America and West Indies
March 1697, 22-25


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J. W. Fortescue (editor)

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'America and West Indies: March 1697, 22-25', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 15: 1696-1697 (1904), pp. 406-415. URL: Date accessed: 26 November 2014.


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March 1697

March 22.836. Journal of General Assembly of Massachusetts. Proposals from the Representatives as to defence of the frontiers, prosecution of the war, and supporting the charge thereof, received and debated. The vote as to the security for money advanced to the Treasury, returned to the Representatives with amendments.
March 23.Proposals for supporting the charge of the war were debated. Bill to encourage the Treasurer to advance his own money to the public, drawn up and sent down to the Representatives.
March 24.Proposals for raising a fund for supply of the Treasury again debated. Order for a bill to be prepared to prevent inconvenience from Indians pretending themselves friendly.
March 25.On the petition of Sheriff Samuel Gallop, order was given that he be not prosecuted for the fine laid on Daniel Wilcox, who has escaped from his custody. Order for annulling an execution issued against Joseph Doty. Bill to secure the Treasurer for money of his own advanced to the Treasury, received from the Representatives and assented to. Harvard College Incorporation Bill again debated.
March 26.The members of the Corporation of Harvard College agreed on, and sent down to the Representatives for concurrence. Additional Bill for regulating fences and cattle read a first time.
March 27.Two votes of the Representatives for payment of the clerk and door-keeper of the Assembly agreed to. Orders voted for the regulation and fortification of the garrisons. Adjourned to 30th. [Board of Trade. New England, 48. pp. 125–132.]
March 22.
H.M. Yard
837. Henry Greenhill to William Popple. The packets for the West Indian Islands have been received, and shall be put on board the respective convoys when they arrive. I have ordered an account to be kept with you for the postage. Signed, Henry Greenhill. ½ p. Endorsed, Recd. Read, 24 March, 1696–7. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 47; and 34. p. 132.]
March 22.
838. Commissioners of Customs to the Lords of the Treasury. Forwarding a body of instructions to the Governors of Colonies for the more effectual observance of the Acts of Trade and Navigation; and presuming that some additions will be necessary in consequence of the address of the House of Lords to the King respecting the Plantation Trade. Signed, Sam. Clarke, Robert Southwell, Robert Clayton, Ben. Overton. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 34. pp. 142–143.]
March 22.
839. The Mayor of Bristol to William Popple. Yours of 16th has been communicated to our Newfoundland merchants, who have several ships bound for Cork and Waterford, where their cargoes and provisions are ready bought. Though the ships lie here at great charges, not one will proceed until advised that the forces intended are departed. Nevertheless the merchants are sensible that the season is approaching and that a small loss of time will totally frustrate their fishing design. It will be a great encouragement if H.M.S. Crown is ordered to call at Cork and Waterford to take them to Newfoundland. Signed, John Hine, Mayor. ½ p. Endorsed, Recd. 24. Read, 25 March, 1696–7. [Board of Trade. Newfoundland, 3. No. 66.]
March 22.
840. Council of Trade and Plantations to Secretary Trumbull. Enclosing him extract of a letter from William Adams to Simon Cole of 17 March, 1697, as follows. I have seen a letter from Newfoundland how the French have destroyed the places that remained in our possession, and killed eighty of them who fled into the woods and made resistance. The French King is sending out six men-of-war and stores for building fortifications. The French boast more of this conquest than of all that is done in this war. We shall have ships go to Newfoundland when too late. [Board of Trade. Newfoundland, 25. p. 99.]
