America and West Indies: July 1697, 1-10

Pages 528-545

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 15, 1696-1697. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1904.

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July 1697

July 1. 1,129. Minutes of Council of Massachusetts. Leave granted to Joseph Vickers to erect a house in Boston. Order for payment of £4 10s. to Henry Emes, messenger of the Assembly.
July 3. Order for succour to be given to New Hampshire if desired. [Board of Trade. New England, 49. pp. 100–101.]
July 1.
1,130. Governor Sir Edmund Andros to Council of Trade and Plantations. Yours of the 1st of February last with a duplicate of yours of 24 September came to hand a little before the sailing of the fleet. I was not well, and incapable of giving you an exact account of the population, nor can I do so now, for though I have sent directions to the various counties to take such lists as will enable me to answer your queries more fully, this will take time. On the arrival of H.M. ships Harwich and Southsea Castle at the beginning of this month, I gave immediate notice thereof to the officers of the several rivers and districts, and of the time of their stay in order that such vessels as might should be got ready to sail under their convoy; but I understand that only two or three will be ready by the time appointed. As to the information which you require of me touching a privilege claimed by members of Council I enclose a copy of the General Courts' order relating thereto. From this and from other information it appears that it has ever been the practice here to issue out a summons for a Councillor in all actions where a common writ hath gone for others, and it is now the practice to have the summons signed by the Secretary, upon which a Councillor stands as strictly obliged as by the serving a writ upon him, and judgment passes against him for his default of not appearing, or otherwise, as the case requires and ought to be on other process; and the reason given for this practice is that a Councillor may not at any time be surprised and taken up with a writ, whereby he may be hindered from his attendance at the Council or General Court, no other benefit nor farther protection being intended by it to the prejudice of any plaintiff. As to the allegation concerning several persons sitting in the General Court as judges, who have never taken the oath of a judge, it is so that, the General Court being a Court from the seating of the country and consisting only of the Governor and Council, the members have never had any other oath administered than that of Councillors, by virtue of which they have always been and still are esteemed here to sit as duly qualified judges. As to the engrossment of large tracts of land and my opinion what is to be done therein, I would submit that lands have always been granted here by patent upon rights for the importation of persons (being fifty acres for each person), and that none have had any lands granted here but upon their producing such rights according to custom and ancient privilege confirmed by the charter. I do not therefore know any remedy for what is past, this being a matter of property, nor do I perceive (due care being taken for demanding and receiving the quit-rents) that any particular disadvantage accrues from the large tracts of land now held. But forasmuch as the restraint of grants to small parcels of land will oblige all persons, be their rights for importation never so many, to complete their claim, I conceive a limitation in this particular a likely means for the more regular planting and thicker seating the unappropriated lands in this Government, the said grants to be made in such divisions as the takers-up shall apply for, but not to exceed four hundred acres or such other quantity as you shall decide.
Captain Andrew Douglas of H.M.S. Harwich lately applied to me for thirty men, having in the first place sent to the officers of the several rivers for that number and received a reply that there were no seamen on the land. The power of impressment being committed to me as Governor and Commander-in-Chief, I issued warrants for the impressment of one seaman from every ship, and of two seamen from every ship having sixteen men, and so in proportion. Having no other means for safe conveyance of the men, when got, I sent the warrants to Captain Douglas and desired him to receive the men who should be impressed in virtue thereof. I hope that he may obtain his number. Your commands against harbouring fugitives and deserters and entertaining of pirates shall be observed. I have published a proclamation, according to the Council's orders, for apprehending Henry Every and others, but have not as yet heard of any of them. I shall be careful to observe your directions as to giving assistance to New York. Captain Douglas brought in a French prize, the St. Ignance, of about 150 tons burden. I appointed a Court to try her, and she was condemned; and I have placed her in the hands of Colonel Byrd, Receiver-General, to be disposed of according to law. Mr. Joshua Broadbent, commander of the sloop employed here for prevention of illegal traders, lately seized a ship called the William, Captain Mackhen, master, of Portaferry in Ireland, but on trial she was cleared. I have directed good security to be taken for her return to England. Signed, E. Andros. 6 pp. Endorsed, Recd. 16 Sept. Read 17 Sept., 1697. Enclosed,
1,130. I. Copy of Minutes of Council of Virginia, 27 March, 1678. Order directing a new summons, under the hands of the Governor or Secretary, to be issued for the appearance of Sir Henry Chicheley and Ralph Wormeley, Councillors, to answer a suit against them, a previous summons having been not good. 1 p. Endorsed as the preceding. [Board of Trade. Virginia, 6. Nos. 23, 23I.; and 37. pp. 110–116 (covering letter) and 123–124 (enclosure).]
July 1.
1,131. Governor Sir Edmund Andros to Board of Trade and Plantations. This is practically a duplicate of his former answers to the queries of the Board of Trade (see No. 956 I.) but contains the following additional information. The whole number of inhabitants is supposed to be 70,000. The foot companies of militia are "unsizeably" and not well armed. Besides articles already enumerated, sassafras-roots are exported to England. There are two ships, four brigantines and nine sloops belonging to the province, but few or no seamen. No ships have been built in Virginia until lately eight ships, eleven brigantines and fifteen sloops, for which carpenters, iron-work, rigging and sails were brought from England. Hemps and flax grow very well, but no great quantity is made, the industry being neglected when goods from England are plenty. The making of saltpetre out of salt earth called "licking-places" up the rivers has been tried, but has not answered expectation, and there is no good artist for it. All else is to be had in quantities near navigable places on the rivers, as also iron, but it is not minded for want of hands, labour being dearer than in Europe. No Indians have yet been brought to live among the English in a settled way nor to learn the language. They are not useful except for hunting or uncertain work, being very impatient of regular work and, though depressed, jealous of liberty. They are not likely to become more useful unless encouraged to settle in numbers on some good place on the frontiers, forty or fifty miles from the English. Signed, E. Andros. 4 pp. [Board of Trade. Virgina, 6. No. 24; and 37. pp. 117–122.]
