America and West Indies: February 1717

Pages 251-263

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 29, 1716-1717. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1930.

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


February 1717

Feb. 2.
Custom House.
459. An account of rozin and turpentine imported from the Plantations 1707–1715. Endorsed, Recd. Read 4th Feb., 1716/17. 1 large p. [C.O. 388, 18. No. 105.]
Feb. 2.
Custom House.
460. An account of pitch, tar, masts and yards, etc., imported from the Plantations, Christmas, 1714–15. Endorsed as preceding. 1 large p. [C.O. 388, 18. No. 107.]
Feb. 6.
461. Mr. Burt to the Secretaries to Mr. Secretary Methuen. Encloses following. Signed, E. Burt. Endorsed, Recd. 20th Feb., Primer'd 6th June, 1717. ½ p. Enclosed,
461. i. Navy Board to Mr. Secry. Burchett. 1st Feb., 1716. Enclose following. Continue: As the quantities of tar and pitch [imported from the Plantations] are very inconsiderable in respect of the expence of the Navy, so no hemp or other naval stores have been imported from the Plantations (that we have heard of) except masts and turpentine, the latter is not used in the Navy, and the former (especially great masts) have always been imported from New England by one, two, three or four ladings a year, as the service hath call'd for them. But little tar, till of late hath come from the Plantations, and what does come, is not esteem'd fit to be us'd in making cordage (wherein consists the greatest consumption of that commodity) being found to be of too hot a nature for that use, but that fault might be mended, if the people of that country wou'd use the same methods in making it, as are practis'd in the East Countrys. And tho' no hemp (as we can learn) has come from the Plantations, notwithstanding the prœmium allow'd by the Act, yet it is humbly presum'd those countrys (especially Virginia which is reputed to be a very fertile and well water'd country) are capable of producing that commodity. But whether any, or what further encouragement. may be proper to be given for increasing of Naval Stores in the Plantations and the importation of them hither, over and above the prœmiums already granted by Act of Parliamt., we are not capable of judging. Hitherto the prœmiums have been a great clogg unto the Navy, for as much as the charge thereof will (as it is believ'd) when a collection shall be made of it, (which is in hand), amount to upwards of £80,000, for which no money hath been given or any advantage accrued to the Navy. For no hemp comes, which is the principall specie wanted, of tar (which is the next) but little, till of late etc.; of turpentine and pitch indeed considerable quantities, but as the Navy uses none of the first, so not much of the other, and the prœmiums have been, and are to be paid for those commodities by the Navy, even tho' they are imported to the remotest ports of Great Britain, and out of the way of the Navy, so that it were to be wish'd the same might be paid at the Custom House, etc. Signed, Cha. Wager, Ja. Acworth, Cha. Sergisin, D. Lyddell, R. Burton, J. Fawler, Tho. Swanton. Copy. 3pp.
461. ii. Account of tar and pitch imported from the Plantations bought for H.M. Navy. New England, 1711, 15 lasts tar; 1712, 5½ tons pitch; 1714, 29 lasts tar; 1715, 25½ lasts tar, 8 tons pitch. Virginia, 17½ tons pitch; Carolina, 47½ tons pitch; New York, 22 tons pitch. ½ p. [C.O. 5, 866. Nos. 121 i., ii.]
Feb. 6. 462. Extracts of letters from S. Carolina [?to Richard Beresford] (a) Feb. 6, 1716/17. As to the Virginians trading with our enemies, itt is most certaine though wee can have only Indian proff, butt itt is certaine that the Sawraws are very well provided with ammunition and other goods though they are still our enimies, and enimies to No. Carolina, so that theire trade must be from Virginia etc. The Watabees and Cutabas informes us that they do come to the Sawraws to trade, and that the Sawraws do go frequently to Virginia to trade there, the Chereekees have lately been on the Creeks but did not much damage there, the French were then there with several pereaugers of goods a trading, the Chequesaws still promises us theire friendship.
