Journals of the Board of Trade and Plantations, Volume 3, March 1715 - October 1718. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1924.
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Journal, August 1717
Mr. Micajah Perry, Mr. Stephen Duport and Mr. Nivine attending, their lordships had some discourse with them, concerning the disposal of the late French lands in the Island of St. Christophers, wherein these gentlemen said, that it seemed very reasonable, and they hoped it might be so, that the persons at present possessed of those lands, might have the prœ-emption, or be considered at least for their improvements, if they should be turned out; that the survey of the said lands being not yet transmitted to this kingdom, or probably not finished, there were but very uncertain informations yet here, as to the exact quantity of the whole, or of the true bounds of any of the plantations there; and therefore Mr. Nivine particularly declared his opinion, that it might be necessary to authorize some person or persons to receive upon the island, such proposals as should be made there upon this subject; that the selling the said lands in gross to one person, or a body of men, he apprehended, would be of very ill consequence, such purchasers being like to prefer their particular private interest before the best methods for peopling and securing the island. As to the value of the lands Mr. Perry informed their lordships, that some of the French Protestants, to whom his Majesty had granted certain plantations, which formerly had belonged to them, had sold some for 5l. and others for 6l. sterling per acre; and Mr. Perry promised to bring some proposals he had to make in behalf of some present possessors of lands there.
Mr. Mills attending, acquainted the Board, that upon the advertisements in yesterday's and to-day's Courant, by the Lords of the Treasury, relating to the lands in St. Christophers abovementioned, he desired to consider further of the proposals he had to make within the time therein limited. He then producing to their lordships his powers of attorney in behalf of two of the sufferers by the French invasion of Nevis and St. Christophers; the debentures numbered 562 and 602, were delivered to him.
A letter from Col. Spotswood, Lieut. Governor of Virginia, dated the 31st May last, together with a representation from himself and the Council of that colony, relating to the seizure of an English ship, and several of his Majesty's subjects being made prisoners by the Spaniards, were read; as also the copy of an information, and of two affidavits, relating to the pirates in the West Indies; whereupon copies were ordered to be made of Col. Spotswood's said letter, and of the forementioned papers therewith received; and a letter for transmitting the same to Mr. Secretary Addison was signed.
Mr. Daniel Bolton attending, presented to their lordships a memorial relating to the lands in the late French part of St. Christophers, which was read; and Mr. Bolton being thereupon asked several questions he said, that he had never been upon that island, but had his information from persons well acquainted with the place, that several surveys had been made of the said lands, which surveys he had seen, but that most of them were imperfect; and their lordships desiring him to procure them one of the said surveys, he promised to endeavour it: as to the measure of the acres at St. Christophers and in this kingdom he said, he supposed them to be the same; that he had formerly made a proposal for Col. Codrington and some others, of giving 60,000l. for the said lands; that there are persons at Barbadoes, who would give the rate mentioned in his memorial, and some gentlemen likewise in London, that would give 10l. an acre for some parts; whereupon he was further desired to bring what proposals he had to offer.
The draught of a letter to the Lords of the Treasury, relating to the lands in the late French part of St. Christophers, together with some preliminary conditions, thought proper to be insisted upon in the disposal thereof, were agreed and the said draught of a letter signed.
A letter from Mr. Attorney General, of the 1st instant, together with the draught of a proclamation for suppressing of pirates, were read; and the same being compared with the draught of one for the like purpose, which was laid before his late Majesty King William, with the representation of the Board of Trade, dated the 4th of March 170 0/1, a progress was made in the consideration thereof.
Their lordships went through the consideration of Mr. Attorney General's draught of a proclamation for suppressing pirates, mentioned in yesterday's minutes, and agreed the draught of a letter to him from the secretary thereupon.
The draught of a representation to his Majesty, upon the memorial of the Danish Envoy, relating to Crabb Island, and other islands adjacent to that of St. Thomas, referred to the Board by Mr. Secretary Addison's letter of the 11th and mentioned in the minutes of the 23rd May, was agreed and ordered to be transcribed; and a letter directed to be prepared for transmitting the same to Mr. Secretary Addison.
