His Excellency Gov. Burke, No. Carolina.
I have just now before me your Favor of the 12th Instant. I shall always give the Public the preference in furnishing them with Iron or any Thing else in my Way. I hope it will be considered that Punctual payments are essentially necessary to enable me to support the great expence I am at. I think you may have Regular Supplies of Bar Iron and Cast Iron from Oxford Works, upon you enabling your Agent to pay me in Tobacco at Pitch Landing in four weeks after demand. My Price is at present 12 M. Tobacco per Ton at this Place, and Frediericksburg it sells at 15 M. Tobacco per Ton. I shall charge no more than I do to this State or to other Purchasers at the Time of Delivery, and I flatter myself that your Excellency will take proper measures to prevent Disappointments on payment. From the Excellent quality of my Iron and other local Advantages, my works may be extended and improved, to be of great Public Utility, and I am purposing to make some very considerable additions to them, so as to make three times the quantity of Bar Iron, also Steel Iron and Sheet Iron for Camp kettles. I am prest to this last Manufactory by Gen’l Greene, who seems to think Mr. Hunter’s works may be destroyed this Campaign. This will require near 100 additional Hands. Pray are there any Public Slaves in your State that could be hired or purchased?
The Enemy were encamped for some time at my Estate, at the Forks of James River, and have so injured my Stock that I shall probably find it necessary to draw some supplies of prisoners from
Letter from David Ross, Aug. 24th, 1781. Rec’d from Col. Martin, Sec. Lt., 31st Jan., ’82.