[William Cleland, lunatic, of Upper Canada.] Autograph Petition Signed to Lord John Russell, and Autograph Letter Signed to George Ross, regarding his claim to have been cheated by the Bank of Scotland. With forwarding letter to the bank.
ONE: Autograph Petiton Signed. 'Unto the Right Honble. Lord John Russell Secrety of State &c &c | The Petition of Samuel Cleland residing near St George Dumfries Upper Canada'. 2pp., foolscap 8vo. In poor condition, aged and worn at edges, with one corner apparently nibbled away by mice. At least some of the damage would appear to be contemporary with the document, as Cleland has written within the boundaries of the loss to the corner, and there is no loss to text. Docketed in red at head '1091 U. Canada' and stamped 'Received | C. D. | June 1 1840'. As is his practice, Russell has docketted the document in pencil: '1 June | The Enclosure should be forwarded, & I think that this document should be sent to the Bank of Scotland. The writer would appear to be deranged. | R'. The first paragraph supports Russell's contention. Cleland asserts that he 'has been these Seven Years Brutally and Beastly abused no Horses no Cow in all the British dominons have been so kept since April 1832 He has not been permitted to enter a Bed but compelled to welter & Roll in his own polution [sic] by night and by day [footnote reads 'by the Governor & Co. of the Bank of Scotland']. - that all this too by a Company with whom he never has had any act[ion] - by a Company that at a former period and with same manner have Rooted out and Extirpated from this World the whole Race Root & Branch to which he belonged and, now that he is an Old man [nor] wealthy Friends nor relations nor any Human being in England that can afford him the smallest comfort nor assistance in distress neither is he able to labour for a subsistence'. The petition continues in the same vein. TWO: Autograph Letter Signed. 3pp., 4to. Bifolium. In better condition than Item One, but also aged and worn. Addressed, with postmark, on reverse of second leaf, to George Ross Esquire | Advocate | Edinburgh | North Briton'. Written in the style as Itme One, over 62 lines, and beginning: 'When I was a Young Man I was several years a Clerk to a Mercht in Glasgow and was dismissed from the same at the Insistence of the Governor & co. of the Bank of Scotland.' THREE: Secretarial Letter, signed by Sir James Stephen ('Jas Stephen'), to the Governor & Company of the Bank of Scotland. Downing Street. 9 June 1840. 1p., foolscap 8vo. 'I am directed by Lord John Russell to transmit, for your information, the enclosed copy of a letter which has been addressed to his Lordship by Mr Samuel Cleland, complaining of your conduct towards him.' Note; James Stephen was colonial secretary from 1834, saw the anti-slvery legislation through, and was later "involved in the establishment of government in Canada".