March 22.841. Memorandum of several papers with reference to the case between Isaac Richier and Governor Goddard of Bermuda, presented at different times to the Board by Edward Richier. ¼ p. Annexed,
841. I. Statement of the case between Governor Goddard and Isaac Richier. On his arrival at Bermuda Governor Goddard demanded of Richier half of the profits of the Government since the date of his commission, threatening that he would make him comply. Accordingly he caused Richier to be imprisoned and his goods to be seized. This is not denied in Goddard's answer. Next he instigated several persons to bring vexatious suits against Richier and notably Nicholas Trott, whose ship Richier had stopped in pursuance of the Acts of Trade, in which action the Lords of Trade and Plantations upheld him. Yet Richier was prosecuted to outlawry for so doing. Goddard has also ousted from the Council and Commission of the peace all who were friendly to Richier, and has intimidated all who dared to speak on his behalf. Mr. Richier has for long been closely confined in a noisome common gaol. One Walker, a murderer, was released from prison by Governor Goddard, and three witnesses against him imprisoned. Governor Goddard has perverted the forms of justice to extort money from one Ephraim Fox and one Adam Eve. The King's Orders in Council to obtain justice for Richier have been disregarded. 1½ pp. Endorsed, Presented by Mr. Edward Richier, 22 March, 1696–7.
841. II. Attestation of Thomas Walmsley. Absolutely denying the truth of Samuel Wall's narrative of Isaac Richier's disloyalty to King William, and hinting that Wall himself was a Jacobite. He adds that for speaking on Richier's behalf he had several of his goods seized by Governor Goddard's order. 2½ pp.
841. III. Protest of Isaac Richier to Governor Goddard, 1 July, 1695, arguing that Nicholas Trott's suit of outlawry against him is utterly illegal.
841. IV. Copy of a bond offered by Isaac Richier to abide by the King's award as to his case, if Governor Goddard restored his goods. 1 p.
841. V. Copy of the bond offered by Isaac Richier to Governor Goddard; a duplicate of No. 728 II.
841. VI. Copy of the bond offered by Isaac Richier relating to the prosecution of Nicholas Trott; a duplicate of No. 728 III.
841. VII. Copy of Isaac Richier's memorial of 4 October, 1696, a duplicate of No. 728 VII.
841. VIII. Protest of Isaac Richier against the illegality of the pretended outlawry against him, 16 Sept. 1696. 1 p.
841. IX. Affidavit of John Dudgeon as to the committal of three witnesses to prison by Governor Goddard to prevent them from giving evidence against Thomas Walker; and as to the intimidation by Governor Goddard of Richier's friends. 1¼ pp.
841. X. Attestation of Mary Vaughan. As to the perversion of the forms of justice by the Governor and Sheriff of Bermuda to extort money from Ephraim Fox. 1 p.
841. XI. Copies of documents in support of Mary Vaughan's attestation. 2 pp.
841. XII. Petition of Adam Eve to King William and Queen Mary. Stating how he has been ruined by Governor Goddard and Nicholas Trott, who unjustly seized some land which he had recovered by action at law, because he refused to pay the large fees. 1 p.
841. XIII. Statement of the case of Adam Eve. 3 pp. [Board of Trade. Bermuda, 3. Nos. 8, 8 I.–XIII. List of these documents is in Board of Trade. Bermuda, 29. p. 21.]
March 22.842. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. The King's letter to the Governor of Massachusetts received, and signed. Order for a letter to be prepared to the Lieutenant-Governor to cover it. Mr. Adams's letter of 17th inst., with information as to Newfoundland, was read and at once written to Mr. Secretary Trumbull (No. 840). Mr. Usticke's letter of 19th inst. read (No. 826).
Mr. Thornburgh's letter, excusing his delay in replying owing to the death of one and the indisposition of others of the Proprietors of the Bahamas, read.
The Gentlemen interested in mines in New England attended, but were told that the Council still insisted upon the heads of the proposals signified to them on the 15th of February. They were also desired to bring up a clause mentioned by them to have been prepared by the House of Commons against stock-jobbing.
Mr. Penn's letter excusing himself from attendance was read.
Mr. Edward Richier presented papers relating to his brother's case in Bermuda (No. 841).
Order for the Secretary to press the Attorney and Solicitor General for the despatch of the laws of New York and New England.
March 23.Mr. Graves presented a petition (No. 843) on which the Secretary was directed to write a letter to the Secretary of Customs (No. 844).
March 24.Mr. Sansom's letter of yesterday as to Mr. Graves read (No. 845).
