William Goodwin of Street Farm, Earl Soham.
Diaries dated from 1785-1810. Vol. 2.. HD 365/2.
Transcribed by Mrs. J. Rothery of Earl Soham, August 2001
The following Miscellany of Occurrences Persons and Curiosities was began in the Year 1785 by Wm. Goodwin of Earl Soham Surgeon and is intended as an Universal repository and Chronology.
Extract for 1791 (Jul - Dec)
June 24th 1791 Woodbridge Bank was open’d this day under the firm of Francis Brooke Philip Riches and Cornelius Collett - Their Notes are Cash’d at Mr Riches’s and at Messrs. Thornton , Down and Free-s in London.
Escape of the King and Queen of France
They had long intended to fly to the Army of the Prince of Conde on the frontiers, and were strictly guarded; but on Monday night of the 20 of June at about 12 they together with their Children and the Kings Brother descended from the Queen’s chamber, thro’ a passage dug 10 ft deep, into a common Sewer, in wh. They crept in disguise under the garden at the end of wh. Coaches were in waiting and convey’d them unpursu’d to Clearmont, upwards of 160 miles from Paris, where a postilion knowing the King, the populace surrounded the Coaches, stop’d their further progress, and the national Troops reconducted them back to the Capital, together with Mon. Bouille a general officer, who met the King with Draggoons belonging to the royal cause, to flavour His escape, but They laid down their Arms and assisted in making the Royal fugitives and their Commander prisoners -
The King before his flight left a paper revoking his assent to the acts of the national assembly - The Assembly were sitting from Tuesday morning at 10 (when the escape was first known) to Wed’y Evening, deliberating and passing decrees with a diligence coolness and magnanimity that must ever do the Members the highest honors. The King etc were within about 60 miles of Met\z, the place of destination when apprehended - In the same week He fled He wrote a long Letter to the prince of Conde, praising in the highest terms the new Constitution, declaring It the happiness of the People and Himself, which He had solemnly sworn to defend and cherish
June 24th The King and Queen of France have been examin’d by a deputation from the national assembly of 3 Members relative to their late flight from Paris - The King declar’d it was not his intention to leave the Kingdom but to secure himself in a frontier Town to avoid the insults of the Capital and obtain more Liberty - The Queen shelter’d Herself under the principles of Duty Love and Loyalty to the Commands of Her King and Husband - They and the Dauphin are more strictly guarded than ever -
July 10th 1791 A very sharp drought has prevail’d this Summer little rain having fallen since the beginning of May wh. Has shorten’d our mowen grasses and made feed and water very low indeed - This night a glorious moderate rain has fallen and continues to do so - Corns on strong good Lands have a fine appearance but those on weak light gravely soils are likely to be a short crop -
Fat Beef has kept a good price from 5 to 6/ pr. Stone but Lean Beasts from 20 to 25 pr.Cent cheaper than at Bungay fair - The Drovers are losing by wholesale and some are expected to be ruin’d in consequence of the dry season -
July 11th Turnips are sowing all over the Country -
Wool has sold freely from 13d to 14 d per lb -
The Royal Family of France and Their attendants did not descend into a Sewer but went out at a door through the Garden singly, unperceiv’d, and waited at an appointed rendezvouse - They left Paris about 2 o’Clock of Sunday morng. The 21 of June and were reconducted back by 30,000 national guards on Saty. The 25th about 7 in the even’g without any Tumult or accident of consequence.
The people all over the Kingdom seem firm to the Revolution wh. may prevent the attempts of their Enemies, and a Civil war
Kent - 120 to 135
Bank 186 ½ India 168 ½
3 pr Cent Con 81 ½ ¾
July 1791 The National Assembly has after violent debates resolv’d that the Person of the King is inviolable and not ameneable to Trial - but that all his aiders and abetters in his late Flight are - The Queen is likewise excus’d as acting under the commands of her Husband.
