America and West Indies
February 1698, 16-28


Institute of Historical Research



J. W. Fortescue (editor)

Year published





Comment on this article
Double click anywhere on the text to add an annotation in-line

Citation Show another format:

'America and West Indies: February 1698, 16-28', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 16: 1697-1698 (1905), pp. 112-122. URL: Date accessed: 29 November 2014.


(Min 3 characters)


February 1698

Feb. 16.
233. William Bridgeman to William Popple. Forwarding a list of the officers appointed in the Courts of Admiralty in North and South Carolina. Signed, Wm. Bridgeman. ¼ p. Endorsed, Recd. Read 17 Feb., 1697–8. Enclosed,
233. I. List of officers of the Admiralty Courts. Virginia and North Carolina. Edward Hill, Judge; Miles Cary, Register; Michael Sherman, Marshal; Edward Chilton, Advocate. South Carolina. Joseph Morton, Judge; Thomas Carey, Register; Richard Pollinger, Marshall; Jonathan Armorey, Advocate.
An order has been given for the preparation of Letters Patent empowering the Governors of those places for the time being to appoint officers when vacancies occur. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 2. Nos. 12, 12I.; and 25. p. 195.]
Feb. 17.234. Jonathan Langley to William Popple. I have kept home this fortnight of a very severe cold, and am still so ill that I keep my bed, and cannot without hazard stir out while the weather continues so severe. Pray excuse me to the Council of Trade. I send herewith what has come to my knowledge in the matter you wrote to me about. Signed, Jonathan Langley. ¼ p. Endorsed, Recd. Read 17 Feb., 1697–8. Enclosed,
234. I. Jonathan Langley to Council of Trade and Plantations. I can give you no information as to the pirates in the East Indies from my own knowledge, but what I have received from the information of others is as follows. About a year-and-a-half ago a sloop arrived at Barbados, the master whereof applied to me on behalf of about twenty men who some years ago had committed piracies in the East Indian Ocean between the mouth of the Red Sea and the Island of Borneo. They are very desirous that application may be made to the King for the royal pardon, that they may return to their allegiance and to England with their goods, which are very considerable. They hope the more from the royal clemency since they have never offended in any of the seas belonging to the Crown of England, nor against any of the subjects of England, nor any in confederacy or alliance with the King. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. Nos. 93, 93 I.]
[Feb. 17.]235. Extracts from letters received by the East India Company. Letter from Fort St. George, 19 January, 1696–7. Every letter from the coast of India brings fresh advices of pirates appearing in one part or another, and committing robberies against all nations without distinction. One appearing at Calicut, took and burned several ships in the road, and brought the factory in danger of being cut off by the country people, because they were supposed to be English; and indeed it seems probable that most of them are English and come from New York. The Mocha frigate in August last went and lay among the Mergen Islands near the harbour, where the Governor gave them entertainment; and though the masters of the English ships, who fell in there by contrary winds, warned them that they were pirates and offered their assistance in surprising them, yet they would not, probably from fear of some of the King's ships there expected, lest the pirates should seize them, as they did one at their departure in October which came from the coast. The pirates took out fourteen bales of paintings and wrote the Government that they had done it by way of reprisal, because they had refused to give up to them two of their men who ran away with 4,000 dollars, out of which they might satisfy themselves for the bales. Mr. John Wallis, master of a country-ship then at Mergen, gave a particular account of these passages, as also an account that near the Nicobar Islands Coliver the master, the quarter-master and the boatswain of the Josiah ketch, came off to him in a canoe. The boatswain died, but the other two he kept bound on the ship till the pirates on the Mocha frigate threatened in Mergen Harbour to release them. He therefore sent them into the country, from whence they made their escape to the Mocha's long-boat, and 20 got aboard. Some of the Mocha's men had in discourse declared their design to lie off Acheen for some time and then proceed for the coast of India and the Gulf of Persia; Guillam, an old pirate, is one of the Mocha's gang and goes by the name of Marshall. Their lying off the head of Acheen may probably be the advice of Coliver, who in this road gained the account of our China Manilla ships.
