America and West Indies
December 1723, 1-10


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'America and West Indies: December 1723, 1-10', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 33: 1722-1723 (1934), pp. 372-385. URL: Date accessed: 21 April 2014. Add to my bookshelf


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December 1723, 1–10

Dec. 3.
771. Governor Hart to Lord Carteret. Being informed your Lordship was in personal attendance on H.M. abroad, and I having laboured under a violent sickness for many months which rendered me incapable of business, I hope your Lordship will pardon me for not having answered your letters etc. Continues:—I have the honour of your Lordships of 1st July, in favour of Mr. John Douglass, that he should be restored to all the lands he was possessed of by a former grant which was expired etc. That there might be no more pretence of complaint upon that score, I entered your Lordships letter in the proceedings of the Council of St. Christophers and immediately made out a grant etc. Some time before I had the honour to have your letter it was intimated to me that your Lordship intended that favour to Mr. Douglass, and as he had abundantly more land than he could possibly make use of, he very readily agreed to farme me the 200 acres I was in possession of, so in obedience to H.M. pleasure I am become tenant to my own improvements, having been obliged to build a house, there being none provided for a Governour in that Island, and before that time was forced to rent a very wretched habitation at £300 per annum, besides there being no market in that Island, I was constrained to farm a plantation, being impossible to subsist without one. These reasons I hope will hold me excused from any misrepresentations that may have been made etc. Acknowledges letter in favour of Mr. Smith, Secretary of these Islands etc. I shall do him all the good offices in my power etc. (v. 4th Oct.) Continues:— I have your Lordships of 28th May, commanding me to show all due countenance to the person that should be sent by the Rt. Hon. the Earl of Denbigh who has a claim upon the estate and effects of Mr. Douglass formerly Governour. His Attorney has received all the assurances of what countenance is proper for me to show to him etc. The estate mentioned was always in trust for his son, John Douglass, and is that very 560 acres which by H.M. command I have given a patent for to him: and as for the effects of the father I know not what advantage my Lord Denbigh may gain by a course at Law, he having already mortgaged them for more than they are worth etc., and his son John under pretence of rent due from his father has had judgment and execution by a law suit in St. Christophers etc. Your Lordship's of 27th May was delivered me latly by Mr. William Wyne signifying H.M. commands that I should confirm him in a faculty he had obtained from the Archbishop of Canterbury as a Notary Publick in this Island. Mr. Wyne about two years past was sued by another Notary publick in this Island acting by commission from the Commander in Chief, alledging that the Lord Archbishop had no jurisdiction within these Islands, by any signification from H.M. to his Governours etc., and so judgment went against Mr. Wyne. But to the end that H.M. commands may be complyed with etc., I have granted him a commission to act as Notary Publick. I humbly intreat your Lordship will be pleased to signify what jurisdiction (if any) H.M. is pleased to allow His Grace etc., there having been no Ecclesiastical jurisdiction mentioned in my Instructions, save that of the Bishop of London. Your Lordship will herewith receive by the hands of Mr. Nevine an Address to H.M. from the inhabitants of St. Christophers etc. which I hope will find your Lordships approbation and that you will represent it in the most favourable manner to H.M., being in my humble opinion for the honour of his service and the common interest of the Governour and People of these Islands. The intention of this Address is from the just observation of the people of St. Christophers, that the general disputes between the Governours and the people in all these Islands was occasioned by the different sentiments for ways and means of making a provision for the better support of the Commander-in-Chief, which indeed has formerly been the source