July 1.
1,132. Governor Sir Edmund Andros to the Duke of Shrewsbury. Reporting the despatch of papers, and the condemnation of the French prize St. Ignace. Signed, E. Andros. 1 p. [America and West Indies. 638. No. 29.]
July 1. 1,133. Commission to Captain John Nanfan to be Lieutenant-Governor of New York. Countersigned, James Vernon. [Board of Trade. New York, 52. pp. 247–249.]
July 1.
1,134. James Vernon to Council of Trade and Plantations. There are about fifty women convicts now lying in Newgate for transportation, which is at last found necessary to be provided for at the King's charge. The Lords of the Treasury have therefore directed the Commissioners of Transport to agree for shipping to carry them to the West Indies. It still remains to be resolved how they should be disposed of there, which the Lords Justices now refer to you, asking you to report to what places these women should be sent and what instructions it will be proper to send along with them for their being received and disposed of. Signed, Ja. Vernon. Holograph. ½ p. Endorsed, Recd. Read, 1 July, 1697. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 54; and 34. p. 170.]
July 2.
1,135. Council of Trade and Plantations to the President and Council of Barbados. By the unhappy rencounter which stopped the convoys of the outward-bound fleet, we expect this to go by the same conveyance as that which bears our letter of 12 February. We now enclose you a circular letter from the King, dated 22 April, requiring your diligent care in all matters concerning the Acts of Trade. The King has appointed the Hon. Ralph Grey to be Governor of Barbados, who is accordingly preparing for his voyage. The King has also appointed David Ramsey to be of the Council of Barbados, but we must add that for want of a perfect list of the members of the Council now living and residing upon the place, we are at some loss in inserting their names, as requisite, in Mr. Grey's instructions. You will send us such a list from time to time in future. We think it right to inform you that intelligence has reached us that the French have sent some able engineers to Jamaica, who speak Italian and intend to pass as of that nation, under that colour carrying on the French designs in those parts. Be vigilant therefore against any such emissaries of France in Barbados. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Tankerville, Ph. Meadows, Jo. Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 44. pp. 63–64.]
July 2. 1,136. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Goddard. We send you a duplicate of our last letter, which was retarded owing to the meeting of the fleet with some French men-of-war. We have since received yours of 11 November last. We now send you a copy of the King's circular letter of 22 April, concerning the Acts of Trade. We have laid before the Lords Justices an abstract of all the papers sent to us concerning Mr. Richier, who have ordered that both Mr. Richier and yourself return to England, and that another Governor be appointed in your place, who will bring with him the said order. Meanwhile, as you remain yet Governor we recommend to you, in your own interest, your utmost care in fulfilling the duties of your places. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Tankerville, Ph. Meadows, Jo. Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Bermuda, 29. pp. 37–38.]
July 2.
1,137. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Codrington. By the unhappy rencounter which stopped the outward-bound convoy to the West Indies, this letter will go by the same conveyance as our former letters of 12 February. We send you the King's circular letter of 22 April requiring your diligent care in the observation of all things relating to the Acts of Trade. We have received yours of 26 March and 1 May last and observe your care for the security of the Islands. We shall not fail to lay before the King whatever seems to us to be for the advantage of the Islands. The King has ordered Mr. Palmer to be removed from being Secretary and Councillor of the Leeward Islands, and has appointed Mr. Edward Parsons to be Secretary in his stead. The Acts of Antigua, lately under our consideration, have been confirmed by the King. We have information that French engineers have been sent to Jamaica who will try to pass for Italians. Keep a watchful eye on all strangers, and be on your guard against such emissaries. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Tankerville, Ph. Meadows, Jo. Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 45. pp. 83–85.]
July 2.
1,138. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Sir William Beeston. Owing to the unhappy rencounter which stopped the convoys of the outward-bound fleet, the same conveyance will probably bear both this and our letter of 12 February. We enclose a letter of 22 April from the King, commanding strict observance of the Acts of Trade. We have received yours of 17 October to the Duke of Shrewsbury and of 12 February to ourselves and extracts of your letters to Mr. Blathwayt. We are sensible of what you write as to the condition of Jamaica and of your care for it. What relates to the conduct of the Captains of the King's ships we hope will be remedied by the Order in Council of 3 December, 1696. We shall neglect no opportunity of obtaining anything advantageous to Jamaica, and are at this time preparing a report for the disbandment of the soldiers there. We have information that French engineers are visiting Jamaica, passing themselves off as Italians, so be watchful of strangers. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Tankerville, Ph. Meadows, Jo. Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 56. pp. 109–111.]
July 2.
1,139. William Popple to Governor Sir William Beeston. In the Acts transmitted for Jamaica the seal of the Island is so affixed that the string on which it hangs is apt to tear through the paper on which the Acts are written; so that some sheets ever and anon separate from it. You are requested to take care that either the heads of the sheets be strengthened or rather that the Acts themselves be written on skins of parchment, and so fastened as to prevent the like accident. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 56. pp. 111–112.]
