at 1 PM I write 
this he is enjoying a little repose 

yours truly 

W m Blackledge 

J For William Blackledge see 7803, n. 40. 

2 This refers to Thomas Blount. See 1807, n. 10. 

3 Dr. Charles Worthington, who lived in Georgetown, was a well-known physician and 
socialite. He advocated a strong standing army in the United States. Gaillard Hunt (ed.), 
The First Forty Tears of Washington Society in the Family Letters of Margaret Bayard Smith (1906; 
reprint ed., New York: Frederick Ungar Publishing Co., 1965), 106; Anne H. Wharton, 
Social Life in the Farly Republic (Philadelphia: J. P. Lippincott Co., 1902), 87, 150, hereinafter 
cited as Wharton, Social Life in the Farly Republic. 

Letters for 1812 155 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

Washington City Saturday 8 th Feb y 1812 

Dear Sir) 

Your brother Contrary to the expectation of his physicians held out till 
half past 8 oClock last night when he expired, in defiance of every exer- 
tion that could be made to preserve. So far as consolation can be af- 
forded to his affected relations, from a knowledge that the tenderest most 
friendly, & assiduous attentions have been paid him from the moment of 
his confinement, by not only his distressed & affectionate wife, the mem- 
bers from the State generally, & other members of his acquaintance, but 
by all his respectable acquaintance of this City & Georgetown, his most 
assuredly have reason to feel Consoled. M rs Madison, 4 M rs Curtis, M r & 
M rfl Duval, 6 M r & M r8 Threlkeld, M r & M r8 Vanness, 6 Doctor Easter— 
of this place have acted the part of friends indeed — But of M r Shmallie of 
Richmond I cannot say enough, in fact had all the relatives he had been 
present, more could not have been done to alleviate his as well as his 
ladies distresses than has been done. M r Threlkeld three days ago 
addressed me a note, requesting should he die that his body should be 
deposited in his family vault in Georgetown & that his Lady should, 
remove to his house, & tarry till her (2) departure. M r & M rs Duval 
about the same time requested that I would remove M 1 * 8 Blount to their 
house — Her mind would be Consoled when in a situation, which it un- 
fortunately is not — She has rested none I learn all night — & I very much 
fear the consequences upon her. I shall use my influence with her to have 
his remains deposited in the piece of Ground set a part in the city bury- 

4 This was Dolley Madison (1772-1849), a native of Guilford County, North Carolina, and 
wife of President James Madison. Who Was Who in America: Historical Volume, 1607-1896 
(Chicago: A. N. Marquis Co., Revised Edition, 1967), 399, hereinafter cited as Who Was 

6 This probably refers to Gabriel Duvall and his wife. He was a Maryland politician and 
judge who had served one term in the United States House of Representatives in the 1790s. 
On February 3, 1812, he took his seat as an associate justice in the United States Supreme 
Court. Biographical Directory of Congress, 891. 

"General John Peter Van Ness (1770-1846) had been a member of the United States 
House of Representatives from New York and a general of militia. Later he was an alder- 
man and the mayor of Washington, D.C. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1852. 

1 56 John Gray Blount Papers 

ing ground for members of Congress, as is usual, & where a handsome 
monument or rather marble inclosure with appropriate descriptions of 
the person is erected over the grave, by the public — I have summoned 
the members from the State to his lodgings to arrange the order of his 
funeral — With sentiments of sincere condolance I remain, your dis- 
tressed & affectionate friend 

W m Blackledge 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 
N° Carolina 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

Washington City Feb y 10 th 1812 

Dear Sir) 

To the Intelligence of this day I must refer you for an account of the 
procession & respectful ceremonies observed in the interment of your 
late respected & beloved brother. The House having adjourned over 
from Friday to monday, I informed the Speaker M r Clay 7 of the un- 
fortunate event early as possible, who on consulting with M r Macon 8 & 
other old and experienced members of the course proper to be taken, 
who advised that an informal meeting of the House should be called at 
12 OClock, when almost every member attended. Never did I witness in 
the Countenances of men so striking an evidence of sorrow for an event 
of the kind. The few words uttered by the Speaker announcing the oc- 
casion of their being convened drew tears from the eyes of a great many. 
Every thing necessary was immediately done by the house unanimously, 
& so large a procession has not been Witnessed in this City on any oc- 
casion of the kind. I had made arrangements with M r John A Shmallie 
(the particular friend of your brother, & who had together with me at- 
tended on him through the whole of his illness) to remove M rs Blount 

7 This was Henry Clay (1777-1852), the famous political figure from Kentucky. He was 
born and educated in Virginia, but he began his law practice in Lexington, Kentucky. He 
served in the Kentucky legislature and both houses of Congress. He was Speaker of the 
House of Representatives from 181 1 to 1814. In 1825 he was appointed secretary of state by 
President John Quincy Adams. Several times a candidate for president of the United States 
and longtime member of the Senate, he ranks among the most distinguished statesmen in 
American history. Biographical Directory of Congress, 749. 

8 For Nathaniel Macon see 1803. n. 91. 

Letters for 1812 157 

from the house of Oneale 9 where they had boarded to General Van 
Ness's as early as possible after the Corps [e] should get out of sight, and 
on my return from the grave found that M 1 * 8 Madison had as soon as the 
procession passed the Presidents gone in her Carriage to Oneales & that 
M r Shmallie had in her Carriage taken M rs Blount to M r Van Ness's, 
where she at this time is & will remain, for a few days longer (2) when 
she will be obliged to go to M r Threlkelds to avoid giving offence, if the 
State of her health will purmit which is doubtful. Having been herself 
sick when her husband was taken down & been much wearied by her 
anxieties & indefatigable attention to him, she was in bad condition to 
undergo the shock occasioned by his death — But for the assistance of 
M r8 Curtis I do not believe we could have managed to save her. For three 
days & nights M rs Blount got no sleep & during the whole time M r8 C. 
staid by her assisted a part of the time by M r8 Mitchell 10 of New York & 
M r8 General Mason 11 M r8 Van Ness M r8 Duval M r8 Threlkeld M r8 
Madison & others — M rs B. yesterday morning got a little repose & on 
last evening appeard to be some what composed, & I have hopes that by 
the time one of your sons or some other person gets here will be able to 
travel. It should not be delayed longer than can be avoided as the horses 
& Rochester are on an expence of $12 pweek, though I shall endeavor if 
possible to arrange this on better terms. Your brother expressed in his 
illness an apprehension that Oneal would extort more than his just due, 
& I am sorry to find his fears were too well founded, as by his Bill which 
I got from him yesterday he gives Credit for only $200 paid him & 
charges I am Confident more than y r brother ever paid by $10 p week in 
regular charges, & then leave to the generosity of his friends to make a 
suitable allowance for extra's occasioned by his illness &c — Of his atten- 
tion to your brother in his illness no Complaint Can be made — The bal- 
lance due by his Ace 1 rendered is (3) $379.50 — besides this there are the 
Doctors Bills, which will no doubt be heavy & perhaps $150 of other 
Charges so that the ballance of his pay & milage about $540 will 
ha[r]dly be sufficient to get him away as he had not much money by 

"This refers to O'Neale's Tavern, a favorite gathering place of congressmen and their 
wives. Some government officials lived there while in Washington. This is where Andrew 
Jackson met Peggy O'Neale Eaton. She became an object of scandal during his administra- 
tion because of her background. Peggy, whose father owned the tavern, played on Jackson's 
knee during her childhood. Claude G. Bowers, The Party Battles of the Jackson Period (Boston: 
Houghton Mifflin Company, 1928), 117-118. 

10 This was probably the wife of Samuel Latham Mitchell (1764-1831). Mitchell repre- 
sented New York in Congress from December, 1810, to March, 1813. Biographical Directory of 
Congress, 1422. 

11 The reference seems to be to the wife of General John Mason. The Masons lived in 
Georgetown and also had a home on an island in the Potomac River. They were prominent 
Washingtonians. Wharton, Social Life in the Early Republic, 226. 

1 58 John Gray Blount Papers 

him, the amount I cant name but not over from $50- to 100 dollars — I 
mention this for your government should it reach you before you start 
any one for her — But at the same time will state that if there be much in- 
convenience in raising money to send on dont wait on that Ace 1 & the 
good M r Shmallie has offered as much as $300 in needed, & I can spare 
as much as a hundred & perhaps more — 

I am Sir as usual yours 
W m Blackledge 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 

J. B. Borland to John Gray Blount 

Boston Feb y 17 th 1812 
Mr. John G Blount 
Dear Sir 

I have the pleasure of advising you that the Schooner Jane arrived on 
Friday last -after a most distressing passag and after losing her deck 
load — Your Naval Stores are not yet landed, as soon as they are and can 
be sold will write you again 

Corn is in demand and worth 90 cents per such as is in good order — 
Tar is extremely scarce & worth 3V2$ — at this moment it would bring 
over as there is in fact none here worth naming Rozin dull 3$ — Pitch 
3 ] /2$ — Turp 3$ soft Tobacco very dull nominally about 4$ Rice 4 3 A$ 
quick — Cotten very dull 10 to 12 cts Staves in no demand Pipe 45$ Hhd 
26 to 27 — [illegible] Spirits Turp scarce 35 cents — Varnish 20 to 25 cts 

I am very resp y yours &c 
J. B. Borland 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 
North Carolina 

Letters for 1812 159 

Thomas H. Blount 12 to John Gray Blount 

Washington Feby. 20 1812 

Hon'd Papa, 

I did not arrive here 'till Yesterday owing to the uncommon badness of 
the roads — & fear it will be some time before they are better — I presume 
you have been informed of the death of my uncle which happened on the 
7 th Inst, and my aunt who has been very ill, has some what recovered tho' 
yesterday was the first day she has been able to sit up out of her bed — 
she is however somewhat more composed & probably will soon recover 
in some degree her health, & consequently her spirits — The roads & her 
health will detain me here much longer than we expected at my de- 
parture, & also the lameness of one of the horses will compel me to pur- 
chase a horse as I very much fear those she now has would never be able 
to get us home — She resides at the home of Gen 1 Van Ness where (2) I 
am happy to say she is treated as a Sister, as in fact she is by all hers, & 
my Uncles acquaintances which are numerous — she informs me she will 
return to Washington with me as she can no longer reside in Tarb° — 
Inform Mama that her fears as to my health were groundless as I have 
never been better than since my departure, & hope the family's are as 
good — 

Yours affectionately 
Thos. H Blount 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 " 
N.C a 

Willie Blount 13 to John Gray Blount 

KNOXViLL E Feb y 21 8 M812 

Dear Sir, 

It has fallen to your lot and mine to survive the death of our most ten- 
derly beloved brother Thomas — you know my feelings by your own — A 

12 For Thomas Harvey Blount see Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 107n. 

13 For Willie Blount see 1803, n. 33. 

160 John Gray Blount Papers 

letter from M r Grundy 14 of the 8 th Instant rec d by last mail gave me the 
unwelcome information — I have of this date written my sister that the 
only relief to my feelings would be to go to Washington and see her safe 
home, and that even that relief is denied me by my obligation to be here 
in order to attend to my official duties — I have also written to Blackledge 
that you and he would take measures for her safe return home — I had no 
information of his illness until I was informed of his death — I had heard 
he was unwel but had not an idea of the shocking result of his severe in- 
disposition — remember me affectionately to my sister and family and am 
with grateful affection 

Your brother 
Willie Blount 

John Gray Blount Esquire 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 
Post Master 
North Carolina 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

Washington City Feb y 23 d 1812 

Dear Sir) 

Yours of the 10 th is to hand but your son Thomas H. & M r Worthing- 
ton were here several days ahead of it. Had I been less attentive to your 
brother I should have felt myself not only ungrateful for the innumerable 
acts of friendship experienced [manuscript torn] by myself & my family 
from him & his family, but should have furnished evidence of my own 
unworthiness of the many singular acts of kindness & attention received 
from yourself & your immediate family, and that I was not entitled to 
the distinguished attention with which I had been alway treated by the 
General himself. In the approbation of those whose good opinion is 
worth of enjoying I have the most ample reward. I am sorry to hear by 
your son as well as from your letter that you have had a sickly winter, 
but am in hopes your family is not to experence any further fatal effects 
from it. And while the Subject is on my mind do tell [your wife?] I am 

14 Felix Grundy (1777-1840) began his political career in Kentucky, but he moved to Ten- 
nessee and became a prominent politician there. He served in both houses of Congress, 
and, as a representative in the Twelfth Congress, he became a leader of the War Hawks, 
young national leaders agitating for war against Great Britain. Biographical Directory of Con- 
gress, 1040. 

Letters eor 1812 161 

some thing of a quack as well as a nurse, and that from my acquaintance 
with herself & her family as well as from an experimental knowledge of 
the effect of spiting, upon persons addicted to a pain in the breast, that I 
am convinced the practice of cleaning the teeth with snuff is extremely 
injurious to her health, & if not gradually deserted from I fear will effect 
her lungs dangerously and that in no great while (2) It is a habit which is 
hard to break like tobacco chewing, but it may as I have found by ex- 
periment be broken, and in this manner put into a particular box all the 
snuff to be used in the day, & use it as usual the first day. the next day 
put less use it just as often but not quite so long at a time, & so go on 
abating a little at a time each day, till the quantity used will be so small 
as scarcely to be tasted — then get green dogwood sticks to make brushes 
of without tobacco at all, & swallow the saliva caused by cleaning after 
spiting not more than twice or three times at each cleaning Then in one 
month or less time she may break a habit which if persevered in will un- 
questionably much enfeeble if not destroy her constitution. Had not your 
late good brother when I had the influenza at this place 5 years ago rec- 
ommended me to a physician Doctor Weames who in hearty the above 
way advised me to break off the use of Tobacco, I am convinced I should 
not have lived 6 months. Cleaning the teeth with Snuff has precisely the 
same effects as chewing Tobacco, as the signs in certain houses about 
our Lots where the brushes are used fully prove. As this advice is well in- 
tended you will not mention it unless you think it may be useful — 

Thomas tells me you have or M r Rodman 15 has excellent green Coffee 
for sale at $12 Vi p CW l — Now as I am about removing my family to the 
University where it may be difficult to make the remittances at times of 
this article I wish to lay in a stock for 3 or 4 years supply at once, & have 
inclosed you a $50 bill which I will thank you to apply in the way most 
to my interest in this article, I say in the way most to my interest be- 
cause Thomas said, there was some which would answer very well at 
rather a lower price. I will therefore leave it to your Judgment to apply it 
as you may think (3) best. And if you think it would be an article worth 
trading in that is which you could make money on in the event of war 16 

15 In 1811 William Wanton Rodman, a practicing lawyer in New York City, moved to 
Washington, North Carolina, where he married John Gray Blount's daughter Polly Ann in 
the same year. Lemmon, Pettigrew Papers, xvii-xviii, 440-441; North Carolina Reports, Volume 
116 (Raleigh: Commercial Printing Company, State Printers, 1922), 631. 

16 Because of the War Hawks in Congress there was much discussion in Washington dur- 
ing the closing months of 1811 about the probability of war with Great Britain. The British 
orders-in-council, which had imposed a paper blockade on all ports from which the British 
flag was excluded, had resulted in the seizure of American ships and cargoes by the British 
for several years. Blackledge seems to have thought in February, 1812 (just four months 
before war would be declared on Great Britain by the United States),. that the orders-in- 
council might be repealed but that war was a clear possibility. Morris, Encyclopedia of Ameri- 
can History, 135, 140-141. 

162 John Gray Blount Papers 

coming on, you may apply the proceeds of the inclosed check in the same 
way, so as to enable me from the profits on my Coffee to pay a part of 
the expence of my sugar. My own opinion is that it must be a good spec- 
ulation even if the Orders in Counsel should be repealed, & therefore if 
good Coffee can be had at as low a price as $12y2 p CW l lay the bill & 
the check both out in it. The resolutions of the Merchants of Seven 
[manuscript torn] the effects of the Orders in Counsel so forcibly that I 
cannot for [manuscript torn] closing them to you by this days mail. 
Should you purchase any Coffee for me have it put in barrels, advise my 
friend John F. Smith of it that he may send a Cart over for what it will 
carry as early as possible inasmuch as I have already orderd off a part of 
my goods for the University and they may send a barrel of it up in a 
waggon which will carry some of my other things, & moreover I suspect 
my family may be wanting Coffee by this time — If you should not have it 
in your power to purchase for me, you will please endorse the check & 
forward that with the inclosed Bill to M r Smith to be applied as I shall 
direct — As Thomas will no doubt write you I shall say nothing further 
as to M rs Blount but that she is recovering [manuscript torn] rode out 
twice though she is yet very feeble — 

yours truly 

W m Blackledge 

(4) for the money & Check to J F Smith by John Clark the 10 h March 

[No address] 

Josiah Bradley to John Gray Blount 

Shell Castle February 26 th 1 81 2 

Jno G. Blount Esq r 


A few days past I was inform d that M r W m Jolston had writs out for M rs 
Wallace on account of Perry & Angis, piloting, for motives which I can 
not account for, as he has had no dealings with the Castle or any person 
inhabitant there for many years, or a dispute to my knowledge & I can 
assign no other reason than that of [manuscript torn] in trying to get 
Vessel's to pilot himself, if you think best, you can get their branc[h]es 
which will do away all dispute, as I think there can be no more risk than 

Letters for 1812 163 

at present, as there appears nothing but Enmity existing between them 
that follow the Lightering & piloting Business here — 

I am respectfully your most Ob 1 
Hum 6 Serv — 
Jos Bradley 

Addressed: Jno G. Blount Esq r 


Cap' Perry 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

Washington City March 18 th 1812 
Dear Sir) 

I sincerely rejoice to hear that you have hopes of the recovery of your 
lady, whose ill health I had heard of from your Son when he was here. 
And congratulate you at the same time on the evidence you have no 
doubt since rec d that you were deceived in the energy of the 12 th Con- 
gress, God forbid they should prove to be the 2 d edition of the 10 th — 

Henrys disclosures 17 I hope will be of some service in giving additional 
energy to Congress as a body, while I cannot but regret that the feds are 
according to custom endeavoring to weaken the force which this addi- 
tional evidence of panic faith in the British government ought to [manu- 
script torn] upon the people. They are endeavoring now [to] raise a sus- 
picion that the handwriting of Liverpool & others are a forgery, & to 
bring our own government into Contempt & discredit by alledging that 
they have given $50,000 for the forged discovery — whether this or any 
other sum was given (2) I know not but this I know that under the exist- 

17 John Henry, a British agent, toured New England early in 1812, searching for people 
who opposed President Madison's policies and favored secession. When Henry made his 
report to British officials, they refused to pay him the bonus he expected. In revenge he had 
himself introduced around Washington by a man calling himself the "Count de Crillon" 
and sold his report to Madison for S50,000. The report proved only that a British spy had 
been at work in the United States. Madison tried to use the report to fire up Congress for 
war, but the New England Federalists continued to resent his policies. "Crillon" was even- 
tually exposed as a petty embezzler whose real name was Soubiran. Smelser, Democratic 
Republic, 202. 

164 John Gray Blount Papers 

ing state of our affairs with that nation the disclosure was worth twice 
that Sum if the facts disclosed were true, that they are genuine there is 
no doubt as things will ultimately prove — The Committee of foreign rela- 
tions at the instance of Mr Randolph 18 have examined a Spanish Count 
named Crelon who it was known had kept company with Henry at this 
place — It confirms the truth of Henrys facts rather than otherwise — I sus- 
pect an Embargo for 30, 60, or 90 days will be proposed in the Course of 
a fortnight if not sooner — this is preparatory to War — Almost all the of- 
ficers for the 25 M regulars are appointed — from your district I have not 
yet heard of a recommendation for Captain & but one Gen 1 , present me 
very respectfully to your lady & all the family 

yours in haste 
W m Blackledge 

P.S. M rs Blount is pretty well recoverd I saw her last (3) evening at M r 

Van Ness's 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1- 
N° Carolina 

Henry I. Toole 19 to John Gray Blount 

6 th April 1812 

Dear Sir 

I was desired by W m Blackledge Esq some weeks ago to name to him 
some persons who would be willing and fitted to take the command of a 
company of Infantry in the army about to be raised — I was informed by 
him at the same time that you had been addressed on the same subject — 

I am not acquainted with any Gentleman willing to accept a captaincy 
for whose conduct I would be responsible; nor do I know of any one who 
would discharge faithfully and satisfactorily the appointment either of 
first or second Lieutenant; if proper characters are, however, known to 

18 For John Randolph see 1803, n. 95. 

19 Henry Irwin Toole (1779-1816) was married to William Blount's daugher Anne. Scion 
of a family of Revolutionary War heroes, Toole served in the state Senate in the first 
decades of the nineteenth century. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 421n; Alan D. 
Watson, Edgecombe County: A Brief History (Raleigh: Division of Archives and History, 1979), 
11, 29, hereinafter cited as Watson, Edgecombe County. 

Letters for 1812 165 

you, and my concurrence with you in their recommendation should be 
more satisfactory either to M r Blackledge or yourself, it will be freely af- 
forded — (2) I feel highly complimented by the opinion you are pleased to 
express of me in your favor by Nancy, 20 and if a longer continuance in 
public life were at all reconcileable either to my feelings or my interest 
your wish that I should do so, would certainly afford a sufficient induce- 
ment; but I have long since formed the determination to abandon public 
employment in which I engaged without inclination and almost without 
motive, and for which my love of ease, and my pursuits generally but illy 
fitted me. 

I have written to M r Love of Haywood County three or four times on 
the Subject of the land in that quarter but have rec d no answer, for which 
I cannot account; as Gen 1 Love to whom I was talking on (3) the subject 
led me to believe that a Letter to his Brother would meet the earliest at- 
tention — 

I have some business to the westward of this place, and if I could be 
assured that I would be able to finish the business in Buncombe on my 
arrival there I could continue on until I should reach the mountains. 

Perhaps a Letter from you to Col Love would afford the greatest as- 
surance of my being able to do so; it can be forwarded to me and I will 
take it on. 

I am, like all other lazy people, in great haste, but 

very respectfully 
& sincerely your friend 

& Serv 1 
Henry I Toole 
I hear that Hall 21 and Kennedy 22 have declared their willingness to go to 
Congress, but I would, for my own part, prefer to remain unrepresented, 
if I win as an alternative, compelled to accept of either of those Gentl n I 
have written to M r Blackledge to get a Law (4) passed by Congress en- 
abling us to elect a Representative presuming the Fed e constitution gives 
the power to that Body by the 4 th section of article l 8t of that instru- 
ment— H I T 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq re 
N° Carolina 

20 Nancy was the nickname for Anne (or Ann) Blount, Henry Irwin Toole's wife. Keith 
and others, Blount Papers, III, 97n. 

21 Thomas H. Hall (1773-1853) of Tarboro served eight terms in the United States House 
of Representatives (1817-1825, and 1827-1835). From 1835 until his death in 1853 he prac- 
ticed medicine and engaged in agricultural pursuits in Edgecombe County. Biographical Di- 
rectory of Congress, 1053. 

22 For William Kennedy see 1803, n. 65. 

166 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas Bell to John Gray Blount 

Milton (Mass) April 24 th 1812 


Cap 1 Barns of Situate, handed me your letter of Feb y last. 

I wish to know the head which you can raise at your privilidge, & the 
fall also of the water — I wish also to know, what kind of mills you intend 
building, whether Flour mills, Corn mills — paper mills, or what may 

I wish you to be very particular, in your description of the above, 
privilidge & the Kind of mill or mills you Intend building. 

In my next, I shall be able to make proposals of terms. I then knowing 
your privilidge & the Number of mills you intend to build, If my pro- 
posals are acceptable to you, I can come to Washington, the beginning of 
next winter — 

I am Sir very Respectfully 
Your Obt Servt — 
Thomas Bell 

P. S. Direct your letter to Milton (Mass) 

Addressed: M r John G Blount 
North Carolina 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

Washington City April 25 th 1812 

Dear Sir) 

I have conversed with M r Gallatin 23 on the subject of Johns going into 
the Army, & having the duties of his office performed by a deputy, but 
he says it cannot be done. Tell Thomas H. I have this day rec d his cov- 
ering the other half of the Bills of $300 & announcing the departure from 
Washington of William 24 for Richmond or this place — I Am glad he is 

23 For Albert Gallatin see 1807, n. 9. 

"For William Augustus Blount see 1808, n. 2. Blount's lifelong desire for military honors 
was described many years later by an acquaintance who derided "the folly of Gen Wm 
Augustus Blount who some years ago made a great fool of himself with his Military aspira- 
tions." Crabtree and Patton, "Journal of a Secesh Lady," 5-6. 

Letters for 1812 167 

coming on, as it will have a good effect upon his application for a com- 
mission — We are to have the question of adjournment decided on in the 
Senate this day — I hope most sincerely it will not pass but have serious 
fears it will — I have not time to say more at present than to inform you 
As I think I have already done Thomas that M rs Blount will wait here 
the arrival of William, & as to the time they will depart it is impossible 
to say — I am hurrying the Completion of the monument which she 
wants to have done before she leaves this, but whether she will even then 
be willing to leave the place it is impossible for (2) me to say — 

Yours truly 
W m Blackledge 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 

Henry I. Toole to John Gray Blount 

30 th April 1812 

Dear Sir, 

I wrote to you some time since, and as the mail and private con- 
veyances have since intervened, I think it probable my Letter never 
reached you. 

Among other things I mentioned that I had repeatedly written to Col° 
[Love] — on the subject of the lands in the Western part of this State but 
had been unable to obtain an answer, for which I could not then assign 
any sufficient reason: since that time however, I have been favored with a 
reply explanatory of the delay — I presume an extract from the Letter will 
answer my purpose, and follows — "The Titles are all in the name of 
M r and I am bound to know them in no other manner" 

I have omitted the names of the agent and ostensible proprietor lest, in 
case of miscarriage, any injury might result — M r Parker (2) who will de- 
liver this will afford an opportunity of returning an answer if your leisure 
will permit. 

Present me respectfully to your family and assure yourself of my great 
respect and regard — 

Henry I Toole 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 
N° Carolina 

168 John Gray Blount Papers 

W. S. Biddle 25 to John Gray Blount 

PHiLAD a May5 1812 


Your letter of the 25 th ult. was received yesterday and the Bill upon 
D & M Ray for $704.67 has been accepted. I proposed to them that they 
should discount it, but they declined doing it. Your distant residence 
would prevent a discount at the Bank, I have therefore lodged the bill in 
bank for collection. I am unable to give you any exact and certain infor- 
mation as to the credit of the acceptors. 

M r Leroy's 26 draft upon M r Bernardou with his acceptance was deliv- 
ered to M r Kuhl who held the Second of the Set which you mention — 

I am respy 
y r ob l Serv* 
W S Biddle 

J. G. Blount Esq 

Addressed: J. G. Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

William Augustus Blount to John Gray Blount 

Washington City May 7 th 1812 

Dear Papa 

I have been detained here much longer than I expected to have been, 
when I arrived here, I wrote to my Brother to tell you that my aunt, 
wished to see the monument finished; which is about to be erected over 
the grave of my uncle, this is nearly done, but unfortunately, M r Black- 
ledge, the best of friends is extremely ill, I am now with him and shall 
pay all possible attention to him, for that purpose I have moved my lodg- 
ing to the house in which he boards, but for those circumstances I should 
have been home before this, as I fear you have no person to attend to 

26 For William S. Biddle see 1810, n. 4. 

26 This was perhaps Lewis LeRoy, a merchant of Washington, North Carolina, and one 
of the few Roman Catholics living in Beaufort County during this period. Reed, Beaufort 
County, 86, 149. 

Letters for 1812 169 

your business, I cannot say when I shall be at home as it depends on the 
health of M r B. — but so soon as he recovers, or rather so soon as he is 
thought to be out of danger I shall leave this for home, I am confident 
this will meet your approbation — as his attention to uncle if no other in- 
ducement is one sufficient in itself to merrit all the service which I can 
ever render him — M r Blackledge says he has no doubt, but there will be 
a war as also a number, and in fact all the members I have conversed 
with on the Subject — he says he has written you that my Brother John 
cannot under existing circumstances go into the army, but that he has 
recommended me to the secretary and will, undoubtedly, get a commis- 
sion — (2) you in my Brothers letter to M r Blackledge that Gen 1 Polk, 27 is 
willing to accept of him as an aid — and as my Brother cannot accept of 
the offered appointment, Provided it is consistant with your wishes I will 
tender my services, but as to this you will please do as you think proper 
— I should however be very glad indeed to be an aid to a Gen 1 — who I 
believe to be brave and inginious, such I have understood to be the char- 
acter of Ge 1 Polk. I have not received a letter from any one of the family 
since here I have been. Aunt is now with one of the finest women I ever 
knew, M rs Van ness and joins with me in love to Yourself and the fami- 

Your affectionate Son, 
Will A. Blount 

PS. Since I wrote this M r Blackledge has taken a Warm Bath and I think 
he is much better. 

W A. B. 

Addressed: M r John G. Blount Sen r 
N. Carolina 

William Blackledge and William Augustus Blount 


John Gray Blount 

Washington City May 18 th 1812 

Dear Sir 

I am this day for the first time able to Sit up long enough to dictate a 
letter in answer to yours as well as your Son Tho s of the 4 th Instant both 

For William Polk see 1805, n. 22. 

1 70 John Gray Blount Papers 

of which are just at hand, things as they are, at this place it is known 
that Polke, will only accept conditionally, that is to say, he is willing to 
be a Gen 1 provided he can have his place of Rendezvous at Raleigh, so 
that he can act as gen 1 and Be the President of the Bank at the same 
time, whether he will ultimately acept unconditionally is yet unknown — 
before the rec 1 of this you will know that your Son William is appointed 
a first Luitenant at which he is much pleased as he is anxious to serve his 
country, and before I was taken sick I wrote you that John could not per- 
form the duties of his office, or Rather be Collector and an officer too — 
hence my exertions to procure an appointment for William — in this state 
of things how to act I am at a loss, for John to resign his appointment, 
without a certainty that any vacancy will take place and whether he can 
fill it, and the uncertainty who will be made collector on his resignation 
would seem to me improper, being myself unable to wait on the Presi- 
dent, or on M r Gallatin, Than come to this determination, to wait until I 
am (2) able to see them, in the mean time John should forward this resig- 
nation to me that I may use it to the best advantage, but I think he 
would be rong to resign under present circumstances — I will consult M r 
Gallatin and the President about getting Thomas appointed Collector, 
and seize on any opportunity that may offer in getting a commission for 

W. Blackledge— 
Yours truly — 

PS. Dear Papa 

You will discover that M r Blackledge is getting well and myself and 
aunt shall leave this for home friday morning — I am very sorry to hear of 
the death of my aunt but I think she is better off. I have to inform you 
with pleasure that I have been appointed an officer in the army and hope 
I shall do credit to you, my Country & myself — M r B. mentions to you 
the situation of my Brother. 

Your affectionate Son 
Will A. Blount 

Addressed: John G Blount Sen r Esq r 
N° Carolina 

Letters for 1812 171 

James Taylor 28 to John (hay Blount 

New Bern May 19 th 1812 

Dear Sir 

I have a strong wish for a personal interview with you, or with some 
one who is confidential with you — the subject you can readily imagine; 
It is without my power to command that wish — 

The torment I have to oppose here, I may with propriety and truth 
say, I am incompetent to resist — Domestic peace, and pecuniary de- 
rangements — a heavy load on my mind, between duty & feeling — all 
contribute to its exhaustion — do let me see you or some one closely in 
your confidence — Some arrangements may be made, if speedily conclud- 
ed no less satisfactory to you than to myself — Your Son William, or M r 
Rodman; either would be equally acceptable — pray let me hear from 
you without delay — 

Our Virtuous British Bank 29 here has Subscribed 25M to the Loan — 
Solomon sayeth that there is nothing new under the Sun — I wish he were 
alive to destroy the Apothegm, this is surely new — A Body of men de- 
cidedly opposed to the Administra. and all its measures — but this most 
important of all — furnishing that Adm n with more than a proportion of 
its funds to carry on a War against their Royal Masters Gang — While 
their neighbours around are literally drained to the last cent by them — if 
this is not something new I know not what is — I do not mean the drain- 
ing part — it is the subscribing part I allude to, and to that alone; re- 
spectfully present me to y r family & assure yourself that I am sincerely y r 
ob l Serv 1 

James Taylor 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 

M r Goncoke 

28 For James Taylor see 1805, n. 17. He is often referred to in subsequent letters, some- 
times as Cap Taylor or Captain Taylor, and sometimes as just Taylor. 

29 This probably refers to the Bank of New Bern. That bank subscribed $25,000 to a feder- 
al government loan in 1812, which Taylor evidently thought was hypocritical because the 
bank's owners opposed the Madison administration and therefore war with Britain. 
Sarah M. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots: North Carolina and the War of 1812 (Chapel Hill: Uni- 
versity of North Carolina Press, 1973), 25, hereinafter cited as Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots. 

172 John Gray Blount Papers 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

Washington City May 23 d 1812 

Dear Sir) 

I find by letters this day received from home that on the 10 th of this 
Month my friends at Newbern had made no arrangement for removing 
my family to Chapel Hill, & fear they will not be gone till after this shall 
reach you. M rs Blount who is on her way home was so good as to offer to 
let Rochester go with her carriage & Carfy a part of my family should 
they not be gone before she got home — Now what I wish you to do for 
me is to write J F. Smith Esquire as soon as M r8 Blount arrives, & in- 
form him of her arrival & of the time by which the carriage & horses can 
be over to go up with my family if they should be needed — He will then 
notify you whether the family are gone & if they are not I must beg the 
favor of you to have the carriage & horses sent as early as possible, as the 
(2) Session begins the 1 st of June & I am very anxious the boys should be 
up as early as possible in the Session — Or if any thing should turn up 
that M rs Blount Cant spare the Carriage & Horses, inform M r Smith of 
it that he may look on — for some other mode of Conveyance & oblige 

yours truly 

W m Blackledge 

The Hornett 30 is arrived, but report says things in France stand, as when 
Barlow 31 reached Paris 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
Thomas H Blount 
N° Carolina 

30 The Hornett was a sixteen-gun sloop under the command of Commodore John Rodgers 
in the early stages of the War of 1812. It was later commanded by Captain James 
Lawrence. After numerous engagements the ship was scuttled. Irving Brant, James Madison, 
Commander in Chief (Indianapolis : Bobbs-Merrill Co., Inc., 1961), 39, 40, 122, 164, 200, 383, 
hereinafter cited as Brant, Madison, Commander in Chief. 

31 Joel Barlow was a land speculator, diplomat, and poet. He wrote The Columbiad and 
Hasty Pudding. During the War of 1812 he briefly served as minister to France, until his 
death during a visit to Poland to confer with Napoleon. Morris, Encyclopedia of American His- 
tory, 138, 598. 

Letters for 1812 173 

Ed m Burr to John Gray Blount 

Fairfield 1 st June 1812 

Dear Sir 

I am disappointed & I expect you are by this time your wheel has 
been done the wood part of it ever since the first of May. I expected to 
sent it by Cap 1 Burton Last Trip but was disappointed about the Iron 
work. I was at New York 1 st of May & engaged the work & it was to be 
sent to me the next week, it did not come. I was confident I Should have 
it the next time the boat went but it did not come the man I agreed with 
would promise to have it ready. & it has been now four times sent for & 
I have not receiv'd it I mention these circumstances that you may know 
the cause why it has not been sent to you — I have tryed to find a Mill- 
wright to come out with the work in order to set it up for you but I can- 
not find anyone willing to come to your place in the summer season they 
are willing to go in the winter but not at the present Season — however I 
will send you such Instructions as I shall be able to do for the benefit of 
your Millwright — perhaps he may set it up as well as any one — I shall 
procure the Iron work & send it out to you as soon as possible. I have 
engaged a full set of Irons for the Mill — the necessary Geer — the Mill 
Stones I have not yet engaged I could find none to Suite me & the price 
is a considerable higher than usual — if you wish I will obtain as good as 
any I can find & send to you — 

with due respect your 
Obe 1 Serv 1 Ed m Burr 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 
North Carolina 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount, Jr. 

Washington City June 19 th 1812 

Dear Sir) 

I rec d from you your letter of the 9 th with the inclosures, but as yet 
have not done any thing with them, expecting from letters rec d from Cap 
Taylor, that it is not improbable your father might perhaps wish for 

174 John Gray Blount Papers 

some alteration in his plans as regards you & your brother Thomas — 
Tho I have had several conversations with M r Gallatin since I recom- 
mended your brother Thomas H. in the event of your going into the 
army I have not been able to learn whither he has resolved on his ap- 
pointment. You will see of course that in leaving to my discretion, you 
have placed me in a very delicate situation I will however do for the best 
according to the dictates of my Judgment — This is written barely to ap- 
prize you that Your letter is received — as time is precious I must Con- 
clude — As to war we now have it open 32 and undisguised — All I wait to 
see whether your father or yourself shall by next mail wish any change, 
or I can be certain of T. H's appointment, if I find the latter pretty cer- 
tain I shall not hesitate a moment to hand in your resignation of Collec- 

yours truly 

W m Blackledge 

Addressed: John G. Blount Jun r 
N° Carolina 

Jos: R. Dickinson to Josiah Collins 

WiNTONjuly 5 th 1812 

Dear Sir, 

I hasten on my return from Tennessee to inform you that your Lands 
in that State are reported for the taxes due on them for the year 1811 & 
that unless meassures be taken in time to prevent it, a Sale will be had in 
November next. I had brought with me a paper which contained the re- 
port but cannot now conveniently lay my hand on it; or would enclosse 
it, so that you might thereby be enabled to know what Sum would be 
necessary to remit to your Friend or Agent in Tennessee. I believe the 

Sum reported to be due was about $33 When my baggage which has 

not yet arrived comes to hand I shall I think be able to asscertain the ex- 
act amount & you shall hear from me on this Subject by the next Mail. 
From the place of my departure, it was not in my route, (& having the 

32 President Madison's war message, which pointed to violations of numerous American 
rights by the British, was sent to Congress on June 1, 1812. The House of Representatives 
by a vote of 79-49 approved it on June 4, while the Senate passed it by a vote of 19-13 on 
Jun; 18. Morris, Encyclopedia of American History, 141. 

Letters for 1812 175 

care of property which I was conducting to this State it was out of my 
power) to call & see the Sheriff of Overton County or I would have done 
so, and paid him the Taxes &c. In (2) a conversation with M r D. Dick- 
insson 33 of Winson [Wilson?] County Ten. on the Subject of your lands, 
he promised me that he would pay the taxes too prevent a Sale. But per- 
haps the thing would be more certain if you could forward the money 
not to Major Woodfork but to M r Dickinson, or it would be better to 
Some Gentleman who might be trusted in Overton — as it would be at- 
tended with Some little inconvenience to M. Dickinson perhaps who lives 
at a distance. I have Said above not to Major Woodfork and this may re- 
quire Some explanation. 

It was represented to me in that Country (Ten) that the Major was 
not the best Man in the world, & I have too, reasons of my own, which 
arisse out of a conversation had with him (the Major) on the Subject of 
your lands, which induces a belief that he would not deem it very crimi- 
nal to speculate upon you if an oppt y offers. He however did Say that if 
he was authorised by you, that he would pay every attention to the busi- 
ness — pay the taxes — endeavor to perfect your titles &c &c. Woodfork 
informed me that a very extensive (3) clearing had been made on one of 
the Tracts (I believe the largest) by a Man of the name of Williams 34 a 
great land Jobber in that Country. 

A Sale will not increasse the expences & it may be known to you too, 
that you will have 12 mo: to redeem by paying at the rate of 50pc. Per 
Ann. on the amo' of purchasse to the purchasser. I merely mention this 
to releive any anxiety my communication may have created. If it be your 
wish to send money, or letters to Ten. an oppt y that can be relied on will 
offer from this, Some time in Sept. next — 

If this communication shall have a tendency to charge the conduct of 
any: I hope you will do me the justice to beleive that I have not done so 
with that view but with a belief alone that it might be usseful and neces- 
sary to you. 

I am Sir, 

y rs respectfully 
Jos: R. Dickinson 

33 For David Dickinson see 1809, n. 5. 

34 There were several active speculators with the last name of Williams — Captain 
Benjamin Williams, Jesse Williams, John Williams, Joseph Williams, and Sampson 
Williams. This could be a reference to any one of them. It is the editor's belief, however, 
that the reference is to John Williams of Knoxville, who had been involved in the Transyl- 
vania Company's ventures. He became adjutant general of the state militia and fought with 
Andrew Jackson in the Creek War. Folmsbee and others, Tennessee, I, 141, 258, 261. For list 
of Land Warrants purchased see Land Warrants under each man's name in the Tennessee 
State Archives. 

1 76 John Gray Blount Papers 

Jos h Collins Esq r 

Addressed: Josiah Collins Esqr. 

W. S. Biddle to John Gray Blount 

(Duplicate) Philad* July 7 1812 


I have the pleasure to inform you that D Kings bill upon D & M Ray 
for 704.67 is paid. 

Besides the deduction which you have authorized me to make for my- 
self, I will with your permission retain Thirty dollars for professional 
services rendered & fees paid by me in the Suit brought for you, several 
years ago against the Executors of John Hall. 35 The balance is subject to 
your order 

I am resp y 
Y r mo. ob 1 Ser 1 
W. S. Biddle 

J. G. Blount Esq. 


Not having heard from you since the date of the above letter I have 
sent a duplicate, lest some accident may have prevented your receipt of 
the original. 

I am very resp y 
Y r ob 1 Ser 1 
W S Biddle 
Phil a Sep 1 9 1812 

J. G. Blount Esq. 

Addressed: J. G. Blount Esq 

36 For John Hall see 1803, n. 13. 

Letters for 1812 177 

William Blount to John Gray Blount 

[July 20, 1812] 

M r John G Blount 

Sir please to Send me one Barrel of your french Brandy if you Can Let 
me have it for thirteen Shillings per Gallon I can git the Cash for it. you 
must Let me have it as Low as you can. Send it By Tom, I wish you to 
Send it at any Rate, also I want you to Send me fifteen pound of flax of a 
good quality & you will oblige yours & c 

July 20 th 1812 William Blount 

Addressed: M r John G Blount 

Nathan Tisdale 36 to John Gray Blount 

Newbern Augst 3 d 1812 

D r Sir — Permit me to solicit your influence & assistance in expediting 
the march of the Detach 'd militia from the Reg 1 of Beaufort County — I 
have [manuscript torn] day by Post address 'd a Letter to the Com- 
mandant of that Reg 1 urging the necessity of the immediate march of the 
Detachment — I wrote to him several weeks since & have not receiv'd any 
answer — neither have I heard from that County even by repost. 

Your Compliance with this request will 0[b]lige one who is ambitious 
of being ranked among your Friends 

Nathan Tisdale 

John G. Blount Esq 1 " 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 " 

36 Colonel Nathan Tisdale, a watch repairman in New Bern, was described as "a gentle- 
man of great reading and intelligence." During the War of 1812 he commanded the fort on 
Beacon's Island. He had two sons, Joseph and Nathan. Miller, Recollections, 39. 

178 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Devereux DeLacy 37 to John Gray Blount 

New York Aug st the 20 th 1812 
John G. Blount Esq r 
Dear Sir 

enclosed you have the sentiments of Mess rs Emmet & Harris 38 they 
agree as you perceive to take the power of atty when necessary so that 
the sooner you send on M r Alii [s] on 39 the Heir at Law the better as they 
are afraid of its being delayed so as to be barred by the statute of Limita- 
tions in that case made and provided — 

I have seen Lohra, and have also been on the search in Phila a and else- 
where for Trenchard who is somewhere to the southward certainly but I 
do not now think him so indispensably necessary as I think the business 
can be unravelled without him, as I hope to find Zollinger and if so I 
shall most probably get all the papers & books, I will go to Phila a next 
week again on the subject, and will leave no means untried to have the 
business completely developed, altho care and address will be necessary 
to not only recover the estates but also to preserve to you a precedence as 
a Creditor by bringing the suit in your name against Allison when he 
shall be here and getting a Judgment in your favor by confession which 
will of course secure the whole to you by Allisons instantly returning 
from (2) you must give me timely notice of the time of his coming that I 
may meet him here — Indeed but for my want of money to follow the 

37 John Devereux DeLacy came to North Carolina from New York in 1813 to establish 
steamboat companies for Robert Fulton, but he failed. Specifically, Fulton wanted steam- 
ship routes established around New Bern, the Little River Inlet, and on the Cape Fear 
River. DeLacy subscribed to 218 shares in the Neuse River Navigation Company, but, since 
he made no payments, he was dropped from the list of subscribers. He practiced law in 
Raleigh for a short time. DeLacy died in New York City in 1837. William Henry Hoyt 
(ed.), The Papers of Archibald D. Murphey (Raleigh: North Carolina Historical Commission, 2 
volumes, 1914), I, 324, hereinafter cited as Hoyt, Papers of Archibald D. Murphey; Henry 
Thomas Shanks (ed.), The Papers of Willie Mangum (Raleigh: State Department of Archives 
and History, 5 volumes, 1950-1956), I, 13, hereinafter cited as Shanks, Papers of Willie 
Mangum; John S. Morgan, Robert Fulton (New York: Mason/Charter, 1977), 175, herein- 
after cited as Morgan, Robert Fulton. 

38 Thomas Addis Emmet was a famous New York lawyer associated with Robert Fulton 
and his business partner Robert R. Livingston. In 1812 Emmet served as attorney general 
for New York State. Harris must have been Emmet's law partner, but no information has 
been found concerning him. Henry W. Dickinson, Robert Fulton, Engineer and Artist: His Life 
and Works (London: John Lane, 1913; reprint ed., Freeport, N.Y.: Books for Libraries 
Press, 1971), 244, 251-253, hereinafter cited as Dickinson, Robert Fulton; Morgan, Robert Ful- 
ton, 178-179, 182, 186, 187, 201-202; Joseph G. E. Hopkins (ed.), Concise Dictionary of American 
Biography (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1964), 273, hereinafter cited as Hopkins, 
Concise DAB. 

39 For David Allison see 1810, n. 28. 

Letters for 1812 179 

thing up I could soon I think not only discover where those persons are 
but also get every information necessary but I have neither time nor 
money to spare in the pursuit, and have at best but an extremely remote 
and precarious interest in the business however successful it may be — 

I beleive with Swift 40 that there is more roguery than honesty in the 
world, and I beleive after the following statement you will think so — 
Counsellor Abner L Duncan, 41 a practitioner of Law in New Orleans & 
The brother in Law of the late John Nicholson and affidavit man of Wil- 
kinson has for a bona fide consideration to him given by Morehouse & 
Co. released acquitted and discharged the whole of the Judgment ob- 
tained vs Morehouse &c als in New Orleans — as an atty of that Court — 
tho in no one shape ever employed retained or concerned in or by any 
person connected therewith there being but myself that could so em- 
power him, and I always and ever had insuperable objections to the hav- 
ing any thing whatsoever to do with him — for many circumstances — 
induced me to think him not correct at all times — A M r Rainier of the 
Atakapas was the agent and a M r Fromentin 42 the atty upon record who 
is now in Philad a and whom I have seen. He has (3) taken the necessary 
steps to do away the operation of Duncans — unjustifiable release and I 
am determined to prosecute him criminally, in which I shall hope for 
your support — 

I have much more to say on these matters generally that has occurred 
in the course of my researches since I saw you but as the detail would be 
too voluminous for a letter I shall postpone any farther mention of the 
subject untill I shall next see you 

M r Rodman's 43 machine is ready and I would have been with you but 
that M r Mowat refused absolutely having any thing to do on the busi- 
ness alledging that M r Rodman (to whom I have written on the subject) 

"Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) was a prominent man ofletters and one of the greatest satir- 
ists to write in the English language. His satire often focused attention on English and Irish 
economic, political, and social conditions. Barnhart, Handbook of English Literature, 

41 Abner L. Duncan was probably the A. L. Duncan who helped to establish a steam 
ferry across the Mississippi River at New Orleans in 1820. Harold Sinclair, The Port of New 
Orleans (Garden City, N.Y.: Doubleday, Doran and Company, Inc., 1942), 142. 

42 In all likelihood this reference is to Eligius Fromentin, a French Catholic priest who 
fled France during the Reign of Terror. Coming to the United States, he settled in Pennsyl- 
vania. Later he moved to Maryland where he studied law. From Maryland he moved to 
Louisiana and practiced law in New Orleans. Through the influence of his wife's wealthy 
family, he gained political office and recognition. From 1813 to 1819 he represented Louisi- 
ana in the United States Senate, and in 1821 President Monroe appointed him federal judge 
for West Florida. While serving in the latter capacity, Fromentin ran afoul of Andrew Jack- 
son when Jackson, as governor of Florida, jailed the Spanish ex-governor, Jose Callava, and 
Fromentin issued a writ of habeas corpus for Callava's release. Biographical Directory of Con- 
gress, 973; Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of American Empire, 409, 410, 413-414. 

"For William W. Rodman see 1812, n. 15. 

180 John Gray Blount Papers 

had not said a word to him relative to it in any shape, indeed it has dis- 
appointed me considerably particularly as I am not much known in Bal- 
timore at any rate I will avoid having more to do with M r Mowat in the 
money way (at present) than I can avoid for he is said to be a very diffi- 
cult man to do any thing with, I have not time to give you our politics 
tho we are chock full of them — the Jersey convention is sitting that of 
Pennsylvania will sit next week as will that of this state — Clinton 44 will 
certainly be Presd 1 tho if an opening is given for peace & that M r Madi- 
son makes it he will be re-elected and will stand higher than ever to the 
Eastward — I beg to hear from you by return of post and am Respectfully 
Sir your most obed 1 Serv 1 

John Dev x DeLacy 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 
North Carolina 

William Black ledge to John Gray Blount 

[September 18, 1812] 

Dear Sir) 

I received from M r Brown 45 the Sum which you requested on the 
claims against the Cutter, & paid M r Watson 46 $10.75 — the ballance 
$9.05 are in my hands to pay M r Thompson in part of the Sum of $12 
which you had rec d for him. Herewith are Watsons Accounts and re- 
ceipts. I must now ask the favor of you to fill up the enclosed writ with 
the names of the Administrators of Frederick Grist or Executors if he left 
a will, and if he left executors strike out the word Adm r8 & insert ex rs in 
its place & hand it to the sheriff if you please as early as possible so as to 
have it executed in time to be returned to the Superior Court. It will be 

44 De Witt Clinton was a famous New York political leader who served as mayor of New 
York City, as governor of New York, and as a United States senator from New York. In 
1812 he ran unsuccessfully against James Madison for the presidency. He was largely 
responsible for the completion of the Erie Canal. Morris, Encyclopedia of American History, 

"This might be a reference to Jeremiah Brown or to Parsons Brown. Together they ran 
the mercantile firm of J. Brown and Company in New Bern. Miller, Recollections, 55. 

"This was possibly Thomas Watson, who, in conjunction with John I. Pasteur, was edi- 
tor and proprietor of the Carolina Sentinel (New Bern). Miller, Recollections, 57. 

Letters for 1812 181 

necessary if you wish to draw the Amount of your bill to send me a 
check, this I presumed you would know or I should have mentioned it in 
my former letter — 

Yours truly 

W m Blackledge 
Newbern Sept r 18 th 1812 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 
N° Carolina 

W. S. Biddle to John Gray Blount 

Philad a Sept. 28 1812 


I have just received from the office the Enclosed Certificate of the 
Judgment against Hall's Executors which I transmit agreably to your re- 
quest. The Assetts here were insufficient to discharge the Judgments 
which existed against D r Hall in his life time and which had a preference 
in payment. My Father has also a Judgment against D r Hall's Executors 
for which he has never received a cent, and if any thing can be recovered 
from lands in Carolina I Should be glad to know it. 

The money due upon Ray's bill was collected in my name and passed 
to my Credit: You will of course draw upon me for the balance. My 
charge for this business, and that of Bernadou's bill is Fifty five Dollars. 
For the Suit against Hall's Executors and expenses $30, leaving your bal- 
ance $619.67/oos 

If you have any objections however to these charges, you are at liberty 
to reduce them and draw accordingly. 

I am y r ob l Sev 1 
WS Biddle 

M r Blount 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 

182 John Gray Blount Papers 

Frederick Brooks 47 to John Gray Blount 

Camp at Beaufort October 

th 14—1812 

M r John G. Blount Sir I have taken the lirberty to right to you by the 
Request of my offersers and my men as we under Stand that there is to 
be two Compan discharged from Beaufort and as we was the only Com- 
paney of volunteers we dont want to be one of them my men is much 
Confused a bautit they Say that they want to Stay now for if they ar dis- 
charged they will not Ever volunteer a Gain and if they ar not they will 
volunteer their servises to Go Enney whar they may be wanted as Soon 
as their time is out at Beaufort Dear Sir if you can have Eney influanc by 
Righting to the Govnor of the State as soon as you can all the thanks will 
be Gaven you from the (2) Companey and their Respects to you paid 
hear after as we offersers have bin at a Grate ic spenc to a quip our 
Selves and now to be discharged it will all most a tempt me to Say that I 
nevr will have nothing more to doe in the army Sir please if you think 
proper I Shall be Glad — if you will bea So Good to gave Major tisdal a 
few lines as it is a verrey Crital peos of bisness for me to menchant it to 
hime as there is three others Cap 1 [Gautier] 48 — I have the Right of the 
Ridgment Cap 1 Goldan 49 & Cap 1 Kilpatrick 50 ar boath willing but their 
sebaultans-ar not which may make Some truble with Major tisdal if it 
left to him to Say which Shall be a discharged the troops are ginerlay wel 
we have bin verrey Suckselful for we have not had one death in armey (3) 
Sir I have to informe you that there has a Rived at Beaufort a few days a 
Go a Brig of two Hundred and fifty tons a prise to the privateer Comit 
out of Baultomre which his Cargo Contains one Hundred and Nintey 
Hodgs of Sugar and Sixtey Hodgs Moleses and the Ballanc of His Cargo 
Coffee and CoCo — which Cargo is said to be a worth Seventy thousand 
dollars — 

47 Frederick Brooks was captain of the Second Company, Second North Carolina Regi- 
ment, detached from the Beaufort County militia during the War of 1812. He was supposed 
to organize a company of sea fencibles and use them if the state came under attack. 
Sarah M. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 42, 79; Muster Rolls of the Soldiers of the War of 1812: 
Detached from the Militia of North Carolina in 1812 and 1814 (Raleigh: State of North Carolina, 
1851), 10, hereinafter cited as Muster Rolls of the War of 1812. 

48 The only Gautier located was Thomas N. Gautier, who was one of North Carolina's 
most notable naval officers in the War of 1812. There is little likelihood that the Gautier 
referred to here was the same man. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 73-74. Also, see 1814, n. 12. 

49 Jacob Galden was captain of the Eleventh Company, Second North Carolina Regi- 
ment. His company was detached from the Onslow County militia. Muster Rolls of the War 
of 1812, 12. 

60 Francis Kilpatrick was captain of the Fifth Company, Second North Carolina Regi- 
ment. His company was detached from the Lenoir County militia. Muster Rolls of the War of 
1812, 12. 

Letters for 1812 183 

Sir I Remain yours 
with Respect 
F rd Brooks 

Addressed: M r John G. Blount Es d 
Beaufort Countey 


William Augustus Blount to John Gray Blount 

Tarborough October 21 st 1812 

Dear Papa 

I have received your letter and have got the receipt Signed according 
to request and now enclose it — I have also received my Brothers letter in 
which he mentioned you wished me to procure 7 Locks, I shall do so and 
Send them down by the first opportunity; Say to my Brother that I shall 
attend to the contents of his letter nothing new at this place Col° White 51 
has gone to Columbia S.C. and on his return I think we shall probably 
know where we Shall be Stationed for the Winter I rather Suppose at 
Raleigh, please hand M r Rodman the enclosed letters — My love to all 
the family — 

Your affectionate Son 
Will A. Blount 

M r Rodman 

I Some time ago wrote you that I should retain the draft forwarded me 
until I heard from you but for fear you did not get that letter I now for- 
ward it you — if any business at this place which I can transact Shall be 
happy in doing So 

look on the other side W A. B. 

(2) In a conversation a few days since with M r Toole 52 1 am of an opinion 
that he has not possitively determined not to offer as a candidate, He did 
not say that he would offer, but I think if he was solisited by you, & 

"Lieutenant Colonel Benajah White of the Eighteenth North Carolina Regiment was 
supposed to be a recruiting officer, but he failed miserably at the task. Although he later 
participated in the Creek Indian War, White's ineptitude resulted in his court-martial and 
dismissal from military service. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 64. 

62 For Henry Irwin Toole see 1812, n. 19. 


John Gray Blount Papers 

William Augustus Blount (1792-1867), 
John Gray Blount's son, was stationed in 
South Carolina during the War of 1812 but 
never saw combat. Even so, he was elected a 
major general in the North Carolina militia af- 
ter the war. Portrait by Jacob Marling; 
photograph from the files of the North 
Carolina Division of Archives and History. 

could have any assurances that he would be tolerably supported in 
Washington & Tyrell counties that he would permit himself to be run — 
He regretts that the district should be represented either by Kennedy or 
Hall & his aversion to them I think will eventually determin him to be a 

yours &' 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 

John Hill Bryan's Power of Attorney to John Gray Blount 

[October 21, 1812] 

Know all Men by these presents that I John Hill Bryan of the County of 
Tatnall and State of Georgia do hereby constitute and appoint John 
Grey Blount of the County of Beaufort and State of North Carolina my 
true and lawful Attorney for me and in my name to reclaim the custody 

Letters for 1812 185 

of Nancy and Richard Grist 53 Infants to whom I am Guardian; and for 
that purpose to prosecute all and every lawful means to vacate and re- 
peal the authority by which Reading Grist 54 pretends to hold the said In- 
fants; and do hereby give and grant upon my said Attorney my full and 
entire power in and about the premises, and do hereby ratify and con- 
firm all that my said Attorney shall do in and about the same by virtue 
hereof. In witness of all which I have hereunto set my name and seal this 
twenty first of October 1812. 

John Hill Bryan (seal) 

Delivered in 
presence of 
Thomas Worsley 55 
Nathaniel Locker 

John Hill Bryan to John Gray Blount 

[October 22, 1812] 

John G. Blount Esq r 

Sir, M r Gaston 56 thinks it necessary for me to have the Letters of Ad- 
ministrations, will thank you to forward them to me, by the same person 
who hands you this. I enclose you a power of Attorney which you will 
please Keep. The Other papers necessary I will endeavour to forward 
you in time — Misunderstanding the Gentleman who will hand you this 

"Richard Grist represented Beaufort County at the convention held in Fayetteville in 
November, 1789, to ratify the federal Constitution. These children may have been Richard 
Grist's. Reed, Beaufort County, 124. 

54 Reading Grist represented Beaufort County in the North Carolina Senate from 1814 to 
1818. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 265, 267, 268, 270, 272. Reading Grist is listed in the 
1820 census for Beaufort County as the head of a household containing two males and two 
females. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 18. 

"For Thomas Worsley see 1803, n. 23. 

56 In all probability this was William R. Gaston (1778-1844), an eminent North Carolina 
jurist in the nineteenth century. He served several terms in the North Carolina House of 
Commons and as its speaker for one term. He also served terms in the North Carolina Sen- 
ate. His public career further included a stint in the United States House of Representa- 
tives and a judgeship on the North Carolina Supreme Court. Ashe, Biographical History of 
North Carolina, II, 99-107. 

1 86 John Gray Blount Papers 

in his returning here will thank you to send the paper by a boy to deliver 
to my boy on this side the river — 

John Hill Bryan 

Oct r 22 nd 1812 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 

John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount 

PmLAD a Nov r the 6 th 1812 

John G Blount Esq r 


I have but Just returned from the western part of the state of New 
York where I had been to see Johnson Hall 57 and Whitehall, 58 they are 
immensly valuable estates indeed probably the most so on the Continent, 
I have hunted up the titles, proceedings &c &c on the case as far as I 
could and submitted them to M r Emmet for his opinion which I have 
taken in writing, the expence attending my doing this has been enorm- 
ous considering the little interest I have in it — I have those papers as far 
as I could procure them with me, The titles were in the hands of old 
[illegible], and I can neither as yet find them nor the copies nor his let- 
ters, but as I am now on the Tract I hope soon to find them all, but if 
not there are a sufficient number of witnesses to prove his having had 
them deposited in his hands, with other very valuable papers — I have 
now to state to you that if any one of your sons or nephews will meet me 
in Richmond on the 20 th or 21 st of this month I will communicate M r 
Emmets opinion with the other documents to them — I am now on my 
way to Washington and will go from thence to Richmond I am Respect- 
fully Sir, 

Your most obed 1 Serv 1 
John Dev x DeLacy 

"Johnson Hall, also called Fort Johnson, was originally the home of Sir William John- 
son in the Mohawk Valley of New York. It was built in 1749 and was a two-story Georgian 
stone structure. Writers Program, Works Projects Administration (comp.), New York: A 
Guide to the Empire State (New York: Oxford University Press, 1940), 22, 165, 458, 491, 641, 
hereinafter cited as WPA, New York. 

58 Whitehall, New York, is a town located midway between New York City and Montreal 
along the Vermont border, just south of Fort Ticonderoga. WPA, New York, 84, 540, 623. 

Letters for 1812 187 

P. S. I have a salaray of $2000 a year from Livingston & Fulton 59 as their 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

Washington City Dec r 6 th 1812 

Dear Sir) 

In my way from Philadelphia I fell in with a gentleman who has grad- 
uated at one of the Colleges in New England by the name of Dennison 
about 26 or 27 years of age who is inquiring for a place in an accademy 
— His Credentials shew that he has taken his degrees & is of good moral 
Character — He could doubtless be had on good terms either for an accad- 
emy or for a private family — Do say to me as early as possible whether 
he could be assured of employment in your academy & of what he might 
expect p r annum in the employment — Perpetual Motion is discovered I 
have seen it & do hope nay believe it will be made to answer both for 
Grist and Saw Mills — yours in haste 

W m Blackledge 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1- 
N° Carolina 

59 Robert R. Livingston and Robert Fulton were business partners in a steamship com- 
pany during this period. Livingston (1746-1813), member of a prominent and wealthy New 
York family, was a politician whose career began prior to the Revolution. Livingston served 
in three New York provincial congresses during the Revolution and served two different 
terms in the Continental Congress. He also served as minister to France from 1801 to 1804, 
during which time he concluded the Louisiana Purchase. It was in France that he first met 
Robert Fulton and decided to form a partnership with him. Robert Fulton (1765-1815), 
born in Pennsylvania, was an artist and engineer who became interested in the steam 
engine. He spent much of his life promoting steam navigation in the United States and 
Europe. In 1807, with Livingston's financial support, he successfully demonstrated the 
practicality of steamships by sailing one on a round-trip voyage between New York City 
and Albany. Hopkins, Concise DAB, 321, 576; Morgan, Robert Fulton, 118-124, 139-142; Dick- 
inson, Robert Fulton, 134-136, 149-150, 153, 159, 213-221. 

John Gray Blount Papers 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

Washington City Dec r 9 th 1812 

Dear Sir) 

Tell Sam Young 60 & Redmond 61 & Howard 62 & the rest of your noble 
sound hearted neighbors to Kindle the powder light the lamps string the 
musick & be merry now without fear of deception as to the truth of the 
glad tidings I am going to give you — Last night arrived at this place mid- 
shipman Hamilton 63 of the UStates Frigate Cap Decatur with the Col- 
ours of the Macedonia 64 of 38 guns Captured on the 25 th October in Lati- 
tute 30 longitude 26 W l of Greenwich after a runing and maneuvering 
fight of about an hour & a broad side & broad side fight of only 17 
Minutes with on[ly] 10 Men Killed and wounded in our ship 107 in the 
British Both ships are arrived within Mon tog Point — When young 
Hamilton arrived his father the Sec y of the Navy his Mother & Sisters 
with a large portion of the City were at a Ball given by the Citizens to 
the Officers of the Navy — Imagine to yourself the feelings of the son the 
father, the Company on the entry of the young man into the Ball room at 
such a time with such a trophy — I can say no more for want of time & 
talent to do justice to the scene — 


W m Blackledge 
turn over 

(2) Should Cap Taylor 65 be with you tell him Dugomen is unhurt 

60 Sam Young is listed in the 1820 census as head of a household containing four males 
and three females. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 48. 

