For sale is a rare handwritten COLONIAL ERA LEGAL SURETY BOND from a Norfolk Court. This rare legal document was drafted by the clerk of court as a legal form with standard text and blank spaces to be completed when needed upon execution. This unexecuted document is believed to date to the 1700s because of the reference to his Majesty’s Justices. The American colonies were part of the Great Britain monarchy back in the 1700s. It is also interesting that the document refers to a Virginia currency. This fragile document from the 1700s shows signs of wear consistent with its age. A long time ago, someone put some cellophane tape on the back of the document. The document measures about 10 inches by 7 inches. The color of the ink is dark. The cursive writing is very stylized and striking. It’s rare to come across a court document from colonial America. A great historical and ephemera collectible.
This document would have been executed at the Courthouse and presented with a separate contract. The surety bond would have established the amount owed in the event contract performance was not accomplished.
The document is clearly written but due to the cursive style and legal terminology some of the words are hard to decipher. The document reads as follows:
“Know all Men by these Presents that we _____________ are held & firmly bound with _______________ in the sum of __________ I owe money of Virginia to (illegible) payment will and truly to be made to thus: __________________ his heirs, Ex. [abbreviation for executer], , Adm. [abbreviation for Administrators] or assigns we bind ourselves our heirs, Ex. and Adm. jointly & severally firmly by these Presents Sealed with our Seal & dated this ______ Day of _______
The Condition of the above Obligation is such that whereas the above bound __________________ hath this Day applied to me one of his Majesty’s Justices of the Peace for the County of Norfolk for an attachment of the estate of the above named _______________ Returnable to the Norfolk Court to be held for thou County of Norfolk and attained the same Norfolk the said ______________ do and shall will & truly pay to thus: _________________ in case the said ______________ shall (illegible) in his attachment. This the above obligation to be void or else to be in full force & Power of Justices.
Sealed & Delivered
In the Presents of”