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Title: John Rea, SC, U.S.A. to Matthew Rea, Drumbo, Co. Antrim.
CollectionIrish Emigration Database
FileRea, John/6
SenderRea, John
Sender Gendermale
Sender Occupationbusinessman
Sender Religionunknown
OriginS. Carolina, USA
DestinationCo. Antrim, N.Ireland
RecipientRea, Matthew
Recipient Gendermale
SourceD3561/A/17/2: Transcript presented by Dr. P. R. Green, 15 May, 1965.
ArchiveThe Public Record Office, N. Ireland
Doc. No.9901025
Partial Date
Doc. TypeEMG
LogDocument added by LT, 08:01:99.
Word Count929
TranscriptLetter from John Rea, Esq., thirty-four
years settled in South Carolina, to his
Brother Matthew Rea of Drumbo.
Rea's Hall, May 15, 1765
In my last letter to you by way of London, I
informed you that I had procured a grant from
the Governor and Council of Georgia for fifty
thousand acres of land in this Province
for any of my friends and countrymen that
have a mind to come to this country and bring
their families here to settle. The land I
have pitched upon lies on a fine River
called Ogichey, near to which I have my
large cow-pens of cattle settled, which
will be very convenient for new-comers-in,
to be supplied with milk cows. I can
also furnish them with Horses and
Mares, any number they may want. I
am likewise in Hopes of obtaining
a Bounty at their arrival; but as this is a
young Colony, and of course not rich,
they cannot expect so much as Carolina
gave to the People who came over with
my servants, who are all well and
hearty. The land I have chosen is very
good for wheat and any kind of Grain:
Indigo , Flax and Hemp will grow to
great perfection; and I do not know any
place better situated for a flourishing
township than this Place will be. Now,
Brother, if you think a number of good
industrious families will come over here
I will do every thing in my Power to
assist them; for nothing will give
me more satisfaction than to be the
means of bringing my friends to
this country of Freedom; there are no
Rents, no Tithes here, only King's [Quit?]
Rent, which is only two Shillings Sterl.
per hundred acres: Who would define
a cheaper Rent? We have settled a
firm peace with the Indians around us,
and have agreed on boundary lines
betwixt us and them so that all is
settled with them.
The method of granting lands to settle
in this Country, is one hundred acres to
the Head of the Family, be they Man or
Woman, and fifty acres to every person in the
family, big and little. The Distance of this
Township from the Sea will be about one
hunded miles, that is to say, the town of
Savannah, where the shipping comes to,
which is the Capital town of the Province, and it
grows very fast, and soon will be a great Place
of trade. I have lots and houses in town,
and Rea's Hall is about four miles out of town,
but a ship can come up the River Savannah to
my door, and large boats go from hence to my house
at Augusta, which is about two hundred and
seventy miles by water. The township is about
forty miles from Augusta near this way.
Now I have told you the [encou-ag-----?]
and situation of the township, I will now say
something of the climate:-- which is, that it
is very hot for four months, June, July,
August and September and in the these last,
people that live on the low land
near the Sea are subject to fevers and
agues but up high in the country, it is
healthy and fine springs of good water.
As I would gladly obtain [----?] by this
undertaking both here and in Ireland, I
should be sorry to say anything but what
may be depended on. The winter is the
finest in the world never too
cold, very little frost, and no snow [sic].
The people that I would advise to come to this
country are those that have large families
growing up, that they may get land
and assist each other. Likewise
tradesmen of all sorts, for that will draw a
trade amongst them from other settlements, by
which they will get money. I would have them
bring a clergyman with them, and a school-master
that may be [Clerk?], for they are scarce here, and
they will have land given them, and what the
people can afford with my [Mite?] may procure him
a living.
Dear Brother I do not expect to have the
pleasure of seeing you in this country, nor
could I advise any person to come here
that lives well in Ireland:
because there is not the pleasure of society that
there is there, and the Comfort of the Gospel
preached no fairs nor markets to go to, but we
have greater plenty of good eating and drinking:
For I bless God for it I keep as plentiful a
table as most gentlemen in Ireland, with good
punch, wine and beer. If any person that comes
here can bring money to purchase a slave
or two, they may live very easy and well.
A good slave will cost about fifty Pounds
Sterling. As soon as I can procure a bill
I will send you one hundred Pounds
Sterling to be laid out by you on the
education of my late Brother's children:
Pray give them the best education and
I will pay for all. A young man that
is a good scholar may not fear a
good living in this country.
I am etc.
John Rea

I Matthew Rea, on behalf of my
Brother John Rea, do hereby promise and
engage, that my said Brother shall
give every person who shall go and
settle in the above mentiioned
township, the use of a cow, horse,
or mare, for the first five years
gratis, to each individual man,
woman, and child, they returning at
the end of said term as good a
Beast or the value such beast was of when
first received. Given under my
name, this 26th day of August, 1765.

Matthew Rea