of most of the differences that have arisen between the Governours and people, which they are willing generously to make a provision against for the future, and as they have made a suitable provision approved of by H.M., my interest in this affair is entirely out of the question; the sole views I have in promoting of this, regards the good of my successors and the peace of these Islands. The 500 acres which they pray may be appropriated for the support of his Commander in Chief out of such late French lands in that Island as he shall graciously please to appoint, with the expense which the inhabitants propose to be at in setling the same, which when so settled may produce one year with another about £2000 sterling, the value of these 500 acres to H.M. may be computed at £5000 sterling, and it will cost the inhabitants to erect proper works and supply it with negroes and cattle in order to make sugar for the least £8000 sterling. If H.M. condescends to grant the said acres, and the people settle it in the manner they propose, the Commanders in Chief will be at a certainty on their arrival in this Government, without being anxious for their support, or being layd under the unhappy circumstances of making such servile court to the inhabitants for their interest that they can never disengage themselves from; Besides as this is proposed to be a general charge the people will be eased in all these Islands for the future of making any further settlement, but what shall be the produce of the said 500 acres etc. From two years experience, my expences amounts to full £2000 per annum, so that in case this establishment should be made, the Governour will not save above a third part of his income, which I presume your Lordship will not think too great a reward for his services, nor too large a recompence for the almost certain loss of his constitution in this very warm climate, and it is remarkable that no Governour of the Leeward Islands has lived to return to Great Britain for 33 years past, Mr. Doughty excepted etc. Signed, Jo. Hart. Endorsed, Rd. 1st April, 1724. 5 ¾ pp. Enclosed,
771. i. Address of the Council and Assembly of St. Christophers to the King. Express gratitude to "the Divine Mercy lately vouchsafed to all your Majesty's subjects in the preservation of your Royall person and our happy Constitution from the restless and deep laid designs of an infatuated faction" etc. Return thanks "for placing over us our present Chief Governour who has on all occasions steadily pursued the honour of your Majesty and the prosperity of these Islands etc. With an unanimity due to your Royal recommendation we made provision for his support etc. Tho' this charge upon ourselves was given and is readily paid with all chearfullness being raised in such a manner as no ways affects the poorer or needy sort of people among us, etc., yet we pray your Majesty to grant for the use of your present and successive chief Governours 500 acres of your Majesty's lands in this Island yeilded at the Treaty of Utrecht etc. Wee for our parts shall readily contribute (and we cannot doubt the concurrence of your Majesty's other Islands of this Government, who will share in the benefitt to assist us in the charge especially when they likewise consider how necessary such a provision is for the better supply of the Chief Governour's table which for want of a certain and constant market of fresh provisions is not now to be done but with the greatest dificultys) to stock such a portion of land with sufficient negroes and other necessarys for sugar making. The produce of a Plantation so settled will be a standing revenue to maintain the character of your Majesty's Governours and will render all other taxes for that purpose unnecessary which may thereby remove all those causes of contentions and differences which have too frequently happen'd between the Governours and the people here on that occasion etc. Signed, J. (?) Davis, Francis Phipps, Jno. Bourryan, John Willett, Chas. Payne, Ste. Duport, Richd. Holmes, John Garnett; Tho. Butler, Speaker, John Greatheed, William Wooddrop, Benja. Estridge, Aretas Seaton, Nathl. Payne, Marmad. Bacheler, Peter Thomas, Wm. Johnson, Willm. Liddell, Frdk. Crie (?). 1 large p. [C.O. 7, 1. No. 27 (covering letter only); and, (without covering letter) 239, i. Nos. 29 (and, copies), 29, i., ii.]
Dec. 3.
