America and West Indies
August 1704

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Institute of Historical Research

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Cecil Headlam (editor)

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1916

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225-245

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'America and West Indies: August 1704', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 22: 1704-1705 (1916), pp. 225-245. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=73666 Date accessed: 01 October 2014.


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Contents

August 1704

Aug. 3.
St. James's.
487. Order of Queen in Council. Upon Representation of July 18, ordered that the Council of Trade and Plantations prepare a draught of an Instruction to the Lieut.-Governor of the Bermuda Islands for the securing the liberty of the subject from illegal imprisonment as proposed. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 17, 1704. 1 p. [C.O. 37, 6. No. 19; and 38, 6. pp. 54, 55.]
Aug. 3.
St. James's.
488. Order of Queen in Council. Confirming Laws of Bermuda, as recommended in Representation of July 18. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 4 pp. [C.O. 37, 6. No. 20; and 38, 6. pp. 64–68.]
Aug. 3.
St. James's.
489. Order of Queen in Council. Repealing 4 Acts of Bermuda as recommended in Representation of July 18. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 1½ pp. [C.O. 37, 6. No. 21; and 38, 6. pp. 69–71.]
Aug. 3.
St. James's.
490. Order of Queen in Council. Approving Representation of July 13, and ordering the Council of Trade and Plantations to write to the Governor and Council of Bermuda to cause the Act for raising a Public Revenue to be put in execution, and to take care not to pass any temporary Law in derogation of the said Act. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 23, 1704. ¾ p. [C.O. 37, 6. No. 22; and 38, 6. pp. 71, 72.]
Aug. 3.
St. James's.
491. Order of Queen in Council. Upon reading Representation of July 10, ordered that the directions given by H.M. letters to Col. Dudley relating to the building of Pemaquid Fort, and setling a salary upon the Governor and Lt. Governor be renewed. The Lords Commissioners of Trade to prepare draughts of letters accordingly. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. 14th, Read Aug. 16th, 1704. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 863. No. 113; and 5, 911. p. 382.]
Aug. 3.
St. James's.
492. Order of Queen in Council. Extract of Representation of July 10, relating to ships of war to guard the coasts of the Massachusetts Bay and New Hampshire, to be sent to H.R.H. the Lord High Admiral, to give such orders therein as he shall see most fitting. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. 14th, Read Aug. 16th, 1704. ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 863. No. 112; and 5, 911. p. 381.]
Aug. 3.
St. James's.
493. Order of Queen in Council. An extract of the Representation of July 10, relating to the Charter Governments of Rhode Island and Conecticutt, to be sent to Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor General, who are to consider the same, together with the opinion of the Attorney and Solicitor General in 1694, therein mentioned, and to report their opinion to H.M. at this Board what they conceive H.M. may legally do upon these and the like complaints against them. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. 14th, Read Aug. 16th, 1704. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 863. No. 111; and 5, 911. pp. 379, 380.]
Aug. 3.
St. James's.
494. Order of Queen in Council. Approving Representation of July 13, and directing the Attorney and Solicitor Generall to cause Commissions to be prepared accordingly. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. 14th, Read Aug. 16th. [C.O. 323, 5. No. 61; and 324, 9. pp. 30, 31.]
Aug. 4.
Custom-house, London.
495. Mr. Sansom to W. Popple, jr. In reply to letter of Aug. 1. The Commissioners of Customs have dispatched their report upon the two Bills of Virginia. [See Aug. 10.] They have nothing to object, etc. Signed, Jno. Sansom. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1314. No. 28.]
