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

1820 Settler Correspondence before emigration

ALL the 1819 correspondence from CO48/41 through CO48/46 has been transcribed whether or not the writers emigrated to the Cape. Those written by people who did become settlers, as listed in "The Settler Handbook" by M.D. Nash (Chameleon Press 1987), are labelled 1820 Settler and the names of actual settlers in the text appear in red.


National Archives, Kew CO48/41, 437

Hope Fire Office

Ludgate Hill

August 1819

My Lord,

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.


Print Email