772. Governor Hart to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I have the honour of your Lordships of the twentieth of June past; which I received in the Island of Saint Christophers the beginning of October, and immediately signified to the Council and Assembly H.M. approbation of the Act settling £2000 warrant money per annum on me etc., which with much satisfaction I acquaint your Lordships was very acceptable to those good people, and I have a most greatfull sence of your Lordships favour to me, in so early laying that Act before H.M. for his royal approbation. Soon after the receipt of your Lordships letter (tho' under very weak circumstances from the effects of a fever, which has continued upon me with little intermission for many months past) I returned to Antegoa in order to publish H.M. Order for the repeal of the Act for my better support in that Island, and accordingly I summoned the Council and Assembly on the 9th of November and communicated to them your Lordships letter as also the Order of Council thereon, from which time the said Act ceased, the repeal being then published. I beg to leave to assure your Lordships that I am very sencibly affected with the obliging manner you remind me of my duty on the repeal of that Act, which will always be a caution in my future conduct. At the same time I crave your Lordships permission to lay before you my reasons for passing that Act in the manner I did, which I am in hopes will render me more excusable in your Lordships opinion, for which I have the utmost deference. On my arrival in Antegoa, I found the Assembly then chosen, and no small number of H.M. Council in that Island, prepossessed with an old maxim to keep their Governours always poor and depending; and when they did make them any presents or settlement, it was generally at the price of some branch of the Prerogative; By which means the Governours could not properly be said to be free Agents, but was subject either to their designs or caprice of their fluctuating affections, of which some fatal instances may be given; and for two months after my arrival was kept in suspence whether they would make any settlement on me or not, that part of my Instructions which injoyned me to receive no additional sallarys from any of the Assembly but during my Government only, being by no means relished by them, as disagreeable to their views mentioned; and proposed whatever settlement was to be made should be from year to year. Whilst I was endeavouring to remove these difficultys the merchants residing and others trading to this Island, of their own accord, made their proposals by some members of Assembly who were also merchants, to bring in a bill in the manner it was past into ane Act; volentarily submitting themselves to the duty of three percent. with assurance of writing to their correspondance to use their interest, and make their application in order to obtain H.M. approbation of it. I have good reason to believe that the inducement to the merchants for laying this tax on themselves, was, that by my means they were in hopes to obtain such good laws for the speedy and effectual recovery of their just debts, which had been wanting to them many years, almost to the ruine of trade. And in effect I did obtain those laws, by which it is now in a more flourishing condition then ever in this Island: which laws have been long since remitted to your Lordships; and now my Lords I have ingenuously laid before you, a true state of this case, and humbly submit it to your superior judgment whether a distinction may not be made between an imposition on trade and a volentary offer of the trader. Refers to letter of 8th June relating to Assembly of Antigua. q.v. Continues:—[The new Assembly] have given me several proofs of their good inclinations towards me, particularly of their intentions to make a further provision for my support, of which I hope to give your Lordships a further account in a little time, that affair being now under their consideration. Encloses Journals of Assembly of Antigua 23rd April, 1722–28th June, 1723, and Minutes of Council of Nevis, 8th March, 1721–27th Sept. 1723. Continues:—I think it my duty to acquaint your Lordships, that I have from time to time demanded of the Clerks of the Councils of the several Islands of this Government, and also of the Clerks of the Assemblys of the same, the copys of the Journals and proceedings of the Councils and Assemblys; yet I have not been able to obtain them, except such as is herewith sent; the several Islands haveing refused to pay the Clerks for such copys, which by H.M. Instructions they are obliged to deliver me; As for the several Clerks of the Councils, they pay a certain price for their offices to the Secretary of these Islands, who is a Pattent Officer, and have urged to me, how great a hardship it would be to make out the proceedings, since they are not paid for it by the country as formerly; I therefore pray your Lordships would be pleased to represent this matter to H.M., that I may be the better enabled to recommend this stronger to the several councils and Assemblys, to pay for such copys and duplicates as in reason they ought to do; and without which I am not able to send you the journals and proceedings mentioned as I am commanded, for I cannot but think it a great hardship to have suspended the several Clerks