Economic History of Virginia in the Seventeenth Century/Chapter 14

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All the different forms of property which were held by the Virginian planter in the seventeenth century have now been enumerated. They consisted, as has been seen, of land either inherited, purchased, or acquired by patent; of tobacco, Indian corn, and wheat; of horses, sheep, goats, hogs, and horned cattle; of agricultural implements, vehicles, and buildings; of white servants, both native and imported; of slaves born in the Colony or brought into it from Africa or the West Indies; of residences containing a large quantity of furniture, carpets, plate, and utensils; of clothing, both linen and woollen, coarse and fine; and lastly, of a great assortment of household supplies of foreign or domestic growth or manufacture. Fitzhugh described very accurately the condition of the planters, when he declared in a letter to his brother, towards the close of the century, that they were in possession of an abundance of everything except money, by which he meant coin. Where a very large proportion of the articles consumed or used by the family of the landowner were the products of his own soil, cultivated and gathered by his own laborers, there was but little need of a metallic medium of exchange as long as tobacco continued to have a value in the markets of the world so high as to induce shipowners and merchants to transport their goods to the very doors of the Virginians to procure it.[1]

The accumulation of individual wealth in the Colony previous to 1650 was comparatively small. Sir John Harvey stated in 1639, that Virginia at this time consisted of very poor men. The largest estate as yet acquired was that of Abraham Piersey,[2] who had enjoyed as Cape Merchant a position of exceptional advantage for building up a fortune, but it is quite probable that, unlike Sir George Yeardley, who left property to the amount of six thousand pounds sterling,[3] a considerable proportion had been earned in England before his connection with Virginia began. About the middle of the century, there had been sufficient accumulations by individual planters to justify the author of Leah and Rachel in saying that many good estates were now obtained by immigrants simply by marriage with women born in the country, who hail inherited their property from their parents, or from relations who were citizens of the Colony.[4] Lord Baltimore, speaking in 1667 of both Virginia and Maryland, said that within the same length of time, it was easier for persons residing in either to gain fortunes than it would have been in the mother country.[5]

It is very difficult, if not impossible, to obtain a perfectly accurate idea of the value of the estates owned by the planters of Virginia in the seventeenth century. Only an approximate notion can be formed. As the volume of the personal property is set forth in the innumerable inventories preserved in the county records, this portion of the fortunes of that age is easily estimated. The real difficulty lies in our inability to obtain full information as to the extent of the landed interest held by individual planters, as this part of their estates was not like personalty listed for valuation.

It would be interesting to know what was the average amount of personal property brought over to Virginia by the great body of that class of settlers who immediately upon their arrival in the Colony took an independent position in the community in point of fortune. Reference has already been made to the articles of a varied character which Evelyn, Williams, and Bullock strongly recommended that every English emigrant who was in possession of means and proposed to open a plantation should carry over with him.[6] It is highly probable that the bulk of the assortments suggested by these writers were brought over by every man who entered Virginia with the intention of acquiring an interest more or less extensive in its soil. The agent who was in correspondence with Sir Edward Verney in 1634, respecting the course to be pursued on the removal of Sir Edward’s son to the Colony, where he designed to establish himself as a planter, stated that the cost entailed in the purchase of goods and in the transportation of the required number of servants would come to fifty-six pounds sterling.[7] This sum did not include the outlay in buying land. In 1690, Fitzhugh, writing to Oliver Luke in England, who had expressed an intention of placing his son in Virginia, advised him to deposit two hundred pounds sterling in the hands of a trustworthy merchant in London engaged in trade with the Colony, with instructions to buy a suitable plantation there. At the same time, an additional two hundred pounds sterling were to be used in purchasing slaves from the Royal African Company. All the live stock needed by young Luke could be obtained in Virginia.[8]

