Journals of the Board of Trade and Plantations, Volume 7, January 1735 - December 1741. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1930.
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Journal, December 1736
Mr. Yeamans, agent for Antigua, Mr. Coope, agent for St. Christophers, and Colonel Butler, agent for Nevis, attending, according to appointment, with the other gentlemen, mentioned in the margin, Alderman Heathcote presented to the Board a memorial signed by a great number of merchants of the City of London, praying that the Montserrat Act, passed in June last, to prevent illicit trade etc., mentioned in the minutes of 23rd ult., may not be repealed, unless the French king will annul his edict of 1727, for seizing all English vessels within a league of any French shore, which memorial was read. Colonel Thomas then presented to the Board some reasons against the above Act, which were read; Mr. Sharpe, in behalf of the Act, enlarged upon the subject of the above memorial, and all parties being heard, the Board gave some directions for preparing the draught of a representation upon this subject.
A letter, ordered at the same time to be prepared, for inclosing a copy of a letter from Mr. Clarke, Lieut.-Governor of New York, relating to the disorders in that province, occasioned by Mr. Van Dam etc., to the Duke of Newcastle.
The draught of a report, ordered to be prepared the 30th ult. upon the petition of the Georgia trustees, praying that no land may be granted to the south of the Alatamaha, as also the draught of an instruction to the Governor of South Carolina, forbidding the same, were agreed to.
Mr. Hayes, Deputy Governor of the African Company, attending, as he was desired, with Mr. Travers, the Board took again into consideration the letter from the Duke of Newcastle, read the 24th of last month, referring to the Board a memorial delivered by Monsieur Chavigny, relating to the French pretended right to an exclusive trade to the Gum Coast; and Mr. Hayes acquainted the Board that the Court of Directors desired to be referred to their memorial (read the 31st of July, 1733, Trade W.125) shewing their right to trade to the Gum Coast, as a full answer to the above memorial from Monsieur Chavigny. But with regard to the ship mentioned in Chavigny's memorial belonging to the English, seized by the French and condemned, but said not to have been reclaimed, Mr. Travers said it belonged to him, that he had reclaimed it, but without effect; and that he would, in a few days, lay before the Board some papers in proof thereof; the Board then agreed to postpone the consideration of this affaire, till Mr. Travers shall send the said papers.
The report to the Lords of the Committee with the draught of an additional instruction to Colonel Broughton, Commander in Chief of South Carolina, forbidding him to grant any land to the south of the Alatamaha, agreed to yesterday, was signed; ordered that a letter be wrote to Colonel Broughton, to know whether any application has been made to him for grants of land, as above mentioned.
The Board take again into consideration the two letters from the Duke of Newcastle, mentioned in the minutes of 12th ult., relating to consular and national duties payable at Cadiz, but refused by the Spaniards and Flemings; and Sir William Chapman attending, as he had been desired, with Mr. Clarke, he referred to an Act, passed here the last session of Parliament, entituled An Act for the more equal paying and better collecting certain small sums for the relief of shipwrecked mariners etc., at Cadiz and Port Sta. Maria in Spain etc., and said that the merchants, trading to Spain, were desirous of waiting some time, in hopes that the above Act might answer the complaint made by the consul at Cadiz, mentioned in the Duke of Newcastle's above mentioned letter; Sir William said further that as there was now in the river a ship, which had been, and was returned from Cadiz, he would in a few days send to the Board an account what effect this Act has had.
The Board taking into consideration the draught of a representation, ordered to be prepared the 26th ult., upon the subject of the Lord Harrington's letters, read the 2nd ult., relating to the prohibition of serges and shalloons in Denmark, gave directions that the Governor of the Hamburg Company be desired to attend the Board upon this subject on Wednesday next.
Letter from Mr. Clarke, Lieut.-Governor of New York, dated the 18th of October last, acquainting the Board with his having received an instruction from the queen, taking notice of him as President of the Council and Commander in Chief of the province, by which the peace thereof was entirely restored, was read; ordered that an answer be prepared thereto.
Mr. Fane's report against An Act, passed in 1735–6 at Barbados, concerning the surveying of land there, mentioned in the minutes of the 9th ult., was now read, and orders were given for desiring Mr. John Sharpe, one of the agents for Barbados, to attend on Thursday next upon this subject, as also Mr. Edlington, the Surveyor General.
