“Letters from the Past”
Mr Lea of Henley in Arden
from P Hicks, Warwick 1826

by

Eunice Shanahan

The letter has been folded for nearly a couple of centuries, but it shows how it was folded and sealed. This image shows that the inner parts are relatively clean.The paper is a heavy cream foolscap size and has the watermark T & S 1822, which runs across the width of the page.


This is a provincial letter which only travelled less than 20 miles, so no need for any London postmarks. There are only two postal markings : the postal charge of 5 for a distance between 15 and 20 miles, and the dated WARWICK 107 mileage mark applied in black ink for JU 26 1826.

There is also a filing note on the outside, written in the receiver’s office for easy reference once the letter has been folded and filed. this is visible in the first image.

Mr Hicks 26 June 1826 propy Secy or hope Life Ins.

address

Now to the contents, which are very easy to read,

Sir,
I received your letter on Saturday last & wo’d most certainly have been at Henley to day if I co’d. On Thursday last I was on my Road for Henley & about 2 Miles from here the Horse fell with me & broke my Collar Bone and bruised me considerably beside, so much so that I cannot at present bear the motion of the Coach.

The Security I have to offer is a sum of £1500 3 per Ct Consols settled on Mrs Hicks for her life & after her decease on her children by Secure Settlemt. We wish if possible to raise £150 which I sho’d think co’d easily be effected by insuring her Life which sum wo’d set me clear of your Debt & others which I owe here. But sho’d you not like to advance this Sum I will immediately give you an Assignment of my Effects to pay one half of the bill in 3 months & the remr in 9. But if you co’d get the £150 Mrs H will gladly give the Security required. I will send to the Trustees for an Attested Copy of the Settlement.

The letter then continues giving information about his travel arrangements, and this image shows the signature of the sender.

I must if possible go to Northampton on Wednesday morning therefore if you will have the kindness to direct a letter to me there to the Care of Mr Grant, Keeper of the Prison I will write from there to the Trustees who are in London for the Copy of the Settlement.

Pray assist me if you possibly can & if you wish it will see you the latter end of the week on my return from Northampton which will be on Friday
I am Sir
Your obedt
P.W..H.Hicks
Warwick June 26 1826


Reference: "Great Britain Post Roads Post Towns and Postal Rates" 1635 to 1839 Alan W Robertson


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