America and West Indies: August 1694, 16-31

Pages 324-341

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 14, 1693-1696. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1903.

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August 1694

Aug. 16. 1,227. John Povey to William Bridgeman. Requiring of the Admiralty a list showing the present distribution of ships at war, with their opinion as to the ships that should be sent to Jamaica, and directing that an advice-boat for Jamaica be at once prepared. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 53. p. 211.]
Aug. 16. 1,228. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. The Commissioners of sick and wounded and for exchange of prisoners attended, when the Lords drew attention to the constant liberation of the French prisoners taken in the West Indies.
An express arrived with Sir William Beeston's letters of 23 June. The Admiralty was desired to send at once a list of ships of war, with their present stations, and of the number that can be spared for Jamaica, and also to prepare an advice-boat to be ready to sail to Jamaica. A letter to Sir William Beeston was also directed to be prepared.
Aug. 17. Captain Hide's letter of defence read, and orders given for the damage done by his company to be made good by stoppage from their pay. List of men-of-war received, and orders given for enquiry as to the obtaining transport ships. The Secretary at War attended and was ordered to consult with Lord Romney as to the men that can be drafted from the army to Jamaica. The Navy Board directed to make enquiry as to transport ships. It was reported that the merchants were under no apprehension of the loss of the Island, but of the devastation of a portion of it only.
Abstract of proceedings in Virginia as to bulk tobacco read and referred to the Treasury.
Major Crispe's petition (see No. 1,010 I.) read and referred to the Treasury. [Board of Trade. Journal, 7. pp. 320–329.]
[Aug. 17.] 1,229. Abstract of the proceedings of the General Assembly of Virginia in reference to Act for ports, the prohibition to export bulk-tobacco and the revision of the laws. 12 October to 11 November. 2 pp. Endorsed, Read 17 Aug. '94. [Board of Trade. Virginia, 5. No. 57; and 36. pp. 272, 273.]
Aug. 17. 1,230. Minutes of Council of Barbados. Governor Russell's Commission read, himself sworn, and the Council sworn. Order for a proclamation of his assumption of the Government. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XII., pp. 461–463; and Board of Trade. Barbados, 65. pp. 1, 2.]
Aug. 17.
1,231. Minutes of Council of New York. The Governor reported that Count Frontenac had sent him a belt of wampum, which he suspected to be a snare to make the Indians believe that a peace was agreed on between French and English, and that the English had broken faith with the Indians. Resolved that the belt cannot be received. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXV., pp. 553, 554.]
Aug. 17. 1,232. Minutes of Council of Massachusetts. Order for payment of £100 apiece to Elisha Cooke and Thomas Oakes for their services as Agents in England, as also the expense of their passages; also of £100 to William Blathwayt for his services as Auditor General, and of £100 each to Sir Henry Ashurst and Mr. Constantine Phips as well as £200 more for the expenses of the agency. Further evidence taken as to the charges against the Governor. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXIV., pp. 267, 268.]
Aug. 17. 1,233. John Povey to the Secretary of the Treasury. Forwarding the petition of Major Joseph Crispe (see No. 1,010 I) for consideration and report. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 44. p. 186.]
Aug. 17. 1,234. John Povey to the Commissioners of the Navy. Desiring them to ascertain at what rates ships may be taken up for transport of troops to Jamaica, and when they will be ready to sail. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 53. p. 200.]
Aug. 18.
1,235. William Bridgeman to John Povey. The Admiralty will be ready to lay before the Committee their opinion as to men of war for Jamaica. Signed. Wm. Bridgeman. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. No. 39; and 53. p. 211.]
Aug. 18.
1,236. Lieutenant-Governor Sir William Beeston to the Duke of Shrewsbury. I send copy of the narrative of what passed while the French were here. Since then Major Low and Lieutenant-Colonel Clarke, who were detained by Mons. du Cas all the time of his expedition hither, have returned, with the captain of the Falcon and many other prisoners. I shall shortly send back forty French prisoners that I have here. Major Low tells me that the French returned to Hispaniola very sickly, and it may be concluded that what with many killed and wounded and dead of sickness they have lost half their numbers they brought with them. The men-of-war also are returning to France, so that with men and ships we could not only revenge ourselves but root them out of Hispaniola. I have great reason to be suspicious of the Spaniards as to this late enterprise of the French, for not only did they know of the French preparations, but I sent an express to the President of Panama to tell him what advantage he had, and I know that he received it in good time. With 200 men he might have rooted the French out of Hispaniola, for Du Cas left only the English prisoners, women, children and two hundred sickly decrepit men behind him; and he would hardly have done this for nine weeks together had there not been some good understanding between them, though if the French gain this Island the Spaniards will not find them such easy neighbours as we have been. We have been wholly betrayed not only by renegades from our own nation and by Irish deserters, but also too clearly (though it cannot be positively proved) by some dwellers here, who held correspondence with the French and hoped when they came that their estates would be spared. I have sent to Mr. Blathwayt copies of letters which show this and which I have chanced to intercept. Again, when Captain Bryan of H.M.S. Falcon was taken, Mons. Du Cas said that he would ask him no questions about Jamaica affairs as he doubted not that he knew them better himself. He added that he had intelligence thence every week or ten days, and knew all our force and how and where they were seated, so that we are in an ill condition with such an enemy so near us and such villains among ourselves to betray us to them. Captain Bryan, who goes by this ship, will give you further particulars and I have written also to the Lords of Trade and Plantations. Signed. Wm. Beeston. Duplicate. 1½ pp. Endorsed, R. 1 July, '95. Annexed,
