America and West Indies: September 1730, 1-5

Pages 251-255

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 37, 1730. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1937.

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September 1730, 1-5

Sept. 2.
411. Governor Philipps to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I have done myselfe the honour by every opportunity since my return to this Government of acquainting your Lordships with the state and posture of affairs therein etc. By my last dated 3rd Jan. your Lordships may have perceiv'd that I had apply'd myself particularly to bringing our French inhabitants to submitt themselves to the Crown of Great Brittain, by swearing allegeance to H.M., a work which became dayly more necessary in reguard to the great increase of those people who are at this day a formidable body, and like Noah's progeny spreading themselves over the face of the Province. Your Lordships are not unacquainted that for twenty years past they have continued stubborn and refractory upon all summons of the kind, but haveing essay'd the difference of Government in my absence they signify'd their readiness to comply with what I shou'd require of them at my return, for which reason I judg'd no time so proper to sett about it as at my first arrival! among them, etc. Refers to encl. Jan. 3. Continues:—I acquainted your Lordships at the same time of my purpose to proceed up the Bay of Fundy (as soon as the the winter broke up) where the gross of the inhabitants are settled to finish the work so well begun, which I have the sattisfaction to have seen fully compleated, and have now the honour to congratulate your Lordships on the entire submission of all those so long obstinate people and H.M. on the acquisition of so many subjects. A duplicate of the instrument to which they have sworn and sign'd goes herewith inclosed and is exclusive of the other transmitted from Annapolis: they are all marry'd and may be computed at five in a family one with another by which your Lordships will find the number of those people at this day, adding to the number about fifty straggling familys who wait my return to Annapolis. The greatest obstruction that I apprehended to meet with in the course of this affair was from the Indians, who I had notice given me had taken the alarm, and were assembled in bodys to know what was upon the anvil, but by good management, plain reasoning and presents which I had prepared for them, they were brought into so good temper that instead of giveing any disturbance they made their own submission to the English Government in their manner and with danceing and huzzas parted with great sattisfaction. Thus far the peace of this country is settled with a prospect of continuance at least so long as the union subsists betwixt the two Crowns, but to be secure in all events requires farther precautions for 'tis certain that all the safety of this Province depends absolutely upon the continuance of that union; when that ceases the country becomes an easy prey to our neighbours, being in its present state not capable of much resistance, and Canso (which is the envy and rival of Cape Briton in the fishery) will be sure of being the first attack'd, which will take them no more than six or seven hours to march and possess it. But I am only the watchman to call and point out the danger, 'tis with your Lordships to gett it prevented. It is computed that the returns of the fish carry'd to marketts from Canso brings an yearly encrease to the home dutys of thirty or forty thousand pounds ster., if so, is it not looseing a sheep according to the proverb, when one third part of one year's income only, laid out in a fortification will put it out of danger. I am sure it will cost ten times that sum to recover it when lost; its present sad condition is the surprize and discouragement of the troops posted here, and to all such who desire to settle it. I have mett here with one of Col. Dunbarr's Deputy Land Surveyers, the first I have seen; he tells me he is sent to this place to receive my orders, whereas your Lordships' instructions to me only say, that I am to be aideing and assisting to them, in what I may, he is sett down here a passenger, and in no condition to proceed from hence on the surveys, for want of a vessell, it not being practicable by land; I have propos'd to him to take him on board the vessel, which your Lordships were acquainted I had taken into the service, and on my return to Annapolis to shew him the coast between this and Cape Sables and when I shall be sett down there to lett him make use of her when I have not immediate occasion; by this method the service may be done both ways, without farther expense, and is all I can do toward furthering the work. Refers to the proposal of M. Le Mercier (v. 2nd Oct. 1729, encl. iii) for settling a 100 familys in Nova Scotia. Continues :—A fertile soil and a good harbour is what they want, to which no answer is yett receiv'd, it were pitty such an offer could not be immediately embrac'd and incourag'd, but more was not in my power. I should think that now is the time our new French subjects should be putt upon some footting, it's a misfortune that we are not one jott the nearer to a regular form of Government by this acquisition, their religion disqualifying them from makeing a part of the Legislature, but whether they should not pay to the support of the Government, and in what degree, and also be oblig'd to take out new tenures for their lands, from the Crown to which they are now become subject; are matters whereto I shall wait perticular orders and instructions; Under this head it is proper your Lordships should know that here are three or four insignifycant familys who pretend to right of seigneurys that extend almost over all the inhabited part of the Province, the late Governor Nicholson carry'd with him from hence the originall papers by which they claim; and all that they produce to me is a foul scrip of paper, which they say is a copy of part of the originall grant, (encl. ii), but I have told them that all pretentions to seigneurys fall to the ground by the conquest of the country, that there is no article in the Treaty of Utrecht in behalf of such priviledges, or if there was they have long since forfeited by refuseing to come in and swear allegeance to the Crown of Great Brittain. The Chief of these is a woman, who has been wife to two subaltern Officers of the Regiment; she has by cunning address got the