of the Council, who are upon a rack rent, nor would any other person take it upon those terms, were they so suspended; and the Clerks of the Assemblys have no more salary, than what is a bare reward for the business done during the sitting of the House. I am much honoured with your Lordships approbation of the short state I laid before you of the several Islands under my Government, and shall not fail from time to time to inform your Lordships of the several occurrences in it; and particularly in complying with my duty in making you the most perfect answers I am capable of, to the several queries your Lordships were pleased to send me, so soon as a return is made me of such of them as was necessary to send to the other Islands for a more certain account of them. Agreecable to H.M. commands, William Pym Bürt Esqre., and Major Richard Abbott have been qualified for their places in the Council of Nevis in the room of Joseph Symonds and Roger Pemberton. These two last are chosen into the Assembly, with declarations and resolutions to make every thing as uneasy as they can in that Island. I haveing received several letters from the President of Nevis, Colonel Richard Abbott, that upon proper summonses to the Council and Assembly they neglected to meet, I thought it my duty to repair to that Island (tho' in a very weak condition) in hopes to have put matters upon a better footing, and accordingly went there the 9th July, and on the 22nd commanded the Assembly to attend me with their Speaker. Mr. Brown one of the Members of the Council who carryed that message, returned with the Speaker's answer that they would consider of it: etc. Refers to Minutes of Council. Continues:—But whilst I was deliberating with the Council, whether they ought not for this contempt immediately to be dissolved, the Speaker with the House did attend, so that after giving them a gentle reproof for that answer, of which no minute I find (by the neglect of the Clerk of the Council) has been made; and being willing to accommodate all matters in that Island by the easyest and gentlest methods, I then delivered myself in a Speech to them etc. Refers to Journal. Continues:—The pretended former contention with me being upon the score of a settlement, I gave up all thoughts of my own interest, however expensive to me, in hopes that then they would have entered upon such measures as would have promoted the welfare and safty of that Island; But how farr I was able to prevail for their own good, I beg leave to referr your Lordships to a Message page 64 they sent up with great contempt by a single member, whereas in all other Islands in this Government as well as in the rest of H.M. Plantations, that honour is paid to his Commission, that whenever the Commander in chief delivers himself in a Speech, whatever answer is made is always by an humble Address. When this message was brought up to me, I was in so low a condition that I returned to Saint Christophers, where for some time I was incapable of all business. But on my recovery the Assembly tho' admonished by their Speaker to address me in the proper form, which he came personally to Saint Christophers to acquaint me of, as also of the temper and disposition of that House I thought it proper for H.M. service to dissolve that Assembly, which I did on the 13th day of September following, and did not give any answer to their extraordinary message, as contemptious and unpresidented. I begg leave to make a few short remarks upon it to your Lordships, which in my humble opinion will prove that message avasive. For they acknowledge that I did recommend to them the putting the Island into a better posture of defence, the revising of the Laws, and making provision for my support, by H.M. command, which they have put into a parenthesis (as your Excellency informed us) tho' I might have had some credit that it was done by H.M. commands haveing produced my Instructions for my so doing; and yet all these have been intirely neglected;tho' the Island was never in a more flourishing condition, and the inhabitants have more money (as I am credibly informed) in the merchants hands in London, than any of the inhabitants of the other Islands in this Government; and they are so far from being impoverished by the late war, that the bounty money they received upon the score of their losses, is the foundation of their present riches; the Crown haveing been very much abused in that bounty. As for the provision they make for my entertainment; it consisted in a bed and a very few dishes of meat; tho my expences of going from Island to Island is always suitable to the dignity of the General of H.M. Leeward Islands, which is attended with a very great expence; where even the very necessarys of life are dearer, than in any other part of the world. As for the services that I personally rendered that Island, I beg leave to to refer to a letter from my Lord Carteret in page 5 etc. Before the obtaining of this letter it was thought of such importance to that Island, that they past an Act of Assembly to give £500 to such person as should solicit and obtain H.M. protection against the claim and demand made by the French Minister at the Court of Great Britain on the score of the Capitulation made between Monsieur De Ibberville and the inhabitants of that Island. Permit me my Lords to acquaint you that that letter was