1,236. I. A brief account of what passed in Jamaica during the preparations and duration of the French attacks on it in 1694. Privateering having been for some years past discountenanced in Jamaica and encouraged among the French at Hispaniola, many of our people who cared not to live any other kind of life went over to them and in time became their people. Others also went, some of them Roman Catholics, some Irish, some because they thought it their duty to serve King James, some because they were in debt or dissatisfied. Thus the French were strengthened and ourselves weakened. Among the chief of these rogues was one Grubbin, who was born here of English parents, and who knowing every part of the Island had done much mischief by landing in the night, robbing lone settlements, and going away again before notice could be given to any force to oppose him. Stapleton and Lynch, two Irishmen who were here since my coming hither, also proved very inveterate. Stapleton came from the Windward Islands with his wife and child, and was kindly used about Port Morant. Lynch, as I guess, came in a sloop as a spy. He refused the oaths when tendered to him, and got out of the way before I could have him apprehended. I sent warrants all over the Island for him, but Major Kelly kept him privately at his plantation for six months, notwithstanding the warrants. These two, as appears from letters since intercepted, had too close a correspondence with some of our windward inhabitants, where their abode was while they were here. At length Major Kelly found a way to send them off in a sloop, which he pretended he was sending to Curaçoa for seamen (and probably this was part of his design); so loading up the ship with about 1,200l. worth of indigo he sent it privately away, contrary to the Acts of Trade. About this time Kelly was killed by a party of French, who had landed at Cow Bay, while riding up to Port Morant to despatch this sloop. The sloop sailed soon after, with Lynch and Stapleton in her, who in requital for his kindness ran away with her and cargo to the French. They then (as I am informed) told Mons. Du Cas that the Island could be easily subdued, and that the fortifications at Port Royal were out of powder and few men in them, so that 200 men could take that place, and 200 more could march where they would into the country, so few were the people, and so little used to arms. Stapleton wrote to his wife (whom he had lodged by the seaside in St. Thomas's parish for the purpose) that he would come and fetch her and some company, meaning negroes, with her. He made other revelations also therein, but by chance the letters came to my hands, and I secured his wife. Some time in April one Captain Elliot was sent in a sloop by some merchants with a cargo go £8,000 or £10,000 to trade on the coasts of Carthagena and Porto Bello, where he was captured by two French privateers and carried to Petit Guavos. About the same time I had with much ado got the Falcon manned, and, to keep the small French privateers from landing parties to plunder, I ordered Captain Bryan to cruise seven or eight leagues to windward of the Island to prevent them from coming down on us. This he did with great diligence and made two or three cruises; but about the middle of April he met with six privateers, with 500 men aboard, to be landed for the plunder of St. Thomas's and St. David's parishes. The Falcon made sail towards them, on which (as we afterwards heard) Major Beauregard called a Council of War, and would have fought the Falcon, but the captain of the privateers refused, saying that at best they would only get broken bones and spoil their men for any other design. So off they ran and all outsailed the Falcon but one, a New England provision ship, which had been captured on her way hither. This the Falcon took and brought in, but I sent the frigate back in forty-eight hours to cruise in the same place. At this very juncture some merchant ships and three men-of-war arrived at Petit Guavos from France; and the Governor, being told by the privateers where the Falcon was, sent them after her. They soon met her, fought her and were too many for her; but of this we were ignorant for some weeks.
Some time before this, one of our armed sloops belonging to the Island had accidentally met with Grubbin's wife, a Frenchwoman, on the coast of Hispaniola. They would have left her where she was, but she earnestly begged to go with them and be quit of her husband who, she said, used her very ill. They therefore brought her here, and though I would have sent her away again, being a French-woman, she desired earnestly to stay and have protection; and it was a stated agreement between Du Cas and myself that such of their nation as were with us should not be sent away against their wills, and the like for ours that were with the French. I would have sent her away with a flag of truce that came here, but she refused, and by the agreement I could not force her. Nevertheless Grubbin in revenge told the people, where he landed to plunder, to write to me, that he would carry off every woman he met with till he had his wife again. Accordingly he landed one night at a lone house in St. Elizabeth's, belonging to Mrs. Barrow, a minister's widow, plundered her of her negroes, household goods and all she had, tortured her to make her confess if she had money, and took away with him her maiden daughter, Rachel, aged fourteen years, and carried her off to Petit Guavos. The house being at least 100 miles from me, I did not hear of this directly. Much about the same time another privateer had been on the north side of the Island, when they took Major Terry and his wife, carried them on board their ships, stripped her to her shift and beat her, and at last for ransom made him give bond to pay a certain sum, for which they would send. Also there they took two sloops, whose owners came to me and asked for leave to go to Petit Guavos and buy their vessels and cargoes. I gave it to them, and wrote them safe-conducts. Soon afterwards Mrs. Barrow came to me with prayers and tears, begging me to help her on behalf of her daughter. Considering that these were inhumanities beyond the customs of Christian warfare I sent Major Low and Lieutenant-Colonel Thomas Clarke with a flag of truce to Mons. Du Cas, to complain of them and of many other insolencies of the privateers, and to require punishment of the offenders, or warn them that I would take satisfaction on any of their people that we met with. But the two sloops afore-mentioned and Major Low's also were seized and plundered directly that they reached the coast, and those on board detained as prisoners.
