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, November 1712
Mr. Onslow and Mr.Broughton attending [fo. 197, 220], in relation to a debt due to them from the factors of the Assiento, and after some discourse with them thereupon, ordered that the draught of a representation be prepared for laying the state of that matter before her Majesty.
Mr. Crow attending [fo. 214, 219], and desiring to be heard by council in relation to the fees of the private secretary of Barbadoes, their lordships appointed Thursday next for that purpose, and ordered that Mr.Skeen and Mr.Tilden have notice thereof, to come prepared with one counsel each.
Mr. Campbell and Mr. Duport, with several Leeward Island gentlemen attending [fo. 216, 220], in relation to the form of an oath to be taken by the sufferers of Nevis and St. Christopher's, to prove re-settlements there, they were acquainted that their lordships agreed to proceed on that affair on Thursday next.
Their lordships agreed to reconsider the several papers in the office, touching a difference between Mr. Simpson, Mrs. Gandy and Mr. Finch on Tuesday next; and ordered that Mr. Compere and Mr. Daniel have notice thereof.
Colonel Nicholson attending [fo. 206, 231], and desiring their lordships to appoint a day to consider the reference from my Lord Treasurer relating to the island of Barbuda, as also the reference [fo. 205, 232] from the Council upon the petition of Mr. Poyer, clerk in New York, relating to the Governor's instructions about appeals to her Majesty in Council; their lordships agreed on Thursday next for that matter.
Mr. Crow and Mr. Skeen attending [fo. 218, 221], as they had been directed, Mr. Crow acquainted their lordships that he was not ready to lay before their lordships what he had to offer in relation to the fees of the private secretary of Barbadoes, by reason that his council was engaged in Westminster Hall, and after some discourse with him thereupon, he promised to let their lordships know to-morrow morning what day next week he can be ready.
Mr. Campbell and Mr. Duport, with other Leeward Island gentlemen attending [fo. 218], their lordships agreed upon the form of the oath for proving a re-settlement at Nevis and St. Christopher's, and ordered the same to be printed. Their lordships further agreed to meet on Monday next, at nine of the clock in the morning, to take the oaths of such persons as shall then be ready to prove re-settlements; and ordered that an advertizement be put into the Gazette, to inform all whom it may concern that such proofs is to be made before the 25th December next.
Mr. Broughton attending [fo. 218, 222], laid before the Board several papers relating to a debt due by the Spanish Assiento to some merchants of Jamaica, among which there being the affidavit of Sir James Del Castillio, sworn the 5th of October, 1709, a copy was ordered to be taken thereof.
Mr. Lekeux, Deputy Governor of the Lustring Company, attending [fo. 216, 246], presented to their lordships an account of the disbursment of 2,400l., received by the Company from the Crown, but there being an omission in it, ‘twas taken back to be amended.
Mr. Nash, in behalf of Mr. Crow, attending [fo. 219, 233], acquainted their lordships that Mr. Crow could not be ready with his counsel before Friday next at eleven a clock in the morning; whereupon their lordships agreed on that day and hour, to hear what he has to offer in relation to the fees of the private secretary at Barbadoes; and ordered that Mr. Skeen and Mr. Tilden have notice thereof.
|Account of petty expenses, from Lady Day, 1712, to Michaelmas following, amounting to||68||17||9 (fn. 1)|
|The stationer's account for the same time||65||7||9|
|The post officer's account for the same time||111||8||9|
|Mr. Clerk's account for wood and coals||33||18||9|
|In all||279||13||0 (fn. 2)|
The draught of a letter to Mr. Lowther, Governor of Barbadoes, inclosing two Orderes of Council [fo. 216, 217, 263], repealing two Barbadoes Acts, mentioned in the minutes of the 31st of October last, was agreed, and ordered to be transcribed.
