Journals of the Board of Trade and Plantations, Volume 2, February 1709 - March 1715. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1925.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. All rights reserved.
Journal, December 1710
A letter from Sir Charles Hedges, of the 28th of the last month [fo. 108, 137], inclosing an affidavit of Benjamin Joice and William White, made in August, 1700, as also a certificate of Captain Lodwick Fardinando, relating to the refusal of James Briggs to serve on board a pirate ship &c., were read; whereupon ordered that copies of the said affidavit and certificate be taken, and the originals sent in the following letter to Colonel Bennet.
A letter from Major-General Handasyd, Governor of Jamaica, dated the 3rd of October, 1710, was read; whereupon ordered that the paragraphs E and F of the said letter, relating to the French and Spanish ships at Carthegena &c., be sent to Mr. Burchet for the information of the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty, and that the substance of paragraph I of the same letter, relating to her Majesty's pardon of a serjeant at Jamaica under sentence of death for killing a person there, be sent to Captain Gardner.
A letter to Mr. Secretary St. John upon the project of a convention with Hamburgh, relating to the herring trade from Scotland [fo. 117, 175], mentioned in the minutes of the 30th of the last month, was signed.
A letter from Captain Aldred, commodore of the Newfoundland convoy, dated at Plymouth the 26th of November last, with his answer to the heads of enquiry &c., was read, as also the papers following referr'd to in the said letter, vizt.:
Answer of Captain Aldred, commodore of the Newfoundland convoy, to the heads of enquiry &c.
Account of the fishery of Newfoundland for the year 1710.
Copy of a petition from the inhabitants and traders of Newfoundland to their lordships, praying that a sufficient force may be sent thither for the protection of the trade and fishery there.
A letter from the Duke of Queensberry of the 1st instant, desiring this Board to acquaint his Grace [fo. 203] with what their lordships may have to propose for the advantage and security of the British trade in the dominions of the Czar of Muscovy, was read.
A letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of the 30th of the last month, signifying that there is no treaty now subsisting for regulation of commerce between her Majesty's subjects and those of the Republick of Venice [fo. 126], and that it is her Majesty's pleasure their lordships do prepare such heads for a treaty of commerce, as they shal think proper, was read, and directions given for laying before their lordships all the papers in this office, relating to the Venetian trade.
A letter from the Duke of Queensberry, of the 2nd instant, inclosing the petitions of the Royal African Company [fo. 109, 122], and of several planters and inhabitants of Barbadoes, to her Majesty, with several papers relating thereunto, desiring this Board to let his Grace have their opinion thereupon, which were read; and directions given for preparing and answer to the said letter, acquainting him that their lordships should be ready to enter into the consideration of what he has proposed, but that having already laid before her Majesty and the late House of Commons in 1708 and 1709, their observations on the trade to Africa, they do not conceive it proper to enter further into that matter, unless her Majesty think fit to direct the same.
A letter from Mr. Secretary St. John, of the 2nd instant [fo. 114, 122], relating to the woollen manufacture at Lintz, and the herring trade at Hamburgh, was read; and their lordships took into consideration the papers referr'd to in the said letter touching the herring trade, and made a progress therein.
Their lordships taking into consideration Mr. Secretary St. John's letter of the 2nd instant, concerning the woollen manufacture at Lintz [fo. 121, 123], and the herring trade to Hamburgh, mentioned in yesterday's minutes, the papers referr'd to in the said letter were read, vizt.:
Extract of Mr. Wyche's letter to Mr. Secretary St. John, as likewise the demands of the Dutch resident there, relating to herrings imported.
Copy of Mr. Wyche's memorial to the Senate of Hamburgh about the herring trade. His account of the Dutch herring trade there.
The answer of the Chancery of Bohemia to a memorial from Mr. Palms, her Majesty's Minister at the Court of Vienna, relating to Crown rash; also extract of his letter to Mr. Secretary St. John thereupon, dated the 22nd of November, 1710.
A letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of the 2nd instant, inclosing a letter from Mr. Waterhouse, secretary to the Postmaster General, to Mr. Warr, dated the 15th of November last, containing several letters from persons in Maryland, was read.
Another letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of the 4th instant, signifying her Majesty's pleasure, that their lordships do reconsider their representation of the 23rd of February last [fo. 110], relating to Newfoundland, as also several papers referred to in his lordship's said letter, was read, and the said papers were laid before the Board, and are as follows, vizt.:
Captain Moody's proposal for building a fort at Newfoundland [fo. 128], and fortifying the same.
Letter from the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty to the Lord Dartmouth, of the 2nd instant, acquainting his lordship that three men-of-war were sent last year to Newfoundland, and that the like number will be sent thither the next.
Letter from Mr. George Vane, of the 2nd of August, 1710, to the Lord Dartmouth, containing an account of the taking of St. John's &c., in Newfoundland.
Copies of letters from Mr. John Collins at Newfoundland to his brother, giving an account of the taking of St. John's, and of what has happen'd there since.
Two letters from Mr. Collins to the Board of Ordnance, dated the 24th June and 24th October, 1710, relating to the present state of Newfoundland &c.
Extract of a letter from Major Lloyd to Mr. Solomon Merit, dated at Placentia in Newfoundland, the 13th of November, 1709, giving an account of the strength of the French there, &c.
A letter to Mr. Secretary St. John, in answer to one from him of the 2nd instant, relating to the herring trade at Hamburgh [fo. 123], and to the woollen manufacture at Lintz in Austria, directed yesterday, was sign'd.
A letter from the Commissioners of the Customes of North Britain, dated at Edinburgh the 25th of November, 1710, inclosing an abstract of the trade of that country to and from Sweden, from the 1st of May, 1707, to the 25th of March, 1710, was read, and directions given for acknowledging the receipt of the said letter &c.
The affidavit of Richard Love, master of the Abraham gally, sworn before John Stewart, esquire, one of her Majesty's justices of the peace, the 5th instant, setting forth that he had observed that Charles Arrabella, now in prison in Maryland for blasphemy [fo. 114, 128], was, during his being on board the said gally, a very sober, modest man, and not given to swear or curse, or to utter any prophane expressions, though unfortunately prosecuted for the same at Maryland, was read; whereupon ordered that the draught of an answer be prepared to the reference from the Lord Dartmouth of the 14th of November last, mentioned in the minutes of the 27th of the same month.
Their lordships, taking into consideration the letter from the Lord Dartmouth of the 30th of the last month, mentioned in the minutes of the 4th instant, relating to heads for a treaty of commerce with Venice [fo. 120, 219], together with the several papers in this office concerning the Venetian trade, ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Carkass to move the Commissioners of her Majesty's Customs, that their lordships may have an account of the exports and imports to and from the Venetian territories [fo. 177], with the values thereof for the year 1700 and 1708, as also an account of what duties are payable here upon the said imports; further ordered that Mr. Samuel Shephard, Mr. Williams and Monsieur Claude Jamineau [fo. 139] have notice to attend the Board on Thursday morning next.
Mr. Phelp, Deputy Governor of the Eastland Company [fo. 111, 115], with some other merchants attending, they presented to their lordships a memorial relating to the opening a trade with Riga, Revel &c., in the Czar's dominions, which was read; desiring therein, that they may have the same liberty and freedom in their trade to those places as her Majesty's subjects enjoy at Archangel; as likewise if further immunities are granted any other nation, that in such case they may be entituled to the like; and these gentlemen being withdrawn, ordered that letters be writ to Sir Benjamin Ayloff, Governor of the Russia Company, and to Mr. Whitworth [fo. 159], to desire that they will let their lordships have in writing an account of what liberties and freedome in trade her Majesty's subjects do enjoy at Archangel.
