Pages v-xlix

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 39, 1732. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1939.

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The papers of 1732 are considerably less in number than those for either 1730 or 1731. Whereas they numbered respectively 652 and 595, without counting enclosures, there are only 518 abstracts for 1732 and this volume is therefore smaller than those of the two previous years. There seems to be no special reason for the diminution, though some part of it may possibly be attributed to a decline in the number of David Dunbar's prolix letters.



Spanish seizures and British reprisals.
The long negotiations with Spain were still being carried on by Benjamin Keene and his fellow commissaries in Madrid, and the depredations of the Spanish guarda costas on British shipping in the West Indies were certainly fewer in number than they had been for some years. This was due to the fact that on 7/18 January 1731/2 the King of Spain in deference to the representations of Great Britain had issued a cedula restraining his Governors in the Indies and on 28 Jan./8 Feb. 1731/2 a reciprocal declaration had been signed by the British Minister Plenipotentiary in Madrid (415). But in May 1732 Capt. Aubin, commander of H.M.S. Deal Castle, seized a Spanish ship La Dichosa in the Bay of Campeachy by way of reprisal for the capture of the British ship Wool Ball, which had been taken in June 1731 by a Spanish privateer off the Colorados near Cuba and carried into the port of Campeachy for condemnation as having been engaged in illicit trade with the Spanish colonists. The Court of Spain complained of the seizure as contrary to the British declaration, and the Duke of Newcastle therefore sent orders to Sir Chaloner Ogle, commanding the squadron on the West Indies station, to restore La Dichosa with all her apparel, furniture and lading in the condition in which it was at the time of her seizure (415). Major-General Hunter, Governor of Jamaica, was informed of this order to Sir Chaloner Ogle (417), and it was also handed by the Duke of Newcastle to the Spanish Ministers to be transmitted to the Governor of Cuba.

But the Duke told Ogle that if any embargo had been laid by the Spaniards in revenge for his reprisal, such embargo must be removed and all ships and effects belonging to British subjects restored at the same time that the Spanish ship was delivered up. There was clearly a suspicion in Newcastle's mind that the Spaniards might not be playing fair in the observance of the reciprocal declarations, for he told Ogle to be particularly careful to sec that copies of the order were sent to all the Spanish ports in the Caribbean and especially to Vera Cruz "in such manner as there may be no reason to apprehend chicane or delay" (430). Mr. Keene in Madrid was also informed of the matter, so that he might be prepared for any effect that reacted upon his negotiations.

Jamaica and the commerce of the Spanish Indies.
Jamaica was the colony most interested in relations with the Spaniards, and in the representations of its Council to the King we can trace how closely its commerce was bound up with those relations. In November 1731 and again in February 1731/2 the Council and Assembly sent to London elaborate Addresses to explain the causes of the depression then affecting the colony, and each put the decay of their commerce in the forefront. "We confine ourselves," the Council wrote, "to the most obvious and visible causes of our misfortunes,.. the decrease of our white people and the decay of our trade and planting interest."

"The decrease of our people is in great measure owing to our loss of commerce. We are of late years deprived of the most beneficial branch of our trade, the carrying negroes and dry goods to the Spanish coast … A further discouragement to our trade is the frequent hostilities committed by the Spaniards, who, regardless of the solemn treaties entered into with Your Majesty, spare no English vessel they can overcome, and from whom it has been hitherto in vain to attempt the obtaining any satisfaction in these parts. The Bays of Campeachy and Honduras were many years in the possession of Your Majesty's subjects and reputed part of the territories depending on Your Majesty's Government of [Jamaica. They] gave employment to a considerable number of shipping and people to cut and carry logwood from thence, but we have been dispossessed of them by the Spaniards, who likewise there seized and made prizes of a great number of ships belonging to Your Majesty's subjects" (83 i).

Disputes over the Aasiento and the South Sea Company.
The Spaniards had never receded from their determination to exclude all foreigners from legitimate trade with their colonies, and therefore it was protection for their illicit trade that was sought by the Jamaicans. Only in one case had Spain been compelled to make a breach in her exclusive system when, by the treaty of Utrecht, the Assiento or contract for the supply of negroes to the colonies was placed in the hands of the South Sea Company. This led to incessant wrangling with the Spanish Governors and it was also regarded in Jamaica as a perennial grievance. In 1732 the matter arose upon an Instruction sent to the Governor of Jamaica, which had been drawn up on the representations of the merchants of Bristol and Liverpool. They petitioned for the disallowance of what was called the Additional Duty Act passed in Jamaica as hampering their trade in negroes, and the instruction they procured forbade the Governor to pass any act for laying duties upon the importation or exportation of negroes in Jamaica. Governor Hunter at once laid the new instruction before the Council and Assembly and they warmly protested, for they saw the hand of the unpopular asientistas, the South Sea Company, at work to further their own interests which had destroyed Jamaica's clandestine trade with the Spanish colonies that in earlier years had been so valuable. "The duty on the exportation of negroes commonly called the Additional Duty has been a standing charge on such export since the year 1693 in order to supply all extraordinary occasions of the Government," said the Address; "and was never thought unreasonable or burthensome till the late South Sea Company established a factory in [Jamaica] to carry on the Assiento Contract which [is] of the utmost ill consequence to the inhabitants of this island, who through their means are deprived not only of their trade to the Spanish settlements, but of the great part of their strength, consisting in the numbers of seamen, at least of one thousand two hundred, who were employed in that trade besides near 200 sail of vessels in and to the Bays of Campeachy and Honduras. Your Majesty's undoubted right and property have both been in a manner given up by that Company by their attorning tenants to the Crown of Spain and licensing some few vessels under them to trade to those places" (245).

Rival interests.
The representations from Jamaica were referred by the Duke of Newcastle to the Board of Trade for examination, for clearly the matters in debate were of great importance in connection with the long drawn out negotiations which Benjamin Keene and his fellow Commissaries were conducting in Madrid. There were four distinct interests involved, the Crown of Spain which wished to prevent all foreign intercourse with its settlements, whether licensed or illicit, the South Sea Company which sought to be the sole English enterprise carrying on that trade in virtue of its Assiento Contract, the Jamaica merchants who wanted a free hand to carry on their old illicit trade in merchandise and logwood and to be protected from the guarda costas, and lastly the merchants of Bristol and Liverpool who objected to the South Sea Company's exclusive privileges and wanted free trade without colonial duties or restrictions. The hand of every one of these four parties was against each of the others, and so the Government found it no such simple matter as it would have been if a straightforward English contention had had to be supported against Spanish pretensions.

The various parties on the English side were summoned to attend the Board in July with their counsel. Mr. Delafaye attended as Agent for Jamaica in support of the Act for laying additional duties on negroes, Sir John Eyles and several other directors represented the South Sea Company, and Messrs. Harris and Wood spoke for the merchants of London, Bristol and Liverpool, as they had frequently done at earlier enquiries concerning West India trade (Journal, p. 307). Certain of the memorials presented by the various parties to the enquiry appear among the papers calendared here, but their relations cannot be properly understood without consulting the minutes of the enquiry recorded in the Journal. If these be taken as the basis, the various papers on either side fall into place a ad the rival contentions can be appreciated.

Opposing contentions of Jamaica and the Company.
The Jamaicans maintained that the duties upon the export of negroes from the island had been charged without complaint from 1693 to 1717 while they had a considerable trade to the Spanish settlements. In that year the trade was quite lost by the South Sea Company's carrying on their trade from Jamaica and the price of negroes to the island planters was considerably increased. In answer to this contention the Company's counsel observed that the carrying on the Assiento trade from Jamaica was an advantage to the island, inasmuch as the South Sea Company employed many of their sloops and men, and as the Company was obliged by their contract to furnish the Spaniards with 4800 negroes annually, they were obliged to carry to Jamaica near double that number, because the Spaniards, being very nice in their slaves, would not receive any with the least blemish. This great importation of negroes must consequently make negroes cheaper in Jamaica, and since the island had become thus the market for slaves between the South Sea Company and the Spanish West Indies, it must have other advantages thereby, for the Jamaica sloops did not come home empty from the Spanish West Indies. On the other hand the South Sea Company were losers by their negro trade, of which the Spaniards were so sensible that they allowed them their annual ship to make up that loss. It was the practice of the authorities of the island to charge the whole cargo with the additional duties, contrary to the instruction given to the Governor in 1727 even though only a part of the cargo was sold (328, Journal, p. 308).

Contentions of the British merchants.
The British merchants by their counsel claimed that the Act ought to be disallowed on other grounds. It really laid duties on the manufactures of Great Britain because the merchants trading to Africa constantly exported there malt spirits and other manufactures which they bartered in exchange for negroes. The duties were particularly prejudicial to the merchants for this reason and also because their factors in Jamaica were obliged to keep considerable sums of money by them or to sell part of the cargoes consigned to them almost at any rate to pay the duties chargeable upon the remainder. Allowing the assertion of the Jamaicans to be true, that the Assiento contract had been a prejudice to Jamaica, yet it was not right that the British merchants should be compelled to shoulder the whole burden (Journal, p. 309).

Jamaica's reply.
To these contentions the Agent for Jamaica replied that the duty could not be a burthen upon the merchants because if the planters bought their negroes, they in fact paid the duty by the enhanced prices, and if they were sold to the Spaniards, it was they who paid the duty. Before the Assiento contract came into the hands of the South Sea Company, Jamaica annually employed in the trade to the Spanish West Indies about 200 sail of sloops and 1200 men, while in 1732 the Company only employed six snows and 200 men. Since the Company alleged that they were the losers by the contract, the island of Jamaica was willing to take over the Assiento from them and allow them the annual ship into the bargain. However, this offer was not taken seriously and when the memorials against the duties (327, 328) had been considered, the Board of Trade decided to report to the Duke of Newcastle that the representations of the merchants and the South Sea Company should be acceded to, the Act disallowed and the Instruction to the Governor against any similar measure re-emphasised (336, Journal, p. 310).

Complexity of West Indian trade.
The whole of this matter is illustrative of the intimate complexity of the trade questions which made up t he greater part of our relations with Spain in the colonial sphere. So many interests of divergent sorts were involved on both sides and so constantly were they being affected that it was impossible to expect anything but incessant friction between the subjects of the two powers in the Caribbean. Wrangle followed wrangle with wearisome monotony and there could be no doubt that the profit which England thought that she had won at Utrecht was in reality illusory and detracted from the stability of our West Indian position.

