Tea Leaves
Author: Various
Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6     Next Part
Home - Random Browse

N.B.—It is submitted whether it would not be proper for the directors of the East India Company to send two persons to Philadelphia, who have been accustomed to pack and repack teas at the India House, to the end that they may be employed for that purpose, and in dividing whole chests of black teas into half chests, for the greater accommodation of the country shopkeepers.

No. 5.



Admitting that an exportation of tea to America by licence takes place immediately, in order to prevent the colonists from becoming purchasers at the sales of foreign companies, usually made from September to November, and consequently at least discourage those companies from encreasing their China trade, and also to obtain some information, though imperfect, before the investments for the China ships of the ensuing season are ordered. It is proposed that chests of Bohea tea, chests of each specie of Singlo tea, together with a smaller assortment of Hyson, Souchong, & Congou tea be consigned to such a number of merchants conjointly as may be thought sufficient, (for whom their correspondents in England shall give satisfactory security,) together with such persons as shall be thought proper for that purpose to be sent from thence. That upon the arrival of such tea in Boston public notice shall be given thereof through the Continent, and also that it is the intention of the East India Company, if the sales of this cargo should be found to answer, to repeat such consignments, in order to supply that Continent with teas at least equal in price to what they must pay for the same if obtained in a way of illicit trade. That in order to conduct these sales in the most advantageous manner, the parties to whom the cargoes shall be entrusted shall act as one body; that the concurrence of the majority shall be necessary for any act therein; that each party shall be answerable for himself only, but that no credit shall be given to bills received for paying without the assent of at least three of the persons so appointed; that it shall be the object of the person who may be appointed to go with the cargo to obtain all possible information respecting the actual consumption, mode of sale, species of tea that may be introduced, & opportunity of remittances at Boston, where it is proposed the first consignment shall be made, as it is the only considerable mart, where tea from England is at present received without opposition, and having so done he shall visit such other places on the Continent as may be thought proper, but particularly New York and Philadelphia, in order to obtain the same information at those several places, and learn, from being on the spot, how far the New Yorkers, &c., will hold their solemn engagements, when they find the advantages they will probably reap by receiving tea from England. They having obtained all such necessary information, he shall return to England & report the same, from which time it is presumed there will be full employ for such agent without any additional expence to the Company in preparing such assortments of tea as may from time to time be required for this market, and can be best spared from the necessary demand of Great Britain & Ireland, and also in negotiating the remittances that may from time to time be received on account of this concern.

That such an appointment is absolutely necessary must appear to every one at all acquainted with the nature of the tea trade, not only properly to regulate these investments, but also from time to time to preserve proper assortments of tea for the consumption of Great Britain & Ireland, and indeed in this particular alone could the directors for some years past have had such information, from any person in whose abilities & integrity they could have placed a proper confidence, and who, from the nature of such trusts, must be placed above the temptation to any sinister practices the Company, from the resources of the tea trade alone, would probably never have been involved in their present difficulties.



We are informed that you have come to a resolution to ship tea to America, we therefore beg leave to recommend our friends, Mr. Andrew Lord, and Messrs. Willm. & George Ancrum,[28] of Charles Town, in South Carolina, merchants, for the consignments of such part as you may ship to that place. Both houses are of the first repute, and have been long established there, and also to tender to you our ship the London, Alexander Curling, Master, to carry the same out, who shall be ready to sail whenever you please to account.

We are, your most humble servants, GREENWOOD & HIGGINSON.

London, 4 May, 1773.

To the Hon'ble the Court of Directors of the United Company of Merchants of England, trading to the East Indies.



Being informed you intend to export teas to several different settlements in America, to be sold there under the direction of agents to be appointed. I beg leave to acquaint the Court that I have a house established in New York, under the firm of Pigou & Booth, and I humbly solicit the favor of that house having a share of the consignments.

Philadelphia being also a port to which the Company will most likely send teas, I beg leave to recommend Messrs. James & Drinker, of that city, to be one of your agents there.

Should I be so happy to succeed in my request, I am certain the greatest attention will be paid by those gentlemen to the Company's orders, and that the Company's interest will be made their study in the sales and remittances. I also beg leave to observe that if ships should be wanted for this service, I have vessels now ready for the ports of Philadelphia and New York.

I am, gentlemen, Your most obed't & very humble serv't, FRED'K PIGOU, Jun^r. Mark Lane, 1st June, 1773.

To the Hon'ble the Court of Directors of the United East India Company.


London, 1st July, 1773.


I intended to have made a purchase of teas at your present sale to have exported to America, but the candid intimation given by you of an intention to export them to the Colonies on account of the Company, renders it disadvantageous for a single house to engage in that article.

I now beg leave, gentlemen, to make a tender to you of the services of a house in which I am a partner, Richard Clarke and Sons,[29] of Boston, New England, to conduct the sale of such teas as you may send to that part of America, in conjunction with any other houses you may think proper to entrust with this concern; altho' I have not the honor of being personally known to many of you, I flatter myself our house is known to the principal merchants who deal to our Province, and are known to have always fulfilled our engagements with punctuality & honor, and trust I shall procure you ample security for our conducting this business, agreeable to the direction, we may from time to time receive from you.

In soliciting this favor, I beg leave to avail myself further of the circumstance of our having for a long time been concerned in the tea trade, and to greater extent than any house in our Province, with one exception. Of the disappointment I have met with in my intended adventure, by which we are deprived of a very valuable branch of our business, and on my being on the spot to take such instructions from you as may be requisite in disposing of what you may send. And give me leave to add my assurances that the interest of the East India Company will always be attended to by the house of Richard Clarke & Sons, if you think fit to repose this confidence in them.

I am, very respectfully, gentlemen, Your most obed't & humble servant, JONATHAN CLARKE.

To the Hon'ble Directors of the East India Company.

Mr. Clarke also enclosed two letters in his favor; one from Messrs. Henry & Thos. Bromfield, the other from Mr. Peter Contencin, merchants.

June 5th, 1773.


The bearer, Mr. Barkly, is the person whom I took the liberty of recommending to you as a person able and qualified to give you information touching the quantity of tea that is now consumed in America, and to serve the Company in that part of the World in case the Directors shall judge it proper to make any establishment there for selling tea on the Company's account, & I am, sir,

Your most obedient and most humble servant, GREY COOPER.[30]

Received from Henry Crabb Boulton, Esq.

Hon'ble Sirs:

Being informed of your resolution to export a quantity of tea to different parts of America, we take the liberty of recommending our friends, Messrs. Willing, Morris & Co., to be your agents at Philadelphia, for whom we are ready to be answerable.

We are, very respectfully,

Your honors most obedient, humble servants, ROBERTS, BAYNES & ROBERTS.

8 June, 1773.

To the Hon'ble the Committee of Warehouses.

London, 9th June, 1773.


I have understood that you propose fixing agents in the different colonies in America, to dispose of certain quantities of tea; if so, I am a native and merchant of Virginia, and think it will be in my power to execute your commands in that quarter, on terms equal, if not superior, to any one in it.

There are some things respecting this business that come within my knowledge; which are too prolix for a letter, but if the Court chuses to notice my petition, I shall be happy and ready to give any intelligence in my power.

I am, gentlemen, Your very obed't & hum'ble serv't, BENJ. HARRISON, Jun^r. At Webbs, Arundel Street, Strand.

To the Hon'ble Court, &c.


Being informed that you have it in contemplation to export tea to the different Provinces in North America, for sale on the Company's account, I beg leave to recommend my brother, Mr. Jonathan Browne, merchant, in Philadelphia, as an agent for any business you may have to transact at that place, and I flatter myself his activity & knowledge of the trade of that country, acquired by a residence of upwards of fifteen years, will render him deserving of your notice.

Any security for his conduct I am ready to give, and to any amount you shall think necessary for the discharge of the trust you may be pleased to repose in him.

I am, very respectfully, gent., Your most obed't & humble serv't, GEORGE BROWNE.

London, Tower Hill, 11th June, 1773.

To the Committee of Warehouses.


As many difficulties seem at present to attend the exportation of tea to America in large quantities, on account of the Company, if the expedient is approved by this Court, of sending about 200 chests of Bohea tea, and a small assortment of other species to Boston, by way of experiment, and you should think proper to entrust such cargo to the care of Messrs. Hutchinson, merchants, there, I am ready, as a security, to advance upon the same the sum such tea shall amount to, at the prime cost in China & freight from hence, before the shipping thereof, provided I am permitted to charge interest upon such advance, until remittances for the same are received from America.

I am, gent., Your humble serv't, WM. PALMER.

Devonshire Square, 24th June, 1773.

To the Hon'ble Court of Directors, &c., &c.