(b) March 22, 1716/17. We have lately had a messuage from the Creek Indians relaiteing to peace which will require a great thought to manage, for fear of disobliging the Charikyes, who was the first people that return'd to us in the greatest of our extremity, the Creeks will have no peace wth. ye Charikyes etc.
(c) April 8, 1717. There is still Indians lurking about who kill'd two white men about a fortnight ago about 2 miles from Edistow Fort. Signed, Richd. Beresford. Endorsed, Recd. Read 26th June, 1717. 1p. [C.O. 5, 1265. No. 72.]
Feb. 6.
463. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Methuen. Enclose extract from Governor Lowther's letter, relating to a trade carried on between H.M. Plantations and those of the French in America. Continue:—Tho' we do not find any law prohibiting the same, yet by the 5th and 6th Articles of the Treaty of Neutrality in America concluded in 1686, it is forbid, wherefore in order to our giving the necessary directions in this matter, we desire you will please to lett us know, whether the sd. Treaty of 1686 is to be look'd upon as still in force. [C.O. 29, 13. pp. 370, 371.]
Feb. 6.
Admty. Office.
464. Mr. Burt to the Secretaries to Mr. Secretary Methuen. Encloses following in reply to Jan. 29. Signed, E. Burt. Addressed. ¾ p. Enclosed,
464. i. Navy Board to Mr. Secry. Burchett. 1st Feb., 1716 (17). Concerning premiums on Naval Stores. Copy.
464. ii. Account of tar and pitch imported from the Plantations and bought for H.M. Navy. Tar, 69½ lasts. Pitch, 104 tons. No hemp or other naval stores from thence except masts. ¾ p.
464. iii. Value of imports and exports to and from Denmark, Norway, East Country, Russia and Sweden, 1697–1701. ¾ p.
464. iv. Account of Naval Stores imported to England, Christmas 1700–1715. 4 pp. [C.O. 5, 4. Nos. 14, 14 i.–iv.]
Feb. 7.
465. Mr. Popple to the Commissioners of H.M. Navy. The Council of Trade and Plantations desire an account of the species and quantitys of Naval Stores bought for the use of the Royal Navy, and from what places those stores have been respectively imported, and upon what conditions of payment, each year from 1696 to Christmas last. [C.O. 324, 10. pp. 98, 99.]
Feb. 9.
466. Extract of letter from George Knight of Barbados, to Jos. Wyeth, London. There's severall vessells has been broken among the Leeward Islands by the pirates who are numerous, they having one ship taken by them from the French wch. will mount 40 gunns, and another of 16 gunns, etc. Endorsed, Recd. (from Mr. Wyeth) Read 31st May, 1717. ¼ p. [C.O. 28, 15. No. 8.]
Feb. 11.
467. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Methuen. Enclose draught of Instructions for Lt. Governor Johnson, who has given the usual security etc. (v. 4th Jan.). Note:—The Instructions are the same as those given to Mr. Hyde, except the Addl. clause, and the two clauses of an Act relating to the time of the late war. [C.O. 5, 1293. pp. 69, 70.]
Feb. 12.
468. Mr. Secretary Methuen to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses following for their report. Signed, P. Methuen. Endorsed, Recd. 15th, Read 18th Feb., 1716/17. 1 p. Enclosed,
468. i. Petition of Ollivier Tulon to the King. Petitioner, an inhabitant of the Island of St. Peters, Newfoundland, now in possession of H.M., notwithstanding he hath taken the oaths required to the late Queen and King George, is molested in his habitation by three masters of English merchant ships, Weston, Cleaves and Burdell, without lawful cause. Prays for justice and protection and to be allowed to live with the same privilege as other British subjects etc. Signed, Ollivier Tulon. Copy. 1½ pp.
