America and West Indies: August 1696, 17-31

Pages 71-91

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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August 1696

Aug. 17. 147. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. An invoice sent by Sir Henry Ashurst, and a paper from Mr. Randolph (see two following abstracts) were received. [Board of Trade. Journal, 9. pp. 56–57.]
[Aug. 17.] 148. Invoice of the first cost of Naval stores imported by Sir Henry Ashurst. Total cost, £697 16s. 10d. ½ p. Endorsed, Aug. 17, 1696. [Board of Trade. New England, 8. No. 20.]
[Aug. 17.] 149. An account of several things whereby illegal trade is encouraged in Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania, with methods for preventing the same, submitted to the Commissioners of Customs by Edward Randolph. (1) The ignorance, remissness or connivance of Collectors permits masters of vessels and others to import goods and load tobacco under forged certificates. Some are traders who hold offices of trust and profit under the Government. (2) The Naval officers accept persons of little or no estate as security for masters of vessels who sail direct to Scotland, yet when these produce forged certificates the forfeited bonds are discharged. (3) There is a general partiality of Courts and juries in all causes relating to the Crown, of which some, as in Virginia and Pennsylvania, are not legally qualified. (4) There is no penalty by law upon Fob-masters, nor upon masters who produce forged certificates and cockets, nor upon the persons who forge them. (5) The people on the Eastern shore of Virginia, Maryland and Delaware River, Scotsmen and others, have great stocks lying by them to purchase tobacco, and prepare a loading ready to be put aboard any vessel. The master assists to get the goods ashore before the vessel is entered, which are disposed of among the goods ashore. The vessel lying in some obscure creek forty or fifty miles from the Collector's office is presently loaded, and sails away undisturbed. (6) Collectors permit vessels, entered outwards to other places than the plantations, to trade in the plantations, without certificates that they have given security. (7) Collectors allow Scotchmen coming by way of Berwick or Whitehaven to the plantations, to land with a considerable quantity of goods, which they dispose of in a peddling manner by running small boats from creek to creek. (8) Masters are not prosecuted on forfeiture of their plantation-bonds, nor vessels upon breach of the Acts of Trade, unless they come to the plantation where the offence was committed. (9) Fob-masters not worth five pounds apiece are permitted to trade if they produce no more than a cocket from England. (10) Collectors never board vessels on their first arrival to ascertain their qualifications. (11) They suffer vessels carrying provisions in cask to load in any river, no matter how distant from the office, whereby great quantities of tobacco are put up in cask or carried to the plantations. (12) Governors permit privateers of all nations to be masters and owners of vessels.
To prevent these evils I propose (1) That three or four active Custom-house officers be sent, with salaries, to the districts where illegal traders chiefly resort. (2) That no enumerated commodities be exported from the plantations till bond be first given and certificate produced, and Governors should be subjected to the penalty of £1,000 and forfeiture if they take insufficient security. (3) Courts of Exchequer should be established with Judges and Attorney-Generals appointed by the Crown; appeal to lie to the Governor in Council, and from thence to the King in Council. (4) Fob-masters and those producing forged certificates should be liable to twelve months' imprisonment and forfeiture of the ship and cargo, and forgers to imprisonment for life. (5) Landing of goods before entry made should be punished by a fine of £200, and persons assisting to land should be punishable by fine and forfeiture of boats, etc. (6) Ships from England to the Colonies should bring a printed certificate that bond has been given, or otherwise shall not be permitted to load. (7) Scotsmen coming from Whitehaven with goods should be accounted aliens according to the Act of 12 Car. II. (8) All masters of vessels should be strictly prosecuted upon forfeiture of their bonds. No fraudulent sale of a vessel for breach of the Acts should bar prosecution. Masters and vessels guilty of breach of the Acts should be proceeded against upon the copies of their bonds given in 1693 and 1694. (9) No English or Irish subject should sail master or mate on a Scotch ship, on pain of forfeiture of the ship and cargo. (10) Collectors and their deputies should board any vessel suspected to be unqualified, and the master if convicted should forfeit £500. (11) Ships carrying tobacco or provisions to other Colonies should be allowed to unload and load in two ports only in each of the Colonies of Maryland, Virginia and Pennsylvania. (12) No privateer should be admitted to any liberties or privileges in the Colonies until he has given at least £1,000 security. 6 pp. Endorsed, Presented to the Commissioners of Customs, 16 October, 1695. Delivered to me [William Popple] 17 Aug., 1696. Annexed,
149. I. A paper submitted to the Commissioners of Customs by Edward Randolph. 17 Aug., 1696. The object of this paper is to show that the Acts of Parliament made for encouraging and securing the trade to and from the Plantations to England have not been observed nor executed in the Proprietary Colonies, but that on the contrary all encouragement is there given to illegal trade. The chief end of granting these vast tracts of land to proprietors was doubtless to encourage the first undertakers to plant and improve them for the benefit of the Crown and to be subject to English laws and dependent on England. Great numbers of people are now seated in some of the proprieties, but have been long endeavouring to break loose and set up for themselves, having no sort of regard for the Acts of Trade and Navigation and discountenancing appeals to the King in Council. The persons generally appointed by the proprietors to be Governors are men of very indifferent qualifications, parts and estates. Their maintenance is inconsiderable, which renders their Government precarious. They have power only (like civil magistrates in petty corporations in England) to make municipal laws with the consent of the people for their quiet and peaceable government. They are indeed only stewards and overseers, always liable to be turned out at the pleasure of their employers. The following is a report as to the present Governors of the proprietary Colonies in respect of the Acts of Trade.
Bahama Islands.—Mr. Nicholas Trott is Governor. The Islands have long been and are still a common retreat for pirates and illegal traders. Cadwallader Jones, the late Governor, made one Boulton Collector, who entered and cleared vessels as he and the Governor pleased. In 1693 the master of a Barbados ship, richly laden from Jamaica to London, ran his ship wilfully aground in the Islands, and he and his sailors divided the money and cargo. The Governor had his advantage from it. All appeals from their Courts lie to the Proprietors in England.
