America and West Indies
February 1724

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Institute of Historical Research

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Cecil Headlam (editor) and Arthur Percival Newton (introduction)

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1936

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22-37

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'America and West Indies: February 1724', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 34: 1724-1725 (1936), pp. 22-37. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=72381 Date accessed: 20 October 2014.


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Contents

February 1724

Feb. 3.
London.
40. Governor Johnson to [?Lord Carteret.] Since I had the honr. of wateing upon your Lordship, have had some thoughts, in what manner your Ldp. might best influence the afaires of Carolina, to induce the people to doe justice to your interests their and I submit to your Lps. judgment if you don't think it may be advisable to obtaine the Governmt. your selfe; and to act by a Deputy; My Lord Orkney is Governr. of Virginia in the same manner etc. Offers to act under him and then to inform him "how far it would answer your being sole Proprietor." Continues:—My Lord I am sure Mr. Nicholson hopes by his comeing to England to get him self established Governour to act by a Deputy so by haveing one he recomends could influence the afaires of Carolina his one way; to my knowledge he tells the facsion he shal be able when in England to do them moor service then in Carolina, and desiers to go to England for that reason, and once in a passion I heard him say; Let the Lds. Proprs. take cair the King did not take the soil as well as Government, for their ruinging the country by shuting up the land office; for theirby they had forfited their Charter. Encloses a Petition to the King, and Address of Assembly to him to show that he only forfeited their esteem by his opposition to their "unjustifiable proceedings against the Lds. Protrs." The great majority of the inhabitants wish him to succeed Mr. Nicholson. Continues:—If in your Ldps. absence I had not been barberously treated by the Lds. Proprs. and everything done contrary to my advice, and my Counsel removed who I had settled a good understanding with, to make way for Trott's and Rhet's friends to worm me out of the Governt. before your Ldps. return; I could esely have prevented what hapned and have defied the people's eforts etc. Signed, Robt. Johnson. Holograph. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 308. No. 2.]
Feb. 4.
Whitehall.
41. Mr. Popple to Mr. Attorney General. Presses for report upon Laws of Jamaica (4th Oct. 1723). [C.O. 138, 16. p. 463.]
Feb. 4.
Whitehall.
42. Same to Mr. West. Encloses, for his opinion in point of law, Act of Barbados, 1722, for enabling Elizabeth Alleyne etc. [C.O. 29, 14. p. 386.]
Feb. 4.
Whitehall.
43. Same to Same. Encloses, for his opinion in point of law, four Acts of Bermuda, 1723. (i) to supply the deficiency of funds, and for the immediate support of Government, and for repairing the fortifications, (ii) for the better security of such as are possessed of slaves etc., (iii) for prolonging and altering the Act for attaching the goods of persons not residing in these islands, (iv) A second additional clause to the Act for vessels paying powder-money. [C.O. 38, 8. pp. 10, 11.]
Feb. 6.
Custom ho.,
London.
44. Mr. Carkesse to Mr. Popple. Reply to 29th Jan. q.v. The clauses in the said Act requiring all masters to deliver in a manifest of their whole cargo and to take out cocquetts and sufferances from the Treasurer is contrary to the Laws of Trade and Navigation, particularly 7th and 8th K. William III by which they are obliged to enter and clear with the Collector and Comptroller of Customs etc. By the 10th Section H.M. subjects not being inhabitants of the Island are not allowed the same time for payment on their giving bond for these duties as is allowed the inhabitants etc. There are severall extra ordinary powers given to the Treasurer and Comptroller appointed by the said Act which appear to be repugnant to the Laws of Great Britain etc. Signed, Cha. Carkesse. Endorsed, Recd. 7th, Read 11th Feb. 1723/4. Addressed. 2 pp. [C.O. 28, 18. ff. 34, 34v., 35v.]
Feb. 7.
Admty.
Office.
45. Mr. Burchett to Mr. Popple. Encloses following. Signed, J. Burchett. Endorsed, Recd. 11th Feb., Read 22nd July, 1724. Addressed. ½ p. Enclosed,
45. i. Extract of letter from Lt. Governor Wentworth to the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty. 30th Dec., 1723. We are a number of the principal men of this Province, and the Government of Connecticut Colony, that are desirous in setting up a New England Company, for raising Naval Stores etc. As for the Massachusets, we desire to be clear of them, knowing how they draw everything from Connecticut, and this H.M. Government, we being the two legs on which that Government stands; Having no export of their own, they drain us even to death, that we are hereby kept poor. If this projection meets with success hoping we may become yet more serviceable to Great Britain, and also freed from the bondage we now labour under in respect to the Massachusets. We have drawn up proposals, being signed by 180, and hope to obtain as many more in Great Britain, and that your Lordships will countenance and incourage such an undertaking, that promises so beneficial to Great Britain. Some of us in this Province have made an attempt on iron works, etc. Repeats conclusion of C.S.P. 1723. No. 806. Copy. 3 ½ pp. [C.O. 5, 869. ff. 21, 22–23v., 24v.]
