Journals of the Board of Trade and Plantations, Volume 1, April 1704 - January 1709. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1920.
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Journal of the proceedings of Her Majesty's Commissioners for promoting the trade of this Kingdom, and for inspecting and improving her plantations in America and elsewhere, from the third of July, 1705, to the twenty-ninth of November, 1706.
Journal, July 1705
A letter from Commissioner Greenhill at Plymouth together with an inclosed affidavit of William Wain, master of the sloop Friendship of Boston, giving an account of what he knew relating to the late attempt of the French on Newfoundland [I. fo. 413; fo. 10], were both read.
A letter from Mr. John Evans, Deputy Governor of Pennsylvania dated the 13th of February last, relating to her Majesty's proclamation [fo. 3], for settling the rate of foreign coins in the Plantations, was read.
Then their lordships took into consideration the Lord Cornbury's letter of 19th of February last, and the papers therein refer'd to, relating to the disobedience shewn in the Massachusets Bay and other Proprietary Governments to her Majesty's proclamation for settling the rates of foreign coines in the Plantations [I. fo. 78]. They also read the first paragraph of a letter from Colonel Nicholson of the 3rd of March, 1704, upon the same subject; and ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Attorney General [fo. 3] inclosing the foresaid papers, and desiring his opinion in point of law what method may be most proper for preventing or remedying the mischeifs ensuing from the disobedience to her Majesty's commands in this particular.
A letter from Mr. Dummer giving an account of the taking the Cotton sloop (one of his packet boats), the 12th of Aprill last, by a French privateer near the Island of Nevis, and informing their lordships of the number of privateers at Martinico and the captures lately made by them, was read; and thereupon ordered that a letter be prepared to Mr. Secretary Hedges [fo. 4], inclosing to him an extract of Mr. Dummer's foresaid letter relating to the French privateers.
A letter to Mr. Attorney General [fo. 2, 67], relating to the disobedience of the Propriety (sic) Governments to her Majesty's proclamation for settling the rate of coin in the Plantations, as directed in yesterday's minutes, was agreed and ordered to be sent.
A letter from Mr. Secretary Harley of the 3rd instant [fo. 5], refering to the Board a memorial from the Emperor's ministers here, relating to the carrying our English manufactures through Germany into Turkey, was read; and thereupon ordered that a translation of the said memorial be made.
Ordered that Mr. Docmenique and Mr. Dockwra be writ to to attend the Board [fo. 9], in order to inquire of them about Mr. Townley, recommended by the Lord Cornbury to be one of the Councill of New Jersey.
Their lordships took again into consideration the Lord Cornbury's letters which were read the 27th and 28th of the last month; and his lordships acquainting the Board in his letter of the 25th February that he had admitted Mr. Roger Mompesson, Mr. John Barbarie and Mr. Adolphus Philips into the Councill of New Yorke; ordered that a representation be prepared [fo. 7] for offering to her Majesty that her Majesty be pleased to confirm the said three counsellors.
Upon consideration of the Imperial Minister's memorial mentioned in yesterday's minutes [fo. 3], ordered that the Governor or Deputy Governor of the Turkey Company have notice to attend the board to-morrow morning [fo. 7].
A letter from my Lord Cornbury of the 19th February last [fo. 110]
relating to his government of New Jersey, was read, and the papers
therein refer'd to laid before the Board, which are as follows, vizt.:
Minutes of the General Assembly from the 13th of November, 1704, to the 12th of December following, relating cheifly to Acts past in this Session.
Several Acts past at a General Assembly held in December, 1704.
And thereupon ordered that copy of paragraph H, which relates to the want of Statute books in New Jersey and New York, be sent to Mr. Lowndes, and that he be desired to move the Lord High Treasurer that this Board may have half a dozen complete collections of the Statutes, in order to be dispersed in the Plantations, as there may be occasion. Further ordered that copies of paragraphs K and L relating to fines, forfeitures and escheats, and to the appointing Rangers of the woods, together with the grants of the Jerseys to the Proprietors, and their surrender to her Majesty; as also that clause of her Majesty's instructions to the Lord Cornbury [fo. 72], relating to fines, forfeitures, and escheats, be sent to Mr. Attorney General, and his opinion desired whether such fines, forfeitures and escheats belong to her Majesty or the Proprietors, and whether the appointing of Rangers of the woods be in her Majesty or the said Proprietors.