Some time passed away and we heard nothing of the Falcon, though I could not think she was taken, not having heard of the arrival of French men-of-war, but thought she must have been lost through some accident. At length I became seriously alarmed, for about a month before I had received a letter from a gentleman unknown to me at Curaçoa, saying that the French were making great preparations against Jamaica. While I was still waiting in growing doubt and anxiety, on Thursday the 31st of May, in the evening, while I was sitting with some gentlemen, there entered my house Captain Elliot in a very mean habit and with a meagre, weather-beaten countenance, who told me that for the safety of the Island he and two more had ventured their lives in a small canoe that would carry no more than three people, and had stolen away from the enemy on the Saturday night before, to warn me that the French had recruits of men and ship from France and Martinique, and that Du Cas was coming against Jamaica with 20 ships and 3,000 men; that Stapleton, Lynch and other of the rogues who had deserted us had told him that the fortifications of Port Royal were down and the population much weakened by the earthquake, sickness and desertion, that at least five hundred men affected to King James would join them, and that a very small number of men might march through the country. The French, he said, hoped to be with us in three or four days, before any intelligence could reach us. This was surprising, but I at once called the Council together, adjourned the Assembly for a month, called a Council of War and proclaimed martial law.
At this time one of the bastions of Fort Charles at Port Royal was built but up to the sills of the port, but Colonel Beckford applied himself so industriously to the work that he got the bastion built, the platform laid, the guns mounted, and all the fort in excellent order. He then laid a line of nineteen culverins to east of the fort, and five to the west; and meanwhile we fitted out a vessel as a fire-ship, drew the merchant-ships into a line, posted the Advice so as to second the fort, barricaded the streets leading to the fort and mounted great guns in them, and put all in as good a posture of defence as was possible in the time. I sent Beckford 100 whites and as many blacks from St. Catherine's, St. Andrew's and Kingston, and put fifty blacks on board the Advice. Meanwhile Colonel Lawes at St. Andrew's and Kingston drew lines where they were wanted, secured a pass where an enemy might break in at the eastermost part of Kingston and St. James's, and garrisoned and provisioned his house, which was well walled and gunned for defence. They also built a regular fort in the parade at Kingston and put themselves into very good order. On St. Catherine's side we also made good breastworks and planted guns where there might be danger of a landing; and the like was done at Old Harbour and Carlisle Bay. The Island being too large to be defended in all parts with the force at our disposal I resolved, if possible, to defend what was strongest, so sent for all the forces from the out-parts and drew them near together unto St. Dorothy's, St. Catherine's, St. Andrew's and Port Royal, from which places we could assist one another if attacked. A few men were left to defend Carlisle Bay; but that was thirty miles off. The people of St. Thomas and St. David's, being to eastward and most exposed to the enemy, I ordered to come in to St. Andrew's and Kingston, with their wives, children, negroes and all they had. In about twenty-five to thirty miles space they could not have collected 130 men together, so could not have defended themselves. The most part came in, but a few trusted to the good nature of the French, as some intercepted letters had led me to expect, and lost what they left behind. At Port Morant I ordered the guns at Fort William to be spiked, the shot to be buried and the powder to be brought away, as indefensible against such a force. We also collected as many negroes as could be trusted, and put them in arms, wherein many did good service as well as in the laborious part of raising breastworks. We were fortunately well stocked with flour and salt provisions.
On Sunday morning, 17th June, the French fleet came in sight with a fresh gale, and we expected them to come straight in to Port Royal; but they had met with no intelligence, so left eight ships at Port Morant and anchored fourteen in Cow Bay, seven leagues to windward, where, if I had not ordered in all the people from St. David's and St. Thomas, they would have cut them off from joining us, and ourselves from sending succour to them. Here a negro came to them and told them that Captain Elliot had given us warning, that all the people were collected from the out-parts and that Port Royal was fortified. Mons. Du Cas would have come in none the less, but many of his people, and Captain Rollon of the Temeraire, who was admiral, told Du Cas that he would not venture the ships into a harbour from which, if they did not prevail, they would never come out again. They then fell to landing their men, plundered, burnt and destroyed all before them to eastward, killed all the cattle and fowls, drove flocks of sheep into houses and fired them, burnt the canes, pulled up the very herbs, and cut down the fruit trees. Some of the straggling people that were left behind they tortured, some, and in particular two, they murdered in cold blood, some women they suffered the negroes to violate, some they dug out of their graves, so that more inhuman barbarities were never committed by Turk or infidel. What they could not carry away they destroyed, and the whole of that country they laid waste, for they were at perfect liberty there, the distance being too great for us to send a force to repel them. Moreover, they had secured the pass at Cow Bay and were watching for us to divide our forces, when they would have been upon us in a few hours with their ships and have put us in great danger. Having cleared all before them from Cow Bay to Port Morant, about twenty-five miles, and moved their ships there, they thought they would do the like everywhere, and sent vessels round to the north side, where they burnt some plantations, but returned to their ships on the approach of some of our forces. On the Thursday after their arrival at Cow Bay the wind blew hard, and the Admiral's ship and another were blown off shore to Blackfield Bay at the west end of the Island, where they landed sixty men. Major Andress, who had been left there with a few men, engaged them and there was a small encounter in which we had one man killed and two wounded, and they lost some; but the Admiral firing a gun to recall them they hurried on board, leaving their food and captured cattle behind them, and sailed away. The fleet having done all the mischief that it could at Port Morant and the country round it, battered down the wall of Fort William, burned the gun-carriages and left