Feb. 7.
St. James's.
46. H.M. warrant to Governor Burnet appointing James Alexander Attorney General of New Jersey, "during Our pleasure and his residence "etc. Countersigned, Carteret. Copy. [C.O. 324, 35. p. 54.]
Feb. 7.
St. James's.
47. Similar Warrant appointing William Trent Chief Justice of New Jersey. Countersigned, Carteret. Copy. [C.O. 324, 35. p. 55.]
Feb. 10.
London.
12th mo.
called Febry. ye
10th, 1723.
48. Mr. Partridge to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses following. "It is not only impracticable to joyne Rhode Isld Connecticut and New Hampshr. together by reason of the distant scituation of the Governmts., but it wd. be very injurious to our inhabitants for that many substantiall familys would be liable to be turn'd off from their estates and ruined, being our opponents in the presant controversy would be much superior in votes" etc. Prays for a day to be appointed for hearing dispute as to boundaries etc. Signed, Richd. Partridge. Endorsed, Recd. 11th, Read 14th Feb., 1723/4. Addressed. 1 ¾ pp. Enclosed,
48. i. Governor Cranston to Mr. Partridge. Gives the reply of the General Assembly Newport, 26th Nov., 1723, to the enquiry of the Council of Trade and Plantations. States their case as to boundaries with Connecticut [?. A.P.C. III. No. 44.], and reasons for rejecting proposal for annexation to New Hampshire etc. (v. 17th July, 1723). Concludes:—Upon the whole wee humbly pray that their Lordships will beleive wee have a tincture of the ancient Brittish blood in our veines. And that we esteem our liberty and property granted by our Royall Charter equall to any Corporation in Great Brittain tho' not of like value and we hope our loyalty and conduct for the service and interest of the Crowne of Great Brittaine hath no wayes merritted the forfeiture of so valuable a blessing and have faith to beleive that so long as we continue faithfull loyall and obeadient subjects to his Royall Majesty etc., we shall be confirmed and protected in our rights and properties, tho' att the same time wee are not ignorant that the enemies to our present constitution take all oppertunityes to misrepresent our conduct etc. Signed, Samll. Cranston Governr. Addressed. 2 ½ closely written pp. [C.O. 5, 1266. ff 137–140v.]
Feb. 13.
Whitehall.
49. Council of Trade and Plantations to the King. We have had under our consideration an Act passed in Barbados in 1723, for laying an imposition or duty on wines and other strong liquors imported this Island, in order to raise monys for carrying on the fortifications for payment of such persons as are or shall be employ'd at the publick charge, and for such other publick uses, as are herein contained. In which, observing some matters derogatory to your Majesty's prerogative, and contrary to the Acts of Navigation, we have taken the opinion of the Commisrs. of your Majesty's Customs, as also of Mr. West etc. According to your Majesty's 16th Instruction to your Governor, all taxes or impositions whatsoever laid upon the subjects, are to be given by way of grant to your Majesty, your heirs and successors, for the uses therein contained; But in this Act there is no mention whatsoever made of the Crown, nor is there any grant of anything to your Majesty, it being enacted by the sd. Act, that after the publication, the duties raised shall be paid to the Treasurer appointed by the sd. Act. In consequence of which, it is provided that the bonds given for the payment of this duty, are not to be taken in your Majesty's name, but in that of the Treasurer, who is empower'd to issue his warrant against such persons as don't comply with the condition of their bonds; and this power is so absolutely vested in him that it don't appear to us, that in case of misuser, the party aggrieved can have any relief by application to any Court of Justice in that Island etc. In the issuing the above warrants, they are not to be directed to the Marshal but to any two Constables who are to proceed in the same manner, as Marshals do at Common Law; by which the execution of such warrants is taken out of the hands of the officer in whom the ordinary course of the law has placed it. The Treasurer and Comptroller are further empower'd by this Act to summon and examine any persons whom they may suspect of having acted contrary thereto, who are obliged to answer upon oath to any questions, that shall be made either in relation to the landing, removal or importation of any strong liquors, whereby people may sometimes be obliged to accuse themselves, and will be frequently laid under a temptation of perjury, which we humbly conceive to be highly unreasonable. The penalty upon removing or landing any liquors contrary to this Act, seems to be so worded as to make the ship and cargo in which any liquors are imported lyable to a forfeiture, upon the running any small quantity of beer by any common sailor, tho' the same be done without the consent or privity of the master or owner, which we conceive to be a very great hard ship etc. The several clauses in this Act, requiring masters of all ships and vessels to deliver in a manifest of their whole cargo, and to