468. ii. Deposition of Ollivier Tulon la Galanderie. 24th Jan., 1716(17). In Sept., 1716. one of his boats going out to fetch wood was stopped by Capt. Ambrose Weston on the pretext that it was going to give intelligence to some French ships about the fishery, telling him that it was in vain for him to take any care about his habitation, for by the first English vessel that should come from England, it would be seized. Deponent justifying the falsity of the accusation, Weston and William Burdell assaulted him, and continually threatened to force him to quit his habitation; since which time his tenants have not paid him his just due, on pretence that he has no right to demand the same etc. The place was grub'd up and cultivated by his predecessors and himself, and he has kept 101 servants and shipped of 8,000 quintals of fish in a season. He furnished the garrisons with provisions for a bill of exchange drawn by Govr. Moody on the Commissrs. of the Victualling Office, wch. they have suffered to be protested. His servants have ventured their lives in giving assistance to English vessels perishing on the coast etc. Deponent hath always been so ready in complying with any orders from the British Govrs., that when Mr. Edward Falkingham sent him word not to keep any foreign servants, be forthwith discharged them, to his great charge, altho' the rest of the inhabitants have in their service most part foreigners. Deponent's adversaries, Ambrose Weston, Boore, Burdell and William Cleaves have seiz'd 722 quintals of his fish, under pretence that his servants employ'd in fishing up the said fish were forreigners. Deponent entered into bonds to submit to the decision of the first person in power that should come from England, and Edward Falkingham in August ordered the fish to be restored to him. Notwithstanding that verdict, Weston, Cleaves and Burdell have caused the said parcel of fish to be stopt at Bilboa and threaten to seize his habitation etc. Signed, Ollivier Tulon. Copy. 3½ pp.
468. iii. Duplicate of No. 439 vi.
468. iv. Deposition of Thomas Gaudin and others, that M. de la Garanderie Tulon has ordered the Frenchmen in his service to return to France and paid their passages etc. 25th Sept., 1716. Signed, Thomas Gaudin, his mark, and 3 others. Copy. ¾ p.
468. v. Certificate by Governor Moody that M. Tulon Garanderie, has taken the oath of allegiance to King George. Placentia, 8th Aug., 1716. Signed, J. Moody. Copy. ½ p. [C.O. 194, 6. Nos. 20, 20 i.–v.; and (without enclosures ii.–iv.) 195, 6. pp. 302–304.]
Feb. 13.
N. York.
469. Governor Hunter to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Abstract. Has just arrived from the Jerseys, where they have had a very happy sessions of Assembly, held at Chesterfeild, near Burlington (where the small-pox was raging). The enclosed list of acts shows that the Assembly made good their engagements. Hopes that the act repealing an act fixing the session to Burlington may be immediately recommended for confirmation. It was the hand of Providence which prevented the session at that time at Burlington. Mr. Talbot has thought fit to give some faint light towards the discovery of a most hellish contrivance, which as he says he in some measure defeated. He says he will do what he can in that discovery etc. If he grows squeamish, the gentleman to whom he has discovered it will take his oath to the information he has given etc. Talbot seems very penitent, but he does not know how sincere he may be. Hunter guessed there was something more than ordinary in the sudden flight of the party and the great solicitations of almost all of them for pardon, which he has granted to all who have submitted. The Jerseys, about a year ago the most tumultuous, is at present one of the most quiet and best satisfied of H.M. Provinces. Refers to enclosed papers in answer to Mr. Cox's charges against him. His action in persuading Wetherhill to make amends for his vilainy, instead of punishing him, was done at the earnest request of many of the principal members of Assembly, to prevent the danger of a rupture with the Indians, and was applauded by the whole country. The other charge of cutting wood, explained by Mr. Clarke, is so trivial that it shows the plaintifs have nothing to complain of. Has fixed a meeting with the Indians in May, and must hold an Assembly of the Jerseys in the fall, to perfect what is so happily begun. He cannot therefore use H.M. licence of leave this year at least, for he will not allow his private affairs to compete with H.M. service. Hopes by then to have put these Governments upon such a foot, that anybody may govern them who has but honesty, though but indifferent capacity, etc. Printed, N.J. Arch. 1st Ser. IV. 273–285. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Endorsed, Recd. 1st April, Read 27th Nov., 1717. 3pp. Enclosed,
469. i. List of Acts passed in New Jersey Jan., 1716 (=1717). Same endorsement. 2⅓ pp.
