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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from James Armstrong to Thomas Burke
Armstrong, James, d. 1794
August 25, 1782
Volume 16, Pages 646-647


Camden, August 25th, 1782.

Dear Sir:

I was at Camp some time ago but did not see Judge Burke. He then was in George Town with a Command of Militia. General McIntosh and some other Gentlemen, with whom I was in company, knows the place purchased for you and allows it to be very Valuable, but says that the Annual interest to be paid for all Such property must in the end distress the Purchaser unless with a sufficient Force of Hands, they work such places until interest and principle are paid.

Colo. Kershaw’s brother is just come home from Georgia he says at the Public Sales of Negroes in that State where credit was given likely Field Slaves has sold for 200 Guineas and there is only between seventy and eighty to be sold in the whole state, upwards of three thousand being carried away at the evacuation of Savannah and it will be the same in this State. I heard the Governor and part of his Council acknowledge the impropriety of their premature Confiscation. It has answered little other purpose only to advertise the overseers on the plantations where Such Negroes were to send them into the Garrison to their Masters, and before that law passed the people who went into town and made application for their Negroes was never refused them. But since the Publication of the Law none has been suffered to come out; and it is agreed that for every Negro that the State gains by confiscation three will be lost.

I dwell the longer upon the affair of the Negroes as I conceive you must be interested in knowing upon what terms they are to be had, especially if you mean to live upon your New Purchase. This

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Minute by a Gentleman from Georgetown we learn that the British is most Certainly relanding their heavy Common Stores and Baggage; which they have been putting on board for Some weeks past. This must either be from orders which they have received, or from the appearance of a fleet that is seen off the Barr which the Whigs say is a French fleet.

I am Sir with my compliments to Mrs. Burke and your Daughter.

With much respect
Your very Humble servt.,