81 This probably refers to James Redmond II, who is listed in the 1820 census as an 
unmarried male between the ages of twenty-six and forty-five. Potter, 1820 North Carolina 
Census, Beaufort County, 35. 

62 This could refer to James Howard or to William Howard, both of Beaufort County. In 
the 1820 census James was listed as being between twenty-six and forty-five years of age 
and the head of a household containing children. William, listed as being between sixteen 
and twenty-six years old, also was married but had no children. Potter, 1820 North Carolina 
Census, Beaufort County, 22, 23. 

83 Edward Wilkinson Hamilton was the only son of Secretary of the Navy Paul Hamilton 
and Mary Wilkinson Hamilton. After serving in the navy in the War of 1812, Edward 
Hamilton became a doctor, married Elizabeth Isabelle Lynah, and lived for a while near 
Dorchester, South Carolina. He later moved to Alabama. Samuel G. Stoney (ed.), "Mem- 
oirs of Frederick Adolphus Porcher, " South Carolina Historical and Genealogical Magazine, 
XLVI (July, 1945), 140; Webber Genealogical Notes, Webber Collection, 30-4, South Caro- 
lina Historical Society, Charleston, South Carolina. 

64 The Macedonian was a British frigate captured west of the Canary Islands by Captain 
Stephen Decatur, commander of the frigate United States. Brant, Madison, Commander in Chief, 

66 For James Taylor see 1812, n. 28. 

Letters for 1812 189 

in G. Blount} 
o 9 H Blount ) 

Addressed: Johi 

North Carolina 

Ansell E. Cushman to John Gray Blount 

Boston December 17 th 1812 


I have this day Recieved a letter Bearing Date 28 th Oct. 1812 Stating 
that Perry Wallace my pilot at Ocracoke Could not Recover his wages 
on account of the informality of the order. I have only to observe that I 
gave him an order for his pay as a pilot, & Ration as according to the 
usage of the navy, as I am Removed from the norfolk station I cannot as 
you suggest apply to mr. Armistead for a more Uniform order than the 
one that I gave him. should the order he now has not Enable him to Re- 
cover his wages — If you will take the trouble to transmit to me a more 
Uniform method of ascertaining the wages Due him I will Cheerfully 
give it him 

I have the Honour to be Sir 
Your Obedient Humble 

Ansell E Cushman 

Master U S. navy yard Charleston 

John G Blount Esqr 

Washington N Carolina 

Addressed: John G Blount Esqr 

Washington, North Carolina 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

[December 26, 1812] 

Dear Sir) 

Miss Charlotte Taylor has prospects of getting a good school of the 
[illegible] here — She will probably call on you at Washington & State 
her difficulties from the want of money — I sent Cap Taylor $50 but really 

1 90 John Gray Blount Papers 

fear he has from necessity spent it — If you can raise for her any how SI 50 
& take her bill upon me payable at 30 days after sight I will pay the 
am 1 of it here or as you may direct — 

Yours truly & in haste 
W m Blackledge 
Washington Dec r 26 th 1812 

As certain what she will need if she says that sum let her have it, but if 
less will do give what she may state 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 


P. Nesty to John Gray Blount 

Straits January 19 th 1813 

Dear Sir 

As I desire to be naturalized, I wish you would inform me how to pro- 
ceed in order to be honoured with the Title of american Citizen. 

Fame has brought us the news of Cap 1 Decatur 1 having taken an Eng- 
lish frigate of superior force, and would to God it was the last of that 
da — d proud, hauty over bearing, detestable and accursed nation. Ex- 
cepting those whom may be true wellwishers to America. No doubt there 
are some individuals of that description in England. 

I have mind to go to Charlestown next Summer to try fortune in en- 
deavouring to get employ in some Store, as I flatter myself possessing 
some abilities, which may admit me in the capacity of a Clerk in a Count- 
ing room. Keeping school affords nothing, for I can hardly make the two 
ends meet. 

I shall be in my fortieth year from the 9 th of February coming, and it is 
time to be stale, as old age Steps forward with rapidity. 

(2) There is a Sweed Ship in Beaufort. She was bound to Charlestown, 
but forced to put in this port being distressed. 

In wisshing you health, you will please to add the sentiments of the 
greatest esteem with which I qualify myself, 

Your Respectful 

P. Nesty 
at M r Jacob Henry 


P. S. My respects to M r Leroy. 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
N. C. 

Fav d by M r R. Willis 

Stephen Decatur (1779-1820) was born in Maryland and reared in Pennsylvania. He dis- 
tinguished himself as a naval officer in the Tripolitan War and again in the War of 1812. 
He was probably the most publicized naval hero of the latter war. DAB, V, 187-189. 

192 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Owens 2 to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville N. C Jan ry 30 th 1813 


Having it in contemplation to take a situation, as a Teacher in some 
seminary of learning; I send this to you, as an interrogation, whether 
there be, or whether there be not a man wanted to fill that station in the 
institution, in which I think it probable you are interested. 

If there should or should not be such a person wanted, be pleased to 
give me the earliest information possible. And likewise a statement of the 
emoluments which would arise from such a station if there should be one 

I trust, I shall be able to produce a satisfactory recommendation from 
the Academy of this place. 

I have the pleasure to be 
sir yours with esteem 
John Owens 

Addressed: Post master 
N. Carolina 

William M c Pheeters 3 to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh February 6 1813 


M rs M c Pheeters, by to days Mail informs me that she is in need of 
some pecuniary supplies — when I left Washington I did not furnish her 

2 The exact identity of the correspondent named John Owen is unclear. Two men by that 
name have been located. One was John Owen of Bladen County. He served several terms 
in the North Carolina legislature, was governor of the state in 1828 and 1829, and was a 
delegate to the state's Constitutional Convention of 1835. He was well known for his strong 
interest in education. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 161, 262, 264, 265, 274, 276, 288, 
817. Another John Owen was listed in the 1820 census as a resident of Cumberland County 
and as the head of a household of five. This is the only documentation uncovered about the 
John Owen in Cumberland County. In Story of Fayetteville, John A. Oates mentions two men 
named John Owen, Governor John Owen and presumably the John Owen listed in the 
1820 census. Oates obviously confused the two men in several places, thus leaving several 
perplexing questions about them. John A. Oates, The Story of Fayetteville and the Upper Cape 
Fear (1950; reprint ed., Raleigh: Litho Industries, Inc., 1972), 109, 112, 452, passim, here- 
inafter cited as Oates, Story of Fayetteville; Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Cumberland 
County, 18. 

3 William McPheeters served as principal of the Raleigh Academy from 1810 until 1826 

Letters for 1813 193 

as I otherwise would have done calculating on collections from Notes al- 
ready due — and also from such as would become due in a day or two 
after I should leave the place — Perhaps you could make it convenient to 
furnish her — You Bond was left in her hand and can be lifted on applica- 

Your Son Cap 1 Blount 4 is in this town and well — He passed the Door 
a few minutes ago — One of his Soldiers died this Morning 

your respectfully 

William M c Pheeters 

[No address] 

Willie Blount to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville Feb y 10 th 1813 

Dear Brother, 

Since writing you the other day by mail informing you that I was mar- 
ried the other day to M rs Mary White of this place, and that I should by 
M r Jordan send you a Statement of the business of the Salter's Estate, 
nothing interesting has occurred — but as Major Harmon informs me he 
is on his way to Washington I write to inform you that we are all well 
here and that I still intend to send you a statement of the business of 
Salter's estate 5 by M r Jordan who probably will be along here in a week 
or two & in the mean time I have to get some vouchers & c from those 
who have attended to the land belonging to the estate in Campbell and 
Anderson Counties the want of which prevents me from sending the 
statement by Major Harmon to whom I refer you for the news of our 
quarter of the world who can give it more in detail than I can write 
it — My Mary, Mary Miller 6 & the Girls join me in the request that you 
present us affectionately to your family & friends and ask you to accept 
assurances of our 

affectionate attachment 
Willie Blount 

and as pastor of the First Presbyterian Church of Raleigh. John S. Grasty, Memoir of Rev. 
Samuel B. McPheeters (St. Louis: Southwestern Book and Publishing Company, 1871), 28-29; 
see also McPheeters Family Papers, North Carolina State Archives. 

4 This is probably a reference to John Gray Blount, Jr., but it could be to William Augus- 
tus Blount. 

5 For Salter's estate see 1807, n. 33. 

"Mary Louisa Blount Miller was the daughter of William Blount and the wife of Pleas- 
ant M. Miller. See 1803, n. 26; 1804, n. 11. 

194 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 

P. M. Miller is still volunteering in Georgia & I don't know the time 
he and his companions in arms expect to return — 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 
North Carolina 

Hon'd by 
Major Harmon 

Peter Schermerhorn & Sons 1 to John Gray Blount 

[April 24, 1813] 
John G Blount Esq 1 * 

Annexed you have sales of the Beeswax shipped to us in October 1810. 
p r * Schooner Olive Branch — nett proceed Dollars 86 90/100 is to your 
Credit — & we are glad to close the Sales of that consignment, which has 
been so long standing. 

Will you please to do us the favor to inform us the lowest prices at 
which, Tar, Rosin & Turpentine, can be had at with you, and what the 
expences p r month would be, if it lies a few months before shipped & 
what would be the probable loss by leakage — and if drafts on us could be 
negociated for the payment. & at what rate — We shall be glad of a reply 
to these enquiries as early as possible — which will much oblige 

Your ob* Serv 1 

Peter Schermerhorn & Sons 
New York 24 h April 1813— 

(2) Sales of Bees wax rec d from John G Blount Esq r for Scooner Olive 
Branch John Flowers Master being the remains of a Consignment for 
Said Vessel rec d in October 1810 — 

For Peter Schermerhorn see 1803, n. 51 

Letters for 1813 195 


Apl 24 Sold A [manuscript torn] for Cash- 
1 Cask Bees wax 195 

Loose 266 

461@20Cts 92 20 


Storage 3. 

Commissions 2 Vz per Ct 2. 30 5 30 

Dols — 86 90 

Errors Excepted 

New York 24th April 1813. 
for P Schermerhrn & Sons 
J Willis 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq' 
North Carolina 


James Hoskins 8 to John Gray Blount 

Columbia 5th May 1813 


having a favourable Oppertunity, I beg of you to Send me £ 20.0.0. the 
amount due me for the taxes in Tyrrell for 1810 with Interest included, 
which I am at this time much in want of — Colo 1 Alexander the bearer 
will call on you when at Washington and your Sending it by him will 
confer a very Singular Obligation on yours 

very Sincerely 
James Hoskins 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 

8 For James Hoskins see 1803, n. 78. 

196 John Gray Blount Papers 

Charlotte Murren to John Gray Blount 

Portsmouth May the 12 1813 


I have taken the Liberty to Write to you Altho a Perfect Stranger to 
ask you if you will be so kind as to Call on M r Redmond For the Money 
that is Due Me From him as my Husband has been Absent so long that 
I am in great want of Money Or I should not have taken the Liberty to 
write to you myself But as M r Gatt informed me that he had wrote to 
you in my Behalf and M r Redmond wrote me word that if I would send 
for the Money it was ready for me and I Did not know in whose hands to 
place it Where it would be as safe as in yours Sir if you receive it please 
to take out as much as will Satisfy you for your trouble and send me the 
Ballance by Doing so Sir you will very much Oblige me — 

Charlotte Murren 


the whole Amount is 1 hundred and 7 Dollars 

Addressed: M r Blunt 

North Carolina 

John Gray Blount to William Hawkins 9 

Washington May 25 th 1813 

D r Sir 

An express Boat which left Ocacock Bar this morning informs that on 
Friday last a Schooner with American Colours ankered off the Barr on 
which a Pilot Boat with four Hands went on board & were informed that 
the Schooner wanted to come in over the Bar & still pretended to be 
Americans & were very liberal in their abuse of the British, but in a 
short time informed the Pilots that she was the British Schooner the 

9 William Hawkins served as governor of North Carolina from 1811 to 1814. He also 
served several terms in the General Assembly and was speaker of the House of Commons. 
Cheney, North Carolina Government, 160, 249, 250, 256, 257, 260, 271. This letter comes from 
the Governors Papers, XXXVIII, William Hawkins, January 1-June 4, 1813, North Caro- 
lina State Archives. 

Letters for 1813 197 

Venus late the Highflyer Privateer of Baltimore and that she must be pi- 
loted in over the Bar. On the Pilots assuring them there was not water 
sufficient for her draft to come in safely they man'd the Pilot Boat with 
the avowed intention of burning the Revenue Cutter and other Vessels 
then within the Bar and left the Schooner with the signal for a Pilot still 
flying in proceeding in to execute their truly British plan they met 
another Pilot Boat going out to the Schooner which they ordered along 
side of them, and inform 'd them they (2) were in want of water on board 
& requested that they would proceed on board & take on shore a few 
Casks to fill for them no doubt supposing they would proceed on board 
& be detained but they observing the number of armed men & the si- 
lence of their Brother Pilots in the first Boat supposed all was not right 
& proceeded no farther towards the Schooner than to get out of the mark 
of their muskets & then rowed on shore to give the alarm. On the Officer 
in the Boat observing that, he observed that he wished he had sunk that 
Boat, that they must now return as she would give the Alarm; they ac- 
cordingly did return on board & in a short time discharged the Pilots ob- 
serving that they would soon return better prepared to execute their de- 
sign, & on Sunday last they again return'd off the Bar & took a Sloop 
which had just gone out 

Letters by this Boat inform that the Revenue Cutter was not maned or 
prepared in any way to make resistance & that the few Inhabitants on 
both sides the Inlet are without Arms or Amunition but are well dis- 
posed not only to resist the attacks of the British but to render every as- 
sistance to the shiping within the Bar which are now left wholly unpro- 
tected by the sending away the two Gun Boats which were stationed 

(3) From having understood that you intended sending two Companies 
of militia to each of the Towns of Edenton, Washington, New Bern and 
Wilmington I have taken the liberty of giving you the information this 
day received And beg leave to offer it as my opinion that one Company 
stationed at Ocacock composed of men accustomed to the water and 
commanded by a brave and enterprising Captain also acquainted with 
Ocacock & their Pilot Boats to assist & supply the Inhabitants there 
with Arms & Amunition would afford more security to all the Northern 
part of North Carolina as well as the numerous Vessels now daily arriv- 
ing there from the Blockade of Virginia than all the Companies can that 
can be stationed at the Towns aforesaid even if the object of them 
Troops should be to guard against internel Enemies; And as that Subject 
is before me I will take the liberty of observing that it is my opinion that 
now the lower Counties are supplyed with Arms if they are judiciously 
disposed of & a supply of Powder & Ball procured there will be nothing 
to fear from insurrection And if one good Company selected from Hyde 

198 John Gray Blount Papers 

or some of the Counties accustomed to the water & commanded by the 
most active & popular Pilot on Ocacock Island and the US Government 
can be prevailed on to order back to Ocacock (4) the two Gun Boats late- 
ly ordered from there or some other two there will be little danger at 
Ocacock And without that or the building a Fort on Beacon Island there 
is no safety for Vessels or other Property at Ocacock or its vicinity or 
even in the Towns of New Bern, Washington or Edenton. The impor- 
tance of the Subject to myself & my fellow Citizens will I hope justify me 
in the liberty I have taken in writing you thus freely 

I am with much respect 

your Excellencys most Obed 1 
Humble Serv 1 
JG Blount 

[No address] 

Enoch Sawyer 10 to John Gray Blount 

Camden County May 28 th 1813 

Dear Sir/ 

I am requested by a particular friend of Mine, M r Richard Winslow, 
to enquire of you, if the Castle is now to be rented or leased and the 
terms and conditions p r annum, for the Tavern House Alone or the 
whole, if your terms are thought reasonable you will immediately hear 
from him on the Subject 

I am very respectfully 
Dear Sir 
(2) [John Gray Blount's notation] yours most sincerely 

Enoch Sawyer 

Am (i tt that I would take the present year 300$ 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 
North Carolina 

10 Enoch Sawyer appears in the 1820 census as the head of a household containing five 
males and four females. He represented Camden County in the North Carolina House of 
Commons from 1784 to 1790 and was a delegate to both constitutional ratification conven- 
tions held in 1788 and 1789 respectively. He was also collector of the port for Camden. Jesse 
Forbes Pugh, Three Hundred Tears along the Pasquotank: A Biographical History of Camden County 
(Durham: Privately printed [by Seeman Printery, Inc.], 1957), 129-132; Potter, 1820 North 
Carolina Census, Camden County, 15-16. 

Letters for 1813 199 

John Gray Blount to J. 0. K. Williams 11 

[June 12, 1813] 

Sir having understood that no proposals were like to be put in or deliv- 
ered you for building a Jail in Washington agreeably to the Description 
& Plan presented by [illegible] I have determined that I will build the 
same agreeable to the Description in your hands and compleat the same 
in two years from the date of my Contract for the Sum of three thousand 

J.G. Blount 

Washington June 12 th 1813 

(2) Received the within Proposals for Building the Jail at half Past 
Twelve Oclock 

J. O. K. Williams Jr 

Addressed: Major J O K Williams 

Robert Love 12 to John Gray Blount 

Waynesville 18 th of June 1813 


Since I wrote You last I have been on to the warm springs & its Neigh- 
bourhood I have run the line of Your Survey, from opposite the painted 
rock so as to see how it would interfere with M r Balls 3 Surveys which I 
Shew You the Copys of whilst at Washington; The Tract which he lives 
on he can Bar You under the Statute. The Other two he cannot. One of 
the other two the line runs through his improvement leaving about two 
thirds to You, this Tract was Granted in 1807 Consequently his improve- 
ment Cannot as Yet avail him anything and the third One which is one 
of the two Granted 1803 he has only been improving for about two Years 
past, that that one also is out of the Question M r Ball appears perfectly 
reconcil'd under his Situation & request that no suit may be brought 
against him, which I have promised not to do untill we can see other 
again at Buncombe County Court the first monday in July, he wants to 

u This letter was probably to J. O. K. Williams, who later represented Beaufort County 
in both houses of the state legislature. Reed, Beaufort County, 128, 130. 
12 For Robert Love see 1811, n. 16. 

200 John Gray Blount Papers 

purchase 5 or 600 acres but I told him I Could give him No encourage- 
ment as I Expected You intended Building an Iron works [illegible] 
Neighbourhood from Your instructions to me, this I conceived myself 
[illegible] to State to him from the Great advantages that combine in fav- 
our of that place over any other that I ever recollect to have Seen; In 
Erecting Iron works there are Three Materials or principles that are of 
primary importance (to wit) Water, wood, & Ore and it is rare that any 
two of those can be had Very convenient together but at this place all 
Three are as conveniently Situated almost as a man could wish, as well 
as everything Else for Carrying on the Business; Unless the quit Claim 
deed which You have made to Col° Avery 13 should interfere with a Small 
tho necessary Scite for a furnace on Shitin Creek, 14 I had not at that time 
the Comps of that deed with me or I would have examin'd, this plan if 
not taken away, is so convenient to an ore bank that the ore might al- 
most be brought in a wheel Barrow, a Scite for a forge can be had on 
french Broad river, within one mile of that place, and the proprietor who 
is friendly with me tells me that if I cannot find a better one I Shall have 
that one, The Country around the ore bank has a Great deal of Vallu- 
able Timber fit for Coaling which is an essential object, And for the 
Building Timber the river is Very advantageous, as it may be brought 
down for Several Miles, where the best kind can be (2) had; an immensi- 
ty of both Free and Limestone for the Buildings can be Conveniently 
had; And if a works was once in operation at that place, all the Surplus 
Iron & Casstings after home Consumption could be taken from the forge 
Hammer in Boats at Convenient Seasons to every part of the western 
Country; And if a Nail factory was Erected at that place the[y] would 
find a ready market in the Western Country — The only objection against 
the place is that it lyes much in the mountains and by some it may be 
thought, that an inconvenience might be experienced in the Article of 
provision, but my Opinion is Very different, for it is much easier to furn- 
ish provision from 10 or 12 miles distance than to be Surrounded by 
Large farms which would soon make wood for Coaling Very inconven- 
ient, I have said that provisions can be had in 10 or 12 miles, & this I do 
aver to be the. Case that it might in that distance be had to Supply Sever- 
all Sets of works, flour would be delivered at the place for from 1 Vi Dollar 

13 This reference is probably to Waightstill Avery (1741-1821), a prominent political figure 
and soldier of the Revolutionary War period. He helped write the state constitution of 1776, 
served in the first state legislature, and commanded the Jones County militia. After the war 
he moved to Burke County and represented that county numerous times in the General As- 
sembly. Subsequently he moved to Tennessee, where he died. Ashe, Biographical History of 
North Carolina, VII, 1-5. 

14 Shitin Creek may refer to Shit-Britches Creek, which rises in southeast Buncombe 
County and flows into Cane Creek. Powell, North Carolina Gazetteer, 452. 

Letters for 1813 201 

to 2$ p r C l and Corn or meal at 37 Vi Cents p r Bushell, pork at from 3 to 
4$ p r 100 and Beef at 2 Vz$ p r 100— And after a few Years when the Tim- 
ber to be cut down for Coaling a Great deal of Small Grain could be 
made & forage Sufficient for the Necessary teams & Cattle for Carrying 
on the works — I Shall have a Load of the ore brought to a forge and 
Tryrd, Yet I have no doubt of its being off an Excellent quality — These 
are things You can think off; and if You cannot think of going into the 
Business if You will let me have the Bank and as much of the Land as 
will be necessary for carrying on the Business I will form a Connection 
for that purpose with some men of interprise that may be able to give it a 
Start in the first moments of the Business, Then afterwards the only 
thing wanting to make it a most Valuable acquisition will be Care and 
Industry — 

A power for me to do any of Your Business here will be necessary I 
have return 'd Your Land for Taxation for the Year 1812, and whether 
the business will pass unnoticed for the preceeding Years I do not know; 

I have Rec d no Letter from You since I saw You; I want You if You 
please not to Neglect to forward me an Order or direction to M r Strother 
to pay me the (3) Land for the Bills I delivered in, as he probably will not 
feel authorised to go farther than the obligation mentions & will take no 
notice of the Ac 1 This may be necessary for me to have before I go on to 
the western Country this fall, the more so as I have inform'd the Rags- 
dale family of the arrangment about the Bills & informed them, that I 
Expected to be able to Convey to them their Share of that Business when 
I might get out; 

I have enclosed a Letter from Hamilton Kyle to myself on the nature, 
and manner of Erecting the Spining Machine, Also a Clumsy drawing of 
my Own making from Memory — Your Extensive Machanical Ideas must 
direct You from Experimental Observations as soon as You can Get part 
of the wheels in Operation, to improve when needfull, after which You 
can put four Spinning Wheels in Operation from the one Large Wheel 

Myself and family are enjoying a State of perfect health except a hurt 
which I received on my Breast in my return from the Springs the other 
day, and I flatter myself that those lines will meet Yourself family & all 
friends in the Neighbourhood of Washington enjoying Equal health 

I am with respect Your friend 
R° Love 

John G. Blount esquire 

NB. I shall make some arrangement to let 6 or 8000 acres of Your Land 
in the Neighbourhood of the Springs go for the Taxes of the present Year 
which will give me an opertunity of finding what part of the Mountains 

202 John Gray Blount Papers 

will be the least Needfull to retain I am well assured that the lines of 
Your Grant will Cover at least 30000 acres or more 

Addressed: John G Blount esquire 

Washington North Carolina 


Beaufort County 

Thomas H. Blount to William Hawkins 15 

Collectors office 

Port of Washington 

June 29 th 1813 


Yours of the Ins 1 was yesterday rec d at this office — previous to the re- 
ceipt thereof I had dispatched officers to the farthest inlets of this District 
to prevent the offenses stated in your Communication as far as prac- 
ticable — From the vigilance of the Officers employed I confidently hope 
that violaters of the laws will be detected; but there are other Districts on 
the Seabord, where other Collectors reside, to whom I have sent Copies 
of yours & its inclosures, endeavouring as far as possible to excite their 
attention, to so important an object 

With sentiments of Esteem 
I have the honor to be 

your Most Obd 

Thos. H Blount Coll. 

His Excellency 

William Hawkins 

15 For William Hawkins see 1873, n. 9. This letter is recorded in the governor's letter 
book. Thomas H. Blount to William Hawkins, June 29, 1813. Governors Papers, XXXIX, 
William Hawkins, June 7-November 8, 1813, North Carolina State Archives. 

Letters for 1813 203 

Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount 

K N oxviLLEjuly2 d 1813 

D r Sir 

I find on the words of Knox County a Judgment in your name, against 
William Blount Executor of David Allison for about $34,000 the par- 
ticular sum &c you have below, this Judgment I am informed, was ob- 
tained by William Blount with a view of Securing Such of Allisons prop- 
erty as might be come at & making it subservient to his views perhaps 
for the payment of his debts this I presume was with your knowledge be 
that as it may I want you if you please to assign that Judgment in Blank, 
I will fill it up as occasion may offer, I am inclined to think I can make 
something of it if you feel disposed to put it my power you can do so in 
your own words, dispatch is absolutely necessary. Jackson 16 & others 
have made a general purchase of the Heirs of all his Allisons property in 
this country, for the purpose of speculation I feel disposed to give them 
or Some of them some trouble if I can make a trifle well an immediate 
reply is Necessary let your determination be wat it may we are all well 

I am D sr 
Pleasant M Miller 

(2) Knox County 
January Term 1800 

John G. Blount 

vs. Judg 1 34690 

William Blount Executor of David Allison 

You will be able to Specify the Judgmt from the above Memoranda — 

PM Miller 

16 The land speculator David Allison owed Andrew Jackson $20,000. When Allison died 
Jackson sued Allison's heirs in federal court for the money, was awarded 5,000 acres of 
land, and then learned in 1810 or 1811 that the court that had awarded the land did not 
have jurisdiction in the case. Jackson went on horseback to Georgia and persuaded Alli- 
son's heirs to sign over the 5,000 acres to him in exchange for Allison's $20,000 note, which 
Jackson still held. Jackson was then able to sell the 5,000 acres with a clear land title. 
Robert V. Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Bank War (New York: W. W. Norton and Com- 
pany, Inc., 1967), 18-19, hereinafter cited as Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Bank War; 
Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of American Empire, 87-90. 

204 John Gray Blount Papers 

Addressed: John G. Blount Senior 
North Carolina 

Richard Wins low to John Gray Blount 

Camden C°NC 8 July 1813 
John Gray Blount Esqr 

Sir my Friend Enoch Sawyer Esqr wrote you upon my account re- 
specting the Castle, your part of which I rushed to Him, we have received 
your Answer you say I may have it for Three Hundred Dollars pr year, I 
have concluded to take it & shall move there in a few weeks 

am told a Mr Wallis now lives in it, I have seen his Brother & in- 
formed him of this arrangement & have no doubt he will give it up when 
I call upon him, you observe in your Letter that the Premises are out of 
Repair, Should I find it very bad & unsafe I hope you will be willing to 
have some Repairs put upon it, is not your Rent high give me leave to 
hope when you Reflect upon the difficulties of the times & Imposibility of 
doing much Business you will lessen the price 

I am with Respect 
Sir your obedient 

Rich d Winslow 

John G Blount Esqr 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esqr 
N Carolina 

Samuel Topping 11 to John Gray Blount 

Prospect Mill July 19 th 1813 

M r John Gray Blount, 

Dear Sir, 

I Recvd your Letter by my father while at pungo. In Regard of Col- 
lecting and purchasing wheat I will do the best I can for you. Should the 

17 For Samuel Topping see 1805, n. 46. 

Letters for 1813 205 

Ennemy not give us cause to have our homes to defend our Rights and 
Libertys and Should the Enemy attack us I presume Every man will Vol- 
enteer his Servises in behalf of his County or any other County that 
Stands in need of them However it appears to be the Spirit of our 
County — Col n Watson told me to day that the British Sailed from the 
Baar to Sea on Friday Last But plundered the Inhabitants 18 very much 
of Stock &c before thare departure the amount of Damage is not Esti- 
mated Tharefore as the Enemy is gone our Volenteers and Guards are 
Discharged by order of the Col on , I Shall not Return to pungo as I am 
hear I think in all august I Shall be able to Collect what wheat Can be 
got — In Regard to my Sisster Lucas Sending for the Corps of poor 
Henry her Son wishing him Removed was Something that was not ap- 
proved off (2) by me by no means But She was in much trouble about the 
death of him as She had never been to Sea him in all his Sickness for 
which She blamed her Self for She Said that She always heard that he 
was getting Better and I Saw a man Right from Washington about the 5 
or 6 July and he Said he Saw Henry walking the Street that he had got 
quite well and that I told her when I got home that he was better and I 
further Knew in Regard of moving the Corps that it would not be al- 
lowed of by the Inhabitants of the town for fear of its Breeding Some In- 
fectious disease But with all this I could not Reconcile her as She Said 
She wanted him Buried by his father — As to the care was taken of Henry 
while Living or the body of him when dead Thare is no doubt with me or 
any of the Connection of Henry But that he was treated well and Buried 
Decently — and nothing D r Sir I well Know Could have Induced you to 
have taken the Trouble uppon your Self and family But that Benevolent 
Hart you had for the Orphan (3) I Regret the death of poor Henry very 
much and feel very Sorry that So much trouble Should faul on you with- 
out a Cause. I well no he was Better taken care of at your House then he 
Could have been at home that is no Doubt with none of us — I feel my 
Self under many obligations to you for your good treatment to Henry 
and his Little Brothers and my Self in time past for which I fear you 
never will be Rewarded hear for But I hope you may hearafter — The 
voage to Washington had like to have Ended more Serious than the 
Death of the poor Boy The Horse Run away With the Cart and Like to 
have Killed my father Sharp and Sam 1 Lucas I never got my father at 
home until Thursday he Stoped at town Creek he was wounded in [illeg- 
ible] head very bad So that he did not come to his Rite Sensses until Fri- 

18 The British troops who landed on Ocracoke and Portsmouth seized cattle, sheep, and 
fowl, in addition to reportedly destroying much private property. The admiral in charge, 
George Cockburn, ordered that restitution for the livestock be made to the local inhabi- 
tants, but the $1,600 received did not begin to match the value of the cattle or any of the 
other confiscated property. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 132. 

206 John Gray Blount Papers 

day Sam 1 was hurt in his head Sharp the wheel Run over and wounded 
much But the negroes Brot the Buoys home But my father Could not 
bare to be moved until Thursday and I Could not dare leave my father 
until Sunday Last he was So Bad General Muster on Satyrday (4) at the 
Mills/ It was So that I Could not Send your Letter to Mr Hollowell 
about Sending your hands home, until I come down on Sunday and on 
that day I met your hands going home, I Expected to have Returned to 
pungo Immediately as I belonged to the 8 Guard but Coin Watsson 
Dissmised me and all the Rest and wrote to the Major to disscharge all 
under his Care until further orders — Please to Inform M r Oneel and Mr 
Coltsson that Sharp & Samuel Lucas got Hurt and are Sick is the Reas- 
son they do not Return The buoys is very fond of Mr Oneel & Mr Colts- 
son and they are Sorry they Cant Return as soon as they Expected too I 
told them when they got well to go up — and Should you Sea these men I 
will thank you to tell them as I have not a Chance to write them 

I am yours with Esteem — Sam 1 Topping 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blount 
July 19 th 1813 

William Hawkins to John Gray Blount and Thomas Singleton ] 

Head Quarters 20 

23 d July 1813 


I owe you an apology for not having answered the communication 
which you did me the honor to make me some time since upon the sub- 
ject of defence, which I hope I shall shortly have the pleasure of making 

19 Thomas Singleton of Hyde County represented that county in the North Carolina Sen- 
ate in 1820 and in the House of Commons from 1830 to 1832. During the War of 1812 Single- 
ton, collector of the port at Ocracoke and Portsmouth, helped organize coastal trade de- 
signed to bypass the British blockade. When a British force invaded the islands in 1813 in 
an effort to catch some of these trading vessels, Singleton was held prisoner for two days 
before being released when the British troops returned to Norfolk. Cheney, North Carolina 
Government, 276, 295, 297; Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 126, 131-133. Hawkins's letters to 
Blount and Singleton appear on the same pages in the Governors Letter Books, William 
Hawkins, 1812-1813, North Carolina State Archives. 

20 After an attack at Ocracoke and Portsmouth by the British on July 11, 1813, Colonel 
Nathan Tisdale called out the New Bern militia and sent an urgent message for help to 
Governor William Hawkins. Tisdale and others believed the British were about to attack 
New Bern, and frantic preparations were made to build up the town's defenses. Upon 

Letters for 1813 


Governor William Hawkins (1777-1819) 
moved his headquarters from Raleigh to New 
Bern in the summer of 1813 when a British 
fleet of nine ships and nineteen barges 
anchored off Ocracoke. After the British 
departed, he spent a month visiting coastal 
fortifications. Photograph from the files of the 
North Carolina Division of Archives and 

you in person. A copy of your letter I immediately after the receipt of it 
forwarded to the War Office. 

After examining Prices survey which has been laid before me I am 
strongly in favor of erecting a fortification on Beacon Island. 21 If that 
chart be correct it would seem that nature had placed that Island where 
it is as the foundation of a work which adequately improved might at no 
very great expense afford ample protection to the Towns &c on the 
waters of the Pamplico and Albemarle sounds. I wish much to effect that 
work. I am aware of the difficulties and the danger that might at present 
attend it. Having been informed that part of the materials of which a 
Fort at that place should be constructed, belongs to you, it is necessary I 
should treat with you before I attempt it. Should I finally make up my 
mind to do so I shall go to Ocracock perhaps tomorrow for the purpose 
of satisfying myself by actual observation as to the propriety and prac- 
ticability of building a Fort on Beacon Island, where it would give me 
great pleasure to meet with you. Should the War continue and we neg- 
lect to fortify that Island ourselves, I, at present entertain not the 
Shadow of a doubt but that the Enemy will do so, as it would place it 

learning of the situation through Tisdale's message, Governor Hawkins went with a troop 
of cavalry to New Bern to lend assistance and command the forces if the British did attack. 
The citizens of New Bern were most appreciative of the governor's coming in person, and 
the local committee of safety formally commended him. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 

21 Beacon Island is located near Ocracoke Inlet. It was granted to John Gray Blount and 
John Wallace by the state of North Carolina in 1789. They sold it to the federal government 
in 1799. The island was fortified during the war, but the defenses were never used. Lem- 
mon, Frustrated Patriots, 139; Stick, The Outer Banks, 77, 79. 

208 John Gray Blount Papers 

completely in his power to steal with impunity as many (2) sheep, cattle 
&c as his hungry fleet on our coast might require. 

Permit me to offer you an assurance of the high consideration and re- 
spect with which 

I have the honor to be, 
very respectfully 

Your Obedient &c 
William Hawkins 

John Gray Blount Sen Esq 6 

Head Quarters New Bern 
24 th July 1813 


Having been informed that you were at Portsmouth when the British 
landed on that Island and having heard much of their conduct whilst 
there, I have determined to solicit you to favor me with a communication 
upon this subject; wherein it is expected you will detail such occurrences 
as happened during their stay at that place & under your immediate ob- 
servation or such as you may have received from a source entitled to 
credit. I do not conceive it necessary at this late day that facts should be 
adduced to show the real character of the Enemy, as their Acts have im- 
pressed it so strongly, and at so many points, that it is as well known, as 
it is deprecated by the rest of the civilized world, but if you have it in 
your power to embrace in your communication the particulars of the sav- 
age cruelty exhibited by them in shooting the unfortunate man on the Is- 
land, 22 you will I hope not omit doing so. 

I am with great consideration 

Your Ob 1 &c 

William Hawkins 

Thomas S. Singleton Esq 6 

Collector of the Port of Occacock 

22 Richard Casey, an aged resident of Ocracoke Island, was wounded by invading British 
troops. The British admiral, George Cockburn, expressed regret for the incident. Lemmon, 
Frustrated Patriots, 132-133. 

Letters for 1813 209 

Ben B. Hunter to John Gray Blount 

July 26 th 1813 


In consequence of Some intelligence, which we have recently rec d the 
citizens of this place will convene to day, for the purpose of a dopting 
Such measures as will be calculated to Secure them from the danger of a 
domestic insurrection. 23 

There being a rumour of Such a design we think it prudent to use a 
little timely precaution for the purpose of frustrating it, and thinking that 
possibly no Such Suspicions might exist at Washington, I have taken the 
liberty of giving you this information, in order that you might Suggest 
the propriety of a Similar mode of procedure, Should you think it neces- 

The plan which we intend to adopt, in pursuance to Some, which have 
been already executed, in Some of the upper Counties, is to solicit the 
Colonel to apportion out Such a part of each Captain's company as will 
be Sufficient to make diligent Search throughout the County among all 
the negroes, for the purpose of discovering, any arms, ammunition &c 
which they may have in possession, to be conducted however with Such 
Secrecy, as may prevent their discovering the object of our Search. 

Yours respectfully 
Ben. B. Hunter 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 

M r Doring 

23 As in other periods of crisis, slaves capitalized on the unsettled conditions to seek their 
freedom. White fears of slave insurrection led to several alarms along the North Carolina 
coast in the summer of 1813, and the militia was placed on alert. When some sixty or sev- 
enty slaves fled to British warships off the coast. Admiral Sir John Borlase Warren con- 
sidered plans to arm a corps of runaway blacks, who were reportedly eager to join the Brit- 
ish and who were secretly drilling at night. No slave revolt occurred, but white fears of in- 
surrection remained intense throughout the war. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 196-198. Also 
see Jeffrey J. Crow, "Slave Rebelliousness and Social Conflict in North Carolina, 1775 to 
1802," William and Mary Quarterly, third series, XXXVII (January, 1980), 79-102. 

210 John Gray Blount Papers 

Andrew Joyner 24 to John Gray Blount 

Washington 5 th August 1813 


Being on the eve of seting out for our respective homes, we cannot do 
justice to our feelings, without expressing to you the grateful sense we 
entertain of the very polite, liberal, and hospitable treatment, we have 
experienced at your hands. If the generous treatment you have given us 
had been accorded to us by an intimate acquaintance, it would have re- 
ceived as it would have merited our warmest acknowledgements, but 
when we consider it has proceeded from who but a few days ago was an 
entire stranger to us, our powers of language fail us in attempting to de- 
scribe how much we feel ourselves indebted to you. And whilst we offer 
you the tribute of our sincere thanks and acknowledgements for your 
kindness towards us individually & collectively, permit us to assure you 
it has made an impression on our minds, which can never be effaced. 
With the most earnest wishes for your health and happiness we are Sir 
with sentiments of (2) the highest respect and esteem Your most obliged, 

humble Servants 
Andrew Joyner 
Amos P. Sledge 
Edw'd Pattillor 
H.G. Williams 25 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 

Edward Young to John Gray Blount 

Portsmouth V a Aug 9t 7 th 1813 

Dear Sir 

My suspension from the Gun Boat system for the four succeeding 
Months, for an unintentional error; compels me to be on the alert to sup- 
port my family during the interim, & as I understand engineering thor- 
oughly, & you are about to erect a Battery on Beacon Island, should 

"Andrew Joyner represented Martin County in the North Carolina House of Commons 
from 1811 through 1813. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 261, 262, 264. 

"Henry G, Williams represented Martin County in the North Carolina House of Com- 
mons in 1809. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 257. 

Letters for 1813 211 

have no hesitation in accepting the superintendance of the same; pro- 
vided a liberal compensation will be made for such service — Thro the in- 
tercession of yourself in my behalf "if none other in View" may possibly 
be the means of procuring me the situation alluded to — A return to this 
request Stating the particulars &c. will be gratefully received by Dear Sir 


Obt 1 Serv 1 
Edw d L. Young 

Jn° G. Blount Esq r 

Addressed: Jn° G. Blount Esq r 
N. Carolina 

Moses Mordecai 26 to John Gray Blount 

Greenville 7 th August 1813 

John G. Blount Esqr. 


As attorney for the United States I am directed to inform you that 
they will not receive any more shells under the Contract made with you 
& M r John Wallace, through James Taylor their agent, and to demand 
of you payment of the Money advanced by the United States deducting 
the amount of the shells furnished under the Contract, if any were fur- 
nished. This determination has been made known to you & a Similar de- 
mand made Five years ago. I am directed to repeat it and in case of non 
compliance to commence an action. 

I am Sir your Ob St. 
M: Mordecai 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 

26 This correspondent was probably Moses Mordecai (1785-1824), who was born in New 
York City and later came to live in Warrenton, North Carolina. A lawyer, he settled in 
Raleigh and became one of the state's ablest attorneys. Wheeler, Historical Sketches, II, 417. 

212 John Gray Blount Papers 

William Watson 27 to John Gray Blount 

Mattamuskeet Augt. 11th. 1813 

I think it better to confess Ignorance, And apply for Instruction where 
it may be obtained, Than to remain ignorant & suffer by the conse- 
quences. When I receiv'd the information of the Enemy having entered 
Ocrecock Inlet & Were Landing on the Points, I thought Proper to call 
my Militia together, & had about Three Hundred men under Arms Four 
days, and A Company of Volunteers, Stobd Three days Longer, During 
this time we had Occasion to call on certain Individuals to furnish us 
with Beef, meal &c. Necessary for our Support, I also thought it advis- 
able to purchase in all the Ammunition I could obtain, Which I still have 
on hand & think Proper to retain it for Public use. 

I shall esteem it a favor if you will Inform me By Letter, Whether (or 
not) we are entitled to Draw on the public for compensation for the Ar- 
ticles furnished, And if we are; How to make out Certificates & who to 
Draw on, So as to have the business in Legal form. 

I am Sir With Respect 
Yours &c. 

W m Watson Lieut. Col. 
Comdt. Hyde Regt. 

P.S. I suppose you will conclude us an Ignorant set, and if you do, your 
conclusion will be Just. 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq. 

p r M r Selby 

"William Watson represented Hyde County in the North Carolina House of Commons 
from 1822 through 1825. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 280, 282, 284. 

Letters for 1813 213 

Samuel Topping to John Gray Blount 

Prospect Mill August 27 th 1813— 27 th 

M r John G Blount, 

D r Sir 

The collection of wheat is more than it was Last year by a Consider- 
able But the promisses of people is better tharefore it appears that they 
will pay in promisses as usual and not wheat, as I have attended hear 
Steady all this month and before for the purposse of Reeving wheat — 
thare is Several people not cleaned thare wheat out no faster than they 
use it, thare is 50 or busshels wheat promissed me at Swan quarter that 
they have not Bro 1 the water Keeps so low in the Lake and Canel So that 
they cant bring up a Loaded Canoe, The fact is thare is not many that 
lives hear that has got the wheat to pay more than they must have for 
thare own use — I think that it will be a chance for you to have your 
wheat ground hear for the mill does not grind more than Enough for 
family use the water Keeps So low and that is only when the wind is 
northwardly that she will grind any — as for Buying wheat for notes wont 
do as they think they will get money those that has to Sell — The Crops 
of Corn is good perhaps we may Collect Corn for debts as they will have 
much of that to Spare and with a few articles to make up a Small assort- 
ment about the Last of november I will Sell the balance of Goods on 
hand hear for Ready pay If you think proper to do so I will attend at 
that time if Possible 

I am Yours with much Esteem 
Sam Topping 

N.B. I was at Swan quarter Election and thare was a Man told Zac- 
hariah Jarvis Eq r28 that it was Reported to you the he and his Brothers 
were torys and Refused to do duty when the men Convenied to gether to 
Keef Guard the time that the British was at Ocracoak and you Said if 
you thought that he was a tory you would be one of the men to Come 
and Burn his house (2) over his head, which Mr Jarvis Replied that it 
would be no more than he Deserved, was he guilty — M r Jarvis denys the 
Charge in point he Says that he maid Every preparation for to on Guard 
and went — we got [illegible] guns and furnished with a number of Bauls 
of his own make and Carried down to the guard Station for him Self & 

28 Zachariah Jarvis represented Hyde County in the North Carolina House of Commons 
during 1805 and 1806. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 250, 252. 

2 1 4 John Gray Blount Papers 

Son — his Brothers was al Ready thare — His Son in Law M r Gaskins 29 
was [illegible] of a Canoe when he was noticed as one of the Guard to 
meet, he Said he would be down with them as Soon as he Could Get his 
Gun in order & go home for her — and before he Could wash his Gun 
and get his dinner they Sent a file of men after him to Carry him by force 
But when the men got thare they never told thare Business only Cauled 
in Stayed a while and Asked him if he was going to take his Station with 
the Guard and he Said yes Stop a few moments and I will go with 
you — and when they got to thare Stations Gaskins found that these men, 
that was at his house, was Sent after him. and they and the Rest of the 
people, Cauled him a tory and all the Jarvis 8 , they Said that they had 
him to Send [manuscript torn] [illegible] and that [illegible] Gaskins 
went home and Said the next men that Come after him he would Shutt, 
and from that the Confusion arose they Said that it was his father in 
Law Jarvis 9 fault that he was maid a tory by him. Zac Jarvis Says that he 
done Every thing to get him Back and as Such he went Back to his Sta- 
tion thare Foolish flouts was (3) the cause of the Reports at home & 
abroad — M r Zachariah Jarvis Requested me to write you Privately a few 
Lines Beging your advise How is the Best way to Extricate him Self from 
the Charge alledged against him as he Says that he can prove his pro- 
ceeding during the time by undoubted witnesses that he was in favour of 
the mode adopted as to the Guards — also be So kind as to Relate what 
you heard, is his wish — He Says if his father Refused to fight he Cant 
help that But he feels willing to Loose the Last drop of Blood in favour of 
his Country and Reputation — 

I do not wish to Say any thing against the Inhabitants of Swan quarter 
as they have all treated me well — I have thought from the Acquaintance 
that I had with M r Jarvis that he was a Republican and a true friend to 
his Country — 

I wish you not to name to any persson about my [manuscript torn] to 
you about Mr Jarvis 8 difficulty as they would add Something 

Yours &C 

S. Topping 

PS the Crops of Corn is very much hurt, fully one third Cut off by a very 
hard wind and Some Rain the wind Come on Synday morning Last 
about Sun Rise and Continued with rains abundant [manuscript torn] 

Yours ST 

29 Several men with the name of Gaskins are listed in the 1820 census for Hyde County. 
Without a first name it is impossible to identify Jarvis's son-in-law. 

Letters for 1813 215 

30th august 1813 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blount 

Josiah Bradley 30 to John Gray Blount 

Shell Castle Sept r 26 th 1813 

Jno G. Blount Esq r 

Dear Sir — 

The Seen of danger appears nearer approaching than we have heretofore 
thought from the passific Words from the Officers that have been here 
before Yesterday, (unless some provocation induced it) — A little 
Schooner from appearance stood of & on the bar a pilot boat with four 
Men went to her supposing her intending it, they took one of the pilots 
& Boat, can d the other three near the Brakers & made them Jump over 
board, one of which refus d the Captain instantly shov d him over, I sup- 
pose from the Account I this moment rec d they had at least from 1, 2 
hundred yards to swim & could they not have done that the consequence 
they must have drown d — It will be presumed they will say nothing more 
about Crany Is. 31 as this I think was as unhuman as Shuting men in the 
Water, for they know not wheather the Men could Swim or not — He sais 
he wanted a pilot to bring in a Brig that was expected here in a few days, 
& that he himself should be here in a few days & would destroy all be- 
fore him — This place is in a horid situation liable to be insultin piloged 
& in fact burn 1 out by an unprincipal Villain that choses to come here — 
The Govenor is certainly been very servicable here, he has errected forti- 
fications & supp d the place with an apple quantity of Militia, & what is 
more astonishing (2) all done at one Buckfact [?] and he & the Gent, is 
now Return d Home, puffing there own Elg ms of there Patriotic excursion 
along the Sea coast, I suppose they are now satisfied wheather the Gen 1 

30 For Josiah Bradley see 1811, n. 12. 

31 Craney Point was on Craney Island, which in 1783 became Harker's Island. The island 
is located between the Straits and Back Sound in southeastern Carteret County. About five 
miles long and a mile wide, the island was purchased in 1783 by three brothers, Zachary, 
James, and Ebenezer Harker, who divided it among themselves. Powell, North Carolina 
Gazetteer, 213. 

216 John Gray Blount Papers 

will be more servicible in the State of Virginia than in his own State — 
The fact is we are in a desperate situation cut of from all Trade & liable 
to every insult, should there come in many Vessels to lay here, I think in 
all probibility the Town of Newbern will taste of the sweets we enjoy for 
such a Night as may be from the appearance of this day they could leave 
here after dark & be at Newbern or Washington before day light, take 
them upon suprise & do what ever damage they saw proper, I should 
like to here y r opinion what you think is best for this family, it seems un- 
safe to have Negroes within there reach if they dont force them they de- 
coy, I do not think any of our would go with them expect it was by some 
alurements, however I mean to keep them out of there reach if possible, 
for the moment there is danger I will send them away in the lighters (the 
Sloop is of without Injury) in haste I remain 
Dear Sir y r most Ob 1 Hum 1 Serv 

Jos Bradley esq 

N.B. One Ship, one Brig & Schooner lay at the cape on Thursday night. 
Flag. T. Sch r return d to Chesepeake same day after taking a Sloop load- 
ed with flour bound to New London or elsewere — J.B — 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 " 

Sch r G. Wallace 
Cap 1 Balance 

Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville September 29 th 1813 

D Sir 

I rec d your letter two days since containing, some inclosures, & have 
sent the whole to William, & the girls are gone out to Nashville the sig- 
natures may be obtaind there, what the Spanish government may do it is 
impossible to foresee, lands in Florada to them are of no consideration & 
it is likely an indemnity may be obtaind there, respecting Allisons busi- 
ness, I can only say that my object in geting the assignment, was with a 
view to assisst Erwin, but whither a better trade might not have been ob- 
tained I cannot say, I never knew of this Judgment untill about the latter 
end of June, last If I had known of it five years ago it might have been 
made of value equal or nearly so to its amount, there could never have 
been a doubt but you had a right to redeem upon the ground of your 

Letters for 1813 217 

Judgment, but after the laps of seven years it becomes too doubtfull to 
risque a suit, & especially where mortgages have made sales to person 
who must be considered as Innocent under the Decree, as to Jackson & 
those concerned they cannot I immagine be missled by the purchase 
from the Heirs, because by his will Allison has divised all his property to 
be sold by his executors for the payment of Debts which I presume will 
give his creditors a superior lien upon his property to any the heirs can 
have, I believe it to be worth while to employ an agent to attend (2) to 
your debts against Allison, when Jackson went to Georgia & obtaind 
from the Heirs the transfer which he has, he procured a great part or the 
whole of Alisons papers including I presume all your Brothers letters, 
&c. these may be obtained I immagine, Jackson at this time knows 
nothing of your Judgment, & I do verily believe you might do well to pay 
a personal visit to this country, as it respects yours or any other Judg- 
ment they I presume under the will, can have no preference over other 
debts, especially as they may be supposed to effect any mortgaged prop- 
erty, a Judgment at Law I should suppose cannot bind a mere equity — 
& Judgments are not preferable to other debts farther than their specific 
lien, especially under the will I should be glad to commune with you a 
few days upon this & other subjects but do not know how this is to be 
done, I am very much ingaged, & the expences of my own immediate 
family, & the extra's is a burthen that I have for a long time felt, & when 
they are to be supported by the single exertion of one man, poor in flesh, 
property & intilect, it requires the unremited attention of any one, & 
particularly one who has no nack at spliting Sharpskins, or counting 
cents — you say you have never seen Allisons Will, I will inclose it if the 
clerk will copy it, you ought to see it, & I now advise you that a quack 
Lawyer if their be any such amonghst you, will be unable to instruct 
you, if you want any information — I desire that you will remember me to 
all the M re Blounts in a most particular manner, Mrs Miller & myself 
make (3) Love & make children as fast as a reasonable man ought to de- 
sire, we have six all in fine health, & Mrs M in fair way — Barbara & 
Elizer 32 went to Nashville a few days ago where they will remain for the 
winter the creeks or a great part of them are hostile, 33 five thousand men 
will march against them from this State, say in three weeks the troops 

32 This is a reference to two of William Blount's daughters, Barbara and Eliza Blount. 
See 1804, nn. 8, 10. 

33 Miller's comment on hostile "creeks" was a reference to the growing tension between 
white settlers and many of the Indians along the entire western frontier. Settlers feared that 
a war with England would result in a war with the Indians, some of whom were British al- 
lies. As early as 1811 the threat of an Indian war was foreseen, and it finally erupted in Ala- 
bama on August 30, 1813. Miller clearly recognized, however, that there were Indians hos- 
tile to the Creeks. When the war began many Cherokees joined the American troops in 
suppressing the Creeks. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 109-113. 

218 John Gray Blount Papers 

are filing of from this place constantly, & I hope they will do well your 
old acquaintance James Ring is acting as quarter master, General! Cock 
& Jackson 34 will command — 

Pleasant M Miller 

Your Nephew William 36 is to be a considerable man in this State 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
North Carolina 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to Thomas H. Blount 

CHAUTAUGAY 36 Oct r 7 th 1813 

Knowing that our army is on it's march for Canada its a fair pre- 
sumption to suppose you are anxious to Know how we get on — When I 
wrote you last I expected we should leave this place the next day — I 
drew my inference from the return of the messenger who had been sent 
to the Secty. & it's being immediately followed by a generall order which 
reduced the officers to a second shirt & a blanket which must be taken 
on their backs & other odd arrangements calculated to produce suffer- 
ings which nothing but an intended forced march could justify the inflic- 
tions of — But here we continue, & some conjecture, here will end the 
campaign — Untill yesterday we never have been able to get five days 
provisions in advance, the road from this to Platsburgh is forty miles & 
of the worst description and all our supplies are brought from there — 
From the information of a Deserter the enemy have between two & three 

34 This reference is to Major General John Cocke (pronounced Cook) and Major General 
Andrew Jackson, both of whom were appointed by Governor Willie Blount to lead Ten- 
nessee armies against the Creek Indians in 1813. Cocke led the army from east Tennessee, 
while Jackson led the one from west Tennessee. Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of 
American Empire, 191-193. See also 1817, n. 19. 

35 For William Grainger Blount see 1807, n. 35. 

36 One of the major objectives of the American war effort was the capture of Canada from 
Great Britain. Two campaigns were launched against Canada, one in 1812 and the other in 
1813, but both ended in failure. The campaign of 1813, in which John Gray Blount, Jr., par- 
ticipated as an aide to General Wade Hampton, was aimed at seizing Montreal through a 
two-pronged attack. Hampton led one of the two American divisions into Canada via Lake 
Champlain. There were many skirmishes and the Battle of Chateaugay (River) on October 
25, but Hampton abandoned the advance shortly thereafter because of insufficient troops 
and retired to winter quarters. The second American line of advance failed to achieve a vic- 
tory as well. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 104-106; Morris, Encyclopedia of American History, 
146-147. See also 1803, n. 98, for information on Wade Hampton. 

Letters for 1813 219 

thousand encamped about fifteen miles north of us — A few days since 
about forty Indians made an attack on an advanced corps Killed a Leu 1 
& one private and wounded another — They were soon routed & persued 
some distance, had the persuit continued one fourth of a mile further we 
must have been cut-off, as the Indians sent forward were only intended 
as a decoy, and the main force remained conceald in the rear consisting 
of from 6 to 800 Indians & Canadians Our picqut was fired on two nights 
since & one wounded in the face, the fire was returned & our guard 
retreated & we remained under arms all night — This has become usual 
with us of late — 

When at Odletown we were within less than forty miles of Montreal 
— they were unapprised of our approach & there was no force collected 
to oppose our progress — Our countermarch succeeded (2) by this tedious 
halt has not only given the enemy time to collect his force in this part of 
the country, but to draw a considerable force into Montreal — I d[o]ubt 
very much whether we shall proceed further & if we do our chances of 
success are much diminished — The head quarters of the army is at the 
village Our light corps are stationed four miles in advance, which brings 
us within two of the lines — This is a woodland country & requires to be 
on the allert to keep-off the copper skins who are lurking about our 
camp — For our greater security we are throwing up a temporary breast 
work which will releave us of half our duty — I believe this army would 
gladly compromise if they could conclude this campaign without dis- 
grace; if we do more it will be so much clear — Say to the Ensign I should 
like to have him with me for a week, he would be charmed with our 
habits — sleeping with one blanket & sometimes without any & without 
tents, would be extremely fascinating to a man of his disposition 

The weather begins to be severe to our southern Gent 1 and I suspect 
we shall not be able to Keep the field much longer even if we find no 
other opponent — My love to the family & say to them, I shall be home 
by the time the weather gets colder to frollick with my neighbours — 

yours affectionately 
JG Blount 

By an officer from H Quarters this moment we are again induced to be- 
lieve we shall soon continue our march 

Addressed: Thomas H. Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 


John Gray Blount Papers 

John Devereux DeLacy 37 to John Gray Blount 

New York Dec r the 1 7 th 1 81 3 
John G Blount Esq 1 * 
Dear Sir 

my last having apprised you of my being about to set off for Raleigh 
where I could wish to meet the Representatives of your late Brother, 38 I 
now write to inform you that on consultation with M r Emmet and a 
perusal of Allisons will, He is (as well as myself) decidedly of opinion 
that even Allison himself could make no sale that can be binding espe- 
cially in the state of New York, That all the residuary Legatees named in 
the will being also the Joint Heirs at Law must Join in the sale of the 
surplus assets, bequeathed to them, and in a Joint conveyance of the 
Lands devised or descending to them as Heirs at Law, And also Join in a 
power of attorney to authorise the suing for said Lands by Ejectment or 
otherwise, or confessing a Judgment for any am 1 due from said Estate & 
Testator, either as may be Judged most adviseable by the suitor, under 
those instructions I think you had better set M r Strawdor [Strother?] in- 
stantly at work to get those engagements with & powers from them so 
that the suits can at once be (2) commenced to save the claim as other- 
wise it will in a very few weeks from this be barred by the statute of limi- 
tations of this state applying under the particular law in virtue of which 
it was sold, 

If yourself or Brothers family will not proceed I would be thankful for 
permission to enter into the thing on my own ace 1 which delicacy pre- 
vents my doing untill you and they have first declined as otherwise I 
have a friend in Georgia who will get the necessary conveyances & 
powers, from them for me & I can get the money here to bear me 

I am most Respectfully 

Your most obed 1 Serv 1 
John Dev x DeLacy 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 


37 For John Devereux DeLacy see 1812, n. 37. 

38 This probably refers to William Blount. See 1805, n. 37. 


Articles of Agreement between 
John Gray Blount and Abraham Satterwhite 

[January 26, 1814] 

Articles of agreement made this 26 th day of January 1814 Between John 
Gray Blount of the Town of Washington of the one part and Abraham 
Satterwhite of the County of Hyde of the other part witnesseth that the 
said John Gray Blount hath let to the said Abraham Satterwhite the fol- 
lowing ninety one Acres of Land for and during the term of seven years 
from the date hereof towit beginning at the beginning Corner of the said 
John Gray Blount Grant for Six Hundred & forty Acres on Broad Creek 1 
adjoining Tisons Land which is also Tison Corner and runs with Tisons 
Line N° 88 W 9 150 pole to his Corner then N° 39 E 1 243 pole then to the 
beginning on the following conditions towit that the said Satterwhite 
shall annually pay the taxes of the said Land and shall with the said 
seven years build on said Land a Log or framed House convenient and 
suitable for a Family to reside in clear thereon fourteen Acres of Land & 
put the same under a good Fence and plant thereon one Hundred fruit 
trees such apples Peaches or Pares so as to be some of each and after the 
expiration of seven years he is to pay rent for the same one third of all 
the Corn & wheat which can be made on all the Land so cleared except 
an Acre for Garden & c And it is understood and agreed that if the said 
Satterwhite performs this agreement and shall wish at the expiration of 
the time before to purchase the said Land he shall have the refusal same 
but if he does not purchase at the expiration of the time (2) It is under- 
stood that the Houses & Fences shall all be in as good repair as the com- 
mon ware of a Plantation will admit so that no waste shall be committed 
by him or suffer others to do so without giving the said Blount informa- 
tion either on their Land or his adjoining Land In Witness whereof the 
parties have hereunto set their hand & Seals the date aforesaid 

Signed Sealed & Delivered 
in presence of — 

Witness Tho s Blackledge 2 

JG. Blount (Seal) 

Abraham x Satterwhite (Seal) 


'For Broad Creek see 1805, n. 8. 

2 Thomas W. Blackledge represented Beaufort County in the North Carolina House of 
Commons from 1820 to 1824 and from 1827 to 1829. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 276, 
278, 280, 282, 289, 291. 

222 John Gray Blount Papers 

It is further agreed between said parties that John Gray Blount will pur- 
chase two Cows & Calves and two Stocks of Bees which the said Satter- 
white will get home and take care of in the best manner he can and that 
at the expiration of seven years the stock first harvest and shall be made 
good to the said Blount & all the increase divided and that annually 
such of the profits of the Cattle so far as respects the Beef Cattle & the 
Honey & Wax shall be equally divided. 

If more Cattle should offer for sale thereof & be purchased they are to 
be paid for jointly & the increase of profits be equally divided or if a di- 
vision shall be sooner required it shall be made on the above principles 

Abraham x Satterwhite 


Tho s W Blackledge 

Ira Hollowell 3 to John Gray Blount 

prospect mill morch 4 th 1814 
M r J G Blount 
D Sir 

By m r Lucus I send up as pur Last 

I have tried to Brak the Hemp but thar was not water. I maid one 
Hand assist in running of the wheat. I have sent up what I Brok I Do not 
Belive that the meshson will Brake it at all but I shal [illegible] Every 
[illegible] wind to see wether it will Do & to no whered it tis [illegible]. 
you will send plank to Do the flat & oakom to Cork [illegible] on Gunk. 
I Shal Get Silverthron & D Mury 4 to Do the hous & what work I want 
Don to the mill but you Can write me a bout that 

I shall See [illegible] a bout mail, as soon as the wether will admit. (2) 
Davis will begin the postes next week you will [illegible] me how wide 

Masteres Land is on the Canal from the upper Line Down to the 
march as he intend to Sew [sue] you if you work any whior between the 

3 For Ira Hollowell see 1803, n. 1. 

4 This is probably a reference to Daniel Murry, who is listed in the 1820 census as head of 
a household containing one male and five females. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Hyde 
County, 18. 