Carolina.—Mr. John Archdale, a Quaker, is deputed Governor, during his son's minority, who is one of the proprietors. Charlestown is free for trade to all from all places. They trade to Curaçoa, from which Holland manufactures are brought to Carolina and carried by illegal traders to Boston, Pennsylvania etc., the return trade in plantation commodities being passed through the same channels. About three years ago seventy pirates, who ran away with a vessel from Jamaica, came to Charleston with a vast quantity of gold from the Red Sea. They were entertained, and had liberty to stay or go to any other place. The vessel was seized by the Governor for the Proprietors as a wreck and sold without regard to the Acts of Trade. The present Governor favours illegal trade, having given his permit to the master of a foreign vessel to trade, taking no notice of the Collector appointed by you. Here also appeals from the province lie to the Proprietors in England.
North Carolina has sixty or seventy scattered families, but under no regular Government. One Jarvis was appointed Governor by Colonel Ludwell, without salary. The inlet of Currahtuck lies conveniently to ship off the tobacco grown in these parts to New England, etc. Roanoke Inlet lies more southerly and open to the West India trade and ready to harbour pirates.
Pennsylvania.—William Markham, a very infirm man, is Governor. Samuel Carpenter and John Goodson, both Quakers, are appointed to be his assistants, but refused to act. Nine vessels have gone from thence to Scotland direct, and the Custom-house has advice of the arrival of another. Several known pirates are allowed to live and trade there, trading chiefly with Curaçoa, to the great damage of honest traders. The inhabitants have lately made a stock of £20,000, to be managed in a joint trade. The Governor refused to grant me a special Court at Philadelphia for trial of a ship which I seized, but ordered the trial to be held at Chester, where I was cast, imprisoned, and had £46 damages given against me. Patrick Robinson, a Scotchman, is secretary and a fast friend to his countrymen. It is a great outlet to Maryland, from whence tobacco is brought overland to Scotland. There is a fort of seven guns at Newcastle, of which a trading Scotchman (being Major) has command.
East and West Jersey.—Andrew Hamilton, a Scotchman, is Governor. There are several Scotchmen at Amboy. Mr. Brooke, Collector of New York, seized a vessel there for illegal trading to Scotland.
Connecticut.—Robert Treat is Governor. The people are mostly husbandmen, and carry their provisions to Boston and New York, but they are quite ready to carry prohibited goods to either place, as was lately done, the Governor taking little notice of it.
Rhode Island.—Caleb Carr, an illiterate person, was lately Governor. It is now a free port for pirates. Thomas Tew, a pirate, brought £100,000 there from the Red Sea in 1694. The place should be put under a regular Government.
New Hampshire.—Mr. Samuel Allen is Proprietor, and William Partridge, a man of good estate, is Lieutenant-Governor. The trade is chiefly lumber and fish. It is the only place from which great masts are brought to England.
From this it cannot be imagined that the Proprietors' Agents are fit people to execute the powers, in respect of the Acts of Trade, which are vested in the Governors. The Proprietors' Governors should be approved by the King and otherwise qualified as the late Act, to regulate the Plantation trade, directs. This will be no invasion of the Proprietors' rights. Lord Baltimore and Mr. Allen have their Agents in Maryland and New Hampshire, but the Governors are appointed by the King. Signed, Ed. Randolph. 2½ pp.
149. II. Record of the trial of the sloop Dolphin for illegal trading, at Newcastle, on 21 June, 1694. Verdict for defendant with damages. 2½ pp.
149. III. Copy of Record of a Court held in Kent County, Pennsylvania, on 17 March, 1693, for trial of the sloop Dolphin. Verdict for defendant. 2 pp.
149. IV. Copies of William Markham's Commission for trial of the ship Dolphin at Chester, Pennsylvania, dated 20 April, 1695; and of the petition of the master of the Dolphin for the trial of the ship. 2 pp.
149. V. Copy of the Record of Edward Randolph's libel against the ship Dolphin. 16 April, 1695. 2¼ pp.
149. VI. Copies of William Markham's Commission for trial of the ship Dolphin, 23 April, 1695, and of a deposition against the ship, 20 April, 1695. 1½ pp.
149. VII. Copy of the record of the trial of the ship Dolphin on 30 April, 1695. Verdict for defendant, with damages and costs. Randolph's request to appeal was granted, but the ship was ordered to be discharged meanwhile. 2½ pp.
149. VIII. Copy of a warrant for the arrest of Edward Randolph in Pennsylvania to answer a complaint of the master of the Dolphin. 2 May, 1695. ½ p.
149. IX. Copy of the suit brought by the master of the Dolphin against Edward Randolph for £44 damages. 1¼ pp.
149. X. Names of fifteen Red Sea pirates, who came to Pennsylvania from South Carolina in 1692, also of six merchants who trade thence illegally with Scotland. 1 p.
149. XI. Information from Edinburgh, 6 July and 2 August, 1696, of the arrival of ships from Pennsylvania in Scotland. ½ p.
149. XII. Copy of the Order of Queen Mary in Council of 9 August, 1694, for vessels to be hired to cruise off Maryland and Pennsylvania to check illegal trading. 1 p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. Nos. 6, 6 I.–XII.]
Aug. 17. 150. Minutes of Council of Massachusetts. The sailing orders for the cruise of the naval expedition were read and approved by the Council. [Board of Trade. New England, 49. p. 42.]
Aug. 17. 151. Minutes of Council of Barbados. The Assembly's proposals were considered. (See No. 144.) (1) Requires no answer. (2) Order for Colonel Salter and Major Lillington to be joined with three members of the Assembly for inspection of the magazine and report on the stores therein. James Hannay produced his patent as Provost Marshal, which was allowed. A joint Committee appointed to consider the Governor's funeral. The Assembly brought up an Address to the King for arms, a bill for a speedy supply of arms, and a bill for election of a vestry in St. Thomas. They then offered memorials as to the African Company, as to postponement of the Governor's funeral, as to a joint representation against the appointment of Sir Willoughby Chamberlayne to be Governor, and as to a meeting of the Commissioners for the fortifications.
Aug. 18. A conference held on the bill for speedy supply of arms. Bill for election of a vestry for St. Thomas passed. Colonel Salter and Major Lillington brought in their report as to the stores in the magazine. A Committee to correspond with the Agents in England was appointed. Bills as to the militia and as to repair of the forts received from the Assembly, also proposals that but one gun be fired in future to answer salutes, that the French prisoners be sent home, that the Acts passed this session be forthwith published, and that a despatch-boat sail forthwith with an express to the King.
