America and West Indies: September 1673

Pages 522-527

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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September 1673

Sept. 1.
1139. Duplicate of the preceding letter, in original, and copies of the enclosures. Endorsed, For the Right Hon. the Lord Arlington, &c., these present at Whitehall from New England for his Majesty's special service, hast hast, post hast, London. Rochell the 26/16 of October 1673. Received the 24/14 and sent forward by your honour's most humble servant Andrew Stuckey & Co. Recd. from Mr. Richards, 11 Sept. 1678. 7 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXX., Nos. 63, 63 I.–VII. See also Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XCIV., 143–150.]
Sept. 3.
1140. Extract of a letter to Mr. Harwood. Account of the arrival of the Dutch before New York, and the surrender of the fort, which is a shame and derision to their English nation as hath not been heard of; for such a place that was so well fitted to defend themselves and offend their enemy, as to open their gates to let in their enemies; as if their Englishmen had lost all their spirits, so the near approach of so potent an enemy hath alarmed the whole country. Are putting themselves in a posture as to be ready to defend the country, but are in no capacity to send shipping, for they have them not that is able to reduce it by sea, nor have they done injury to any of the plantations adjacent, nor taken away any of their vessels. The United Colonies have all agreed as one man, and resolve if they offer any abuse to have reparation. Do not hear of any Englishmen estates sequestered as yet, but Deslavell's and Lovelace's, who were then both absent, but many will be great sufferers. Endorsed by John Locke. Printed in New York Documents, III., 205–6. 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXX., No. 64.]
Sept. 3. 1141. Minutes of the Council of Barbadoes. Ordered that the Assembly be desired to alter the preamble of their orders, and say, ordered by the President, Council, and Assembly, and not by the Assembly only; and that the Commissioners for disposing of the perishing provisions sent for his Majesty's ships, accept sugar at 8s. per cwt. where money cannot be had. 1/2 p. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XI., 251.]
Sept. 6. 1142. Minutes of the Council of Jamaica. Upon petition of the inhabitants of the Precincts of the Magotty to be taken out of the parish of St. John's, &c., ordered that as to all public duties taxes, and levies which concern the church or poor, they shall continue still annexed to said parish; but that, for the conveniency of carrying goods, they shall be annexed to the Precincts of Sixteen Mile Walk as to their paths and highways, on equal terms with the inhabitants there, and exempted from any contribution to the making of old or new ways in or to the Precincts of Guinaboa; and the justices and surveyors of the highways in said Precincts of Sixteen Mile Walk and the Magotty, are empowered to compel the inhabitants of the latter to assist with hands and money in repairing the highways from the Magotty through Sixteen mile walk to town; and the Governor and Council recommend to Col. Coape and the justices and vestrymen of St. John's, to consider of the most equal and easiest way for laying their taxes, so that no person may be aggrieved or oppressed by them. On information that by the death of Lieut.-Col. Robt. Freeman there was no person remaining in the island with any power to look after Mr. Rich. Pacy's interests, ordered that Capt. Reginald Wilson receive the rents for the houses at Port Royal, giving security to answer the effects to him or his attorneys. On petition of Messrs. Sam. Lewis and William Gibbons, ordered that Thomas Matthews be empowered to take account from Dan. Jordan of the estate of Thomas Shutt, deceased, and make return thereof to the Governor as ordinary. Ordered that a patent be drawn in the names of the justices of the parish of St. Katherine and their successors, to hold a fair twice every year at St. Jago de la Vega, on 10th of November and 10th of May, the profits to be accounted to the vestry by the Custos Rotulorum, and be disposed of to the use of the parish. Ordered that in every parish entries be made of the sale of all horses and cattle with the Clerk of the Court for said Precincts with vouchers according to the custom of England, and that no person's property shall be extinguished unless by such sale so recorded; and the Clerks of said Courts are empowered to demand 12d. for every such entry and no more. 3 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XXXV., 355–357.]