Their lordships having met this day, in order to administer the oaths to prove the re-settlements of the sufferers at Nevis and St. Christopher's; and Mr.John Spencer attending, he took the oath to prove the re-settlement of Walter Hamilton, esquire, at St. Christopher's, as also another oath to prove the said Walter's re-settlement at Nevis, and another to prove his re-settlement in conjunction with Archibald Hamilton, esquire, there. Then the said Walter Hamilton attending also, he took the oath to the re-settlement of the following persons, planters at Nevis, vizt.:
Their lordships proceeded to administer the oaths to prove the re-settlements of the sufferers at Nevis and St. Christophers's, and Lieutenant-General Hamilton attending, he took the oath to the re-settlements of the following persons. inhabitants at Nevis, vizt.:
An Order of Council, of the 8th of March last [fo. 105; Q. fo. 157], referring back to their lordships the representation of this Board of the 21st February, 17 11/12, upon the petition of Thomas Finch and Mrs. Gandy, of Jamaica, and upon the Act for vesting the estate of the said Finch in trustees &c., was read; and their lordships, taking notice that they are required by the said Order to consult Mr. Attorny General and Mr. Solicitor General in this matter, ordered that a letter be writ to them, inclosing all the papers in this office upon this affair, and to desire their opinion thereupon.
Dr. King, Colonel Nicholson and Mr. Edwards, in behalf of the Society for Propagation of the Gospel, as also Colonel Cleland and Mr. Chester, in behalf of Mr. William Codrington, [attending,] the reference from the Lord High Treasurer on the petition of the said Society, and [of] the said William Codrington, was read, praying for a reversion of the island of Barbuda [fo. 219]; and these gentlemen being asked several questions thereupon, they said that the grant from King Charles the Second, of the said island, was for 50 years, of which there are 28 past; that, by reason of the war since the said grant, the grantees have not been able to make any great benefit of it; that they have had considerable losses by pirates and privateers, and particularly one Brumingham, who, about two years ago, landed with some French on that island, and carried off the slaveservants and dead stock, killed great quantities of their cattel, and destroy'd the castle, which had been built by Colonel Codrington; that, if her Majesty would be pleased to grant the said island to the petitioners, or to renew the lease for a long term of years, they should then buy negroes, and endeavour to plant and raise ginger and cotton works, which, in case they should succeed, would not only be of an advantage to this kingdom, but her Majesty's revenue of the Customs, and inable the Society to proceed in the propagating the Gospel in those parts; but, on the other hand, if the petitioners’ request be not comply'd with, they cannot then be at that expence, because they may not be able to reimburse themselves before the expiration of their lease; that the island of itself is barren, and only used for the feeding of cattle; that it will be of little or no value to anybody else, by reason of the term the petitioners have yet in it; and, after some further discourse with those gentlemen, their lordships agreed to take the whole matter into consideration at the next convenient opportunity.
Then the Order of Council, of the 28th of July, 1712 [fo. 219, 246], upon the petition of Mr. Poyer, clerk in New York, relating to the Governor's instructions about appeals to her Majesty in Council, was read; and the foremention'd gentlemen said they only desir'd that the instruction to the Governor, in relation to the appeals from inferiour Courts to him in Council, and from him to the Queen, might be altered, that is, that there may be no restriction of the summe to be appealed for in what relates to the clergy; and after some discourse with them thereupon, their lordships asked them whether they would not be satisfy'd, in case appeals were allow'd to be made by the clergy to the Governor in Council without restriction of any summe; Dr. King said they acquies'd in it. These gentlemen being withdrawn, their lordships gave direction for preparing a draught of a representation accordingly.
Mr. Crow attending [fo.221, 244], with Mr.Lutwich, his council, Mr. Skene, with Mr. Attorney General, and Mr. Tilden, in behalf of the Governor of Barbadoes, with Mr.Solicitor General, as they had been appointed the 7th instant, Mr. Solicitor General would have enter'd into the merits of the dispute between the Governor of Barbadoes and Mr. Skene, but their lordships acquainted him that that matter had been already heard; they were at present to confine themselves to that point of the Governor's having a right to any of the fees of the secretary.
