Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Richard Price - 20 December 1803 - Five per Cent Annuities, 1797

Richard Price had a 5 per cent annuity purchased from the English government. This was similar to a savings bond in the U.S. today. It was purchased for £199.14.6 on December 20, 1803 and would be redeemable at a future date for £220.1.8. This would be equivalent today to buying a bond for $19,400 and redeeming it for $21,500.

Ezra Poulsen in his biography of Robert Price stated the following regarding this document:
Another document of unusual interest is a receipt to Mr. Richard Price for 199 pounds, fourteen shillings, six pence from "Five per Cent Annuities," dated December 20, 1803. The total maturity value of this investment was 220 pounds, 1 shilling, 8 pence. "Five per Cent Annuities," a governmental agency set up by act of Parliament in 1797, was a means through which the government borrowed money from its own citizens for a specified rate of interest. In principle, this investment operated like our modern United States savings bonds.
There are numerous examples of these annuities on a website entitled the AnnuityMuseum.

It is unknown when or how this was redeemed.

It is also unknown who has possession of this receipt today. The reproduction here was taken from the biography of Robert Price where it appears on the plates between pages 36 and 37. It would be nice to locate and scan the original in color--judging from the reproductions in the AnnuityMuseum it is likely that the words at the head of this document "Five per Cent. Annuities. 1797" were printed in red ink.

No comments:

Post a Comment