others to make over their pretensions to her, on promise of some small consideration, and is goeing over to sollicite in hopes of obtaineing something of the Government in lieu thereof. I believe a small addition to her pension as an Officer's widow would content her, and put an end to that affair. Your Lordships' queries shall be answer'd by the first opportunity being but just come to hand. Lt. Col. Armstrong who is gone for England carry'd with him one Manjean a French Papist, who fled lately from Canada into this Province for a barbarous murder, the Lt. Governor took him into his protection and admitted him to take the oath; after which he render'd himself exceedingly odious to the inhabitants both English and French they believing that the Lieutenant Governour had acted toward them by his Counsell and advice; at my arrivall he finding many complaints were ready to be exhibited against him, petitioned for leave to retire, which being granted with a defense never to return gave a general sattisfaction and prov'd a great inducement toward their submission to the Crown of Great Brittain, The fellow's character is very bad, but is allow'd to have a genius and would make an excellent Minister to an arbitrary Prince. Refers to enclosed account of the Fishery at Canso, "which is now breaking up for this year, in wch. the number of fishing vessels, has been short of last year, occasion'd from the sickness at Boston, and the failing of some marchants there, notwithstanding which the plenty of fish made up so well for that deficiency that the quantity ship'd for forreigne marketts is not much less then last year. I shall have the honour of writeing to your Lordship's at my return to Annapolis." Signed, R. Philipps. Endorsed, Recd. 12th Nov., Read 11th Dec., 1730. 10 pp. Endorsed,
411. i. Return of the Canso Fishery, 1730. 158 vessels, their cargoes and ports. 4 large pp.
411. ii. Copy of grant of lands in Accadie to M. Delatour etc. Versailles, 20th March, 1703. Endorsed, Recd. 12th Nov., 1730. French. 4 pp.
411. iii. Oath of allegiance to King George. Signed by the French inhabitants of Nova Scotia. "Nous serons entièrement fidèles et nous soumettrons véritablement à sa Majesté George le second etc., que nous reconnoissons pour le souverain seigneur de la Nouvelle Ecosse et l'Accadie." 591 signatures. Endorsed as preceding. Parchment. 1 large folded p. [C.O. 217, 5. ff. 223–227v., 228v.–230v.; and (abstract of covering letter) 217, 30. p. 41.]
Sept. 2.
412. Governor Philipps to the Duke of Newcastle. Duplicate of preceding covering letter. Signed, R. Philipps. Endorsed, R. 18 Feb. 9 pp. Enclosed,
412. i. Duplicate of encl. ii preceding. French. 2 ¼ pp.
412. ii. Duplicate of encl. iii preceding. Parchment. 1 large folded p. [C.O. 217, 39. Nos. 2, 2 i, ii.]
Sept. 3.
413. Lewis Bonnet to [? Mr. Delafaye]. Sr., since Governor Rogers his arrival here he hath been at a very great expence for repairing and improving the fort, in building of barracks for sheltering the soldiers, there being before the hurricane but a very poor rotton place which was then blown downe, and the rest of the fort very much damaged and decayed. Mr. Pheney having made no repairs ever since Governor Rogers's former administration here; the great expences of which must have exhausted H.E. much this year, as also that of building a snow and fitting her at his own expence, for the safety of the Trade in these islands; after having protected the inhabitants while raking of salt, she has been to the Havana, warlike armed and manned, also at H.E.'s charge, to the Governor and the English facktor there, where he sent to complaine of a Spanish pirate that had taken two vessels amongst our islands, which we are to have satisfaction for from the Capt. and owners of the pirate if it can be recovered and factors at St. Jago de Cuba. I am going within a day or two to settle a correspondence to windward at Hispaniola and as most of the Gent, here are ready to enter into such a trade H.E. has recomended me to go in some of their vessels supercargoe which may prove both a genteel and profitable post. The Governor has been informed of some stir made at home against him by Mr. Pheney which (as H.E. is generally beloved) has caused some remonstrances (made by the old inhabitants) to be offered to H.E., which doth lay both Mr. Pheney and Mrs. Pheney in a very bad, tho' true light; I beleive 'twould have proved much more to their advantage to have rested quiet, etc. Signed, Lews. Bonnet. 1 2/3 pp. [C.O. 23, 14. ff 133, 133v.]
414. Governor Burrington to the Duke of Newcastle. In North Carolina there are att this time ten precincts, when the country is all over peopled, there may be as many more, att present there is a Register in every precinct, but if H.M. gives a Commission or Patent to any gentleman to keep a General Register for the whole country, the precinct Registers must drop. Signed, Geo. Burrington. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 308. No. 10.]
Sept. 3.
415. Publicus [i.e. Francis Freelove. v. Sept 17] to the Duke of Newcastle. I am no stranger to the unhappy disputes in the Plantations between the people and their Governours, which are of such a nature as seems to clash with the Prerogative of the Crown, and may be of dangerous consequence if a stop be not put to them etc. I have lived many years in the Plantations, and have seen most of their remonstrances and complaints etc., and could propose an expedient to allure them to their duty, and thereby put an amicable end to those unnatural controversies etc. They are now under the strongest apprehensions in case of a war, upon account of the miserable condition of their fortifications, which they have neglected ever since the late war etc. Has a scheme to propose that will be no ways burthensome or disagreeable to them, by which an additional revenue of 40,000l. pr. annum may be settled on the Crown, to inable H.M. to put the fortifications into an immediate state of defence etc. By this means the Crown may be freed from any future dependance upon the people for the better support of their Governours; which will put a final end to all complaints of that nature. I propose to raise this additional revenue without any further tax upon the subject, either at home or abroad, than what they now pay etc. P.S. Will wait on his Grace if the receipt of his letter is acknowledged in the next Gazette. Signed, Publicus. Endorsed, Advertised accordingly. Addressed. Postmark. 2 ¼ pp. [C.O. 5, 4. No. 43.]