Minute Book: March 1674

Pages 228-235

Calendar of Treasury Books, Volume 4, 1672-1675. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1909.

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March 1674

Mar. 2. The Customs Commissioners and Mr. Sewell called in. The petition and articles of the town of Minehead against Daniell Sewell, collector of that port, are read. A copy of the articles is ordered to be given to Sewell. The matter to be heard this day week.
Memorandum : That 63l. are deducted out of the 22,000l. claimed by the late contractors upon account of a bill drawn by Col. Butler for 63l. on the said contractors.
Remind the Lord Treasurer to speak with the Secretary of State about the passes for ships.
Send to the [Customs] Commissioners to know when they first gave notice of the prohibition for transporting coals over sea in reference to Sir William Blackett's case.
The Lord Treasurer to speak with Sir Hugh Cholmely and Mr. Pepys about the proposal of carrying goods from St. Malo to Tangier.
[Ibid. pp. 87-8.]
Mar. 3. The proposals concerning the Forest of Dean [are ordered] to be offered to the King for his approbation [viz. as follows] : (1) to have a supervisor of the woods and bow bearer whose salary is to be 100l. per an. ; (2) six keepers at 20l. per an. each ; (3) an allowance of 30l. per an. for repair of gates and fences ; (4) the ironworks to be demolished ; (5) the materials of those ironworks to be employed towards building lodges for the aforesaid keepers ; which together with 100l. in money will serve to build the said lodges.
[British Museum Additional MS. 28,077, p. 88.]
Mar. 3. Present : Lord Treasurer, Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lord Arundell, Sir Cha. Harbord, the Solicitor General, Sergeant Maynard, Earl of Bath, Attorney General, Attorney of the Duchy [of Cornwall], Sir Peter Killegrew, Mr. Tregagle.
[The conclusions of the Committee of reference concerning the law of the Stannaries are given in as follows] : (1) the King hath power to buy all tin ; (2) the King must buy at the coinage [? rate or Hall]. Sergeant Maynard says whosoever brings tin to be transported, without the stamp, forfeits it. The Solicitor General says they find several records which prove that if any man exports uncoined tin 'tis seizable and forfeitable. As for Pre-emption the King's Counsel affirm they find no footsteps to warrant the King's right in that particular.
The Earl of Bath [Lord Warden of the Stannaries] reads a petition of the year 1661, from the tinners to the [late] Treasurer Southampton wherein they offer 10s. in every hundred in lieu of all duties except Customs.
The convocators are called in. The Lord Treasurer says the King desires to come to a fair accommodation with the country and my Lord desires to know how far they are empowered to treat. The convocators answer, the letter to the Lord Warden shows their instructions. My Lord tells them that the King hath a right of seizing all uncoined tin as his learned Counsel are of opinion. He acquaints them with the King's power of emption which ought to induce them to a compliance with His Majesty, and further acquaints them with the proposal made in Treasurer Southampton's time of raising the coinage duty from 4s. to 10s. in lieu of all duties except Customs.
Sir John Coryton says the reason of offering the King 10s. in Treasurer Southampton's time was because tin gave a greater price than now it does.
The letter and petition from the convocators in 1661 was read before them. Mr. Buscawen says there was a price agreed then at 4l. 10s. stannary weight. The wages for tinners are higher now than formerly. He says that the property of the tin is in the subject and not in the Crown. He says the 4 per cent. was granted by the King to [sic for to the King by] the tinners in consideration of their charter.
Sergeant Maynard says the King may have by his prerogative the universal property of the mines. He further insists that in Henry III's, time the King did prohibit the transportation nisi cuneo nostro sit signatum.
The Attorney General says the end of the coinage is lost if uncoined tin be permitted to be exported, and the reputation of the commodity will fall. As for the [pre-]emption he concluded that if the King will buy he may, viz. at a reasonable price.
The Solicitor General says as to the coinage 'tis not enough to pay the duty but the tin must have the King's stamp upon it, and [he] shows the inconvenience that would arise if it were otherwise, and instances in several records [and] concludes that 'tis not lawful to carry any away unless it be coined. And as for the exportation he says that in Henry III. 'tis said none is to be exported without the licence of the bailiff.
Mr. Buscawen says the tinners stand upon their privileges and the law, and that they may cast into bars as well as into dishes, &c. ; and further says that they will join with the King to prevent frauds. The Lord Treasurer desires them to acquaint the Convocation with the debate, and commands a fair accommodation expecting the Convocation answer upon the whole matter.
The pewterers' petition is read. Mr. Buscawen says that the tinners will most willingly join with the pewterers in preventing the falsification of the tin. The pewterers say that the small bars are frequently falsifed, and that they buy the same quantities in small bars cheaper than in blocks.
