Special Collections, John D. Rockefeller Jr. Library, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation

William Plume letter to Joseph North, 1780 November 4


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William Plume letter to Joseph North, 1780 November 4



William Plume, Williamsburg, Virginia, letter to Joseph North, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, November 4, 1780. Plume writes briefly about the war including mentions of Cornwallis and the Leslie raid of Virginia. Plume notes that Leslie has failed in his primary goal and is opposed by a large number of American regular and militia forces commanded by Brigadier General Muhlenberg. The rest of Plume's letter concerns business and personal matters. Plume requests North procure some knives for him and discusses the high price of horses in Virginia. He also urges North to come to Virginia where he will find plentiful oysters, rum, cider, beer etc.


Text Item Type Metadata


[Page 1]

No Letter by the Post [illegible] not even a drunken one. Very little
news has transpired this week - not the least communi
=cation between Portsmouth and us. Report says the Enemy
are throwing up works there and I suppose they are but
I also think they are very much disapointed in their ex=
=pectations with respect to the success of Cornwallis [crossed out, illegible]
which I believe is stopt in his career, reports from Carn.
are many and very favourable but as the most of them
want confirmation I shall defer the acct till next
Post - you may rest assured that affairs there have taken
a favourable turn. - Genl Mhulinberg is now at
Suffolk with a considerable Army of Regulars, &
Militia who turn out in great numbers and with
great cheefrullness. For my part I think my situation
a Safe one and I believe our friends as I at Hoods thinks
theirs the same - I heard from them the first of the
week nothing new Liddy [illegible] still very ill very little
hopes I believe of her recovery. Expect a long letter next
week and I trust an agreeable one - Have you got the
brass tops for Gilbert's Chair Wheels or have you got
him the Tea Kettle. I plainly perseve our correspon=
=dence on the decline but to do you justice you have
done more than I had a right to expect considering your
business - Come here and let us see your face dont be
afraid there's no body here that will hurt you lets see
what a figure you'll cut in your New Phaeton and
your taste in Horse flesh - don't be scared as price horses
here [crossed out, illegible] that are fine will fetch what you plan to ask

[Page 2]

consider that [illegible] sold for 10,000 lb J River Tobo.
Jo Davis complains of my Carryg Knives, I wish you cou'd
procure some of your Fathers if he has declined the
business or there is a Patrick McCloskey's Widdow
who had some good ones which she perhaps might
dispose of if you get them contrive them by land
as soon as possible - But seriously dont you intend this
way soon - Good Quarters here I can assure you - Oysters
excellent, good Wine & Jamaica, Cider, Beer &c &c &c &c
I have not heard of Purviance since I wrote you but sup=
pose his bounds is prescribed as they have taken Post at
Doctr Halls and the great Bridge.

you'll naturally imagine that imported goods have
taken a rise since the Invation and Tobo fallen.

I have not seen North or Nestor lately but conclude from
my own knowledge that a waggon load of dry goods
wou'd ansr well at Richmond as the waggon & Horses
might be sold at a good price but as I am not acquainted
with circumstances sufficient to recommend it leave it entirely
to your own consideration - I [crossed out, illegible] am of oppinion that the
British will not stay longer at Portsmouth than to take
all the Beef and Pork which that part of the Country af
fords for (as I said before) I think them disapointed in
first aim. Adieu I hope in my next to give you a good
account of Cornwallis and till then

I am Dear Jo
W: Plume

Williamsburgth. Nov 1780. -

Family well and sends peace and health to Poll.

[Page 3]

I have receive'd yours to Nestor of the 23rd.. Ult. Bets begs you w. not
forget the Search I wrote you for

[Page 4]

Joseph North Esqr.
Post Office
Philadelphia -


Original Format

Ink on paper


Plume, William, “William Plume letter to Joseph North, 1780 November 4,” Special Collections, John D. Rockefeller Jr. Library, Colonial Williamsburg Foundation, accessed May 22, 2024, https://cwfjdrlsc.omeka.net/items/show/517.