America and West Indies: January 1733, 16-31

Pages 15-29

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 40, 1733. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1939.

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January 1733, 16-31

Jan. 16.
19. Mr. Popple to Mr. Fane. Encloses, for his opinion in point of law, 19 public and 16 private acts (enumerated) passed in Virginia in 1732. [C.O. 5, 1366. pp. 96-103.]
Jan. 17.
20. Duke of Newcastle to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses following, from the Commissaries, "giving an account of the present state of their proceedings in the disquisition of the right of H.M. subjects to the cutting of logwood at Campechy ; and as the Commissarys have applyed for further orders etc., H.M. refers it to your consideration, that if you have any further proofs or arguments to produce for the better enabling H.M. Commissarys to support this claim, you may communicate the same to me in order to their being transmitted to them." Signed, Holles Newcastle. Endorsed, Recd. 20th Jan., Read 7th Feb., 173 2/3 1 p. Enclosed,
20. i. Extract of letter from the Commissaries at Seville to Lord Harrington. Seville, 25th July, 1732 (N.S.). Refer to letter of 18th inst., giving an account of their conferences relating to their demand for reparations of prizes taken in America since 11/12 June, 1728. Enclosure i contains what the Spanish Commissarys have advanced with relation to the King of Spain's right to all the countries and islands situated in America from 40 degrees north latitude to the South Pole, founded on a gift from Pope Alexander 6th, and on the Spaniards having been the first discoverers and possessors of said countries, excepting only such of them as shall have been given away by Treaties. And by virtue of the said right they insisted, that we should exhibit H.M. title to the Island of Providence and the rest of the Bahama Islands, and the other places mentioned in their said papers. But altho' we were sufficiently apprized by the Treaties, as well as by several documents we received from the Board of Trade, of H.M. titles to those places ; we did not judge it proper to produce them for the present, apprehending it might only have given the Spanish Commissarys room to cavil and dispute the validity thereof. We therefore gave them for answer, that it did not appear to us, that they had a right to insist on our exhibiting H.M. said titles, who being in possession it must be their part to shew, that the Spaniards were the first possessors [note in pencil on opposite page : A wrong issue to put it upon.], and to make good their aforesaid pretensions ; for by the civil law, which they first pleaded, we proved the onus probandi to be always incumbent upon the claimant, but upon their declining this, and at their insistence we agreed to give an account of this matter to our respective Courts. Endorsed, Recd. 20th Jan., 173 2/3. Copy. 2 pp.
20. ii. Claim advanced by the Spanish Commissaries (v. preceding). Whereas H.M. has an indisputable and notorious right by sundry titles to the property and dominion of the Spanish America, with all the islands and seas adjacent from the time of the discovery, conquest and aggregation of them, which comprehend all the islands and continents found out, discovered or that shall be discovered between the Arctick and Antarctick Poles, one hundred leagues westward of the islands of the Azores, excepting those places which have since by agreement with H.M. been possess'd by other Princes ; [Note in margin : The explanation of their demand is from 40 degrees No. latitude in America to the South Pole.] and whereas the British Nation have introduced themselves into the said Dominions without the consent of His Majesty, particularly into the Islands of New Providence, Tortola, Panisbron or Virgin Islands, the hutts built from the Cape of Catoch to the Gulph of Honduras and the places called Islas de Mugeres bordering upon the people of Cohak, Bolona and Lake de Terminis, the neighbourhood of the river Vallis, and within the limits of Florida, the British Commissaries ought to agree, that the abovementioned places be quitted, and all others, that have been possest in the like manner, be left free and unmolested, or that the British Nation shall make appear, that they are in possession of them by virtue of an agreement with H.M. Endorsed as preceding. Translation. 1 pp.
20. iii. Commissaries at Seville to the Duke of Newcastle. Seville, 26th Sept., 1732. Since our last letter of the 23rd inst. etc. the Spanish Commissaries etc. yesterday in a very serious manner desired to know whether we had received H.M. resolutions in order for the discussion and decision of their demand for the evacuation of the several places in America belonging to the King of Spain tho' at present in the possession of H.M. We told them we had not yet received any answer to this point, but that we hoped we should very soon etc. They threw out to us that they did not propose to make any further demands, till this was discussed etc. Refer to No. i. Signed, B. Keene, Arthur Stert, John Goddard. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 p.
20. iv. Same to Same. Seville, 24th Oct., 1732, N.S. Extract. Acknowledge letter of 26th Sept. "since which we have had several conferences with the Spanish Commissaries. On the 6th inst. they delivered us the following paper, described. Hope their answer, No. vi, will meet with H.M. approbation. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 p.
