America and West Indies: November 1699, 1-10

Pages 505-516

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 17, 1699 and Addenda 1621-1698. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1908.

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November 1699

Nov. 1.
913. Mr. Secretary Vernon to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I send you an advice that came to the Admiralty. His Majesty would be informed whether you have any notice from Newfoundland of the sending of the recruits back and for what reason it was done. Signed, Ja. Vernon. Endorsed, Recd. Read. Nov. 2. 1699. Enclosed,
913. I. J. Burchett to Mr. Ellis. My Lords of the Admiralty send you a copy of a letter from the Capt. of the Deal Castle for the information of Mr. Vernon. Annexed,
913. II. Extract of a letter from the Capt. of the Deal Castle. The soldiers which were ordered on board for recruits for H.M. Fort of St. John's are returned by order from Capt. Leake, they having no occasion for them. [Board of Trade. Newfoundland, 3. Nos. 153, 153 I.; and 25. p. 331.]
Nov. 1. 914. Attorney General to the Council of Trade and Plantations. As to the petition of Mr. Richier (Oct. 27) he might be required to give security for his appeal, but not Mr. Trott, the respondent. Signed, Thomas Trevor. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 20, 1699. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Bermuda, 3. No. 52; and 29. p. 240.]
Nov. 1. 915. Minutes of Council of Nevis. Patent granted to James Bevon for land in St. Christopher's, bequeathed to him by Thomas Merrye. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 64. p. 510.]
Nov. 2. 916. Council of Trade and Plantations to the King. Representation upon the petition of Mr. Mears, who complains that his ship and cargo are perishing at Bermuda, and that none there in authority will take any depositions relating to Governor Day's conduct. We humbly offer that Mr. Day and the Council be directed to commissionate Capt. John Tucker, Capt. Thomas Hartford, Samuel Spoferth and John Dickenson to be Justices of the Peace, and that they or any one of them may take depositions and make report in that and all other matters relating to Mr. Day's conduct. Signed, Stamford, Lexington, Ph. Meadows, Jno. Pollexfen, Jno. Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Bermuda, 29. pp. 233, 234.]
Nov. 2.
917. Order of King in Council in accordance with preceding Representation. The Justices named to transmit all evidence taken about Mr. Day's Government and their report thereon to the Council of Trade. Mr. Day to be strictly charged not to use any illegal or indirect practices to hinder any person from making or taking such depositions or from repairing to England to give more full information. Mr. Day to transmit his answer in writing to all such matters as may be objected against him upon the said examination. Signed, John Povey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 13, 1699. 1¼ pp. [Board of Trade. Bermuda, 3. No. 53; and 29. pp. 238–239.]
Nov. 2. 918. Earl of Jersey to Council of Trade and Plantations, ordering a Commission and Instructions to be prepared for Sir William Beeston in the quality of Captain-General and Governor-in-Chief of Jamaica. Signed, Jersey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 6, 1699. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 8. No. 137; and 56. p. 390.]
Nov. 2. 919. Minutes of Council of Virginia. Thomas Blunt, interpreter to the Indians on the south side of James River, ordered to summon such of the Nottaway, Nansemund and Mehecen Indians as Benjamin Harrison directed, to appear before the Governor and Council on the 10th, and likewise Robert Peasley, interpreter to those in the northern parts of the Colony, to summon the Pamunkey Indian called Mr. Marshall of the Pamunkeys, and two great men at least of the Chickahominies, Rappahanocks, and Nantiaticoes. Enquiry to be made after the two Nottaway Indians who went lately into the northern parts and are not yet returned. [Board of Trade. Virginia, 53. p. 356.]
Nov. 2. 920. Account of the discovery of an horrid plot on board the Antelope sailing to the East Indies for the seizing and running away with her. Deposition of Richard Burroughs. 2½ pp.
920. I. Copy of confessions of the conspirators; John Pallee, midshipman; Anthony Hart, William Alexander, Henry Crowther, John Hickinton, Thomas Bayley, William Spaul, John Smith, John Belfrage, Edward Butler, John Collen, William Charnock, William Brewer and James Farmer. 5¼ pp. Taken before Sir Edward Littleton in the Bay of Bengal, April 22, 1699. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 2, 1699. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 5. No. 29; and (Burroughs' account only) 35. pp. 97–104.]
Nov. 2.
921. Earl of Jersey to Council of Trade and Plantations. The French Ambassador has presented a memorial concerning the Island of Tobago. I send you copy of it by His Majesty's command in order that you may consider and report thereon. Signed, Jersey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 3, 1699. Enclosed,
921. I. Memorial from the French Ambassador concerning Tobago. The island of Tobago was taken in 1676 by the French arms from the Republic of Holland, to which it then belonged. It remained in the hands of the French by right of conquest till the peace of Nimeguen, when it was ceded to them by the 7th article of the treaty made in that town in 1678. Since then His Very Christian Majesty has thought fit to raise the fortifications, but has not failed to preserve his right to the island, and his vessels have orders to visit it twice a year to prevent any other nation from taking possession of it contrary to the rights of France. But as the rumour is being spread, rightly or wrongly, to the effect that a Company of Merchants is being formed in England with the object of making a settlement there, I have thought fit to present a memorial notifying that the said Island of Tobago is by no means an abandoned territory and it belongs to none other than his Very Christian Majesty. French. 2 pp. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 8. Nos. 23, 23 I.; and 44 A. pp. 354, 355.]
Nov. 2.
922. Letter enclosing Representation of Council of Trade and Plantations with a draft of instructions to Mr. Grey relating to Sta. Lucia. Signed, Stamford, Lexington, Ph. Meadows, John Pollexfen, John Locke. No enclosure. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 44 A. p. 350.]
Nov. 2.
923. Order of King in Council. The representation of the Council of Trade and Plantations with the draught of a letter to the Governor of Barbados relating to the settlement of the French on Sta. Lucia is to be sent back to the Lords Commissioners who are to alter the said draught in such proper terms as that the Governor may be thereby only directed to assert His Majesty's right and title to the said island of Sta. Lucia, and to give notice to the French who are settled there that unless they remove from off that island, he shall be obliged to dispossess them by force. The revised draught to be presented to His Majesty for approbation. The Commissioners are to consider and report upon the asserting of His Majesty's right and title to the Islands of Tobago and Sta. Lucia and the making such settlements thereupon as may hinder the same from being settled by any other than His Majesty's subjects. Signed, John Povey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 7, 1699. 1 p. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 8. No. 24; and 44 A. p. 358.]
Nov. 2.
924. Order of King in Council. Letters to the Governors of Plantations relating to pirates to be prepared according to the draughts submitted. When any pirates are to be sent for in custody, His Majesty's pleasure for the sending them into England is to be signified to the respective Governors in the manner proposed by Sir Charles Hedges. Signed, John Povey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 8, 1699. ¾ p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 5. No. 30; and 35. pp. 104, 105.]
Nov. 2.
925. Journal of Trade and Plantations. Representation upon Mr. Day's seizure of the Dolphin signed.
Col. Codrington explained that he would not go to the Leeward Islands till the Treasury paid him the sums due to him. Letter to the Earl of Jersey to inform his Majesty accordingly.
Representation about Sta. Lucia ordered.
Letter from Mr. Secretary Vernon about recruits returned from Newfoundland read. Answer prepared.
An account received from Mr. Gilbert Heathcote of a design of the seamen of the Antelope to run away with her on her voyage to the East Indies read.
Nov. 3. Letter to Mr. Vernon about Newfoundland recruits signed.
Letter from Mr. Isaac Richier with an account of the lands in Bermuda, laid before the Board.
Letter from the Earl of Jersey, Nov. 2, with French Memorial about Tobago read. Abstract of H.M. title to that island, as drawn Dec. 4, 1686 (see Cal. 1686, No. 1,033), ordered, and Capt. Poyntz ordered to attend.
Letter from Governor Grey, Barbados, Aug. 21, read. Answer prepared. [Board of Trade. Journal, 12. pp. 230–232; and 96. Nos. 172, 173.]
