America and West Indies: February 1671

Pages 160-167

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 7, 1669-1674. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1889.

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Febuary 1671

Feb. 1.
St. Jago do la
409. Minutes of the Council of Jamaica. Present: Sir Thos. Modyford, Bart., Governor, Lieutenant-General Sir Jas. Modyford, Major-General Thos. Modyford, Lieutenant-Colonels John Coape, Robert Byndlosse, and Wm, Ivey, Major Thos. Fuller, Colonels Thos. Ballard and Thos. Freeman, Majors Chas. Whitfield and Ant. Collier, and Hender Molesworth. On request of the Grand Inquest to take into consideration the mis-patenting of the glebe land in the minister's name and his beves contrary to the meaning of the parishioners who intended only for the minister then being and his successors; Ordered, that the Bench request his Excellency's advice how a safe title might be made from Mr. Sellers, the minister of St. Andrew's to the parish. Ordered that Mr. Sellers make a deed of sale of said land to the churchwardens of the parish of St. Andrew's and their successors, for the use of the parson and his successors, unless he can give good reasons to the contrary. Whereas many disputes hath happened by reason that the surveyors through carelessness, ignorance, or knavery have laid out more land within their lines than expressed in their returns, upon which divers persons have in behalf of the King obtained re-surveys and come within the bounds of patent land to the great vexation of the proprietors. Ordained, that on information of surplusage land, the patentee or his agents have notice, and if he shall make appear that he has hands already, or shall engage for the bringing of hands and payment of rents, that then he shall have the order of survey and a patent for the same, but if he neglect or refuse the same, or be convicted of having bribed or persuaded the surveyor or those that carry the chain to commit the errors, then the informer shall have the survey and enjoy the same by patent; this ordinance to continue to the next General Assembly and to be confirmed if they think just. Ordered that John Mackene Marrow be continued a prisoner till the next council after the fleet's coming in, that they may be truly informed concerning him, and that he remain on the Angell's Plantation on parole till discharged by the Governor and Council. On complaint of the great delays and partialities of late observed in his Majesty's Supreme Court, and other courts of Common Pleas, by reason the clerks of those courts are permitted to be of counsel, and to plead on behalf of their clients, whereby they are inclined to favour their clients, and, as much as they dare, hinder the adverse party, and suppress or enfeeble the evidence, and are also diverted from the due service of the court; be it ordained that if any clerk take any fees to plead for any party in his court, or gratis undertake the same, he shall forfeit his office, and the judges are required to put another in his place. Petition of Christopher Horner, George Osborne, John Aldred, George Child, Tho. Coswell, Jno. Warren, Wm. Hinkston, Robt. Smith, James Jenner, Jno. Downer, and Phi. Robarts, inhabitants of Withywood and Dry River. That whereas his Excellency had recommended Mr. Lander to them for their minister, and they had bought land and were building him a church, and had provided him a competent maintenance, pray they may not be liable to contribute to any other church within the parish, referred to the next General Assembly, in regard the justices and vestrymen of every parish are empowered by Act of the General Assembly to lay such assessments and parish duties as they shall think requisite, and that power cannot be taken from them by the Governor and Council only. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XXXIV., pp. 305–212.]
Feb. 9. 410. Proposals of Sir Chas. Wheeler. 1. Though some of the planters have reported to the Council that Nevis contributes to the Governor 800l. per annum, Lord Willoughby assured him the Governor never received 200l., in regard it arose from many poor planters, of whom he had no way to collect it but by greater severity than he would use; however, Sir Chas. will accept it for 800l. as part of his entertainment, and desires that the 700l. arising out of the 4 1/2 per cent. of the Leeward Islands may be added; with proviso that if St. Christopher's should be any way beneficial to the Governor, his Majesty may retrench the like value from the 700l. per annum. 2. He prays that before Sir Tobias Bridge's regiment be disbanded, 200 of his soldiers may be drawn out for the forts to be raised at St. Christopher's, unless the rendition be still delayed. 3. He hopes he may so order the planters of the respective islands, that they may send negroes to the works and fortifications of St. Christopher's and his Majesty be at no other expense than for some masons and carpenters, and for two drawbridges which he desires may be sent with him ready framed. 4. He prays for 22 cannon, with ammunition; which cannon may be returned in case the French restore the 30 cannon they took from the English. 5. He also desires 1,000 muskets, to be paid for by the planters in two years; an order to his Royal Highness for a ketch. 6. A donation from the King, without which he cannot make so long and expensive a voyage, and put himself in a condition suitable to his employment. Endorsed, "Brought in and read in Council, 9th Feb. 1670–1." 3 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XX VI., No. 21.]