July 2.
1,140. William Popple to the Agents of the Colonies in England. Desiring their opinion of each as to the transportation of fifty women convicts to the Colony which he represents (see No. 1,134.) [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 34. p. 171.]
July 2.
1,141. William Popple to the Secretaries of the Admiralty. The Council of Trade desire to be informed at what place the men-of-war, which lately returned from convoying the outward-bound West India fleet and which I suppose are now ready to sail from Spithead, are ordered to touch either upon the Western Coast or in Ireland, and how long it may probably yet be before they can depart from either place. This is in order to preparing accordingly some despatches which the Council desires to send with them. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 34. p. 172.]
July 2.
1,142. William Bridgeman to William Popple. In reply to yours of this day the men-of-war at Spithead, which are going to the West Indies, are to sail with the first fair wind, call at Plymouth for some merchantmen, and lie off Kinsale for two victualling ships bound thence to the West Indies. Signed, Wm. Bridgeman. ½ p. Endorsed, Recd. 3rd, Read 5th July, 1697. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 55; and 34. p. 172.]
July 2. 1,143. Memorandum of a letter written by William Popple to William Thornburgh about some women convicts, now lying in Newgate for transportation, to be sent to Carolina. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 25. p. 84.]
July 2.
New York.
1,144. Governor Fletcher to Council of Trade and Plantations. Since my last, a sloop which left Curaçoa on the 1st June has arrived here with advice from the Dutch Governor that the French have taken Fort Boca Chica and are before Carthagena, of which it is doubted that they are masters. Having shared much provisions to the Spaniards he asks leave to purchase some here. The sloop was immediately searched, being in ballast, and as the master made oath that he came without any loading the Council was unanimously for giving the required permission upon so urgent and good a design. The sloop touched at the Bahamas on her way, where the master understood that Admiral Nevill had been at Petit Guavos and was gone towards Carthagena in good health and condition. The enclosed propositions will shew you the extraordinary pains and craft of Count Frontenac to draw over our Indians, and how necessary it is for the King's service to preserve their allegiance to this province. I hear there is a sloop of thirty guns from Scotland arrived at Pennsylvania. We are under great hardship for want of a due and constant return of the subsistence of the four companies. I have drawn sundry bills upon the Agent, which have been returned protested for not being paid in money but bank-bills, in which there is 19 per cent. less as I have been informed, other payments have been with charge (sic). This accident has given such a check to the credit of my bills that neither victuallers nor merchants will accept them. I beg your assistance herein. Disappointments in clothes and subsistence greatly discourage the service. The Lieutenants whom you mention must throw some crimination on me to cover their own guilt, quitting the service at a time when the enemy was expected. The Companies have been subsisted ever since I came over upon my bond and credit. I constantly paid those gentlemen as money came to my hand, either to themselves or to their Captains, as their acquittances will shew. When Mr. Livingston gave in his complaint against me he had not one penny due to him from me or from the Government since my coming to it. The £900 with which he charges me, when he was given over here for lost, was all paid to his order ere he got to England. I hope that, when I attend you, I shall prove to you that I have done my duty as a honest man for the province. Signed, Ben. Fletcher. 3 pp. Endorsed, Recd. 7 Jan. Read 10 Jan., 1697–8. Enclosed,
1,144. I. Propositions made by the Sachems of Onandaga in Albany, 9 June, 1697. Present: Colonel Peter Schuyler, Godfrey Dellius, Major Dirck Wessels, Captain Evert Banker. An Indian spoke first as follows. One of our tribe is lately returned from Canada and brought us the following account. He told Onontio [the French Governor] that he had an affection for his own country and would therefore return to it. Onontio answered that he might do so, but that he would give him a belt of wampum for the Five Nations, which he did. The belt was folded double, one half to shew his affection for the bearer, the other half to shew the Five Nations his inclination to make peace with them; and pursuant thereunto they should send one out of each family to him, or, if that were too troublesome, they should send some of their principal men to him. If they could not resolve upon that, they should send some of their mean persons; but, if they should still scruple, they should declare their thoughts of peace to the bearer, who would impart them to him, for he would leave nothing undone to come to a peace. When the bearer brought this belt into our Castle one of the chiefs said that it was resolved by old and young, men and women, that none of their castle should again go to live in Canada, because the English Agents as well as the other nations had charged them with being affected to the French. Now, brother (addressing the English Agents), about this belt from Onontio. We summoned all the Five Nations by seven bands of wampum. We asked the Oneidas if they had informed the gentlemen of Albany of it, and they said they had not. We also have neglected to send seven bands of wampum to Albany to desire them to assist us in our general meeting, particularly about the treaty of peace, which of old used to be done there. Before the return of our messenger sent to summon the whole house to meet, Onontio had killed one of our people, but because he was of our own people and not of another nation and because also we had resolved to make peace, we resolved that we would not. We therefore put a stop to it. The Cayouges, Maquas and Sindowannes, none of them answered our summons, but sent us word that they would leave the whole matter to us. As you (English) gave us leave about two years ago to make peace with Onontio we have resolved to send two Agents to him with a belt folded double and the following message: "Father, you sent a message that you were inclined for "peace and desire us to come to you for that end. "Father, is that peace?" (Here they would let fall the fold out of the belt of wampum.) "We know not how "your heart is inclined for peace. You speak of peace "and knock our people on the head, and commonly "when you send for us you sharpen your axes." (Then they shall throw down the belt and say) "Father, speak "now." Whatever answer Onontio shall give, they shall make this reply: "We shall carry your words to "our country and consider of them. Send along with "us two Frenchmen and two Praying Indians and they "can go backward and forward with messages between "us." Brother, (addressing the English Agents) last winter you sent a belt to inform the whole house of your arrival at Albany to cover it and us from the insults of the enemy. For this we thank you heartily, but the belt is but just now come to us, and we have sent it to the Cayouges and Sindowannes. Had it come in time it would have been of great service to the public. Brother, I have more to tell you of Onontio's discourse. He said, "Child go now to your own country. I am "wholly inclined to peace. I would have your arm tied "to mine that we might live peaceably together." To which our Indian answered: "No, father, I will not "have my arm tied to yours, because you might "lift your arm against my people, and then my "arm must hang to yours." Onontio then assured him he would never make war again upon the Five Nations, and sent for another Indian to come and live for three years in his bosom and learn his intentions. All this we have sent to the Upper Nations for their advice, though we believe it will not be answerable to the whole house, because Onontio has deceived them in this manner more than once. Brother, we thought that two Maquas which our chief had sent to Canada had been detained, and had prepared a belt of wampum to ask for their release, but hearing that the Maquas were returned we kept the belt. We sent lately seven bands of wampum by a messenger (who is since killed) asking you to assist us to rebuild our castle, and we understand that you give us a favourable answer. Anyhow we hope that you have not forgot it. It will be a very convenient time to do it when our corn is eatable, for we do not reckon that this is peace, though there is discourse of it.