Nov. 3. 926. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Vernon. We have no account from Newfoundland concerning the recruits returned, nor any other knowledge of their return than what your letter gives us. Signed, Ph. Meadows, John Pollexfen, John Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Newfoundland, 25. p. 332.]
Nov. 3.
St. John's.
Nov. 4.
927. Minutes of Council and Assembly of Antigua. It was agreed to draw up an Act for reinforcing three Acts nearly expired. The Assembly pressed for the passing of an Act encouraging Aliens and, the Council concurring, a Joint Committee was appointed to draw it up.
The Assembly, hearing that the Governor proposed to come direct, without touching at Barbados, and thinking that he would therefore have no opportunity of providing himself with good Madeira wine, proposed the provision of half-a-dozen pipes of old Madeira and two hogsheads of best white biskett against his arrival, to which the Council agreed.
The case of Richard Buckeridge, appointed to collect customs but unjustly suspended by James Thynne, Commissioner of Customs, considered. Buckeridge recommended to his remedy by law.
Land granted to John Weir. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 64. pp. 324–328.]
Nov. 4.
928. John Graves to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Two months since John Williams of Nevis was executed for piracy, he being one that was with Capt. Hind, whose trial and three more of his confederates I enclose. Signed, John Graves. Endorsed, Recd. Ap. 4. Read Ap. 5, 1700. ½ p. Enclosed,
928. I. Copy of proceedings at the trial and condemnation of Hendrick van Hoven (alias Hynde) the grand pirate, and Ouca Guicas, Frederick Philips, John Floyde and John Vantein, some of his company. New Providence, Oct. 23, 1699. Richard Talliafferro, Chief Judge. Perient Trott, Mathew Midleton, Joseph Groves, Assistants. Grand Jury:—Capt. Richd. Peterson, Foreman; David le Brittoon, George Grahame, Jerome Wells, Patrick Ballentine, William Spatche, Samuel Frith, John Bethell, Nich. Davis, Tho. Williams, Danl. Jackson, Hugh Strode. Clerk:—Capt. Edward Elding, Patrick Davidson his deputy; John Rudsby, High Sheriff. Petty Jury:—Ellis Lightwood (Foreman), John Peilman, Nich. Spencer, Tho. Spencer, John Baiker, Ephraim Fox, John Ingham, Benj. Griffin, John Sterline, jr., Samuel Fox, Elisha Carter, Will. Holins. Evidence of James Robertson, mariner, Adam Eve, Joseph Evins, mariner, and George Hinkson.
Petition of Hynd for a reprieve "if it cannot be fifteen days let it be ten; if it cannot be ten let it be help me to save that dear jewel my soul." Cases of Kings David and Hezekiah quoted. Signed, Hendrygo van Goven. 10 pp. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 5. Nos. 2, 2 I.; and (without enclosure) 26. pp. 182, 183.]
Nov. 6.
929. Governor the Earl of Bellomont to Mr. Popple. I know not how my long letters and so many of 'em will be liked by the Lords of the Council of Trade. It were for mine ease and health to shorten them. I am not able as yet to give an account of my negotiation in Rhode Island, the Governor having not as yet furnished me with copies of their laws, or of the Journals of their Assemblies and Minutes of Council which I requested of him according to the King's instructions. I hear for certain an Assembly was called, which is now sitting, purposely to repeal a great many of their laws which they are ashamed of, and when those are melted down, so as that they think their body of laws is refined, and made fit to bear the test, then I am to have them sent me. This was told me when I was in the Island, by some who are weary of the licentiousness and confusion of the Government. The Governor, too, though he promised me the Journals and Minutes, so soon as they could possibly be copied fair, yet a few days ago writes that they never made use of either. I beg you will intimate this to the Lords of the Council of Trade that they may not think me negligent. I staid in that island a week, and collected matter enough to prove that Government the most irregular and illegal in their administration that ever any English Government was.
Col. Blake, Gov. of Carolina, writes to the L.G. of N. York, to acquaint him that Col. Day, Gov. of Bermuda, had writ him an account of his imprisoning Mr. Randolph, and that he had intercepted a letter from Mr. Randolph to the Lords of the Council of Trade, wherein he complains of all the Governors, I think, on this Continent for conniving at unlawful trade, and of me among the rest, and, if I may believe what Col. Blake writes, he treats me with no better a name than that of rogue. I have mislaid Blake's letter, but you shall have it by the next ship. I once was so nettled at this that I resolved to write to your Board about it; but I am jealous this is only an artifice of Col. Day's to engage me and the other Governors in his quarrel against Randolph. If such a letter were written by Randolph, I am persuaded you will do me the common right to let me know it. If Randolph has accused me to any of the Ministers, I will desire the matter may be brought to an open examination. I desire you will assure Mr. Locke of my humble service. Signed, Bellomont. I have found Col. Blake's letter, and send you a copy. Endorsed, Recd. Jan. 5. Read Feb. 7, 1699/1700. Enclosed,
929. I. Abstract of above. ¼ p.
929. II. Copy of letter referred to by Lord Bellomont, from Joseph Blake to Capt. John Nanfan, L.G. of New York. Charles Town, July 22. 1699. ¾ p. [Board of Trade. New England, 10. Nos. 3, 3 I.–II.; and (without enclosures) 37. pp. 305–308.]
Nov. 6.
930. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Earl of Jersey. Col. Codrington desires us to represent that his not repairing to his Government, where his presence is much needed, is due to his difficulty in obtaining from the Treasury four years' salary and other large sums due to his father. Signed, Stamford, Lexington, John Pollexfen, Jon. Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 46. p. 8.]
Nov. 6.
931. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Grey. Since our letter of Oct. 12 we have received yours of Aug. 21, and in the next shall expect an account of the Patent Places in Barbados as also a list of persons fit to fill up vacancies in the Council. We observe that you write about pirates infesting those parts, and are very sensible of the necessity of another good ship to attend that Government, a good sailer, fit to pursue them, but can at present give you no information of any new directions about that matter. However, we desire you to be very watchful upon all occasions in doing what you can for the suppression of pirates, and we shall not be backward in improving all the advices which we receive from you or others towards the obtaining of such remedies against that evil as shall be thought most proper. The ship Adventure that had been run away with in the East Indies has been heard of in another place, so we need say no more concerning her. We are glad of what you write about the inhabitants being willing to repair their forts and hope therefore it will be done accordingly and the island kept in a good state of defence. We cannot judge of what you write about their being in debt and how far that reason is valid for their not building a house for their Governor, because you have not given us any account what that debt is, but whatever it be it seems to us that the annual charge of house rent must needs be much more costly to them than that of building such a house once for all. And therefore we hope that when you find the opportunity proper to move them in that matter you will be able to prevail. You may shortly expect directions in the matter of Sta. Lucia. Signed, Stamford, Lexington, Ph. Meadows, John Pollexfen, John Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 44 A. pp. 356, 357.]
Nov. 6. 932. Minutes of Council of Massachusetts Bay. Various accounts referred to be audited, and warrants for pensions for wounded persons and soldiers' wages at Groton and Haverhill, 1698, ordered. £30 paid to John Arnold, underkeeper of the gaol, for keeping Joseph Bradish and others. Warrants for payments for provisioning the Province galley and the Castle ordered. Capt. Timothy Clarke, Deptford frigate, paid £4 9s. for conveying a packet and endeavouring to weigh a sloop. [Board of Trade. New England, 49. p. 254–256.]
Nov. 6.
933. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Letter from Lord Jersey read. Draughts of commission and instructions to Sir Wm. Beeston as Capt.-General and Governor in Chief of Jamaica, ordered.
Letter from Mr. Thornburgh read.
Mr. Mears ordered to attend the Board, Wednesday or Thursday.
Secretary ordered to write to Mr. Perry to enquire if he have any further news about pirates.
Letter to Lord Jersey, about Col. Codrington, signed.
Letter to Governor Grey signed.