A letter from Col. Spotswood Lieut. Governor of Virginia, dated
the 30th May last, relating to the deficiency of the revenue for
support of the government of that colony, was read; and the
accounts undermentioned, therein referred to, were laid before
An account of his Majesty's quit-rents, from the 25th April, 1716, to 25th April, 1717.
2s. per hogshead.
An account of his Majesty's revenue of 2s. per hogshead, from the 26th October, 1716, to the 25th April, 1717.
An Order of Council, of the 31st of the last month [fo. 293], upon a representation of this Board dated ye 29th June, for repealing three Acts passed in Virginia, relating to the staple of tobacco and the Indian trade; and requiring instructions to be prepared to the several Governors in his Majesty's plantations, about their passing Acts which may affect the trade or shipping of this kingdom, was read; whereupon directions were given for preparing the draughts of such instructions accordingly.
A letter from Mr. Carkesse, Secretary to the Commissioners of his Majesty's Customs, dated the 20th July last, together with an extract of one from the surveyor of Liverpool, relating to the badness of tobacco imported from Virginia, were read; and directions given for taking notice thereof in the next letter to Col. Spotswood.
Ordered that Mr. Carkesse be desired to move the Commissioners of the Customs, for directions to the proper officer, that this Board may have an account of the Canary wines imported annually into this kingdom, from the year 1676.
Mr. Joseph Pemberton attending, and his powers of attorney from Mary Johnson, one of the sufferers by the French invasion at Nevis, being examined at the Board, the debenture numbered 229, was delivered to him.
The Lord Archibald Hamilton, late Governor of Jamaica, attending, acquainted the Board, that he understood there were some reflections made upon his lordship in the petition or papers relating to it, from Don Bernardo de Guardia and Mr. Diharce, now before their lordships, relating to a Spanish ship condemned at Jamaica; whereupon, he said he did not doubt to make appear, if their lordships pleased to give him an opportunity, that he had done even more than his duty in favour of the Spaniards in that affair. His Lordship then desired, the Board would consider his memorial as soon as conveniently they could, in relation to the money formerly advanced by him and the Council of Jamaica for subsisting his Majesty's forces there, which their lordships promised accordingly. Whereupon, the Lord Archibald Hamilton being withdrawn, his said memorial was read, with Mr. Secry. Addison's reference thereof, dated the 17th of last month, and directions given for preparing the draught of a representation to his Majesty upon that subject.
A letter from Mr. William Cokburne dated the 30th of last month, desiring a copy of the complaint which he is informed, Col. Heywood has made against him, relating to the discharge of his duty, when he officiated as Secretary of Jamaica, was read; and Mr. Cokburne attending was acquainted, that when Col. Heywood's letters are considered, he may have a copy of such part as shall appear to be any charge upon him.
The copy of an Order of Council, of the 31st July, 1717, upon the petition of Col. Long, for repealing an Act passed at Jamaica in February, 1713, entituled, An Act for the more effectual relief of the freeholders and inhabitants of the town of Kingston, was read.
A petition from Sir Alexander Cairnes, Baronet, James Douglas and Joshua Gee merchants, in behalf of themselves and others praying for a tract of land in Nova Scotia, was read; as also Mr. Secretary Addison's reference upon the said petition, dated the 2nd instant; and their lordships resolved to take the same into consideration at the first opportunity.
A petition from Don Bernardo de Guardia and Peter Diharce in behalf of the Spanish master and owners of the ship Nostra Signora de Bethlem, and of her lading, &c. was read, with Mr. Secry. Addison's reference of the 2nd instant thereupon; as also an annexed estimate of the prime cost of the said ship and cargo, and the damages sustained by the owners by reason of her seizure; and their lordships resolved to consider the same, with the former petition, and other papers upon the same subject.
A representation upon the memorial of the Danish Envoy, relating to Crab Island, and other islands in America, adjacent to that of St. Thomas, mentioned in yesterday's minutes, was signed, together with a letter for inclosing the same to Mr. Secretary Addison.
