Journals of the Board of Trade and Plantations, Volume 4, November 1718 - December 1722. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1925.
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Journal, September 1720
A letter from Mr. Secretary Craggs, of the 20th of the last month, inclosing a memorial about appointing a Comptroller of His Majesty's Woods in New England, was read, together with the said memorial, whereupon directions were given for preparing the draught of a representation to their Excellencies the Lords Justices upon that subject.
Mr. Jeremy Long, who appears in behalf of John Conrade Weiser and other Palatines at New York, attending, and desiring that Captain Charles Huddy, Mr. Peter Sonmans and General Nicholson might be summoned to give their Lordships an account of several particulars relating to the settlement of the said Palatines in that province; their Lordships gave directions for acquainting the said Mr. Sonmans and General Nicholson, that they desire to speak with them on Tuesday morning next. And upon enquiry, the Board being informed that the said Huddy is at present at a great distance from London, Mr. Long was ordered to inform the Board when he shall be come to town.
Mr. James Gordon attending, a letter from him, dated this day, praying to be heard in relation to the running of wool, etc. from this kingdom into foreign parts according to the late advertisement in the Gazette, was read; and being called in, was asked, if he had any scheme or proposals for the purposes mentioned in his said letter, he said he had prepared one and promised to bring it to the Board on Thursday next.
A letter from Mr. John Oxenford, by order of Mr. Martyn, Inspector General of the Imports and Exports, dated yesterday, in answer to the two letters writ to the said Mr. Martyn, the 16th and 22nd of the last month, relating to some accounts to be furnished to this office and to the manner of adjusting the valuation of goods imported and exported, was read; whereupon ordered that Mr. Martyn, who is indisposed, be acquainted that this Board desire to speak with him when his health will permit.
A letter from Messrs. Samuel and Joseph Travers, dated the 26th August, inclosing copies of the accounts of the losses by the ships, Royal George, Duke of York and Enterprize, taken by the French on the coast of Africa, was read; and upon consideration of the said accounts, ordered that Messrs. Travers be acquainted that the Board desire to speak with them on Tuesday morning next.
Their Lordships taking again into consideration the letter from Mr. Woolley, Secretary to the East India Company, mentioned in the Minutes of 7th July last; ordered that the said Mr. Woolley be desired to remind the Court of Directors of the said Company of the letter writ him of 30th June, by the Secretary of this Board, and of the accounts and proposals therein mentioned.
Mr. Horace Walpole, Auditor for the Plantations, attending, and desiring an extract of what Colonel Spotswood has lately writ to this Board, relating to some pirates' effects in his, the said Colonel Spotswood's hands, and desiring also extracts of such parts of the Instructions to His Majesty's Governors in America, as relate to His Majesty's Revenues, or the granting of lands in those parts, and the accounts thereof; directions were given for furnishing Mr. Walpole with the extracts desired.
An abstract of the total number of ships, which have entered or cleared in England to and from the Canary and Madera Islands, between Christmas, 1718. and Christinas, 1719, with their tunnage, being received from the Registers' Office at the Custom House, the same was laid before the Board, and read.
A letter from Mr. Delafaye, dated the 1st inst., signifying that he had laid before the Lords Justices the representation of this Board, relating to the proper measures to the taken for the security of Carolina and Nova Scotia. And their Excellencies were pleased to direct this Board to go into the state of our settlement upon the Island of Providence, and what immediate supplies they stand in need of, was read; whereupon ordered that the Secretary write to Mr. Samuel Buck, to desire he will acquaint the lessees of the Bahamas Islands that the Board desire to speak with them on the subject of the said letter at eleven of the clock to-morrow morning.
A letter from Mr. Pulteney, His Majesty's Commissary in France, to the Secretary of this Board, dated the 3rd September, 1720, N.S., inclosing a regulation, relating to the commerce and navigation of foreigners to the French Colonies in America, published at Paris the 20th August, 1698, as also an ordinance, published there in August, 1681, relating to prizes, was read, and the said regulation and ordinance laid before the Board.
Messrs. Samuel and Joseph Travers attending, as desired, their Lordships observed to them some mistakes in their accounts of losses sustained by the capture of three ships by the French on the coast of Africa, as mentioned in the Minutes of the 1st inst.; whereupon these gentlemen desiring to rectify the said mistakes, the said accounts were delivered to them for that purpose.
