National Archives, Kew CO48/41, 437
Hope Fire Office
Understanding it is the intention of His Majesty's Government to send out settlers to the Cape of Good Hope, I humbly offer myself for this – being brought up the first twenty years of my life in farming & the timber line – lines that have been a domestic in the families of Mr. Geo. ROBINSON, Sir John STANLEY and Sam'l WHITLSEA Esq, all of whom now deceased. While in their service was a Volunteer in the Queens Royal Regiment in the Neighbourhood of Pimlico upwards of 7 years and afterwards in the Clerkenwell about two years whilst the present peace took place & the breaking up of Corps – for twelve years have been in Business for myself as Publican & General Dealer in Timber. & lastly as Messenger and Agent to the Hope Albion & Norwich Union Fire Offices. The office last mentioned having declined business in the City they had no farther occasion for this Establishment. Consequently I was thrown out of Employ except that I now only act as an Agent to the Albion and the Hope, which is not sufficient to support me wife an two children (girls) one twelve & the other three years of age – all in good health. I am upwards of forty years of age – am able and willing to work as ever I was, therefore flatter myself (from the knowledge I have of timber & all sorts of cleaving such as laths, poles, spokes &c – as well a little of Aggriculture) that I might be a usefull person in the new Colony. Should this application meet your approbation I humbly solicit such instructions as may be necessary on such an important occasion as [soon as] possible that I may order my affairs accordingly.
It may be necessary to add that my salary may be worth about 50 pounds is all I am worth at this time. My wife & eldest girl can work well at the needle. Their savings and mine may bring us in from ten to fifteen shillings per week. I beg your Lordship's pardon for stating my circumstances in this familiar way to you. I had only one shilling in my pocket when I first came to Town to seek a service. The first of which was with the Hon. Capt. JAMES, now Lord FORBES – in 2 years from that by great love of economy I realized five hundred pounds, which in far less time as been lost in [obscured]. I can have recommendations from the Secretarys of the Albion & Hope Fire Offices where letters are received fro me. If your Lordship will be pleased to take notice of me at this critical juncture I should be My Lord your Lordship's most obliged and most humble servant.
Jas. Benj'n BATCHELOR