Journals of the Board of Trade and Plantations, Volume 2, February 1709 - March 1715. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1925.
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Journal, March 1711
A representation, relating to the disputes between the Lieutenant Governor, Council and Assembly of St. Christopher's [fo. 240, 259], upon a Bill for raising a publick revenue &c., and proposing the repeal of an Act past there the 5th of June, 1704, for the Treasurer's receiving and paying the publick stock of that Island, agreed at the last meeting, was signed.
A letter from Mr. Dudley, Governor of New England, to the secretary, dated the 25th of November, 1710, inclosing a memorial from four of the Council of New Hampshire, complaining of Mr. Usher's proceedings there [fo. 245], were read; whereupon their lordships agreed to consider what Mr. Usher writes in his letter of the 22nd November last, relating to the government of New Hampshire.
Their lordships, upon consideration of the powers in their commission, whereby they are desired to examine the general trade of this kingdom, and the several particular trades into foreign parts, how the same are respectively advanced or decayed, and the causes or occasions thereof &c.; ordered [fo. 255] that the draught of a letter be prepared to be sent mutatis mutandis, to the several companies, or, where there are no companies, to some of the principal merchants trading into foreign parts.
Further ordered, that a representation be prepared, proposing to her Majesty that all the British consuls in foreign parts, and, where there are no consuls, her Majesty's ministers there, may receive her Majesty's directions every six months, to assemble the British merchants, trading in the place of such consul or minister's residence, and consult with them upon the then present state of the British trade to that place, and to propose what they think proper for the improvement or advancement thereof; and that such their deliberations be writ down, and signed by the said merchants, and by the said consul or minister transmitted to her Majesty, by one of her principal Secretary's of State, and to her Commissioners for Trade and Plantations.
A letter from Mr. Usher, Lieutenant Governor of New Hampshire, dated the 22nd of November, 1710 [fo. 243], relating to the late expedition against Port Royal, to his services, and the affronts he has met with in the Council in that Province, to the Treasurer thereof and his accounts, and recommending a new one, and persons to be members of the said Council, was read, and the papers referr'd to be members of the said Council, was read, and the papers referr'd to therein were laid before the Board, and are as follows, vizt.:
Papers therein referrd to.
Copy of the Assembly's address to Colonel Dudley, and vote about raising money.
Mr. Usher's account of mismanagements in the Treasury &c. of New Hampshire; his reasons for suspending Mr. Waldron.
Copy of Colonel Dudley's letter to Mr. Story, secretary of New Hampshire, upon her Majesty's Order, appointing Mr. Waldron to be of the Council of New Hampshire, and Mr. Usher's suspension of him.
Account of money issued out of the Treasury, without any account of particulars, for the service of the government, contrary to instructions.
The draught of a letter to be sent mutatis mutandis [fo. 243], as directed at the last meeting, to the Governors of the Turkey Company, Hamburgh Company, Eastland Company, Russia Company, as also to the Flanders merchants, Portugal merchants, Spanish merchants and Italian merchants, relating to those respective trades; and to the Provost of Edinburgh, relating to the fishery of that part of North Britain, was agreed and ordered to be transcribed.
Mr. Lowther, Mr. Milner and Mr. Bayley [fo. 241, 260], attending, in relation to the memorial from the merchants at Whitehaven complaining of the illegal proceedings at the Isle of Man, particularly in the tobacco trade, read the 22nd of February last, they were acquainted with the message from Mr. Carkess, mentioned in the minutes of the 28th ditto, signifying that the accounts of the duties and drawbacks, desired by the secretary's letter of the 23rd of the same month, could not be got ready so soon as might be expected; and after some discourse with those gentlemen thereupon, their lordships agreed to discourse with the Earl of Derby, and the Earl of Stamford was desired to acquaint his lordship therewith.
An Order from the House of Commons, dated the 27th of the last month, received the 3rd instant, directing their lordships to lay before that House their observations and reports they have made since the last sessions, relating to the trade to Africa, was read [fo. 211, 253]. Whereupon ordered that copies be made of all the papers received from the African Company and the separate traders, as likewise of their lordships’ report thereupon, to be laid before them to-morrow morning.
A letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of the 3rd instant, directing their lordships to lay before her Majesty such accounts as they have received of what the inhabitants of Newfoundland have done for their defence [fo. 147], since the taking of St. John's, was read. Whereupon ordered that the draught of an answer be prepared, to inform his lordship that the Board have received no accounts of anything that has been done at Newfoundland [fo. 252], since their representation to her Majesty transmitted to his lordship the 18th of December last.
The draught of a representation directed the first instant [fo. 244], proposing to her Majesty that all the British consuls in foreign parts, and where there are no consuls, her Majesty's ministers there, may receive her Majesty's directions to assemble the British merchants, trading to the place of such consul or minister's residence, every six months, and to consult with them upon the then state of the British trade to that place &c. was agreed and ordered to be transcribed.
Mr. John Walton attending, in relation to his petition to her Majesty [fo. 225, 250], praying to be Governor of the Virgin Islands in America, and being asked what number of people there were upon the said islands, he said about 500; and what where the produce of the said islands, he said cotton, sugar, ginger and indico and tobacco. He then presented to their lordships a memorial containing a description of the islands [fo. 249, 254], as also reasons why they ought to be taken care of, which was read, and their lordships agreed to take the same into consideration at a convenient opportunity.
An Order of Council, of the first instant, upon a memorial from Mr. William Keen transmitted to the Lord Dartmouth, in their lordships’ letter of the 2nd of the last month [fo. 215, 251], containing an account of several illegal and indirect practices that were committed by Major Lloyd, late Commander of her Majesty's fort at St. Johns in Newfoundland, directing this Board to take care to stop the payment of any monies that shall be found due to Major Lloyd, deceased, for his pay, or for disbursements at Newfoundland during his command there, as likewise to prevent for the future the abuses set forth in the said memorial, whenever her Majesty shall think fit to send a Commander to Newfoundland, was read. Where-upon ordered that Mr. Thurston have notice to attend the Board to-morrow morning.
Mr. Thurston attending in relation to her Majesty's Order in Council of the 1st instant [fo. 250], mentioned in yesterday's minutes, touching the stopping of what money may be found due to Major Lloyd, late Commander at Newfoundland, and being asked if he knew of any money in the hands of any persons in this kingdom belonging to the said Lloyd, he said that he had himself about 2 or 300l. of the said Lloyd's in his hands, and that there was also some small sum in Mr. How's hand; and he being withdrawn, ordered that a letter be writ to him to take care to stop the same, pursuant to the said order [fo. 256], and that a like letter be writ to Mr. How, and to the Victualling Office, to the same purpose.
A letter to the Lord Dartmouth, in answer to his lordship's of the 3rd instant, acquainting his lordship that this Board has received no account of any matters relating to Newfoundland [fo. 249], since what was laid before the Queen the 18th of December last, as directed at the last meeting, was signed.
Order of Council of the first instant, upon a representation of the 22nd of the last month, relating to Mr. Craven's being Governor of Carolina [fo. 234]. approving the same, and directing their lordships to take care the usual security be given for his observing the Acts of trade &c., was read; and the secretary acquainting their lordships that a gentleman from the Lord Craven had acquainted him, that his lordship was ready to give security as is usual [fo. 309], for the said Charles Craven's due observance of the Acts of Trade; ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Lowndes to acquaint him therewith, that the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury may give the necessary directions therein.
The secretary laying before their lordships copies of all the papers in the office relating to the trade to Africa since the last session of Parliament [fo. 248, 379], together with a list thereof, Mr. Baillie was desired to present the same to the House of Commons, which he promised to do accordingly.
A proposal from Mr. Polhampton [fo. 262], for the better regulating the soldiers and sailors maintain'd and imploy'd in her Majesty's service in America, was read. Whereupon ordered that he have notice to attend the Board on Tuesday morning next, and further order'd Mr. Sloper attend to-morrow or Fryday morning next.
A letter from Mr. Walton, who attended yesterday in relation to the Virgin Islands in America [fo. 250, 267], being read, ordered that he be acquainted that, if he has anything further to offer touching the said islands, he do the same in writing.
