America and West Indies: December 1703, 6-10

Pages 857-872

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 21, 1702-1703. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1913.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. All rights reserved.


December 1703, 6-10

[Dec. 6.] 1355. Memorandum of abstract of List of Tithables of Virginia, 1703. ¼ p. [C.O. 5, 1313. No. 37.]
Dec. 6. 1356. Solicitor General to the Council of Trade and Plantations. In obedience to your Lordships' order I have considered the Acts passed in Bermuda 1690, 1691, 1693 and 1694. Enumerated, As to (1) the Act to prohibit from retailing liquors without lycence of the Justices, this Act is by a particular proviso therein to continue for two years from the publication thereof, and I presume was intended to commence at 20 days end after the publication, but by mistake in penning the Act commences immediately and lasts no longer than 20 days. (2) In the clause in the Act for keeping a dilligent guard at the Castle and Pagitt's Fort for the further incouragement of the watch and guard by distributeing the fourscore ears of corne, there is an omission of a line or two which makes that clause nonsense. (3) By an Act for trying any debt or difference not exceeding 20s. by the J.P., the Justice is enabled to allow what he pleases to be evidence, whereas he ought not to determine but by legal proof. It also provides that after judgement shall be awarded by the Justice, if satisfaction shall not be made within 10 days, the Justice is to grant his warrant to levy the debt and charges by distress and sale of the parties goods, and for want of such distress, the Justices are impower'd to hire out to service the defdt., till the debt and charges shall be satisfied, but there's no rule to determine when the debt is satisfied, or by what means the party shall again obtaine his liberty. This is not agreable to any execution which can be awarded according to the Law of England, it gives an arbitrary power to the Justice to make any Defdt. from whom such debt shall be oweing a servant, if not a slave, to whomsoever and wheresoever he thinks fitt. For these reasons I think this Act not fitt to be confirmed. (4) By an Act for recovery of debts from persons insolvent, every person of what quality soever, as wel strangers as inhabitants, within the Island, who shall be in prison for debt, and shall not pay the same within 10 days after such publication as is mentioned in the Act, is to be hired forth to any person in any place and upon any imployment as the Governor and Council shall order for satisfaction of the said debt, but no rule is laid down to ascertain the rate or price for which such person is to serve, nor when the debt is to be satisfied, nor how the debtor shall be discharged from his service. Persons of very good ability, especially strangers, thro' misfortunes or accidents, may be in prison for debt, and unable to pay the same within 10 days, yet such persons are equally liable, as persons really insolvent, to become servants to work out their debts. The persons insolvent only are mentioned in the title of the Act, yet this Law extends to all persons whomsoever, and to all debts without any distinction. I think this Act not fitt to be confirmed. (5) The Act for putting out apprentices and setting idle people to work directs such as are of the age of 15 and living idly, and not having wherewithal to maintain themselves, to be forced to work or go to service as is required by the Statutes 7 Jac. 1., and there are not any such statutes. But this Act referrs also to several other Laws which may be of great use, and therefore may without prejudice be confirmed. (6) The Act for settling intestates' estates mentions the wrong chapter of an Act referred to. (7) In the Act for the liberty of the subject, the statutes of H. III. and E. III. referred to are unnecessary to be enacted within these Islands, being declaratory of the Common Law of England. If the 16th of Car. I. should be there in force, the jurisdiction and authority of the Queen in Council in making any determination concerning any lands, tenements, goods or chatles on appeal, or otherwise, is wholly laid aside. This Law likewise enacts that all Laws in force in England relating to liberty and property, shall be also in force within those Islands, which I conceive to be very improper, and ought by no means to be approved of. (8) An Act for quieting men's estates and preventing Law suits. A Statute of limitations is undoubtedly at least as necessary in these Islands as in England, but this Act is so very imperfectly drawne, that it will rather destroy men's undoubted rights then quiet them, and create law-suits than prevent them. An actual enjoyment for 20 years before the making this Law without any claim, rent, service or acknowledgment, and five years continued enjoyment afterwards, or the like enjoyment for 20 years at any time after the making the Act, is turned into an absolute estate of inheritance. As to the limitation of five years after the making the Act, I conceive that tyme to be short, and persons who had a right of entry might be surprized thereby. And as this Act is penned, persons who have an undoubted title in reversion or remainder may be barred thereof by the possession of tenant for years, during whose possession they in reversion or remaynder cannot by Law make any entry or claym. The provision in this Act ought to have been agreable to the Statute of limitations, 21st Jam. I. For the imperfect drawing of this Act and the ill consequence may arise thereby, I conceive it ought to be rejected. (9) Part of the Act for the alteration of several Acts varys part of the Act before mentioned for trying any debt not exceeding 20s. by the Justices, but leaves it liable to the objection before made to it, and therefore I think this Act not fit to be confirmed. (10) The Act for liberty of the subject from illegal imprisonment gives the entire benefit of the Habeas Corpus Act of 31st Charles II. to the inhabitants of this Island. They have all the benefits of the writ of Habeas Corpus which the Common Law of England gives against illegal imprisonments. It must be submitted to your Lordships, whether such an Act in those parts will not lessen the dependance upon the Crowne. If such a Law should not be thought improper there, yet the granting a Habeas Corpus ought not to be in the power of every J.P. (11) The Excise Act of 1693 has the same mistake as that of 1690 as above. However, this Act also is long since determined according to their intentions. As to the residue of the several Acts concerning which I have made no particular remark, your Lordpps. will observe that very many of them were but temporary, and are determined several years since, and few of them are drawne so carefully as they ought to be, and in many of them there seem to be mistakes in transcribing. However, I have no such objection in point of Law as to advise the rejecting of them. Signed, Sim. Harcourt. Endorsed, Recd. Dec. 2, 1703. Read. July 11, 1704. 7 pp. [C.O. 37, 6. No. 5; and 38, 6. pp. 20–35.]