The secretary laid before their lordships the extract of a letter which he received from Mr. Stephen Duport, dated at St. Christopher's the 16th of September, 1710, relating to the weak state of Guardaloupe, which was read; and a letter to the Lord Dartmouth, inclosing a copy thereof, was signed.
A letter from the Lords Proprietors of Carolina, of yesterday's date, acquainting this Board that, upon the death of Colonel Edward Tynte, late Governor of Carolina, they have constituted Charles Craven, esquire, to succeed him in that employment [fo. 137], and desiring their lordships to lay the same before her Majesty, for her approbation of the said Charles Craven, was read; whereupon ordered that the draught of a representation be prepared for laying the same before her Majesty, as usually had been done heretofore.
Captain Moody attending, as he had been desired, his proposal for building a fort at Ferryland in Newfoundland, and fortifying the same [fo. 123, 130], referr'd to in the Lord Dartmouth's letter of the 4th instant, was read; and being asked if he had anything further to offer therein, he said that he had not. Whereupon their lordships agreed to take the rest of the papers referr'd to in the foresaid letter into consideration on Monday morning next.
Sir Benjamin Ayloffe, Governor of the Russia Company, with several of the merchants trading thither attending [fo. 115, 159], he presented to their lordships a memorial, in answer to the letter writ him the 30th of the last month, relating to the opening a trade with Riga, Revel &c., in the Czar's dominions, which was read; setting forth that, whereas the trade to the Czar's dominions has been carry'd on by the way of Archangel, it will require encouragement to induce the English merchants to renew the trade to Narva and Petersburgh; to which end it will be necessary the Customes and other duties on trade should be made moderate, and be paid in the coin of the country; that they may have free liberty with the Czar's subjects, in the same manner as is now practized at Archangel, and not be imposed on by pretences of burgher-right, which was a great oppression of trade under the Swede; that a publick braack for hemp and other goods be established in the same manner as heretofore practised at Narva. But what is above-said, in relation to the duties, to the liberties of the British subjects at Archangel, to the payment of the duties in the country money &c. not being sufficiently explain'd, these gentlemen were desired to let their lordships have as full and as particular an explanation of these matters, and of anything relating to this trade, as may be, which they promised to do accordingly.
Their lordships now took into consideration and read the papers relating to Newfoundland, referred to in the Lord Dartmouth's letter of the 4th instant [fo. 128, 138], and Captain Vane, late engineer there attending, and being asked several questions in relation to the fortifying of St. John's (to which place he gave the preference in his memorial, one of the foresaid papers), or the fortifying of Ferryland; he said that the harbour of St. John's was very capacious in which hundreds of ships might safely ride. That Ferryland could not contain, especially if it were stormy weather, above twenty ships, though he owned that the harbours of Caplin and Aquafort, which are not above a mile distant by land from Ferryland, might contain more ships than go from this kingdom to fish at Newfoundland. That these two last mentioned harbours might be protected by a fort on Ferryland Down, which place is very convenient to be fortifyed, there being from thence a prospect of several leagues at sea, and a narrow entrance into the harbour, but, however, he did not think Ferryland so proper a place to be fortifyed as St. John's, for that in Ferryland harbour there was not so much room for flakes and stages as at St. John's, unless the ground were cleared, the charge whereof with the building of their stages would come to about twenty pounds each. That Ferryland is further from Placentia than St. John's. That if the design of fortifying Ferryland be only to serve the inhabitants and the effects of the merchants during the winter from the incursions of the French, a fortification there would undoubtedly answer that end, and be a safe retreat to all the inhabitants that should winter there, and might be erected at much less charge than at St. John's notwithstanding which at St. John's is the more capacious harbour, and in which there was no want either of bait or fish, he was the rather inclined to that. However, if St. John's be agreed to, he did not propose to have a fort erected in the place where the late fort stood, but in another which would better protect the harbour, and not be commanded by adjacent hills. Then Captain Vane being desired to make a comparison of the conveniencies and inconveniencies in fortifying the harbours of St. John's and Ferryland, with a computation of the charge of fortifying each of the said places, he promised to do the same accordingly, and to lay it before their lordships in writing on Wednesday or Thursday next.