obtained at my humble suite to my Lord Carteret, which is esteemed a good office done to those people, H.M. having taken the matter of that Capitulation under his immediate protection. But your Lordships may please to observe they are so far from considering it in that light, that they even refused to pay their Agent upon this account (Mr. Nevine) etc. folio 66, tho' he was the person that gave me all the lights into that affair upon the credit of the Act of Assembly mentioned. How gratefull this is to me and just to Mr. Nevine, I submit to your Lordships. I shall be very glad if the professions of duty and loyalty to H.M. were as zealous and affectionate as their expressions. But I am sorry to say that a majority of the Assembly of that Island are governed by the opinion of one Mr. Peacock Walker a person notoriously known to have been long disaffected to His Majesties person and Government, of which proper proofs were taken some time before my arrival, and transmitted to my predecessor Mr. Hamilton then at Antigua, which proofs being demanded by me of him, at the instance of some gentlemen in Nevis; Mr. Hamilton's answer was that he had sent the affidavits against Walker amongst his papers for England. I mention this my Lords for the sake of representing to your Lordships what expectations may be had for the better Government of that Island, when the Assembly is influenced by such a person that takes a pride and pleasure in leading everything into confusion; But indeed this is not the only instance of the singular perversness of that people, nor can I find they have been in any other temper since the Revolution; Haveing given all other Commanders in Chief that have preceeded me from that time, very indifferent treatment. And perhaps your Lordships may have wanted a fuller information of the genious of that people than can possibly be done by letters; no Governour of the Leeward Islands haveing lived to return to Great Britain for thirty three years past except Mr. Douglass from whom I presume much was not expected. I take it to be my duty to represent to your Lordships consideration, whether it would not be for the safty of that Island, as well as for that of Saint Christophers, if there was but one Council and Assembly in both; for the Island of Nevis is distant from the other but an English mile, and the Trade winds which blow from the North East to the South East ten months in the twelve, serves both for the going and returning to either Island in two hours, which is frequently done both in matters of bussiness and pleasure. Such a union, in my humble opinion, will be an advantage to the Island of Nevis, for in time of war it will be an additional strength to them; Saint Christophers being much superior in numbers of people well disciplined, and provided with all sorts of warlike stores; and in time of peace H.M. service would be dutifully and affectionately promoted, and the common good and wellfare of both Islands (Nevis especially) will be greatly advanced. If what I have offered receives your Lordships approbation, I shall very readily obey the commands you shall lay upon me in order to effect it; and I cannot avoid acquainting your Lordships that these Islands look on themselves as a distinct people and Government; without considering they are the subjects of the same King and that their real interests ought to be inseperable. My Lords, the Act of Antegoa (enclosed) is the revisal of an ancient Act latly expired for laying a duty of one pound of pistoll powder or in lieu thereof two shillings currant money of this Island per ton on all ships and vessells trading to or from this Island. The dutys arising from this Act is to supply the magazeens with powder, and for the erecting a new one and keeping the same in repair, which has formerly been; and I shall take care that the same be carefully applyed to the use for which it was enacted. Encloses an Act to prevent excessive and deceitfull gaming, which was grown to a pernicious hight to the great discredit of this Island and detriment to the trade, which being obvious to every person was upon my recommendation easily enacted, and as this Act is upon the foundation of the Gaming Act in Great Brittain, I presume I need not say more to recommend it to your Lordships for H.M. approbation. Refers to Addresses from the Council and Assembly of Saint Christophers as in preceding. I humbly intreat it may be presented to H.M. for His royal approbation, and that you will be pleased to signify what fate it has to me, at your own time. Mr. George Millward, one of H.M. Council of St. Christophers, being latly dead, I humbly desire your Lordships favour that you will recommend Major Peter Soulegre to succeed him; Mr. Soulegre is not only the wealthyest man on that Island, but is in all respects a worthy and discreet person. Notwithstanding the violence of the three late hurricanes, these Islands remain in a very thriveing condition; the merchants haveing been the greatest sufferers in their shipping. Signed, Jo. Hart. Endorsed, Recd. 30th March, Read 15th April, 1724. 15 pp. Enclosed,
772. i. Address of the Council and Assembly of St. Christophers to the King. Pray H.M. to grant 500 acres for the use of Chief Governors etc. Duplicate of No. 771 i. Signed, Tho. Butler, Speaker, John Balaguier, D. Secry. and Clk. Councill. Same endorsement. Copy. 2 ½ pp.