Dec. 6. 1357. Solicitor General to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Report on the Laws of the Bermuda Islands, 1690, 1691, contained in the Book of Laws—a negligently transcribed copy of the Laws criticised in preceding. Signed, Sim. Harcourt. 2½ pp. [C.O. 37, 6. No. 4.] pp. 20–35.]
Dec. 6. 1358. Copy of H.M. Instructions concerning Imprisonments in Barbados. (See preceding volume of this Calendar.) A True Copy. Signed, A. Skene, Secretary. [C.O. 319, 1. pp. 53–55.]
Dec. 6. 1359. Mr. Warters to Mr. Popple. In reply to letter of Dec. 2nd. It has been always customary in time of war to appoint Agents as well in the several Plantations abroad as at home, for receiving the perquisites of Admiralty. The Agents so empowered have of late met with great oppositions and discouragements from the Governours of several of H.M. Plantations, of which great complaints have been made, more particularly from Bermudas, Berbadoes, Jamaica, Antegoa, New England, to the great prejudice of H.R.H. the Lord High Admiral in the recovery of his just rights, and to the great loss to the publick, to whose use all those rights are assigned during the present war. These complaints from the Agents have given occasion for this matter being laid before their Lordships the Commissioners for redress, and for the further satisfaction to their Lordships in this matter I have here incerted the several particulars how the rights of Admiralty do arise on prizes. (1) All enemies' ships that shall come into Port, whether by mistake, stress of weather or other accident, the same do wholy belong to the Lord High Admiral. (2) All such that shall be seized either by any of H.M. men of war or otherwise within any Road or Harbour, or within gun-shot of any of H.M. forts or castles, do likewise wholy belong to the Admiral. All ships or goods taken from the enemy by any ship not commissionated, the same. All such taken by Privateers or ships carrying Letters of Marque, a tenth belongs to the Admiral. All men of war or privateers belonging to the enemy taken by any of H.M. ships of war or privateers, a tenth thereof likewise belongs to the Lord High Admiral. Salvage of ships and goods retaken from the enemy belongs to the Lord High Admiral. There are many other Droits of Admiralty such as wrecks of the sea, flotsons, jestsons, lagons, derelicts, ships and goods of pirates, deodands, and many others which come more particularly under the care of the ViceAdmirals, for which they are accountable to the Lord High Admiral. Signed, J. Warters. Endorsed, Recd. 6th, Read 17th Dec., 1703. 2 pp. [C.O. 323, 5. No. 31; and 324, 8. pp. 309–311.]
Dec. 6.
1360. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Mr. Cope [see Dec. 2] attending said that he was sent Master Gunner to Jamaica in 1701, which their Lordships judged to have been done by the Board of Ordnance in pursuance of their Representation upon occasion of Brigadier Selwyn's going Governor. Whereupon ordered that his Memll. be sent to Col. Handasyd, and that he be told it is a reproach to the Island that a man sent in that manner has been no better received.
Letter from the Lords Proprietors of Carolina read.
Ordered that the Barbadoes Merchants and New England Merchants have notice to lay their desires relating to convoys for those trades before the Board in writing on Wednesday, and the Pennsylvania Co. to attend then.
Letter to Mr. Burchet about Newfoundland ordered.
Dec. 7. Mr. Byfeild attending on behalf of the Pennsylvania Co., their Lordships enquired if there be good riding for a fifth-rate frigat upon the coast of S. Carolina; and some other doubts also arising upon the meaning of the Company's Memorial, in relation to New York and Pennsylvania, he desired to take it back, and promised to bring another more full and perfect on Thursday next.
Order of Committee of House of Commons to prepare a bill for the incouragement of seamen and effectual manning of the Navy, requiring the Board to lay before them an account of what ships, tonnage and number of men are imployed in the several foreign trades, or have been so employed for one or more years past, read. Ordered that the Secretary write to Mr. Sansom for the account thereby desired, the Custom House being the only place where such accounts can be taken.
Ordered that the Secretary write to Mr. Perry for an Account of what ships, tunnage and number of seamen, were imployed in the Virginia and Maryland Trades in the last year, and to Mr. Merrit for a like account of the Newfoundland trade.
Plan of the channels and soundings between Kingston and Port Royal laid before the Board.
Report to the House of Lords (Nov. 22) considered.
Dec. 8. Mr. Jennings presented a letter from Governor Nicholson, referring to 3 boxes of papers received; all which their Lordships ordered to be methodized and laid before them with a list of the whole at the first conveniency. He also delivered a list of the ships and tobacco exported from Virginia and Maryland under the convoy with which he came, but some supposed to be lost in the late storm.
Further progress made in the Report to the House of Lords.
Memorials from the Barbadoes and New England merchants read. [C.O. 391, 16. pp. 308–314; and 391, 97. pp. 753–762.]
Dec. 6. 1361. Journal of Assembly of New Jersey. Money Bill read a third time, passed and sent up.
Amended Bill, to enforce the payment of former taxes in the Western division, ordered to be engrossed.
Dec. 7. Above Bill read a third time, passed and sent up.
Engrossed Bill for ascertaining Representatives' fees read a third time, passed, and sent up.
Dec. 8. The House met and adjourned. [C.O. 5, 1019. p. 487.]
Dec. 7.
1362. W. Popple to J. Burchett. The Council of Trade and Plantations being called upon to give an account of the last summer's trade and fishery at Newfoundland, enquire what answer they are to expect to the Heads of Enquiry of June 3 last. [C.O. 195, 3. p. 260.]
Dec. 7. 1363. Minutes of Council of Bermuda. Ordered that the next Assizes be holden on the second Tuesday in March. [C.O. 40, 2. p. 57.]
Dec. 7.
St. Jago de la Vega.
1364. Minutes of Council of Jamaica. The Gentlemen appointed Nov. 25 to hire a sloop to carry pacquetts to the Spanish Governor's, giving an acct. that they could not do so, ordered that the Naval Officer hire one, and if he cannot, that he immediately send notice to the Governor and thereupon that he have an Order to impress for yt. service and that she be mann'd with the people belonging to ye men of war.
There being certain intelligence that the French at Hispaniola have four men of war and a fleet of merchant and store ships lately come there, and ye Masters of merchant ships now ready here having petitioned the Govr. to grant them a convoy to the Crooked Island, the Board advised it was not safe for them to goe that way, till we have further intellegence of the motion of the enemy, and therefore that there should be an imbargo laid on all vessels except Turtlers and Traders about ye Island. Ordered accordingly.
50l. ordered to be paid to Capt. Edwards for his good service against ye enemy lately landed at North Side, and 50l. to such persons as ye Govr. and Gentlemen of the Council wch. shall happen to be in town shall appoint, according to the Captain's report of their service in that action.
Various salaries paid. [C.O. 140, 6. pp. 199, 200; and 207, 208.]
Dec. 7.
1365. Minutes of Council and Assembly of New Hampshire. H.E. (Usher) addressed the Representatives and assured them of H.M. gracious protection and his own efforts for their welfare. Continues:—I have visited the garrisons in the several towns, finde some out garrisons weakly mann'd, and will stand in need of help, that the inhabitants may look after their affairs for subsistance. I found H.M. Fort in a bad condition, and not above 2 men in pay, there is great need of more, this Fort being of the greatest concernment of the whole country, and for want of men there hath been such omission as to warding and watching, the enemy might easily have surprized and taken itt. There is great want of powder, arms and ammunition. The Province is much in debt, an account thereof the Treasurer shall lay before you, and not only want of money to pay debts already dew, but also a fund to pay daily charges, which may arise. The money raised shall be ready for your examination, how disposed of. If you see cause to address to H.M. for a company of souldjers for H.M. service at the Fort, for powder, arms and ammunition, the same shall be forwarded. Considering the ships will speedily depart for England, and the season of the year, hope you will be speedy in your results.
Letter from Governor Dudley, Nov. 22, 1703, to Col. Romer read.
Col. Romer reported that he was ordered by Governor Dudley to repair Fort William and Mary, and that New Hampshire to that end had allowed 500l. in money and 500l. in labour, and that they had made some progress in it, but the severity of the winter had obliged them to leave off. And whereas the 500l. in money was delivered in all sorts of provisions to the Treasurer according to the Act, but they not being sold for the prices therein mentioned, there was given to the Treasurer by Order of Council 50l. abatement. The 500l. in labour would soon consume the 450l.; they had already consumed upwards of 26l., and had not done full 8l. worth of work. It was customary in all parts of the world that when the country allowed any sum of money for labour, that then the subjects did take provisions along with them for 8 or 10 days, according to the distance of their habitations, and then it would be reckoned as money, but it cannot here be reckoned so because that if this daily labour soe proceed, it will soon consume the 450l.; therefore the Board may judge that it is impossible to make a magazine for powder and lodgings for 50 or 60 men. Col. Romer further declared that he had a year ago demonstrated to the Duke of Marlborough the state of this Province, and that it was impossible for them to make these fortifications, which his late Majesty was pleased to order. It was now in due season that the Province should implore the Queen for her assistance, and [he] requested that the Board desire the Governor and Lt. Gov. for their concurrence. Col. Romer took his leave in order to depart next day for Boston.
George Jeffreys' accounts as Treasurer, 1695, 1696, passed.
Dec. 8. An estimate of this Province's debts, amounting to 450l., was sent up from the Representatives.
Accounts of Joseph Smith, Treasurer, 1696, 1699, passed.
Representatives' reply to H.E. speech sent up:—Wee account it the greatest happiness of the age we live in to be under the Government of so great, good and glorious a Queen, etc. As to the frontier garrisons, wee beleive they may be in some danger, but wee are not capable of sustaining the charge of supplying all with souldjers, besides the Committees of Militia in the several towns are impowered by Law to look after these affaires. As to H.M. Fort at Great Island, the Assembly advanced 500l. that it might be made more defenceable, and as to men, we suppose the present season of the year will in some measure supply that want, there being on Great Island only the Fort to do duty, and the inhabitants are sufficient to supply men for watching. As for powder, our Agent, Major Wm. Vaughan, was instructed to Address H.M. for a supply, from whom we have yett had noe account. As for the Treasurer's Account(s) we had them lately laid before us by order of H.E., and have continued an Act for laying a duty on lumber etc. for another year, which wee hope by the year's end will pay our debts and answer the necessary charges arising the meantime. As to addressing H.M. for a company of souldjers for the Fort, the Governor having been lately among us, and well acquainting himself with the state of the Province, Fort and all things concerning the same, we have prayed H.E. to represent our state and wants at large, and pray H.M. favourable releife, which wee presume is already done, or will be done by these ships.
Ordered that Dec. 29 be sent apart as a Thanksgiving Day throughout this Province for all mercys daily received.
Dec. 9. Capt. Eason ordered to pay 2 barrels of powder for this voyage.
Message sent down:—Whereas there is one power given in H.M. Commission to execute Martial Law in time of peace upon souldjers in pay by H.M., I therefore recommend to the Assembly, that, if not already done, you prepare an Act for punishing mutiny, desertion and false musters and for the preserving of good discipline amongst souldjers.
It appearing that the Treasurer in 1701 paid Lt. Gov. Partridge per order being voted as part of his disbursements for the Province 100l., the Representatives were asked for a particular account of those disbursements, which they said they had not got.
Ordered that Henry Dow, George Jeffrey and Joseph Smith, formerly Treasurers, be allowed 5 p.c. for paying and receiving, their accounts having been approved. [C.O. 5, 789. pp. 349–358.]
[Dec. 8.] 1366. List of ships and quantity of tobacco exported from Virginia and Maryland on the fleet that arrived in England Nov., 1703. Totals: ships, London 36, Outports, 12=48; hhds. of tobacco, London 11,440; Outports 3,878=15,318. Endorsed, Recd. Read Dec. 8, 1703. 2¼ pp. [C.O. 5, 1313. No. 36; and 5, 1360. p. 438.]
Dec. 8.
Treasury Chambers.
1367. Wm. Lowndes to Mr. Popple. Mr Lord Treasurer desires you to acquaint the Lords Commissioners for Trade that the Commissioners of Customs having laid before him the proceedings of the Court-Martial in Barbados, he hath directed that Mr. Cox should be dismissed from his post. My Lord Treasurer likewise desires you to acquaint their Lorpps. that for the future as any matter relating to the Customs occurs to them, he desires the same may be first transmitted to his Lordship that soe, as is regular, it may be by him transmitted to the Commissioners of the Customes, who are under his Lop.'s direction. Signed, Wm. Lowndes. Endorsed, Recd. Read Dec. 10, 1703. 1 p. [C.O. 28, 6. No. 110; and 29, 8. p. 360.]
Dec. 8. 1368.Mel. Holder to [? William Popple]. Here are merchants have an acct. of 6 French men of war, 28 privateers and several transport and store-ships yt. were at Martinico Oct. 8: it is said further that they were preparing to make a descent upon some of the Leward Islands. Signed, Mel. Holder. Subscribed, One evil consequence of late convoys is that it is impossible for convoys to keep the merchants ships together by reason of the bad weather, wch. some of the merchants would have mended that clause of the petition, but considering we had not time enough, I intreated them that I might signify it by letter which they desire may be communicated to their Lordships, as also that the guardships mentioned are too few. 1 p. [C.O. 28, 6. No. 109; and 29, 8. p. 353.]
Dec. 8.
1369. New England Merchants to the Council of Trade and Plantations. As to convoys for New England. The French have in those parts seldom less than 2 men of war, 50 guns each, and during the last war the coast of New England much insulted by the enemy, and the New Englanders suffered much thro want of guard ships on their coast; and the traders lost 2/3 of their ships trading between that place and England for want of convoys, besides many others bound thence to the other Plantations with provisions and other necessaries etc. The case being now the same, we conceive that it will be necessary that the coast of New England shall be alwaies defended by two men of war of a sufficient force; that 2 men of war depart hence about 20 Feb. to convoy such merchant ships bound thither as shalbe then ready, the number whereof we cannot ascertain; that one of the said shipps, or that which is now there, return for England with such merchant ships as shalbe ready about June 15; that another man of war depart hence about the beginning of Sept., as a second convoy to ships bound to New England, and that the same, or one of the two men of war remaining there, depart thence as a convoy for England about the beginning of Dec.; that the other two men of war being unserviceable in the winter, depart thence about the beginning of Dec. as a convoy to the ships bound for Berbados and the Leeward Islands, and thence to Saltertudos, and return to New England early in the spring. Signed, Ste. Mason, Jer. Johnstone, Joseph Pa[ice], John Shippen. Endorsed, Recd. Read Dec. 8, 1703. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 863. No. 63; and 5, 911. pp. 154–156.]
Dec. 8. 1370. William Bridges to William Popple. Enclosing answer to letter of Dec. 6. Signed, Wm. Bridges. 1 p. Enclosed,
1370. i. Merchants trading to Barbados to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Two convoys in the year are necessary for the Barbados trade, one to sail the begining of January and the other in April. The first to return from thence the begining of May and the other Aug. 1st. But forasmuch as the last fleet from Barbadoes for want of an early convoy came so lately home that they are not yet all unladen, and that there must be time for refitting and lading, wee humbly desire that the next convoy may be ready Feb. 1st, and that if wee cannot have a second in Aprill, wee may have some speedy intimation thereof, that so we may send out the more commodities for the supply of the Island by ye first convoy. Upon this occasion wee take leave to lay before your Lordships some great discouragements that wee lye under, and unless we can have redress both wee and the Island will be in danger of being ruined. (1) The last year, according to appointment of the Admiralty, wee had ships ready to sayl Feb. 10, and mann'd them at very great expence, and lay from that time till May before wee could have convoy or were permitted to sail, and to compleat our misery after we had mann'd at the charge of 4 or 5l. a man, besides very high wages, under the sanction of the Admiralty's protections, the men were press'd from our ships, etc. The fears of being so treated again, has hindred severall from setting out ships any more. (2) There was a very considerable fleet of ships loaden at Barbadoes in May last which were detained untill the fleet which saild from hence in May arrived there and were laden, which was not till Aug., so that the bottoms of many of the ships of the fleet which were laden in May were much prejudiced by worms, and by that means severall of them foundred in their return home. (3) The last fleet from Barbados was not permitted to sail directly home as has been ever accustomed, but were forced to accompany the convoy to the Leeward Islands about the hurricane time, to the great hazard of their ships amongst those Islands, and also by being exposed to the enemy's privateers from Martinico, and were there detained untill the ships laden at the Leeward Islands were ready, which was so great a hazard and damage, that wee cannot think it fitt for us any more to adventure our ships and goods in like manner. (4) When that fleet came in sight of England. where the great danger of meeting the enemies's ships is, the Commodore of the convoy, which was the biggest rate and best ship, in pursuance of his orders as he pretended, left about 100 saile of the greatest and richest ships to convoy about eleven small ships for Bristoll, by which means severall of the said 100 saile were taken off Scilly Island the same day and the day following. All our advices agree, that the enemy's privateers of Martinicoe are very numerous and have taken so many ships from Guinea with negroes and ships with provisions from England, Ireland and other parts off Barbadoes, that has ruin'd many Merchants and disabled the Planters from carrying on their works for want of strength and food, and subsisted the French and much enriched them by enabling them to supply the Spaniards with a very great number of negroes. To prevent this, it is necessary that there be two small frigats and a fourth rate ship of war that are very good sailers to attend that Island. Signed, Pat. Mein, Mel. Holder and 15 others. Endorsed, Recd. Read Dec. 8, 1703. 3 pp. [C.O. 28, 6. Nos. 108, 108. i.; and 29, 8. pp. 353–358.]
Dec. 9.
St. James's.
1371. Order of Queen in Council. Referring the accounts of John Bridger to the Council of Trade and Plantations. [See Acts of Privy Council, II, No. 908.] Signed, John Povey. Endorsed, Recd. 14th, Read 29th, 1703. 1 p. Enclosed,
1371. i. Copy of Report of the Admiralty upon Bridger's Petition. Dec. 2, 1703. 1½ pp.
1371. ii. Abstract of Mr. Bridger's disbursements upon journeys in New England, 1696–1701. 1 p.
1371. iii. Copy of the Observations of the Navy Board upon Bridger's Accounts, which they do not consider themselves able to allow of, from want of proper vouchers. 6 pp.
1371. iv. Copy of Abstract of Accounts of John Bridger, etc. 3 pp. [C.O. 5, 863. Nos. 64, 64.i.–iv.; and (without enclosures) 5, 911. pp. 161, 162.]
Dec. 9.
1372. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. The several Memorials relating to convoys considered. Upon some doubt on that from the Virginia Merchants, ordered that Mr. Perry have notice to explain the same to-morrow.
Ordered that the New York Merchants have notice to bring their Memorial in writing, as promised Nov. 22.
Mr. Cox, lately arrived from New York and Virginia, delivered to the Board a box containing several papers from the Lord Cornbury, which their Lordships ordered to be abstracted and laid before them as soon as may be.
Dec. 10. Letter from Mr. Lowndes, Dec. 8, read.
Mr. Byfeild presented a Memorial of the Pennsylvania Co.
Mr. Perry with other Virginia merchants attending, acquainted the Board that they knew of no ships that designed to go with the convoy they desired, yet considering the fleet now in Virginia will be one of the richest that ever came from thence, they could not desire less than 3 men of war to sail from hence, so as to be able to return by the last of April, because one of those ships must be left as a guard to the country, and then the other 2, with the 2 already there, will be little enough to take care of so large a Fleet as that will be, which will consist of between 150 and 200 sail.
Letter from John Moor, Sept. 17, read.
Dec. 11. Report upon convoys considered, and finding some defects in the merchants' memorials, their Lordships ordered that a letter be writ to the Barbadoes Agents for the number and rates of ships they desire for a convoy, and the time they should sail; and to the Agents of the Leeward and Jamaica, to enquire what number and rates of ships they desire may be appointed for guardships for those Islands.
Similar enquiry ordered of Mr. Lodwick, as to number and rates of ships desired for New York. Replies to be made on Monday.
Letter to Lord Nottingham, enclosing copy of Mr. Moor's letter, signed.
Progress made in Report to the House of Lords. [C.O. 391, 16. pp. 314–319; and 391, 97. pp. 765–774.]
Dec. 9. 1373. Minutes of Council [in Assembly] of Bermuda. The Assembly appeared and for some reasons H.E. dissolved them. [C.O. 40, 2. p. 57.]
Dec. 9. 1374. Journal of Assembly of New Jersey. Bill for regulating the purchasing of lands from the Indians, agreed to by the Council, was sent down with some amendments.
Dec. 10. Above amendments agreed to and sent up, with one further amendment.
Dec. 11. Bill for ascertaining Representatives' fees sent down agreed to with amendments. [C.O. 5, 1019. pp. 487, 488.]
Dec. 9. 1375. Vice-Admiral Graydon to [? Mr. Burchet]. The heads of enquiry to be made at Newfoundland did not come to my hands till Sept. 29, a hundred leagues E. of Newfoundland, and the convoy being to sayle to Portugall the beginning of Oct., there was not any time for said enquirys to be made. They ought to have been sent out in the beginning of the year, etc. Signed, Jo. Graydon. Copy. 1 p. [C.O. 194, 3. No. 7; and 195, 3. pp. 287, 288.]
Dec. 10.