In the meantime ordered that the draught of a representation in answer to the Lord Dartmouth's fore-mentioned letter of the 4th instant, requiring the Board to reconsider their representation of the 23rd of February last, be prepared.
A letter from the Duke of Queensberry, of the ninth instant, returning to their lordships the petitions from the Royal African Company and the planters and inhabitants of Barbadoes to her Majesty [fo. 122, 147, 181], together with several other papers relating to the trade to Africa, mentioned in the minutes of the 6th instant, was read, and the papers therein referr'd to were laid before the Board, and are as follows, vizt.:
Petition of the Royal African Company and of their creditors to her Majesty, relating to the trade thither.
Petition of several planters and inhabitants of Barbadoes praying that the trade to Africa may be preserved &c.
Letter from Sir Dalby Thomas and others to the Royal African Company dated at Cabo Corso Castle, the 26th of November, 1709, relating to the trade to Africa.
Letter from Mr. Crabb to Mr. John Perry, dated at Commenda in Africa, the 19th March, 170 9/10, relating to 4 Dutch men of war being there, and to their building a trade house at Balshan, &c.
The scheme of the Royal African Company for preserving and carrying on the trade to Africa, &c.
The letter to the Lord Dartmouth of the 8th instant, upon the petition of Anne Pauley, in the behalf of Charles Arrabella, now a prisoner in Maryland [fo. 128, 144], being returned to this Board, with directions to reconsider the same, ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. John Hyde to desire that, if he has received any account of the proceedings touching the said Arrabella in that province, he would acquaint their lordships therewith; but, in case he had not, that he would then inquire of such persons as were lately come from thence or others concerning this matter, and give their lordships the best information he could get as soon as possible.
A letter from Mr. Lowndes of the 9th instant, referring to the Board the memorial of the merchants, planters and inhabitants of Jamaica [fo. 166], relating to the duties payable there on prize goods, was read, together with several papers concerning the same, which are as follows, vizt.:
Report of the Councill of Trade, May the 16th, 1710, relating to the complaints from Jamaica of the Custome House Officer.
Letter to the Lord Treasurer from the Earl of Sunderland, of the 13th June, 1710, upon the complaint of the inhabitants of Jamaica, touching the high duties on prize goods &c. N.B.—This paper was omitted to be copy'd.
Copy of the address of the Governor, Council and Assembly of Jamaica.
The humble memorial of the merchants, planters and inhabitants of Jamaica, upon the report of the Commissioners of the Customs relating to the duties of prize goods sold at Jamaica.
Report on the complaint of the inhabitants of Jamaica against Mr. Beckford, the collector there.
Report on an order of her Majesty in Council, on the petition of the traders and inhabitants of Jamaica.
Whereupon ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Carkesse for an account of the amount of the bonds taken for the payment of the duties [fo. 138, 148]; an account of the English duties payable for prize goods, for which these bonds were given; and an account of what summ has already been paid there for such prize goods since the passing the American Act.
A letter from Mr. Secretary St. John, of the 8th instant, inclosing the extract of a letter from Mr. D'Alais [fo. 163], concerning a new imposition laid upon foreign coarse cloths, imported into the Elector of Hannover's dominions, was read, and their lordships were acquainted that the secretary had writ to Mr. Carkesse yesterday, for an account of the duties payable here, upon the importation of linnen and thread from Germany [fo. 152], and particularly that he would distinguish the duties upon the linnen and thread from the Elector of Hannover's dominions, if there be any difference, as also that he do mention the several years, wherein any of those duties were laid.
A letter from Mr. Thomas Maxwell, Mr. Edmund Sutton and Mr. Guy Ball, three of the members of the Assembly of Barbadoes, appointed a committee of correspondency, dated the 8th of July, 1710, relating to the disputes that have arisen between the Assembly and the Council of that island touching the right of nominating a Treasurer, was read.
Letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of the 7th instant, acquainting their lordships that he had received letters from Colonel Bennet, Lieutenant Governor of Bermuda [fo. 117, 139], relating to James Briggs, a prisoner there for piracy, and to some soldiers condemned for conspiring against that Governor, was read, and directions were given for preparing of an answer thereunto.
A letter to the Lords Proprietors of Carolina, in answer to one from their lordships of the 7th instant, read the 8th ditto, about their having constituted Mr. Charles Craven to succeed Colone Tynte [fo. 128], deceased, in the government of that province, acquainting their lordships with the method proper to be taken for obtaining her Majesty's approbation of the said Mr. Charles Craven, was signed.
Mr. George Vane attending, he presented to their lordships a memorial relating to the advantage and disadvantage of fortifying St. John's or Ferryland in Newfoundland [fo. 130, 140], as likewise the difference of expence of each of those places, which was read; and he being withdrawn, their lordships took into consideration the draught of a representation for laying before her Majesty the state of Newfoundland &c., directed the 11th instant, and made a progress therein; and ordered that Mr. Archibald Cumming, lately come from thence, have notice to attend the Board to-morrow morning.
Ordered that another letter be writ to Mr. Carkess, in relation to the duties on prize goods to Jamaica [fo. 135, 148], signifying that their lordships having been inform'd that great quantities of those goods, for the duties whereof bonds were given in that island, have since been imported into this kingdom, and paid the duties here, they desire that he would give them what sight he can in this matter, and, if it be so as is alleged, what goods have been imported, and what is the account of the duties received here, upon the said goods.
Mr. Williams and Mr. Claude Jamminean, Venetian merchants, attending [fo. 126], the letter from the Lord Dartmouth of the 30th last month, mentioned in the minutes of the 4th instant, directing the Board to prepare the heads of a treaty of commerce with Venice, was again read, as were also heads for such a treaty, extracted from a representation of this Board dated 28th June, 1706, and some propositions made by the republick of Venice, relating thereunto, being laid before the Board, the same were likewise read; whereupon these gentlemen desired that they might have copies of the said papers [fo. 176], and they would give their lordships their thoughts thereupon in writing, and the same was order'd accordingly.
The draught of a letter to the Lord Dartmouth, in answer to his lordship's of the 7th instant [fo. 137, 146], relating to the pirate Briggs, and some soldiers condemned at Bermuda, was agreed and ordered to be transcribed.
Mr. Cumming, who has lived several years at Newfoundland, and lately arrived from thence, attending as directed yesterday [fo. 138, 144], and being asked the following questions, answered as in the opposite column.
A letter from Mr. Commings, inclosing an account of the number of stages, fishing boats and quantity of fish made the last fishing season in each of the harbours in Newfoundland [fo. 140, 146], was read; and their lordships then taking into consideration the draught of a representation relating to Newfoundland, mentioned in the minutes of the 13th instant, agreed the same, and ordered it to be transcribed.
Captain Hyde attending, as he had been desired, with Captain Love, in relation to Charles Arabella, a prisoner in Maryland for blasphemy [fo. 133, 147], and being asked what they knew concerning him, Captain Hyde said he had no account, but Captain Love inform'd their lordships that, when he went to Maryland in 1709, the said Arrabella went with him as a sailor, that during the voyage he had observed him to be a very diligent man, and no ways given to prophane cursing or swearing, as is more fully set forth in his affidavit, read the 7th instant. He added that he was at the said Arrabella's tryal, that there was but one witness against him, a carpenter, that he was indicted for uttering some blasphemous expressions, the particular words he did not remember, but the occasion was as follows. The said carpenter and Arrabella were pitching a sloop, and that some of the hot pitch fell upon the said Arrabella's foot, so that in the anguish of the pain he believed he might perhaps utter what he was accused of, and that the carpenter upon a quarrel between them afterwards inform'd against him. These gentlemen being withdrawn, their lordships took notice that the petition sets forth that the prisoner was bored through the tongue, fined twenty pounds, and sentenced to lye 6 months in prison, which, if so, is contrary to the law of Maryland, pass'd the 30th October, 1704, entituled An Act for the punishment of blasphemy, prophane swearing and cursing, whereby the offender is to be bored through the tongue and fined twenty pounds, or in case he cannot pay the fine to lye 6 months in prison, so that the said Arrabella, having been in prison ever since his conviction, the fine of twenty pounds of course was to be remitted. Whereupon their lordships gave directions for preparing a letter to the Lord Dartmouth, in answer to his reference of the 9th instant.