The secretary being directed to prepare a letter to Mr. Lowndes, desiring him to represent to the Lords of the Treasury the necessity of this Board's having annually copies of the Inspector General of the Customs leidgers; and to move for their lordships directions to the Commissioners of the Customs therein; the draught of a letter for that purpose, was laid before the Board, agreed and ordered to be sent.
Don Bernardo de Guardia and Mr. Diharce attending, with Mr. Cobb their solicitor, they presented to the Board a memorial relating to some mistakes in the accounts of plate and goods taken on board the ship Nostra Signora de Bethlem, condemned at Jamaica, as mentioned in their petition, &c. concerning that matter; which memorial was read; and their lordships proposing to the said gentlemen to come to the Board this day sev'night in the morning, or so soon as they could be ready to explain and make out the said accounts, they agreed to attend for that purpose this day sev'night.
A letter from Sir Alexander Cairnes to the secretary, dated the 13th instant, relating to the tract of land in Nova Scotia, for which he petitions with Mr. James Douglas and Mr. Joshua Gee, merchants, was read; whereupon ordered that the said Mr. Douglas and Mr. Gee be acquainted that the Board desire to speak with them upon that subject tomorrow sev'night at ten of the clock in the morning.
Mr. Mulford attending, and desiring their lordships to appoint a day for hearing him in relation to his petition about the whalefishery at New York, mentioned in ye minutes of the 17th June last; ordered that he be acquainted their lordships will be ready to hear him thereupon tomorrow morning.
A letter from Mr. Bampfield, in behalf of Brigadier Hunter, Governor of New York, &c. dated this day, desiring that copies of Mr. Mulford's complaints against ye Brigadier, may be transmitted to him, for his answer, or that their lordships determination upon that matter be respited till he come over from New York, according to his Majesty's licence, was read.
The Order of Council, of ye 14th March, 1714–15, mentioned in the minutes of the 17th June last [fo. 280], together with the petition of Mr. Mulford relating to the whale-fishery at New York, were read; as likewise his case, the proceedings of the Supreme Court at New York in 1713, relating to the said fishery, [Bundle Aa. 136] with Mr. Attorney General Northey's opinion thereupon, and several letters from Brigadier Hunter, on the same subject; and the said Mr. Mulford attending, as desired, together with Col. Lodwick, Mr. Knight, Mr. Richard Mico and Mr. Blew, they were asked several questions concerning the whale-fishery on the coasts of the said province; whereupon they said, that the ordinance made in Col. Nicholls's time for paying a share of drift-whales, was only by the Governor and Council; that they have no copy of that ordinance, but believe, it still remains among the records of the province of New York; and Col. Lodwick acquainted their lordships, that drift-whales were judged a royalty at New York, his late Majesty King William having granted the same to the Duke of Leominster, and the Duke having given him, the said Col. Lodwick, a deputation for claiming and taking all such drift-whales there; that indeed whilst he remained at New York, it happened that he claimed but one such whale, and relinquished it, upon finding an iron with a fisherman's mark, who had wounded that fish; those killed or taken at sea being esteemed the property of ye persons who kill or take them, and no duty demanded for them, as he remembers, before the Lord Cornbury's time. Mr. Knight, who had been Secretary of New York, during Col. Dungan's Government, acquainted the Board, that drift-whales in that province were accounted to belong to the king, but that he remembered no duty to have been demanded for whales taken at sea, whereof there were some taken yearly while he was in those parts. Mr. Mulford further added, that Brigadier Hunter demands a twentieth part of the whale-bone and oil, clear of all charge, tho' he alledged there was no law in the plantations to warrant it; that it was true, several people paid what the Lord Cornbury demanded on that account, but out of fear. Mr. Mulford being then asked why he left New York, and if he was not under prosecution there, upon some other matters; he said he came from thence to endeavour the re-establishing the whale-fishery upon the same foot it had anciently been, and to obtain relief against a prosecution which he was under on account, as he alledged, of a speech which he had made in the assembly of New York, and which was afterwards printed and for not appearing to a subpoena on occasion of some arrears of quit-rents, which he offered to pay; that the proceedings of the supreme Court above mentioned were equally against him with other persons, which he looked upon to be very unjust. These gentlemen being asked upon what terms they desired to have the said fishery settled; they all agreed that they should be satisfied, if the whales taken or killed at sea were duty free, and that as to drift-whales they had nothing to say against their being in the Crown: but Mr. Mulford further added that it would be an advantage to the said fishery, if proprietors of beaches were obliged by a law to permit the whale-fishers to erect barracks on such beaches for cutting up and boiling the whales, paying reasonable damages for the use thereof.