take out cockets and sufferance from the Treasurer appointed by the said Act (instead of the Custom-house Officer) is contrary to the Laws of Trade and Navigation, and particularly the Act of the 7th and 8th of King Wm. the 3rd by which all masters and commanders are obliged to enter and clear with the Collector and Comptroller of the Customs both inwards and outwards, and to deliver in a manifest of their cargo, and to take out cocquets and sufferances from the said officers in the same manner as they would be obliged to do in this Kingdom; and the officers of the Customs, have the same power of visiting, searching, taking of entries, and of seizing any prohibited goods, or for which any duties are payable, by any Act of Parliament mentioned in the said Act of King William III; whereas this Act gives all the powers solely to their Treasurer and Comptroller named by the said Act. We further submit it to your Majesty whether the duties laid by this Act upon beer, ale, cyder and perry (which are of the growth and produce of Great Britain) do not affect the British trade, in which case there ought to have been a clause inserted therein (pursuant to your Majesty's 21st Instruction to your Govr.) to prevent it's being in force till your Majesty's pleasure should have been declared thereon; which seems to us ye more necessary, because it frequently happens that Acts are passed for so short a time, that they have their effect, before they can be considered here, which is the case of the present Act. [C.O. 29, 14. pp. 387–390.]
Feb. 14.
Wms. burgh
in Virga.
50. Lt. Governor Drysdale to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Tho' I have very little to write, I would not lett this opportunity, pass without transmitting to your Lddspps. the Journalls of Councell, and other publick occurrences, since the end of the last session of Assembly, and observing on them what are more immediately necessary for your Ldspps. notice. In the journall of 3rd Nov. your Lordshipps will find sundrey regulations with respect to the surveying of land, and sueing out patents, wherein great abuses were crept by the combination of the surveyors, and the patentees to keep lands many years under entrys, surveys, without any patent, and all the while neither paying any quittrents, or making any seating, or improvements, to the exclusion of others, who would have taken upp, and improved the same lands; a practise, which I hope will bee now effectually remedyed etc. by the due execution of the rules now establish'd. Another thing, of which I judg'd itt necessary to inform your Ldspps., is the alteration made in the journall of 5th Novr. as to the sale of the tobacco reed, for H.M. Quitrents. I perceive that the manner of disposing that tobacco prescribed by the Governour's instructions, has for many years been discontinued, upon the experience of its inconveniency and sundry other methods substituted in itts room, and altered from time to time as the circumstances of time, and the tobacco trade required: and itt seems very good reason for the present alteration, that the selling the King's tobacco so late as the month of Aprill, and selling itt altogether at one auction, not onely gave the purchasers an opportunity of combining to beat down the price, but likewise rendred itt less valuable, thro' the uncertainty of finding freight for itt, att a time of the year when the shipps have generally engaged all their lading: and this the officers of the King's revenue found so great a discouragement to its sale, that on their representation the now alteration is made; and I doubt not will bee attended with a visible advantage to H.M. in that revenue. But there is a greater occasion this year, than ever, for a more early sale for the quittrent tobacco; for should any part of itt happen to bee paid in stemmd tobacco, which the planters have the liberty to doe, that would have proved an intire loss: (if unsold till Aprill generall Court) since the late Act of Parliament has prohibited any such to bee imported into Great Brittain after 1st June next: and no man would venture to shipp stemm'd tobacco on ye hazard of its getting home in 5 or 6 weeks time. I have lately received their Excellcys. the Lords Justices order for the repeal of the act for the better government of convicts imported, and have issued a proclamation thereon (inclosed). Att the same time I received the order for remitting the rights and quitrents in the two new counties, but by the badness of the weather have been twice disappointed of a meeting of a Councell, to publish the restrictions on which that privilidge is granted: and therefore am oblidg'd to deferr to another opportunity what may bee necessary to represent to your Lddspps. on that subject. Signed, Hugh Drysdale. Endorsed, Recd. 31st March, Read 13th May, 1724. Holograph. 3 pp. Enclosed,
50. i. Account of H.M. Revenues of 2s. per hhd. Receipts, (including balance brought forward £2593 6s. 11 ¾d.) £5999 10s. 8 ¾d. Expenditure, £2108 19s. 6 ½d. Signed and sworn to in Council, John Grymes. Audited by Nathl. Harrison, Depty. Auditor. Endorsed, Reed. 31st March, 1724. 2 pp.
