East Indies: July 1630

Pages 31-36

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, East Indies and Persia, Volume 8, 1630-1634. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1892.

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July 1630

July 2. 40. Minutes of a General Court of the E. I. Co. Mr. Governor first desired to give a touch of what passed concerning the Palsgrave, Dolphin, and Hart intended to have been sold at a Court of Sales 25th June last, which were appraised at 1,900l., but only 700l. bid for them, so he proposed the disposal of them be left to the Committees. Next he reported that letters had been received from Bantam by Dutch ships, advertising that the London would be ready to come thence with pepper and cloves about the beginning of Jan. last, that they had hoped to lade another small ship of 150 tons, and that if they had three ships more as big as the London they could send them for England next year fully laden with pepper. Therefore seeing it had pleased God to bless the Old Stock with such a remain of goods, he desired their resolutions whether they would send ships for this pepper, his own opinion being that one of these three ships would serve, and that if the London come in time she might be made ready to return with a small charge; but this cannot be done without an order of the General Court. This proposition debated and argued at large; some thought considering the price, charges, labour, adventure, and custom that the pepper was not worth the sending for; but it was observed that though it cost 40l. per ton all charges, it would be worth here at least 80l. per ton, and considering they have ships of their own which they cannot sell at present but at great loss, it was conceived much better to set out two ships to fetch the pepper, than to sell it in the country to the loss and dishonour of the Company; besides who would buy it, for neither of the adventurers in the three Persia voyages will meddle with it, having sent out such large stocks that in all probability they will want ships to bring home their adventures; but forasmuch as an order of the General Court prohibits the sending out of any more of the Old Stock, ordered, that the Court may not be surprised, to defer resolution until another General Court appointed for this day sennight. Mr. Governor then fell to the business of the day, he acknowledged how much he was bound for the Courts' good opinion, and seeing he is willing to free himself from that care and resign his place to another, he desired the Court to think of some more worthy and able man to be in election, and so departed the Court; and the ballotting box having been offered by Mr. Deputy and refused, one of the generality proposed that the stipend of the Governor, &c. be reduced, and that unless gain be made no gratification be given; another of the generality advised that the stipend being settled, a fine be set upon his head if he refused, and that the gratifications to the Governor, &c. be not taken but by direction of the General Court. To this was answered, that this manner of proceeding will much discourage men of their fashion to do the Company service, for to be articled with is both base and a great dishonour to persons of their rank and condition, and therefore Mr. Deputy for his part, and doubtless Mr. Governor, Mr. Treasurer, and the rest of the Committees for theirs will never be entertained upon those terms. And as for this charge which is so much repined at, the whole charge for the gratifications of Governor, Deputy, Treasurer, Committees, with all their principal officers and servants at Crosby House and Blackwall amounts not to 1½ per cent. upon the stock sent out and returned whereas no merchant allowed his Factors abroad for factorage less than 2 and 2½ per cent. The Court receiving this satisfaction passed by this motion as not worthy further consideration, and proceeded to the nomination of persons to be elected. Sir Morris Abbott, Sir Hugh Hamersley, and Aldermen Freeman and Garway nominated for Governor, but the choice fell by a general and free erection of hands upon Sir Morris Abbott to be Governor for the year ensuing; Alderman Clitherowe next elected Deputy, though he desired very earnestly to be spared; and Robert Bateman, Treasurer, though he pleaded hard to be excused, alleging his old age and desire of ease, and that he had served 10 years, whereof four he was alone, and had it not been for Mr. Massingberd's help he had never been able to undergo, especially at this time when four accounts are on foot together. In the last place the Court proceeded to the election of the six committees of the 24 to be changed, and Sir Hugh Hamersley, Messrs. Armitage, Davis, Bownest, Reynardson, and Highlord, all of whom had 2,000l. adventure in the Old Stock and 400l. in each particular voyage were elected as new Committees; to make room for whom Messrs. Styles, Bell, Milward, and Cradock were by erection of hands dismissed, as also Sir Robert Ducy being to be Lord Mayor and Mr. Rastell employed as President in the Indies. So the 24 Committees for the ensuing year are:—Alderman Sir Hugh Hamersley, Alderman Garway, Sheriff Abdy, and Messrs. Kirby, Andrewes, Browne, Nun, Wm. Garway, Perry, Spurstowe, Mustard, Job Harby, Cordell, Willyams, Gayre, Cockayne, Martyn, Kerridge, Langham, Armitage, Davis, Bownest, Reynardson, and Highlord. 6 pp. [Ct. Min. Bk., XII., 1–6.]
