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In Their Own Words

August 25, 1804

Contract for Apprentice

Reuben King brought in an apprentice to help in his tanning shop in Darien - he also wanted to help educate him. He recorded the contract - or “indenture” - in his journal:

“John Hale came to live with me as an Apprentice and the indentures ware drawn after the following manner —- This Indenture made the twenty-fifth Day of August in the year of our Lord one thousand eight Hundred and four between William Ray as guardian for John Hale of McIntosh County and State of Georgia on the one part and Reuben King of the Same State and County on the other part Witnesseth that the afforesaid William Ray as Guardian for the said John Hale with his advise and voluntary consent have put and placed the said John Hale an apprintice to the said Reuben King with him to dwell and serve from the Date of these presents for and during and unto the full end and term of Six Years and Six Months during all which term the said Apprintice his Master faithfully Shall Serve in all lawful business according to his power and wit and ability - Honestly orderly and obediently and in all things well and truly conduct and demean himself as an apprintice - and the said Reuben King for himself his heirs executors and Administrators doath covenant promise and agree to and with the Said William Ray for the time being that he the Said Reuben King the Said apprintice in the art and mystery of a tanner and currier which he now useth Shall and will teach and instruct or cause to be taught and instructed in the best manner he can and shall and will during all the term aforesaid find provid[e] and allow unto the said apprintice good and sufficient meat and drink and apparrel lodging and washing and all other things fit and necessary for an apprintice during the said term and at the end or experation thereoff will supply furnish and diliver unto the said John Hale Thurty Dollars Cash or to that amount in Cloathing I am also bound to give the said John Hale learning that is to lern him to read and write - As im [I am] determined to learn the boy I bought him a Spelling book and intend he shall read every day during his apprintice Ship…”

Source: Virginia Steele Wood and Ralph Van Wood, ed. The Reuben King Journal, 1800-1806. Savannah, Georgia, The Georgia Historical Society, 1971, pp. 88-89.