[Aug. 4.]496. Attorney General to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Report upon 4 Bills of Virginia. (1) The Act for the better securing the liberty of the subject is the same with the Habeas Corpus Act in England, wch. hath been before attempted to be pass't in the Plantations, but it hath been thought that H.M. Instructions to ye Governour is all that is reasonable to be done there, and that the passing this Act there will be prejudicial to H.M. and the Realm of England on which the Plantations depend, and will tend to make them independant. Therefore I am of opinion no countenance ought to be given to a Bill of this nature there. (2) As to the Act for limitation of actions and avoiding of suits, I have no objection against it, but think it may be a beneficial law for quieting ye country, and is the same Law that has been pass'd in this Kingdom. (3) As to the Act for establishing County Courts etc., I cannot approve of erecting Courts in ye Plantations by the Acts of ye Assembly, that authority being lodg'd in ye Governour by virtue of ye Queer's Commission. This Act directs monthly Courts to be kept in each County, to consist of 8 Justices of ye Peace to be commissioned by ye Governour by and with the consent of the Council or five of them at least, wch. alters ye authority of the Governour given by H.M. By this Law the Justices are required to sign the Association, wch. is now abrogated. The said Courts to be erected will hereby have power to hear and determine all causes wt. soever within their respective countys, except criminal causes etc. Appeals are hereby allowed from these Courts to ye General Courts, but no Appeal to H.M. in Council, wch. ought to be reserved, if a Law of this nature pass, the County Courts determining causes of all values, and in reserving such appeal, it will be fit to allow such appeals in all causes exceeding such value or of such nature to be mentioned, and in all other causes if H.M. in Council shall direct such appeal to be allowed. By this Law the Justices are to proceed to doe justice according to the Laws of England and Virginia, by wch. all ye Laws of England may be construed to be enacted there, and I am apt to think it is intended, and therefore I am of opinion this is not fit to be in the Act. This Act contains matters of different natures, wch. is not proper to be allowed in ye same Act and other objections. (4) As to the Act concerning the distribution of intestates' estates etc. I am of opinion it varying in several particulars from ye Laws now in force in England touching the distribution of intestates' estates, it is not fitt to pass. Details given. If in lieu of this Law an Act were prepared to make the estates of persons dying intestate distributable in such manner as they are by the law of England. I am of opinion it will be reasonable, and yt. to doe more will be inconvenient and not practicable, in regard part of ye personal estate, wch. may be in England, will not be bound by this Law. Signed, Edw. Northey. Endorsed, Recd. 4th, Read Aug. 15th, 1704. 3½ pp. [C.O. 5, 1314. No. 29.]
[Aug. 4.]497. Attorney General to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I have considered the Act of Antegoa for establishing Courts, which being exactly the same with that of Nevis, I refer to my report on that, with this addition, that it is taken notice of in this Law that there was a former Law made in this Island for establishing Courts, which I have not seen. Signed, Edw. Northey. Endorsed, Recd. Aug. 4, Read Dec. 14, 1704. 1 p. [C.O. 152, 5. No. 78; and 153, 9. pp. 63, 64.]
Aug. 4.498. Sir Edw. Northey to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Returns Laws. Your Lordships having now under consideration ye bodyes of ye Laws of ye Plantations, I desire to propose one matter wch. I do not find sufficiently provided for in any of the Plantations, the barring of estates tailes and remainders depending on ym., the want of wch. will occasion many suites. There are yt. doubt whether the statute of entailes in England take place in ye Plantations though the settlements are made there as if it were taken to be a law there; if it be not binding there, all such settlements will be of no use etc. Proposes that it be declared by Acts to be passed in the Plantations, yt. the Statute De donis conditionalibus (of entailes) be in force there, and that in the Courts of Pleas there fines and recoveries may be levied and suffered to be of the same force as of lands in England, and also that fines and recoverys levied and suffered in the Common Pleas at Westminster and transmitted to and registred in the Plantations shall be of the same avail as if served and suffered of lands in England, these are wanted and will be of great benefit to the quiet of the Plantations, if passed, etc. Signed, Edw. Northey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 15, 1704. Holograph. 1½ pp. [C.O. 323, 5. No. 60; and 324, 8. pp. 506–508.]
Aug. 8.
Office of Ordnance.
499. Board of Ordnance to the Council of Trade and Plantations. We have appointed Capt. John Rednap Engineer for H.M. service in New England, New York and the neighbouring Continent of America, in the room of Col. Romer. Signed, Wm. Bridges, Ja. Lowther, Ja. Craggs. Autographs. ¾ p. Endorsed, Recd. 12th, Read Aug. 17th, 1704. [C.O. 5, 863. No. 114; and 5, 911. p. 383.]
Aug. 10.
Treasury Chambers.