These villains having begun with the murder of the commander and the seizing of one of your ships will doubtless go on in making a prey of any ship they can meet with and master, without distinction, whereby not only the country-shipping, but your Honours' best ships, when single, will be in hazard of being taken by them when joined in a fleet. For there is now an account of at least seven pirates, a number not easily subdued, and capable of doing irreparable mischief to the trade of India if not quelled, as well by taking ships at sea as by offering such injuries to the natives of India as may expose our factories to ruin. And the mischief falls heavier on the English than on any other European nation, because the pirate-ships pass under the name and colours of the English, and it is known that there are many English aboard them. So that whereas the English nation has been generally respected in all parts of India, they will now lie under the character of pirates and robbers, and our soldiers in garrison and our seamen in country and Europe ships will be allured by the pirates' success to run to them, as several stragglers have already done. Were it not for the restrictive power in India the pirates' numbers had doubtless been much more increased.
Letter from Bombay, 11 April, 1697. Very lately we received advices from the Malabar Coast that the pirates have taken a Portuguese China ship and plundered her to a great amount, also that they have taken the Diamond, a ship in the English service, and sunk her because the captain resisted.
Letter from Bombay, 28 April, 1697. We hear from Calicut, under date 25 March, that the Mocha frigate and another pirate had sunk the Satisfaction, a ship of 500 tons belonging to some English, off Zecloon (? Ceylon) laden from Bengal and bound to these parts. They kept the master and mate prisoners, and had killed four or five of their men in the fight. It is said that they sunk this ship for her rigging. They also sunk another and plundered a third, but what we wrote of the Diamond in our last letter was a mistake. The Dutch master of the plundered ship says that the Mocha frigate has now 125 English, Dutch and French; and when she was taken from the Captain the officers and others came away in the boat to the number of sixteen. She had not above three or five and thirty Europeans on board her at most. So alluring is the gain of piracy; and what it will amount to in a little time, if care be not taken to suppress these villains, God knows, nor what place they will seize or fortify to make their rendezvous. It is certain that these villains frequently say that they carry their unjust gains to New York, where they are permitted egress and regress without control, spending such coin there, in the usual lavish manner of such persons, as might sufficiently convince the Government that they came not well by it; and they stick not to report also that by picastres to the Governor they pass without being molested. 2½ large pp. Endorsed, Presented to the Board by the Under Secretary of the Company. Recd. Read 17 Feb., 1697–8. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 94.]
Feb. 17.
236. Council of Trade and Plantations to the King. In reply to the memorial of the Board of Ordnance referred to us by Order in Council of 13th ult. (No. 174); we think that considering how long it is since the Engineers specified in the list have been sent thither, and how much longer it will probably be before they can have notice to come away, we see no reason to doubt but they will before that time have despatched the business upon which each of them was sent, especially since there is less occasion for the same since the conclusion of peace, and we therefore see no reason why they should not be recalled. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 34. p. 241.]
Feb. 17.
237. Order of the King in Council. That in accordance with the representation of the Council of Trade (see preceding abstract) the Earl of Romney be directed to recall the Engineers at present employed in the Plantations, by the first opportunity. Signed, John Nicholas. ¾ p. Endorsed, Recd. 22; Read 23 Feb., 1697–8. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 95; and 34. pp. 243–244.]
Feb. 17.
238. Order of the King in Council. That the Governors of the Plantations in America do take exact care that the several Acts, made for increasing the number of white men in their respective Governments, be effectually put in execution, and that they use their best endeavours with their General Assemblies to amend those Acts where they are in any measure defective; the Council of Trade to signify the royal pleasure to the Governors accordingly. Signed, John Nicholas. ¾ p. Endorsed, Recd. 22nd, Read 23rd Feb., 1697–8. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 96; and 34. pp. 242–243.]
Feb. 17.
239. Order of the King in Council. Referring a letter from the Commissioners of Ordnance respecting the officers of the train in Newfoundland to Council of Trade and Plantations for report. Signed, John Nicholas. ½ p. Endorsed, Recd. 22, Read 23 Feb., 1697–8. Annexed,
239. I. Commissioners of Ordnance to the Earl of Romney, 1 February, 1697–8. We enclose a list of the officers and attendants of the train of artillery who were left at Newfoundland by Colonel Gibsone for the winter, with an account of their pay per diem. You will see thereby that a considerable charge lies on this office for the same, which we hope may be taken off, especially as formerly such expense always lay on the respective Plantations. We submit that the King's orders should be taken as to their being remanded home. Signed, C. Musgrave, Jos. Charleton, Ja. Lowther, Wm. Boulter. Copy. ½ p.
239. II. List of the officers and attendants of the train left at Newfoundland. Five officers, twenty-five bombardiers, gunners and artificers. Daily charge for their pay, £4 11s. 6d. Annual charge, £1,669 17s. 6d. 1½ pp. [Board of Trade. Newfoundland, 3. Nos. 94, 94 I., II.; and 25. pp. 174–177.]