20. v. Proposal of the Spanish Commissaries referred to in preceding. For the better maintaining a good correspondence between the two nations everywhere and that there may be an end put at once to that sort of hostility which arises from the clandestine cutting of logwood, as well as for the suspending the orders already given by H.M. for preventing this abuse, propose that His Britannick Majesty shall give clear and effectual orders for His subjects to desist from the beforementioned cutting of logwood and from the exercise of this illicit commerce. Same endorsement. Translation. p.
20. vi. Reply of the British Commissaries to preceding. The paper delivered on the 6th [Nov.], containing nothing but a declaration of the mesures which His Catholic Majesty has resolved to take to prevent British subjects from cutting Campeachy wood for the future, and insisting on orders in accordance from His Majesty, it appears that from the manner in which the article in question is approached in the said paper, that the Spanish Commissaries have desired to withdraw it from the jurisdiction (ressort) of the Commission ; and if such was their intention, His Majesty's Commissaries are of opinion that the contents of the abovementioned paper ought to have passed through another channel, etc. It is surprising that whilst the Commission appointed for discussing the rights and privileges of the respective subjects is actually sitting, orders such as those mentioned should have been despatched, which, without giving room for discussion, seem to assume that the article in question has already been decided in favour of the Crown of Spain. Same endorsement. French. Copy. 1 p.
20. vii. Extract of letter from the British Commissaries to the Duke of Newcastle. Seville, Dec. 1/12, 1732. Enclose answer and reply (Nos. viii, ix) to preceding. Same endorsement. Copy. p.
20. viii. Answer of the Spanish Commissaries to No. vi. Abstract (i) The Commission is not only for the discussion and decision, but likewise for the settling of the points submitted to it, and as one of these points is the examing into all the abuses on both sides, and that the Commissaries ought to have particular regard to the principal and final intent of this Commission, which is the union and good correspondence between the two nations, it seems to be in a peculiar and unavoidable manner incumbent on them to use all possible means to secure the same by settling this point and preventing the inconveniencys that daily encrease. That the cutting of logwood is a notorious and detestable abuse, appears from it's not being allowed by any of the Treatys. For from it there are several transactions which confirm this prohibition, and some by which the Court of England has justified itself upon this matter, declaring that it had never consented to such a contravention etc. (ii) It cannot be inferred from the above paper (No. v) that the orders referred to have been issued at this present juncture, on the contrary it seems to imply that they are of an earlier date etc. (iii) Even if they had been new, the British Commissaries would have no ground for their observation, because the right, dominion, property and possession of H.M. being indisputable, and the frequent expulsion of those persons who were employed in cutting logwood having never been opposed by the Court of England, it cannot be a sufficient motive for H.M. to suspend his precautions, because such matters are produced as a subject of debate, which being clear, evident and notorious were never before disputed ; for by the same extraordinary rule the British Commissarys might tye down the absolute power of H.M. in all his dominions, merely under pretence of having some imaginary pretensions to them. Same endorsement. Translation. 3 pp.
20. ix. Reply of the British Commissaries to No. viii. Abstract. Agree that the principal object of the Commission is to strengthen the good understanding between the two nations by removing certain objects of contention, and regarding, therefore, the question of logwood-cutting as coming properly within the jurisdiction (ressort) of the Commission, they could not help being surprised that the Spanish Commissaries should inform them of orders of some date sent by the Court of Spain on a matter still in dispute, and that they should describe it as a detestable abuse, without producing the smallest proof to invalidate the incontestable right of His Majesty's subjects etc. Continue :Campeachy wood is a product of the Province of Yucatan, where the Crown of Spain is in possession of San Francisco, Merida and Valladolid, and perhaps of some other places of little importance, but all the rest of this great Peninsula was a veritable desert, in which the Spaniards had not any forts, fortifications or magazines, which have always been regarded as the marks of possessions in America. Such was the true state of the Province at the time when the English first established themselves near Cape Catoche, Suma Santa, Laguna de Terminos, Trieste and the Isle des Bufs, where for a very long time they cut Campeachy wood without interruption even before the Treaty of Madrid in 1667. And it is worthy of note that they continued in the said possession at the time of the conclusion of the Treaty of 1670, by which their rights were established and confirmed in the strongest and most effective manner. Quote 7th Article of that Treaty. Continue :The Spaniards indeed began some time afterwards to disturb the Colony, and to challenge the right and liberty which it had so long enjoyed without interruption. For H.M. Commissaries believe they can advance as an indisputable fact, that since the publication of the Treaty of '67 until some years after the Treaty of America, the logwood-cutters had not been in any way disturbed or annoyed in their occupation directly or indirectly etc. Continue the case as stated by Council of Trade in 1717 (v. C.S.P. 1717-18. No. 104 i.), concluding with the clause in the Treaty of Commerce of Utrecht, confirmed by the Treaty of Seville, which they regard as decisive, since by right, tolerance and indulgence the logwood cutters are thereby confirmed in possession. Conclude :They therefore hope that the Spanish Commissaries, far from regarding the matter as an imaginary pretention, will yield to the evidence and the strength of the proofs etc. Same endorsement. French. Copy. 12 pp.