An Order of Council of the 1st instant, upon a representation of the 22nd of February last [fo. 234], relating to the boundaries between Virginia and Carolina, approving the same, and directing this Board to signify her Majesty's pleasure to the Lieutenant Governor of Virginia, as is proposed by the said representation &c., was read. Whereupon order'd that the draught of a letter to Mr. Spotswood be prepared accordingly [fo. 260].
An Order of Council of the first instant, upon a representation of the 16th of the last month [fo. 226, 227] upon some late letters from Mr. Hunter, Governor of New York, relating to the difficulties he has met with in relation to the settlement of a revenue, for the support of the Government there, approving the same, and directing their lordships to prepare heads of a Bill to be pass'd into an Act here [fo. 257], for obliging the Assembly of that province to settle a revenue as has been heretofore, was read. Whereupon ordered that the draught of such a Bill be prepared accordingly.
A report from the Earl of Orkney to her Majesty, upon a representation of this Board of the 22nd of the last month [fo. 234], touching the granting, seating and planting of lands in Virginia, having been by his lordship's directions communicated to the Board, the same was read. Whereupon order'd that a copy thereof be kept, and the original returned.
The draughts of letters to Mr. How, Paymaster of her Majesty's guards and garrisons, to the Commissioners of the Victualling Office, and to Mr. Thurston, relating to the stopping of such money as they may have in their hands belonging to Major Lloyd, late Commander of St. John's in Newfoundland [fo. 252, 294], was agreed, and ordered to be sent.
The secretary acquainting their lordships that the Lord Baltimore had inform'd him, that he was ready to be heard before them upon the subject matter of his petition to her Majesty [fo. 239, 261], touching the nomination of a Governor for the province of Maryland, order'd that Mr. Attorney General and Mr. Solicitor General have notice thereof, and that they be desired to appoint a day to hear what his lordship may have to offer; that his lordship may attend with his council accordingly.
The draught of a Bill (pursuant to her Majesty's Order in Council of the 1st instant) for raising a revenue for the necessary support of the government of New York [fo. 255, 264], to be pass'd by the Parliament of Great Britain, was agreed, and ordered to be sent to Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor General for their consideration, together with a copy of the said order, and an Act past at New York 24th October, 1692.
Mr. Perry, having communicated to the Board the extract of a letter to Colonel Gledel from Mountserrat, relating to the murder of Colonel Parke at Antego [fo. 258], the same was read, and a copy thereof ordered to be kept.
A letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of the 9th instant, desiring an account of what advices their lordships have received in relation to the murder of Colonel Parke at Antego, was read, where-upon the secretary acquainted their lordships that he did on Saturday last deliver to the Lord Dartmouth a copy of the extract of a letter to Colonel Gledil communicated to them by Mr. Perry at the last meeting [fo. 257, 265], and acquainted his lordship, that the Board had no other information concerning that matter.
A letter from the Lord Provost of Edenburgh, of the 3rd instant, in answer to one writ him the 22nd of the last month [fo. 235], acknowledging the receipt of the copy of a convention relating to the herring trade at Hamburgh, was read.
An Order of Council, of the 1st instant, upon a representation of the 16th of the last month, proposing her Majesty's approbation of an Act past in New Jersey in 1709 [fo. 228], for ascertaining the place of the sitting of the representatives to meet in General Assembly, approving the same, was read. Whereupon ordered that the draught of a letter to Mr. Hunter be prepared [fo. 262], for transmitting the said order to him.
An Order of Council, of the 1st instant, upon a representation of the same date, proposing the repeal of an Act past at St. Christopher's the 5th of June, 1704 [fo. 242], entituled, An Act for the Treasurer's receiving and paying the publick stock of this island, approving the same, was read.
A second Order of Council, of the 1st instant [fo. 242], upon the same representation, relating to the Lieutenant Governor and Council of St. Christopher's disagreeing to a Bill proposed to be past by the Assembly of that island for raising a publick revenue &c., approving the said representation, and directing their lordships to signify her Majesty's pleasure to the Commander in Chief of all the Leeward Islands, as proposed, was read. Whereupon order'd that the draught of a letter to him be prepared [fo. 262], inclosing the foregoing order, as likewise signifying her Majesty's pleasure, as aforesaid.