nothing that they thought might be useful to mankind. On Monday 16 July the whole fleet sailed from thence and next day some seventeen of them came in sight of Port Royal and in the afternoon anchored with the rest at Cow Bay. To amuse us they then landed their men very fast and made fires along the bay, which made us fear that they designed to force the pass into St. Andrew's. I therefore sent 100 men from St. Catherine's to reinforce them, but still suspected a trick, and so it proved to be. For as soon as it was dark they embarked all their men again, and leaving three large ships at Cow Bay, sailed with the rest to westward. On the morning of the 18th we saw them from our look-outs and I concluded that they meant to surprise Carlisle Bay before I could reinforce it, being about thirty-six miles away from us at St. Catherine's. I ordered two troops of horse and a detachment of foot to march and to mount such of the foot as they could get horses for, and by evening they were all marched away. The mounted men got there in the night, and the rest marched so hard that they reached it next morning. The French fleet anchored in the bay in the afternoon of the 18th. A Guinea ship was lying there, which had landed her negroes but was unable to beat up to Port Royal against the hard breeze. Captain Daniel, seeing that he could not save her, set her on fire and went ashore with his men into a breastwork, where they did very good service, losing six men killed and others wounded. In the breastwork were about 250 men, besides blacks, and here Colonel Sutton of Clarendon Regiment was in command; he had built the work, but it was ill made and worse contrived. On the south of it was the sea, on the west a large river, and on the east they had left a wood standing, while they had made no provision either for victuals or forage. Thursday, the 19th July, some hours before day, the French threw up balls of wild fire from every ship as signals for landing, and by daylight had landed what was reckoned to be 1,400 or 1,500 men. There were small guards posted to watch them, who fired at them as they approached and then retreated. About nine or ten in the morning the French, having very good guides, came down through the wood in the east side and fell very hotly on the breastwork. There was a hot fire on both sides for a time, but the breastwork being ill made, and the French officers forcing their men on, ours gave way and fled away to westward. Many got over the river and were saved, others were bogged and drowned. Many of the officers and most of the men fought bravely and killed many of the enemy before they were forced to retreat. Colonel Claybourne and his Captain-lieutenant Vassall were killed dead; Lieutenant-Colonel Smart, Lieutenant Dawkins and others were also killed; Captain Dawkins, Captain Fisher and others were wounded and divers taken prisoners. They lost all their horses and four of their colours. Just as the French forced the breastwork some of the reinforcements that I had sent came in after a march of thirty miles, weary, lame and hungry; yet they fell bravely on the right of the enemy and charged them so warmly that they could not follow our men that fled over the river, who would otherwise have been cut off. Both officers and men, notwithstanding fatigue and hunger behaved with such gallantry that they made the enemy retire. Ours then did the like to refresh themselves after their march. Several were killed and wounded on both sides. As soon as the encounter was over the French with their usual barbarity fell to burning or destroying all they could, and made no advance towards our forces, nor ours towards them except in small skirmishing parties. On the 22nd however they marched upwards, and came to a brick house of one Mr. Hubbard's, who had got five and twenty men in, well provided with arms, ammunition, victuals and water. On this house they fell smartly, but those within defended themselves so well that they killed some and wounded more, including several considerable officers. Major Lloyd hearing the fire came up with horse and foot in time to help to beat the French off and to plunder the dead, but here too we lost some men.
That night our scouts and spies brought news that the French were bringing up guns to batter the house next day. Meanwhile the Council of War, not being satisfied with the briskness and conduct of the chief officers, unanimously chose Major Richard Lloyd to command all the forces there, some 700 men. Next day, the 23rd, Major Lloyd put about sixty men into Hubbard's house, and laid the rest in an ambuscade to await the expected coming of the enemy. Had they come on few of them would have returned alive, but being privateers and finding so many of their men and best officers killed or wounded and that they could make no advance into the country, they set fire to the little town of Carlisle, left their prisoners and returned to their ships. At their first coming they boasted that they would destroy all the country before them to St. Catherine's, plunder and burn that also, and then cut off the water from Port Royal, starve it out and so secure the whole country; but at the same time they took care to let our people know that all who would enlist to the King of France and to King James should have their goods preserved to them, which few believed. Having met with no repulse in St. Thomas and St. David's they thought to march as freely everywhere. On Tuesday the 24th their whole fleet sailed, and for fear lest they should fall on Old Harbour (which lies between St. Catherine's and Carlisle) and land a force to cut off our troops at Vere from us, Major Lloyd by my order marched the force to St. Dorothy's, leaving only a guard at Carlisle Bay, while I called in troops from Port Royal and St. Andrew's (which was safe so long as the enemy was to leeward) and collected 450 men besides blacks. Had they put this trick on us, there is an open plain six miles of westward of this town through which they must have passed, and where our horse could have done us good service, which they could not in the enclosed country at Vere. We had also five good field-pieces, so that I doubt not we should have given them a warm reception; but they made all haste homewards and had favourable weather to do it. Du Cas and two or three ships departed without making further stay anywhere; but about seventeen sail put into Port Morant to wood and water, which they did with all speed, and then putting their prisoners ashore on the evening of Saturday the 28th, they sailed away that night, homeward as we guess, for we have heard no more of them. I cannot yet procure a certain account of the losses on either side, but we reckon ours at sixty killed and wounded since the first landing of the French. From what we can gather from released prisoners the French have about 350 killed and wounded men, besides many dead of sickness in the ships, so that it is supposed that they will find 700 men wanting.