Nov. 7. Order of Council, Oct. 23, about seizure at Perth Amboy considered. Further enquiries of the Commissioners of Customs ordered.
Capt. Poyntz, attending as desired, said he had been eleven voyages to Tobago, up to the year 1680. After the French, upon the desire of the Duke of Courland had, about 1676 or 1677, beat out the Dutch, who had possessed themselves of the island, the title was, as he said, by consent of the King of England, the Dutch and the Duke of Courland, referred to the King of France, who confirming the Duke of Courland's title, the Dutch renounced it. Capt. Poyntz promised to draw up a memorial with what speed he could.
Agents of Barbados summoned, in order to discourse them upon Tobago.
Order of Council, Nov. 2, about Tobago and Sta. Lucia read.
Letter to Governor of Barbados in pursuance thereof ordered.
Letter from Mr. Secretary Vernon, Nov. 7, enclosing Sir W. Beeston's complaint about Rear Admiral Bembow's pressing seamen, read. Representation prepared.
Nov. 8. Order of Council, Nov. 2, about pirates read.
Capt. Poyntz was told that the Board wish to be informed about the changes in the possession of Tobago.
Acts of Nevis and Antegoa ordered to be sent to Mr. Solicitor General.
Nov. 9. Representation about pirates signed.
Representation about Sta. Lucia signed.
Letter to Sir William Beeston signed.
Nov. 10. Letter to Lord Rumney about stores of war ordered.
Representation about the impressing of seamen signed.
Caveat against an Act for the service of Almighty God, Maryland, brought before the Board. [Board of Trade. Journal, 12. pp. 233–239; and 96. Nos. 174–178.]
Nov. 7.
934. Mr. Secretary Vernon to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I enclose an extract of Sir William Beeston's letter complaining of the irregular pressing of seamen by Rear-Admiral Benbow. His Majesty being desirous that all interfering of jurisdiction should be avoided, and that what is necessary for carrying on the public service should be provided for in a quiet and orderly manner, he would have you consider this complaint, and propose such regulations as may conduce to prevent the same for the future, so as the authority of the Governors in the several colonies may be preserved, and that convenient care may be taken to supply H.M. ships with the men necessary. 1 p. Signed, Ja. Vernon. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 7, 1699. Enclosed,
934. I. Extract of Sir William Beeston's Letter. Rear-Admiral Benbow impresses all, even the men who belong to this place and have wives and families here, which has caused our seamen to desert the island, and will undo the place. He will not allow me to have anything to do on the water, though in the Harbour, and over the seafaring people of the island, so that I cannot execute H.M. authority nor protect his subjects, who complain to me of the injuries and insults they receive, and therefore I have desired to be released, for 'tis very uneasy to bear H.M. authority and to have the orders from the Admiralty to countermand them, which indeed upon all occasions they esteem above His Majesty's. I have written to him that if he has brought any power to supersede or contradict any of the authorities H.M. has been pleased to place in me, that as in duty I shall readily concede, but if not it's interfering with the King's authority and meddling with that which does not concern him. He thinks whilst he is here that I have no authority but what is immediately on the land, though I have large powers under the Great Seal, His Majesty's particular commission to be Vice-Admiral and to preserve to His Majesty all royalties, yet he forced away in the harbour 150 jars of oil out of a boat that took them up out of a wreck by my order, and in short does what he pleases. I believe the merchants now in general make grevious complaints. In truth it ruins all the trade and the place. Copy. 2¼ pp. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 8. Nos. 138, 138 I.; and 56. pp. 391–395.]
Nov. 7.
935. William Popple to John Sansom. Have the Commissioners of Customs anything further to offer relating to the seizure of goods at Perth Amboy by Charles Goodman, or any information concerning it upon oath ? [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 26. p. 126.]
Nov. 7.
Nov. 8.
936. Minutes of Council and Assembly of New Hampshire. William Partridge, the L.G., moved that some care might be taken for a common gaol. Report of the Committee of Public Accounts referred to the Assembly, who represented that it was not convenient to raise money at present to pay the public debts. They were adjourned till Nov. 21.
Nov. 9. Elizabeth Harvey exempted from paying excise, so long as she keeps the Post Office. Some small accounts were paid. The Secretary was ordered to enter all Acts passed in the province in a Record Book. The boat bought by Major Joseph Smith, late Treasurer, for the use of H.M. Fort William and Mary, ordered to be delivered to Capt. John Hinckes. Proclamations ordered for a day of General Thanksgiving on the 23rd. Treasurer ordered to provide firewood, candles and other necessaries for the Council and Representatives during their meetings in the winter. Sampson Sheafe ordered to give account of what monies he received during his term of office. Twenty pieces of eight ordered to be presented to — Taylor, Secretary to Lord Bellomont. On the report of the Committee of Public Accounts, the Representatives agreed to the payment of some 40 payments, enumerated, with a few exceptions and additions. [Board of Trade. New England, 49. pp. 549–562.]
Nov. 8.
937. John Sansom to William Popple. The Commissioners of Customs have nothing further to offer, and no information upon oath about the seizure made at Perth Amboy by-Charles Goodman. Signed, Jno. Sansom. Endorsed, Recd. Nov. 9, Read Nov. 13, 1699. ¼ p. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 4. No. 19; and 26. p. 128.]
Nov. 8.
938. Wm. Popple to Sir John Hawles. I send for your opinion some Acts of the General Assemblies of Nevis and Antego, passed in Jan., March and Aug., 1699. List annexed. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 46. pp. 9, 10.]
Nov. 9.
939. Council of Trade and Plantations to the King in Council. Letter enclosing altered draft of letter to Mr. Grey on the matter of Sta. Lucia. Signed, Ph. Meadows, John Pollexfen, John Locke, Abr. Hill. Annexed,
939. I. Draft of letter from His Majesty to Governor Grey. Trusty and well-beloved we greet you well. Whereas we have understood by your letters that some foreigners, especially French, have without our leave or authority made a settlement within our island of Sta. Lucia, where they have built houses and pretend themselves to be the only possessors and proprietors thereof, and we, being well satisfied of our right and sovereignty over the said island, as well by the title of first discovery and possession as by legal purchase from the natives, whereof a formal conveyance was remaining in the hands of our right trusty and well-beloved William, Lord Willoughby of Parham, our late Governor-in-Chief of our Carribbee Islands, our will and pleasure is that you assert our right and title to the said island of Sta. Lucia, and give notice to the French or any other foreigners, who are settled or may hereafter pretend to settle there, that unless they remove from off that island and discontinue their settlement there,* you shall be obliged to dispossess them by force and send them from off the said island. *Mem. These words, in some short time which you shall appoint, were added by Order of Council of Nov. 9, 1699, to come after the word "there." [Board of Trade. Barbados, 44A. pp. 359, 360.]
Nov. 9.
940. Order of King in Council, approving of the preceding draft with the alteration therein cited. One of his Majesty's Principal Secretaries of State is to prepare a letter for his Majesty's Royal Signature, with the said amendment, accordingly. Signed, John Povey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 13, 1699. 1 p. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 8. No. 25; and 44A. p. 361.]
Nov. 9.
941. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Sir William Beeston. We have not received any letter from you since ours of Oct. 12. His Majesty having been moved by the Lord Lucas that you may have leave to come to England for the recovery of your health, has, upon our plain representation, been pleased to constitute you Governor with the salary of £2,000, instead of giving you leave for your return. We have your Commission and Instructions now under consideration. Signed, Stamford, Lexington, Ph. Meadows, John Pollexfen, John Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 56. pp. 396–398.]
Nov. 9.
942. Order of King in Council. In consideration of the great encouragement pirates may receive from the Governors of Plantations not approved by His Majesty, the Council of Trade and Plantations are to make a return of those appointed by the Proprietors, who have not been approved by His Majesty. Signed, John Povey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 13, 1699. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 5. No. 31; and 35. p. 113; and Proprieties, 26. pp. 126, 127; and (Memorandum only) 4. No. 17.]
Nov. 9. 943. Council of Trade and Plantations to the King. Having upon many occasions applied to your Majesty and their Excellencies the late Lords Justices about the matter of pirates, and several fresh informations coming daily to our hands of the many mischiefs committed by them, we are apprehensive lest the sending for those that have been seized on and are now in custody in any of your Majesty's Plantations will not be sufficient to work thorough cure of that evil. The sum of our advices import that the pirates hovering upon. those coasts do not only surprise ships coming into or sailing out of their ports and sometimes sink and destroy them, but enter into their very bays and harbours, plundering such ships as they can surprize of their rigging, provision and ammunition, debauching and engaging many of the seamen to quit their honest employments and go along with them, fitting out such of the ships they surprize as they find proper for their purpose with the things that they plunder from others, manning their ships with the men whom they so debauch and increasing thus their strength to such a degree that the apprehensions of future mischief may not only be from single ships but squadrons, and the corruption already spread and still further spreading by this means amongst our seamen may in the end prove too universal, that we humbly conceive the consequences are greatly to be dreaded. For the remedy, therefore, the Governors having complained to us of the insufficiency of the ships of war appointed to attend their respective governments, we offer that such a sufficient force of well sailing ships as may be thought necessary and proper to clear those seas from pirates be appointed for that service. Signed, Philip Meadows, John Pollexfen, John Locke, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 35. pp. 106–109.]
Nov. 9. 944. Order of King in Council. The Representation of the Council of Trade and Plantations, offering that a sufficient force of well-sailing ships to clear the coasts of America from pirates be provided, is referred to the Admiralty for their opinion. Signed, John Povey. Endorsed, Recd. Read. Nov. 13, 1699. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 5. No. 32; and 35. p. 114.]
Nov. 9. 945. Order of King in Council. Representation of the Council of Trade and Plantations about pirates referred to the Attorney General and Sir Charles Hedges, Judge of the High Court of Admiralty, who are to consider of some effectual remedy for the putting an end to the great increase of pirates, being H.M. subjects. The Attorney General also to report how the Proprietors in the Plantations may be more effectually obliged to present the names of the Governors appointed by them for H.M. allowance or disallowance, pursuant to the late Act. Signed, John Povey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 13, 1699. ¾ p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 5. No. 33; and 35. pp. 115, 116; and Proprieties, 26. p. 127; and (Memorandum only), 4. No. 18.]
Nov. 10.
946. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Vernon enclosing the following report to be laid before His Majesty.
946. I. Council of Trade and Plantations to the King. We have considered the extract of Sir William Beeston's letter upon the irregular pressing of seamen at Jamaica by Rear-Admiral Bembo (Nov. 7), and humbly report that, upon like complaints made in 1696 from several Plantations, we represented the great inconveniencies and mischiefs arising to those Islands from the weak manning of your Majesty's ships-of-war in those parts, and from the irregular conduct of the captains thereof in impressing not only seamen but landmen for their supply. Your Majesty was pleased by Order in Council, Dec. 3, 1696, to commit the sole power of impressing seamen to the Governors or Commanders-in-Chief of the Plantations, as Vice-Admirals, and to require them upon the application of the Commanders of your Majesty's ships in those parts to take care that they be furnished with the number of seamen necessary. We do not conceive that there can be any more proper provision in the case, because we do not see the possibility of the interfering of Jurisdictions, but if your Majesty's directions in that point be duly observed, and care be taken that your Majesty's ships in sailing to the Plantations, because of the great mortalities that sometimes happen there, do always set out from hence with their full complement of seamen, as we formerly proposed, the inconveniencies complained of will be in great measure prevented, and your Majesty's service in that particular quietly and orderly carried on. Signed, Stamford, Lexington, Ph. Meadows, John Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 56. pp. 399–402.]
Nov. 10. 947. Minutes of Council of Virginia. Advice having been received of a violent and dangerous sickness raging in the City of Philadelphia, ordered that no vessel from those parts be admitted to trade here if sickly, nor, if well, till after the next frost and cold weather which shall happen to clear the air.