The Committee of Warehouses of the East India Company desire you will meet them at this house, on Thursday next, at twelve o'clock at noon, relative to the exportation of tea to America.

I am, sir, Your most humble serv't, WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 25th June, 1773.



The enclosed newspapers contain the sentiments of the Americans with regard to the quantity of teas consumed in that country, and the fatal consequences attending buying it from foreigners, by leading them to purchase other articles of East India goods at the same markets which otherwise would not be an object, and which, of course, would be commissioned from the mother-country.

The memorial, which I had the honor to deliver, lately points out an undoubted method for gaining this trade.

The Company being the exporters, pays the American duty of 3d. pr lb., of which they will be amply repaid by the advance on their sales, and as mankind in general are bound by interest, and as the duty of about a shill'g pr lb. is now taken off tea when exported, the Company can afford their teas cheaper than the Americans can smuggle them from foreigners, which puts the success of the design beyond a doubt.

It may be suggested that the Americans have not money to pay for those goods. The Province of Pennsylvania alone ships yearly to the West Indies, Spain, Portugal & France, &c., above 300,000 barrels of flour, large quantities of wheat, Indian corn, iron, pork, beef, lumber, and above 15,000 hhds. of flax seed to Ireland, and the other Provinces are equally industrious. The principal returns are in silver and gold, with bills of exchange, an incredible part of which will center with the Company should the same be executed agreeable to the plan proposed, and smuggling will be effectually abolished without any additional number of officers and cruizers.

Warehouse rent, &c., in America, will come as cheap as it is in England; and by the mode proposed for disposing of the teas, the grocers and merchants will be quickly served without any risk of loss by bad debts. I beg your forgiveness for the freedom I have taken. I have the honor to be, with due respect, gentlemen,

Your most obed't & humble servant, GILBERT BARKLY.

Lombard Street, 29 June, 1773.

To the chairman & deputy chairman of the East India Comp'y.

(See Mr. Barkly's letter in the miscellany bundle for the Pennsylvania packet of 17th May, 1773.)


Upon my coming to town, I found a letter from the clerk of the Committee of Warehouses, desiring my attendance at the East India House, relative to the exportation of teas to America.

I should have waited on the Committee of Warehouses at the time desired, if I had been in town, and I will attend them if they wish to see me any day next week, which may be convenient to them. I am, sir,

Your most obedi^t. humb. serv't, SAMUEL WHARTON.

Argyle Street, June 30th, 1773

Crabb Boulton, Esqr.


Submitted to the consideration of Henry Crabb Boulton, Esq., Chairman of the East India Company.

The usual exports to America, consisting of callicoes, muslins, and other produce of India, (tea excepted,) have been seldom less than L600,000 pr an., as such the consequence of that trade, and the interest of the merchants concerned therein, ought to be well considered before this measure of sending out teas to America should be adopted, lest it might defeat the one and prejudice the other.

The merchants are much alarmed at this step of the Company, fearing it will prevent, in a great degree, the remittances from their correspondents by so much or near it as the sales of the teas amount to; for it is beyond a doubt, that the people in America, if they admit the teas, (which I much doubt,) will be tempted to purchase them with the very money arising from the sales of muslins, callicoes, Persians, &c., bought of the Company instead of sending it to the merchants in England, and thereby tend to encrease the distress which is already too severely felt, for want of remittances. And I should not be surprized at the merchants forming a resolution similar to that of the dealers, viz., not to purchase anything from a Company who are interfering so essentially with their trade, and striking at the root of their interests. I am of opinion, if a proper application was made to the ministry, aided by a petition from the American merchants, it might produce a relaxation of that disagreeable and fatal duty of 3d. pr lb., and in case of success I could almost promise that in the course of six months there would be exported not less than one million of pounds of tea, and further, that the usual annual export would be upon an average four millions of pounds of teas. This mode would relieve the Company from its present load, and place the correspondence and connection in its usual and natural channel. But admitting that the ministry would not comply with such a request, is it not too hasty a resolution before answers are come from America if they will receive the teas through the channel of the merchants, and particularly when they see the drawback is encreased from 14 to 24 pr cent. ad valorem, and thereby they are enabled to introduce that article cheaper from hence than from Holland.

It is well known to every gentleman conversant in trade, that on account of some disagreeable Acts of Parliament passed here, the people of America formed a resolution, which was too generally adhered to, not to import any goods from hence. This resolution continued for two years. However, the merchants of New York, (who are men of understanding and liberal principles,) foreseeing the fatal consequences that attend England & the Provinces by a continuance of dis-union with the mother-country, summoned a meeting of the principal inhabitants of the town, and then came to a compromise with the people, that in case they would agree to admit all other goods, they promised not to import any teas from England, under very severe penalties, until the Act imposing a duty of 3d. pr lb. was repealed, and the several captains of ships in the trade were enjoined upon pain of forfeiting the good esteem of the inhabitants to comply therewith. The like resolutions were agreed to in Philadelphia & South Carolina.

There is another difficulty which occurs to me in this business, and that is, there is not so much specie in the country as would pay for the quantity said is intended to be exported. The Company should be very cautious who they appointed to receive the produce of the sales, for should the contractor for money have that power, who are the general drawers of bills, it would enable them to make a monopoly of the ready specie, and to make exchange advance 25 pr ct., to the loss of the remitter.

Thus have I stated the principal objections to the measure, and in compliance with my promise, I shall give you my opinion relative to its introduction, & the proper modes of sale, admitting the Company persevere in their resolutions of exporting the teas on their own account.

A ship should be hired by the Company, capable of carrying the quantity they intend to export, and at so much pr month. She should call in the first place at Boston, and there land 300 chests, under the care of one of the Company's own clerks; from thence to New York, and there land 300 chests, in the like manner as at Boston; from thence to Philadelphia, and there land 300 chests, as before, and from thence to Carolina, and there land 100 chests, under the care of the clerk of the Company, all of which may be performed in the course of three months from her sailing from hence, until her arrival at her last destined port, provided the people in the different Provinces don't disturb the voyage upon the arrival of the teas. Public notice should be given in the papers of each Province at least one month preceding the sale, and the following valuation prices affixed for the buyers to bid upon, subject to the allowances, as limited in your own sales: Boston, @ 2s., lawful money, pr lb.; New York, 2s. 9d., currency; Philadelphia, 2s. 3d., currency; Charles Town, South Carolina, 10s. pr lb., currency. These prices are for Boheas. The several clerks of the Company can with ease correspond with each other, as there is a constant and regular communication by post, so that if there should be an over quantity at one place, and a deficiency at another, it may be supplied. The clerks should have directions to pay the proceeds of the sales to some eminent merchant at each Province, who should be a person well acquainted with the article, and one who has great weight with the other merchants and people, both as to esteem, rank and property; this merchant to remit the money by good bills of exchange, which he must guarantee, and a security given here for such a trust.

Great care should be had to regulate the sale by the consumption of each Province, and not to be held at the same time, but to follow each other by the distance of a fortnight, so that in case there should be more buyers at one Province than the quantity will furnish, they may have an opportunity of writing or going to the next sale at another Province.

I fear there may be an opposition made by some of the Provinces upon a surmise that Government is aiding in this plan, and mean to establish principle and right of taxation, for the purpose of a revenue, which at present is very obnoxious, as such great care should be had not to employ either paymaster, collector, or any other gentleman under the immediate service of the Crown, to receive the money.

Garlick Hill, 1st July, 1773.


In compliance with your desire, we have reflected on the business & expence which will attend the sale of and remitting for such teas as the East India Company may ship to North America, and considering that none but gentlemen of known property, integrity and of experience in trade can, with propriety and safety to the Company, be employed therein, we humbly conceive that five pr cent. commission, and one pr cent. for truckage, warehouse rent, brokerage, and other incidental charges, making in the whole six pr cent. on the gross sales, is as little as the business can be transacted for. And we further beg leave to suggest that no person ought to be employed who will not give security to the Company, in London, for faithfully following such instructions, as they may from time to time receive from them, for remitting to the Company all monies which they may receive on account of teas sold, first deducting the above six pr cent., together with such freight and duties as they may have paid on account thereof, and interest thereon, till reimbursed, such remittances to be made in bills of exchange, within two months after receiving the money, which bills, to be drawn upon their security in London, payable sixty days after sight, or in specie, at the Company's risk and expence; if in bills of exchange, the security to be obliged to accept and pay them. Should the Company determine to ship teas on their own account and risk to North America, we presume to recommend to their service, Benjamin Faneuil, Junr., Esqr., & Joshua Winslow, Esqr.,[31] of Boston, jointly, to transact their business, for whom we are ready to give security to the amount of ten thousand pounds for their performance of the before mentioned conditions, and in like manner a security of two thousand pounds for John Butler, Esqr., of Halifax, in Nova Scotia, who we also beg leave to recommend to the Company's service. We are, with great respect, gentlemen,

Your obe't, hum^e serv'ts, WATSON & RASHLEIGH.