Feb. (13). 411. Grant of denization to John St. Clemens, native of France, provided he pay custom and subsidy as strangers do, and take the oaths of allegiance and supremacy before the Governor of Barbadoes. Endorsed, 13o Febr. 1670–1.[Dom., Chas. II., Docquets.]
Feb. 14. 412. Report of the Council for Plantations to the King, concerning the government of the Leeward Islands. In pursuance of his Majesty's commands have prepared a commission and instructions for Sir Chas. Wheler, Governor of the Leeward Island, and transmitted copies the 21st January last to Lord Arlington for his Majesty's approbation. That Sir Chas. may have power to appoint Deputy Governors in the islands under his command, and for his better maintenance the 700l. per annum arising by the farm of the 4 1/2 per cent. of said islands, together with all profits heretofore enjoyed by the Governor of Nevis, provided that when St. Christopher's can contribute towards maintaining a governor there, the said 700l. per annum cease; that the Master of the Ordnance deliver to Sir Chas. 22 cannon, 1,000 muskets with swords, ammunition, &c., and two drawbridges ready framed, the muskets, swords, and bandoliers to be paid for by the planters in two years, and the cannon to be returned in case the French restore the 30 pieces they formerly took from the English there, and that he may also have a ketch; that the Treasury, by virtue of some Privy Seal dormant, may pay him 400l. for extraordinary expenses, but not to be drawn into a precedent; and that Sir Tobias Bridge's four companies of foot now in Nevis, Montserrat, and Antigua be reduced to two companies of 80 men each, besides officers, and settled in St. Christopher's for one year, in his Majesty's pay under Sir Chas. Wheler's command. 2 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XCIV., pp. 86–87.]
Feb. 17.
413. The Gentlemen Planters in London to the Assembly of Barbadoes. Send copy of their letter of 14th December last [see ante, No. 357]. Have received theirs of 17th November, thank them for their great confidence, and will let slip no occasion for their advantage; in order to which have formed themselves into a committee to promote their petition, designing Coll. Edward Thornburgh to attend their affairs and transmit what is done, whom they recommend to be continued with a convenient salary, business in this great town being not to be done without great expense. Think fit to hint that the not sufficient humility of their petition gives a latitude for ill constructions, and therefore desire them in future, when petitioning the King, to express themselves in as humble manner as may be, or send the heads of what they desire, and leave the writers to clothe them in the style the Court expects. In confidence of their promise of seeing it repaid, have made subscriptions, list whereof will be sent by Col. Thornburgh, and desire them to speed home effects for reimbursement. Lord Willoughby's commission to Capt. Langford to call before him all Treasurers, &c., was occasioned by his Lordship being referred by the Commissioners of the Treasury to an Auditor of Exchequer to prepare his accounts for their view, but conceive that the excise was inserted in that commission rather from want of remembrance that the Act required the Treasurer to be accountable to the Governor, Council, and Assembly only than from any will in his Lordship to interfere with their privileges, which they are certain the King will never take from them without their consent; hope they will let nothing pass injurious to the island, lest men say they have consented to it. Lord Willoughby is very ready to assist their affairs, and ought to have thankful acknowledgment. The King of France makes vast preparations by sea and land against next summer, wherefore mind them to keep their lines and fortifications in repair, "plant all that wants with pinpillows," put the militia in good order, and timely advise for supply of arms and ammunition if wanted, and lodge effects here for procuring same. Once more recommend the keeping up the number of their freeholders by a law that no one possessed of 25 acres of land shall be capable of buying, renting, or receiving more unless by descent, forfeiting all lands so purchased to the first man that has not 25 acres that enters action for it in the court of the precinct where it lies; otherwise the land will fall into the hands of a few, and they will be lost for want of enough interested men to defend the place. Also hope they will contrive means that their poor may subsist without increasing the charge of making sugar, lest the French and other English Colonies undersell them. Signed by Sir P. Colleton, Sir Paul Painter, Henry Drax, Edward Pye, Thos. Wardall, John Gregory, John Bawden, and Ferdinando Gorges. "Received in Barbadoes, May the 31st, 1671." 2 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XIII., pp. 33–35.]
Feb. 17.
414. Edward Thornburgh to the Assembly of Barbadoes. The enclosed papers will show the cause of these lines. The gentlemen empowered in their concerns have appointed him to attend them, intreats their favour in continuance of it. Represents that a correspondence at the Court, Parliament, and Council of Plantations, will not only employ a great part of his time, but be very chargeable. Received by the Assembly 31st May 1671. Encloses,
414. I. List of subscriptions to be paid within 10 days to Jacob Lucie for the service of Barbadoes, advanced in pursuance of a letter of the Assembly of 17th November last, viz.:—Sir Paul Painter, Henry Drax, Giles Sylvester (in behalf of his brother Constant), Edward Pye, Thomas Wardall, Jacob Lucie, John Bowden (for himself and John Sparke), John Bendish, John Gregory, Ferdinando Gorges, Sir Peter Colleton, John Searle, and Phillip Bell, 10l. each; and Robert Legard, Thomas Batson, and John Worsam, 5l. each; total 145l., January 28, 1671.
414. II. Minutes of a meeting of the above-named committee of the Barbadoes planters in London, 28 January 1671. Names of a committee appointed for the business of Barbadoes, viz.:—Lord Willoughby and eleven of the subscribers above mentioned, also Col. Thos. Middleton. The comittee to meet at the Cardinal Cap in Cornhill, on Friday, 3rd February, at 3 in the afternoon, and afterwards weekly at the same hour, to consider and do all things requisite for the good of the island.
414. III. Minutes of the above-named committee, 3 Feburary, 1671. Ordered, that a letter be drawn to the Assembly of Barbadoes in answer to theirs received 17th November last, and presented at the next meeting on Thursday next; That Lord Willoughby's assistance be to-morrow desired to wait on Lord Lauderdale in order to procure free trade from Scotland to Barbadoes, especially for men servants; That Sir Peter Colleton and Colonel Drax entertain a Parliament solicitor to negotiate the business about the imposition voted to be laid on sugars; That Edward Thornburgh be their agent to attend the committee and that he buy a book and register all transactions of the committee; That Jacob Lucie pay Edward Thornburgh 10l. for the charge of this committee; and that the committee adjourn till Thursday, 9th inst., at the Cardinal Cap tavern in Cornhill.
414. IV. Minutes of above-named committee, 9th February 1671. Ordered, that Edward Thornburgh send copies of the subscriptions for the service of the island and of all orders of the committee, with their letter to the speaker of the Assembly of Barbadoes; that he buy two books to enter all orders of the committee, and keep copies of letters; and that he have a fair copy of the letter presented to-day ready at the next meeting of the committee at the Cardinal Cap on Tuesday next.
414. V. Minutes of the above named committee, 14th February 1671. Draft letter to the Assembly read and approved, and Edward Thornburgh ordered to draw fair copies of their last letter sent by Colonel John Drax, and of this, to be sent by Captain Perriman to Barbadoes. Next meeting appointed at the Cardinal Cap on 28th and meantime the committee to give attendance on Parliament to keep off the imposition on sugars, and to seek an opportunity to confer with Lord Lauderdale about trade with Scotland.
414. VI. Minutes of the above-named committee, 28th February 1671. Sir Peter Colleton and two others desired to be at Westminster Hall daily till the new imposition on sugar be determined, and all the gentlemen planters to give attendance on notice through Edward Thornburgh, who is likewise to attend. Ordered that Jacob Lucie pay to Edward Thornburgh 10l. for the charges of the committee. Together 4 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XIII., pp. 35–39.]
Feb. 20. 415. H. Slingesby, Sec. to the Council of Foreign Plantations, to Sir Chas. Wheeler. Is ordered to send him the enclosed inquiries, and to desire his answer in writing in relation to the respective Leeward Islands under his command, as soon as he can with conveniency after his arrival. Doubts not it will be esteemed as a good service if he will inquire into his Majesty's right and title to Saba and Statia, and advise the Council thereof, and of his opinion about their usefulness. Encloses,
415. I. The aforesaid inquiries in 24 Articles, the answers to which by Sir Chas. Wheeler will be found calendared, 9 Dec. 1671. Together 3 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXVI., Nos. 22, 22 1.]
Feb. 416. A clause to be inserted in his commission between the 11th and 12th clauses empowering Sir Charles Wheeler to appoint deputy governors in the islands under his command. 1/2 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXVI., No. 23.]
Feb. 24. 417. Commission to Sir Charles Wheeler, Capt.-General of the Leeward Islands. Authorising him to appoint deputy governors in the islands under his command, instead of certifying his Majesty as directed in his commission (see ante, No. 393), but to continue Lt.-Col. Wm. Stapleton, Lt.-Governor of Montserrat, for the good opinion his Majesty has of his abilities. 1 p. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XLV., 17.]
