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Letter from Archibald Maclaine to George Hooper
Maclaine, Archibald, 1728-1790
June 09, 1783
Volume 16, Pages 964-965


Wilmington, 9th June, 1783.

My Dear Sir:

I have now before me your letters of 31st May & 3rd instant; the former by D. Mallett (which I did not receive till this Morning, owing to the blundering stupidity of Major Blount, in whose portmanteau it was concealed) the latter by Mr. W. H. Hill. The things you sent by Smith I believe came all safe in my absence but Kitty writes you herself. Upon looking over your letter again I find the things you allude to were received today.

I am happy to find that Archy has got so well over the measles. His sister is as well as you could wish.

You must before this have received my letter by Captain Eve, in which I gave you as good an account as I could procure of the doings of our Assembly. With respect to what you heard had been done after I left Hillsborough, you must certainly be mistaken. There was nothing more than I wrote you; and God knows that was enough. I have seen several moderate members who staid till the last; but my principal and best information was from Captain Read (who saw them out) and brought with him the act of pardon, such as it is; and this he declined shewing to the Judges, till I assured him that it could not injure Mallet. There was a cursed bill about disposing of confiscated property, which I saw; and it intended to provide for calling in debts due to persons whose estates were confiscated or supposed to be so; but Read with great generosity told some of the members very peremptorily (he is one of the Commissioners appointed by the army to solicit pay, &c.) that if they laid their hands upon it, he insisted that it should be reserved as a fund to pay the army; and it was accordingly reserved. As to banishment I never heard of such a thing, and I suppose it has arisen from the exception in the act of pardon, which in fact leaves you where you were. The clauses which preclude British merchants & people in your situation from taking any benefit by the suspension of the limitation laws, and making your contracts null and void is so horridly wicked & stupid, that it must soon be repealed. In the mean time

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as you have determined, & I make no doubt for very good reasons, to continue where you are, I would advise you by all means to become a citizen of South Carolina, that you may be enabled to recover your debts. I hope to see you very shortly & shall write in two or three days, by Capt. Conyers; but I would not omit this opportunity of giving you a short letter by the post. The court finishes tomorrow, when I shall have time to be more explicit, & when Mr. London (to whom my compliments)may expect an answer from me. I am told that foolish fellow Dunbibin has advised him not to return; for what reason I do not know.

The judges have resolved not to oblige any man to a trial who does not choose it, as it militates against an article of the peace. All such are continued over.

I have already answered every part of your letter about your personal safety, as well as your property; & am affectionately yours,