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Southern Historical Society Papers.

dollars. The country had been devastated, the property of the planters, in slaves and cattle, carried off; cities plundered, towns burned. The value of the currency had fallen to almost nothing. In December, 1778, one thousand dollars in Continental bills was worth about $150 in hard dollars. In December, 1779, it was worth $38. In 1780 it took $1,000 in Continental bills to buy $25 in hard dollars. The following accounts, copied from original vouchers printed some years ago in the Historical Magazine, will, perhaps, give a better idea of the depreciation of the currency then in use, than could be done otherwise, as they exhibit the real difference in business transactions between Continental paper and specie in 1781:

The United States


To Sam'l Martin, Dr.

May 28.—To shoeing two wagon horses belonging to the Continental. . . . . . . . . . 60 pounds

Received the above sum this day of Mr. Thomas Pitt

(Signed) Samuel Martin.

The United States

Sept. 2.

To Wm. Hansill, Dr.

To 1 1/2 pounds Brown thread at 88 shillings per pound. Depreciation at at 600 per 1 . . . . . . . 360 pounds

Staunton, Va., 27th Sept., 1781. Received payment.

(Signed) Wm. Hansill.

The United States


To Richard Mathews, Dr.

Oct. 17th.—To 1,000 wt. of Bar Iron at sixpence per pound, the depreciation at 600 per 1 . . . . . 15,000 pounds

Staunton, Va., 17th Oct., 1781. Received payment.

(Signed) Richard Mathews.