Then Mr.Solicitor General said that, by one of her Majesty's instructions to the Governor (No. 20), it is directed that in case of the absence of the Governor in Chief, a moiety of his salary and all the perquisites shall be paid to the Lieutenant Governor or Commander in Chief during such absence, which plainly implies that there are fees and perquisites; that, by another instruction (No. 86), her Majesty does reserve the colating to benefices, granting of licences for marriage and probate of wills to the Governor, from whence he inferr'd that it is not probable that her Majesty shou'd give the Governor the power of executing those matters, and that the secretary of the island should run away with the profit; that besides what he had offer'd, he said that constant usage was against Mr. Skene, for that Sir Jonathan Atkins (who was Governor in the year 1679), and all the succeeding Governors to this time have always had an allowance from the secretary for their share of the fees.
Then Mr. Lutwich said that, by the foremention'd instructions, it was plain that the Governor had fees and perquisites belonging to him; that he had some Mr. Skene could not pretend to, particularly in the four following cases: For orders upon petitions, for all acts done as ordinary, for all military commissions, and for transcripts of all things that are under the Great Seal; besides that by an Act past in Barbadoes the 9th of November, 1668 [Barbadoes Laws, fo. 76], entituled An Act for regulating and appointing the fees of the several offices in this island and other publick Ministers,the fees of the ordinary, which is the Governor, and his register, are settled; and this Act not having been repealed, the Governor had undoubtedly a right to the same; and as a proof that Mr.Skene did not reckon the fees of the private secretary as perquisites of the secretary's office, he said that Mr. Skene had never accounted with Mr. Welbey (who was for some years sharer with him in the profits of his office) for the fees he received as private secretary; which Mr. Skene did acknowledge to be true.
That the Governor in this dispute had taken the proper method to be inform'd of his or Mr. Skene's right to the said fees by recommending the same to the Council and Assembly; and that upon the Assembly's address setting forth his right to the said fees, and some misdemeanors alledged against the said Skene, and their desire that he should suspend the said Skene from the execution of all his offices, he had done it accordingly; and he thought the Governor justifiable therein, having done nothing but by advice of the Council and Assembly there; upon this occasion the Governor's speech to the Council and Assembly, and part of their address to him thereupon, which related to the like dispute between Mr. Skene and the Lord Grey, when Governor of that island, setting forth the opinion of the then Council, that the Lord Grey had a right to the fees in dispute, were read.
And as a further instance that this dispute had already been determined by her Majesty, Mr. Lutwich affirmed that in the articles formerly exhibited against Mr. Crow by three of the Council of that island, one of the articles was that Mr. Crow had demanded four hundred pounds per annum of the said Skene for his share of the fees accruing by the private secretary's office, and that her Majesty, upon a hearing in Council, had dismist the said complaints, in proof of which he produced her Majesty's Order in Council of 13th December, 1710.
Then Mr. Attorny General, in behalf of the said Skene, said that, by his patent under the Great Seal of this kingdom, he is to enjoy all the places therein mention'd (amongst which is that of the private secretary, with all and singular the rights, proffits, advantages, fees, rewards and emoluments, powers and immunities thereunto belonging, in as full and ample manner as any persons formerly exercising the same have done.
That Mr. Skene demands no fees, but such as former secretaries have had, and are settled upon them by an Act past in Barbadoes the 21st of October, 1670 [Bar. Laws, 97], entituled An Act for regulating and appointing the fees of the secretary of this island; that this Act, being pass'd two years after that already mentioned by Mr. Lutwich, and giving to the secretary those very fees that are by the former given to the Ordinary, it was plain (though the first Act is not repealed in express terms) the Assembly did not intend the said fees should be received by the Governor; and he added that it was also plain that the first Act was look'd upon as repealed or obsolete, for that the secretary receiving for the proving of a will before the Governor 40lb. of sugar, and the like for the letters of administration, the Governor might, were the former Act in force, receive the like quantity of sugar, which would be 80l. for every probate or administration, which was never yet done.