I have since ascertained that Hubbard's house was first garrisoned and held by order of Major Lloyd. We have lost about 100 killed and wounded of all sorts, Christians, Jews and negroes, 50 sugar works destroyed and many other plantations in St. David's, St. Thomas's and St. Mary's, over 200 houses burnt besides in Vere and St. George's, and about 1,300 negroes carried off, besides other spoil. Signed. Wm. Beeston. Copy. 9 pp. [America and West Indies. 540. Nos. 41, 41 I.]
Aug. 20.
1,237. Minutes of Council of New York. The Commissioners for New England and Connecticut urged that the Indians should be checked for not condoling the blood lately shed in New England. The Governor pointed out that it would not be safe to make a treaty in respect of one particular province only, but proposed to suggest to the Indians to join him in a mission to the Eastern Indians to urge them to peace. The Governor concurred with the Commissioners as to the treatment of Chevalier Deaux. The Governor suggested that 500 men was the least number requisite for adequate defence of the frontiers. Governor Hamilton and Major Pyncheon thought 200 sufficient. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXV., pp. 554, 555.]
Aug. 20. 1,238. Instrument for revocation of so much of Governor Fletcher's Commission as concerns the Government of Pennsylvania. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXVI., pp. 63–65.]
Aug. 20.
Navy Office
1,239. Commissioners for the Navy to John Povey. We have in compliance with orders sent officers to speak with masters of ships as to transport for troops to Jamaica. The enclosed list of ships was given to us, and the masters should have waited on us today; but only three came at the appointed time, who between them can carry 470 men and can be ready to sail in a fortnight. But they all ask £4 a man for transport, Their Majesties providing victuals and hammocks or bedding. We hope to give you further particulars shortly and shall lose no time, but we take leave to say that considering the vast business on our hands in providing stores and transport of the same to the Mediterranean, despatching several ships now refitting, and providing for the many on the stocks and ready to be launched and for the reception of the fleet, which will soon be obliged to return into port, as well as other matters, we did hope that their Lordships would not have required us to provide transport for these soldiers but would have left the matter to the Commissioners appointed for that business, who, having nothing else to do, could give it despatch. But if the service must be done by us we hope that we shall be excused if any of the naval services be not complied with according to the wishes of the Admiralty. Signed. E. Dummer, Thos. Willshire, D. Lyddell, J. Pett, G. St. Lo. 2 pp. Endorsed, Recd. 20 Aug. Read 21 Aug. '94. Annexed,
1,239. I. List of twenty-six ships of from 200 to 400 tons, with their masters' names, berths, and destinations. 2 pp.
[Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. Nos. 40, 40 I.; and53. pp. 200–202.]
[Aug. 20.] 1,240. Memorandum from the Admiralty. The ships that we can prepare for all services this winter are 63, of which 43 are appointed by a late Act of Parliament to cruise for protection of merchant vessels in their going out and coming home. This leaves 20 for all services such as foreign convoys, etc., for Jamaica and for unforeseen services, which is insufficient; but if the King order ships to be sent to Jamaica we recommend the Dunkirk, 3rd rate, the Ruby, Reserve or Assistance, 4th rates, and the fire-ships Terrible and Hawk as most proper for the service. Here follows a distribution of the whole of the sixty-three ships for the winter's service. The whole, 3½ pp. Endorsed, Presented 20 Aug. '94. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. No. 42; and 53. pp. 212–216.]
Aug. 20. 1,241. John Povey to William Bridgeman. The Committee of Trade and Plantation will meet this evening at 5 p.m. to hear the opinion of the Admiralty as to ships of war for Jamaica. Draft. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. No. 43.]
Aug. 21. 1,242. The same to the Secretary at War and the Commissioners. Summoning them to attend the meeting of the Committee on 21st inst. Draft. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. No. 44.]
Aug. 20. 1,243. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. The Lords of the Admiralty attended concerning the despatch of ships of Jamaica, and reported that the advice-boat was ready to sail.
Aug. 21. The Secretary at War attending, it was agreed to recommend the drafting of 1,200 men from the several regiments into two regiments of ten companies from Jamaica. A letter from the Navy Board with a list of transports read, wherein they deprecate the laying of the burden of finding transports upon them. The business was then referred to the Commissioners for Transportation. [Board of Trade. Journal, 7. pp. 329–333.]
Aug. 21.
1,244. John Povey to the Commissioners of Transportation. Forwarding a list of ships lying in the Thames that are suitable for transport of troops. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 53. p. 203.]
Aug. 21. 1,245. John Povey to Mr. Clerk. Directing him to prepare draft establishments for one regiment of twelve companies of 100 men each; and for two regiments of ten companies of 60 men each. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 53. p. 209.]
Aug. 21. 1,246. The Queen to the Proprietor of Pennsylvania. Charging him to send assistance to New York when required, the Province's quota being eighty men. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXVI., pp. 58–60.]