Spain and the Indians on the border of Carolina.
On the northern and north-western frontiers of the British colonies the perennial complaints against foreign intrigues among the Indian tribes accused the French at Quebec, but there were similar complaints in the south which were directed against the Spanish authorities at St. Augustine. Neither Virginia nor North Carolina was much concerned with Indian difficulties at this period, for the numbers of their redskin inhabitants were greatly reduced. It was upon the shoulders of South Carolina that the burden lay, and the frontier tribes with whom they had to deal were the Creeks. In September 1732 Governor Johnson wrote about Spanish intrigues against British influence and trade with them. "We are alarmed" he wrote to the Board of Trade, "by two of our Indian traders having been killed near the Creek nation in their way thither, but that nation disavows the fact, and all our people who are amongst them are safe and civilly treated. We have not yet discovered the murderers, but we apprehend it has been done by some Spanish Indians at the instigation of the Spaniards of St. Augustine to terrify our traders from remaining at the Creek nation, that they may not have the opportunity of putting those Indians upon opposing the Spaniards building a fort and re-settling the Province of Appalachia in that neighbourhood, out of which they were driven thirty years ago. They have actually, we are informed, begun the building a fort there. 'Tis the king's ground by right of conquest, but how far the not having kept possession will make it not so, I leave to your consideration. I have done all I could by my Agents among the Indians to induce them not to suffer them, but they have a party among the Creek Indians as well as we" (394, see also 490 ii, iii). The troubles along the only long land frontier of the empire were similar both in the south and the north, though the Spaniards were less persistent in their intrigues with the Creeks than were the French among the Iroquois, and so they were less dangerous. But the problem of the relations of our frontiersmen with the nomadic Indian tribes was certainly dual and the authorities in London had to bear that fact in mind when they devoted any attention to the question which was slowly growing in importance and was to fill such a prominent place in shaping our policy in North America in later years.

French encroachments on the western frontier.
It was noted in the Introduction to the previous volume of this Calendar that in 1731–2 the encroachments of the French were already giving rise to serious concern in London. The Home authorities were kept informed of them by reports from LieutenantGovernor Gordon of Pennsylvania and President Rip van Dam of New York (35, 41), and the Board of Trade passed on these reports to the Secretary of State. In reply he required them to consider the danger to which the trade and security of that Province might be exposed and to suggest methods by which a stop might be put to the French encroachments (138). In accordance with this reference the Board reported to the Duke for submission to the King that it was undoubtedly true that the Crown of France being always desirous of extending the Dominion of New France had omitted no opportunity of encroaching upon neighbouring territories. Under the pretence of carrying on their trade with the Indians the French frequently erected small huts or trading houses in the Indian lands, which in a little time they converted into forts. They then set up a claim to the property of the soil and the dominion of the surrounding territory. By this illicit means and the zeal of their missionaries they had been" able to draw over several Indian nations and to establish a communication between their territories on the Continent of America lying on the back of the English settlements from the entrance of the River St. Lawrence to the mouth of the Mississippi which opens into the Bay of Mexico." They had recently built a fort at Crown Point within three days march of the city of Albany (see G.S.P. 1731 Introduction), which was manifestly a breach of the Treaty of Utrecht since the fort was erected in the country of the Iroquois commonly called by the name of the Five Nations or Cantons of Indians whose ancient subjection to the dominion of Great Britain was acknowledged by France by the Fifteenth Article. Although the French subjects should by artifice have obtained permission from the five Nations to make the settlement, that permission must be invalid without the King's special allowance and the Board therefore proposed that H.M. ambassador in Paris should be instructed to make effectual protest to the Court of France and demand that the fort at Crown Point should be demolished (160). The further progress of the protest does not appear among these papers, but must be sought in the State Papers, Foreign, France.

French encroachments in Nova Scotia.
Besides those who were responsible for the defence of the frontiers of Pennsylvania and New York, the British authorities in Nova Scotia were continually worried by what was going on in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. We have repeatedly referred to this in the Introductions to earlier volumes, but the activities of the French in the region were now taking a new turn. The northern shore of the Bay of Fundy was generally destitute of white settlers, either French or English, but in the fall of 1731 a small colony of French who crossed over from Nova Scotia established themselves on the River St. John and refused all obedience to the British authorities at Annapolis Royal (259, p. 147). A Committee of the Council of Nova Scotia represented the great danger that was likely to arise from this small beginning, for it seemed probable that before long a fort would be erected in the new settlement and so our fisheries in the Bay of Fundy would be at the mercy of the Frenchmen. Already the French fishermen who had been driven out from Canso had established a great fishery at Cape Gaspé (454, p. 252), although it was claimed as lying within H.M. dominions as ceded by the Treaty of Utrecht. Being undisturbed for several years they had firmly established themselves and so held the whole of the southern shore of the Gulf of St. Lawrence (259 iv). Lieutenant-Governor Armstrong therefore summoned those who had settled on the River St. John to come before him at Annapolis to give an account of themselves and to purge their "audacious presumption" by settling on the St. John "or at any other place within his sacred Britannic Majesty's province or dominions without liberty first obtained" (259 vii). The settlers took no notice of this summons, but Armstrong learned that they claimed a right to their lands under a grant that had been made by Mons. de Våudreuil at Quebec in 1722 (259 xi).

The British commanders were convinced that these actions were undertaken with the connivance of Governor St. Ovide of Cape Breton or even according to his direct order. The Indians round Les Menis at the head of the Bay of Fundy, under the prompting of "their most insolent priests who come and go at pleasure" under pretence of the articles of the Treaty of Utrecht which promised them freedom of religion, had interfered with the Englishmen who were opening up a colliery at Chickenectua. They used for an argument what had been instilled into them by Governor St. Ovide, that though the English had conquered Annapolis, they had never possessed themselves of Les Menis or the other northern parts of the Province. He told them and the French inhabitants of Nova Scotia, even those who had taken the oath of allegiance, that if they permitted the designs of the English to succeed the whole province would be lost to them. He thus attempted to destroy the Articles of Peace with the Indians which had been concluded both in Nova Scotia and New England (pp. 251, 254), and so all the British possessions round the fisheries were faced with imminent danger.

Appeal for help from Massachusetts.
To avert this danger Armstrong not only asked for further support from England but also wrote to Governor Belcher in Massachusetts. He pointed out that "all our troubles proceed originally from the French by the influence they have over the Indians, which they will always maintain while our English merchants employ them to sell their goods to the Indians, whereby they keep us at a distance, make the latter depend upon them, engross the whole management of the fur trade and run away with the profit." He proposed that the General Court of Massachusetts should erect brick trading houses at St. John's River and elsewhere on the mainland of Nova Scotia which would be a means of bringing the neighbouring Indians, the most powerful tribe in the province, to entire dependence upon them (455 ii, No. vii). It will be remembered that Massachusetts had been in opposition to David Dunbar's project of forming a new "Province of Georgia" round Frederick's Fort not far from this disputed region and that the colony olaimed extensive rights over the whole region, so that Armstrong's proposal had a good deal to be said in its favour.

Massachusetts and the fisheries. French activity at Isle St. Jean.
The Massachusetts fishing merchants had large interests in the English fishing station at Canso (496 ii) which is mentioned later. The New Englanders were particularly threatened by French encroachments on the fisheries. The growth of their ambitions was proceeding very rapidly. Captain Fitch, the naval commander on the Canso station, wrote that "the French have a very great fishery upon the island called Isle Royal and islands adjacent, which is most carried on by boats, but [they] have many ships and schooners." There were no less than 7000 fishermen on that coast, part of whom came annually from France, but the rest remained the winter at the settlements, which were many. The chief was Louisbourg which was now a very large town and had recently been walled. Upon the fortifications that commanded the harbour were 122 great guns besides 36 brass cannon of 42 pounders which had been brought over during the past year (p. 283, see also p. 28). The French were also beginning a great new settlement at Isle St. Jean (now Prince Edward Island), and the Board of Trade and Plantations were informed from various sources of what was going on (e.g. p. 252) and warned of the dangers that could not fail to arise from these new French plans. Some of the news that was sent to them may not have been very reliable, but that much important activity was going on was certain. David Dunbar wrote of "six French men-of-war at Louisbourg on the Island of Cape Breton full of Jews to settle the Island of St. Johns in Baie Verte back of the bottom of the Bay of Fundy which is already planted only with French who will supply and maintain this new intended settlement of St. Johns with bread, corn and live cattle if not prevented" (p. 200). It seems as though Dunbar was confusing the settlement of Isle St. Jean with the new settlement on the River St. John, but at any rate his story of the six ship-loads of Jews was frankly incredible. However, he knew from his own observation what the French were doing on the Penobscot, somewhat further to the south, and that was disquieting enough. "The French Governor at Quebec takes upon him to give commissions to the Indians in this country and makes them believe that they and the French men settled among them are subjects of France: he may perhaps deny this," so Dunbar wrote, "but I myself had in my hand and read a commission from Mons. Bouruchois, the present Governor of Quebec, dated September last to the Chief of the Penobscot tribes as such, and enjoining obedience from the rest— The said Indian chief in virtue of it carried a white flag in his canoe even before H.M.S. Scarborough, who I hear made the Indian strike that flag" (p. 200). Several Frenchmen had lately come from Canada and settled near Penobscot and their numbers were increasing fast. In Newfoundland, on the other hand, the French were doing nothing contrary to the Treaty of Utrecht; there were no French remaining at Placentia; they did not come to the north of Cape Bona Vista and there were apparently no intruders from Cape Breton who came to take furs or hunt in Newfoundland (404 i, p. 226). The old rivalry which had caused so much difficulty in the first years after the Treaty had thus apparently died down, and it was upon the mainland that their encroachments were now most dangerous. The proceedings of their priests among the Roman Catholic inhabitants in the peninsula of Nova Scotia are referred to later when we come to deal with that colony's domestic affairs.

English and French in the Neutral Islands.
There was a lull in the rivalry between the English and the French in the "Neutral" Islands and there are few papers referring to matters there. According to the agreement that had been reached earlier the King of France sent orders (25 i) to the Governor of Martinique to evacuate all French subjects from St. Lucia, St. Vincent and Dominica, and in forwarding a copy of this order to the President of Barbados, who was then administering the government in the interim between two Governorships, the Secretary of State ordered him to communicate with Martinique and concert proper measures for the mutual carrying-out of the evacuation (25). The preparation of the original order for evacuation on the British side was completed by the Board of Trade in September 1730 (Journal, p. 148) and the French order to the Marquis de Champigny, Governor of Martinique, was dated in December of the same year (25 i), but two years later there was still no news from Barbados of the evacuation having been carried out, and it was not until July 1733 that the authorities in London learned what had been done upon the orders (Journal, p. 351). The whole affair is a good illustration of the inevitable delays in dealing effectively with far-distant colonial difficulties. Those delays were not attributable wholly or even mainly to the dilatoriness of the parties concerned, but rather they were unavoidable when communications were so bad and so irregular.

Parliament and the colonies.
Turning from international difficulties to affairs of constitutional interest respecting the colonies we may note that both Houses of Parliament were concerning themselves with colonial affairs far more closely than they had ever done before. On 5 May, 1731, the House of Commons presented an address to the Crown praying that the Commissioners of Trade and Plantations might be directed to report upon (1) laws made in the Plantations (2) manufactures set up and trade carried on there which might affect the trade, navigation and manufactures of Great Britain (Commons' Journals, xxi, 753). The address was again presented in identical terms in January 1731/2 (fn. n1) (ibid, xxi. 760) and the Board then consulted the House as to whether an immediate report was required or whether they should wait until they had received, answers to the circular letters which they had despatched to all colonial Governors (87, p. 53). Since an immediate report was asked for, the Board proceeded to draw one up from the materials in their possession, and this occupied them and their officers steadily through January and February (see Journal). The resulting report is of great interest as giving a conspectus of the colonies and their problems as seen by those who were responsible for advice upon them. It is long (pp. 52–62) and is mainly concerned with the second question asked, but it begins with a survey of the constitutional position which may be quoted fully.