20 Sept.
1143. Wm. Dervell. to Robert Woolly. New York was taken by the absence of Col. Lovelace, through whose neglect and the treachery of Capt. Manning, who was left Commander-in-Chief, the place was delivered up to Cornelius Everson and Jacob Binkes without articles, as appears, for most English lost all, only some few that take their oaths, that are inhabitants, to be true to the States of Holland. All his father-in-law's state and his were seized and made prize of, the reason they give is that his father-in-law is the Duke of York's Auditor, and his is lost because he lived in the colony. They have already carried away of his 160 hhds. of tobacco, 30 tons of logwood, 14 tons of braziletta, and 70 barrels of oil. His father-in-law is going home a prisoner for Holland, and has lost about 2,000l. Hopes some address may be to have their estates again. Endorsed by John Locke, Read in a Comtee of the Council, 7 Nov. 73. Printed in New York Documents, III., 206. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXX., No. 65.]
Sept. 24.
1144. Richard Wharton to (his kinsman?—). Apologises for his defect of duty in not writing. Needs not inform him of the extent, constitution, &c., of the colonies there. Account of the proceedings of the Dutch against New York. On the 11th, Cornelius Everson with eight ships attacked the Virginia fleet at the appointed rendezvous for their return home near Point Comfort, and had the same success as in '67 (burning and taking 19 sail), only the convoys escaped, and Capt. Gardner by his resolute and good behaviour gained from friends and enemies an honourable report. The enemy then resolved to go into Delaware Bay to wood and water, but finding no sufficient pilots in their fleet for that place, and having several persons of Boston prisoners that were well acquainted with New York, resolved for Staten Island, being rather afraid of receiving some disturbance from New York than giving any to it. But whilst they rid there, several of their countrymen from New York went privately on board and gave intelligence of the weakness and disorder of the place, the Governor gone to Connecticut, the garrison-soldiers most drawn out, the guns in the fort most dismounted or the carriages rotten or unready, the people dissatisfied with the oppression of such as ruled the town and trade and ready to revolt; on which invitations and encouragements they were emboldened to bring up their ships against the town, and finding no resistance landed about 500 men, who in a straight and long street leading to the fort (which was very strong and defensible) they marched up to the fort (and in their march were only saluted with one gun), and on their approach the English flag was struck, and the gates set open, so that without the least dispute or complaint the English marched out and the Dutch marched in to the fort, who, finding themselves so tamely possessed and the English so tamely taken, marched out of the fort again, disarmed those few soldiers that the officers had so betrayed and finding their entrance and entertainment so facile and friendly made present seizure of the estates of the English, and dispatched a small frigate to Fort Albany with a declaration that New York had surrendered and offer of the same terms, which without any inquiry or further capitulation were accepted, and so the estates and persons of the English there by their own inadvertency betrayed into the power of the enemy. Their next stratagem was to invite Col. Lovelace, who from Connecticut was gone over to Long Island to come in, who, it is supposed, for protection from the deserved punishment answered their invitation, leaving the poor people upon that island without commission or Commander to stand up for their defence, which the Dutch well understanding required all the towns on the island to send in their constables' slaves and colours, and come to receive new ones from the Prince of Orange, and all the towns except Southhampton readily subjected after the example of their Governor. Some persons from Southhampton made application to the Boston General Court for assistance, the messenger, John Cooper, a resolute man, proposing it as easy with 100 armed men, to proclaim his Majesty on all the towns upon Long Island, but the deputies in the General Court wholly refused to engage the country in the undertaking; so the enemy are likely quickly to enjoy what they have acquired till his Majesty give them disrest. Insists on the importance of an expedition to unkennel the enemy, New York being the navel of his Majesty's territory, and his subjects on both sides so familiarized to the Dutch by trade and converse, that all will not believe they are their enemies; and having such a convenient place of shelter and resort for their shipping, his Majesty's subjects will be miserably infested, if not overrun, and conquered in their plantations and destroyed in their navigation, as the sad news from Virginia formerly and that day from Newfoundland informs them that some of the ships that went from New York have been in Newfoundland and taken all the English vessels in the country, five or six belonging to Massachusetts. If speedy care be taken before the enemy send further supplies, two or three frigates with two or three hundred men for land service with such force as may be raised there will be sufficient, but in such case the frigates must be there in February or March at furthest, and the soldiers must have warm clothing and bedding aboard, or the frost will unfit them for service. Advises that the General officer should be elected in America, where his Majesty has many worthy subjects fit for command, such as Major Daniel Dennison, sometimes Major General in Boston, a gentleman, a scholar, and a soldier. Refers to Edward Rainsborough for a more certain knowledge of the constitutions of their government and complexions of the people; desires him to accommodate Robert Woolley or any other friends of his; asks him to hasten the frigates as much as possible, if he should be instrumental to send them. P.S. Rainsborough dwells at Knightsbridge and is to be heard of at Mr. Whiting's shop on the Old Exchange. His wife presents him and his lady with her service, desiring her to accept a barrel of cranberries and a pot of refined sugar for winter tarts. 4 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXX., No. 66.]