Mr. Greenhill's letter of 22nd inst. read (No. 837).
Mr. Burchett's letter of 20th read (No. 834), whereupon the letter to the Lieutenant-Governor of Massachusetts of to-day's date was signed and sent to Plymouth. Mr. Samuel Allen presented a petition to be continued as Governor of New Hampshire, but withdrew it on learning that Lord Bellomont had been appointed. Order for the Secretary to write to Mr. Nelson to ascertain the right and title of the English to Port Royal in Acadia.
Mr. Penn attended, and obtained the Council's assent to his proposal that the persons appointed as Admiralty Officers in Pennsylvania might act also in the three lower counties.
The Duke of Shrewsbury's letter of this day as to new Councillors for Barbados read.
March 25.Mr. Sansom's letter of 24th read (No. 850). Order for the alteration to be added to the letter to Mr. Secretary Trumbull of this day (No. 853).
Mr. Hine's letter of 22nd read (No. 839). The Secretary was directed to inform him that H.M.S. Crown would call at Waterford. Mr. John Cary attending was also informed thereof.
Draft Commission for Lord Bellomont as Governor of New York agreed upon, and a copy ordered to be sent to him. Lord Bellomont's letter of to-day to Lord Bridgewater was read (No. 854), and consideration deferred.
March 26.Mr. Blathwayt delivered copy of an address of the House of Lords to the King of 18th inst. (No. 820). Ordered that a circular be prepared to signify to the Plantations the King's pleasure as expressed in that address, that the same be inserted in all future instructions to Governors, and that Proprietors of Plantations give security that their Deputy Governors shall obey the King's commands in respect of the Acts of Trade.
Mr. Secretary Trumbull reported that the King thought it too late in the year to enter on the project of intercepting the Canada fleet.
Draft Commission to Lord Bellomont as Governor of Massachusetts agreed to, and a copy ordered to be sent to him. [Board of Trade. Journal, 10. pp. 40–49.]
[Mar. 23.]
843. Petition of John Graves to Council of Trade and Plantations. I was commissioned to be Collector of Customs in the Bahamas and have shipped provisions and other goods to the value of over £100 for my voyage and occasions ashore. By your orders I attended you and gave you certain information as to pirates; but since the delivery of a petition by Thomas Bulkley, the Commissioners of Customs ordered me to return my Commission. Since there is nothing against me in this petition except verbal allegations, not sworn to, I beg that Captain Webb and the Council may be ordered to enquire into the whole matter and report to you, when I shall be content to abide by the King's decision thereon. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 25. pp. 55–56.]
March 23.
844. William Popple to John Sansom. The Council of Trade in sending you Mr. Bulkley's petition did not intend to charge Mr. Graves with any crime, nor do they desire that the bare allegations of Mr. Bulkley should be accepted to his prejudice. Whatever the Commissioners of Customs think fit to do on any other ground the Council leave entirely to them. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 25. p. 57.]
March 23.
845. John Sansom to William Popple. I have received yours of 17th, with a petition from Thomas Bulkley making grave reflections upon John Graves. The Commissioners of Customs on enquiring into the matter summoned Mr. Randolph, who said that Mr. Graves had been named to him as one well-qualified to execute the Acts of Trade and Navigation in the Colonies, that from that time he had no knowledge of him, and that he finally proposed him because he appeared to have been appointed Attorney-General by Governor Trott in the Bahamas. Mr. Graves then produced to the Commissioners his authority to act as Attorney-General, and would have proceeded to defend himself, when the Commissioners checked him, saying that the matter was under the examination of the Council of Trade, and in the meanwhile required him, as his conduct was in question, to return his Commission. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 25. pp. 58–59.]
March 23.
846. William Popple to the Attorney and Solicitor-General. The Acts of several of the Colonies have been sent to you, some jointly, some separately. While they all of course require to be considered in some competent time, yet by reason of the Earl of Bellomont's appointment as Governor of New England and New York the Council of Trade desires your opinion as speedily as possible upon the laws of Massachusetts and New York, and in particular of New York. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 34. p. 131.]