To the Hon'ble the Committee of Warehouse, &c., &c., &c.

London, July 2, 1773.


If it should be agreeable to you to consign to the house of Richard Clarke & Sons, of Boston, New England, this summer or fall, I would beg leave to propose to you, that I will find security to the amount of two or three hundred chests, that in eight months after the sale of them in America, the accounts shall be forwarded you, and the money for the net proceedings paid to your order within that time, you allowing our house five pr cent. commission on the sales, and one pr cent. for storage & other charges, the freight and American duty to be chargeable on the teas besides, & we to be free from the risk of fire or any other accident that may occur before the delivery of the tea.

I am, with the greatest respect, gentlemen, Your most obed't, hum. ser't, JONATHAN CLARKE.

To the Hon'ble Directors, &c., &c.

London, July 5, 1773.


The terms which I had the honor to converse with you upon, relative to the sale of teas in America, I take leave to recapitulate as necessary, to understand each other, viz.: You expect that the houses here who recommend their friends abroad, and are in consequence appointed as your factors to dispose of that article, should stipulate that it be sold agreeable to such orders as you may think proper to give for that purpose, and that the factors pay the cartage, warehouse rent, brokerage, and other charges incidental to the sale, and remit the net proceeds in two months from the last, prompt, in good bills of exchange or bullion, for the whole of which service they are to retain a commission of 6 pr cent. on the gross sales, the Company to be at the risk and expence of shipping the tea out, to pay duty and entry abroad, and to be also at the risk and expence of sending bullion home, which terms I do agree to in behalf of those which I shall recommend, whose names are at the foot. And as it seems prudent to guard against accident by death, as well as that the Company be secured against the neglect & misconduct of its servants in this business, I do hereby, for myself and my house, here guarantee the safety of the houses named as above, for the execution of this business, and also that such bills of exchange, as they shall remit on the above account, shall be good.

The agents in this business hope to be indulged with giving their ships in the trade the freight of the tea out, in preference to others.

I am, with the highest respect, sirs, Your most obed't & most hum. serv't, WILLIAM KELLY.

To the Hon'ble the Com^tee of Warehouses, &c., &c., &c.

For New York:

Messrs. Abraham Lott & Co.[32] Messrs. Hugh & Alex^r Wallace.

Mr. Lott has been a merchant of reputation there about 18 years, and Public Treasurer of the Province about 7 years. The latter is a house of long standing and of great credit, and is well known to many gentlemen here, particularly Messrs. Bourdieu & Chollet.

For Boston:

John Erving, Jun^r.[33] Henry Lloyd.[34]

Both men of fortune and established characters as merchants.

For Philadelphia:

Messrs. Francis Tilghman. Messrs. Reese Meredith & Son.

Both houses of great credit & established reputation.

P.S.—Mr. Kelly, on consideration, thinks that one month from the last prompt, will be too short a time for limiting the remittances to be made, and therefore has taken the liberty to put down two.

London, 6 July, 1773.


Mr. Kelly will give the Committee my proposals for doing the Company's business in Virginia, and if they require further knowledge of me, Messrs. Harris & Co., and Mr. John Blackburn, will give them it. I am, sir,

Your hum. serv't, Benj. Harrison.

Mr. Wm. Settle, Clerk, to the Committee of Warehouses.

Hon'ble Gentlemen:

Pursuant to your request, I beg leave to lay before you the proposal of my friend, Henry White, Esqr., of New York, for the sale of what teas you may think proper to commit to his charge, and in justice to my friend, I think it my duty to declare that there is no gentleman more capable of transacting this business, seeing from his long experience in that branch, that his consequence as a merchant of fortune he will be capable of advancing the interest of the Company in the sale thereof, as well as silencing any prejudices that may arise from the mode of its introduction, viz.:

That the money arising from the sale of such teas shall be paid into the hands of your treasurer in three months immediately following the receit thereof, first deducting 6 pr cent. in lieu of all charges consequent to their landing, save the duty of 3d. pr lb. and freight, and I hereby engage to join myself with one or two more gentlemen of fortune in a bond for the faithful performance of the above covenant.

I am, with all due respect, hon'ble gentlemen, Your most obedient, &c., &c., &c., &c., JOHN BLACKBURN.

Scots Yard, Tuesday, 6 July, 1773.

N.B.—The firm of Mr. White's house is the Hon'ble Henry White, Esqr., at New York.

To the Hon'ble Directors, &c., &c., &c.


Your letter of the 30th ultimo, addressed to the chairman of the East India Comp^y, having been read in a Committee of Warehouses, they desire you will please to meet them at this house tomorrow, at twelve of the clock at noon, relative to the exportation of tea to America.

I am, sir, Your most ob. serv't, WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 7th July, 1773.

Samuel Wharton, Esqr.


The Petition of Walter Mansell,[35] of the City of London, Merchant, respectfully sheweth:

That your petitioner, having received certain information of the Hon'ble East India Company's intention to export large quantities of teas to His Majesty's American Colonies, your petitioner therefore humbly begs leave to acquaint this Committee, that he and his partner, Thos. Corbett, now resident there have long carried on considerable business as merchants, in Charles Town, South Carolina, where your petitioner has been resident himself for near 20 y^rs and flatters himself that he is well acquainted with the trade of that and the neighbouring Provinces. That your petitioner has at a very considerable expence erected and built large and commodious brick warehouses, for the reception of all kind of merchandize, in Charles Town, and has a ship of his own, of the burthen of two hundred tons, constantly employed in the Carolina trade only; that your petitioner humbly hopes and doubts not, but that this Hon'ble Com^tee will upon the strictest enquiry into his character and circumstances, being possessed of houses and lands, in Charles Town, of upwards of L500 sterling pr an., and from his American connections find him not unworthy of their countenance and favor.

Your petitioner therefore humbly presumes to offer his services to this Hon'ble Comm^tee to transact as their agent any business relative to the exportation to and sale of their teas in South Carolina, or elsewhere in the Colonies of America, as they shall think fitting to commit to his care and management.


* * * * *

Hon'ble Sirs:

We take the liberty of recommending Messrs. Willing, Morris & Co.,[36] of Philadelphia, to be your agents there for any quantity of tea you may please to consign them for sale, and which they will dispose of in the best manner they can for the benefit of the Com^y on the following terms:

The tea to be sold at two months prompt, to be paid for on delivery, and the money to be paid at the exchange, which shall be current at that time, into the Company's treasury within three months after it is received from Philadelphia. Willing, Morris & Co. to be allowed 5 pr cent. for commission, and 1 pr cent. for warehouse room and all other charges, except freight & duty.

Messrs. Peter & John Berthon are ready to become joint securities with us for Messrs. Willing, Morris & Co.

We are, very respectfully, Your honors most obed^t humble servants, ROBERTS, BAYNES & ROBERTS.

King's Arms Yard, July 8th, 1773. To the Hon'ble the Com^tee &c., &c.

* * * * *

London, 8 July, 1773.

To the Hon'ble Committee of Warehouses.


We beg leave to recommend Messrs. James & Drinker, of Philadelphia, to be one of your agents at the disposal of teas, which you may think proper to send to Philadelphia, undertaking that they shall dispose of such teas in no other manner than as you direct, on condition of your allowing them 5 pr cent. for commission, for selling and making remittance, and 1 pr cent. for truckage, warehouse rent or any charge whatever; should any teas get damaged on board of ships, any expence arising on them to be allowed by the Company. We do also engage, that in two months after the prompt day, remittance in bills or specie, shall be made to the Company, provided the teas are cleared, the specie to be at the risk of the Company, they paying the charges attending it. We further agree, that in case any bills are protested, we will pay the Company the amount of them in two months after they become due. And we are willing to enter into bond for the performance of the agreements, provided the Directors think proper to allow the teas to be sent to any other port, if the Pensilvanians refuse to admit the duty to be paid, or to consume them in that country, in the latter case, our bond to be void.

We are, &c., &c.,


We beg leave to solicit the } freight to Pensilvania. }

* * * * *


Having been informed that the Directors of the East India Company propose shipping teas to some of the American Colonies, to be there sold by agents on the Company's account, and as I apprehend South Carolina may be fixed upon as one of them, I beg leave to propose Mr. Roger Smith, of South Carolina, for whose solidity I am willing to become responsible.

If the intended plan takes effect, and you do give me the honor to admit of my application, I shall be ready to attend you on the business whenever you may be pleased to give me notice thereof. I have the honor to be, gentlemen,

Your most obd^t h'ble serv^t JOHN NUTT. New Broad Street Buildings, 14^th July, 1773.