50. ii. Proclamation proroguing the Assembly to 15th May. 19th Oct. 1723. Signed, Hugh Drysdale. Copy. 1 p. Endorsed as preceding.
50. iii. Proclamation for publishing repeal of the Act for amending the Act concerning servants and slaves and for the better government of convicts imported etc. 18th Jan., 1724. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1319. ff. 167–169v, 170v, 171, 172, 172v.]
Feb. 17.
So. Carolina.
Charlestown.
51. Governor Nicholson to the Council of Trade and Plantations. On Saturday night late I prorogued our Assembly to the 10th March next and the Journalls of both houses and the laws that I have passed are prepairing with all expedition in order to my transmitting them to your Lordships, but there being a ship (God willing) now going to Great Brittain I thought it my duty incumbent on me to send your Lordps. the true copy of an Act for calling in and sinking the paper bills with an Address to his most sacred Majesty. I am in hopes that this Act will meet with your Lordps. approbation for (with humble submission) I think this Act is all that can posibly be done at this time for sinking the paper bills and that this H.M. Province can't well subsist without some sort of paper currency as likewise of the comodities wch. are sent to Great Brittain be some way or other made a tender or else the planter will be necessitated to make both woolen and linnen for themselves and slaves, which will in a great measure lessen the trade between this and Great Brittain. Refers to enclosures. Continues:—This Sessions of the Assembly has been very long, by reason of the many difficulties there were concerning the sinking of the paper bills, making the tax law and others. We are in expectation of having an accot. from the Upper and Lower Cherikees as likewise from the Upper and Lower Creeks, and next month is the time of the Indian traders coming in with their skines etc. and I hope some of them will be here by that time (please God) the Assembly are to meet because we may see if there be an occasion either to add or diminish from the law concerning that trade. Tho' we have had several ships and vessells that are already loaded and gone and several now loading with rice, pitch and tarr, yet I find that there is a great want at present of more ships and vessells for the said commodities but we are in daily expectation of several from Great Brittain and some from the Continent and Islands. I thank God we have had a very fine winter which has been the principal cause of the vessells being so soon dispatched. P.S. Hopes to hear of receipt of letter of 20th Jan. etc. Signed, Fr. Nicholson. Endorsed, Recd. 20th April, Read 29th Oct., 1724. 3 pp. Enclosed,
51. i. Report by the Commissioners for printing the paper currency as to their progress in printing and cancelling the same, Charles Town, Feb. 19, 1723(4). Signed, Will. Dry, H. Houser. Endorsed as preceding. 1 p.
51. ii. Address of the Council and Assembly of S. Carolina to the King. 15th Feb. 1723(4). The goods imported into this Province and the rest of your Majesty's Dominions amount to about £100,000 a year sterling though the number of taxable inhabitants do not exceed 1300; and our exports are in value very near the same, so that as we have now neither silver nor gold for a currency, it will be impossible for us to have any of either, until our exports exceed our imports in value, which we hope will never happen, because it will not be for the advantage of Great Britain or this Province. The currency of £120,000 we had before the Lords Justices' repeal, from the difference of exchange between this place and England was equal but to £20,000 sterling which being but the fifth part of the amount of our trade it could not be more than sufficient for the convenience thereof. The Government of Rhode Island that seldom sends a ship to Great Britain has 90,000 pounds in paper mony, which according to their exchange with Great Britain is equal to about £30,000 sterling, and which is upon no better foundation than the currant bills of this Province: and indeed it is impossible in these parts of the world to settle such funds for paper currency as is done in Great Britain, for which reason they are made payable in the taxes and duties provided to defray the charges of the Government, and a tender in law by which they are always currant without any discompt. We hope we have complyed with their Excellencies' repeal and letter, 27th Aug. and 5th Sept., as will appear by an Act for calling in and sinking the paper bills etc., now transmitted for your sacred Majesties Royal approbation. We are apprehensive that what contributed most to the late repeal was that the laws for establishing the paper currency provided for sinking them which is what our neighbouring Governments upon the Main took care not to do, well knowing that when their paper currency was but sufficient for the convenience of their trade, whatever they sunk of it must be supplied by making more. As this Province is the southermost frontier of your Majesties northern Dominions in America both in respect to the French and Spaniards and their Indians who are using all possible ways and means to set their Indians on ours and to get our Indians and trade to themselves which if not timely prevented may prove of fatal consequence not only to this but other your Majesties adjoyning Colonies, and as this Colony furnishes great quantities of naval stores for the service of your Majesties Royal Fleet and the ships and other vessels belonging to Great Britain. We most humbly pray your most sacred Majesty to take the premises into your Royal consideration, and to permit us to pass a law to establish a paper currency to the amount of £20,000 sterling upon the same foundation with that of our neighbouring Governments without which the trade of this country must greatly suffer etc. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 large folded p.