20. x. British Commissaries to the Duke of Newcastle. Seville, 23rd Dec., 1732. Acknowledge letter of 9th Nov., with H.M. commands that we should enter with the Spanish commissaries into the disquisition of the right of H.M. subjects to cut logwood in the Bay of Campeachy, that we should complain of the orders given by His Catholick Majesty for hindring the exercise of this right, and that we should desire that those orders be revoked. Refer to their last letter and enclosures (Nos. vii-ix), "which we have the pleasure to find agreable to H.M. said commands," and enclose following, "whereby your Grace will see, [the Spanish Commissaries] declare that they will not enter into any further discussion of this matter, or suspend the orders etc. (No. v) till we produce other proofs etc. But as we are humbly of opinion that we have already laid before them all that was for our purpose contain'd in the information given us by the Board of Trade, as well as all that we could meet with in the several Treaties with this Crown, we humbly apprehend we have nothing more to advance, and shall be obliged to wait for H.M. further Instructions etc. Signed and endorsed as No. iii. Copy. 1 pp.
20. xi. Reply of the Spanish Commissaries to No. ix. Seeing that the British Commissarys do not give a direct and particular answer to the last paper relating to logwood etc. (No. viii), and that they do not admit of the amicable proposal (No. iii) for the setling this dependence (as we are reciprocally obliged) in order to remove the uneasiness thereby occasioned between the two nations, it does not seem that H.M. Commissaries have any more to do in this matter, having already discharged their part, nor will they be accountable for the pernicious consequences that may attend this abuse if not redressed by the method which in their last paper was shewn to be so clear, so fast and so necessary etc. Notwithstanding etc., they are ready to discuss any pretentions that shall be produced on this subject, provided it be with any foundation, and proving that before the year 1670, the Crown of England had the dominion, possession and property of the lands and places in the Provinces of Yucatan, or that the same had been since given up by the express or tacit consent of H.M., and that the English have enjoyed the possession of them without interruption or dispute, before and till the time of the Treaty of Utrecht. In such case the proofs shall be examined, and if found to be just, it shall be allowed that the orders which till such time may have been given for preventing this practise ought to be suspended. But otherwise, as the Province of Yeucatan is under the dominion of H.M. by its inseparable identical union with America, any dispute would appear scandalous that might suspend the precautions taken by His Majesty. Same endorsement. Translation. 1 pp. [C.O. 388, 31. w. 57-68.]
Jan. 18. 21. Representation of the President, Council and Assembly of Barbados to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The said Island has been for many years past of great advantage of Great Britain, on which it has been and ever must be dependent, and from whence it has allways received and ever must receive it's most valuable supplyes. For several years last past there has been a very great want of cash in the said island, and trade has been carryed on etc. chiefly by credit given by the British merchants etc. and by the inhabitants to one another ; and without such credit be continued the trade of the island must sink and in short time be wholly lost etc. The Sugar Plantations require a continuall supply of slaves, horses, cattle, lumber and plantation stores, for all which the sugar planters have no other means of paying than by their sugars rum melasses, the currt. cash of the said island at present being not sufficient to defray the hundredth part of the necessary annuall expences of the said island. In order to obtain and preserve such creditt as aforesaid the Legislature of the said island have from time to time made severall good and wholsome laws (now in full force) very much in favour of creditors, who have thereby all reasonable security for the payment of their debts, and a method of coming at them wth. great ease and expedition. By an Act made in this Colony in its infancy intituled an Act declaring what proofs to bonds, bills, procurations, letters of attorney, procurations etc. shall be sufficient in law (which act in its preamble takes notice that by reason of the great distance between this island and England direct proof concerning deeds, bonds, writings or other specialtys for moneys or goods etc. could not be had, and that thereby great mischiefs had redounded to the good people of England and great obstruction to the justice of the said island) it is enacted that such deeds and bonds etc., all letters of attorney etc. which should at any time thereafter be produced in any Court of Justice in the said island attested to have been proved upon oath under the Corporation seal of the Lord Mayor of London, or any other Mayor or Chief Officer of any City or Town Corporate within the Dominions of England, should be taken deemed and judged as sufficient in law as if the witnesses in them named and subscribed had been personally there and proved the same and that such attestation should be sufficient evidence to a jury to give a verdict thereon. By another Act depositions of witnesses departing, departed, or extream sick, taken before any Governour, Judge Assistant or Justice of the Peace (the other party having had notice to be present to cross interrogate etc.) are enacted to be etc. good evidence in law. And by the constant usage and practice of the Courts of Common Pleas in the sd. island all agents and factors (making oath that they have no profit or loss by the success of the cause except their commissions) are admitted to prove their accounts and all matters relating to their factorage and commiss-business. By means of those laws and said usage etc. the English merchants who have given credit to the inhabitants have found it no difficult matter to prove their debts etc. The method of suing and proceeding to judgment for debts in this island is