Anatomy of a Madeira Letter – Receipt Docketing | Hogshead
Home > History of wine, Picture > Anatomy of a Madeira Letter - Receipt Anchor Anatomy of a Madeira Letter - Anchoring Receipts A pair of related letters received by Messrs. Newton Gordon Murdoch & Scott, Madeira May 30, 1817. Author's collection. On the back of an individual letter from Madeira you will find its […]

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Anatomy of a Madeira Letter - Anchoring Receipts


A pair of related letters received by Messrs. Newton Gordon Murdoch & Scott, Madeira May 30, 1817. Author's collection.

On the back of an individual letter from Madeira you will find its recorded history. This information includes who sent the letter and from where, when it was written, when it was received and when it was answered.

The first image presented in this article illustrates the memorization of receipts for two letters of introduction sent to MM. Newton Gordon Murdoch and Scott of Madeira. The letters relate to two men each traveling from London to Calcutta via Madeira. Written one day apart, the letters were received in Madeira on May 30, 1817. They were promptly answered the next day, possibly because the gentleman himself was on the same boat as the one on which the letters were sent. been sent.

A letter received by MM. Newton Gordon Murdoch & Scott, Madeira November 29, 1809. Author's collection.

Not all letters received a timely response. One of these letters, sent by parcel, took only 11 days to travel from London to Madeira. However, it took almost four months to respond! The letter concerns an order for 10 Madeira pipes to be sent first to Brazil before returning to London. It is possible that the response was not drafted until after the pipes returned from Brazil, hence the long delay.

A letter received by MM. Newton Gordon Murdoch & Scott, Madeira February 22, 1791. Author's collection.

The last cover in this article indicates that two letters with different dates from Francis Newton were received. Although written on a single sheet, Francis Newton first provides an extract from his previously sent letter dated November 30, 1790, which is followed by his present letter dated December 6, 1790. The extract from the previous letter is marked "Copy", which is perhaps why it is saved with "Duplicates". The letters were received on February 22, 1791 and marked "ans'd formerly". The first letter may have been received and responded to before the last copy arrived.


We would recommend either Wineworks Premium or Wineworks Superior as your first 30 Bottle Kit Wine. Both of these ranges are designed to produce a good quality wine that is ready to drink within 2-4 weeks but will benefit if left up to 6-8 weeks. Furthermore, they also have a great selection of wines to choose from.

If you’ve never made wine before or you simply don’t have any of the equipment or ingredients any longer then you could purchase one of our bundles. These bundles allie all the required equipment along with your prefered wine kit so that you can have everything delivered to your door and just get started. The Wineworks Superior Starter Bundles are a great choice if you want to keep the equipment budget down but still choose the quality of wine you’d like to go for. Whereas, the Wineworks Luxury Starter Bundles offer a better quality equipment pack and still let you choose from a great choice of wine kits.

The two most important critères of making wine are Cleanliness and Temperature. Firstly remember everything that comes into contact with the wine should be cleaned and sterilised ( see below ). Secondly maintain a constant temperature between 21-26°C ( 69-79°F ). It is much better to be on the cool side and constant than hot one minute and cold the next. Airing cupboards are definitely no, no’s. ( See below )

Clean and sterilise all equipment. Here’s a selection of Sterilisers you can use and if you not quite sure which steriliser to go for then you can take a look at our Beginners Wine Making Part 1 - Cleaning, Sterlising

Wineworks Superior wines : These usually take 10-15 days to ferment, and a further week to clear. Again the wine can be drunk immediately but we recommend ageing it 4 weeks but you can leave it up to 12 months. The time you will leave it will depend very much on your stocks. So get plenty built up. The reds benefit more than the whites with ageing. Certain kits ( see the list below ) are suited more to the experienced wine maker and take around 4 weeks to ferment and then left for a further 2 weeks. These products does really benefit from ageing. All the packs we list in this section require little ageing.

As it’s new to you it will probably take in all 2 hours for your first batch. However, once you are used to it 1 hour is about the maximum amount of time needed. We would also point out bar the bottling side; it takes just as long to make 6 bottles as it does to make 30 bottles, so we strongly recommend you make the larger quantity. After all 6 bottles doesn’t go very far as we said before !

From our experience it is much better to maintain a constant temperature than a fluctuating one. We suggest 21-26°C ( 69-79°F ), although if it is cooler than this, it is not a problem, it just takes slightly longer to ferment. If you can’t maintain this then we supply three different forms of heating equipment : Brew Belt / Heat BeltThis is a simple insulated electric cable that wraps round your conteneur and provides a gentle heat. It is very souple and extremely easy to use. Heat Tray ( 4 demi/5 Gallon Fermenter ) This is like a flat tray that provides a gentle continuous heat that goes under the fermenter. Immersion HeaterThis drops into the container, through the bung and can be thermostatically controlled to maintain the exact temperature. Similar to a fish tank heater. All these can be added to our starter kit packages. See our video showing the variétés of heating equipment available for your fermentation.

It is important to clean

If you’ve made it this far, hopefully understanding a bit of what we’ve said, then you’ll want to know how much it will cost to get started ! As you may have noticed, we’ve put together a couple of equipment kits which include everything you need, and take the confusion out of buying. You can make your first 30 bottles of Wine for approximately £65. 00. That’s all in ( Equipment

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