Answer to the foregoing propositions. Brother, we heard that a belt had been sent from Canada and thereupon we sent a belt unto you on the 26th of May last, the contents of which we informed you of two days ago. But we are astonished that you should call a general meeting of the Five Nations to consult on the belt sent by Onontio, and moreover that you and the Oneidas should conclude to send messengers of peace to treat with Onontio without giving notice to us. Brethren, we are almost afraid to write it to the Governor of New York, for it is a breach not only of your promise not to treat with the enemy without his advice, but also of the covenant chain by which we agreed each of us to assist the other in carrying on the war, and to live and die together. More than all this you are particularly obliged to us because we entered upon the war on your accounts, for we were at peace when you were at actual war with him, and besides you know how the Governor has helped you with ammunition and provisions. You say that the Sindowannes, Cayouges and Mohawks were not at your meeting, but had left the whole matter to you. What relates to the two Upper Nations we can say nothing to, though we cannot believe that they would so much forget themselves, but as to the Mohawks, they have informed us that they sent you a belt of wampum, sixteen deep, to stop your proceedings at least till their two messengers returned from Canada, so that you cannot say that they left the whole matter in your hands. You say that Governor Fletcher two years ago gave you leave to go to Canada to make peace with Onontio. Brethren, we were present at the time, and it was only by way of discourse to try your affection, and that if you would make peace (because he had been informed that you almost begged it on your knees of Onontio) you should take care that the subjects of the Great King beyond sea should not be damaged thereby. Whereupon you resolved then, as you did also last year, to renew to Governor Fletcher your promise to enter into no negotiations of peace with Onontio. Besides, brethren, this belt which we now give is wholly to stop your intended message, and if you persist in your designs (which we cannot think you will) you shall at least stop till all the Sachems of the Five Nations meet and consult with Governor Fletcher at Albany. Meantime let us tie your arms to ours and lift them together against the common enemy. Remember what Onontio lately did to one of your tribe, and yesterday at Senectady, and here to-day to our people. We cannot imagine how you became so drunk in your understanding as to call Onontio your father. We know no Father Onontio here. He is your enemy and ours. Do you call your enemy your father, who has no thoughts but to destroy you? Our two Mohawks who were lately in Canada were wiser; they called him to his face no otherwise than Onontio. As to rebuilding your castle, brethren, you will always find Governor Fletcher very ready to do it. As to Onontio's wish for one of your Indians to be lodged in his bosom for three years, your whole house has long ago known Onontio's heart to be naught, so it is not necessary for him to go. We believe that he is too wise to go, and that you will dissuade him. The words of the Oneidas, that they will none of them live in Canada, are very good if they be confirmed by deeds. As to the belt sent by Governor Fletcher last winter, you have done well to send it to the Upper Nations. Therein you may see how willing, ready and careful Governor Fletcher is for us. If Onontio had fought with him, as he threatened, he would have been received very well with powder and ball. Onontio makes a great noise, but an empty cask sounds most. Certified copy. 11 p. Endorsed, Recd. 7 Jan., 1697–8. [Board of Trade. New York, 7. Nos. 35, 35 I.; and (without enclosure) 52. pp. 294–296.]
July 2. 1,145. Abstract of Governor Fletcher's letter above abstracted. 1 p. [Board of Trade. New York, 7. No. 36.]
July 2. 1,146. Minutes of Council of Maryland. Letter from Lieutenant-Governor Stoughton read, asking Maryland to send provisions for the Newfoundland expedition owing to the dearth in Massachusetts. Order for publication of the letter, and for no ships carrying provisions to be cleared except for Massachusetts or Newfoundland. The Governor further undertook to pay all dues and fees that might be payable by such as would export provisions. Letter to Lieutenant-Governor Stoughton respecting these orders. Order for such homeward-bound ships as are ready to sail with H.M.S. Harwich to be cleared. Two of the Collectors swore to their accounts. Peter Jenings sworn Collector of Patuxent. Order for the records of his office to be delivered to him. Peter Jenings produced a Commission as prize-agent in Maryland, on which the Governor declared that he renounced his own share of prizes in favour of the commanders of ships. The commission was then registered.