500. Wm. Lowndes to Mr. Popple. My Lord Treasurer remits the report of H.M. Commissioners of Customs upon the two Bills of Virginia transmitted to him April 25. He hath no objection to the Lords Commissioners of Trade laying before H.M. the Revenue Act for Jamaica for H.M. approbation. Signed, Wm. Lowndes. Endorsed, Recd. 12th, Read 15th, 1704. 1 p. Enclosed,
500. i. Report of Commissioners of Customs referred to in preceding. Customhouse, London. Aug. 4, 1704. We are humbly of opinion that what is conteyned in the said Acts of Virginia [see Aug. 4] may be of advantage to trade and to the Customs and other duties in Virginia, and likewise to the Revenue arising by tobacco here in general, and therefore have nothing to object to their passing. Signed, A. Maynwaring, Sam. Clarke, T. Newport, Rich. Breton. 1 p.
500. ii. Copy of an Act of Virginia for preventing frauds in the Customs etc. 9 pp.
500. iii. Copy of an Act of Virginia for improving the staple of Tobacco and regulating the size and tare of hhds. 7½ pp. [C.O. 5, 1314. Nos. 27, 27.i.–iii.]
Aug. 12.
Bermuda.
501. Lt. Governor Bennett to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I defer'd my answer to yours of Nov. 25, receiving it just att the time I was making up my pacqt. In that letter your Lordships observed that in the copy of a Comission I had transmitted, there were blanks left for the month and day of the date, and yet the year 1701 was expressed, which proved to be delivered out in time [of] peace. etc. To which I answer that pursuant to your Lordships' commands I ordered the Secretary to write a copy of one of the Commissions I had granted and told him it was only to satisfy your Lordships of their forme, which he tells me was the occasion of those blanks, and I hope your Lordships does not imagine I had any cunning or design in it. As for granting Commissions in time of peace I att first refused it, till presidents were shewn me, and it was affirm'd the like had been in Sir Robert Robinson's time, and with submission my Instructions does not mention anything relating thereunto save only forbiding me to grant Comissions of War against any Prince or State or their subjects in amity with H.M. But my Patent from his then Majesty says "And forasmuch as divers mutinies and disorders doe happen by persons shipt and employed at sea, and to the end that such as shall be shipt and employed at sea shall be the better governed and ordered, we do hereby give and grant unto you full power and authority to constitute and appoint Captains, Lieutenants, Masters of ships and other Commanders and Officers, and to grant unto such Captains, Lieutenants, Masters of ships and other Commanders and Officers Commissions to execute the Laws Martial during the time of warr." By which clause, together with the presidents as before, I presumed I might lawfully appoint Capts. in time of peace under this restriction, as not to impower them to execute the Laws Martial but in time of war. And to prevent such constructions for the future (as I conceive it was) in my now Patent from H.M. that clause begins thus. "And for as much as divers mutinies and disorders may happen by persons shiped and employed and [? at] sea dureing the time of war, and to the end that such as shall be shipped and employed att sea dureing the time of war, may be the better governed and ordered, Wee doe therefore give and grant unto you full power and authority to constitute and appoint Capts., Lts., Masters of ships and other Commanders and Officers, and to grant unto such Commissions to execute the Law Martiall etc." By which (I think) it expressly limits comissionating any but in time of war. I am very much concerned at what mistakes I have made, and hope your Lordships will not impute it to any ill intent, but to the contrary, as may be judged by my answer to your Lordships' next remark (vizt.) that the Comission I granted ought not to have been given in an undetermined sence, against pirates, and the Queen's enemys att large, but upon information of some especial occasion that required them. For answer, I had an especial occasion, for complaint was made to me that att Turks Islands pirates frequently came and took vessells that were rakeing salt there (on which is our chiefest dependance) and if I would encourage persons by giving them Comissions, they would goe fitted and man'd accordingly, which was the only reason I did comply; and att that time of peace I knew not how well to word those Comissions otherwise than exprest in your Lordships' remarks, and I took care to make them enter into security according to the enclosed bond. As for the number of Comissions given out, I enclose a list, and also a forme of a Letter of Marque, of which I desire your Lordships' opinion, for there is not one vessell as privateer now out from this place. By my brother I understand your Lordships resents my