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

Selected Settler Correspondence 1820 - 1837

Whereas ALL the 1819 correspondence was transcribed (see CO48/41 through CO48/46 at the National Archives), whether or not the writers emigrated to the Cape, here only letters by known settlers or their families, or letters of great relevance to the 1820 settlers, have been transcribed. There are many other letters in later files, thought not to be written by eventual settlers. However, if an ancestor is known to have emigrated after the 1820 settlers then it might be worth looking through the rest of the correspondence, which is arranged alphabetically. The relevant files for letters written in 1820 are CO48/52 (A-L) and CO48/53 (M-Y). Later files are labelled "Original Correspondence" followed by the year, and can be found from CO48/56 (1821) to CO48/186 (1837).

Unless otherwise stated letters were written to either the Secretary of State for the Colonies or his deputy. The original correspondence is filed in order of receipt. Here it has been placed in alphabetical order according to the surname of the writer, with letters by the same writer in chronological order, for ease of reading. Original spelling has been maintained. Reference numbers, where given, refer to printed page numbers stamped on the letters and will enable visitors to the National Archives to locate the letter more easily.

CAMPBELL, Mary, 1828

National Archives, Kew, CO48/127, 209

12 Judd Street, Brunswick Square

27th December 1828

Sir

I appeal to you as Secretary of State for the Colonies and who as a military Officer of [rank?] to redress the grievances of an unfortunate family, the children of a deceased Officer who are reduced by the circumstances I am about to relate to poverty and great distress.

The late Major General CAMPBELL their Father received a considerable grant of Land 10,000 acres from the then Secretary of State for the Colonies at the new Settlement at the Cape of Good Hope and from the flattering description given of that place at the time as well as from the extent of the grant he was induced to embark a considerable sum of money in transporting himself and a part of his family with work people of different descriptions, agricultural implements, materials for buildings, vines from Portugal plants and seeds of different kinds with sundry &c hoping in a few years by activity and attention to secure a comfortable independence for his numerous family of 13 Children. An accident however produced by over exertion put a period to his life and deprived his Children of their Protector. This lamentable event was the fore runner and the cause of other misfortunes.

The Land after a location of 3 years was taken from them and they had the grief and mortification to see distributed to others the Land that had cost their Father the Sacrifice of his Country and friends and eventually of his life. The Widow indeed had a portion of it given to her but independent of her own four children, very young, as well as the nine by a former marriage. Since the Pension has been withdrawn of £18 per year which ceases by the new regulation at the age of 18 they have been without pecuniary or other resource.

Such is the situation of the Children of an old officer; the Eldest Son at the Cape now twenty years or nearly so was noted by the Command of His Royal Highness the late Duke of York for a Commission but has not yet been appointed, nor are there any hopes held out that he will be so for a considerable time. The small sum of money that he is entitled to from the sale of his Father's personal property is in the hands of the Orphan Chamber who are entitled to hold it ‘till the age of 26 years. He is a lad of good talents, writes well, and has considerable local knowledge of the Country he is in and speaks the language, which would make him eligible as well as useful either in the Military line / a Cape Regiment / or in a civil capacity - Something I trust will be done for him – and if possible for his Brother also – and a portion of the Land restored to the family generally. ___ In making a representation of this case I do not address myself only to the Secretary of State for the Colonies but to a Gentleman of the same Profession as their deceased Father – whose humanity as well as feeling for the Orphan Children of a Brother Officer will lead him to give them his assistance either in the way pointed out or in any other he may think better suited to this case.

I have the Honor to be Sir

With high respect

Your most Obedient Servant

Mary CAMPBELL

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