Friday, May 11, 2018

The Diary of William Byrd II #vagenealogy #virginiapioneers

The Diary of William Byrd II

William Byrd IIWilliam Byrd II, born 1674, died 1744, was an English planter and author from Charles City County in colonial Virginia. After the death of his father in 1704, William became the owner of the plantation. Some of the shipbuilding at Westover on the James River is recorded in his diary. In July 1709, Byrd wrote: "I sent the boatmaker to Falling Creek to build me a little boat for my sea sloop." Two days later he wrote: "I sent Tom to Williamsburg for John B-r-d to work on my sloop." Later in the month, he noted that John B-r-d had come in the night to work on his sloop. In November, he wrote: "In the afternoon we paid a visit to Mr. Hamilton who lives across the creek. We walked about his plantation and saw a pretty shallop he was building." In August, 1710,he wrote that he had taken a walk to see the boatbuilder at work. On August 9, he wrote that he had paid the builder of his sloop sixty pounds, which was twenty pounds more than he had agreed for. Later in the year, he noted that his sloop had gone down to the shipyard at Swinyards. Byrd acquired a new shipwright who came from England on the ship "Betty" in 1711. In March, he wrote that the new shipwright was offended because he had been given corn pone instead of English bread for breakfast. He had taken his horse and ridden away without a word. However, he reported later that the shipwright had returned. On May 15, 1712, Byrd reported that he had engaged Mr. T-r-t-n to build him a sloop next year. Several years later, he recorded the loss of his great flat boat, but it was found by a man at Swinyards. Swinyards was a place for public warehouses and a shipyard, located on the north bank of the James River, a short distance below Westover, opposite Windmill Point. Source: Shipping In Colonial Virginia by Cerinda W. Evans. 
Names of Ancestors of Charles City Co. VA

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