772. ii. Address of the Council and Assembly of St. Christophers to Governor Hart. Pray H.E. to recommend above proposal etc. Signed as preceding. Endorsed, Recd. 30th March, 1724. Copy. ¾ p. [C.O. 152, 14. ff. 237–247, 248v.–249v.]
Dec. 4.
So. Carolina.
773. Governor Nicholson to Mr. Delafay. Returns thanks for letter of 6th Sept. Refers him to letter now sent to Mr. Yonge. Continues:—What you were pleased to write concerning the merchants is very surprising to most people here that they should have the impudence to say such things to their Excellencys the Lords Justices. I find they will lye most notoriously when they think anything will make for their interest. This putts me in mind of what my old master Muli Ishmael Emperour of Morocco told me, vizt., "Tell the King your Master never to trust or believe a merchant for when we had warr with him at one gate they sold us powder at another." There was then with me one onely a Barbary mercht. with another wch. was ye reason I suppose that the Emperour added vizt. "What do you think this man comes for but to buy or truck with us for bad powder and give good for it, and further added, "I believe the King your Master will thank him for it." You'l excuse this accot. had from him when he lay encamped in the middle of Mount Atlas going against his nephew Muli Hamett etc. Signed, Fr. Nicholson. Endorsed, R. Feb. 3rd. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 387. No. 42.]
Dec. 4.
So. Carolina.
774. Governor Nicholson to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Acknowledges letter and Order relating to repeal of Acts for bills of Credit etc. Continues:—The proceedings of the Council and Assembly thereupon I shall (God willing) transmitt by the first safe opportunity which I hope will be soon we having sevll. ships and vessells loading for Great Brittain and I thank God the weather hath been and is like to continue extraordinary good so that the rice pitch and tarr is brought hither every day for shipping off. Refers to enclosures. The Indian affairs and trade with them seems at present to be under very indifferent circumstances but as soon as the Assembly have done with this affair of the printed bills etc. (which at present seems to be of the last consequence to those two inseparables, H.M. interest and service and that of this his Province) I shall lay this whole affair before the Assembly in order to the better regulation thereof by some additional Act etc. Signed, Fr. Nicholson. Endorsed, Recd. 15th Jan., Read 29th Oct., 1724. 1 ½ pp. Enclosed,
774. i. Duplicate of Lords Justices' letter to Governor Nicholson, 5th Sept., 1723, requiring him not to assent to any Act for increasing the currency of paper credit or diverting the established sinking funds etc. Cf. Aug. 27. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 ½ pp.
774. ii. Minutes of Council and Assembly of S. Carolina, 3rd Dec., 1723. A Committee of the two Houses was appointed to consider the state of the currency, upon the repeal of two Acts for bills of credit etc. Same endorsement. Copy. 2 ¼ pp.
774. iii. Minutes of Council of S. Carolina, 2nd Dec. Proclamation for repeal of the two Acts ordered. Resolved, that H.E. recommend the Assembly to comply effectually with the Lords Justices' letter etc. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 ½ pp.
774. iv. Proclamation repealing Acts for raising £17,248 Os. 6d., and for reprinting the current paper bills etc. with copy of Order in Council, 27th Aug. 3rd Dec. 1723. Signed, Fr. Nicholson. Same endorsement. Copy. 3 pp.