Mr. Samuel Buck and Mr. Richard Harris attending, in behalf of the lessees of the Bahama Islands, they acquainted the Board, that most of the said lessees, particularly those, who have the papers which give the latest advices concerning those Islands, are out of town, but that they hoped they should be able to attend their Lordships on Thursday with what they had to propose for the better security of the said Islands.
A letter from Mr. Bampfield, dated the 30th August, desiring an
Act passed in Barbadoes in December, 1716, entituled:—
An Act to confirm and make more effectual certain deeds or Indentures of Lease and Release bearing dates the 1st and 2nd days of March, in the year of our Lord, 1707, and made or mentioned to be made between Robert Lowther of Meabourn, in the County of Westmorland, Esqr., and Joan his wife of the one part, and the Right Honble. Catherine, Viscountess Lonsdale and James Lowther of Whitehaven in the County of Cumberland, Esq., of the other part &c.
may be laid before His Majesty for confirmation; ordered that the said Act be sent to Mr. West for his opinion thereupon, in point of law.
General Nicholson, attending, as desired, as also Mr. Jeremy Long, who appears in behalf of the Palatines and other Germans at New York, whose petition and case, as also a letter from Brigadier Hunter on the same subject, are mentioned in the Minutes of the 21st July, and 2nd August last, the said case and letter were again read; and General Nicholson being asked what he knew of the allegations set forth in behalf of the said Palatines, he said that he understood the number of the Palatines, first sent over to New York, was about 3,200; that he knew nothing of any promises made to them. That he had about 300 of the said Palatines with him in the expedition to Montreal, who were subsistered during that expedition, but that he knows of no engagements concerning their pay. That he is a stranger to their settlement at Schories: that as to the arms made use of in the expedition, he knows of no direction for leaving what the Palatines had in their possession, but that there was an order for leaving some of them in the Plantations as stores for the magazines there. And Mr. Long, above mentioned, being unable to make proof of any of the particulars set forth in the said case of the Palatines, he was acquainted that copies of the several papers relating to their petition should be transmitted to Mr. Burnet, Governor of New York, and the settlement of such of them, as desire to remove to proper places, recommended to him, thought it was observed to Mr. Long, that it seemed several of the Palatines had behaved themselves very undutifully to His Majesty and his late Governor of that province.
Mr. Martyn, Inspector General of exports and imports, attending, their Lordships had some discourse with them concerning the manner of computing the valuations of several goods by the Inspector General; and Mr. Martyn acquainted their Lordships, that, except with regard to the woollen manufactures, he had followed the computation of his predecessor; though he had endeavoured to correct the valuations of several foreign goods by the assistance of some of the principal merchants, to whom he had sent lists of the said goods for that purpose, but that he had received no answers from them. That as to the woollen manufactures, he had valued them by the assistance of some of the most considerable persons concerned therein, and would still, endeavour to get the best information he could, of the present value of our plantations and foreign commodities.
A letter from Mr. James Gordon, together with three memorials from him, viz.:—one about preventing the running of foreign goods into Great Britain; another about the method to prevent the exportation of Fuller's Earth, and the third, containing a scheme of what he calls his Legal Fund, were laid before the Board and read; and he promised to bring to their Lordships a scheme to prevent the running of wool, which he has not yet finished.
Mr. Samuel Buck, attending, presented to the Board a memorial relating to the present state of the Bahama Islands, the charge the lessees have been at in settling and defending the Islands, the Island of Providence; and to the stores at present wanting for the said Islands, which was read; and directions given for preparing the draught of a representation to the Lords Justices thereupon.
A representation relating to the present state of the Bahama Islands, the charges the lessees have been at in settling and defending the Island of Providence, and the stores at present wanting for the said Islands, was agreed and signed.