very easy and expeditious, as appears by the Act establishing the Courts of Common Pleas etc. Its provisions and subsequent modifications explained. Continue : To which we begg leave to add that by the constant usage and practice of all the Courts of Law and Equity in this island, lands of inheritance in fee simple have ever been held and adjudged liable to the payment of debts of what nature soever, and actions are daily brought against execrs. and admrs. for debts and contracts of their testators or intestates, of wt. nature soever sueh debts or contracts be, and upon recoverys thereon had the lands of the testators or intestates are taken in execution and appraised to the creditor, and the Marshall gives the creditor possession thereof and a bill of sale for them, and the creditor thereby gains a fee in the lands appraised to him. Thus it appears that creditors have all reasonable security for the payment of their debts here, and even better security for them than creditors in England have for their debts there. There the creditors of Barbados in generall have hitherto been well contented with the constitution so much to their advantage. But so it is that some merchants of London having sometime in 1731 preferred a petition to your Lordshipps complaining that as the laws stood in some of H.M. Colonys and Plantations in America his subjects of Great Britain had but a precarious or no remedy for the recovery of their just debts, and your Lordships having been pleased thereupon to represent to H.M. that it might be proper that lands in the Colonys should be subject to the payment of debts as lands are in Great Britain, that Representation being read in the House of Commons the last sessions gave occasion to etc. the Act for the more easy recovery of debts in H.M. Plantations and Colonys in America, by which etc. it is enacted that affidavits taken in Great Britain shall be evidence in actions and suits relating to debts and accounts wherein persons residing in Great Britain are partyes, and that after the 29th Sept., 1732, houses, lands, negros and other hereditaments and reall estate scituate and being within any of H.M. Plantacons in America belonging to any person indebted shall be liable to and chargeable with all just debts, dutys and demands of wt. nature or kind soever by any such person to H.M. or any of his subjects and shall and may be assetts for the payment thereof in like manner as reall estates are by the Law of England etc. and be subject to the like remedys and process in any Courts of Law or Equity in any of the said Plantations etc. But forasmuch as the said petition on which your Lordships' Representation was founded contained only a complaint of want of Justice in regard to creditors in Maryland and some other Colonys, in which lands and buildings and other reall estate had not been subjected to the payment of debts, and this island was nowise mentioned in the petition or representation, and such ample provision had been made in that island for the security of creditors as aforesaid, we humbly apprehend that the said act of Parliament was not intended any way to affect this island where the laws with regard to creditors are much more favourable than even those of Great Britain, and that in many particulars. But should the said act be construed to extend hither, it must (as we humbly conceive) soon compleat the ruin of the inhabitants (who are already sinking under many and great misfortunes and calamitys) and will in truth be of very great prejudice to the creditors themselves etc. Represent that "it will destroy all our joynture and other family settlements. It will enable any one crafty or malicious creditor not only to ruin his debtor ; but to cheat all the other creditors of the same debtor of their just debts ; for there being but a very small currency of cash in this island, the best sugar-work-plantation, if exposed to sale at outcry will not in all humane probability find any other chapman but the very creditor at whose suit it is exposed to sale ; and such creditor may thereby for a triffling debt become master of the best sugar-work-plantation in this island, while all the younger creditors of the unhappy debtor thus stript of his estate will go unpaid. It will put it in the power of any ill-disposed debtor to cheat his creditors by getting his estate sold for a small summe to some knavish confederate for a pretended debt. It will enable elder brothers, and others seized of estates charged wth. legacys to cheat their younger brothers, sisters, and relations of their legacys. Many merchants, and hundreds of others who have taken lands here by appraisement for satisfaction of their just debts, and have since built, stockt and improved them, and by that means ran in debt, will, if their creditors fall upon them, be ruined by the same law if those very estates which were obliged to take at the full value by appraisement must pass by them from sale at vendue in a Colony where the want of ready money makes it impossible for anyone but the creditors themselves to be the purchasers of landed estates. And thus the honest dealer who became interested by the laws and constitution of this island for a good valuable and full consideration may by the said Act of Parliament be stript of his whole estate, tho' more than sufficient to pay all his creditors with a large overplus, and yet not pay more than one of his creditors and then perish in prison at ye suit of the rest. The said act will destroy all future credit in the said Island ; and without credit the Colony cannot subsist etc. Apprehend that the act was not intended and cannot be construed to extend to this island etc. Pray that, if it should be thought otherwise, their Lordships will commiserate the unhappy estate of this island and represent the same to H.M. and the Legislature for relief etc. Read and agreed to by the General Assembly nemine contradicente, 18th Jan., 173 2/3 ; Signed, Robt. Warren, Cl. of ye Assembly ; By the President and Council unanimously, 23rd Jan., 173 2/3. Signed, Wm. Webster, D. Clk. of the Council. Endorsed, Recd. (from Mr. Yeamans) 15th June, Read 3rd July, 1733. Copy. 3 large pp. [C.O. 28, 23. ff. 87, 88, 89, 90 v.]