469. ii. Mr. Cox to Mr. Allison, Phila. July 7, 1716. Duplicate of No 392 i.
469. iii. Affirmation of John Wills. Menemickwon, the Indian King, commonly by the English called King Charles, complained to me that John Wetherill had a design to cheat him of some of his land, by making him drunk and getting him to set his hand to some writing, etc. I went with him before the Governor, who urged it very mildly with Wetherill, setting before him the dangers that might attend such a proceedure etc. He took the paper back to the Indian who said he had received nothing for it, and burnt it. Signed, John Wills. Copy. 2¾ pp.
469. iv. Affirmation of Thomas Wetherill and Samuell Furnis, Jan. 2, 1716(1717). Confirms preceding. The Governor offered John Wetherill a free licence to purchase as much land any where else in the country, etc. Signed, Thomas Wetherill, Saml. Furnis. Copy. 1 p.
469. v. Affirmation of John Kay, 25th Jan., 1716 (17). Confirms preceding. Signed, John Kay. Copy. 1¼ pp.
469. vi. Certificate by George Clarke, New York, Feb. 6, 1716 (17). In 1711 some batteaus being ordered to be built for the intended Expedition against Canada, and admitting of no delay, carpenters were directed to go to Sandy Hook to cut crooked sticks for them. Afterwards a demand was made by one Hartshorn (reputed Proprietor of the land whence they were cut) of a greater sum for those sticks than was judged reasonable. An offer of what was thought ample satisfaction was made, which he refused, etc. Signed, Geo. Clarke. Endorsed, Recd. 1st April, Read 27th Nov., 1717. ¾ p.
469. vii. Address of the Representatives of New Jersey to Governor Hunter. Duplicate of No. 192 iii. [C.O. 5, 971. Nos. 28, 28 i.–vii.; and (without enclosures) 5. 995. pp. 368–374.]
Feb. 13. 470. Enclosed in preceding letter, List of vessels trading from New York, 1705–1716.
To Europe. West Indies. Neighbouring Plantations. Africa.
1705 9 68 54
1706 13 70 33 1
1707 18 55 39
1708 13 62 40 1
1709 15 57 65 1
1710 18 59 82 1
1711 25 63 57 1
1712 21 95 50
1713 12 75 55
1714 22 91 56
1715 27 102 66 2
1716 31 124 63
Totals: 224 921 660 7
Signed, T. Byerley, Collr. Endorsed, Recd. 1st April, Read 27th Nov., 1717. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1051. No. 42 i.]
Feb. 13. 471. Mr. Popple to Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor General. Encloses petition of the Earl of Sutherland praying for a Charter of certain Islands lying upon Delaware Bay, for their opinion whether it be in the power of the Crown to dispose of those lands. Mr. Penn has pretended some title to those lands and his trustees are Henry Goaldney, Silvanus Grove and Joshua Gee. [C.O. 5, 1293. pp. 70, 71.]
Feb. 14. 472. Mr. Bridger to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Revises his scheme of premiums to be given upon Naval Stores imported from America. Signed, J. Bridger. Endorsed, Recd. 14th, Read 20th March, 1716. Holograph. 1p. [C.O. 5, 866. No. 105; and 5, 915. pp. 30, 31.]
Feb. 18.
473. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Methuen. Enclose extract of Governor Hamilton's letter and affidavits relating to pirates that infest those seas, received since report of 17th Jan. Continue:— Upon which we take leave to observe that should the pirates remain any time among the Virgin Islands, or make a settlement there or in the Bahama Islands, they wou'd not only hinder the provision ships from coming to Jamaica, Barbados and the Leeward Islands, but obstruct the Trade in general. Genl. Hamilton further acquaints us, that upon visiting the several Islands under his Government, he found them all in a very defenceless condition, their forts and platforms very much out of order, most of the guns dismounted, and stores and ammunition wanting everywhere. If there be no orders on our Representation of 14th Dec. last already given, we think it will be for the service, that H.M. wou'd be pleas'd to give his directions thereupon. Autograph signatures. 2 pp. [C.O. 152, 39. No. 126; and 153, 12. pp. 497, 498.]