Letters for 1814 223 

upper Line & the Bay thirfor I wish you to be Sure wheor to work. I 
shall sow the Hemp next week 


34 1/2 [illegible] wheat Horruses— 
45 1/2 plantashon — 
26 Hirruny tete — 
all the turnaps — 
Brak Hemp — 

Yours to Ser 

Ira Hollowell 

Addressed: M r JG Blount 

Nathaniel Macon 5 to John Gray Blount 

Washington 5 March 1814 


The letter which you wrote to me on the 20. of last January, has been 
but lately received, with it M r De Lacey handed a petition on the same 
subject, which has been presented to the House of Representatives, and 
at his special request referred to a select Committee, of which our Coun- 
tryman Murfree is the chairman 

The importance of inland navigation & of turnpike roads is not at this 
time questioned by any one; But by what ways & means the navigation 
is to be improved, and the roads to be made, is not a question quite so 
easily settled, though I apprehend experience has gone far towards doing 
so; In England canals and roads are private property & there they have 
been carried to great perfection, here the public good and private interest 
were both promoted by them; The celebrated canal of Lewis the (2) 14, 
was so expensive to the monarch, that he gave it, I believe to the Engi- 
neer who constructed it, in his hands it was a productive and valuable 
estate; so far as I understand M r De Lacey 's plan, it is this, that the pub- 
lic should make the improvements he proposes & only require a toll suf- 
ficient, to keep the work in repair and support the persons necessary to 
attend them, I am sure indeed I may say, that I know, that you are satis- 
ified such a plan cannot succeed here or any where else; no one with 

For Nathaniel Macon see 1803, n. 91 


John Gray Blount Papers 

Nathaniel Macon (1757-1837), North Car- 
olina's most powerful political figure for 
nearly half a century, was an old-guard Jeffer- 
sonian Republican who opposed any exten- 
sion of the federal government's power, par- 
ticularly in the area of internal improvements. 
This oil portrait of Macon hangs in the United 
States House of Representatives; photograph 
courtesy of the Library of Congress. 

whom I am acquainted, would more readily discover the objections to its 
producing a beneficial result; But after all how can the government of 
the U.S. undertake to lay out & cut canals without the consent of the 
states through which they are to pass, when it cannot own forts or maga- 
zines with out the consent of the state in which they may be; I enclose 
you the bill on the subject of the D. & C. canal, by which you will per- 
ceive the vast difference between that, and De Lacey's plan 

Whenever the General Government shall be placed in a situation to 
have the management of (3) canals and roads, it ought as soon as possi- 
ble to have a complete survey made for canals and another for roads, so 
as to connect the whole in the most advantagious and convenient man- 
ner, every effort without this, will be made more on local considerations 
than national policy, and the result will probably be that the different 
works will not be connected in the best possible way, if connected at all, 
some may have one depth of water and others another; to be usefull one 
design ought to pervade the whole; and if the General Government were 
to have a pecuniary interest in the works, it ought to be an equal propor- 
tion in the whole 

The steam boats in the North river have succeeded in the most com- 
plete manner, and are there of immense value, and no doubt can be en- 
tertained it seems to me, but that they will succeed in any of our bays or 
sounds, provided there is sufficient employment for them 

Permit me to assure you, that any information from you, will always 
be thankfully (3) receivd and particularly so, when it concerns our native 

Letters for 1814 225 

I am with Great respect & esteem 

y r ob l ser 1 
Nath 1 Macon 

Addressed: M r Blount 

William Augustus Blount 6 to Thomas H. Blount 

Fayetteville March 23 1814 

Dear Brother 

I have this day arrived after a very Fatiguing though not an un- 
pleasant March, Myself & Men have enjoyed very good health and as 
yet no Desertions — On My Arrival at this place I rec d orders to March 
directly for Charleston, which will save Me a Weaks journey, so in a fort- 
night I hope to be at Head Quarters — M r Blackledge 7 accompanied Me 
to this place and to night leaves me I am Anxous for him to go on, but he 
cannot, I find pleasure on the road in his [illegible], but I anticipate not 
much from my present Companion L l Strut — on the 25 in the Morning I 
again commence the March I have no News. My Love to all the Mem- 
bers of the family — Wright me soon. 

Yours Sincerely 
Will A Blount 

Addressed: Thos H. Blount Esq r 

Washington N Ca r 

John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount 

Washington April the 14 th 1814 
John G Blount Esq r 
Dear Sir 

Your favor of S l Pats day (17 th Ultimo) reached me here while I was in 

6 For William A. Blount see 1808, n. 2. 

7 For William Blackledge see 1803, nn. 32, 40. 

226 John Gray Blount Papers 

the thick of strife and contention with the ogdens 8 their family and influ- 
ence, who all exerted themselves conjointly with Stevens 9 to attack M r 
Fulton 10 in order to break him down but over whom he has obtained a 
most complete and splendid victory in which it has been my good for- 
tune to have been of considerable use to him, I in fact never have known 
a more impudent or shameless attempt to wrest from a man the well 
earned fruits of his labor but their efforts have proved abortive — 

I am truly sorry to find that M rs Blount is indisposed still, but trust 
and sincerely hope that the opening cheering spring will renovate her 
health and rid her of that abominably ungentlemanly lazy companion 
the ague, which I was in great hopes she would have long ago, kicked out 
of doors, as I have done, for it made its very feircest attack upon me and 
kept me down for a fortnight, but I attacked and turned it out of Doors 
by hard fighting and strong drinking above it — 

It affords me pleasure to inform you that as soon (2) as I can go to Phi- 
lad 3 from hence I will send you the appointment of Russian Consular 
agent for M r Rodman, but you and he are before this informed that the 
presid 1 will not give him an exequatur, and that the one he held under 
the Swedish government — either is or will be withdrawn very speedily 
however his acts will be as binding on the governm 18 that he acts for and 
represents, as if he had the exequatur from the presid 1 , as it only de- 
prives him of consular privileges in the United States — 

8 Aaron Ogden (1756-1839) was a successful New Jersey lawyer and politician who became 
governor of that state in 1812. A Revolutionary War veteran, he was extremely influential in 
New Jersey legal circles and served as a United States senator from 1801 to 1803. During the 
War of 1812 he commanded the New Jersey militia. Later he operated a steam ferry be- 
tween New Jersey and New York. This ferry service involved Ogden in legal conflicts that 
ultimately forced him into bankruptcy. Ogden then collected customs at Jersey City from 
1829 until his death. Hopkins, Concise DAB, 744-745. 

9 Colonel John Stevens (1749-1838), a prominent resident of New York and New Jersey, 
was Robert Livingston's brother-in-law (see 1812, n. 59). After serving in the Revolutionary 
War and as surveyor general for the eastern division of New Jersey, Stevens devoted his life 
to experimenting with steam engines and steam-powered transportation. Stevens became 
one of Fulton's major competitors in the steamship business, and he detested the monopoly 
Fulton held that barred all other steam-propelled craft from the Hudson River and New 
York waters. Although Stevens never directly challenged this monopoly in court, he never 
wasted an opportunity to criticize Fulton, his steamships, or the navigation monopoly he 
held. Hopkins, Concise DAB, 1006-1007; Morgan, Robert Fulton, 120-123, 137-138, 161-165, 
183, 187-188, 207, 208; Dickinson, Robert Fulton, 238-239, 243. 

10 The dispute referred to here revolved around a steamship/navigation monopoly held by 
Robert Fulton and Robert Livingston that stopped other steamship operators from using 
New York waterways. Ogden wanted to operate a steam ferry between New Jersey and 
New York, however, and he was determined to overturn the monopoly. Fulton and Liv- 
ingston had obtained their monopoly from New York in 1808 when the state ruled that it 
had sole jurisdiction over the Hudson River, although this was a boundary held in common 
with New Jersey. The New Jersey legislature denied the legality of the New York claim and 
a number of legislative battles occurred between the two states, one of which was precipi- 
tated by Ogden. Ogden had unsuccessfully petitioned the New York legislature to repeal 

Letters for 1814 227 

I have been assured by the Secretary at war (Mars the 44 th ) with 
whom by some means I have become a great favorite, That the moment 
the staff appointment in Norfolk that is wished for shall become vacant, 
"Captain Blount Shall be thought of" 

Was I in Washington to lay that passage of your letter before the secre- 
tary of the navy 11 with whom I am intimate I am convinced he would 
grant what you wish, but Gautier 12 is not liked by any means therefore 
do not use his name to them, Commodore Dent commands that station, 
and his recommendation would be of use — 

I am truly grateful for your efforts with General (3) Smith, 13 but he is 
really such a strange unaccountable man and the price he asks is so 
much above the intrinsic value of the land or its local advantages, which 
can be made as great about half a mile South of his claim and for one 
twentieth part of the enormous sum that he asks that I will decline but 
very respectfully any farther negotiation with him on that subject — 

I shall be prepared to sit down in part upon a farm and go to salt 
making as soon as M rs Blounts health shall have permitted you to go 
abroad & make the necessary arrangments 

M r Bowden I presume has ere now been with you — I am Respectfully 
& Most Sincerely Dear Sir 

Your Most Obed 1 Serv 1 
John Dev x De Lacy 

the Fulton-Livingston monopoly on the grounds that Fulton's invention was not original 
and used other men's technology. Later, as governor of New Jersey, Ogden instructed the 
state legislature to grant him a navigation monopoly over New Jersey waters to checkmate 
the Fulton-Livingston interests. The New Jersey legislature issued Ogden 's monopoly in 
1813, but the Livingston political and social ties within the state forced the rescission of the 
monopoly in 1815. Worried about the legality of the monopoly himself, Fulton then pur- 
chased Ogden's future cooperation by selling him the rights to the ferry trade for a period 
of ten years. Another challenge to the monopoly led to a Supreme Court decision in 1824 
{Gibbons v. Ogden) that held that the New York law violated the constitutional powers and 
laws of the federal government and was therefore invalid. Morgan, Robert Fulton, 136, 
161-165, 171-174, 178-188, 201, 208-210; Dickinson, Robert Fulton, 229, 240, 243-246, 248-254. 

11 William Jones (1760-1831) was secretary of the navy from January 12, 1813, to December 
2, 1814. He was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. During the Revolutionary War he saw 
both military and naval combat. In the Seventh Congress he represented a Pennsylvania 
constituency in the House of Representatives. From 1816 through 1819 he was president of 
the Bank of the United States. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1208; Who Was Who, 285. 

12 This is probably a reference to Thomas N. Gautier, the naval officer in charge of North 
Carolina's coastal defenses during the War of 1812. An experienced seaman who received a 
commission as sailing master in 1812, Gautier was allotted merely six gunboats to defend 
the state, a fact he bitterly bemoaned. He was particularly concerned when his small flo- 
tilla was ordered to return to Wilmington in 1813 for an indefinite period. Finally, in Octo- 
ber, 1814, Gautier received word to return to patrolling the Carolina coast. Lemmon, Frus- 
trated Patriots, 41-42, 73-74, 135. 

13 This reference could be to General Samuel Smith, the United States senator from Mary- 
land who commanded the land and sea forces that defended Baltimore against the British 
during the War of 1812. DAB, XVII, 341. Also see 1810, n. 1 1 . 

228 John Gray Blount Papers 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 
Post Master 
North Carolina 

per Steam Boat 
to New York 

John Strother 14 to [John Gray Blount?] 

Nashville April 26 th 1814 

Dear Sir 

My long silence has been owing to my being attached to the southern 
army since the 25 th of September last — previous to my engaging in that 
service I had put all my agency & other business in such train that my 
friends would not have experianced any considerable inconveniance if 
the fate of war had proved inauspicious to me — and indeed I did not ex- 
pect the campaign would have lasted more than three months when I 
first engaged in it — but a variety of causes among which the want of pro- 
visions was by no means the least conspicuous, hath spun it out to the 
present time — Late information not official, tho relyed on states that the 
armies from the Mississipia Territory, Georgia & from this State have 
consentrated at the hickory ground near the confluance of the Tallapoo- 
sa & Coosa rivers — that there is 2000 regular troops in the field & that 
the Militia is or will be shortly discharged also that the hostile creek In- 
dians have offered unqualified submission — if this report is true Gen 1 
Jackson with the Militia of this state will return to their homes in the 
fore part of the next month — 15 

This creek war with the scarcity of Cash, and restrictive laws of the 
Gen ] government has compleatly put down the sales of lands in the West 
end of this state — I sold last summer (2) the lower part of the Campen 
tract, which included all the good land unsold in that survey — the money 

14 For John Strother see 1804, n. 3. 

15 Andrew Jackson, on March 27, 1814, attacked and defeated the major encampment of 
hostile Creek Indians at Horseshoe Bend on the Tallapoosa River in Alabama. Jackson's 
victory broke the Creek Indians' strength, and the Treaty of Fort Jackson, which officially 
ended the war, forced the Creeks to cede two thirds of their land to the United States and 
removed them from the southern areas of Georgia and Alabama. Lemmon, Frustrated 
Patriots, 111-114; Morris, Encyclopedia of American History, 148; Wayne Andrews (ed.), Concise 
Dictionary of American History (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1962), 261, hereinafter 
cited as Andrews, Concise Dictionary of American History. 

Letters for 1814 229 

will I hope be paid in time to meet direct & other Taxes which is high in 
this State and will be hard to raise — so soon after I can obtain a list of 
the Valuations of your lands I will transmit it to you — in some cases they 
are high, in others, moderate enough — I left last summer in the hands of 
the Governor 16 for his remarks, a list of all the warrants, & their disposi- 
tion so far as I could assertain facts — which I had any account of as your 
property or presumptive property, since my return from the army he in- 
forms me that he still has the list, & had forgot either to make his re- 
marks — or transmit it to you for your further remarks — The list, or cop- 
ies of your lands sold and unsold in this quarter which I long since 
promised to transmit to you is in the same situation as the list of War- 
rants — both those list I will, so soon after I am done attending to the di- 
rect Tax Valuations, transmit to you with such remarks as I may at the 
time be in possession of — This I should have attended to last fall, but for 
the Itching inclination which I had to engage in the campaign against 
the creek indians & on their country — their country — I am not fond of it 
is generally poor — nor am I fond of fighting the red rascals — however I 
confess that I am gratified (3) that I did go, and am highly pleased with 
the result — for surely no general ever fought Indians with more success 
& honor to himself & country than General Jackson has done, his mode 
of fighting is a charge which they cannot stand, notwithstanding they 
fight with an enthusiasm bordering on desperation — The last brilliant 
action he had with them I am sorry I had not the pleasure of participat- 
ing in — I think it will surely put an end to the War with the poor de- 
luded rascals & bring them to unqualified submission as report states — 

I wrote you last summer on the subject of the suits respecting the 7200 
acre tract, have never received an answer — your affidavit respecting the 
loss of the grant must again be transmited to me— it is indispensable — 

Perhaps the war with the Creek Indians will dictate to the Gen 1 Gov- 
ernment the good policy of purchasing & settleing the country between 
the Tennessee & Mississippi & thereby cut off the communications be- 
tween the Northern & Southern Indians— In this event M r Harris's pri- 
vate Notes of surveys in that country would be of service to me — In his 
life time he promised to send me a copy, will you try & procure one — 
The heirs of Harris in this quarter appears not to know what to do with 
respect to the real Estate of E. Harris 17 to the Eastward, I think (4) they 
might be dealt with advantageously by buying them out individually — 
this you can think on, & if you deem it proper — give me instructions 
thereon? I discover that some persons from N° Carolina has by letter of- 

16 Willie Blount served as governor of Tennessee from 1809 to 1815. See 1803, n. 33; Hop- 
kins, Concise DAB, 85. 
17 For Edward Harris see 1803, n. 11. 

230 John Gray Blount Papers 

fered the heirs their agency & from what W m Harris 18 tells me, cautioned 
them against you — this letter I am to see in the next month, its contents 
Harris says when I see it I may communicate to you 

If you know where Cap 1 F.S.B. is, will you know of him whether or not 
he will take $1600 Dollars for speculation, one half paid down, the other 
half in Nine & 18 month this offer I have had made to me for it & I think 
it is its Value — but how he wishes me to arrange with the heirs of Sam 1 
M c Culloch for their interest in it, is what I am at a loss for — adeu — my 
best wishes to M rs Blount & family & believe me with sentiments of due 
respect y r Ob t 

servant John Strother 

[No address] 

John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount 

N.Y.May the 22 nd 1814 
John G Blount Esq r 
Dear Sir ' 

My letter to you from Albany remaining unanswered induces me to 
fear that M rs Blounts health is not as yet restored, if such should be the 
case (which I would regret extremely) had you not better try the air and 
spa's of this state this approaching summer and autumn both for your- 
self and M rs Blount, as I should hope the most salutary results from it 
for both, and Indeed I must confess to you candidly my dear Sir my con- 
viction that you stand nearly in as great need of it yourself as M rs Blount 
and I should hope that you would be so completely renovated by it that 
you would for a long time afterwards enjoy uninterrupted good health; 
both of you; which that you may do whether you come or not, is my 
earnest wish and prayer — 

As I have not heard from M r Bowden for a length of time, nor from 
you; do I beg of you, let me know if he has been as yet to visit you and 
Shell Castle, and what prospect of my farm and salt works &c &c — 

(2) You no doubt have seen and heard of the attack of M r Ogden late 
Gov r of New Jersey upon M r Fultons State and patent rights, 19 in both of 
which he was completely defeated and the questions set forever at rest as 

18 William Harris was possibly a relative of Edward Harris. 
19 For information on this controversy see 1814, nn. 8, 9, 10. 

Letters for 1814 231 

it regards M r Fultons rights and claims, but there is a sequel to the busi- 
ness that is particularly unfortunate for Governor Ogden, for besides his 
Boat that cost them Twenty one thousand Dollars being forfeited to the 
Patentees, Fulton has had him arrested on an action on the Case & held 
to Bail in Fifty thousand Dollars which will effectually ruin Ogden, nor 
will he be pitied, neither is he entitled to any sympathy as he has 
brought it on himself having embarked on the business in defiance of the 
existing Laws and with his eyes open to the risks he ran determined to 
break down all barriers relying upon his family and party influences, so 
much was his cupidity — inflamed and his avarice excited, however the 
business has ultimately resulted in his complete overthrow, and in giving 
the state of New York to the Administration, so much was the attempt 
condemned by the thinking men of both parties. Tho it was and is said 
that the leaders of the a part of the Federal party here had promised to 
compensate (3) him with a slice of the steam Boat revenues and privi- 
leges — provided he declined accepting the Major Generalship from the 
present Administration, however this I give you as hearsay tho I have 
heard it asserted in positive terms by men that I know to be respectable, 
but I think warped somewhat by their interests for myself tho a decided 
peace man as you know, I detest the attempt to deprive Fulton of his 
well earned rights in such an unprincipled way. and to say the truth it 
was somewhat doubtful for some time for when I arrived here it had 
gone against Fulton in the Lower House and was then pending before 
the Senate, but fortunately I got the affidavits of M r Eaken the District 
[illegible] and of John Fitch 20 of this City and went post with them to Al- 
bany and set the thing at rest I hope forever — 

M r Fulton has agreed in opinion with me that it is best to build all the 
boats for the Southward, in North Carolina, this from the Colony of Able 
and experienced Artists that must be employed will be a great acquisi- 
tion to the state, but the want of Competent Iron works is a great obsta- 
cle, do let me have your advice by return of Mail as to where you would 
have them located and whether you would recommend their being estab- 

20 John Fitch (1743-1798) was an avid inventor and promoter of steam-powered navigation. 
Receiving a fourteen-year monopoly from New Jersey for the exclusive operation of steam- 
ships in the state's waterways, Fitch formed a steamship company in 1786 and began work 
on a steamship he successfully launched in 1787. He received further encouragement from 
other states in the form of monopolies, but his finances remained uncertain. By 1790 he 
constructed a steamboat that traveled eight miles per hour, and he maintained a regular 
passenger service on the Delaware River. The company failed, however, because of low 
profits and public indifference. In 1791 he went to France to promote steamships but was 
again unsuccessful. He returned to the United States and vainly attempted to promote 
steam navigation until his death. Fitch died in 1798 leaving a legacy of advanced technology 
that aided Fulton in his experiments with steamboats. The John Fitch mentioned here was 
possibly his son. Dickinson, Robert Fulton, 129-132; Morgan, Robert Fulton, 121, 207; Hopkins, 
Concise DAB, 296. 

232 John Gray Blount Papers 

lished by a (4) Company organised with a president and Directors, or by 
one or two individuals and whom you think would be most likely to em- 
bark in it in North Carolina — the Capital necessary to establish it com- 
pletely would not be great — 

Aikin the late tenant in possession at Johnson Hall is dead and his 
heirs have parcelled it out in small lotts and have advertised it for sale. 
M r Emmet says this does not avail M r Lohra agrees to your proposals, a 
Memorial has on his part been handed to the Presid 1 and favorably Rec d . 
I am Respectfully Y r Most Obed 1 

John Dev x De Lacy 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 " 
N. C. 

John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount 

New York May the 23 d 1814 
John G Blount Esq r 
Dear Sir 

As the inclosed gives you most of the news I will devote this to my own 
business, and begin by begging of you to let me know when I can get the 
Poney from M r Bradley I would take more good ones could I get them 
here readily they sell so well — I must also beg of you to let me know how 
vinegar, Eastern Rum, or plated ware for sadlers or liquors generally 
would answer, I must also solicit your Patronage and support for a con- 
cern in which I am about becoming a Dormant partner to do Such Share 
of the Southern business on commission in this City as we may get to do, 
and also favor me with your opinion of it. There is one thing in doing 
commission business I shall risk nothing, and I shall not be tied down to 
it as I must be in North Carolina in the (2) fall to encounter M r Stevens 
and get M r Fultons claim established there and the steam Boats run- 

I have made a purchase here in the City and a most advantageous one 
for four thousand Dollars that I would not take under six for, but tho 
Livingston & Fulton owe me Nine thousand and some hundred Dollars 
still Fulton who is now the acting man is very much embarrassed at 
present so much so that I do not trouble him for money knowing him to 

Letters for 1814 233 

be perfectly safe — I therefore wish to be doing something and if you 
could only procure a consignment or two however small the vessels or 
whatever the Cargo to myself direct it would give me very great impor- 
tance and weight with Fulton himself, and would so completely establish 
me in this City at this time that I could command whatever Credit I 
pleased either for myself or freinds so high have I risen in the estimation 
of my fellow Citizens (3) that there is but such a thing wanting to me, to 
establish my credit here and set me at ease for ever, and enable me to do 
almost whatever I please in a reasonable way in this City, upon this head 
also I solicit your advice, but I must also inform you that my mind is 
made up to the not continuing the agent of Livingston & Fulton longer 
than untill the term for which I engaged shall have expired. I will after- 
wards be only Fultons agent, for the Livingstons did not do right or 
honest as it regarded the stock holders in the different Companies tho 
they approved of my conduct very highly and of this I have given M r Ful- 
ton notice who is not displeased about it I am well convinced — 

There is a man here who is Setting up a distillery by steam at Brook- 
lyn on M r Rodmans place pretty much the Boiler is of wood lined with 
Iron, and the water is contained between the wood and the lining of Iron 
in which the fire is kept — the form is Cylyndrical partaking of the 
cone — They have one already at work at Utica that I am told answers 
extremely well, it is putting up, and is in use for a man of the name of 
John C Devereux 21 and it is said answers a very good purpose being a 
great saving in time, fuel, and duties, — I am anxious to be making salt, 
tho I shall have the superintendence of the Iron works Boat building &c 
in N.C. as soon as you can recommend a suitable site for the works on 
some navigable stream with water and fall enough to work the machin- 
ery (4) I will also beg of you to let me know if you think that good Brigs 
well found and sea worthy could be purchased at present in North Caro- 
lina on Bills upon a good House in this City at 12 months or six months 
after date — As a particular friend of mine & wealthy man has papers by 
him that of course would answer to neutralize them, and if so; if Cargoes 
of North Carolina produce can be purchased in the same way, if so and 
that you will not undertake it yourself, I beg of you to recommend a suit- 
able person for it, and also favor me with the prices of North Carolina 
produce at present, Spirits of turpentine and white oak staves are high 

21 John C. Devereux (1774-1848) was born in Ireland and emigrated to New York in 1797. 
By 1802 he had opened a store in Utica. In 1840 Devereux served as mayor of that city. In 
conjunction with his brother Nicholas Devereux, a wealthy merchant, banker, and philan- 
thropist of Utica, John Devereux founded a savings bank in the city. Who Was Who, 216. 

234 John Gray Blount Papers 

here now. I wish one or two vessels of the sire of M r Ross's little ones 
would slip round with Cargoes of those articles consigned to 

Dear Sir Respectfully Your Most Obed 1 Serv 1 
John Dev x De Lacy 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 " 
N. C. 

Jacob Swindell 22 to John Gray Blount 

Rose Bay Turnpike [June 14, 1814] 

Dear Sir This make the Third Time I have To You and Shuld have 
and have Seen you my Self from Coart but I under Stud that you was 
coming down and my wish is for you to have passhence with m[e] a Lit- 
tel Longer I am indevering to make you a payment as Soon as I Can and 
wish to know whether you will take nots of hand in part or not I Can git 
note when I Cant git money I Shall have Six or Seven good Beeves that I 
Can Spare as Soon as Beef gits fat I hope that it will be in my power to 
pay you all that I do owe this fall for I am deturm'd to be out of det or 
own no probtey So I yours 

with Respect 
Jacob Swindell 

June 14 th day 1814 
M r John G Blunt 

Addressed: M r John G Blunt Eq r 

John Strother to John Gray Blount 

Nashville June 14 th 1814 

D r Si 

M r James & Sam 1 Harris is now with me on the subject of your propo- 
sition about Edw d Harris's real Estate in North Carolina — They state 

For Jacob Swindell see 1805, n. 23. 

Letters for 1814 235 

that so far as respects themselves, they feel a disposition to accept the 
offer of ten thousand Dollars for their Brothers real Estate in North 
Carolina subject to the Widows dower & the debts yet due by the Estate 
& whatever balance after paying the debts may be due to the heirs they 
are willing to take in lands here agreeable to your proposition — but they 
State that they will before they act definately consult with the rest of the 
heirs, & if they feel disposed to do as they themselves to wit Jas. & 
Sam — are willing to do — that so soon after the determination of the rest 
are known they will communicate to me the result — some of their heirs 
live in Kentuckey some, in Louisanna & some in North Carolina — one is 
dead & his heirs except two are minors — In the mean time they request 
that you will not suffer the land to be sacraficed for the Taxes — as re- 
spects Judgments they apprehend that none can be legally obtained un- 
till after the heirs are Known, & they state that the minor heirs they 
themselves at (2) this time are unacquainted with, but will as soon as in 
their power know them & give me a final answer to your propositions — 
The federal court is now in cession I have never received your deposi- 
tion requested in a former letter I have rec d a copy of the grant, the fees 
are two Dollars, which you will please pay M r Hill — what I am to do 
when the trial comes on I cannot at present say but the event of it — I feel 
as sanguine in as ever — on a Jury of view more was discovered by the 
pltff's they wanted, & to my mind enough to convince the surveyor, that 
where they want to establish the land he never surveyed it notwithstand- 
ing lines & corners sufficiently ancient & corresponding with the calls of 
the grant they shew but the Waters are not such as the location & grant 
recognizes — I am obliged to attend court & am much hurried, I'll write 
more fully after court — my best wishes attend you, my compt 8 , to M rs 
Blount & family & believe me respectfully your 

M° Ob 1 H um Serv 1 
John Strother 

M r Harris's will write to you shortly — 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 
Post Master 
N° Carolina 


236 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount 

N.Y.June the 14 th 1814 
John G Blount Esq r 
Dear Sir 

By a letter received from M r Bowden dated the 5 th Ins 1 I find he has 
been prevented visiting you hitherto in consequence of two important 
law suits, one of them being of no less interest than to determine whether 
he had or had not a right to draw off ancf use his own water when and 
how he pleased which has been decided in his favor — about the close of 
this month or the beginning of next he contemplates being with you un- 
till when I will beg of you to postpone the Sale of Shell Castle as I am 
anxious that he should be interested there, if he does not visit you by 
that time, I will dispose of it here for you, as there will be but three 
shares to dispose of upon the plan I contemplated placing it, that of hav- 
ing it in five shares of eight thousand Dollars each so as to make the 
$40,000 required by you as the price of that place and all its appendages 
to be paid by instalments as agreed to by you — 

Of this Thomas Addes Emmett Esq r takes one share (2) upon these 
terms and I take another which makes two shares or $16,000, conse- 
quently there remains but three shares of $24,000 which I can immediate- 
ly get here, but that I wish M r Bowden interested there as I well know 
that his enterprise and Capital with my own perseverance and industry, 
and the aid we should receive from any others that would be interested 
as well as from you would give an importance to that place and to North 
Carolina generally if it received only moderate legislative encouragement 
and patronage, that would rival some of the Ports on which North Caro- 
lina is at present dependent — 

Let me know if there is as yet any chance of the site for the Salt works 
and farm, as I could now send a most valuable man & his wife as farmer 
& Gardiner if I had it. With best wishes for the speedy restoration of M rs 
Blounts health, and for the welfare of all your family I am Respectfully 

Dear Sir 

Your Most Obed 1 Serv 1 
John Dev x De Lacy 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 " 
N. C. 

Letters for 1814 237 

John Fries to John Gray Blount 

PHILAD a Jllly9 1814 

John G Blount Esqr 

I am under the Necessity of troubling you again on account of the Tax 
payable on the Land & Swamp lately W m Shannons, 23 I wrote to Slade 
Pearce Esqr 24 the 14th of May last on this Subject but as yet Rec'd no 
Answer. Ill thank you to ascertain the amount of tax for 1813 from your 
Present Sheriff, and let me know it as soon as Possible that I may remit 
the money before any expence accrues, or If the Sheriff Could make it 
convenient to draw on me for the amount of the tax would be more 
agreeable and his draft shall be paid at sight — 

last year this Land was Sold by the Sheriff before the time I usually 
sent the money to the late Sheriff Slade Pearce, I wish to pay the Tax 
this year without any additional expence if it can be done with your kind 
assistance Please to let me hear from you soon 

I am very Respectfully 
yrs &c John Fries 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esqr 
Postmaster at 
North Carolina 

John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount 

Philadelphia July the 21 st 1814 

John G Blount Esq r 

Dear Sir 

Business of the patentees having brought me for a few days to this 
place and not having heard that M r Bowden had visited Shell Castle as 
he had promised I endeavoured to make such arrangm ts relative to it as 

23 For William Shannon see 1803, n. 19. 

24 Slade Pearce is listed in the 1820 census as head of a household containing five males 
and three females. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 33. 

238 John Gray Blount Papers 

would come up to the terms you proposed it, on, to me and promote my 
views on it, and I am now enable to say to you with confidence that I 
will take it on my own ace 1 on the terms you stated to me, namely one 
instalment to be paid as soon as the Titles shall have been legally per- 
fected and the residue at such convenient times as we shall agree on. The 
surplus to be secured by Mortgage on the property, and you to put the 
Houses wharfs Side in good order — To this I must request your immedi- 
ate answer for should you agree with me the Castle will yet flourish as I 
shall get the aid and patronage of one of the most respectable merch ts in 
the United States who will I believe move thither — 

I will also repeat my request to you to look out for a good farm for me 
that I can sit down upon and improve in my own way — 

With best respects to the whole of your family and all friends I am Re- 

Dear Sir 

Your Most Obed 1 Serv 1 
John Dev x De Lacy 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

Pleasant M. Miller to [John Gray Blount?] 

KNOXviLLEjuly 28 th 1814 


It appears that there are two tracts of land in West Tennessee now in 
the Heirs of William Blount being William Blounts at his death from any 
thing that appears, there are Judgments against William on which I 
Presume they can be sold, it is suggested that they belong to you, by the 
inclosed letter, as it respects one of the tracts, perhaps if they do the title 
had better remain in the Heirs for the purpose of advoiding the Statute 
These tracts are valuable, & can be secured to the Heirs if you have no 
claim to them, I wish to Know that fact — Major Dixon 25 told me in June 
that there was a tract of Land near him which was like to be lost or per- 
haps was lost by Neglect in not suing in time — it may however be the 
tract alluded to in the inclosed letter — I do suppose it probable that your 
interest may be suffering in that quarter altho I do not Know that it is 

25 This might be a reference to Tilman Dixon, a Tennessee land speculator. Land War- 
rants 1403, 1405, 1518, and 1519, Tennessee State Archives. 

Letters for 1814 239 

so — as it respects Strothers trade with Erwin 26 you can Judge — the rea- 
son why the Judgment was not revived, was, that it never could be made 
a specific lien on the land, & under Allisons will his lands were only 
equitable assets — & as such they could not be affected by the revival, in 
equity also all creditors come in (2) in equal proportions according to 
their respective amt s besides no Judgment can be a lien on Lands beyond 
the Jurisdiction of the court in which Judgment is obtained. M r Erwin 
therefore will have all the benifits of the Judgment that he would have 
had if the same had been revived, As I believe I know nothing of their 
bargain more than the within letter discloses. My family are all well Bar- 
bara & Eliza are here & well. We have nothing new — pray sir what part 
of the play will the British act, 27 will they not pay the Southern cost a 
visit & set your negroes by the cain — or is it not more probable that they 
will in conjunction with the Spaniards Visit the Mississippi, if they do it 
is inevitably gone — they have a party there — & when connected with the 
Blacks — who are unquestionably the worst [?] in the United States they 
must go — the Western people cannot be got their on account of the Cli- 
mate — will not the Eastern states be gone first by depriving the union of 
that portion the United States — 

I am D Sir 

Pleasant M Miller 

[No address] 

John Fries to John Gray Blount 

Philad* August 24th 1814 

J G Blount Esqr 

I duly Rec'd your Letter of the 6th Inst informing me that the tax for 
1813 on the Lands & Swamp late W m Shannon is 105 Drs 29 Cents — I re- 

26 For Andrew Erwin see 1810, n. 27. 

27 The British offensive planned in 1814 included a massive invasion of the United States 
from the Gulf of Mexico, but General Andrew Jackson was not sure whether the main 
point of attack would be Pensacola, Mobile, or New Orleans. Jackson's movements had the 
fortuitous effect of thwarting the British design, which ultimately turned out to be the cap- 
ture of New Orleans. Miller's reference to the Spaniards and blacks might have been 
prompted by the fact that the Spaniards established a "Negro fort" in Florida during the 
war and enticed runaway slaves to take refuge there. By 1816 there were about 250 blacks at 
the fort, but in that same year General Edmund P. Gaines blew up the fort, killing 270 per- 
sons. Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of American Empire, 236-245, 344-345. Also see 
1814, n. 54. 

240 John Gray Blount Papers 

mitted to the Sheriff Allen Griest 28 on the 12 August 1 8 1 4 the half of a 1 00 
Dr note and one 10 Dr note both of State Bank of North Carolina and on 
the 16th Same Month Sent on the other half of the 100 Dr note I hope 
they all got to his hands safe 

I observe that a Direct Tax is also to be Collected I was in hopes that 
State had Assumed the payment of it (as Pennsylvania did) and as the 
tax for 1813 is almost double to what it was for 1812 favored the Idea 
much. Please to inform the Sheriff or any other Person who has the Col- 
lecting of it to let me know the Amount of the direct Tax and 111 forward 
the money Immediately 

I am with due Respect 
Yrs &c John Fries 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esqr 
Postmaster at 
North Carolina 

William Augustus Blount to Thomas H. Blount 

Fort Johnson S.C. August 31 st 1814 

Dear Brother 

It is with pleasure I acknowledge the receipt of a letter from you — I 
prize it highly — to correspond with my Brother is always a source of 
gratification to me — and if I were capable of making an exact representa- 
tion of my situation which can only be done by comparison, I think you 
would not willingly withhold, any thing has a tendency to stimulate and 
console me in my misfortunes — I mean in my unenviable situation as a 
military man— shut up in an obscure garrison — but dialy exposed to 
iminent danger — threatened some times with immediate dissolution by 
the all powerful Sand flies and blood thirsty musquitoes — but not a 
Laurel reaped — and this too when my brothers in arms and driving tri- 
umphantly before them the enemy — Gathering Laurels promiscuously as 
they pass — The natives bursting forth applause and justly, for their suc- 
cess — Yes the administration oppressing them with brevets — the attain- 

28 Allen Grist was a prominent citizen of Beaufort County. He helped found the Bank of 
Washington. Reed, Beaufort County, 112. 

Letters for 1814 241 

ment of which is at once the price and the Glory of the Soldier — Under 
such circumstances do I not need a stimulous? You may consider me 
wild fanciful and enthusiastic, but what man is there who entered the 
service with my intention and expectations under such circumstances, 
could be otherwise but I am a Soldier — to murmur is a prostitution of 
subordination — pardon this digression from my intended Subject — 

As you ask it I shall not make myself uneasy about the money I bor- 
rowed of you, but I can not help feeling mortified, chagrined at not hav- 
ing (2) remitted it long since — but I have no Idea of considering it my 
own — I have already been an expense to you. And I Know that your 
money is with you as well spent by a Brother as Self upon the Whole. I 
have no use for it, and if I had my delicacy should not get the better or 
ascendancy Over my Necessates — In a few days I shall receive it from 
the P. M. Gen 1 and will remit it — Since the receipt of your letter I have 
been making use of all my address with Doc r Hill of our Reg 1 , to get his 
puppy a match, brother of Roller's but it has proved ineffectual — shall 
however procure for you one shortly, to equal if not surpass the Cap ts 
highly prized pet — Oh! What a misfortune! What a depravity of taste! 
that man should prefer a spaniel Pup — to a prattling Babe — Ask my Sis- 
ter what Pet I shall procure for her — I am surprised, no mortified to 
hear that Grist, Williams and Boyd 29 are the Beaufort representatives — 
but indeed you deserve it — I suspect the only difference in your Candi- 
dats is their profession about Politics which is enough — they may vote 
right — but I think you should at a time like this send, as could be done, 
Firm and enlightened Republicans. I have the command of 107 aggre- 
gate — a fully compy a part of that Number the Men commanded by My 
Brother — I have a company mostly enlisted by self, if they have an op- 
portunity — they will neither Lessen the Standing of their officer nor dis- 
grace their State — My Love to Sister and the family 

yours Sincerely — 
Will A. Blount 

Addressed: Tho 8 H. Blount Esq r 
N. Carolina 

29 This is a reference to Reading Grist, who served as a Beaufort County senator from 1814 
through 1816. See 1812, n. 54. James O.K. Williams was a state representative from 1814 to 
1816 and a state senator from 1822 to 1828 and from 1831 to 1838. See 18 13, n. 1 1 ; Cheney, 
North Carolina Government, 265, 267, 269, 279, 283, 285, 286, 288, 290, 303, 305, 308, 310. 
George Boyd represented Beaufort County in the House of Commons in 1812 and again in 
1814. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 262, 265. 

242 John Gray Blount Papers 

William Augustus Blount to John Gray Blount 

[August, 1814] 
Dear Father, 

Your letter of the 26 th July I have received and the enclosed bill, which 
was at this time a very pleasant sight; M r Champlain 30 the D 9 Pay Mas- 
ter has just returned from the City, he went on to procure money to pay 
of the troops in this district, some of them now 8 months others 5 since 
paid, he has not brought one Farthing, no does he Know when he will 
get it, he says he expects its arrival any moment, I fear the funds are low, 
and that the conducters and governors of our Military affairs, are desti- 
tute of the necessary abilities to remove the many obstacles in the way of 
success, and dissipate the impending cloulds of destruction which now 
hover over us — 

I anticipated and was fearful of the result of my application, as I was 
too sensible of the difficulty to change the situation of an officer in an 
army where there is any thing like discipline, or where the army is regu- 
lated by men of military capacity, but in ours, judging from circum- 
stances which have occurred, I entertained a just hope of success — I am 
however from your advice satisfied with my situation, and will console 
rnyself with this hope. That the government will in long remove the sill, 
which obstructs the sight, and obscures the means, which would bring 
this War to a happy Issue, they will discover the Necessity and concen- 
trate the regular Forces on the lakes — & call out the Militia for the pro- 
tection of our Sea ports, and never suffer them for a moment to be in- 
vaders — I have by accident become acquainted with some gentlemen 
who evince a disposition to contribute to the completion of the happiness 
or contentment of the officer (2) who is desirous of becoming perfect in 
his profession — these are members of the Charleston Library Society. 31 
they have very politely offered me the use of any books in their library 
which are valuable. I accepted and am happy to inform you that when 
off duty, I devote my time, to the reading of such books as are calculated 

30 This might refer to Lieutenant Samuel Champlin, the deputy assistant quartermaster in 
Charleston. Champlin, in addition to his quartermaster position, held so many other offices 
that complaints were made to General Thomas Pinckney about Champlin's inefficiency 
and lack of performance. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 31. 

31 The Charleston Library Society was organized in 1748 by a group of the city's young 
men. It was authorized to acquire British pamphlets, magazines, and books. Some of its 
holdings were destroyed by fire in 1778, but the institution is still in existence. David 
Duncan Wallace, South Carolina: A Short History (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina 
Press, 1951), 198, 471, 477. 

Letters for 1814 243 

to make me a proficient in my profession and to enlarge my limited 
understanding. Cap 1 Kenan of this regiment has been promoted to a ma- 
jority and I believe my Brother is the first on the list for promotion. Lt 8 
Maggen and the col 1 adjutant Hamilton 32 have both been promoted and 
I believe I am first on the list for promotion; Col 1 Drayton 33 offered me 
the adjutancy but I declined accepting. In the Army as at court every 
thing is done by favours: I will only remark that the Government or 
rather the President and Secretary of War hold out to the army one prin- 
ciple of promotion and act upon another. I Know this myself, but as I 
serve the administration I will not disclose it, the consequences would be 
fatal for nine tenths of the officers in the service would resign, if they 
Knew the manner the rank is decided The encampment at P l Pitn is, by 
order of the Secretary of War broken up and I believe a large proportion 
of the troops are ordered to this harbour, the ballance I am told will be 
stationed at Savannah — 

Col 1 Drayton informed me a few days since that he should order in all 
the officers, who are recruiters, and send others, who had more the inter- 
est of their country at heart recruiting, from this I think it very probable 
I shall be one among the number ordered, if so I presume it will be the 
last of Sep r or 1 st October [illegible] to M r Guillard 34 a senator from this 
state, requesting him to make exertions, to have this regiment ordered to 
the North, the Secretary very politely observed that although this was 
one of the best disciplined regiments in the service, it must remain where 
it is until the (3) regiments for the protection of the Coast were raised — I 
have not heard from my Brother John in several Weeks, I wrote to him a 
few days ago, supposing him to be with the general on Lake George, give 
my love to Mama and the family and say to them I Will write them in a 

32 Lieutenant Colonel William S. Hamilton was assigned to the Third Regiment and 
ordered to North Carolina to recruit a rifle corps. He was a career army officer and had 
previously been the assistant inspector general and a major in the Tenth Regiment. His 
rifle corps was eventually abolished, and the Third Regiment never participated in combat. 
Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 69. 

33 William Drayton (1776-1846) was a South Carolina lawyer and politician. He served in 
the state legislature from 1806 to 1808 and also served as a judge and as a United States 
congressman. Drayton later declined two federal appointments, one as secretary of war and 
the other as minister to England under Jackson. Drayton opposed the'pronullification 
stance adopted by South Carolina in 1830, and in 1833 he moved to Philadelphia, where he 
assumed the presidency of the Bank of the United States for two years. During the War of 
1812, Drayton was commissioned lieutenant colonel in the Tenth Infantry Regiment, 
United States Army. He later was promoted to colonel and commanded the Eighteenth In- 
fantry Regiment. Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 57; Who Was Who, 225. 

34 John Gaillard (1765-1826) represented South Carolina in the United States Senate from 
1804 to 1826 and served as pro tempore of the Senate at different times. Biographical Directory 
of Congress, 979. 

244 John Gray Blount Papers 

few days, by l 1 Col 1 White 35 who is ordered to take command at Fort 

Your affectionate and dutiful Son 
Will A. Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Sen r Esq r 
N. Carolina 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh Oct° 6 th 1814 

The warrant for 1600 acres issued to John Allen 36 is in the office, and 
there is filed with it a certificate of survey indicating that a Grant had is- 
sued on it; though after closely examining the books none could be found 
on record — From some conversation I had with the Secty. on the subject 
I suppose it will be necessary to make application to the Legislature be- 
fore it can be taken out of the Office — On enquiry I can find no claim of 
yours against the state for services rendered & c except one for oak plank 
furnished, amounting to one dollar & some cents, which has been al- 
lowed. If there should be others, M r Leroy can say how he disposed of 
them — H. Dickenson died two days since — 

Please present my love to the Family 

I am affectionately your Ob 1 
J. G Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 

M r Stewart 

36 For Benajah White see 1812, n. 51. 

36 John Allen enlisted as a lieutenant in the North Carolina Continental Line on October 
1, 1776. Allen died in September, 1780, while still in the military service. He was in Cas- 
well's Company, Fifth Regiment. Fifth Regiment, Register of the North Carolina Conti- 
nental Line. 

Letters for 1814 245 

William Kennedy to John Gray Blount 

Washington City 23 d Oct r 1814 
D r Sir 

I this moment got a letter from Governor Worthington 37 inclosing a re- 
ceipt of W Hinde, for the money you forwarded to me for him which you 
will here with receive 

We have no late news from our ministers at Ghent, 38 nothing since the 
dispatches which have been published and no doubt you have Seen long 

The tax bills 39 are rapidly progressing The one to lay and collect a di- 
rect Tax of Six Millions of dollars passed the house of representatives 
yesterday by a large majority. This is a pro[d]igious large Sum to be col- 
lected by a direct tax in one year and I seriously fear, in the present state 
of our country without trade, and of course (2) without the possibility of 
Selling our Surplus produce unless at great Sacrafice; it cannot be paid 
without uncommon inconvenience to the people, and particularly to 
those of North Carolina, where very little of the public money is expend- 
ed; I endeavoured to reduce it but without effect; the most objectionable 
part however was the pledge of its continuance, for the redemption of the 
public debt until congress should substitute other taxes or duties equally 
as productive, which I conceived a mortgage of all the lands in the coun- 
try for that purpose, and I feared an entailment of the tax not only upon 
ourselves but upon our children after us Under those and other consider- 
ations I voted against the bill. 

37 For Thomas Worthington of Ohio see 1803, n. 88. 

38 In November, 1813, the British Foreign Office proposed to the United States that the 
two nations enter into direct negotiations for peace. President Madison accepted the pro- 
posal and named John Quincy Adams, James Bayard, Henry Clay, Albert Gallatin, and 
Jonathan Russell to represent the United States at the peace talks. The Flemish town of 
Ghent was selected as the site for the negotiations. Bailey, Diplomatic History, 149. 

39 Heavy borrowing by the government brought the debt of the United States to 
$127,335,000 during the war. Before the war annual expenditures ran about eleven million 
dollars; by 1814 they were running about thirty-five million. Consequently, in 1814 Con- 
gress increased tariff rates, doubled the tax of 1813 on land, dwelling houses, and slaves, 
and increased the number of items subject to internal revenue. Morris, Encyclopedia of Ameri- 
can History, 529. 

246 John Gray Blount Papers 

The Hartford convention 40 has met; appointed their Chairman a M r 
Cabbot 41 and also three chaplains, Nothing of their (3) measures have 
transpired so as to com to my knowledge, indeed I have understood from 
a member of congress who has received a letter from one of the delegates 
that they consider it important that their measures should be conducted 
in Secret very respectfully I am your Obed 1 Servant 

William Kennedy 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 
N Carolina 

Willie Blount to John Gray Blount 

Nashville Oct r 26 th 1814 

Dear Sir, 

I have only a moments leisure to drop you a line by Major Harmon 
who is about to Start to Washington — I am so engaged getting Troops 
into the Service and in making the necessary arrangements for their 

40 The Hartford Convention, composed of Federalists opposed to Madison's administra- 
tion and the war and of New England mercantile interests hurt by trade dislocations and 
westward expansion, met in Hartford, Connecticut, to assess their problems. Delegates 
from Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, and individuals from Vermont and New 
Hampshire attended the meetings held in secret sessions from December, 1814, to January 
5, 1815. Their announced intention was to propose amendments to the Constitution that 
would promote and protect New England's political dominance and industry. In addition 
to trade and militia regulations, the delegates advocated constitutional controls that would 
limit the South's political power, trade embargoes, declarations of war, the admission of 
new states to the Union, and officeholding opportunities for naturalized citizens. The Hart- 
ford Convention delegates displayed a distinct sectional bias, and their proceedings were 
widely denounced in other parts of the country as unwarranted and possibly treasonable. 
Andrews, Concise Dictionary of American History, 422; Henry Adams, History of the United States 
during the Administrations of Jefferson and Madison (Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, Inc., 
Abridged Edition, 1964), 134-144, hereinafter cited as Adams, History of the United States. 

41 George Cabot (1752-1823), chairman of the Massachusetts delegation to the Hartford 
Convention, was chosen president of the convention on December 15, 1814. Adams, History 
of the United States, 136-137. Cabot was a prominent Massachusetts merchant and politician 
who held strong Federalist views and deeply opposed Jeffersonian-Republicanism. He 
served as a United States senator from 1791 to 1796 and maintained a pro-British attitude 
throughout the period of controversy preceding the War of 1812. Nevertheless, Cabot 
attempted to control the more radical elements participating in the Hartford Convention. 
Hopkins, Concise DAB, 134. 

Letters for 1814 247 

equipment for their march to New Orleans to meet Lord Hill 42 if he 
should be fool enough to attack that place that I have no time to write 
you about business of yours which of late years has been entirely trans- 
acted by Major Strother — The war has so multiplied executive duties 
that I am kept almost constantly employed about what relates to the 
prosecution of it — This State has a conspicuous part to act as all the 
lower Country has necessarily to look this way in the first outset of any 
difficulty for momentary relief or aid as to defence — Kentuckey our 
neighbour is a good helpmate in such cases — Tenn. has upwards of 6000 
men now in the field and 5000 more are to rendezvous on the 13 th Nov. at 
Nashville & Knoxville thence to proceed without delay to Orleans to act 
under Gen 1 Jackson's orders — 2500 men for the same services are ordered 
from Kentuckey — if all these Troops get down in time Jackson will flirt 
Lord Hill into the Sea again — he will deal with him in the measure of 
short metre. This detachment from Tenn. will be commanded by Major 
Gen 1 Carroll 43 who has in all proper ways distinguished himself as an of- 
ficer (2) of merit & bravery — He is not only brave but is also a tacti- 
cian — M r8 Baker has been very like to die this fall & was so when I left 
home two weeks ago — She has however gotten much better so much so 
as to be considered in a fair way to recover — My family are well as were 
our Knoxville friends a few days ago — Rich d 44 was yesterday to be mar- 
ried to a Miss Kitty Minor of Montgomery County — She is a fine Girl — 
M r Minor lives six or eight miles from Rich d — William requests me to 
say to you that he will send to you a map of the Creek Country to be 
compiled by Strother soon from his Notes taken when acting with Gen 1 
Jackson as Topographical engineer — he was in hopes to have had it 
ready by this time as he wished to send it by Major Harmon — William 
requests that you will cause his taxes to be paid on 1000 acres of land on 
Alligator Bay in Onslow County if it has not been sold for the taxes since 
the death of Judge Wright — He has empowered M r John Owen 45 to pay 

42 Major General Rowland Hill at one point had been in command of the British forces 
who were scheduled to attack New Orleans from the British West Indies. Governor Blount 
was obviously not aware that the British ministry had changed the commander for that in- 
vasion and appointed Lieutenant General Sir Edward Michael Pakenham to lead the at- 
tack. John K. Mahon, The War of 1812 (Gainesville: University of Florida Press, 1972), 344, 

"William Carroll (1788-1844) became a prominent Tennessee soldier and politician. He 
moved to Tennessee from Pennsylvania around 1810 and participated in the Creek War. He 
succeeded Andrew Jackson as major general of the Tennessee militia and served under 
Jackson during the battle of New Orleans. Carroll later served as the Democratic governor 
of Tennessee, from 1821 to 1827, and from 1829 to 1835. Hopkins, Concise DAB, 147. 

44 For Richard Blount see 1807, n. 30. 

45 This probably refers to Governor John Owen of Bladen County. See 1813, n. 2. 

248 John Gray Blount Papers 

his taxes at Wilmington & gave him money for that purpose — Present 
me and my family to yours and our friends in terms of affectionate re- 
gard and am very affectionately 


Willie Blount 

John Gray Blount Esquire 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

Hon'd by 
Major Harmon 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Beacon Island 31 8t Oct r 1814 

Dear Sir, 

Your letter by my boat was rec d Yesterday and the articles sent by 
her — 

In my trunk of papers in your office are [illegible] papers and I believe 
by themselves unless tied up with my Uncle's you will if you please ex- 
amine & deliver to M r Russworn all such as you may think he ought to 
have — 

M rs Blount 46 also wishes a Copy of her father's will which is among 
my Uncles papers, send that also — my Mother has the key of the 
trunk — 

I have mentioned the wood to Col. Armistead 47 and tho' no positive 
bargain has been made he declines purchasing elsewhere, relying on the 
supply from Vail — 'twill be very (2) precarious, but as yet we have had 
enough & a supply of two weeks a head — price the same as you offer — 

In answer to yours respecting Hall's business, if McNair will C r Tho. 
Blount's note with the amt. due in by Hall I will pay the Bank & release 
my right to the legacy — the pay 1 will be as good as I wish — 

We are progressing in our Work & think even at this time, a pretty 
formidable defence could be made, we have on the Island 300 Men 200 

"The Mrs. Blount referred to could be either Mrs. Reading Blount or Mrs. Thomas 
47 The reference here is possibly to John Armistead. See 1803, n. 64. 

Letters for 1814 249 

will be here tomorrow — ammunition abundant — so that nothing but 
courage is wanting, & I flatter myself that will not be wanting — The 
walls in front are nearly high enough, they will now cover a man to his 
chin, & we daily add to their height 'twoul'd gratify me very much if in 
November you could visit us — in the day you could (3) live here well 
enough, but at night the Castle would have to furnish you with a dry 
place if it rained — however agreeable to your maxim, close houses are 
unhealthy — I shall this week get a chimney to my hut & then shall have 
ended my building — but taking all together I never was more satisfyed, 
as I believe I am becoming daily more healthy. 
My love to all the family & am yours &c. 

Thos. H. Blount 

I engaged about 2000 th part of Powell — the man you once bought of 
for me to be del d in Dec r if you see him remind him of it, & if he brings it 
I will pay, & must request you to have it cured for me — I was to give 
5$ — perhaps a Cargo of Salt will arrive here, if so, shall buy for my use — 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 

William Kennedy to [John Gray Blount J 

Washington City 25 h Nov r 1814 

D r Sir 

Your favour of the 13 th Ins 1 enclosing a letter to Mess™ Thomas S. 
Hinde & David Collins agents for non resident Land holders I have re- 
ceived together with $20 in bank notes, and which agreeably to your re- 
quest I should have placed in the hands of Governor Worthington, but 
he left this place for Ohio the day before your letter arrived. It was my 
intention to have put those papers into the hands of M r Shannon, 48 but 
he refered me to M r Creighton, 49 who represents Chillicothe and who is 
the neighbour of both M r Hinde and Governor Worthington, that gentle- 
man advised me (2) to forward them immediately to M r Hinde who he 

"Thomas Shannon (1786-1843) was an Ohio merchant and politician who served in the 
Ohio legislature and one term in the United States House of Representatives. Biographical 
Directory of Congress, 1682. 

49 William Creighton, Jr. (1778-1851), was a member of the United States House of Repre- 
sentatives from Ohio. He served at intervals between 1813 and 1833. Biographical Directory of 
Congress, 801. 

250 John Gray Blount Papers 

Said was a worthy and honourable man, upon reflection however I 
thought it most advisable to forward both letter and money to Governor 
Worthington with a request that he would take a receipt [illegible] the 
money and forward it to me at this place. This I did by this days mail 
and expect to hear from him in the course of about three weeks. I was in- 
duced to take this step with your business, as I understood from both of 
the gentlemen with whom I conversed on the Subject, that unless the 
money got there in one Month, the taxes would be doubled, it therefor 
admited of no delay. Should you have aney other business at this place 
which (3) I could transact for you be so good as to command me merly 
and it will be done with pleasure. 

We have no late news from our Ministers at Ghent. The general opin- 
ion is that the negotiations are broken up, and that the war will be con- 
tinued for Some time to come There are however some gentlemen of a 
different opinion, we have had before us the bank bill for nearly a fort- 
night, and this moment, Calhouns project 50 is recommited to a Select 
committee, with a view as I understand to come to Some compromise 
with the friends of the first bill on this Subject, it being tolerable well as- 
certained that it would not Succeed in its last shape. 

The ten [manuscript torn] have not been yet finally [manuscript torn] 
upon, the whole when (4) taken in conjunction with the laws already 
existing on the Subject of revenue are intended to raise annually about 
twenty one million of dollars, the plan of prosecuting the war, by loans 
almost alone seems to be in some measure abandoned, indeed it is a le- 
mentable but serious fact that the treasury is exhausted and I under- 
stand from good authority that the President does not hesitate to say 
that unless congress shortly provides the means the goverment must 
stop, indeed this is no secret to any one here, very respectfully I am Sir 
your Obed* Servant 

William Kennedy 

[No address] 

50 Madison's secretary of the treasury, Alexander J. Dallas, proposed the creation of a 
national bank as an administration measure to finance governmental operations. John C. 
Calhoun, a member of the House of Representatives from South Carolina, was selected to 
steer the bill through Congress, but he refused to support the bill as presented by Dallas. 
Instead, he introduced his own scheme that modified the method for capitalizing the bank. 
Calhoun's bill was defeated, just as Dallas's had been. Charles M. Wiltse, John C. Calhoun: 
Nationalist (Indianapolis: Bobbs-Merrill Co., 1944), 94-96. 

Letters for 1814 251 

Willie Blount to John Gray Blount 

Nashville Nov. 27 th 1814 

Dear Sir, 

At the request of Judge M c Nairy 51 who is married to the widow of the 
late Mark Robertson 62 I transmit to you via Washington City thro' the 
Hon'ble Jessie Wharton 63 a Senator from this State in Congress, (the 
most derict route being very uncertain) the inclosed paper for your infor- 
mation of the Judge's claim to lands therein mentioned — I have told the 
Judge that you are anxious to have all your land business in this Country 
settled and that upon your receipt of this that I did not doubt but that 
you would without delay give M r Strother (who heretofore has written 
you on the subject) your instructions to settle with the Judge — The 
Judge is as well as yourself desirous to have that business brought to a 
close, & he requests me to say that provided it soon can be settled he is 
quite willing to have it done in any way you may suggest; the mode is in- 
different to him — He is desirous to have all his land concerns brought to 
a close — A few days ago five thousand of the Militia from this State 
marched under a requisition from the War Dep 1 for that number to join 
Gen 1 Jackson who did on the 7 th Ins 1 take possession of Pensacola by 
Storm & thereby at the same time made the British blow up their fort at 
the Baranca, just below Pensacola and depart with a quick Step — the 
next (2) important movement that we expect to hear of Gen 1 Jackson will 
be that he has repulsed Lord Hill's attack on Louisiana 64 if he should be 
simple enough to make such attack as the papers & c tell us he is about to 
make — there is upwards of eleven thousand Tennesseeans with Gen 1 
Jackson and on their way to his Head Quarters — there is also between 
twenty five hundred and three thousand Kentuckians on their way to 

"Forjudge John McNairy see 1803, n. 58. 

52 For Mark Robertson see 1803, n. 59. 

53 Jesse Wharton (1782-1833), born and reared in Virginia, practiced law in that state until 
he moved to Tennessee. A successful politician, Wharton served Tennessee in the United 
States House of Representatives (1807-1809) and in the United States Senate (1814-1815). 
After leaving the Senate he returned to Tennessee to practice law. He died in Nashville on 
July 22, 1833. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1904. 

54 In 1814 the British planned a massive invasion of the United States by way of the Gulf of 
Mexico. They planned to use Pensacola as a base of operations and from there capture 
Mobile before launching the final attack with a major invasion force. Andrew Jackson 
thwarted their plans by first taking over Mobile and refortifying it and then by capturing 
Pensacola and driving out the small British force located there. Later, after making sure 
that Mobile was heavily defended, he marched to New Orleans to stop the British invasion, 
which, according to his intelligence reports, was to take place there. He succeeded in crush- 
ing the British attack. Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of American Empire, 234-245. 

252 John Gray Blount Papers 

him — those Troops with about 2500 regulars now there, together with 
the local Militia of the State of Orleans and the Mississippi Territory say 
from three to five thousand will give his Lordship such a reception that 
he will not consider his enterprize as an agreeable undertaking — 
possably Jackson may in the end give his Lordship & army a passport to 
the other world, or to Tennessee as Prisoners — If our Troops get on in 
due time they would feel much pleasure in meeting his Lordship in the 
lower Country — The war has so multiplied my Executive duties that I 
have enough to do to get thro' with them, but duties I never did nor 
never will neglect — Gen 1 Brown 55 & his army have certainly behaved 
well & have done much, but I did hope that that army would have been 
enabled to close this Campaign with the taking of Kingston — it surely 
was practicable with the necessary aids of Government and good man- 
agement — My family are well & join me in the tender of our affectionate 
regard to you, yours & friends — and am with gratitude and affection, 


Willie Blount 

John Gray Blount Esq 1 * 

(3) I think you had best derict your answer by the route and thro' the 
medium you receive this — M r Wharton will send it on to me & I con- 
sider that route safe — the derict route from this State to yours I consider 
doubtful — where the neglect or miscarriage is I know not but there is 
great complaint — am satisfied you do not receive the half of mine and 
Strother's letters — neither do we get the half of yours — 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

Care of 
The Hon'ble 
J. Wharton 

56 While Jackson was defeating the British in the Southwest, General Jacob J. Brown 
(1775-1828), who was appointed major general and given command in western New York 
on January 24, 1814 (following General James Wilkinson's failure to take Montreal), had 
considerable success against the British in the North. In July, 1814, he fought the fierce bat- 
tle of Lundy's Lane on Canadian soil, defeating the British but sustaining many casualties. 
He was the most successful American general in holding the northern frontiers against the 
British. DAB, III, 124-125. 

Letters for 1814 253 

John McNairy to John Gray Blount [with enclosure] 

Nashville 28 th November 1814 

You have enclosed a copy of a writing given by Gen 1 James Robert- 
son 56 to me. From this you will see, the interest I am entituled to, out of 
the Lands located by him and others employed by him, and which were 
granted to you and your connexions during the Genl's life time I often 
urged that a settlement should take place, but matters could never be so 
arranged as to come to a final settlement. Your agents frequently men- 
tioned that they wanted further instructions or additional powers. Dur- 
ing the lifetime of your brother William, who (I suppose) had the agency 
of this business, an offer was made to purchase my interest, but his death 
and other circumstances frustrated that attempt. Afterwards your 
brother Willie and myself made some attempt towards the settlement of 
this business, and he conveyed to me one thousand acres of land which I 
was entituled to in the Military District. While your son resided in this 
country we had frequent conversations on this subject, but nothing was 
done. I then made application to Maj r John Strother who told me, he 
was your agent but that he needed further instructions from you, and 
told me also that he had wrote you several letters on this subject, but has 
never received any answer, he seems to be very positive that the letters 
have miscarried. To multiply the chances of your getting a letter, Gov- 
ernor Blount has written you enclosing another copy of this writing be- 
tween Gen 1 Robertson and me. (2) I have a very great desire to have this 
business finally closed and shall not be particular about it; believe me Sir 
I will accept of any terms which shall be any how tollarably reasonable 

I hope you will therefore upon the receipt of this, send clear and ex- 
press instructions on this subject to your friend and agent Maj r John 
Strother. Notwithstanding I am an entire stranger to you, I entertain the 
Opinion that you will pardon my importunity, and solicidute [sic] about 
this business, it is of from between 20 & 30 years standing. 

I am very respectfully Sir 
Your Obed 1 Ser 1 
John McNairy 

Tor James Robertson see 1803, n. 35. 

254 John Gray Blount Papers 

P.S. Besides the instructions asked for to your agent, an answer to this 
letter would be highly acceptable & pleasing to me. 