The Lord Treasurer proposes an accommodation betwixt the King and the country, and desires an answer 14 days after their meeting at the next Convocation. The proposition to be given to the Convocators.
Nicholas Sanders, Collector of Truro, is to be removed. Capt. Peter Courtney is humbly proposed by the Earl of Bath and Mr. Tregeagle as a very fit person for that employment.
Sir William Strode's business of the Lambhay is referred to Sir C. Harbord on the King's part and to such other person as Sir William Strode shall nominate : [who are] to report the state of that matter to the Lord Treasurer.
A letter to be drawn from the Lord Treasurer to the Earl of Bath, taking notice of a former [letter] directed to said Earl from the King : and [informing him of] the substance of this day's debate concerning the tin [and further informing him that the Lord Treasurer expects] the Convocators' answer in 14 days after their next meeting.
[British Museum Additional MS. 28,077, pp. 88-91.]
March 5. The Lord Treasurer directs Sir John Banks's order for 260l. (for interest) to be paid out of the contingencies of the second quarter [of the present Eighteen Months' tax].
"My Lord be pleased to settle Sir John Berrie's 1,740l. upon some list."
[Ibid, p. 91.]
March 8. Send for Sir John Banks to [be with] the Lord Treasurer tomorrow morning.
Give the Lord Treasurer an account of the fourth quarter [of the present Eighteen Months' tax] with all speed to [enable him to] know what is already paid in and what [remains] in arrear.
March 9.
Wallingford House.
Present : Lord Treasurer, Marquess of Worcester, Chancellor of the Exchequer, Surveyor General [of Crown Lands.]
After a long debate concerning the Forest of Dean [it was] resolved that a respite be put upon the sale of [the timber of] any part of the Lea Bayly for the present.
Mr. William Hanway at the Black Spread Eagle in Drury Lane offers 5s. per cord if he fell the timber himself, or 6s. 4d. if the King fell and cord it.
The Lord Treasurer directs that the Commissioners of the Navy give an accompt how many ships and of what rate they judge may be built out of the timber in the said Lea Bayly.
Sir John Banks engages to furnish the Lord Treasurer with 10,000l. this week towards present occasions, and hopes to do as much for the next week.
[British Museum Additional MS. 28,077, pp. 91-2.]
March 10. The Lord Treasurer directs that 20,000l. be issued by warrant for the service of the Navy, upon accompt ; to be satisfied by levying of tallies on Alderman Backwell to be paid out of the first moneys of the 800,000 patacons to be paid by the States General of the the United Provinces.
The Lord Treasurer directs 10,000l. for Sir John Banks on the Treasurer of the Navy's orders : to be issued out of the payment of the 800,000 patacons.
Articles between the King, Mr. Hanway and Mr. Alderman Forth : the 10th of March, 1673-4.
(1) That for so much cord wood as shall be cut in the Lea Bayly in three years Mr. Hanway obliges himself to take it away in manner following : as agreed unto this day by said Hanway and Forth.
(2) That the measure of the cord be according to the return of the Commission, and that to be at the time of the cording.
(3) That the wood be corded within 14 days after cutting and cleaving.
(4) That when 500 cord or upwards shall be cut and so corded as aforesaid Mr. Hanway be obliged to take it into his custody and the King to be discharged of it.
(5) The price to be paid for the short cord as aforesaid is to be 5s., and 1s. 4d. more for cutting the same.
(6) To advance for the cutting and cleaving it the rate of 1s. 4d. per cord for 500 cord at the beginning of cutting, and so from time to time upon every 500 cord.
(7) The 5s. per cord to be paid one moiety at the time of delivering it into his custody as aforesaid, and the other moiety at the clearing of the ground : which ground shall be cleared in six months after cording.
(8) That Mr. Hanway be at the charge of cording over and above the 1s. and 4s. for cutting and cleaving.
(9) Articles to be drawn wherein Mr. William Hanway and Mr. Alderman John Forth, of London, are to be bound for performance of these covenants : and bonds to be given for 2,000l.
[Ibid. pp. 92-3.]
March 11. The Lord Treasurer orders Capt. William Fordred to be the next landwaiter in Bristol port when a vacancy is presented by the Customs Commissioners.
[British Museum Additional MS. 28,077, p. 93.]
March 12. Warrant for 10,000l. [to the Navy Treasurer] on the fifth quarter of the Eighteen Months' assessment : [to be] for the Victuallers.
To remind the Lord Treasurer for this year's establishment for Tangier, on the Customs ; when his Lordship makes a new list.
