Friday, January 15, 2016

Coopers and Blacksmiths

Among those who made the first voyage to Virginia in 1607, there were four carpenters, two bricklayers, a blacksmith and a mason.  Afterwards, in the first Supply ship, were included a cooper and a blacksmith and fourteen artisans arrived in the second Supply ship.  The Virginia Company of London advertised from time to time to secure members of different trades. However, in 1616 the only tradesmen referred were smiths and carpenters.   So it came to pass that when Governor Yeardley took charge in 1619, he alotted to every tradesmen who decided to follow his handicraft rather than engage in husbandry, a tract of four acres of land. This area of ground, upon which a dwelling-house was to be created, was conveyed in fee simple, subject to a quit-rent of our pence.

Source: Works of Capt. John Smith, p. 94; Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, Vol. II, p. 160.

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