[Katharine Villiers, Countess of Clarendon.] Four letters to the London merchant bankers Thomson Hankey & Co., all relating to the Mesopotamia Estate sugar plantation in Jamaica, two signed by both the Earl and the Countess.

Katharine Villiers, Countess of Clarendon [née Grimston and previously Foster-Barham] (1810-1874), wife of George Villiers, 4th Earl of Clarendon (1800-1870) [Messrs. Thomson Hankey & Co., bankers]
Publication details: 
Two letters from the Vice Regal Lodge, Dublin in 1851, one of them signed by the Earl and the Countess. The other two letters from London, 1845 and 1849.
SKU: 15536

The Countess of Clarendon had inherited the Mesopotamia Estate from her previous husband John Foster Barham (1799-1838), who had died a certified lunatic year before her marriage to the Earl. The Estate had been in the hands of the Barham family for more than a century. The four items in good condition, on lightly-aged paper. All four with notes by the recipients. ONE: Letter signed by George J. Nicholson of the London soliticitors Vizard & Leman, in secretarial hand, to Messrs Thomson Hankey & Co. Lincolns Inn Fields; 7 July 1845 ('Mesopotamia Estate'). 1p., 4to. Directing Hankeys to pay sums totalling £750 '[o]ut of the Mesopotamia Estate' to: 'the Countess of Clarendon at Coutts & Co.', 'Mrs Robins with Messrs. Coutts & Co.', 'Madame Gagiotte with Mr Wordsworth', 'The Rev Ch. Barham at Messrs Coutts & Co.' TWO: [June 1849.] Letter signed by the Earl and Countess ('Clarendon' and 'Katharine Clarendon'), in secretarial hand, to Messrs Thomson Hankey & Co. Without place or date [1849]. 1p., 12mo. Instructing them to pay the balance of the account (£717 9s 9d) to 'Mr James Leman of Lincolns Inn Fields London': 'this Sum arises from the proceeds of the Mesopotamia Estate'. With autograph note at foot by James Leman, London, 10 June 1849, instructing Hankeys to pay the sum into his firm's account with Messrs Coutts & Co. THREE: Letter signed by the Countess and Earl ('Katharine Clarendon' and 'Clarendon'), in secretarial hand, to Messrs Thomson Hankey & Co. Vice Regal Lodge, Dublin; 5 May 1851. 1p., 12mo. Directing them to 'dispose of the Five hundred and seventy one pounds 16/5 the Cash balance in your hand arising from the Mesopotamia Estates as you may be advised by Mess Vizard & Leman'. FOUR: Letter in secretarial hand from the Earl (from 'Clarendon' but not signed), to 'James Leman Esq'. 'V. R. Lodge' [Vice Regal Lodge, Dublin]; 2 December 1851. 2pp., 4to. The Earl is sending 'the Jamaica Newspapers', which he asks Leman to forward to Hankeys, 'as they contain a report of the new process for improving the manufacture of Sugar that Lord Howard de Walden has lately introduced on his Estates - Lord H. writes me word that on its first establishment last year various accidents occurred which will not happen again but that "the general result has been an improvement from 2 to 5 shillings per Cwt & 3 Hgds (i e Ton) realizing 17 & 18 Cwts at the Queens Beam whereas hitherto they seldom came up to 16 Cwt & I have nearly doubled the quantity of my rum from the saving of Molasses & being able to use them partly for distilling"'. Clarendon considers the subject 'well worthy of consideration with reference to the Mesopotamia Estate', and suggests that Hankeys 'might possibly think it adviseable [sic] to direct Mr. Johns to make enquiry as to the success which has attended Lord Howard's operations'.