Feb. 18. 474. Mr. Popple to Mr. Burchett. Encloses extract from Governor Hamilton's letter 14th Dec., giving an account of the pirates, and of the want they are in of a man of war for the protection of the trade there, to be laid before the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty. [C.O. 153, 12. p. 499.]
Feb. 19.
Treary. Chambers.
475. Mr. Lowndes to Mr. Popple. Encloses following to be laid before the Council of Trade and Plantations for their consideration, before the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury incurr any new expense on that head etc. Signed, W. Lowndes. Endorsed, Recd. Read 20th Feb., 1716/17. Addressed. ¾ p. Enclosed,
475. i. Board of Ordnance to Lords Commissioners of the Treasury. Jan. 18, 1716/17. In pursuance of Order of 17th Dec., 1716, we have received out of the duty of 4½ p.c. but £4749 4s. 5d. out of £15, 241 4s. 10d. due to this office for stores sent to the Leeward Islands, and £4438 16s. 9d. out of £15, 317 18s. 3d. due for stores and pay of officers etc. sent to Barbados, so that there remains in all £21, 371 1s. 11d., and the total sum received being £9188 1s. 2d. deducted out of the £78, 528 2s. 5¼d., the amount of the 4½ p.c. from Barbados and the Leeward Islands since 1702, there will remain £69, 340 1s. 0¾d., out of which we humbly hope your Lordships will order the payment of what is due to this Office, etc. We take leave to add that as the Lords of Trade do look upon the demand to be sufficiently distinct, to repeat our opinion, it can't be comply'd with without further explanation. (v. Dec. 14, 1716.) Signed, Edw. Ashe, D. Windsor, Tho. Frankland, John Armstrong, Tho. Erle, M. Richards. 2 pp. [C.O. 152. 11. Nos. 47. 47 i.; and 153, 12. pp. 502–505.]
Feb. 22.
476. Mr. Popple to Mr. Lowndes. In reply to Feb. 19th. refers to representation of Dec. 14. The Council of Trade and Plantations still think it absolutely necessary for H.M. service, that the Leeward Islands be immediately supply'd with the several particulars wanting (v. June 22, 1716), least they should suffer from the buccaniers and pirates, that now infest those seas. Refers to the report of the Board of Ordnance that the account of the stores remaining there is imperfect. Continues:—My Lords Commissrs. did thereupon think they had reason to report (14th Dec.), that they look'd upon the acct. of stores remaining and wanting " to be very distinct as to the number and species," nor do they conceive how in this case the want of a more perfect account of the stores remaining could hinder the Board of Ordnance from making an estimate of the value of what is demanded. As to the postscript of the letter of the Board of Ordnance (v. 19th Feb.), their Lordships do not understand what further explanation is necessary unless it may be in particulars, that are not of sufficient weight to retard the supplying those Islands with the necessary stores of which they are so much in want. Refers to following. Annexed,
476. i. List of stores remaining and wanting in the Leeward Islands. [C.O. 153, 12. pp. 505–509.]
