Rhode Island Stampless Covers & Letters
Introduction to Stampless Covers
1816 Letter from Henry Sherburne - Newport, RI
To Brown and Ives - Providence, RI
8 Cent Restored Rate of 1799 for distance under 40 Miles

(Scroll Down for Background Information and Text of Letter)

This letter was mailed on April 20, 1816 from Newport, RI and received in Providence on April 22. The letter was charged a rate of 8 cents for mail traveling 40 miles or less. This rate lasted only one month, from March 31 to April 30. On May 1, 1816 a new rate went into effect of 6 cents for less than 30 miles and 10 cents for 30 to 80 miles. Prior to March 31, 1816, beginning on December 28, 1814; a war rate (War of 1812) was in effect of 12 cents for mail traveling less than 40 miles. Letters containing the 1799 restored rates of April, 1816 are rare and much sought after by stampless era collectors.
The letter appears to be a dun for payment of a bounced note by Brown and Ives. There may have been shortages of ready cash by the firm at this time, as this was shortly after the War of 1812 ended, which caused severe disruption to commercial shipping and enterprise by many American companies due to the British blockade of American ports and to privateering during the war.

Newport April 20th 1816

Messrs Brown and Ives

You are hereby notified that Cranston & Shaw note by you endorsed for Six Hundred and Thirty Two Dollars and Ninety Three cents & payable at the Bank of Rhode Island was this day protested for Non payment of the holders there. I look to you for payment at this time.

   H. Sherburne Public Notary

There was also a return notation as follows on the cover: 
Newport 20 April 1816
Henry Sherburne
rw 22
advising of the non payment of Cranston Shaw note
See below links for further information: 
The History of Brown and Ives with Brown family Genealogy 
1789 Brown and Benson Letter from Champion and Dickason - London 
1834 Brown & Ives Letter from Amsterdam Factor
1852 Brown & Ives Letter from Baring Brothers - London, England 
Brown and Ives Family of Providence - Covers & Letters 
SEE ALSO: 1817 Cover and letter with May 1, 1816 - 6 cent rate for under 30 miles

RI Historical Society
Stampless I
Stampless II

Stampless III
Stampless IV
Stampless V
Stampless VI
Brown & Ives Letters
The Hazard Family Letters
Joseph Tillinghast
Free Franked Letters
DeWolf Family Letters

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