Feb. 24. 418. Draft of the preceding in Williamson's hand. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXVI., No. 24.]
Feb. 24. 419. Two copies of the above. [Col. Entry Bks., No. XCII., 444–446, and No. XCIII., fo. 28, 22.]
Feb. ? 420. Relation of the governments, forts, &c. of St. Christopher's "received from the petitioners and planters of St. Christopher's" by order of the Council for Foreign Plantations. The Commander-in-chief of the civil and military power was one single Governor, and usually chose his Council and Assembly, viz., two out of each of the six parishes belonging to the English, and the trial of all suits was by a jury of 12 men, with the Governor as judge. Sir Thos. Warner, when Governor, lived on a sweet plantation in the middle of the island, which was not to be alienated from the Governor, but since Lord Willoughby bought it of Philip Warner, who pretended to the inheritance as heir to Sir Thos., paying for it (as reported) out of the 4 1/2 per cent. granted him by the island, to the value of 40 negroes. What power Sir T. Warner had for disposing of lands, his commission, which Mr. Sec. Slingesby has, will show, but the manner was believed to be by indenture, reserving something to the Governor for ever. There were three forts, viz., Charles Fort, at the Old Road, with seven sakers, Stones Fort, to the east, with six culverin, which was the most considerable at sea, and Sandy Point Fort to the west, with seven great guns and three brass field pieces. The forts mostly built of hard stone, to be had near at hand, and lime, to be had at Brimstone Hill or the salt ponds; three small sconces at Permita Point, one on Brimstone Hill, and a platform at the Old Road, the guns in all 39, and in each fort 10 soldiers, one corporal and one gunner on constant duty, all paid by the country with lands set out for the soldiers. Cannot give a particular of the losing of the island, but one Watts, formerly a chirurgeon, and put in by the late Lord Willoughby, was then Governor. Copy of No. 296, which was read in Council, 18 Oct. 1670. 1 1/2 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XLV., pp. 18, 19.]
Feb. 24. 421. Commission to Sir Chas. Wheeler to be captain of a company of foot to be formed in the Leeward Islands, and there employed, consisting of 80 men besides officers, and to have superior command of the other company, whereof Lt.-Col. Stapleton is captain. And of a commission for Lt.-Col. Stapleton to be captain of one of the companies to be formed in the Leeward Islands under Sir Chas. Wheeler. 1/2 p. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XLV., p. 19. See also No. XCIII., p. 29.]
Feb. 24. 422. Draft of preceding in Williamson's handwriting. 1/2 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXVI., No. 25.]
Feb. 24./Mar. 6. 423. Protest of the King's Commissioners sent to Surinam to bring off the English subjects against the Dutch Governor of Surinam, which is contained in the "Narrative of the proceedings of Major Banister," calendared, No. 486. 4 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXVI., No. 26.]
Feb. 28. 424. The King's letter of revocation to Sir Thos. Modyford. Having found fit by letters patents of Jan. 4th last to revoke his commission for government of Jamaica, and to constitute Sir Thos. Lynch Lieut.-Governor of same, his Majesty requires him forthwith to deliver up the government to said Sir Thos. Lynch, and to be assisting to him by the best means he can. And his Majesty gives him leave to return to England, according to his son's petition, as soon as the Lieut.-Governor shall have no further use of his assistance, as well for his private affairs as to inform his Majesty of the state of that island. Draft by Sec. Williamson. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXVI., No. 27.]
425. Copies of preceding. [Col. Entry Bks., Nos. XXVII., 95, and XCIII., 29.]
Feb. 28. 426. Warrant to pay Thomas Holder, Treasurer of the Royal African Company, 5,000l. for his Majesty's adventure in the said stock. Endorsed, 28o Febry 1670." [Dom. Chas. II., Docquets.]
427. Lists of the King's letters to Sir Thos. Modyford and the Deputy Governor of Jamaica, nine in number, all of which are calendared under their respective dates, except the following, viz. :—
1663, May 26. To the Deputy Governor of Jamaica, to forbear acts of hostility.
1664, Feb. 24. To Sir Thos. Modyford, to receive into his hands the government of Jamaica. N.B. His commission is dated 15 Feb. 1664.
1665, Jan. 17. To Sir Thos. Modyford, for the defence and safety of the island and to follow the Lord High Admiral's instructions. 1 1/2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXVI., Nos. 28.]