Antigua Novr 21st 1817
Your favor of the first October I received by the last Mail, am happy to find the Wool sold to your satisfaction, I shall do every thing in my power to increase the flock of woolly sheep, in my next I will endeavour to form some idea of the number of sheep we shall be enabled to keep; I wished not to have written to you till my return to Barbuda, which I intended to have done this day, but the wind is now so very squally with rain that I am obliged to postpone it; and the boat will follow the Packet on Monday next. My business in this Island has been to settle the salvage of a small Schooner which was wrecked on the North side of Barbuda, on the night of the 20th of last month; she was last from Philadelphia, and had a valuable Cargo on board, consisting of Brandy, Wine, Soap, Lard &c, she sank about 2 O:Clock in the morning; three miles from the shore, and before day light was entirely in pieces, therefore nothing was saved but what drifted to the shore, & was sold in this Island for about £700 Currency; the Crew who saved themselves in their Boat had secured the whole before I got to the beach, the vessel having gone to pieces before day light the wreck was discovered by the person I had sent round the Bays. As we did not assist in saving the Cargo the Magistrates have only awarded us the trouble of transporting the Articles to this Island, for which they have given £100 Currency; I shall leave the money here with the hopes of getting a Bill for its amount by the next Packet.
Lord Combermere has been visiting the Islands to inspect the Troops under his command, he reached this Island on Sunday last, hearing that he had an idea of going to Barbuda, I waited on him the day after his arrival, when I found that he had too little time at his disposal being obliged to be in Barbados on a certain day; but intends going to Barbuda the next tour he makes through the Islands, I have sold him some Heifers for his Estates which he is to send for; he requested me to let you know that I had seen him.
In your letter you mentioned that you would endeavour to send out two or three Mares, I should feel much more obliged if you could send a good Horse or two, as we have Mares enough on the Island, but are greatly in want of good Horses; they should be about half breed with a good deal of Bone as draft Horses fit for Whiskeys are the most valuable, and the Barbuda Horses are rather too slight for that work; having been chiefly bred from the Barb. The Dogs will be most acceptable we are greatly in want of them. Since my last we have had an abundance of rain in fact rather too much, when I left Barbuda the low lands were entirely under water, so much so that Cart could not get from the Castle to the Fort.
I am Sir
Your Most Obedt Humble
(signed) John James
The Negros on Barbuda have lately been much afflicted with Bowel complaints, but I am happy to say we have had no loss
Reference: JJ265 Robson Lowe collection on microfilm 24995, University of Texas at Austin, Nettie Lee Benson Latin American Collection.