March 23.847. Minutes of Council of Barbados. A letter from the officer on the French flag of truce was Englished and referred to a Committee to answer. A petition from twenty-three masters of ships for leave to sail was read, and rejected in view of the fact that a French squadron is reported to windward, and that another British man-of-war is expected from the Leeward Islands. Account of disbursements for a hired sloop presented. Bill for quartering of soldiers returned to the Assembly as amended. The Assembly renewed their request for the recording of the Act enabling judges to choose their own clerks, and brought up three bills, to disable judges from practising in any Courts, to repeal an Act for a duty on shipping, and for payment of the powder-duty. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 65. p. 199.]
March 24.
848. Duke of Shrewsbury to Council of Trade and Plantations. Edward Bourke and David Ramsay have applied to the King to be appointed to the Council of Barbados. The King desires you to ascertain their qualifications for the office and to report. Signed, Shrewsbury. ½ p. Endorsed, Recd., Read 24 March, 1696–7. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 7. No. 27; and 44. p. 55.]
March 24.
849. William Popple to the Agents for Barbados. Asking them to enquire as to the qualifications of Edward Bourke and David Ramsay for the Council of Barbados, and to report. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 4. p. 56.]
March 24.
850. Secretary of Customs to William Popple. In reply to yours of 19th, the Commissioners of Customs, being informed by Mr. Randolph that Mr. Thomas Newton is lately arrived in England without any thoughts of returning to Massachusetts, have called Mr. Benjamin Lynde before them and are of opinion that he is a fit person to be Advocate in Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. Signed, Jno. Sansom. ¾ p. Endorsed, Recd. 25 March, 1697. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 48; and 34. p. 132.]
March 24.
851. William Popple to John Nelson. Desiring him to inform the Council of Trade as to the English right and title to Port Royal in Nova Scotia, in case of a treaty of peace between France and England about territories in America. [Board of Trade. New England, 36. p. 145.]
March 24.
852. Council of Trade and Plantations to Lieutenant-Governor Stoughton. Preparations are making by land and sea for the recovery of Newfoundland. You and the whole body of the Government will do your utmost to forward the undertaking, knowing how much New England is concerned in recovering what is lost there and in hindering the further progress of the French there. We need add no more to incite you to extraordinary vigour than that your efforts will be most favourably accepted by the King. To secure greater unity of action the King has appointed the Earl of Bellomont to be Governor of New England, New York, and New Hampshire, and Captain-General also of the forces of Connecticut, Rhode Island, and the Jerseys. He will embark shortly. Meanwhile use your utmost care and diligence. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, Jno. Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. Memo.—A duplicate was sent to Colonel Gibsone. [Board of Trade. New England, 36. pp. 146–147; and Newfoundland, 25. p. 102.]
March 25.
853. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Trumbull. According to the King's orders signified to us by Mr. Tucker in his letter of 17th, we have heard Mr. Penn respecting some alterations which he desired to make in the list of Admiralty Officers submitted by us to the King. Finding that he objects nothing against any of the persons nominated, but desires only that the same officers may serve for Pennsylvania and the lower Counties, we have nothing to object to his proposal. The Commissioners of Customs have informed us that Mr. Thomas Newton is in England with no thought of returning to America, and have proposed Mr. Benjamin Lynde to take his place. He has been here to declare his willingness to accept the post, so we concur with the Commissioners that his name should be inserted instead of Mr. Newton's. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 34. pp. 133–134.]
March 25.854. Earl of Bellomont to the Earl of Bridgewater. I have the ill-luck to have a lame knee, but hope to be well enough in two or three days to attend you concerning my voyage to the West Indies. Meanwhile I hear that the merchants trading to the countries wherein I am to be concerned, are preparing a memorial to lay before you the wants under which the people at present labour for their support and security. No doubt a very few days will produce the result of their consultations before your Board, as also some communications from myself. I hope that you will have time enough to consider our memorials and be ready to take the King's commands upon them by next Council day. Signed, Bellomont. Holograph. 1¼ pp. [Board of Trade. New England, 8. No. 78.]
