from Gerald Milner

DGS member, Gerald Milner of the UK has sent three letters from his ancestral file in the hopes that someone will identify the principals mentioned and shed some light on their Irish background. The first two letters were sent by William and James Dalton, emigrants to New York from Ireland. They reveal much about the economic situation in the US, and mention the names of their relatives and friends in Ireland. Lisburn may be the focal point of this family. The third letter was sent from England to Lisburn, Ireland by Charles Dalton of Gravesend. In the letter he mentions the family's impending departure for New Zealand. Gerald is keenly interested in anyone who has connections with this family and to learn what happened to the family headed for Auckland, New Zealand.

Letter I
1853 Dalton Letter
"I am happy to know that all of you Family is in Good Health I am surprised of David being so Tall and in the Police it is Better than Weavering all his life I hope he will be Steady it may be Good for him if his Health Continues I expect that William John wrote your letter to me he must write heaver not like a Lady he is a fine young man now James says and Ellen is a Clever Tall young Woman I hope David Wife is restored to her Health again on account of the Children it must be hard on David. Glad I am that Ellen and Mary Rogers is Both well Give my love to the Both poor Children I would like to see them on ther Mothers account. I feel satified that my Brothers Sisters, Brother in Laws with their families is all well.
Eliza and I is well We have plenty to eate and Drink and Clothes to Wear as Long she can Dress in Silk and satin. I work in the same place now into my seventh year: Don't Let it be to Long before you Write again. Write a letter for me Mother us she get the money Giv it to herself Give James Eliza and my love to me Mother hersel and to your Misses and all our friends no more Brother I am your with affaction William Dalton
(written in margin) do you write I will ours to Albany Answer letter there is all toe particular I think of now
(on the reverse side of the sheet)
There's Many Reail Roads in the City 2 to Albany 140 miles for one dollar to Albany, in about 6 hours Run in Rout another along the side of the Hudson River 12 shillings or 1 1/2 Dollar through in 4 1/2 Hours to Albany 1 to New Haven and Boston and 1 to Ohio. 1 to Philadephia, and many City Rail Road besides Cars drawn by Two Horses each one you can ride 4 miles for 5 cents you call 2 1/2 pence Property is getting Dear on account of Building Stores 20 to 56,000 Thousands Dollar for a lot 25 feet Front from 10 to 100 feet Back, put up a Building on it that costs 40 to 60 thousand Dollar more the Cristle Palice was opened on Thursda July 14th by the President of the United States (*) and Friday the 15 for the Recption of Visitors amittance 25 Cents it will not pay the Costs. There has been a Great Deal of Thunder here this summer and Heavy Rains no Sickness
Jane Gurley is married to a carpenter I dont know his name. Stores Rent's here from 2 to 6 thousand a Year. Dry Goods Stores Muslims Silk Woolen Goods and Such and is called Dry Goods Here.
1 Dollar 100 Cents to the Shilling in New York, for William John to Know
(in margin) no letter a Sign Before the Dollar the same y (Designation for pound)