Feb. 22. 477. Agents of South Carolina and London merchants trading thither to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Reply to questions proposed by the Board. Any quantity of tarr and pitch (upon due encouragement) may be had from South Carolina. The export of last year from thence was abov[e twenty] thousand barrels. The pitch is as good as any imported into Great Brittaine, tarr but little inferiour to that of Stockholm, and is capable of being improved to ye greatest perfection. The manufactory of turpentine has not yet [been] considerable, but the country will afford what quantity can be wanting equall in goodness to the best. Hemp hath been sown and found to grow well; great part of the lands is proper to produce it. Great numbers both of cyprus and pine masts may [be] had from 40 to 60 feet long from 2 to 4 ft. diameter. Oake, cyprus and pine timber and planks are in great quantities from 20 to 40 feet long free from knotts [and of] fine grain proper for fine flooring and building ships (as has been experienct by the many ships and vessells that have been built there) but the charge of freight and duty will not at present admitt it to be imported unless a suitable bounty is allowed. Cedar (by a strict explanation of an Act) pays customs as sweet wood, which amounts in effect to prohibition. In many parts of Carolina are great quantitys of iron ore and wood sufficient for the manufactoring the same. The Province is capable of these and many other valuable productions, as rice, silk, indigo, cochenill, cotton wooll, potash, with many valuable druggs etc. to the advantage of Great Brittaine, which their unhappy circumstances in respect to the present warr with the Indians deprives them of, and togeather with the want of ye Crown's protection debars them from a great number of people that would otherwise settle in that Province, some of those already settled there being daily destroy'd and others leaving the country, insomuch that at this time near half the quantity of land formerly possest, is abandon'd, and the number of men is very small that are fitt to bear arms not 700, and the Indian enemies very numerous, so that hands are wanted to take care and manure the remaining Plantations. Wherefore wee humbly intreat your Lordships to make representations to H.M. for a speedy and sufficient supply of men to be sent to that distressed Province of which it stands in the utmost need, etc. Refer to Addresses of Assembly to that end. Signed, Joseph Boone, Richd. Beresford, James Crane and 15 others. Endorsed, Recd. 22nd, Read 25th Feb., 1716/17. Edges torn. 2 pp. Enclosed,
477. i. Address of the Representatives of South Carolina to the King. Refer to previous Address, etc. (v. 12th June, 1716). Continue:— Our troubles, instead of coming to a period, daily increase upon us; and we now see our selves reduced by these our misfortunes to such a dismal extremity, that nothing but the Allpowerful Providence of Almighty God working a miracle in our favour, or your Majesty's Royal and most gracious protection, can preserve us from ruin. Our Indians continue committing so many hostilities, and infest our settlements and plantations to such a degree, that not only those estates which were deserted at the breaking out of this Barbarous War cannot be resettled, but others are likewise daily thrown up to the mercy of the enemy, to the ruin and impoverishment of several numerous families etc. Notwithstanding all these our miseries, the Lords Proprietors of this Province, instead of using any endeavours for our relief and assistance, are pleased to term all our endeavours to procure Your Majesty's Royal protection the business of a faction and party etc. We most humbly assure your Majesty that it's so far from anything of that nature, that all the inhabitants of this Province in general are not only convinced that no human power but that of your Majesty can protect them, but earnestly and fervently desire that this once-flourishing Province may be added to those already under your happy protection etc. Signed, Tho. Broughton, Speaker, and the rest (21) of the Members attending the service of the House. Printed. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 1265. Nos. 55, 55 i.; and (without enclosure) 5, 1293. pp. 71–74.]