To the chairman and deputy chairman of the Hon'ble East India Company.

* * * * *


We beg leave to tender you the services of Mr. Samuel Chollet, merchant, in Charlestown, South Carolina, and Messrs. Hugh and Alexander Wallace,[37] merchants, in New York, for the sale of such teas as you may think proper to send there, being persons in every respect well qualified to dispose of them to the best advantage.

We are willing to enter into such covenants as may be required for the security of the consignments & the remittances of the sales, on the same terms as are to be granted to other houses on the Continent of America, provided we are allowed a proper consideration for such guarantee.

We have the honor to be, sirs, Your most obed^t hble. serv^ts. BOURDIEU & CHOLLET.

Lime Street, July 15, 1773.

* * * * *

London, 15th July, 1773.


Hearing that you are going to appoint agents in America for the sale of your teas, permit us to propose our partner, Mr. Daniel Stephenson, of Blandensburgh, Maryland, as one (should you adopt this measure,) and we flatter ourselves, that from his long residence & connexions in Virginia & Maryland, in business, that he will be thought an eligible person, & for his responsibility, we are ready to give the security of our house, should he be appointed on the same terms as the other gentlemen. We apprehend his present situation is well calculated for this measure, being at a proper distance between New York & James River, & near the centre of the Maryland business.

We are, respectfully, gentm^n your most odb^t servants, GALE, FEARON & CO.

To the Committee of Warehouses.

* * * * *


Upon considering the exportation of teas by the Company, having no direction or power from our correspondents at Boston or New York, to make terms, we decline offering any recommendation in the present state of the affair, at the same time think our thanks are due to you, for your readiness in attending to any propositions we might make. We are, respectfully,

Your most ob^t serv^ts DAVISON & NEWMAN.

Fenchurch Street, July 15, 1773. Edw^d Wheeler, Esq^r deputy chairman.

* * * * *


The Committee of Warehouses of the East India Company desire you will meet them at this house, on Thursday next, at twelve o'clock at noon, relative to the exportation of tea to America. I am, sir,

Your most obd^t serv^t WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 17th July, 1773.



In consequence of my conversation this day, with the gentlemen of the Committee of Warehouses, relative to the rate of exchange from Boston, I beg leave to confirm the offer I made, of abiding by the standard exchange of L133 6s. 8d. currency for L100 sterling, upon an allowance of 2-1/2 pr cent., with the proviso of the intended exportation being made by way of experiment, that is not exceeding 500 chests to Boston, before the success thereof is known.

I am, gentlemen, Your h'ble serv't, WM. PALMER.

Devonshire Square, 22 July, 1773.

To the Hon'ble the Court of Directors, &c.

* * * * *


It is so perfectly contrary to all mercantile usage, to fix a certain rate of exchange for commission business, that we must beg leave to decline making any further proposals for your intended consignments to New York and Carolina, because the revolutions in all exchanges cannot be foreseen. We have known the New York exchange at 168 & 190, at present it is 177-1/2, the par between Philadelphia and New York is, as 160 at the former, to 170-2/3 at the latter.

If you should hereafter adopt the regular and usual mercantile form—of receiving your remittances at the current exchange of the place at the time of remitting, we shall be obliged to you for your consignments to Messrs. Hugh and Alexander Wallace, of New York, and Samuel Chollett, of Charlestown, South Carolina, for whom we will become security for the usual commission of guarantee of 2-1/2 pr cent.

We are, sirs, Your most obd^t h'ble serv^ts BOURDIEU & CHOLLET.

Lime Street, July 23^rd 1773.

* * * * *


The Committee of Warehouses of the East India Company desire you will meet them at this house tomorrow morning, at eleven o'clock, relative to the exportation of tea to America.

I am, sir, Your most obd^t servant, WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 29^th July, 1773.


* * * * *


I am directed by the Comm^tee to acquaint you that the Court of Directors of the E.I.C. have agreed to ship for Boston three hundred chests of tea, and consign to your correspondents an equal proportion thereof, of which please to inform them.

Shall be obliged to you to acquaint me the firm of your correspondents at Boston. I am, sir,

Your most hum. serv^t WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 4^th Aug^t 1773.


JOHN BLACKBURN, } WM. KELLY, } Esq^rs. New York. FRED'K PIGOU, Jun^r. }


* * * * *


At foot you have the firm of our correspondents at Boston, which we gave into the Com^tee of Warehouses for partaking of the India Com^y's Tea consignments, and for whom we are ready to give security.

Benj^m Faneuil, Jun^r, } Esq^rs of Boston, Joshua Winslow, late of Nova Scotia, } jointly.

Security—Brook Watson, Rob^t Rashleigh, Watson & Rashleigh.

London, 4^th Aug^t 1773. Mr. Wm. Settle.

Security offered for Mr. Gilbert Barkly,—Wm. Ross, Esq^r.—No. 24 Austin Fryars.

* * * * *

Securities offered for Walter Mansell,—Henry Laurens, Fludyer Street, Carolina Merchants; William Barrett, Old Palace Yard.

* * * * *


The firm of the house I have recommended to the Court of Directors for New York, is Pigou & Booth, and at Philadelphia, Messrs. James & Drinker, as agents for the disposal of teas. I am, sir,

Your most hum. ser^t FRED'K PIGOU, Jun^r

Mark Lane, 4 Aug^t Mr. Wm. Settle.

* * * * *


I was favored with your letter of yesterday, last night after ten o'clock, acquainting me that the Court of Directors of the E.I.C. had agreed to ship for Philadelphia six hundred chests of tea, and consign to my correspondents an equal proportion thereof, you will be pleased to inform the Directors that I gave notice to my brothers, Thomas & Isaac Wharton, (the persons whom I recommended,) by the last night's New York mail, of the resolution of the Court of Directors to ship the above quantity of teas to Philadelphia. I am, sir,

Your most hum. serv't, SAM'L WHARTON.

Argyle Street, Aug^t 5, 1773.

Mr. Wm. Settle.

* * * * *

Mr. Browne's compliments to Mr. Settle, and begs leave to inform him that the address of the house at Philadelphia, whom he recommends for an agent for the sale of tea, is Jonathan Browne, merchant, at Philadelphia.

Aug^st 5, 1773.

* * * * *


Last evening I had the pleasure to receive yours of yesterday, mentioning the resolution of the Court of Directors of the Hon'ble East India Company relative to the exportation of tea to New York, and desiring me to acquaint you with the firm of my correspondent there, which is Abraham Lott & Co. I am, sir,

Yours, &c.,


Crescent, 5^th Aug^t 1773.

Mr. Wm. Settle.


The Bohea tea to be taken out of what was refused by the buyers last sale; but particular care to be taken that none under the degree of middling, or good middling, nor any damaged chests are sent, to be marked & invoiced, not according to the King's numbers, but the Company's, to be reweighed, by thus marking them, each bed will be kept separate, and there will not only be no pretence abroad for finding fault, as from No. to No., will be exactly of the same quantity, having been packed from the said heap or pile at Canton, and since examined in England. But the taste of the Americans will also be better known, that is, whether they prefer a fresh middling tea, provided it is not absolutely faint, or a strong, rough tea. A certain quantity of each of these kinds to be sent to each place, that either may not have the advantage over the other, by having teas of a superior quality, their respective qualities to be remarked in the invoices. A small assortment of about a dozen or twenty small chests of Hyson, Souchong, Congou, and each specie of Singlo tea, viz.: Twankey, Skin and First Sort, to be sent to each place, with proper remarks thereon in the respective invoices, each of these species to be taken out of some bed or break of teas now laid down, or intended so to be, for next September sale, regard being had to their respective qualities, and to be taken out of such beds or breaks, which shall be sufficiently large, not only to supply each Colony with its quantity, but also to leave a considerable part thereof to be sold at the ensuing sale, by which means the Company may hereafter compare the prices to the same parcel of tea sells for, not only at each Colony, but also at their own sales, which can no otherwise be done, as each of these species, going under the same general denomination of Hyson, Souchong, Congo and Singlo, vary almost 100 pr cent. in the price they sell for, according to quality, & not 10 pr cent. in the purchase.

As it would be a great object with the Company to introduce, if possible, the consumption of Singlo tea into America, that being a kind of tea which spoils by age, much more than Bohea, and also that of which they are much more considerably overloaded with, and further, such an introduction would have this advantage also, that the foreign countries could not soon rival us, not being themselves importers of any considerable quantity of this specie of tea. It should be recommended to the agents, to endeavour all they can, at such introduction, which it is conceived may be brought about, at least in some degree, from the experience of the consumption here in England, which will appear to have constantly gained ground proportionally, as its price at the Company's sales has approached nearer to Bohea tea, and in the present situation of this branch of the Company's trade, it might easily be made appear, it would be for their advantage, even to sell it in America, at the quoted price of Bohea, by which means they might be relieved from the disagreeable alternative of selling it here under prime cost, or keeping a greater quantity unsold in their warehouses, until it is spoiled by age.