Jan. 18.
22. Governor Hunter to the Duke of Newcastle. By the Shark sloop which arriv'd here on the 14th of this month I had the honor of your Grace's letters of the 12th and 30th of October last. The first signifying H.M. pleasure relating to the effects taken out of the Spanish vessel the St. Michael wrack on the Caymanas and brought into this island, etc. Refers to enclosed Minutes of Council. Continues : I have issued orders to the Provost Marshall and Naval Officer who had seiz'd and are possess'd of what could be discover'd of these effects, to deliver them into the hands of Messrs. Pratter and Rigby, Factors to the Assiento Compy. Neal Walker mention'd in the Factor's Memorial to the Council and who plunder'd this wrack was at that time under a sort of proscription, proclamations having been issued for apprehending him in order to bring him to justice, for that he being fitted out and employ'd by these gentlemen the Factors to go in quest of the President of Panama and others who went adrift from the Genoesa upon a float, had contrary to their orders and intentions stopt at the wrack, fish'd up a considerable quantity of treasure which he carry'd with him and has not been heard of since the plunder of the St. Michael, tho' all possible diligence was us'd to find him out here as well as elsewhere, by letters and informations sent to the several Colonys and Governments where he might probably seek shelter. In answer to that of the 30th of October with which I receiv'd copys of the cedula's declaration and orders to Sr. Chaloner Ogle for restitution of the Spanish ship Dichosa taken by Capt. Aubin at Campechy in reprisal for the Woolball and sent hither, I have the honor to inform your Grace that upon application to Mr. Lestock who at that time commanded H.M. ships here, by the Factors of the Assiento Company the Dichosa with her cargo was sent back to Campechy and arriv'd there ten days before the time limited by the Governor of la Vera Cruiz was expir'd, so that capture can draw no consequences after it prejudicial to the trade of England of any kind. In these matters, as in all others, I have acted with no other views but to that of H.M. service, so far as I could be concern'd in execution of the trust repos'd in me and whilst I do I cannot doubt of the honor of your Grace's protection etc. P.S. Since my writing what is above I have reced. a letter from the Assiento Factors acquainting me that as H.M. Council here did not think their power for the receipt of the goods or effects saved out of the packet boat St. Michael sufficient while the gentleman who gave it was in the West Indies, they think it can be of no use now that Dn. Manl. Lopez Pintado is return'd home and out of Commission, and besides that they had then money of his Catholick Majesty's to pay charges, and his General's directions what to do with what could be got, for which reasons they now refuse to receive what has been sav'd and offer'd to them by the Officers abovemention'd ; but say they will make application for them without delay so soon as they shall receive a fresh power ; and I shall take care to do all that depends on me to prevent any embezelment of what has been sav'd till somebody be authoriz'd to and will receive the same, and shall use as I have hitherto done all possible means for the discovery of any further effects that may have been sav'd. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Endorsed, R. March 19th. 4 pp. Enclosed,
22. i. (a) Minutes of Council of Jamaica, 6th April, 1731. The Petition was read of Edward Pratter and James Rigby, Agents for the Assiento Co., and attorneys appointed by Dn. Joseph Herrera who was commissioned to this island by Dn. Manuel Lopez Pintado, General of His Catholick Majesty's galleons. Neal Walker, Nov. and Dec. last, made two voyages to the Little Camonas, and plundered from the Spanish brigantine St. Michael lately stranded there great quantities of wine, brandy etc. He hath likewise plundered the wreck of the Genouesa stranded on Point Pedro shoals, whereupon H.E. in Council issued a proclamation for his arrest, 26th Sept. And whereas it appears by the affidavit of Martin Adunson that Mr. Colen Campbell embark'd in a sloop, William Dove master, from the wreck of the said brigantine loaded with wine and brandy, with the consent of Adunson, in order to deposit the same in the hands of the Government for the benefit of His Catholick Majesty, which sloop was likewise cast away, and Dove and others took out her loading, part of which wine and brandy have been seized by the Naval Officer etc. ; and whereas it appears by the same affidavit that Thomas Ware and James Jordon loaded their vessels from the St. Michael with wine, brandy etc. which H.E. has ordered to be seized at petitioners' request. Walker has not been in any of the British Colonies and is probably concealed near the island. If pardon were offered him upon delivery up to petitioners his plunder from the Genouesa and St. Michael, think he would embrace it, and thereby His Catholic Majesty recover a considerable sum etc. Copy. 4 pp.