enclosing any letters in your Lordships' pacqts. other than what related to your Board. The reason I presum'd it was I thought postage to all offices imediate relateing to the Crown cost nothing. I ask your Lordps.' pardon for what's past, and shall readily make satisfaction, and take care not to intrude any more. I have by this conveyance sent to my brother all the proceedings relateing to Capt. Jones, and affidavits to prove the Assembly's Articles against him. By his letters to his friends here, he says they may expect him in a very little time reinstated, which has so much revived his party (the male-contents) that they publickly discourse my continuance will not be long amongst them, and add that altho' Mr. Larkin is said to be dead, yet by their interest they have almost weather'd me. The people in general are under a great dissatisfaction, and conclude that if Capt. Jones comes again they must expect nothing but malice, revenge and cruelty in the execution of his office, and with threatning expressions say they had as good dye of a fever as an ague. So under those circumstances I expect nothing but disturbances and complaints. As for me if it be H.M. pleasure to restore him I must submit, but he deserves usage sutable to my injurys which are very grevious, for besides those sordid contrivances to hurt my reputation whilst he was here, and those barbarous reproaches att Jamaica (as appears by Mr. Greatbaches his affidavit formerly transmitted) he has ofen repeated all att Carolina, with other inventions to scandalize me. My Lords, it's impossible for me to express his affronts, and if he does return (and I consequently restrain'd from a due resentment) I hope your Lordships will not blame me if I take my remedy att law, for should I doe nothing to justify myself, I shall be reproached in all the English Plantations in the West Indies, wherein it's very well known how I have been abused by Mr. Larkin and him. Pursuant to the Assembly's Address to me I have now transmitted under the publick seal several articles and affidavits against Capt. Nelson, and also have now sent the copy of a quietus to one whom I had give[n] a Comission of the Peace, being the only Officer I have displaced since my first regulateing the Government. Signed, Ben. Bennett. Endorsed, Recd. Feb. 12, Read March 6, 1704/5. Holograph. 4 pp. Enclosed,
501. i. Form of Letter of Marque, with Instructions and Bond relating thereto, granted Lt. Governor Bennett. Endorsed, Recd. Feb. 12, 1704/5. 3 pp.
501. ii. Copy of the Quietus of Capt. Samuel Stone, J.P., of St. George's Town, for taking exorbitant fees etc. etc. Signed, B. Bennett. April 26, 1704. Endorsed as preceding. 1½ pp.
501. iii. Address of the Assembly of Bermuda to Lt. Governor Bennett, July 18, 1704. Whereas your Excellency was pleased to lay before us H.M. Order upon Edward Jones' petition etc., this House humbly requested your Excellencie's favor in transmitting home our sentiments and necessary records pursuant to that matter, and we have some reason to believe that Gilbert Nelson, late Chief Justice (being legally convicted of sordid bribery and other high crimes and misdemeanours and by lawful judgment of the Court fined for the same), either already hath or doth intend to give your Excellency and Government the same trouble and in the same manner as Jones etc., for prevention thereof, we pray that the Articles and copies of records of Court at Nelson's trial may be transmitted home etc. ¾ p.
501. iv. Articles exhibited against Gilbert Nelson by the General Assembly of Bermuda, 11 charges of abuse of power, illegal arrests and receiving bribes etc. (Cf. C.S.P., 1702. No. 1042.x.) Copy. 1 p.
501. v. Copies of Depositions supporting above charges, 1698–1701, by Samuel Trott, Charles Walker, Robert White, Henry Tucker, Lewis Johnston, Richard Peniston, John Dickenson, Samuel Spofferth. 10 pp.
501. vi. Copy of Proceedings at the trial and condemnation of Gilbert Nelson, Dec. 3, 1701–Feb. 25, 1702, for receiving a bribe as Judge in the case of George Tucker v. Joseph Hovell, and as C.S.P., 1702, No. 1042.x., and for maliciously imprisoning without examination Charles Walker, Anthony White, Samuel Spofferth and Capt. Thomas Harford, their complaining to the then Governor and charging him with bribery; for extorting mony from John Dickenson, by colour of the office of Chief Justice and imposing unreasonable security; for granting a special Court contrary to the Act of Assembly; for malitiously false and scandalous words against Anthony White; and for illegally imprisoning Thomas Smith, senr. 7 pp. Endorsed, Recd. Feb. 12, 1704/5. [C.O. 37, 7. Nos. 2, 2.i.–vi; and (without enclosures) 38, 6. pp. 87–95.]
Aug. 15.
Whitehall.
502. Mr. Popple to the Attorney General. Returns two Acts of Virginia by Col. Jennings to give further information on certain points. [C.O. 5, 1361. pp. 1, 2.]