Admiralty Office.
1376. J. Burchett to Mr. Popple. Enclosing preceding. Signed, J. Burchett. Endorsed, Recd. Dec. 11, 1703, Read March 21, 170¾. ½ p. [C.O. 194, 3. No. 9; and 195, 3. p. 287.]
Dec. 10. 1377. Pennsylvania Company to the Council of Trade and Plantations. For the security of the trade and Colony of South Carolina, it will be necessary that H.M. send a frigate to ride there and to convoy thence to Virginia such ships as shall be ready to sail thence timely enough to reach the Virginia Fleet in order to come home with that convoy, and then for ye frigate to return to Carolina for the guard of the coast, and we being informed that Ashley River in Carolina is a barred place and that the frigate must not draw above 12ft. water to go over the bar, but when she is over there is as good rydeing as in ye Thames, and without the barr as good as the Downes, we humbly conceive it most proper to send such a frygate as draws the least water, yet of good force. There is about 8 legues from Charles Town a place called Port Royal, where a larger frigate may ride with safety, which is deep water and not barred. The late expedition to St. Augustin hath so farr wasted their amunition that the country was in great want, and the Law here prohibiting powder to be shipt from hence for foreign parts when it exceeds the price of 5l. per barrel, the merchants trading thither where frustrated from sending a supply by their last ship. Therefore it is humbly desired that H.M. would be gratiously pleased to take such care of the preservation of the Colony and trade as to her princely wisdom seems meet. As for New York, Mr. John Thrale, Agent of that Colony, and other Merchants we understand are concerned in that Port already, wherefore we humbly crave leave to decline. Endorsed, Recd. Read Dec. 10, 1703. 1½ pp. [C.O. 5, 1262. No. 58.]
Dec. 10.
Treasury Chambers.
1378. Mr. Lowndes to Mr. Popple. My Lord Treasurer desires you to lay enclosed before the Lords Commissioners for Trade, and desires they will signify to him if upon this further acct. they continue their opinion for dismissing Mr. Cox or have any objection against his being restored. Signed, Wm. Lowndes. Endorsed, Recd. 11th, Read Dec. 13, 1703. Addressed. 1p. Enclosed,
1378. i. Richd. Savage to Wm. Lowndes. Customhouse, London, Dec. 9, 1703. Enclosing following Memorial to be laid before the Lord High Treasurer. The Commissioners of Customs confirm Mr. Mein's character of Mr. Cox as a very good officer. Signed, Rich. Savage. Addressed. 1 p.
1378. ii. Patrick Mein (formerly employed as Surveyor General of Customs in America) to the Commissioners of Customs. Dec. 9, 1703. I was at Barbados and a Member of Council at the time of the Court Martial concerning Mr. Cox. What Cox did was not taken notice of by the Government there as any fault in him, and might have been done by any Member of Council without ill intention, it having been usual for the persons sent with Flags of Truce betwixt Barbados and Martinico to go on shoar in both places without waiting for leave to do so. Nor did I ever hear of any such thing called in question before, for as they of Martinico have constantly treated the persons sent with that character from us with great civility and respect, so we in Barbados have always made the like returns etc. Mr. Cox is a very good officer, as any I found in those parts. Signed, Pat. Mein. 1¼ pp. [C.O. 28, 7. Nos. 9, 9. i., ii.; and 29, 8. pp. 361–366.]
Dec. 10.
Crotchett Fryers. March 21.
1379. Mr. Merrett to Mr. Popple. Enclosing following. Signed, Solomon Merrett. ¾ p. Enclosed,
1379. i. An account of the Fishery of Newfoundland for 1703.
At Bonavista that Bay vizt. Men. Boats. Quintalls Fish. Tons Oyle. Fishing ships and boats.
Ship Boat
Greens Pond 40 6 1,800 6 1 1
Salvage 13 2 300
Barrow Harbour 11 2 300
Keels 11 5 1,400 5
Bonavista 200 30 10,500 45
Baily's Cove 42 7 2,400 10
Green Island 24 4 1,600 8
Salmon Cove 24 4 2,400 10 1 1
Trinity Harbour 18 3 1,000 5
English Harbour 24 4 800 4
Silly Cove 30 5 1,500 7
New Perlican 72 12 3,600 15
Old Perlican 108 18 6,300 28
Bay de verds 42 7 2,100 9
Carboneer 60 10 2,500 9 1 1
Harbour Grace 60 10 2,500 8
Bay Roberts
Harbour Maine
Portugal Cove 24 4 1,600 8
Torbay 12 2 600 3
Quidi vidi 48 12 3,600 15
St. Johns 300 47 14,100 60 18 37
Petty Harbour 16 3 900 4 1 2
Bay Bulls 12 2 700 5
Witles Bay 6 1 300
Ferryland and severall small Harbours 72 12 3,600 14 1 2
Ranews and Fermouse 12 2 600 3
1,281 214 67,000 (fn. 1)
8,000 (fn. 2)
285½ (fn. 1)
15 (fn. 2)
23 44
75,000 300½
40 saile of ships computed to carry quintalls 1,800 one with another, is 72,000 quintalls; 6 sailes to England with oyle of which one is taken. Signed, Solomon Merrett. Endorsed, Recd. Dec. 10, 1703. Read March 21, 170¾. 1 p. [C.O. 194, 3. Nos. 8, 8.i.; and 195, 3. pp. 284–286.]