The draughts of two Bills, one to be pass'd by the Parliament of Great Britain, the other in the Isle of Man [fo. 247], being communicated to their lordships, from the Commissioners of the Customs, the same were read. Whereupon ordered that copies of the said draughts be sent to Mr. Lowther, and that he be desired to consult with Mr. Milner [fo. 267], Mr. Bayley, and such other persons as he shall think proper, and to let their lordships have their observations thereupon on Fryday next.
A letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of the 10th instant, inclosing a representation from Mr. Blathwayt of the 7th ditto [fo. 256, 348], upon the petition of the Lord Baltimore, relating to the nomination of a Governor for the province of Maryland, was read.
Mr. Polhampton, purser of her Majesty's ship the Kinsale [fo. 253, 271], attending in reference to his proposal, relating to the better regulating of the land and naval force in the plantations (mentioned in the minutes of the 6th instant), and being asked whether he knew of his own knowledge that the four companies of New Yorke were not kept up, he said he was inform'd of it by one Mr. Smith at New York, who was clerk to Mr. Cockeril, agent for the said four companies in the time of the late Lord Lovelace. Then being asked who are the two persons that are mentioned in the said proposal to be now in London, that were discharged some years agoe, and are yet continued on the muster roll, he said the one is called John Smith, and came from New York in August last, and, as the said Smith inform'd him, was discharged ten years ago, and was, when he left New York, continued still upon the muster roll. The other's name is John Humphrys, who was discharged about two years ago, but was in August last, as he says himself, still upon the muster roll. The said Humphrys has now taken orders, and is returning to New York to keep a school there. And being asked whether what he alledges in relation to the ships of war be of his own knowledge, he said that a great part of it was, but was not willing to name particular persons; that 40 or 50 men run away from the Kinsale at New York, and were continued, notwithstanding that, several months upon the muster roll of the ship. Then being asked whether what he proposes for remedying the abuses in the navy, mentioned in his proposal, be not establish'd in the plantations, he said, that it was not.
The draught of a Bill for raising a revenue for defraying the necessary expences of the government of New York [fo. 257], to be past by the Parliament of Great Britain, sent to Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor General the 9th instant, being returned by them with their approbation thereof, the same was read, and a representation for laying the said draught, together with the heads thereof, before her Majesty, was signed.
A packet arriving at the office from Mr. Lillington, President of the Council of Barbadoes, and upon opening the same, their lordships finding therein an account of the murder of Colonel Park [fo. 258, 272], a letter to the Lord Dartmouth, inclosing a copy thereof, was signed.
A letter from Mr. Lillington, President of the Council of Barbadoes, dated the 27th of January last, was read, and the papers re ferr'd to therein, were laid before the Board, and are as follows, vizt.:
Papers therein referr'd to.
Copy of orders given relating to the flag of truce to go to Martinico, about exchange of prisoners, together with a copy of a letter from the Governor thereof to Mr. Lillington.
An account of the murder of Colonel Parke, late Governor of the Leeward Islands.
Minutes of the Assembly of Barbadoes, from the 3rd of October, 1710, to the 26th of December following.
Minutes of the Council of Barbadoes, from the 6th of September, 1710, to the 28th of November following.
Whereupon ordered that the draught of a letter to the Lord Dartmouth be prepared [fo. 270], acquainting his lordship that Mr. Lillington has not yet received her Majesty's pleasure relating to the Assembly's right of nominating a Treasurer in that island.
A letter from the Duke of Queensberry, of the 13th instant, inclosing a proposal made to Mr. Pulteney, her Majesty's Envoy to the King of Denmark [fo. 305, 351], about a trade to be carried on between the Venetian and British merchants in the Sound, was read. Whereupon ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Philp, Deputy Governor of the Eastland Company [fo. 320], inclosing a copy of the said proposal, and to desire the said company's observations thereupon as soon as possible.