(b) 11th May. H.E. communicated to the Council a letter to himself from Don Pintado asking for a pardon for Capt. Walker in the same terms. The Council were unianimously of opinion that it would be of very ill consequence to pardon him. In the case of the St. Michael, it did not appear to them that Messrs. Pratter and Rigby were impowered either to demand or receive the goods mentioned in their memorial. The Government had taken due care to order the detention of the goods in the custody of the proper officers etc. Copy. 2 pp. [C.O. 137, 54. ff. 146-151.]
Jan. 18.
23. Governor Hunter to the Duke of Newcastle. Upon receipt of your Grace's letter recommending to my care that justice should be done to the heir of William Poyntz Esq., I sent for the Chief Justice who I heard was one of his executors and assur'd him of all the dispatch in my power of any proceedings that should be brought before me ; he acquainted me that tho' he had been appointed one of the executors he did not act, but that one Mr. Woodcock, a merchant at Kingston, was the only acting executor, whom he would acquaint with what I had said ; I have hear'd nothing of that affair since till about a month ago I had sent me a duplicate of your Grace's letter, whereupon I wrote to Mr. Woodcock enclosed, but having receiv'd no answer, I hope that affair is transacted to the satisfaction of Mr. Poyntz. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Endorsed, R. March 19th. 1 pp. Enclosed,
23. i. Same to Mr. Woodcock. Spanish Town. Dec. 19th, 1732. Requests him for a particular state of above affair and assures him of all dispatch in his power etc. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Copy. 1 p. [C.O. 137, 54. ff. 152, 154, 154 v., 155 v.]
Jan. 24.
New York.
24. Governor Cosby to the Duke of Newcastle. I belive your Grace will be applyd too by ye Duke of Shandos for to reccomend one Mr. Harrison to succeed Mr. Jeykl deceasd for ye Collectorship of Boston. I beg also that your Grace will be so good as to spake for him ; he is of ye Councill here, and has been very serviceable to me etc. He has but very little from ye Govermt. and really does deserve a great deale, he has some small employmts. in this place, which would be of very great service to my affairs in ye disposeing of them properly where he provided for in ye way I desier etc. Continues :I doe not in ye least doubt but that your Grace has long since been informed that the extrodinary behaviour of ye Boston people has not proceeded imediatly from themselves but as they are spirited upp from home by Mr. Polteney and that faction, he not only keeping a constant correspondence with them but also with some of the other Collenys as Raud Iland, Conecticute etc. which thier first people that direct them bragg off very much. I heartily wish your Grace and the duches many many happy new years. I am my lord your Grace's most oblidged and faithfull servant, Signed, W. Cosby. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 1093. ff. 263, 264.]
Jan. 25.
St. James's.
25. Order of King in Council. Approving draught of Commission for Governor Fitzwilliam. Signed, W. Sharpe. Endorsed, Recd. 16th, Read 19th June, 1733. 1 p. [C.O. 23, 3. ff. 67, 72 v. ; and (signed, W. Cary) 5, 21. f. 25.]
Jan. 26.
St. James's.
26. H.M. Commission appointing William Hanmer Lt. Govr. of Nevis, in the room of Major General Sibourg, decd. [C.O. 324, 49. pp. 115, 116 ; and 324, 36. pp. 404, 405.]
Jan. 26.
27. Order of Committee of Privy Council. The Commissioners for Trade etc. are to prepare an Instruction to empower Governor Belcher to assent to the Act of the Massachusetts Bay, as proposed in their representation of 20th Dec. Signed, W. Cary. Endorsed, Recd., Read 2nd Feb., 173 2/3. 1 pp. [C.O. 5, 875. ff. 35, 35 v., 42 v.]