J. McN. 


This may certify to all whom it may concern that John McNairy is en- 
tituled to three thousand three hundred, thirty three and one third acres 
of land, being one third of Ten thousand acres, which was surveyed and 
Granted to the Blounts (I believe) on the Obion river, a water of the 
Mississippi river in one thousand acre tracts. This he is entituled to on 
account of a contract with Mark Robertson, and consideration paid by 
him in his life time by services performed; he is further entituled to one 
third of all warrants which were divided between us and delivered by me 
to Mark Robertson and were located by him in his life time or by John 
Hunter 57 or John McNairy since his decease and I hereby request the 
said Blounts their agents or attornies to convey the before described 
lands to the said John McNairy according to the contract existing be- 
tween them and me, and this shall be their sufficient warrant and dis- 
charge Witness my hand & Seal this 26 th day of July 1814 

A copy (signed) James Robertston (Seal) 

John Baird 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

"John Hunter was an attorney in Tennessee who apparently specialized in selling land 
warrants for ex-soldiers who wanted to dispose of them for cash. Land Warrants 4327, 4426, 
4533, 4534, and 4536, Tennessee State Archives. 


William Watts Jones 1 to John Gray Blount 

Wilmington Jan y 16 1815 


As proctor for the owner of the Schooner Roger, I filed a libel in this 
Court against a cargo of Salt, which has been claimed by M r Josiah C 
Fowle 2 who pretends to be a subject of Sweeden. 

I wish to prove that he has owned and sold, or either, a vessel of the 
U.S. as a citizen of the U.S. subsequent to the 20 of March 1809; being 
the date of his Burghers brief. 

I understand he has done business in Washington and did both buy & 
sell vessels. 

Presuming you are acquainted with the circumstances if they existed, I 
must take the liberty of asking you to give a deposition according to the 
form herewith sent. It is unnecessary to send a commission or to give 
notice; but if M r Fowle shou'd be at Washington at the time the depo. is 
made, notice will be necessary; to provide for that event, I send the form 
of a notice, a copy of which can be served by any one, and sworn to be- 
fore the justice who takes the depo. 


Your Ob 1 servant 
W m Watts Jones 

Addressed: John G Blount esquire 
Washington N.C. 

1 William Watts Jones was a prominent citizen and real estate broker in Wilmington. 
Jones also represented New Hanover County and the town of Wilmington numerous times 
in the North Carolina House of Commons between 1807 and 1827. Elizabeth Francenia 
McKoy, Early Wilmington Block by Block from 1733 On (Raleigh: Privately printed [by Ed- 
wards and Broughton Co.], 1967), 10, 32, 140; Cheney, North Carolina Government, 254, 255, 
257, 259, 261, 263, 265, 266, 268, 286, 288, 290. 

2 Josiah Fowle and his brother Luke established a mercantile firm in Washington, North 
Carolina, about 1812. Their younger brother, Samuel R. Fowle, later joined the firm. After 
the older brothers died, the firm was renamed S. R. Fowle & Son. Reed, Beaufort County, 

256 John Gray Blount Papers 

Robert Love to John Gray Blount 

John G Blount Esq r Waynesville 3 rd of February 1815 


I have frequently wrote to you since I was last at Washington But have 
had no answers to any of my Letters — at the time I left Washington you 
promised to forward a power that I might be enabled to convey such 
Land of Yours as are not worth Taxes to such persons as would be Will- 
ing to receive them — I have heretofore mentioned that Lewis Ball Esq 1 " 
Wanted some Land that he had taken out Grants for — One Tract he will 
bar You under his possession — a Scope of that Land Ought to be Got 
Clear off by some means, from my own Observations I am of the Opin- 
ion that instead of 10240 Acres which the Grant Calls for there will be 25 
or 30,000 Acres which Gives a Large Space of Country to Cull from — I 
think when I made return to One of the Assistant Assessors of Bun- 
combe County I threw Your Land into five Tracts With a View of Get- 
ting Clear of some of it that way; But the Principle Assessor Blended the 
whole together and made a Sum Totall of the amount of Your Tax 
which I have paid — it is possible that you can furnish the Names of some 
persons to Whom I might Convey. I Think there might be 9,000 acres at 
least Conveyed that will be of No Earthly use to you, and afterwards will 
leave a Large Extent for Culling — These are things for Your Considera- 
tion — Such Oar Banks as are Known off I will retain 

This Spring and Summer I Shall appropriate a Considerable portion 
off toward Selecting the Lands in the Mountains about the Springs and 
on the Waters of Laurel 

write early to me on this Business that I may Know how to act 

respectfully Your friend & Humb 1 Sert. 
R° Love 

John G Blount 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r Postmaster 
at Washington Beaufort County 
North Carolina 

Letters for 1815 257 

Hugh Williamson* to John Gray Blount 

New York 22 March 1815 

John Gray Blount Esq r 


As nothing could be exported from North Carolina for some years 
past, it was obvious that the means of raising money in that state were 
greatly reduced. But as the demand is now restored for North Carolina 
produce, you cannot deem me importunate if I put you in mind of a debt 
of long standing. The interest of your obligation $1461 :16 eighteen years, 
by the 19 th of next month will be SI 578:05 

Of which I received 27 th June 1811 533:88 

It follows that $1044:17 Interest will be due on the next month. By which 
it is clear that I suffer the loss of sixty dollars every year by the interest 
not being paid. And if you take the trouble to calculate you will find that 
I have suffered the loss of near 600 dollars by the interest not being paid 
regularly. Nor is this at present the whole that I suffer by such delay, for 
by a late law of this state I am obliged to pay a tax for the amount of my 
personal estate including all the debts that are due me in the United 
States. It follows that I pay a tax for the whole of the debts due me, un- 
less I chuse (2) to swear that I count them bad debts. I lately paid 75 dol- 
lars the demand of that new law. 

I depend entirely, for my support, on the interest of my money, and 
the interest not being paid is to me a serious inconvenience at present, 
for the effect of a rheumatic complaint now renders a carriage necessary 
in cases where I used to trust to my feet and the other expences of living 
are much increased. Will you have the goodness to tell me when I may 
expect to receive at least some part of the interest now due. 

I wish you to be assured that a small payment, at this juncture would 
be very convenient, for I am absolutely paying interest for borrowed 

Accept my assurance of sincere respect 
J Hu Williamson 

3 Hugh Williamson (1735-1819) had been a member of the Continental Congress and a 
delegate to the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia in 1787. A Federalist, Williamson 
represented North Carolina in the first two United States congresses (1789-1793). After 1793 
he moved to New York and eventually wrote a history of North Carolina. Biographical Direc- 
tory of Congress, 1933. 

258 John Gray Blount Papers 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 
North Carolina 

Willie Blount to John Gray Blount 

Nashville Ap 1 17 th 1815 

Dear Sir, 

I rec d the other day your well expressed and highly congratulatory let- 
ter on the Victory of Gen 1 Jackson at Orleans & the more recent Peace 
these subjects afford cause for mutual congratulations to every lover of 
his Country and as I know you & I think [manuscript torn] our common 
Country and [manuscript torn] alike about our enemies I tender to you 
my most hearty congratulations on the late Peace — may it be lasting — 
the Victory at Orleans will tend to make it last longer than any thing 
which happened prior to the signing of the Treaty — your congratulations 
on Jackson's victory, an affair in which Tennesseans acted a conspicuous 
part are acceptable very much so to me and our people — Tennessee has 
done her part in the war — The Court at New Orleans have fined Gen 1 
Jackson 4 for doing his duty, and as the Court say, for a contempt of 
Court, since the Peace, one thousand dollars — curse such People — we 
this morning are going out of Town to meet Gen 1 Carroll to escort him 
into Nashville (2) as an evidence of our ideas of his worth as a Gen 1 at 
Orleans where he acted the part of a Hero — all is bustle on this occa- 
sion — M r Jordan waits being anxious to proceed on his journey — My 
family and all friends are well and join me in the request that you will 
make affectionate mention of us to your family and our friends — next 

*The day after the people of New Orleans acclaimed Jackson for saving their city from the 
British, they learned that Old Hickory had reimposed martial law. He was determined to 
continue safeguarding the city until it was clear that all danger had passed. This caused 
bitter resentment among the inhabitants, and when one of them, a legislator named Louis 
Louailler, criticized Jackson for his high-handedness, the general arrested him. Louailler's 
attorney secured a writ of habeas corpus from federal district Judge Dominick Augustin 
Hall to secure the legislator's release. Jackson responded by arresting Judge Hall. Although 
acquitted by a court-martial on the charge of spying, Louailler was not released because 
Jackson was convinced that he was guilty. The general then sent Judge Hall out of town 
and ordered him to stay away until peace was officially announced. After the official 
announcement of peace on March 13, 1815, Judge Hall waited a week before hailing Jack- 
son to court to show cause why he should not be held in contempt of federal court. Thus 
began the trial of the U.S. v. Major General Andrew Jackson, which ended with Jackson's pay- 
ing a fine of $1,000. Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of American Empire, 308-315. 

Letters for 1815 259 

Sept r puts an end to my public services for life and I look forward to the 
time with much delight — Tell John 5 that since the war is over he cannot 
act more acceptably than to come out and see us — I am with gratitude 
and affection 

Your Brother 

[Signature cut out but noted 
on back of letter] 

John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

Hon'd by 
Mr. Jordan 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville August 3 d 1815 

I received by last nights mail a letter from M r Strother, in which he in- 
forms me he does not expect to finish running the Creek line for severall 
months — His papers are here, but on examination I find it impossible to 
obtain from them the situation of your business in this State; should he 
return before I leave it, I will take the necessary steps to have all unsetled 
claims adjusted, and bring with me a statement of the value situation & c 
of each particular tract — Lands appear not to be in great demand, & I 
think no immediate supply of funds should be expected from this 
quarter — 

Uncle Willie has just recovered from a severe illness & I think it prob- 
able he may visit N° Ca r this winter 

Affectionately yours & c 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 

5 This was John Gray Blount, Jr. Prior to the war Blount acted as his father's business 
representative in Tennessee. He is sometimes referred to in subsequent letters as Major 

260 John Gray Blount Papers 

Robert Love to John Gray Blount 

Ashe ville 4 th of October 1815 
John G Blount esquire 

Our Worthy friend M r John Strother is no more, he departed this life 
(as report Says here) on the 19 th of August at fort Jackson in the Country 
lately acquired of the Creek Indian, he was out on the Business of runing 
the Boundary line between that Nation and the U.S — 

How his Business is left, or What arrangements he may have made I 
am Totally Ignorant off — I have always thought that You were deeply 
Interested in all his Business in this and Haywood County — The people 
here view his Landed Interest as if his rights with his Decease descended 
into non existence, and a number of Entrys (as I have been informed) 
has been made on his Lands since the News of his Death — And my 
powers have ceas'd so that I can do nothing; It may be that as Maj r 
Blount is in the Western Country that You may Receive Earlier informa- 
tion how his affairs Stands here than I will, and if so I would be thank- 
full if You would let me know at an Early Moment. If I can be off any 
service, I will do everything in my power — 

My reasons for making this request, is that I know from Experience 
that things are much easier Check'd as the Old Saying is By taking them 
in the Bud than by letting them Get Strength — I have not Got the Busi- 
ness you and himself both requested of me finished — (to wit) procuring 
the Amount of Sales in those two Counties — I find the Business more 
Ardu (2) ous than I at first expected — The Register's Books of this (Bun- 
combe) County is extensive (to wit) About 12 Books some of Which have 
6 or 700 Pages and I have been Oblidg'd to Turn them over Leaf by 
Leaf — and so it altho I have once Gone over them all I have not found 
all, that is I must either have overlooked some or otherwise the holders 
have never had them Registered — Some I know were not at the time 
Registered for I have found some of an Old date presented to Haywood 
Court to be recorded, and many others may Still be Lying Back for so it 
is that a Great Share of mankind are too careless — 

I have made no farther arrangements about Your Lands in the Vicini- 
ty of the Warmsprings, the alteration in the Moode of Taxation now will 
I think preclude the necessity of leting any be sold off for the Taxes — I 
am returning them for the present Year at the Value of $2000 this will I 
flatter myself bring the public & County Tax under $4 — And as a Good 
share of the Boundary of Your Grant is but Little Known I think it most 
advisable to retain the whole under the present mood of Taxation untill 

Letters for 1815 261 

it can be more fully Explored — Your Grant I think will Cover 25 or 
30,000 acres of Land, But that is a thing that may rest with You & my- 
self — it is distant from me say from 40 to 50 miles & Very mountaineous 
that it will take time I would advise to Sell to Ball Such Lands as he has 
had Granted to him by the State if he will purchase — I want your par- 
ticular instructions on that head — the place he lives on he can Bar by 

Among other things I wish if You please, that You would forward (3) 
to me a Receipt for the Three horsses in the Winter of 1812 the two 
Blacks were at $80 Each and the Brown $55 the Totall Amount is 
$215 — this I may want in a Settlement with the Executors of Our friend 
Strother — he has fully approv'd of my Conduct in the Business But I 
have nothing to Shew, and it will now be Esential for me to produce 
Vouchers in all Casses — let me hear from You on the Diffirent Subjects I 
have requested if You please at an Early day I have frequently wrote But 
Seldom have received any answer 

With due regard Your Ob 1 Serv 1 
R° Love 

Give my Compliments to M 1 * 8 Blount & all friends &C 

John G Blount Esq 1- 

Addressed: John G Blount Esquire Postmaster 
Beaufort County 
North Carolina 

Edmund Hopkins to John Gray Blount 

Henderson 1 8 th Nov r 1815 


I am favor 'd with a Sight of Your letter to M r Alves 6 date 14 th Sep 1 
last. I thank you Sir for Your polite & friendly reference to me, as a pur- 
chasser of the 1125 acres of land, in Lott 32 belonging to the Est. of Col° 
Salter. 7 & will (as I am Still willing & able to purchass) State as Amply 
as possible what I will Give you for it. 

"This reference is probably to Walter Alves. See 1803, n. 9. 

7 For information on the confusion over the Salter estate see 1807, n. 33. 

262 John Gray Blount Papers 

I will pay into the Hands of Y r agent Walter Alves Esq 1 * S3, 000 — one 
half the l 8t of January 1817. & the Other half in one Year there after, 
with permission to pay at any earlier Period, any Sums in Anticipations 
of the aforesaid payments, with a deduction or allowance of Legal In- 
terest which in Kent y is 6/2 th [?] previous to any payment on my part, & 
after having Secur'd to Your agent, the aforesaid payment amply, I 
should require a Deed made & Sign'd by the Exors of the last will & c of 
Col° Salter & of all his Heirs of full age Surviving, Warranting the Land 
against Col° Salters Heirs of Devissees either of them or of the Said Exec- 
utors, this deed duly Certified by (2) a Notary public or Clerk of a Court, 
(I mean the acknowledgement by the parties of it) & transmited here 
free of Expence wil be Satisfactory. 

If You conclude to accept this Offer Sir, I Am pledged to the Contract, 
& ready to Closse it with your Agent, if you decline it, I will thank You 
to Advise me as Early as possible. 

Permit me to Thank you for Your Friendly reference In this business, 
& to assure You I have as you desire in Your letter to M r Alves, Candid- 
ly Stated my ultimate decission. 

With due Conssideration & Resspect I am 

Sir Your Most Obt. Serv 1 
Edm d Hopkins 

Col° J. G. Blount 

In consequence of the uncertainty of the Mail from this, to N Carolina, 
this is the second letter I have wrote you on the Subject, a duplicate of 
the first 

Edm d Hopkins 

Addressed: Colonel John, G, Blount 
North Carolina 


William Augustus Blount to William Miller 1 

Raleigh January 24 th 1816 


On the 28 th ult° I received a Commission, purporting me to be ap- 
pointed Major General of the 6 th Division of the Militia of this State, 
which appointment I accept 

I have the honor to be 

Your obt Servant 
Will: A Blount 

[No address] 

Robert Love to John Gray Blount 

WaYNESVILLE 1 5 th ofFeb r 1816 

John G Blount Esq r 


A few days ago I rec d a Letter from Capt George Strother, under date 
at Nashville the 20 th of January last, In which he says that James Lock- 
hart & himself had qualified in as Executors On the 18 th of that month 
To a Will made by John Strother on the 22 nd of Nov r 1806 and he States 
to me that he intends To be in at Asheville by April Court & wishes to 
Close such contracts as I have made relative to his Brother's Estate in N° 
Carolina — I have been Told as well as having Rec d a notification from 
Maj r Blount in his Letter to me of October last, That John Strother had 
by his Will left You all his Speculation Land in this Country, This Being 
the Case, the question is whether George Strother can have any Business 

1 William Miller of Warren County was attorney general of North Carolina in 1810, gover- 
nor from 1814 to 1817, and a state legislator for several terms. Cheney, North Carolina Govern- 
ment, 160, 182, 259, 261, 263, 266. This letter is contained in the governor's letter books. See 
William Augustus Blount to William Miller, January 24, 1816, Governors Letter Books, 
William Miller, North Carolina State Archives. 

264 John Gray Blount Papers 

with such Contracts as I have made relative to those Land, or whether 
the proceeds from such Sales do not Belong to You, as I have entered 
into no Contract about any of those Lands but what are Subsequent to 
the date of the Will — 

I have thought probably that Your Interest in the Western Country 
with the event of Strother's Death might Induce You to visit that Coun- 
try — Should You determine on that measure, I would feel happy in See- 
ing You in Waynesville — If Otherwise do write me on the Occasion, with 
Your Views on the Subject (2) for I really feel a Great anxiety to Close 
the Contracts which I have entered into with the people Generally, That 
is I have a desire to be enabled to Execute Legal Deeds to all those per- 
sons who may be ready to finish their payments — think of those things & 
write me before the first of April That I may know how to Act with 
Capt. George Strother when he comes — not that I would presume that 
he would want to Act improperly about the Business knowingly 

respectfully Your friend &C 
R° Love 

John G Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John G Blount esquire Postmaster 
Beaufort County N° Carolina 

John G Blount, Esq 

Robert Love to John Gray Blount 

Asheville 2 nd of April 1816 

Your Letter of the 12 th of Last Month I Rec d Yesterday at this place, 
And as you have it in request to me to let M r George Strother & M r 
Lockhart know that your Son William will Set Out about the Beginning 
of Summer to Nashville with a View to Wind up Your Business in that 
Country in which John Strother dec d was any ways concern 'd, And for 
them to be in a State of preparation to facilitate a Settlement with them 
as respects the Estate of John Strother dec d — And as it has been an- 
nounc'd to me in a Letter from M r James Lockhart under date of the 
24 th of last Feb r that George Strother Died in Nashville on the 19 th of the 
same month of the late fatal Epedemic that raged so much in that place 
& its Vicinity about that time and that a Cap 1 Kingsley & himself were 

Letters for 1816 265 

his Executors — On this Occasion I think at duty I owe You to give the 
Earliest Notice of the same, That you may know how to Act agreeable to 
the existing Circumstances; And in the Mean time I shall write on to M r 
Lockhart, Acquainting him of Your intention of empowering Your son to 
repair to that place to make a Settlement with him as he is now the only 
Surviving Executor of John Strother dec d (as he informs me) and one of 
the Executors of George Strother Also dec d That he may have his Busi- 
ness in a Train of preparation to make an Amicable Settlement in a 
Speedy Manner and for that purpose You have it in desire to forward 
You an Acct of John Strother 's Claim on You as well as his Amount of 
Sale in that Country of Your Lands — And as respects Your Business 
here which You wish me to undertake, I will merely Observe, that I wish 
an Explanation as to the words "Trouble & Expences" Not that I have 
the least doubt of Your Justice or Liberal disposition in all Your dealings 
or Transactions with mankind, But as the words might be probably con- 
strued, If either of us Should die before we Could Settle our own affairs, 
that it was intended for me Out of my Share of the Sales, to meet all 
Cossts and Charges in necessary Lawsuits & Taxes & the whole amount 
of Taxes that might accrue, when I stated in my propositions to you that 
I would be at all Expences only in Exploring, Surveying & Selling 
&c — and only one half of the Cosst & Charges in Lawsuits & Taxes — 
and this I think you will I hope think reasonable & equitable between 
us — Yet I would wish the proposition to extend a little farther That is 
where I may commence any Lawsuit (2) for the recovery of any of the 
Lands intended for Sale (and Such there must be for Latterly I am told a 
Great number of Entrys have lately been made on them) And have 
prosecuted the same to Effect, and Death take place on either of us be- 
fore Sales can be perfected That my heirs If You should be the Survivor 
Should have a share of the proceeds of such Lands on their perfecting the 
Sales and Complying with the other prequisites in our agreement, And 
further I wish It to be understood that in Case of Insolvencies where I 
may make any Sales and do not convey the Land, That I am not to be 
responcible, But only that the Land may be resold again, These things I 
think it proper to now name and be fairly understood between us, as a 
Great Share of the Sales must be made to the poorer Class of men or not 
[at] all, Therefore risks will be as to Collection, But in all Cases I will 
use the precaution of keeping the Land for its own Security, always ex- 
pecting that such improvements as may be made on the Lands so Sold 
will Compensate on a Second Sale for the detention of payment and the 
lapse of time in making the Succeeding Sales — 

As we may expect some Lawsuits for the recovery of some of the 
Lands it will as well as for other purposses be necessary for me to have 
from you a power of attorney Authenticated in such a manner as will be 

266 John Gray Blount Papers 

Evidence in Courts of Justice that I am Legally authorised to do Your 
Business here Therefore when Your Son comes Out be so Good as to 
Send a Gen r power authorising the sale & power to Convey such Land 
as I may from time to time Sell and as it will be necessary to have the 
Same recorded & registered have the Same proven or acknowledged in 
some Court of Judicature & have the Seal of Office thereto affixt, for it is 
suppos'd that the power under which I am now acting from you being 
Given before the Death of M r Strother from whom You now derive Title 
may be liable to some exceptions — And as I have a Strong desire to have 
the Ragsdale Business finally Closed, and I have no doubt but it is also 
Yours Therefore I will Endeavour to be in readiness to accompany Gen 1 
Blount 2 to West Tennessee as he passes here expecting that he will be 
Cloathed with ample power for that purpose, and I wish the Gen 1 Could 
be with us about the middle of June — 

as I am now holding notes which are the proceeds of the Lands which 
I have (3) Sold here under the authority of John Strother to a Consider- 
able amount, and Title Bonds out for the Conveying of the Lands on 
which the payment of those notes rests Therefore I wish that an Early 
understanding Could take place Between Yourself & M r Lockhart on 
that Subject, and who ever may be the proper person to authorise the 
Conveying of such Lands will do so, that the minds of the purchasers 
may be put to Ease for be assur'd that every Scoundrel attack that can 
be made against the Validity of the Claim as now making by those who 
are disposed to risk Suits on their Entrys &C. do take proper Council on 
the occasion and Send me the result as who must Convey under my Con- 
tracts — 

And Now Sir as a New Erea or Change have taken place as to the 
Title of the Lands which I am now to Sell for You here, I therefore I 
wish You to form a Blank deed of Conveyance to be made by me in Your 
name, This deed Ought at least to have the Semblance of a General 
Warrantee, and I think a General Warrantee ca [manuscript torn] Given 
under the Title — 

[Manuscript torn] You can safely write everything to me which You 
may wish [manuscript torn] as to forward to me a few Blank deeds If the 
[?] do not be too heavy & in [manuscript torn] as I may Shortly want 
Such, But above all things [manuscript torn] Some direction as to the 

'General Blount is a reference to William A. Blount. See 7808, n. 2. 

Letters for 1816 267 

manner of the Conveying those Lands which I have heretofore sold as no 
Collection can be made untill that can be done, 

with every wish for Yours & Your familys Individual 
welfare I bid adeu 

respectfully Your Ob 1 Ser 1 
R° Love 

John G Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John G Blount, esquire 

Beaufort County N° Carolina 
Town of Washington in said County 

John Washington 3 to John Gray Blount 

KinstonAp 2 27 1816 

Dear Sir 

I purchased last Summer M r Jos. Crooks part of two patents of land 
for 1920 acres ea. One granted to yourself and him and the other to him 
and yourself in Bear River and Dawsons Creek 4 pocoson [?] 

I should be glad to have it decided, and would therefore be glad to 
Know upon what principles would be agreable to you and whether it can 
be done at our joint expense, and further whether you will personally at- 
tend (2) To it, if so I shall be glad for you to appoint some time 

I wish to attend to it for the purpose of [illegible] the land 

I suppose it to be better to do it in the Spring than later on account of 
the [illegible] 

3 This was probably John C. Washington of Lenoir County, who represented that county 
in the secession convention and the Constitutional Convention of 1861. Cheney, North Caro- 
lina Government, 386, 824. 

4 John Washington could be referring to one of two Bear Creeks. The first Bear Creek 
begins in Wayne County and empties into the Neuse River in Washington's home county 
of Lenoir. The second Bear Creek rises in northeastern Pamlico County and flows into Bay 
River. Dawson Creek, rising in southern Pamlico County, flows southeasterly into the 
Neuse River. Dawson Creek was named in 1706 for Richard Dawson, who lived in the 
vicinity, and was included in the Moseley map of 1733. Since Washington is clearly refer- 
ring to two separate land patents, the Bear Creeks mentioned could be either one of the 
two discussed above, but it probably was the one in Pamlico County. Powell, North Carolina 
Gazetteer, 28-29, 136-137. 

268 John Gray Blount Papers 

Be so good as to answer by the return of Mr. Hooten the bearer 

I am respectfully 
Sir your Ob 1 Ser 1 
John Washington 

If you cannot attend will you appoint some person to attend in your be- 
half, & your choice of Surveyor 

The sooner it can be done the more agreable to me 


Addressed: Jn° G. Blount esquire 
Washington, N.C. 

fav r of — 

M r C. Hooten 

Everard Hall to John Gray Blount 

Norfolk May 25 th 1816 

Dear Sir 

I have not heard from you since my last but have seen M r Dickson 
who tells me the business has been properly arranged — A sale I think 
has been effected in good time as letters have been received from London 
lately giving an account of the determination of M r Everards executor 
never to pay the money upon amicable terms if he can help it — Dickson I 
apprehend bigins to be rather sick of his bargain, but that is no business 
of ours you know — 

In one of y r letters you mention that there would be a balance due me 
in the clerks office after settling all claims against the office — if so — since 
these claims have been adjusted by the sale of the legacy, I am entitled to 
whatever money has been, or may be collected there on my account — 
Enclosed is an order on the clerk for the money, which you would oblige 
me by forwarding as soon as possible, as I am at present in very great 
need of it — 

If I mistake not, when I was at Ocracock bar I saw a machine of yours 
for pumping water by wind, but do not recollect in what manner it was 
constructed — You will oblige me very highly by sending me a description 
of it, with something like a draught, if you can, as I am now enjoy the 
salt business, and find the hiring of pumpers amo [illegible] to more 

Letters for 1816 269 

than I can well afford — Your complian [illegible] the above requests you 
will truly oblige 

Y r Sincere friend 
Everard Hall 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
N Carolina 

J . W. Worthington 5 to John Gray Blount 

[July 2, 1816] 

I send by the canoe 6 Barrels & 48 rd of flour & 2 Barrels of Seconds 
makeing in the whole 18 bis. & 48 rd of Superfine flour & 4 Barrels Sconds 
being all that M r [illegible] wheat made — he owes us for 19 oak barrels 
& 4 Cypress & for sending down 21 Bl 8 — you will also receive your 
Meal — I should have had more than 40 m Shingles; but some of the 
hands has been unwell — I have now 32 m & two hands getting & two 
sick — If they can be had please send me three bushels peas to Sow by the 
flatt & bush 1 [manuscript torn] Salt — 

July 2. 1816 yours 

J. W. Worthington 

Addressed: M r J. G. Blount 

William Vines 6 to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh Nov. 2 1 st 1 8 1 6 

Dear Sir 

I arrive safe and well at this place about 10 Oclock on Monday morn- 
ing last, about 2 in the evening, both Houses meet, and the Members 

5 This was probably Joseph W. Worthington of Pitt County. He appears in the 1820 cen- 
sus as the head of a household of six. He was between twenty-six and forty-five years of 
age. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Pitt County, 41. 

6 William Vines represented Beaufort County in the North Carolina House of Commons 
in 1816 and 1817. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 269, 271. 

270 John Gray Blount Papers 

pretty Generally appeared, there has been no business of Consequence 
before the House, except a Bill introduced to day by M r Drew 7 from 
Hallifax at the introduction he drew the attention of the House in a very 
Considerable Degree, the bill appears to have Several Objects in View, 
the General Object appears to be to Tax the States Bank 8 and compell 
them to pay Specie by the first day of March next & some others that I 
don't recollect at this time, he came out in a very pompous manner & 
promises to unfold some hidden Secrets, such as that the Bank has for- 
feited its charter &C. &C. and that he is determined to draw some of the 
quick silver as he Calls it from its Vaults — It is said that Col. Porter 9 has 
bro 1 his Saddle bags full of (2) Bills and Resolutions, but what they Con- 
tain I am at a loss to know, it is however said that he wants to call a 
Convention — The Penatentiary appears to be popular — Very little is said 
yet about the Navigation bill, the Governors Message was receiv'd yes- 
terday. As it will get to you as soon as this letter it is unecessary to say 
any thing on that Subject — So far as I am able to Judge at present 
Pickett, 10 Porter, Iredell, 11 and Drew will be the leading Characters. I 
think there are Several Gentlemen of Good abilities in the House, there 
are a great many New & Young Members several I may almost say 
beardless boys but appear to be young men of Education — I believe 
there is nothing more that I can inform of, more than you can see in the 
News papers — the Boarders had fallen down before we got here from 125 

7 William Drew represented the town of Halifax in the North Carolina House of Commons 
in 1803, 1809, 1813, 1814, and 1816. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 247, 257, 265, 266, 

8 The State Bank of North Carolina was chartered by the legislature in 1810. In addition to 
the central bank at Raleigh, there were to be branch banks at Edenton, New Bern, Wil- 
mington, Fayetteville, Tarboro, and Salisbury. The state was to subscribe $250,000 to the 
capitalization, which was limited to $1,600,000. During the inflationary period between the 
end of the War of 1812 and the panic of 1819, the bank apparently made excessive loans and 
issued bank notes too freely. This may be the reason William Drew thought the State Bank 
had forfeited its charter. Lefler and Newsome, North Carolina, 290, 302. 

9 William Porter of Rutherford County participated in the constitutional ratification con- 
ventions of 1788 and 1789 and served numerous nonconsecutive terms in both houses of the 
North Carolina General Assembly, beginning in 1780 and continuing through 1816. 
Cheney, North Carolina Government, 206-270 passim, 767, 769. 

10 Joseph Pickett of Anson County served several terms in both houses of the North Caro- 
lina General Assembly. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 250, 264, 265, 269, 270, 285, 286, 
288, 304. 

n James Iredell, Jr., of Edenton, was governor of North Carolina in 1827 and 1828 and was 
a member of the General Assembly many times between 1814 and 1 828. Cheney, North Caro- 
lina Government, 161, 265-290 passim. 

Letters for 1816 271 

cents to 100 and 90 Cents, so there is no objection on that Score. I hope 
you will be so Kind as to write to me the next mail if Convenient. 

I am with due Respects 
Your's &.C. 
W m Vines 

N.B. Give my Respects to all who think it worth while to enquire after 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 " 
N. C. 

J. W. Worthington to John Gray Blount 

[November 23, 1816] 

Dear Sir/ 

I send by the flatt 4312 feet Scantling being all that we have that is 
good & 6399 feet Inch boards; I do not know what quantity the flatt 
takes of Singles, but in the two shall endeavor to send 100,000; but am 
fearful we shall not effect it, as this flatt cannot get down the creek full 
loaded, & the other is too small to carry those that are left — 

Yrs. respectfully 
Nov. 23. 1816 J. W. Worthington 

Addressed: M r J. G Blount 



William Clark 1 to John Gray Blount 

Pitt County/ Piny Grove 7th Jany 1817 

Dear Sir 

You will please to send by the bearer the barrel of Rum which I en- 
gaged of you & if you can conveniently procure an Iron Pot the Size or 
nearly the Size of that large Pot which sot in the yard at M rs Blounts you 
will please to send it to me & oblige 

Your Friend William Clark 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 " 

William Gaston 2 to John Gray Blount 

Washington Jan y 17 th 1817 

Dear Sir 

I am desirous that the inclosed letter should reach M r Blackledge 3 as 
speedily as may be, because it relates to a subject on which he wants 
early information. As you probably know where M r B is to be found I 
have taken the liberty to request that you will have the goodness to cause 
him to receive it without delay. 

Very respectfully Sir 
Your most obed 1 Serv 1 
Will: Gaston 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 

1 William Clark of Pitt County was a member of the North Carolina House of Commons 
in 1820, 1829, and 1830. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 277, 293, 295. 

2 For William Gaston see 1812, n. 56. 

3 This is probably a reference to William Blackledge. See 1803, nn. 20, 32, 40. 

274 John Gray Blount Papers 

James T rumble to W. G. Blount 

Nashville 10 Feb. 1817 


Yours of the 20 th Jany covering me to you from Jn° G Blount came to 
hand. I have communicated its contents to Robert Thompson 4 — 

When the latter suits were commenced the tenants applyed to Mr. 
Whitesides 5 & myself we have pleaded to the suits and they stand for 
trial at June Term & I think it would be advisable for you to be here in 
the Spring before that court — 

I have obtained an order for taking the Depositions of Dobbins, 6 
Crutcher 7 and some other witnesses I have prepared the notices and 
given directions for taking the Depositions, and I hope every thing will 
be ready for a trial, there is some difficulty in not having an agent prop- 
erly qualifyed to take Depositions, however I have been particular in my 
instructions in order to remedy that deficiency. As to the subject of com- 
pensation it stands thus soon after my removal to West Tennessee and 
soon after the first suits were commenced by Pillow M r Strother em- 
ployed me to attend to those suits, there were two in the Federal Court 
& the ballance in Wilson Circuit Court, he informed me that he wished 
me to attend to them with M r Whiteside and that I should have a liberal 
fee proportioned to (2) the magnitude of the contest and my trouble no 
other agreement was made and no part was ever paid, those suits are all 
ended after four or five laborious trials in the Federal Court and circuit 
court of Davidson county — I have also a great propertion of trouble in 
preparing depositions &c &c before the trials — 

In the present suits I think it right that the tenants should contribute 
their part in paying counsel in as much as the issue is of more impor- 
tance to them than to M r Blount I will inform them of that I will there- 
fore expect from you a [illegible] the first set of causes & from the ten- 
ants for the present ones or at least a part of it — 

4 Robert Thompson was a speculator in Tennessee lands. See Land Warrants 3764, 4784, 
5138, 5202, 5272, and 5289, Tennessee State Archives. 

5 In all probability this refers to Jenkin Whiteside (1772-1822), a native of Pennsylvania 
who moved to Tennessee and practiced law in Knoxville. Whiteside also served as a United 
States senator from Tennessee (1809-1811). Hale and Merritt, Tennessee and Tennesseans, II, 
388-389; Who Was Who, 649. 

"This perhaps refers to William Dobbins, another land speculator in Tennessee. Land 
Warrants 1660, 1682, 1683, and 2195, Tennessee State Archives. 

7 This was probably Anthony Crutcher, who acquired North Carolina military warrants 
402, 1016, 2202, 3347, and 3426. Land Warrants 402, 1016, 2202, 3347, and 3426, Tennessee 
State Archives. 

Letters for 1817 275 

We have a cold winter in Tennessee. Snow covers the earth for 8 days 
past, the river has been frozen across &c nothing new. accept assurances 
of my sincere regard &c 

James Trumble 

Addressed: Honb 1 W G Blount 
In Congress 

Edward Pasteur 8 to John Gray Blount 

Farmville 18 th Feb y 1817 


By the Mail before the last I addressed You requesting to know, why 
You had declared in public the opinion, that "You had long since con- 
sidered me of no politicks whatever," for an answer to which I have wait- 
ed untill the present time, when finding it unattended to, and fearing 
that my communication may possibly have miscarried, my Friend M r 
John I. Pasteur 9 waits on You for the desired reply: the circumstance Sir, 
however unimportant to You, is to me, vastly different, I therefore have 
no hesitation in looking with confidence for Your ready acquiescence, to 
my so reasonable expectation. 

Your Ob 1 Serv 1 
E Pasteur 

J. G. Blount Esquire 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 

M r Pasteur 

8 Edward Pasteur of Craven County was adjutant general of North Carolina in 1807 and 
1808. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 183, 197n. 

"John I. Pasteur was one of the editors and owners of the Carolina Sentinel in New Bern. 
Miller, Recollections, 57. 

276 John Gray Blount Papers 

Jacob N. Gordon 10 to John Gray Blount 

Plymo. 20 March 1817 
John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 
D r Sir 

you will herewith please to receive a copy of a Decree in favor Edward 
R. Byrd v.s. you as administrator to Redding Blount Esq r Dec d 

Since I ordered this paper I have Seen a Statement made by you and 
now in the hands of the Executor of M Hardy 11 Dec d in which it appears 
you had paid nearly the balance due, you however did not Set down the 
Am 1 of the decree as March as it is — I have annexed a Statement which 
is nearly aggreeable to yours in all other respects, which leaves a balance 
due of 68.86 Cts. — which you will please have examined and if Correct 
pay the balance to M r Hines 12 and his recept shall be good [illegible] 

The Executor of M Hardy requires of me to produce the recepts to 
you for the Money before he can pay it, Will you be so good as to enable 
me to Claim it by a voucher that will be good for the Executor — 

I am D r Sir Very respectfully 
Your M. Obt St. 

Jacob N. Gordon Guard, 
to Edward R. Byrd 

[Attached decree omitted] 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 

M r Hines 

Willie Blount to William Augustus Blount 

BAKERDONjune 3 d 1817 

Dear Nephew, 

I have just rec d yours of the 23 d April and am so glad of it that I imme- 
diately after reading it sit down to acknowledge the receipt — The receipt 

10 Jacob N. Gordon is listed in the 1820 census as the head of a household of four. Potter, 
1820 North Carolina Census, Washington County, 19. 
11 For Miles Hardy see 1803, n. 72. 
12 This reference may be to Richard Hines. See 1824, n. 23. 

Letters for 1817 277 

of a News Paper announcing your marriage gave me pleasure — John in- 
formed me you were married 13 — I tender you and your good Lady my 
best wishes for your joint and individual happiness, in this, your Aunt 
Mary, 14 who is barely able to hobble about the house on crutches, most 
heartily joins me — the mode of life you have just entered on is the only 
rational way of living and it is best calculated to promote happiness — it 
is a mode of living in which people may be happy if they please, and it is 
the only way — Nothing could add more to my gratifications thro' life 
than to have you for my nearest neighbour, at Bakerdon, provided such a 
residence accorded with your views of future persuits — to live near to one 
of my family connexion whom I love, and I love them all, would afford 
me a pleasure greater than I have language to communicate an idea 
of — to be a neighbour to the son of your Father and Mother, who I have 
ever viewed in the two fold lights of my Father, Mother, Brother & Sister 
would give me sensations which I cannot describe — Knowing my feelings 
as I am satisfied you do in relation to them and their family I need say 
no more — Mary has endured as much afflicting pain as any person ever 
could bear to live, but I hope & believe she will be well again, tho' her 
entire recovery is very distant — every neighbour we have nursed her as 
constantly and as affectionately for upwards of three months (2) day and 
night as if she had been the most beloved one of each of their families 
and if any of them ever should be near you it will afford me pleasure for 
you to act towards them as my good friends — but for their kindness and 
friendly offices and attentions I should have been worn down and Mary 
would before this have been in her grave & I should have been left whol- 
ly disconsolate regarding this world & this life as useless to me forever in 
all ways — I am so fashioned that those whom I love I love with all my 
soul and have great pleasure in loving them and when one whom I thus 
love is taken away I feel like one who is dead — the only property that I 
think truly desireable in this world is the interest I feel in the wellfare 
and well-being of my friends and connexions — it is a rational property 
— all other kinds that I know any thing of may be called, so far as it pro- 
motes comfort, a convenient property, and nothing more, according to 
the use made of it, or contemplated to be made of it — and it is in general 
something like a button on a Summer-Coat — it is nearly bed time and I 
will drop the curtain for to night — Since sleeping last night my Garden 
and Irish Potatoes have been cleaned and dressed over — they look the 
better for the attention bestowed on them, you Know my Garden is a fer- 

13 William A. Blount's first wife was Anne Haywood, the daughter of Sherwood Haywood 
of Raleigh. Ashe, Biographical History of North Carolina, I, 166. 

"Willie Blount's first wife was Lucinda Baker of Bertie County, North Carolina. His 
second wife was Mary White, the widow of Hugh White of Knoxville. Keith and others, 
Blount Papers, I, xxix. 

278 John Gray Blount Papers 

tile spot and the Potatoe-ground is very much like it in fertility, hence I 
count on a great crop of them — I must inform you that the ground before 
my door which we were trying to get ready when you was here has now 
as good looking wheat on it as is to be seen in any Country, if it meets 
with no disaster it will produce thirty and thirty five bushels per acre — it 
would really surprize you to see it — you Know the ground when under- 
going the ploughing was so hard that it broke up very obstinately & in 
some places the (3) Plough could scarcely be made to penetrate the 
ground at all — The Timothy and Big-Blue-Grass which I had sewed last 
fall looks as if it would yield a Ton or so to the acre, and the red-clover 
seed which I had sewed with my wheat & Rye, about six acres, has come 
up well — about fifteen acres of my old Pasture is now planted in Corn by 
way of preparing it for the reception of small-grain and Clover and 
Timothy seed next fall, if it should do well it will be an encouragement 
to me to sew about forty acres more the fall after on the Southern part of 
my place which forty acres I propose to have set out in Apple and Peach 
Trees as soon as I can after next fall — This Spring has been quite a cool 
one and as yet tolerably seasonable — my corn crop altho' it is low looks 
tolerably well — it is clean and when the ground gets warm it will grow 
fast — my wheat, Rye and oats look well — Tell W. L. Blount that M r 
Bayley of Clarksville married Miss Polly Bryan last Thursday — about 
200 People were at the wedding and I among the number — say to him 
also that the old dancing Master Golliday is dead — he was playing his 
fiddle about an hour before he died — Some say that he was married a 
few days before his death — that he had a run-away-match of it — that the 
Girl's father when he found it out took her from him which grieved Golli- 
day so sorely that he died — My young horse Citizen proved to be so un- 
ruly that his keeper could do nothing with him, so I had him unstuded & 
he makes a fine saddle horse — I have seen one or two of his Colts which 
are so good that I am satisfied he would have made a very valuable Stud- 
Horse had he been kept as one — I don't admire your choice of residence, 
in a Town, because I don't (4) believe that a man of your active turn can 
employ his time in such a place to the same benefit to the community 
nor spend it as satisfactorily in Town as in the Country — the great object 
of life is to be useful to the community and to promote the growth of in- 
dividual comfort on the most rational scale — if you lived on a farm I 
should promise myself a great deal of satisfaction and edification from a 
correspondence with you on agricultural subjects and experiments in 

Letters for 1817 279 

that persuit — when I was allowed the pleasure of your company the time 
passed off charmingly and interestingly so much so that I sincerely wish 
we lived near enough to each other to have daily social intercourse thro' 

10 th If I had sent this by the first mail after the date, as I intended to 
have done, it would have saved an apology for my neglect — I forgot it 
and that is but a poor apology — it is however the fact, and it is said that 
a fact is a stubborn thing which will always speak for itself and requires 
not the support of reasoning — since commencing this letter much of my 
Wheat before the door has lodged and of course injured but it is so good 
it would astonish you, who saw the ground before it was sewed, to see 
it — My farm is much better ordered than it was last year, and looks as if 
it was nicely dressed and cultivated — the different crops of small-grain, 
Corn, Grass, Potatoes, Pumpkins, Garden and Fruit-trees promise a 
more abundant Crop than usual — the Cotton looks only tolerable, that is 
ascribeable to the coolness of the season — to a Carolinian I should have 
mentioned that my Peas look well — they do — Doctor Wiatt, who is ap- 
pointed Surgeon to the rifle regiment, U.S. Army, with his family & the 
family of Gen 1 Thomas A. Smith 15 left this two days ago on their way to 
S l Louis, there to be stationed — (5) they were accompanied from Nash- 
ville to this place by M r8 May — their visit to us was very acceptable — 
during their stay Mary who was so pleased with their company did for 
the first time since Jan y last walk across the room unsupported by 
Crutches, but she is still obliged to use them in common — She will I 
hope before long be able to do without them and when she may be able 
to do so I shall be able to attend to out-door-business, and the first that 
will engage my attention will be the division of my brother Reading's 
land for my Sister and the heirs — her situation has for many months pre- 
vented me from leaving home to attend to any thing of the Kind — Our 

"Thomas Adams Smith (1781-1844) was a career army officer originally from Virginia. 
He was commissioned in 1803 as a captain of rifles. By 1808 he was lieutenant colonel of the 
regiment, and he assumed command of the regiment during the War of 1812, fighting at 
Plattsburg, Sacketts Harbor, Burlington, Vermont, and against the Seminole Indians in 
Florida. He earned a promotion to brigadier general for his war exploits in 1814. In 1814, 
while commanding the rifle regiment, he was named commander in chief of the territories 
of Missouri and Illinois, with headquarters at Bellefontaine near St. Louis. President James 
Monroe later appointed Smith the receiver of public monies in Franklin, Missouri, a post 
Smith held from 1818 until 1826. Fort Smith in Arkansas is named for him. Folmsbee and 
others, Tennessee, I, 258; Who Was Who, 565. 

280 John Gray Blount Papers 

present Governor McMinn 16 is opposed by brother Foster 17 at the next 
election — W. G. Blount 18 is opposed by Gen 1 Cocke 19 — Marr, 20 Gen 1 
Johnson, 21 Reynolds, 22 Booker 23 and Goodrich are candidates in this dis- 
trict, which is the sixth, for Congress — Cannon, 24 Weakley 25 & Clai- 
borne 26 for the 5 th — Doctor Hogg 27 & Overton 28 for the 4 th — Jones 29 & 
Rodgers 30 for the 3 d — William & Cocke as above said for the 2 d & Wil- 
liam will be elected as is thought — John Rhea 31 and Sevier 32 for the 1 st 

16 Joseph McMinn (1758-1824), originally from Pennsylvania, moved to Tennessee and be- 
came a member of the territorial legislature in 1794. He served in the Tennessee constitu- 
tional convention in 1796 and in the state legislature (1796-1804), where he was speaker of 
the house three times. McMinn was elected governor of Tennessee in 1815 and held the 
post until 1821. He then was appointed the federal agent to the Cherokee Indians 
(1823-1824) and negotiated the treaty whereby the Cherokees ceded huge tracts of land in 
eastern Tennessee to the United States. Folmsbee and others, Tennessee, I, 210, 214, 263, 265, 
272-273, 291, 293-294; Who Was Who, 421. 

17 Ephraim Hubbard Foster (1794-1854) was born in Kentucky, graduated from Cumber- 
land College in 1812, and was admitted to the Tennessee bar in 1814. Foster was elected to 
the state legislature (1829-1831, 1835-1837) and served as speaker of the house during his last 
term in office. From 1838 to 1845 Foster represented Tennessee in the United States Senate. 
Folmsbee and other, Tennessee, I, 309, 321, 334, 345-346, 350-351, 353-354, 357-359; Hale and 
Merritt, Tennessee and Tennesseans, II, 435, 437, 440, 489, 522; Who Was Who, 257. 

18 For William Grainger Blount see 1807, n. 35. In subsequent letters he is sometimes re- 
ferred to simply as William. In 1811 he had been a member of the Tennessee legislature, 
and from 1811 to 1815 he was secretary of state in Tennessee. He was elected to the Four- 
teenth and Fifteenth congresses, serving in the House of Representatives from 1815 to 1819. 
Biographical Directory of Congress, 605-606. 

19 This is probably a reference to General John Cocke (1772-1854), a prominent Tennessee 
soldier, planter, and politician. He began practicing law in Tennessee in 1793 and was 
elected at different times to both houses of the state legislature, beginning in 1796 and con- 
tinuing through 1843. Cocke served as major general of Tennessee volunteers during the 
Creek War and fought at New Orleans as colonel of a regiment of Tennessee riflemen. 
From 1819 to 1827 Cocke represented his state in the United States Congress. Cocke was 
also instrumental in founding a school for the deaf and dumb in Tennessee. Biographical Di- 
rectory of Congress, 760; Folmsbee and others, Tennessee, I, 258-260, 294; Who Was Who, 182. 

20 George Washington Lent Marr (1779-1856) was born in Virginia and was a graduate of 
the University of North Carolina. He moved to Tennessee and became attorney general 
first of West Tennessee (1807-1809) and later of the Fifth Tennessee District (1809-1813). 
Marr fought in the Creek War and was wounded in battle. He returned to farming but was 
elected to the United States House of Representatives, serving from 1817 to 1819. In 1834 
Marr participated in Tennessee's constitutional convention. Who Was Who, 403. 

21 This was probably Thomas Johnson, a brigadier general in the Tennessee militia, who 
fought with Andrew Jackson against the Creek Indians in 1813. Johnson served several 
terms in the Tennessee legislature and was the father of Cave Johnson, James K. Polk's 
postmaster general. McBride, Directory of the Tennessee Ceneral Assembly, I, 410-41 1 ; Hale and 
Merritt, Tennessee and Tennesseans, II, 259-260. 

22 James B. Reynolds (1779-1851) was born and reared in Ireland. Upon moving to Ameri- 
ca he migrated to Clarksville, Tennessee, where he began practicing law in 1804. He also 
served as a United States congressman from 1815 to 1817 and from 1823 to 1825. Biographical 
Directory of Congress, 1600; Who Was Who, 509. 

23 This may refer to Peter R. Booker (1784-1839), who was a senator in the Tennessee 
legislature from 1813 to 1815. Originally from Williamson County, he later moved to Maury 
County, Tennessee. McBride, Directory of the Tennessee Ceneral Assembly, I, 60-61. 

Letters for 1817 281 

and it is said Rhea will be elected — I believe there is some hundreds of 
Candidates for the State legislature, among them Judge White 33 & 
Miller 34 — I have the honor not to be a candidate for any appointment 
and never shall be again — farming and private persuits are my hobbies 
and they of course will engage my attention, that is, as much of it as a 
lazy man can give — The Kentuckians are trying to make the world be- 
lieve that Gen 1 Jackson in his official report of the battle at Orleans did 

24 Newton Cannon (1781-1841) was born in North Carolina but later moved to Tennessee. 
He served in the state Senate in 181 1, in the state militia during the Creek War, and was 
colonel of the Tennessee Mounted Rifles during the War of 1812. Cannon was elected to 
the United State Congress (1814-1817, 1819-1823) and became a bitter political opponent of 
Andrew Jackson. Cannon was the first Whig elected governor of Tennessee, serving from 
1835 to'l839. Folmsbee and others, Tennessee, I, 280, 294, 299, 301, 309-310, 314, 331, 
342-344, 348, 376, 383, 496-498; Who Was Who, 163. 

25 For Robert Weakley see 1810, n. 38. 

26 Thomas Claiborne (1780-1856) was born in Virginia. He moved to Tennessee where he 
began practicing law in 1807. During the Creek War he served on Jackson's staff. He was 
also a member of the state legislature. Claiborne was elected to one term in the United 
States Congress (1817-1819). Biographical Directory of Congress, 739; Who Was Who, 175. 

27 Samuel Hogg (1783-1842) was born in North Carolina and studied medicine in Tennes- 
see in 1804. Hogg taught school as well, until he became a surgeon for the First Regiment, 
Tennessee Volunteer Infantry, in 1812. He later acted as hospital surgeon on Jackson's staff 
during the Creek War and on General William Carroll's staff from 1814 to 1815. Hogg was 
elected to the United States Congress for one term (1817-1819) and then returned to his 
medical practice in Tennessee and Mississippi. Hogg helped found the Tennessee Medical 
Society and served as its president in 1840. Hale and Merritt, Tennessee and Tennesseans, II, 
478, 481; Who Was Who, 325. 

28 For John Overton see 1804, n. 5. 

29 Francis Jones, a lawyer from Winchester, Tennessee, served three successive terms in 
the United States House of Representatives (1817-1823). He also served as solicitor general 
of the Third Tennessee District in 1815. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1203; Who Was 
Who, 353. 

30 James R. Rogers was a member of the Tennessee Senate from 1811 to 1813. He lived in 
Roane County. McBride, Directory of the Tennessee General Assembly, I, 636. 

31 John Rhea (1753-1832) was born in Ireland and moved to America in 1769. He gradu- 
ated from Princeton in 1780 and fought in the Revolutionary War. From 1785 to 1790 Rhea 
served in the North Carolina House of Commons and was a member of the North Carolina 
convention held to ratify the federal Constitution. He moved to Tennessee in the early 
1790s, where he attended the first state constitutional convention (1796) and served in the 
state legislature (1796, 1797). He was elected to the United States House of Representatives 
for almost two decades, serving from 1803 to 1815 and from 1817 to 1823. Rhea also farmed 
and became deeply interested in promoting higher education in Tennessee. He acted as a 
trustee to Washington College, Greenville (Tusculum) College, and Blount (University of 
Tennessee) College. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1601; Who Was Who, 510. 

32 John Sevier, Jr. (1766-1845), was the son of John Sevier and Sarah Hawkins Sevier. He 
owned large tracts of land in Washington County and Carter County, Tennessee, and at- 
tempted to mine lead there. After living for a while in Overton County, he finally settled in 
Greene County. He represented Washington County in the Tennessee House of Commons 
during the Third General Assembly, 1799-1801. McBride, Directory of the Tennessee General As- 
sembly, I, 660-661. 

33 For Hugh Lawson White see 1804, n. 7. 

"This probably was Pleasant M. Miller. See 1803, n. 26. 

282 John Gray Blount Papers 

not do the Militia from that State justice, 35 & the Gen 1 stands to it that 
he did — I expect that the object of the former is to pull the Gen 1 down in 
(6) public estimation, and if so they will throw dirt as long as they can, 
and if the Gen 1 will (after making a bare statement of facts in relation to 
that whole affair) be entirely silent, they will find that they have nothing 
to throw dirt about & they will quit less satisfied than when they began 
the squabble — whether the Gen 1 will have patience enough for the ob- 
servance of a tacit course or not I cannot say — I did intend to have made 
this letter touch on other points but my neighbour Doct r Roulhac being 
about to visit Nashville I shall cut this bob short and ask him to put it in 
the post office at that place which will forward it a week or so — Mary 
and the Children as well as Major Baker 36 & family join me in the re- 
quest that you present us in terms of affectionate regard to your good 
Lady, father, family and other connexions and am 

yours affectionately 
Willie Blount 

Major Gen 1 W. A. Blount 

Addressed: Major Gen 1 W. A. Blount 
North Carolina 

To be put in the 

Post Office, at Nashville 

35 Kentucky officials had good reason for the anger they felt toward Jackson, for Old Hick- 
ory at New Orleans did not prepare his defenses adequately on the west bank of the Missis- 
sippi River, and he blamed the Kentucky troops for the disaster that his army nearly suf- 
fered at the hands of the British. Although a court of inquiry exonerated the Kentuckians of 
conduct deserving censure, Jackson continued to disparage them. Remini, Andrew Jackson 
and the Course of American Empire, 273, 287-288. 

38 This is a reference to John Baker of Bertie County, North Carolina. Baker was Willie 
Blount's father-in-law through Blount's first marriage. Baker apparently had moved to 
Tennessee to live near his daughter who was deceased at the time of this letter. Genealogi- 
cal Files, Tennessee State Archives; Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xxix; John Hill 
Wheeler, Reminiscences and Memoirs of North Carolina and Eminent North Carolinians (1883-1884; 
reprint ed., Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1966), lxi, 32, 130, hereinafter cited as 
Wheeler, Reminiscences of North Carolina. 

Letters for 1817 283 

John Devereux DeLacy to John Gray Blount 

Newbern June the 14 th 1817 
John G Blount Esq 1 " 
Dear Sir 

I intended being with you at last Court having a great deal to say to 
you, as I have since I last saw you made a complete tour of the Country 
up alligator & Scupanong and between them and Mattamuskeet which 
Country together with your farm, and the sugar Cane I really like very 
much. The sugar Cane is thrifty and as a plant Cane with the plough 
will answer a good purpose: But I have been retained — to defend Gen 1 
Roberts before the Court Martial, for which I get two thousand Dollars, 
600$ Down and the residue by order on the Treasurer for money due by 
the State to him which he secures by his note to me at 12 Months. This 
is better than a solitary Case in a County Court, And will serve I hope to 
introduce me to business on a more extensive scale — 

I have since I saw you entred 128,540 acres of Land in Carteret County 
that was David Allisons. It had been sold for taxes & I have reentred it. 
There is some of it really first rate, I am getting M r Price 37 to plot it off, 
so that I may pick out the good, and leave what I dont think worth keep- 
ing — Some of it, one Body particularly is equal to the first rate apaluchia 
praira land, and seems to have been formed in the same way — 

Tell Gen 1 Blount if he has any Books on Courts Martial He will very 
much oblige and serve me, by sending them by the Post Boy and I will 
return them safely — 

With best Respects I am Dear Sir 

Y r Most Obed 1 Serv 1 
John Dev x De Lacy 

N.B. All location of the N. J. Branch Bank is positively postponed untill 
the fall, and I believe untill the meeting of the General Assembly 

[No address] 

"This was probably Jonathan Price of Pasquotank County, North Carolina. He and John 
Strother produced a map of North Carolina in 1808. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III. 

284 John Gray Blount Papers 

James Trumble to John Gray Blount 

Nashville 26: July 1817 

D Sir 

There is a suit depending in the court of Davidson County wherein the 
lessee of Grubbs & League are plaintiffs & Andrew Work is defendant, I 
am Counsel for Defendt and the plaintiff has appointed to take the de- 
position of yourself & Squire Aden at the Court house of Beaufort 
County on the 2 d Saturday of September next — & notice has been served 
accordingly. My client M r Work cannot attend so far to take [manu- 
script torn] the fact in dispute is about a tract of 274 acres granted upon 
a military warrant to Jeremiah Smith. 38 the plaintiff claims title by a 
deed from Samuel Smith calling himself heir of Jeremiah Smith — the de- 
fendant denies that he was heir of the grantee — & the plff will endeavor 
to prove by the witnesses that he is. I wish you to State in your deposi- 
tion whether you Knew a Jeremiah Smith a soldier in the North Caro- 
lina line, and what Kind of man he was. & whether he had any children, 
also did you Know a mulatto man of that name a waggoner in the army. 
& what became of him & if your deposition is not taken I would like 
those questions answered in a letter to me. 

Your deeds with Pillow about the tract in Wilson were not reached on 
the docket last term, they will not be tryed before next June 

Your friend 

James Trumble 

Addresses: John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 
Beaufort County 
N° Carolina 

38 Jeremiah Smith of Beaufort County was a private in Allen's Company, Second Regi- 
ment, during the Revolutionary War. He received 274 acres for enlisting, and Samuel 
Smith later claimed he was Jeremiah Smith's heir and had a right to the land. Register of 
the North Carolina Continental Line, Second Regiment; Treasurer's and Comptroller's 
Records, Military Papers, Service Records and Settlements, 1776-1792. One Jeremiah 
Smith, who was a Negro, petitioned Congress in 1851 for a pension. He was a servant to 
John Smith of Johnston County during the Revolutionary War and carried expresses and 
performed similar tasks for the officers. He may have been the mulatto referred to in this 
letter. Crow, Black Experience in Revolutionary North Carolina, 102. 

Letters for 1817 285 

Eli Smallwood to John (hay Blount 

Philadelphia Sept 1 st 1817 

My Dear Sir 

I have requested J. M Roberts Cashier of the St Bank to give you the 
Mony for my Note after deducting the Int. from it you will therefore 
send it to him 

I have this day sold all my Stock in the U S Bank at 56/pct above par I 
make by this speculation $23,000 

John Myers & company wishes to purchase my interest in the Matta- 
muskeet land I do not wish to be selfish in this sale I [s]hall therefore if a 
sale should be effected Make it for the benefit of all concerned he has 
promised to go with me to Mattamusket in October I have told him he 
may have the Ten thousand acre tract of land for One Hundred thous- 
and dollars of the comp will agree to it if will do us no injury to ask a 
good price as we can then take what we think proper 

E. Smallwood 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

Benjamin Robinson™ to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville Dec r 10 th 1817 

John Gray Blunt Esq r 

Sir At the request of one of my neighbours I take the liberty to write you 
to inquire whether you own at this time a Tract of Land in this County 
(Cumberland) containing five thousand one hundred & twenty acres ly- 
ing at the head waters of Gibson's, Carver's, Greens & Beaver Creeks, 
patented 1794, entered by Jas. Porterfield 40 & by him transferred to 
you — if you are the owner of the Tract whether you will sell a part or the 
whole, and at what price 

39 Dr. Benjamin Robinson of Fayetteville was elected in 1814 by the North Carolina legis- 
lature as a member of the Council of State. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 171. 

40 James Porterfield had been a prominent citizen of Fayetteville and was involved with the 
Blounts in land speculation. Porterfield served in the North Carolina House of Commons in 
1791. He died in 1795. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 227; Keith and others, Blount 
Papers, III, 204n. 

286 John Gray Blount Papers 

The land appears still to be yours by the records of our county; but if 
you have conveyed it perhaps you can inform me who the present owner 
or owners is or are — I learn from my neighbour that the land was sold 
some time since for the Taxes but the purchaser neglected to obtain a 
title Several Enteries are now making of different parts of the Tract — 

I hope to hear from you as soon as convenient, 

With due respect 
I am Sir your very 
humble serv 1 
Benj n Robinson 

Addressed: John Gray Blunt Esqr. 
No. Carolina 

Thomas H. Blount's Bill of Sale to William Augustus Blount 

[December 31, 1817] 

Know all men by these presents that I Thos. H Blount for and in consid- 
eration of the sum of six hundred & fifty dolls, to me in hand paid, the 
int. whereof. I hereby acknowledge & myself fully satisfyed contented & 
paid hath bagained sold and delivered, and by these presents doth ba- 
gain sell and deliver unto the said William Augustus Blount a certain 
negro man named Joshua — 

To have and to hold unto the said William A. Blount his Excrs. Adms. 
or assigns — And I the said Thos H Blount will warrant and forever de- 
fend the said negro Joshua unto the said Will. A. Blount his Excrs. 
Adms. or assigns forever — In witness whereof I have hereunto set my 
hand & seal this thirty first day of December 1817. Witness. 

Thos. H Blount (Seal) 

JG Blount jr 

(2) Beaufort County Court June Term 1818 Then was this Bill Sale from 
Tho 8 H Blount to W m A. Blount Acknowledgd in Court by S d Tho 8 H. 
Blount let it be registered 

Tho Smaw 41 Clk 

41 Thomas Smaw of Beaufort County was a member of the North Carolina Senate from 
1805 to 1807. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 249, 251, 252. 


Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount 

FAYETTEViLLEjany. 24 th 1818 
John Grey Blunt Esqr. 
Dear Sir 

your favor of the 7 th inst. came duly to hand and would have been 
sooner attended to but for the lameness of M r Groves 1 hand which pre- 
vented him from writing & a little time spent in endeavoring to procure 
some other person to act as your agent, as I have much business of my 
own to attend to I have however concluded to act in that capacity, if on 
the perusal of M r Groves letter you think proper to empower me and 
furnish me with the references to your different Lands — Your offer is cer- 
tainly liberal — 

Should you determine on appointing me your agent perhaps it will be 
well to do it as soon as convenient, I learn that one or more sales have 
been made since I wrote you of a part the tract of Land refered to in my 
letter — these sales were for taxes & the land can be redeem 'd I presume 

With due respect I am D r Sir 
yours &c — 

Benj n Robinson 

Addressed: John Grey Blunt Esq 1 " 
No: Carolina 

1 William Barry Grove (1764-1818) was a Fayetteville lawyer who served in the state House 
of Commons (1786, 1788, 1789) and attended both state ratification conventions for the 
United States Constitution. In addition, Grove became a trustee for the University of North 
Carolina and president of the Fayetteville branch of the Bank of the United States. A 
staunch Federalist, Grove represented a North Carolina constituency in the United States 
Congress (1791-1803). Biographical Directory of Congress, 1039; Who Was Who, 292. 