That the instructions above-mention'd did not specify any fees to be taken by the Governor; and, if they did, they being only under the Sign Manual and Privy Seal, could not vacate a right given by the Great Seal.
The arbitrary proceedings of former Governors was no proof of a right, their exacting by threats, ill usage or other ways, an annual sum of money from the secretary; and the secretary's compliance therewith, was no good claim of right, but a manifest violation of the priviledge of her Majesty's Patent Officer.
That the method taken by the Governor for enquiring into the rights to the said fees, as is alledged, was by no means proper. It might have been well in cases where the advice of the Legislature was necessary for the good and safety of the government of that island; but in this case it was setting up an inquisition of his own creatures, to enquire into her Majesty's prerogative and power of granting patents for places in the plantations; and therefore he did not beleive it would be insisted on by the council on the other side.
As to the address of the Council and Assembly above-mention'd, Mr. Attorney took notice that the addressors only mention'd what was the opinion of the Council in the Lord Grey's time upon that matter, but take no notice of what was writ to the Lord Grey by this Board thereupon in July, 1701 [Bar. B., fo. 334], vizt., That he had made an innovation upon the secretary to the prejudice of his Majesty's Letters Patents, which would by no means be allow'd, and that, unless he made the said Skene immediate satisfaction for the profits received by his private secretary, the Board would think themselves obliged to lay that matter before his Majesty, which letter was read.
As to what had been alledged, that her Majesty had already determined the matter, Mr. Attorney said that ‘twas true the complaints of the foremention'd councillors against Mr. Crow had been dismiss'd, but that it was for want of proof; and he added that her Majesty was so far from allowing those encroachments upon her Patent Officer [Bar. F., fo. 444], that, upon a representation of this Board on the complaints of Mr. Skene against Mr. Crow, she was pleased by her Order in Council, of the 28th April, 1709 [ditto G., fo. 28], to direct the then Secretary of State to prepare a letter for her royal signature, requiring Mr. Crow to restore the said Skene to all his places, and to the enjoyment of all the rights, profits, advantages and fees thereunto belonging, and by the 49th article of her instructions to the present Governor she is pleased to take notice that Mr. Crow had not comply'd with the foremention'd directions, and therefore required Mr. Lowther to do it imediately upon his arrival.
Then Mr. Solicitor General only took notice that the Governor had obey'd the said instructions, and replaced Mr. Skene in his several offices, and should not have suspended him, but for the foremention'd address of the Council and Assembly.
Those gentlemen being withdrawn, their lordships agreed to take this matter into consideration on Wednesday morning next, in order to the preparing a representation to lay this matter before her Majesty.
Their lordships proceeded to administer the oaths to prove the re-settlements of the sufferers at Nevis and St. Christopher's, and Lieutenant-General Hamilton attending, he took the oath to the re-settlement of the following persons, planters at Nevis, vizt.:
Mr. Duport attending, presented to their lordships an Act pass'd at St. Christopher's, entituled An Act for settling the estates and titles of inhabitants of this island to their possessions within the same, which was read; and ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Attorny General, inclosing the said Act for his opinion thereupon in point of law.
Memorial from Mr. Pepper, praying for a copy of a letter from Mr Lowther, Governor of Barbadoes, of the 18th February last, relating to Mr. Kirby, one of the persons concern'd in the murder of Colonel Parke, was read, and an extract of the said letter order'd to be given him.
Their lordships taking into consideration a letter from the Earl of Dartmouth, of the 1st May, 1712, referring to the Board the petition of Mr. Skene, secretary of Barbadoes, complaining of the Governor's having suspended him from the execution of his office &c., as also an Order of Council, of 23rd May, 1712, on the petition of Mr. Lowther, Governor of Barbadoes, to her Majesty, relating to a controversy between him and the foresaid Skene, about their rights to several fees &c., mention'd in the minutes of the 18th August last, agreed on the draught of a representation thereupon, and ordered [fo. 233, 245] the same to be transcrib'd, and that a letter be prepar'd inclosing the same to the Earl of Dartmouth, to be laid before her Majesty.