July 3. The Governor directed Peter Jenings and George Muschamp, collectors, to survey their districts and report as to the place most suitable for their residence. Information was heard as to the harbouring of runaway seamen and privateers in Pennsylvania. Order for all masters of ships to be on their guard. Order for all officers to obey punctually their orders as to furnishing returns. A small deficiency of arms was reported at Annapolis, and ordered to be made good. Order for the balance of the arms-account, amounting to £622, to be expended in the purchase of arms. The Governor reported the sum in his hands for building a church at Annapolis to be £376. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 13. pp. 296–305.]
July 3.
1,147. Memorial of the Bideford merchants trading to Newfoundland. We have perused a letter by Mr. Popple, asking for an account of English and French encroachments on the Newfoundland trade since 1667. We know of no encroachments made on either side since that date until the present war. In 1690 several inhabitants were driven from Trepassy (which had been in our possession many years before 1667) by the French, and their habitations were burnt. In 1696 the Governor of Placentia came northward with a fleet and took possession of Renouse, Firmouse, Aqua Fort, Ferryland, Capeling Bay, Bay of Bulls, Petty Harbour and St. Johns, destroying the inhabitants and their goods and all ships that they found. What has been done further to northward the merchants of other ports can tell you. 12 signatures. ½ p. Endorsed, Recd. 12 July, 1697. [Board of Trade. Newfoundland, 3. No. 82.]
July 5.
1,148. Governor Codrington to Council of Trade and Plantations. On 3 May Admiral Nevill touched here with his squadron, and on the 5th sailed in search of the enemy, He took in pilots at St. Thomas's for Hispaniola on 8 May, since which I have not heard of him. By his fleet I received yours of 22 January and 12 February with the papers relating to New Tertholen, as to which I will inform myself and give you the truest account that I can, being as yet wholly a stranger to the affair. Since Admiral Nevill passed and took with him H.M.S. Colchester, we have been much troubled with French privateers, who have taken the victualling ships bound to this Government. But fourteen days ago they took a large hag-boat of the London fleet, of considerable value, off this island. But three ships of this fleet have arrived, one at Nevis and the other at Antigua. I fear that their loss in the Channel was very great, though the Captains of the two ships that arrived here can give no more perfect account than that the French had taken several of our merchant-ships and one of our men-of-war before they lost sight of them. The enemy are powerful here, and knowing that I have but one bad sailing frigate will insult us daily, having sometimes four, sometimes six, cruisers in sight of this island. One of them landed lately in Montserrat, plundered a house of considerable value of plate and of ten negroes, and lately attempted St. Christophers, but was prevented by the people's diligence and chased away by our frigate. This has obliged me this last week to fit out two privateers of my own, and some of the gentlemen have been encouraged by me to fit out a third. These with the Jersey will I hope drive the enemy from our coasts and make us easier for the future. They are all now at sea for that end, and it shall be my care, if provisions reach us, to keep them at sea till a stronger naval force arrives from England. I shall continue to observe the King's directions as to the ships that henceforth attend this Government, though I must acquaint you that I have great difficulty in victualling them when their provisions are spent, and the very ordinary provisions generally brought here, in comparison with the King's provisions, prove a great discouragement to sailors to go on board the King's ships. I have found this by experience of manning the small frigate now here, for which I can scarce find provisions in my government, so scarce and dear have they been this summer. Since I have held this government none of the pirates mentioned in your letter have arrived in any of these islands. They generally find more remote islands and Carolina to shelter themselves in, rather than adventure themselves here. However, if any of them come they shall be secured and your orders strictly obeyed. The engineers have not yet arrived, but when they do they shall receive my friendship and assistance. I shall particularly want their advice for a considerable fortification in this island which is now near finishing, but will want the King's favour to furnish it with great guns. I shall entreat your assistance towards obtaining them. Signed, Chr. Codrington. 1½ pp. Endorsed, Recd. 7 Dec., 1697. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 5. No. 47; and 45. pp. 109–113.]
July 5.
1,149. Governor Codrington to the Privy Council. I have received your letter of 27 August, and shall strictly observe your orders as to pirates. Neither Every nor any of his crew have been here. They frequent remoter islands, Providence and Carolina. Signed, Chr. Codrington. ¼ p. Endorsed, Recd. Read 20 Dec., 1697. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 5. No. 48; and 45. pp. 127–128.]