To move the King that out of the last money payable out of the last quarter of the Eighteen Months' tax in co. Hereford (which money is difficult to be got in) Madam Hamilton and Col. Birch be satisfied for their orchard.
March 14. Present : Lord Treasurer, Viscount Ranelagh.
That as to the 500l. desired by the Lord Lieutenant [of Ireland] for building, if it can be conveniently spared out of the money for the Marine Regiment, considering the charge newly laid thereupon, that the Lord Lieutenant may take it out of that money. But otherwise that it be charged upon the Concordatums as hath been usual.
Write the Lord Lieutenant and therein particularly to remember that there be no remittal of the quit rents before the expiration of the present farm : and to make the enquiry into the quit rents according to the method proposed by the Lord Lieutenant.
Memorandum : to send for Mr. Harbord to attend the Lord Treasurer concerning coining of farthings in Ireland.
That the Lord Treasurer inquire concerning the intrinsic value of the new farthings lately coined to compare them with the former, and that Mr. Doyly be sent for to the Lord Treasurer in this matter, and also the Master of the Mint.
Order for 1,000l. to Mr. Le Gouche presently out of some of the contingencies [of the quarters of the present Eighteen Months' tax] : his arrears [due to him are] to be placed upon some secure funds.
Mr. Griffin to have 7,500l. upon the Excise next in course after what is charged on the new farm.
To wait on the Lord Keeper with Alderman Forth's petition, the Lord Treasurer desiring said Lord Keeper to give him his opinion in that matter to-morrow at the Committee for Foreign Affairs.
On Tuesday afternoon to consider the defalcations of the Irish [Revenue] Farmers.
Write a note upon the objections made against the instructions [issued] by the King's Commissioners, of the Revenue in Ireland.
The Lord Treasurer to be put in mind to consider the whole matter of the Lord Lieutenant's last letter.
[Ibid. pp. 93-4.]
March 16. To discourse with the Chancellor of the Exchequer of Sir Charles Wheler's business, of his petition and accounts.
A warrant to be drawn for 2,400l. per an. to the Duke of Buckingham for 21 years upon that part of Excise that is settled by Act of Parliament upon the King and his heirs : being in consideration of his Mastership of the Horse, and the 2,500l. per an. out of Ireland : and likewise one for 1,500l. per an. upon the same fund during life.
The Lord Treasurer to write to the Customs Commissioners to make some proposals to him for the settling a trade at Tangier, the Composition trade at Dover and the proposal of Humphry Willett for the importation of French merchandizes.
Mr. Sewell's articles and answer are to be referred to the [Customs] Commissioners to report whether they think him fit to be employed in any other Custom House place.
Mr. Harmar (Harman) to be restored to his place of landwaiter in London port.
[British Museum Additional MS. 28,077, pp. 94-5.]
March 17. A letter to be written to the Lord Lieutenant of Ireland pursuant to the minutes in the foregoing page, and also concerning the [Irish Revenue] Farmers' accounts [viz.] that his Excellency would direct the taking them [the said accounts] both the ways mentioned in the contracts : ride clause.
[Ibid. p. 95.]
March 19.
Treasury Chambers.
Present : Lord Treasurer, Marquess of Worcester, Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lord Chief Baron.
Sir Baynham Throckmorton makes a proposal concerning the draining of Wawmore in the Forest of Dean, containing 200 acres, and alleges if drained would become good land and those that use it at present have no right of commonage and those who have [such right of commonage] live too remote from it ; he concludes that the draining of this would bear the charges the King is at in preserving the forest. Upon the debate of the whole matter, the Lord Treasurer was of opinion that this proposal is unpracticable and not warranted by the Act of Parliament.
The Lord Treasurer to give directions for the 300l. for building of lodges in the Forest of Dean.
The report from Sir Ch. Harbord and Mr. Bampfield is read in relation to the demands of Sir William Strode for a parcel of ground called Lambhay situate near the fort of Plymouth. The Lord Treasurer directs that the case be stated and that afterwards a report be drawn up to be presented to the King.
The Lord Treasurer will recommend Mr. Henry Fanshaw's petition to the King.
Tuesday week appointed to consider the arrears of the taxes uncollected ; the Lord Chief Baron, Mr. Laurence, and Mr. Fillingham to be summoned.
[Ibid, pp. 95-6.]
March 20. The Lord Treasurer orders the first 10,000l. of the 20,000l. designed for the Victuallers upon the fifth quarter of the Eighteen Months' Assessment to be paid to the Treasurer of the Navy.
Write to the Customs Commissioners to inform the Lord Treasurer what retrenchment may be made in the charge of management and collection of the Customs, and how far the patent officers may be serviceable and useful to this end.