London, Aug^t 5^th 1773. St. Paul's Churchyard, N^o. 55.


I am favored with yours of yesterday's date, and agreeable to your request, I shall immediately communicate the information therein contained, to Richard Clarke, Esqr., & Sons, Merchants, in Boston, New England, which is the house with which I am connected, and who I flatter myself will acquit themselves of the trust the Hon'ble the Court of Directors have been pleased to repose in them.

I would also beg leave to solicit part of the freight of the tea for a vessel which I shall possibly have ready in ten days, provided it will agree with the time you propose to ship them.

I am, sir, Your most hum. serv^t JONATHAN CLARKE.

Mr. Wm. Settle, 17^th Aug^t

Wm., Cap^t Joseph Royal Loring, will be ready in 5 days.

* * * * *


The Committee of Warehouses desire you will inform them whether you have a constant trader to Boston or South Carolina ready to sail, as the East India Com^y intend to export teas to both those Colonies, and are desirous of giving you the preference of the freight.

I am, sir, Your most obedi^t ser^t WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 5^th Aug^t 1773.

To George Hayley, Esq^r. Thos. Lane, Esq^r. Alex. Champion, Esq^r.

* * * * *


The deputy chairman of the East India Com^y desires you would point out to the Com^tee of Warehouses what sorts of tea and quantity of each are, in your opinion, proper to be sent to Boston & South Carolina, to make up to the former of those places, an export equal to 300 large chests of Bohea tea, and the latter a quantity equal to 200 large chests Bohea.

Mr. Holbrook says if you can be with him this morning, you will expedite his business very much, as the Com^tee have directed him to make ready for shipping immediately.

I am, sir, Your most hum. serv^t WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 6^th Aug^t 1773. Mr. Wm. Settle.


So. New Boston. Carolina. York. Philadelphia. Total.

Bohea, l. ch^ts. 268 182 568 568 1586 Congo, sm^l d^o. 20 10 20 20 70 Singlo, d^o. 80 50 80 80 290 Hyson, d^o. 20 10 20 20 70 Souchong, d^o. 10 5 10 10 35


lbs. Bohea, 562,421 Singlo, 22,546 Hyson, 5,285 Souchong, 2,392 Congou, 6,015 ——— Total lbs., 598,659

The Hayley, James Scott, is now ready to sail, & I mean to dispatch her 15^th Aug^t. The Dartmouth, James Hall,[38] will be here about 14 days longer. These two are constant traders to Boston.

I have no connection with the Carolina trade, but I understand the London, Curling, belonging to Greenwood & Higginson, is now ready for sailing, and is a constant trader. Mr. Settle will please to inform the Com^tee of the above & thereby oblige,

His humble servant, GEORGE HAYLEY.

East India H^o 10 Aug^t 1773.

* * * * *



By order of the Court of Directors of the United East India Comp^y, I transmit you the enclosed petition, with their request that you will be pleased to lay the same before the Right Hon'ble the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury.

I am, very respectfully, sir, Your most obed^t & hum. ser^t PETER MITCHELL, Sec^y.

* * * * *


The humble Petition of the United Company of Merchants of England trading to the East Indies.


That by an Act passed in the last session of Parliament, it is among other things enacted, "That it shall and may be lawful for the Commissioners of his Majesty's treasury, or any three or more of them, or the High Treasurer for the time being, to grant a licence or licences to the said United Company, to take out of their warehouses such quantity or quantities of tea as the said Commissioners of the Treasury, or any three or more of them, or the High Treasurer for the time being, shall think fit, without the same having been exposed to sale in this kingdom, and to export such tea to any of the British colonies or plantations in America, or to foreign parts discharged from the payment of any of the customs or duties whatsoever."

That the said United Com^ny have agreed to export to the British colonies or plantations in America a quantity of teas, equal in weight to 1700 large chests of Bohea tea, which quantity will not in the whole exceed six hundred thousand pounds weight. And your petitioner having in the affidavit hereunto annexed shewed unto your lords^ps that after the taking out of their warehouses the said quantities of teas so intended to be exported, that there will be left remaining in the warehouses of the said United Company a quantity of tea not less than ten millions of pounds weight, as by the said Act is directed.

Your petitioners therefore pray your lordships to grant them a licence to take out of their warehouses the quantities of teas above mentioned, not exceeding in the whole six hundred thousand pounds weight, without the same having been exposed to sale in this kingdom, and to export such tea discharged from the payment of any customs or duties whatsoever.

By order of the Court of Directors of the said Company.


East India Ho. 19^th April, 1773.


After our hearty commendations. Whereas, the united company of merchants of England trading to the East Indies, have, by the annexed petition, humbly prayed us to grant them, in pursuance of an Act passed the last session of Parliament, a licence to take out of their warehouses a quantity of teas, equal in weight to one thousand seven hundred large chests of Bohea tea, which quantity will not in the whole exceed six hundred thousand pounds weight, without the same having been exposed to sale in this kingdom, and to export such tea discharged from the payment of any customs or duties whatsoever, to the British colonies or plantations in America. And it appearing to us by the annexed affidavit, that there will be left remaining in their warehouses a quantity of tea not less than ten millions of pounds weight, as by the said Act is provided and directed. Now we, having taken the said application and the several matters and things therein set forth into our consideration, do think fit to comply with the request of the said petitioners. And in pursuance of the powers given unto us by the said Act, we do hereby authorise, permit and grant licence to the said Company to take out of their warehouses the said quantity of tea, not exceeding in the whole six hundred thousand pounds weight, without the same having been exposed to sale in this kingdom, and to export such teas discharged from the payment of any customs or duties whatsoever, to any of the British colonies or plantations in America. Nevertheless, you are therein to take especial care, that all and every the rules, regulations & restrictions and orders directed by the said recited Act, relating to the exportation of such teas, or any ways concerning the same, be in all and every respect fully obeyed and observed. And for so doing, this shall be as well to you as to the said Company, and to all other officers & persons whatsoever herein concerned, a sufficient warrant.

Given under our hands and seals at the Treasury Chambers, Whitehall, the 20^th day of August, one thousand seven hundred and seventy three; in the thirteenth year of the reign of our sovereign lord, George the Third, King of Great Britain, France and Ireland, and so forth.


To our very loving friends the Commissioners, for managing His Majesty's Revenues of Customs and Excise, now and for the time being, and to all other officers and persons herein concerned.

* * * * *

East India Company, Licence to Export Teas

Hon'ble Sirs:

We have the ship Eleanor, James Bruce, about 250 tons, (a constant trader,) which we intend for Boston, and should be much obliged for the freight of the teas you intend exporting to that place.

We have no ship bound to South Carolina, but are much obliged for the preference given us. We are, sirs,

Your most h'ble sert^s. LANE, SON & FRASER.

Nicholas Lane, 6^th Aug^st 1773.

The Hon'ble the Court of Directors, &c., &c.

John Dorrien, Esq^r. recommends for Boston, the Beaver, Capt^n Coffin.

* * * * *


I wrote you under date of the 5^th inst^t that you would be pleased to inform the Committee of Warehouses, whether you had a constant trader ready to sail for Boston or South Carolina, but should have said to Boston only. I am therefore to desire the favor of an answer whether you have a constant trader ready for that colony.

I am, &c., &c., WM. SETTLE.

East India H^o. Aug^t 10, 1773. Alex. Champion, Esq^r.


In answer to your esteemed of the 5^th and 10^th current, am obliged by the favor intended, but at present have only one ship under my care bound to Boston, who will depart in a very few days, but she is not a constant trader. It is not, therefore, in my power to accept of the offer.

I am, sir, Your most hum. serv^t. ALEXANDER CHAMPION.

Bishopgate Street, Aug^t 10, 1773.

Mr. Wm. Settle.

Hon'ble Sir:

Being informed you have some teas to ship to America, I have now a vessel, British built, burthen about 160 tons, which should be glad to lett to your honors for the above purpose.

I am, with due regard, hon'ble sirs, Your most obed^t servt^t, THOS. WALTERS.

Carolina Coffee House, Birchen Lane, 17^th Aug^t 1773.

The Elizabeth, John Scott, for any part of America.

To the Hon'ble Directors of the East India Company.

* * * * *

Mr. Abraham Dupies, in Gracechurch Street, will become obligated for Richard Clarke & Sons, of Boston.