A letter to the Lord Dartmouth, in answer to his of the 7th instant, relating to James Briggs, in custody for piracy at Bermuda [fo. 139], and to some soldiers under sentence of death there, was signed.
Captain Moody attending, he presented to their lordships a memorial setting forth the advantages of fortifying Ferryland, and disadvantages of fortifying St. John's in Newfoundland [fo. 144, 147], which was read, and being particularly asked concerning the situation of the Admirals Rock, he said that the same was commanded by two hills within pistol shot, that overlook it, and was about a quarter of a mile further from the entrance of the harbour than the place where the old fort stood, and by consequence could not defend the said entrance.
The draught of a letter to the Lord Dartmouth, in answer to his lordship's reference of the 9th instant, relating to Charles Arrabella, a prisoner in Maryland [fo. 144], directed at the last meeting, was agreed, and ordered to be transcribed.
The letter from the Duke of Queensberry of the 9th instant [fo. 132, 150], together with the papers presented to her Majesty by the Royal African Company therein referr'd to (mention'd in the minutes of the 12th ditto) [fo. 182], were read, and their lordships agreed to take the same into further consideration to-morrow morning, and ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. John Perry, signifying their lordships’ desire to speak with some of the members of the said company on Fryday morning next.
Ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Woolley, secretary to the East India Company, to remind him of that writ him the 18th of the last month [fo. 106, 153], desiring to know what exports were made by the said company between April, 1709, to April, 1710, and what between April, 1710, and September following.
Further ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Carkesse to hasten the accounts desired from him by the secretarie's letters of the 12th and 13th instant [fo. 134, 138], relating to the duties payable on prize goods at Jamaica.
An Order of Council of the 13th instant, referring to their lordships the three following addresses from the Council and Assembly of Maryland to her Majesty [fo. 324], was read, and their lordships agreed to take the same into consideration at a convenient opportunity, vizt.:
Address from the Councill and Assembly of Maryland to her Majesty against the Governor's keeping the seal of that province.
Address from the General Assembly of Maryland to her Majesty, relating to two Acts repealed by her Majesty, the one about gauge of tobacco hoggsheads, the other against cropping and defacing the same, as also to an Act against devulgers of false news.
Address from the General Assembly of Maryland to her Majesty, relating to Sir Thomas Laurence's claim to the ordinary licences in that province &c. [fo. 163].
Their lordships, again taking into consideration the papers relating to the Royal African Company mentioned in yesterday's minutes [fo. 147, 154], ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Perry, signifying their lordships’ desire that such of the members of the said company, as shall attend them on Fryday do come fully prepared to prove the allegations set forth in their petition to her Majesty.
Answer of the separate traders to Africa, to the queries sent them the first of November, 1710, relating to that trade &c. dated the 11th of December, 1710, was read, together with the following papers therein referr'd to vizt.:
Papers therein referr'd to.
Account of ships sent from Great Britain, from Michaelmas 1708, to Michaelmas, 1709, by the African Company and separate traders, with the ten per cent. duty paid, number of wollen goods exported and negroes &c.
Account of ships sent from Great Britain and the plantations to Africa, by the separate traders, from Michaelmas, 1709, to Michaelmas, 1710, with the 10 per cent. duty paid. No. of woollen goods and negroes imported.