John Gray Blount Papers 

John Gray Blount to Benjamin Robinson 

Washington Feby 19 th 1818 
D r Sir 

Yours of the 24 th Ult° enclosing the Letter of WB Grove Esq r came 
duly to hand and that being satisfactory I herewith send you the draft of 
an Agreement which I suppose it may be proper for us to enter into in 
order to provide against accident. If you approve it execute it & leave it 
with my Friend Mr Grove & inform me the date that I may execute & 
send you a counter part & a power of Attorney Herewith I send you the 
N° of all the Grants I claim which are registered in Cumberland County 
by reference to which you will see the dimensshion of the Land, Most of 
them were [illegible] in my name & no conveyance registered from me 
The rest granted to David Allison but all were sold for the taxes of 1796 
in 1798 & purchased for me by John Strother who conveyed them again 
to me I have the Sheriffs Deed to Strother & his to me They shall be 
[illegible] & sent you as well as some (2) plotts of part the Land 

Copy of this sent Doc 1 B Robinson 
(3) List of Grants of Land claimed by JGB in Cumberland C y 


640 Acres dated 23 d April 1795 
5800 18 July 95 


18July 1795 


10Dc r 1795 



All above granted to David Allison 
66018 granted to JG Blount 


Letters for 1818 289 


1052 \ dated 26 Nov r 1 





1064) dated 23 April 1795 



[Agreement omitted] 

Joseph Blount 2 to John Gray Blount 
[City and month torn off, probably February] 22 nd 1818 

Dear Sir 

I Rec d a letter from M r T. Allen a few Days ago informing me that 
Jacob 3 was Still in the woods committing many Depradations in that 
Part of the county in Consequence of which & his unwillingness to come 
to me I think it will Be Best to Write Worsly that he Can Take him un- 
till I See him than I will make a Bargain with him for the Ballance of the 
year or other wise as the Case may Be I write him this Merely that he 
may come in So that I can Get holde of him I Don't wish By any means 
that Worsly Should Know But what I Entend Letting him Keep him as 
above mentioned I also wish that when he comes in you would Give me 
as Earley notice of it as Possible and I will come Down and we will fix on 
Some way for his apprehension So that it can Be affectually affected fear- 
full that if there Should Be an attempt made to Take him and Should fail 
that he will Be hard to [illegible] in again & if we can Succeede in this 
you can have any recourse on him and than I will Take him up with me 
and Dispose of him to the first Goergia Speculator that Comes the Letter 

2 Joseph Blount was an affluent member of the Edenton branch of the Blount family. Ap- 
parently he was a merchant, too, being a partner in the New York firm of Blount & Jack- 
son. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 423n; see 1821, n. 8. 

3 Apparently Jacob was a runaway slave who had been hired out for a year to Mr. Allen. 
It was not uncommon for slaves who had been hired out to behave in this manner. 

290 John Gray Blount Papers 

that I Send worsely the Postage will Be Paid please Take it out & for- 
ward it as Earley as Possible Please to Inform Allen what we have con- 
cluded on also 

I am Respectfully Sir yours &. C 
Jo Blount 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 
Washington NC 

John Gray Blount's Power of Attorney to Benjamin Robinson 

[February 27, 1818] 

North Carolina 

Beaufort County 

Know all men by these Presents that I John Gray Blount of the State 
and County aforesaid have constituted made and appointed and by these 
Presents do constitute make and appoint Doct r Benjamin Robinson of 
the County of Cumberland and State aforesaid my true and lawful At- 
torney for the purpose of selling and conveying all the right title and in- 
terest which I have in sundry Tracts or parcels of Land in the said 
County of Cumberland which were granted to me by the State of North 
Carolina or conveyed to me by John Strother giving and granting to my 
said Attorney by these Presents my full and whole power strength and 
authority to explore, survey & sell the Lands and to convey all the right 
Title and interest which I have in the Lands in Cumberland County 
which were either granted to me by the State of North Carolina or con- 
veyed to me by John Strother by his Deed dated the 30 th day of July 
1798. and to sue and take all lawful means in my (2) name to recover said 
Lands if claimed by any Person to receive all such Sums of money as is 
or shall be due for the Sales of any part thereof and receipt or other 
proper acquaetances in my name to give and also in my name proper 
conveyances to execute which shall convey all my right title and interests 
to any or all the before discribed Lands in said County of Cumberland 
hereby ratifying and holding for firm and effectual all and whatsover my 
said Attorney shall lawfully do in and about the Promisses by virtue 
hereof In Witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand and Seal this 
27 th day of February in the year of our Lord 1818 

Signed Sealed & Delivered 

in presence of — 

Letters for 1818 291 

Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville Febr y 28 th 1818 
J. G. Blunt Esq r 
Dear Sir 

your favor of the 19 th inst. inclosing articles of agreement for the gov- 
ernment of our future intercourse on the subject of your Cumberland 
Lands came duly to hand. 

As the articles appeared to me to be equitable & proper I signed them 
yesterday (the 27 th Febr y ) and left them with your friend W m B. Grove 
Esq r 

When it is convenient for you to forward me a counterpart of the 
agreement and power of Attorney I will proceed to an examination of the 
situation of your lands and report to you from time to time my prog- 
ress — 

With much respect I am 
Dear Sir 

your obedient Serv 1 
Benj n Robinson 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 1 " 
North Carolina 

Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville April 22 d 1818 

John G. Blount Esqr 

Dear Sir 

So much time has elapsed since I wrote in reply to your favor of the 
19 th Feb y that I apprehend my letter has not reached you — I executed 
the agreement written by you for our government relative to our future 
transactions on the subject of Cumberland Lands and handed over to M r 
Grove — The Death of that worthy man will make it necessary to obtain 

292 John Gray Blount Papers 

the paper from his heirs and hand it over to Gen 1 Davis, 4 M r Winslow 5 or 
any person you think proper to name — 

I shall be pleased to hear from you as soon as convenient, and receive 
such further papers and instructions as you think proper to furnish, as 
delay may be adding to the number of your lost Claims — 

I am Dear Sir 

with much respect 

your obed 1 humble Serv 1 
Benj n Robinson 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esqr. 
North Carolina 

Burns & Sugg to John Gray Blount 

Bensboro 14 th June 1818 

John G Blount Esqr 

We have sent p Cap 1 King 210 Barrels soft Turpentine a Considerable 
part of which will want Coopering which you will please to have done we 
have 90 or 100 Barrels more that will be down in the Course of the next 
week which we would like to ship with the others to the care of Mess r8 R 
& C W. Davenport & Co. of New York write us at the return of Capt 
King if the Vessel will sail before the last of the next week & when the 
pork will be shipped 

Yours Rescptfully 
Burns &. Sugg 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 

4 This is probably a reference to Thomas Davis, who represented Fayetteville several times 
in the North Carolina legislature, and who was elected to the Council of State in 1808. 
Cheney, North Carolina Government, 169, 238, 242, 247, 256, 257, 266. 

5 John Winslow represented Fayetteville several times in the North Carolina legislature 
and was elected in 1848 to the Council of State. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 178, 268, 
270, 272, 274, 275. 

Letters for 1818 293 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville June 14 th 1818 

After some delays by the way I arrived here yesterday — M r Lockhart 
is absent from town but is expected back in a day or two, when he re- 
turns I shall soon know whether we can do any thing towards a settle- 
ment — I find Blackfan 6 has been an attentive agent & that your business 
has been attended to — A 640 on Blounts creek & the tract granted 
W Blount on Tennessee have been sold to Thompson 7 on the terms men- 
tioned to you by Uncle Willie's letter & part of the first payment re- 
ceived to day, the ballance of it, I shall get this week — William says he 
will convey this tract granted to his father & get the other Heirs to do 
so — I hope there will be no difficulty about it — 

I believe the calculations made on the Mississ e lands by the heirs of W. 
B are too greate to expect a relinquishment on the terms (2) you pro- 
pose — I did not mention it because I thought there was no probability of 
its being aceded to — William will be here soon, when some thing more 
decisive may be done — If you were to receive lands in the western district 
for the Am 1 of your judg 1 1 think they would not be valued less than $1 p r 
Acre, as I believe they would now command it — There have been sev- 
erall companies formed here & agents sent to N° Car° for the purpose of 
purchasing those claims & land warrants — Land warrants worth $1 and 
almost a certainty of their being $2 or more verry soon — I shall not sell 
at present, unless I find your wishes can be effected in no other way — 

Perhaps you could make some exchange with Donel who I suppose 
owns the lands conveyed by you to Speight 8 that would be profitable — 
The whole country have become speculators & the least assurance that 

6 Jesse Blackfan was a Blount land agent and speculator in Tennessee. Land Warrants 
769, 894, 1138, 1360, 1363, 3958, 4565, 5161, and others, Tennessee State Archives. 

7 This could refer to Jason Thompson, a Tennessee land speculator. Land Warrants 31, 
757, 1352, 3441, and 5029, Tennessee State Archives. 

"This might refer to Jesse Speight, a native of North Carolina who speculated in western 
lands. Speight (1795-1847) served as speaker of the North Carolina House of Commons 
(1820), in the North Carolina Senate (1823-1827), and in the United States House of Repre- 
sentatives (1829-1837). He moved to Mississippi after his term in Congress and was elected 
to that state's senate in 1841, serving through 1844. From 1845 to 1847 Speight represented 
Mississippi in the United States Senate as a member of the Democratic party. Biographical 
Directory of Congress, 1734; Who Was Who, 569; Land Warrant 4358, Tennessee State Ar- 


John Gray Blount Papers 

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Letters for 1818 295 

the treaty 9 will be made will raise Mississ e lands to two dollars or 
more — I have severall offers for lands & hope to bring considerable 
money with me, I can't say how much — In consequence of the Small pox 
being (3) in this place, the Federal Court adjourned without doing any 
business — of course your suit with Pillow for the land in Wilson is de- 
layed another court — I may not write every mail, but I shall do so when- 
ever I have any thing to communicate — My love to the family 

your Obd 1 Son 
JG Blount jr 

I find amongst the orrigional grants in my possession one for Ja 8 
McClanney for 2560 acres lying on Caney fork — I Know nothing of it — It 
may have got amongst them by accident, or perhaps you may Know 
some thing of it — There never has been any claimant for the land — 

[Marginal note] I rec d yours of 22 nd May 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville July 9 th 1818 

M r Lockhart has been preparing his papers for a settlement since my 
arrival here, & has not yet been able to furnish his Ace 1 . He says he will 
have it made out soon; but whether we shall come to a final settlement 
or not, is something doubtfull — My own impression is that we shall; but 
those who Know him better say it is impossible to settle an ace 1 with 
him — 

I think I have so hedged him in by an agreement to generall princi- 
pals, that there is no place left for him to escape — By way of guarding 
against any loss which might arrise from want of information about the 
Georgia business, & a correct Knowledge of the Am 1 of lands sold by 

9 In all likelihood the treaty referred to here was the Adams-Onis Treaty by which the 
United States was supposed to acquire Florida from Spain. Negotiations were deadlocked 
in 1818, when Andrew Jackson invaded Florida to deal with Seminole Indians who had 
troubled the United States on its southern frontier. Jackson's invasion prompted the Span- 
ish to pursue the negotiations again. Acquisition of Florida by the United States would 
have the effect of reducing the Indian threat and increasing the value of southwestern 
lands. Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of American Empire, 350-377, 382-383. 

296 John Gray Blount Papers 

Strother in this state, I have proposed that we settle as far as our present 
information goes, & that, if in the course of 18 months or two years, 
either party can substanuate any additional charge they may be per- 
mited to do so — if within that (2) time none are made by the parties, then 
this settlement is to be final — This if agreed to, may opperate in your 
favour & cannot against you — I have sold some lands & expect to sell 
more before I leave here; I am yet unable to say how much money I shall 
be able to raise — I shall do all I can towards it — I have been offered $1 p r 
Acre for lands in the western district; but I think the probability of the 
Indian titles being extinguished so great, that it would be improper to 
sell at that price — If there is any way of geting on without selling them 
until the Indian claim is extinguished, they will be worth an immense 
sum — Warrants may be said to be worth $1 [illegible] the cash could not 
be had for any large quantity at that — They never can be less & cer- 
tainly will be more — 

The claim against Allison & the one against Rice 10 I have done 
nothing final with yet — Th° I have some expectations from the first & 
believe I shall get the latter Erwin 11 I think will take Allisons if he can se- 
cure me the Am 1 of the purchase and through Judge Overton I expect to 
get the Am 1 of Rice's — Matters have been so managed with the Donel- 
son 12 that I fear it is too late to do anything — Uncle Willies faith in their 
honesty has lost you 2000 acres of land — 

(3) I shall leave here the last of this month — 

My love to the family 
Your Ob 1 Son 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

10 For John Rice see 1803, n. 54. 

11 For Andrew Erwin see 1810, n. 27. 

12 The reference is to Stockley Donelson, Andrew Jackson's brother-in-law, who was in- 
volved with Jackson in land speculation. In 1797, as Jackson journeyed to Philadelphia to 
take his seat in Congress, he heard news along the way of a land scandal involving Ten- 
nessee speculators who were forging North Carolina land warrants and selling Tennessee 
lands to which they had no legal claim. To Jackson's dismay, he learned later that Stockley 
Donelson was implicated in this land fraud. Remini, Andrew Jackson and the Course of Ameri- 
can Empire, 90, 117-118. 

Letters for 1818 297 

William Blackledge to John Gray Blount 

[July 26, 1818] 

Dear Sir/ 

The sum I paid at the bank of Newbern for you was $97.97 on the 6 th 
day of May 1818 — The inclosed will shew you the balance due on the ex- 
ecution of US vs R° Blackledges 13 estate — the interest of which calculate 
to the 6 th of May 1818 & for that procure me the discharge of the Collec- 
tor against the execution which take care of for 

yours W m Blackledge 
July 26 th 1818 

Take care also of the Statement for me — & if you can conveniently hand 
the balance of the money to Thomas or inclose it to me by the bearer I 
should be glad WB 

68. 6 


Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 

Ann C. Blount 14 to Polly Ann Rodman 15 

[August 26, 1818] 

My dear Cousin, 

I was very agreeably surprised to day by receiving a letter from you 
and I was both pained and pleased at the contents, pained at your afflic- 
tion for the loss of a son and pleased that affliction in all probability has 
led you to enqure what you must do: they are wisely ordered by the 
Father of all Mercies to draw our thoughts and affections from earthly 

13 No information on a Robert Blackledge was located by the editor. Possibly William 
Blackledge meant to write R d (rather than R°) for Richard Blackledge, in which case he 
was probably referring to either his father or his brother. See 1803, n. 20. 

14 The Ann C. Blount who wrote this letter was probably William Blount's oldest 
daughter. See 1804, n. 12. 

15 Polly Ann Rodman, married to William Rodman, was John Gray Blount's daughter. 
See 1812, n. 15. 

298 John Gray Blount Papers 

and fix them on heavenly things. When my dear cousin, shall herself be- 
come the sincere follower of the meek and lowly Jesus she will not think 
so highly of the attainments of her unworthy cousin — but altho I am not 
capable of directing you in so momentous a concern as the salvation of 
your soul; I will thank God that he has led you to enqure of me as it af- 
fords me an opportunity of sending you a book, viz. The Rise and Prog- 
ress of Religion in the Soul, that has been blessed to the conversion of 
many: read it, my dear Cousin with attention from beginning to end and 
pray earnestly to God for Christ's sake to enlighten you by his Holy 
Spirit and give you an understanding heart to discern the things that be- 
long to your everlasting peace. It is the precious blood of Christ that 
cleanseth from all sin: read your Bible pray for faith to believe in Christ. 
and I beseech you listen not to the cavils of unbeleivers for assuredly God 
has appointed a day in which he will judge the world by that man Christ 
Jesus. Write me frequently and freely on the subject of Religion, inform 
me what your views on the subject are. for I hope God has begun a good 
work in your soul, yes my dear cousin I will pray for you, that he will 
pour out of the out pouring of his spirit upon you and all your family — If 
it were in my power I would visit you but I cannot leave my aged Grand 
Father — My Uncle has not removed to New York as yet. he is on there 
at present with (2) three of his children who are there at school, when he 
does remove I shall go with him unless G. Papa stays here, my Sister has 
only one child Nancy Blount & she has been very ill this summer but is 
now well excepting a breaking out — she has lost three lovely Boys, my 
own health is very much improved my Aunt is only tolerable she desires 
her love to you. I hope Mama may derive the anticipated benefit from 
sea bathing I should be happy to see her but I suppose I never shall. I 
am happy to learn that cousin Margarette is so much better. Make my 
affectionate love with my Sisters to my Uncle, Aunt and all my other re- 
lations Remember this letter is for no other eye but yours. I hope the 
Books will prove a blessing to others as well as yourself — 

Yours &c. 

Ann C. Blount 

Aug. 26 th 1818 

Addressed: M rs Polly Anne Rodman 


N. Carolina 
M r Le Roy 16 

'This was probably Lewis LeRoy. See 1812, n. 26. 

Letters for 1818 299 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to Thomas H. Blount [with enclosure] 

TARB°Sept r 1818 

[To James Lockart, Nashville] 

Although it would seem there was little prospect of an adjustment of 
the Ace 1 between the representatives of J. Strother dec d and my Father, 
yet my desire to have it amicably settled, induces me to make another at- 
tempt, from a conviction if it can be effected, much trouble & unneces- 
sary expence will be saved to all parties — 

Before I make a proposal I will call to your recollection the terms on 
which we attempted to adjust the Acct 8 — you will recollect that the Es- 
tate of Strother was credited by one half the Am 1 paid Dillon 17 — some- 
thing over four thousand dollars (a reference to your ace 1 will show the 
precise am 1 ) If you have my Fathers letters to J. S. you will see that 
Strother was to have an interest in the Buncombe lands which he re- 
surveyed & c — In the contract with Dillon, he Dillon was to be at all ex- 
pences of selecting, resurveying & c — Of course Strother could (2) set up 
no claim, never having performed the services which alone could have 
given him one — And this is the way in which it has always been under- 
stood by those who should know most about it — In addition to this you 
charged the whole amount paid for taxes in Buncombe Cty. whereas 
JGB should have been credited for perhaps the three first years (I am 
writing without access to the papers) amounting to severall hundred dol- 
lars — Strother paid these taxes as an agent, before he had an interest in 
the Lands — 

As agent in Tennessee, you will recollect all the charges for taxes, & 
other expinces which could with any propriety be chargable to my 
Father, were admited from the commencement of his agency — I was well 
aware that the admission was incorrect, for I trust we both Know, that 
Strother was not in a situation to make these advances for my Father — It 
is not matter of opinion with me, for I was with him most of the time 
from the commencement of his agency in Tennessee untill 1811 and Know 
that the expenses were paid out of money arrising from the sales of 
lands, the property of JGB — And so far from his having advanced for 
this purpose, frequently he has mentioned to me, he was under the ne- 
cessity of using money so obtained (3) on his private Ace 1 — The foregoing 
charges as stated to have been admited, would be correct if Strother had 
been charged with the Am 1 of sales of all lands sold by him — But this was 

17 This was probably Thomas Dillon, a Tennessee land speculator. Land Warrants 362, 
1779, 2870, 2885, 2937, 3229, 3554, and others, Tennessee State Archives. 

300 John Gray Blount Papers 

not the case — I left Tennessee in 1811. There were notes to a consider- 
able amount; some were lent to Strother to answer his individual pur- 
poses, the balance for collection — These notes & the money he subse- 
quently received he has alone been charged with — and all expenses since 
1811 he incurred on Ace 1 of JGB are of course the only correct charges — 
Not even the cash & notes lent him and which he had the use of for 
seven years, has any interest been charged for — If the ace 1 had been set- 
tled with these alteration (and I am certain it would be correct) the bal- 
ance would have been widely different — Besides the Ge° business I sur- 
rendered an amount which could not with justice be claimed, solely for 
the purpose of effecting a final close of the business if possible — We differ 
widely as to compensation for his services — you seem to have considered 
him solely employed in my Fathers business from the time of his arrival 
in Tennessee untill his death — This was not the fact; and I will state to 
you how far it is (4) from it — He arrived in Tennessee I believe in Augs 1 
1804 In 1807 the land office opened in Jefferson, and as early as 1806 
Strother was engaged in exploring the lands on Duck & Elk Rivers He 
had a deputation under W. P. Anderson & they were largely concerned 
in locating lands, & from the moment he engaged in it, his other land 
business was more than he could attend to — He certainly continued to 
[illegible] a sort of generall agency and sometimes rendered his personall 
services; that you will find from the vouchers you produced, when many 
charges are made for services, which should have been rendered by an 
agent who was exclusively so, which have been rendered by others as thee 
acc ts will show — And the many double taxes which have been paid & the 
severall tracts which have been sold for the taxes, evidently shows he had 
other matters to attend to — In addition to all this when he first arrived in 
the country I was with him and continued in the country with the ex- 
ception of occational visits to my relations untill 1811 and performed 
most of the active duties required of an agent — You claim for Strother 
the whole am 1 of sales after deducting expenses — By the same rule I 
should be entitled to the part unsold for my services (5) I have given you 
what I consider the correct outlines of this business, and submit for your 
consideration this proposal — If you will secure the payment of the bal- 
ance as adjusted by you & myself within some reasonable time, it will be 
accepted, & some person shall be immediately appointed to make a final 
close of the Acc t8 — 

Please write me or inform M r Blackfan as soon as possible your con- 
clusion, as it is wished that no further steps should be taken untill your 
determination is Known 

Your Obd 1 

Letters for 1818 301 

Jm 8 Lockhart 

On the other side is your letter 

(7) If it should be found necessary to send up my sea-stores & c by land, I 
think it would be safer to consign them to Tho 8 Hadly than to my over- 
seer — 

All I had to say to you is contained in the above mem r but if I had said 
it in a letter to my Father it's probable you would never have heard of 
it — Therefore to save the writing of two letters I send enclosed to [manu- 
script torn] & part of a letter I rec d from P. M. Miller — both which 
please hand to my Father — I send him the copy of the one to Lockhart 
that he may make any alterations he thinks proper & if there any to be 
made I wish him to write me directed to Raleigh by next mail, otherwise 
it will be sent as it is — 

I leave here tomorrow for Raleig — 


Addressed: Thomas H. Blount Esq 1 " 
N° Carolina 

Jackey S. Blount's Bill of Sale to John Gray Blount 

[December 30, 1818] 

Know all men by these presents that I Jackey S Blount of the County 
of Edgecombe & State of N° Carolina. That for and in Consideration of 
the Sum of Two thousand five Hundred Dollars to me in hand paid the 
receipt whereof I hereby acknowledge Have bargained & Sold unto John 
G Blount of the Same County & State. All the right title & Interest as 
held & owned by me according to the last will & Testament of the late 
Gen 1 Thomas Blount in and over the following Negro Slaves Viz George. 
Jake. Randolph Marcus. Rochester. Bill. Dick. Tom. Alfred Luke. 
Fanny. Silla. Lucy & Eliza. To have & to hold unto the Said John G 
Blount all my right to the above named negroes free & Clear 

302 John Gray Blount Papers 

In witness whereof I have hereunto Set my hand & Seal this 30 th day 
of December in the year of our Lord one thousand Eight Hundred & 

J.S. Blount. (Seal) 


Ben. M. Jackson 1 

18 Ben M. Jackson is listed in the 1820 census for Edgecombe County as an agent for 
Jackey S. Blount, Thomas Blount's widow. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Edgecombe 
County, 2. 


Jonathan Price to John Gray Blount 

Ralegh 1 th January 1819 
My Old Friend 

I have been detain d , some days at Raleigh after the session of the 
General assembly was ended, I used what little influence I had to get the 
Bill for a Canal from Roanak River near Williamston to Tar River near 
Washington to pass: The Washington, Tyrell and Chowan County mem- 
bers were Voilently oppose 'd to the Scheem they were still much in favor 
of that most unheard extravagance of Stopping up the Passage of the 
water between the Pamticoe [Pamlico] and Albemarle Sounds and fool 
like trusting to Nature to open a Channel out from the Albermarle 
Sound through all those heeps of Sand at least Six fathoms deep to the 
Clay, whch the God of Nature had formed for the protection of all our 
low Rich Swampy Lands — thes men never even so much as dreemd of 
the eternal course of the nature of things wold it not be very cosey fro a 
member of our Legeslator to covince his constituents that a very small 
Tax for enternal improvements would be an everlasting benefit to his 
Country forever. (But No!) the Cry here has been (eoconemy, econemy; 
eocomnemy) till I was tyred to death with the Nonsencical sound — 

The Cry put me in mind of an old economical farmer who had set his 
soul to the improvement of his Lands by making manure and by his deep 
scill in three years time he had made thirty or forty very large piles of the 
highest grade of compost with lime and other Materals. (2) At this he 
though [t] twas time to invite his farming neighbors to take dinner with 
him and after dinner to Shew them what a great man he was, to improve 
Lands by mannure. takes his Guest out to his barn yard and Shews them 
forty five large and butiful heaps of mannure that by his econemy and 
Industry he had made in the Course of three years, an old friend of his 
who much wished information and improvement simply asked the old 
econimist what quantity of this wonderfull Compost he anually put on 
an Acre of his Land the econimist much Piquit at as such, an absurd 
question, answered pevishly (not a jot) prity qustion indeed, was I as 
you supose fool enough to Spread all these fine heap over the Land they 
wold soon be out of our Sight and my great skill in making mannure 
wold be Lost foever — and my great skill in improving Lands would be 
lost forever. 

This story of the old farmer is a digresion from the Subject of my letter 
I hope you excuse the [?] though as it only Struck me on hearing the 

304 John Gray Blount Papers 

word economy So often used in the House called the General assembly of 
N Carolina — you know me M r Blount better than I know myself and 
have liberality to make all due allowance for the errors of my thoughts 
When a Canal was to be opened from Roanak to Pamlicoe River (3) 
M r Iredel Horton and many others said They were not in favor of alter- 
ing the natureal Cours of the River Roanaok, and wonderful fluent was 
M r Horton in [s]peach to Shew that nature ought not to be obstructed 
peticularly as to the Roanak River above Plymouth but the great good of 
Stoping up the marshes, and altering the natural water Course between 
the Albemarl & Pamticoe Sounds, so as to divide the communication of 
the Northern Section of the State from that of the Southern, would be 
the most desireable object; (from the thoughts of Such men the Lord de- 
liver us) 

I am yours & c 
Jonathan Price 

John Gray Blount Es 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 

J. W. Worthington to John Gray Blount 

Blount H ALL Ja y 9 1819 

Dear Sir 

Enclosed is $1332.40/100 it [illegible] so much placed in my hands 
while in Tennessee by Gov r Blount 1 on a/c of the Estate of your Brother 
Reading, which I promised to pay over to you — supposing that you 
might have a use for it before I could come over I have sent it in this 
way — the rec 1 of which you will please acknowledge — hoping all are 

well I am y r8 truly 
J. W. Worthington 

M r J. G Blount 

Addressed: M r John G Blount 
N C 

'This is a reference to Willie Blount. 

Letters for 1819 305 

Thomas Love 2 to John Gray Blount 

Newbern 16 th January — 1819 

Dear Sir 

I have Examined the Ten patens Granted by this State of James Coor 3 
and Survy d — I beleave all by H Rutherford 4 Two of them only appears to 
have bean Survey d on obion rivir on warrants N° 2512 & 2513 for one 
thousand acres Each, the other Eight Grants for one thousand acres 
Each are Survey d on the waters of the forked deer five out of the Eight 
Grants on forked deer appears from the plats Enaxed [annexed?] to the 
Grants appears to have bean Survy d in the name of Thomas Coor yeat 
the hole of the Ten Grants are in the name of James Coor the Nomber of 
the Eight warrants that is Survey d on the forked deer is as follows N° 
2515 & N° 2524 and 2516 in the Name of James Coor and warrants N° 
2518 2519 2520 2521 & 2517 are in the Name of Tho 8 Coor Survey d in the 
Name of Tho 8 Coor but Granted to James Coor — Such infirmation as 
you may be So Kind as to Give me rispecting the Two Grants on the 
Obion River & the Eight* Grants on the forked deer, will be rec d as a 
favour that Shall Never be forgotten by me, and upon my Honour Such 
infirmation as you may please to give me on the Ocation Shall be with 
my Self alone perhaps it may be Such as will Ennable me to find the 

I Shall leave this place this morning (2) for home you will please to 
write me as Early as possable and direct your letter to me at Haywood 
County Waynesvill as I Should be Exceedingly glad to rec d the Infirma- 

2 Thomas Love (1765-?), the brother of Robert Love, was deeply involved in western land 
speculation and politics. From 1797 to 1808 Love was elected by Buncombe County to the 
North Carolina House of Commons. In 1808 he participated in the formation of Haywood 
County and subsequently represented the county in the state legislature almost con- 
tinuously from 1808 to 1829. During the War of 1812 he became a brigadier general of the 
Haywood County militia. He also helped run the boundary line between North and South 
Carolina in 1814. Love moved to Tennessee in 1830 and maintained an active role in Ten- 
nessee politics, finally serving as speaker of the state Senate. Arthur, Western North Carolina, 
128-129; Lemmon, Frustrated Patriots, 109-110; Cheney, North Carolina Government, 236-292 

3 James Coor of Craven County was a member of the Council of State (1792-1794) and 
served several terms in the North Carolina General Assembly between 1777 and 1792. 
Cheney, North Carolina Government, 166, 201-227. 

4 Henry Rutherford, the son of Griffith Rutherford, was a surveyor and land speculator in 
partnership with his father who acquired numerous land patents along the Forked Deer 
River in Tennessee in 1789. Around 1819 Rutherford founded the first permanent settle- 
ment on the river. The 1790 census lists a Henry Rutherford as a resident of Lincoln 
County, North Carolina, and the owner of two slaves. A Henry Rutherford also fought in 
the Revolutionary War. The First Census of 1790, 114; Roster of Soldiers from North Carolina in the 
American Revolution (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1967), 215; Hoyt, Papers of Ar- 
chibald D. Murphey, I, 134n; Abernethy, From Frontier to Plantation, 53-54. 

306 John Gray Blount Papers 

tion previous to my Setting out for Tennessee which will be about the 
middle of february — 

I am Dear Sir Very respectfully 
Your friend as usual &c 
Tho 8 Love 

J G Blunt Esq r 

Addressed: John G. Blunt Esq 1 " 

Beaufort County 



and Company to John Gray Blount 

Baltimore 2 mo. 22. 1819 
John Gray Blount 
Esteemed friend 

By a letter received from John Baillie dated the 13 th Ins 1 we are in- 
formed that thee is in possession of the documents relative to the wrick of 
the Schooner John Rodman. Captain Pendleton and that the Captain 
Pendleton had diposited in thy hands the money arising from the Sales 
[illegible] as Baily had shipped & consigned to us a part of the cargo 
consisting of Tar which was insured in this place, we are in want of a 
copy (attested in due form) of the captains protest on the loss of the ves- 
sel, and also a copy in like manner of the [illegible] sales, shewing the 
net amount of the Sum recovered belonging to the underwriters, we 
therefore request thee will forward those papers to us and inform us if 
the money can be drawn for. 

Thy immediate attention to this request will oblige us. 

We are very respectfully 
Thy friends 

W m Matthews & C° 

[Address torn off] 

For William Matthews see 1810, n. 1 

Letters for 1819 307 

Willie Blount to John Gray Blount 

Bakerdon March 20 th 1819 

Dear Sir, 

By M r Seth Jordan you will receive two thousand dollars the sum you 
wrote for — I have but little time to write as M r Jordan is in a hurry to be 
off — My family and all relatives in this quarter are tolerably well — The 
Grand Juries of several of our Circuit Courts have addressed me on the 
subject of becoming a Candidate at the next election to be held in this 
State (in August) for Governor, & have requested that I would be a can- 
didate — I have answered that my health (which was much impaired by 
the arduous duties of the late war imposed on me then to discharge) is 
not sufficiently good to authorise me to believe that I could injustice to 
the interest of the State do the duties of so important an office: & further 
that the health of my wife is not sufficiently restored from (2) her illness 
two years ago to justify me in leaving her at home for any length of time 
& she cannot without being much exposed, from a change in her mode 
of living, leave home — therefore I trust they will excuse me for declining 
to be considered a candidate at the next or at any future election — a 
sedentary life disagrees with me & a moderately active one on foot agrees 
very well with me — after I get well of Piles which prevents me from rid- 
ing much I hope to be as well as I was in former days — that complaint I 
am getting better of & hope to be well — Mary joins me in the request 
that you present us affectionately to your family & friends, receive the 
same yourself & I am 

your affectionate brother 
Willie Blount 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

Hon'd by 

M r Jordan 

308 John Gray Blount Papers 

William Augustus Blount's Purchase of a Slave 

[March 25, 1819] 

Know all Men by these presents that whereas, I Allen Grist 6 Sheriff of 
the County of Beaufort State of North Carolina by virtue of a certain 
writ of Venditioni exponas to me directed from the Court of pleas and 
quarter Sessions of Beaufort County aforesaid returnable to June term 
1818 of said Court commanding me to expose to Sale Certain Goods and 
Chattels the property of James R Hooker 7 previously levied upon to 
Satisfy a certain judgment obtained in the said Court for the Sum of 
Seventeen hundred and Seventy five pounds Debt with Interest from the 
24 May 1817 and four pounds Seventeen Shillings Costs, in a Suit where- 
in R & C W Davenport & Co were Plaintiffs and James R Hooker and 
Josiah C Fowle 8 Defendants, did accordingly, after one advertisement 
made, expose to public Sale at the Court House in the town of Washing- 
ton County aforesaid on the 22 d May 1818 a Certain negro boy named 
George, at which Sale William A Blount of the same place became the 
last and highest bidder for the said negro at the Sum of Seven hundred 
and two Dollars. Now therefore I Allen Grist Sheriff aforesaid for and in 
Consideration of the premises and of the said Sum of Seven hundred and 
two Dollars to me in hand paid by the said William A Blount, the re- 
ceipt whereof is hereby acknowledged and the Said William A Blount his 
heirs Executors and Administrators forever released (2) and discharged 
from the Same, have bargained Sold assigned and Set over and by these 
presents do bargain Sell assign and Set over to the Said William A 
Blount his heirs and assigns the Said negro boy George, to have and to 
hold to him the said William A Blount his heirs and assigns to the only 
proper use and behalf of him the said William A Blount his heirs and as- 
signs forever. And I the said Allen Grist do hereby Covenant and Agree 
to and with the said William A Blount his heirs and assigns to warrant 
and forever defend the Said negro to him the Said William A Blount his 
heirs and assigns as far as my said Office extends and no further 

In Witness whereof I have hereunto Set my hand and Seal at Wash- 
ington Beaufort County aforesaid the 25 day of March 1819 — 

Allen Grist (Seal) 


6 Allen Grist, sheriff of Beaufort County in 1819, later served two terms in the North Caro- 
lina Senate. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 318, 323. 

7 James R. Hooker is listed in the 1820 census as the head of a household of three. Potter, 
1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 21. 

8 For Josiah Fowle see 1815, n. 2. 

Letters for 1819 309 

Signed Sealed & delivered in 
the presence of 

W W Rodman 9 

[Clerk's entry omitted] 

Benjamin Robinson 10 to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville March 26 th 1819 
Jno. G. Blount Esq 1 " 
Dear Sir 

Three days since I met our Friend Jno. Winslow Esqr. and he handed 
me a letter from you under date of Dec mr 10 th 1818 — intended to be given 
me by Tho s H. Blount Esq r also Strother's Deed to you which I had long 
been expecting — M r Winslow observed that when he rec d these papers 
from M r Blount at Raleigh he was much engaged in the business of the 
Session and laid them by with other papers for which he had no immedi- 
ate use, and they were forgotten till this time — This will ace 1 for your re- 
ceiving no acknowledgement of these papers — After the rec 1 of the Con- 
tract and other papers which reached me thro' the hands of 
S. Haywood 11 Esqr. of Raleigh, I had an opportunity of sending you a 
verbal message stating that I would write you on the rest of Strothers 
deed which was refered to in your letter of the 4 th May 1818 — 

I had the pleasure of meeting your son-in-law M r Rodman at Raleigh 
last winter & requested him to say to you that I had made very little 
progress in your business — The surveyor who I had engaged to make the 
necessary investigation before anything further coud be accomplished, 
put me off from time to time under one pretence or another till I have 
reluctantly been compelled to engage a second one — the reluctance I felt 
at giving up the first surveyor arose from a knowledge of his superior 
qualifications for making the investigation — I shall sometime in April (2) 
as soon as the weather will permit, recommence the enquiry and con- 
tinue till I either find the Lands called for in your titles or that they are 
not to be found. I am sick of this neglectful mode of doing business — you 

9 William Rodman, married to Polly Ann Blount, was William Augustus Blount's brother- 
in-law. See 1812, n. 15. 

10 For Benjamin Robinson see 1817, n. 40. 

11 The S. Haywood referred to could have been Stephen Haywood of Wake County, who 
served three terms in the North Carolina General Assembly (1817-1819). Cheney, North 
Carolina Government, 272, 273, 274. Another possibility is Sherwood Haywood. See 1821, n. 7. 

310 John Gray Blount Papers 

shall hear from me as soon as I am able to establish any of your sur- 
veys — 

Who was formerly agent for your Cumberland Lands? Was Col° John 
Dickson 12 once your Agent? 

I am 

very respectfully your ob 1 Ser 1 
Benj. Robinson 

P.S. David Hay 13 Esqr. Administers upon the estate of our late worthy 
friend W m B. Grove and will hand over on application the contract I exe- 
cuted to you and left in M r Groves care — 

B. R. 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
N. Carolina 

Sarah Fullington to John Gray Blount 

[May 24, 1819] 

Dear Sir, 

On Wednesday last Mr Corprew 14 had his Land run out & fixed it So 
as to take the whole of my Plantation. I Should be very glad if you would 
advise me what I had best do. the papers I have Sent which was in my 
posession — if Something is not done he will Cut all the timber off the 
Land, knowing I am nothing but a lone woman — 

Bath May 24 th 1819 With Respect Sarah Fullington 
Mr. J. G. Blunt 

Addressed: Mr. John G. Blunt 


12 John Dickson of Cumberland County served several terms in the North Carolina Gener- 
al Assembly between 1800 and 1815. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 241, 243, 245, 246, 
260, 265. 

13 David Hay, a member of a prominent Fayetteville family, was a lawyer and plantation 
owner. Oates, Story of Fayetteville, 109, 507. 

M Three men named Corprew, George, James, and William, are listed in the 1820 census 
as heads of households in Beaufort County. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort 
County, 9. 

Letters for 1819 311 

Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville July 24 th 1819 
J. G. Blount Esq r 
Dear Sir 

Shortly after my last letter to you on the subject of your lands in this 
County, our little town was so overwhelmed by the alarm which arose 
for the failure of several merchantile Houses here, and effect produced on 
our citizens generally by the unexpectd fall in produce, that our whole 
attention was engrossed in seeking ways and means to save ourselves 
from immediate ruin — I did not escape the panic 15 — 

It was therefore late in June before I could conveniently leave home 
with a surveyor to search for your lines on the survey of 5120 acres lying 
on the head waters of Gibsons, Carvers Greens & Beaver Creeks. This 
Last was nearest to town, and several attemps had been made without 
success to find the corners — I feel satisfied that I found the beginning 
corner but on taking our course and distance on two of the first lines no 
trace of corners could be found — The surveyer therefore doubted 
whether any had been orriginally made — One of the chain carriers with 
the surveyor being dead and the other a Mad Man no information can 
be derived from the parties on the (2) orriginal survey — as a great pro- 
portion of this tract of land has been entered since the date of your 
Patent and there are many claimants I have come to the determination 
to sell it to the highest bidder on the first day of our September Court 
after due advertisement on a credit of 12 or 18 months — 

I have found a purchaser who will give a fair price for the land if the 
tittle coud be made good — he is desirous of purchasing and will go so far 
as to save us from costs in such suits as may be brought provided your 
tittle fails — conditioned that if the land is held under your tittle, that 
such necessary costs as he is subjected to shall be deducted from the pur- 
chase money 

Can the Original Grant for this tract be produced? it is not among the 
papers which you have forwarded me nor at the Secretary's office at 

15 The panic, or depression, of 1819 affected North Carolina in much the same way it af- 
fected other parts of the country. Deflation, falling prices, and lower property valuations 
forced banks to suspend specie payment of their notes. Many businesses and individuals 
went bankrupt. Banks were blamed for causing the panic or at least making it more severe 
than it should have been. An antibank sentiment was widespread, as were demands for un- 
sound money and inflation to remedy the economic illness. Voices expressing such senti- 
ments were particularly numerous in western areas of North Carolina and other states. Lef- 
ler and Newsome, North Carolina, 303, 319-320. 

312 John Gray Blount Papers 

Raleigh — M r M c Kay, 16 the gentleman aluded to as a purchaser is 
extremely anxious to obtain it — I have procured a copy from the office — 
As the pressure of the "times 1 ' if felt with such severity here that there 
is no prospect of making sale of your other lands I have not attempted an 
examination into any other survey but will do it as soon as any thing can 
be effected by it — 

I am, with much respect 
your obedient humble Ser* 
Benj n Robinson 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
No. Carolina 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville 3 rd October 1819 
My Dear Father, 

Yours of the 10 h Ult. was reed, on the 26 th and the pleasure I reed, was 
truly great, as I think my Sisters truly fortunate, if in that place they can 
escape with only the ague & fever, & even of that I hope they are re- 
lieved as I well know exercise & a small portion of medicine will soon 
cure them — Abner's loss I really regret, as I fear without M rs M c Daniel 
things cannot go on very well, but she was far advanced in years & could 
not well calculate on many more, but still we are unprepared for such an 
event, with one whom we have long looked up to as giving us pleasure, 
and with him I suppose with filial reverence. 

We have here the finest weather I ever saw, not a cloud for five weeks 
past, and at the same time sufficiently cool to wear our winter cloath, 'tis 
now very much like our month of May, the wild cherry near the house in 
full bloom, (2) no person sick, and they rely that this weather will con- 
tinue till the middle of November, when rain usually commencez — if this 
climate was at Washington how happy we could all be, provided a few of 
the limestone springs were there, for on this farm alone (Miller's) 17 they 

16 Many McKay (pronounced McKoy) families lived in Cumberland County at this time, 
and it is impossible to identify this man without a full name. 
17 This is probably a reference to Pleasant M. Miller. See 1803, n. 26. 

Letters for 1819 313 

have four excellent springs more than they use from — 'twould not violate 
any commandment to covet one of them as they are here useless — We 
shall leave here on the 5 h on our return home, and after remaining three 
days at the Sulphur springs twenty miles from this, I shall not stop any 
where, longer than will be sufficient to rest our horses &c. &c. so that 
my impression is we shall see you by the V November at farthest, but I 
hope a few days sooner — Margaret has increased about 15 or 20 lb8 since 
you saw her, & is much stronger, tho' her cough is not to me better; I 
hope however it is — but if she recovers her strength and increases in size, 
her health must be better, & in time her cough will disappear — I am 
much better, & tho' my eyes are yet yellow, I cannot (3) expect to be en- 
tirely changed in a few months, when my disease has been increasing for 
ten years; if I can only stop its progress I shall be satisfyed, as proper 
care will then restore me — 

I have this moment reed, a letter from John is which he says ct I am un- 
able to say whether I can get home this winter or not; if funds must be 
raised before I do so, & that was the object of my journey, I do not think 
I shall in 18 mo. All my Father's other business can be settled this 
winter; but money cannot be had, nor is it in the Country." This is the 
fact — never have I heard of such a scarcity, for negro men sell for 200$! I 
have made an arrangement with William about T. B. [illegible] & shall 
write John to day — William 18 leaves here the 15 h for the Chickasaw 
Country to meet John — Your relatives in this Country are all well — 

Yours affectionately 
Thos. H Blount 

Tell J. Akenford 19 of my intended return & that I reed his letter on the 
10 h Ult— 

Addressed: John G Blount Esquire 
N. Carolina 

18 Thomas H. Blount refers here to his brothers, John Gray Blount, Jr., and William 
Augustus Blount. The editor does not know who T.B. was. 

19 John Akenford is listed in the 1820 census as the head of a household of two. Potter, 1820 
North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 1 . 

314 John Gray Blount Papers 

Robert Love to John Gray Blount 

Waynesville 2 l 8t of October 1819 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Sir) Your Letter of August the 22 nd came to hand lately; The reason of 
my not writing to you Earlyer after Seeing your Son at the Warm springs 
was Oweing to two circumstances. One of which was the Sickly Situ- 
ation that I found my family in when I got home from the Springs. I 
parted from your [manuscript torn] on the 30 th of July & the Next Even- 
ing I Got home, and in the Evening of the Next day (to wit) the first day 
of August One of my Daughters died, (my wife then absent in Tennessee 
Waiting on her Sick Mother a Widow who also died Shortly after) and 
the Ballance of my family Chiefly were Affected either Less or more, but 
more Severely two of my Sons in Succession, and both 20 miles from 
home, which took up my time so Generally Between them & family who 
were with me at home that I was not able to attend to any other Busi- 
ness untill about the middle of Last Month, at which time I had to leave 
home to go to the Circuit Court at Morganton, Where I had removed 
Our Land Suit With James Allen 20 for the Land round Barnet's Station 21 
a noted place on the Warm spring road, this Suit is all important to us, 
and Great pains are takeing with the[?] parties Oppos'd to your Title; 
and Since the Court begun in this circuit I have been so busily Engag'd, 
that I have had no time untill the present to either Act or think — And 
now as respects the Silver Ore an appointment had been made by the 
discoverers to have been at my house about the Mid (2) die of June to 
have made an experiment in my presence with of the Ore, at this time I 
was to have been back from West Tennessee, and which I was, but on 
my return home I found my wife Gone to wait on her Sick Mother as I 
before Stated; and these Men lived in that Neighbourhood, Therefore in 
a few days I went on to where they were, and on the Night I Got to the 
place, the principle one & who was the only one who pretended to 
[manuscript torn] in Chimistry Got his right arm broken a little above 
his wrist bone at least he So said & made use of a Sling; this State of 
things prevented any thing being then down, and after a Tarriance of 8 
or 10 days with my wife & her Sick Mother I returned home. I went back 
about the 20 th July, and after some difficulty and after drawing an agree- 

20 This was probably the James Allen who acquired a land warrant from Private Edmond 
Wright. Land Warrant 1681, Tennessee State Archives. 

21 Barnet's Station possibly refers to an old stock stand on the French Broad River, five or 
six miles below Marshall, North Carolina, that was owned by a man named Barnard. 

Arthur, Western North Carolina, 46. 

Letters for 1819 315 

ment for the[?] parties to Enter into, I Got them to make the Experiment 
of which Your son has inform 'd you Off as he had from me with the 
View of the mettal which is Suppos'd to be extracted from the Ore, I 
have this moment for the first time being Trying the Weight, and find 
that we may Safely Calculate, what ore we us'd was below two pounds 
Say 1 Vi first burnt but neither washed nor beat and from which there is 
37 Vi Cents of the purest looking Silver better than 25 Cents of which is in 
one piece United, I used all the care in my power to prevent deception 
Yet Such a thing might have happined but I flatter myself Otherwise — I 
think that if Silver was put into the hearth bason or Cruisible it must 
have been put into the Mortar that that Bason or Cruisible was made off 
as I did not See it before it was in the Smiths hearth burning under a 
Severe Blast, & the Ore we us'd was Burning on Top of the Cole, After 
the Bason was burnt as they Said Enough I saw it Clean brushed out 
with a brush broom, The Ore was beat & dusted by the owner of the 
Shop an Indifferent person & one who was desirous of discovering the 
deception if any was intended to be practis'd; The ore after (3) being 
beat fine was put into the fire under the direction of the Chemist at 
Sundry times by my son Samuel, I held the drugs made up of five differ- 
ent parcels But of what composition except he would not Tell (the whole 
of which would not have exceeded in Weight a 6 Va Centpiece) between 
my fingures & Thumb and as he directed had them put into the fire he 
haveing his right arm in the Sling and Standing off from the fire and not 
intermeddling with the same untill he by a nail rod examin'd the compo- 
sition in the blast and found it melted or [manuscript torn] in the Cinder 
the Mettal Generally found with the Cinder adhering to the same which 
leads to believe that it could not have risen up out of the Mortar of which 
the Bason was made, But it is not worth my while to dwell on the Sub- 
ject as I have Sent you by your Son a Sufficient quantity of the ore to 
have it properly Tryed, and which I hope you will have done; it is not 
Generally known here yet, I have thought it prudent to say no more 
about it than I could well help — I have enclos'd a Copy of the agreement 
above alluded to; and as the Chemist Robert Orr 22 (whom by the G[ods] 
I think a rascal) & William Mills have refused Signing I think that we 
are under no farther Obligation to them, as to William Tinker & Martin 
Shelton through whom the discovery is made (if Good for any thing I 
wish to Treat them well — I have consented to take in my Brother 
Thomas who will be of use to us in the General assembly under the 
Clamourous Situation that the Country has got into about your Title 

"This might be the Robert Orr who registered a livestock brand in Buncombe County in 
1794. Sondley, Buncombe County, II, 478. 

3 1 6 John Gray Blount Papers 

and every effort is makeing to destroy the Same, and at the head of 
which is your old friend W m Brittain 23 and Z Beard 24 has Studily Elec- 
tioneer on that principle Beard has been left out at the last Election W m 
Brittain I believe has give Notice that he will be a Candidate at the 
Ensuing Election, and he has been instilling into the minds of the Inhab- 
itants in the North Eastern Section of Buncombe County that your (4) 
Lands had all reverted to the State except Such as had been Selected 
into Small Surveys when in Truth and in fact, that all the Lands below 
Walnut Creek have always been retain'd, as well as all the Lands in the 
Cainny River Settlements; William Brittain about the year 1801 or 1802 
took out a Grant for the Land Opposite the upper warm spring includ- 
ing where the little Town was laid out, and [manuscript torn] he has 
Sold to William Neilson Jun r dec d a Number of years ago, and the 
administrators have taken possession the last year of the Same conse- 
quently it will become necessary to bring a Suit against the person in the 
possession Shortly, yet I had a wish not to bring any Other Suit than 
what I now brought Untill a decision could be had thereon, the Suit at 
morganton against Allen we did not reach oweing to the Judge not open- 
ing Court untill Tuesday the Suit v s James Patton for the Land Near to 
Asheville, he could not be ready to Try as well as the Suit v 9 Alexander 
of Mecklenburg for a Tract on Laurel the Situation of his Claim is that 
his Title is the oldest but he is not able to Identify any one Corner or line 
and has lately run out and marked new lines all round agreeable to the 
Calls of his Grant, I have acknowledged being in possession and the 
Service of the writ in order to Try the Title, his Brother it seems was the 
Surveyor, and is not able now to go on the Ground But he think he can 
Identify the Land by his deposition to be taken on the 9 th day of Novem- 
ber which will be the Time of Mecklenburgh Court, and M r Burton 25 our 
attorney has Promised me to attend to the Business himself — I Shall in a 
few days Set out for the Obion Country again — the[?] waters were 

"William Brittain, Sr., of Buncombe County, served one term in the North Carolina 
House of Commons in 1 82 1 . He was a major political opponent of the Blounts in Buncombe 
County. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 278; Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 442n. 

24 Zebulon Beard (sometimes spelled Baird) of Buncombe County served numerous terms 
in the North Carolina General Assembly between 1800 and 1821. Cheney, North Carolina 
Government, 241-299 passim. 

25 This was probably Hutchins Gordon Burton (1782-1836), who was born in Virginia but 
reared in North Carolina. A practicing attorney in Mecklenburg County by 1806, Burton 
was elected to the North Carolina House of Commons in 1809. He served there until 1810 
when he became the state attorney general, a post he held until 1816. Burton moved to the 
town of Halifax in 1816 and represented it in the lower house for one term. Burton also 
served in the United States House of Representatives (1819-1824) as an "Anti-Democrat" 
and as governor of North Carolina (1824-1827). He continued his law practice in Halifax 
until his death. Biographical Directory of Congress, 678; Ashe, Biographical History of North Caro- 
lina, IV, 68-71. 

Letters for 1819 317 

generally So full and the (5) Country so overflowen that we could not ex- 
plore it as we wished to have done, Therefore we have fixed upon this as 
the most proper Season to examine it again 

I Expect to Get home by Christmass, and would be Glad to hear from 
you by that time, If You can have the one Tried, Should it prove to our 
expectation I will than make some arrangement to have the Business 
carryed on, to the best advantage, but on all Occasions I previously con- 
sult you, Streams of water with Scites Equal to any in the world is Very 
Convenient to where I under the Ore is, and Timber & rock for any pur- 
pose on the Spot so that the principle Expence will provision & Labour 
to put materials together for the expence of Geting them on the Ground 
will be Triffling, the Greatest difficulty will be to Get a waggon to the 
place for the purposses that may be necessary, for it is in the midst of the 
Greatest of mountains, Your Sons can give you Some Idea of them, for 
the ore is in Such as the go through in Geting on the Springs down the 
French Broad river — 

When I began this Letter I fully intended to have Sent you a Copy of 
the agreement that I had drawn up for us to have Sign'd but I some how 
or other have mislaid it so that I cannot lay my hand on it I remember 
well of Shewing it to your son at the Springs but have no recollection of 
Seeing it Since But the purport of it was that we were to Convey to the 
Said William Tinker W m Mills, Martin Shelton & Robert Orr an Equal 
Interest in 500 acres of Land in one or more Tracts (6) that they were use 
and exercise all their art and Industry for purpose of Carrying on the 
Business as an Equivalent against the Land, and that for such money as 
either of the parties Should Lay out more than their proportion in Erect- 
ing and carrying on the Business Such party was to Receive 12 1 /: per 
Cent, and that a Settlement was to take place I think every three 
months; and that a Deed was to be [manuscript torn] an Equal half or 
Moiety as soon as they Satisfactorily Shew that the Ore would produce 
one fourth of an Ounce of pure Silver in each and every pound of the raw 
ore — this is the Substance of the agreement, But W m Tinker was the 
only person who Signed on their part & he Stated that he was authorised 
to act for Martin Shelton who never has been present at any of our meet- 
ings Orr & Mills Seem'd to hesitate on the Ground of their being 
oblidged to use all their Skill & Industry at all times as an Equivelant 
against the Land, and as the alledged it must be through them that most 
Essential part must be done, & I on the other hand alledged that the 
Spirit and meaning of their proposals forward to you was to that amount 
as well as the express words of the Same and that I could not depart 
from the Same, and as they Seem'd to hesitate I felt Willing to Shake 
them off for the Truth is I did not wish to have much to do with him — 

3 1 8 John Gray Blount Papers 

If the ore proves Good I have no doubt of obtaining a knowledge of the 
place at any time — 

I was Glad to hear from your Son that you were well pleas'd with the 
horse that I Sent you, he tells me he can break your Ground where two 
Small horsses would be required to do the Same I believe I Stated to you 
that he would make a Good drudge (7) and that I thought he would be fit 
for no other use, I have made but few Sales this Year, and but few ought 
to be attempted untill the people are reconciled as to the Validity of the 
Title, for as things are, you have first to perswade them to purchase and 
of Course they will be for fixing the price themselves — 

Your son I have no doubt have Stated to you the Situation of a Small 
price of [manuscript torn] Whorth wants Joining him below the Springs, 
the Chief of which he has now [illegible] also the Situation of a Tract 
that Lewis Ball wanted to have Settled without any difficulty in Law & 
your Son made a promise to him of the Land, these are places which my 
Power do not Extend to with your Special directions — 

Be So good as to remember me to Each of Your Son's and Receive for 
Yourself my best wishes, whilst I Submit myself Your Ob 1 Serv 1 &C — 

R° Love 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 


in Beaufort County 

N° Carolina 
Waynesville N° C 
Oc l 22 nd 1819 


Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh January 2 d 1820 


I arrived here to day, and have only had time to get acquainted with 
the great men of the place. I have had no conversation with Mrs Leewell 
but expect to have some in a day or two, I regret Toms absence, & I sin- 
cerely regret the occasion, there lived no woman, with whom I was not 
more nearly connected, that I esteemed so much. I think it is important 
that I should have seen you before I left this State. I am very anxious to 
do so, & William Blount pressed it at me very much to go down & see 
you, but I do not see how I can do it — at present I expect to leave here 
on the 10 th of this month, in the stage as far as Salem where I left my 
horse whose back I hurt on [manuscript torn] you see I am on foot at 
this place — The new Bank 1 paper in our State passes pretty well at 
present, she has made but a small issue say $300,000 she has means at 
present say 200000 dollars in the notes of the [manuscript torn] Banks, 
besides her debts — but I consider it impossible if she issues to the 
amount allowed of by Law to keep up her credit for four weeks even at 
present there is an evident preference given to the paper of the old Banks 
it is probable that shortly before the next election they may [manuscript 
torn] largely with views that you know how to appretiate, the [manu- 
script torn] & Land sales have perhaps not much diminished the quan- 
tity of circulating currency considering the supply furnished by the new 
Bank (2) if the paper of the new Bank was receivable for cotton in 
allabama, ass [sic] the notes of the old Banks are, (concerning which I 

1 As a result of the panic of 1819 Middle Tennessee suffered severe economic and financial 
distress in 1820. Governor Joseph McMinn called the state legislature into special session. 
Led by Felix Grundy, the legislature created a new Bank of the State of Tennessee, which 
was completely state owned. It was generally called the "new state bank" to distinguish it 
from the "old state bank" of which Hugh Lawson White was president. A majority of the 
stock held in White's bank, unlike the "new state bank," was owned by private investors. 
Through its loan offices in Nashville and Knoxville, the new bank was authorized to lend at 
6 percent interest as much as a million dollars to hard-pressed citizens. Paper money issued 
by the bank for this purpose was to be backed by money coming in from the state's land 
sales. The bank had many opponents, including Andrew Jackson, and the state's financial 
situation became a lively political issue in subsequent state elections. Stanley J. Folmsbee, 
Robert E. Corlew, and Enoch L. Mitchell, Tennessee: A Short History (Knoxville: University 
of Tennessee Press, 1969), 140-142. This letter may be mistakenly dated 1820, when in fact it 
was written in 1821. See Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount, January 11, 1821, below. 

320 John Gray Blount Papers 

have at present no information), it is likely, that that mony might be pro- 
cured, for lands & by laying it out in cotton, which might be turned into 
northern funds — if a general peace continues, it does seem to me that 
land must continue to fall still lower than it now is, again they will be 
farther depressed, on account of the whole of the country where your 
land mostly lies being in the markett, much of this land is held by Specu- 
lators who have purchased the land or warrants on credit & who will 
have to sacrifice their lands to meet their payments — upon the whole, I 
cannot see how a large some of mony could be raized on lands in our 
state, without great sacrifice, there are some monied men, but I believe 
their money could be more easily procured on personal credit than on 
land, whilst you were here I wish you had stayed till I came — I shall 
write you again before I leave this, & give the news of the suit, I am 
satisfied, that your interest in the suit cannot be adverse to the interest of 
the children of William Blount & if they are to be sacrificed one creditor 
might surely as well collect on another but more of this hereafter, present 
me to your sons, & affectionately to your Daughters. I made sure of find- 
ing some of them [manuscript torn] 

P M Miller 

Addressed: John Gray Blount 

William Holmes 2 to John Gray Blount 

[January 2, 1820] 

Mr. J. G. Blount 

I wrote a few lines by your Son William Showing the hiring I had 
effected, Mr. Vines 3 being anxious to Keep the Girl I hired of him who 
was pregnant, induced me together with the bargain being a bad one, to 
give her up. Since I have hired one from Mr. Pritchet 4 for $13:75 have 

2 This was probably William S. Holmes, who is listed in the 1820 census as head of a 
household of four in Beaufort County. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 

3 For William Vines see 1816, n. 6. 

4 Abisha, Peter, and William Pritchett are listed in the 1820 census. This could refer to any 
one of them. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 33-34. 

Letters for 1820 321 

given him my note for the Same & requested him to call on you for your 
Signature, your Compliance will much Oblige your Obt. Servant 

W m S. Holmes 
2nd Jan: 1820 

[No address] 

William S. Holmes 's Contract with John Gray Blount 

[January 6, 1820] 

Articles of Agreement made this Sixth day of January in the year of our 
Lord one thousand eight Hundred & Twenty Between John Gray Blount 
of the Town of Washington of the one part and William S. Holmes of the 
County of Beaufort of the other part Witnesseth that whereas the said 
John G Blount hath made a contract bearing date the 9 th day of Dec r 
last with M r John Jackson for to deliver to the said Jackson a quantity of 
white Oak Hhd Staves & Heading and the said John G Blount having 
consented and agreed with the said William S Holmes that he may have 
the benifit of the one half said Contract on his the said Holmes on his 
part furnishing one half the trees and an equal number of good hands 
provisions, tools, Team & c to get the said Staves & heading & deliver 
them agreeable to the Contract aforesaid and superintending the whole 
using every exertion to comply with said Contract & in case of failure to 
be responsible to the said John G Blount for the one (2) half all loss & 
damages to which the said John G Blount may be subjected on a failure 
on his part to perform said Contract. And it is further agreed between 
the said Blount & Holmes that if the one should furnish trees to make 
more Staves & c than the other the one furnishing the most shall be 
allowed for such surplus one third the same at the tree as compensation 
for the surplus timber furnished & the expence of hailing shall be joint 
expence so that their staves shall be equal at the place of delivery except 
that one third for the surplus timber so furnished And to compensate 
said Holmes his Extra trouble the said John Gray Blount agrees that he 
will become the security for said Holmes for the hire of four negro men 
to be employ 'd with his the said Blounts hands geting said timber and to 
furnish Corn, Pork, fish & c to feed the hands employ'd as aforesaid all 
which expence of hire of negros, and provisions the said Blount shall 
have the right to (3) retain in his hands out the proceeds of the Lumber 
got on the delivery of the same In Witness whereof the parties have here- 

322 John Gray Blount Papers 

unto set their hands & Seals the day & date aforesaid Witness present 
W m Ellison 5 

W m S. Holmes (Seal) 

J G Blount (Seal) 

J . C. Stanly 6 to John Gray Blount 

New Bern 23 d April 1820 

Dr Sir 

I have this moment been informed that probably you possess some 
knowledge of a case in which I have some anxiety (viz) 

I am told that some number of years ago, you surveyed for Jeremiah 
Vail 7 a tract of Land 3 miles from New Bern, will you be so good as to 
say whither or no it is a fact, and what information you have respecting 
that Land, as to title, extent &c. it is the land at present between J. C. 
Stanly & Isaac Taylor. 8 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
Washington, N° Carolina 

Charles Monies 9 to John Gray Blount 

Hyde County Sept. 6 th 1820 

Sir I received your letter concerning Your road but Cannot give you all 
the perticulars you wis'd, they blowd the horn as I Stated but was a mis- 
sunderstanding in the time that they was to blow one went in the morn- 
ing & the other at 12 O clock & therefore did not assertain the Course & 
Distance as I Exspected. the water is Still over the Surface of the Ground 
where they quit Clearing, but if there is not any Great rain in Eight or 
ten days I think they Can go on & Clear the rest of the way, & perhaps 

5 This was probably William J. Ellison, who represented Beaufort County during the se- 
cession crisis and convention of 1861 and 1862. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 386, 824. 

"This possibly refers to John Stanly of New Bern. See 7803, n. 43. 

7 This might be the Jeremiah Vail who had represented the town of New Bern in the 
North Carolina provincial legislature (1753-1754). Cheney, North Carolina Government, 45. 