Aug. 19. James Hannay sworn as Provost Marshal; Mr. Terrill sworn of the Council. Bills for repair of trenches, to supplement the Militia Act, and to prevent frauds in the powder-duty passed. Bill for supply of arms amended and returned. Jonathan Langley appointed Administrator of the late Governor's estate on giving security for £20,000. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 65 pp. 127–132.]
Aug. 18. 152. An account of stores of war in the magazine at Barbados and of expenditure of powder and arms from the same. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 44A. pp. 72–73.]
Aug. 19. 153. Minutes of Council of Jamaica. Orders for sundry payments. Agreed that £150, being part of the King's bounty of £4,000 granted to the distressed inhabitants of Jamaica, be distributed among the poor of St. George's and St. Mary's parishes. The Committee brought up their report on Usher Tyrrell's petition, which was approved and ordered to be sent home. Richard Dawkins sworn of the Council. Resolved that the Assembly be dissolved. Order for the Acts approved by the King to be printed. Order for enlargement of the gaol at St. Jago de la Vega. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 79. pp. 15–16.]
Aug. 19. 154. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Evidence as to trade with Holland was heard. Mr. Randolph brought Mr. Chilton to confirm his statements in his paper of 17 August, and gave in the records of two trials in which he had been unjustly cast in Pennsylvania. Mr. Chilton confirmed former information as to the sitting of Councillors of Virginia and elsewhere as judges, without taking any special oath. Mr. Heathcote and Mr. Gracedieu were ordered to attend next meeting. [Board of Trade. Journal, 9. pp. 57–62.]
Aug. 20. 155. Commission to Thomas Gower to be Secretary of the Bahama Islands. Signed, Craven, Bath (for himself and for Lord Carteret), Wm. Thornburgh for Sir John Colleton. [Board of Trade. Carolina, 4. p. 33.]
Aug. 20.
156. Order of the Lords Justices of England in Council. For the payment to Governor Russell of the present granted to him by the Assembly of Barbados. Copy. ½ p. Endorsed, Recd. and read 9 June, 1697. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 7. No. 9; and 44A. p. 61.]
Aug. 20.
157. Order of the Lords Justices of England in Council. Referring a report from the Council of Trade, together with a memorial of the New York Agents, back to the Council of Trade for report. Signed, Wm. Bridgeman. ½ p. Annexed,
157. I. Council of Trade to the Lords Justices, 7 July, 1696. We enclose a paper on the American Colonies which we have received from Lord Shrewsbury, thinking that the matters referred to therein are of such importance as to demand speedier action than the yet unsettled state of our office enables us to deliberate on and represent. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Will. Trumbull, Cha. Montague, Ph. Meadows, John Locke, Abr. Hill. ½ p.
157. II. Copy of a memorial delivered by Charles Pilsworth to William Blathwayt at the Hague, 9/19 May, 1696. About the middle of March, 1695–6, I was greatly conversant with Sir Thomas Laurence, and, as he had been appointed Secretary of Maryland, I acquainted him with a design, which I had received from a friend of mine, of the French against the English Colonies in America. At Sir Thomas Laurence's request my friend came to him and told him that if I would go to Amsterdam I should be directed to those who would confirm his account. Through Sir John Lowther I was introduced to Lord Portland, from whom, as well as from other officers, I received the necessary papers and passes. I left England on the 22nd of April, arrived at Helvoetsluys on the 24th and at Amsterdam on the 25 April/5 May. Next day I waited on Burgomaster Wilsen, presented my letter from Lord Portland, and after he had consulted the other Burgomasters he at my request sent for Mr. Lovinus van Schaick, who promised to meet me on the 1st of May, and on that day gave me the following information. The value of the Alliance of the Five Nations of Indians to the English is well known. The French having suffered much in a war with them thirty years ago, have ever since courted their favour and have contrived secretly to undermine and extirpate them. To this end they have sent Jesuit missionaries among them, who by subtle insinuations have tried to draw them away from their own country into Canada, pretending that they could be better instructed in the Christian religion, and have so far prevailed as to have drawn away a considerable number, who are settled near Montreal. These have done eminent service to the French in the present war; indeed without them and other Indians of the Five Nations the French could not have preserved Canada. With their help the French have destroyed Senectady and several plantations near Albany, and terrified several of the Dutch and English into deserting their habitations. The rest of the Five Nations have fought the French for ten years, the French wishing to extirpate them as they would not join them and trade to Canada. The French King in a treaty with the late King James very subtly obtained an article, that if English or French were at war with Indians, the other party should not encourage or supply ammunition to the Indians. Immediately after this treaty the French came down in great force upon the Senecas, the strongest of the Five Nations, who laid an ambuscade for the French, but after some hours' fighting were obliged to retreat before the French, who burned their towns and plundered all they could. This began the war, and the French doubted not soon to dictate their own terms to them. But those Indians soon after invaded Canada in revenge, killed many of the French and took many prisoners. The French Governor has spared no pains to allure them to his side, and asked them to meet him at Cadaraqui; but the English dissuaded them and promised them refuge in New York, if defeated by the French, engaging also to try to take Canada from the French, which has not yet been undertaken. The Indians have lost much by the war and are inclined to peace with the French, which would be fatal to the English Colonies; for if the few Indians at Montreal are so formidable, much more will be the whole of the Five Nations. The French offer large presents to gain the Indians, by the insinuation of Pierre Milet, a Jesuit, who is a perfect master of their languages and customs. The Indians though often urged to send this man away, refuse to do so. Mr. Van Schaick is informed that the French have a present design to destroy the English settlements in America, having sent ships with presents for the Indians to the West Indies. He obtained his information from a letter from a pirate of note to a gentleman of quality. It is absolutely necessary to hold the Five Nations firm to their alliance by presents. £800 or £1,000 would purchase sufficient presents for the purpose. Peter Schuyler, Dirck Wessels and Godefridus Dellius are the persons best fitted to treat with them, being much beloved. Ammunition and clothing are the best presents for Indians; but the capture of Canada would gain them for ever.
Information was given me from another source that Mons. Renaut sailed for the West Indians with five ships on the 4th of May. Another fleet of merchantmen and men-of-war will join them shortly. There is no doubt that the English frontier towards Canada is in great danger. 14½ pp.
157. III. Memorial of the Agents for New York to the Lords Justices of England. We were sent by the Governor, Council and Assembly of New York in November last, with an address of thanks and loyalty to the King, and with instructions to lay before you the state of that province. In January, when off Scilly, we were captured by a French privateer and remained prisoners until April, and before the ship surrendered we sank all our official papers. We were instructed to represent that the French in Canada have resettled Cadaraqui, from which they were driven by the Indians at the beginning of the war; that the Indians have since been much colder to the English, and it is feared that they may not only make peace with the French but war with the English; that the Governor of New York has been unable, with the forces at his disposal, to hinder the settlement of Cadaraqui, the place being five hundred miles away, and the way through thick woods and great lakes without a road and with no means of obtaining provisions for white men in any number; that if the Five Nations are gained by the French the whole of the English settlements will be liable to destruction; that New York by means of presents (to her great impoverishment) has with great difficulty kept the Indians faithful, so far; that the province, of three thousand families, has since 1690 raised over £30,000 for the expenses of the war, whereas the other Colonies, which are equally concerned, have contributed no more than £3,000; that in spite of this the expense of the war has been so great that the province is heavily in debt; that the Indians are inclined to the French side from observing the great recruits of men, arms and stores sent to Canada annually from France; that therefore we beg you to intercede with the King to prevent the evils that may ensue if the Five Nations confederate with the French. Signed, Chid. Brooke, W. Nicoll. 1 p.
The whole endorsed. Read 24 Aug. 1696. [Board of Trade. New York, 6. Nos. 48, 48I.–III.; and (without enclosures I., II.) 52. pp. 1–4.]
Aug. 21. 158. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Mr. Gracedieu attended and gave information as to the Admiralty Court and other Courts of Jamaica, pointing out that the offices of Provost Marshal, Secretary and Receiver General were all Patent places. He gave other information as to the Island in general, and promised to put suggestions for the advantage of the Island on paper.
The records of the Plantation Office were received.
Two letters from Governor Codrington, of 12 February and 5 May read. Order for copy of the latter to be sent to the Duke of Shrewsbury, and for the Agents of the Leeward Islands to attend next meeting.
Mr. Randolph delivered a paper as to Attorneys General in the Colonies, which was referred back to him for further details as to the persons whom he proposes to displace. [Board of Trade. Journal, 9. pp. 62–66.]
Aug. 21.
New York.
159. Governor Fletcher to Lords of Trade and Plantations. On the 2nd inst. I had intelligence that the Governor of Canada with a thousand French and two thousand Indians was in our Indian country, and that the people of Albany were in some consternation lest the Five Nations should join them and fall upon Albany and Senectady. He surprised one Castle at Oneida which he burned, and he destroyed the Indian corn. The Onandagas sent away their old men, women and children to southward. The young men tarried till they perceived that the French were too numerous for them, burned their fort and retreated, leaving their corn to be destroyed. It is reported by some escaped prisoners that an Indian brought tidings to Count Frontenac that I was on march from Albany with an army as numerous as the trees of the woods, which hastened his retreat. The Cayonges and Senecas are not hurt. I wrote to Connecticut for their quota and to the Governor of the Jerseys for men to meet me at Albany, but all my endeavours could not obtain one man from them. The Council have resolved to supply the Oneidas and Onandagas with corn this year, which will add to the expenses of the province. I have sent herewith a copy of my proceedings at Albany on this occasion. I have delayed giving them the King's present till I can get them all together, and having received advice from the Privy Council of a French design upon some part of America I hastened to New York, for in a month or six weeks' time the winds are esteemed a defence to this coast. Three of the Lieutenants of the King's Companies have often troubled me with papers, desiring to be discharged, and at last have resigned their commands. On the day of their resignation I granted provisional commissions to Lieutenant Abraham Bickford instead of Matthew Shanke of Ingoldsby's Company, to Lieutenant Simon Young instead of George Sydenham of Weems's Company, and to Lieutenant Charles Oliver instead of Roger Wright of Hide's Company. They had all served as Cadets with the English troops in the Irish war, two of them have been lieutenants in the country-forces and behaved themselves well against the French and Indians in February, 1692. The frequent alarms we have from the French put us to great charge and expense of ammunition, besides the supplying of the Indians and of the forts of Albany and Senectady. I beg for an annual supply and for punctual payment of the subsistence of the Companies, which are all the force that I can depend on for the safety of the province. I have transmitted herewith my answer to the depositions taken against me. Signed, Ben. Fletcher. 3 pp. Endorsed, Recd. 30 Nov. 1696. Read 7 Dec. Answd. 1 Feb. 1696–7. [Board of Trade. New York, 6. No. 49; and 52. pp. 46, 47.]
Aug. 22. 160. Governor Fletcher to Lords of Trade and Plantations. Recounts briefly the story of the French raid as in preceding letter and ends as follows. On my return to New York I found the people very forward in the reparation of their breastworks and platforms, having furnished the guns with new wheels and carriages where wanting. Signed, Ben Fletcher. 1½ pp. Endorsed, Recd. 12 Dec. Read 14 Dec. 1696. Answd. 1 Feb. 1696–7. [Board of Trade. New York, 6. No. 50; and 52. pp. 52–53.]
[Aug. 22.] 161. Answer of Governor Fletcher to the depositions taken against him in the late Committee of Trade and Plantations on 28 August and 14 September, 1695. First in relation to Philip French's depositions; as to the report that I threatened to pistol any man that should choose Delanoy for the Assembly, I can bring 500 witnesses to aver that they never heard of such a report until it came from England. The value of Philip French's statements of like nature may therefore be left to your consideration. As to the presence of seamen and soldiers with clubs at the election, I answer that I myself stirred not abroad that day. It is indifferent to me who are Assemblymen. I hope only that they may be honest men with care for the safety of the frontiers and the welfare of the province. The very depositions do not affirm that the soldiers voted. I can assure you that I allowed not one to go off guard, though several of the soldiers were freemen. It is hard to hold an officer responsible for the walks of his men when off duty. I know nothing about what the witness calls Leisler's party, and as to impressing in the election field there has been no press for the land-service since I came here. As to alleged great heats in the Assembly about the public accounts, the minutes of Council and Assembly, which have been already transmitted, will show that I have never received a penny of public money, nor issued a warrant for payment without advice and consent of the Council. I beg that Mr. Brooke and Mr. Nicoll may be examined as to their depositions. As to Major Howell's detachment at Albany, he was ordered there because it was his turn, and he received pay as major and captain. As to the allegation that all the goldsmiths were employed in making presents for me, it had been more to the purpose if the deponent had proved that the plate had been presented to me; but I acknowledge that I have received two snuff-boxes from gentlemen whom I have obliged. The last part of Mr. French's deposition is all hearsay, but I acknowledge that at my coming here I found one Mr. Simms, lieutenant in Major Ingoldsby's company, and that I sent him to England to procure recruits. As to his being master of a ship I can say nothing, but I own no ship nor share in a ship. Next as to the deposition of William Kid, most of which is answered in my reply to that of Philip French. As to the making of freemen, I am of opinion that you will not hold me responsible for the action of the Mayor and Sheriffs at elections, though I have never heard it complained of. I have never named anyone to the Assembly, having nothing to ask or desire of them except the protection of the frontiers. Samuel Bradley's evidence I have already sufficiently answered. As to John Aldbrough's evidence I beg you to examine Mr. Brooke and Mr. Nicoll, who will refute also the statements of Joseph Davies. Giles Shelley's evidence is already sufficiently answered. The rest of the depositions are mere hearsay, and I beg that Mr. Brooke and Mr. Nicoll may be heard upon them. Signed, Ben. Fletcher. 3¼ pp. Endorsed. Recd. 30 Nov. Read 24 Dec. 1696. [Board of Trade. New York, 6. No. 51.]