July 5. 1,150. Memorial of the subscribers to an undertaking for working copper-mines and producing naval stores in New England, to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The object of the undertaking is to produce in the King's dominions commodities which hitherto have been imported from foreign countries, and which foreign princes may either forbid to be exported or subject to such duties as would make the price excessive. We think therefore that it deserves encouragement. The stock will be necessarily so large and the subscribers so many that it cannot be managed but by a Corporation. No private person can give the Crown the same assurance of producing and supplying the said commodities, for individuals die and then contracts may be voided, which is not the case with corporations. We neither intend nor desire to exclude others from producing the same commodities. It is objected by a few traders to New England that our intended charter will injure the trade of that Colony; but it will rather advance it, for, the trade to New England being in a few hands, the merchants have so raised the prices of English manufactures that the people have been forced to abandon husbandry and manufacture cloth, &c., for themselves. These traders have and always have had liberty to join in an undertaking. Where one now trades to New England, five will trade after we are incorporated. The Deputy-Governor, some of the Council and several of the principal merchants there, who may be presumed to understand the interest of the country, were the first promoters of this undertaking and are still concerned in it. Twenty-five years ago the Colony thought undertakings of this nature so much to its interest that by Act of Assembly they gave the sole right of producing the said commodities, excluding all other persons by forfeiting such commodities if produced by them. We cannot learn that any of the patents granted of late years for less useful purposes have been clogged with such conditions and restrictions as are now proposed for ours. Two clauses which we have inserted are, we think, enough to show that our undertaking is not notional and that stock-jobbing is not intended. We are willing to abide by the last paper which we gave in to you, though far short of the privileges which former favourable reports had led us to expect; and the inclination and the encouragement which you seemed disposed to give us diverted us from applying to Parliament in this matter. We cannot accept a charter under the provisions and restrictions lately sent us by your Secretary, and if these be insisted on we must desist from troubling you further, and, after so much trouble and expense to ourselves, wait until we have an opportunity of representing elsewhere the advantages of our undertaking to the King and country, and the zeal and industry for the same which has always been our chief motive in promoting it. 2½ pp. Endorsed, Read, 10 August, 1697. [Board of Trade. New England, 8. No. 113; and 36. pp. 240–243.]
July 5. 1,151. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. The letters to the Governors of the West Indies were signed by Lord Bridgewater and despatched to Plymouth.
One Mr. Dudgeon presented a petition for appointment to be Provost Marshal of Bermuda, which was returned to him, the place not being within the cognisance of the Council.
Lord Arran attended, and said that he had found the original grant of the lands, which he claims in New England, at his home at Hamilton.
July 5. Three memorials for the use of the Plenipotentiaries at the Hague read.
Mr. Povey's letter of 28 June as to Mr. Brooke's petition was read (No. 1,117), and the Secretary was directed to write to Mr. Lowndes thereupon.
Mr. Merret gave information that the French had destroyed all the places captured from the English in Newfoundland except Bonavista, and had so left them.
Lord Arran brought up a copy of the Marquis of Hamilton's deed of feoffment and asked for early consideration of the business.
Representation as to the foot soldiers in Jamaica signed (No. 1,154) and sent to the Council. The Secretary reported that he had received an answer from the Jamaica merchants as to the transportation of fifty women convicts.
Letters from the President and Council of Barbados of 3 March and 29 April last read, with their enclosures.
July 7. The Secretary reported that the Treasurer would not pay the salaries and allowances of the commission until the Privy Seal for constituting it was sent to them.
The Secretary reported as to the despatch of the last letters to the West Indies, and orders were given as to the despatch of those to Rhode Island and Connecticut. Letter from Rhode Island read (No. 1,159 I.).
Lists of papers received from Maryland and Virginia on 21st ult. were read, also a list of papers recently received from New York.
July 8. On the report of the Secretary as to Acts of the Colonies, he was ordered to hasten the despatch of those now lying before the Attorney and Solicitor General, and in future to refer them to either instead of to both of them.
The Council began the examination of Lord Arran's case.
July 9. The Secretary's letter to Mr. Lowndes on Mr. Brooke's petition approved (No. 1,171).
The Secretary reported the receipt of Mr. William Brooke's letter of yesterday (No. 1,165), and received orders to reply that if the papers mentioned by him belonged to the Council, they ought to be sent, but that he had no directions as to postage. Order for Mr. John Kendall and Mr. Samuel Day to be apprised that the Lords Justices have reserved to themselves the nomination of a Governor for Bermuda.
Lord Arran's case further considered. [Board of Trade. Journal, 10. pp. 144–159.]
July 6. 1,152. Memorandum of the receipt of a memorial from Sir Henry Ashurst as to what has passed between the English and French since 1667. Recd. 26 June, Read 6 July, 1697. ¼ p. [Board of Trade. New England, 8. No. 114.]
July 6. 1,153. Similar memorandum of the receipt of a letter from Mr. Nelson on the same subject. Recd. 2nd, Read 6 July, 1697. ¼ p. [Board of Trade. New England, 8. No. 115.]
July 6.
1,154. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Lords Justices of England. In compliance with Mr. Vernon's letter of 23 June (No. 1,101) we are of opinion that the disbanding of the company of foot in Jamaica will not only save expense, but will tend equally to the security of the island by their service upon all occasions in the militia as by their continuing in pay. They will also be able to gain more advantage for themselves by the profit that they may be able to make of their labour. We think, however, that the Lieutenant-Governor should be instructed, on disbanding them, to use such prudent measures as he thinks advisable to prevent their leaving the island. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Tankerville, Ph. Meadows, Jo. Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 56. p. 113.]
July 6. 1,155. Extract from the Minutes of the Privy Council. The representation of the Council of Trade as to disbanding the company of foot in Jamaica was read (see preceding abstract), but the Lords Justices decided to keep the matter for the King's return. ¼ p. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 8. No. 62; and 56. p. 114.]
July 6. 1,156. The Agents for the Leeward Islands to William Popple. In reply to yours of 2nd relating to the transportation of some women convicts, it may not be improper to send them to the Leeward Islands. The best way will be to recommend them to the Chief Governor to dispose of according to their conditions and circumstances. Signed, Bastian Bayer, Joseph Martyn, Rd. Cary. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 56; and Leeward Islands, 45. pp. 85–86.]
