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  • Title
    William Hewitt papers
  • Held at
  • Reference
    MS522
  • Date
    1759-1790
  • Creator
    Hewitt, William (1719-1781) Commissioner for the Sale of Crown Lands in the CaribbeanMore Info on Creator
  • Scope and Content
    The papers are concerned chiefly with Hewitt's work in the West Indies 1767-1771 and 1776-1781, predominantly the latter period. The West Indian territories covered by the papers are Grenada, the Grenadines, St Vincent, Dominica and Tobago, primarily Dominica. The majority of his personal correspondence (1772-1781) is taken up with persuading the Treasury to pay his salary, and there is also material relating to his land interests in Dominica and his dealings with British merchants who invested in the West Indies. The financial papers and accounts (1759-1781) in the collection cover a longer time span than any other type, as some of the material dates from before he went to the West Indies. There are also documents concerning Hewitt's personal property, mainly bonds concerning payment for Crown lands in Dominica, 1767-1777. There are papers relating to slaves owned by him between 1768-1781. There are also legal papers (1768-1781) and official documents concerning land in Tobago, St Vincent and Dominica, 1764-1781, including commissioners' instructions, surveys, maps and correspondence. The collection also includes papers created following the death of William Hewitt, mainly relating to the settlement of his estate, 1781-1790 There collection also includes a number of letters from Viscount Lifford, but in spite of his position of Lord Chancellor in Ireland, there is very little information in them concerning Irish affairs. The material also spans the period of the American war, and there is material from 1779-1780 which contains detailed information concerning military and naval movements in the West Indies.
  • Conditions of access
    Open for research. At least 24 hours notice is necessary for research visits.
  • Exent
    4 boxes and 14 volumes
  • Language
    English
  • System of Arrangement
    The material was received by the University of London in two separate deposits, in 1960 and 1971. The second deposit has been listed consecutively with the first, and begins at item number 343. Within these 2 groups the material has been arranged according to type of document, and then chronologically within these types.
  • Finding aids
    Catalogued online (click on the "contains" icon below). A pdf version of the hard-copy catalogue is also attached to this description. 'William Hewitt Papers: A Handlist', (1969) by Christine E. Micklem and 'William Hewitt Papers: A Handlist of the Second Deposit', (1972) by Paul Kelly both contain more detailed introductions to the material; Paul Kelly's handlist also contains an personal name index of the papers themselves (with biographical detail). Copies of both handlists are available in the library's Special Collections Room.
  • Related files
  • Related
    Paul Kelly, 'An eighteenth century colonial "Civil Servant": William Hewitt and his papers', Archives, April 1972. An offprint is shelved with the handlists to the Hewitt papers.
  • Level of description
    fonds
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