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.

FRANCIS, David Polley, 1832

National Archives, Kew CO48/147, 332


Mount Ellis, Port Elizabeth, Cape of Good Hope
23rd June 1832

Dear Sir,
         I have taken the liberty of enclosing under cover to you two letters, one for my friend Mr. ELLIS and the other for my friend Mr. L. DICK, trusting you will have the kindness to forward them and excuse the liberty I have taken.
   It gives me great pleasure that I am enabled to inform you that everything is going on very satisfactorily in this Colony, particularly in this division of it, The new slave regulation has caused little or no agitation and the Colony is fast improving in every respect. This part is gradually becoming of more importance every day, not only in regard to trade & shipping but the increase of buildings and inhabitants goes on very rapidly. When I came out here in 1820 there were only two indifferent houses, besides a few military buildings. There are now about 130 houses & at least 100 good houses, and near 1100 inhabitants. We are exerting ourselves for the erection of a jetty, which is much wanted here, and will be of immense advantage to the Bay in every respect. This part of the Colony never looked so fine as at the present moment. We are in great want of labourers, mechanics and servants of all classes, and I hope some of the Emigrants will be directed to this Colony, where there can be no want of employment, and an abundance of the necessaries of life at a cheap rate.
   I am happy to observe that I am now getting comfortably situated here, and I shall always feel most greatful to my friend Mr. ELLIS and the kind attention I received from you and Mr. HORTON when at home, in advancing my interests in procuring the situation I now hold.
   I have the honor to be most respectfully your oblig'd serv't

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