51. iii. List of 12 public and 9 private Acts of S. Carolina passed 15th Feb., 1723(4). Signed, Fr. Nicholson. Same endorsement. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 359. ff. 132–136v.; and (abstract of covering letter) 5, 406. pp. 12, 13.]
Feb. 20.52. Mr. West to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Has no objection to the three Acts of Barbados sent him 7th Jan. Signed, Richd. West. Endorsed, Reed. 20th Feb., Read 11th March, 1723/4. 1 p. [C.O. 28, 18. ff. 48, 49v.]
Feb. 20.
Whitehall.
53. Mr. Popple to Mr. West. Presses for reply to Jan. 8. [C.O. 153, 14. p. 125.]
Feb. 21.
Whitehall.
54. Same to W. Nivine. Enquires for Commission for trying pirates sent to England by the executors of the late General Hamilton etc. [C.O. 153, 14. pp. 125, 126.]
Feb. 21.
St. James's.
55. Order of King in Council. Referring to Committee of Council Excise Act of Barbados, 1723, and representation thereon of 13th inst. Signed, Temple Stanyan. Endorsed, Reed. 29th Feb., Read 1st April, 1724. 1 p. [C.O. 28, 18. ff. 52, 58v.]
Feb. 21.
Whitehall.
56. Order of Council. Referring to Committee Act of Virginia for laying a duty on liquors and slaves. Signed and endorsed as preceding, ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 1319. ff. 44, 45v.]
Feb. 24.57. Mr. West to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I have no objection to the Acts of St. Christophers (I) for quarantine, (2) for regulating vestries, etc. Signed, Richd. West. Endorsed, Reed. 25th Feb., Read 6th March, 1723/4. 1 p. [C.O. 152, 14. ff. 235, 236v.]
Feb. 24.58. John Barker, Engineer, to Lord Carteret. Having been imploy'd by the Office of Ordnance at Carolina, on my returne I visited the Bahama Islands. Encloses following report, which he intends to deliver to the Board of Trade. Continues: The interest your Lordsp. has in them, all the world is perswaded, wou'd be one of the last motives of yor. Lordsps. concerne or reguard for them, but when that becomes one with the service of H.M., and the preservation of his subjects, your Lordps.' zeal for both is too well known to leave anything undone etc. Signed, J. Barker. Endorsed, R. 26th Feb. 1723. 2 pp. Enclosed,
58. i. Same to Same. Report upon the advantages of the Bahama Islands. Recommends fortification of Providence Island and submits plans for that purpose etc. Signed, J. Barker. 2 ¾ pp. [C.O. 23, 13. ff. 159, 159v., 160v.–162.]
[Feb. 25.]59. Proceedings of the Harbour of St. Johns on 26th Nov., 1723. "Men being by nature all free, equal, and independent, no one can be put out of this estate, and subjected to the political power of another, without his own consent. The only way whereby anyone devests himself of his natural liberty, and puts on the bonds of civil society is by agreeing wth. other men to joyn and unite into a community, for their comfortable, safe, and peaceable living one amongst another, in a secure enjoyment of their properties, and a greater security against any, that are not of it. This any number of men may do, because it injures not the freedom of the rest; they are left as they were in the liberty of the state of nature. When any number of men have so consented to make one community or Government, they are thereby presently incorporated, and make one body politick, wherein the Majority have a right to act and conclude the rest." Quoted from Locke's Essay on Civil Government, p. 256. 4th Edition etc.
A copy of the writing whereby the majority of St. Johns enter'd into a community etc. Whereas the inconveniences are many, and the losses very considerable which the inhabitants of this country, in general, but of this port more particularly, sustain from a multitude of men of desperate fortunes. And whereas the Act of Parliament for the regulation of the Fishery, has not made any provision for the security of such as remain upon this island after the fishing ships are departed hence. And whereas many wicked and malicious men take an advantage herefrom, that no Civil Magistrate is settled here to restrain their vices and to punish their insolences and rapines. And whereas frequent burglaries are committed, cattle stoln, merchants insulted, servants cajoled to leave their masters without just cause or grievances and many trespasses and acts of wrong are daily committed, to the prejudice of those that endeavour at an honest living. We the underwritten Minister, merchants, factors, principal inhabitants and housekeepers, or masters of families, being the majority of this place, do hereby under our hands and seals, indent, engage and agree to enter into an association, and embody ourselves into a community for the mutual preservation of H.M. peace, and the protection of us and ours, during the winter, that is, until the arrival of a British fishing ship in this harbour. And moreover, that our honest intentions may not be liable to any misconstruction, we here unanimously declare, and testify by these presents, that we most heartily agree to guide ourselves, and others by the laws of Great Britain, both as to the allegiance which is due to our rightful and lawful Sovereign King George, and also as to that law of equity which the King's Courts distribute, without favour or affection, prejudice or partiality to any one person whatsoever. Hereby we conceive that vice may not only be punished, but virtue promoted, the honour of God maintained, and the joynt interest of this place advanced. We likewise oblige ourselves to leave this affair to the management of three men, to be annually elected (upon the departure of the last ship from hence) by the majority of the subscribers hereunto. We likewise oblige ourselves joyntly and severally, our heirs executors and assigns in the penalty of £50 to be levy'd by the majority, and disposed of as they shall judge proper, upon the failure of our complying with those articles which we shall sign. Given under our hands and seals, etc. Signed, John Jago, Chaplain, John Gerard and 49 others (of which, 14 illiterates).