Aug. 21. 1,247. The Queen to the Governor of Massachusetts. In the execution of the power granted to you to command the militia of Rhode Island you shall not in war take command of more than such quota as we shall direct, except in case of imminent danger or actual invasion, in which event you will with the advice of the Governor take command of the whole of the forces, leaving however a sufficient force for the defence of the province. And since several of the provinces have omitted to send Commissioners to agree upon the quota to be furnished by them for defence of New York we appoint Massachusetts to furnish not more than 350 men, at the requisition of the Governor of New York, who has orders to require no greater quota in proportion than he demands of other Colonies. [Board of Trade. New England, 35. pp. 165–169.]
Aug. 21. 1,248. The Queen to the Governor of Rhode Island. Recites the directions given to the Governor of Massachusetts as to the command of the militia (see preceding abstract), fixes the quota of Rhode Island at 48 men, to be furnished whenever applied for by the Governor of New York, who has orders to require no greater proportion of the fixed quota from Rhode Island than from the other Colonies. [Board of Trade. New England, 35. pp. 170–174.]
Aug. 21. 1,249. The Queen to the Governor of Virginia. A similar letter to the preceding, fixing the quota of Virginia at 250 men. [Board of Trade. Virginia, 36. pp. 269, 270.]
Aug. 21. 1,250. The Queen to the Governor of Maryland. A similar letter, fixing the quota of Maryland at 160 men. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 8. pp. 178–180.]
Aug. 21. 1,251. The Queen to the Governor of New York. We have restored William Penn to the Government of Pennsylvania, and have ordered him, as well as the Governors of the other Colonies, to furnish you with a quota of men, the quota of Pennsylvania being eighty men. He has also been ordered to assist you out of the public funds of the Province, as Pennsylvania has at present no militia. [Board of Trade. New York, 48. pp. 142–145.]
Aug. 21. 1,252. The Queen to William Penn. Ordering him to furnish eighty men, or the equivalent in money, as the quota of Pennsylvania if called upon by New York for assistance, and to make provision for supplying such assistance as shall be required by him. [Board of Trade. New York, 48. pp. 48, 49.]
Aug. 21. 1,253. Memo. Letters similarly to the foregoing were sent to other Colonies, the quotas being fixed as follows:—Connecticut, 120 men; Rhode Island, 48 men; Massachusetts, 350 men; Maryland, 160 men; Virginia, 240 men; New York, 200 men; Pennsylvania, 80 men. Total, 1,198 men. Also, with the consent of the proprietor of New Jersey, the Governor of New York is empowered to command the forces of that province to a number not exceeding 700 men, making the total force for defence of Albany 1,898 men. [Board of Trade. New York, 48. pp. 150, 151.]
Aug. 21. 1,254. Minutes of Council of Barbados. On the question of issuing writs for an Assembly, it was agreed to refer the question of the law as to the qualification of electors to the judges and law-officers. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XII., pp. 463–465; and Board of Trade. Barbados, 65. pp. 3, 4.]
Aug. 22. 1,255. Minutes of Council of Jamaica. The case against Thomas Sutton and Francis Blackmore heard and adjourned. Order for arrest of Nicholas Beerin, and for Sutton and Blackmore to pay the Provost Marshal's fees. Sundry accounts passed and payments ordered. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 77. pp. 289–291.]
Aug. 22. 1,256. Minutes of Council of Massachusetts. Further evidence taken as to the charges against the Governor.
Aug. 23. On the application of the town of Groton, it was advised that thirty men be sent to protect the frontiers, and eight troopers to range the ground for Indians about the towns. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXIV., pp. 269, 270.]
Aug. 23.
1,257. Minutes of Council of New York. Several accounts were brought in, and a Committee appointed to examine the same. Committee appointed to examine Albany Fort, with a view to mounting great guns. The Governor suggested the appointment of a Commissary of subsistence for the four companies expected from England. Order for payment of £45 to Major Dirick Wessells for a year's pay as Commissary of the Musters. Patent for land granted to Charles Broadhead.
Aug. 24. More accounts brought in and referred to a Committee. Proclamation for officers to examine all strange Indians coming on the frontier and report to the Commandant of the nearest garrison. Orders for payments, and that Major Ingoldsby have £60 a year to supply the fort at Albany with firewood. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXV., pp. 555–557.]
Aug. 26.
1,258. Lieutenant-Governor Sir William Beeston to Lords of Trade and Plantations. I beg you to lay our condition before the King. By a moderate computation the cost of the war will amount to £10,000; and five of the parishes, instead of helping, must receive relief to resettle the people. Unless the King will grant about £4,000 I fear for ill consequences. The war makes our income small and every day less, while our expenses increase, nor is there any money to build fortifications. Unless we have a little help the people will think themselves neglected, as they do already, because we have had neither ships nor news from England since February last. Our enemies have better intelligence from England than we have, and from here also they know everything, as Mons. Du Cas told the captain of the Falcon. The Assembly is to meet on the 30th to find some way to pay our debts, but that tediousness of the payment will I fear discourage all people from trusting the public in future. The people has grown so accustomed to martial law, by which common justice is obstructed, the credit of the Island lost and people kept out of their just debts, that as soon as the Assembly meets one of the first things is for it to address for martial law. And, now that there is occasion for money, unless they are satisfied therein they will do nothing and, whatever happens, they will take the advantage of throwing it on the Governor if he refuses it to them. Unless an instruction be sent to the Governor to impose martial law on great emergency only, and to raise it as soon as things are quiet, the Island will be spoiled and the people will forget that there is justice, equity or civil authority. For so long as they can preserve and raise their own fortunes, they care not on whose ruin it is done. I cannot now persuade them that it is now time to lay martial law by, but as it is in my power to act I shall order the Court to be before the Assembly meets. They will be very angry; but I cannot think it right that the martial and civil law should so interfere with each other that no man knows by which he is to be governed.