A letter from Mr. Delafaye, dated the 8th inst., inclosing extracts of letters from Sir Robert Sutton, Ambassador, and Mr. Pulteney, one of His Majesty's Commissaries in France, relating to a conference with the Archbishop of Cambray, one of the French ministers, and others about the Fishery, &c., at Cançeau, in North America, was read, together with the said extracts; whereupon ordered that Colonel Vetch and Mr. Capon be desired to attend the Board tomorrow morning; in the meantime, their Lordships sent their Secretary to enquire of Mr. Burchet at the Admiralty, whether there were at that office any charts or accounts of the situation of the Cape or Passage of Cançeau and adjacent Islands, and to desire to speak with Captain Thomas Smart, Commander of His Majesty's ship Squirrel; and the Secretary being returned, acquainted the Board, that he was informed at the Admiralty that they had no other charts of that part of North America, than what are printed, and Mr. Burchet referred him to the memorial published sometime since by Sir Hovenden Walker, for a description of the mouth of the river of St. Lawrence, and the Islands, &c., there. That as for Captain Smart, Mr. Burchet said, he was not yet returned to this kingdom.
Sir Charles Cooke acquainted the Board, that some gentlemen, who are Directors of the East India Company, had been with him, and desired he would inform their Lordships that the Court of Directors of the said Company should in a little time be ready to lay before this Board their answers to the letters lately writ them, concerning painted and stained calicoes, and the difficulties which they labour under in their Trade.
Three accounts received from the Register's Office in the Custom
House, were laid before the Board, viz.:—
Ships English and Foreign.
An account of English and Foreign ships and trading to and from London, in the year ending at Christmas, 1717.
The like account ending at Christmas, 1718, and
The like account ending at Christmas, 1719.
Mr. Capon attending, as desired, he was asked several questions concerning the situation of the Islands of Cançeau and parts adjacent, to which the French pretend a right on the coast of Nova Scotia; whereupon he said that the French have no right to anything to the south-west of a direct line from the Island of Sable, and the passage or gut of Cançeau. That the Cançeau Islands lie neither in the river nor Gulf of St. Lawrence, but are between 4 and 5 leagues to the south-west of the Gut of Cançeau. That the Cape called Cançeau is not an Island, as would seem by a French draught of that place.
Colonel Vetch likewise attending, as desired, and being asked several questions on the same subject, he said he had sailed through the Passage or Gut of Cançeau. That the Cançeau Islands, which have been lately called so from that passage, are neither in the mouth of the river not Gulf of St. Lawrence. That the Islands of Cançeau are, some of them, not above a league, others at a greater distance from Cape Breton, and the same from the continent of Nova Scotia. That one of the Cançeau Islands, called Green Island, lyes in the Passage or Gut of Cançeau.
A representation to the Lords Justices upon Mr. Delafaye's letter, which was read the 13th inst., together with the extracts of those from Sir Robert Sutton, His Majesty's Ambassador, and Mr. Pulteney, one of His Majesty's Commissaries in France, relating to the Fishery at Cançeau, was agreed and signed.
A letter from Mr. Middleton of the 12th inst., relating to a scheme or proposals he has prepared for preventing the exportation of wool, was read; whereupon ordered that he be desired to bring or send his proposals to this Board in writing on Thursday next.
Mr. Boon, Agent for Carolina, and Colonel Barnwell attending, Acquainted the Board that upon some advertisements now published by Sir Robert Montgomery, they were apprehensive that some disputes might arise between the Officers or Forces expected to be sent by His Majesty to that province, and such persons as Sir Robert may send to the Golden Islands, one of which Islands lies in the mouth of the River Alatamaha, which has been proposed to be secured; whereupon their Lordships signified to these gentlemen, that the Government of Carolina being provisionally assumed to the Crown, no power of Government derived from the Lords Proprietors could at present could at present interfere with His Majesty's authority, but that in this affair their proper application would be to the Lords Justices.
Captain Hyde attending, as desired, their Lordships had some discourse with him concerning tobacco, particularly as to the valuation of it in the Plantations and in this kingdom; in which he acquainted the Board, that a penny sterling per pound is a just valuation upon a medium for tobacco in Maryland, and in Virginia about three half pence per pound, though in Virginia they call it 2d. That most of the tobacco re-exported from this kingdom is Maryland tobacco, the value of which here, upon re-exportation, is 3d. sterling per £ at a medium, and the little Virginia tobacco re-exported is 3½d. That 1d. sterling per £ in Maryland for their tobacco is a rate both planter and merchant may gain by. And that if it were higher in the Plantations, the temptation would be too great for planting tobacco clandestinely here, and the profits too much encourage the produce of tobacco in other parts of Europe, by which means our Plantations and the British trade would suffer in the end. That the petty charges here upon a hogshead of tobacco comes to twenty shillings. That the common computation of the value of tobacco for exportation here is 1d. per lb. first cost in the Plantations, 1d. freight and 1d. charges. Mr. Hyde being further asked on this occasion, what was usually given for the Madera wines sent to the Plantations he said, 7 or 8 £ a pipe, whereof one half was usually paid in British goods, and the other by Bills of Exchange on Lisbon.