There are many evidences that a large number of the immigrants were sprung from English families of substance.[9] The instance of John Boys could not have been exceptional; just before he set out for the Colony in 1650, he drew up his will, dividing his valuable possessions among sixteen heirs.[10] There were many persons in Virginia who owned an interest in property in England.[11] In 1650, John Catlett and John Clayton of Gloucester County were in the enjoyment of estates in Kent. A few years later, John Clark of York County devised two houses which he owned in Essex, in one of which his father had long resided.[12] John Pen of Rappahannock, in 1676, willed landed property in England.[13] In 1688, John Smythe of York ordered the sale of a farm which he possessed in the vicinity of Walton, with the view of investing the proceeds in a Virginian plantation.[14] Miles Cary owned two houses in Bristol.[15] John Page had an interest for a term of seven years in five tenements situated in the city of Westminster. In 1692, Benjamin Read devised landed property which he possessed in England.[16] Nicholas Spencer left a valuable estate in Bedfordshire, Huntingdonshire, and Essex.[17] The inventories belonging to the period preceding 1650, upon which we have to rely to obtain a just conception of the size of the personal holdings in Virginia in that age, were comparatively few in number. The records of York alone throw any real light upon the point in inquiry. The largest estate in this county appraised by order of court previous to the middle of the century was that of William Stafford, which amounted to 30,681 pounds of tobacco in value, which, at the rate of two pence a pound,[18] was equal to £250, or in purchasing power perhaps to about six thousand dollars at the present day. The personal estate of Thomas Deacon follows next in size at an appraisement of 19,343 pounds of tobacco, or £161. The personal estate of Francis Carter was inventoried at 13,728 pounds of tobacco, or about twenty-seven thousand pence.[19]

Passing to the period that followed the middle of the century, and still confining our attention to York, it is found that in the interval between 1657 and 1662, the largest personal estate appraised by order of court was that of Colonel Thomas Ludlow in 1659. It was valued at 118,598 pounds of tobacco, which at the rate of two pence a pound was equal to £988, or in purchasing power perhaps to about twenty-five thousand dollars in American currency. He owned in the form of sums due to him as debts, £449. The personal estate of Francis Wheeler, consisting principally of tobacco due him, was appraised at £1123 13s. 4d., from which a deduction of £379 10s. is to be made for his own obligations.[20] The remaining personal estates inventoried in York during the same interval in no case exceeded 1500, and only in few instances rose as high as £140.[21] In the course of the eight years between 1664 and 1672, the largest personal estate appraised was that of John Hubbard; it was valued at £722, independently of a large amount due him in coin and tobacco.[22] The estates following next in point of size were those of Mathew Hubbard, Richard Holt, and James Moore. The personalty of neither exceeded £200. In the interval between 1672 and 1690, the largest personal estate brought before court was that of James Vaulx, which was valued at 1612, equal in purchasing power perhaps to about fourteen thousand five hundred dollars. This did not include the debts due him. The personalty of Jonathan Newell was appraised at £554; in addition, there was a very large sum due him in tobacco. The personal estate of Edward Phelps was valued at £455; of Mrs. Elizabeth Bushrod, at £355; of Robert Cobbs, at £235;[23] and of Francis Mathews, at £220.[24] The appraisement of the personalty of Major James Goodwyn amounted to £542, and of Mrs. Rowland Jones to £440.[25] The largest personal estates inventoried in York subsequent to 1690 were those of Mrs. Elizabeth Digges and Nathaniel Bacon, Sr. The first was valued at £1102; the second at £925, exclusive of live stock.[26] Passing to the personal estates appraised by order of court in Rappahannock, it is found that the records of that county, which are unusually voluminous, show very few that were notable in size. The three largest were those of William Travers, George Jones, and William Fauntleroy. The personalty of Travers amounted to 285,861 pounds of tobacco, or about £2382, a sum perhaps equal in purchasing power to fifty thousand dollars in American currency; the personalty of George Jones, to 108,308 pounds of tobacco; and of William Fauntleroy, to 30,828 pounds of the same commodity. Valuing a pound at two pence, these latter quantities represented all appraisement of £902 and £252 respectively.[27]