Sir John Shaw to pay 620l. remaining [in his custody] upon [account of his receipts of] the Coinage duty before he receives the money appointed to be paid to him at Midsummer by Mr. Mounteney.
March 24. Order for 2,600l. for Sir Lionell Jenkins and Sir Jo. Williamson : Mr. Perwich [similarly ordered] 200l. out of the 50,000l. reserved upon the Custom [payments] list for ambassadors and presents.
[British Museum Additional MS. 28,077, p. 96.]
The Lord Treasurer forbids the burning of prohibited goods to be in force "till the sum of 500l. be raised and no further," Mr. Dewy to give an account weekly.
Mr. Lyndsay to be sent for.
Write Sir Robert Howard for a list of all salaries or persons payable in the Exchequer or by tallies of pro, and to despatch it immediately.
A like letter to all other places [offices, such] as the Customs, Excise, &c. ; and to the Navy, Ordnance, Cofferer of the Household, Great Wardrobe, Sir Stephen Fox, Treasurer of the Chamber, Paymaster of the Works, Treasurer of Tangier, &c. Likewise send to all those places [offices] for particulars of the ordinary expenses, and what extraordinaries they can foresee for this present year in their [respective] offices.
Mr. Bertie to give the Lord Treasurer an account how each branch of the revenue is charged by anticipation, and for what time any of the offices are already provided by assignments, &c.
[Order for tallies for] 3,000l. to Mr. du Teil for the galleys : [to be charged] on the sixth quarter [of the present Eighteen Months' tax] after 127,000l. [already charged thereon].
[Ibid. pp. 96-7.]
March 24.
Treasury Chambers.
A paper concerning the regulation of fees in the Exchequer [is brought in and] to be signed by the Lord Treasurer.
Col. Birch to be paid (for charge laid out upon the orchard) by a tally to be struck on the Receiver [of the Eighteen Months' tax] of the county of Hereford, on the last money payable to His Majesty there out of the present Eighteen Months' assessment : which money appears to be due, [as appears] upon the accompt delivered in by Col. Birch and Mris. Hamilton.
On Thursday morning to consider the defalcations of the old Farmers of Excise. The Lord Keeper, Sir George Downing and the King's Counsel [the Attorney General, &c.] to be summoned.
[Ibid. p. 97.]
March 25.
The Lord Treasurer orders Sir Allen Apsley's debt of 1,800l. to be placed [charged for repayment] upon the new farm of the Excise next and immediately after the 20,000l. for the Cofferer of the Household.
On Friday, the 27th inst., the present Farmers of the [London] Excise, Sir Geo. Downing and Col. Birch, are to be summoned touching money in the [Excise] Farmers' hands, both upon the old and new duty, as appears upon the Auditor's state [of said Farmers' accompt].
March 27 Present : Lord Treasurer, Chancellor of the Exchequer, Lord Chief Baron, Attorney and Solicitor General, Sir Rob. Howard, Sir Geo. Downing, and the present Farmers of the London Excise.
The [said] Farmers allege that upon the whole farm expiring at Midsummer next they do not owe above 25,000l. to the King [after taking into] account their advance money. Col. Birch [is ordered] to make up the Farmers' account by the calendar month. Three months and eight days insisted upon by the Farmers as days of grace. Col. Birch [is ordered] to draw up a state of the whole three years' rent due from them, giving allowance for quarterly payments. (In the margin : Letters then writ to him.)
Upon the 9d. per barrel Col. Birch charges the Farmers with 46,000l. and odd money.
Alderman Breedon confesseth the bargain of 54,000l. [for the 9d. per barrel] but says there was afterwards a bargain made by Lord Clifford and Sir John Duncomb under their hands which some of their [the Farmers'] partners insist on.
Upon the debate now [had] concerning the money given in upon the state of [their account as prepared by] Auditor Birch, as in arrear and owing by the present Farmers of the London Excise [up to] 25 Dec., 1673, it was ordered that the said Farmers do forthwith give to the Auditor an accompt of all moneys already paid or to be paid within the time of their farm ending 24 June, 1674, wherein the said Auditor is to take special care that he give no allowance to the said Farmers for any money paid by way of pensions since 21 March, 1673-4, and that the said Auditor do compute the payment of salaries and other incident charges yet to come for Lady Day and Midsummer [quarters] according to the usual quarterly payments of that nature already passed ; and that the said Farmers give the Auditor an accompt of all their payments forthwith ; so that the Auditor may attend the Lord Treasurer with the said state on Thursday afternoon next : in which state the Auditor is to charge the said Farmers with 54,000l. yearly for the 9d. per barrel imposed by the Act of Parliament. (In the margin : Letter then wrote to them.)
[British Museum Additional MS. 28,077, p. 98.]