Mr. Sampson St. Hill attending, presented to the Board a memorial, proposing some methods to prevent the exportation of wool, which their Lordships resolved to take into consideration at another opportunity; in the meantime, ordered that Mr. St. Hill be acquainted that the Board desire to speak with him on Thursday morning next.
A letter from Mr. Francis Webber to the Secretary, dated 8th inst., on the same subject, was read; whereupon ordered that Mr. Ellis Veryard, who brought the said letter, be acquainted that the Board desire to speak with him on Tuesday morning next.
Mr. Micajah Perry attending, their Lordships had some discourse with him in relation to the price of tobacco in Virginia, and being asked several questions, he said, that the prime cost of tobacco in Virginia, with the charges there, is about 1¾d. per pound, and the freight and charges in Great Britain, (exclusive of the duty), is about 2¼d., so that Virginia tobacco for re-exportation may be valued on a medium at 4d. per lb.
Mr. William Tryon like attending, as desired, their Lordships had some discourse with him concerning the valuation of Muscovado sugars in the Leeward Islands, who said, that an hogshead of 12 cwt. their, which is no more than an five score pounds to the cwt. after wastage in the voyage, reders here at a medium about 8. That they give in an average 18 shillings island money, or 12 shillings per 100 lb. weight. That each hogshead, which contains the sugar, costs 20 shillings island money. That the cost and charges of the ordinary sugar there on board, amounts to about one pound one shilling island money per cwt., and have been sometimes sold in this kingdom at about 14 shillings sterling per cwt., but that the Leeward Island sugars in a medium yield here about a guinea per cwt., both for home sale and for re-export. That sugars have borne a higher price by 50 per cent. about seven years ago than they do at present; that the great increase of our own and the French sugar plantations are the chief cause of lowering the price of sugars, and about 3000 hogsheads of fine sugars are annually brought from the East Indies.
Mr. Alexander Baxter attending, and being recommended to the Board by the Rev. Mr. Gordon, of Barbadoes, to give their Lordships some account of the present state of affairs at the Bahama Islands, the said Baxter was called in, and being asked what he knew on that subject, he said he came from the Island of Providence the 29th May last. That he was some time ago taken by the Spaniards off of Virginia and carried prisoner to St. Augustine, from whence he was taken out of prison, to go with the Spaniards in their late expedition, against the Island of Providence, where, after they failed of success, he was carried with them to the Havana, at which place he was, with other prisoners, obliged to carry stone for the buildings. That he found means to escape in a canoe, from the Havana to Providence, and there gave Governor Rogers advice of a second attempt intended by the Spaniards, which by the care of the said Governor Rogers, was happily defeated. That there were about 300 people at Providence, when he left that Island, and a fort of above forty guns. That the soil there is fertile, everything growing that they have yet planted. And being asked as to the condition of the Spaniards at St. Augustine, he said, there were usually about 300 of them in garrison there; that there is a bar at the entrance to the harbour at St. Augustine, upon which there is about fourteen foot water.
A letter from Mr. Delafaye of yesterday's date, inclosing by order of their Excellencies the Lords Justices, the extract of a letter from Sir Robert Sutton, His Majesty's Ambassador at Paris, with a copy of a memorial he received from the Archbishop of Cambray, concerning the fishery at Cançeau; as also inclosing several papers offered by General Nicholson, appointed Governor of Carolina, relating to that Province for the opinion of this Board thereupon, was read, together with several papers referred to in the said letter; all which their Lordships agreed to take into further consideration at the next meeting.
Mr. Veryard attending, as desired, their Lordships took again into consideration the letter which he brought to the office from Mr. Francis Webber, mentioned in the Minutes of the 16th inst., relating to some proposals he has to offer for preserving the wool of this kingdom, to be manufactured here, whereupon the said Mr. Veryard being asked whether he knew the substance of the said Mr. Webber's proposal, and what recompence he expected for his trouble and charge, Mr. Veryard answered, that he knew not Mr. Webber's scheme, nor what he might expect on that account. Their Lordships then signified to him. and ordered the Secretary to write to Mr. Webber to the same effect, viz.:— that as this Board have not the disposal of any public money, they cannot promise such recompence as may be desired, but if the said Mr. Webber will send them his scheme immediately, they will consider the same, and if found practicable and of use, they will recommend him to the Lords of the Treasury for such incouragement as he may deserve.
