previous next

Letter of Isaac Royall.

‘A pretty good price for a silver watch,’ was the observation made by a banker who read the following letter of the Medford loyalist Isaac Royall, adding ‘seventy-five pounds, why! that's about four hundred dollars.’

But the amount was in ‘old tenor’ and about seven and one half times that of ‘lawful money’ in 1761.

So fifty dollars (on the latter basis) would seem not an undue figure for the day of Colonel Royall, but the old fashioned time-piece would suffer in comparison with the modern Waltham watch.

Collector Robert Hale is supposed to have been His Majesty's customs officer at the port of Newbury, Mass. [p. 65] The kindly offer of assistance to his grandson and namesake speaks well for the one who a few years later, misunderstood by his townsmen, became an exile.

His letter, till recently in the possession of the late General Lawrence, may now be seen at the Royall House.

Several pages of the History of Medford may well be read in relation to the depreciated currency of those days.

When lawful money came in one wrote:

And now Old Tenor fare you well,
No more such tattered rags we'll tell,
Now dollars pass, and are made free,
It is a year of jubilee.

Of short duration however, for the Continental currency was even worse depreciated.

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Sort places alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a place to search for it in this document.
Waltham (Massachusetts, United States) (1)
Newbury, Mass. (Massachusetts, United States) (1)
hide People (automatically extracted)
Sort people alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a person to search for him/her in this document.
Isaac Royall (3)
Rosewell B. Lawrence (1)
Robert Hale (1)
hide Dates (automatically extracted)
Sort dates alphabetically, as they appear on the page, by frequency
Click on a date to search for it in this document.
1761 AD (1)
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: