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    Description

    Revolutionary War Accounting Ledger Pages, kept by Miss Faney Clifton of Philadelphia. Fourteen loose pages (laid paper), 4.25" x 6.5", [Philadelphia], 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. All unbound pages of her ledger have been well-cared-for.

    In 1778, Miss Clifton hired out a slave named Jenny to Benedict Arnold. She writes in the ledger on July 13, "Hired Jenny to General Arnold at £4-15 pr month hard money." General Arnold, too ill to leave the city, had been in Philadelphia since June when General Washington ordered him in a letter written on June 18 "immediately to proceed to Philadelphia and take the command of the troops there." (The British withdrew from Philadelphia on June 17.) On July 8, Arnold replied to Washington, "My extreme illness has prevented my writing as often as I wished; at present I am entirely free from the disorder in my stomach; my wound [leg wound received nine months earlier at Saratoga] is in a promising way and pretty free from pain." Five days later, Miss Clifton sent Jenny to Arnold, who was living in one of the largest homes in the city. Built in 1767, the home had belonged to the colonial lieutenant governor, Richard Penn. While in Philadelphia, Arnold met Peggy Shippen, whom he married in April 1779.

    In another one page entry (possibly the first page), Clifton records, "Begun houskeeping 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:

    "July 7 [1778] Bot 3 Pounds of Bohea Tea 19.6 - 3 Pounds of Green Tea 5,5 [July] 10. 1 Barrell of flour."

    "Recd January 9 1779 of Emanuel Eyres [a shipbuilder] One hundred and Twenty five Pounds for a half years rent due the first of January."

    "1780 Feb 1 hired Jenny to Don Marelles at 4 Pound pr Month - March 3 Recd of Don Mirelles one Months Wages for Jenny due the first of March. 4.00." Juan de Miralles was an agent of Spain sent to the U.S. during the Revolutionary War to observe the Continental Congress. A personal friend of George Washington, 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." "Mr Morris" might have been Gouverneur Morris, a member of the Continental Congress and a signer of the Articles of Confederation who moved to Philadelphia in 1779.

    "May 13 Recd of Mr Morris one Months wages for Jenny."

    "April . . . 15 Recd of Mr. F. Lee one hundred and twenty Pounds for the rooms &c." Most likely, "Mr. F. Lee" was Francis Lightfoot Lee, a delegate to the Continental Congress from 1775 until 1779 and a signer of the Declaration of Independence.

    "Dec . . . 15 Let the rooms furnished and use of the servants to Mr & Mrs Lee [Francis and Rebecca Lee] & Mr Smith at the rate of Seven hundred and forty pounds pr year."

    In 1780, Miss Clifton received a receipt signed by "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."


    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    October, 2010
    14th-15th Thursday-Friday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 1
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