Testimonial of John Hays, master of the Dorset brigantine taken by a French man of war on the coast of Africa, relating to the Governor of the African Company's trading with the French, and going on board their ships.
Testimonial of Jacob Duce, relating to protection given by the Royal African Company's agents to the Portuguese ships trading to Africa.
A letter from Mr. Carkesse in answer to three from the secretary of the 11th, 12th and 13th instant [fo. 135, 136, 138], relating to the duties payable on the importation of linnen and thread from Germany &c. and to the quantity of prize goods imported from Jamaica, was read, together with the papers therein referr'd to, which are as follows, vizt.:
Papers therein referr'd to.
Account of the quantities of prize goods imported from Jamaica, from Midsummer, 1708, to the 20th of November, 1710, with the amount of the duties thereon.
An account of the quantities of prize goods imported into the port of Bristol from Jamaica, from Michaelmas, 1708, to Michaelmas, 1710.
Account of the several duties on linnen and thread [fo. 166], imported from any parts of Germany, with the several years the duties were granted, and the nett duties of each particular.
Whereupon ordered that Sir Charles Wager, Colonel Lloyd, and Mr. Whitgift Aylmer have notice to attend the Board on Fryday, the 29th instant, and that the Lord Mayor be acquainted therewith; and that, in case his lordship knows of any other persons that are capable of giving particular information in this matter, he would please to let them have notice likewise to attend at the same time.
A letter from Mr. Thomas Woolley, secretary to the East India Company, dated the 20th instant [fo. 148], in answer to one writ him the 18th of the last month, giving an account of the said companie's exports, between April, 1709, and September, 1710, was read.
A letter from Mr. Penn, of the 7th instant, in answer to one writ him the 4th of November last [fo. 93, 191], with several queries relating to his proposal to surrender the government of Pennsylvania to her Majesty, was read, whereupon their lordships agreed to take the same into further consideration at a convenient opportunity.
Mr. Pindar, Deputy Governor of the Royal African Company [fo. 150], with Mr. Lake and several other members, and Sir Edward Gold, with several creditors of the said company, attending, they were acquainted that their lordships, having read the companie's petition to her Majesty, and papers therein referr'd to, were desirous to know whether the company had anything further to offer than what was contained in the said papers, particularly upon this single point, whether the trade to Africa could best be carried on for the benefit of the plantations by a company with a joint stock, exclusive of others, or whether any other method could be proposed for doing the same, forts and castles being agreed to be necessary. They said that it was impracticable to carry on that trade to the utmost advantage otherwise than by such a company, and they presented to their lordships the two following papers, vizt.:
Reasons against the separate traders’ scheme, and
Reasons and arguments against the separate traders’ scheme, and shewing the necessity of a joint stock establishment, for carrying on the trade to Africa.
for the companie's speedy settlement.
Reasons shewing the necessity of the speedy settlement of the trade to Africa in a company with a joint stock.
|Amounting to in old debts||65,520||18||9|
|And in new debts since the revolution||105,602||16||5|
|In the whole||£171,123||15||2|
Upon which they said that they had interest at ten per cent. allow'd them from their debtors in the plantations; that formerly they had agents for recovering of their debts, but those agents made in their accounts, fictitious debtors, whereby the company were considerable losers. After this they sold their negroes to the planters, and gave them credit, which occasioned in part the great debts owing to them. Then they appointed agents again from whom they have security in this kingdom; but for that reason they are forced to allow them three per cent. more than they did to their former factors.
