[lit-ideas] Re: A 'hermeneutic' circle

  • From: David Ritchie <profdritchie@xxxxxxxxx>
  • To: lit-ideas@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 8 Jul 2012 11:45:33 -0700

Apprenticed as a barrel maker.  Maybe didn't have the patience, so he turned to 
sugar broking.  Can't manage a similar Maqn-Booker connection myself, but 
thinking about barrels and sugar and their influence on history, I come to rum 
and George Washington's campaign against Thomas Swearingen.

A law at that time stood on the Virginia statutes forbidding all treating or 
giving of what were called "ticklers" to the voters, and declaring illegal all 
elections which were thus influenced. None the less, the voters of Frederick 
enjoyed at Washington's charge—

40 gallons of Rum Punch @ 3/6 pr. galn                 7   0   0
15 gallons of Wine @ 10/ pr. galn                      7  10   0
Dinner for your Friends                                3   0   0
13-1/2 gallons of Wine @ 10/                           6  15
3-1/2 pts. of Brandy @ 1/3                                 4   4-1/2
13 Galls. Beer @ 1/3                                      16   3
8  qts. Cyder Royl @ 1/6                               0  12   0
Punch                                                      3   9
30 gallns. of strong beer @ 8d pr. gall                    1   0
1 hhd & 1 Barrell of Punch, consisting of
       26 gals. best Barbadoes rum, 5/                 6  10   0
       12 lbs. S. Refd. Sugar 1/6                         18   9
3 galls. and 3 quarts of Beer @ 1/ pr. gall                3   9
10 Bowls of Punch @ 2/6 each                           1   5   0
9 half pints of rum @ 7-1/2 d. each                        5   7-1/2
1 pint of wine                                             1   6
After the election was over, Washington wrote Wood that "I hope no Exception 
was taken to any that voted against me, but that all were alike treated, and 
all had enough. My only fear is that you spent with too sparing a hand." It is 
hardly necessary to say that such methods reversed the former election; 
Washington secured three hundred and ten votes, and Swearingen received 
forty-five.


David Ritchie,
not running in
Portland, Oregon

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