March 25.
855. Minute of the Privy Council. Captain Webb was sworn before the King and Council as Governor of the Bahama Islands. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 25. pp. 59–60.]
March 25.
856. Sir Thomas Laurence to William Popple. The Bishop of Salisbury told me when I was at home last year that you were designed for the place of Secretary to the Council of Trade, which we since hear that you have received. This is to congratulate you. In November, 1694, I was deputed by the Governor and Assembly to lay before the late Committee several addresses and proposals as to this province, few of which, owing to the uncertain sitting of that Committee, were perfected, but all referred to different offices. Mr. Povey, who still transacts some matters in favour of this Colony, and Mr. John Boesman (?) who solicits both the public and my private matters, have already, I suppose, laid the papers before the Council. Those which press for speediest despatch are an Act for establishing the Protestant religion, which has been revised according to the King's order in Council. It is among our last laws, herewith sent, together with an humble address that if it be not found according to the King's wish, he will have it worded so that he will passit. Another Act relates to the founding and endowing of free schools, which is also returned with amendments. There is also a petitionary law for the introduction of foreign coins, and settling their value in the Colony, which is of great moment towards quieting our trade. In all of them favourable despatch will lay us under great obligation. Lastly there was a memorial of the Governor delivered by me, containing many things for the better regulation of the trade and improvement of the King's interest in this and the neighbouring Colonies, to which we hope for an answer. I have now sent up in a box and directed all the duplicates of the laws and journals which were sent home last summer, together with duplicates of those which were lost at sea, and the transactions in the Council and Assembly since my arrival in Maryland at the beginning of August last. Copies of all these are likewise sent to the Duke of Shrewsbury. If you are not acquainted with the extraordinary character of our Governor, which will deserve your recording, his Acts sent herewith will show you his pious and generous intentions and actions. In short, if building State-houses, churches and free schools, and contributing largely to them himself, and bringing at the same time a poor country out of debt—if furnishing with store of arms and settling the militia—if bearing down vice by good laws and good example, and carrying the credit of Christanity to the eyes and ears of our poor ignorant Indians—if these things will merit your esteem, Colonel Nicholson will be the fairest for it of all the Governors in America. Signed, Thomas Laurence. Holograph. 3¼ pp. Endorsed, Recd. 31 July. Read 5 Aug., 1697. Enclosed,
856. I. Copy of a correspondence between Governor Nicholson of Maryland and Governor Fletcher of New York, between 22 June and 10 November, 1696, on the subject of the quota required from Maryland for the defence of New York. 2 pp. Endorsed, Transmitted by Sir Tho. Laurence, 25 March, 1697. Recd. 31 July. Read 19 Aug., 1697. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 3. Nos. 14, 14 I.]
March 25.
857. Extract of a letter from Sir Thomas Laurence to the Earl of Bridgewater. I found the Governor in good health, carrying on a fair house for the administration of justice and all the offices of business, a fine brick building, which will be accompanied with a fine church, costing £1,000, and a public school, costing £500, both of which are now in hand, and our contributions ready. But the reversal of the Acts for the establishing of religion and for free Schools had put our Assembly so out of humour that, if the Governor had not with great address got them re-enacted, all his generous designs for the good of the country were in danger of miscarrying. The Acts are now sent back to be presented to the King and an humble address with them; but it is a wonder here that Mr. Popple has not given us timely notice how to make our addresses and applications. Many matters were left unfinished when I came away from England. There was a memorial relating to several matters in this and adjacent Colonies, which was referred by you to the Customs, and by them to the merchants. Therein notice was given of the encouragement given to cotton-planting in Virginia by Sir Edmund Andros and others, which seemed prejudicial to tobacco-planting and to the King's interest. This gave distaste to some in London who were friends to Sir Edmund and had land here, and they have sent copies of the memorial into Virginia, endeavouring to bring Governor Nicholson into odium as an informer and an enemy to the welfare of the country. Some hot and factious spirits have carried this so far in our Assembly that though I was of their opinion before, and had recovered £300 for them which Sir Edmund Andros had taken from the Colony (£200 of which is applied to the building of the free school) and gives a fair account of my negotiation [there is apparently some mistranscription here, for this sentence does not end]. No doubt you were surprised at the sending of the memorial to the Custom House Commissioners, and at their sending it to the merchants, for there are some things in it not so fit for the merchants or common persons to know. Pray let me know what judgment is passed upon it, for there has been so much noise about it. Copy. 1½ pp. Endorsed, Recd. 13 Aug. 1697. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 3. No. 15.]