The most important personal estates in Lower Norfolk county in the course of the interval between 1650 and 1700 were those of Cornelius Lloyd, valued at 131,041 pounds of tobacco; of Henry Woodhouse, at 64,034 pounds; of William Moseley, at 69,270 pounds; of Adam Reeling, at 102,222 pounds; of John Okeham, at 27,984 pounds; of John Sibsey, at 68,313 pounds; of Lawrence Phillips, at 81,371 pounds; of Robert Hodges, at five hundred and ten pounds sterling; of William Porteus, at six hundred and sixty-six pounds sterling; of Lewis Conner, at five hundred and sixty-seven pounds sterling; and of John Madden, at two hundred and eighteen pounds sterling.[28]

In the interval between 1690 and 1700, the largest amount of personal property inventoried in Elizabeth City County in a single case was that of William Marshall. It was valued at £282. The personalty of Jacob Walker was appraised at £176.[29] One of the most important personal estates which came before court in Lancaster County in the same interval was that of John Carter, Sr., which was valued at £2250.[30] The personal estate of Robert Beckingham of the same county was appraised at 342,558 pounds of tobacco, or £2852, which represented perhaps as much as eighty thousand dollars in our American currency.[31] Beckingham was a merchant, and his whole property probably consisted of personalty. Smaller estates in Lancaster and Westmoreland to which reference may be made were those of David Myles, £320;[32] of John Washington, £377;[33] and of John Pritchard, £476. In addition, the personalty of the latter included in the form of debts due him £30 and 101,307 pounds of tobacco.[34]

The largest personalty appraised in Middlesex County by order of court was that of Robert Beverley;[35] it consisted of property amounting in value to £1,531 4s. 10d. To this sum, there are to be added the debts due him in the form of tobacco, 331,469 pounds, and in the form of metallic money, £801. This would mean that Beverley was in the possession of a personal estate that would be equivalent to £5000 at least, or in modern figures perhaps to about one hundred and twenty-five thousand dollars, rating tobacco at two pence a pound.[36] The personal estate of Corbin Griffin was valued at £1131, and that of Robert Dudley at £548.[37]

The personal estates appraised in Henrico previous to the close of the century were comparatively small. The personalty owned by Francis Eppes, who combined the trade of a local merchant with the business of planting, was probably as large in volume as that of any citizen in this county; independently of the value of the contents of his store, which at the least added as much again, it amounted to £302.[38] The personalty of Thomas Osborne was inventoried at £208;[39] of William Glover, at 23,500 pounds of tobacco;[40] and of John Davis, at 32,435 pounds of the same commodity.[41]

It will be seen from the figures which have been given for the personal estates of the leading planters and merchants in half a dozen of the wealthiest counties, that the average accumulation in this species of property was very important for that age and for a newly settled country. In a few cases, the accumulation was extraordinary. Unfortunately, the records of some of the oldest counties, such, for instance, as those of Charles City and Warwick, have been destroyed, which prevents us from obtaining any information as to the personal estates of planters like the elder William Byrd.

The largest proportion of the property held by citizens of Virginia in the seventeenth century was in the form of land. What was the extent of the area of soil owned by the leading planters? No accurate answer can be given to this question, because it is impossible to say how much each one had inherited or acquired by purchase. The land patent books afford us the only clear light as to the real estate in the possession of individual colonists. Among the most important patentees in the early part of the century were George Menefie and Samuel Mathews.[42] Menefie obtained grants for eight thousand four hundred and sixty acres, and Mathews for about nine thousand; each one of these planters was probably in possession of about one-third more landed property acquired by purchase or mortgage. John Carter, father and son, of Lancaster, sued out patents to eighteen thousand five hundred and seventy acres; Nathaniel Bacon, Sr., to five thousand more or less; John Page, to seven thousand; Richard Lee, to twelve thousand; William Byrd, to fifteen thousand;[43] and finally Robert Beverley, to thirty-seven thousand. The names of a dozen additional colonists of almost equal prominence might be given who had acquired as great an area of soil by public grants, but the instances which have been mentioned are typical of their class.[44] It is probably not going too far to say that the average size of the landed property held by the members of this class was at least five thousand acres.