Mr. Gore, Governor of the Hamburgh Company, attending, as he had been desired, with Mr. Godfrey, a member of the said company, the Board take again into consideration the two letters from Lord Harrington, read the 2nd ult. and mentioned in the minutes of 3rd inst., relating to the prohibition of shalloons etc., in Denmark; and Mr. Gore acquainted the Board that during the prohibition of trade between Denmark and Hamburgh, the importations from hence have been directly to Copenhagen, but that since the prohibition has been taken off, the channel of trade may be altered; that he apprehends the King of Denmark's ordinance, prohibiting the importation of shalloons etc., may greatly affect the trade of this kingdom, and that he fears the King of Denmark may extend his prohibitions yet further; that the Danish army has of late years been cloathed with cloth of their own country, but was formerly cloathed with English cloth. Ordered that a copy of the above-mentioned ordinances be sent to Mr. Gore, and that he be desired to procure and send to the Board an account of the amount of the trade for British woollen goods carried on between Hamburgh and Denmark for seven years, before the prohibition of trade between Denmark and that city.
Mr. Fane's report upon two St. Christophers Acts for settling the bounds of parishes etc., mentioned in the minutes of 3rd ult., was read, and directions were given for preparing a representation for confirming that passed in 1733.
Mr. Jackson, Collector of the Customs at the Bahamas, attending, presented to the Board a petition, praying among other things that the Governor of South Carolina may be directed to take depositions from certain persons, who left the Bahamas, and are now settled in South Carolina, relating to his complaint, mentioned in the minutes of the 28th of October last; which memorial was read, and the Board gave directions for adding a paragraph in the before-mentioned letter to Colonel Broughton, for the purpose desired by Mr. Jackson.
Mr. Edlington, Surveyor General of Barbados, attending, as he had been desired, as also Mr. Leheup and Mr. John Sharpe, agents for Barbados, the Board take again into consideration the Act, passed in that island in 1735–6, Concerning the surveying of land, mentioned in the minutes of the 7th inst., which was again read; as also Mr. Edlington's commission, appointing him Surveyor General. Mr. Sharpe apprehends the Act a reasonable law, because no surveys can be made, but by sworn surveyors; and there are none such, but those deputed by Mr. Edlington or his predecessors; and restraining people to one surveyor would be a great restraint upon the subject; that the present Act is agreeable to an Act of the island passed in 1748 (fn. 1) (folio 4 of Basket's printed volume) which gives every one leave to employ any sworn surveyor; upon further discourse upon this subject, some doubts arose about the validity of Mr. Edlington's commission, now read; and orders were given that Mr. Fane should be desired to attend the Board on Tuesday next thereupon.
The representation upon the subject of the Danish prohibitions of serges, shalloons etc., mentioned in the minutes of the 3rd inst., was agreed, as also a letter, for inclosing the same to the Lord Harrington.
Letter from the Duke of Newcastle, inclosing an extract of one from Mr. Allen, consul at Naples, relating to a Giunto of commerce established there, was read; ordered that Mr. Jackson (an Italian merchant) be desired to attend upon this subject on Thursday next.
Letter from Lord Harrington with several papers, relating to our trade to Fiume and Buccari, two Imperial ports in the Adriatick, and to the appointing a consul there, was read, and the Board resolved to consider further thereof on Thursday next. [The Board did not reconsider this affaire till the 15th and 19th of January, 1736–7.]
Mr. Travers, who attended the 2nd inst., attending again, presented to the Board a letter from himself to the secretary, in relation to his having reclaimed the Royal George, a ship belonging to him, and taken by the French on the African coast in 1718, and acquainting him that he had wrote to his agent at Havre, for authentick copies of such papers as were presented to the Admiralty Court there, in October, 1719, for reclaiming the said ship, which letter was read; and Mr. Travers acquainting the Board that he expected a return to his letter from his agent at Havre, in about ten days, and that he would then attend the Board again, the Board agreed to defer the further consideration of the letter from the Duke of Newcastle, with Monsieur Chavigny's memorial, relating to the French Senegal Company's pretence, to an exclusive trade on the Gum Coast, read the 24th ult., to another opportunity.
The Board taking again into consideration the order of the Lords of the Committee, read the 16th August last, directing the Board to prepare a state of the paper currency, in the Massachusets Bay, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Connecticut; as likewise the draught of a report upon certain New England Acts, ordered to be prepared the 24th ult., their lordships agreed to take this matter into further consideration on Tuesday morning next.
Mr. Fane attending, as he had been desired, as also Mr. Edlington, Surveyor General of Barbados, the Board stated to Mr. Fane the difficulty that arose the 9th inst., concerning the validity of the Surveyor's commission, it being issued under the Governor's private seal only; and Mr. Fane acquaints the Board that he finds it is the custom in Barbados, and in all the other colonies, to issue all commissions, both civil and military, except the judges' only, under the Governor's private seal, and that upon the demise of a governor, as all such commissions become void, it has been the custom to issue a proclamation for their continuance. Ordered that a letter be wrote to the Attorney and Solicitor General for their opinion in point of law, whether the above method is legal. [vide the minutes of the 15th inst.]