[Feb. 25.] 478. Mr. Dummer to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Report, in obedience to their Lordships' commands, upon the quantities and qualities of the naval stores which can be raised in New England, and upon what terms they may be imported here. To begin with timber, I am very well assur'd that New England has what is very fit for all uses tho' I know very well that the Commissrs. of the Navy have discredited it. Many ships built there last as long as those built here, except in cases where the East Country timber has been better season'd etc. For the terms, I believe the taking off the duties may barely do, but it would be better that a bounty of 20 shs. pr. tun were given on all timber as is already allow'd on masts. For pitch, tarr, turpentine and rosin the present bounty will suffice if care be taken that the payment of it be constant and regular so that there be no discount upon it. This appears from the great importation of those species of late since the bounty has been pretty well paid. We have had the last year 6000 lbs. of turpentine more than the year before, and so in proportion of the other species. The whole imported the last year amounts to 16,153 lbs. of turpentine, 5937 lbs. of pitch, 3210 bls. of tarr. This great importation has sunk the prizes very considerably; pitch has fallen halfe, vizt. from 14s. to 6s. 6d. pr. hundred. I hope this will be a reason to induce yor. Lordpps. more easily to come into the bounty I propose on timber, because it will probably be a means of bringing in the more which will yrfore be ye cheaper and so the nation will be rather a gainer than looser by the bounty. Whereas yr. Lordpps. were pleas'd to observe that New England made but little tar themselves notwithstanding the encouragement given, I can only say that seeing they find their account in fetching it from Carolina to bring here, there's no doubt but as the demand rises here, and Carolina has not tarr enough to answer it, the people in New England will in course fall the more heartily into it themselves. As to the article of Hemp. The soil in New England is undoubtedly very fit for it and capable of producing, there having bin experiments made in severall parts of the countrey and all of 'em answer'd. I am particularly assur'd that the Ropemakers in Boston have frequently declar'd, that if they had enough of the hemp of the countrey, they would work it preferably to any from Europe. I am likewise inform'd that the General Assembly of the Province of the Massachusetts have by a law lately made allow'd a premium of a half penny pr. pound on hemp sow'd and cur'd in the countrey, which, I hope, when join'd to the bounty given by Act of Parliament, will encourage the inhabitants to fall into it. Yet considering the great quantities of hemp and cordage which New England takes from hence, it must be a great work to make enough for themselves to turn the importation here especially so as in any considerable measure to supply what Great Britain wants and therefore I believe it would be necessary that a number of merchants should form themselves into a Company, and with a joint stock carry it on vigorously. I think the same with respect to the manufacturing of Iron because of the expence in sending our skillfull workmen, and erecting ironworks tho I understand there are several small works of that kind rais'd there already, vizt. two in Taunton, one at Brantree, one at Deuxbury, one at Providence in Rhode Island Government, and another at or near Reading. I am told that there is oar all over the countrey, and that its capable of being made very good if rightly work't. A master of a ship now in town saies he built a ship in Taunton and made his chain plates and rudder irons out of the iron made in the town, and he found they did as well as the best. If therefore the iron is capable of serving for those uses, where the greatest strain is, it must needs be good for every use besides. Signed, Jer. Dummer. Endorsed, Recd. Read 25th July, 1716/17. 4 pp. [C.O. 5, 866. No. 101; and 5, 915. pp. 25–29.]
[Feb. 26.] 479. Petition of merchants and traders of Bideford to the Newfoundland to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Petitioners, having about 30 sail belonging to this and the adjacent port of Barnstable now bound on fishing voyages to the Newfoundland, to fish at Trapassy, St. Peters and the other southern parts, pray that a man of war may be order'd on that station by the middle of April, to cruize from Trapassy to St. Peter's during the fishery, her rendezvous to be at Trapassy, that our trade may be protected from the insults of the pirates, who are now very numerous, and have been some time heretofore very destructive to the fishing ships, even to the ruin of several merchants and traders. And we further desire that at the end of the fishing season in those parts (which is much sooner than in the northern) the said man of war may convey our ships bound to Lixboa and the Streights. Signed, Robert Willis, Mayor, and 67 others. Endorsed, Recd. 26th, Read 27th Feb., 1716/17. Copy. 3p. [C.O. 194, 6. No. 21.]
Feb. 27.
480. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Methuen. Enclose preceding petition from Bideford. Conclude:—We conceive this trade to be so advantageous to ye nation that it deserves all proper incouragement and this being the first time that we have heard of such a number of ships going to the southern parts of Newfoundland since the Peace, we desire you will please to take the first opportunity of laying the said petition before H.M. etc. [C.O. 195, 6. pp. 305, 306.]
Feb. 27.
481. George Lewen to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Ambrose Weston and William Cleeves, fishing admirals of St. Peters, are men of undoubted integrity. If Oliver Toulon sent his French servants back to France, it is probably in order to return them the next season as customary, they being bound to him for 3 years etc. Signed, Geo. Lewen. Endorsed, Recd. 27th, Read 28th Feb., 1716/17. 1 p. Enclosed,
481. i. Deposition of William Cleeves and Ambrose Weston, of Poole, Mariners. 23rd Feb., 1716 (17). Nine of Toulon's crew were hired servants for three years and natives of France. Toulon is merely the servant of Mme. Ouffry of St. Malo, who offered to sell her plantation at St. Peters to Cleeves in Nov., 1714, etc. Signed Wm. Cleeves. Ambros Weston. 2 pp. [C.O. 194, 6. Nos. 22. 22 i.]