Aug. 15.503. Memorandum [? by Sir Charles Hedges]. The Commrs. of Trade send an abstract of pris'ners taken in New England. They further desire to have the papers laid before them which have been taken on board ye ship bound to Canada. ¼ p. Enclosed,
503. i. Extract of a letter from Gov. Dudley, April 20, 1702 (? 1704) referred to in preceding. ½ p. [C.O. 5, 751. Nos. 54, 54.i.]
Aug. 17.
St. James's.
504. Order of Queen in Council. Ordered that the Council of Trade and Plantations do send an account to one of H.M. Principal Secretarys of State of the English prisoners that have been lately taken by the French of Canada. Signed, John Povey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 22, 1704. ½ p. [C.O. 5, 863.No. 115; and 5, 911. p. 385.]
Aug. 17.
Whitehall.
505. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Board of Ordnance. We are ready to give Capt. Rednap such Letters of recommendation to the Governors as he may desire [see Aug. 8]. [C.O. 5, 911. p. 384.]
Aug. 17.
Whitehall.
506. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Recommend the Revenue Act of Jamaica for H.M. approbation. [C.O. 138, 11. pp. 300, 301.]
Aug. 17.
Whitehall.
507. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Nicholson. The bearer hereof, James Wallace, having thought himself obliged with other inhabitants of Virginia, to give us some informations which may be displeasing to you, and being thereupon apprehensive of the effects of your displeasure upon his return to Virginia, where the duty of his Ministry calls him, and the Lord Bishop of London having further recommended him to us, we accordingly recommend him to you, not to molest him, but to give him all reasonable encouragement. [C.O. 5, 1361. pp. 4, 5.]
Aug. 17.
Whitehall.
508. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Nicholson. Whereas we have already acquainted you that H.M. has been pleased to direct that you return to answer the complaints against you, and there being some informations come to us by the last ships of great heats expressed by you against private persons for matters that are or have been in difference or contest between you, we do further think it for H.M. service and the quiet of the Province, that you forbear (and discontinue if begun) any personal resentment, prosecution or molestation whatsoever, upon your own account against any person concerned in those complaints, whilst the said complaints against you are depending and untill H.M. have determined thereupon. [C.O. 5, 1361. pp. 2–4.]
Aug. 17.
Whitehall.
509. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Enclose following, as ordered Aug. 3. Annexed,
509. i. Additional Instructions to Lt. Governor Bennet. Whereas we are above all things desirous that all our subjects may enjoy their legal rights and properties, you are to take especial care that if any person be committed for any criminal matters (unless for treason, felony or piracy plainly and specially express'd in the warrant of Commitment) such person have free liberty to petition, by himself or otherwise, the Cheif Baron or any one of the Judges of the Common Pleas for a Writt of Habeas Corpus, which upon such application shall be granted and serv'd on the Provost Marshall, Goaler or other Officer having the custody of such prisoner, or shall be left at the goal or place where the prisoner is confined. And the said Provost Marshal or other Officer shall within three days after such service (on the petitioner paying the fees and charges and giving security that he will not escape by the way) make return of the writt and prisoner before the Judge who granted out the said writt, and there certify the true cause of the imprisonment. And the said Baron or Judge shall discharge such prisoner, taking his recognizance and sureties for his appearance at the Court where the offence is cognizable, and certify the said writ and recognizance unto the Court, unless such offences appear to the said Judge not bailable by the Law of England. And in case the said Judge shall refuse to grant a Writt of Habeas Corpus on view of the copy of Commitment, or upon oath made of such copy having been denyed the prisoner or any person requiring the same in his behalf, or shall delay to discharge the prisoner after the granting of such writt, the said Baron or Judge shall incurr the forfeiture of his place. You are likewise to declare our pleasure, that in case the Provost Marshall or other Officer shall imprison any person above 12 hours, except by a Mittimus setting forth the cause thereof, he be removed from his said office. And upon the application of any person wrongfully committed, the Baron or Judge shall issue his warrant to the Provost Marshal or other Officer to bring the prisoner before him, who shall be discharged without bail or paying fees. And the Provost Marshal or other Officer refusing obedience to such warrant, shall be thereupon removed, and if the said Baron or Judge deny his warrant he shall likewise incur