What was the value of an acre in Virginia in the seventeenth century? The basis which we have for an answer to this question is very insufficient. The records of York, between 1633 and 1700, have preserved forty-seven instances in which tracts of land in that county aggregating 3664 acres were sold, not for tobacco, the price of which was fluctuating, but for money sterling. The average value of an acre in these forty tracts was slightly in excess of half a pound sterling, the value of the whole being £3134. In Rappahannock, twenty-one tracts covering an area of 11,519 acres brought when sold £1604, or about one-seventh of a pound sterling an acre. In Elizabeth City, twelve tracts aggregating 2094 acres brought £431, or about one-quarter of a pound sterling an acre. In Henrico, twenty-five tracts aggregating 6734 acres brought £632, or about one-tenth of a pound sterling. It is not surprising to find that land in the older counties, like York and Elizabeth City, commanded a higher price than in the more newly settled communities of Rappahannock and Henrico. It is probable from the figures given that one-fifth of a pound, or four shillings, in that age perhaps equal in purchasing power to five dollars in our modern currency, represented the average; value of an acre on a plantation under cultivation.[45] It must be remembered that the estates of the seventeenth century were for the most part confined to the lowlands adjacent to the streams, which consisted of the most fertile loam. Reduce the four shillings to two in order to be very moderate and apply this standard of value to the real estate owned by Robert Beverley, and it is found that he held landed property to the value of £3700, which at modern rates would perhaps be equivalent to about £18,500 or ninety-two thousand five hundred dollars. To be still more moderate, reduce these figures one-half and it will be seen that the whole estate of Beverley, personal and real, amounted to one hundred and severity-six thousand dollars at the least. It would be reasonably safe to say that it was equal in value to two hundred thousand dollars, perhaps to two hundred and fifty thousand.[46] When it is recalled that Virginia had only been settled for eighty years when Beverley died, the statement of Lord Baltimore, that fortunes were more easily acquired in this age in that Colony than in England, seems entirely consistent with the fact. The whole property of William Byrd, who made great additions to an inheritance already large, was perhaps more valuable than the estate of Robert Beverley.[47] There were fifty, probably one hundred, planters in Virginia at the close of the century whose property equalled if it did not exceed fifty thousand dollars.

Robert Beverley, the historian, declared that such was the geniality of the climate of Virginia and such the fertility of its soil, that no one there was so sunk in poverty as to be compelled to secure a living by beggary.[48] This statement was doubtless perfectly accurate for the time at which it was made, but it was not entirely true of a period fifty years earlier, when the accumulation of property was not as yet so great. There are several recorded instances in that age in which special licenses were granted to mendicants. Such a license was obtained by John Claxson of York County, whose only property had been destroyed by fire, and who had been left with a family of five children without means of support. It is probable that this professional beggar was physically disabled. Similar cases were those of Thomas Bagwell of the Isle of Wight, and Richard New of James City, both, like that of Claxson, occurring as early as 1653.[49] A general complaint arose in 1672, that the neglect into which the vagrant laws had fallen had led to an increase in the number of vagabonds, and a statute was passed in consequence looking not only to the suppression of all idlers, but also to setting the poor to work.[50]

The records of levies disclose the frequency with which assessments were made for the benefit of persons who, from their physical disabilities, were incapable of earning a self-support. The sums of tobacco thus obtained were paid either to the paupers themselves directly, or to some one who had agreed to furnish the person who was the object of charity with food and clothing.[51] In 1668, the Assembly provided for the establishment in each county of a workhouse;[52] this act must have been enforced, for in 1678 the justices of the peace for Lower Norfolk County were indicted by the Grand Jury for neglecting to observe it.[53] The erection of workhouses was specially recommended to Lord Culpeper in the instructions which he received its Governor in 1679.[54] The form of relief generally requested by those who had become impoverished was exemption from the payment of county levies; this privilege was granted if the person seeking it was advanced in age,[55] or so lame or so blind as to be incapable of work,[56] or was burdened with a large family of children.[57]

