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Yates to Samuel Martin, Sept. 20 1773

Virginia Fredsburg Septr. 20th 1773

Samuel Martin Esqr.
Dear Sir
To oblige & serve a very worthy industrious Man who has been in my service as skipper of a craft for 8 or 10 years past I take this liberty to request you will interest yourself so far in his behalf as get some of your correspondents in Dublin to have a careful inquiry made into a matter which although not so clear as on his account I coud wish it, yet it probably may in the end by your and your Friends kind assistance be means of helping him to provide for a numerous family---His name is Stafford Lightburne, and his story to me is that he is well convinced that he is intitled to a considerable Estate in Dublin as Heir at Law to his decd Father also named Stafford Lightburne who was sent out of Ireland about the year 1717 and sold as a servant in Potomack Virga. side by a capt. Stonehouse he being at that time 13 years of age by the Judgement of the Court of the County he was sold in, and the account that he invariably gave his son and others was as follows - That he was born in Staffordshire in England, son of Richard Lightburne & Ann his wife who had only one other child a girl named Deborah. That his Father was a Clergiman & moved to Dublin where he had a Church in or near Stephens Green, and dyed there intestate, that his Mother marryed again & soon after he was sent off as he always thought by the contrivance of his Father in Law - being then so young it is not to be supposed he coud know much of his Fathers affairs, but however, he remembered to have heard his Father say that he had one tenement which rented for Eighty Pounds per annm. & that he knew of others which he also had but knew not at what prices they were let---In the earlier pasrt of the said mans life he wrote sundry Letters to his Mother but never obtained any answer - but afterwards being marryed, unwilling to have his Family & quite unacquainted with and body in Ireland whom he coud with any probability engage to serve him & also having a competency to live on he neglected the matter entirely--I must confess that for my part on taking the whole story together I should think these tenements might be his Fathers stipend as Minister, but even then his being sent abroad as related woud make it appear as if something was to be gained by it - as an Incumbent of a Living in Dublin I apprehend there will not be much difficulty in tracing out the Revd. Richd. Lightburn & there will be a clew to canvas all the rest so that I need not add further than that I will with thanks pay you any expence incurred in making the proper inquiries into this matter which when done you will please to communicate to me at your first convenience & oblige I am
Your very obed. huble. servt.
Chs. Yates

[Note: See ads for runaways that Lightburn placed for Yates: Sam: Virginia Gazette (Purdie & Dixon), Williamsburg, January 31, 1777, and Manuel: Virginia Gazette (Purdie & Dixon), Williamsburg, November 19, 1772.]

Bibliographic Information

[Charles Yates Letterbook, p. 19. 1773-1783 The Harrison Institute and Small Special Collections Library, University of Virginia #3807 (micro M 570-P)]

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