1145. Some propositions concerning the ill consequence of New York being in the hands of the Dutch, with something in order to the retaking and settling it under his Majesty's obedience again. by Wm. Dyre, Gent. New Yorkshire being in the possession of the Dutch is not only a particular loss to his Majesty, a general ruin to his English subjects there and highly injurious to the adjacent colonies, but, above all, prejudicial to the whole American trade, by which his Majesty's customs are abated, many merchants undone, and much shipping lost. The enemy thereby has the convenience to repair their ships and recruit with provisions there, taking all opportunity to be at the capes of Virginia, surprising what ships are bound in thither, with the like advantage on all the coasts. New York being the very centre and key of his Majesty's dominions in America, it is as commodious in obedience and contrary when in an enemy's hands as Tangier to the Straits or the Downs to the Channel of England. The routing of the insulting enemy is easy, if his Majesty dispatch four ships from 30 to 40 guns apiece, sufficient to convoy the Virginia fleet and to make his Majesty master of the Province to a greater advantage than before, by expelling the Dutch inhabitants who have given just grounds for the same, by throwing off their late subjection to his Majesty. Land forces can be raised in America; dares engage his life to raise men enough, if his Majesty give commission. The inhabitants of New England will not move without his Majesty's order, but is afraid if they have not speedy relief they may be compelled to embrace terms of a very ill and dangerous consequence. Urges this through a tender regard to the welfare of those suffering plantations, by whose produce his Majesty receives 150,000l. customs yearly. When the place is reduced the next thing will be to expel all the Dutch, fortify the entrances and settle a garrison, to make it impossible for an enemy to do spoil for the future, to sell the estates of the Dutch at reasonable rates and encourage English settlers, to appoint a Governor acquainted with the manners and constitutions of the country. The place may, instead of being a perpetual charge, produce a clear profit to his Majesty, (1) by imports upon merchandise, &c., (2) by building ships and improving the timber to make planks, &c., (3) by improvement of the trade with the natives, (4) by taking whales on the south side of Long Island; there are also good benefits to be made of the iron ore, of which there is plenty in those parts. If his Lordship were to promote the sending a small force to put a stop to the daily losses sustained by the shipping and trade, it would cause many thousand poor distressed souls to have his Lordship's name in perpetual honour. 3 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXX., No. 67.]
Sept. 24. 1146. Petition of John Smith, son and executor of English Smith, late of Nevis, to the King. Has a petition in the nature of an appeal against a surreptitious judgment obtained against him in Nevis by his own brother Thomas, which his Majesty has referred to the Council for Trade. But forasmuch as petitioner hath long attended the sitting of said Council, and cannot hear of any fixed time, their sittings being seldom, and being informed that said Thomas is transporting himself with all his substance out of this kingdom to New England, where petitioner will never be able to recover any satisfaction of him; prays an order to said Thomas to give security to abide his Majesty's judgment, and not to depart the kingdom till same be declared. In margin, "Read Sept. 24, '73." 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXX., No. 68.]