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Bacon's Rebellion

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46            NARRATIVES OF THE INSURRECTIONS

original was retained in the archives of the society. In 1856
Conway Robinson, chairman of the executive committee of
the Virginia Historical Society, wrote to Massachusetts ask-
ing for the return of the manuscript, but the society, after con-
sulting with Mr. Quincy, at that time advanced in years and
failing in memory, declined to comply with Mr. Robinson’s
request, on the ground that the document was the property
of the society.

      ln 1866, the original letter written by Burwell to Quincy
having come to light, the members of the society learned for
the first time of the conditions under which the manuscript
had been placed in their hands and determined to return it
to Virginia. Finding, however, that the earlier printed ver-
sion was very imperfect, as it contained many errors in the text
and was incomplete, the society decided to reprint the manu-
script and did so in the Proceedings for August, 1866, pp. 299-
342. The original was then returned to Virginia and is to-
day among the Burwell manuscripts in the custody of the
Virginia Historical Society.

      The volume is “in the form of a small octavo, the text, with
the heading, measuring five and a half by three and a half
inches, not paged. The portion which remains contains fifty-
two pages. The chirography is remarkably distinct. Sev-
eral leaves being destroyed at the beginning and end, there is
no title, except the running headings on each page. Many of
the remaining leaves are much injured by time.” (Proceed-
ings
, Massachusetts Historical Society, 1866, p. 342, note.)

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