Monsieur Lostau, from Monsieur Chavigny, attending, upon the subject of the Fleuron, a French ship, taken at Montserrat, by virtue of the Act, passed there in June last, for preventing illicit trade, mentioned in the minutes of the 1st inst., acquainted the Board that he had orders from Monsieur Chavigny to enquire whether the Board have made any report, or whether they are ready to make any report upon this subject; and the Board acquainted him that they had this matter under consideration, and should make a report upon this subject, as soon as conveniently they could.
Mr. Fury, agent for South Carolina, attending, presented to the Board an order of the Committee of Council, dated the 8th inst., referring to the Board a petition from the Council and Assembly of South Carolina, complaining against the inhabitants of Georgia, for obstructing their trade with the Indians, was read; and Mr. Fury desired to be heard by council in support of the several facts contained in the said petition, if any of them should be contested.
Ordered that the trustees of the Colony of Georgia be desired to attend the Board upon this subject, as also upon the letter from Mr. Broughton, relating thereto, and read the 9th ult., to-morrow morning.
Ordered that Sir William Chapman, who attended the Board on the 3rd inst., be reminded of his having then promised the Board to give them some further account for the affaire of consular and national duties payable at Cadiz, as soon as he received any from thence.
Mr. Fane attending again upon the subject of the Surveyor General's commission, mentioned in the minutes of yesterday, he acquainted the Board that upon further enquiry, he had found that commissions, granted to justices of the peace, were given under the Great Seal of Barbados.
The Board took into further consideration the Barbados Act for surveying of land, mentioned in the minutes of the 9th inst., and gave directions for preparing the draught of a representation for repealing the same.
Mr. Martin, secretary to the Georgia trustees, attending, and acquainting the Board that the trustees cannot conveniently attend this day, as desired, the Board appointed Thursday, the 13th of next month, for their attendance, upon the petition from South Carolina, read yesterday.
Mr. Wilks, agent for the Massachusets Bay, attending, their lordships had some discourse with him concerning the paper money current in that province, and agreed to consider further thereof at another opportunity.
Letter from Mr. Martin, inclosing three Acts passed by the Georgia trustees in April, 1735, for maintaining peace with the Indians, for preventing the importation of rum, and for preventing the importation of negroes, was read.
The Board read the draught of a representation, ordered to be prepared the 1st inst., upon the French memorials referred to the Board by the Duke of Newcastle's letter, read the 3rd ult., complaining of the seizure of two French ships at Montserrat, and upon the Act, passed there the 5th June last, for preventing illicit trade, and agreed to consider further thereof to-morrow morning.
The Board take into further consideration the draught of the report, mentioned in yesterday's minutes, relating to the two French ships seized at Montserrat, and resolved to proceed further therein, this evening.
A letter from Sir William Chapman, relating to national duties payable at Cadiz, and to the effect the Act of Parliament, passed the last session upon this subject, has had there, but promising a further account from a ship just arrived, was read; and the Board in expectation thereof, postponed the further consideration of this affair till after the Holydays.
The representation upon the subject of the Danish prohibitions of serges, shalloons etc., agreed to the 9th inst., was signed, as also a letter, for inclosing the same to my Lord Harrington, and proposing that English artificers, now settled there, may be recalled.
Letter from Mr. Johnston, Governor of North Carolina, dated 15th October last, with two papers, was read; and the Board agreed to consider further thereof; and in the meantime ordered that the secretary do acknowledge the receipt of Mr. Johnston's above letter, and acquaint him, that Captain Burrington has had no reason to write what he has suggested against Mr. Johnston, as mentioned in the above letter, from any conversation at this Board.
The representation upon the French memorials, complaining of the seizure of two ships at Montserrat, agreed to yesterday, was signed, as also a letter, for inclosing the same to the Duke of Newcastle.
The Secretary acquainted the Board that the reason of his having sent them notice of the receipt of a memorial from the Society of Merchants at Bristol, against the French King's edict of 1727, mentioned in the representation signed the last meeting, was that Sir Abraham Elton, who brought the said memorial, desired personally to present it to the Board; and Sir Abraham attending accordingly, the said memorial was read; and their lordships agreed and signed a letter for inclosing a copy thereof to the Duke of Newcastle, to be laid before his Majesty with the above-mentioned representation.
A letter from Mr. Carkesse, secretary to the Commissioners of the Customs, relating to the importation of Canary wines directly from the Canaries to the plantations in America, and desiring copies of any articles in the general instructions to the Governors in America, relating to the Surveyors General of the Customs, or to the Acts of Trade, was read, and directions were given for sending copies accordingly.