8 There are numerous Isaac Taylors listed in the 1820 census, although none is shown in 
Craven County. An Isaac Taylor is listed under Lenoir County, however, which is adjacent 
to Craven County. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Lenoir County, 12. 

9 Charles Moules is listed in the 1820 census as the head of a household of five. Potter, 1820 
North Carolina Census, Hyde County, 15. 

Letters for 1820 323 

by that time they Can go to ditching — ND Tooley 10 has not run the line 
yet that you requested but Says he will Soon. I will write you as Soon as 
they can work to any advantage I shall be at Washington before many 
Days & Shall then try & bargain for your land — 

Your Obt Servant 
Charles Moules 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esqr 
N. Carolina 

Blount & Jackson to John Gray Blount 

New York Septem r 1 1th 1820 
John G. Blount Esq r 
Dear Sir 

We have received yours of the 20 th ult & agreeably to directions now 
forward your acct. with us balancing with $284.82 in your favour we also 
forward to you herewith sales of spirits turpentine & rosin rec d per the 
sch Louisa last October netting $102.64 

Since we wrote you last wheat has experienced a further decline in 
price, it may now be quoted at 87 Vt @ 90 cents for prime Virginia & 75 & 
85 for North Carolina, and very dull. Southern corn is worth about 45 
cents demand extremely limited. Flour about $4Vi very little foreign de- 
mand for it 

Cotten centinues in good demand at 19 @ 21 cents. New turpentine 
meets a pretty ready sale at 16%[?]. Tar has been selling on small par- 
cels at about 20%[?] owing to the scarcity of it in market, but within a 
few days we have had several arrivals of it & we suppose 16%[?] is as 
much as could be obtained for it now. North Carolina money is three © 
three & a half percent discount. You will observe that [illegible] & gal- 
lon were paid for the plains on the 3 rd June as charged in your acct. We 
are very respectfully your m o svts 

Blount & Jackson 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 
Washington N° Car 

10 In all probability this refers to Nathaniel Tooley, who is listed under Hyde County in 
the 1820 census as the head of a household of six. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Hyde 
County, 7. 


John Haywood 1 to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh 6 th January 1821 

Dear Sir, 

As Endorsser of the note made by yourself, M r Macnair and M r 
Thomas H. Blount to the State Bank here, I was called on lasst Week 
and ruled to acknowledge the Service of a Citation or other Writing, go- 
ing to Shew that the Said Note was ripe for Renewal, and that it had not 
been renewed, nor had the required Instelment and Interest been paid — 
This caussed my Calling at the Bank; by the Officers of which I was ad- 
vised, that it became my duty to write you without delay, and to advise 
you of my having been ruled to acknowledge the Service of the above 
mentioned Citation; to the end you may, with all possible dispatch, for- 
ward a new Note with the form required for renewal, & c — This is an un- 
pleasant Task to me, but I was advised that there remained no alterna- 
tive; and it was added further, that the Bank could neither Suffer delay 
nor grant indulgence to us, but would f[o]rthwith proceed to enforce 
Payment, as Soon as the ussual time of waiting Shall have expired: I 
promissed to write to you, and assured the Officers that I did not appre- 
hend they would be under the necessity of proceeding further, as the 
Note & c might confidently be looked for. 

I hope you are in health, and with an Offer of my Regard and best 
wishes, I remain, much & truly 

your friend 
John Haywood 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 


N° Carolina 
Recommended to 
the Care of Major 
Blount, of Tarborough 

For John Haywood see 1805, n. 19. 

326 John Gray Blount Papers 

Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh January 11 th 1821 


I leave this place to morrow at two oclock for home I should have been 
glad & do sincerely wish I had it in my power to come down, but I can- 
not — Mrs. Blounts cause was argued yesterday — & will be farther ar- 
gued to day I suppose — if I am not greatly mistaken, I shall pull up the 
gentlemans shirt collars — my Judgment is that the result is not even 
doubtful, more however from bad management — than on account of the 
merrits — it is likely that I shall not know the opinion of the court before I 
leave here, perhaps not untill next court — Seawall 2 was not in court but I 
suppose will be to day, as to your part of the case in any event — there is 
no doubt — but the debt due by Thomas Blount on the Books ought to 
have been set — if the release was set aside — it does not appear whither 
this release covers her claims on Thomas Blounts estate it rather appears 
that it was a release of her claims on you — tell Rodman that he has Suc- 
ceeded in his case — but that on the next trial he had better make proof 
that he made the purchase directed by Brigs — that does not sufficiently 
appear upon the record sent up — it is possible that Mrs Blounts cause 
may let Back to Edgecomb — for farther proofs &c if so it is important 
that I should know it. in that event I have much to say 

P M Miller 

Addressed: John Gray Blount 

John Haywood to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh 13 th January 1821 

Dear Sir, 

In consequence of a Vissit from the Notary of the State Bank here, it 
became my duty to inform you, that I had been required to acknowledge 

2 Henry Seawell (1774-1835), a successful Raleigh lawyer, served several terms in the 
North Carolina House of Commons (1799-1802, 1810-1812) and as a state senator for Wake 
County ( 1821-1826, 1 831-1832). In 1803 Seawell was elected state attorney general, a position 
he held until 1808. He continued his law practice and served as a superior court judge on 
several occasions. Seawell attended the Constitutional Convention of 1835 as the Wake 
County delegate and also served as a Linked States arbitrator during the Treaty of Ghent 
negotiations in 1823. Ashe, Biographical History of North Carolina, II, 394-397. 

Letters for 1821 327 

the Service of a Citation or Notification going to Show, that the Note 
made by yourself, your Son Thomas and M r Macnair, and endorsed by 
me, lasst fall, to Secure the Payment of a Sum of Money therein men- 
tioned to the Said Bank, was ripe for renewal, and had not been re- 
newed, as required by the Custom & usseages of the Said Bank & c — I 
forwarded a Letter by the Mail giving to you this information, Some 
time passt: and calling this day at the Bank, on other bussiness, was in- 
formed that the required Renewal had not yet been made, nor had the 
Instalment been paid — and it was further Said, that as the day of Grace 
or time of waiting had nearly expired, Suit would be commenced in a 
Short time — To my Enquiry, whether I was to expect the Writ to be 
Served on me, or whether it would be Sent to Washington, in casse of 
failure? I was answer'd, that the attorney for the Bank would act in that 
regard as he might think proper — This alarmed or rather made me un- 
easy, and leads me again to address you on the Same Subject; and to re- 
quest that you will Send in the required Note & c without further delay, 
and thusly prevent further proceedings & difficulty — If I had the Money, 
I would pay for you; but being without it, or the power of commanding 
it, I must confidently look forward to your Sending the Note & c (2) in 
time to prevent further proceedings: as I Should exceedingly dislike 
being Sued, or the Suffering Suit to be brought on this Note, after the 
promisses I made & the assurances I gave the Bank, that no difficulty or 
delay Should occur, in casse your Note was discounted. 

I am pained at being under the necessity of addressing you on this 
Subject, which I am aware must be unpleasant to you: but necessity has 
no law. 

I offer my Regard & kindest Greetings 
and remain, much & truly 
Your friend, 

John Haywood 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
N° Carolina 

328 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas S. Singleton 3 to John Gray Blount 

Pleasant Plains Jan y 13 th 1821 

My Dear Sir, 

Your's relative to the shipment of corn to Darien, has been rec d ; I had 
previously engaged a vessel to take my corn to market, or I should have 
been pleased with the oppertunity, afforded by means of your politeness; 
I have informed M r Hollowell, that I will deliver him corn to the am 1 of 
your claim agreeably to your proposition; believing, I shall have it in my 
power to procure enough corn to make up the quantity I engaged to 
ship. I am truly sorry for the melancholy misfortune your son Thomas 
has lately experienced; 4 I heard of it at Tarborough on my (2) return 
from Raleigh; which was the occason of my proceeding immediately 
home with my family, instead of complying with my promise of calling 
on you; I hope however it will not prevent the young Ladies from visiting 
us when you come down again. I have a favour to ask of you; it is to pre- 
vail on Hall 5 to offer again for Congress; I have been solicited to offer if 
he declines & was fool enough to promise it; but my pecuniary affairs 
will not justify me in such a course at present; if he would serve two 
years longer, perhaps I might then be able to offer; at present it will be 
greatly to my injury; I wish this aplication to be kept secret. With best 
respects to the young Ladies, 

I remain very sincerely 
& respectfully your friend 
Tho 8 S. Singleton 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq. 


M r Clark 

3 For Thomas Singleton see 1813, n. 19. 

4 This refers to the death of Eleanor Margaret (or Ellen) Brown, Thomas Harvey Blount's 
first wife, whom he had married in 1810. He remarried in 1827. Wheeler, Reminiscences of 
North Carolina, lx. 

5 For Thomas H. Hall see 1812, n. 21. 

Letters for 1821 329 

Michael King 6 to John Gray Blount 

Plymouth Ja n 15th 1821 

M r John G. Blount 

D r Sir 

as you are the only acquaintance I have in Washington. I would be 
very glad if you would take my son William to live with you. to keep 
store or any Buisness in the way of Merchandise, as he have bin in that 
way of doing business for three years, and now he is out of imployment 
and he wishes to be in Buisness very much — if you do not want him to 
live with you I would be very much oblidge to you to try and get him in 
busness as I have Before Stated, he will also write for any one — if you 
could get him in a Custom house or Counting house he would like it 
Very much — our family are well I have no news perticcular to write you 
after which believe me to be your 

Respecttifully Michael King 

Addressed: M r John G. Blount 

Thomas H. Hall to John Gray Blount 

H. Reps. Jany 23 d 1821 

Dear Sir 

When I saw you last we had some talk relative to the insuing election, 
Singleton was mentioned as probably having a desire to be a Candidate, 
I have recently been informed that it is his intention to do so. I take the 
liberty of asking what you know relative to the Business and expect with 
Confidence a Candid and decisive answer I wish to Know if Singleton is 
to be a Candidate and under what auspices, you will do me a favor by 
answering this as soon as possible. There is but one way to let in a 
federalist two republican Candidates may do this without some republi- 

"Michael King is listed in the 1820 census of Washington County as the head of a house- 
hold of six. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Washington County, 4. 

330 John Gray Blount Papers 

can is brought forward I shall have no opposi(2)tion, your immediate 
attention to this will Oblige me. 

Yours &c 
Tho 8 H. Hall 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
Washington N. C. 

J. R. Donnell and J . Stanly to John Gray Blount 

NEWBERNjany 30 th 1821 

Dear Sir 

Mr. Smallwood thinks it will be much to his advantage and no doubt 
it would promote the interest of us all to have laid off to each of us as 
much land as possible out of that held in common. If it is practicable to 
divide our Land, on the Canal either seperately or connected with others 
so that the part of each one may be seperated from the rest by a known 
line we are quite indifferent what part each of us should git. We suppose 
your acquaintance with the property and the relative value of its different 
parts, would enable you to make such allotment, as would do entire jus- 
tice to all concerned. If you could do so, without giving yourself much 
trouble, you would oblige us all and rest assured we shall be perfectly 
satisfied with any division you and M r Smallwood may make, (2) The 
more extensive the division, the more desirable to us. 

We are conscious we have no claim upon your time, or attention to 
such business, as we are already indebted to you for no little of both. 

Be pleased to accept the assurance of our esteem 

John G Blount Esq 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 

M r Smallwood 

very respectfully 

JR Donnell 
J. Stanly 

Letters for 1821 331 

John Haywood to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh l 8t February 1821 

D r Sir, 

Your favour of the 11 th Ult. was brought me by my Brother Sher- 
wood, 7 on his return from Tarborough, about two weeks after its 
date — I lost no time, but immediately called at the Bank and mentioned 
to the Cashier the Subject matter of it — I was aware there could be a 
difficulty in renewing, for the want of more Money; but the Cashier, 
being mindful of your kindness towards him in former days, Shewed 
himself entirely disposed to do all he might venture on; and arranged 
and Settled the matter as you will perceive by his Note or Mem° to me, 
which is herein enclosed. 

Pursuant to the wish expressed in yours above mentioned, I Subjoin to 
this a Mem of the Advances made by me towards the Renewals of your 
Note — I so managed, as to get the Tennessee Money you sent me off and 
on the Bank, without loss or deduction; and had therefore to advance on 
your behalf as follows, and no more Viz. 

On the first Renewal of your Note 40-50 

as Stated in your Letter 19th Sep. lasst. 
On the final Renewal, as mentioned in the 
Cashier Mem° to me, & which you have 
enclosed 3-99 

I hope you continue in health, notwithstanding the late unfavourable 

Be assured of my Regard & best wishes, and believe me, much & ever, 


John Haywood 

Addressed John G. Blount Esquire 
N° Carolina 

[Cashier's memorandum omitted] 

7 Sherwood Haywood (1762-1829), a brother of state Treasurer John Haywood, was the 
cashier for the Bank of New Bern's branch office in Raleigh. Sherwood Haywood also 
served as the United States commissioner of loans and as a trustee of the Raleigh Academy. 
His daughter Ann Haywood married William A. Blount, while his daughter Sarah married 
John Gray Blount, Jr. Ashe, Biographical History of North Carolina, VI, 304-305. 

332 John Gray Blount Papers 

Blount & Jackson 8 to John Gray Blount 

Newyork February 15th 1821 

John G. Blount Esq: 

dear Sir, 

Annexed we hand you sales of cotten received per sch Emeline netting 
$207.57 to your credit in account 

The schooner Mary Ann has arrived, but the six bales cotten are not 
yet delivered 

Your Bill of the 11th ult° favour John Haywood was accepted the 31 l 

By the arrival of the Packet ship Albion we have accounts from Liver- 
pool up to the 1st January, which are very unfavorable to the cotten 
market; we are advised of a reduction in prices from the preceding quo- 
tations & that a further decline was anticipated so soon as the supplies of 
the new crop should become abundant. The stock of old cotten in the 
English mark(2)ets is represented to be extensive. There have not been 
any sales of cotton of importance since the arrival of the Albion; some 
small lots of very prime quality have been sold at 15 @ 15 l A cents on time, 
the market is extremely dull & as far as we can judge there is every pros- 
pect of a considerable decline from the last sales soon. 

No Carolina Money We are very respectfully 

about 3 per cent dis. Your Most obt svts 

Blount & Jackson 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq. 


[Prices and accounts omitted] 

8 Joseph Blount was a partner in the Blount & Jackson mercantile firm located at 89 South 
Street in New York City. Commercial Directory: Containing A Typographical Description Extent 
and Productions of Different Sections of the Union (Philadelphia: J.C. Kayser and Co., 1823), 140. 
See also 1818, n. 2. 

Letters for 1821 333 

Thomas Ruffin 9 to John Gray Blount 

Hillsborough February 15 th 1821 


Many years ago one James Turner obtained a Judgement in the Old 
District Court at this place against a M r Hans Patton, 10 on which a Ca. sa. 
[capias ad satisfaciendum] issued & Patton was arrested & gave a prison 
bounds Bond, in which M r Benj n Blount 11 & You were his Sureties — 
Afterwards a notice issued on the Bond & a Judgment was rendered on 
it at October Term 1804, when you paid the Costs & the Debt, except 
the Sum of f 1 1.10.3, which remained unpaid &, with Interest, is still due, 
as appears by the Record, which I have examined — This M r Turner, 
who is a very particular man, has removd to Tennessee & has written to 
me to revive the Judgment & collect the balance — The Sum is so Small 
that I Should very reluctantly bring suit for it & subject you to further 
Costs, without first giving you notice of it. To this course I am the more 
especially drawn by being informed that Patton is dead & that you made 
the former payment & will have to make this out of your own pocket. 
Should you feel under any obligations to pay the money, you will be 
pleased to remit it to me as early as convenient — but should you deny 
the demand or mean to contest the recovery, I shall be obliged to you to 
inform me immediatly — 

I am Sir Your obed 1 Sv 1 
Thomas Ruffin 

9 Thomas Ruffin (1787-1870), originally from Virginia and educated at Princeton, moved 
to Hillsborough, North Carolina, and began to practice law in 1808. He served in the North 
Carolina House of Commons (1813. 1815-1816) and as a superior court judge (1816-1817). 
He resigned his judgeship in 1817 because of financial difficulties and returned to his law 
practice. In 1829, however, he was elected to the state supreme court, eventually serving as 
chief justice of the court beginning in 1833. He resigned this position in 1852 to concentrate 
on farming and served as president of the state's agricultural society from 1854 to 1860. 
Ruffin briefly returned to the North Carolina Supreme Court (1858-1859) but spent the re- 
mainder of his life practicing law. Opposed to disunion, he joined the North Carolina dele- 
gation to the Peace Conference held in Washington prior to the Civil War, but he later 
voted for secession at the state convention. Ruffin also served as a trustee of the University 
of North Carolina for many years. Ashe, Biographical History of North Carolina, V, 350-359; 
Cheney, North Carolina Government, 360, 687, 689, 690. 

10 Hans Patten had once been an employee of John Gray Blount. Keith and others, Blount 
Papers, III, 117n. 

11 Benjamin H. Blount is listed in the 1790 census as a resident of Pitt County. Keith and 
others, Blount Papers, III, 437n. 

334 John Gray Blount Papers 

Balance of Debt £11.10.3 
Interest from Oct° 1804. 
John Gray Blount Esq. 
Washington No Caro 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esqr 
Beaufort County 
N° C ar 

Lovett Bell 12 to John Gray Blount 

Montgomery February 16 th 1821 

Sir Seeing my Nabours geting in the Spirit of Makeing Cotten and wish- 
ing to be one amoungst them as a farmer; I sent up my Boy Moses to 
you for 25 Bushels of seed You will please to send it by them and I will 
settle with you for the same 

the peach trees I told you and your son Thomas I would send you I 
[sent] one a peace by M rs Turley York he siad he could Not No more as 
he was full also I sent some Rose Bushes for M r Leroy I Now send you 
and your son one more a piece by my boys 

I am yours With Much Esteem & 
Lovett Bell 

John G. Blount Esqr 

NB sir I understood by M r W. Higson Tho 8 G. Bell 13 my son had sent 
up to you for soom Cotten seed and he was to have caried them down 
but come of without them you will pleas to send them the first oppor- 
tunity as I wish to see what my Mattamuskeet Land will do in Cotten & 

L B 

12 Lovett Bell is listed in the 1820 census as the head of a household of eight. Potter, 1820 
North Carolina Census, Hyde County, 6. 

13 Perhaps this was the Thomas G. Bell who served numerous terms in the North Carolina 
General Assembly between 1807 and 1836. Originally representing Camden County, both in 
the house and in the senate at different times, Bell moved to Pasquotank County and be- 
came a representative for that county beginning in 1821. He represented Pasquotank in 
both houses of the state legislature as well. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 253-258, 263, 
265, 279-280, 282, 286-287, 293, 295, 297, 305. 

Letters for 1821 


John Gray Blount, Jr., frequently looked af- 
ter his father's landholdings in Tennessee and 
attempted to raise money from land sales in 
times of economic crisis. Photograph from the 
files of the North Carolina Division of 
Archives and History. 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 


John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

TARB°Feby. 23 d 1821 

Mr. Darbey has enclosed me a patent right for erecting Tilfords horse 
mill for a two horse power — He speaks highly of it; but says nothing 
about the probable cost, or amount of work it will perform in a given 
time, nor has he given so full a description of it as would enable me to di- 
rect the building of one. I am not in a situation to build & if you want a 
machine of this sort, I will transfer the right to you — I expect a par- 
ticular description of it from Mr. Hardiman, accompanied with a draw- 
ing, which shall be forwarded to you if you think of building — 

Please send word to William that Lucy Haywood is here, & that her 
& M r8 Falkner are desirous of visiting Nancy if they can get an escort — 

Our love to the family 
Your Obt Son 

336 John Gray Blount Papers 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 
N° Car° 

Arnold Gray to John Gray Blount 

Lake Landing 14 Hyde County Feb ry 28 th 1821 

Sir, It is the request of Mr. Lavender Wilkins that I should ask informa- 
tion of you regarding his application for admission into the Military 
School at West Point. 

He is now in suspense respecting the fate of his application; & as he 
has had no answer or information from you, notwithstanding his appli- 
cation by Letter for advice from you, he becomes dubious of his success 
in gaining admission into that School though he should possess the nec- 
cessary qualifications. He has now acquired a tolerable knowledge of 
English Grammar, and Arithmetick, having past through Vulgar and 
Decimal Fractions, and will continue to pursue these studies some little 
time longer. These two branches of Education, with Reading & Writing 
which he had already acquired, being the requisite qualifications & the 
only ones known to him, You will be so kind as to direct him how to pro- 
ceed in order to his successful admission into said School. What vouchers 
of his qualification & recommendation of his character are necessary to 
be sent and where should they be sent? Does he undergo an examina- 
tion, and where is he examined? Does he wait here for his Commission 
(2) and Orders to attend at Westpoint or proceed thither without either 
or elsewhere for examination? Would you reply to these interrogatories 
and give him the necessary information and direction your condescen- 
sion would oblige your humble Servant 

Arnold Gray 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 
Beaufort County 


14 Lake Landing is a town in Hyde County. It lies along the southeast shore of Lake Mat- 
tamuskeet. The county court was held there from about 1820 to 1836. Powell, North Carolina 
Gazetteer, 269. 

Letters for 1821 337 

John Hardeman to John Gray Blount 

Feby. 28th 1821 

I am now at the house of our mutual friend Willie Blount Esq r having 
progressed no farther than this place, though I have waded through mud 
for one month In Murfreesborough, agreeably to your request, I called 
on John M. Tilford and asked his permission to see his improved horse 
mill — The mill had been erected merely as an experiment, had never 
been covered in, the place on which it had been raised was sold a short 
time after, and the mill was not now in operation I then requesed of him 
to show me a model of his improvement, & he said he had none & the 
man who usually made models for him was not to be seen 

You will infer from these circumstances, that the opinion of the people 
in the Country was about the same as the one I expressed to you when at 
your house, (to wit) that its advantages were nothing In conversing the 
same day with a friend of mine who is a good mechanic I discovered that 
his opinion was no advantage was gained by the application of the pro- 
peling power in the way stated in Tilford's patent — the Angle of the 
plane on which the horse walks is about 30 degrees 

(2) You are capable of demonstrating the impossibility of increasing 
the momentum of the wheel by this application of the force Suppose a 
wheel 30 feet diameter and the plane on which the horse walks to be 30 
degrees of elevation, he could not produce a greater force thus situated, 
than if he were fastened to one end of a Seven one third part of the semi- 
diameter of the wheel which would be IVi feet; and though his motion 
would be but one third of the motion of the periphery, his power would 
not be more than what is stated above 

Your friends are here in good health and desire to be presented to you 
& lady in respect 

Your friend &c 
John Hardeman 

Major John G Blount 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 


N° Carolina 
M r Harril 

338 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Stanly to John Gray Blount 

NEWBERN4May 1821 

Dear Sir, 

The Board authorize me to say, your Note for Three thousand dollars, 
payable at Ninety days, will be discounted when offered. 

I am dissatisfied, and indeed mortified that the accomodation is less 
than you desired, but the fear of doing new business, so pervades the 
board, that nothing but special favor toward you could have obtained 
even the sum offered — besides the objection to new loans arising from 
the State of the Institution, the delinquency of our friends on tar river 
operates against applications from that quarter — You will say at foot of 
the note that it will be paid in full when due — You will add such names 
as will satisfy these very timid men that they are safe — 

Your obed Serv* 
J. Stanly 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq. 
N° C a 

Joseph B. Hinton 15 to John Gray Blount 

River Shore May 10 th 1821 

Dear Sir, 

Interest as well as duty, urge me to seek, with as little delay as pos- 
sible, the adjustment of Robert Salters Estate, 16 at least, so far as 
C. D. G. Wolford 17 is concerned therein. Life is very uncertain with us 
both: for my part I dare not venture on the expectation of an hour, I feel 
so sensibly, that each succeeding day is a renewal of my life. It will admit 
of no doubt, that we can adjust it more consistently with your interests, 

15 Joseph B. Hinton served as clerk of the Beaufort County court in 1823 and was a state 
senator from 1829 through 1830 and again in 1832. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 292, 
294, 298; Shanks, Papers of Willie Mangum, I, 520. 

18 For Robert Salter and the settlement of his estate see 1807, n. 33. 

"Charles D. G. Wolford appears in the 1820 census as the head of a household of two. 
Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 43. 

Letters for 1821 339 

than others can for us: and believing the accounts to be voluminous, and 
from the lapse of time, intricate, and that no little difficulty might arise, 
or will from them, as also from the Sales of Lands authorised and Sales 
unauthorised by the Will, if Strictly tested by the rules of Justice and 
Equity. Fearing difficulties might arise, perhaps sufficient to preclude all 
hope of an adjustment upon the face of the accounts, I proposed taking the 
Windmill point Lands, 18 as a Summary mode of closing the Matter. I did 
believe, then, and I must adhere to the belief, until my error is made 
apparent, that Wolfords interests fairly meeted out by Justice & Equity, 
will exceed the Value of that property — yea, greatly exceed it. all my 
sources of information are grossly erroneous and deceptive if it is not so. 
However, as you have thought proper to reject that mode of adjustment, 
I am now open to receive a proposition from you. If you can with a few 
days reflection, settle on any one, you think worthy the occasion, I shall 
be pleased to hear from you. 

Very Respectfully 
J. G. Blount. Esq r Jos B Hinton 

Enclosed is your transcript. Jos Bonner will put the County Seal to it if 
you send it up to him. 

Addressed: Jno. G. Blount Esqr 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville 12 th May 1821 
My Dear Sir, 

After much fatigue and great delay occasioned by the badness of the 
roads and other causes I arrived here yesterday, and fear my journey will 
be of little service to you & perhaps less to myself — 

Mr. Blackfan your agent in Nashville left here the day before my arriv- 
al for Philadelphia where I am informed he will remain some time, prob- 

18 Three possible locations, each named Windmill Point, could be the one referred to here. 
The first lies in Carteret County and extends into White Oak River. The second is a point 
of land at the entrance to Silver Lake on Ocracoke Island in southeast Hyde County. The 
third Windmill Point is located in Pamlico County and extends into Bay River. Powell, 

\orth Carolina Gazetteer, 539. 

340 John Gray Blount Papers 

ably 'till the fall — this I consider a serious inconvenience as thro' him I 
calculated much of my business would be done as he must have a better 
idea of the lands, their value &c. than I can obtain by any other means 
and presume he has many papers important in making sales — if so what 
can or must be done? It is the opinion of William founded on a visit to 
that Country lately, and frequent conversations with others on the sub- 
ject that a sale of lands cannot be effected at any sacrifice which may be 
made to any extent, that there is not money in the Country I am well 
convinced of N. C. or Virginia — tho' I left home resolved to raise you the 
money wanted, I hear such frequent complaints & see along the road 
such sacrifices by the Sheriffs I really despair of success — but if the 
amount you men(2)tion must be raised, if all your lands in Tenessee will 
effect it, it shall be done, and nothing on my part shall be wanting to ef- 
fect the object. I have said thus much that you may form some idea of 
the prospect and how I am situated in the absence of Mr. Blackfan — if 
he has left an agent I do not know, but I see many of your Chickasaw 
lands advertised for taxes to sell in August. I shall leave here in the 
morning for Nashville. 

P. Miller informs me that the counsel of Mrs. B. endeavoured to pro- 
cure a decree against me personally at the last Supreme Court — the 
Judges have not yet given their opinion & whether they will personally 
subject me I do not know; I wish you would write to Sewell to attend to 
my interests in the suit, for having always understood the object was to 
subject the lands only of Tho. Blount I felt satisfyed with their proceed- 
ings, the next Court sits early in July, I believe — Tho' I feel very anxious 
to hear often from home, I cannot expect to receive a letter during my 
absence from the averssion of the family to write, such being the case 
they must not be surprised at not hearing from me during my absence 
unless I am gratifyed with letters from them — from you I hope to hear 
often & particularly — 

Yours affectionately 
Thos. H Blount 

Addressed: Mr. John G Blount 
Beaufort County 
N. Carolina 

Letters for 1821 341 

Robert Love 19 to John Gray Blount 

Waynesville 18 th of May 1821 
John G Blount Esq r 

On the reception of your Letter I Shew that part of it to M r Gooch rel- 
ative to him, he now has it in request to know whether you will receive 
$500 from him which is the original Sum that John Strother first Sold the 
land for (to a M r Gilliam) and he will then look to Strothers Executor for 
his redress, the money will be placed in my hands if you Say so & which 
can be forwarded to Raleigh this fall either by the Sheriff or members of 
the Assembly & there Lodged ready for your order — The Land M r 
Gooch represents to me to be of thin Soil & no water nearer than half a 
Mile except in the Winter Season, it is Situated on the head of Elk or 
near there he Says that there is a well dug but it Goes dry — 

M r Gooch has Sold the Land and is likely to be injured by not being 
able to make the Tittle — he thinks that Strother in the first Instance Sold 
the Land as your agent — 

as respects information of your Westren District Land rest well as- 
sured that every thing relative ther to that may come within my knowl- 
edge or my (2) Brothers 20 will be most freely given — my Brother and son 
William had Set out for that Country before your Letter came to hand, If 
any information Such as you ask can be obtained from them on their re- 
turn I will write you immediately — This winter my self & Brother design 
to explore the Country in all its parts & expect to make a division of our 
Lands, they amount to some where about 100,000 acres that is the whole 
that we are Interested in probably ours 40,000 — and are Scattered over a 
Great deal of the Country which will give us an oppertunity of Seeing 
more than we otherwise would, and if you will forward to me Special 
Memorandums of Such as you are the most particular about I will at- 
tend to the Same with Cheerfullness — 

I am deeply engaged at this time in opening the road through this 
County which I Contracted to do when I Saw you last, as to my Share of 
the Business I am doing all within myself, Money being with us an ob- 
ject, and my hands I find could not be better employed — 

19 For Robert Love see 7577, n. 16. 

20 Love was probably referring here to Thomas Love. See 1819, n. 1 


John Gray Blount Papers 

my Compliments to all your family and receive for yourself my best 
wishes — 

Respectfully &c 
R Love 

John G Blount Esq r 

(3) NB write to M r John Gooch immediately on the reception of this let- 
ter if you please that he may know what to depend on — 

R Love 

If you Comply with his request in Receiving the $500 he wishes you to 
instruct your agent in West Tennessee to make the deed to himself or to 
his order 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esquire 
Beaufort County 
No Carolina 

Josiah Collins to John Gray Blount 

Dear Sir, 

Edenton 19 th May 1821 

Mrs Collins will be at your place this day or, tomorrow week next, if 
nothing occurs to prevent her, on her return home from Newburn; would 
you do me the favor to inform me by her of your prospects of discharging 
the [illegible] vs you at my instance and now in the hands of the Sheriff 
of your County? it would be highly gratifying to me to learn that you 
have succeeded in procuring the funds requisite to that end — 

With great respect I am 
D r Sir yr obt sev 1 
Josiah Collins 

Letters for 1821 343 

If an earlier oppty offers than by Mrs C by which you can write to me, 
should be glad you would do so — 

Jno Gray Blount Esq 1 * — 

Addressed: Jn° Gray Blount Esq 1 " 


N C 

Henry Smith to John Gray Blount 

May 21 8t 1821 


Some time passed I wrote to you relative to your Western lands at that 
time I had made and thought a Sale of the principle part of my landed 
estate & under that impression I commenced the correspondence which 
possibly might have brought about a trade between us but as the Gentle- 
man afterwards refused to confirm the contract further communications 
in the shape they first assumed become unnecessary I now bring fourth 
the subject a new by way of an exchange of Lands with you for some of 
your land lying in the last purchase made of the Chickasaw nation of In- 
dians on the forked Deer the loose hatchee or wolf rivers or in that sec- 
tion of the country, my Land is situated on Roanoke River near the great 
falls & within a half a mile of the town of Weldon where the canal now 
cutting is contemplated to be let into the river the tract contains by Sur- 
vey 1272 acres 1076 acres of which lie within Mush Island & for the pur- 
poses of agriculture if equaled is not exceeded by an tract of my knowl- 
edge on the river & what gives it a decided advantage over most Roa- 
noke farms is its elivated Situation the balance of the tract is high land & 
valuable for its timber & as a place for a family residence the Island has 
I suppose about 650 acres of land cleared the balance is in woods & the 
whole with the exception of 20 or 25 acres might be made fit for cultiva- 
tion too with very little ditching — to give you some idea of the value of 
the land in the estimation of disinterested persons I have since the 
change of times been offered $45000 for it this statement is merely made 
to give you an idea of its value that if you are disposed to barter that you 
may not think it unworthy your attention (2) by way of preliminaries to a 
bargain it might not be amiss for you to state where your land is Situ- 

344 John Gray Blount Papers 

ated its description & what would be the price of select parcels of 1000. 
or more acres in tracts an immediate answer will be thankfully received. 
I am respectfully yours &c. 

Henry Smith 

[Address missing — manuscript torn] 

William Polk 21 to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh May 25 1821 


I have this day rec d your letter of the 22 nd of September last; by which 
it would seem; that you were impressed with a belief that I was to cancel 
the Judg 1 had against you by the acceptance of a Land Warrant, at what 
rate you have not said — I have no recollection of such an agreement; ever 
having been made with you or with any one for you; so far from it; that I 
was not a little surprised, yesterday, to know from my Att° that the Judg 1 
had not as yet been satisfyed — I regret (2) that this is the case inasmuch 
as the non payment, has & will give me more trouble than I had ex- 

I am respectfully 
Y r Mo Ob dt 
Will. Polk 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 

Washington N.C. 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

TARB°Tues. May. [1821] 

In conversation with John respecting your offer to the Heirs of William 
Blount he informs me that W. B. transferred all his western lands to Pierce 

For William Polk see J 805, n. 22. 

Letters for 1821 345 

Butler 22 of Phil a and that he was once on a bargain with Irwin 23 to give 
Allison's judg 1 for W. B. interest in those lands — was your offer to the 
heirs made under such information, or is it only for the Interest of 
W. Blount in the mercantile concern? and if so what think you of the 
bargain with Irwin for W. B. interest in those lands. It has occurred to 
me since I saw you that 'twould be desirable to give and receive a full 
discharge to Willie Blount as the means of settling a law suit between 
you & his children — if he owes you will never get it — if you do — you 
know nothing of the business — Write me at Nashville as early as con- 
venient & send Tho. Blount's judg 1 

Yours affectionately 
Thos. H. Blount 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 

Mr Rodman 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

June 4th 1821 

I was much disappointed in finding you absent, as I could have given 
you a much more satisfactory account of the Tennessee business, & the 
prospect in that quarter, than I can possible do by letter — 

The money the Girls will hand you is all I could collect after making 
every exertion & remaining in the country some months without any 
other object — I made no sales of either lands or warrants & the note due 
to the estate of R. Blount for warrants, Uncle Willie had passed away on 
his private Acct. Warrants could have been sold at $2 for notes; but 
would not com d cash at more I think than 1.25 or SI. 50 — The drawing 
for priority of entry takes place on the first Wednesday in Nov r next & 
the early drawn numbers will probably bring from 10 to $20 p r Acre & 
the last drawn, not less than they are now selling for, I therefore thought 
it best to delay the sacrifice if one must be made — I left (2) with Mr 
Blackfan (in whose abilities & integrity I have the highest confidence) a 
power of Att° & directions to sell warrants if he could, at an average of 
$2 & land at its value — I have tried to light a considerable quantity of 

For Pierce Butler see 1803, n. 103. 

For James Patton and Andrew Erwin see 1810, n. 27. 

346 John Gray Blount Papers 

warrants & certificates which were not before in possession & over- 
looked — the precise quantity you will have, I do not recollect; but a 
statement will be forwarded from Tarb° when Sally arrives with my 
papers — I eventually succeeded in geting a settlement with Maj r Lock- 
hart Exc r of J. Strother — we after losing much time in adjusting the Ace 1 
compromised by his giving his note for $5000 payable $3000 at the end of 
three years & the balance one year after, with interest from the date — A 
full statement shall also be forwarded — In his Ace 1 rendered there are 
items which must be charged in a settlement with W m Blount & others 
viz their proportion for Strothers services, & expences attending the law 
suit with Pillow & Hadley, taxes & c — I have mentioned to my Brother 
every thing that I could think of & which I thought it probable you 
would have enquired about — And regret very much the situation of my 
affairs is such as to prevent my remaining until your return 

affectionately your Ob 1 Son 
JG Blount 

P.S. I have some good grounds for hoping you will recover your debt 
against D. Allison (the whole amount) I enclose the notes (3) I men- 
tioned to Mr J. Haywood & to Mr. McNair your instructions to me to 
sell lands for the payment of your note to the letter — Mr. Haywood has 
suggested a plan which it was thought would meet your approbation — 
The enclosed form of a note with the Mem° on the back will explain 
it — in addition, he offered to attend to the business at Bank & altho not 
a monied man would in cases of necessity do what he could in making 
advances of the p r C l required by the bank when it was out of your power 
to do so — I believe they require 5 p^ 1 every 90 days but this is matter of 
memory — M r McNair unsolicited offered to join in the note if wished — 

There was a resolution of the last session of the Leg 1 directing the 
Treasurer to refund you a sum (say part of $140) which you had over 
paid for taxes — Owing to the want of the proper endorsment it could not 
be paid; but M[r] J Haywood said he would take it up or send it to Mr. 
P. Henderson 24 the Clk. & prevail on him to make them & then it should 
be paid to your order — 


"Pleasant Henderson (1755?- 1842?), originally from Granville County, North Carolina, 
lived in Chapel Hill. Henderson, an officer during the Revolutionary War, served as clerk 
of the North Carolina Council of State (1781-1784), as clerk of the Orange County Superior 

Letters for 1821 347 

This is some Tennessee money. N. Ca r could not be had, the most I got 
was from travelers on the road 

Addressed: JG Blount Esq 1 

Wilson B. Hodges 25 to John Gray Blount 

Tyrrell County June 5 th 1821 
J. G. Blount Esq r 
D r Sir 

I have the pleasure of informing you that our Tax has been reduced 
from $40: to $6 and some odd cents p r Year, this is a wide difference be- 
tween the sums; and the inclemency of this past Fall and winter pre- 
vented my having the land Surveyed. I wish you would be so good as to 
send me down the old patents of this land as I believe the presence of the 
patent would prevent any law Suits; with those persons who may have 
encroached upon the premises. 

I had the pleasure last week at Washington County Court House of 
seeing our two Candidates for a seat in Congress. I think M r Clark 

Court in 1782, as private secretary to Governor Alexander Martin, and as reading clerk of 
the state House of Commons from 1807 to 1829 "on account of his sonorous voice." While 
living in Chapel Hill, Henderson also acted as a justice of the peace and as steward of the 
University of North Carolina. Henderson speculated in western lands throughout this peri- 
od and moved to Carroll County, Tennessee, in 1830. Shanks, Papers of Willie Mangum, I, 
155n.; Kemp P. Battle, History of the University of North Carolina from Its Beginning to the Death of 
President Swain, 1789-1868, Volume I; From 1868-1912, Volume II (Raleigh: Edwards and 
Broughton, 2 volumes, 1907, 1912), I, 53, 159, 193, 233, 314; Cheney, North Carolina Govern- 
ment, 163-164, 253-293 passim; Wheeler, Historical Sketches, II, 334-335; Wheeler, Reminiscences 
of North Carolina, 180; Hoyt, Papers of Archibald D. Murphey, I, 176n. 

25 Wilson B. Hodges represented Hyde County in the North Carolina Constitutional Con- 
vention of 1835 and in the North Carolina Senate (1842-1843). Cheney, North Carolina Govern- 
ment, 311, 817. 

348 John Gray Blount Papers 

understands electioneering much better than Doct. Hall. 26 I think the Con- 
test will be warm in Washington Cty — but in this County Hall will get 
an unanimous vote, the people of this County (with the exception of a 
few) are determined to support Hall, there are but few respectable Char- 
acters in this County but will do their utmost to leave the magnanimous 
General at home; and I think there will be but little doubt of his enjoy- 
ing the comforts of his own fire Side the ensuing winter, hoping this may 
find you enjoying good health. I conclude by subscribing myself 

Yours with Respect and 

Wilson. B. Hodges 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 " 

Washington N° Ca 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Nashville 15 th June 1821 

My Dear Sir, 

Yours of the ult. respecting your loan was not rec d by me at this place 
'till the 3 rd Inst, so that 'twas impossible to answer you by the time de- 
sired, & that being past, declined writing 'till I could be better enabled 
to give you some general information relative to your affairs in this 
quarter — 

I have before informed you of the absence of Blackfan your agent and 
McLemore 27 your locator — I am but now informed the first will be here 
early in August, the latter the ensuing week — All the land of J. G. & 
T. B. 28 originally entered by them in the Western District are advertised 
for taxes in their name, among which I presume are included those sold 
Spaight and Sheppard — As the sale will not take place before the return 
of Blackfan I shall do nothing with respect to them, but if he should not 
return in time I must by some means raise money to pay them, as 'twill 
ruin all I trust to the Legislature for relief — From any (2) information I 

28 For Thomas H. Hall see 1812, n. 21. The Mr. Clark mentioned as Hall's opponent was 
probably James West Clark (1779-1843) of Bertie County. He had already served in both 
houses of the General Assembly and as a representative in the Fourteenth Congress 
(1815-1817). He died in Tarboro on December 20, 1843. Biographical Directory of Congress, 743. 

"For John C. McLemore see 1811, n. 7. 

28 This is a reference to John Gray Blount and Thomas Blount. 

Letters for 1821 349 

can obtain, the chance of selling land is small, if one half its value is re- 
quired — Small tracts of the new locations may sell this fall for cash at a 
reduced price but if money is demanded I doubt whether 500 acres could 
be sold to any one person unless at a discount of 50 p Cent from its 
nominal value — I have sold 360 acres at 4$ and 'tis considered a good 
sale for cash — the Land was estimated at 5$ on a credit of 12 mo. I there- 
fore thought 4 was doing well — Whatever can, shall be done previous to 
my return, but should like much to hear from you any [illegible] on the 
subject, for I assure you a few lines afford me neither pleasure nor infor- 
mation — Discount on Tenessee paper for N.C. 22 p.C. scarce. P. Butler 
under a deed from Will. Blount has sued R. Thompson for a 1280 acre 
tract lying in Humphrys county which you sold him — 'twill be hard you 
should have to pay for this tract & not be paid for it (which I suspect is 
the case) but know not how you will avoid it, unless you can shew you 
were the equitable owner — I have spoken to M r Whitesides and he will 
in a few days give me an opinion on the subject, so that I am getting into 
business of a very different nature from the original motive of my 
journey — As to myself — I am nearly the same as when I (3) saw you, but 
have consulted an eminent physician & am now under a course of medi- 
cine — the effect I do not know & the final event is & will be of little 
consequence to one who has nothing to stimulate him to exertion — My 
love to my sisters — 

Yours affectionately 
Thos. H. Blount 

Jno. G. Blount Esq r 

Yours of the 19 l May is this moment handed me — I have given you a 
view of things in this quarter & cannot think any thing effectually can be 
done before the last of Sep r What can be done I will do — 

[No address] 

Wright C. Stanly 29 to John Gray Blount 

[June 18, 1821] 

My Dear Sir 

During the last week I saw many of the farmers of our County and had 
an opportunity of hearing from many of the neighbouring ones — The 

29 Wright C. Stanly represented Craven County in the North Carolina Senate in 1814. 
Cheney, \orth Carolina Government, 265. 

350 John Gray Blount Papers 

universal opinion is, that, since the memory of man, never was there so 
hard a winter as the one past and never was there known so unpropitious 
a spring and one in which so much rain had fallen — The late heavy and 
continued rains have materially injured both our corn and our cotton — 

Hundreds of acres of cotton, in the Counties of Onslow Jones & 
Craven, have been abandoned — Some have replanted with corn but most 
have entirely surrendered it to the grass — 

Our Corn, which (2) before the rains of the week before last, was green 
and flourishing, is now overcast with a yellowish and sickley hew — 

The above is as nearly as I can learn the fate of our farmers in this 
part of the State — 

We call the farmer's life, the life of independence — It is so — Under our 
own vine and our own figtree, we can enjoy, with those connected to us 
by the tender ties of friendship, the fruits of our own industry from our 
own soil — But surely it is also the life of hazard and is as much check- 
ered by adversity and success as is the life of a merchant — Witness the 
present prospects of our farmers — But a few weeks ago, we were 
promised an abundant harvest; now, we ought to be thankful if we 
gather half crops — 

I leave this in two or three (3) days with my Aunt (M rs Badger) for her 
Son's in Warren — I shall stay a few days there, say a week, and shall 
then return home taking Washington in my way — Present me to the 
young ladies of your family and believe me 

My Dear Sir sincerely 
your friend 
W C Stanly 
June 18 th 1821 
Newbern N° Ca 

John G Blount Esq 1 " 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
N° Ca 

M r Leroy 

Letters for 1821 351 

C. C. Cambreleng 30 to John Gray Blount 

Newyork 2 1 June 1 82 1 
John G. Blount Esq r 
dear Sir, 

I duly received your favor of the 2 d inst and would have replied to it 
earlier, but for one recent and melancholy visitation — 

I have made enquiry and find it impracticable to do anything in the 
way you propose; unless I would give my own name here, which I can- 
not do without violating one of the conditions of our parternship: and as 
a proposition in business, it is not such a one as I could with propriety 
make to the house — 

Money is very plenty here but our capitalists are unwilling to loan it 
on mortgage upon lands at a distance, unless they have some friend to 
examine them and give their opinion; and in such cases they will not 
loan except for a long term, it being no object to them to loan their 
money on mortgage for short periods — In short when the property pro- 
posed lies at a distance it is very difficult to make the security satisfac- 
tory — 

I am very respecty — 
Y r mo obt sv l 
C. C. Cambreleng 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
No Carolina 

30 Churchill Caldom Cambreleng (1786-1862) was born in Washington, North Carolina, 
and was educated in New Bern. He moved to New York City in 1802 and became the confi- 
dential clerk to John Jacob Astor. Eventually he ran his own mercantile business. From 
1821 to 1829 he served as a New York Democratic-Republican in the United States House 
of Representatives. President Martin Van Buren appointed him minister to Russia in 1840 
and Cambreleng served in that position until July, 1841. He is buried in Brooklyn, New 
York. Biographical Directory of Congress, 694; Wheeler, Reminiscences of North Carolina, 13-14. 

352 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Nashville 27 l June 182 

My Dear Sir, 

Since my last M c Lemore has returned to this place and informs me 
that your lands are all located and he thinks well done — in a few weeks 
he will have a connected plan of all the District, so that on my return I 
trust I shall be able to give you a pretty correct idea of the situation & 
value of your lands in that section of the State — It is the opinion of sev- 
eral from the Western District that lands may be sold this fall, but now, 
I cannot at any price — below there is not a purchaser, and here not one 
able if willing — besides at the present depreciation of their paper, 
'twould realise nothing — I assure I have & will do all I can but 'tis not in 
my power to compel people to part with their money, & they will at this 
time do any thing rather than invest it in land — 

Yours sincerely 
Thos. H. Blount 

[Note in margin] Will you direct Jacob to make the negroes grub & 
clean up the ground where the Brick yard was — I want to use it if I ever 
return — 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq 1 " 
N° Carolina 

Hamilton Fulton 51 to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh 13 July 1821 

John G. Blount Esq 1 " 

Dear Sir 

I found the Creeks so much swelled by the rains that I could not by 
any means form an idea of the ordinary summer water issuing from the 

31 Hamilton Fulton was an English engineer who specialized in making canals, bridges, 
railroads, and in draining swamps. He was hired by the state of North Carolina in 1819 to 
develop and implement a comprehensive internal improvements program in cooperation 
with local businessmen and the state's internal improvements board of commissioners. One 

Letters for 1821 353 

Swamp — I was informed at M r Kelly Williams Mill that it was rarely 
they were obliged to stop the grist mill during summer, both the Robin- 
sons thought if their dams were tight the[y] would seldom or never feel 
the want of water. I was very much pleased with the ground I passed 
over it is very favorable for Canal purposes. I am however of opinion that 
the navigation might be let into the Creek at Harmon Robinsons mill 
and pass from thence to M r Yarnals mill, below which M r Yarnal thinks 
the course is not very circuitous and would not be expensive to render 
navigable as there are no other obstructions than trees and logs. I 
crossed it at 3 or 4 places and found it a very slow running stream with a 
super abundance of water at the time 

(2) While I was on the Survey of Occracock Bar I had Richard Sum- 
mers and a young man an Englishman with me as Boatmen the young 
man called himself William Slater. I have received a letter from his 
father who is a respectable man in London and who is desirous he 
should return home, if you will be kind enough to enquire of Summers if 
he knows any thing of him I shall be much Obliged, he is an only son (a 
prodigal I suppose) his father is wealthy and advanced in life and seems 
anxious to see him before he leaves the world, he calls himself William, I 
understand his real name is Joseph, if you think an advertisement in the 
Washington papers will do any good I shall send one for insertion. 

I remain 
Dear Sir 

Your most Obed Serv 1 
Hamilton Fulton 

Addressed: John. G. Blount Esq r 


of his major concerns was to form a canal system linking the state's major eastern rivers 
with one another to export agricultural products through Beaufort, on the lower Albemarle 
Sound, because of the unstable navigational conditions along the Ocracoke Inlet. Fulton 
concentrated on the Roanoke, Tar, and Neuse rivers and the towns of Williamston, Wash- 
ington, and Beaufort in surveying the proposed canal area. He praised Washington as a 
"port of entry" for the Tar River, based on a canal route survey "from the mouth of 
Blount's Creek, below Washington, to the top of the ridge dividing the waters of the Tar 
from those of the Neuse." The state's ambitious plans, jointly financed by the state and 
private partnerships, never materialized, and Fulton was forced to resign in 1825 because of 
the lack of progress. Lefler and Newsome, North Carolina, 316; Hoyt, Papers of Archibald D. 
Murphey, II, 136-138, 143-144; Samuel A. Ashe, History of North Carolina, From 158 J to 1783, 
Volume I; From 1783-1925, Volume II (1925; reprint ed., Spartanburg, S.C.: Reprint Com- 
pany, 1971), II, 259, 287, 302, hereinafter cited as Ashe, History of North Carolina. 

354 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Nashville 3 rd August 1821 

My Dear Father, 

Yours of the 25 June was reed, and to day one of the 6 July arrived — I 
must rejoice your time has past as you desired, and flatter myself with 
the hope by the last of September you may be able to comply with your 
promises — Be assured that no exertions or sacrifices on my part shall be 
wanting to effect your object — I wrote you fully on the subject last week, 
since when nothing has occurred, except that on the 7 l Inst, a company 
will proceed to examine your lands under a partial agreement at 2$ pro- 
vided they take 5000 acres in a [illegible] the old granted lands; this I know 
will be a great sacrifice, but better here than in N.C. of negroes — at any 
rate if the money can be had in N. York at 10 p Cent 'tis better to take 
than risque this, for the difference in premium will more than pay, & If I 
sell the money could remain here in Bank 'till the exchange is up — I 
shall however proceed (2) as tho' all depended on me — I have written to 
Knoxville to ascertain if a loan can be had of Dolls. 4000 'till the 1* Nov. 
when I can repay it from funds here but do not calculate on much from 
that source — I regret much the situation of my Sister & trust in God that 
in this she has recovered — Yourself & her are the only beings whose loss 
I could not bear — She is my all, & without her I could well depart with- 
out a murmur — Give my love to her & the family generally & believe me 
to be sincerely yours 

Thos. H. Blount 

P.S. Tell Caroline 32 I reed, hers in June & thank her — My health is 
sometimes better, but riding half a day throws all the bile on the surface 
again — but my Physician pretends to entertain the hope that a long & 
[r]egular course of Mercury & Bark will effect a great change if not a 
perfect cure — I have no such hope — 

Addressed: John G Blount Esquire 
North Carolina 

32 This was probably Thomas's cousin, the daughter of Reading Blount. Keith and others, 
Blount Papers, III, 107n. 

Letters for 1821 355 

Joseph Blount to John Gray Blount 

New York 4 th August 1821 

Dear Sir, 

Your letter of the 13 th ult° reached me a few days since in Saratoga 
County — I arrived here to day to attend to that and some other business 
that required my personal attention and I am sorry to be obliged to 
inform you that I failed in obtaining a loan for you — When I reached 
here from Carolina I was informed by a Person that he would gladly 
make the loan provided he was satisfied of the Security of Debt — 
knowing that M r D Clark was well known to him induced me to suggest 
to you the propriety of procuring a Letter from him and upon receiving it 
I had no doubt but that the money could be obtained on the terms I 
wrote you but upon making the application to day I find that the Person 
is not disposed to make the loan because neither you or your proposed 
Security are known (2) to him — without which he could not be satisfied 
as to the Security of the Debt and pay mt of Interest — I stated your will- 
ingness to give a mortgage — his objection to that was that being for 
money borrowed at 7 per Cent it would be voidable — I do not know of 
any other person who would be willing to make the Loan — It is generally 
difficult for persons residing in N. Carolina to procure loans here — in 
case of Death Executors & administrators have not always thought 
themselves bound to make payments of interest punctually nor to pay 
the principal here and the Expenses of collection in N. Carolina being 
generally 5 per Cent & the loss on remittances from 2 @ 5 per Cent more 
would deter most capitalists from making investments in North Carolina. 

M r Jackson informs me that he wrote you lately as to the State of our 
market for your produce since when there has been no change. I am 
sorry to learn that the Crops in Carolina have been so much injured by 
the wet weather — the Crops in this part of the State are said to be 
good — To the North the Indian (3) Corn has been injured somewhat for 
the want of Rain — The small grain & grass was very good — 

I am very respectfully yours 
Jos. Blount 

John G. Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq re 
N. Carolina 

356 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Nashville 4 Sept 1 1821 

My Dear Sir, 

I had fondly indulged the hope that by this time I should by sales, col- 
lections, or loans (for I have tryed all) been able to raise the sum you 
wanted, but my source has failed notwithstanding all the exertions I 
could make — I have gone so far as to offer Land worth 5$ at 2$ for cash, 
but there is really but little money in this part of the Country and that is 
held up for shaving — I have however ascertained certainly that by the 1 st 
of Nov r I can get 4000$ — but it will be in Silver, and what I can do with 
that sum I do not know — Gold or U.S. notes is 3 or 5 p. Cent higher & 
for the Silver I shall have to give 20 to 23 p. Cent — I wish you would give 
me your ideas on this business, in fact you write so seldom, & then so lit- 
tle that I know not what to think or do — Could you imagine my situation 
I must believe you would devote a few of your leisure moments in writing 
me, for tho' you may think you have nothing interesting to communicate, 
any thing from Washington is so to me — (2) I wrote you a few days since 
by M r Rueben & hope you have rec d it — Let me intreat you to write me 
often — 'tis distressing enough to be here in my situation but more so to 
be deprived of the happiness of hearing from home, when there are a 
dozen there who having nothing to do, I almost fear that I have by some 
means lost the affections of my Brothers & Sisters if I ever had it, for not 
a line have I rec d from any one of them since I left you, except Polly 
Ann— 33 

yours affectionately 
Thos. H. Blount 

Addressed: John G Blount 
North Carolina 

'This reference is to Polly Ann Blount Rodman. 

Letters for 1821 357 

John Hogg 34 to John Cray Blount 

Raleigh NC. 9 th Septem b 1821 
John Gray Blount Esq r 
Dear Sir 

Valuing in your fondly regard, I have to apprise you that I am a Can- 
didate for the Comptrollership at the ensuing Gen 1 Assembly, and the 
present is to solicit your good offices with such of the Members as you 
have influence with — 

As to my fitness and capacity to hold the Office to you I presume it is 
unnessary to say anything and I shall only add that, if appointed, I 
pledge myself that I can & will within the space of two years exhibit the 
financial concerns of The State in the Books of the Comptroller, stated in 
a more clear and comprehensive (and permit me to say in a more 
masterly) manner & view than they have ever been — 

I request a reply hereto, at your convenience, address d to me at 
Fayetteville, & whether favourable or not to my wishes will carrie no 
diminution in that regard and respect in which you have ever been held 

Dear Sir. 

Y r friend & Serv nt 
John Hogg 


Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
Beaufort County 
N° Car a 

34 For John Hogg see 1803, n. 6. 

358 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount, Jr. 

Nashville 1 2 th October 1821 

Dear John, 

Yours of the 25 th Ult. has this morning been rec d . I was unprepared for 
such a letter as the last I rec d induced me to believe my father would be 
able to negotiate his business in N. York and had made arrangements for 
leaving this on the 20 th by which time I shall probably receive 2000$ — my 
journey is certainly postponed 'till the l 8t of December and I have no 
reason to hope to succeed by that time, but to remain after that day is 
useless as your promise expires the 25 th of Dec r and if I cannot raise the 
amt. by that time why delay is useless — I do not know how it can be 
done — I have already offered Lands (& choice) at 2$ — others at 
1$ — while others are selling at 5$ by crediting 6 & 12 mo — if I sell the 
paper is 23 p. Cent depreciation — I have no assistance — all others almost 
are wishing to sell and as for your agent — he is a man cypher so far as it 
respects any active agency — from this you may judge of my situtation 
and feelings — to undergo the same again for 6 mo. I would not for the 
state of Tenessee — The damn'd inhabitants of an infernal place have not 
contributed any thing to the improvement of the health of one, formerly 
bad, but now from the confinement in one place & anxiety of mind 
respecting this business, that I am really incapable of any thing & worn 
down by continual fever 'till I (2) have the appearance of an inhabitant of 
another world — I wish you to inform my father of your hearing from me, 
for I have determined not to write another letter during my residence 
here; I hear from none of them, I remain hear sacrificing my health, hap- 
piness & peace of mind to enable my father to procure a fortune for 
those who neither think or care for me — I have no interest in it, for I can- 
not possibly survive another year — deprived of those who were so dear to 
me, neglected if not disliked by nearest relatives, not one real friend on 
earth, and a constitution broken & worn down, both present & future 
pleasures are gone or cannot be enjoyed — My love to Polly, who I hope 
yet thinks of me — 


Thos. H Blount 

Addressed: Major John G Blount 
Edgecombe County 
North Carolina 

Letters for 1821 359 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Murfreesborough Tue. 21 st Oct. 1821 

My Dear Sir, 

I rec d a letter a few days since from John, stating that he had borrowed 
on your acct. of the Bank at Raleigh 6000$ and had given his honor that 
it should be paid on the 25 th Dec 1 * That being the case I concluded that 
delay on my part to act would be wrong, & knowing that great sacrifices 
would have to be made to effect the object, I determined at once to sell at 
any price which could be had: I have made a contract for 4000$ in 
Tenessee paper, to select 2000 acres of any of your land after they have 
examined it — I can make a similar contract for 4000$ more & then pay- 
ing the discount for good paper I shall have 6000$ to pay the debt — This 
you will consider a great, very great sacrifice — 'tis so, but 'tis all that 
could be done & if your land here would pay what you owe, there would 
be enough in N. C. and God forbid that you or any of your children 
should own, or have any thing to do in Tenessee — I wish I could this trip 
sell all you have here at any price — From the above, you will see that I 
shall be able to meet the payment (2) before the 1 st of January — I cannot 
leave here 'till the 25 th of November & shall then hasten home as fast as 
possible — There are many persons moving into the Western District, but 
they purchase of the many sellers at long credits, or exchange their farms 
in other parts of the Country for them, but I know of only two tracts 
which have been sold for money & those at low prices and small 
prices — As I shall not write John at this time, you will be pleased to 
write him that I shall be able (I think) to comply with his promise in 
Raleigh My Love to the family — 

Yours affectionately 
Thos. H. Blount 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 


North Carolina 
M r Wheaton 

360 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Nashville 28 th Nov. 1821 

My Dear Sir, 

I have declined writing you for some time past, believing that I should 
be able to state when I should leave this place, as also the amt. of money 
I should bring with me. the first I am now able to do, as I have 
determined to leave this on the 2 nd of December — The amt. is more un- 
certain — I have between 6 & 7000$ in N.C. & U. States notes, principally 
the former & am in hopes of raising 3000$ in Silver on my way — I have 
made a contract & a letter of this day informs me there is a possibility of 
raising that sum to carry the contract into effect; if I succeed I hope 
'twill be enough to satisfy your immediate demands, if I fail I can only 
say all that could be done has been — I must however inform you that I 
have made my great sacrifices in your land to effect, and thus almost as 
great in this cursed paper to get that which would answer any pur- 
pose — I at least shall feel happy if all the Land in this State could relieve 
you, for at your age repose is all important & your children must provide 
for (2) themselves — Such has always been my impression & I have acted 
up to it — From the present appearance of the road, I think I shall be at 
Raleigh by the 25 th Dec r but to do so, shall be obliged to leave my car- 
riage and travel on horseback, for the snow was yesterday four or five 
inches deep in this place and no doubt the road will be very bad — This 
will induce us to take the nearest road home & by constant traveling 
may fulfil my expectations — I may however be disappointed & therefore 
do not look for me 'till you see me — My Love to all the family who are 
with you — 

Yours affectionately 
Thos. H Blount 

John G. Blount Esq. 
Washington N. C. 

Addressed: John G Blount Esquire 
No. Carolina 

Letters for 1821 361 

Thomas Hamilton to John Gray Blount 

Clinton Jones Co. Georgia 
6 th Decemb. 1821 


Being the Executor of the last will of James Blount 36 late of this 
County dec d and formerly of N. Carolina and having learned from Mrs. 
Blount and others that confidence in you wold not be misplaced, I take 
the liberty to request you to inform me immediately by letter what has 
been done by Mr. Horace Ely 36 in relation to the Maul's Point land in 
Beaufort County, particularly what the records of the Court Shew in re- 
gard to it Since the death of John M. Roulhac brother of Mrs. Ely and 
Mrs. Blount. 

Inform me as far as you conveniently can what Mr. Ely and T. B. 
Houghton Esqr have done or are doing with the notes, Bonds, &c left by 
John M. Roulhac to the children of James Blount 

I must authorize and beg you (2) to turn your attention to this land So 
far as to prevent Mrs. Blount's part from being Sold for taxes or other- 
wise Sacrificed till She regularly constitutes an Attorney in your County, 
and for all trouble and expense incurred in So doing She will amply 
Satisfy you. Some time past James Blount and Mr. Ely effected a 
division of this land in behalf of their wives. I would thank you cautious- 
ly to ascertain and make known to me whether this division was ever 
properly legalized or not. 

Very Respectfully Yrs. 
Thomas Hamilton M.D. 

John G. Blount Esq. 

P.S. Be So good as to mention to me the name of an attorney of integrity 
and Skill who would be willing to transact the business of Blount's 
Estate or legatees of J.M. Roulhac T. H. 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esqr. 
Beaufort Co. 
N. Carolina 


36 James Blount was John Gray Blount's uncle. Keith and others, Blount Papers, I, xiv. 
36 Horace Ely is listed in the 1820 census as the head of a household of eight. Potter, 1820 
North Carolina Census, Washington County, 15. 

