On This Day: 11 August 1706

On this day in 1706, Thomas Bowrey drafted a petition to Queen Anne on behalf of himself and the other owners and freighters of the Worcester and cargo. This was just one of many petitions to the Queen, Parliament and others concerning the Worcester starting within months of the seizure of the ship at Leith and continuing for a number of years. The seizure of the Worcester was claimed to have been in reprisal for the seizure of the Annandale by the East India Company.

This petition quantified their losses as £35,006/1/3, calculated as sum they would have been to make by trading and interest with their initial loss of £23,975/00/10. It is a remarkably precise figure (Bowrey’s calculations are not given) and would equate to at least £5.3m today. A substantial sum but I doubt that the petitioners were in the distressed Condition the petition claims. They wanted Queen Anne to issue Letters of Reprisal against the Scots Company or by such other ways as she in her great Wisdome should seem meet.

This latest petition had been prompted by the legal judgement requiring them to pay the seamen’s wages which with our other great losses is unsupportable and will be the utter ruine of Several of us unless Relieved by your Royall Bounty.



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