A supplemental memorial from Mr. Walton, relating to the Virgin Islands, mentioned in the minutes of the 6th instant [fo. 254, 278], was read. Whereupon ordered that a letter be writ to him, to explain the last paragraph of his said memorial, wherein he desires a commission for the improvement of the said islands, upon such terms and regulations as shall be thought fit.
Mr. Lowther, Mr. Lawson, knight of the shire for Cumberland, with Mr. Perry, Mr. Milner and Mr. Bailey attending [fo. 261], in relation to the Bills to be past into laws touching the trade to the Isle of Man, sent to Mr. Lowther the 12th instant, they said, that they had consider'd the said Bills, and were of opinion that they would by no means remedy the abuses complained of; on the contrary those Bills were intirely in favour of my Lord Derby and the Isle of Man, but contain'd nothing in them to prevent the illegal trade complain'd of; that they knew nothing that could effectually cure that evil, but the making of the Isle of Man as part of Great Britain, in reference to trade, taking off the drawbacks upon tobaccos and other debenture goods exported thither, or limiting the quantity of tobacco to be exported thither. These gentlemen being withdrawn, a letter was writ to the Earl of Derby [fo. 269], to desire to speak with such persons as his lordship should appoint, upon the subject matter of the said Bills.
A letter from the Earl of Derby, of the 17th instant [fo. 268], was read; whereupon order'd that the secretary do write to his lordship, to acquaint him that they have received this day an order from the House of Lords, which will take up their time for some days, in preparing what is thereby required; however that they shall be ready to discourse with such persons in relation to the memorial from the merchants of Whitehaven &c. [fo. 280], as he shall be pleased to appoint, on Fryday morning next.
An order from the House of Lords, of the 17th instant [fo. 170, 277], for an account of what has been done, pursuant to the late Act of Parliament for encouraging the bringing of naval stores into this kingdom, was read; whereupon order's that the draught of a report be prepared for laying such an account before their lordships accordingly.
A letter to the Lord Dartmouth [fo. 266], directed at the last meeting, acquainting his lordship that Mr. Lillington, President of the Council of Barbadoes has informed this Board, that he had not yet received her Majesty's pleasure in relation to the right of nominating a treasurer for that island, pursuant to an Order of Council of the 26th of September, 1710 (read the 26th of October following) and desiring his lordship to direct that a duplicate of the said order and her Majesty's pleasure thereupon be dispatch'd thither by the first opportunity, was signed.
Mr. Polhampton attending [fo. 262, 302], with John Smith, mentioned in the minutes of the 13th instant, and James Kenard, who had been a serjeant in Captain Weem's company at New York; and the said Smith and Kenard being examined touching their knowledge of any abuses in the musters of the soldiers there, the above-mentioned Smith said, that he went over to New York about 12 years ago; that he obtain'd his discharge two years after-wards, and was nevertheless (as he had been inform'd) continued upon the muster roll; but upon examination of the said muster rolls in 1709 and 1710, his name was not found therein. He then said, that one Scurlock to his knowledge did obtain a furloe to go a privateering.
The fore-mentioned Kenard said, that he came from New York about three years ago, and that he knew that boys of nine or ten years old were muster'd as private centinels. After which, they being withdrawn, ordered that so much of the said Polhampton's memorial as may concern the Admiralty be sent to Mr. Burchet [fo. 303] for the information of the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty; and that what relates to the soldiers be sent to Mr. Granville, Secretary at War; and that his whole memorial be sent to Colonel Hunter for his examination into the several matters contained therein.
A letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of this day's date, signifying the desire of the lords of the committee to speak with the Board at six a clock this evening at the Duke of Queensberry's office, about the disorders that have lately happen'd in the Leeward Islands [fo. 265]; and their lordships, having been with the said committee accordingly, return'd to their office, and gave directions that Mr. Tryon, Mr. Duport, Mr. Jory, Mr. Cary and Mr. Carpenter [fo. 273, 276], have notice to attend the Board to-morrow morning.
An Order of Council, of the 15th instant, directing this Board to transmit to them what papers they have in this office [fo. 277], relating to the sloop St.James of Barbadoes, condemn'd at Bermuda, was read; whereupon order'd that the said papers be transmitted accordingly.
