Letter from Caspar Voght & Co. to the North Carolina General Assembly
Caspar Voght & Co.
Volume 16, Pages 920-924
TO HIS EXCELLENCY THE GOVERNOR AND THE HONORABLE MEMBERS OF THE GENERAL ASSEMBLY OF THE STATE OF NORTH CAROLINA IN COUNCIL ASSEMBLED.
[From Executive Letter Book.]
Thursday, Dec. 11th, 1783.
Persuaded that in your well known great goodness, you will condescend to excuse our presuming to address you in a Legislative
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body; we beg leave through your honorable Assembly, to assure the inhabitants of your State, that the deserved freedom and independence of North America so generally desired, and on the point of being universally acknowledged, change the system of every Merchant established before this Glorious Revolution; and open the best of prospects to both sides the Atlantic, prospects that assure multiplied and reciprocal advantages.
Excited more by a patriotic zeal than self interest, we also beg leave gentlemen, to remind you of the superior advantages peculiar to Germany; it being, in the opinion of very many great and learned men, who have no further interest in the Revolutions of trade, than a sincere wish for the good of the whole; of all the Countries in Europe, That which best promises mutual benefits from the conformity of its Climate with yours, having all the manufactures proper for your trade; particularly those of the first necessity.
Hamburgh, a neutral free and Imperial City, happily situated upon the River Elbe, about eighty English Miles from the Sea, is considered as the Key to all Germany, and the general Magazine of all the Northern productions, the harbour is continually full of Ships from almost every Nation, and so very safe deep and commodious that the greatest can anchor close to the Keys. It is also reckoned one of the richest and most flourishing Cities of Europe there being none which have such an universal trade in the products of America and both the Indies, nor so well stored with all the manufactures indispensably necessary to the North Americans; who were formerly obliged to receive them from England on very disadvantageous terms. In this town therefore, the American Merchant can be certain of meeting the best market both for buying and selling.
We take the liberty Gentlemen to offer you herewith a list of all the goods manufactured in Germany; as well as those we get at the first hand from Russia, Sweden and Denmark which here in Hamburgh we are able to sell as cheap, and often cheaper, than the merchants of those Countries themselves.
Mr. Peter Penet, Agent for Virginia, and partner of the late Mr. Emanuel Plearne, during his stay in Hambro’, informed us of all the merchandize, proper for your continent, & having in his travels through Germany, seen its different manufactures and observed their quality and moderate prices; he advised us to send somebody
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over to America, with the samples of those proper for the American market; and which the English formerly bought of us to send them.
It is in the before mentioned City of Hamburgh, that for a long series of years from father to son, our house has carried en a pretty extensive trade.
Encouraged by your known goodness, the advice of Mr. Penet, and the credit and experience our long established trade has procured us; we hereby humbly solicit the honor of your commands, for all such of the described Articles you may think necessary to purchase. We will make it our study to serve you with the strictest probity: so as to deserve a continuation of your favors & confidence.
We propose Gentlemen sending directly an able and intelligent person to deliver you the samples &c., & to receive your orders, in case you should be pleased to grant us any.
We have the honor to be, &c.,
CASPAR VOGHT & COMPY.
Hambro’ on the Elbe, 1783.
[From Executive Letter Book.]
Specification of Goods, more profitable to be drawn from Hamburg than from any other Market, vizt:
German cloth of every quality and colour, the ordinary sort of which in particular to be had there than any where else, and the Brabant cloth we have at first hand.
All sorts of woolens fit for linings, such as serges &c and a kind of bays near like the English but 20 p. ct. cheaper. Cotton stuffs of every kind, manufactured in Germany.
Flannels, Freezes, Woolen Stockings, Blankets & Caps.
Thread, Stockings, Shoes & Slippers.
All sorts of Ribbons.
Coarse Linens such as sack linen, from the coarsest to the lightest quality and Saxonian sail Cloth.
Westphalia Linens at various prices, vizt:
Osenburgs, Mecklenburgs, Ravensburgs and Hessens.
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Wahrendorfs, Bichelsfelds, Quadruples, or Brunswick.
Silesia Linens, vizt.
Bretagnes Imitating the French Linens under the same denomination, but are one third cheaper here.
Platillas royale Imitating the French Linens under the same denomination, but are one third cheaper here.
Cres a la morlaix Imitating the French Linens under the same denomination, but are one third cheaper here.
Rouens Imitating the French Linens under the same denomination, but are one third cheaper here.
Cholets Imitating the French Linens under the same denomination, but are one third cheaper here.
Estopiiles or Cambricks Imitating the French Linens under the same denomination, but are one third cheaper here.
Silesia Diaper of different quality and patterns.
Loom Dowlas Go in great quantities to London, from thence they are exported to America.
Slicked Dowlas Go in great quantities to London, from thence they are exported to America.
Rough ditto Go in great quantities to London, from thence they are exported to America.
Quadruple Tandems Go in great quantities to London, from thence they are exported to America.
Brown Silesias Go in great quantities to London, from thence they are exported to America.
All sorts of striped and checked linnens, vizt:
Bleached Linnens otherwise called fil d’epreuve.
Arabias, Sailors Linnens, Coutils, Gingams.
Tortillas fit for bedding.
Handkerchiefs of all colours, &c.
Chintzes & calicoes of various patterns, whole pieces as well as for gowns, likewise white calicoes.
Russia Duck, Ravens duck, Flaams Cables Cordage, Anchors, & in short every requisite for fitting out Ships.
All Sorts of Goods the Danish and Swedish East India Companies imports from thence and China, of which the chief articles are tea and salt peter.
Hartz lead, which always comes cheaper than the English, small shot, Tin, tinplate, Steel, Iron assorted,
Scythes of every kind of course, Iron ware, Nails, Needles.
Iron wire, brass wire, &c.
Paper of every kind, gilt and silvered paper, paper for tapestry, &c.
All sorts of Bohemian and other German glasses for windows.
Looking glasses, bottles, decanters, wine & Beer glasses, &c.
German earthen ware, China, &c.
Russia matts, and in short all Russian products.
Rhenish wines, refined Sugars.
All sorts of haberdashery ware, which are made very good & cheaper in Germany.
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Toys of every kind, besides many more articles, too prolix to be specified.