Feb. 18.
St. Swithen's
240. Gilbert Heathcote to William Popple. After all enquiry I can find no account of what free negroes the French may have carried off from Jamaica. I shall write to Jamaica itself for the information. I have no particular instructions about Sir James Castillo's Act. He only asks me to take care of it and return it to Jamaica as soon as confirmed. He did the island a very eminent service during the French invasion. I cannot tell what to say as to reserving the King's right, but I believe that the Act was passed in gratification for his good service in the defence of Jamaica. I hope all the laws will speedily be printed, and I shall then wait upon you with the book. Signed, Gilbert Heathcote. 1 p. Endorsed, Recd. Read 18 Feb., 1697–8. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 8. No. 84.]
Feb. 18.
241. William Popple to the Secretaries of the Admiralty. The Agents for Jamaica are unable to give any account of the number of free negroes carried from that island by the French; but I enclose extract from a letter from Sir William Beeston of 12 February, 1694, which gives an account of the whole number of negroes taken away, without distinction of free and unfree, which is all the information that I can give. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 56. p. 176.]
Feb. 18.242. Francis Parry to William Popple. I enclose copy of the grant for making copper half-pence and farthings, and that we may be the better enabled to draw up and offer anything to the Council of Trade for supplying the Plantations with small money, I beg you to give me a copy of the proposal, already referred to, for coining small money of an artificial and mixed metal. Signed, Fran. Parry. ½ p. Endorsed, Recd. Read 22 Feb., 1697–8. Enclosed,
242. I. Abstract of Sir Jos. Herne and Partners' Patent for making copper farthings and half-pence. (1) The Patentees' proposition. Sole privilege for seven years beginning at Midsummer, 1694. To make sufficient quantity not exceeding 700 tons of copper. To change all old tin farthings, &c., and to pay charge of a controller, to be appointed by the King. (2) Grant sole privilege as proposed. The money to be coined in the Tower and made of fine English copper. 1lb. of copper avoirdupois not to make more farthings than amount to 21d. in tale. (3) The Tower may find leave to coin elsewhere, if convenient. Liberty to utter and vend such farthings in England, Wales and the Plantations. Figure and inscription. The coins to pass in places aforesaid to such as will receive them voluntarily and not otherwise. (4) Coinage or uttering of such coins by other persons to be forbidden during said term under penalties. Power to be given to search ships, houses, &c., for counterfeits, and (5) to seize such counterfeits, tools, &c., without giving account thereof. The Patentees to pay £200 per annum to a controller appointed by the King. They covenant to deliver sufficient quantities of copper to the Master of the Mint from time to time. (6) Standard of the fineness of the copper to be so delivered and kept. The metal to be delivered cut into pieces fit for stamping; to be then coined by direction of the Master of the Mint and redelivered to the Patentees, who are to pay the charge at 5d. per lb. weight, or, (7) if the pieces be delivered fit for stamping, at 2d. per lb. weight. If the Mintmaster fail in his agreement, the Treasury may appoint others. No persons to be employed except by appointment of the Treasury. (8) All profit to go to the Patentees without account. They undertake to make sufficient to change the old tin farthings, to supply England, Wales, and the Colonies with limitation of quantity and term of years as aforesaid, to take no greater price than the coins are coined for, and to keep a public office in a convenient place. (9) They covenant to change tin farthings not exceeding £200 a week and melt them down. They submit their management to inspection of any persons appointed by the King. They are to have the use of the King's tools, also formerly employed in making tin farthings. (10) Upon performance of these conditions, they are to enjoy their privileges aforesaid without molestation. 1½ pp.
242. II. Full text of the agreement abstracted above, dated 27 June, 1694. 9½ large pages. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 97, 97 I., II.]
Feb. 18.