Letter II
New York: April 22nd 1855
Dear Mother
I write these few lines hopeing the will find you in good health when the reach your hands as the Leuve me at present, Considering your old age I send to you this Check for two pounds Sterling on the Bank of Ireland in Belfast, they me put it in the Bank of Lisburn or post office. I send it as a token of Love and respect for you only I hope you will enjoy it I send it to the Care of Edward for you I have been working with they Farmers these last Sixteen Months in the Summer ten Dollars a month in the Winter Seven in the State of New Jersey I got along very well Times has been very hard here in this Country this last winter as ever you seen me at home no work to be of any Kind, all Busines Stoped Banks Broken Merchants Failing and Victuals of all Kinds very Dear and Great Starvation was manifested among mechanicks and poor people Soup Houses was opend respectable and poor mechanicks and poor Labourers served dayly Flour 11 Dollars and half by the Single Barrel potatoes by the Bushel the Best is twelve and six pence the are called Carters Beef 1s to 1/6 per lb. That is 6 1/4d to 9/8 British Eggs for 12 1/2 cents or 1s Butter the Best 37 1/2 Cents a pound that is 18 3/4d British Chees 16 to 31 cents a pound Oats is 18 shilling a Bag 2 1/2 Bushles in a Bag Weight 80 lbs 85 pounds in a Bag nine shillings two and a halfpence British money Hay is one Dollar and a quarter for 100 lbs. Brand is 33 cent a Bushel Coal Seven Dollars a ton 2000 lbs. for a ton. the potatoes prices is Marican Money so you will understand. I have declared my intentions to become a Citizen of the United States on the 2nd of this Month and in two years more I can lift my Naturalization paper. I paid twenty cents now and fifty more when I lift my papers A young man from 18 to 30 years justs suits the Farmers here I have to stand out in the Woods Cutting Down timber in Rain frost and Snow from morning to night and half starved for want of Food some days only twice.
I am in new york now with William and Eliza But I intend to go to the Country to Work with the Farmers this Summer I believe I have Sent all the particulars I think of at Present William and Eliza is Both in Good health he is a Carman now he bought a Horse and Cart on the 20th April 1854 one year past for $330 Dollars and they works of a store his Boss Failed Last January than he has done pretty well since he fifteen Dollars up well before he Failed it has cost him to Keep the Horse and Cart Two Hundred fifty three Dollars and 31 Cents Stable Rent is two Dollars a month William and Eliza send their Love to all Brothers and Sisters
Dear Edward Give my Love to all my Brothers and Sister and Familys Hopeing they are all well no more at present Edward give this money to me Mother her self Write as soon as you Get the money the particular how Wm John and david. Ellen and Margaret and yourself is. How John David and Charles. Ellen and Mary Rogers John Fletcher Ellen and Family is all well
Direct your letter to 100 Anthony St. New York for William Dalton No more at present But Remains your affection@ Son James Dalton

Letter III
from Charles Dalton to Silas Dixon
Gravesend, 10 September 1874
Dear Silas i send you these few lines to let you know that we are all hopeing that these few lines will find you and your famley all well thank god for all his goodness to us we have got this length on our way we will sail right of this night we do not rue this as yet we are getin the best of treatment good beads and plenty of meat and all hands verey civil here we have got a great deal of friends here more than you would think of the wood give us anything
the do not know how to make mutch of us here there is over 500 on bord from all parts there is a great deal of fine children here all in good spirits I did not see one single teardrop here to we had a sermon from a minister before we sailed it was a verey pressing discorse we got from him he give us all books for the voyage we have everey encoragement here for going to newzealand from this i hope all my Edward &margret is well also David & famley is all well and all my old neighbours is of well let them all know that i was thinking about them all i suppose Robert Green has got no missus yet i might here of doing something yet the never looked at our boxes nor aneything we had the are using us well here I have rote this on the bullworks of the ship Ellenor is in first rate health she is captian of her mess that 8 people everey 8 is in one mess the single feamels is by themselves & single men also we have got good beads at night to lyin let all my neighbours now that i am getting on well so far thank god for all his goodness to us all the captain is a fine big scotch man and nearly al the sailors scotch to all frendley men i have little more to say at present but we remain your sincere friends i hope you will enjoy good health to i rite to you from Auckland let Thomas Jane Isiah now how we are getting along so no more from Charles Dalton Ellen and Ellenor you might rite to me in 2 months you will get the address from Thomas
Envelope addressed to: Mr. Silas Dixon, Englishtown, Maze by Lisburn, County Antrim Ireland.
Postmarked: Gravesend B, SP 10, 74 High St. On the reverse of envelope: Lisburn A, SE 12, 74

If you recognize any of the information in these letters, please send your reply to Gerald Milner at:

extracted by Michael Cayley, DGS Archivist

Vol VI, Edward III, 1347-1356, pub. HMSO 1921
2 April 1347, Reading. Order to the sheriff of Lancaster to take into the king’s hands John de Dalton’s lands following the abduction of Margery de la Beche. (Other sheriffs were ordered to seize Margery’s own lands.)

