[From Atholl Papers - AP 42B-17]
Dunkeld 20 September 1764
I had last post the honour to receive your Lordships letter of the 12th acquainting me that not having an opportunity of informing yourselves of the value of the Isle of Man ; that you cannot possibly fix upon a price which as trustees for the public you should think yourselves authorized to propose, and desiring me if I now intend to treat for the sale of the Island, that I should transmitt an exact and accurate rental of the revenue thereof, specifying the several kinds of which it consists, the annual amount of each, and with respect to any customs or impost duties which I may receive, the several species of goods on which they were levied, the rates at which they are paid, and the annual amount arising from each species respectively.
In answer to this I must beg leave to repeat what I writ in my last letter to your Lordships, that having been so short a time in possession of the Isle of Man, and never having had the least thoughts of a sale till I received your first letter, it is impossible for me at present either to form a just idea what I should look upon as an adequate value for it. or to transmitt to your Lordships so accurate an account of the Revenues as could be relied on.
As neither your Lordships or myself are at present fully enough inform'd of the value of the Isle of Man to make any proposals, I apprehend no material detriment can attend the public by your delaying this treaty a few months longer.
I intended going these next summer, and at my return hope to be enabled to give in such proposals as well appear equitable to your Lordships. I am
most obedient & humble servant