A letter from Mr. Secretary Hedges of yesterday's date, inclosing some proposalls of the Newfoundland merchants here, and refering to their lordships that part thereof which relates to the putting the inhabitants under a civill and military government, and directing the Board to prepare a scheme for such a settlement accordingly, as also instructions for the Commodore and Captain of the Fort [fo. 12] relating to the building storehouses and exempting the inhabitants from being pressed or being carryed to New England, was read; and thereupon ordered that copies of the said proposals be sent to the Mayors of Bristoll, Biddiford, Barnstable, Plymouth [fo. 21, 22], Exeter, Pool, Dartmouth and Weymouth [fo. 11, 24], and that they be desired to consult the Newfoundland traders in their respective corporations, and to appoint some person to attend the Board with their opinion upon the whole matter; and further ordered that the Newfoundland merchants in town have notice to attend the Board on Tuesday next in the morning [fo. 10, 11].
A representation [fo. 4, 23] for offering to her Majesty that Mr. Mompesson, Mr. Barbarie, and Mr. Philips, lately admitted into the Councill of New Yorke by the Lord Cornbury, may be constituted counsellors in that province, was signed.
Mr. Falkner, treasurer of the Turkey Company, attending, he was acquainted with the proposals made to her Majesty [fo. 5] by the Emperor's ministers for carrying on the trade to Turkey through Germany; whereupon he said that this proposal had been made before now, and that the Turkey Company would quickly be able to give their lordships an answer thereunto [fo. 17], if their lordships would let them have an abstract of the said proposal. Whereupon ordered that an abstract be sent to Mr. Falkner accordingly.
A petition from Mr. Bohun praying their lordships recommendation of him to her Majesty for the place of Attorney General of New Yorke, as also another petition from Mr. Broughton (son of the late Attorney General at New York) desiring also to be recommended for the said place, were read; and thereupon ordered that the said petitions be sent to Mr. Attorney General for his opinion in like manner as Mr. Knight's had been the 5th of the last month.
A letter from Mr. Secretary Hedges of the 3rd instant, refering to the consideration of this Board an extract of a letter and two memorials from Mr. Broughton, consullat Venice [fo. 33, 35], relating to the currants and fish trade there, was read.
Mr. Docminique attending [fo. 4], he was asked if he knew Mr. Richard Townley recommended by the Lord Cornbury to fill up a vancancy in the Councill of New Jersey. To which he said that he did not know him, but would make inquiry. Then their lordships communicated to him paragraph N of the Lord Cornbury's letter which relates to the purchasing of lands of the Indians. To which he said that the proprietors did not purchase lands of the Indians to have a title to those lands, but only to make the Indians live easy with them, for they had all those lands in their patents: that in the beginning they sold their lands at 5l. a hundred acres with the quit rent of half a crown a year; that they had indeed sold some for ten pound a hundred acres. But he added that, if their lordships would give him a copy of the foresaid paragraph N, he would bring an answer in writing [fo. 18]; whereupon ordered that a copy of the said paragraph be given him accordingly.
Mr. Dockwra attending, and the same question being asked him about Mr. Townley [fo. 4], he said that he thought that he was a very good man, and had no objection to his being admitted into the Councill of New Jersey.
Mr. Merret attending [fo. 6, 11], the memorial of the Newfoundland merchants, refer'd to this Board by Mr. Secretary Hedges and mentioned in the minutes of the 5th instant, was read; whereupon he said that he thought it might be for the security of the fishery if the proposals in that memorial could be effected; that for his part he could propose nothing to be done this year, not having had a perfect account in what condition they were in at Newfoundland since the late attempts of the French; and therefore he was of opinion that no final determination be taken in relation to Newfoundland till the return of the Commodore, who will bring a full account of all that has passed there. He added that there was one John Stephens [fo. 13] lately arrived from Newfoundland in the same sloop with Mr. Collin Campbell (and now at Plymouth), who was able to give the Board some further account of the late attempts of the French [fo. 1, 17]; whereupon ordered that a letter be writ to the said Stephens [fo. 22], and that it be inclosed to Commissioner Greenhill, and he desired to procure a speedy answer thereunto.