July 9–16. 41. Court Minutes E. I. Co. Bill of Mr. Acton's law charges to be paid. Ordered that compensation be made from 1617 of the composition of 400l. per annum, paid yearly to the King's grocer for spices imported by the Company; some of opinion in regard the Company now bring home less spices, to cease that payment, being no way obliged by contract, and serve the King with spices at the King's price. Ordered, on presentation by John Staresmore of a letter of Attorney from his father, Exor of Richard Cocks deceased, that 150l. formerly given in full of all demands touching Cocks estate be paid on his giving a general release. Request of Mr. Clarke for allowance upon a parcel of cotton wool, pretending it was not merchantable but foul, denied because the wool comes loose in the hold amongst the pepper and other goods, and cannot be clean as is known to all men that buy. Consideration of the course to take concerning the sending for the pepper ready at Bantam for the account of the Second Stock. Resolved that the Second Stock set out ships to fetch it home, the charge conceived not above 1½ per cent.; Mr. Mountney to give full allowance of materials, stores, and victuals for 16 months, and thought meet first to make ready the Palsgrave and hoped that the London would be home to be set out with her easy charge. Report of Mr. Browne of Deptford that Lord Ambassador Sir Henry Vane is content to take the houses and ground the Company held by lease from Mrs. Sheffeild, Mr. Lupo, and Mr. Comey, and all the land and tenements the Company held of the Bridgehouse by lease, except that part of the stone wharf and yard reserved by the Company, for which they are to pay 20l. per annum to the Bridgehouse and the Ambassador to pay 50l. per annum to Lupo and Comey. The auditors to perfect the account of the second voyage. A parcel of defective calicoes sold to Sir Hugh Hamersley at ¼ less than the price agreed upon for the former parcel. Gratuity of 100 marks bestowed on Mr. Secretary Sherburne for the year past. 3 pp. [Ct. Min. Bk., XII. 7–9.]
July 9. 42. Minutes of a General Court. Mr. Governor having returned thanks for his election for this year, acquainted them that this morning the Court of Committees had at large debated whether to send out ships on account of the Second Joint Stock to fetch home the remain of their estate in the Indies; that divers propositions were made, as first, whether the adventurers in the Persia voyages might not be dealt with to bring home the pepper, to which was answered it is expected they will want shipping to bring home their own returns; secondly, to offer to sell it outright, but the most that was offered was 2d. per lb., which was conceived too mean a rate; thirdly, that ships be freighted, but to that was answered that the Court had long endeavoured that course, but no man as yet could be found to perform it; and, lastly, that some Turkey merchants who were adventurers should send out ships and carry it directly for Leghorn; neither of these propositions was approved and no way found so good as to send their own ships, that they had resolved on the Palsgrave, with the London if she arrive in time, as the most proper ships, the charge whereof for 16 months would be about 15,000l., "which is no great matter considering the benefit that is expected." Hereupon these propositions were again at large debated, some conceiving that the Charles will bring her lading of that pepper from Bantam and therefore no cause to send ships, or else to send the Palsgrave only; others advising to offer it to the Chinese or Hollanders, to which was answered that it is a question whether the Chinese will buy it, and if the Dutch took it, doubtless it will be at base prices, and give them cause to brag that they had so wearied the English out of the trade as they are not able to fetch home the remain of their goods, besides putting jealousies into the Generality that they are wronged in their estates, to the scandal of the Court of Committees. Again it was objected that this Court is restrained by an Act of the Generality from sending out any more stock, upon that account to which was answered that the Generality had likewise ordered that the remains of their goods in the Indies shall not be sold, and therefore that Act hath relation only to quick stock and not to shipping; whereupon it was put to the question and ordered by erection of hands as the Court of Committees had formerly agreed as is before declared. Motion of Ald. Fenn for settling the payments of the 14th and 15th half capitals in money, answered by Mr. Governor that the Court of Committees will find a time to consider it, and bring it before this Court.
July 16. Ordered to continue the payment of 400l. per annum; composition for spices for the King's household till Michaelmas next come 12 months, the Court being informed by an abstract made by the auditors that for 13 years past, at the King's price of 1s. 6d. per lb. it comes to a far greater sum. Information that Sir Henry Vane desires respite till Michaelmas to give answer whether to accept or refuse the Company's offer of their housing and grounds at Deptford, in respect that he is to go presently over for Holland as his Majesty's Ambassador extraordinary, he should have no leisure to view the same before his departure. Besides he is somewhat discouraged from building since he understands that the air is not so wholesome as he conceived it had been, his purpose being to have made it a place of residence for his children and a great part of his family. The Court, considering that they lose nothing as his term was not to begin till Michaelmas, willingly consented to his Lordship's motion and left it wholly to his choice either to accept or release the bargain. Request of George Clarke for allowance for his ill bargain of cotton wool; resolved to leave him to take his course. Nathaniel West's bond, who is lately returned to be delivered to him. Request of Sir Wm. Russell concerning Ald. Freeman bond for 6,000l. for Burlamachi's debt. Recommendation of Sir Kenelme Digby of one Dibbs who had been Master Chirurgion in his ship in his late voyage; to be put on the list of the suitors at the election of officers on the first Friday in September next. Estimate to be prepared of the repair of the Palsgrave. Committees to use all diligence in providing forthwith the materials, provisions, and commodities necessary for the next intended voyage. Edward Lee, an ancient servant, with great charge of children, to be continued in his place of making and getting bills sealed for wares sold, with 20l. per annum, and 5l. bestowed upon him in respect of his present wants. Wages due to Robert Marsh, prisoner in the Poultry Compter, detained on pretence of his leaving the Mary at Plymouth to be paid. Petition of Gabriel Hawley, showing that great actions of account had been commenced against him by the Company, for which he was restrained of his liberty and of all means of giving them or any others satisfaction, and prays that the accounts be forthwith examined, arbitrated and determined; he was desired to procure something in writing from his brothers that they would become bound with him to stand to the award of arbitrators indifferently chosen, without which the Company conceived it bootless to alter their course. 6½ pp. [Ct. Min. Bk., XII., 9–16.]