A letter from the Earl of Dartmouth, directing the Board by her Majesty's comands, to consider what advantages are proper to be insisted on for the benefit of her subjects trading to Sicily, in case that kingdom be dismember'd from the Spanish monarchy, and to prepare the draught of a treaty thereupon, was read; and their lordships gave directions [fo. 247] for writing to Mr. Robert Ball, to desire him to lay before their lordships, on Wednesday next, what he may have to offer upon that matter, and in the meantime that he would inform their lordships of any other persons that are vers'd and knowing in that trade.
A representation upon the dispute between Mr. Lowther, Governor of Barbadoes, and Mr. Skene, secretary of that island [Q. fo. 421; fo. 244, 406], together with a letter inclosing the same to the Earl of Dartmouth, were signed.
A memorial from the Lustring Company [fo. 221, vide infra], relating to the expenditure of 2,400l., given the said Company by King William, was read; and thereupon ordered that the draught of a letter to my Lord Treasurer be prepared, in answer to his lordship's reference of the 24th September last (mention'd in the minutes of the 31st of October), transmitting to his lordship a copy of the foremention'd memorial.
A draught of a representation upon the Order of Council of the 28th of July last [fo. 232, 247], referring to the Board a representation from the Society for Propogation of the Gospel, relating to Mr. Poyer, clerk at New York, was agreed, and ordered to be transcribed.
Letter to the Lord High Treasurer, in answer to his lordship's reference of the 24th September, 1712 [vide supra], relating to the expenditure of 2,400l. given the Lustring Company by King William, was signed.
A letter from Mr. Robert Ball, in answer to one writ him the 20th instant [fo. 245, 253], relating to the trade to Sicily, was read; whereupon ordered that letters be writ to Sir Samuel Stanier, Mr. Andrew Hopegood, junior, Sir Edward Gould, Mr. James Porteen, Mr. John Cutting, Mr. Richard Froom and Mr. Miles Cook, desiring such information as they are able to give their lordships in this matter on Wednesday, the 3rd of December next.
|Samuel Earle.||Walter Bill.|
|Rowland Statham.||John Bill.|
|Dormn. Driscoll.||George Hazel.|
|Joan Hazel.||Richard Emera.|
|Edward Barry.||Jonathan Taylor.|
|Jonas Boisse.||Thomas Pheasant.|
|Antho. Thorne.||James Miller.|
|Eleanor Stephens.||William Pickett.|
|The heirs of Samuel George, vizt., Wm. George and Theoderk. George.||Tho. Salters.|
Mr. John Smith attending, took the oath to the re-settlement of the three following persons, planters at Nevis, vizt.:
Parnel Hanley, widow and executrix of John Hanley, Ann Ling and Francis Saunders.
|George Cherriot.||Peter Bowden.|
|Eliz. Turtle.||Ann Sheppard.|
|Mary Smith.||Tho. Bartlet.|
|Rowland Gideon.||Eliz. Pim.|
|John Goodwin.||Peter Bradneck.|
|Joshua Brightthread.||Hugh Gurney.|
|William Thompson.||James French.|
|Joseph Herbert, junior.||Jane Evans.|
|William Titcomb.||Cath. Roddwell.|
|Joan Hartman.||William Jackson.|
|Christopher Deane.||Susannah Consident.|
|Robert Jones.||Cath. Connel.|
A letter from the Earl of Dartmouth, of yesterday's date [fo. 217, 253], referring to the Board the memorial of Mr. Strahan, agent to the four independent companies at New York, praying an additional number of troops for the security of that province, was read.
A letter from Mr. Lowther, Governor of Barbadoes, of the 29th August, 1712, complaining of the captains of the men-of-war there, in relation to the assistance he intended the Leeward Islands, was read. Whereupon ordered that a copy of the said letter be sent to the Earl of Dartmouth, as likewise a copy of the minutes of Council therein referr'd to.