I formerly recommended Colonel Stanton for the Council, but he has lost all his estate through the French, and it seems to be too evident, from letters that have been intercepted, that he was in correspondence with the French. He, like some others, left his goods behind him when he came into Port Royal in the assurance that the French would not meddle with them, but privateers made no distinction and burnt or carried off everything. I shall not swear him of the Council even if the warrant comes. Now that they have lost everything these people blame me for calling them in, saying that they could have defended themselves. But this is impossible, and moreover they allowed a single privateer to overrun St. David's parish twice last year, and made little or no resistance. It was for this and for other reasons that I called them all to Port Royal. Colonel Sutton and Mr. Blackmore being suspended, I find it hard to select good men for the Council. All the old ones are gone, and now some of those born in the Island must be made use of. I recommend James Banister, who is of good estate and lies conveniently near. I am now trying to promote those officers who did good service during the war, having convenience for their encouragement and for filling the regiments again. I hope to send muster-rolls of all the forces when it is done, but they do not exceed 2,400 men. The people of St. Thomas and St. David's are by much persuasion returning to their ruined lands, but the destruction of sugar- cotton- and indigo-works was very great. The destruction of Fort William is of no importance, for there were few inhabitants on that side to man it. Major Low and Lieutenant-Colonel Clarke are returned from Petit Guavos with our prisoners. The Governor has sent me a kind of huffing letter. I shall return him the French prisoners and write him an answer. There are 300 British seamen at Curaçoa, who will not return for fear of being pressed. I have sent a proclamation promising that they shall be free if they enter their names at the Naval Office. Signed. Wm. Beeston. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 54. pp. 14–19.]
Aug. 27.
1,259. The Commissioners for Transportation to Lords of Trade and Plantations. We find that we can hire ships for transport of troops to Jamaica on the following conditions, viz., that the King find victuals and that they receive £4 a head freight for every man before sailing, as they fear there will be no cargo for them at Jamaica. The masters desire to know where they shall go if they find Jamaica in possession of the French and cannot land their men there, and what consideration they will receive on this account. They urge also that it will be requisite to victual the ships for four months owing to the uncertainty; but any portion not spent at sea will be acceptable at Jamaica. They require assurance that they shall not be unduly detained nor their men pressed. So far we have found five ships, fit to carry 1,055 men. The Virginia ships' masters are unwilling to treat till we have your orders to make a positive agreement. 2½ pp. Endorsed, Recd. the same day. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. No. 45; and 53. pp. 204–206.]
Aug. 27. 1,260. Commissioners for Transportation to John Povey. Forwarding a memorial as to the provision of ships to transport troops to Jamaica. Signed. John Nicholl, John Ellis. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 53. p. 203.]
Aug. 28. 1,261. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. The Commissioners of Transportation presented a memorial of the terms for hire of transport-ships, which the Lords considered very dear. The memorial was then sent down to the Treasury, which sent a reply intimating its willingness to supply money from time to time for the Jamaica expedition. The consideration of the establishment of the regiments for Jamaica was postponed. [Board of Trade. Journal, 7. pp. 333–335.]
Aug. 28. 1,262. Estimate of the annual charge of two regiments of foot each of ten companies and 60 men to a company. Total, £25,191. 1 p. Endorsed. Recd. and read 28 Aug., '94. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. No. 46.]
Aug. 28. 1,263. Similar Estimate for a regiment of twelve companies of 100 men per company. Total, £21,319. 1 p. Endorsed as the preceding. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. No. 47.]
Aug. 28. 1,264. Memorandum as to the above Estimates. Officers of companies whose men are drafted must receive £2 a man; drafted men who have served in Ireland must be paid their arrears, and officers also; an additional serjeant to each of twelve companies will raise the estimate £328. A draft of 8 men per company out of twelve regiments will produce 1,248 men; deducting 48 for the six companies of Beaumont at Berwick, this will leave just 1,200. 1 p. Endorsed as the preceding. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. No. 48.]
Aug. 30. 1,265. John Povey to Commissioners of Transportation. Ordering them to attend the Committee on 1st September. Draft. Scrap. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 7. No. 49.]
Aug. 30.