Mr. Samuel Shepherd, Mr. Brown, Mr. Campbell and others who had signed the abovesaid memorial attending [fo. 6, 10], the said Memorial was read; and several questions being asked them, they explained themselves as followeth vizt. that their desire was that the Commadore should every year nominate and appoint out of the principal inhabitants of the harbours where he should come, such persons as he should think best qualifyed to be justices of the peace and constables during the winter, in the absence of the fishing admirals; which justices they did not intend should be impowered to try and determin any differences that may happen during the winter, but only to bind over the parties to abide by the determination of the fishing admirals the next season; and that the fishing admirals have the same power of appointing the like officers in such harbours where the Commodore should not come.
They further desired that blanc commissions be sent over for constituting militia officers, and that it be left to the Commadore and the fishing admirals, as above, to fill up the blancs with the names of the principal inhabitants.
That her Majesty would be pleased to send 1,000 firearms (the French having carry'd away or destroyed all they had) to be distributed amongst the inhabitants, they giving security one for another to make good the said arms in case they be lost or broken.
That three small forts be built, vizt., one at Ferryland, one at Carboniere, and one in Trinity Harbour; and that the Captain and other officers of the garrison be strictly forbid to trade or barter upon their own account, or any ways to concern themselves in the fishery upon pain of casheering.
A letter from Mr. Secretary Hedges of the 6th instant [fo. 6, 13], directing the Board to prepare instructions for Captain Lloyd, commander of the soldiers at Newfoundland, and for the Commadore of the convoy there, relating to the inlisting of men, and to the late attempts of the French, was read; and their lordships resolved to take the same into consideration to-morrow morning.
A letter from Mr. Solomon Merit, inclosing some queries to be made to Mr. John Stephens [fo. 10, 22] (mentioned in yesterday's minutes) relating to the late attempts of the French at Newfoundland, were read; and thereupon ordered that the said queries be sent to the said Stephens accordingly.
Their lordships took again into consideration Mr. Secretary Hedges's letter mentioned in yesterday's minutes [fo. 12, 14, 15], relating to instructions for Captain Lloyd and the Commadore of the Newfoundland convoy, and made some progress therein.
Mr. Sloper attending, acquainted their lordships that the Lord Cornbury had appointed him agent for New Yorke [fo. 23], and that a man of war would be ready in a little time to sail for New Yorke. Their lordships thereupon gave directions for preparing a letter to the Lord Cornbury accordingly.
Captain Lloyd attending [fo. 13], and several questions being asked him relating to the inlisting of straglers at Newfoundland, he said that he only desired a power to inlist so many men as may make up the complement of his company when any shall dye or desert; that he would not inlist any seamen or servants without the consent of their captains or masters, nor any person without his own consent, nor even that till after the fishery is over and the English ships sailed from thence, unless it be upon an invasion of the French.
The proposal of the merchants, mentioned in the minutes of the 5th instant [fo. 6] for establishing justices of the peace &c., was communicated to him; whereupon he said that there was very few, if any, of the inhabitants capable of executing such a place; that those justices must be forbid to trade during their executing that office, else they would have opportunities of ingrossing all commodities and forestalling the market, and therefore he thought that none of the principal inhabitants would accept of such a commission.
And as to the military commissions mentioned in the said proposal, he said that there was none of the inhabitants there capable of taking such a command upon them, and that he thought that if the Commodore should leave directions in all the harbours that the inhabitants immediatly send notice to the captain of the garrison at St. John's of the approach of the enemy, it might be sufficient.
A letter to Mr. Secretary Hedges [fo. 15] as directed in yesterday's minutes, in answer to his of the 4th and 6th instant, relating to Newfoundland, inclosing instructions for the Commadore and the Captain of the garrison there, as also the draught of a declaration for her Majesty for settling a militia there, was signed.
A letter from Mr. Solomon Merit of the 13th instant, inclosing several heads which he proposed to be given as instructions to Captain Lloyd, was read; and their lordships observed that most of them are already contained in the instructions abovementioned.
Ordered that a letter be writ to the Turkey Company [fo. 8, 24], to desire them to hasten their report upon the Emperor's minister's memorial relating to the carrying on of our trade to Turkey through Germany.