July 21.
Bay of St. Augustine.
43. Consultation aboard the Royal James by the President (Rastell). Whether the five ships should proceed directly to Surat or directly to Persia, the meeting of the Charles and Jonas bound for England proffering a good occasion by reason of special advices received from their Commanders. That no forces of the enemy were to be expected in Persia so early as Wylde confidently affirmed; that the Company's estate destined for that place would be well secured; that there would be five months gained for procuring silk; that it imported much for forestalling the Dutch as well in sales as investments; that the ships being disburdened would be far more nimble, and fit to encounter the enemy, and able at Surat to lade greater quantities of goods for Persia, to which was objected the doubt of procuring camels for transport of the goods on landing; the chance of unfavourable winds to prevent them joining the Dutch upon the coast of India before the 10th Oct., by which day they had consorted to meet Capt. Bickley with eight ships; and that they run great hazard to be disappointed of Port Swally. Resolved therefore to depart hence 26th present, and not making above three days' stay at the Isles of Comoro proceed thence with the Discovery and Reformation. 2 pp. Mutilated by damp. [O. C., Vol. XII., No. 1308.]
July 23. 44. Court Minutes, E. I. Co. Estimate for repairs to the Palsgrave, amounting, besides masts and iron work, to 800l., to be proceeded with, with all diligence, committees to provide timber and other materials wanting, committees for lead to buy and send to "the wall" 50 tons of lead for stiffening the Mary which will be ready by this day sennight to be launched. Letter of thanks to be written to Mr. Misselden for 2,158 R. of eight consigned to the Company without order at 5s. per R., and to let him know they are willing to accept them at 4s. 8d. per R., at which price they have lately been accommodated with a good quantity. 1½ pp. [Ct. Min. Bk., XII., 16–17.]
July 26.
Ship Royal James,
St. Augustine's Bay.
45. Richard Barry (Purser of Royal James) to the East India Company. Arrived here after a prosperous voyage 14th instant, having found no place of touching save a rock upon the coast of Brazil, described on the plats (charts) as Trinidado, where for five days they provided themselves with water, fish, fowls, &c. Their people are in good health, but one man, a carpenter, dead. Concerning their provisions and stores, complains of the great authority given to Commanders over Pursers, for how can they comply with the Company's expectations in opposing matters prejudicial to trade if threatened daily with peremptory menaces. He is the only man that has suffered, or in this fleet is like to suffer, but who knows what may ensue to others. Endorsed, "Rec. by the ship Charles 7th April 1631. Complaint of the imperious carriage of Capt. Moreton." 1 p. Mutilated by damp. [O. C., Vol. XII., No. 1309.]
July 30. 46. Court Minutes, E. I. Co. Brokes charged to the account of Richard Fursland deceased, remitted. Request of Mr. Drew for remission of his brokes, answered that similar brokes amounted to 6,000l. or 7,000l., whereof he as an adventurer is like to have a share, and that his request could not be granted, unless the court did the like to all. Mr. Governor's securities approved for the great parcel of indigo he had bought amounting to 44,000l. He also complained that he had received 40 bales of coarse, cheap indigo bought by Crispin Blagden at Ajmere, and not worth 2s. per lb., instead of Lahore indigo, and for which he demanded allowance either in price or time; the court, after discussion (Mr. Governor and partners having withdrawn) agreed to enlarge the time for payment of same. Allowance to Sir Hugh Hamersley for 100 weight of stones found amongst the pepper he had taken out on stock and transported, and for which he was sentenced to pay 18½ ducats. Report of Mr. Hanson concerning Mr. Collins' debt to the Company and that he desired 4 tons of saltpetre, otherwise the powder mills must stand still. Examination of Mr. Collins who complained of the great waste of the coarse saltpetre in refining it, of the standing still of the mills while he was in Holland, and of the many hazards he bears by the blowing up of mills, the loss of powder, and charge of casks and carriage, whereto the court well inclining to make his bargain better, but suspending their resolution until he present his desire in writing, ordered meantime that he have 100l. and 4 tons of saltpetre, and desired Mr. Cobb to deliver it equally sorted and not all of the worst sort as formerly. 3 pp. [Ct. Min. Bk., XII., 18–20.]
July 30./Aug. 9. 47. Sir H. Vane to Sec. Dorchester. Had public audience of the States General yesterday and spake to the effect, the substance of which he encloses,
47. I. Speech of Sir Henry Vane. The King has sent him again to continue the negociations, consisting chiefly of two points, viz.:—His Majesty's treaty with Spain, and the affair of Amboyna; and he hopes they will be brought to an issue, that will redound to the welfare of both States. [Extract, Holland Corresp.]