The constitutional position in the colonies.
"That the House may be the better apprised with what regards the laws, we … premise some particulars relating to the constitution of the several colonies and to the powers vested in them for the passing of laws. Many of the British Colonies in America are immediately under the Government of the Crown; others are vested in Proprietors, as Pennsylvania, Maryland, and not long since the Bahamas and the two Carolinas also. There are likewise three Charter Governments. The chief of these is the Massachusetts Bay, commonly called New England, the constitution whereof is of a mixed nature, where the power seems to be divided between the King and the People; but in which the People have much the greater share; for here the people do not only choose the Assembly, as in other colonies, but the Assembly choose the Council also, and the Governor depends upon the Assembly for his annual support, whioh has too frequently laid the Governors of this Province under temptations of giving up the prerogative of the Crown and the interest of Great Britain.

"The two remaining Provinces, Connecticut and Rhode Island are Charter Governments also, or rather Corporations where almost the whole power of the Crown is delegated to the People; for they choose their Assembly, their Council and their Governor likewise annually, and hold little or no correspondence with our Office…All these colonies, however, by their several Constitutions have the power of making laws for their better government and support, provided they be not repugnant to the laws of Great Britain, nor detrimental to their Mother Country. And these laws, when they have regularly passed the Council and Assembly of any Province and received the Governor's assent, become valid in that Province, repealable however by His Majesty in Council upon just complaint, and do not acquire a perpetual force unless confirmed by H.M. in Council.

" But there are some exceptions to this rule in the Proprietary and Charter Governments; for in the Province of Pennsylvania they are only obliged to deliver a transcript of their laws to the Privy Council within five years after they are passed, and if H.M. does not think fit to repeal them in six months from the time such transcript is so delivered, it is not in the power of the Crown to repeal them afterwards. In the Massachusetts Bay also, if their laws are not repealed within three years after they have been presented to H.M. for his approbation or disallowance, they are not repealable by the Crown after that time. The provinces of Maryland, Connecticut and Rhode Island, not being under any obligation by their respective constitutions to return any authentic copies of their laws to the Grown for approbation or disallowance, or to give any account of their proceedings, we are very little informed what is doing in any of these Governments.

"All the Governors of colonies who act under the King's appointment ought within a reasonable time to transmit home authentic copies of the several acts by them passed, that they may go through a proper examination. But they are sometimes negligent in their duty in this particular and likewise pass temporary laws of so short continuance that they have their full effect even before this Board can acquire due notice of them. Some attempts have been made to prevent this pernicious practice. But the annual support of Government in the respective Colonies, making it necessary that laws for that purpose should pass from year to year, they have frequently endeavoured in those laws, as well as in others of longer duration, to enact propositions repugnant to the laws of Great Britain."

" Tacking."
This evil practice of "tacking" has been referred to in previous Introductions, but it has never been set out more clearly as a major cause of complaint than it is here in the words of the Board of Trade for the information of the House of Commons. Of this practice, the Board wrote, "they have never failed to express their dislike to the Crown, and many laws have from time to time been repealed on that account" (p. 54).

Laws of Rhode Island.
"As to such laws as do not fall directly within the above rule," they went on, "of which no complaint is made, and where the Board are doubtful of the effect they may have, it has always been usual to let them lie by probationary, being still under the power of the Crown to be repealed in case any inconvenience should arise from them. It has also been usual that where a law has contained many just and necessary provisions for the benefit of the Colony where the same passed, intermixed with some others liable to objection, to let the same lie by, giving notice to the Governor of the Province [where] that law passed that it should be repealed if he did within a reasonable time procure a new law, not liable to the like objections, to be substituted in place thereof" (p. 54).

That the legal position concerning the laws passed in some colonies was very unsatisfactory was shown by the opinion of the Attorney and Solicitor General on the case of the laws of Rhode Island (340), which is again referred to when we consider the affairs of that colony. They gave the opinion that the Crown had no discretionary power of repealing laws made in that Province, but that the validity thereof depended upon their not being contrary to the Laws of England. The Board realised the serious implication of this and wrote to the Queen, who was then administering the government. "We do not at present see in what manner your Majesty can apply a remedy to the grievances complained of. If the acts passed in the Assembly of Rhode Island can only be vacated by their containing something immediately repugnant to the laws of Great Britain, a very wide field is left open for enacting many things contrary to good policy and highly prejudicial to H.M. subjects, although they may not be so far inconsistent with the laws of this kingdom as to admit of a reversal for that reason only" (307 i).

Colonial Acts differentiating against English trade. Colonial trade and manufacture.
As was stated above, the debates in the House of Commons were raised upon the complaints of the mercantile interest of obstacles placed in the way of English trade by the colonists, and the main part of the report of the Board was devoted to a detailed study of the various colonial acts which differentiated between colonial and English merchants. For these details, which list acts dating back as far as the Restoration, reference should be made to the appropriate parts of the report (pp. 54–58). Similarly the Board summarised the replies of every colony in turn concerning any trade or manufactures carried on which might compete with imported English products. These summaries afford an admirable bird's-eye view of the economic situation of the outer empire at the period (pp.58–62). There was no serious competition nor the likelihood of any on a large scale, but the Board pointed out that there were radical differences between the continental and island colonies in this respect. "There are more trades carried on and manufactures set up in the Provinces on the continent of America to the northward of Virginia prejudicial to the trade and manufactures of Great Britain, particularly in New England, than in any other of the British colonies. This is not to be wondered at, for their soil, climate and produce being pretty near the same with ours, they have no staple commodities of their own growth to exchange for our manufactures, which puts them under greater necessity, as well as under greater temptation of providing for themselves at home. To which may be added in the Charter Governments the little dependence they have upon their Mother Country and consequently the small restraints they are under in any matters detrimental to their interests" (p. 62).

Recommendations of the Board of Trade.
The recapitulation of such undeniable facts was almost a commonplace, but the Board could suggest no remedy other than the perennial project "whether it might not be expedient to give these Colonies proper encouragements for turning their industry to such manufactures and products as might be of service to Great Britain and more particularly to the production of all kinds of Naval Stores" (p. 62). Thus "we might be furnished in return for our manufactures and much money saved in the balance of our trade with the Northern Crowns, where these materials are chiefly paid for in specie" (p. 60). There are few documents in which the ideas of the old colonial systems are set out upon official authority so clearly and succinctly, and the report was therefore of considerable importance at the time.

Additional Instructions and enquiries sent to Governors.
In consequence of these debates Additional Instructions were sent to the Governors of all the Colonies, including the Chartered and Proprietary Colonies, forbidding them, on pain of H.M. highest displeasure, to give their assent to any law wherein the natives or inhabitants of the colony were put upon a more advantageous footing than the people of Great Britain. No duties were to be laid upon British shipping or upon the product of manufactures of Great Britain upon any pretence whatever (55, 176 i, 196, 205). The House of Commons welcomed the information contained in the Board's interim report and asked for a further communication to be prepared and laid before them in their next session (256 i). In consequence, the Board despatched a circular letter to all the Governors of the Plantations requiring them to forward the best and most particular accounts they could of any laws made, manufactures set up or trade carried on which might in any way affect the trade and navigation and manufactures of the kingdom, which were in future to be made up and forwarded in the form of annual returns (263).

Replies from the colonies.
The individual replies from particular colonies upon which the Board had made up the report from which we have made such lengthy quotations can be traced from the but we may here indicate for convenience certain of the more interesting papers:—Memorial from Captain Thomas Coram (23); Council of Virginia (24, pp. 14–19); Leeward Islands (47); Jeremiah Dunbar re New England (54); South Carolina (437); Pennsylvania (449 i); Massachusetts (465). Governor Cosby's reply to the circular letter of June 16th (263) contains a paragraph that is worthy of quotation as illustrative of the somewhat drastic remarks to which a Governor might be induced by his exasperation with those whose affairs he had to administer. "The inhabitants here [in New York] are more lazy and unactive than the world generally supposes, and their manufacture extends no further than what is consumed in their own families,—a few coarse linsey woolseys for clothing, and linen for their own wear" (494).

Parliament and the recovering of debts in the colonies.
Parallel with these comprehensive questions from Parliament concerning the laws, trade and manufactures of the colonies, there was a more specialised enquiry by both Houses in succession, which concerned the methods of recovering debts in the colonies owing to British merchants, especially in Jamaica and Virginia (136 i). This question had already demanded the attention of the Board (Introduction C.S.P. 1731, p. xx) in consequence of an Order of 12 August, 1731 (G.S.P. 1731, No. 367) upon the petition of certain merchants of the City of London. An elaborate report upon it was sent in January 1731/2 (36, pp. 25–27). The interest of the matter is the indication it gives that the Lords as well as the Commons were paying new and special attention to colonial affairs and their reaction on British mercantile prosperity. There are many papers relating to this question of the recovery of colonial debts, but they are too specialised to need more than a passing mention here (e.g. 22, p. 15, 55, 68, 77 i, p. 57). It may be noted that when the report was finished, it was presented to the House of Commons direct by one of the members of the Board, Sir Orlando Bridgman, M.P., and not sent through the Secretary of State, although it had been prepared in obedience to an Order in Council forwarded by him after an Address from the House to the King (Journal, p. 277). The same course was followed with various other reports which were presented to the House by Mr. Docminique, M.P., a member of the Board. Reports were usually forwarded to the House of Lords through the Earl of Westmoreland, President of the Board, and it was also he who transmitted the reports called for by the Committee of the Privy Council on Trade and Plantations, of which he was an influential member. It does not appear clear what difference there was between the matters upon which the Secretary of State was the channel of communication between the Houses and the Board of Trade and those on which orders for papers etc. were transmitted direct. It may be suggested, however, that in the first case elaborate reports involving matters of principle were involved and in the second only comparatively simple and explicit matters.