A letter from the Lord Archibald Hamilton, dated at Portsmouth the 16th instant [fo. 296], recommending Mr. Broderick to be Attorney General of Jamaica in the room of Mr. Percival, deceased, was read.
Col. Jory attending, as he had been desired yesterday [fo. 272], and being asked whether he had received any account of the murder of Colonel Parke, he said that not, and that he had only seen the extract of a letter to Colonel Gledhill from Montserrat.
Then being asked several other questions in relation to the disorders that have lately happen'd at Antego, he said that he believed now the Governor was dead, the island was at present in quiet; that if Lieutenant General Hamilton, who for his integrity and honesty is generally beloved there, were appointed Governor in Chief, he did not doubt but in would be to the satisfaction of all the inhabitants, and would be a means to settle them in quiet for the future; that he was not in any apprehension the French would be encouraged from what had happen'd to make any attempt upon that island; that in case they should, the inhabitants would all to a man take up arms in their own defence; besides, the regular troops that Colonel Hamilton might draw in a little time from the other islands, would be a good security; that if the ships of war that are appointed for the guard of the Leeward Islands, were directed during their stay there to cruize between Antego and Guardaloupe, which is not above 10 hours’ sail distant, it would be a security against the enemies’ privateers, and be a means to have constant intelligence; but not a defence in case the French come against them with a superior force in ships of war; that the number of men able to bear arms in Antego about 20 years ago when he was there, was between 12 and 16,000. Then being asked whether in case by contrary winds or otherwise, the outward bound ships should be detain'd here a week or ten days, it would be of any great prejudice to the islands, he said that all delays of that nature would be of some prejudice to the merchants, but he did not beleive that so short a delay as 10 days could be of any consequence to the islands.
Mr. Tryon, Mr. Duport and Mr. Carpenter [fo. 272], also attending as directed yesterday, and being asked the same questions as Colonel Jory was, their answers were to the same purpose; they only added, that they beleived there were at present about three thousand men able to bear arms at Antego, and that besides the fortifications at the harbour of St. Johns at Antego, Monks Hill had been fortify'd for the security of the women and children, in case of an attack from the enemy.
These gentlemen being withdrawn, ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Burchet, to desire to know the number and rates of the ships of war intended to convoy the trade [fo. 277], now going the Barbadoes, the Leeward Islands and Jamaica, the number of mariners on board each ship, the name of the Commodore of these ships, where the trade which they are to convoy is at present, and when they are to proceed.
A representaion transmitting to the Council the papers in this office relating to the sloop St. James of Barbadoes [fo. 273], pursuant to her Majesty's Order in Council of the 15th instant, mentioned in yesterday's minutes, was signed.
A letter from Mr. Burchet, of this day's date [fo. 276], in answer to one writ him yesterday, inclosing the names of her Majesty's ships which are bound to Jamaica, Barbadoes and the Leeward Islands, together with their rates, the name of the captain who comands in chief, and what number of marines they have on board &c. was read; whereupon a letter to the Lord Dartmouth acquainting him therewith, was signed.
The draught of a letter to the Lord Dartmouth, relating to the disorders that have lately happen'd at Antego, having been prepared, pursuant to the directions of the Lords of the Committee of Council the 19th instant, was laid before the Board. Whereupon ordered that Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor General have notice to attend their lordships at 5 this evening.
A third memorial from Mr. Walton, in answer to a letter writ him the 17th instant [fo. 267, 288], relating to the Virgin Islands, was read. Whereupon ordered that the draught of a representation upon the said Walton's petition be prepared.
Mr. Attorney General and Mr. Solicitor General attended [fo. 278], as they had been desired, and after some discourse with them touching the disorders that have lately happen'd at Antego, they being withdrawn, their lordships made a further progress in the draught of the above-mentioned letter to the Lord Dartmouth [v. infra].
An estimate made by John Williams, her Majesty's Custom House Officer at the Isle of Man, of the yearly loss to her Majesty's revenue by the running of tobacco from thence back into this kingdom, amounting to 16,505l. 16s. 8d., having been communicated to the Board by Mr. Lowther, was read.
