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Colonial and State Records of North Carolina
Letter from William Blount to Henry Toomer
Blount, William, 1749-1800
May 20, 1787
Volume 20, Pages 702-703

(From Executive Letter Book.)

New York, May 20th, 1787.


Inclosed is a bill of lading for seven Chests of the best Hyson Tea, just from India, Shipped by Constable, Rucker & Co., by my order on account of the State of North Carolina, on Board the Ship Morris, Captain Linnet, to your address. You will please sell it on account of the State (unless otherwise directed by the Governor whom you will please advise of its arrival) for the most obtainable by the Box or pound as you shall judge most beneficial for the State, so as to have the money in hand therefor at the sitting of the next General Assembly. You need not ask the Governor for further Orders but if he gives you any you are to obey them; if you should retail it I suppose it will Command 24d to 30d paper Money per lb., and less than 24d you are not to take without further orders from the Governor or myself, & this price I suppose may be obtained for it by the Chest at a Credit till November; but in case of a sale on a Credit sell only to such persons as the fullest dependence may be had, or the Governor’s warrants on the Treasury will answer in payment as well as money. As these Teas are the property of the State I suppose they will not be subject to the actual payment of any State duty. The Money with which these Teas were purchased was here Raised by the sale of some deerskins belonging to that State, as the enclosed Accounts of Mr. Ramsey will show, and these skins were received in Georgia on account of the State of North Carolina for goods by me there sold belonging to the State. If a Certificate is sent here from the Collector from the Impost of these Teas having been landed in North Carolina, and they have paid or are subject there to the payment of such duties as are imposed by the State, the duty here will be refunded, therefore Sir, I request you to procure such Certificate and a Duplicate thereof, and send them to this place

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by the first Conveyance to my friend Mr. John Ramsey, Mercht. of this place; if these Certificates can’t be obtained unless the duty is actually paid in that case you must actually pay it for it is better with you than here & it is of very little consequence whether it is actually paid or not with you, for the State only pays to herself in that case. For this trouble you will charge your usual Merchantile Commission. Observe that you open your Account with the State & not with me for I have no other Interest in the Transaction, except, that as it has been under Guardiance & direction I wish it may be very beneficial to the State. Will you please forward the Governor a Copy of this Letter and inform him of the arrival of the Tea as soon as an Opportunity offers after it reaches your hands, and inform him of the value of it with you and your prospects of sale.

I am your most Obedt. Servt.,
To Henry Toomer, Esq.,