Controversy between the Sugar Islands and the Northern Colonies.
In the Introduction to our previous volume the important controversy between the Sugar Islands and the Northern Colonies was referred to at some length. It was there stated that the Board set to work in earnest to examine the voluminous papers relating to the controversy in December 1731 (C.S.P. 1731 Introduction, pp. xiv–xix). They called before them on December 7th the agents of Barbados, St. Christophers and Antigua and six gentlemen concerned in the sugar trade of those islands, and their evidence is recorded in the pages of the Journal (Journal, pp. 253–4). On the 20th the agents for the Northern Colonies and various gentlemen trading to those colonies came before the Board in their turn and presented the answers of Massachusetts, New York etc. to the representations of the Sugar Colonies, but they were not orally examined (Journal, p. 259). The Duke of Newcastle had written to the Board on November 24th, 1731, asking for their report, but as he had not received it by February 4th, 1731/2, he wrote again somewhat peremptorily to repeat his demand. "As it appears by the late Address from the House of Commons (46 i) that this affair is coming under the consideration of that House, H.M. has commanded me to acquaint you with his pleasure that you do without any further delay make your report in pursuance of what I then wrote to you; it having been H.M. intention that this report should have been ready against this session of Parliament that it might have been laid before the House for their information" (65). This was to demand an impossibility, and the Board said so with a frankness that is a refreshing contrast to the circumlocution that was so common in the official papers of the early eighteenth century, and, it may be added, at other more recent periods. To illustrate the thoroughness with which the Board did its work and to do something to refute the allegations of slackness and ineptitude which are sometimes levelled against its members, it seems worth while to quote some sentences from their reply. "In order to make a perfect report upon the several particulars [the Board] immediately sent for all the parties or their Agents. Those concerned for the Northern Colonies desired copies of what had been represented in behalf of the Sugar Islands in order to make their answers, and it was some tine before we received their answers thereto. The Agents for the Sugar Islands likewise desired copies of these answers, that they might be able to make their reply, which could not in reason be denied. Some time passed before they delivered in their reply, and within two days after that, we received H.M. Orders upon the Address of the House of Commons to lay copies of all such papers as had come to our hands upon this subject before the House." (fn. n2)

"We really did not apprehend till we received your Grace's second letter [i.e. No. 65 of Feb. 4th] that it was H.M. pleasure we should proceed to make this report upon a matter of so much nicety and importance, which in all probability will have received its determination in Parliament long before it can be possible for us to make a report upon it, [even] though all other business were laid aside and all imaginable diligence applied to this subject only." This protest was certainly justified, for at the same moment the Board were engaged upon the elaborate report on the laws, manufactures and trade of the colonies which had been called for by the House of Commons and was mentioned above (Journal, pp. 274, 275 etc.) and the report on colonial debts which had been called for by both Lords and Commons (Journal, p. 277). The amount even of clerical work involved in the preparation of these documents must have been overwhelming.

Protest of the Board of Trade against complaints of delay.
In forwarding copies of the papers they had received, the Board pointedly remarked. "The papers that have been delivered to us by the parties concerned consist of many allegations, but of allegations only and not of proofs, which has brought this matter hitherto no farther than to an issue upon the facts in dispute between the opposite parties. [It may easily be conceived] what time it will naturally require to apply proofs to these allegations and how imperfect our report would be, how little able to answer the many enquiries directed by your Grace's first letter till those proofs shall have been applied and thoroughly considered" (80, pp. 44–5). "We must beg you would do us the justice to believe that we are incapable of delays or neglect of our duty, and particularly that we have not lost any time in enquiring into the matters mentioned in your Grace's last letter" (80, p. 46).

Debates in the House of Commons on the controversy.
With this protest the matter passed out of the hands of the Board of Trade and into the Commons. To that House many petitions had been presented by the Agents of the various colonies on the bill "for securing and encouraging the Trade of H.M. Sugar Colonies in America" then before them. The petitioners were heard by their counsel on February 3, 9, 10, 11, 15 and 23 when the bill had its second reading (Commons Journals xxi, 788–847 under dates given). The debate on the proposal was led by Col. Bladen for and Mr. Oglethorpe against (Parl. Hist, viii, 993–1002), and the speeches deserve close attention as interpretative of the papers here calendared. The bill was committed to the whole House and after report it received its third reading on March 15th by 110 to 37. The tellers for the bill, who may be taken as representing the sugar interest, were Messrs. Bladen and Hedges and against, Messrs. Barnard and Oglethorpe (C.J. xxi, 849). For our present purpose the interest of the matter lies in the confirmation it affords of the statement in our previous Introduction that Parliament was now taking a much greater interest in colonial affairs than ever before and was becoming highly critical of the actions of the administration, so that henceforward demands for papers became much more frequent and the work of the Board of Trade was consequently increased.

Dislike of Parliamentary interference in the colonies.
It was remarked in our previous Introduction (C.S.P. 1731, p. xix) that Parliamentary interference in their affairs was much disliked by the colonies who believed that whatever competition was threatened the powers of the House of Commons were certain to be wielded in favour of English interests. This dislike, which played so important a part in the constitutional struggle later in the century, is well brought out in a memorial from the Council of Virginia to the Board of Trade against the proposed Act of Parliament restricting colonial manufactures, in which their preference for royal rather than parliamentary control appears clearly. "There is already a very positive and full Instruction from the King to all the Governors of his Plantations to suffer no law [affecting the trade and navigation of Great Britain] to take effect till it shall be assented to by his Majesty. Tis therefore very strange that the merchants, who have the happiness to be much nearer the throne than the planters are, and are commonly sent for when any such law appears, should so far distrust H.M. paternal care in this particular as to petition for an act of Parliament to relieve them. It seems to be more for H.M. service and for the interest of Great Britain to prohibit the passing all such laws by a royal Instruction than by an act of Parliament, because the King by the advice of his Council will from time to time be perfectly able to judge of the expediency of any such particular law; while it will be hardly possible to form an act of Parliament that will distinguish every case" (24, p. 14).

"We presume the petitioners don't intend to exclude the King from judging how far the laws made in the Plantations shall be conformable to such act of Parliament (for 'tis certain there must be some judicature to determine the controversy), and if so, what greater effect could such an act of Parliament have than H.M. Instruction hath already ? As the laws heretofore made in [Virginia], which in any degree affect the trade and navigation of Great Britain, have always allowed a reasonable time before their commencement for the merchants to make their objections and for H.M. consideration of the justness and usefulness of them, we hope the interest of our Mother Country is so fully secured thereby that there is no need of such an act, but that we shall be still indulged the same privilege in the making laws for ourselves as [Virginia] hath enjoyed from its first establishment" (24, p. 15). "As it is our unhappiness to have no Representative in the British Parliament, we beseech you to take us under your protection, and to lay our case in so favourable a manner before His Majesty that the loyal inhabitants of this British Colony may still continue to enjoy those privileges which have been granted them by the Crown from the time of their first settlement . . and protected in their estates equally with the rest of H.M. subjects" (24,p.19).

The essentials of the constitutional disputes that came to a head thirty years later are here unmistakably at issue, and it is interesting to note that among signatures attached to the memorial is that of William Randolph, and that it was presented to the Board by Captain Isham Randolph, of the family who took so prominent a part in the next generation.

Relations of the Board of Trade and the Committee of the Privy Council for Trade and Plantation Affairs.
Certain papers here calendared cast some light on the central machinery of government and the relations of the two offices that were closely associated with the administration of colonial affairs, those of (1) the Committee of the Privy Council for Trade and Plantation Affairs and (2) of "His Majesty's Commissioners for promoting the Trade of this Kingdom and for inspecting and improving his Plantations in America and elsewhere"—to give the Board of Trade its full and cumbrous title (Journal, p. 262). The work of the Plantation Committee was done in the Council Office and by its subordinate staff of clerks generally working under the direction of William Sharpe, though the orders were signed by Temple Stanyan, Clerk of the Council. The Lord President appears to have had some supervision over the management of business. The exact allocation of function between the two offices does not seem to have been settled, for there is a letter (68) from the Council Office declining the burden of preparing copies of the papers required by the House of Commons and passing it on to the Plantation Office. Again it was doubtful where the initiative in the nomination of colonial councillors lay, whether with the Committee or the Board (69). The general impression left by the many letters passing between them is that of a growing control, even in details, by the Committee with whom the final decision rested. The relations between the two bodies and their work is well illustrated, for example, in the Report of the Committee to the King concerning the salary of Lord Howe as Governor of Barbados (480). The Board was never left in doubt as to its subordinate position in the official hierarchy and on occasions the Lords of the Committee of Council drew pointed attention to this. At the beginning of August 1732 the Commissioners considered a complaint against Governor Hunter of Jamaica for giving an assent to an Act of Assembly contrary to his Instructions which had been sent to them by the Secretary of State at the end of May (245). They prepared a report upon it and forwarded it to the Duke of Newcastle in the form of a representation to be laid before the Queen, who was then administering the government (335). In reply to an order of the Committee of Council (254) requiring from them a report upon the same matter which had been sent in June, they forwarded a copy of this representation, but the Lord President of-the Council at once returned the report and stated that he did not apprehend it to be a proper answer to. the Order of the Lords. The Board was not then sitting, but Martin Bladen and another member as private gentlemen hastened to apologise and stated that "the Board were led into this method of proceeding by a late precedent in their books where the Lords of the Committee accepted of a like report and proceeded upon it," it being the copy of a representation to the King which was enclosed in lieu of a particular report. If this method of proceeding should be thought improper, Bladen assured the Lord President that his brethren would readily submit to his Lordship's better judgment and make a particular report to the Lords of the Committee (354, p. 196). The secondary position of the Board was unmistakable, and this point is also brought out in some of their letters to Governors when they have to state that they do not know what is the determination of the King (i.e. the ministry) (e.g. 373).

Fees of the new Clerk of Reports of the Board of Trade.
In the year 1730 in consequence of a complaint of the burden of work falling upon their staff the Board had secured the appointment of a new official, the solicitor or clerk of reports (Journal, p. 139). He gave no assistance to the clerks in copying and refused to share equally with them in the division of fees. He claimed equality with the Deputy Secretary, to the indignation of the clerks, some of whom had served for twenty years and strongly objected to an outsider being put over their heads (140). The decision of the Board is not shown among these papers but is to be found in the Journal. The Secretary was to have two-fifths of the fees, the Deputy Secretary two-fifths of the Secretary's share (i.e. 4/25 of the whole), the clerk of the reports one-quarter of the Secretary's share (i.e. 4/25 of the whole) and the clerks to have the remainder equally divided between them (Journal, p. 288).

Newcastle and the exercise of colonial patronage.
The exercise of ministerial patronage in the disposal of places in the colonies was always particularly distasteful to the Governors, and there is a letter from one client to the Duke of Newcastle which is illustrative of the tale-bearing that ensued when the sycophants did not receive satisfaction. William Frewin, a lawyer, on the motion of Brigadier Churclrill was recommended by Newcastle to Governor Johnson of South Carolina. He had secured this favour by his protestations that he had from his childhood "espoused the interest of His Majesty,"—a euphemism for the Hanoverian cause,—and had supported the administration, praying that "his Majesty and his royal race may reign over us till time shall be no more and they may never want a Duke of Newcastle to be near their persons." When the Governor received the recommendation, however, he told Frewin that there were a number of his profession in South Carolina already and that the people at home had taken care to let him have very little trouble in the disposal of places. He was clearly out of humour with the stream of place hunters forced upon him and took no further notice of Newcastle's client. In revenge Frewin wrote to the Secretary of State to inform against Governor Johnson that he was determined to ingross and resolve all offices as they fell in into his own family and to execute some of them by his own deputies so that he might keep their proceeds for himself (390). Back-stairs tale-bearing such as this must have been a constant cause of difficulty and uncertainty to those who had to carry on the service.

