Main content

Title: John Chambers, New York to Robert Simms, Belfast.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileChambers, John/1
SenderChambers, John
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationunknown
Sender Religionunknown
OriginNew York, USA
DestinationBelfast, N.Ireland
RecipientSimms, Robert
Recipient Gendermale
SourceT 1815/12A: Copied by Permission of the Presbyterian Historical Society, Church House, Fisherwick Place, Belfast.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, Northern Ireland.
Doc. No.8809111
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by JM 26:11:1993
Word Count783
TranscriptNew York, 24th May 1811

Dear Simms
Your very kind favour of the 6th Ult & its
enclosure, were very acceptable. - It is pleasant to live in
the remembrance of one's friends, especially when separated
by so wide a distance, & when fortune seems to have divided
them forever.

The Emigrants from every part of Ireland, are pouring in
here, in unexampled number - but I am disappointed in not
seeing the return of our old friend Henry Jackson, who left
this three years ago, with a determination to return in a
few months. I had promised myself many happy days in the
[?] of a man whom similarity of thinking had rendered
interesting - but it is not easy to make great efforts of
Mind or Body when we [pass?] a certain period of life and he
and I are now waxing grey.

I enclose you an account of a naval engagement, which has
made a great deal of noise here, & perhaps may produce a
similar effect in your quarter, the production of [serious?]
consequences. - The account wh. [which?] I send you is
authentic, whatever other you may see, - another action is
expected of more serious character, which Com d [Commander?]
Rogers it is expected, may soon be engaged in, arising, from
the following circumstances. The [Guerrien?] Br. frigate,
appeared off this port a few days ago, stopt [stopped?] a
[coasting?] [Nepel?], & took out of her by force a young Lad
(a native of one of the neighbouring towns) under pretext of
a British subject! This naturally excited great & general
indignation, & could not be palliated by the warmest friends
of England in this Country - This feeling it is said has
reached the seat of Government, & Com [Commander?] Rogers
was ordered to take out the President Frigate, - go and
search of the [Guerrien?] - demand the American Lad, & act
further, as circumstances may require. Doubts are
entertained by some, of the latter part of the instructions,
- whilst others think he is merely directed to "demand" the
Lad, without having recourse to coercion. The Br. Government
never seem to estimate the mischief done to her interest on
the continent by the folly & tyranny of her naval officers -
who are daily estranging more & more of her friends from her

Our late President Jefferson, is very desirous of getting a
Grass from Ireland, which it highly spoken of by the Belfast
society, as possessing some valuable & peculiar properties -
I shall quote a letter of his on the subject, wh [which?]
will speak for itself - "The first paper of the 1st [?]
published by the Belfast Society, in which Mr Richardson
gives an account of the Grass which he calls [Fiorin?], or
Agnostis Stolonifera, which from his character of it woud
[would?] be inestimable here ([Monticello Nirga?]) to cover
what we call our galled Lands. These are Lands which have
been barbarously managed till they have had all of their
vegetable Mould washed off, after which we have no permanent
grass which can be made to take on them. From the length of
time which the Fiorin is said to retain it's vegetative
power after being severed from the earth, I am persuaded
that if done up in Moss under proper [envelopes?], it woud
[would?] come here with life still in it perhaps a little of
it might be sent to me in a packet not more than the size of
a small [volume?]" you would render in this a great service
to our agriculturalists for none can be greater than the
communication of useful plants of one Country to another"

Thus writes our late worthy President to a friend of mine,
who imposes on me the talk of gratifying Mr Jefferson; & my
folicitation [felicitation?] now goes to you in the hope
you can oblige me, at the proper season - by sending me the
small quantity required

It will doubtless gratify you to learn that one of the
Inhabitants of the Belfast Prison Ship, the then Reverend
D.B. Warden has been promoted by Mr Madison to the Office of
Consul General of the U.S. to France. He had been secretary
to our late Embassy there, & for some time Charge Des
Affairs. - his appointment now to the Counsulship has been
singularly flattering having recieved [received?] the
Unanimous approval of the senate - a circumstance of which
we have few examples.

I must have done - except, my dear Simms best wishes, &
believe me yours always

J [John?] Chambers

To what a deplorable state your paper currency is reduced! -
how it The decline of Mr [Huskisson?] received.