* * * * *


I have a vessel in this port, which will be ready to return to America in a few days, therefore take the opportunity to acquaint you that I am willing to take on board her 600 chests of tea, either for New York or Philadelphia, at the a customary freight given from hence to those places.

I am, gentl^n your most hum. servant, JOSEPH CABOT.

Threadneedle Street, 24 Aug^t 1773. To the Hon'ble Committee of Warehouses.

London, Aug^t 26, 1773.


We pray you to inform the Com^tee of Warehouses for the Hon'ble the East India Company that we have a ship, river built, called the Nancy, commanded by Captain Colville, compleately fitted and ready to receive the tea for New York, which we beg leave to recommend to the Committee. We are, sir,

Your most obedient and humble servants, JOHN BLACKBURN. PIGOU & BOOTH. WM. KELLY & CO.

Mr. Wm. Settle.


Please to acquaint the Hon'ble Committee of Warehouses, that we have taken up the Polly, Cap^t Ayres, for Philadelphia, to carry the Company's tea to that port, which vessel lays at Princes Stairs, Rotherhith, and was built at Ipswich, in the year 1765. She is now ready to take in.

We are, sirs, Your most h'ble serv^ts. PIGOU & BOOTH, For selves & GEORGE BROWNE, SAMUEL WHARTON & GILBERT BARKLEY.

Mark Lane, 31st Aug^t 1773. Mr. Wm. Settle.

* * * * *


Your remarks to the bond offered you, relative to the 600 chests of tea, which are to be exported to New York, have been laid before the Committee of Warehouses, and they are of opinion that the said bond is according to the agreement made with the several gentlemen for the different Colonies, and the merchants who are concerned for the tea to Boston, have executed their bonds agreeable thereto, and Messrs. Wharton, Pigou & Barkley have agreed also to execute on Thursday morning. Therefore, I am to desire you to inform me whether you will please likewise to execute the said bond.

I am, sir, Your most h'ble serv^t WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 31^st Aug^t 1773.

To John Blackburn, Esq^r. William Kelly, Esq^r.

* * * * *


As the several gentlemen mentioned in your polite note of this day have executed the bond, I shall with pleasure follow their example, and on Thursday next I propose waiting on you for that purpose. I am sir,

Your most h'ble serv^t JOHN BLACKBURN.

Scot's Yard, 31st Aug^t 1773. Mr. Wm. Settle.

* * * * *


Last evening I had the pleasure to receive your favor of yesterday, relative to the bond which I am to sign for New York, and the objections made to its draught by Mr. Blackburn, Pigou and myself, which at the time appeared resonable to us, but as others have signed in the form shewn to me, I don't mean to be particular, and therefore shall conform, relying on the honor of the Com^tee in all future matters.

Tomorrow I am indispensably obliged to go out of town shall return on Saturday next, wait on you, & execute the bond. I am, sir,

Your most obedi^t & most hum. serv^t WM. KELLY.

Crescent, Sep. 1^st 1773. Mr. Wm. Settle.

* * * * *

Freight of 568 whole, & 130 half chests of Tea, shipped on the Polly, Cap^t Sam^l Ayres, for Philadelphia:

feet. 568 chests con^g for freight, 8748.6 130 quarter d^o. d^o 656.9 ——— 9405.3 ———

9405.3 at 1s. 6d. pr foot, Philadelphia currency, is L705 7 10-1/2

tons. Primage on 235-1/3 at 2s. sterl^g pr ton, is L23 10 3

Freight of Tea on the London, to South Carolina:

feet. 182 chests measure 2644.3 at 1s. pr foot L132 4 3 75 d^o. d^o. 345.9 d^o. 17 5 9 —— ———— 257 149 10 0 Primage, 5 pr cent 7 10 0 ———— L157 0 0

Freight of Tea shipped on the William, for Boston:

feet. 58 chests measure 585.11, at 1s. 4d. pr foot, L39 1 3 L.M. Primage, 1 9 6 sterl^g.

Freight of 698 chests Tea on the Nancy, for New York:

feet. 698 chests measure 9264.8, at 2s. 3d. pr foot, is Currency, L1042 5 4 Sterling, L30 8 2 Primage, 5 pr ct. 52 2 3 ———— L1094 7 7 ————

Freight of 114 chests Tea on the Eleanor, for Boston:

feet. 114 chests measure 1383.4, at 1s. 4d. L92 4 5 L.M. Primage, L3 9 0

Freight of 112 chests Tea on the Beaver, for Boston:

feet. 112 chests measure 1375, at 1s. 4d., is L91 13 10 L.M. 34-1/2 tons at 2s. pr ton primage, L3 17 0

Whitehall, Dec^r 17^th 1773.

Lord Dartmouth presents his compliments to Mr. Wheler, and requests the favor to see him at his office, at Whitehall, on Monday morning next, at eleven o'clock, on the subject of some advices Lord Dartmouth has lately received from America, respecting the importation of tea from England.

* * * * *



The Com^tee of Warehouses of the E.I. Com^y desire you would please to inform them whether you have receiv^d any advices from Boston relative to the said Com^ys exportation of tea to that colony, and if you have, to communicate the purport thereof to the Committee. I am, sir,

Your most obe. ser^t WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 20^th Dec^r 1773.

To Mr. Wm. Palmer,} Brook Watson, } Boston.

Wm. Greenwood, } J^o. Nutt, } South Carolina.

Jn^o. Blackburn, } Wm. Kelly, } New York.

Fred^k Pigou, Jun^r. New York & Philadelphia.

Geo. Browne, } Sam^l Wharton, } Philadelphia.



The Comm^tee of Warehouses desire the favor of an answer under your hand to my letter of yesterday, relative to the exportation of tea to Boston. I am, sir,

Your most obd^t servant,


East India House, 21^st Dec^r 1773.

Brook Watson, Esq^r. Boston. Wm. Greenwood, Esq^r. } John Nutt, Esq^r. } South Carolina. John Blackburn, Esq^r. New York. Geo. Browne, Esq^r. Philadelphia.

* * * * *




From Mr. Palmer.

Mr. Palmer has received no material advices from Boston since the consignment has taken place, but has letters of as late a date from thence as the 3^d of Novem^r, one of which mentions there was no tea then to be bought.

East India House, 21st Dec^r 1773

Garlick Hill, 22d Decem^r 1773.

To the Hon'ble the Committee of Warehouses, East India House.


In compliance with your request, we send you enclosed extracts from the letters which we have lately received from Boston relative to the Com^ys teas sent there.

We are, gent^m Your most hum. serv^ts WATSON & RASHLEIGH.

Extract of a Letter dated Boston, 18^th Octo^r., 1773:

"But what difficulties may arise from the disaffection of the merchants and importers of tea to this measure of the India Company, I am not yet able to say. It seems at present to be a matter of much speculation, and if one is to credit the prints, no small opposition will be made thereto. However, I am in hopes it will be otherwise, and taking it for granted that the tea should arrive, and no obstacle happen to prevent its being landed and disposed of, agreeably to the instructions of the Company, then I am to add that you may be assured I shall strictly conform to the instructions which I may jointly receive respecting it, paying all due regard to the contents of your letter.

"I know not how to write more fully hereon until the tea arrives, and what may possibly be the consequences attending it. My friends seem to think it will subside; others are of a contrary opinion."

Extract of a Letter dated Boston, 30 Oct^r., 1773:

"I omitted a letter to you in particular when I wrote to your house the 10^th inst., because I thought it was probable, both from the contents of your letter then received, as well as from the public reports, that the tea you mention as coming from the India Com^y might every day be expected to arrive, as you say 4 Aug^t they intended shipping 300 chests immediately, but by my letter, this day received by a vessel from London, it is not to be sent.

"I perceive by the prints, that the clamour is still continued against this measure of the India Company, and seems to be pursued with rather more warmth in some of the Southern Colonies than in this. For my own part I am not sufficiently skilled in politicks to see the pernicious consequences which 'tis said must arise therefrom. If they would prevent the Tea Act being enforced, or the payment of the revenue arising therefrom to Government, methinks they should either not import any tea, or rather not consume any, and then the end would be answered at once. But while there is such a vast quantity exported every year by so considerable a number of persons, who all pay the duty thereof on its arrival, I do not see why every importer, nay, every consumer thereof, do not as much contribute to inforce the Tea Act as the India Comp^y themselves, or the persons to whom they may think proper to consign their tea for sale. Nor can I but be of opinion that the uneasiness is fomented, if not originated, principally by those persons concerned in the Holland trade, and thereby introduce large quantities of tea, which, paying no duty, by that means they can afford to undersell those who do pay it, and this trade, I am informed, is much more practiced in the Southern Governments than this way.