March 25.
858. Sir Thomas Laurence to James Vernon. I send here-with several duplicates and some originals of journals and public proceedings. I arrived in Maryland at the beginning of August. By two ships laden with sugar from Jamaica and rescued by a storm from the French, who had taken them in the Gulf of Florida, we understood that Mons. Renaud with a squadron of seven large ships had lain off Cuba for some time in quest of the Plate fleet. They missed it, nor can we hear that they have done any harm to any English Colony. On my arrival at Annapolis I found the Governor very busy building the State-house, a fine brick building containing all the offices of business belonging to the country. He is now going on with a church, to which he has given £100 and which will cost £1,000, besides a school costing £500, of which £200 is to be defrayed from the money recovered from Sir Edmund Andros. Besides these, thirty parish churches will be finished this summer, and by next fleet we hope that Dr. Bray may come, bringing part of the parish library which he has been collecting, and ten or twelve sober ministers. I think considering the sort of people we have to do with, living hitherto under no civil or ecclesiastical Government of any influence in faith or morals, that the Governor's works will be near akin to the converting of a barbarous and heathen nation. Yet all this was nearly brought to a stand by the disallowance of the Acts for Religion and for Schools, which might have gone back for an amendment without a reversal (sic) if somebody had pleased to spare that remark about the £300. But this puts the Assembly so much out of humour that if the Governor had not got the Acts speedily re-enacted and amended, the maintenance of our clergy had been gone and the churches unbuilt. At the same time he threw over Captain Coode, who has long renounced his orders, and his morality and religion too. He lately got into the Assembly on purpose to embroil our affairs, having before held correspondence with Dr. Payn and got a deputation to go halves with him in the Commissary's office, which the Assembly have petitioned the King to bestow in perpetuity on the Bishop of London's suffragan. Considerable consequences might have followed if Coode had not been put down; but now we go on triumphant, many persons by the Governor's example subscribing to these good works. I hope they will not be perverted by the contrary practices in Virginia, where I hear that £2,000 of the subscriptions are not to be got and the College is at a stand, their politic Governor thinking it enough to build his own fortune, and being too wise to take any advice which tends to the lessening of his revenue. By his conduct he has shewn the vanity of that fear which has been artificially suggested by some persons, of less orthodox principles, likely upon his removal to succeed. We are fully assured that none such will be recommended by the Duke nor have Mr. Vernon's countenance; who will, I believe, be rather inclinable in another instance to imitate King Charles II., who when he gave Dr. Snow the Bishopric of Winchester said he did it to enable him to pay his debts contracted by his hospitality in his poor one of Bath and Wells. My best thanks for your many civilities to me in England. My ill-luck with our laws and not bringing back a confirmation of the proposal for advancement of coins has so far affected me among these ill-bred and ungrateful people that the Assembly gave me not a penny for all my expenses, losses and trouble, only £50 on condition that the law for coins is confirmed. Nor are they more honest here, for I can never get half of my yearly profits from them, nor even that until the ships are gone. So if a vacancy happen for the agency of Portugal, your remembrance of me will never be forgotten. Signed, Thomas Laurence. P.S.—We hear the new Commission is opened, but not a word yet from Mr. Popple. If my eldest son be in town from Oxford, pray let him wait on you some time. Holograph. 4 pp. Enclosed,
858. I. List of papers forwarded with the foregoing letter. 1 p.
858. II., III., IV. Extracts from the Minutes of Council of Maryland of 4 January, 18–21 February, and 16–17 March, 1697. [America and West Indies. 558. Nos. 1, 1I.–IV.]