1 May 1347, Reading. Per order to the sheriff of Lancaster, on pain of forfeiture, to cause to be arrested John son of Robert de Dalton, ‘chivaler’, Robert de Dalton ‘le cosyn’, Robert de Dalton father of John de Dalton, Sarah Ballof mother of John de Dalton and others who were indicted by the king’s writ before William de Thorp and his fellows, justices of oyer and terminer, of the rape of Margery late the wife of Nicholas de la Beche, and of the death of Michael de Pnynges ‘le uncle’ and Thomas le Clerk of Shipton, an dof other felonies, trespasses, excesses and contempts committed at Beaumes by Redyng, and were put in exigent for outlawry in the county of Wilts by process before the said justices, as appears by the tenour of the indictments, record and process sent to the king in Chancery, and now stay and wander in the said sheriff’s bailiwick, committing evil deeds night and day, which business amounts ot sedition, the cognisance whereof pertains to the king and no other in the realm; and to cause the same to be brought to the Tower of London to be delivered there to the constable or his lieutenant, there to be kept until further order; and to cause their lands and goods to be seized into the king’s hand and kept safely, answering at the Exchequer for the goods and for the issues of the lands.
Similar orders to the sheriffof York, the justices in Wales, and the justice of Edward, earl of Chester.

10 May 1347, Reading. Order to the sheriff of Lancaster, and the sheriffs throughout England, on pain of forfeiture, to cause to be arrested John de Dalton, Robert de Dalton ‘le cosyn’, Robert de Dalton father of John de Dalton, Sarah Baillof mother of John de Dalton, and others, who were indicted before William de Thorp and his fellows, justices of oyer and terminer, of felonies committed at Beaumes by night, and of the rape of Margery late the wife of Nicholas de la Beche, and of killing Michael de Ponyngs ‘le uncle’, and Thomas le Clerc of Shipton and others, and of taking away goods to the value of 1000l., an dof wounding divers men, and were put in exigent for outlawry in the county of Wilts, as above; and also to cause to be arrested their accomplices, who, the king has learned, have harboured them contrary to the sheriff’s proclamation; and to cause them and their accopmlices to be brought to the Tower of London to be delivered to the constable thereof or his lieutenant, there to be kept until further order; and to cause their lands and goods to be seized into the king’s hand, so that answer may be made at the Exchequer for the goods and for the issues of the lands, and to certify the king in Chancery hereon.

27 Nov 1347. Lands held by Margery de la Beche granted to Thomas de Ponyngges, knight.

14 Feb 1348. The sheriffs of a number of counties commissioned to seize the lands of those alleged to have been involved in the abduction of Margery de la Beche.

12 March 1350, Westminster. Grant to the king’s clerk, William de Dalton, of the marriage of the son and heir of John de Cave of Beverley, deceased, who held by knight service of the heir of William de Ros, a minor in the king’s ward, to hold the same as shall be agreed upon between him and the treasurer.

29 April 1350, Westminster. Grant to Willoam de Dalton, king’s clerk, for 20l. which he will pay in the wardrobe, of the wardship of the lands in Middelton, co. York, late of John de Cave of Middelton, who held by knight service of the heir of William de Roos of Hamelak, a minor in the king’s ward, to hold the same, with the issues since John’s death, until the lawful age of the heir, together with his marriage; and so from heir to heir.