Then being asked what they meant by that part of their scheme where they say they would be obliged to export to the coast of Africa in manufactures of this kingdom and other goods to the value of 100, 000 pound annually; whether that export was intended only on account of trade, or whether part of it was to be apply'd to the use of forts and castles; they said, part for trade, and part to pay their officers; that by such an exportation, if the management of the trade was wholly in them, they did not doubt but that negroes might be had at a much cheaper rate then they are at present, and that they might be able to supply the wants of all the plantations; but that they could not enter into an engagement to do the same, unless there were agents here appointed from the said plantations, who should from time to time give them accounts of negroes wanting for each respective government, and that the said agents do contract with them that, when such negroes shall be imported to the said respective governments, they be then taken off their hands at certain rates, otherwise it would be an insupportable loss to them. Upon these terms they would venture to engage to supply the plantations annually with such numbers as they should want.
They then presented to their lordships an account of the improvement of the woollen manufactures by them, and being thereupon asked what they meant by anabasses, mentioned in the said account, they said, that they were a sort of a stuff made of wooll and cotton, between three and four yards long, and in value from three to five shillings a peice. They further laid before their lordships an account of the coinage of gold by the company from 1680 to 1688 amounting to 252, 818 guineas.
These gentlemen being withdrawn, ordered that a copy of the companie's scheme above-mentioned (read the 19th instant) be sent to the separate traders [fo. 165], for what they may have to offer thereupon.
A letter from Mr. James Du Pré, dated at New York the 4th of October, 1710, to Mr. James Vernon (communicated to the Board by Mr. Monckton) [fo. 186], giving an account of what Colonel Hunter has done towards the settlement of the Palatines on Hudson's River at New York, was read.
A letter from the Duke of Queensberry, of the 22nd instant, referring to the Board a petition of some Swedish merchants to her Majesty, praying for a pass for two Swedish ships to go from London to France, was read; whereupon ordered that some of the persons concerned have notice to attend the Board on Tuesday morning next [fo. 162].
Copies of the several priviledges granted by the Emperors of Russia [fo. 129], to the Merchants Adventurers of this kingdom trading thither &c. received from the Governor of the Russia Company, was laid before the Board; whereupon ordered that the draught of a letter be prepared, in answer to that from the Duke of Queensberry [fo. 162], of the 22nd of the last month, read the 23rd ditto, relating to the opening a trade with Riga, Revel, &c. now in possession of the Czar of Muscovy.
Colonel Lloyd and Mr. Aylmer attending, as they had been desired the 21st instant [fo. 134, 153], Mr. Lowndes's letter of the 9th, relating to the duties on prize goods in Jamaica, was read, and being asked how much of the British duties they thought might be necessary to be taken off for the encouragement of privateers, they said, the whole; and, unless that were done, their seamen would not return again to that island; that her Majesty would not be a loser thereby, for all the prize goods brought into Jamaica (except some small quantity perhaps for the use of the island) are imported to this kingdom, where they pay the duty upon such prize goods; so that, if the British duty at Jamaica be not wholly taken off, there will be three duties paid upon the same goods, vizt.: the island duties, without which the government there cannot subsist; the British duties there, and the same duties again upon their importation here, which will effectually put a stop to all privateering at Jamaica, and has already been the occasion of their losing almost all their seamen. The foresaid duties are the heavier upon the Jamaica privateers, in that it is three times dearer to fit out a privateer there than it is here. Then being inquired of concerning the price of cacoa at Jamaica they said that depended upon the goodness and the quantity imported; that the best is generally sold between three or four pound per cwt.; that there was prize cocoa imported, which paid thirty-seven shillings per cwt. duty, and was sold but for forty shillings the sharoon (which is 150l. weight), so that the captors were losers by that prize ten shillings and four pence upon every cwt. Then Colonel Lloyd communicated to their lordships a letter he had received from Jamaica, setting forth the hardships the privateers have undergone there in relation to the fore-mentioned duties, and particularly, that the collector of the British duty had taken bonds in the penalty of 130,000l., for 8,000l., duties demanded; and Colonel Lloyd added that he had not heard of more than 1,200l. actually paid upon the said duties. These gentlemen being withdrawn, ordered that a scheme of the said duties be prepared to be laid before the Board on Tuesday morning next.