The three men chosen Justices by the majority of the subscribers are John Jago, Chaplaine, Samuel Rooke, Allyn Southmayd, merchants. Knowing that many people wanted to be heard in cases of complaint, they gave the following advertis ment fixt to several publick places of the Harbour etc.—Dec. 24th, 1723. This is to give notice that a Court will be holden at ye house of Mr. Southmayd on Monday next, etc., when those that are grieved may be heard by us. Signed, John Jago, Samuel Rooke, A. Southmayd. The first complaint, that was brought, was by Ann Levering agt. John Hugo, for detaining some goods of hers. He was summoned to appear. Hugo answer'd that she owed him some money. Hugo was ordered to deliver her the goods, upon her signing an obligation of paying him 15d. 14 other cases, between this date and 25th Feb., 1724. Endorsed, Reed, from Commadore Bouler, March 25th, laid before the Board, April 9th, 1725. 12 pp. [C.O. 194, 7. ff. 246, 247–252v.]
Feb. 26.60. (a) Deposition of Parabow Skynner, of London, Merchant. On Aug. 1721 he was employed by the Bahama Society as one of their factors to go to the Island of Providence, etc. In March 1722 he shipped on board the sloop Hester, Capt. John Marshall, owner and captain, merchandize to the value of £2000 sterling, and sailed to the Havana, where he asked permission of the Governor to wood and water, who refused to allow them to come into port, but said they might take it on the coast. This they did at Buena Vista, and bought provisions there but did no trade. After trading with some of the French settlements in the Mississippi, they were seized off Cuba by two Spanish sloops, Capt. Antonio de Mandieta, who had a Commission from the Governor of Havana only to take pirates. A prize crew put on board the Hester and plundered their chests. They were carried into the Havana where the Governor condemned the Hester and cargo, and committed deponent, Capt. Marshall and John Hall, his mate, to prison. After lying in close prison from July to December, 1722, they were sent to Cadiz, where they were kept in the common gaol without the least subsistence, (not even water, except what they could procure at their own charge,) Feb.–August, 1723, when they obtained their discharge. They have not been able to obtain any satisfaction for damages amounting to 30,000 pieces of eight. Upon Capt. Marshall's appeal home to the King of Spain and Council of the Indies from the sentence passed by the Governor of Havana, the said Governor obliged the capturer of the Hester to give in security for double the appraizement of said sloop and cargo, in case his sentence should be reversed. Signed, P.G.P. Skynner. Copy. 2 ½ pp. [C.O. 23, 13. ff. 163–164v.]
Feb. 26.61. (b) Petition of John Marshall and Parabow Skynner to Lord Carteret. Pray for redress for damages received as above. "All the pretence advanced against was that Capt. Marshall had landed three men with twelve barrells of flower and eight hats with a chest of medicines on said Island, whereas the whole truth is that three passengers left the sloop on the coast of Cuba with said goods, intending to settle there" etc. Signed, John Marshall, P. G. P. Skynner. Copy. 2 pp. [C.O. 23, 13. ff. 165, 165v.]
Feb. 26.62. (c) Deposition of John Marshall. To same effect as (a) above. Signed, John Marshall. Copy. 2 pp. [C.O. 23, 13. ff. 166, 166v.]
Feb. 26.63. Deposition of John Marshall, of Jamaica, formerly master and owner of the sloop Greyhound, which, in Nov. 1718, was cast away upon the Islands of Tortugillas, 40 leagues N.N.W. from the Havana. With great labour deponent saved part of his cargo (consisting chiefly of English woollen cloth, to the value of 3300 pieces of eight), and got to the Havana in his canoe. He obtained leave from the Governor to hire a canoe to bring back that part of the cargo he had salved, and did so, whereupon the Governor seized it etc. Signed, Jno. Marshall. 1 p. [C.O. 23, 13. ff. 167.]