A letter from Mr. Delafaye of the 13th inst., inclosing by order of the Lords Justices, the petition of Monsieur Hirriberry, with several papers relating to some fish taken from the French at Cançeau by Captain Smart of His Majesty's ship Squirrel, for the opinion of this Board what is fit to be done in that matter, was read; and their Lordships agreed to proceed in the further consideration thereof, at another opportunity.
A letter from Mr. Woolley, Secretary to the East India Company, dated the 16th inst., with the answer of the Directors to the letters writ him on the late address of the House of Lords, concerning the wear of calicoes, and the difficulties the said Company lie under in their trade, was read, together with the said answer, and their Lordships agreed to reconsider the same.
The draught of a representation in order to the repeal of an Act passed in Barbadoes in February, 1718–19, entituled. An Act to impower the Governor or Commander in Chief and Council for the time being, to commute the value of powder, arms, &c, being laid before the Board, ordered that Mr. Lowther, Governor of the said Island, be acquainted that their Lordships desire to speak with him on Friday or Tuesday morning next.
A letter from Mr. William Tidmas, relating to goods and utensils carried to France for the use of the manufactures there, was read; whereupon ordered that he have notice to attend the Board on Friday morning next.
A letter from the Lord Provost of Edinburgh, Preses of the Royal Burrows of Scotland, dated 27th of last month, relating to a copartnership authorized by them for carrying on the fishery of the coast of North Britain, was read; and some directions were given to the Secretary for preparing a letter to the Lord Provost thereupon.
Mr. Francis Webber attending, and being acquainted that the Secretary had writ to him by the last post, on Mr. Veryard's appearing in his behalf, concerning the proposals he has to make for preventing the exportation of wool, he said, he set out for this place before the receipt of that letter; he then presented to the Board his said proposals, which their Lordships agreed to consider with others on the same subject.
Mr. St. Hill attending, his proposals to prevent the exportation of wool, were read; and their Lordships had some discourse with him relating to that affair, wherein among other things, he particularly said, that the wool usually run out of the kingdom, was combing wool, none of which sort is used in our Broad Cloths. The Board then agreed to reconsider his said proposals at another opportunity, as likewise those from Mr. Power, on the same subject.
A letter from Mr. John Middleton, dated the 21st inst., relating to his scheme for hindering effectually the exportation of wool, was read; whereupon the person, who brought the said letter, was called in and acquainted, that as this Board had not the disposal of any public money, they could not promise a reward on these occasions, but if they found the said Middleton's scheme of use, they would recommend him to the Lords of the Treasury, for a recompence for his pains; whereupon the said person produced Mr. Middleton's scheme, which was read, and at his request returned to him.
Upon further consideration of the answer from the Directors of the East India Company, to the letters writ to Mr. Woolley, their Secretary, on the late address of the House of Lords, relating to the wear of calicoes and the difficulties in the East India Company's trade; directions were given for writing to the said Mr. Woolley, to acquaint the directors that this Board should be glad to see the Placaert published in Holland, as mentioned in their said answer, and to discourse with them any day that may be most convenient for them.
General Nicholson and Colonel Barnwell attending, their Lordships took into further consideration the several papers referred to this Board by Mr. Delafaye's letter of the 15th inst., relating to stores of war and other necessaries for Carolina, and after some discourse with those gentlemen thereupon; their Lordships gave directions for preparing the draught of a representation to their Excellencies the Lords Justices on that subject.
Mr. Tidmas attending, as desired, his letter mentioned in the Minutes of the 20th inst., relating to goods and utensils carried to France for the use of the manufactures there, was again read; and their Lordships enquiring whether he had any particulars in writing to offer to the Board, he said he had not, but said that several anchor smiths and workmen for the woollen manufactures had been lately enticed to France, that a certain English woman, whose son is chief of a factory in France for the woollen goods, is now in London, as she often comes to get more workmen, whereupon the said Tidmas was advised to apply to a Secretary of State and endeavour to have such persons apprehended and prosecuted according to law.