774. v. Proceedings of the Governor, Council and Assembly of S. Carolina, upon the Speech of the Charikee Indians. 2nd-8th Nov., 1723. Outassatah and Kureeroskee said that a quarrel had occurred on account of Hunt, an Indian trader and a squaw. They asked that prices of goods and measures should be fixed. They were told that they must make the best agreements they could with traders. They must punish the authors of any damage done to Hunt, and not allow their young men to insult the English as in this case, or no traders will be sent to their towns. The Government recognised Outassatah as King of the Lower Cherikees, being recommended to H.E. at his first arrival by their chief men, and not Konotiskee etc. A detachment was ordered to go and arrest the unlicensed traders amongst the Cherikees. The Cherikees were presented with powder and bullets to hunt home etc. Same endorsement. Copy. 5 ¼ pp.
774. vi. Proceedings of the Committee for Indian affairs, upon the occasion of a visit from Oulatta, Emperor Brim's second son, and other Creek Indians (Pallachocolas, Cowetas, Hitchetees and Euchees). Charles Town, 25th Oct., 1723. Oulatta complained of insinuations against him by the Indians of the Upper towns etc. Col. Theophilus Hastings reported to H.E. Oct. 8, 1723, from Cussitaws, that though the chief of fifty warriors going out against the Charikees told him that all the people of the lower Creek were of one mind to be enemies to the Yamasees, he very much doubted it, for two of the Yamasee Kings were at the Cowetas lately, and gave the old Emperor a bag of Spanish money. There has been a great deal of disturbance between the traders and Indians, occasioned by their bringing up too much rum, and they not having skins to purchase it etc. The Tallapooses, after their talk with your Excellency, raised a body to go against the Yamasees, but an alarm happened which caused a great many to return; however about 200 went down as far as a town called the Ufawles, not far from the Yamasees settlements, and hearing that the Yamasees had left their town and gone to St. Marks, they met with one woman and killed her, and cut her scalp in several pieces, and returned, wch. am informed they have carried to you; and those that are gone down with Oulatta is Cowetas, except one Euchee, and two from the Hechitees, who have done much [such] another exploit, for they have a woman that was threatned for a witch, to be killed, and so was given them to carry down. Cussabaw's says, if he abused the traders, it was when he was drunk, and believes the Cowetas set the white people against him etc. Same endorsement. Copy. 8 pp. [C.O. 5, 359. ff. 105–107v. (with abstract of covering letter), 108v.–111v., 112v.–117v., 118v., 120–123v., 124v., and (abstract) 5, 406. p. 8.]
Dec. 5.
775. Mr. Burchett to Mr. Popple. Reply to 27th Nov. The Comadore, who is suddenly expected home, will be directed, upon his arrival, to attend the Lords Commrs. of Trade, etc. Signed, J. Burchett. Endorsed, Recd. 9th Dec., 1723, Read 22nd July, 1724. Addressed. 1 p. [C.O. 194, 7. ff. 219, 220v.]
[Dec. 5.]776. (a) Memorial of Merchants trading to Africa and Virginia, to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Arguments against Act of Virginia laying duty upon negroes imported. v. Sept. 23 etc. Signed, Tho. Colmore, Rd. Harris, Fran. Chamberlayne, Robert Cary. 2 ½ pp.
(b) A computation of the effect of the said duty. ¾ p. The whole endorsed, Recd. Read 5th Dec., 1723. [C.O. 5, 1319. No. 30.]
[Dec. 5.]
777. Extract of letter from Virginia to Mr. Harris, 25th June, 1723. Presumes the African Co. will oppose the Act laying duty on negroes imported etc. To pay themselves in money, rather than tobacco, the Burgesses have broke into a fund appropriate for bounties to those that manufactured hemp and tar. The money arising from above Act must for a long time go to supply that fund etc. Endorsed, Recd. Read 5th Dec. 1723. Copy. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1319. No. 31.]
Dec. 7.
