Lot 252: Revolutionary War

RR Auction

RR Auction

2015-12-18 16:59:22

Lot 252: Remarkable clearly penned Revolutionary War–era journal kept by Miss Faney Clifton of Philadelphia, 14 pages on 10 loose sheets, 4.25 x 6.25, dated 1778–1781. Faney Clifton was a Philadelphia slave owner who hired out her slaves and provided other services to congressional delegates, American generals (including Benedict Arnold), foreign agents, and prominent Philadelphia residents during the American Revolution.Entry for July 13, 1778: "Hired Jenny to General Arnold at £4-15 pr month hard money." Benedict Arnold was living in one of the largest houses in Philadelphia, residing there for about a year in 1778. Jenny, identified by first name, was most probably a slave. Slaves and indentured servants, who would usually be listed with their full names, were frequently hired out during wartime to help in homes temporarily occupied by the military, politicians, or businessmen staying in Philadelphia.One page, possibly the first, begins, "Begun houskeeping [sic] December the 10 at which time I had in the house £97-15.10 in hard Money—About 1 hundred and forty dollars Continental. December changed a half Joe."Other entries include: —"Recd January 9 1779 of Emanuel Eyres One hundred and Twenty five Pounds for a half years rent due the first of January." Eyres was a shipbuilder. —"1779…Febry 15 Recd of Mr Lee 102-26 for two Months rent. March 29 recd of Mr Biddle for Muslin 7.11.10."—"1780 Feb 1 hired Jenny to Don Marelles [sic] at 4 Pound pr Month—March 3 Recd of Don Mirelles [sic] one Months Wages for Jenny due the first of March . 4.00." Juan de Miralles was an agent of Spain sent to the United States during the American Revolution to observe the Continental Congress. He became a partner in the trading firm of Robert Morris and Thomas Willing and became a personal friend of George Washington's. He lived in Philadelphia from August 1777 until his death in May 1780.—"July 19. Sam Return'd from Genl Thomson [July] 21 hired Sam to Mr. Hasenclever at 8 pound pr Month Cloaths shoes and stockings."— "April 10 hired Jenny to Mr Morris at the rate of 3 Pound hard money to be paid in Continental Money." This could possibly be either Gouverneur Morris, or Declaration of Independence signer Robert Morris.—"May 13 Recd of Mr Morris one Months wages for Jenny due the 12. £3.00. June 16 recd one months wages of Mr Morris for Jenny Due the 12."—"April …15 Recd of Mr. F. Lee one hundred and twenty Pounds for the rooms &c." This may very well be Declaration of Independence signer Francis Lightfoot Lee.— "Dec…15 Let the rooms furnished and use of the servants to Mr & Mrs Lee & Mr Smith at the rate of Seven hundred and forty pounds pr year." Both Francis Lightfoot Lee and his wife Rebecca lived in Philadelphia while he served in Congress.Also included is a handwritten receipt signed, "Daedesqui," which reads, in full, "Received of Miss Faney Clifton Two Half Joes [a Portuguese coin] to Purchase one Barril of muscarde Suggar and a Barril of Coffee which Suggar & Coffee I will send to Miss Faney Clifton by the first opportunity when I shall be arrived in the west indias. Philadelphia March the 30th 1780." In overall fine condition, with scattered light toning, as well as some edge wear. RR Auction's Fine Autographs and Artifacts Auction 467 Wednesday, 13th January 2016 Estimate: $3000-4000
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