Jan. 29.
Charles Town.
28. Governor Johnson to the Duke of Newcastle. Encloses following. Would have passed in silence Mr. St. John's insolence to himself, rather than take up his Grace's time etc. Continues : But as his behavour in his publick capacity has almost in every instance been attended wth. corruption, partiality, and an open defiance of the power of the Legislature, as well as disrespect and disobedience to H.M. Instructions, and the orders he has from time to time received from me, and H.M. Council, grounded on the said Instructions ; I should think myself inexcusable did I not lay before your Grace in a clear and true light, matters which so nearly concern H.M. honour and interest, and the peace and prosperity of this his Province ; I cannot conceive but what has already been and now is represented to your Grace on this subject, will have greater weight with your Grace than any libels fill'd up with false facts, allegations and the crafty insinuations of one Whitaker, formerly Attorney General to the Lords Proprietors, and now a most active fellow in stirring up contention in the Province, all assented to by Mr. St. John ; for the said Whitaker is the sole director of that most vain and weakest of men etc. If it should be my misfortune that any remonstrance from two obscure men, who are very deservedly odious to the whole country, should meet with more credit, than what proceeds from H.M. Governor and Council, it will hardly be in our power to do H.M. that service, which we shal always be desirous, and inclined to perform, and which we conceive we should be able to do, were we not obstructed in our good intentions by their insolent and wicked measures, in order to debauch the minds of H.M. subjects, and seduce them from the duty and obedience, which his due to his sacred person and government. Notwithstanding these many, and gross misbehavours, I have not suspended the said Mr. St. John, and if I have committed any mistake in relation to him, I apprehend it was only in treating a person with too much lenity, who knows not how to make a good use of it. I shall offer Mr. St. John a copy of the Council's Representation, if he thinks fit to have it. Signed, Robt. Johnson. Endorsed, R. April 24th. 2 pp. Enclosed,
28. i. Representation of the Council of S. Carolina to Governor Johnson. 15th Dec., 1732. Charges against James St. John, Surveyor General and Deputy Auditor. (i) For seven months after his arrival he assumed the title of Auditor General, appointing George Rolfe his Deputy. When it was objected to him that the Right Honble. Horatio Walpole was H.M. Auditor General of all America, and that the office of Auditor could not be executed here without a deputation from him, he answered that Mr. Walpole could not be deemed Auditor General of this province, because his patent was prior to H.M. purchase of this county from the Lords Proprietors. After discharging Rolfe, he appointed Dr. Daniel Gibson Depty. Auditor. On being interrogated by the Council, after many prevarriations, he at length produced a deputation from Mr. Walpole, the suppression of which for seven months, and his denial of his constituents' right as above, appears to this Board a great violation of trust and manifest imposition etc., which may frustrate the good effects of the Quit Rent Law for registering titles in the Auditor's Office, etc., many people being discouraged from registring their deeds in that office, which has so much incurred the odium of imposition, abuse and uncertainty etc. Believe he intended to defraud Mr. Walpole of his dues. The Board showed him great favour on his first coming, but when they desired to examine into the conduct of his office, he denied that they had any authority to do so, and said that he has complained to the Ministry. But he refused to supply the Board with a copy of his complaints. Express utmost resentment at his liberties and disrespectful speeches, saying that he did not value a fig the Governor and Council etc. To shew that he would not really pay any obedience to H.E.'s commands, he continues to take unlawful fees, notwithstanding the orders of the Governor and Council to the contrary. He gives out frequently that he has an interest with the Ministry in England superior to any interest of Governour and Council, and very often pretends to receive letters from Mr. Walpole and other great personages assuring him of their superlative favour at home. Which acts may very much tend to weaken H.M. Government here, and such behaviour in a King's Officer may very much contribute to infuse notions of turbulence and disobedience into the minds of H.M. subjects. Pray H.E. to "write home and desire that a person so corrupt in his office, and so obnoxious in his behavoiour may be removed from H.M. service in this Province" and to send copies of this Representation and following papers etc. Signed, Thos. Broughton, and seven others. Copy. 6 pp.
28. ii. Deposition of Francis Yonge. 6th Dec., 1732. St. John informed him that Mr. Walpole was not Auditor of Carolina etc. as above, but that office was his by vertue of his commission for Comptroler and Inspector etc. Signed, Fra. Yonge. Copy. Certified by, J. Badenhop, Cl. Con. 1 p.