Aug. 22.
New York.
162. Governor Fletcher to William Blathwayt. I have sent by this opportunity a copy of my proceedings at Albany, being called thither on the 2nd by an express with intelligence that Count Frontenac with a thousand French and two thousand Indians was overrunning the Country of the Five Nations. He was gone before I reached Albany, and it happened well that our Indians fled. It is believed that had they tarried to have discoursed him, being at the head of so great a force, he had got his desire in having them make peace with Canada. The copies of our Minutes of Council and laws are ready and await trustworthy carriage. I have sent an answer to certain depositions taken against me. Mr. Livingston is arrayed and has presented to me a letter from the Duke of Shrewsbury. He shall have right done to him in all his just pretensions. The Council, and in particular Colonel Van Cortlandt, were much surprised at his whole proceedings, and have begged leave to send to Mr. Brooke and Mr. Nicoll a true answer to his case, which they conceive to be much for the King's service and the ease of the province. Three of the subalterns, Lieutenants Shanke, Wright, and Sydenham have resigned. If they are clamorous I hope that they will not have as easy credit as Mr. Livingston had. I have appointed Lieutenants Bickford, Young, and Oliver in their places. The remainder of the letter is a repetition of that to the Lords of Trade of same date, as to the qualifications of these officers and the need for supplies. 2 pp. Endorsed, Recd., Read 30 Nov. 1696. Answd. 1 Feb. 1696–7. [Board of Trade. New York, 6. No. 52; and 52. pp. 42–43.]
Aug. 24.
163. Governor Sir William Beeston to the Duke of Shrewsbury. Yesterday the fleet sailed under convoy of the Hampshire, intending to go by the Windward Passage; and in the evening came an express from Cuba that the French were cruising off Havana with twenty sail, several of them great ships. I at once sent a sloop after the fleet, to the intent that they should not go by way of the Gulf, though it seems to me unreasonable to think that the French can cruise for three months or more on a coast where they have no port or place to recruit in, so I think they must be gone away through the Gulf before now, though until we are certain it is not safe to venture that way, nor is it easy for laden ships to gain the other passage, for they must beat to windward of Cuba. Some time since a ship arrived with packets for the Spanish Governors and officers from Cadiz. For the sake of the Spanish Government I forwarded them at once by a hired sloop, writing to the Governor of Porto Bello and asking him to pay for the same, the cost being 300 pieces of eight. But no sooner had he read the letters than he bade the sloop begone instantly, and would hardly suffer her to take in a little wood and water; and he wrote to me that most of the letters were intended for the galleons, and that he doubted not that the Admiral would pay the expenses, but that he would not keep the sloop till his messenger for them should return, lest she should lie at charge, so for my respect to them I must pay it myself. This will shew you how they use us on all occasions, notwithstanding the friendship between the two crowns. To this day if they meet any vessel of ours that they can overpower, they never stick to do it. They have lately cut off all the Bay of Campeachy, and carried the men who were not killed to New Spain, from which there is little hope that they will ever return. Signed, Wm. Beeston. Holograph. 1½ pp. [America and West Indies. 540. No. 49.]
Aug. 24. 164. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. The Agents for the Leeward Islands attended and gave an account of their constitution, administration, etc., when they were desired to put in writing anything that they could propose for advantage of the Islands.
Order for Colonel Hartwell to attend and give a further account of Virginia.
A memorial for the Agents of New York was read (see No. 157, III.), when they were ordered to attend next meeting. [Board of Trade. Journal, 9. pp. 66–69.]
Aug. 25. 165. Memorial of Edward Randolph to the Council of Trade. I have already laid before you my proposals for better enforcement of the Acts of Trade and Navigation and my recommendation of officers for the Admiralty Courts, and of Attorneys-General in place of those who are ignorant of the law and abettors of illegal trade. I now offer the following remarks as to those officers:— Bermuda. Nicholas Trott, jun., is the present Attorney-General, and (as I am informed) is fit to be continued. South Carolina, Jonathan Armory is the present Attorney-General, and also (as I am informed) fit to be continued. North Carolina has no Attorney-General. Bahamas. I hear that John Graves is fit to be continued as Attorney-General. Virginia. Edward Chilton was appointed by Lieutenant-Governor Nicholson to be Attorney-General in 1690, but on his obtaining leave to go to England was replaced by William Randolph, who knows nothing of the law. Mr. Chilton is a barrister and approved of by many eminent lawyers. Maryland. George Plater was appointed Attorney-General by Governor Copley, the lawyers who knew anything of the laws of England in the province being papists. About 1693 there was a combination of New England men, Scotchmen, and others to carry on illegal trade from Maryland directly with Scotland. It was not unknown to Governor Copley and to Nehemiah Blakiston, late a Collector, and was promoted by George Plater, also a Collector. In 1694 he cleared eight vessels which carried tobacco direct to Scotland. As Attorney-General he connived at the partial prosecution of a forfeited bond, and has refused to prosecute others. Pennsylvania. David Koid is Attorney-General. He refused me to put several forfeited bonds in suit. East and West Jersey have no Attorney-General. New York. James Graham is Attorney-General. Rhode Island and Connecticut have no Attorney-General, nor has New Hampshire. Massachusetts. Thomas Newton, a person well known in practice in the Courts of England, was made Attorney-General by Sir William Phips, but on his vigorous prosecution of offenders against the Acts of Trade was (as I am informed) put out to make place for Anthony Checkley, a man who is ignorant of the laws of England and has been (if he be not still) an illegal trader. Mr. Brenton can probably give you better information hereon. Signed, Ed. Randolph. Attached, A rough list of the Attorneys-General for the American Colonies as already sketched by Randolph. ½ p. The whole endorsed, Read 21 Aug. 1696. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 7; and 34. pp. 29–33.]