"To what lengths the opposition to this tea's being brought or landed, or disposed of, may be carried, must be left to time to determine."

Extract of a Letter dated Boston, 4 Nov^r., 1773:

"Thus far I had wrote you with intentions to forward by first conveyance, when I found there was to be a muster of the people, to demand that the persons who are to be employed as agents for disposing of the tea which may come from the India Company, would resign their commissions & swear (under Liberty Tree) to return the tea by the same or first vessels for London, &c. You will be fully acquainted of their unreasonable proceedings. After the time had elapsed which was fixed upon for the gentlemen to appear and resign, on their not complying with the order, they marched down in a body to Mr. Clarke's store, where we were, and not receiving such an answer as they demanded, they began an attack upon the store and those within, breaking down doors, flinging about mud, &c., for about an hour, when they began to disperse, and a number of gentl^n, friends of those agents coming to their assistance, they left the store and went upon change, but met with no further insult, tho' there is much threatening. As the tea is not arrived, and it is uncertain when it may, I purpose to write you again speedily.

"In the interim, I am, &c."


Letter from Mr. Greenwood.


In answer to your letter of the 20^th inst., I beg you would be pleased to inform the Com^tee of Warehouses that I have yet received no advices from South Carolina, relative to the Comp^y's exportation of tea. When I do, they may depend I will take the earliest opportunity to communicate the same to them.

I am, sir, Your most obe^t serv^t WM. GREENWOOD

Queen Street, 22^d Dec^r., 1773. Mr. Settle.

* * * * *

From Mr. Nutt.


In compliance with your desire, intimated to me by Mr. Settle, respecting any information received from South Carolina, concerning the teas exported by the East I. Com^y to that Colony, I have the honor to acquaint you that the vessel in which they were shipped did not sail from England before the 18^th October, and the latest dates from thence are only the 1^st Nov^r., so that we cannot expect for some time to hear of her arrival. I have the honor to be, gent^n.,

Your most obed^t hum. serv^t., JOHN NUTT.

Broad Street, 22^nd Decem^r, 1773. To the Com^tee of Warehouses, &c., &c., &c.

* * * * *


Letter from Mr. Blackburn.


I am honored with your two letters of the 20^th & 21st curr^t, desiring me to inform the Com^tee of Warehouses if I have received any advices from New York relative to the Com'^s exportation of tea to that Colony.

The vessel wherein the tea was shipped was not arrived when the last letters were dispatched from thence, consequently no precise judgment can be formed whether or not it would be permitted to be landed; but I flatter myself from the disposition of the principal gentle^n of New York, who are men of moderation, candour and prudence, and as firmly attached to the Government and laws of this Kingdom as any of his Majesty's subjects; that they will, by their example and influence, be able to suppress every riot and disturbance occasioned by the opposers of this measure.

I expect a ship from New York, which was to depart about the 26^th Novem^r, by which I shall receive some fresh intelligence relative to this business, and if I should be furnished with any advices that regard the interest of the Company, I shall not fail to wait on the Directors immediately. I have the honor to be, sir,

Your most obed^t & hum. ser^t JOHN BLACKBURN.

Scots Yard, 22^nd Dec^r, 1773. Mr. Wm. Settle.

Extract of a Letter from a merchant in New York, to Wm. Kelly, of London, dated 5^th Nov^r, 1773:

"The introduction of the East India Company's tea is violently opposed here, by a set of men who shamefully live by monopolizing tea in the smuggling way."

Extract of a Letter from Abraham Lott, Esq^r., of New York, to Wm. Kelly,[40] of London, dated New York, 5^th Nov^r., 1773, & received with the above mentioned Extract of Mr. Kelly, 22^d Dec^r., 1773:

"Herewith you will receive several papers relating to the importation of the India Com^y's tea. If it comes out free of a duty here on importation, things I believe may go quiet enough, tho' you will observe much is said against it even on that supposition. But if it should be subject to a duty here, I am much in doubt whether it will be safe, as almost every body in that case speaks against the admission of it, so that, altho' I am well assured that the Governor will not suffer the laws to be trampled on, yet there will be no such thing as selling it, as the people would rather buy so much poison, than the tea with the duty thereon, calculated (they say) to enslave them and their posterity, and therefore are determined not to take what they call the nauseous draft. A little time will determine how matters will terminate, that is, if the tea comes out. If it does, I hope it may come free of duty, as by that means much trouble and anxiety will be saved by the agents. I do assure you they have all been very uneasy, tho' at the same time determined to do their duty, but in the most prudent & quiet manner. It is now two o'clock, P.M., when I received the paper signed Cassius, in which you will find Mr. L—— R——de handsomely complimented, and yourself severely handled, on a supposition that you should have spoken words to the import, as asserted in the paper. Mr. R——e's name is not mentioned, but there is no doubt but he is the person alluded to, as upon the arrival of the London ships, who refused to bring the tea. It was currently reported that he had wrote his partner nearly in the same words as mentioned in the paper. You are the best judge of the truth of the assertion, but whether true or not, his conduct is ungenerous and mean. If the paper speaks truth, that he was offered part of the consignment of tea, he must be a man of great influence to have so great an offer made him, when so many other people of weight were applying for it and could not obtain it."

* * * * *

From Mr. Fred^k Pigou, Jun^r.


Please to acquaint the Com^tee of Warehouses of the Hon'ble the East India Company, that from the advices I have received from Philadelphia, I should be of opinion the tea sent to that place will, if landed, meet with much difficulty in being disposed of.

At New York, I am of opinion it will meet with less opposition, and may possibly be sold in that city. It would have been fortunate if the New York vessel could have arrived as soon or before the Philadelphia ship.

I am, sir, your most hum. serv^t FRED'K PIGOU, Jun^r.

Mark Lane, 21st Dec^r., 1773. To Mr. Settle.


Letter from Mr. Geo. Browne.


The advice I have from my brother at Philadelphia, relative to the Com^y's consignment of tea, is, that it was very doubtful how it would be received there, the measure being looked upon in an unfavorable view in general. He had only just received an account (from another hand) of his being nominated one of the agents, and refers me to the public prints for an account of the resolutions entered into by the people in opposition to it. I am, sir,

Your most obedi^t ser^t GEO. BROWNE.

Mr. Settle.

* * * * *

From Mr. Sam^l Wharton.


I understand that Mr. Walpole, of Lincolns Inn Fields, had received some advices from my brother, respecting the teas sent to Philadelphia. I applied to him for them, and he requested that I would send them to you, with what intelligence I had myself received. I am, sir,

Your very hum. serv^t SAMUEL WHARTON.

Argyle Street, Decem^r 23, 1773. Mr. Settle.

Extract of a Letter from Thomas Wharton,[41] Esq^r. of Philadelphia, dated Oct. 5, 1773, to Sam^l Wharton, in London:

"I have closely attended to the course of your arguments, and think they are of great weight, but you know it is impossible always to form a true judgment from what real motives an opposition springs, as the smugglers and London importers may both declare that this duty is stamping the Americans with the badge of slavery, and notwithstanding the Directors of the East India Company have a just right to send their teas where they think proper, yet the Americans allege they may and ought to refuse to purchase and use it.

"A little time after the ship's arrival we shall know what is to be done, and I expect we shall before that time have a conference with the agents from New York, which I proposed, that our conduct might be uniform, and as much as possible answer the end of our appointment."

Extracts of two Letters from Tho^s. Warton, Esq^r., of Philadelphia, dated Oct. 5 and Oct. 30, 1773, to the Hon'ble Tho^s. Walpole, of London:

"About a week before the arrival of the September mail, a letter reached this city, informing us that particular persons (tho' not all of them the proper ones) were nominated agents for the East India Directors. This gave the inhabitants a knowledge of the intention of the Directors, and some persons immediately declared, that as the duty was still retained, that, tho' small, yet it as implicitly fixed the power and established the badge of slavery, as if it had been greater. The same sentiments, I am told, are expressed in letters from New York. At present, therefore, it is impossible to say what measures the people will take on this occasion, but I should expect they will not hinder the tea being landed, if they insist on its not being sold, till the duty is taken off by Act of Parliament, or the East India Directors satisfy the Commissioners of the Customs in London. For, notwithstanding, it may justly be urged that the Directors of the East India Comp^y have a right to export their teas to North America, yet, as it is said, the inhabitants have also a right of judgment respecting the purchase and consumption. I should expect, that if the opposition takes place, it will rest with their adherence to an engagement of this kind.