Rum trade with the Indians.
Among the many topics of incidental interest to be found among the letters attention may be drawn to two. In the House of Commons remark had been made as to the evils produced by the sale of rum to the Indians in the colonies, and the Board of Trade received order to supply a list of the various acts passed to deal with this matter (75). Accordingly a list was prepared and forwarded to the House showing that Massachusetts had been the first to pass an act prohibiting the sale of rum to Indians in 1693 and this was confirmed in 1725, 1729 and 1731. Virginia passed a similar act in 1705. Private traders were not allowed to deal in rum and the permitted trade was confined to certain truck masters. New York in 1728 forbade the sale of rum without licence, but it did not prohibit the trade and in fact raised some revenue from a duty of 6d. per gallon upon the rum sold (86). Oglethorpe was at this period an active member of the House of Commons and taking a large part in all colonial questions discussed there. It may have been due to his sympathetic interest that this enquiry was raised in an assembly that was not notably distinguished for its philanthropic feelings.

Coffee culture iu the West Indies.
The second point that may be mentioned is the desire to encourage the cultivation of coffee in the West Indies. This arose upon a petition from the planters of Jamaica and merchants trading to that island, which was referred by the Privy Council to the Board of Trade. By experiments made in Jamaica and others of the Sugar Islands it appeared that both their soil and climate were very apt and fit for raising coffee in quantities sufficient not only for our home use, but also for supplying the European markets, so avoiding the sending out annually great sums of money from the kingdom for payment for foreign supplies. It was suggested that the granting of bounties on the importation of colonial-grown coffee, like the bounties on hemp and flax given to the Northern Colonies, would greatly encourage the investment of capital in coffee plantations. The planting would be chiefly carried on by the middling sort of people, unable to bear the great expense necessary for erecting and carrying on a sugar plantation or raising indigo, cotton or ginger. The petitioners maintained that coffee might easily be planted at a very easy and small expense, two negroes being sufficient to make a beginning, and upon such vacant ground as was unsuitable for other crops. There had been considerable progress in coffee-growing by the Butch in Surinam and the French in their sugar colonies (29 i). The Board of Trade consulted various Jamaican planters then in London and returned a favourable report upon the petition (44, Journal, pp. 270–2), but no further immediate action ensued.

Convict transportation.
The grievances felt in certain colonies concerning increased convict transportation, which were mentioned in the Introduction to our preceding volume (C.S.P. 1731, p. xxvi), received two illustrations during 1732. The Assembly of New Jersey had passed in 1730 an Act imposing a duty on persons convicted of heinous crimes, but the Board of Trade reported that the Act seemed "to be intended to prevent the importation of convicts from Great Britain in pursuance of the several Acts of Parliament made for that purpose." They therefore recommended the disallowance of the New Jersey Act (134). In Virginia there had been so great an increase in criminal prosecutions in consequence of the influx of transported felons "whose morals [were] unchanged by change of air" that the Attorney-General applied for an increase of salary, and his application was supported by the Governor (p. 178).



Newfoundland. Changes since the Fishing Act of William III.
While it is appropriate to consider under this heading the affairs of the troublous dependency of Newfoundland because they were so closely interconnected with those of the northern colonies which were also interested in the fisheries, it must be pointed out that Newfoundland was never regarded as a colony in the strict sense. Commodore Clinton, the naval Governor during the fishing season of 1731, represented emphatically that it would be impossible to prevent the many abuses connected with the Newfoundland fishery until the Governor had "full authority to put the laws in execution as in other H.M. Plantations," which was impracticable owing to the Fishing Act passed in the 10th and 11th years of William III. He showed how radically circumstances had changed since the Act was passed. "The ships chiefly then employed in the trade were purely for the taking and curing of fish, which ships brought over with them great numbers of men to be employed in the fishery and their necessary provisions and craft for making their voyages. After the fishing season was over, [they] returned to England with their fishermen and servants, excepting those that carried their fish to markets. Those ships on their arrival in Newfoundland did (pursuant to the Act of Parliament) make up so much of the ship's room as was necessary for the number of shallops each ship employed, and accordingly built their stages and flakes,. and after the season was over left all standing for the benefit of the fishing ships that came the year following, which was of very great advantage for the ships on their arrival to find stages and flakes without the charge and trouble of building. But for many years that custom is left. Few ships come purely on account of catching and curing of fish except from Bideford and Barnstaple" (148, pp. 95–6, see also Journal, pp. 284, 286, 289).

Organisation of the fishery in 1732.
Despite this fact, neither of those North Devon ports took the lead in defending the ancient system; that place fell to Poole, Dartmouth and Bristol who presented petitions to the Crown protesting against the appointment of justices of the peace whose office had been set up to preserve some continuity of order in Newfoundland (49, 74, 144). They maintained that the justices were illegally appointed, since by the Fishing Act supreme authority lay in the "fishing admirals." As a matter of fact, this traditional method of managing the fishery had quite broken down and the "admirals" used their authority to serve their own interests, as Clinton pointed out in his description of the new system that had been evolved in the fishery in the forty years since the passing of the Act. The old system seems to have been really out of date even when the earlier traditional practices were codified by King William. The Commodore told how the ships from "Dartmouth, Teignmouth, Topsham, Bristol etc. instead of coming directly on the fishery, leave Britain with just a sailing crew (ships that bring the passengers excepted), and many of them proceed for Ireland and load with provisions, soap, candles, linen and woollen goods and great numbers of Irish Roman Catholics. Their cargoes they as admirals soon dispose of and take care to exercise their authority in receiving all their debts [that had been left over] from the previous fishing season and often more. The greater number of men now [in Newfoundland] are Irish Romans and those the scum of that kingdom who on the arrival of the trading fishing ships are employed by their commanders as fishermen on the Banks of Newfoundland to make up the numbers which of right they ought to bring from Britain. By this means the intention of making the fishery of Newfoundland a nursery for seamen is totally frustrated, for [of] those Irishmen few or none ever become seamen" (p. 96). Thus the main purpose of giving peculiar privileges to the fishing merchants of the western ports and preventing the erection of a proper colonial government in Newfoundland was brought to naught.

Abuses of the "fishing admirals."
Again great scandals arose from the arbitrary and violent proceedings of the "admirals" and the fishing merchants upon pretence of exercising their lawful authority. They entered in a violent manner on the people's flakes and stages and under pretence of debt seized by force what quantities of fish and other goods they pleased without having any authority for so doing and contrary to the orders that had repeatedly been given by the commanding naval officers on the station. By these illegal practices masters were disabled from paying their servants' wages and the poor servants were reduced to beggary (148 i). The Board of Trade considered Clinton's report and the petitions of the western ports simultaneously, and called him and Lord Vere Beauclerk, who had served as Commodore before Clinton, to give personal evidence {Journal, pp. 284, 286). They reported that in their opinion the justices of the peace had not interfered with the "fishing admirals" in matters properly belonging to them, but the latter had been negligent in not holding proper Courts for regulating the fishery except in cases where their own interest was concerned (162). But the tone of the report was much gentler than Clinton's frank and uncompromising censures upon the "admirals" and the fishing merchants, Clearly the western ports were so strong in their influence upon the House of Commons, where they commanded many votes, that they could not be antagonised at a moment when that House was showing itself so critical regarding the management of colonial affairs. The resident community in Newfoundland was still there only on sufferance, and it had no voice to raise on its own behalf in answer to the powerful fishing interests.

Answers to the Heads of Enquiry.
For the fishing season of 1732 Captain Edward Falkingham of H.M.S. Salisbury was sent out as Governor (181, 186, 206, 216, 217), and in October he sent home from St. John's elaborate answers to the usual Heads of Enquiry which he had taken out with him. His report emphatically corroborated Clinton's evidence. Since the appointment of civil magistrates their several districts were under good regulation, but the several "admirals" had very little regard to anything but their private interest, and none of them sent any reports of their proceedings to the Privy Council, as they were required to do by the Fishing Act. The disputes that happened were seldom decided by them but were left until the arrival of H.M, ships, In Captain Falkingham's opinion, the "admirals" simply used their authority to collect their debts and serve their own turn.

Connections between Newfoundland and New England and Ireland.
He went on to show what a close connection had sprung up between Newfoundland and New England and Ireland. The New Englanders kept by-boats manned by the local inhabitants and sold the fish they caught to the British sack-ships, the fishermen being paid by goods brought in from the American Plantations. When there were insufficient sack ships to purchase the whole of the catch, ships were laded to carry it direct to the Azores or the British Plantations, but much of it was refuse fish which lowered the reputation of the British fishery. What provisions and cattle did not come from New England was imported direct from Ireland, whence there were coming large numbers of ignorant Irish servants who knew nothing but the tending of cattle and seldom or never became seamen. There was a most serious evil in the great import of rum from the American Plantations, and it was certain that by the masters furnishing their servants with strong liquors at exorbitant prices, great disturbances were caused and the poor servants could never get out of their masters' debt. They were bound to remain in the country, and those who went from England could not get back home, though by law the fishing merchants were bound to return them. In consequence the New Englanders found it easy to entice away .great numbers of seamen and fishermen, leaving behind the refuse of destitute and feckless Irishmen in Newfoundland (404 i, pp. 223–5).

Decline of French interference in Newfoundland.
Falkingham's report and the many papers he forwarded as annexures afford most valuable evidence about the condition of the most distressed of the British dependencies, and they show how the whole of the settlements on the northern coast of America were linked in a single economic nexus. It is interesting to note that Falkingham reported the freedom of Newfoundland at the time from French interference. He could not find that they did anything contrary to the treaty of Utrecht; they did not come to Petit North or any other parts to the northward of Cape Bona Vista. There were no longer any French inhabitants at Placentia or St. Pierre, so that Newfoundland no longer had to cope with those French encroachments which gave so much anxiety to the Governors of Nova Scotia.

Falkingham could find no evidence that the Newfoundland harbours were being used for illicit traffic contrary to the Acts of Trade, which was such a serious complaint at a later period (p. 227).

Illicit French trade at Can so.
At Canso, on the other hand, according to a petition from the merchants trade there a great illicit trade was carried on by the French. They came from Gaspé and Cape Breton to sell great quantities of Martinique rum, molasses and sundry commodities from Old France like brandy, wine and linen to the fishermen who came to Canso from other places. They bartered these goods for fish caught by the English and by their contraband commodities undersold the British ships whose commodities were lawful. The French, too, were enabled to purchase the greatest quantities of fish and supply the markets in the Mediterranean and more especially in Italy, which were yearly overstocked to the detriment of fish carried there in British bottoms (70). There is no mention of this contraband trade in Captain Fitch's answer to the heads of enquiry and it may be that the petitioners were exaggerating the evil under a sense of grievance, but there was no doubt that the fisheries afforded opportunities for leakage through the regulations of the Acts of Trade, and at a later date there is ample confirmation of the abuses mentioned in the petition.