Dec. 10. 1380. Certificate from Cha. Noden, that on Sept. 30, 1701, he shipped to Lt. Gov. Bennett 36 gallons of brandy, 31 gall. of claret, and 33 gallons of white wine. Signed, Cha. Noden. Endorsed, Recd. Dec. 17, 1703. Read June 1, 1704. ½ p. [C.O. 37, 6. No. 8.]
Dec. 10. 1381. Newfoundland Merchants to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Enclose letters received yesterday from St. Johns, Newfoundland. Wee also pray your Lordships to take into your consideration, the deplorable condition the inhabitants and our Estates there are in, and to represent to H.M. the danger of losing that country, unless a sufficient force be sent early thither to prevent the ruin of it by the French, whose intentions we have good reason to fear, as that Fishery is of so great advantage in breeding up seamen to us as well as to them. We again offer the Officers interfering with trade is a very great discouragement to the trade and fishery, and also to the soldiers there, who last winter have been forbid to buy bread of our Factors, and they also have been ordered not to sell to the souldiers althô they would have sold them at halfe ye price. Pray, that the Officers may have strict orders not to hinder or threaten us, or the inhabitants, or molest them in their buisness, but that they may freely trade in Newfoundland, as in the other Dominions of H.M. etc. Signed, Solomon Merrett, Simon Cole, John Jackson, John Voysey, Wm. Brooke, Samll. Weston, Wm. Smirkey. Endorsed, Recd. Dec. 10, 1703. Read March 31, 1704. 1 p. Enclosed,
1381. i. Letter from John Roope referred to in preceding. We are like to have a long and tedious winter. I were going to Bonavista for timber for the boome, but now have gotten intelligence that there is enough to be had in those parts, so hope to perfect so as at first conserted; as [to] Admirall Graydon's miscarriages, cannot yet learn ye true cause, but my thoughts are that if the soldiers had come directly and not from the West Indies, it would have been better, and that if the Officers of the Ships of Warr had been better acquainted with the nature of this country, for when about ten leagues from the shore it is very foggy; near the shore, it is very often clear weather, but makes those that are not well acquainted fear to come near the coast, and the poor men that were a board as pilots, not being used to the haughty carriages of the Navy Captains were so scared at their words that they had not sence enough left them to make use of their sentiments, etc. Repeats contents of his other letters. Signed, John Roope, Nov. 6 and 10. [C.O. 194, 3. No. 10, 10.i.; and 195, 3. pp. 275–280.]
Dec. 10. 1382. Minutes of Council and Assembly of New Hampshire. In reply to H.E. message, Dec. 9, the Representatives returned answer that the Military Laws are sufficient to punish offenders according to the discretion of the Committees of Militia.
Dec. 11. The Representatives, asked if they had anything to offer, said not. Summoned to attend, the Lt. Gov. addressed them. In your reply (Dec. 8.) you say there are Acts for duties laid which will answer the necessary charges. Those Acts are given for other ends, not for defence etc., [and I] judge will not answer those ends. I laid before you that the Province was in debt above 450l., and daily charges doth arise, that there was absolute need of souldjers at H.M. Fort and some of the frontier garrisons; if either suffer by want of supplyes, I have quitted myselfe. There have been in Major Vaughan's and his successors' time paid to Mr. Partridge 867l. 2s. 6d. for which there is noe account of perticulars of disbursements, and that ought not to be allowed. As to the 300l. paid your Agent, he has not given any acct. of his proceedings in England. I have not onely been informed of the condition of the Province, but have visited itt, and seen the condition thereof, and I doubt not but the Governour hath truely represented the same, and I shall by these mast shipps second it likewise to H.M. In the meantime I shall take care of H.M. Fort as shall judge proper. You are dissolved. [C.O. 5, 789. pp. 358, 359.]


  • 1. Taken from the Inhabitants.
  • 2. Taken from 23 Fish-ships.