362 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

Murfreesb 1 1 th Dec r 1 82 1 

My Dear Father, 

You will no doubt be surprised at receiving a letter from me at this 
place, when you expected I was on my way home before this, but much 
more so when I inform you that from this I return to Nashville and send 
another to N. C. in my place — To enable me to accomplish even a part 
of your business, to wit, raising money and what was almost as hard, to 
exchange it for the kind which would suit your purposes, has detained 
me till this time and yet have not done all that I desired or had — 
promises to be performed — On arriving here, I found the roads so bad, 
and a continuance of Snow or rain, that a due regard for my health, in- 
duced me to abandon my journey to N. Carolina this winter, to return to 
Nashville, and from thence as soon as the river will permit, take passage 
in a steam boat for Orleans, and from thence opportunities offer weekly 
in packets for Charleston, Baltimore or some of the Atlantic ports — The 
roads were so bad I could not return in my carriage & therefore being 
compelled to leave it, I chose rather to sell that & my horses — (2) The 
journey even thus far has convinced me that I could not travel home in a 
month, and I do not consider my health such as to justify the attempt, 
for from my liver complaint I have severe pains in my breast & side & 
my spleen has increased very much — still I enjoy apparently better 
health than when I saw you; that is I am stronger, eat hearty, but do not 
sleep well, not being able to lie but on one side — if however I can have a 
good passage from Orleans, I have great hopes that a sea voyage even in 
winter will be beneficial — These are my reasons for the course I am 
about to pursue — I know your anxiety to see me & the necessity for my 
presence at home, but to be there & confined is worse than roaming 
about, for there I have some hopes of a recovery — if then none, & I much 
fear I never shall be able to remain long in any one place if I expect to 
enjoy tolerable health — I have made a contract with Mr. Sublett, that he 
will carry my servant, horses, &c. &c. home and am to pay him 2$ per 
day while travelling from this and back & pay expenses, and furnish him 
with a horse — By him I send a favorite grey, saddle &c. which you will 
please have sent to San Souci & direct I wish to have him well taken care 
of as I keep him for the saddle (3) and probably the only horse I shall 
ever own or want — You had best give Sublett the long bay to return on 
as I shall order the sale of him on his return, the other bay you will keep 
or dispose of as you please — he is only 4 years old — 

Letters for 1821 363 

I inclose you a number of land papers from which you can form some 
idea what I have done, & if I should ever return can explain more fully 
— As to the Western lands, I would barely say — they will in one or two 
years I think rise 100 p. Cent in value, they are moving fast to that Coun- 
try, & the next summer will decide its healthiness — if 'tis so, a large por- 
tion of Tenessee will move there, as the Cotton & Corn made there this 
Season when cultivated almost exceeds belief — I still entertain the hope 
that I shall bring 3000$ in specie with me; I have made a contract to that 
amt. & hope the man will be able to comply previous to my departure, if 
so shall take it with me, as I cannot get any paper for it that will arrive 
to send by mail — I send you by Mr. Sublett $7965. from which you will 
pay Caroline J. Blount $136. 66 /1(X) i n U.S. paper & $609 80/100 in 
N.C. being in all Dolls. 746 46 / 100 recd - for fee of Sublett, which I have 
written her about — I hope & trust the sum so sent you will answer 
present purposes & if I (4) can get more shall certainly do so — I will 
write you again before I leave Nashville — 

Having been so much longer absent than I expected, my family may 
be in want of every thing, I rely confidently that all which ought will be 
done — more I need not say, than that I hope you will manage them in 
any way you may think proper for my interest & their convenience — I 
have but one wish on earth, that is to be at San Souci & spend the 
balance of my days there — now I cannot — & when I can God only 
knows — I want Chloe & Louisa taken care of, the former you well know 
acted as she should toward my departed partner & the latter I regard as 
my child — then let me entreat that what may happen take care of 
them — should I never return, you will find my will in the Iron Chest, in 
it there is nothing for Louisa, but my legatee will provide for my omis- 
sion as 'twas made at a time when I was happy enough to have a dearer 
object to provide for — if 'tis not such as you like destroy it, I have no care 
about it now — Should I not return, I want a white marble slab placed 
over — with this inscription only "M rs Eleanor Margaret Blount 37 wife of 
Thos. H. Blount" — I feel bound by many ties to have a similar one over 
M r8 Brown — This done I shall have no other wish & shall have per- 
formed my promise satisfyed (5) my feelings to her who was idolised 
when living & remembered when gone with feelings not to be de- 
scribed — In thus writing you I feel almost as tho' twas for the last time; 
my feelings I cannot describe, but if you can picture to yourself a Son 
taking leave of a parent whom he adores & one whom he has always 
looked up to — with pride and the most sincere affection, to Brothers and 

37 For information on Thomas Blount's first wife see 1821, n. 4. 

364 John Gray Blount Papers 

Sisters whom he tenderly loves, then you can fancy my feelings — 
Farewell — and May that God who watches over in this world, receive & 
reunite us all in that world where we shall soon meet, never again to be 
seperated — My Love to all & each of our families — 

Your affectionate Son 
Thos. H. Blount 

P.S. I have given Mr. Sublett Dolls. 152. in part pay, expenses &c. & you 
can estimate the balance which will be due him & pay the balance or 
give an order on Blackfan — Tell Jno. Akenford to attend particularly to 
making the returns & be particular in his transactions of the office, send- 
ing all the money he can spare from the office to Fayetteville immediately. 

Addressed: John G Blount Esquire 
Washington N.C. 

Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount 

Tuesday Morning 
Dec 1 " 12 th 1821 

Dear Sir, 

Being now, with a part of my domestic establishment up here, I am in- 
duced to try once more, the effect of negotiation, for the point place: for 
if I could now acquire it, I would decline returning to the River Shore. 
Therefore I submit the following to your Consideration. 

For the point place, with immediate possession, and a good title, I will 
release & convey to you Woolfords entire claim of and in Col° Rob 
Salters estate, including the Money due from the executors, a part of 
which you have paid in the payments made to & for account of Wool- 
ford. To this I will add Eight hundred Dollars, upon this I shall wish a 
twelve months Credit — if not paid in that time, I will give a Neg 1 Note, 
with undoubted names at either Bank in Newbern, which I shall wish, if 
it be my own, to pay by the usual Bank installments. But I should hope 
to Substitute that of some other person in lieu of giving my own; this I 
should expect to accomplish by a Sale of my River Shore or some other 
interests of mine. I exact no title, until the Cash or a note of the above 
description be paid, over as above. 

An answer by, or on tomorrow will be desirable, because, if you decide 
in the Negative, I shall remove on Friday or before down to the Shore — 

Letters for 1821 365 

which is the one, far most to my interest to be at, altho' its location, in- 
terferes with my clerical concerns. 

Yours &c. 
Jos. B. Hinton. 

Addressed: Jn° G. Blount esq 

Pleasant M. Miller to John Gray Blount 

Knoxville December the 23 d 1 82 1 

D Sir 

I have a son called William who from the time he could crawl has 
never done any one thing, even by accident, as it should be or as any 
other human creature would do it he is impatient of controul, & cannot 
& will not where it can be avoided be second — he has perfect confidence 
that he possesses superior knowledge about every matter and thing in 
this world, at school he never would learn altho his capacity is not 
doubted, he is generous & immagins he is hamsome upon the whole I 
think he bids fair to be a vagabond whils I was at Murfreesborough he 
took one of my horses & went of about 100 miles to a horse race his 
mother sent the Overseer after him & with some persuasion he returned, 
staid a week or ten days started a second time, went to Kentucky fell in 
with some horse drover and is now some where in your state I presume 
the last account he was at Salsbury. he is now about sixteen (2) years of 
age as he knows he has relations in your State, I immagine that necessity 
may drive him amongst you, now what I wish is that if you hear of him, 
you would intice him to your house or to somebody elses, who would 
persuade him into the navy. You can procure him an appointment of 
midshipman. Eaton 38 will do this forthwith, let him put to sea immedi- 
ately or do any other matter or thing with him that you please, and let 
me [hear] from you — 

38 This probably refers to John H. Eaton (1790-1856), who was a United States senator 
from Tennessee from 1818 to 1829. A staunch supporter of Andrew Jackson, he was ap- 
pointed secretary of war in 1829 but resigned two years later after Washington society re- 
fused to accept his second wife, Peggy O'Neale, thereby disrupting Jackson's cabinet. 
Hopkins, Concise DAB, 260. 

366 John Gray Blount Papers 

I shall go & see the late purchase this spring or Shall remove there the 
winter following it is probable that it will be in my power to attend to 
your concerns in that quarter, a resident agent would be usefull. this 
business of sending every year has & will cost you more than the land is 
worth, my family are in good health 

P M Miller 

if you see him do not [tell] him any thing of this letter 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

Thomas H. Blount to John Gray Blount 

N ashville 26 th Dec r 1821 
My Dear Sir, 

I hope ere this M r Sublett and my boy have arrived and deld. you 
papers &c. sent by him — I now congratulate myself that I did not at- 
tempt the journey as I am very certain I should not have been able to 
proceed farther than Knoxville — The snows have been frequent since my 
last and the coldest weather recollected for many years — I leave this 
early in to-morrow for Orleans in the Steam boat, where I shall arrive in 
7 or 8 days no accident ocurring & I trust by the last of January I shall 
leave that place in the Steam Ship for Charleston — A letter from a friend 
in Orleans — few days since informs me the place is now very healthy — 

I have not been able to raise more money, but have instructed Black- 
fan to sell as much as would raise 5000$ if to be done at a fair price & I 
think in the course of a month or two it may be done — 

Yours affectionately 
Thos. H. Blount 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 


John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

TARB°Jany 6 th 1822 

M r Haywood 1 has arrived & says he thinks the Bank would receive the 
money & interest instead of Bills — at all events that 1 p r c* would be as 
much as they could charge — would it not be well to send up the money 
by him to the Treasurer & request him to do the best — I am the more 
anxious about a speedy settlement as I have understood that Col° Polk 2 
has been predicting that the money would not be paid without difficulty 
— I consider that we are endebted to him for most of the difficulty which 
has occured 

your Ob 1 So n 
JG Blount 

[Note] M r Jackson will please deliver this as soon as he arrives at Wash- 


Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 
N° Car° 

Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount 

Sharon Jany. 9 th 1822 

Dear Sir, 

If you knew how my necessities teazes me, and how willing I am to 
settle our Woolford affair on terms, at once reasonable and fair, I cannot 
think you would willingly defer it. 

I am aware, that the time is truly unpropitious for Cash advances, and 
of all things of a terrestrial nature I need these most, yet I have studied 

lr rhis was probably John Haywood. See 1805, n. 19. 
2 For William Polk see 1805, n. 22. 

368 John Gray Blount Papers 

your own Convenience as to mode, rather than mine, in the offers I have 
hitherto made. 

You won 200 Acres Piney land, adjoining 300 of mine, this side of 
Bainers. I have laboured hard to sell mine for three years past — but have 
not been able to do so. Yours would be an acquisition to mine — & mine 
so would be to yours. Mine is Well timbered — and has neither been 
Boxed — nor has it lost the Lightwood. Your sawable pines have been 
so [Id] to Woodard. 3 the residue have been Boxed, and the [lijghtwood 
burned by Bainer. I will buy or Sell — You may have mine at $2 per 
Acre — pay me in 12 mos. or I will take yours at the same price — in part 
of the Woolford claim. What say you — ? 

Yours Respectfully 
Jos: B. Hinton 

Jn° G. Blount esq 

Addressed: Jn° G. Blount esq 

John Gray Blount, Jr. *s Bill of Sale from Willie Barrow 4 

[January 21, 1822] 

THIS INDENTURE, made the twenty first day of January in the year 
of our Lord one thousand eight hundred and twenty two between John 
Gray Blount Jun r of the county of Edgecombe and state of North Caro- 
lina of the one part, and Willie Barrow of the county of Davidson and 
state of Tennessee of the other part, Witnesseth: That the said John 
Gray Blount J r for and in consideration of the sum of Two thousand Dol- 
lars to him in hand paid by the said Willie Barrow the receipt whereof is 
hereby acknowledged, hath given, granted, bargained, sold aliened, 
conveyed and confirmed, and by these presents doth give, grant, bargain, 
sell, alien, convey and confirm unto the said Willie Barrow his heirs and 
assigns forever, a certain tract or parcel of Land, situate, lying and being 

8 This might refer to Isaiah Woodard, a resident of Beaufort County listed in the 1820 cen- 
sus as the head of a household of five. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 

'Willie Barrow was involved in the transfer of North Carolina Land Warrant 3480. He 
lived in Davidson County, Tennessee, and was the father of George Washington Barrow, a 
lawyer, businessman, and prominent Tennessee political figure. McBride, Directory of the 
Tennessee General Assembly, I, 30; Land Warrant 3480, Tennessee State Archives. 

Letters for 1822 369 

in the county of Davidson on the Bluff of Cumberland River above the 
upper Ferry it being the whole of Lot Number twenty four as designated 
in the general plan of Lots laid off by the President & Trustees of David- 
son Accademy 6 adjoining the Town of Nashville; also one other tract or 
part of Lot designated in the same plan by Number twenty eight Begin- 
ning at the end of the Street at a Stone Sixty feet South of the fifth corner 
of the above described Lot Number 24 thence running with the Street 
South 55 degrees west one hundred and fifty Seven feet to a Stake on said 
Street, thence South 35 degrees East two hundred & twenty two feet to a 
Stake in the East boundary line of the Accademy Survey thence with 
said line North two hundred & Seventy feet to the Beginning To have 
and to hold the said aforesaid Land, with all and singular the rights, 
profits, emoluments, hereditaments and appurtenances, of, in and to the 
same belonging, or in any wise appertaining, to the only proper use and 
behoof of him the said Willie Barrow his heirs and assigns forever. And 
the said John Gray Blount Jun r for himself his heirs, executors and 
administrators, doth covenant and agree with the said Willie Barrow his 
heirs or assigns, that the before recited Land and bargained premises, he 
will warrant and forever defend against the right, title, interest, or claim, 
of all and every person whatsoever. 

In witness whereof, the said John Gray Blount Jun r hath hereunto set 
his hand and affixed his seal the day and year first above written. 

Signed, sealed and delivered, 

in presence of JG Blount j r 

Valentine M. Jubleth 
W. L. Blount 6 

6 Davidson Academy, located approximately six miles from Nashville, Tennessee, was 
chartered by the North Carolina legislature in 1786. The academy eventually became Cum- 
berland College and was renamed a third time when it became the University of Nashville. 
The school's first president was the Reverend Thomas Craighead, a Presbyterian minister. 
Among the trustees were James Robertson and Hugh Williamson (see 1805, n. 35; 1815, n. 3 
for the respective identifications of these men). Hale and Merritt, Tennessee and Tennesseans, 
I, 142; II, 273. 

6 William L. Blount, the son of John Gray Blount's brother Sharpe Blount, is listed in the 
1820 census as a single male residing in Beaufort County. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, 
Beaufort County, 6; Wheeler, Reminiscenses of North Carolina, lxi, 131. 

370 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

TARB°Jany. 26 th 1822 

Owing in some measure to the derangement of business by the small 
pox, 7 Capt. Bowers has come off with two Bails of Cotton belonging to 
M r Haywood without their being weighed — I should be glad you could 
get some person who would attend to having them weighed for him — I 
weighed the balance of his Cotton but had to do it with a pair of patter 
[?] ballances that I know nothing about the correctness of — If convenient 
I should like to have one or two bails weighed by scales & if they were 
found to be meterially rong, the whole of them ought to be re weighed — 
If I had known when the flat got to this place from his plantation I 
would have done it before they left this — I give you the No 8 & W ts of a 
few bails which can by tryed— (viz) N° 17-396— N° 15 390— N° 
10-330— N° 44-297— We are well & keep close at home— 

your Ob 1 Son 
JG Blount 

I shall probably hear from M r H. by this mail, what the bank says 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
N° Car° 

Swepson Whitehead to John Gray Blount 

V a Portsmouth March 12 th 1822 


a short time ago I took the liberty to ask of M r Bernard some informa- 
tion relative to Juniper swamps in your vicinity. In answer he mentioned 
several tracts of Juniper swamp without professing to know any par- 
ticulars about them, and inclosed me a memorandum from you on the 
subject, in which you mention one near matamuskeet lake as combining 
more advantages than any other. I have an inclination to buy Juniper 

7 Tarboro experienced a smallpox outbreak in 1822 because people were inoculated with 
live" crusts. Watson, Edgecombe County, 54. 

Letters for 1822 371 

timber if suitable in quality, situation, & price. Will you be so good as to 
inform me if the timber is very fine, whether it has been worked or not, 
what quantity there is, what would probably be the price, and who are 
the proprietors. I should be sorry to impose much trouble on you, but I 
infer from your note that you will freely impart this information, and I 
am assured that I may implicitly rely on it when given. If from your rep- 
resentation I should wish to view it, it may be more convenient to go by 
water and when there, should be too far from Washington to confer with 
you. It will be useful to add some instructions as to the best method of 
identifying and seeing it. 

Have you an idea that your Juniper timber bears any (2) comparison 
in size & quality for making shingles to that in our Great Dismal swamp 
near us? 

Your early attention to this subject, will very much oblige 

Your Ob 1 Serv* 

Swepson Whitehead 

Addressed: J. G. Blount Esq. 
North Carolina 

John Gray Blount to Swepson Whitehead [copy] 

March 23 d 1822 

M r Swepson Whitehead 
Portsmouth Va. 


Yours of the 12 th Instant is rec d & the Contents noted The Juniper 
Swamp alluded to in my mem° to M Bernard lies to the N° E. of matta- 
muskeet Lake towards the S° E. end thereof & about two miles from the 
Lake It was in the lifetime of Judge Harris owned by & and myself & we 
had thoughts of working it and sent two men say'd to be judges of that 
sort of Timber to examine it they reported the distance to be from the 
Lake at Davidsons Store 1 Vi to two miles in a N°E* direction to a Swamp 
several miles long ranging from S° E l to NW* nearly parralel to the Lake 
& from an half to 3 /4 of a mile wide The Timber plenty, large & good 
shortly after that examination Judge Harris died & his half was pur- 

372 John Gray Blount Papers 

chased by M r Eli Smallwood, Judge Donnel 8 M r John Stanly of New 
Bern I have (2) had no communication with any of them since I rec d 
your Letter but for myself I am willing to sell if as much as 1000 Acres is 
taken at a low price And if you And any person comes on to examine the 
Swamp shortly M r Smallwood will be at Matt and can say possitive as to 
price & every person on Mattamuskeet can direct them to Davidsons on 
the N° side the Lake it lies due N° from Doc 1 Jones 9 at the Lake Landing 
the outlet of the Lake to the Sound and there will be no difficulty in pro- 
curing persons to go to the Swamp & the Compess will stear them N° E l . 
Altho the distance is small there are few men that have been to the 
Swamp as no part of it has ever been worked notwithstanding the dis- 
tance is small the way open & a road or Canal easily made as none of 
the people there owned any of the Swamp this part of the information I 
have from John Selby Esqr. 10 now of this place who formerly lived near 
Davidsons & has been to the Swamp & assures me it is excellent 

I am Yours &. 

[No address] 

John G. Blount's List of Taxable Property the first April 1822 

Lott N° 1 9 on which he lives 

half 13 adjoining $6900 

N° 39 on which John Latham lives 

1000 Acres Land in the fork including his 

plantation & marsh &c. 5500 

300 Acres call 'd the Juniper 75 

40 Acres head of Chocowinity Bay 200 

2 Acres Sand beach at Hills point 6 

300 Acres piney Woods including Calf Savanna 1000 

8 This probably refers to John R. Donnell (1791-1864), an Irishman residing in Craven 
County. He graduated from the University of North Carolina with a law degree and in 1815 
was elected solicitor of the New Bern circuit. In 1819 Donnell became a judge on the state 
superior court, a position he held until his resignation in 1836. Donnell married Margaret 
Spaight, the daughter of Richard Dobbs Spaight. Wheeler, Historical Sketches, II, 120; 
Wheeler, Reminiscences of North Carolina, 139; Cheney, North Carolina Government, 361. 

9 For Hugh Jones see 1810, n. 3. 

10 Two John Selbys are listed in the 1820 census for Hyde County. Both were heads of 
households and had large families. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Hyde County, 6 and 

Letters for 1822 373 

4000 Acres in Chocowinity pecoson 1000 

6200 Acres head of SoD. Creek mostly pecoson 1 570 
6880 Acres between SD Creek & Goose Creek 

all Swamp 1720 

2220 Acres below Goose Creek Swamp & marsh 555 

71 Acres near Washington Bens place 600 

250 Acres adjoining Smaw 11 & Cruthers 750 

640 Acres Bradys Pecoson 160 

1 200 Acres West pecoson of Long Acre 1 24 

1 500 Acres East pecoson of Long Acre 395 
5000 Acres between Pungo Creek & Broad 

Creek 1220 

350 Acres head of Pungo 87.50 

2100 Acres on Juniper Branch 400 
31 black Polls 
Lott No 49 for the mortgages of Phil Rielly 

JG Blount 

Swepson Whitehead to John Gray Blount 

V a Portsmouth April 6 th 1822 

D Sir 

Yours of the 23 d ult° is at hand. I am anxious to know the price set by 
you on the Juniper Swamp mentioned in your letter. My reason is that I 
could at once determine whether that price would probably answer, if on 
examination the timber should prove such as might be expected — If the 
price should be too high, I should be saved the trouble & expense of 
traveling there & exploring it, a task I should be unwilling to undertake 
without some prospect of making a purchase. We are aware that there 
are no swamps nearer than Georgia which afford a great quantity of tim- 
ber of as good quality as our Dismal Swamp once contained. Your tim- 
ber will not [illegible] & make large shingles commanding the best price. 
This is no doubt the chief reason (to which may be added the difficulty 
of getting & the navigation) (2) of those swamps selling so low as we have 
been informed they have done. 

11 This may have been Thomas Smaw of Beaufort County, who had business connections 
with the Blounts. See 1817, n. 39. 


John Gray Blount Papers 

The fairest mode will be I imagine for you to say what you will take 
for 1500 acres to be selected in a body by me in Cash — and allow me 2 or 
3 months to accede or not — I will then immediately visit it or at any rate 
as soon as its condition will admit. 

Your Ob 1 Ser 1 
S. Whitehead 


J. G. Blount Esq r 
North Carolina 

Eli Smallwood to John Gray Blount 

ThurMay 1 st 1822 

Dear Sir 

M r Watson has surveyed the land I have wrote to you by mail to that 
letter I refur you for particulars M r Watson says you must bring with 
you to court the coppy or cou[r]ses of Green Carrowans 12 entry as he 
cannot mak a representtion to the jury which would be satisfactory with 
out it the great Quantity of rain which has fallen prevented him from 
survey out it as you had directed but he says his survey will be sufficient 
if he can have the Courses of Carroway patent 

Addressed: John G Blount Esq r 


E Smallwood 

12 Green Carrowon (not Carroway) is listed in the 1820 census as a resident of Hyde 
County and the head of a household often. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Hyde County, 

Letters for 1822 375 

Richard D. Spaight to John Stanly [copy] 

Newbern Friday August 16 th 1822 
John Stanly Esqr 

From the situation, in which we have stood and now stand towards 
each other I feel myself bound in duty to my reputation and character to 
notice any thing which may come from your affecting either. 

It has not been my fortune to acquire much practice in this court as a 
lawyer. I am enduced from this and other circumstances to believe that 
that part of your circular in the words following, viz, "and the choice of a 
man to manage our highest worldly interests, the making our laws, may 
be limited to individuals whom the people would not entrust the most 
trifling of their private business," was intended by you as allusive to me. 
To this I require from you an explicit answer. 

You are probably aware that a stripling by the name of Farnifold 
Green attempted (2) in M r Dunn's store to insult me. It is my impression 
that this fellow was sent by you for that purpose. My object is to know, 
whether or not you had directly or indirectly any agency in that affair. 
To this I require a decided answer. 

This letter will be handed by my friend M r Thomas W Blackledge 13 
and I shall expect to it a speedy answer. 

Your Obedient Servant 
Rich d D Spaight 


M r Blackledge 

delivered to Jn° Stanly Esq r 

Vi past 2 oclock — the 16th 

Aug 1 1822 

Addressed: John Stanly Esq r 

13 For Thomas W. Blackledge see 1814, n. 2. 

376 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Stanly to Richard D. Spaight 

August 16, 1822 

Your note of this day meets my immediate attention. The address to 
which you allude contains no sentiments which I do not entertain — and I 
should think it a misfortune to my country, if they were not entertained 
by a great proportion of the people of the State. The clause to which you 
except, is to be found, nearly in the same words in the presentment of a 
Grand Jury, made some months since in a County in which you were not 
a candidate. Although ready at all times to maintain my right to act and 
to speak as truth and decorum may justify, I hold it unbecoming me as a 
man of honor to seek a quarrel, by assuming a meaning to my language 
which the words do not impart and which the occasion did not require. 
Should it be my fate to engage in a quarrel, it shall be my care to be jus- 
tified by the conviction that I am right, and under such circumstances, I 
trust I shall be as ready as any man to do what honor shall require 

I should therefore be disingenuous and quarrelsome if I did not reply 
to your enquiry that I had not (2) a special allusion to you in the words 
to which you call my attention; and that I do not hold the trust of man- 
aging a law suit in Court, the "most trifling of a mans private busi- 
ness" — 

M r Green whom you call a Stripling and a fellow, is a member of a re- 
spectable family, and himself respectable. That there was cause of quar- 
rel or difference between you & him, I had no knowledge until after the 
meeting at M r Dunns Store. If any man has told you, or shall say that I 
sent M r Green to insult you, or that I encouraged him to do so, that man 
is a liar. 

Your obed* Serv 1 
J. Stanly 

R d D. Spaight Esq. 

Received by the hands of Peter Custis 14 on Friday evening the 16 th of 
August 1822 about 8 OClock in the evening. 

Addressed: R. D. Spaight Esq. 

14 Peter Custis is listed in the 1820 census as a resident of Craven County and the head of a 
household of six. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Craven County, 23. 

Letters for 1822 377 

John Haywood to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh 16 th August 1822 

Dear Sir, 

Thosse feelings of friendship and affection which I have ever 
cherisshed towards you, as one of my earliest and mosst valued Friends, 
would leave me illy at easse were I to remain Silent & fail to inform you, 
that the Writs against yourself and your Son Thomas, which go to the 
Sheriff of your County by the Mail which carries this, would not have 
been issued, had the Matter ressted wholly with me — It is, no doubt, 
right and proper that the Monies now Sued for Should be paid; and 
therefore none concerned in attempting the Collection of them can prop- 
erly be blamed, or confirmed as acting an unfriendly part; and my object 
in writing this is merely to express the regret I feel on the occasion; and 
to Say, that had the Matter of commencing Suits remained with me alone, 
a different Coursse would better have attended with my feelings, and 
Should have been pursued — I am Sorry that it has not been found con- 
venient to pay uss thosse Monies Sooner — all others, however, who be- 
came indebted about the Same time and for the like kind of Purchasses, 
and whosse Accounts are not [illegible], are likewisse Sued. 

I hope the Matter will not prove inconvenient to you or to our friend 
Thomas, in any considerable degree; and offering to yourself and to him 
my affectionate Regards & kindesst Greetings, I remain, much and Sin- 
cerely, your friend. 

John Haywood 

John G. Blount Esq r — Washington 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire, 
N° Carolina 

Richard D. Spaight to John Stanly [copy] 

Newbern Saturday August 17 th 1822 

John Stanly Esq r 


Your note of yesterday has been received. The object of my note was 
not (nor could you have such a conception of its contents) to discuss the 

378 John Gray Blount Papers 

propriety of the general tenor of your circular or the respectability of M r 
F Green. It was plain and explicit, referring to a sentence only of your 
address and an other transaction. When I shall discuss, or wish to dis- 
cuss, the matter and principles of your circular, it would not be by a pri- 
vate communication to you. As to the voluntary and irrelevant certificate 
of M r F Greens respectability, contained in your note, I shall only say, 
did I want information on that subject I should not apply to you for evi- 
dence of that fact. 

Your answers to my inquiries I (2) admit as satisfactory. 

Your Obedient Servant 
Rich d D Spaight 


M r Blackledge 

delivered to D r Peter Custis 

for Jn° Stanly Esq 1 " 

Saturday at 12 OClock 

August 17 th 1822 

Addressed: John Stanly Esq r 

Michael Hollowell 15 to John Gray Blount 

Prospect Mills/ Sep 1 10 th 1822 

M r Blount 

Sir the time begins to Draw Nigh for wheat to be Sowen — when I was 
up there you Said somthing about Sowing the two Cuts below [?] the 
Road from the old Stable ground Down to Juniper Bay Road in wheat & 
oats — I will State to you the way that I Shod do off it was myne But off it 
Dirs Not Comply with your opinion I will have it Don your way — that is 
you want the present cotting [cotton] pach on the Canal and the old 
Stable ground — planted in Cotting Next Spring — I therefore think it wod 
be the Best to have the Lake Redg and the Cut from the Stable ground 
Enext togeather — and have them Both Soan in wheat and oats — and 
have the two Soan Cuts to themselves — and them Bothe planted in 
Corn — as you Mean to have the farm Laid of in three Difrints Cuts — 

16 Michael Hollowell was probably the son of Ira Hollowell. Ira, but not Michael, is listed 
in the 1820 census as a resident of Hyde County. Potter, J 820 North Carolina Census, Hyde 
County, 15. For Ira Hollowell see 1803, n. 1. 

Letters for 1822 379 

that will Bring [manuscript torn] as Near Equel as they can be got — the 
Cotting pach on the Canal is 64 thousand/Stable ground is 54 thousand 
which is 118 thousand will be in Cotting Nother year — Lake Redg 65 
thousand — the Jining Cuts is 44 thousand which is 109 thousand in 
wheat and oats — the two Lorey [?] Cuts is 120 thousand at the [illegible] 
which will be in Corn — my Reason for that way is/ that it will be 
ajining Each Crop togeather and when the Logs is got up at the Long 
Cuts them two Cuts will make [illegible] wheat and oats patch and the 
two Cuts on the Road Can be put in Corn togeather an Cotting and the 
Cotting patch in Corn — But If my plan Dirs Not/Nor is Not Sutiably to 
your wish and opining I will Sow wheat & oats the way that you was 
[illegible] the Cotting and the Ridg will come of time anauf for oats — I 
have got 140 Bushels of oats/anauf athem to Save the Ballance to Send 
up — with about 1100 lbs of Cotting (2) that I have got picked out/that 
come of the Long Cut of the Canal/as it opens Sooner then any of the 
Rest — the Cotting Fineley Looks well and appears to be Reasonly full of 
pods — with Little Excepshon with Small Spot on the Lake Redg which 
appears to be D[y]ing — It looks to me to have the Rust or something — 
that Imatates the Rust — the Corn is Likely to Look at — and think will 
turn out as well as I Eaver had — Nothing more to inform you at 
present — you will pleas to write me By the Next Mail — 

Michael Hollowell 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blount 

William Hill 16 to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh 21 8t Sept r 1822 

Dear Sir 

Enclosed is the Grant made on the paper forwarded by you some days 
past in favour of M r B. Edwards, 17 which would have been sent you 
sooner but for the indisposition of the Governor. 

18 William Hill (1773-1857) of Stokes County, North Carolina, served as North Carolina's 
secretary of state from 1811 until his death. Hill began his public career as a clerk in the 
secretary of state's office. In 1804 he was appointed magistrate of Wake County, in 1806 he 
became register of the county, and in 1807 he was elected the county's court clerk. Hill 
married Sally Geddy in 1803 and later married Frances Connor Blount, the widow of 
Joseph Blount of Chowan County. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 181; Wheeler, Histori- 
cal Sketches, II, 419; Wheeler, Reminiscences of North Carolina, 432-433. 

"In all likelihood this was Briton Edwards, who is listed in the 1820 census as the head of 
a household of seven. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 15. 

380 John Gray Blount Papers 

I also enclose $1.40 change in a case where application was made by 
M r Neal some time past. 

Will you have the goodness to inform me what you know with respect 
to the Kidds' who once lived in your Town having left heirs in the 
United States. There were two by the name of Joseph Kidd, an elderly 
man who married the Sister of Colo. John [Geddy?] formerly of Halifax, 
he died in Washington leaving no child by his wife and by his Will left 
half his property to his wife and the other half to his Neiphew, and made 
his neiphew Exer. who I am informed spent all the Estate and returned 
to England from whence he came leaving neither wife nor child in this 
country. The one who died in Washington (it is presumed) purchased a 
Military Warrant, which by a late location has become valuable & 
which I think belongs of right to a poor relation of mine, but it appears 
that Lewis D. Wilson Esq r18 of Tarboro? has set up a claim to it bot- 
tomed he (2) says on a purchase from a Grand child of Joseph Wilson 
Kidd who died at Washington Beaufort County. Now I do not believe 
from what I have already learned of the matter that there ever was but 
the one Joseph W. Kidd lived in Washington, that his neiphew Joseph 
Kidd before mentioned came from England quite a young man and lived 
with his uncle until his death and then returned as aforesaid without 
having been married. The transfer on the Warrant was made in 1784 to 
Joseph Wilson Kidd, Witnessed by Joseph Kidd and Benjamin Blount. 19 
Please give me all the information you can on the subject, for if my 
poor relation is entitled to it I want him to have it for he has a large and 
helpless family to support and nothing to support them on 

Very Respectfully 
Your most Ob 1 Serv 1 
W m Hill 

18 Louis D. Wilson (1789-1847) was a prominent Edgecombe County Democrat. He served 
almost continuously from 1815 to 1846 in one or the other of the two branches of state gov- 
ernment, but he gained the greatest political recognition in the state Senate from 1824 to 
1846. He was a delegate to the state Constitutional Convention of 1835, and in 1842 he was 
elected speaker of the state Senate. During the Mexican War he promoted war measures by 
resigning his legislative position and raising an Edgecombe County company that was sent 
to Mexico. Wilson later received a promotion to colonel of the Twelfth Regiment of 
Infantry in the United States Army but contracted yellow fever shortly after assuming com- 
mand and died. Wilson County subsequently was named for him. Wheeler, Reminiscences of 
North Carolina, 164; Watson, Edgecombe County, 30-36; R. D. W. Connor, North Carolina: 
Rebuilding An Ancient Commonwealth, 1584-1925 (1929; reprint ed., Spartanburg, S.C.: Reprint 
Co., 2 volumes, 1973), 571-572; Joseph K. Turner and John L. Bridgers, Jr., History of Edge- 
combe County (Raleigh: Edwards and Broughton, 1920), 110-111; Cheney, North Carolina Gov- 
ernment, 267-314, 867. 

19 For Benjamin H. Blount see 1803, n. 62. 

Letters for 1822 381 

John G. Blount Esq 1 " 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
Beaufort County 
N° Carolina 

Sarah Ball 20 and Samuel Richards 's 
Receipt to John Gray Blount 

[November 7, 1822] 

We Sarah Ball and Samuel Richards, Administrators of Joseph Ball, 21 
(late of Philadelphia deceased) have received the obligation of John Gray 
Blount of the Town of Washington and State of North Carolina, bearing 
date the 2 d day of November 1822 for ($20,275,8/100) twenty thousand 
two hundred and seventy five Dollars and eight cents, that sum being in 
full of certain Judgments with interest thereon to the 12th November 
1823, obtained by our Intestate against the said John Gray Blount, 
Thomas and Sharp Blount in the Superior Court of Law for the District 
of Newbern in the year 1801 (it being understood that the Costs on said 
Judgments yet due and unpaid, are to be paid and satisfied by the said 
John Gray Blount) Witness our names hereto signed by our Attorney 
John Hogg acting under our Letter of Attorney duly executed at Phila- 
delphia on the first day of October 1822 — Dated at Raleigh NC this 7 th 
of November AD 1822 

Sarah Ball 
Samuel Richards 
by John Hogg 
Attorney in fact 

20 Sarah Ball, the widow of Joseph Ball, is listed in the 1820 census as a resident of Craven 
County and the head of a household of three. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Craven 
County, 20. 

21 For Joseph Ball see 1803, n. 7. 

382 John Gray Blount Papers 

Due John Myers, 22 Guardian of Willie A Blount 23 Twenty seven 90/100 
dollars with Interest from the 12th January 1819, being for balance of 
negro Tom's hire for the year 1818. 11th January 1823 

Will A Blount 

$27 90/100 

[On reverse] 

$13,72/2 the amount of an accompt overlooked by W W Rodman 

[This statement was attached to the receipt from Sarah Ball and Samuel 

"John Myers appears in the 1820 census as the head of a household of eight. Potter, 1820 
North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 29. 

23 This is not a reference to Willie Blount of Tennessee, John Gray Blount's half-brother. 
A Wiley Blount appears in the 1820 census as a resident of Beaufort County and the head 
of a household of three. It might also be a reference to Reading Blount's son Willie Blount. 
Reading Blount, John Gray Blount's brother, died in 1807. He was implicated in the Ball 
suit initiated in 1800, which in turn evolved from the Blounts' land speculations with David 
Allison. Keith and others, Blount Papers, III, 467-468, 467n; Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, 
Beaufort County, 6; Wheeler, Reminiscences of North Carolina, lx. 


Archibald D. Murphey 1 to John Gray Blount 

Hillsborough 9 th March 1823 

Dear Sir. 

I wish to learn from you whether the 5000 Acre tract of land lying on 
the Hatcher River in the Western District of Tennessee, granted to M r 
Jacob Blount, 2 belongs to You. My Reason for asking this information is 
this. I have had to pay more than $20,000 for one of the Heirs of the late 
John Rice of Tennessee; and he being unable to make me any other 
Renumeration, conveyed to me all his Claim to the lands of which John 
Rice did have or to which he had title or Claim in Law or Equity at the 
time of his death. In prosecuting this Claim, I found it necessary to get 
Conveyances from all the Heirs of John Rice; And Among the Claims 
which I find M r Rice had for locating &c, is one for a third Part of this 
5000 Acre tract located by John Rice for M" Jacob Blount. John Rice left 
four Brothers, one spoken [?], Elisha, made a Contract with your 
Brother William Blount for his Part of the third of this tract, And Altho, 
I have no evidence of it, I expect your Brother paid him for it. The 
Shares of the other Brothers have not been disposed of. Untill they are 
conveyed to me, So far as I can learn. If they have not, they would help a 
little towards repairing the injury I have Received from one of the Heirs 
of M r Rice. Will you do me the favour to write to me on this Subject, 
and let me know who own this tract of land, and Whether the Claim for 
the Locator? Part can be, probably, Settled without Suit. 

Archibald D. Murphey (1777?- 1832) was born in Caswell County but was later a resident 
of Orange County. He graduated from the University of North Carolina in 1799 and then 
taught at that school until 1801. In 1802 he began practicing law and became a powerful 
lawyer. From 1812 until 1818 Murphey served in the state Senate. There he repeatedly 
sought to coax North Carolina out of its backward state through internal improvements 
legislation, a state-supported public education program, and a comprehensive written his- 
tory of the state that he felt was needed because, "We neither know ourselves nor are we 
known to others." His projects, progressive and expensive, failed because of a lack of finan- 
cial and political support. Murphey was elected to the North Carolina Superior Court in 
1818 and served until 1820, when he was forced to resign due to financial difficulties. He 
returned to his law practice and continued to gather historical information relating to 
North Carolina, although he never wrote a comprehensive history of the state. Lefler and 
Newsome, North Carolina, 312-319; Ashe, Biographical History of North Carolina, IV, 340-348; 
Hoyt, Papers of Archibald D. Murphey, I, xx-xxi, xxiv, xxx. 

2 The Jacob Blount mentioned here was probably John Gray Blount's father or brother, 
although it possibly could refer to William Blount's son. 

384 John Gray Blount Papers 

There is another tract in the Western District about which I beg to ask 
of you Some information. It is a tract of 2500 Acres (2) located by M r 
Rice for David Flowers. Where did M r Flowers live, when did he die and 
what are the Names of his Heirs and particularly of his eldest Son. I do 
not mean by this enquiry to collect information for a Suit affecting the 
Interests of M r Flowers estate: for his Son has, I understand, conveyed to 
Thomas Dillon 3 the Locator's Part. My Object merely is, to learn from 
M r Flowers what Part of the 2500 Acres he conveyed, & the boundaries 
of the Part he conveyed. If I could learn this, I would take Possession of 
it and defend a Suit which might be brought Against me — If therefore 
you know M r Flowers & his place of Residence, I beg you to apprise me 
of this — 

Who now owns the Lands granted to John Estes, in the Hatcher Con- 
nexion? I shall go to Tennessee in June, and if I can Serve you there, I 
shall be glad to do it. 

For Some time Past I have been actively engaged in Setling my Affairs, 
and hope to wind them all up in a Short time, When I Wish again to go 
into the General Assembly and press forward the Internal Improvements 
of the State. The most important Work which Should be executed after 
removing the Flats in the Cape Fear, is the Making of a Canal from the 
Roanoke to Washington, & deepening the Channel over the Shoal below 
that Town. I am glad the People of the Roanoke begin to vision this Sub- 
ject in the light in which I have long viewed it — Many of them Seem now 
convinced that this is their true policy. Could this Measure be effected, 
Washington would become a considerable Commercial Town in a few 

I must beg your Attention to another Subject. I am (3) collecting 
Materials for a History of North Carolina, which I intend to write, if I 
can be liberally aided by Gentlemen who can contribute Materials — 
Your long and extensive Acquaintance and your intimite Knowledge of 
the Progress of events for the last forty Years, enable you, if you have 
time, to aid me greatly in this Work. Cant you Send me a valuable Col- 
lection of old Letters, Books, Pamphlets &c. If you will engage in this 
business I will Send you a Memorandum of Points, to which I wish par- 
ticularly to direct your Attention. 

Write to me to the Haw-River Post Office, Orange County. 

With great Regard, I am Dear Sir. 

Your Ob 1 Ser 1 — 
A. D. Murphey 

3 Thomas Dillon was a speculator in Tennessee lands. Land Warrants 362, 1779, 2873, 
2874, 2936, 2937, 3013, and others, Tennessee State Archives. 

Letters for 1823 385 

John G. Blount esq 6 

[On reverse side in John Gray Blount's handwriting] 
Answer'd M Murphey that I held the 5000 Acres of Land granted to 
Jacob Blount on big Hatchy by a deed from him & that I also held a 
Bond from John Rice for the 16 Negros between the age of 16 & 20 years 
and answered his other questions 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
Beaufort County — 
North Carolina 

John G. Roulhac to John Gray Blount 

Bertie County 2 l 8t March 1823 

Dear Sir 

Yours of the 19 th came Yesterday to hand — One note was due on the 
9 th Aug 1 1818 the other 9 th Aug 1 1819— On the one due 1818 there was a 
Credit of SI 00 which was paid by you to M r Hyman 4 before Suit was 
bro 1 on the notes. Trie clerk of our County refused to admit the Credit to 
be of Record as it was not discover 'd by the Jury when it was before 
them & I have never been able to get him to credit the Judgments with 

I waited on the Clerk yesterday for the purpose of ascertaining the 
date of that Credit as also the Time when the Cost & Credit of 
$18.80/100 and was informed that no Information could be got on the 
Subject this week— I have received $80 from M r Grist 5 $18.80/100 from 
the Clerk of our Sup r Court which he said was for Cost paid by both 
Shffs perhaps at a time, he retained one half & gave me the other 
Twenty Dollars Last Spring from Mr Knox & Yesterday $100 from 
Yourself — One hundred Dollars was Credited on the note when it came 
into my hands making in whole $318.80/100 paide now — I will next week 
get from (2) Clerk the dates wished for by Mr Knox & Send them to you 
immediately by way of Winston, If you Let me Know when the money 
will absolutely be paide if my presence will be necessary I must attend 

4 This might refer to Samuel Hyman of Martin County. In 1822 he represented his county 
in the North Carolina Senate. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 279. 
6 This probably refers to Allen Grist. See 1814, n. 28. 

386 John Gray Blount Papers 

— we are all well except my face & request to be remembered to yourself 
& Family 

very respectfully 

Yrs &c &c J. G. Roulhac 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 

M r Rodman 

Robert Love to John Gray Blount 

Waynesville 7 th of April 1823 

John G. Blount Esq r 


Your Letter of the 26 th of Feb r I Rec d a Mail or two back & Should 
have answered it earlier but I Still had an expectation of Receiving a 
Letter from M r Lockhart, 6 and as I expect to start on to West Tennessee 
on Thursday first I think it besst to answer your now & then write to 
you further on my return as respects your Getting a deed from Strother's 
Ex 8 for the Lands Spoken off it will be well Enough But before that can 
be done your Bond for such a Title must be proven in Buncombe Court 
& there recorded and registered, and Still that will not answer the pur- 
pose when Suits are brought & now pending. The Suit with Allen for the 
Lands round Barnard Station Must be Lost if we cannot Sustain the 
present Action as their possession under Title was with two or three 
weeks of Baring us when the Suit was brought, therefore if we Sustain a 
nonsuit It will now be useful to bring a Suit when we are Convinced that 
the Statute will bar us; not hearing from Lockhart Since my return I 
cannot Say more now about the reprobate of the will than I have Said to 
you in a Letter which I wrote to you Soon after my return from Nashville 
which I hope you have Rec d Ere this — In my Letter to you last I Stated a 
wish that you would Sanction a Sale I made of a peice of Land to Cer- 
tain Lewis Ball which he had taken a Grant for below the warmspring 
and which is within the Bounds of the Lands which I was restricted from 
Selling — I have inform 'd you of the circumstances Shortly after I made 
the Sale & Rec d your approbation of the measure but by some means I 
have lost or Mislaid your Letter; and I well know that he will not make 

For James Lockhart see 1806, n. 6. 

Letters for 1823 387 

the payment unless he is forced — Should the County Court of Davidson 
Consent and direct their Clerk to amend the record as respects (2) the 
probate of John Strothers will I flatter myself that it will answer every 
purpose as well as to be the Will reproven but of this I wish you to take 
Counsel, Whether they Justices of the peace who were on the Bench at 
the time will have any recollection of the Eror by the Clerk I know not, 
But one of the attorneys who was in the Court and employed in the Busi- 
ness told me that he well remembered the question being put to Drake 
who proved the will whether he saw Hawkins the other witness Sub- 
scribe the will and he stated that he did See him Sign as a witness in the 
presence of the Testator — If Hawkins is not returned when I go out to 
Nashville I will try to have the probate amended, and Lockhart has 
promised me the Same if it Should be that Hawkins would not get 
back — In both your last Letters to me you mentioned the Circumstance 
of Lockhart having agreed for you to have one half of the Outstanding 
Debts on the Sales of Lands which I made for John Strother, These 
Debts were all assigned to me in august, 1816 at the time Gen 1 Blount 7 & 
myself were in Nashville, some part of which I have Since Collected in a 
Very light way but a Great many of them I know can never be Collected, 
they were the principal Means on which I had to rely for Compensating 
my Services in the Sale & Management of them 

as soon as I return from West Tennessee I shall write on the prospects 
of affairs &c 

I am Sir your Ob 1 Serv* &c 

R° Love 

John Gray Blount Esquire 

Addressed: John Gray Blount esquire 
North Carolina 

Joseph B. Hinton to John Gray Blount 

Monday Morning April 28th 1823 

Dear Sir 

This is to ask of you a very Singular Act of friendship. I owe M rB Pea- 
cock a Sum about equal to that which will be due from yourself to me. I 

7 This reference is probably to William Augustus Blount. 

388 John Gray Blount Papers 

admitted Judgment, and now M r Rodman 8 appears to be threatning M r 
Owens for not having Coerced its Closure, on only this day. 

I did not intend to apply to you, so long as I could possibly avoid it — 
for this — or on any other account, and if two persons, on whom I had 
Confidently relied had not totally defeated my expectations, I certainly 
would not do so now. But so it is — necessity compels me to ask your 
good offices in some form or other, in this business. 

Altho' M rs Peacock is plaintiff of Record, the money is going to M r 
Rodman, as I learn — M r Rodman purchased Ben M Selbys' 9 Ishmael, 
Some weeks Since, and afterwards bargined with M rs Peacock for him, 
and is to take this Money in payment — as I am informed. 

If this debt be M r Rodmans (and I have no doubt it is) — or can be in 
the above way, if he thinks proper I have thought it might answer both 
you and M r Rodman to turn the difference between you and me — in 
Settlement of it. If it is not his, or if it is not to be his — & if it will not be 
convenient to you to account with him — or M r Owens — or M rs Peacock 
for the balance between us — then let me entreat you to interfere — so as 
prevail on M r Rodman, to be quiet about it, for a few Weeks — until I can 
force the (2) Money where I have it due me from another quarter — by so 
doing — you will Confer a kindness which will oblige exceedingly yours 

Jos. B. Hinton 

J. G. Blount Esq 

Addressed: Jn° G. Blount Esqr. 

8 For William W. Rodman see 1812, n. 15. 

9 Ben M. Selby appears in the 1820 census for Beaufort County as the head of a household 
of seven. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 39. 

Letters for 1823 389 

Craven Dickinson 10 to John Gray Blount 

Newbern 12 th May 1823 

John Grey Blount Esqr 


I understand you are one of the Commissioners of Navagation if so 
will you please to inform me per return of Mail who are the Securities of 
Morris Rollison (Pilots) for his branch if you are not one of the Commis- 
sioners be so obliging as to Call on one of them and assertain who the 
Securities are and I shall consider it a favor (Rollison is a Pilots at Cape 

Yours Respectfully 
Craven Dickinson 

Addressed: John Grey Blount Esquire 
N Carolina 

John Hogg to Gavin Hogg 11 

Raleigh NC 15 th May 1823 

Dear Gavin 

I am here at your Home, where I have been since Tuesday morning 
and shall continue till your return as I wish to see you on several ac- 

The present is to ask that you would apply to M r J G Blount and re- 
quest of him for me that he would make me a payment as early as pos- 
sible of about $4000 to account Adm rs of Ball's 12 Judgments against him 
as I have to make a payment on ac/c of Ball's Estate [manuscript torn] a 
debt due by them in this State — and should [manuscript torn] how soon 
I could make it — such a payment as now requested [illegible] to a per- 
sonal favour tendered to me 

10 Craven Dickinson is listed in the 1820 census (spelled Dickison) as a resident of Craven 
County and the head of a household of three. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Craven 
County, 35. 

n Gavin Hogg (also known as Gavin Alves) was John Hogg's nephew. See 1803, nn. 6, 9. 
Although Gavin Hogg was known to the public as Gavin Alves, it is possible that members 
of the family continued to call him by his original surname. 

12 This is a reference to Sarah Ball. See 1822, n. 20. 

390 John Gray Blount Papers 

Say to M r Blount that I am satisfied from the tenor of M r Richards 
Letter, that if failure is made in the payment of the amount of the Judg- 
ment at Nov r Term of Circuit Court US that I shall be directed to take 
the most rigorous measures to collect the debt and that under the exist- 
ing circumstances I shall not feel at liberty, or pleased, to request farther 
indulgence in this regard — Nancy Lydon & Richard are as you left 
them, Christy is at Chapel Hill — 

Dear Gavin 
Yr H le Uncle 
John Hogg 

Addressed: Gavin Hogg Esqr 
Beaufort C ty 


James Maxwell's Bill of Sale to William Ross 

[May, 1823] 

State of North Carolina 
Beaufort County 

Know ye that I James Maxwell of the county & state aforsaid for and 
in consideration of the Sum of One Hundred & Seventy one dollars to 
me in hand paid by William Ross of the same place the receipt whereof I 
do hereby acknowledge myself therewith fully satisfied & paid Have bar- 
gained & Sold unto the said William Ross his hiers [,nV]& assigns for 
ever a certain tract or parcel of land lying & being bounded as follows 
Viz! Begining One hundred & Sixty three pole from Whithursts Creek at 
Henry S Bonners S° E l Corner on Charles Cherry line near a pine 
mark'd WR runing S° 65 E l Eighty Seven pole to a stake near a pine mk d 
W at J. Maxwells S° W* corner, thense N° 34 E l one hundred & five pole 
to a stake by a pond near a pine mk d W to J Maxwells N° W l corner on 
William Farris's line, thence N° 65 W l down s d line Eighty Seven pole to 
a corner between three pines near the road leading from Bainers to 
Luca's landing being H. S. Bonners N° E* corner, thense S° 34 W 1 one 
hundred & five pole to the begining 

To Have and to hold the aforsaid land and premises to him the said 
William Ross his hiers & assigns forever and I the said James Maxwell 

Letters for 1823 391 

for myself my hiers & assigns do Warrant the before mentioned land & 
premises unto him the said William Ross his hiers & assigns from all 
person claiming from or under me In Witness whereof I have hereunto 
sett my hand and Seal this ninth day of September One thousand Eight 
hundred & five 

James Maxwell (Seal) 

Signed Sealed & delivered in presence of 
James Redmond 13 
Ja Taichney 

(3) May Term 1823 Beaufort C° Pleas & Q n Sessions. 

Then the execution of the within Deed from said James Maxwell to 
W m Ross was prov'd in Court by James, a subscribing Witness thereto, 
let it be Registered. 

Tho Smaw 

May Term 1823. Beaufort C° Pleas & Q r Sessions 

Then the execution of the within Deed from James Maxwell to W m 
Ross was proved in Court by the oath of James Redmond, a subscribing 
Witness thereto, let it be Registered. 

Jos B Hinton 

Michael Hollowell to John Gray Blount 

Prospect Mills, June 4 th 1823 

M r Blount, 

Sir the Things Sent By M r Rose I Rec d agreably to your List Except 
the Camphur I understand Rose told the Boy that was Sent after the 
things that the Bottle of Campher got Broak & Lost all — the Corn Cap 1 
L. S. Pugh toald you about, his Brother Rased; John Pugh 14 had Not 
any himself. I have Sent Down to Both of the Pughs for, fore or five 
Bushels of that Late Corn — My Returns was about one Peck Which was 

13 This might refer to James Redmond II. See 1812, n. 61. 

14 The only John Pugh listed under Hyde County in the 1820 census is a Little John Pugh. 
He was the head of a household of eleven. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Hyde County, 

392 John Gray Blount Papers 

Said to be all that they had, you will therefore Send Me the Ballance 
that will take [manuscript torn] thirty thousand, or I Shall plan [manu- 
script torn] Late Corn that as Soon as you possibly [manuscript torn] as 
I Shall Plant all of the wheat pach Soon as the wheat Comes of which 
that will be by the the [20?] at the out Side, my oats is So Late I think 
that will make the Corn in that Cut two Leat, be planted. I therefor have 
Concluded with in myself Not to plant that at all But keep it for pas- 
tu[r]e as it will be the Best If the Can be any Late Corn got I Shod be 
Glad to have it By the 20 or you will write me By the Next Mail. If you 
Can git any Corn, Higsons Boat is at this time Loading for Washington, 
you have oppertunity of Sending of anything you want Even for [illegi- 
ble] which I Can Send Down thereafter, you will pleas to write me 
weither you & Carrow Bargan about Swindells Clames or Not. So that I 
Shall Now weither he is to Settle v/ith me or Carrow — 

Yours Michael Hollowell 

Addressed: M r John Gray Blount 

Gavin Hogg to John Gray Blount 

[June 9, 1823] 

D r Sir 

On my arrival at Raleigh I saw Gen 1 Jones 16 on the subject of his Bond 
to you as trustee of Cowells Heirs — He evaded my application by saying 
he had not rec d a Grant: I knew it was a pretence but I was without 
Proof. He has gone to Tennessee. When He returns He must pay or be 
sued. From what I hear He will I think have to be sued. Read this to M r 
Cowell — 

Yours respectfully 
Gavin Hogg 
June 9 th 1823 

16 Calvin Jones (1775-1846) was born in Massachusetts, spent most of his adult life in 
North Carolina, and retired to Tennessee, spending the last fourteen years of his life there. 
He was a noted physician, legislator, and soldier. During the War of 1812 he was commis- 
sioned a major general of the North Carolina militia in the Seventh Division. When he re- 
signed in 1814, he was quartermaster general. He retired from his medical practice in 1832 
and moved to Tennessee where he became involved in land speculation. DAB, X, 63. 

Letters for 1823 393 

John Gray Blount esq r 

Addressed: John Gray Blount esq 1 


John Gray Blount and Partners to James H. Causten 16 

[October 1, 1823] 

M r Ja 8 H Caustin 


We have this day signed a memorial and petition addressed to the 
Honb 1 the Senate & house of Representatives of the US. representing the 
abandonment by the US. of our Claims on the french Government for 
spoliations committed on our property between & during the years 1793 
& 1800 & praying compensation therefor 17 

Under the course of proceedings that you have suggested we indulge 
the expectation of relief through the Congress of the US. either by the 

18 James H. Causten (1788-1874) was a Baltimore merchant and lobbyist, who represented 
people seeking indemnity from the United States for Financial losses suffered during trade 
disputes with France. He was married in Baltimore on November 9, 1813, to Eliza Myer. 
Robert Barnes (comp.), Marriages and Deaths from Baltimore Newspapers, 1796-1816 (Balti- 
more: Genealogical Publishing Co., Inc., 1978), 55. 

17 With the onset of the wars of the French Revolution in 1793, many American ships des- 
tined for English ports or sailing therefrom were seized by the French. Between 1798 and 
1800 the United States and France fought an undeclared naval war that resulted in the seiz- 
ure or destruction of numerous other American ships and their cargoes. To improve the sit- 
uation President John Adams in 1799 sent William Vans Murray, Oliver Ellsworth, and 
William R. Davie to negotiate for a settlement of differences. They worked out the Treaty 
of Morfontaine (or Convention of 1800) by which there was to be a suspension of all former 
treaties and damages claimed under them (such as French spoliation of American com- 
merce since 1793), pending subsequent negotiations. The United States Senate approved 
the treaty only on condition that the Franco- American Treaty of Alliance of 1778 be abro- 
gated, not merely suspended. The French then insisted that the respective claims of both 
parties be renounced. There was mutual agreement to this, and the treaty took effect on 
December 21, 1801. Because of the Napoleonic wars after 1803 the matter of spoliations con- 
tinued to surface, however, until 1831, when France formally agreed to pay 25 million francs 
in six annual installments. When France failed to pay on time, President Andrew Jackson 
took drastic measures that ultimately resulted in the payment of the money. These pay- 
ments covered claims made after 1803, however. Causten 's efforts to secure payment by the 
United States government for claims against France prior to 1800 apparently failed. Bailey, 
Diplomatic History, 98-99, 195-198; Morris, Encyclopedia of American History, 129. Also see 1831, 
n. 54. 

394 John Gray Blount Papers 

passage of a Law for our indemnity or a reference to a Tribunal; And 
relying on your diligence & management we confide the direction of our 
cause to you. 

For our information & to enable us to instruct you should it anytime 
be necessary you will please communicate with John G Blount Esq r in- 
forming him from time to time the progress of the persuit 

Should a Law for our relief or reference to a tribunal be had (in either 
of which events your agency will terminate) we promise to allow and pay 
you out of the proceeds thereof or otherwise at the rate of 2 Vi p C l on 
whatever Sum or Sums may be awarded to us together with the Sum of 
Twenty five Doll 8 cash in Cash which we now advance for your use 

We are Sir 
Washington Oct 1 1823 Yours 

JG Blount Sen 1 " partner 
of Will Blount and 
Susan Sarcey 
Jo B Hinton, Ad n of 
C Simpkins 

[Note on reverse] Copy of a Letter given 

M r Ja 8 H Caustin of Baltimore 

James H. Causten to John Gray Blount 

JohnG. Blount 

Washington N. C. Baltimore, Nov 8, 1 823 

I have visited all the cities and towns along the seaboard, from Maine 
to Georgia, and have succeeded in each in getting up a Memorial to 
Congress, praying indemnity for French Spoliations. 

From the favorable opinion on the merits of the claim, and the pro- 
jected course of proceeding, which has been expressed by many of the 
first jurists, statesmen and public functionaries in the country; and from 
the confidence, number and unanimity of the claimants, I am warranted 
in holding out a very favorable prospect of a succesful result to the pur- 

If the holders of the Memorials in the respective towns, will devote the 
proper attention to have them signed by the claimants and forwarded to 
Washington as heretofore advised, which I trust will be done in the pre- 
cise manner pointed out by the instructions left with each, we shall have 

Letters for 1823 395 

about seventy distinct applications to Congress, presented by nearly a 
like number of Representatives. 

With a cause so perfectly just, and brought before the proper tribunal 
in the imposing manner contemplated, a respectfull consideration of its 
merits may be confidently anticipated — and this, you will please bear in 
mind, is alone necessary to insure success. The claimants are, therefore, 
respectfully requested to be true to themselves, by promptly executing 
and transmitting the Memorials, as the most essential step; and that 
each of them address a letter to his Representative in Congress, and 
others of that Body to whom he has access, soliciting his or their aid and 
support as far as justice may require — And I have annexed hereto a draft 
of a letter for that purpose, which may not be unacceptable to some of 
the Signers to the Memorial. 

I would also recommend, that you have inserted in one or more news- 
papers, as often as you may deem proper, the advertisement at foot; the 
expense of which you will please defray out of the contributions you may 
receive for me. 

With respect, I am 
Your most ob't Serv't 
James H. Causten 

Hon. A. B. 

Dear Sir, — The United States having applied to the public use my just 
claim on the French government, for Spoliations, made on my property 
by the Cruisers of that power; and having, by the Convention of 1800, 
discharged France from all further liability therefore, I have joined my 
fellow suffers in an application to the government of the United States for 
indemnity. My Memorial and Petition to that effect is now before the 
Senate and House of Representatives, and I respectfully request your aid 
and support to the claim, so far as a due regard to justice and mutual 
obligation may dictate; and that you use your interest with the Delega- 
tion from this State, and others, to co-operate with you. 

I am, Dear Sir, very respectfully, 
Your most ob't Serv't, 

Addressed: John G. Blount, Esquire, 

Washington, North Carolina. 

396 John Gray Blount Papers 

John Gray Blount and Partners to Nathaniel Macon 
and John Branch 1 * 

Washington Nov r 18 th 1823 

The Honb le 

Nathaniel Macon 

& Senetors in Congress from No. Carolina 

John Branch 

Copy sent our Senetors 


We are amongst the unfortunate [manuscript torn] the U.S. who suf- 
fered by french spoliations between the years 1793 & 1800 And as we 
understand that most of the Sufferers are about to petition Congress for 
the payment of their losses We have with confidence petitioned the Sen- 
ate of the U.S. as by that body were our Claims on the French Govern- 
ment barr'd by the ratification of the Convention of 1800 with France We 
take the liberty of inclosing our petition to you with a confidence that 
such attention will be paid to it as our Interest calls for & the honour of 
the U.S. requires We have taken the liberty of requesting our Agent M r 
Ja 8 H. Caustin of Baltimore to call on you & confer respecting the time 
& mode of introducing the petition You will therefore be pleased to hold 
the same until he calls on you 

With much respect we are 
Your most Obed 1 

[On reverse] Copys of Letters to Ja 9 H Causten & our Senators 

18 John Branch (1782-1863) of Halifax County was a prominent North Carolina politician. 
A graduate of the University of North Carolina, Branch served in the state Senate for sev- 
eral terms (1811, 1813-1817, 1822, 1834) and was president of that body from 1815 to 1817. 
Branch was elected governor of North Carolina in 1817, serving until 1820. Three years later 
Branch was elected to the United States Senate, serving until 1829 when he resigned his 
seat to become Jackson's secretary of the navy. Branch resigned his cabinet post in 1831 
during the Eaton scandal but was quickly returned to national politics with a seat in the 
United States House of Representatives (1831-1833). Branch attended the Constitutional 
Convention of 1835 and finished his public career as governor of the Florida territory from 
1843 until 1845. Biographical Directory of Congress, 628; Ashe, Biographical History of North Caro- 
lina, VII, 52-54; Who Was Who, 139. 

Letters for 1823 


John Branch (1782-1863) of Halifax County 
enjoyed a long and varied political career. He 
served North Carolina as a legislator, gover- 
nor, United States senator, and congressman. 
Andrew Jackson appointed him secretary of 
the navy, but Branch resigned following the 
Eaton affair. In 1844 he was appointed gover- 
nor of the Territory of Florida. Photograph of 
official portrait of Branch as secretary of the 
navy courtesy of the National Archives. 