There were in the course of the seventeenth century many instances in which valuable bequests were made for the benefit of the poor. In 1683, Robert Griggs of Lancaster left twenty thousand pounds of tobacco to the destitute of Christ Church Parish in that county, those who had large families to maintain to be preferred;[58] George Spencer of Lancaster, also, left by will ten thousand pounds of tobacco for the same purpose, the objects of his bounty, however, to be chosen from amongst the inhabitants of White Chapel Parish.[59] Corbin Griffin bequeathed fifteen pounds sterling to the poor of Richmond County, and ten pounds to persons in need in Middlesex.[60] John Linney devised his entire estate to the destitute inhabitants of Chiskiack in York. Richard Trotter, of the same county, left one thousand pounds of tobacco to the poor of Charles Parish, while Nathaniel Bacon, Sr., bequeathed twenty pounds sterling to the poor of Hampton Parish.[61] In 1698, Robert Scott willed the whole amount of the sums due him by different persons, in the form of tobacco or coin, to indigent persons in Isle of Wight County.[62] If reliance can be placed upon the statement of Beverley, there was little room for the exercise of charity by benevolent testators towards the close of the century; he declares that he was aware of one case in which a bequest for the benefit of the poor in one of the parishes in Virginia had remained untouched for nine years, because there was no one in the limits of the parish who came within the scope of the testators intention.[63]