Mr. Byfield and several of the Pennsylvania Company attending, presented to their lordships a memorial [fo. 113], setting forth that a ship of theirs was lately arrived with 400 barrells of pitch and tar from Carolina, and praying that through the said ship be arrived before the time allowed by Act of Parliament for bounty money upon the importation of such commodities, yet that her Majesty would be pleased to give them such incouragement as shall be thought fit. They also presented to their lordships a certificate from several shipwrights and rope makers of the goodness of the said pitch and tar, both which papers were read. They added that upon the arrival of their said ship at Lisbon they could have sold their pitch and tar there for fifty shillings a barrell; that the freight from Carolina being twenty shillings per barrell they could not afford it under forty shillings per barrell, unless her Majesty be pleased to allow them some incouragement in consideration of the great charge they have been at. That they now are willing to contract with the Navy for 5,000 barrells of pitch and tar a year. Whereupon a letter inclosing the foresaid memorial and certificate to Mr. Secretary Harley, desiring him to lay the same before her Majesty with the opinion of the Board that these gentlemen cannot claim the bounty appointed by Act of Parliament, which commences not till January next, yet they do deserve a suitable incouragement upon this account, was signed.
Richard Sampson [fo. 17] (whose affidavit relating to the late attempt of the French in Newfoundland was laid before the Board the 13th instant) attending [fo. 21], acquainted their lordships that, being hired by Mr. Collin Campbell to help to saile the sloop that was sent express with the account of those matters, he was now desirous to return to his family there, and prayed their lordships' intercession at the Admiralty that he might have his passage in one of the men-of-war now bound thither; whereupon ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Burchet accordingly.
Sir Henry Ashhurst presented to their lordships a memorial [fo. 267], desiring to be heard by his Council before any Court of Chancery be settled in the Massachusets Bay. He also presented to their lordships another memorial signifying that Colonel Dudley had refused to admit his cousen, Mr. Peter Serjeant, into the Councill of the Massachusets Bay, though he was annually chosen for that place, and desiring their lordships would write to Colonel Dudley in favour of the said Mr. Serjeant that he may be admitted to the said Councill the next time he is chosen; both which memorials were read: and ordered that Colonel Dudley be writ to, to know the reason of such his constant refusal.
A letter from Mr. Whitchurch, Mayor of Bristol [fo. 7], signifying that the merchants there had appointed Mr. Peter Renew and Mr. William Brown [fo. 21] to lay a memorial relating to Newfoundland before the Board, was read.
Mr. Churchill's account of stationary ware for the same time, amounting to sixty-six pounds two shillings and eleven pence; and the postman's account for the same time amounting to one hundred and one pounds;
The whole, amounting to two hundred twenty-four pounds four shillings and three pence, were laid before the Board, and a letter writ to the Lord Treasurer, desiring his lordship's direction for the payment thereof.
A letter from Mr. Burchet [fo. 19, 25] in answer to one writ him yesterday inclosing a letter to the captain of the Anglesey, directing him to take Richard Sampson on board his ship and carry him to Newfoundland, was read, and the said letter delivered to the said Sampson.
Mr. Attorney General's report upon the Acts past at two General Assemblies of Pennsylvania [fo. 8, 22], the one held in November, 1700, the other in October, 1701, was read, and the said Acts taken into consideration and a progress made therein.
Mr. Brown and Mr. Brooks presented to their lordships a memorial from the city of Bristoll, another from the town of Barnstaple, and a letter from the town of Biddiford [fo. 20, 7, 24], all giving their opinions upon the memorial of the London merchants trading to Newfoundland [fo. 6, 24], relating to the security of that place, which were read.
Their lordships entered again upon the consideration of the Pennsylvania Laws [fo. 21, 23], and made a further progress therein; and ordered that a copy of the Act for erecting and establishing a Post Office [fo. 107], be sent to the Post Master General for their opinion thereupon.
A copy of an Order of Councill of the 9th instant [fo. 7] upon a representation of the 6th ditto, proposing Mr. Mompesson, Mr. Barbarie and Mr. Philips to be of the Councill of New Yorke, approving the same, was read.
A Memorial from the Turkey Company [fo. 17], in answer to the letter writ them the 6th instant upon the proposals of the Imperial Commissary relating to the carrying of the trade to Turkey through Germany, was read, and a letter thereupon writ to Mr. Secretary Harley, signifying that the Board would be glad to discourse with the said Commissary to-morrow morning upon those matters [fo. 26].