The Canso fishery.
The increase in the French fisheries has already been mentioned earlier in this Introduction. To watch them and guard the struggling British enterprise at Canso a special navy ship was sent out and Captain Fitch of H.M.S. Sheerness was charged with the duty for the season of 1732 (166). Special heads of enquiry, similar to those given annually to the naval commanders sent to Newfoundland, were supplied to Fitch at his departure from England in the spring. From the replies furnished by him at his return we can get a comprehensive view of the ill-success of the Canso settlement. The fishery was partly carried on by men from Exeter and the West of England, but mostly by the people of New England and Nova Scotia. The waters fished by the Canso boats lay so close to the French settlements in Cape Breton Island that they had constantly to encounter French competition both from those who came out on the annual voyages from St. Malo and other ports and from fishermen who were settled in the island. In 1732 there were thirty French boats in Canso waters and they had far more success than our fishermen. They pretended that they were allowed to fish near the English islands along the Nova Scotian coast by leave from the French Governor, but Fitch contended that this was clearly contrary to the provisions of the Treaty of Utrecht and drove them off. There had been much complaint of the poor quality of Canso fish and this was thought to be the cause of the comparative failure of the settlement on which so much trouble had been bestowed. Fitch enquired into the matter and his account of what he found casts a good deal of light upon the economy of the fishery (p. 282). In another letter he gave statistics of the fishery which appear more likely to be accurate than some of the round figures of certain of his predecessors which look like mere guesses (439 ii). The old type of fishing voyage was clearly out-of-date, as Clinton said in Newfoundland, for only one British ship with six men came out; on the other hand there were 12 sack ships of much larger burthen who got their return cargoes by purchase from the local fishermen, 8 American ships and 80 schooners and sloops in which worked twice or thrice as many men as in all the rest of the fishing fleet put together (439 ii). Though it is not exactly specified, there is no doubt that the majority of the sloops and schooners came from New England, and, since the ship masters were always trying to entice away seamen and fishermen from British vessels, they were particularly unpopular (p. 282).

The whale fishery.
Besides the cod fishery at Canso the hunting of whales was being carried on by sloops from New England and there were great hopes that the industry would grow. This is a matter of some interest, because it was in the Canso whale fishery that the New Englanders from Gloucester, Bedford, Nantucket and other ports along that coast learned the experience of the trade that made the American whaler one of the most ubiquitous of mariners in the latter part of the eighteenth century, ready to sail into the remotest seas in search of his quarry almost from pole to pole. The work was carried on from sloops, and so profitable was the trade in 1732 that many of the sloops had not enough casks aboard to contain all the oil yielded by their catches, but had to return to New England ports with the unflayed carcases aboard, an unpleasant enough voyage on the short passage between Canso and Boston, but one that would have been utterly impossible if the ships had been British (439).

Petition of Poole concerning the whale fishery.
The merchants of Poole were not content that the new whale fishery should be monopolised by the New Englanders, and with a view to furthering their own prospects in the trade they petitioned the Crown to apply the privileges secured by those engaged in the Greenland whale fishery under the act of 1731 to the produce of whales killed in Newfoundland and Nova Scotian waters. The petition (400) was sent on to Mr. Fane for his legal opinion as to the extension of the privileges (424, Journal, pp. 321, 323), and his opinion was passed to the petitioners from Poole (438), but it does not appear among the papers. Only by deduction can we judge that it was favourable.

The liquor trade at Can so.
Just as we have spoken of the evils and disorder caused in Newfoundland by the payment of the wages of the servants and fishermen in liquor, so we may note that Canso was kept in a continual turmoil by the liquor trade carried on by the soldiers of its small garrison. The magistrates of the settlement bitterly complained to Captain Fitch that they were obstructed in the exercise of their proper authority by the ill-conduct of tavern keepers under military protection. There were four taverns kept by permanent inhabitants, but "great numbers," (according to Fitch, ten) "are licensed to sell liquor by the officer commanding there, and most of them soldiers, by which means the fishermen are drawn off from their duty. This might be remedied by the power of granting licences being left to the Justices," (496 i) that is to say, in accordance with the practice in England. It is interesting to note how the notorious activities of the soldiers of the New South Wales Corps as liquor sellers at the end of the century were anticipated by the garrison at Canso nearly sixty years before. Similar circumstances produced the same results.

Misbehaviour of the garrison.
Besides the evils flowing from their liquor-selling the soldiers of the garrison were also accused by the New England fishing merchants of destroying the houses, warehouses, stages and flakes built by their fishermen employees. "The first English settler of the said Canso" was John Henshaw of Boston in Massachusetts, and he had particularly suffered from these depredations because when his men had returned to New England for the winter, the soldiers had torn down his sheds. It may be suggested that they did this to obtain fuel from the timbers of which they were built and so avoid the labour of cutting logs in the woods. The merchants prayed Governor Phillips of Nova Scotia to get discipline among the four companies who composed the garrison (p. 254), so "that such practices be not continued or the settlement will be broken up and then improved by the French, who watch all opportunities from our neglect" (496 ii). Though it might appear from the foregoing mention that Henshaw was not resident in Canso during the winter, this can hardly have been the case, for his name appears first in the commission of Justices of the Peace "in the town and liberties of Canso," which implies that he was a permanent resident (496 iii). The new industry of coal-mining which had been started near Canso has already been mentioned incidentally above, but it may be added that its exact site was at Williamstown by Chickenectua and that the workings were open diggings (p. 154 also p. 28).

Nova Sootia.
There is a long and interesting account from Governor Phillips of the state of affairs in Nova Scotia which contains many points of importance for which reference should be made to our abstract. Read as a whole, it gives a better idea of the province than any extracts could convey. Attention may be drawn, however, to the reputed boundaries of the province which had given rise to disputes with France ever since it was ceded under the treaty of Utrecht. "The reputed boundaries are from Kennebeck River to Cape Rozlers [i.e. Roziers, now Cap des Rosiers near Gaspé], north and south, and from the Islands of Canso to the south side of the River St. Lawrence, east and west, but having never been settled, the French disputed the islands of Canso and other places on the one side of the Province and the people of New England a tract of country now called 'Georgia' on the other side" (37 i).

Influence of French priests in Nova Scotia.
The influence of the French priests over the inhabitants of Nova Scotia is brought out very clearly in a long letter from Lieutenant Governor Armstrong from Annapolis and the annexed documents in support of his statements. "Without some statutes," he wrote, "this Province can never be rightly settled, especially seeing the French here upon every frivolous dispute plead the laws of Paris, and from that pretended authority contemn all the orders of this Government, and follow the dictates of their priests and the Bishop of Quebec (or those of Cape Breton) who orders not only the building of churches here, but sends whom and what number of priests he may think proper, and in all other affairs takes the same liberty" (259, p. 147).

Land titles and the seigneurs. Project of Col. Hart.
The complexities of the legal position concerning land titles in Nova Scotia were almost insoluble, and we get illustration of this in Armstrong's account of the disputes relating to the La Tour lands (pp. 147–8). The claims of the seigneurs were so extensive that it was difficult to find land to which they did not lay claim. Colonel John Hart, who had retired from the Governorship of the Leeward Islands and was desirous of founding a settlement in Nova Scotia, summed up the state of the Province fairly when he wrote in his petition. "Such a settlement would be of great consequence to H.M. Dominions in those parts, there being at present very few or no inhabitants in the whole Province of Nova Scotia besides the garrison of Annapolis and about three thousand French who have remained there ever since the Treaty of Utrecht and who in case of a rupture with France could not be depended on … It is not to be expected that lands so exposed and situate in so cold a climate as Nova Scotia can ever be settled without some encouragements whilst lands are still to be had in all the other more Southern Provinces on the continent of America at moderate quit-rents and attended with all the advantages and security resulting from a well-peopled and well-settled government" (323 i). Hart clearly realised the difficulty of what he was proposing to undertake, for he knew the confirmed reluctance of Englishmen of any but the most distressed sort to emigrate. He purposed peopling the lands to be granted to him with one hundred Protestants and their families, probably from Germany or Switzerland, though this is not clearly stated in the petition.

Pury's Swiss colonists in South Carolina.
The most advanced of such projects was that of Jean Pierre Pury of Neuchatel which has been mentioned in the Introductions to preceding volumes and had been on foot for some years. Pury at last arrived in South Carolina in the autumn of 1732 with 120 Swiss emigrants, 50 of whom were men and the rest women and children. According to Governor Johnson, they liked the country very well and were very cheerful. The Governor was careful to do what he could to make them welcome, so that the accounts they would send home to their friends in Europe would induce others to follow their example and cross the Atlantic (487.) In a private letter of a few days later the Governor made the total of Pury's emigrants who had arrived a little less, but said that they had all gone up from the coast to Puryborough well satisfied (504). The earlier history of Pury's scheme is outlined in a report prepared by the Board of Trade for the Committee of the Privy Council on Plantation Affairs concerning a petition for additional land presented by his agent to the Lord President of the Council (127). The petition and the report upon it (239) enable us to follow in detail how one of these emigration schemes was financed and worked out, and we can see that though the emigrants might be Swiss, the capital behind the enterprise was British. There are accessory papers granting the additional acreage sought (see 255, 290, 319).

Emigrants from Ciermaa Switzerland.
Pury's colonists came to Carolina from the French-speaking cantons, but there were also emigrants from German Switzerland attracted by a little book printed in Berne advertising "that the King of England wants mann that are brought up to country buisines and know to improve land and macke butter and cheese in the Royall Province of Carolina wich is a land flowing with milch and honey," as we learn from their naively worded petition to Lord Harrington (514). In the same petition mention is made of Salzburgers who had been well treated on their voyage of emigration to America, and in our previous Introduction the ambitious project of Johann Ochs and Jacob Stuber was spoken of. (v. C.S.P. 1731, pp. xxxvii–xxxviii.) Their colony of Swiss was to be beyond the western mountains of Virginia and the proposal for a "Georgia" in the west did not advance much during 1731 because of the claims objected by Lords Fairfax and Baltimore (372, 376). The matter came to a head in 1733 and several papers relating to it will be dealt with in the succeeding volume of the Calendar.

Land jobbing in South Carolina.
Both the Carolinas were anxious to attract immigrants to settle their vast areas of unoccupied lands, but there were different reasons why the flow of new settlers was not so fast as some people in each colony wished. In South Carolina these were the land jobbers who had been active ever since the days of the Lords Proprietors. The general management of public business seems to have been carried on well in the experienced hands of Governor Johnson, but there were incessant difficulties over the question of land grants and the methods of survey and of recording title. The despatches of the Governor are filled with the details of these disputes, but they do not lend themselves to summarisation, as they are very technical. (See especially 283, 369, 394, 431, 446, 490.) In the interior, South Carolina, as was remarked in the first part of this Introduction, was troubled with unrest among the Indian tribes, but the greatest blow to the prosperity of the colony during 1732 was the pestilence that swept over Charleston during the summer. It was a violent malignant fever which few escaped, and it was supposed that a ship brought it from the Leeward Islands. During July and August it carried off 130 whites, among whom were Governor Johnson's son and three of his servants. Very many of the slaves perished and hardly anyone who came into Charleston from the country escaped (394). It was impossible to summon the Assembly at the usual time, but by November the epidemic had run its course and things had resumed their normal course (487).