"I can have no doubt that the India Com^y would find their sales lucrative, and that an extension of trade would certainly take place, by comprehending the articles of pepper, spices, and silks in their exports; great quantities of the two first articles have certainly been introduced in the Continent from Holland and thro' the West Indies, and therefore it is that I apprehend the London merchants are mistaken when they say they already ship as much as the Continent can consume, for through them are imported only such quantities of spices, &c., as the merchant here can vend, after the run goods are sold, they being imported cheaper than those from England, are naturally first sold. But if the East India Company should think proper to extend their trade, I cannot doubt it would in a great measure put a stop to the importation from Holland and the Dutch Islands, and large sums would annually pass from America to London for those commodities. But perhaps little more should be said until it is known in what manner our fellow countrymen shall view this scheme of trade."

"Philadelphia, Oct. 30, 1773.

"I shall endeavor to communicate a more full state of the sentiments of my fellow citizens than I could in my last letter. I could then only conjecture what might be the result of their judgments respecting the Hon'ble the Directors of the East I. Com^y sending their teas to this Continent. A communication of sentiments, taking place between the New Yorkers & the Philadelphians, soon produced a number of pieces in the public prints and otherwise, most absolutely asserting the rights of the Americans, and denying the power of Parliament respecting the internal taxation of the Colonies, which led into many comparisons, endeavoring to shew that the agency of the tea was equally odious & dangerous as the execution of the Stamp Act would have been. I may say with great truth, that I do not believe one man in a hundred was to be met with who approved of the sending the tea, while the duty was to be paid here. Yet a great number of people acknowledged the right of the East India Directors to export their teas to America, and declared that nothing less than a confirmed belief that the admitting this mode of taxation would render the assemblies of the people mere cyphers, could have induced them to proceed in the manner they have done; for when it was mentioned to them that by refusing to admit the tea to be landed, they did as much deprive the India Company of the natural rights of English merchants, as the subjecting us to the payment of duty possibly could affect us, they replyed that the Act of Parliament hindered the tea from being landed until the duty was first paid or secured, and consequently as the Directors knew this, and the opposition heretofore given by the Americans, they must take what followed.

"You will perceive by the resolution formed and entered into on the 18^th, into what a situation the agents were driven, there being no possibility of persuading the people to wait till we knew the real state of facts. The meeting at the State House consisted, (it is said) of 6 or 700, and be assured, they were as respectable a body of inhabitants as has been together on any occasion; many of the first rank. The whole of their proceedings were conducted with the greatest decency and firmness, and without one dissenting voice. After the resolution had passed, they appointed a Com^tee of 12 persons, who, on the 18^th inst., about 12 o'clock, called on James and Drinker, and then came down to my house, where they conducted themselves with great decency, read the resolution, and informed me they were appointed by their fellow citizens to demand of Tho^s. & Isaac Wharton, whether we would execute the trust if the duty was to be paid here? We told them it involved us in a difficulty which we could not solve, because we had not received the least intimation from the Directors, and therefore it was impossible to know the exact state the tea was to be shipped in, but that we would, on being acquainted with the situation under which it came, openly communicate the same, and that we would do nothing to injure the property of the India Com^y or enslave America. This answer they received with great satisfaction, and in the evening they reported to a unanimous body of citizens the answers they had received, who gave Tho^s. and Isaac Wharton very evident marks of their approbation for the candid answer they gave.

"Should the tea be sent subject to the payment of the duty, I am satisfied it will not be suffered to be landed, and that it must return to London, (unless the India Directors have in such case directed the captain where to proceed with it,) which intimation may be in time to secure the property by insurance should they incline."

* * * * *

Copies of the above advices were, by order of the Com^tee of Warehouses, sent to Lord Dartmouth in the manner directed by their minute of the ——



Boston, New England, 17^th Nov^r., 1773.


After a long detention in the English channel, and a pretty long passage, I arrived here this morning from England, and there being a vessel to sail for London within a few hours, gives me an opportunity of writing you a few lines on the subject of the consignment of tea, made to our house by the Hon'ble East India Company, in which I had your friendly assistance, and of which I shall always retain a grateful sense.

I find that this measure is an unpopular one, and before my arrival some measures have been taken to oblige my friends to make a resignation of the trust, which they have not thought fit to comply with. They have wrote to our friend, Mr. Abraham Dupuis, very particularly, respecting the measures that have been adopted, and to that account I must beg leave to refer you, as I have not time to repeat it by this opportunity, but I shall keep the Company fully advised in future.

I fully see that we shall meet with difficulty in executing this trust, but our utmost endeavors shall be exerted to fulfill the orders we may receive from the Company.

I am, very respectfully sir, your most obliged h'ble serv^t JON^A CLARKE. Edward Wheler, Esq^r.

Received from the Deputy Chairman, 5^th Jan^ry, 1774.



Mr. Wheler, chairman of the East India Company, having received a letter from Jonathan Clarke, Esq^r., dated Boston, 17^th November last, wherein he begs leave to refer him to you for the measures that have been adopted at Boston, relative to the Company's exportation of tea to that Colony, I am directed by the chairman to desire you would be pleased to communicate to him the advices you have received from Messrs. Clarke & Sons, for the information of the Court of Directors of the East India Company, which will be a favor conferred on him. I am, sir,

Your most obd^t serv^t, WM. SETTLE.

East India House, 5^th Jan^y, 1774. Abraham Dupuis, Esq^r., Gracechurch Street.

* * * * *


Referred to in Mr. Clarke's Letter to the chairman, of the 17th Nov^r, 1773.

Boston, Nov^r., 1773.



We now embrace the first leisure we have, to give you an account of the proceedings of some of the inhabitants of this town, relative to the expected importation of teas into this port from the Hon'ble East India Company. As soon as it was known here that the Company had determined on this measure, and that certain gentlemen of this town were fixed upon as factors, there appeared a dissatisfaction in many persons. But at first there did not appear any resentment against the supposed factors, nor was there, as far as we ever heard, any mention made of a design to bring them under any obligations not to execute their trust, but the general voice among the opposers of the Company's plan was, that the teas must not be landed, or, if landed, not sold. About three or four weeks ago, a printed anonymous address to the Company's factors was brought to this place by the post, either from New York or Philadelphia, but whether it was fabricated at either of those places, or this, we cannot determine. The design of it was, to represent a number of gentlemen, who cannot justly be considered in any other light than commercial factors, as Crown officers, and they, in the said paper, are expressly put on the same footing with the late stamp officers, doubtless with a design to render them odious to the people, and much is said in it to dissuade or intimidate them from executing their expected trust. Soon after this, a second anonymous address, but much more inflammatory, appeared here in one of the newspapers from New York. Both these were printed in one or more of the newspapers of this town, and several other pieces were also published here, to rouse the people to an opposition to the Company's design, and their rage against us and the other gentlemen, factors for the Company in this place. As things were then circumstanced in this place, we judged it might tend to undeceive many persons that were misled, to publish some observations on the Company's plan, to answer the objections that were made against it, and to point out some of the beneficial consequences attending the execution of it. Accordingly we, by the assistance of a friend, got printed in Messrs. Fleet's Evening Post, of the 24^th October, a piece signed Z[42], in which this affair is canvassed with as much freedom as the temper of the times would bear, and altho' this was penned in haste, and under the restriction of the afore-hinted shackle, we have the satisfaction to find, that in the opinion of the most judicious amongst us here, every objection that has been started against the Company's plan is fully answered, and altho' this publishment does not seem to have had its designed effect as yet, it is to be hoped, when the people's temper is become more cool, that the aforesaid piece, with what has since, and may hereafter be published on this subject, may not entirely fail of the design proposed.

Besides these paper skirmishes, we would inform you that we were told that there were about two or three weeks since, several nightly meetings, held in various parts of the town, of a large number of persons, to consult and conclude on some method to prevent the execution of the Company's plan, but what was fixed at these meetings we could not learn. But we were not lost in this uncertainty long, for in the morning of the 2^nd instant, about one o'clock, we were roused out of our sleep by a violent knocking at the door of our house, and on looking out of the window we saw (for the moon shone very bright) two men in the courtyard. One of them said he had brought us a letter from the country. A servant took the letter of him at the door, the contents of which were as follows:

"Boston, 1st Nov., 1773.

Richard Clarke & Son:

The Freemen of this Province understand, from good authority, that there is a quantity of tea consigned to your house by the East India Company, which is destructive to the happiness of every well-wisher to his country. It is therefore expected that you personally appear at Liberty Tree, on Wednesday next, at twelve o'clock at noon day, to make a public resignation of your commission, agreeable to a notification of this day for that purpose.

Fail not upon your peril.


Two letters of the same tenor were sent in the same manner to the other factors. On going abroad we found a number of printed notifications posted up in various parts of the town, of which the following is a copy:

Previous Part     1  2  3  4  5  6     Next Part
Home - Random Browse