George Washington Papers

[November 1767]

[November 1767]

Nov. 20. Vestry in Truro Parish.

This entry is from Fitzpatrick, Diaries description begins John C. Fitzpatrick, ed. The Diaries of George Washington, 1748–1799. 4 vols. Boston and New York, 1925. description ends , 1:240; the manuscript containing the entry has been lost since Fitzpatrick used it.

At the vestry meeting it was resolved to replace the old frame Pohick Church in Mason’s Neck. Because the church was so near the southern boundary of the parish, it was no longer in a central location convenient to all of the Pohick parishioners, many of whom by the 1760s were settled in the northern half of the area served by Pohick Church. After a warm debate over a more central location for the new Pohick building, the new majority was able, by a vote of seven to five, to locate the new church in Pohick Neck, two miles north of the old Pohick Church at a site called the Crossroads (mvar description begins Annual Report of the Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association of the Union. Mount Vernon, Va., 1854—. description ends , 1964, 22–25; slaughter [2] description begins Philip Slaughter. A History of St. Mark’s Parish, Culpeper County, Virginia, with Notes of Old Churches and Old Families, and Illustrations of the Manners and Customs of the Olden Time. Baltimore, 1877. description ends , 64).

Publick Levy 1767  8 lbs. Tob[acco] pr. Poll—No.

No. of Tythables in 1762 – 121022
1764 – 128000
1766 – 131799

Depositum—in 1767

Brunswick 11983
Charles City 15184
Dinwiddie 896
Gloucester 17514
Henrico 5757
James City 5299
Isle of Wight 8522
Louisa 10182
Middlesex 5163
New Kent 7569
Southampton 13882
Surry 6663
Sussex 6250
114864 total

Sold & applied to the fund for giving a Bounty on Hemp

publick levy: These notes appear on one of the last blank pages of the 1767 almanac. Except for GW’s notation of the number of tithables for 1762, 1764, and 1766, the rest of this entry is an abstract of an act of the assembly passed in April 1767 entitled: “An act for raising a public levy” (hening description begins William Waller Hening, ed. The Statutes at Large; Being a Collection of All the Laws of Virginia, from the First Session of the Legislature, in the Year 1619. 13 vols. 1819–23. Reprint. Charlottesville, Va., 1969. description ends , 8:273–75; the 34 acts in this series are incorrectly dated by hening description begins William Waller Hening, ed. The Statutes at Large; Being a Collection of All the Laws of Virginia, from the First Session of the Legislature, in the Year 1619. 13 vols. 1819–23. Reprint. Charlottesville, Va., 1969. description ends as Nov. 1766). In the act, which set the new levy at 8 pounds of tobacco per tithable (or poll), the above-named counties are listed as being in arrears for the 1764–66 levy period, and the respective number given for each county is the amount of arrearage in pounds of tobacco. The act provided that the income from this arrearage tobacco would be set aside as a “depositum” to support the colony’s bounty for growing hemp. From time to time the assembly would lay a “general” or “public” levy colonywide on a per capita basis, which in the eighteenth century ranged between 4½ and 12½ pounds of tobacco per tithable. In 1767 a tithable was any white male aged 16 or over and every black and mulatto aged 16 and over, which in essence defined tithables as all adult workers. Although there was a technical difference between the terms poll and tithable, the two were commonly used interchangeably. Of the three years for which GW here notes tithable totals, the figure for 1762 is exactly the same as that reported by Governor Fauquier (greene [2] description begins Evarts B. Greene and Virginia D. Harrington, eds. American Population before the Federal Census of 1790. New York, 1932. description ends , 141).

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