Feb. 27.
Boston, New England.
482. Governor Shute to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses Acts passed by the last General Assembly, Dec., 1716. Continues: — Upon my arrival I found all things quiet and so they have continued and when I met with the Indians in January last at Piscataqua, they seem'd to be very well disposed to cultivate a good friendship with H.M. subjects in these Colonies, which will tend very much to make these Plantations flourish, which have suffer'd very much in the late wars, etc. Signed, Samll. Shute. Endorsed, Recd. 18th April, Read 22nd May, 1717. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 866. No. 112; and 5, 915. p. 38.]
Feb. 28. 483. Rowland Tryon and William Nevene to the Council of Trade and Plantations. We had the honour of your Lopps.' commands to give in writing what we had to say upon an Act of Antegoa for setling £1000 current money of Antigua on Governor Hamilton, etc. (v. 14th April, 1716). The publick taxes in the said Island are granted in money but paid to and issued out by the Governmt. there in sugar at a fixed price, which has generally been the highest; for severall years past sugars shipped from the said Island for Great Brittaine have rarely yeilded to the importer above halfe of what they cost in Antegoa money, and frequently not soe much; this reason together with the inconveniency of shipping sugars at the risque of the publick, probably made the Assembly insist tenaciously upon granting the £1000 money of that country rather than £400 sterling, and prevailed with the Govr. to give his consent, with a resolution at the same time not to touch any part of the money untill the Act should be approved by H.M. Noe great inconveniency can (in our humble opinion) arise to any of the Colonies from the Govrs. giveing their consent to any Act for granting them a present if they are effectually restrained from receiving any part thereof, till the Act is approved by H.M.; for if the summe be exorbitant or your Lopps. be acquainted with any unfair practices of the Govr. in obtaineing such present, it is not to be doubted but that the Govr. will meet both with a disappointment and suitable rebuke. This Instruction (restraining any Governor from accepting any gift from an Assembly, except for the rent of a house not exceeding £400) will onely be an effectuall restraint upon such Govrs. whose tender regard to their duty will not suffer them to stoop to any arts to evade the force of it, and we are confident that this our opinion will be justifyed. if a strict enquiry be made into the disposall of the publick money in the Colonies since that Instruction was first given to Governrs., and that it will be found that very soon after Govrs. come at the publick money under different disguises and larger summs than probably would have been granted them openly and directly as a present by an Act; and that (if all the other avenues to the publick money be sufficiently guarded against Govrs.) this one of receiving presents by Act after the Royall approbacon may be left open without any great danger. The rents of houses are very dear in the Leeward Islands and hardly any to be lett fit for the habitation of a chief Govr., without such alterations and reparations as are very chargeable; by this means Mr. Hamilton has been put to near £2000 charge in fitting up the house which he now lives in at Antegoa, and which he was obliged to take a lease of for years, nor can he probably get a convenient house upon other terms in the other Islands. The prices of all things, especially of necessarys for the Govrs. table have been for some years soe excessively high and different from what they were when the aforesaid Instruction was given to the Govrs. of those Islands and their salary raised from £700 to £1200, that £1200 would have gone further (at that time) than £2000 at present; and a Govr. (who lives with any regard to the honour of the Crowne and dignity of his post and comes into noe indirect or unwarrantable means of getting money) will be soe far from making a fortune, that he will find it noe easy matter to keep out of debt, etc. Signed, Rowld. Tryon, Will. Nevene. Endorsed, Recd. 28th Feb., Read 6th April, 1717. Addressed. 2 pp. [C.O. 152, 11. No. 51; and 153, 13. pp. 1–5.]