Relatively little primary source material on mercantile activities in Cork survives for the eighteenth century. The Hare letterbook is by far the most comprehensive extant work for a Cork export business and it contain 843 letters covering the period 1771 to 1772 (with occasional gaps). It records Richard Hare’s exchanges with some 265 correspondents, mostly in Britain (London, Bristol and Liverpool), but also in Ireland, the West Indies and Europe.
The Correspondence recorded in this merchant letterbook provides an important primary source for local history, genealogy, biography, landed estates, social and economic history, and for students of business administration.
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