The Bishop of Man with two other persons attending [fo. 269, 288], in behalf of the Earl of Derby and Isle of Man, their lordships discoursed with them upon the draught of a Bill relating to the trade of that island, proposed to be pass'd by the Parliament of Great Britain, and acquainted them with what objections they had to the said draught, particularly.
That bestials, or goods of the breed, growth or produce of that island, are allow'd to be brought from thence into this kingdom custom free, whereas tobacco and other certificate or debenture goods, exported from hence thither, are to drawback the several duties as they are now allow'd to do.
In answer to this, they said that as to their having goods &c. come in duty free, that would be of no great detriment to this kingdom, for that the duties upon their imports here, one year with another, did not exceed 400l. per annum.
As to the drawback upon tobacco, if that were not allow'd it would be very hard upon the inhabitants of Man, they being very poor, and most of them using tobacco; wherefore they hoped that the said drawback would be continu'd at least upon tobacco and other goods for their own consumption.
Then being asked what quantity that island might consume in a year, they said, there being about 22,000 inhabitants, men, women and children in that island, their consumption might be between 60 or 70 hoggsheads a year.
They owned there has been an illegal trade carry'd on at that island, not by the people of Man, but by the merchants of Great Britain, who when the time for receiving the drawback on tobacco upon exportation is near expiring they then export it to the Isle of Man, where it lyes till they have an opportunity of a foreign market; and they beleived that the greatest part of it has frequently been run again into this kingdom. Another way is, that the merchants enter such tobacco so lodged at the Isle of Man for Berghen, but land it privately in this kingdom, or Ireland, and therefore they agreed, with regard to the inhabitants of the said island, that if the drawback was allow'd upon 70 hoggsheads a year for their own consumption, it was but reasonable, to prevent the abuses complaind of, that no further drawback should be allow'd: but that in that case the Earl of Derby would be a loser, for the duties arising to his lordship upon the imports of tobacco and other goods from this kingdom, and upon the re-exports of the same, amount to about 900l. a year, 800l. of which was upon tobacco; and wherefore (sic) they thought it reasonable that an equivalent should be allow'd his lordship.
The Board observing upon this, that a great part of the above-mentioned sum of 900l. might arise by illegal trade, and desiring to know how much these gentlemen thought the Earl of Derby might lose by fair trade, in case the drawbacks were taken off as aforesaid, they said, they beleived it might be about 300l. a year. Their lordships thereupon taking notice, that the Earl of Derby, by the foresaid Bill, is allow'd to import every year from the Isle of Man five tun of wine, one tun of brandy and five tun of beer, free of custom and excise; these gentlemen agreed that an exemption of those duties would be a reasonable equivalent to his lordship; provided that if the duties on wines and brandy shall at any time be lessen'd, that then a further equivalent be granted to his lordship in proportion to such abatement, or 300l. a year in full satisfaction of all duties upon the fore-mention'd wine, brandy and beer.
They further took notice that when this business was depending before the Parliament the last year, the merchants of Great Britain intimated to them, that in case the drawbacks on tobacco should be taken off, they would notwithstanding send them tobacco, which should not cost them above one half-penny per pound more than it did. The way of doing it would be this; tobacco being allow'd by the King of Denmark to be imported into his dominions custom free, and re-exported again, the same (if it be done in 12 or 16 months) the merchants would send tobacco to Berghen, for which they would receive the drawback here, and from berghen import it to the Isle of Man. The whole charges thereof would not amount to above one half-penny a pound.
