James Duncan papers  1673-1875
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Collection Scope and Content Note

The Duncan papers include manuscripts relating to James Duncan's Revolutionary War service (items 2-6, 23), principally his attempts to gain compensation for losses sustained while in the service of the British crown. The series of documents concerning the settlement of his estate (folders 10-12, 15-17) are useful for study of English probate, and the remainder of the collection relates mainly to the legal affairs of the family. Of particular interest, however, are an account by James Duncan's ancestor, William Duncan (1613-ca.1673) about a shipwreck in 1631 (folder 1), and a draft of a manuscript written by James Duncan proposing a plan for ending slavery in Great Britain and ridding the country of its former slaves (folder 22). The collection also includes a broadside: Verses Inscribed to Captain James Duncan, of the Rose-Bud Privateer, New York.

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