North Carolina.
In North Carolina there were similar difficulties over land grants (e.g. 91, 94, especially p. 97), but a large share of the responsibility for the constant disorder that reigned in the affairs of that colony seems to have been due to Governor Burrington himself. His letters are filled with railing against his predecessors and all who opposed his proceedings. One quotation can suffice to show their general tone. Mr. Ashe, one of the Councillors, differed from the Governor over the question of land grants and Hamett, another Councillor, supported him, which provoked Burrington to write to the Board of Trade. "Ashe is an ungrateful villain. Cornelius Hamett is a disgrace to the Council. Bred in Dublin and settled at Cape Fear, he was set to be worth £1000, but is now known to have traded with other men's goods and reduced to keep a public house. It is a misfortune to this Province and to the Governor in particular that there are not a sufficient number of gentlemen in it fit to be Councillors, Justices nor officers in the Militia. There is no difference to be perceived between the Justices, Constables and planters that come to a Court, nor between the officers and private men at a muster, which parity is in no other country but this. Sir Richard Everard [the late Governor] had the meanest capacity and worst principles of any gentleman I ever knew. His administration was equally unjust and simple; he was under the direction sometimes of one set, then of others, who advised him for their own interest, and being incapable of judging was led to do anything they put him upon, which brought infinite confusion on the country [and] every man did as he pleased" (94, pp. 66–7). Burrington had already written in like unmeasured terms in the previous year (see July 1st and September 4th, 1731, C.S.P. 1731), and the Board of Trade had had nearly enough of him (see 159 ii). (fn. n3)

Reproof of the Board of Trade to Governor Burrington.
Before his new letter had been received (August 17th), they had already written (June 20th, 1732) "As to those paragraphs [of your letters] which relate to yourself and those who have disagreed with your measures, we cannot but take notice that they are couched in a very extraordinary style, particularly that where speaking of Mr. Ashe's declining to come to England with the Chief Justice, [i.e. William Smith] you write in the following words 'by which failure of his Baby Smith will be quite lost, having nothing but a few lies to support his cause, unless he can obtain an instruction from a gentleman in Hanover Square.' Of these words we expect an immediate and distinct explanation" (269). In August they wrote in detail about Burrington's proceedings (355), and they were carefully considering the papers presented against him by his opponents (356, 377, 461 etc.).

When in November the Governor replied to the severe reproof of the Board, he made matters worse. He protested that he could not understand their remark that his references to Chief Justice Smith were "couched in a very extraordinary style, couching not being customary" to him. Smith, he said, was a very idle, drunken fellow who was the son of a smuggler and bankrupt yet was horribly given to fibbing and boasting of his family and interest. Ashe was the natural son of a Wiltshire gentleman and, although he [Burrington] had raised him from a poor clerk to be Speaker of the Assembly, he assisted in composing a set of horrid crimes calculated to make him odious and delivered in a petition to H.M. by Smith (450). To the Duke of Newcastle he wrote less heatedly, but he could not deny that the Government of the colony was in turmoil and his opponents very numerous. He begged for the Duke's support against them and wound up with a reminder of what his family had done in the Revolution, which always seemed at this period to be the last plea of a despairing petitioner (459). There are many other papers relating to the scandal which can be traced by reference in the Index to the names of the persons concerned.

The most significant happening during the year in the southern continental colonies was, of course, the founding of Oglethorpe's new settlement in the southern part of South Carolina, the real Georgia. The negotiations between the Board of Trade and the promoters, led by Oglethorpe but usually working under Lord Perceval's name, had been going on ever since 1730, but they have left more traces in the Journal than among the papers calendared (see e.g. Journal, pp. 165, 167, 169 etc.). The first papers here included are a copy of the Charter of Incorporation of the Trustees for establishing the Colony of Georgia which comes from the entry book of the Board of Trade (258) and an Order of the Committee of the Privy Council for an Instruction to the Governor of South Carolina in favour of the Georgia settlers (322, 398).

Papers of the Trustees for Georgia.
The Duke of Newcastle sent out circular letters to all the Governors of the continental colonies south of New York and to Barbados enlisting their assistance for Oglethorpe's settlers (444), and there are a few mentions of them in the despatches from South Carolina late in the year, but that is all from the papers of the Secretary of State and the Board of Trade. It is exactly what might be expected, for the venture was independent of the Crown when once the Trustees had received their charter, and they were responsible for their own business. However, among our abstracts from No. 401 onwards down to the end of the year there will be found several Georgia papers, grants and letters from the secretary of the Trustees etc. It will be noted that all these come from two volumes CO. 5/666 and 5/670, which belong neither to the Secretary of State nor the Board. They are part of a series which came into the possession of the Crown long after 1732 when the Trustees resigned their charter and Georgia became a royal colony, June 24th, 1752 (Journal, 1749–53, pp. 400 etc.). Since their provenance is so different, it seems improper to divide up the items contained within the Trustees' volumes and sort them in with documents from the two sources that we are mainly dealing with. It has therefore been decided to deal with the papers of the Georgia Trustees separately in volumes of the Calendar which will cover the whole period of their existence, 1732–1752. This decision was reached after the sheets of the present volume were printed off, and certain items will be reprinted (e.g. 401, 413, 416, 422, 427, 428, 432, 433, 434, 440, 441, 442, 443, 445, 470, 478, 502, 503).

Virginia. The working of the Tobacco Act of 1730. Lawlessness in the Northern Neck.
The main subjects of Lieutenant-Governor Gooch's excellent despatches from Virginia are his replies to the questions of the House of Commons concerning colonial laws and manufactures and the controversy with the Sugar Islands. There are also valuable comments concerning the projects for settling the western lands, but all these points have been referred to earlier in this Introduction and need not detain us. The question of (greatest interest in the colony was the working of the Tobacco Act of 1730 and its amendment in certain small points that had been found defective. Gooch reported favourably upon the measure and claimed that it had saved the industry of tobaccoplanting from ruin and had given the colony several thousands of pounds more for its crop than would have been obtained if the Act had not been passed (241, p. 126 ; 308, pp. 174–5). The older settled parts of Virginia were orderly and well-governed, but the disputed region of the Northern Neck was a scene of lawlessness and trouble. The people were remote from the seat of government and always remarkable for their disobedience; they were mingled with many transported convicts and were ready to oppose everything that concerned their interest by discovering and thwarting their knavery (149, p. 98). They particularly objected to the Tobacco Act which prescribed the inspection of tobacco parcels intended for export, because it prevented their practice of imposing trash and refuse upon their customers. "Some of the most turbulent among the planters rather than their tobacco should be inspected burned some of the warehouses upon the presumption that if they could by that means put a stop to [it], their trash which would not pass under the law, they might sell as usual when the repeal came in. Within the compass of a month four houses were destroyed by fire" (pp. 97–8). However, in time, when the discontented planters in the Northern Neck found that their hopes of repeal were likely to be disappointed since the Act was willingly accepted in every other part of the colony, the troubles gradually quieted down, although before it was over a parish church and a large tobacco warehouse had been wilfully and maliciously burned by the lawless and discontented mob as their last desperate effort (p. 177).

Customs frauds in the tobacco trade.
The Virginia planters were very hard hit by the low prices obtained for their tobacco in Great Britain and they petitioned Parliament and the King for an inquiry into the many frauds and mismanagement of the British customs which allowed much tobacco smuggling to be carried on with impunity. They sent John Randolph to London to propose a new system whereby these frauds might be prevented with benefit to H.M. revenue and a probable rise in the prices at which legally imported tobacco could be sold (309, 309 i).

The Middle Colonies. Constitution of Rhode Island.
In the Middle Colonies of Pennsylvania, New Jersey and New York the year was comparatively uneventful and besides the matters on the frontier to which reference has been made earlier in this Introduction the despatches contain little or nothing calling for special remark. The very small knowledge of the authorities in England concerning the happenings in Connecticut and Rhode Island has already been noted, but we may also remark upon the peculiarities of the constitution of the latter colony, which appeared in the report of the Attorneyand Solicitor-General upon the dispute between Governor Jencks and his opponents. According to the Charter the Governor stood in a different position to the Assembly to what was usual throughout the colonies. "The General Assembly, or the greatest part of them then present, whereof the Governor or Deputy Governor and six of the Assistants at least to be seven, have a power to make and repeal laws . . [but] no negative voice is given to the Governor nor any power reserved to the Crown of approving or disapproving the laws. Though by the Charter the presence of the Governor or in his absence of the Deputy Governor is necessary to the legal holding of a General Assembly, yet when he is there he is a part of the Assembly and concluded by the majority. Consequently acts passed by the majority of such Assembly are valid in law, notwithstanding the Governor's entering his dissent at the time of passing thereof" (340). Rhode Island thus differed from the royal colonies wherein the Governor's veto upon legislation was an effective part of the constitution and was very frequently exercised.

Massachusetts Governor Belcher's troubles.
As was remarked in earlier Introductions, by far the most recalcitrant and difficult colony to handle was Massachusetts. Governor Belcher's post was a bed of thorns, for he had three or four major difficulties on his hands at once, yet he could get little direction from the authorities in England to help him. In November 1731 the Board of Trade had written admonishing Belcher "to be punctual in your correspondence with them and give them constant accounts of whatever shall happen in your Governments" (see Introduction, C.S.P. 1731, p. xxxiv). This reproof he received at the end of March and naturally it moved him to protest. "As this single letter of yours acknowledges the receipt of eleven of mine, and that I have since wrote them four more, I hope their Lordships will have no reason to complain for want of constant accounts from me" (188). In October things had got worse, for Belcher had to write to Popple, "It is a long time since I have had the honour of any from their Lordships, and I suppose near twenty of my letters lie now before the Board unanswered" (426). This complaint reached the Board in December 1732, but it was not read until the end of August 1733 when it was lumped with twenty-four other letters and papers relating to Massachusetts besides half a dozen from him dealing with New Hampshire (Journal, pp. 355–6).

Belcher was certainly doing his best in very difficult circumstances in the face of an Assembly that refused to find means for supplying the expenses of government or even for paying the long overdue wages of the soldiers garrisoning their forts, and the tone of the Board's letter to him in October 1732 therefore seems very undeserved. It was agreed upon by the President (the Earl of Westmoreland) and Messrs. Bladen and Brudenell, Commissioners (Journal, pp. 320, 321) and may be said to show something of the growing irritation in England concerning Massachusetts affairs. They began by acknowledging the receipt of eleven letters from the Governor dating back to June 1731, "the substance of all which letters [relates] principally to the old difficulties in the matters of your salary, upon which you have had our repeated opinion . . We advise you to continue your endeavours to induce the Assembly to a due compliance with H.M. most reasonable demands. For though H.M., as you have hitherto fulfilled your duty in this particular by complying with the tenour of your Instruction, has once had the goodness to allow you to receive a present from the people in lieu of a salary, we cannot say what may be the success of your second application, and certain it is that we cannot constantly advise his Majesty to show the like condescension to a people who in no instance have shown any inclination to do what has been proposed to them by his Royal Instructions … If the Assembly of New England, when they come to be acquainted with H.M. confirmation of these Instructions, should either refuse or neglect to supply the Treasury of that Province in a legal manner, so that neither the fortifications can be kept up nor the dignity of H.M. Government supported, it will be the Assembly only that will remain answerable for the ill consequences of their own conduct" (412).