14th The French Revolution wh. took place in 1789 was celebrated by the friends of Liberty in most of the principal Cities and Towns in England - In Birmingham the most alarming mob assembled and having no military at hand pull’d down burnt and destroy’d the Houses and furniture belonging to the dissenters in the Town and Country. They were from 7 to 8000 strong and continu’d Their shocking depredations from Thursday ye 14th to ye Monday following to the disgrace of Church and State. The greater sufferers were Dr Priestly, Mr Taylor the Banker, Mr Ryland, Mr Russel, Mr Hutton, Mr Coxe etc etc etc. The whole damage is estimated at four Hundr. Thousand pounds wh. must be paid nby Rate on the Country. The invaluable writings belonging to Dr. Priestly and others are burnt with their Houses. In London the mob began assembling about the Crown & Anchor but by the prudence of the Revolutionists early dispersion, and the Military being near They separated reluctantly, wishing to play the game of 1780 over again.
Note in the Margin: Mr Ryland recover’d £2497
Mr Taylor - £7202
Old Meeting House - £1390
Mr Humphreys - £1834
Dr Priestly - £2592
W. Hutton - £5390
T. Hutton - £619
Porter Brew’d in London from July 1790 to Do. 1791 was forty nine millions one hundred and 12 Thousand six Hund. & sixty Gallons.
Aug’t 7th Visited Mr Farrer of Tottington in Norf.k had a very agreeable Journey and found the Country in a high state of Cultivation - Oil Cakes pulveriz’d is using as manure. N. B. I weighed 12.12 at L. Walsingham’s Chair
1791 Aug’t The French have abolish’d all orders of Knighthood, Decorations or External signs of a suppos’d pre-eminence or distinction - Army and Navy excepted.
Septr 4th The National Assembly completed their new Constitution and have deputed 60 of their members to present It to the King for his acceptance or refusal; & have set Him and the Queen at Liberty by removal of their guards, that His choise may be perfectly free.
In future ye Assembly is to be call’d Legislative instead of National
The King wrote a long Letter with his own hand to the Assembly declaring his free acceptance of the new Constitution, finding in his late flight, it met the wishes of a large majority of his subjects and the ensuing Day went to the Hall publickly avow’d his determination to abide by It in all Cases.
1791 Aug. 22nd 35 Ships of the Line that have long been in readiness to Sail, to compel the Empress of Russia to a Peace with the Turks, are order’d to be paid off, She having made Peace on her own Terms, retaining Ocksakow(?) & its dependencies
3 pr. Cent Consol. Have risen to 89 ¾ & 90
22nd (Aug) Ipswich Lamb Fair was uncommonly full, suppos’d about 200,000 Lambs - Few Buyers the first day, many the second but the terms lower the third and 4th Days. Miss Boodles of Norfolk bore the Bell at 16.10 pr. Score - Sr. C Davers 16£ Sympson’s 15£ and from these down to 6£ - Many were unsold & on the whole cheaper than last year - notwithstanding the drought Lambs were in fine condition.
1791 Aug.st. 21st At Hereford Assises …
Oct. 1st 1791 The King of France has made a second Popular speech in the national alias Legislative Assembly, in the presence of the old, and new members & an immense number of his Grandees in wh. He recapitulates his former acceptance of the new Constitution & declares his voluntary determination to abide by & inforce it with all his Power - The new Members commmenc’d Their operations this Day & the Old resign’d their power and return’d to their Homes amidst the Thanks and the praises of their Countrymen for having overturn’d the Tyranny of their former Government in Church & State & establish’d their Liberation on the firm basis of Law and Equity -
This Revolution has been the most wonderfull and the ablest conducted and likely to produce the greatest good to mankind, of any since the Creation - Language can but feebly reach the praises due to the promoters & completers of it for their temper abilities & Virtue.