John Gray Blount to James H. Causten 

M r Ja 9 H. Caustin 


Washington November 18 th 1823 

Copy sent 

Herewith you have copys of the Letters which we have forwarded to 
Tho s H. Hall 19 our Representitive in Congress & to Nath 1 Macon & 
John Branch Senetors from this State from which you will see that it will 
be expected you will call on them before they present the Petitions sent 

Believing it best that our Representitives should think we spoke our 
own sentiments on the Subject we have not exactly copyed the Letter 
sent me for no doubt your Copy will be adopted in many instances and 
will be shewn amongst the members as well them who have been written 
to by their immediate Constituents as others. 

Herewith you will receive 25$ from Jo 9 B Hinton & from M r Sarcey[?] 
whose situation I stated to you a Letter promising to pay when he can 
raise it out his Claim (2) which is as soon as can be expected Your Letter 
of the 8 th In 9 has inspired a hope which I have no doubt you will use 

19 For Thomas H. Hall see 1812, n. 21. 

398 John Gray Blount Papers 

your exertions to justify and if it depended on any one man to decide on, 
I should say no doubt of success would rest on my mind 

With best wishes for your success 
I am with much respect 
Your most Obed 1 
JG Blount 

M r Clanhorden promised to be down & give such a Letter but has not 
come or signed the Petition for I thought it best he should give the Letter 
when he signed 

Contract between John Gray Blount and William Vines 20 

[November 21, 1823] 

Memorandum of an Agreement and Contract, made and entered into, 
this 21 8t day of November in the Year (a-d-) 1823 between John Gray 
Blount and William Vines of the one part, and Joseph B Hinton of the 
other part (all of the County of Beaufort and State of North Carolina), 
that is to say, the said John and William hath, this day, delivered to the 
said Joseph the possession of all that tract of Land, the Improvements 
thereupon and the appurtenances, just below the Town of Washington, 
formerly the property of James Maxwell, and Sold by the said Maxwell 
to William Ross, which said tract lies adjoining the Lands of Edm d D. 
McNair & Wife, reference being had to the title papers thereof, will 
more fully shew the description, boundaries and quantity — to be oc- 
cupied and Certainly possessed by the said Joseph, until the first of 
January, one thousand eight hundred and twenty seven (1 Jany 1827) 
and the said John and William, doth, by these presents oblige themselves 
their Heirs, Executors and Administrators to execute and deliver a title, 
in fee simple, with a general warranty, for the said tract and the appur- 
tenances to the said Joseph & his Heirs, provided the said Joseph his 
Heirs, Executors or Administrators, shall, on or before the first of Janu- 
ary in the Year One thousand Eight hundred and twenty seven (1 Jany 
1827) pay, or cause to be paid unto the said John and William, their 
Heirs, Executors or Administrators, the Sum of two thousand Dollars, 
current money of the said State, as the full consideration and purchase 

For William Vines see 1816, n. 6. 

Letters for 1823 399 

money, for the fee simple of said premises. And the said Joseph is to have 
full liberty within the said period, to make whatever additions or im- 
provements upon the said premises he may judge conducive to his Com- 
fort and Convenience. (2) And the said Joseph, doth bind himself, by 
these presents, and also his Heirs, Executors and Administrators, to pay 
to the said John and William or their Order, the sum of Sixty Dollars, 
Rent, for the said premises, per annum, payable at the expiration of each 
year, Counting from the l Bt of January next. Nevertheless, the said an- 
nual Rent, terminates, whenever the purchase money for the fee simple, 
aforesaid, shall be paid. 

And if it shall so happen that the said Joseph, his Heirs Executors or 
Administrators shall not have made the payment of the said purchase 
Money, for the fee Simple, on or before the 1 st January, in the Year 
Eighteen hundred and twenty Seven, all the rights of the said Joseph of 
and in the premises shall end, cease and determine on the said day, and 
the possession of the said premises shall immediately revert to the said 
John & William, their Heirs, Exers. Adm rs or Assigns, together with 
whatever Improvements the said Joseph shall, in the interim, have put or 
placed thereupon. 

In testimony of all which, the said parties do hereunto subscribe their 
names & affix their Seals, interchangibly. 

Signed Sealed & deliv d 

in presence of 

Thos A Demill 21 J G Blount (Seal) 

Wm. Vines (Seal) 

Jos. B Hinton (Seal) 

Benjamin Robinson to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville Dec r 15 th 1823 

J. G. Blount Esq r 

Dear Sir, 

Your favour of the 7 th inst. rec d by todays mail reminds me of my long 
and inexcuseable neglect — 

21 Thomas A. Demill is listed in the 1820 census as the head of a household of one. Potter, 
1820 North Carolina Census, Beaufort County, 12. 

400 John Gray Blount Papers 

About the period of my last letter to you on the subject of your Cum- 
berland Lands, I was unexpectedly overwhelmed in pecuniary embar- 
rassments (under which I am still labouring) by the failure of a Brother 
in law, for whom I had endorsed largely at Bank — Shortly after these 
embarrassments assailed me I lost my health, for the recovery of which I 
was at length compelled to change the climate — I returned home but a 
few weeks since — 

After much trouble and some expense in procuring surveys, and infor- 
mation relative to your Lands, I made an effort to sell, in which I entire- 
ly failed — The gentleman M r McKay, who was the sole cause of my ever 
troubling you in this business — held out to me the most flattering pros- 
pects of success in the sale of the lands, he was not only to be a large 
purchaser himself, but would procure purchasers to a larger am 1 — He 
did not even attend the sale — I postponed the sale for a short time under 
the expectation of doing better; but before the day arrived was involved 
in ruinous losses and endless perplexities, and have since paid no further 
attention to the business. 

It was my duty to have written you immediately on the occurrence of 
my misfortune, but the state of my mind and subsequent protracted ill- 
ness caused me to neglect even my most important business — 

I have now the gratification of having my health restored, but my 
pecuniary embarrassments absorb all other considerations 

I have given you a true state of the case — I (2) regret extremely that I 
have given you all this trouble and expense to no profit — 

I will hand over the papers relative to your Cumberland Lands to any 
person you may request and readily furnish all the information in my 

I do not believe that advantageous Sales can be made of the Lands at 

With much respect 

I am Dear Sir your ob 1 Serv 1 
Benj. Robinson 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esqr. 
No. Carolina 


John Gray Blount to Calvin Jones 1 

Washington Jan y 30 th 1824 

D Sir 

Yours of the 7 th Instant came to hand mail and I can only inform you 
what I know of the business to which you allude That obligation you 
know was given to Caswell 2 & others without my knowledge & I re- 
mained ignorant of it until Caswell had once or twice seen you about 
payment when he was advised by some Attorney that my name must be 
used to collect the money then & not until then the Agreement was 
handed me and I told them that if they would sign a request that the 
paper might be handed any person I would then deliver it them they did 
so & the paper was handed Mr. Hogg 3 to collect with no other instruc- 
tions from me only that I had no interest in it and that he would follow 
the instructions of the Heirs of Caswell If it will be injurious to you I 
shall be sorry but the persons to whom the money is coming really need 

I am your most Obed 
JG Blount 

[No address] 

*For Calvin Jones see 1823, n. 15. This letter comes from the Jones Family Papers, Manu- 
script Division, Tennessee State Library and Archives, Nashville, Tennessee. It is pub- 
lished with the kind permission of the Tennessee State Library and Archives, Mrs. Louise 
Jones McAnulty of Bolivar, Tennessee, and Mr. James E. Wood, Jr., of Terra Ceia, 
Florida, the latter two being descendants of Calvin Jones. 

2 Richard Caswell (1729-1789) was a prominent North Carolina political leader during the 
late colonial and Revolutionary periods. Originally from Maryland, Caswell arrived in 
North Carolina in the 1740s to work as a surveyor. By 1750 he was appointed deputy sur- 
veyor of North Carolina and was elected to the General Assembly from 1754 through 1771, 
serving as a speaker of the house in 1770-1771. Caswell served as a colonel under Governor 
William Tryon in 1771 during the government's suppression of the Regulators, but by 1774 
he had become a revolutionary leader himself. He was one of North Carolina's repre- 
sentatives in the Continental Congress (1774-1776) and the first North Carolina governor 
under the new state constitution (1776-1780). He eventually achieved the rank of major 
general in command of North Carolina's state militia (1780-1783) because of his earlier mili- 
tary success at the Battle of Moore's Creek Bridge. Caswell returned to the state Senate in 
1782, acted as the state comptroller general (1782), and was again elected governor 
(1785-1787). Caswell later played a major role in the North Carolina convention held in 
1789 to consider ratification of the United States Constitution. Lefler and Newsome, North 
Carolina, 187, 189-190, 196, 200-201, 207, 211-212, 214, 216, 228, 230-232, 241, 261-263, 268; 
David T. Morgan and William J. Schmidt, North Carolinians in the Continental Congress 
(Winston-Salem: John F. Blair, 1976), 5, 14; Who Was Who, 167; Ashe, Biographical History of 
North Carolina, III, 65-79. 

3 This probably refers to either James or John Hogg. See 1803, n. 6. 

402 John Gray Blount Papers 

James H. Causten to John Gray Blount 

Washington Feb 12, 1824 
D r Sir, 

Your esteemed favor of 26th Nov last, with the enclosures therein 
mentioned, duly came to hand — And your favor of 26th Ultim° reached 
me only yesterday. 

I deferred acknowledging the receipt of the first, with a view to give 
you at the same time some information on the subject matter to which it 
relates, but the Memorials did not come in so early as I expected & 
wished, and a corresponding delay has ensued. 

Under the advice of the best heads of the two Houses of Congress the 
claims have been urged for the present only in the Senate; out of the several 
reasons for this course I will at present state only the following — it is 
considered that the claims having been settled with a Foreign Gov 1 by 
Treaty stipulations, gives the Senate a Kind of original jurisdiction over 
them — hence we have suspended all proceedings in the lower House, 
until a report of the Com. on Foreign Relations of the Senate (who have 
now forty three Memorials in charge) be had. I have furnished the chair- 
man of said Com. a list of the papers on file in the State Department, 
which I deem necessary to shew the leading facts in the case, a corre- 
sponding call for said papers has been made, they are now copying, & 
will be furnished probably in a very few days. 

I find that all the objections which opposing Senators have urged 
against the claims arise out of misconception of the subject, and that the 
contemplated exhibition of the official (2) facts will remove as much 
prejudice (if not all) as will give us a handsome majority. I entertain no 
doubt whatever of the United States satisfying the claims; but I am per- 
suaded that much time, patience and diligence will be required in this 
prosecution, these, with all the firmness I can command, are enlisted in 
the cause. 

With regard to the Spanish claims, in which I have no concern and 
very little opportunity to Know what is passing, I can inform you, that 
the term prescribed by the Florida Treaty 4 for the adjustment of the 
claims expires in June next, that payment is to be made immediately 

4 This is another reference to the Adams-Onis Treaty, which was not formally ratified un- 
til 1821. One of its provisions included payment by the United States government of claims 
held by American citizens against Spain up to a total amount of five million dollars. Bailey, 
Diplomatic History, 172-175. Also see 1818, n. 9. 

Letters eor 1824 403 

thereafter, and that in appropriating all the moneys remaining in the 
Treasury on the 1 st of January last (say, upwards of Eight Millions of 
dollars) to the purchase of the old stocks bearing I think, six per cent, 
Congress avowed the purpose to issue five per cent Stock for the Five 
Millions payable for said claims. The Commissioners have recently 
evinced a disposition to reject a mass of claims, many of which they had 
before admitted (supposed by some, for the purpose of bringing the valid 
claims by force within the Five Millions, in order to screen M r Adams 5 
from censure &c) — much alarm was excited & M r Wirt 6 was employed 
to prepare an argument in favour of the Claimants — a few copies of 
which for the use of counsel have been printed. I have but one but can- 
not spare it; I will endeaver to procure another from Mr Wirt tomorrow, 
& if I succeed will get M r Macon to frank it to you. 

I return you many thanks for your kind attention, and will be most 
happy in serving you when in my (3) power. I beg you will command me 

I am D Sir, with Much respect 
Y Mo. Ob 1 Sv l 
James H. Causten 

P.S. The Fayetteville & other Memorials which have been presented and 
which your last letter refers to, were presented by my direction — by 
referring to the proceedings of the Senate both before & since the presen- 
tation of the "Fayetteville & Washington" (should be Wilmington) 
Memorials, you will find upwards of forty others mentioned. 

Addressed: John G. Blount, Esquire, 
North Carolina 

5 This is a reference to Secretary of State John Quincy Adams, who negotiated the treaty 
with Spain. Apparently there was some disagreement in Congress and among the commis- 
sioners as to which claims were valid, and every effort was made by the commissioners to 
honor all valid claims (as opposed to some that were questionable) in order to protect 
Secretary Adams from criticism. Bailey, Diplomatic History, 172-175. 

6 William Wirt (1772-1834) was a prominent lawyer and author from Virginia. He partici- 
pated in Aaron Burr's trial in 1807 for the prosecution, thereby gaining national promi- 
nence. In 1817 he was appointed attorney general of the United States, a post he held for 
twelve years. During Jackson's presidency Wirt returned to private life but ran as the presi- 
dential candidate of the Anti-Masons in 1832, the first third-party candidate in American 
political history. Hopkins, Concise DAB, 1237. 

404 John Gray Blount Papers 

Thomas H. Blount's Bill of Sale to John Gray Blount, Jr. 

[February 19, 1824] 

Know all men by these presents that I Thos. H Blount for and in consid- 
eration of the Sum of four hundred dollars to him in hand paid by John 
G Blount ju r the rect. whereof is hereby acknowledged & himself fully 
satisfyed contented & paid, hath bagained sold and delivered and by 
these presents doth bagain sell and deliver unto the said John G Blount 
ju r his Exec. Adms. or Assigns a certain negro man named Randal — 

To have and to hold the said negro Randal unto him the said John 
Gray Blount ju r his Execs. Adm. and assigns And I the said Thos. H. 
Blount unto the said John G Blount ju r his Execs. Adms and assigns the 
said negro Randal will warrant and forever defered against any and all 
closing. In witness whereof I have hereunto set my hand & seal this 19 l 
Feby. 1824 

Thos. H Blount 

Signed Sealed & Del d 

in presence of 

Silas C. Ho [illegible] 

Robert Love to John Gray Blount 

Waynesville 16th of March 1824 

John G Blount Esq r 

Sir/ I Rec d a Letter from Maj r Blount 7 on the 19th of January last dated 
Near Jonesboro — In his Letter to me he States that Mr. Lockhart in- 
formed him that he expected James Hawkins at a Court in Nashville 
which was Shortly to commence & that he would have the Will of John 
Strother reproven & would immediately forward to me an authenticated 
Copy, Whether this is not done to amuse is a question in my mind, for 
he told me the same kind of a Tale December was a year ago (this for 
your own Ear) Things are Suffering here Very much for the lack of an 

7 Love is probably referring to John Gray Blount, Ji 

Letters for 1824 405 

authenticated Copy of the Will or a Deed, I have had Several Set of 
Cossts to pay latterly for lack of the Necessary papers to Support the 
Suits, one of which was for the Little Town Seat opposite the upper 
warmsprings, I am really afraid to proceed on with any Business untill I 
Receive something to Substantiate your Claim 

I Expect to move out into the Indian purchase near Tuckasijah [Tuck- 
asegee] River which will be Throwing me farther from those Lands, And 
there is a Certain Zachariah Candler who is anxious to be employed in 
Culling & Selecting out your Lands, he is well qualified for that kind of 
Business, But Still I do not know how I can recommend him, Oweing to 
his Charactor, as he Stands implicated as being Concern 'd in Counter- 
feiting Bank Notes Yet I expect he cannot be convicted from the Evi- 
dence, he is Still urgeing to be employed & which would Suit my present 
Situation, But these are things with yourself, his qualifications (2) Other- 
wise is Good he lives 8 miles below Ashevill on the Warmspring road — I 
have Rec d from M r Gooch fifty Dollars of your money but I had to apply 
it to payment of some of the Cossts I am as I stated above afraid to do 
any thing in the Business untill I Could proceed with some kind of Cer- 
tainty, My Brother Informs that there has been some late decision in the 
Supreme Court which goes to invalidate All Grants which had Issued on 
Certificats of Surveys which were Signed only by Deputy Surveyors, if so 
this is the Case with all your Grants in this Country, do examine this 
Business and inform the extent that it goes that [I] may know how to 

I Latterly Rec d a Circular from a Committee of your Town of whom 
you were the Chairman, in favour of M r Calhoun's Election to the 
Precidency in opposition to the Caucus Ticket, The People here are Very 
much opposed to the Caucus Candidate Generally; But a Great 
Majority are in favour of Gen 1 Jackson, Yet the[y] are willing to Support 
M r Calhoun provided it is discoverable that Jacksons Support in the dif- 
ferent States is not as Strong as Calhouns, Yet the[y] flatter themselves 
that if the peoples Ticket in this State can prevail over the Caucus Ticket 
& it is discoverable that Jackson's Interest in the Other States are 
Greater than Calhouns, that the Electors on the peoples Ticket on the 
Event of their Success will give their Support to Jackson or if Otherwise 
that it is discoverable that Calhouns Interest is the greatest in the other 
States that Jackson's friends will go with Calhouns in their Support of 

406 John Gray Blount Papers 

him against the Caucus Candidate so that there may be no division 
among the Electors of the peoples on the Event of their Success — 8 
I am respectfully your friend & Ob 1 Serv &c 

R° Love 

John Gray Blount Esq r 

Addressed: John Gray Blount, Esquire 
North Carolina 

Edward Livingston 9 to John Gray Blount 

Washington 25 March 1824 

My Dear Sir 

The lapse of time and succession of events have totally erased from my 
memory all traces of the case of the grampus in which you say I Sued the 
underwriters for you. Be so good as to remind me of the time, place and 
other circumstances that may bring it to my recollection, although I fear 
you will be too late in making your claim, but when I have the materials 
I will do what I can to get it received. 

? The last paragraph of this letter refers to some complicated political maneuvering con- 
nected with the presidential election of 1824 in North Carolina. John C. Calhoun's followers 
in North Carolina organized the "People's Ticket" in 1823, intending to solicit support di- 
rectly from the people for Calhoun and against William H. Crawford of Georgia, the candi- 
date nominated by the congressional caucus. When the appeal was made for the people to 
support the most popular candidate, it turned out that numerous North Carolinians pre- 
ferred Andrew Jackson to Calhoun. The Blounts were staunch Calhoun supporters. At the 
first public meeting for the People's Ticket on January 8, 1824, William Augustus Blount 
was named a presidential elector. Strong support was expressed for Calhoun. Thus did 
William Augustus Blount become the first Calhoun elector chosen and the first elector in 
North Carolina history to be chosen by a public meeting. When Calhoun was compelled to 
withdraw from the race, Blount, vowing to vote for the people's choice, ended up support- 
ing Jackson, whom the Tar Heel Blounts did not particularly like. Albert R. Newsome, The 
Presidential Election of 1824 in North Carolina (Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 
1939), 1-173 passim, hereinafter cited as Newsome, Election of 1824 in North Carolina. 

"Edward Livingston (1764-1836) was born in New York, but he made his reputation in 
Louisiana. He achieved fame as a jurist, diplomat, and statesman, serving as a Linked 
States congressman from Louisiana in 1824 and as a United States senator from 1829 to 
1831. He became Jackson's secretary of state in 1831. Morris, Encyclopedia of American History, 

Letters for 1824 


Edward Livingston (1764-1836) began his 
career in New York as a lawyer, congress- 
man, and mayor of New York City, but he 
moved to Louisiana in 1804, where his politi- 
cal career continued to flourish. Andrew 
Jackson appointed him secretary of state in 
1831 and minister plenipotentiary to France 
in 1833. Photograph from Hayward and 
Blanche Cirker (eds.), Dictionary of American 
Portraits (New York: Dover Publications, 
Inc., 1967), 386, hereinafter cited as Diction- 
ary of American Portraits. 

I am much Obliged to you for the information relative to the Dismal 
Swamp Land, could you without too much trouble let me know what is 
the amount of all the taxes now due. and whether there are any others 
likely to accrue? I am very happy in this occasion of assuring you of my 
constant Respect and Esteem 

Edw Livingston 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 

Washington N° Carolina 

Thomas Turner 10 to John Gray Blount 

Williamston April 3 1824 

John Gray Blount Esq 
Dear Sir, 

I am so far on my return from Raleigh, and am glad to be able to add 
to the information I gave you when I had the pleasure to see you the 

10 Thomas Turner is listed in the 1820 census as the head of a household of six in Wash- 
ington County. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Washington County, 16. Turner was an 
officer on the board of directors of the Plymouth Turnpike Company. See 1824, n. 11. 

408 John Gray Blount Papers 

other day in Washington, That we have at length obtained the subscrip- 
tion of $2500 by the State to the Capital Stock of the Plymouth Turnpike 
Company. 11 

It is now obvious to you, that the next thing we have to do, is to elect 5 
Directors to execute, by such means as they shall think the most expe- 
dient, such instructions, as the Board of Internal Improvement, shall give 
in relation to the construction of the Road. And it is already Known to 
you that the 24 of this month has been appointed for the meeting of the 
Stock Holders at Thomas Wendleys 12 in Beaufort County, for the elec- 
tion of Directors; and that absent Stock Holders (2) by a resolution of the 
Commissioners of the Company, are allowed to vote by Proxy; the proxy 
in such cases producing his authority in writing for giving such votes. 

It remains for me to say, that the Treasurer has given me authority to 
vote in the said election for the State, and to inform you that I shall not 
only be glad to have you accept of the burthen of being one of the Direc- 
tors; but also to receive from you such advice in selecting others as you 
shall think proper to give. It is much to be desired that the meeting 
should be attended by all the Stock Holders. This is particularly my 
wish, that I may have the less difficulty in rightly exercising the authori- 
ty given me by the Treasurer; and I cannot but hope that you will at all 
events make it convenient to be there. 

The Board for Internal Improvements, at the meeting held last week, 
declined giving any orders for laying out the (3) road. They were in- 
fluenced in this respect by several considerations — 1. They are to meet 
again on the 13 May; 2 Mr Fulton 13 has as much or more than he can do 
in that time, at a more important interest on Cape Fear; 3 d The swamp 
is now too full of water to allow the road to be run out — and 4, Orders 
on the 13 th May when the Board will again [take] up the subject, will be 
given as [manuscript torn] they can be executed. 

11 The Plymouth Turnpike Company was authorized by an act of the North Carolina leg- 
islature in 1818. In 1822 the act was amended when Thomas Turner was added to the com- 
pany's board of directors. The company was given authority to "cut a canal in conjunction 
with and in aid of said turnpike road," with the state subscribing $5,000 for 200 shares in 
the company. The board of directors was granted ten years to complete the road from 
Pungo Creek in Hyde County to Plymouth in Washington County, but the project was 
never finished. The Laws of North Carolina Enacted in the Tear 1822 (Raleigh: Printed for the 
State by Bell & Lawrence, 1823), 33; Lefler and Newsome, North Carolina, 316; Report of the 
President and Directors of the Board of Internal Improvements, Legislative Documents for 1838 
(Raleigh: Thomas Loring, Printer to the Legislature, 1838), appendix, 5. 

12 The 1820 census for Beaufort County lists two Thomas Windlys, one the head of a 
household of eight, and the other the head of a household of six. Potter, 1820 North Carolina 
Census, Beaufort County, 44. 

18 For Hamilton Fulton see 1821, n. 31. 

Letters for 1824 409 

In conclusion, I will again urge you to become a Director — Impossible 
things, you know, frequently become possible, merely a change of mas- 
ters; and a proper or improper selection of Directors, it is obvious, may 
make or defeat the making of the Road. 

I am Dear Sir 
Your ob HI ser. 
Th: Turner 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq 
Washington NC 

John Haywood to John Gray Blount 

Raleigh 8 th April 1824 
John G. Blount, Esquire, 
D r Sir, 

Immediately on the Receipt of your Check, I attended at the State 
Bank here with it; and offered it in Payment to the Cashier, handing at 
the Same time your Note for Renewal — Some hesitation took place on 
the ground of the insufficiency of the Check, as to Amount — The Bussi- 
ness honour was Subsequently acted on, and the Note and Check was re- 
ceived, on my promissing that the Deficiency in amount Should be made 
good at the next Renewal — Whereupon the Cashier handed to me the 
enclossed Note or Mem , which I promised to forward for your informa- 
tion — He explained or Showed to me, at the time the probable ground of 
your Short Calculation, but I do not at this moment recollect what it 
was — I enclosse the Mem° however, and have no doubt, but you will 
readily discover the reason of the difference between the Calculation 
made by yourself and that made by the Bank. 

I urged that the bussiness Should be passed on, and promised to in- 
form you of the deficiency, adding that all would be made Straight & right 
at next Renewal. 

your friend, 
John Haywood 

The lasst Note, although proposed or ordered to be protected, was held 
up and not handed out, at my Request: and therefore no Costs or Fees 
accured. JH 

410 John Gray Blount Papers 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 
North Carolina 

Edward Livingston to John Gray Blount 

Washington 18 Apl. 1824 

D r Sir 

Your letter of the 4th has brought the Last to my recollection, on my 
leaving New York all my professional papers and I suppose this among 
them were left with a Gentleman who now resides at Albany I have writ- 
ten to have diligent Search made for the policy and if found will forward 
it to you without any delay — 

Can anything Whatever & What be obtained for my Swamp lands at 
this time? 

I am with great Respect 

Your Mo Obd* Ser 

Edw Livingston 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 
North Carolina 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

[manuscript torn] Tarboro July 20th 1824 

Mr McNair 14 says you have neglected your note in Bank — that he ows 
you — And if it is agreeable to you, you can forward a new note & he will 
pay the instalment & place the balance due you, to your credit in 
bank — He makes the offer thinking you might have some reluctance to 
ask for the money — 

14 A Ralph E. McNair represented Edgecombe County in the 1842-1843 North Carolina 
House of Commons. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 312. 

Letters for 1824 411 

The Washington Republican has gone out as was to have been ex- 
pected, when Mr. Calhoun no longer considered his chances worth a 
printers wages — They, (those opposed to Crawford 15 ) tryed to make 
Jackson ride Calhoun — that it seems would not do — They now seem dis- 
posed to mount Adams on Jackson — This I fear will do better — Jackson 
I think will soon give over & then the contest will be, where it always 
ought to have been — Crawford & Adams — Republican & Federal, I 
could never see any claim that any other of the candidates had to being 
made presd 1 . 

Yours &c. 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
N° Car 

Hugh Jones to John Gray Blount 

Lake Landing 
August 9 th 1824 

D r Sir 

Your Note by M r Higson was duly received, & I hasten to reply to it. 
It was agreed among us here, to allow 50 Cents for every four hundred 
Cubic or solid feet, that each subscriber cut, it is what we give to the 
hands we hire & appears to be fair & equitable, as it operates equally on 
all. It was also understood, that whenever a suitable time should occur, 
that we would all send our hands, or supply the funds for procuring 
them, so as to give efficiency to the work. It was left optional with each 
subscriber to work out his subscriptions, or to pay it in money. We com- 

16 William Harris Crawford (1772-1834) was born in Virginia. He moved to Georgia where 
he became a plantation owner, lawyer, and state legislator (1803-1807). In 1807 Crawford 
was elected to the United States Senate, serving until 1813 when he was appointed minister 
to France. Extremely successful in national politics, Crawford briefly held the office of 
secretary of war (1815) before assuming control of the federal Treasury Department 
(1816-1825). Crawford was the leading presidential candidate of the Republican party cau- 
cus for the 1824 election until he suffered a paralytic stroke in 1823. His major campaign 
rivals before his illness were Calhoun, Jackson, and Adams, all opposed to the caucus 
method of choosing the president. Hopkins, Concise DAB, 200; Who Was Who, 196. Also see 
1824, n. 8. 

412 John Gray Blount Papers 

menced upon it last Monday & have made some progress in it, & built a 
house at the end of the West ditch for the hands to live in, it being too 
great a distance for them to travel (2) morning & evening. My hands, cut 
720 solid feet a day & if we had all the force on it, that should be there I 
culd complete one half the Width in less than a month; if the difficulties 
to be encountered, are not greater than I apprehended them to be. I have 
written Pickett & Gulford, apprising them that we have commenced & I 
hope they will be prompt in their attention to the call. I hope you will let 
your zeal be commensurate with the importance of the object, & the pro- 
pitious moment for accomplishing it 

Yours respectfully 
H Jones 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esqr 
N C 

John Hogg to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville NC. 18 th August 1824 
John G Blount Esq r 
Dear Sir 

Your favour of 9 th did not reach me till 16 th Am 1 covering your two 
checks on Cashier Bank of United States Philadelphia, one for $500 the 
other for $4500, together amounting to five thousand dollars; they went 
on by this mornings mail, and so soon as I am apprised of their being 
duly honoured I shall send you a rec 1 for that amount on account of the 
Judgment at the instance of Sam 1 Richards, Administrator of Joseph Ball 
Esq r deceased against you, and further cause satisfaction to that amount 
to be entered on the Record of the Judgment — 

The next thing necessary to ascertain is, how soon you can make pay- 
ment of the balance due of principal and interest of the first moiety of the 
said Judgment; if you can assure me that such payment will be made on 
or before 12 th November next, I shall delay causing the Execution to is- 
sue for said balance & interest, and until I hear from you in this regard I 
shall not give any order relative thereto; and you will of course see the 
necessity of a reply with least possible delay — 

I would fain hope that you will be enabled to prevent any Execution 
issuing for any part of the sums due; expensive and hurtful as such a 

Letters for 1824 413 

proceedure would be to you, and every way repugnant to the feelings of 

Dear Sir 

Y r friend & Serv 1 
John Hogg 

N° Car° 

Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq. 
Beaufort County 
N° Car° 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Nashville Sep m 1824 

You must have been informed before this by my Brother, that W m G. 
Blount 16 refused to accompany me to this place — I am notwithstanding 
preparing with the assistance of Mr. Blackfan a statement of the business 
as connected with T. Blount's representatives, and shall be enabled to 
make out a more correct statement than I had at first anticipated — 
Williams declining to engage in the business I am satisfied did not pro- 
ceed from any objection he has to the business being brought to a close, 
but solely to his aversion to the fatigue necessarily encountered by a re- 
moval from Knoxville to Nashville — I parted with him, stating, I was de- 
termined to close the business by levying under your judg 1 , and I see lit- 
tle other chance of doing it — At all events, sometime must elaps before it 
can be renewed here & if in the meantime it can be adjusted without 
proceeding to extremities the execution may be arrested — If this course 
meets (2) your approbation, you will please forward your judg 1 properly 
authenticated without delay — It is not here & I was persuaded I had 
never seen it — From the progress I have made in assertaining the Am 1 of 
land now on hand owned by JG & T Blount & the am 1 of your claim on 
the estate of T. B., there will I think be but a small balance if any com- 
ing to the children of W m B. 17 and certainly not enough to pay M rs 
Blount's legacy to the church — No further sale of land has been made by 
Mr McLemore 18 than the one you were advised of & at present there is 

16 For William Grainger Blount see 1807, n. 35. 

17 For William Blount see 1803, n. 31. 

18 This is probably a reference to John C. McLemore. See 7677, n. 7. 

414 John Gray Blount Papers 

no one in the country who wishes to purchase, that has the money to 
make a payment with that I know of — It is expected however that in the 
months of Oct 1 " & Nov r there will be many from Alabama & elsewher 
with money to purchase — Nothing but the hope of being able to relieve 
you from your embarrasments, could have induced me to leave home 
under so many disadvantages, & you may rest assured that no exertions 
shall be wanting on my part to effect the object — I shall remain in Ten- 
nessee until Decm r unless I can sooner accomplish my purpose — I am 
not without strong hopes of success — Mr McLemore has just been 
brought home from the Western District after a severe attack of ill- 
ness — I have not seen him, but shall do so, as soon as he is able to talk 
about business — N° Car° money from 5 to 8 p r c l prem. & it is said de- 
clining — 

My love to the Girls &. 

Your Obd Son 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 

Ann [Blount?] to Lucy Olivia Blount 

Edenton Sept 29 th 1824 

I gladly avail myself of the opportunity afforded me by M r Robberts of 
replying to my dear cousin's letter; when I received it I fully intended to 
reply to it as soon as Mary and Louisa, who were then very sick, should 
recouver; but ere that time arrived I was myself on the sick list and my 
health has not been entirely restored, having been attacked several differ- 
ent times, added to which my sister's family was sick all the summer un- 
til she left town about four weeks ago, to try the effect of sea bathing on 
her daughter Nancy, as the D r pronounced it to be the only remedy like- 
ly to restore her to health; so that you may perceive that ill health alone 
prevented me from gratifying my inclination to write you; I have only 
once heard from my Sister since she left home and that was the day after 
she arrived at Ocracoke; I anxiously watch every vessel that approaches 
the town and have inquiries made of the captains though they have all 
been fruitless. I long to hear particularly from you all at Washington, 
how you are and what you are doing; Has cousin Polly or family suffered 

Letters for 1824 415 

in their health from the burning of their mills or did they remove before 
the evil overtook them (2) I should be gratified to learn that the incen- 
diary has been discouvered if he has do inform me. Did cousin Caroline 
visit the North this summer? she promised if she should do so to take this 
in her way. I hope her health has improved — I often think with satisfac- 
tion on the good health my Uncle appeared to enjoy and flatter myself 
that so invaluable a blessing will long be continued to him — Have you 
heard lately from Uncle Willie? I have heard nothing from him since he 
left you — you are the only source from whence I expect to receive infor- 
mation of the different members of my family with you, & I hope you 
will not refuse to indulge my very natural wish to hear more frequently 
and more particularly than I have hitherto done from you — Was Miss H. 
LeRoy 19 as much pleased with her visit to N. Bern as she anticipated? or 
did the anticipation of the pleasure prove greater than the realization of 
it? pray when you see Colonel & M rs Vines 20 make my respects to them. 
I often think of my pleasant little visit to their house. I perceive by the 
papers that one of M rs Camberling's sons is married; do you recollect 
the evening we spend there? our good friend M r Branard is doing exceed- 
ingly well in Williamsborough and is much liked — by the by can you not 
send me M r8 Hoyt's receipt for making muffins? 

If it is not too late congratulate cousin William on his reelection 21 and 
tell him I shall regularly peruse the papers in the hope of meeting with 
some of his original ideas enlarged — so poor (3) M r Hall 22 has to return 
to dignified retirement this winter — pray was your house divided against 
itself or did you all vote for M r Hynes? 23 I mean those who were entitled 
to a vote. I know my cousin Olivia would not desert an old friend — 

I have sent two songs by M r Robberts of which I beg your accept- 
ance — one is a favorite of mine the other I selected because it is fashion- 
able — what a scrawl I send you, pray commit it to the flames if you have 
any love for me — we shall not lose sight of the promised visit this winter 
from you and cousin Patsey, tell her be careful how she laughs at people 
in future — kiss the dear children for me. I often wish I could hear Olivia 

19 Perhaps this was the daughter of Lewis LeRoy. See 1812, n. 26. 

20 For William Vines see 1816, n. 6. 

21 William Augustus Blount was elected to the North Carolina House of Commons in 1824 
from Beaufort County. He was reelected the three succeeding terms serving until 1828. He 
was also involved in the presidential election as an elector. Cheney, North Carolina Govern- 
ment, 283, 285, 287, 289. Also see 1824, n. 8. 

"This is probably a reference to Thomas H. Hall. See 1812, n. 21. 

23 Richard Hines, born in Tarboro, began a law practice in Raleigh in 1816. He served in 
the North Carolina House of Commons in 1824 and was elected to the United States House 
of Representatives for one term (1825-1827). He resumed his law practice in Raleigh there- 
after and died in 1851. Biographical Directory of Congress, 1123; Who Was Who, 322. 

4 1 6 John Gray Blount Papers 

say Grand Pa — she said it so sweetly, it was more pleasant to my ear than 
the softest musick — It is now past twelve and I must bid you good 
night — please make my kind remembrances to my Uncle and all my re- 
lations and accept the same from 

Your affectionate Cousin 

Addressed: Miss Lucy Olivia Blount 
Mr. Roberts N. Carolina 

A Circular by William Augustus Blount 24 

OAKLANDsOct r 26M824 

D r Sir 

The Period is not distant, when the Voters of this State, will be called 
upon by a duty, which they owe to themselves to exercise one of the 
greatest priviledges of Freemen; The Priviledge of electing Electors to 
vote for President & Vice President of the U.S. By the People among 
whom I live, I have been placed upon the Peoples Ticket, an Honor to 
which I am not insensible, and it becomes necessary that I should de- 
clare, what is the course I shall pursue, if elected — 

It is almost Superfluous to Say, yet I cannot deny myself the Pleasure, 
that I am opposed to M r Crawford & to caucusing — I am in favour of 
Adams or Jackson. It seems to me that an expression of a preference for 
either is unnecessary, & would be improper; Yet it is necessary, on my 
own account that I should make known: That if I am elected at all, as it 
must be by a majority of Votes of the whole State or the votes given, that 
I shall honestly and faithfully speak, if I know either, the wishes of that 
Majority. That there may be no possibility of Error, it has been sug- 
gested, & I now request it, that each & every Voter will write on the 
Back of his Ticket the name of the Individual he prefers — Jackson or 
Adams. This is easily done & I trust will be done for I only wish to 
Know the Peoples will, by me it shall be spoken — 

24 For William Augustus Blount's part in the presidential election of 1824 see 1824, n. 8. In 
the final analysis he seems to have voted for Jackson, even though his county (Beaufort) 
was inclined toward John Quincy Adams. Newsome, Election of 1824 in North Carolina, 

Letters for 1824 417 

(2) If however this should be neglected I shall give my Vote for the In- 
dividual, who from all the facts before me, shall seem to be the choice of 
the People. If Jackson, I shall Vote for Jackson if Adams, for Adams — 
This election involves a principle of mighty import to the People of this 
County: Shall we judge for ourselves whom we will make President & 
Vice President, or shall we permit our representatives in Congress to do 
this for Us? I think, & I hope the True & Independent men of this State 
will, in this contest, forever Settle this question! The Constitution has 
given us this right, we will exercise it. 

I shall Vote, if elected, for J. C. Calhoun to be Vice President, & 
proud shall I be to have it in my power to vote for him, a man whose 
Talents, Patriotism & Services are Known & appreciated. I hope it will 
not escape the recollection of the voters, that if M r Crawford is elected 
President M r Gallatin 26 must also be elected Vice President; that M r 
Gallatin is by birth a Foreignor, & that in the event of M r Crawfords re- 
moval or death, M r Gallatin, a Foreignor, becomes the President of the 
U.S. Can I ask Sir that you will make publick in your county the fore- 
going — I am aware that I am imposing trouble, a desire to serve the Peo- 
ple is my only justification 

With great respect 
W. A. B 

John Gray Blount, Jr., to John Gray Blount 

Jackson Oct r 29 th 1824 

I have been in this part of the country for ten or twelve days with the 
hope of meeting with some person who wished to purchase lands — There 
are many viewing the country & some want lands; but I have seen no 
one who had money to purchase with — I have made no sales, & fear the 
prospect of doing so, is a bad one — The judgment against M Bell taken 
in part payment by McLemore for lands sold by him, is not paid, & in 
obtaining it, there was some error which it is said will produc a delay of 
twelve months in its collection — Perhaps I may be able to collect the 

"Albert Gallatin, who is identified in 1807, n. 9, was nominated in 1823 as a candidate for 
vice-president of the United States on the Crawford ticket. When his foreign birth became a 
source of controversy, Gallatin withdrew from the race in an unsuccessful attempt to help 
Crawford. Newsome, Election of 1824 in North Carolina, 106-107. 

418 John Gray Blount Papers 

balance due by Montgomery 26 & Hopkins 27 — I have directed that execu- 
tion issue against Lockhart — He says he will try to raise the money; but 
I have but little hopes from that quarter, except at the end of the law — If 
there should be no prospect of serving you by a longer continuance in the 
country, I shall set out for N° Car° about the l 8t of Decm r — I think I 
have so arranged your land business that no further difficulties may be 
expected, and if I can come to a settlement with W. G. Blount, I shall 
not regret having made the journey, tho' I should fail in the principal 
object of it — My health is not good, some affection of the heart which 
has distressed me much & continues to do so — My love to the Girls — I 
have rec d no letter from Washington since I left there, nor heard one 
word from the family, except through Lolly. 

your Obd Son 
JG Blount 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq r 
N° Carolina 

Timothy Pickering 2 * to James H. Cans ten [printed copy J 

Salem, November 19, 1824 


I duly received your letter of the 23d ult. which not requiring an im- 
mediate answer, I postponed it to other engagements. I regret that the 
information it contains had not been communicated in your former let- 

26 This possibly refers to Colonel John Montgomery, a soldier and Indian fighter who lived 
in Clarksville, Tennessee. Montgomery County, Tennessee, is named for him. Hale and 
Merritt, Tennessee and Tennesseans, I, 205-207; III, 311. 

"This could refer to Thomas Hopkins, a modest speculator in Tennessee lands. Land 
Warrants 42, 262, 333, and 827, Tennessee State Archives. 

28 Timothy Pickering (1745-1829) was a prominent Massachusetts lawyer, judge, and 
politician. He served during the Revolutionary War as Washington's adjutant general, on 
the Board of War, and eventually as quartermaster general of the Continental Army. In 
1795 he became the secretary of war, but he transferred that same year to the State Depart- 
ment, which he controlled until 1800. He was elected to both the United States Senate 
(1803-181 1) and House (1813-1817). While serving in the House, Pickering bitterly opposed 
Madison's war policies during the War of 1812 and became a leading advocate of the dis- 
union movement in New England. Who Was Who, 481; George Dangerfield, The Era of Good 
Feelings (New York: Harcourt, Brace and Co., 1952), 87. 

Letters for 1824 


Timothy Pickering (1745-1829) had a close, 
working knowledge of the undeclared naval 
war with France and of spoliation claims. He 
served briefly as Washington's secretary of 
war in 1795 before becoming secretary of 
state, a position he continued to hold under 
John Adams until 1800. Photograph from 
Dictionary of American Protraits, 488. 

ter. Having no personal concerns with commerce, and rarely seeing any 
of the debates in Congress, I was ignorant of the recent applications of 
merchants to that body for indemnities on account of the relinquishing of 
their claims on France, for her spoliations on our commerce, by the 
treaty negotiated by Elsworth, Davie and Murray. 29 With that treaty you 
are of course familiar; as it is the basis of the claims of the merchants 
you represent. 

When in 1797, Pinckney, Marshall and Gerry, were appointed minis- 
ters plenipotentiary, to negotiate with the French Government, then 
administered by the Directory, on all the differences between the United 
States and France — those ministers were instructed to agree on an equi- 
table mode of examining and deciding on the claims of our citizens, in 
respect to the depredations on our commerce. But although they were to 
press those claims with the greatest earnestness, they were not to insist 
on them as an indispensable condition of the proposed treaty. They were 
enjoined, however, "not to renounce them." But a regard to justice was of 
all things the most remote from the views of the Directory. You must be 

"Oliver Ellsworth, William R. Davie, and William Vans Murray were John Adams's 
emissaries in France ordered to seek the restoration of friendly relations with France. Their 
efforts led to the Convention of 1800. See 1823, n. 17. 

420 John Gray Blount Papers 

acquainted with the result of that mission: the Directory would not even 
receive our ministers. 30 

By the 2d article of the treaty negotiated by Elsworth, Davie and Mur- 
ray,* it appears that our government felt itself bound, in duty to its in- 
jured citizens, to demand of the French Government, compensation for 
the same depredations: but as a set off, the latter demanded a renewal of 
the treaty of alliance, &c. of 1778, and of the Consular Convention of 
1788, all of which, Congress, in 1798, had justly declared void, in conse- 
quence of their notorious violations by the French Government. The 
Senate of the United States, unwilling to renew those treaties, advised 
the ratification of the new treaty — expunging the second article — thus 
leaving the reciprocal claims of the two governments undecided, and 
subjects of future negotiation; and adding a limitation of the treaty to 
eight years. President Adams ratified it accordingly. The French Govern- 
ment gave its assent, with the proviso, that by the retrenchment of the 2d 
article, the two states renounced the respective pretentions which were 
the object of that article: and in this form, Bonaparte, then first consul, 
ratified it. The treaty, in this situation, being laid before the Senate, by 
President Jefferson, was returned as fully ratified without any further act 
of the Senate.** This implied a reciprocal abandonment of the old 
treaties, and of the claims for depredations, up to that time, September 
30, 1800. 

Thus the government bartered the just claims of our merchants on 
France, to obtain a relinquishment of the French claim for a restoration 
of the old treaties, especially the burthensome treaty of alliance, by 
which we were bound to guarantee the French territories in America. 

*I was not then in office — having been removed in the May preced- 

**[Causten's note] M r Pickering is mistaken in this particular; the 
Senate solemnly "Resolved, that they considered the Convention fully 
ratified." 6 vol Laws US J.H.C. 

30 The undeclared war that went on between the United States and France from 1798 to 
1800 was provoked by the refusal of France to negotiate with the three American ministers, 
Charles Cotesworth Pinckney, John Marshall, and Elbridge Gerry, whom President John 
Adams had sent to Paris to treat for the restoration of friendly relations. When three 
French agents, later called XYZ, informed the Americans that they must pay Foreign 
Minister Charles Maurice de Talleyrand-Perigord a huge bribe before negotiations could 
begin, the American diplomats were incensed, and the negotiations never began. Pinckney 
and Marshall were ordered to leave France, whereas Gerry was not. Morris, Encyclopedia of 
American History, 128-129. 

Letters for 1824 421 

On this view of the case, it would seem that the merchants have an 
equitable claim for indemnities from the United States. To avoid this 
claim, especially as the amount is of such magnitude, many reasons, I 
doubt not, will be urged. For instance — that the French Government was 
so utterly regardless of justice as to forbid the hope of obtaining any re- 
dress, if the claim had been persisted in; and to relinquish it, therefore, 
was really to relinquish a nullity; while it procured a formal renunciation 
of the old treaties. That if the United States had persisted in the claim, 
then, to render it efficacious, reprisals must have been made: but France, 
destitute of foreign commerce, presented nothing on which a plan of re- 
prisals could operate. That if the claim were kept up, waiting for the aus- 
picious period of peace, in which to renew it — the very magnitude of the 
demand presented a formidable objection to its admission. That if, when 
the revolutionary measures should cease, a new and regular government 
should be established — by the restoration of the Bourbon family for 
example — this might excuse (2) itself as not obliged to account for the in- 
justice and violence of the usurpers — injustice and violence too much 
countenanced by a numerous party of our citizens. That the present 
French Government had evaded the demand for indemnities for still 
greater spoliations and injuries committed during the reign of 
Bonaparte. And lastly, that to attempt to obtain indemnities by force, 
that is, war, would bring on our country immense evils, without any hope 
of success, in the object of war. 

Such are some of the objections which you may have to encounter, in 
prosecuting the merchants' claims before Congress. The ingenuity of op- 
ponents to the claims will doubtless suggest many more. 

The old claim of Beaumarchais 31 (which has appeared to me alike 
impudent and unjust) has, I have understood, been urged by the present 
French Government; and insisted on as a preliminary to the admission of 
the merchants' claims for the imperial spoliations on their commerce. 
But large as it is good policy may perhaps require its admission by our 
government; provided France will stipulate to compensate for those 
spoliations; Beaumarchais' claim to be a deduction from their amount. 
The merchants would then have a very large portion of their losses 

31 Pierre de Beaumarchais, French playwright, poet, and courtier during the reign of Louis 
XVI, organized secret and substantial French aid to the American cause during the Ameri- 
can Revolution. He did this through a fictitious French company called Roderigue 
Hortalez et Cie. Total expenditures by the company exceeded 21,000,000 livres. Later con- 
fusion over reimbursements resulted in a heavy personal loss for Beaumarchais. Apparently 
the French later claimed that the United States should pay back Beaumarchais before mak- 
ing claims against the French government for the seizure of American ships. Morris, Ency- 
clopedia of American History, 91; Andrews, Concise Dictionary of American History, 436. 

422 John Gray Blount Papers 

I return the certificate of the merchants who appointed you their 
agent. If I could communicate any thing to aid your application to 
Congress, I should freely do it. The objections which I have conjectured 
as likely to be urged against you, though formidable in fact, are in my 
view deficient in principle. If the treaty of September 30, 1800, containing 
the relinquishment, is obligatory on the United States, and as such to be 
insisted on by the present French Government, it amounts to an admis- 
sion, that the government de facto, had a right to bind the French nation 
as effectually as if the treaty had been negotiated with the present legiti- 
mate government: and such doubtless is the principle of public law. It fol- 
lows then, that if the relinquishment had not been made, the present 
French Government would be responsible. Consequently, the relinquish- 
ment by our own government having been made in consideration that 
the French Government relinquished its demand for a renewal of the old 
treaties, then it seems clear, that as our government applied the mer- 
chants' property to buy off those old treaties, the sums so applied should 
be reimbursed. 

If the claim now lay open against the present French Government, and 
should be admitted to be substantially just, what adjustment would be 
deemed equitable? I presume that the actual situation of France at the 
time the spoliations were committed, and ever since, would be pleaded 
against the demand of interest; and whatever could be yielded to that 
plea, should be allowed to our own government. Doubtless the American 
merchants would rejoice if they could obtain the principal of their claims. 

I saw a paragraph in some very late newspaper, that the present 
French government had made provision for British claims for injuries 
under the revolutionary government; while, it was remarked, those of the 
United States had been resisted. 

I am, Sir, Your obedient servant. 

James H. Causten, Esq. 

NB It must be distinctly understood that the above is on no account to 
find its way into the newspapers, it is intended solely for the use of the 
claimants of Washington N.C. 

Very respectfully 
Jas H. Causten 

John G Blount Esq r 
Washington NC 

Letters for 1824 423 

D Sir 

Supplemental Memorials calculated to take up the signatures of those 
claimants who, from whatever cause, failed to sign the former, are now 
making almost every where — this measure is deemed of the last impor- 
tance, to counteract the idea suggested by some members of Congress, 
"that payment would be in good season if made when demanded", that 
is, when demanded by all — It is therefore intended that all should join in 
the application. If there should be other claimants in your quarter, be 
pleased to make a copy of the old Memorial & stipulation for their signa- 
tures, and forward the same to me by the 10 th of next month. M r Leroy 
will show you my letter to him of the 22 d Ins 1 I crave your indulgence for 
the trouble I have taken the liberty to impose on you. In haste, I am sir 

Yr ob Ser* 
J. H. Causten 
John G. Blount Esr. 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 
Washington, N.C. 

John Gray Blount's Instructions to William Williams* 2 

Washington December 4 th 1824 

Captain William Williams 

You will proceed to Juniper Bay where my overseer will deliver at the 
mouth viz Canal as much Corn as will load you and will commence as 
soon as you are prepared with [manuscript torn] formed by a double 
row of Boards that is Boards on each side of Stantions or posts both 
lengthway [manuscript torn] Vessell near the middle of the main Hatch 
to give Air to the Corn all through the Vessell there will be enough of the 
early or rainripe Corn to fill the two forward rooms and I expect the 
Vessell will go best over the swash with them full & about 150 Bl 8 in the 
after rooms; that will be of the common Corn as well as the lighter load 
& will give it more time to dry well before it goes in a large [illegible] I 
think new Corn like mine worth 45 Cents p r bus 1 here & therefore mean 
to sell at the first place it will command that price & pay freight and 
Commissions you will load as quick as you can with convenience & pro- 
ceed for Darian enquiring the markets at Wilmington Georgetown, 

For William Williams see 1803, n. 2. 

424 John Gray Blount Papers 

Charleston & Savannah & if you learn that a price can be had at any 
one of them places which will pay your freight & Com 11 & nett me 45 
Cents p bus 1 you may sell & if not proceed to Darian & deliver your 
Load to M r Anson Kimberly merchant there. He will pay you 42 Cents p 
bu 1 & freight and I suppose if you can sell short of Savannah at 55 cents 
p bu 1 you would be satisfyed with 10 Cents p bu 1 freight and that will en- 
sure me my 45 Cents p bu 1 . 

Write me from the place you discharge at what you have done 

I wish you safety & dispatch 
Your 8 & 
JG Blount 

Rec d a Copy of the above Instructions 

William Williams 

[No address] 

John Hogg to John Gray Blount 

Fayetteville N.C. 30 th Dec r 1824 
John G. Blount Esq 1 * 

Dear Sir 

Your several favours of 16th & 26th Ult° (rec d on 23 d Ult° & 13 th 
instant) are before me to be replied to — 

I am advised by the Cashier of the Bank of the U States at Philadel- 
phia, of 23 d instant, that your check for Five thousand dollars in my 
favour has been duly honoured. 

I have of this date sent under cover to M r Sherwood Haywood 33 a 
Warrant to Clerk of Circuit Court at Raleigh, to enter satisfaction of 
record of the first Five thousand dollars, as of 31 st August 1824 and of the 
second like sum as of 23 d Instant, to account the Judgment by you con- 
fessed to Adm r of Jos. Ball Esq r deceased; which I have no doubt will be 
so entered — 

As yet I have no reply from M r Richards to mine making him this last 
remittance, in which I put before him your request for further in- 

33 Sherwood Haywood of Edgecombe County was clerk of the North Carolina Senate from 
1786 to 1798. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 217-237 passim. See also 1821, n. 7. 

Letters for 1824 425 

dulgence; so soon as I have his reply you shall be advised thereof — 

Wishing you many returns of the season, I remain, as ever, with re- 
gard and esteem 

Dear Sir 

Y r friend & Serv 1 
John Hogg 



Addressed: John Gray Blount Esq r 
Beaufort County 
No Car° 


Robert Jeter 1 to John Gray Blount and C. S. Shepard 

1825 Feb y 26 th Granville County N. Carolina 

Sir; abought last Christmast I Was in the Western Destrict of Tennisee 
Weakly County and Saw a small part of a large tract of land lying on the 
Obine Rivver Said to belong to C. S. Shepard by Some pople and by 
others to the Saim and John Gray Blunt in Company and also was in- 
formed that the land was for sale, and as I could not find any Agent for 
Such Gentelmen out thare and being informed that you livd in Washing- 
ton Beaufort County N. Carolina I avail my self of this opertiuenity of 
righting to you in order to know if the lands is for sale and if so I ask the 
favour of you to giv me the information Whare I can find you or any 
other Gentleman Who is intrusted in the land that livs nearest to me as I 
wish to se the Gentlemen it belongs to in order to se if I could traid for 
one or two thousand acres of it, or pirhaps move as it is likely Some of 
my Neighbours wish to by also if I Should by and go out thare from 
yours &.c. — 

Robert Jeter 

N. B. I would be fond to git & answer as soon as Conveniant — if a letter 
should be sent by the post direct it to the post office at Jones Store Gran- 
vill Cty. N. Carolina — 

R. Jeter 

Addressed: Messrs. John Gray Blunt and C. S. Shepard 
Beaufort County 
Washington N. Carolina 

Fav d by 
M r Mitchel 

1 Robert Jeter is listed in the 1820 census as a resident of Granville County and the head of 
a household of eight. He represented Granville County in the North Carolina House of 
Commons from 1822 to 1824. Cheney, North Carolina Government, 280, 282; Potter, 1820 North 
Carolina Census, Granville County, 23. 

428 John Gray Blount Papers 

Willie Blount to John Gray Blount 

Washington City March 8 th 1825 

Dear Sir: 

The Bill reported by the Committee in my favor stated, that I had 
raised and advanced for the promotion of the public service $370,000, & 
that I so raised it upon my own responsibility, & that of my endorsers — 
my memorial, Documents & vouchers agree therewith — the report from 
the war Dept. agrees therewith; and there was no evidence before Con- 
gress to shew the contrary — 

Said reported Bill proposes, that a reasonable commission should be 
allowed me on the said $370,000 and likewise on the further sum of 
$250,000, remitted to me by the Gov 1 , after the above $370,000 had been 
raised and applied by me to public uses, as I had conducted those remit- 
tances for the benefit of the Gov 1 & its service — it also spoke well of my 
exertions in other respects. 

The Bill in my favor passed a first & second reading, and on the 4 th 
day, before the close of the session, which was the last day a Bill could 
be passed in either House, with a prospect of its being acted on in the 
other, according to the rule of both Houses, it also being a rule to refer 
all Bills, when twice read, to a committee of the whole House to examine 
& report thereon to the House for a third reading, mine took that course, 
& when it was taken up in Committee of the whole, a member, who, I 
am told had said to a friend of the Bill, that he would not oppose it in 
Committee, did, contrary to that assurance, rise & propose to lay the 
Bill, on the table, without using any argument against the Bill, alledging 
however, that he was opposed to the passage of it, but owing to the great 
number of Bills to be acted on, & owing to the length of time it would re- 
quire to discuss the Bill, then taken up, he hoped it would be laid on the 
table for the present: it was accordingly laid on the table — it was after- 
wards called up & discussed fully on its merits, after which, it passed in 
Committee of the whole & was reported to the House for a third reading 
that evening — in the evening it was called up for a third reading, and the 
same member, again, opposed it, tho' on no new ground, but talked on 
until another member, who wanted his Bills acted on, moved to lay my 
Bill on the table again, which was done — Shortly after that, just as the 
friends of my Bill, who were numerous, were about to call it up again, 
with a fair prospect of passing it that night in time to send it to the Sen- 
ate, which Body it was believed would pass the Bill also, a member of 
the Senate observed that the Senate had adjourned until next day — thus 
my Bill with fair prospects of being passed, is laid on the table until next 

Letters for 1825 429 

session, when, I have reason to believe it will be passed; and many mem- 
bers have said, that it is shameful that it was laid on the table for the 
present — the member who opposed my claim was in service a part of the 
time when my responsible exertions were made to afford him & his men 
comforts &c. & his venerable & useful Father was, for a certain part of 
my advances one of my endorsers at Bank, & we would have had the 
money (2) of our endorsed Note to pay, had not Judge White's 2 friendly 
offices prevented it — the Judge's aid to our relief lead to the Notes being 
taken up — the Note was for SI 5000 — & beside [illegible] Bills for which I 
am liable for about $350,000, & if protested should have had that sum to 
pay — I do not complain of any man's opposition to my claim, Knowing 
that all men have a right to think and to act for themselves in a correct 
manner — I only state a few of the many favorable points of view in which 
my claim is entitled to support & how opposed and I really do not know 
of any one fair ground of objection to the claim — I am respectfully & sin- 

your friend 
Willie Blount 

J. G. Blount Esq r & friends 
Addressed: John G. Blount Esquire 


Beaufort County 

North Carolina 

W. Higson to John Gray Blount 

M att amuskeet April 12 th 1825 

Dear Sir 

I wrote you a few weeks ago concerning the Hen y Williamson 3 Busi- 
ness Stating the number of Children which I will again repeat that it 
may not escape your memory — as I wish some further Information re- 
specting it — Nancy Hall Daughter of Hen y Williamson — dead left two 
sons of age Fanny Swindall Daughter of H. Williamson dead left one 
Daughter who is now married to Wilson Daniels — also three Sons under 

2 For Hugh Lawson White see 1 '804, n. 7. 

3 A Henry Williamson is listed in the 1790 census as a resident of Hyde County and the 
head of a household of five. The First Census of 1790, 138. 

430 John Gray Blount Papers 

age. Thomas Williamson Son of Hen y Williamson dead — left one son 
Charles Williamson one Daughter Sally both of age — 

Polly Swindall daughter of Hen y Williamson a widow now living — 
Peter LaCuse Williamson 4 Son of Hen y Williamson now living — Sally 
Williamson 5 Daughter of Hen y Williamson dead — & left two Illegitimate 
Children — Jack" Jarvis Brother to James Jarvis was administrator of 
Hen y Williamson (2) I did not know untill lately that any administration 
had been made on the Estate — your form of a power of attorney furnish d 
me relinquishes the administration to us — what I particularly wish to 
know is whether I need to mention the administration in power of att y as 
it has already been done 

I also wish to know what must be done with respect to the three sons 
of Fanny Swindall all under age and I presume no Guardians — their 
father is living and are all residents of Bay River — no County Court In- 
tervens before our Superior Court — to admit of a Guard" being ap- 
pointed — especially as we wish to have the power of attorney proven at 
our next Sup r Court — I would also wish to know whether the two Illegit- 
imate Children of Sally Williamson Heir for their mother as I am In- 
form d that there is a late act of Assembly making such a provission for 
such Children and if so I presume Guardians would have to be ap- 
pointed — no County court Intervens before our Sup r Court to have such 
guardians appointed — I am anxious to have (3) the Business Arranged so 
as to empower us to act at our next Sup r Court — if possible I presume 
you have wrote to your Correspondant in Baltimoor to assertain whether 
your old friend M r Ja 8 Murdock of London is living. 

I remain your 

most Ob 1 Serv* W. Higson 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esq 1 " 

4 Peter LaCuse Williamson is listed in the 1820 census as simply LaCuse Williamson. He 
was the head of a household of five in Hyde County. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, 
Hyde County, 14. 

B Sally Williamson is listed in the 1820 census as a resident of Hyde County and the head 
of a household composed of two males under ten years of age, and one female between the 
ages of twenty-six and forty-five. Potter, 1820 North Carolina Census, Hyde County, 21. 

Letters for 1825 431 

Samuel Leigh to John Gray Blount 

[May 19, 1825] 
Mr Blount Sir 

I under Stan from Col. Hodgess that you are anxious to have you 
writes further explored that is to Know how far Gumrock Creek is navi- 
gable from Canoes, the basing of it &c. 

I Should have accomplished the business before this time had it not 
been for the wet fall & winter, your wishes Respecting the Creek you 
Shall be acquainted with by the Elecktion or as Soon as they Can be 
Sent. I want to Do it Sooner but I can not conveniently do So without 
Injauring my Business. 

Saml Leigh 

May 19 th 1825 

Addressed: John G Blount Esqr 

Redding Shipp to John Gray Blount 

Bay River 16 June 1825 


The Day Mr Jones Slye & myself left Washington Slye affirmed that I 
Should have nothing more to do with the land purchased of you he con- 
tinued to cut Timber and let to people to git on Shares 

I asked a Lawer who advised me to petition for a partition to save cost 
when the summons was served on Slye & Lincoln Slye purposed a 
Division and promised to complet the same in a few Days. 

In a short time Slye told me that he had given the deed you gave him 
back to you that he (Slye) had no title to the land — Mr Jone must De- 
pend on you for a right and if I wanted any satisfaction sue him (if I 

The reason that made me believe that he had given up the Deed to 
you I often herd him say the Timber was all gone and the land was not 
worth 25 cents per acres, which closed the business with me (2) 

If you take the land on possession again and wishes to sell and will 
give your deed to the purchais's and receive the payment with some 

432 John Gray Blount Papers 

Credit (and let it be Known on Bay river) the land will be bought by 
severall people in company and Divided between them 

I am ready and willing to give you a plot of all or any pat you wish for 
and to Shew the land to any person you may direct to me for that pur- 
pose Except John Slye 

Mr Slye would not have the deed you gave him recorded nether would 
he sell land except the payment was made to himself 

I am Sir yours 


Redding Shipp 

Addressed: John G. Blount Esqr 


Stow & Whittier to John Gray Blount 

Wilmington Aug 1 3, 1825 

John G Blount Esq 
Washington N. C. 


Your valued favour of the 11th July was duly received, and would have 
been replied to immediately, but having placed the Note taken for the 
Corn in Bank for Collection we waited for its payment. But when at 
maturity we ware much disappointed to find the Note protected for non- 
payment. You will observe by the Sales which ware sent you the 25 of 
May, last, a copy of which is here enclosed that the balance of Corn was 
sold to Charles Nixen 6 payable the 20 of July, he gave his note with his 
Brothers James & Robert Nixen 7 as endorsers, both men of property, 
and we had not the least doubt that the note would have been promptly 
paid when due. Charles informs us that he was disappointed in not 
recovering 500 Blls of Turpentine (which it appears he has at a County 

"Charles Nixen (spelled Nixon) is listed in the 1820 census as the head