243. Lieutenant-Governor, Council and Assembly of Montserrat to Council of Trade and Plantations. We are informed that a complaint has been exhibited by one Mr. Walrond and other inhabitants of Antigua against Governor Codrington, and having well considered thereof declare and believe the same to be false, scandalous, and the effects of malice and ill-will. We are sensible of no irregularities on Governor Codrington's part with any design to prejudice the people. It is also our firm belief that he is no Jacobite nor countenancer of such, but, on the contrary, has since the Revolution behaved himself as a true Protestant and with hearty zeal for King William. On all expeditions against the French he has shown extraordinary forwardness, as witness his retaking of St. Christophers and his serving as a volunteer in the expedition to Martinique, which island had assuredly been taken, had the command been vested in him. Nor have we reason to believe him a covetous person, since during the time of his government he has governed us gratis, and as to the accusation against him of breach of the Acts of Trade, we know not how it can be supported, for he has been very diligent in prosecuting them that act contrary to those Acts. As to his maintaining many vessels, we are of opinion that it has been of great advantage to these islands, since in time of danger they have been very useful as scouts. As to his keeping evil councillors, we are strangers to the matter, but we affirm that the men employed by him did good service in these islands, for their advice had so great a relish of integrity and well wishes towards the present Government that, joined to the Governor's courage, we believe it to have been in great measure instrumental to our preservation from ruin. We wish in gratitude to give of our own free will this unbiassed testimony of Governor Codrington's mild and upright government. Signed, T. Delavall. Edw. Bunscombe, Speaker, and by twelve more. 1½ pp. Endorsed, Recd. April, Read 6 May, 1698. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 5. No. 75; and 45. pp. 182–184.]
Feb. 21.244. Minutes of Council of Maryland. Draft writ of prorogation for the Assembly submitted to the law-officers. William Bladen appointed clerk to the Delegates.
Feb. 22.The Attorney-General suggested amendments of the writ of prorogation, which were approved.
Feb. 23.The case of two suspicious vessels was considered, but all was found to have been legally done.
Feb. 24.Thomas Tench, Henry Denton and Thomas Hutchins were sworn Judge, Registrar and Marshal of the Vice-Admiralty Court of the Western shore. Edward Price produced his commission as a Surveyor of Customs and was sworn. [Board of Trade.Maryland, 13. pp. 416–417.]
Feb. 22.245. Minutes of Council of Barbados. Order for five additional men to be furnished to Captain Reeves. Minute recording that the President and Mr. George Andrews are willing to advance the money required for H.M. ships Newcastle and Bideford from their private purses, and desire the Council to write to the Commissioners of the Navy to order punctual payment of the bills upon which the money is advanced. Order for twenty-eight men to be supplied to H.M.S. Deptford. Sundry accounts passed. Order for a present of fresh provisions to the value of £50 to be made to Lord Bellomont for his voyage. [Board of Trade.Barbados, 65. pp. 280–282.]
Feb. 22.246. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Draft letters to the whole of the Plantations in accordance with the resolutions of 9th inst. agreed upon, and directions given to the Secretary for others.
Mr. Parry's letter of 18th inst. read (No. 242), and a copy of the document which he desired given to him.
Feb. 23.The letters agreed upon yesterday were signed.
One order of Council of 3rd inst. as to Governor Russell's present, and three of 17th inst. (Nos. 237–239) received. Order thereupon for letters to be prepared as to the militia of the Colonies, and for Colonel Gibsone to attend on the business of Newfoundland.
Abstract of the patent for making farthings read.
Feb. 25.Captain Andrews attended upon the business of pirates in the East Indies, giving information as to their habits and as to the strength of the expedition necessary to suppress them.
Feb. 26.The Council met at the Cockpit, the Lord Privy Seal, Mr. Secretary Vernon and Lord Orford being present. The business of the pirates in the East was discussed, and a representation prepared and signed, of this day's date (No. 265). [Board of Trade. Journal, 10. pp. 437–445.]
Feb. 23.247. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor the Earl of Bellomont. Forwarding the King's proclamation forbidding his subjects from taking service with foreign princes. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, Jno. Pollexfen, Abr. Hill.
The same was written to the Governor of New Hampshire. [Board of Trade. New England, 36. p. 349.]
Feb. 23.
248. Council of Trade and Plantations to the President and Council of Barbados. Forwarding copies of the King's proclamation forbidding his subjects to take service with foreign princes, and directing that the King's pleasure therein be observed and transgressors thereof punished. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 44. p. 138.]
Feb. 23.
249. William Popple to the President and Council of Barbados. Forwarding a ream of paper with instructions as to the future conduct of correspondence. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 44. pp. 139–140.]
Feb. 23.
250. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Nicholson. We send you a copy of the opinion of the Law Officers (see No. 72) upon your doubts as to prosecutions for breaches of the Acts of Trade. The laws of Maryland still lie as when we last wrote to you, but we hope the suspense will not last much longer. An Agent or Agents would be very useful for promoting expedition therein. We send you the King's proclamation of 28 January, forbidding his subjects to enter the service of foreign princes. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, Jno. Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 9. pp. 174–175.]
