Letter – Martin Morrison to Diana Beaumont – 20 Oct 1820

Document Type: Letter
Date: 20 Oct 1820
Correspondent: Martin Morrison
Recipient: Diana Beaumont
Archive Source: NRO 672 E 1E 6
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      Newcastle 20 October 1820

Mrs Beaumont Bretton Hall.

I yesterday went to Durham, according to appointment to meet Mr Phillpotts. I found him greatly displeased and hurt, at a Report which had circulated in Weardale last week that He had refused to accept £3000 a year for his Tythe Ore and which had been represented to him of having such an effect upon the workmens minds as to render his appearance at Stanhope a step of personal danger and that in consequence he had been deterred going as he intended, to perform his duty there on Sunday. – I assured him that what he told me was now only known to me for the first time and I expressed my belief that no Confidential Agent of Col B[eaumon]ts could or would allow himself even to hint at the sum proposed to be given for the Tythe Ore. That various Reports no doubt would be in continual circulation in the present uncertain state of things, nor was it to be wondered at, where the inhabitants were deeply interested in an event which so materially affected all their hopes of future comfort, - that of an Agreement between Colonel Beaumont and himself. – admitting the truth of all I said, He could not however look upon the Report in any other light, than a threat, and that the circumstance of the identical sum being mentioned, must have originated from a party concerned & with the view to produce intimidation but he could assure me, that no such effect would be produced in his mind as to abandon his right and that altho[ugh] He had not before refused the offer of £3000 He now declared that He would not accept that sum for his Tythe Ore. After repeated assurances that no such motives as he attributed to the Party Concerned, existed I endeavoured to draw his attention to the business of my visit, and I <even> found his estimation of the value of the Tythe Ore enormous. I explained to him the immense expenditure of dead work incurred, in perpetuating the Weardale Mines, showing him the amount. He then required the quantity of Ore produced, which under his repeated assurances of its being Confidential I exhibited for the Year 1817, 18 & 19. On which He observed if I would give him twenty minutes to make his Calculations, He would state the terms [struck out: upon which] he would agree to accept for his Tythe Ore. – I retired and returned at the time appointed. – He observed that having taken an average Of the pr[o]duce of the Mines for the three Years He would accept the value of 250 Tons of Lead annually, at a price to be Regulated by our Sales, or, a money Composition of £5000 a Year. – To such an exhorbitant demand, I told him, I could not reply, and seriously urged him to weigh in his own mind the consequences of persisting to require it. I have not time to save the post to detail all the views he took of the  quantity and value of his Tythe Ore, but He owned his opinion of the produce of the Mines was lessened by the Acc[oun]t I had exhibited. – He parted with an Understanding that He would put down in writing his Ultimatum & in doing so He would take the Evening to reconsider it and inform me by Letter in the morning. – The post has arrived, but no Letter Is come, and I write this in great haste, thinking you will be anxious to know what is passing. – 

      I am etc  etc	MM

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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