Feb. 26.
Whitehall.
64. Lord Carteret to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Having laid before the King your Lordships letter of 18th Dec. etc., H.M. hath commanded me to refer several points contained therein to your further consideration; particularly as to the survey of Nova Scotia, what progress hath hitherto been made therein, and what the charge thereof hath amounted to etc., as likewise in what manner the survey may be most conveniently perfected, and in what compass of time. H.M. being of opinion that the care and preservation of his woods in that Province, is a matter of importance, and, if put under a proper management, may be of great benefit and advantage to the publick, doth likewise direct you to inform yourselves of the best method for setting out the number of acres of wood to be secured for H.M. service, and to consider of the most effectual means for preserving the said woods. And that you make inquiry concerning the proposals, which may at any time have been made by persons who are willing to settle the lands in Nova Scotia, and report your opinion upon what terms it may be proper to admit such persons to undertake the settling thereof etc., with whatever else shall occur to you etc. Signed, Carteret. Endorsed, Reed., Read 27th Feb., 1723/4. 2 ½ pp. [C.O. 217, 4. ff 205–206v.]
Feb. 27.
Whitehall.
65. Mr. Popple to Mr. West. Encloses, for his opinion in point of law, Act of Barbados, Dec. last, to raise a levy etc. [C.O. 29, 14. p. 392.]
Feb. 27.
Pellmal.
66. Governor Shute to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Has directed Mr. Newman to apply as in following. Signed, Samll. Shute. Endorsed, Reed. 28th Feb., Read 3rd March, 1723/4. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 869. ff. 5, 6v.]
Feb. 27.
Middle
Temple.
67. Mr. Newman to Same. Recommends Jotham Odiorne, for the Council of N. Hampshire, in place of Col. John Plaisted who desires to be excused serving. He is a person of known loyalty as well as interest in the province etc. "The Clerks of the Council think it not in their power to make out a separate warrant for Mr. Frost who was appointed at the same time as Col. Plaisted." Asks therefore that warrants for the future may be granted separately etc. Signed, Henry Newman. Endorsed as preceding. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 869. ff. 7, 8v.]
Feb. [ ].
From my
house in
Glocester
Street.
68. Sir Edward Gould to [?Lord Carteret]. Repeats a request for a letter of recommendation for William Raymond of Barbados to Governor Worsley for his protection in the way of trade etc. Signed, Edward Gould. 1 p. [C.O. 28, 44. No. 66.]
[Feb.]69. Governor Philipps to Lord Carteret. The situation and state of Nova Scotia etc. Description. Most of the French inhabitants have their settlements upon the isthmus which joins the East and West parts of the Province. These are divided into four colonies, in number about 500 families, besides another settlement of 100 families about Annapolis Royal etc. Fort and garrison of Annapolis Royal described, and coast from Cape Sables to Cape Canso, which "affords more fine harbours than any known coast of that extent." Harbour of Canso described, which, "if encouraged with the protection of the Government, will become the most considerable of any port in America," by reason of its natural advantages and its propinquity to the Banks of Newfoundland and Nova Scotia. "For its present security, the Governour has caused a small fort, and a battery for 12 guns, to be raised at his own expense, which battery, during the season of the fishery, is mounted with the guns of the shipping, and a garrison of 4 companies is placed there with 3 pieces of cannon drawn from Placentia. N. of Canso harbour is the Bay of Shedeboucto," so called from the harbour which lies in the bosom of the same, which from being extreamly beautifull and pleasant, has lately obtained the name of Milford Haven. Here is a most agreable situation for a settlement, convenient for building of vessells, on the banks whereof all materialls for that purpose are in great plenty etc. From the Gut of Canso, or Passage of Fronsac (described), one enters another small bay, in the bottom of which is the general rendezvous of the Indians at certain seasons, and the residence of their Missionary, where he has a chappell richly furnished in a delightfull countrey. The point of land, which forms this Bay to the northward is called Cape St. Lewis, which when weathered, a westerly course leads along the coast into Bay Vert etc. By this way those French inhabitants before-mentioned drive a clandestine trade with Cape Breton, whither they convey most of their yearly produce of cattle and corn in exchange for the manufactures of France. In this Bay lies the large Island of St. John's, which is now settling with inhabitants transported from Old France, tho' their title to it when examin'd by the Treaty of Utrecht will be found precarious. What is further wanting to a perfect description of the last division of the Province usefull to mariners, is an exact survey of the severall harbours, soundings and bearings of land to direct their entrance, which is a work in hand, and had been now near finish'd, had it not been diverted by the breaking out of the Indians into hostilitys, which obliged the Governour to employ the vessell he built for the surveys of the coast, to chastise those people and to relieve H.M. subjects and their vessells, which they had surpriz'd in the severall harbours, as likewise in fetching provisions from New England to supply the loss of those cast away in the