Letters – John Erasmus Blackett to Thomas Richard Beaumont – 17 Jan 1797

Document Type: Letters
Date: 17 Jan 1797
Correspondent: John Erasmus Blackett
Recipient: Thomas Richard Beaumont
Archive Source: NRO 672/E/1E/5
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Thos Rd Beaumont Esqr                                                               Newcastle    17th Jany 1797

M.P.       Portman square London

Dear Sir!	I wrote to you the 15th inst to which I refer you; I am since favored with your letter of the 14th inst with the Memorial of Ralph Coulthard & John Kidd two of the Workmen who from my own knowledge have been the leaders in every disturbance amongst the Workmen of Weardale Mines, some of their alligations I know to be false, & I look on them to be very mischievous idle fellows & I am satisfied that if you listen to them that you will be perpctually Plagued and your concern will suffer greatly;  At the time of the scarsity & dearness of corn (or rather before it took place) & before any complaints were made to me by the Miners; on Mr Emerson’s representation I sent a considerable quantity of Corn from time to time to Weardale which the Workmen were supplied with at a much Reduced price, at a time that the Miners  in other employs in Weardale had no such advantage;  As to the charge of the Agent having the advantage of employing some horses, I do not see the evil arising from it, in case the charge be fair and reasonable, it has always been allowed to the Agents who can do it at a lower rate than you, & in case they should be deprived of this advantage, it will be reasonable that their Salarys should be advanced;  As to Mr Emerson having received in one year for Horse hire £800 (or near that sum) it is a great falsity, as well as his having saved etc the many thousands, I have frequently informed you that Mr Emerson Senr has always been esteemed a very skilfull Miner & an honest Man I have found him to be such, his Son is sober, industrious and takes a great deal of pains to inform himself of the state of those Mines; he may have been rather pert & not behaved properly & been a little sharp with some of the Men for which I found fault with him, & he promised me to be more circumspect, & cautious for the future;  Algood & he have disagreed but since I discoursed with him on the occasion, he promised me that I should not hear any more complaints of the like for the future, & when I saw Mr Allgood at Hexham on Monday he did not take the least notice to me of any disagreement between them, he is I believe a quiet, sober Man, but he certainly is no judge of Mining, nor was ever looked on as such, nor a person capable of conducting that concern.  As to Potts he is a poor ignorant fellow & is only fit to look after the Washers & to deliver out the Gunpowder & Candles.  Ra. Coulthard & one of the same name at Chapel have always been at the bottom of all the mischief going forward in that quarter, the latter wrote & put up some very inflamatory papers last year at the Smith’s Shop; on making some enquiry I found that he was jealous of a relation of Emerson’s who interfered with him in business etc.  Mr Clarke the Curate of St John’s Chapel was appointed by Mr Hardinge contrary to the interest made in the time of Sir Thos Blackett for a Mr Harris (the nomination having been before in Sir Walter Blackett) & he has since taken the part of Coulthard & the rest of these people.  I told Mr Emerson not to employ these men untill they were sensible of their fault & promised to be quiet, & peaceable for the future; which I am doubtfull of their doing; I shall make further enquiry into these matters of complaint & if in the instances they have mentioned  or in any others? I shall find that Emerson is culpable, I assure you that I shall not screen him; at the same time I strongly recommend it to you, not to listen to their idle complaints which must give encouragement to these discontented fellows & weaken the authority of your Agents;  Emerson Senr has greatly improved the state of those Mines since they have been under his management & I believe him to be a very honest man; he is perfectly acquainted with the Mines of that country having been employed there all his time; his son has been brought up under him, he is sober, clever, & industrious, but is too warm & hasty, he has promised me to conduct himself with more propriety for the future I certainly have no other object for the taking of one part in preference to the other, but your Interest solely                                     I am etc   J.E.B

Excuse this hasty Scrawl

T Rd Beaumont Esqr

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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