  1. The condition of William Fitzhugh was in all its main particulars doubtless fairly representative of that of every planter in the Colony who was in possession of an equal degree of wealth. In a letter to Dr. Ralph Smith, April 22, 1686, he thus describes it: “The plantation where I now live contains one thousand acres at least, seven hundred acres of which are a rich thicket, the remainder good hearty plantable land without any waste either by marshes or great swamps, the commodiousuess, conveniency and pleasantness yourself knows, and upon it, there are three quarters well furnished with all necessary houses, grounds and fencing, together with a choice crew of negroes at each plantation, most of them this country born, the remainder as likely as most in Virginia, there being twenty-nine in all with stocks of cattle and hogs in each quarter. Upon the same land is my own dwelling house furnished with all accommodations for a comfortable and gentle living, with rooms in it, four of the best of them hung, nine of them plentifully furnished with all things necessary and convenient, and all houses for use furnished with brick chimneys, four good cellars, a dairy, dove cot, stable, barn, henhouse, kitchen and all other convenienceys, and all in a manner new, a large orchard of about 2500 apple trees, most grafted, well fenced with a locust fence, which is as durable as most brick walls, a garden a hundred foot square well paled in, a yard wherein is most of the foresaid necessary houses pallisadoed in with locust puncheons, which is as good as if it were walled in, and more lasting than any of our bricks, together with a good stock of cattle, hogs, horses, mares, sheep, necessary servants belonging to it for the supply and support thereof. About a mile and a half distant a good water grist mill, whose tole I find sufficient to find my own family with wheat and Indian corn for our necessities and occasions. Up the river in this county, three tracts of land more, one of them contains 21,990 acres, another 500 and one other 1000 acres, all good, convenient and commodious seats and which in a few years will yield a considerable annual income. A stock of tobacco with the crops and good debts lying out of about 250,000 lbs., besides sufficient of almost all sorts of goods to supply the familys and the quartets occasion for two or three years. Thus I have given you some particulars, which I thus deduce the yearly crops of corn and tobacco together with the surplusage of meat more than will serve the family’s use, will amount annually to 60,000 lbs. of tobacco, which at ten shillings per hundred weight is £300 per annum, and the negroes being all young and a considerable parcel of breeders, will keep the stock good forever. The stock of tobacco managed with an inland trade will yearly yield 60,000 lbs. of tobacco without hazard or risk, which will be both clear without charge of housekeeping or disbursements for servants’ clothing. The orchard in a few years will yield a large supply to plentiful housekeeping, or if better husbanded, yield at least 15,000 lbs. of tobacco annual income.” Letters of William Fitzhugh, April 22, 1686.
  2. British State Papers, Colonial, vol. X, No. 6; Sainsbury Abstracts for 1638-9, p. 58.
  3. British State Papers, Colonial, vol. V, No. 15; Sainsbury Abstracts for 1629, p. 196, Va. State Library. The executors of Yeardley declared that his estate was not worth one-half of this amount. According to John Pory, “the Governor here (that is Yeardley) who at his first coming, besides a great deal of worth in his person, brought only his sword with him, was at his late being in London, together with his lady, out of his mere fittings here, able to disburse very near three thousand pounds to furnish him with the voyage.” This letter of Pory will be found in part in Neill’s Virginia Carolorum, p. 17. Mathews valued the estate of Piersey at £491. See British State Papers, Colonial, vol. VIII, No. 5, II; Sainsbury Abstracts for 1633, p. 57, Va. State Library.
  4. Leah and Rachel, p. 17, Force’s Historical Tracts, vol. III.
  5. Archives of Maryland, Proceedings of Council, vol. 1667-1688, p. 16.
  6. See closing pages of Chapter V, Agricultural Development, 1625-1650.
  7. Verney Papers, Camden Society Publications.
  8. Letters of William Fitzhugh, Aug. 15, 1690.
  9. The instances which follow are given only as examples. They form a very insignificant proportion of the whole number that might be mentioned.
  10. New England Historical and Genealogical Register, April, 1889, p.153.
  11. There were, on the other hand, very many persons in England, besides merchants, who owned property in Virginia.
  12. Records of York County, vol. 1657-1662, p. 78, Va. State Library.
  13. Records of Rappahannock County, vol. 1664-1673, p. 95, Va. State Library.
  14. Records of York County, vol. 1687-1691, p. 100, Va. State Library.
  15. General Court Orders, Robinson Transcripts, p. 257.
  16. Records of York County, vol. 1690-1694, John Page, p. 132; Read, p. 257. James Blaise of Middlesex County owned an interest in a lease hold in Pall Mall, London. Original vol. 1698-1713, p. 49.
  17. New England Historical and Genealogical Register, January, 1891, p. 67.