voyages from hence, by which means the garrisons were twice preserved from starving. The coast of the west division of the Province from the Bay of Fundy to the confines of New England, having never been survey'd, and known only by a few sloops, trading between Boston, and Annapolis Royall, any description thereof at this time will be imperfect, nor will it be very materiall till the East Division shall be first settled, which is better situated for trade: only thus farr it is known, to have many good harbours, and quantities of good timber in many parts, particularly of masting for the largest ships, which growing near the water, may be furnish'd to the Navy vastly cheaper than what are now brought from New England. The present state of the Province stands thus, vizt. The French who are settled on the istmus, and the River of Annapolis Royall are the old inhabitants greatly multiplied since the surrender of the Province to the Crown of Great Britain, at which time it was stipulated in their behalf, to have their choice either to remain in the Province, if they would transferr their allegiance, or in case of the alternative, to dispose of their estates and effects to the best advantage. To determine which, one year's time was allow'd them, but at the expiration thereof finding their new masters in no condition to oblige them to the observance of one or the other; they have remain'd upon their possessions in contempt of the Government, waiting the opportunity of a rupture between the two Crowns to re-establish their former Government, and in the mean time are daily in secrett, inciting the Indians to robbery and murder, to the destruction of trade, and hindrance of settling the country. They are seated on a fertile soil, and raise great store of corn, and cattle, with which, and their furrs, they traffick at pleasure with the neighbouring French Colonies at Cape Breton, and Island of St. John's, and have refus'd supplies to the garrisons in the greatest necessity. The Fort of Annapolis Royal is quite gone to decay; more than one third of the ramparts being at this time levell with the ground, and the garrison exposed to the danger of being surpriz'd by the enemy without, and of being buried in the ruins of their barracks within. A thorough repair thereof is by no means adviseable, in regard that a new fort of smaller dimension may be built at less expense, which the circumstances of that post will admitt of. Canso, the frontier of Nova Scotia towards Cape Breton within the distance of six leagues, which has all the appearance of becoming a place of vast consequence to the trade of Great Britain, whereon the French had fixed a wistfull eye, has no other defence, but what the Governour has made at his own charge for the present security of that growing settlement, and to cutt short the French in the groundless pretension, they had formed to that place. It being part of the Governour's Instructions, that no land in that Province shall be given away in property to any persons, till such time as by a generall survey a certain number of acres of the best wood lands be mark'd out for H.M. service; the settling that Province cannot commence before that Commission be executed, tho' never so many families should offerr themselves in the mean time. Another very unhappy circumstance in the present state of that province, is from the want of ways and means for raising the least supply (tho' it were but a shilling) and the safety of the Government depended upon it, in which case, the person intrusted with the administration must thro' necessity be inactive; or if he disburses his own money, or pawns his credit in the service; he becomes an unthank'd sollicitor at home. Remedies proposed:—(i) That a fort be built on the isthmus to cutt off the communication between our French inhabitants and the neighbouring French Colonies, which will subject them at all times to obedience, and is humbly presumed to be better policy than, by driving them out to strengthen the French Colonies with the addition of such a number of hands; or if the alternative be thought more adviseable, the said fort will be a protection to such of H.M. subjects, as shall settle in their room; and in either case the expense may be made good, by raising a tax on the people, if they stay; or selling their improv'd lands if they remove. This fort will likewise be a great check to the Indians, by preventing the joining of the East and West clans, when they design mischief, (ii) That a fort be built at Canso, both for a frontier post against Cape Breton, where the French are making themselves exceedingly strong, and a protection to that Fishery, which has already paid the charge it will cost in the returns home of the fish, which has been exported in these last three years from thence, (iii) The fort at Annapolis Royal to be new built, but lessen'd to contain half the present garrison. The quota of troops necessary; for the fort on the isthmus, 200; fort at Canso, 200; for Anna-polis Royal, 100, of which the nine companies now there make 360 etc. (iv) That a Surveyor be ordered over, or some person now there be commissioned to perform that service, and remove the barr which obstructs the settlement of that country. (v) That a provision, by way of contingent money may be appropriated, as to other Governments, for necessary services, till such time as the Province shall be able to raise funds within itself for it's own support etc. Prays for payment of disbursements already made etc. Signed, R. Philipps. Endorsed, Given in by Governor Philipps in Feb., 1723/4. 6 ¾ pp. [C.O. 217, 38. No. 5.]