A letter from the Mayor of Exeter, in answer to the letter writ him the 5th instant [fo. 7], relating to the security of Newfoundland, (fn. 1) was read; and thereupon ordered that an abstract of the said letter, and of those lately received from the other Western ports, be made and laid before the Board to-morrow morning.
A letter from Lieutenant Moody, dated the 20th of Aprill, 1705, to Colonel Dudley [fo. 17, 69, 169], giving an account of the late attempts of the French at Newfoundland, was communicated to the Board by Mr. Blathwayt, and read; and thereupon ordered that a copy of the said letter be sent to Mr. Lewis, to be laid before Mr. Secretary Harley.
A letter from Mr. Burchet of the 21st instant [fo. 21], signifying that his Royal Highness had heard that Richard Sampson was a servant to Mr. Collin Campbell, and endeavouring to run away from his service, and that therefore his Royal Highness had countermanded his orders to the Captain of the Anglesey to take the said Sampson on board, was read; and thereupon ordered that the said Campbell have notice to attend the Board to-morrow morning.
Copy of an Order of Councill of the 20th instant [I. fo. 344, 410], upon representations of this Board of the 29th of March and 15th of June [fo. 27, 28], relating to complaints against Sir Beville Granville, Governor of Barbadoes, as also upon a representation of the 27th of June last [I. fo. 416], upon the petition of Richard Downes, complaining that Sir Beville Granville had refused to admit the said Downes into the Council of Barbadoes, was read.
Mr. Penn attending, he was acquainted with the objections their lordships had against several of the laws of Pennsylvania [fo. 23], and after some discourse thereupon, ordered that a copy of their lordships' observations upon the said Acts [fo. 38] be sent to Mr. Penn for his information.
The Count de Gallas, the Emperor's Envoy Extraordinary, as also Monsieur Vecelly, his Commissary General of Trade, being present [fo. 24], their memorial to her Majesty relating to the carrying of the trade to Turkey through Germany and Hungary, was read; and after some discourse upon the difficulties that seem to attend their proposall, they desired to have the said objections in writing, in order to their returning an answer thereunto: whereupon their lordships gave directions for drawing up the said objections, and for preparing a letter to Mr. Secretary Harley [fo. 27], inclosing ye same to him, to be communicated to the said Envoy and Commissary accordingly.
Mr. Bernard attending, and desiring of their lordships a copy of that part of their late representation [fo. 25], which relates to the complaints of the four suspended counsellors of Barbados [fo. 325], he was acquainted that the said representation having been presented and read to her Majesty, it was not now properly in the custody of the Board, and therefore their lordships could not grant a copy thereof.
The draught of a letter to Mr. Secretary Harley inclosing their lordships' answer to the memorial of the Emperor's Envoy Extraordinary and Commissary of Commerce [fo. 26, 29], in relation to a trade to the Levant, to be carryed on through Germany and Hungary, as directed in yesterday's minutes, was agreed and ordered to be transcribed.
Ordered that the secretary write to all the Governors of the Plantations, inclosing to them her Majesty's late proclamation for a day of thanksgiving, that they may give the like directions in their respective governments.
Copy of an Order of Councill of the 20th instant upon a representation of the 29th of March last [I. fo. 344; fo. 25, 61, 81], relating to complaints against Sir Beville Granville (fn. 2) approving the said representation, and directing that Mr. Skene be dismissed from his place of secretary of Barbados [fo. 36], and that he be prosecuted for the misdemeanors charged against him, was read; whereupon ordered that copy of the said Order of Councill and the affidavits in this office [fo. 36] against the said Skene be sent to Mr. Atturney and Mr. Sollicitor General.
An Act past at Nevis to settle the estate of Captain Thomas Butler, deceased, on his three sons, William, Thomas and James Butler, and their heires and assignes for ever [fo. 32], was read; and thereupon ordered that it be sent to Mr. Attorney General for his opinion in point of law.
A letter to Mr. Secretary Harley, inclosing their lordships' answer to the proposal of the Emperor's ministers [fo. 27, 33] for carrying on the trade to Turkey through Germany and Hungary, as agreed in yesterday's minutes, was signed.