The draught of a letter, ordered to be prepared the 8th instant, to Mr. Secretary Addison, relating to the quit-rents of Virginia, and the duty of two shillings per hogshead on tobacco there, was agreed and signed.
Upon further consideration of the letter from Mr. Bampfield, and of the papers from Mr. Mulford, relating to the whale fishery at New York, mentioned in yesterday's minutes, ordered that the secretary transmit to Brigadr. Hunter, Governor of that province, copies of such of the said papers as are a charge against him, and that he desire the said Governor's answer and observations thereupon, as soon as may be.
The copy of an Order of Council, of ye 31st July, upon a representation of this Board dated the 5th of April, 1717, for confirming an Act passed in Jamaica to prevent negroes being evidence against Dorothy the wife, and John, Thomas and Francis, sons of John Williams, a free negro, was read.
The copy of an Order of Council, of the 31st July, upon a representation of this Board, of the 23rd May, 1717, for confirming an Act passed in Bermuda, to vest certain lands in Smith's tribe, to be sold for payment of the debts of Richard Jenings, &c. was read.
The copy of an Order of Council, of ye 31st upon a representation of this Board, of the 8th July, 1717, for confirming an Act passed at Antigua, to enable Giles Watkins and Samuel Watkins to alien a plantation, &c. was read.
The copy of an Order of Council, of the 31st upon a representation of this Board, of the 3rd July, 1717, for confirming an Act passed at St. Christophers, to enable William Mathew, an infant, to convey a parcel of land, &c. was read.
An Order of Council, of the 6th Decbr., upon the representation of this Board, dated the 22nd of November last, relating to money due to the Lord Archibald Hamilton, late Governor of Jamaica for subsisting the forces there, and an account of his lordships salary, was read.
A representation on the memorial of the Lord Archibald Hamilton, upon the same subject, mentioned in the minutes of ye 9th instant, was signed; as likewise a letter for inclosing the same to Mr. Secretary Addison.
Letter from Col. Spotswood, Lieut. Governor of Virginia, dated the 11th July, 1716, complaining of Col. Ludwell, the late Deputy Auditor's not communicating to him his answer to the charge against the said Ludwell, and desiring the answer may not be received before there be an opportunity of replying.
Letter from Col. Spotswood, Lieut. Governor of Virginia, to
the secretary, dated the 16th of January, 17 16/17.
Papers referred to.
Col. Spotswood's answer to two anonymous letters, with queries against him.
Affidavit of Mr. Griffin, about the removing the Saponie Indians to Christanna.
Copy of Col. Spotswood's circular letter to the gentlemen of the Council of Virginia, about levying the burgesses allowances.
The Attorney General of Virginia's narrative of the case of Mrs. Wilson, who killed her slave.
Accounts of the tobacco paid the rangers.
Copy of the Lieut. Governor of Virginia's proposals and message to the Assembly, for a new regulation of the Militia.
Copy of an address from the grand jury of Virginia, to Col. Spotswood, Lieut. Governor.
Letter from Col. Spotswood, Lieut. Governor of Virginia, to
the Board, without date.
Copy of a representation from the Council of Virginia to Col. Spotswood, relating to the joining other persons with them in a commission of Oyer and Terminer.
A letter from Mr. Blathwayt of ye 27th August, 1716, relating to the difference between Col. Spotswood, Lieut. Governor of Virginia, and Col. Ludwell, late Deputy Auditor of that colony was read, and the copy of Mr. Blathwayt's constitution of the said Ludwell to be his deputy, was laid before the Board.