778. Governor the Duke of Portland to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Continues:—Itt has been impossible to get all matters ready to be transmitted to yr. Lordsps. by these ships; no boddy supposing that they would sail so soon, but stay for the convoy of a man of war that is to sail in a fortnight etc. I have also been prevented, by being indispos'd for these five or six weeks last past, by a violent cold, with a great oppression, and the aprehensions of a feavour which is very frequent here att this time of the year, but being pretty well recover'd as to my health, tho' not yet as to my strenght I hope I shall now soon be able to give the necessary directions, and to take care, that, every thing may be sent in good order to Mr. Lordsps. Upon receving the letters, and particularly His Majty's. which acquainted me with his disaproving the laws etc. (v. Aug. 6th), I was obliged to prorogue for a short time the Assembly which was then setting, and wanted some recess; theire own private business requiering theire presence att theire respective homes, and also to give them time to consider what was expected and proper for them to do; I own to yr. Lordsps. I never thought, nor never gave the least encouragement to the people here to hope, that such a law, as that about settling the laws of this Island, and making a provision for the support of the Government could meett with approbation, and I acquainted the Councill with all the objections I had against giving my consent to the law, but they were all of opinion that considering the discouragements or the calamities the Island labour'd under, att that time, itt was advisable to support the sperits of the people, as much as I could; I was a witness my self, that no boddy can describe or hardly imagine, the miserable condition I found the Island in; itt is with great satisfaction I can acquaint yr. Lordsps. that itt is considerably mended, in all respects, no care or application of mine has been or shall be wanting to the best of my judgement, and I hope when you'll be intirely acquainted with the true state of affairs, which I intend to do with the uttmost expedition, yt itt will meet with yr. Lordsps. approbation etc. Signed, Portland. Endorsed, Recd. 19th, Read 20th Feb., 1723/4. Holograph. 3 pp. [C.O. 137, 14. ff. 263, 264–265v., 266v., (with abstract).]
Dec. 7.
779. Same to [?Lord Carteret]. Repeats proceding adding, with reference to the Assembly. "I wish with all my heart that they may behave themselves well, but they are so fond of the notion to be as near as can be, upon the foot of H.M. English subjects that the desire of it almost distracts them." and adds in conclusion:—My concern is none of the least to find I lye under the imputation of not having pay'd that due reguard to H.M. Instructions, which I ought to have done; I can assure yr. Lordsp. and can make itt appear, that a perfect and intire observance of them, has been my constant desire attention and study; and if by the advice of those, who should be the best judges of the state of the Island, there has been any omission, the true and only reason has been, because itt was represented to me, to be for H.M. service; and that the distracted condition of the Island as to the Governmt., the people's healths, and theire estates, did require, and in a manner force me to consent unwillingly, to what I would not have done att any other time and under other circumstances etc. I always depend upon those kind assurances yr. Lordsp. gave me of yr. friendship and assistance before I came away, and no endeavours of mine shall be wanting to deserve them etc. Signed, Portland. Rd. 28th Feb., 1723/4. Holograph. 3 ¾ pp. [C.O. 137, 52. ff. 91–92v.]
Dec. 10.
780. Governor Hart's licence of absence to Mr. Crawford, Provost Marshall of the Leeward Islands. Signed, J. Hart. Seal (broken) attached. 1 p. [C.O. 152, 40. No. 7.]
Dec. 10.781. Mr. West to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Has no objection in point of law to the Acts of Virginia laying a duty on liquors and slaves and for improving the staple of tobacco. Signed, Richd. West. Endorsed, Recd. 10th Dec., 1723, Read 10th Jan., 1723/4. ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 1319. No. 37.]
Dec. 10.782. Same to Same. Report upon Act of the Massachusetts Bay for apportioning and assessing a tax of £6232 13s. 11d. I have been attended on the behalfe of the Quakers in that Province complaining that the use made of this Act was such that it destroy'd the liberty of conscience to which they were entituled by the Charter etc. But upon the face of the Act itselfe, I have no objection in point of law etc. Signed, Richd. West. Endorsed, Recd. 10th, Read 19th Dec. 1723. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 869. ff. 3, 4v.]