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.

FISHER, Joseph re Christopher THORNHILL, 1820

National Archives, Kew, CO48/52, 315

31 Red Lion Sq.

21st Jan 1820

Sir,

In Mr THORNHILL's absence who happens at this time to be at Deptford on board the ship, I beg leave to reply to your letter for him having [been] entrusted by him in some degree with the management of his concerns with Mr W

There is a valid agreement between Mr WAIT and Mr THORNHILL which defines their respective rights and gives to each a share in proportion to the sum advanced to a given amount and also settles their [obscured] beyond that sum. By virtue of this [deed] Mr THORNHILL has at present the greater share [of] the lands, families and all advantages to be [derived] from them, and under this agreement Mr WAIT has become a Trustee in the lands to be granted for both parties according to their respective interests. [As] it had been originally arranged that the grant should be made to Mr WAIT the agreement with the settlers was intended to be made in his name also but when he was arrested and it was expected that he could not go out Mr THORNHILL was anxious to have no further connection with him and he accordingly [made] an application to Earl BATHURST to have his share [of] the deposit returned or to be at liberty to go out [with] a party next season. In reply to this application Mr THORNHILL was informed that the deposit [could] not be returned but the grant would be made in his name. Mr THORNHILL considering that [he] was now to stand in the place of Mr WAIT as Trustee it became necessary that the agreement [with] the settlers should also be made in his name [since] as that between Mr WAIT and them had not been executed they have all become bound to serve Mr THORNHILL on their arrival at the Colony. [Obscured] agreement is also in force altho' Mr THORNHILL has been informed that Mr WAIT has since had another signed by some of the parties.

When it was ascertained that Mr WAIT could accompany the party he wished the Grant as originally intended to be in his own name, but as he had so greatly misrepresented the state of his property he then became desirous, as a security for the [money he] had advanced to have the grant in their joint names and also to provide against further misfortunes that he should have the power to call for a partition of the land, families &c according to their respective interests. These terms were rejected by Mr WAIT but Mr THORNHILL [relying] on the justice of his demand was in hopes of the case being represented to Earl BATHURST he would have directed the grant to be made in their joint names or to each according to the amount of deposit paid. As however his Lordship has decided otherwise Mr THORNHILL must rest satisfied with the deed he now holds. I have no doubt he would be very ready to accede to a proposal for a reference if any thing remained to be decided but as I have mentioned all the points in dispute it will be seen that they are already principally disposed of by the grant being made in Mr WAIT's name only.

With reference to the other point as I made the inquiries for Mr THORNHILL I beg leave to state the [source] from which I derived my information. I was informed by Mr LAFOSSE (Mr WAIT's partner) that the lady referred to was not married to Mr WAIT and that when his goods were seized she claimed and obtained certain articles in her name and not as Mrs WAIT - these facts [obscured] to Mr ADAMS, 13 Grays Inn Square (Mr WAIT's [obscured]) who admitted their correctness. The information received by Mr THORNHILL was from persons on board the vessel.

I have the honor to be Sir

Your most obedient humble servant

Joseph FISHER

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