Aug. 25. 166. Minutes of Council of Barbados. Bill for supply of arms passed. Order for a proclamation to all servants lately employed on the ships of war to return to their service. Proclamation for farthings to pass current in sums under seven pence halfpenny. Orders for the vessels bound to North America to sail with their convoy, for the French prisoners to be sent to Europe, for the foot-guards to be discontinued at night, and for writs to be issued for election of two members of Assembly. Order as to reimbursement of the expenses for the French prisoners. Michael Terrill sworn of the Council.
Aug. 26. Order as to returning salutes with one gun only. Order for the fleet to sail on Saturday sennight and for the letters to England to be ready. Order as to the bonds to be given by administrators of estates. Sundry accounts passed. Bill for encouragement of 100 Christian servants rejected. Jonathan Langley gave new security as Administrator of the late Governor's estate. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 65. pp. 133–136.]
Aug. 26. 167. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. The Duke of Shrewsbury gave in a letter from Governor Fletcher to him of 30 May (see No. 13). Mr. Chidley Brooke and Mr. William Nicoll were then called in and gave a long account of the French and Indians, with some account of the produce of the country and the timber therein. [Board of Trade. Journal, 9. pp. 70–73.]
[Aug. 26.] 168. Copy of a Bill drawing up a constitution and scheme of government for Pennsylvania. 7½ pp. Endorsed, "Presented to Governor Markham by the Quakers, which they desired to purchase to be enacted for the sum of £200 to be given as an assistance to New York, May 1696." Recd. 26 Aug. 1696. [America and West Indies. 599. No. 27.]
Aug. 27.
169. Order of the Lords Justices of England in Council. Referring Governor Fletcher's letter of 30 May to the Council of Trade for report. Signed, Wm. Bridgeman. ½ p. Annexed,
169. I. Original letter of Governor Fletcher to Lords of Trade and Plantations of 30 May. Abstracted above No. 15. 4 pp. The whole endorsed, Read Aug. 31, 1696. [Board of Trade. New York, 6. Nos. 53, 53I.; and 52. pp. 10–14.]
Aug. 27. 170. Minutes of Council of Massachusetts. Order for payment of £2,500 for the equipping of the ships hired for the King's service, and for other expenses in relation to defence. [Board of Trade. New England, 49. pp. 42–43.]
Aug. 28. 171. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Several packets were received. There were read Governor Nicholson's letters of 18 March and 12 June, two letters of 10 June from Governor Fletcher, one from Mr. Usher of 1 June, one from Mr. Beverley of 23 June, one from Sir E. Andros of 27 June. A list of the documents in these packets was made.
Petition of John Miller read (see No. 173), when he was called in, and having given some account of the operations against the French and Indians, he was told that Mr. Heathcote would be spoken to on the subject of his petition. [Board of Trade. Journal, 9. pp. 73–79.]
Aug. 28. 172. "Some Considerations offered by Colonel Charles Lidget, merchant, of New England, for advancing the trade of that country and making it more serviceable to the Kingdom." Of all the Plantations in America none is of so small account as New England, for want of its being duly considered. The Colonies are generally esteemed according to the convenience and benefit which they bring to England, their mother; and those of New England, not being so open to common observation, make that place the less regarded. Though not half so long settled as the rest, this plantation has outgrown them all in numbers, settlements and industrious improvements, and in itself contains all the conveniences and necessaries which all or any others do, abundance of excellent harbours, and every requisite to build or repair shipping. From its nearness to the British Islands it may be called the key or head of America; and in whose hands soever New England is, the rest must be. The benefit arising to the Crown from Barbados and the Leeward Islands is due chiefly to New England, which supplies them with shipping, all woodwork for building, horses, provisions (especially fish for the negroes) all at such cheap rates as no other place could do. The land of those Islands would be useless without the negroes, who are the substantial part of the African Company's trade. New England can be more serviceable still by supplying commodities to England in barter which are now supplied by foreign countries and call all the current coin out of the land, such as naval stores of all kinds and copper, iron, lead and other mines, which are there and will be opened as soon as due encouragement is given to those who will undertake it. The number of ships there built and sold to other countries or used for trading shew what may be done in that respect. The largeness of the country, allowing the people to scatter and each to employ himself in the management of his own property according to his own inclination is the true reason why they have not applied themselves to opening or searching for mines. It would be happy for New England if encouragement were given to that undertaking, and Old England would profit also. The importation of goods from England into that Colony, beyond what they can of themselves produce returns for, has of late much abated their consumption of English manufactures and driven them to practise many of the manufactures of England, which has so far proceeded that most of the country-people are supplied with the produce of their own land. For if the course of trade cannot take off the husbandman's product in the common road of husbandry, he must turn his hand to a supply within himself of these necessaries that he cannot live without. If encouragement were given for importing naval stores into England and for opening and working mines, it would produce a constant staple return hither, employ the people in those affairs and divert them from interfering with England in manufactures. But unless some such way be found they must necessarily pursue what they have so far begun and rush into any foreign trade, which hath been too much practised for England's interest. To restrain them from these necessitous supplies of their absolute wants would savour of great rigour. It is but a weak argument to say that as many goods go thither from England now as in former years, for if the people be since multiplied by one half or double the number (as it must be confessed that they are) then, if the exportation be not greater now than formerly, it is plain that trade decays. But the production of naval stores and opening of mines is not to be expected from private hands. If that Colony be thought worth preserving, kept dependent and made useful to its original, it is worth while to put it into method by a company, regulated, empowered and encouraged as may be thought fit. Unwary and unthinking men object that a company will ruin the country, that it is not for their interest, will be a monopoly, &c. This is the complaint of such as are ignorant of the place or think it will abate their particular interest. The answer to such may be, that the undertaking requires too great a stock for a few persons, so will be best done by some body of men that will adventure therein, under such regulations as may make them secure one with another, serving the Government with their own interest. Nor can it be to the prejudice of New England to have a considerable sum sent into it, to improve the land, employ the people, purchase and build among them, and make them rich by a discovery which none but such a company can ever let them into. Nor can any single man or number of men be hindered to practise the same thing if they will adventure upon it, and yet will not be so subject to the correction of the Government for any irregularity as a corporation fixed in London will be. The present and usual adventurers to New England, for any considerable value, are the least in number of any trade, and accordingly find their advantage, making the people pay such price for English commodities as they think fit, and in this time of war double, treble or even more, of the first cost. If a company, which may consist of many hundreds, shall send a considerable value thither and supply the people at far cheaper rates, then truly thirty or forty men, who now are alone in the trade, will decline; but the people in general will be benefitted and such a corporation will prove an universal good to New England and to the kingdom. Two closely written pages. Endorsed, Recd. 31 August, 1696. [Board of Trade. New England, 8. No. 21.]