The latter part of the letter was even more minatory in tone. "Your remarks upon what Mr. Newman wrote to you about Ms having applied to this Board for the appointment of some Councillors in New Hampshire are something new. For if you imagine that your being directed to lay before us constant lists of such persons as you may think qualified for that trust implied any necessity that we should nominate from your list only, we must inform you that you are very much mistaken" (p. 234). "We can't avoid taking notice of the many parts of your letters, where in general you insinuate pretty hard tilings against the character of Colonel Dunbar. If you design this by way of complaint against him, we desire to know it that we may send him copies thereof for his answer. If not, you may discontinue this way of writing for the future" (412, p. 234).

Disputes with Dun bar.
The endless disputes between Belcher and Dunbar dragged on with wearisome monotony but no new points appeared. On one point at least Dunbar suffered complete defeat, for the decision was given in favour of the claims of the Massachusetts men to the Kennebec lands and his schemes for founding new settlements there came to an end (Journal, p. 429 and see Index sub Kennebec). (fn. n4) Dunbar must have been a man of dictatorial temper and little judgment if Belcher's description of him is to be accepted. "Mr. Dunbar's violent proceedings with the people [near Pemaquid] in threatening to tie them to trees and whip them, to shoot 'em and burn their houses has made several of 'em tell me they thought they lived in an English Government and were not to be dragooned like French slaves. That gentleman's insulting behaviour will never be any service to the Crown in that part of the world. The people will not recede from any part of their right, but by being treated as Englishmen, I mean by a due course of law. Some of the claimers have told him they will part with their lives as soon as their lands, which their ancestors purchased with their money and their blood" (101).

There is an entry of a commission appointing one Spencer Phipps as Lieutenant-Governor of "New Hampshire" in April 1732. Reference to the documents (C.O. 324/50, pp. 59–60 and 324/36, p. 326), however, shows that there is a mistake in this abstract. Phipps was appointed Lieutenant-Governor of Massachusetts Bay, not of New Hampshire. Despite Belcher's repeated requests Dunbar was retained in his appointment and is designated Lieutenant-Governor of New Hampshire as late as 1738 when he came to England on leave of absence (Journal, 1734–41, many entries under this title down to p. 239).



The Bahamas. Compensation to the Lords Proprietors and lessees.
The final stages of the long process of taking the ill-starred and destitute colony of the Bahamas into the hands of the Oown involved difficult questions of compensation. The actual rights in the islands were legally in the hands of Sir Charles Wager and other lessees who with Captain Woodes Rogers had purchased a lease for twenty-one years from the original Lords Proprietors, which in 1732 had still nearly seven years to run. These lessees claimed that they ought to be compensated for the remainder of their lease, also for the £20,000 they had paid to the Proprietors for their old fortifications and other improvements and for a further £20,000 which they had expended in sending out inhabitants, provisions and stores and in suppressing pirates. They had expected to recoup themselves for this expenditure by disposing of grants of lands, but they had sold little or none, and now they claimed that they ought to receive an allowance from the Crown of a sum equal to that allowed to the Lords Proprietors. The Board of Trade had many interviews with the lessees to discuss the matter and come to terms, and finally the lessees were willing to accept a sum of 6000 guineas in full discharge of all their claims. The Board reported this offer to the Committee of the Privy Council and recommended its acceptance in order that all titles to land in the Bahamas might be placed upon a secure basis. They advised that a demand should be made to Parliament for the sum, and a bill brought in to make the purchase effectual according to the precedent set in the parallel case of Carolina (128, Journal, pp. 279–80, 282, 284). The Committee were not, however, prepared to accept the course proposed in the report and sent it back to the Board with orders to enquire into the exact amounts received by the lessees from quit-rents in the islands (137, Journal, p. 292). The matter therefore still dragged on until August 1733 when an Order in Council was issued to the Treasury directing the completion of a bargain whereby the Proprietors were paid out for £6000 and the lessees for £2000 (Journal, p. 367), a meagre recoupment for all the losses that had been incurred in that disastrous experiment in colonisation.

Death of Capt. Woodes Rogers.
No one had striven more to make the experiment a success than Captain Woodes Rogers. He had been appointed as the first royal Governor, but he had only a very short tenure of the office, for he died in harness on July 15, 1732, as was announced to the Duke of Newcastle by a letter from the President and Council of the Bahamas dated July 20 (310). Richard Fitzwilliam was appointed to succeed him as Governor in January 1732/3 (Journal, p. 367), but an abstract of his commission appears among our papers here on the date of Woodes Rogers's death, July 15, 1732 (304). This must clearly have been ante-dated, and attention is here directed to it as an example showing how the dates attached to the papers calendared must not always be taken as first-hand evidence without confirmation. As a matter of fact it was not until May 10, 1733, that the draft of Fitzwilliam's commission was approved by Order in Council (Journal, p. 346), and the actual passing of the seal must therefore be nearly a year subsequent to that at which it appears among our abstracts.

Barbados. Succession to Governor Worseley.
Another example of the complexities attending appointments to colonial Governorships appears in connection with the Governorship of Barbados. Henry Worseley had held this appointment for several years, and it was determined to supersede Mm in April 1731 when orders were given for the preparation of a commission for Walter Chetwynd, who had been a Commissioner of Trade (Journal, p. 196). Long discussions took place during the autumn of 1731 concerning the salary to be paid to him (Journal, pp. 230–1, 258–9), but, before they were completed and he had taken up the appointment, Chetwynd died (February 1731/2, 69) and a new appointment had to be made. Worseley had returned to England in November 1731 (Journal, p. 243) leaving the government of Barbados to be administered by the President of the Council, and it was not until May 1732 that Viscount Howe was nominated as Governor (208). The draft of his commission was prepared by the Board of Trade on May 17, 1732 (221) and apparently approved by the Committee on the following day (222) and the royal warrant was issued on May 31 (248). But this approval was not received by the Board of Trade until August 15 (222), and read by them on September 7 (Journal, p. 316). The instructions for the Governor were prepared in November and December (Journal, pp. 325–6), but he did not arrive in Barbados until April in the following year.

Paralysis of government in the colony.
While matters were thus taking their leisurely course in England, the government of the colony was being administered by the President of the Council, Samuel Barwick. But he found it impossible to secure ready obedience from the officials of the colony, and things seem to have fallen into a bad state of neglect. Neither the Clerk of the Assembly nor the Clerk of the Courts of Common Pleas would render transcripts of the Assembly's Journals or of the proceedings of the Courts of Common Law, nor would the Treasurer send in his accounts. President Barwick was therefore unable to comply with the insistent demands of the Board of Trade for the transcripts they needed to complete their files. The officers knew that the President could not remove them from office for neglect without the consent of at least seven members of Council, and as this was impossible, they could flout the President's authority with impunity. Even more serious was the Assembly's neglect of the fortifications which in a tropical climate rapidly fell into disrepair. Governor Worseley had found it difficult to secure the necessary supplies from the Assembly, and after his departure nothing whatever was done and the colony was falling into a state of complete defencelessness (349).

Leoward Islands.
Nothing of particular moment happened in the Leeward Islands in the course of the year. The burden of government had, in the absence of a Governor, usually fallen on the shoulders of the Lieutenant-General, Colonel William Mathew who had seen longer service in the West Indies than almost any colonial official. But during 1732 Mathew was on leave of absence in England (see Journal) and the burden of administration fell upon Michael Smith, President of the Council of Nevis, who was neither experienced nor influential and was a very poor and infrequent correspondent with the Secretary of State or the Board. It is possibly to his incompetence that the dearth of information during the period is attributable.

Jamaica. Removal of the two regiments. Failure to suppress the negro revolt.
The unfortunate experiment of placing two regular regiments in Jamaica, to which reference has been made in preceding Introductions was at last brought to an end. The remnants of the regiments were ordered to Ireland, although those of the soldiers who wished to enlist in the Independent Companies in Jamaica were permitted to do so (18, 19, p. 65). The cadres of the regiments sailed in March, 1732 (146) after endless wrangling of Governor Hunter with the Assembly, who obstinately refused to pay any of the heavy expenses that had mounted up against army funds which were supplied from the pockets of the British taxpayer. The tragic story of blundering and incompetence, if not worse, that dogged the many parties sent against the negro rebels in the interior still dragged on. Governor Hunter's despatches make depressing reading, for they invariably alternate between hopeful descriptions of new efforts against the rebels and accounts of the failure of party after party to make any permanent headway in suppressing the insurrection. Owing to cowardice, disobedience and sometimes actual treachery, party after party fell into ambushes laid by the rebel negroes in the thick woods, but nothing seems to have persuaded the members of the Jamaica Assembly to drop their factions and unite in measures to clear up the danger that they never ceased to proclaim as fatal to any security or prosperity in the colony (see e.g. 170, 292, 388, 462).

The island's trade has already been referred to earlier in this Introduction, but we may again draw attention to the efforts that were being made to encourage the production of coffee (29 i, 83 i). Cocoa was formerly one of the principal commodities in Jamaica, but the trade was now lost owing to the restrictions and heavy duties laid upon it in Great Britain. There was a fear that a similar decline might threaten the trade of the colony in rum and ginger (83 i), and appeals were made to the Crown for their encouragement by bounties such as were paid for hemp and flax culture in the Northern Colonies.



There are no references to the African trade during the year among the papers here calendared, but what was done in the business of the African Companies with the Board will appear in a later volume of the Calendar especially devoted to African affairs.

An odd phrase occurs in a letter from Lord Delawarr to the Duke of Newcastle. He wrote in reference to a complainant about the proceedings of Governor Burrington of North Carolina. "Mr. Cole, whose head of hair your Grace is perfectly acquainted with is the occasion of my troubling you with this" (449). The reference, as it stands, seems inexplicable, for whether it refers to Mr. Cole's natural hair or his wig or is merely some catch phrase does not appear. There is another unusual phrase in a letter from Lieutenant-Governor Armstrong concerning land grants in Nova Scotia. He speaks of the "bullings and boundings" of all patents granted in the province since his arrival (455).

Arthur Percival Newton


  • n1. For the debate preceding this seoond Address, see Cobbett, W., Part Hist., viii, 918–921,
  • n2. The Resolution of the House was passed on Jan. 28th, 1731/2 (46 i) and forwarded by the Duke to the Board on the 29th (46). It was read"by them on Feb. 3rd (Journal, p. 274) and the papers listed and copied by the 4th (Journal, p. 275; 66). It was certainly impossible to have worked more expeditiously.
  • n3. The letter from the Board of Trade proposing Gabriel Johnstone for Governor of North Carolina is really dated 5 April 1733 and has been included here among the papers of 1732 by mistake. See original and Journal, p. 338,
  • n4. It must be noted that forty pages have disappeared from the New England Entry Book for 1732 (CO. 5 /917). These pages cover the period from April 26th to September 17th, 1732. The binding was broken and the quires loosened, probably by accident. The disappearance is certainly not recent.