1,266. Governor Russell to Lords of Trade and Plantations. The Bristol, Hampshire, Experiment and Play (prize) sailed from Plymouth with the merchant fleet on 16 June, and on 11 July anchored with the fleet in Madeira roads. On the 17th we sailed for Barbados and made the Island on the 14th inst., when the Jamaica fleet bore away from us. We could not weather the Island that night, but the Play contrived to send in a boat so that the inhabitants should not be alarmed. Next morning we saw four large ships to windward, which we could not but suspect to be French; but finding that they stood as we did for Carlisle Bay and did not bear down to cut off our ships, we knew them to be friends, and so we anchored in Carlisle Bay at noon. The four ships also came in and proved to be East Indiamen, richly laden, which are to sail for Europe with the Barbados fleet under convoy of the Tiger and Mermaid. Both of these ships are so short of their complement of men that I allowed them to press 67 men. News that a press was coming leaked out, and in some of the ships they found nothing but officers. They pressed what men they could, therefore, but when the masters complained I consented that the officers might be given up by the men-of-war in exchange for seamen. On the 17th I went ashore, where I was met by the Governor and Council and sworn in. I readmitted Colonel Hallett and Major Andrews according to my instructions, but have not yet had time to examine Hallett's case. In deference to some of the Council I deferred issuing writs for an election till next Council day, when a debate arose as to who were to be the electors, viz. those only who had ten acres of land, or those who had forty shillings a year. I was in favour of the latter, being the custom of England, but the majority of the Council were against me, so the election will be held accordingly, though I am told that it will be a great discouragement to the common people, who have forty shillings a year, to be excluded. I desire your directions herein, for if the next election is held on the same ground it may encourage many to go to Pennsylvania or other new Colonies, as soon as their contracts are expired, whereas we want to keep all that we can. I found all the forts and batteries in very good order, and the militia, for their numbers, good and well-disciplined. Colonel Kendall finding the air and water better at Oistins has appointed it to be the anchorage for the men-of-war, and I shall do likewise. I beg that the other man-of-war designed for this Island may be sent out, and if we could have also a brigantine or sloop, such as they build in Jamaica and Bermuda—the best sailers in the world—it would be of great service, for then the enemy would not dare to approach the Island in their snows, which they often do, either to see what ships are here or to intercept our provision-ships from North America. Had we a brigantine and a sloop they would not dare come near us without ships to protect them, but these snows will run a man-of-war out of sight in two or three hours. Such craft could also keep an eye on Martinique and Guadeloupe and intercept their trade. For want of them one of our sloops was captured a fortnight ago within sight of the Island, and in her unluckily were two Indian chiefs from Trinidad, who had come to make peace and settle trade with us. Colonel Kendall is returning home. The state of defence in this Island proves how good an officer he is. Signed. F. Russell. 4 pp. Endorsed, Recd. 20 Feb., 1694–5. Read 22 May, '95. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 5. No. 65; and 44. pp. 97–105.]
Aug. 30. 1,267. Minutes of Council of New York. The Council met again at New York. Patent for land granted to Leonard Cole. Orders issued to justices of the peace to collect arrears of taxes and give exact account of the same before 25th September, or appear before Council to answer for their neglect. Order for the quota of each County towards payment of the English soldiers to be ascertained. Letter from the Council of Maryland read, excusing the non-payment of a protested bill. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXV., pp. 557, 558.]
Aug. 31. 1,268. Commission to John Archdale to be Governor of Carolina, with power to appoint deputy-governors in both North and South Carolina. Signed. Craven, Bath, Ashley, Carteret, Wm. Thornburgh for Sir John Colleton, Thos. Amy. [Board of Trade. Carolina, 4. p. 17.]
Aug. 31. 1,269. Commission to John Archdale to be his deputy in North and South Carolina. Signed. Craven. The rest of the Proprietors gave him blank deputations. [Board of Trade. Carolina, 4. p. 18.]
[Aug. 31.] 1,270. Commission of the Lords Proprietors of Carolina to Ferdinando Gorges to be Attorney General of Carolina. Signed. Craven, Bath, Wm. Thornburgh for John Colleton, John Archdale for Thomas Archdale, Tho. Amy. [Board of Trade. Carolina, 4. p. 18.]
Aug. 31. 1,271. Lords Proprietors of Carolina to Governor Thomas Smith. We forward you duplicate of our authority to assert to a law enforcing our constitutional system of appointing juries. We have given full power to John Archdale, who will speedily leave England, to deal with the complaints as to indentures for land. He comes with full authority to do all for the peace of the country. Signed. Craven, Bath, William Thornburgh for Sir John Colleton, John Archdale for Thomas Archdale, Tho. Amy. [Board of Trade. Carolina, 4. p. 19.]
Aug. 31. 1,272. Instructions of the Proprietors of Carolina to John Archdale. (1) To encourage building in Charleston, and to try to pass an Act that land taken up therein and not built on shall, after a certain term, revert to the Proprietors; and (2) to endeavour to procure a similiar provision as to land taken up in the country and not cleared or occupied. (3) He is authorised to offer a charter to Charleston. (4) He is to endeavour the building of new towns. (5) He is to inspect the constitutions and to present such parts of them as he think fit to the Assembly for concurrence. (6) He may offer encouragements for improving land, whale-fishing, building mills and such like. (7) He is to endeavour the fortifying of Charlestown, (8) to do his best for protection of the Indians, (9) to try to sell land but reserve a just tax of twelvepence per annum per 100 acres; the price near settlements to be not less than £20 per 1,000 acres and in more remote places £10 per 1,000 acres. (10) He is to be guided generally by the Instructions to Governors Ludwell and Smith. Signed. Craven, Bath, Ashley, Carteret, Wm. Thornburgh for Sir J. Colleton, Tho. Amy. [Board of Trade. Carolina, 4. p. 20.]
Aug. 31. 1,273. Minutes of Council of Massachusetts. Two of the Commissioners returned from Albany, and presented their report of the negotiations. Further evidence as to the charges against the Governor was received. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXIV., p. 270.]
Aug. 31. 1,274. Minutes of Council of Jamaica. Nicholas Beerin examined as to the charges against Thomas Sutton and Francis Blackmore. Order for payment of £177 due to them for hire of a sloop. Proclamation forbidding all correspondence with the French subjects. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 77. pp. 291, 292.]