Aug. 28. 173. Petition of John Miller to Lords of Trade and Plantations. I was appointed chaplain to the King's forces in New York by commission of 7 March, 1691, and have faithfully discharged my duty whenever I was in a capacity to do so. But there is an establishment particularly for payment of those forces, under which I am first concerned, so that I am liable to several grievances and inconveniences, as set forth in enclosed paper. I beg for redress. ½ p. Annexed,
173. I. The grievances referred to in above petition. (1) I went over to New York with Governor Fletcher, was at great expense in fitting myself out for the voyage and acted as chaplain to H.M.S. Wolf. But the preparations for the voyage prevented me from taking out my commission before the 7th of March, 1691, and Governor Fletcher will not allow me any pay before that day. I beg that pay be granted me from the same date as Governor Fletcher's own pay. (2) Chaplains in Flanders are allowed five shillings a day subsistence; but Colonel Fletcher allows me but 3s. 4d., New York money, which is but 2s. 6¾ d. sterling, and owing to the dearness of commodities not worth more than 1s. 6d. in England. (3) Chaplains in New York were wont to receive their full pay yearly. The money arising from the soldiers' pay by the advance thereof in New York amounts to £200 or £300 annually, which is not applied by the establishment to any other case, and is more than sufficient for the purpose. So that if nothing but the soldiers' bare subsistence were paid here in England (whereas I am told that the greatest part of the off-reckonings is paid also) there would be money sufficient, I believe, to pay the chaplain and other officers. Yet in three years and seven months I have received but £151 7s. 3d., and that with much trouble. If my pay were allowed to come at the same time as Governor Fletcher's, the amount would be £352 11s. 3d. (4) In February, 1694, I received news that my father had been dead a year and a half, and that my presence was needed in England. Governor Fletcher gave me leave to come to England on my making provision for the supply of my place. I therefore made every preparation for this and for my voyage, when Colonel Fletcher refused to grant me leave unless I laid down my commission. Being unwilling to do so I came away without furlough, and Colonel Fletcher has taken advantage of this to deprive me of my pay since my departure from New York, and to put another man in my place. I therefore beg redress. 1p.
173. II. Extract from a letter of Governor Fletcher to Gilbert Heathcote, 29 May, 1695. Enclosed is an abstract of Mr. Miller the Chaplain's subsistence from the date of his commission to 1 April, 1694, to which date you say the companies were cleared for subsistence. You will see that £55 19s. 9d. is due to him, which please pay to him. He is now gone to England, I suppose with no design to return, leaving the Companies here without a chaplain, there being no Protestant minister here but himself, so that I must supply his place as soon as possible. I am informed of one lately come over to Boston and intend to send to him; so I would have you account with Mr. Miller only up to 1 June, 1695. The enclosed paper will shew you the value according to New York money. Copy. ½ p. Endorsed, Read 4 Sept. 1696.
173. III. Copy of a certificate of Henry, Bishop of London, as to the godly performance by John Miller of his duties as Chaplain at New York, from August, 1692, to June, 1695. ½ p. The whole endorsed, Read 28 Aug. 1696. Answered 4 Sept. [Board of Trade. New York, 6. Nos. 55, 55 I.–III.]
Aug. 28.
New Jersey
174. Governor Hamilton to Governor Fletcher. Could I make our people as sensible as myself of the hazard Albany lies under, and that the weakness of that garrison may very probably tempt the enemy to attack the place, as they have Pemaquid upon the same grounds, I am sure they would find it their interest to run to its defence. But whom have I to work upon but a stiff and obstinate people, who shut their ears to all reason and become debauched by the example of the neighbouring Colonies, which they still obtrude to me. You may believe that it was with great difficulty that I obtained what I did, namely that in case of an invasion they should march to the frontiers and be at liberty to return when the action was over and the enemy retreated. Even to obtain this I was forced to promise them twelvepence a day from you and pledged my own credit to procure them twelvepence more at the first sitting of an Assembly. So plentifully do they live at home, and so large are their wages. Moreover several of our youth are gone to the Southern Colonies to be free from detachments, and several, as I told you, are gone aboard Captain Kidd, so that it is impossible to prevail with them to remain in garrison, and indeed it is very difficult to effect anything. I am truly melancholy to see ourselves thus baffled by a handful of French, nor will it ever be otherwise until the Crown send a force to root them out of America, or put an indisputable command upon every Colony to furnish a quota and pay them; for while it rests in the breasts of our Assemblies to raise a fund for the support of the frontiers or neglect it, and in the choice of the people to march or stay at home, you do not need to be told at this time which part they will choose. I will nevertheless call an Assembly in October next and will enforce the necessity of the frontiers with all the zeal which I am sensible that they require. Signed, And. Hamilton. 1½ pp. Endorsed, Recd. 23 June, 1697. Read 9 April, 1698. [Board of Trade. New York, 6. No. 54.]
Aug. 29. 175. Minutes of Council of Virginia. Order for a proclamation for the return of all deserters to the King's ships, for the apprehension of all delinquents, and against entertainment or concealment of the same. The matter of the ship Resolution deferred to next Council. [Board of Trade. Virginia, 53. pp. 37–38.]