July 6. 1,157. The Agent for Virginia and Maryland to William Popple. As regards your letter of 2nd, Virginia and Maryland being on the Continent and several Governments joining on each other have found the entertainment of convicts to be prejudicial and have passed a law against the importation of them. There will therefore be no proper place but Jamaica and Barbados, who will bid them welcome, as they most properly may, being confined under one Government and enclosed within the Island. If the Council wish to dispose of them, I could recommend one who would do so to satisfaction. Signed, Micaiah Perry. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 57.]
July 6.
1,158. William Popple to Captain St. Lo. Forwarding packets for the Governments of Barbados, Jamaica and the Leeward Islands, to be sent by the men-of-war bound thither from Plymouth. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 34. p. 173.]
July 6.
1,159. Order of the Lord Justices of England in Council. Referring a letter from the Governor and Magistrates of Rhode Island to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Signed, Wm. Bridgeman. ¼ p. Endorsed, Recd. Read, 7 July, 1697. Enclosed,
1,159. I. Governor and Magistrates of Rhode Island to the Privy Council, 8 June, 1696. Congratulations on the King's escape from assassination, for which thanksgiving was duly solemnised. Vigilant watch is keeping for the conspirators. Unsigned. 1 p. [Board of Trade. New England, 8. Nos. 116, 116I.; and 36. pp. 210–211.]
July 6. 1,160. Commission appointing a Board for the promoting the trade of the Kingdom and improving the Plantations in America and elsewhere. The Board is to consist of the Lord Keeper, Lord President, Lord Privy Seal, First Lords of the Treasury and Admiralty, Principal Secretaries of State, Chancellor of the Exchequer, Earls of Bridgewater and Tankerville, Sir Philip Meadows, William Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, John Locke, Abraham Hill and George Stepney. Three to be a quorum, representations to be signed by at least four. The employment of the poor and fisheries are to be part of their business as well as the business of Trade and the Plantations. The obtaining of naval stores from the Plantations is particularly committed to their attention. The former commission of 15 May is revoked. [Board of Trade. Journal, 10. pp. 233–240.]
July 6. 1,161. Minutes of Council of Barbados. The President sent down a letter recommending several matters to the Council's consideration. £25 granted to Mr. Heberlands for materials. Sundry accounts passed, including £12 to Edward Skeete for superintending workmen at the entrenchments, and three months' subsistence to the officers of Garth's regiment, viz. to the Major 4s. a day, to the Captain 2s. 6d., to lieutenants, surgeon and quartermaster, 2s. a day. The Assembly desired conferences on the bills about elections of Assemblymen and for election of Agents, and that the Excise bill might be passed or a conference appointed for that also, and that the Militia bill might be expedited. Conferrers appointed accordingly.
July 7. Bill for the better enabling of the Governor to furnish seamen for the King's ships (pursuant to the King's late order) read thrice and passed. Major Garth's memorial concerning his soldiers read and recommended to the Assembly. The Conferrers reported that the Assembly had accepted the Council's amendments as to the bill for electing Assemblymen, with an additional clause. On the Agents Bill the Assembly conceded that the Agents be paid by warrant of the Governor in Council, but insisted upon having the sole nomination of the Agents. Thereupon the Council resolved to abide by their former proposals as to the Agents Bill. The Assembly came in and prayed that the Act concerning judges appointing their own clerks might be recorded, and that the soldiers who are not billeted may be supplied for a month, adding that they would pass an Act for their more certain supply with all expedition, and then proposed to adjourn for three weeks. Order for the soldiers to be supplied as desired, at the rate of 25s. each per month.
July 8. Order for payment for provisions supplied to H.M.S. Bideford, that further supplies be given to her for her coming voyage, and that she sail on the 19th inst., with such of the fleet as are ready to go under her convoy. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 65. pp. 223–226.]
July 7.
1,162. William Popple to the Commissioners for Sick, Wounded and Prisoners. Forwarding copy of the list of French prisoners transmitted by the President of Barbados in his letter of 29 April (No. 978 III.). [Board of Trade. Barbados, 44. p. 75.]
July 8. 1,163. Memorandum of the receipt of a Memorial from the Hudson's Bay Company answering certain enquiries of the Ambassador relating to the Company. Scrap. Inscribed, Recd. Read, 8 July, 1698. [Board of Trade. Hudson's Bay, 2. No. 16.]
July 8.
1,164. Solomon Merrett to William Popple. I have written above what news I have received from Newfoundland, and I enclose also an account [missing] of the encroachments made by the French on us. I hear that a convoy is designed for Newfoundland. Kindly advise me when it sails. Signed, Solomon Merrett. Above this is written: An account of news from Newfoundland. Captain Wester sailed from Bonavista on 28 May, where he left three ships. Seven ships from Cadiz had the misfortune to fall in with a French man-of-war of 50 or 60 guns which sank one and took three, the rest escaping, two into Carbonere and one into St. Johns. The French do not pretend to keep the places they have taken, having already quitted them. They have, with Indians, about 100 men. They destroyed everything in every harbour except Bonavista, where they would not attempt anything, as ships were lying there. They have in Placentia about five men-of-war and five and twenty merchantships. A convoy was sighted in latitude 43° 3'. 1 p. Endorsed, Recd. 12 July, 1697. [Board of Trade. Newfoundland, 3. No. 83.]