  18. It is impossible to follow the exact fluctuations in the price of tobacco from year to year. It maintained an average rate ranging from one and a half to two pence a pound. Fitzhugh, in the account of his property given in the first note to the present chapter, places the value at the time at which he was writing at ten shillings a hundred-weight, or one and one fifth pence a pound. In the chapter on Agricultural Development, 1685-1700, I have given references which would seem to show that Fitzhugh’s estimate was extremely conservative. In the present chapter, I adopt two pence as the average price, as being within the highest limit possible.
  19. Records of York County, vol. 1638-1648, Stafford, p. 186; Deacon, p. 372; Carter, p. 376; Va. State Library.
  20. Ibid., vol. 1657-1662, Ludlow, p. 280; Wheeler, p. 300. It is difficult to discover the exact value of the Wheeler estate.
  21. Ibid., pp. 60, 64, 402.
  22. Ibid., vol. 1664-1672, p. 324.
  23. Records of York County, vol. 1675-1684, Vaulx, p. 390; Newell p. 142; Phelps, p. 175; Bushrod, p. 339; Va. State Library. The Phelps appraisement is exclusive of tobacco debts.
  24. Ibid., vol. 1671-1694, p. 130.
  25. Ibid., vol. 1687-1691, Goodwyn; p. 66; Jones, p. 381.
  26. Ibid., Digges, vol. 1690-1694, p. 217; Bacon, vol. 1694-1697, p. 281.
  27. Records of Rappahannock County, vol. 1677-1682, pp. 55, 74, 108. Large debts in tobacco were due both Jones and Fauntleroy
  28. Records of Lower Norfolk County, original vol. 1651-1656, Lloyd, f. p. 168; Sibsey, f. p. 55; Phillips, f. p. 148; original vol. 1686-1695, Woodhouse, f. p. 25; Porteus, f. p. 199; original vol. 1666-1675, Moseley, p. 107; Machen, p. 10; Okeham, p. 81; original vol. 1675-1686, Hodges, f. p. 117; original vol. 1695-1703, f. p. 137.
  29. Records of Elizabeth City County, vol. 1684-1699, Marshall, p. 300; Walker, p. 490.
  30. Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, vol. II, p. 236.
  31. Records of Lancaster County, original vol. 1674-1687, f. p. 36.
  32. Ibid., 1674-1689, orders Feb. 8, 1674.
  33. William and Mary College Quarterly, April, 1893, p. 145.
  34. Records of Lancaster County, original vol. 1690-1709, p. 16.
  35. See his inventory on file among records of Middlesex County.
  36. At ten shillings the hundred-weight of tobacco, or 1 1/5 pence a pound, the personalty of this estate would have been equal to £4537, or about $91,000 in modern values.
  37. Records of Middlesex County, original vol. 1698-1713, Griffin, p. 136; Dudley, p. 99.
  38. Records of Henrico County, vol. 1677-1692, p. 93, Va. State Library.
  39. Ibid., vol. 1688-1697, p. 350.
  40. Records of Henrico County, vol. 1688-1697, p.284, Va. State Library.
  41. Ibid., vol. 1677-1692, p. 283.
  42. Adam Thoroughgood, Richard Kemp, and William Claiborne were also patentees of large bodies of land, amounting in the aggregate to an enormous area.
  43. These different figures are merely approximate. It is not improbable that the planters named obtained by patents a larger area of soil than that stated in each case. These enumerations were made from entries in the land patent books.
  44. William Fitzhugh possessed over 50,000 acres. See his will, Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, vol. II, p. 276.
  45. That is, taking the cleared and uncleared land on such a plantation together. The average value of cleared land alone in good condition was perhaps twice as high as the figures given.
  46. I have reduced the value of the land held by Beverley to the very lowest print, because in a holding amounting to 37,000 acres, an enormous proportion must have been covered with forest, and was, therefore, of little practical worth beyond furnishing an almost boundless range for cattle.
  47. In the course of four years, William Byrd advanced out of his own pocket, £2955 9s. 8d. to cover deficiencies in the revenues of the Colony. At the time he was auditor-general of Virginia. See Palmer’s Calendar of Virginia State Papers, vol. I, p. 58. The early records of the county in which the inventory of Byrd’s personal estate was entered on record are not now in existence.
  48. Beverley’s History of Virginia, p. 223.
  49. Hening’s Statutes, vol. I, p. 381.
  50. Ibid., vol. II, p. 298.
  51. Records of Middlesex County, original vol. 1680-1694, Dec. 4, 1693, Jan. 4, 1685, Oct. 4, 1683.
  52. Hening’s Statutes, vol. II, p. 266. These workhouses were for children.
  53. Records of Lower Norfolk County, original vol. 1675-1680, f. p. 40.
  54. From this, it would appear that the workhouses which had been in existence had fallen into disuse,. It should, however, be remembered that the persons who drew up the Instructions to the Governors showed, in many cases, ignorance of the real condition of the Colony.
  55. Records of York County, vol. 1664-1672, p. 416, Va. State Library.
  56. Ibid., vol. 1687-1691, p. 50.
  57. Ibid., vol. 1657-1662, p. 391.
  58. Records of Lancaster County, original vol. 1674-1687, p. 91.
  59. Records of Lancaster County, original vol. 1690-1694, f. p. 11.
  60. Will on file among records of Middlesex County.
  61. Records of York County, vol. 1694-1702, Linney, p. 10, Trotter, p. 194; Bacon, vol. 1690-1694, p. 154, Va. State Library.
  62. Records of Lower Norfolk County, original vol. 1695-1703, p. 123.
  63. Beverley’s History of Virginia, p. 223.