Feb. 23.
251. William Popple to Governor Nicholson. I send a ream of paper, which is selected as proper for the uses intimated to you in the Council's letter of 2 September. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 9. p. 176.]
Feb. 23.252. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor the Earl of Bellomont. We send you the King's proclamation of 28th ult. prohibiting English subjects from taking service with foreign princes, also copy of a letter which has been addressed to Rhode Island and Connecticut. If either of these Colonies makes any difficulties as to what is required of them, you will report it together with your opinion as to the means of removing those difficulties. We recommend the appointment of an Agent for New York to reside in London. Since your departure the claim of East Jersey for privilege of ports has been disallowed, and we send you copy of the Order in Council which has been issued thereupon. We need hardly recall to you the great importance of the production of naval stores in the Colonies and of giving us full information as to the same. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, Jno. Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. New York, 52. pp. 299–301.]
Feb. 23.253. William Popple to Governor the Earl of Bellomont. Desiring him to send copies of such laws of Massachusetts and New York as have been printed. [Board of Trade. New York, 52. p. 302.]
Feb. 23.
254. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Proprietors of Carolina and the Bahamas and to the Governors and Companies of Connecticut and Rhode Island. Forwarding the proclamation forbidding British subjects to take service with foreign princes.
Connecticut and Rhode Island are also instructed to send copies of their Acts and Laws. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 25. pp. 196–197.]
Feb. 23.
255. William Popple to the Governor and Company of Rhode Island. Your address to the King, undated, was referred by him to the Council of Trade, to whom you may address all further communications. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 25. p. 198.]
Feb. 23.
256. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Sir William Beeston. We send you a royal proclamation forbidding English subjects to enter the service of foreign princes, which you will cause to be published. Your letters of 12 June to Mr. Blathwayt and of 15 July and 11 September to us have been received. The agents will no doubt have informed you as to Colonel Beckford's dormant commission and as to the passing of two private Acts of Jamaica. The remaining Acts shall be laid before the King shortly. We have laid before the Treasury your report that you had devoted £1,000 of the soldiers' subsistence money to the victualling of the King's ships. No doubt they have given the necessary directions thereupon. We so well approve of your suggestion in your letter of 27 January that we have directed Governor Codrington to send you intelligence from Windward on all extraordinary occasions. Your apprehensions of the dissatisfaction of Admiral Nevill's captains was not groundless, for several complaints have been made by them. We, however, being entirely satisfied in that matter wrote our opinion to Mr. Secretary Vernon, since which we have heard no more of it. Copy of the letter is enclosed to give you your satisfaction. We send you also copy of a petition from Captain Usher Tyrrell. We have not thought fit to advise the King to recommend the matter to the General Assembly of Jamaica, but if, by your mediation or their own inclination, the Assembly be ready to meet his wishes we shall be ready to advise the King to confirm the Act. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows. Wm. Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 56. pp. 177–179.]
Feb. 23.
257. William Popple to Governor Sir William Beeston. Sending him a ream of ruled paper, together with certain rules for the future conduct of correspondence. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 56. pp. 179–181].
Feb. 23.
258. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Codrington. We have received yours of 5 July, 27 September and 22 October last. Pending further orders as to Tortola you will continue to observe the King's instructions of 5 December, 1694, and suffer no foreigners to settle on any of the Virgin Islands which they do not lawfully possess. We send you the King's proclamation forbidding his subjects to enter the service of foreign princes. Sir William Beeston complains of the want of intelligence from Windward at Jamaica and offers to pay the expense of a sloop sent express with news. Though there is now less occasion for this in view of the peace, we do not omit to signify it to you. We enclose an affidavit on behalf of one Benjamin Burnet for your enquiry and directions therein. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 45. pp. 168–170.]
Feb. 23.
259. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Sir Edmund Andros. Since our letter to you of 2 September we have received yours of 1 July. We send you the King's proclamation of 28th January last, prohibiting his subjects from entering the service of foreign princes, which you will publish, taking all care that in you lies to enforce the same. There is a useful practice in many Colonies to keep an Agent resident in England, and we suggest that there should be one for Virginia. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Virginia, 37. pp. 198–199.]
Feb. 23.
260. William Popple to Sir Edmund Andros. I send a ream of paper ruled in the form which the Council think proper for the uses mentioned in their letter of 2 September last, and especially for the journals of public proceedings. When this is done you will take care that other paper of the same form be provided. [Board of Trade. Virginia, 37. pp. 199–200.]