28. iii. Advertisement, 27th Nov., 1731, that "James St. John, Esq., being appointed by H.M. Auditor General of this Province has now opened his office in Charles Town" for the registration of lands in accordance with the act of 1731. Signed, Geo. Rolfe, Dep. Auditor. Copy. Certified by, Jesse Baden, Cl. Con. 1 p.
28. iv. Minutes of Council of S. Carolina, 31st May, 1731, 3rd March, 16th Feb., 31st May, 1732, relating to Mr. St. John's affair. 7 pp.
28. v. Mr. St. John to Governor Johnson. Nov. 7, 1732. In reply to letter, does not find by his Commission or Instructions that he is obliged to lay his proceedings as Surveyor General before the Council. Has ordered a list of his deputies to be sent to H.E., that he may examine them as to the charges paid by them to him, though he considers that a matter of private contract. Has ordered a list to be made out of all the platts he has certified by virtue of H.E.'s warrants etc., but hopes he does not expect him to produce all the records of his office before the Council etc. Copy. 1 pp.
28. vi. Deposition of Peter Goudet of Wyneau in Craven County. 24th Nov., 1732. The Surveyor General demanded a fee of 10s. for a precept for running out 1000 acres granted deponent by warrant from H.E. When he refused, the Surveyor said there was an act of Parliament for his demanding that fee, and swore by God that he defyed the Governor, and bid deponent tell the Governor what he said etc. Signed, P. Goudet. Copy. 1 p.
28. vii. Deposition of John Vicaridge, of Charles Town, merchant. 6th Oct., 1732. Has heard Mr. St. John say that he did not care what the Governour, Council and Assembly could do, for that he had a better interest at home etc., and that the Governor had used him very ill in apointing some of his Council to lay out the townships etc. Signed, J. Vicaridge. Copy. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 388. ff. 63, 63 v., 64-67, 68, 69, 70-71, 72, 73, 74, 74 v., 76, 77.]
Jan. 29.
Charles Town.
29. Governor Johnson to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Duplicate of preceding covering letter. Signed, Robt. Johnson. Endorsed, Recd. 23rd April, 1733, Read 27th Aug., 1735. 2 pp. Enclosed,
29. i. Duplicate of encl. i. preceding.
29. ii, iii. Duplicates of encl. iii preceding.
29. iv, vi, vii. Duplicates of encl. iv preceding.
29. v. Duplicate of encl. ii preceding.
29. viii. Duplicate of encl. v preceding.
29. ix. Duplicate of encl. vi preceding.
29. x. Duplicate of encl. vii preceding. [C.O. 5, 364. ff. 185, 185 v., 186 v., 187, 188, 189, 190, 191, 192, 193-195, 196, 197, 198-199, 200, 201, 201 v.]
Jan. 31.
Charles Town, Council Chamber.
30. Governor Johnson to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Mr. Secretary Hammerton having laid before me in Council a letter from the Rt. Honourable Horatio Walpole Esq. of the 24th July, 1732, wherein he is pleased to tell him that if I will represent to your lordships and the Lords of the Treasury what the salarys were which were formerly paid out of the quit rents by the late Lords Proprietors to their Officers, and which have not been confirmed by H.M., together with my oppinion of the reasonableness of them, that they [? and] your Lordships would consider of them etc. Encloses list of salarys "which were established in this Province when the mony was about the value of Proclamation money, without which those offices are inconsiderable," etc. Signed, Robt. Johnson. Endorsed, Recd. 28th June, 1733, Read 27th Aug., 1735. 1 pp. Enclosed,
30. i. List of salaries given by the late Lords Proprietors to their officers :Chief Justice, 80 ; Secretary, 50 ; Attorney General, 50 ; Receiver General, 10 p.c., and for his clerk 20 ; Naval Officer, 40. Endorsed, Recd. 28th June, 1733. p. [C.O. 5, 364. ff. 212-213 v., 214 v.]
Jan. [ ].
Charles Town.
31. Governor Johnson to the Duke of Newcastle. I have received the honour of your Grace's letter of the 8th Novr. last by Mr. Oglethorpe, who immediatly proceeded to Port Royal ; I shall always imbrace all oportunitys to prove the zeal I have for H.M. service, and the respect I bear to your Grace. I have recommended to the Assembly now sitting, the giving Mr. Oglethorpe all the assistance this country can afford, and they have voted him boats to carry his people to their design'd settlement, 105 head of black cattle, 25 hoggs, and a quantity of rice for provisions ; and 20 of our Rangers are orderd to cover them from any insults that may be offerd them by stragling Indians or others. If anything more is necessary to further the success of this undertaking, I will do all in my power to forward it. I am with great respect, My Lord, Your Grace's Most humble and most obedient servant. Signed, Robt. Johnson. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 388. f. 61.]