6 June 1350, Westminster. Commitment to William de Dalton, king’s clerk, of the wardship of the lands in Great Hoghton, Clophull and Caynho late of Brian Saffrey, who held by knight service of the heir of Laurence de Hastynges, late earl of Pembroke, a minor in the king’s ward, to hold from Easter last until the full age of Brian’s heir, together with the marriage of such heir, rendering 100s. yearly in the wardrobe for the wardship, by equal portions at Michaelmas and Easter, and paying 10l. there for the marriage. [Vacated because surrendered, and the said William did not meddle therein and nothing thereof was done.]

25 June 1353, Westminster. Appointment during pleasure of William de Dalton, king’s clerk, as keeper of the king’s great wardrobe, with the accustomed wages and fees.
Order to John de Thorp and Giles de Wyngreworth to deliver to him all cloths, wax, spices and other things pertaining to the office which are in their keeping after the death of Robert de Wyngreworth, late keeper.

12 Oct 1354, Westminster. Commitment to John son of Robert de Dalton, knight, by mainprise of William de Wyndesore, knight, and John de Stirkeland, of the keeping of the manor of Berewyk, in the duchy of Lancaster, which is in the king’s hand by reason of the minority of John de Berewyk, son and heir of Ralph de Berewyk, who held it of the king by knight service as of the lordship late of William de Coucy, which is in the king’s hand for certain causes, and of the keeping of certain lands in Steynton, co. Westmoreland, which are in the king’s hand by reason of the minority oif the same John de Berewyk, kinsman and heir of John de Berewyk, who held them of the king by knight service as of the saeid lordship, to hold until the lawful age of the said heir, rendering 10 marks yearly in the king’s chamber by equal portions at Easter and Michaelmas. Grant to him, also, of the marriage of the said heir, for 20 marks to be paid in the king’s chamber by moieties at Midsummer next and Hilary following.

Vol VII, Edward III, 1356-1368, pub. HMSO 1923
1 May 1357, Westminster. Order to the collectors of petty custom in the port of London, - notwithstanding a previous order to appraise in the presence of William de Dalton, clerk of the great wardrobe, the 4 woollen cloths which were taken into the king’s hand as forfeit because they were exposed for sale before being sealed with the king’s seal for the custom and subsidy on such cloths, and to deliver them to William by indenture - to sell the said cloths, and all other like cloths which have been or may be arrested for the same cause, in the presence of the said William or his deputy, delivering to him the moneys forthcoming from such sale.

1 August 1358, Westminster. Commitment to Thomas de Dalton and Margery, his wife, of the keeping of all the lands in the county of Northumberland held by them in the right of Margery, which have been taken into the king’s hand.

Extracted by K. T. Mapstone

Name of Passenger Residence Arrived Age

Ada Dalton Jamaica 1907 47
Agnes Dalton Kingston, Jamaica 1922 18
Beatrix Dalton Bermuda 1906 22
Cecil Dalton Bermuda 1906 55
Ethel Dalton Spanish Town, Jamaica 1909 49
Federika Dalton West Indies 1914 24
Florence Dalton Havana, Cuba 1919 43
Frank Dalton Nuevitas, Cuba 1913 20
Frederick Dalton Spanish Town, West Indies 1907 17
George Dalton Trinidad 1894 33
Herbert Dalton Mexico 1908 37
James Dalton Barbados 1907 19
James Dalton Bermuda 1907 58
James Dalton Spanish ...awin, Jamaica 1909 49
John T. Dalton Kingston, Jamaica 1923 25
Mable Dalton Barbados, BWI 1911 50
Maria Luisa Dalton Havana, Cuba 1905 24
Mary Dalton Havana, Cuba 1921 18
May Dalton Kingston, Jamaica, WI 1917 15
Michael J. Dalton Buenos Aires 1904 29
Muriel Dalton Jamaica 1907 09
Neale Dalton Prospect, Bermuda 1911 23
Petronella Dalton St. Croix 1904 41
Philip S. Dalton Puerto Rico 1903 28
Stanhope Justice Dalton Port au Spain, Trinidad 1920 21
S. Justice Dalton Port au Spain, Trinidad 1921 22