Feb. 23.261. Minutes of Council of Maryland in Assembly. Eleven delegates appeared, who were sworn, after which the writ of prorogation to the 8th of March was read. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 14. pp. 235–237.]
Feb. 23.262. Minutes of Council of Massachusetts. Orders for payment of £179 to Caleb Ray for keeping French prisoners, and of £8 smart-money to Abraham Foster.
Feb. 24.Orders for proclamations for the dissolution of the Assembly and for a general fast; also for payment of £5 to two constables of Boston for impressing seamen. The Lieutenant-Governor reported that he had received an order from Whitehall admitting Jahleel Brenton, and the officers of Customs in future, to appeal from the Courts of the Colony to the King in Council.
Feb. 25.Information being given of murders by the Indians near Andover, orders were given to raise a hundred men in the adjacent towns to pursue the enemy. [Board of Trade. New England, 49. pp. 140–143.]
Feb. 25.263. Minutes of Council of Jamaica. Order for a payment for the importation of a tradesman from England. Proclamation calling upon the inhabitants to provide themselves with white servants according to the Act, under the penalties prescribed by that Act. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 79. pp. 77–79.]
Feb. 25.264. Minutes of Council and Assembly of Antigua. On the proposal of the Assembly a joint committee was appointed to consider of the business to be laid before the General Council and Assembly. The Assembly also asked for a joint committee to prepare two amending Acts. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 64. pp. 248–250.]
Feb. 26.265. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Vernon. Forwarding a report concerning pirates in the West Indies, to be laid before the King. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. Annexed,
265. I. Council of Trade and Plantations to the King. By further information that we have received it is evident to us that the pirates in the East Indies do resort to St. Mary near Madagascar, where they are supplied by one Baldridge (who has made himself the head of a disorderly rabble of Europeans and natives) with provisions and other necessaries sent thither by your Colonies in America. We can have no certainty of the number or strength of the pirates settled on the island, but the evidence before us tends to show that they daily increase. We therefore repeat our former recommendation to send a squadron of three ships to those parts (see No. 173), but since this undertaking will redound chiefly to the advantage of the East India Company (as by lessening the charge for convoying the Mogul's ships from port to port) we think that they may reasonably be expected to contribute one half of the cost of the expedition. Again, the chief support of these pirates lies in your Colonies, and particularly in those under Proprieties and Chartered Governments. The Proprietors have not yet presented their Governors and Deputy Governors to you for approbation, according to the late Act of Parliament, nor given security for them according to your order made in pursuance of the address from the House of Lords. If the said Proprieties and Chartered Governments do not speedily comply with what is required of them, as abovesaid, we see no means to prevent the continuance of this mischief without calling in the further assistance of Parliament. Signed, J. Bridgewater, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, Abr. Hill. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 34. pp. 245–249.]
Feb. 26.266. "Abstract of papers relating to piracy in the East Indies." This is a brief summary of the Council of Trade's representation of 9 December, 1697, Secretary Vernon's letter of 21 December, 1697, with its enclosures, the request of the East India Company when they attended the Council on 4 January, 1698 (No. 150), Captain Warren's information given to the Council on 10 January, the Council's additional representation of 13 January, the further information given by the East India Company on 1 February, Henry Watson's narrative of 14 February, the information given by John Finlinson to the Council at its meeting of 17 February, Jonathan Langley's written information of the same date, the information given by Mr. Fullerton to the Council at its meeting of 18 February, and the recommendations made to the Council by Captain Andrews at its meeting of 25 February. 4 pp. Endorsed, 26 Feb., 1697–8. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4. No. 98.]
Feb. 28.
267. Mr. Secretary Vernon to Council of Trade and Plantations. On your representation of 26th inst., the King has ordered the Admiralty to appoint two fourth-rates and a sixth-rate to be sent to the East Indies for the suppression of the pirates in those seas, either by force or by bringing them to submission upon terms of pardon and mercy. The King desires you to consider what those terms should be, and how those who shall so submit themselves shall be disposed of and what instructions shall be given to the Commander of the squadron for performing his service in the most effectual manner. The King approves of the recommendation formerly made by you for the enactment of the Jamaica Act against pirates in the other Colonies, and desires that the Governors may be instructed accordingly. Signed, Ja. Vernon. 1¼ pp. Endorsed, Recd. 1st, Read 2nd March, 1697–8. [Board of Trade. Plantations General, 4, No. 99; and 34. pp. 248–249.]
Feb. 28.268. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Order for a representation on the late petition of the East India Company.