In relation to the importation of cattle from the Isle of Man, their lordships took notice that the number to be imported is not limited by the draught of the Bill, whereas the former Act (20th of Charles the 2nd, chapter 7th) the cattle to be imported from thence, is not to exceed 600 head yearly. To which these gentlemen reply'd, that about 20 years ago, when they had the herring fishery (which is now lost, the herrings having forsaken their coast), the people then lived principally on that fish, and did not take much care of their cattle; but now that they are forced to live on their cattle, they have very much increased their breed, and therefore they thought they might reasonably be allow'd to import 1,000 or 800 head a year, considering that their annual consumption, in the goods and commodities of Great Britain, is as follows:—
Their lordships then taking notice, that the last clause of the Bill declares that ships &c. of the built of the Isle of Man shall have the same benefit and priviledge as ships &c. of the built (sic) of Great Britain; whereas it ought to be restrain'd to the importation mentioned in, and intended to be allow'd by, the Bill; they said they desired in no otherwise, and added that they had no ships, but what they buy in this kingdom, or Ireland; and only build at the Isle of Man boats of about two tun, the timber for the doing thereof they fetch from hence.
A letter from the Lord Provost of Edenburgh, of the 15th instant, in answer to one writ him the 6th ditto [fr. 255, 321], signifying that he has sent copies thereof to the several burroughs, and appointed a day for the merchants consulting together, upon the present state of their fishery, and promising to transmit an account of their consulation to their lordships, was read.
Their lordships took into consideration the draught of a representation, upon the petition of Mr. Walton [fo. 278, 289], praying her Majesty's commission to be Governor of the Virgin Islands in America, mentioned in the minutes of the 21st instant, and made a progress therein.
A memorial from the Bishop of Man, desiring that a Bill to prevent the illegal trade carry'd on at the Isle of Man may be passed this session [fo. 280, 289], otherwise that trade will be continued to the prejudice of the fair merchant, was read.
Their lordships taking into consideration the draught of a representation upon the petition of Mr. Walton, relating to the Virgin Islands [fo. 288], a further progress was made therein, and directions given that Colonel Jory [fo. 298], and Mr. Duport, and other Leeward Island[s] merchants, have notice to attend the Board on Thursday morning, the 5th of April next.
Mr. Lowther, Mr. Milner and Mr. Perry attending, their lordships communicated to them the substance of what had pass'd at the Board the 23td instant, when the Bishop of Man attended their lordships [fo. 288], and after some discourse thereupon, these gentlemen agreed, that there would be no great inconveniency, if a draw back were allow'd upon tobacco exported to the Isle of Man for the consumption of the inhabitants, and that the quantity might be seventy hogsheads a year, as mention'd by the bishop at the last meeting, provided each hogshead do not contain above 550li. weight. These gentlemen being withdrawn, ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Lowndes [fo. 292], for the information of the Lords of the Treasury, stating the nature and consequence of this illegal trade, and proposing what their lordships thought fit to offer for remedy thereof.
A letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of the 24th instant, directing their lordships to prepare the draught of a commission and instructions for Major Walter Douglass to be Governor of her Majesty's Leeward Charribbee Islands, was read; and the draught of such a commission being laid before the Board, the same was agreed, and a letter, inclosing the same to the Lord Dartmouth [fo. 306], was signed.
Another letter from the Lord Dartmouth, of the 26th ditto, directing their lordships to prepare the draught of an additional instruction for Major Douglas [fo. 279, 293], relating to the rebellious commotions that have lately happen'd at Antego, and to the murder of Colonel Park, pursunat to the heads of such an instruction inclosed in the said letter, was read. Whereupon ordered that a copy of his lordship's letter, and of the heads inclosed therein, be sent to Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor General, to know whether the offenders may legally be brought over in custody, and are tryable by law here.
An Order of Council of the 24th instant, referring to their lordships the petition of Mr. Buncombe [fo. 341, 312], complaining of the Lieutenant Governor, Council and Assembly of Montserrat, for refusing him satisfaction for damages sustained by him in 1708, by a French privateer, amounting to 1,330l. 11s. 6d., according to an Act entituled, An Act for the better securing and defending his Majesty's Leeward Charribbee Islands in America, in case of a war, and to establish a fund for the same, praying releif therein, was read. Whereupon order'd that the said Act, and what other papers there are in this office relating to that matter, be laid before their lordships.
A letter to Mr. Lowndes, directed the 26th instant [fo. 290], upon a memorial from the merchants of Whitehaven, complaining that an illegal trade, particularly with regard to tobacco, is still carry'd on at the Isle of Man, was agreed and ordered to be sent.