Journal of the House of Commons: Volume 6, 1648-1651. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1802.
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Die Jovis, 31 Octobris, 1650.
Contract for Ships, &c.
ORDERED, by the Parliament, That the Committee of the Navy be authorized to contract for Ships and Provisions necessary for the Expedition to the Plantations in America: And that they do take care for their speedy Dispatch in that Expedition.
Grant to Fox.
Resolved, That the Commissioners for Compounding be authorized and required to issue their Warrants to their Sub Commissioners, to permit Colonel John Fox to hold and enjoy the Quiet Possession of Two Parts, in Three Parts to be divided, of the Manor of Edgbason, with the Adpurtenances, in the County of Warwick; and to take and receive the Rents, Issues, and Profits thereof, and also, Two Parts in Three to be divided, of the Lands of Robert Middlemore, in the Parishes of King's Norton, Yardley, and Northfield, in the County of Worcester: And that he be put into Possession, according to the Act made in that behalf.
Which (after they were withdrawn) was read; and was intituled, "The humble Petition of the Mayor, Commonalty, and Citizens of London, Governors of Christ's Hospital, Bartholomew, Bridewell, Thomas, and Bethlem, Hospitals.
King's Slaughter-house, &c.
Ordered, That it be referred to the Committee of Obstructions, to examine the Business touching the Settling and Disposing of the Slaughter-house of the late King, in Westminster; and to consider also, how Elizabeth Atkin may be provided for, either out of that House, or otherwise: And the said Committee are authorized and impowered to provide for her, and determine the same accordingly: And the said Committee are also to consider how the Parliament may be supplied with a convenient Place for Laying in of Coals, and other Fuel, for the Use of the Parliament, in that House, or elsewhere: And they are impowered to provide and settle a Place convenient for that Purpose.
Levant Trade and Convoys.
"This Council, having taken into Consideration a Report to them made from the Council of Trade, concerning Convoy into the Levant, for the Preservation of the Trade of this Nation, in Danger to be there lost; which Report is hereunto annexed;"
"This Council is of Opinion, That a sufficient Convoy is very necessary for the Ends abovesaid: And therefore, to desire the Parliament to take the same into Consideration; and declare their Pleasure concerning the Charge necessary for ascertaining sufficient Convoy for the End propounded: And that it may be put into a Way of speedy Execution, as the Season of the Year, and the Nature of the Business, require: And Mr. Challoner is desired to make this Report."
"The Council, upon a serious Consideration of what great Import to the Advance and Increase of Trade it would be to settle Convoy for the Securing thereof, did cause Notice to be given, at the Exchange, of their Resolution to take the same into Debate."
"And, shortly after, receiving a Reference from the Council of State, of the Fifteenth of September last, upon a Petition of the Levant Company, to advise what they think fit to be done concerning the securing the Southern Trade, by Convoy; in pursuance of that, and Conference had with the said Company, they received Information, with a List given them of the Particulars, That, within those One-and-twenty Months, there hath been taken from this Nation, by the French alone, above Five thousand Ton of Shipping, with upwards of Four hundred Pieces of Ordnance, and Goods to more than Five hundred thousand Pounds Damage, to the very great Impairing of the Stocks and Strength of this Nation: As likewise, that the Ships now going out to the Streights, with those that are looked for ere long to come home, are reckoned worth above Two hundred thousand Pounds Sterling."
Levant Trade and Convoys.
"This Council also perceiving, that the Trading of those Parts, heretofore very rich, and almost wholly driven in our English Shipping, is, by means of the Discouragements forementioned, now near quite lost to this Nation; and that the Apprehensions amongst the Merchants are very great, of the French being like to increase more and more in Power, even to the Raising of Fear in our Merchants to adventure thither; conceiving it likewise not for the Interest of this Commonwealth, at present, to have Ships of Charge go single and straggling; it is therefore their Opinon, That a Convoy is necessary to be sent with the Ships now going into the Streights, to consist of, at least, Four Ships of about Forty Pieces of Ordnance apiece, to set sail from the Downs with the first fair Wind after the last of November, towards Faulmouth, with all such English Shipping as are bound to the Southward, and then ready; and to stay at Faulmouth Forty-eight Hours, for the taking with them all such Ships also as are then ready to go out of the West Country; and so hold on their Course into the Streights, as high as Zants; and there to stay Thirty Days; and to convoy back all such Ships as shall there meet them; touching at such particular Ports on the Coast of Italy and Spaine, as they go along, both outward and home, for the safe Conducting of all such English Shipping as they shall find ready in any of them; according to the Instructions they shall further receive from the Parliament, or Council of State."
"Towards the Defraying of the Charge of which Convoy, and securing the Southern Trade of the Nation, it hath been offered by the Turkey and Levant Company to advance One Fifth of the Customs, over and above what is now paid, in the same Manner as is expressed in the Propositions annexed:"
"4. Their Trade; which we conceive to be Onehalf of the Trade of this Nation: For, by this means, the Manufactures of the Land cannot be vented; the Hollanders, and other Nations, will be encouraged in the Making and Venting of Cloth, which is the Staple Commodity of England; and to serve England with Foreign Commodities, at high Rates."
"1. That the State will be pleased to send a considerable Number of their Ships (at the least Twelve) to convoy Merchants Ships from Place to Place, within the Streights, to be regulated by a Committee of the Levant Company."
"3. That, besides the ordinary Custom now paid, the Merchants in general may contribute One Fifth Part more towards the Maintenance of the Charge to be paid for Convoy Money, so long as they shall conceive it needful to have Convoy continued."
"5. That this be done with all possible Expedition, in regard there are many Ships ready to depart for several Ports, and sundry rich Ships shortly expected from Turkey and Italy; for the Surprize of which, and others, this Winter, the French are preparing Eight Ships at Tolone."
Resolved, by the Parliament, That it be referred to the Committee of the Navy, upon Conference with the Council of State, to consider of a fit Number of Ships, for the settling and carrying on the said Convoys, from time to time; and make an Estimate of the Charge of the said Convoys, which they are to present to this House; and to take care, that the Monies arising by taking off the Defalcation of Fifteen per Centum be applied and appropriated to this Use only, and no other Use: And that the Committee of the Navy have Authority for the Ordering Providing, and Managing of their Convoys: And that all Officers and Ministers do yield ready Obedience thereunto: And the said Committee are to give Instructions for the same: And to take care that the said Instructions be punctually observed.