Oct. 1791 Took down the old wall in front of my House and set up a paling likewise built a serpentine wall on the Bowling green - the latter if all new costs about 2.12.6 a rod running measure, for bricks Lime and work - 800 Bricks and 6 bus. Lime make a rod.
9th Oct As severe a Drought has prevail’d this Summer as has been known for many years - & much hot weather wh. still continues - Feed and water have been generally much wanted yet the cattle hold their condition to admiration - Turnips have suffer’d so much from the mildew & want of rain that many acres are feeding off, being of no value to stand -
A fine rain has fallen to Day but not sufficient to plow for sowing wheat.
Butter and Cheese
Has sold at 36 - 38 - 39 pr. Wey & Firk’n (?) Dairies - a single wey flat cheese at 3d. per lb and firkins for housekeepers at 40s
Oct 1791 Mr Wilde an Irish Gentm. Propos’d to ride 127 miles in 9 hours - He betted 1900 (probably gns but could be £), nobody would back Him, the knowing ones deem’d it impossible, and laid 3 to 1 against Him - He rode a Two mile Course between Hills on an Elastic Turf. Had 10 blood-Horses, drank a little brandy and water, every time He chang’d them, and had Two hours and thirty nine minuets to spare and walk’d his Horse the last Two miles - He rode exactly 20 miles an hour during the time and only chaif’d the skin off his fingers & knees -
The Duke of Bedford, Mr Fox and four more shot at Calquohonds’s in Norfolk in one Day 80 Cock Pheasants and 40 Hares beside partridges and woodcocks etc.
1791 Christopher Love’s Prophesies - those that are come to pass are the American and French Revolutions and many other events - He further says God will be known to many in 1795, this will produce a great man. The stars will wander and the moon turn as Blood in 1803 - An Earthquake all over the World in 1805 and a General reformation & Peace for Ever -
Rec’d from Helmingham Park a beautifull spotted fawn, in July last then only 5 days old - she is call’d Fanny & is very tame and a great favourite -
Nov. 16th Finished planting and sowing 31 & a ½ Acres of Wheat - the season has been very good for the purpose.
Prince Esterhazy of Germany is said to possess Domains to the enormous amount of Two Hund. Thousand pounds pr. Annum..
1791 St Domingo. A general revolt of the Negroes on this Island has taken place - They were 36,000 strong have burnt 284 Plantations - Destroy’d 94 do. Burnt 169 Coffee do - kill’d several hundred whites - 8000 negroes have fallen in the different Engagements & 4000 have returned to their duty - All West India commodities have in consequence risen in price and common lump sugar to 13d. pr. Lb.
Dec. 10th Smart Frost with a flight of Snow - hitherto we have had a very mild Quarter, with refreshing showers & a fine Season for the new sowen Wheats
Dec. 12th Intense Frost. Ther.r 12 Degrees below freezing
Dec. 15th N. The new Jail at Ipswich, built on the plan of solitary Cells, was first inhabited this Summer; its Construction is novel, beautifull & strong. Prisoners are cloth’d in a peculiar Dress.
Dec. 1791 Turnips are sold from three to four pounds pr. A. to feed off & as high as 5.50 & upwards to draw -
Mr Hart, miller at Letheringham returning from Wood’ge Market, was stop’d & cruelly beaten, by a single footpad near Glevering wind mill about six o’Clock in the Evening.
The wretch fasten’d on his bridle, gave Mr. H. ten severe strokes on his head & face with a large stick demanding his Life or money - after getting Mr. H. on the ground & threatening to cut his Throat He pick’d his pocket of upwards of eighty pounds and left 28£s in another pocket being prevented making further search by a man & woman coming up - The villain leaving Mr. H. weltering in his blood, jump’d on Mr H’s horse & rode away - A man is taken on suspicion. H. is likely to recover.
1791 This year is predicted as a severe cold one - It has already set in as such - The old folks say every fourth year is a cold and frosty one, and every third a mild one.
Lent Mr Ed. Riches of Totington my German flute.