The proposal of Richad. Bankes, Esqr. for the whole lands lately possessed by the French, exclusive of the salt-ponds and poorest lands adjoining, as also of the poorest lands near the sea, together with the rocks and mountains.
The proposal of Mr. Stephen Brown, for purchasing 700 acres, being part of the lands lately possessed by John Thornton, and lands thereto adjoining called Colledge and Fountain Plantations in Basse Terre Quarter, to which was annexed the copy of the petition of the said Stephen Brown, lately presented to his Majesty.
The proposal of Mr. Peter Cabibel, senr. for two plantations for himself and Mr. Peter Soulegre, one of 150 acres, possessed by one Courpom, the other of between 160 and 200 acres, at a place called Fig-tree, adjoining to the boundary between the English and late French ground toward Sandy point.
The proposal of Mr. Micajah Perry, Humphry and Robert South, John Mills and Joseph Martyn, in behalf of several of the most considerable planters, who have settled and improved several quantities of land in the late French part of the said island for 2740 acres, according to a schedule annexed to their said proposal.
The proposal of Mr. Humphry and Robert South, as also of Mr. Samuel and Joseph Travers in behalf of George Lyddale and Robert Clayton, for two plantations, the one adjoining to the plantation of Lagureques, called Bennew's land, the other being where the house of Pennell's Upper Plantation in Capisterre Quarter stood, with 200 acres of land.
The proposal of Mr. John Douglas, for a plantation called Pensez y bien, and a parcel of land in Basse Terre town, formerly belonging to Monsr. Mareschall and Monsr. Raymond, with the buildings thereon, &c.
The proposal of Mr. Nathl. Carpenter, in behalf of Mr. John Huffum, of Nevis, for about 100 acres, being a plantation formerly possessed by William Burke in Basse Terre Quarter, according to the bounds described; as also for another plantation of 150 acres possessed by Mr. Salkeld, according to bounds described.
The proposal of Major Peter Buor, Capt. de Brisac and Mr. Samuel Hill, in behalf of the planters, settlers and inhabitants of the late French part of Saint Christophers, offering to pay for their plantations by a tax.
The draught of a representation for presenting to his Majesty John Colleton, Esqr. to be a member of his Majesty's Council of Barbadoes in the room of Thomas Alleyne Esqr. deceased, was agreed and ordered to be transcribed.
The reference from Mr. Secretary Addison, upon the petition of Sir Alexander Cairnes, Bart., James Douglas and Joshua Gee, merchants, praying for a tract of land in Nova Scotia, as mentioned in the minutes of the 9th instant, being again read; and Sir Alexander Cairnes, Mr. Douglas and Mr. Gee attending, their lordships had some discourse with them upon the subject of the said petition and desiring them to bring their proposals in writing, for the settlement they think of making in Nova Scotia, the said gentlemen promised to consider of it, and bring their proposals accordingly.
Upon consideration of the proposals for determining the controversy about the bounds between Virginia and North Carolina, mentioned in the minutes of the 16th May, 1716, ordered that a letter be writ to Mr. Shelton, Secretary to the Lords Proprietors of Carolina, inclosing a copy of the said proposals, for the sentiments of the Lords Proprietors thereupon.
Their lordships gave directions for preparing the draught of a letter to Mr. Secretary Addison, in order to know his Majesty's pleasure upon what Col. Spotswood, Lieut. Governor of Virginia writes relating to the Councillors of that colony acting in two capacities as Councillors and as members of the Upper House of Assembly there.
Sir Nicholas Lawes attending, his observations upon the draught of his instructions for the Government of Jamaica, which had been communicated to him, were read; and their lordps. having some discourse with Sir Nicholas thereupon, a progress was made in the consideration of the said instructions.
A letter from Mr. Secretary Addison of the 22nd instant, in answer to the letter from this Board, of the 3rd of the last month, relating to the ill practices to keep up divisions in New Jersey, and signifying his Majesty's approbation of the conduct of Brigadier Hunter, Governor of that province and New York, was read; whereupon the draught of a letter to Brigadier Hunter, upon that subject, was agreed and ordered to be transcribed.