Aug. 31. 176. Representation of Edward Randolph as to Virginia. The following discourse represents: (1) the discouragements that the planters in Virginia lie under, and the consequent loss to the customs on tobacco ; (2) the method for remedying those growing mischiefs for the future; (3) the certain advantage that will thereupon arise both to the King and to the planters. It has been the interest and care of this Government to preserve the trade to the plantations entirely to themselves, and to that end divers Acts of Parliament are made with severe penalties upon the violators thereof. But no care has hitherto been taken to increase and encourage the number of planters of tobacco in Virginia, nor has it ever been examined whence it comes to pass that Virginia (the oldest English settlement on the Continent, begun over eighty years ago) is not better inhabited considering what vast quantities of servants and others have yearly been transported thither. Some have imputed it to the unhealthiness of the place; others have said that tobacco, the sole staple, yields them little (all charges deducted) when it is brought to England. But the chief and only reason is that the inhabitants have been and still are discouraged and hindered from planting tobacco in that Colony; and servants are not so willing to go there as formerly because the members of Council and others who make an interest in the Government have from time to time procured grants of very large tracts of land, so that for many years there has been no waste land to be taken up by those who bring with them servants, or by servants who have served their time. But the land has been taken up and engrossed beforehand, whereby such people are forced to hire and pay rent for lands or to go to the utmost bounds of the Colony for land exposed to danger, and often the occasion of war with the Indians. The manner of taking up land in Virginia is this. Every adventurer or planter has, upon his arrival, a right to fifty acres of land in the Colony. If he intends to take up any, he must first make oath, before the Council in a County Court, of the number of persons that he imports, and they of course grant him a certificate thereon, which is entered at the Secretary's office and is then produced to the Surveyor of the County where the land lies waste. He makes a survey allowing fifty acres according to the number of his rights (persons imported) which with the rights is carried to the Secretary's office, in which a patent is made and signed by the Governor in Council, who causes the seal of the Colony to be affixed to it. Thereby the claimer becomes owner of an estate in fee simple, but upon the following conditions:—(1) to pay the King an annual rent of one shilling for every fifty acres; but they never pay a penny of quit-rent to the King for it, by which in strictness of law their land is forfeited. (2) They are to seat such land within three years, otherwise it is deserted. By seating land is meant that they build a house upon and keep a good stock of hogs and cattle, and servants to take care of them and to improve and plant the land. But instead thereof, they cut down a few trees and make thereof a hut, covering it with the bark, and turn two or three hogs into the woods by it. Or else they are to clear one acre of that land and plant and tend it for one year. But they fell twenty or thirty trees and put a little Indian corn into the ground among them as they lie and sometimes make a beginning to serve it, but take no care of their crop, nor make any further use of the land. (3) If such land lie far up in the country upon the frontiers, they are required by law to keep four able men well armed; but this law is never observed. These grants are procured upon such easy terms and very often upon false certificates of rights. Many hold twenty or thirty thousand acres of land apiece, very largely surveyed, without paying one penny of quit-rent for it. In many patents there is double the quantity of land expressed in the patent, whereby some hundred thousand acres of land are taken up but not planted, which drives away the inhabitants and servants brought up only to planting to seek their fortunes in Carolina and other places, which depopulates the country and prevents the making of many thousand hogsheads of tobacco, to the great diminution of the revenue.
For present remedy it is proposed (1) That a survey be forthwith ordered of such lands in every county of Virginia. (2) That a demand be made in full for all arrears of quit-rents due for these lands, and that the claimers thereof be compelled by law to pay them. The Sheriff of King's and Queen's County about four years since made a return that there were 38,000 acres of land in his county taken up by patent, for which he could receive no quit-rent, there being nothing on the land to distrain, and the persons who claimed the same living in other counties. (3) That strict orders be given that grants hereafter shall be made upon more certain terms, and not above 500 acres granted to one man. Such restriction is at this time very requisite, for in some parts of the country (such as Pamunkey Neck and the south side of James River) where the Indians inhabited, these lands were for several years forbidden to be taken up; but, the Indians being reduced to small numbers, the Burgesses have addressed the Governor to grant away these lands. The King has granted 20,000 acres of that land to the College in Virginia, which will soon be settled and planted, if great quantities are not already granted away to persons who have long aimed at it, though they have some thousand acres of land more than they know what to do with. The advantages of a due regulation both to the King and to the inhabitants are as follows. (1) The compelling the owners of such vast tracts of land to pay their quitrents will raise a great sum of money, or, upon their refusal, some hundred thousand acres of unimproved land will revert to the Crown and invite home those who for want of land left Virginia, and encourage more to come from proprieties and other places and to make their settlement, being well assured of their titles and to hold of the Crown only. (2) The granting away such lands in parcels not exceeding 500 acres to one man will mightily increase the number of planters, who through necessity will seat themselves in a far nearer neighbourhood than formerly and thereby be the better enabled to secure their country, families and plantations from spoil and rapine; and many thousand hogsheads of tobacco more than formerly will be made in the Colony. (3) The trade, shipping and navigation of England will be encouraged and the customs on tobacco yearly increased. Colonel Nicholson, Lieutenant-Governor of Virginia, was very sensible of the damage and injustice done to the Crown by their using and conniving at such unwarrantable practices in granting away the King's lands, and was resolved to reform them by suing some of the claimers for arrears of quitrents; but finding that the Council and many of the Burgesses, among others, were concerned, and being uncertain of his continuing in the Government, he ordered to begin with Laurence Smyth, who was seised of many thousand acres of land in different counties, and for one particular tract of land was indebted £80 for arrears of quit-rents, which sum after the cause was ripe for judgment, was compounded for less than one half. Three closely written pages, with abstract attached. Endorsed, Recd. 31 Aug. Read 6 Oct. 1696. [Board of Trade. Virginia, 6. No. 5; and 37. pp. 19–23.]
Aug. 31. 177. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. The Orders in Council of 27th August, referring a letter of Governor Fletcher, and another of 23 April, with a petition of the Colony of Connecticut as to the quota, were read. Major General Winthrop was ordered to attend next meeting.
Two papers from Mr. Randolph as to Attorneys-General, and as to tobacco planting in Virginia, were read (see Nos. 165, 176). Colonel Lidget's memorial was received (see No. 172). An address to the King from Maryland as to Governor Copley's estate was read.
The Secretary reported that he had received £150 from the Treasury for incidental expenses.