Letter – Jonathan Hilton to Francis Gregg – 24 Jan 1776

Document Type: Letter
Date: 24 Jan 1776
Correspondent: Jonathan Hilton
Recipient: Francis Gregg
Archive Source: AMHS H&H
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A Copy of a Letter sent Mr Gragg 				Alston 24th Jany 1776


      It would have given me the greatest Pleasure to have answered yours of the 5th Decr immediately but I was very desirous of having my Son along with me to Join in giving proper Answers to your remarks upon the arrival of your Letter the Pays in this Country were coming on which confined us some Time & after we got the Alston moor Pays made & other Necessary Business the several Bargains finished my son had a call to Farnacres on Account of his engagement with Greenwich Hospital which kept him till last week he wrote you the 14th Inst. which hope you have recd I now inclose you Answers to the remarks & if any thing therein contained requires explanation I shall most readily endeavour to do it as clearly as I am able.

      I also enclose you Copys of the Bargains let at Christmas which I dare say will Ansr every End as to the appearance of the Mine & the probability as you mention Mr Gilbert being to persue the several Accounts & having viewed the Works will from the Bargains be able to Judge how the Mines are going forward.

      It cannot Possibly be immagined that this Year can be any how proportioned to the last for Proffit because if any thing turn out quite agreeable to our expectation it will be a good way in the Year before any Particular advantage can take place and as to new Discoveries if we make any the Year will be farr advanced before proper convenience can be made so as to work them advantageously. I therefore Build very little hopes on this Year but hope the next will do better.

      You’ll see by the inclosed Account how the Mines have been since I was concerned for the present Earl of Carlisle. You desire me to transmitt you an Account once in every two Months how the Mines go on, I beg leave to mention to that it is & always has been the Custom of this Country to let the General Bargons every three Months Viz. at Michas Christmas Lady Day & Midsummer before which lettings a more exact examination of the several Workings is taken than at any other Time & the Mines are cleared of the Work more generally in order to give the Agent an opportunity of seeing every situation in  its own proper position as such take Liberty to recommend those 4 Times as the most proper for sending the generall report & I hope you will think it often enough because besides those general reports I shall most certainly upon any Material charge either for better or worse send you an Account thereof that upon the whole you’ll likely hear from me oftener in this way than in the way you desired but I submit that to your own consideration & shall be glad to hear from you whenever it is convenient.

      My Son made an Application at NewCastle for the Cash which he shall want to make Stanhope Pays which I beleive we will be enabled to procure but the Time is not yet fixed when we told Mr Gilbert that £2000 would be sufficient to compleat the Pays we fully expected that all the Lead which was then deliver’d would be sold & turned into Money but in that we were dissapointed & I have at Present upwards of £1500 worth of Lead lying at NewCastle & on Account of the Trade being very dull at Present we cannot sell it but at a very disadvantageous Price we shall there fore have Occasion for more Money than was then expected till this Lead can be sold my Son is going again for NewCastle & if he should find it Necessary to have our Order for Borrowing the Additional sum I hope upon hearing from him you’ll Please to send the Answer as soon  as you Conveniently can.

There is very little Alteration in the Works since Mr Gilbert was here only I think the West forefield at Greengill looks more Promising than it then did & I hope it will in Time flourish again. We meet with a good deal of Water in attempting to sink into the Limestone which Mr Gilbert recommended you’ll see by the Bargains that it is left to 8 Men but on Account of the Water we are obliged to put 4 more Men to them which will make it very expensive. I shall add no more at Present but you may expect to hear from me soon after we have made Stanhope Pay as may be.

      I am &ca Jonathan Hilton 

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The Dukesfield Smelters and Carriers Project aimed to celebrate and discover the heritage of the Dukesfield Arches & lead carriers' routes between Blaydon and the lead mines of Allendale and Weardale. A two year community project, it was led by the Friends of the North Pennines in partnership with Hexhamshire and Slaley Parish Councils and the active support of Allendale Estates. It was funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund and the generous support of other sponsors. Friends of the North Pennines: Charity No:1137467