July 8. 1,165. William Brooke to William Popple. Your letters addressed to the Governor of Bermuda shall be duly forwarded. A few days ago I opened a packet from him at your house, and desired you to assist me to the postage of that packet and of several others which I have received from him for the King's service, which in all amounts to a valuable sum. It being your dining time I unfortunately did not take a strict account of what was in the packet, but I have done so since, and find them to be all duplicates of papers already sent to you. If you would have me bring these papers I will do so, but I hope that you will put me in some way to have the postage repaid me. I hear that there is a ship in the Downs which is likely to reach Bermuda before that which I had designed, but as I do not know how to obtain a receipt from the captain for your packet I shall deliver it to the other. Signed, W. Brooke. 1 p. Endorsed, Recd. 8th, Read 9th July, 1697. [Board of Trade. Bermuda, 3. No. 14.]
July 8. 1,166. The Jamaican Merchants to Council of Trade and Plantations. The fifty women convicts mentioned in Mr. Popple's letter of 2nd inst. would be of no use to us in Jamaica, nay, we would not receive them except on condition of receiving one hundred and fifty male convicts with them. It is men that we want, having sustained great losses by the earthquake and the sickness that followed it, and particularly by the men-of-war having frightened away many of our men to other Colonies and turned fifteen times as many men as they pressed into pirates. The women would only be a burden to us and would contribute nothing to our defence. Signed, Gilbert Heathcote, Bartho. Gracedieu and by five more. ¾ p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 58.]
July 8. 1,167. Memorandum of the receipt of the foregoing letter. ¼ p. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 8. No. 63.]
July 8.
1,168. William Popple to William Penn. The Council of Trade expected to see you before you went out of town on the subject of my letter of 8th ult., when a letter would have been delivered to you from the King, which letter I now enclose (No. 961). [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 25. p. 84.]
July 8. 1,169. William Popple to Major-General Winthrop and Jahleel Brenton. Forwarding letters for transmission to the Governors of Connecticut and Rhode Island. [Board of Trade. New England, 36. p. 213.]
July 8. 1,170. Minutes of Council of Massachusetts. Orders for payment of £30 to the minister of the garrison at Dunstable, of £100 for expenses of the garrison at Pemaquid, of £7 to Isaac Addington, clerk of Assembly, and of £37 for maintenance of French and Indian prisoners. [Board of Trade. New England, 49. pp. 102–103.]
July 9.
1,171. William Popple to William Lowndes. With reference to Chidley Brooke's petition forwarded in your letter of 14 May (No. 1,025) the Council of Trade have been unable to find any precedent of what has been done on such occasions; but considering that his employment as Receiver of New York has been different from, and far more troublesome than, that of any of his predecessors, the Council are of opinion that he may be recommended to the Government of New York for such an allowance as it may think fit. [Board of Trade. New York, 52. p. 180.]
July 9.
1,172. William Thornburgh to William Popple. I cannot yet arrange a meeting of the Lords Proprietors of Carolina to consider your letter respecting women convicts, but you may be assured that the Proprietors will acquiesce in the Lords Justices' pleasure if they transport them to Carolina. What reception they will find there I cannot say, though it will be better than elsewhere, for most of the rest of the West Indian settlements (if not all, to my certain knowledge) will not receive women-convicts. If you resolve to send them to Carolina I have a ship bound thither that will carry them at the usual rates, and the master will be careful to procure for them the best reception that he can. Signed, Wm. Thornburgh. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 59.]
July 9.
1,173. Captain St. Lo, R.N., to William Popple. Acknowledging the receipt of packets for Barbados, the Leeward Islands and Jamaica, to be forwarded by the men-of-war bound thither. Signed, G. St. Lo. ¼ p. Endorsed, Recd. 10 July, 1697. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 60.]
July 10. 1,174. Memorial of the Agents for Barbados to Council of Trade and Plantations. In reply to Mr. Popple's letter of 30 June (No. 1,128) we offer as follows. Since 1667 to this day Barbados and the other islands depending thereon have been in uninterrupted possession of the Kings of England and of their subjects. St. Lucia in particular has been possessed by them in and since the year 1667; and a little before that time about 1,500 people were sent from Barbados to settle it, though it has since been thought fit to keep that island not for planting thereon but for convenience of wood and timber, which is much needed in Barbados and has constantly been brought thither from St. Lucia. Some of it is cut by those that fetch it, and some by men who stay upon the place. But in the reign of King James II. several French people came from Martinique to St. Lucia, and set up huts and tents, with a design (as they said) to hunt wild hogs. When this was known in Barbados, the Governor, Colonel Stede, at once went down in a ship commanded by Captain St. Lo (now Commissioner of the Navy at Plymouth), and caused the tents and huts to be destroyed and the French people to depart, which they did, promising to come there no more, nor have they ever been there since. Colonel Stede and Thomas Fullerton, who went with him to St. Lucia, are both in London, and can give you full information. It is absolutely necessary to keep St. Lucia, for the preservation of Barbados (1) because of the timber upon it; (2) because, if another nation should possess it, debtors, servants and negroes that have a mind to run from Barbados, could easily get to it, being to leeward and in sight of Barbados; (3) because there is a very good port in St. Lucia which, if possessed by an enemy, might be of most mischievous consequence, since all ships that go from Barbados pass to leeward between these islands mostly in view of St. Lucia (sic). Signed, Edw. Littleton, Wm. Bridges, Fran. Eyles. 1 p. Endorsed, Recd. Read, 14 July, 1697. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 7. No. 36.]