Letter – Nicholas Walton to Peter Mulcaster – 10 Feb 1769

Document Type: Letter
Date: 10 Feb 1769
Correspondent: Nicholas Walton
Recipient: Peter Mulcaster
Archive Source: TNA ADM 66/96
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Mr. Mulcaster. 						Farnacres 10th February 1769

      I reced. yours with the Operation Papers but some mistakes appearing in those I send you I desire youll look them over and return them at any time convenient to you with such Alterations or Memorandums upon them as shall seem to you necessary.

      When you have time I wish you could consider the expence of Smelting and Refining at our Mill upon a Fodder of Lead and I will inclose you an Account of the several Articles with Blanks for you to fill up and in case of my having omitted any Article may add them. I desire this may not in the least interfere with any business that is going forward at the Mill.

      I have tryed the produce of Rampgill Ore last Smelted and find it to be as follows:

137 Bings 4 Cwt produced 548 Cwt wch. is equal to 5 bings 2 cwt 17 lb 2 oz 1- 536/543 drams pr Fodder and supposing 7 Bings deducted for Tails will leave 130 Bings 4 Cwt producing 548Cwt is equal to 5 bings 13 oz 1 156/548 drams.

      I would not have you engage with any Slag Hearth or any other Man who is not at Liberty as that would introduce nothing but Confusion, and therefore let us do as well as we can 'til some better Man can be had without interfering with own Neighbours.

      From what I have heard, I doubt we shall not gain by Washing Greengill Ore, however, make a Tryal till you are Satisfied, & follow that Method which is seen to be best.

      The Lead Mill Pay will be on the 12th day of April & we shall be with you some days before (I believe the 29th & 30th of March) to assist you in getting the Account to ready. When you can come here without inconvenience to the Work or yourself I shall always be glad to see you and am Your real Friend and Servant.

              Nichos. Walton Jr.


      When you have Smelted all the Slags produced from Rampgill Unwashed Ore I desire youll let me know how any pieces of Lead of 1Cwt each of you get from them & at the same time youll let me know how many Cwt of Lead was produced from the Rampgill Unwashed Ore and how much of the said Unwashed Ore there was Smelted and if you have the Thortergill Slags by themselves pray inform me how any Cwt of Lead they produce when you Smelt them.

      Dont let the Smelting Stop on any Account I would rather have you begin with Carrs Cowhill and Cowslitts Ore again than do that, but if you can go forward with Smelting all the Refineable Ore before you touch that I should like it best.

      I am sorry the Reducer does not make so good produce as he did but I hope you will find that breaking the Coals small will be of advantage and that those coals now used will be found to answer. 

      I would not have you to Wash too much of Greengill Ore before you make a Tryal of the Produce.

NOTE the following Papers included for Mr.Mulcaster

The operation rfom first Outset to 24th December 1768

Do from 24th Dceember 1768 to 29th January 1769

Stock of Ore, Lead & Slags at the Mill, 29th Do

Before you begin Smelting Unrefineable ore will it not be right to draw off the Hearths quite clean and begin them again with Slag Lead rather than leave good Refineable Lead in them. I only mention this &c as I am entirely Ignornat whether it will be of Service or not. I may very possibly be much out of the way in thinking it will be attended with advantage.

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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