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Dukesf’d. 27th Dec 1776 Messrs Laidley & White Refiners Sirs I have ordered Robt. Nichol be be [sic] instructed by you as a Refiner for one Yr at a small wage – but if you think any hardship in teaching him as above, let me know & I shall endeavour to get you one that’s master of his Business which I have not the least doubt of getting as our Refinery is now so well established & am Yrs &c IH:Jr
This must refer to the Dukesfield refinery as Hunter was not responsible for the Blaydon refinery. A John Laidler was at Steel Hall (about a mile from Dukesfield in the 1770s) and a Thomas White lived at Steel at the same time, also close to the mill. The hamlet of Steel was home to several smelters. John Laidler’s name is used here.