the forfeiture of his place; you shall give directions that no prisoner being set at large by an Habeas Corpus be recommitted for the same offence, but by the Court where he is bound to appear, and if any Baron, Judge, Provost Marshal or other Officer contrary hereunto, shall recommitt such person so bailed or delivered, you are to remove him or them from their places respectively. And if the Provost Marshal or other Officer having the custody of the prisoner neglect to return the Habeas Corpus or refuses a copy of the Commitment within 6 hours after demand made by the prisoner, or any other in his behalf, shall likewise incurr the forfeiture of his place. And for the better prevention of long imprisonments, you are to appoint two Courts of Oyer and Terminer to be held yearly, vizt. on the second Tuesday in December, and the second Tuesday in June, the charge whereof to be paid by the publick Treasury of our said Islands, not exceeding 50l. each Session. You are to take care that all prisoners in cases of treason, felony or piracy, have free liberty to petition in open Court for their tryals, and that such as are prisoners for treason and felony, be indicted at the first Court of Oyer and Terminer, unless it appears upon oath, that the witnesses against them could not be produced, and that they be tryed the second Court and discharged, and the Baron or Judge, upon motion made the last day of the Sessions in open Court, is to bail the prisoner, or upon the refusal of the said Baron, Judge, and Provost Marshal or other Officer to do their respective duties herein, shall be removed from their places. And that such as are prisoners for piracy be likewise tryed at the first Meeting of the Commissioners appointed or to be appointed by our special Commission for the tryal of pirats pursuant to an Act of Parliament in that behalf, unless it appears upon oath that the witnesses against them could not be produced and that then they be tryed at the second Meeting of the said Commissioners or discharged. Provided always that no person be discharged out of prison, who stands committed for debt, for any decree of Chancery, or any legal Proceeding of any Court of Records. And provided also that in case any Officer in the said Islands do hold his place by vertue of our Letters Patent, he be only suspended from the execution of his place upon any misbehaviour as aforesaid untill our royal pleasure be known. And for the preventing any exactions that may be made upon prisoners, you are to declare our pleasure, that no Baron or Judge shall receive for himself or Clerks, for granting a Writ of Habeas Corpus, more than 2s. 6d., and the like summ for taking a recognizance, and that the Provost Marshall shall not receive more than 5s. for every Commitment, 1s. 3d. for the Bond the prisoner is to sign, 1s. 3d. for every copy of a Mittimus, and 1s. 3d. for every mile he bringeth back the prisoner. And further you are to cause this our Royal Pleasure hereby signifyed to you to be made publick and registred in the Councill Books of our said Islands of Bermuda. [C.O. 38, 6. pp. 57–63.]
Aug. 17.
St. James's.
510. Order of Queen in Council. Referring back draught of above Instruction to the Council of Trade and Plantations to add the word piracy after felony, together with such other words as they shall think requisite. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 25, 1704. ¾ p. [C.O. 37, 6. No. 23; and 38, 6. p. 84.]
Aug. 17.511. J. Thurston to Council of Trade and Plantations. The Admiralty yesterday received advice that the Coventry man of war, convoy to Newfoundland, has had the misfortune to be taken by the French and carryed into Brest, and that several ships under her convoy have been likewise taken. 471l. 13s. 9d. of the soldiers' money was on board her etc. And although the provision-ship is said to have escaped, yet if any accident has befallen her elsewhere, if may be of the last ill consequence to the garrison, as well as the want of their money, which may cause them to desert, unless timely orders be given. Signed, J. Thurston. P.S.—The Admiralty has appointed another man of war, which will be ready in a week's time. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 17, 1704. 2 pp. [C.O. 194, 3. No. 28.]
Aug. 18.
Whitehall.
512. W. Popple, jr. to Mr. Lowndes. The Council of Trade and Plantations enclose preceding and recommend Memoriall to the Lord Treasurer. And whereas there may be likewise danger of loosing the provision ship, and another convoy being appointed for Newfoundland, their Lordships offer that a credit by a Letter to Col. Dudley not exceeding 600l. sterl. be sent by the said convoy to the Commander in Cheif of the garrison there, that in case the said provision ship be lost he may dispatch a vessell to New England, and by vertue of such credit procure from thence such provisions as shall be necessary, untill the arrival of the shipping the next year. [C.O. 195, 3. pp. 337, 338.]
Aug. 18.
Whitehall.
513. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Lord High Treasurer. Enclose account of incidental expenses of the office, Christmas to Midsummer. We have examined the particulars. Total, 146l. 19s. 1d. [C.O. 389, 36. pp. 198, 199.]
Aug. 18.
Whitehall.
514. Receipt for a suit of soldiers' cloathing returned by Lord Cornbury. Signed, Patrick Wardrope. Endorsed, Recd. Aug. 18, 1704. ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 1048. No. 89; and 5, 1120. p. 111.]
Aug. 22.
Barbadoes.
515. Governor Sir B. Granville to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Acknowledges letters of June 29. I shall very carefully observe all the directions in both. I send a duplicate of my last letter, but am not provided with duplicates from the offices of the publick papers. I shall send them by the fleet, which will sail the 14th of next month, and consequently arrive about the same time with this. I shall then also give your Lordships a further account of the publick proceedings here. Since my last there has another alteration happened in the Councill, Mr. Tobias Frere, a member of it, being offended a Cause he had in Chancery was decreed against him, did in open Court tell me he would come no more to Councill, upon which the number being under 7, I put in Mr. John Mills a person every way well qualifyed, and I doe intreat your Lordships' confirmation of him. Mr. Tobias Frere did as little deserve that honour as any man, being a drunken, swearing, profligate person. One Mr. Richd. Downs did lately give me a mandamus dated in Feb. last for him to be sworn into the first vacancy of the Councill, there are two at present by the death of Mr. Callow here and Col. Farmer in England, however, I have not as yet sworn him in, he being a man of a very ill life, and I doe believe will appear to have cheifly bin the occasion of the not sending an advice-boat to General Codrington when Walker's fleet was here. He was at that time Treasurer, and would not lay out the money; but of this I shall be able in my next to be more particular. I am not very well in my health which must be my excuse to your Lordships that I doe not enlarge further at present. Signed, Bevill Granville. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 13, 1704. 3 pp. [C.O. 28, 7. No. 39; and 29, 9. pp. 83–85.]
Aug. 22.
Whitehall.
516. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Lord Cornbury. Recommend Capt. Rednap to his Lordship's protection and countenance. [C.O. 5, 1120. p. 112.]
Aug. 22.517. Mr. Champante to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Restates Capt. Nanfan's case. There being no probability of his accounts ever being settled in New York, prays their Lordships to interpose with my Lord Treasurer for his order for the immediate payment to him of the 1,500l. lodged in Mr. Thrale's hands, so that he may be at liberty to come over and account. Proposes that sufficient security shall be given that Capt. Nanfan shall stand the event of his accts. Signed, J. Champante. Annexed,
517. i. Capt. Nanfan's account with the Four Companys of New York. Deb. Subsistance March 8–Dec. 24, 1701. 3,691l. 10s. 10d., and nett clearings, Dec. 24–June 24, 1701, 221l. 0s. 7d.:=3,912l. 11s. 5d. Cred. Payments, 5,564l. 13s. 5½d. Balance, 1,652l. 2s. 0½d. Deb. 10 p.c. Of 3,912l. 11s. 5d.:=391l. 5s. Cred. Payments. 549l. 10s. 6¾d. Balance 158l. 5s. 6¾d. The whole endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 24, 1704. 5 pp. [C.O. 5, 1048. Nos. 90, 90.i.; and 5, 1120. pp. 210–215.]
Aug. 23.518. E. Jenings to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Prays the Board to consider his expenses in coming to England with the Virginia Bills etc. Signed, E. Jenings. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 23, 1704. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1314. No. 30; and 5, 1361. pp. 6, 7.]
Aug. 23.519. Nath. Blakiston, Agent for Maryland, to the Council of Trade and Plantations. In obedience to H.M. injunction, the Assembly of Maryland granted 300l. of their quota toward carrying on some fortification in New York, in response to Petitioner's persuasion, he being then Governor, tho' they were fully persuaded that the erecting the said fortification would be of no use to the defence of Maryland. But before they would advance anything, the Speaker with some of the Assembly told Petitioner that it was his opinion, and I would assure them to use my best endeavours if in case their neighbours, Virginia and Pensilvania, did not advance their proportions likewise, then the Ordenance of Assembly should be voyd, and Petitioner did accept it upon those termes. But since Virginia nor Pensilvania have not shown ye least inclination towards theire quota, besides the fortifications that ye mony was given for is laid a side and ordered to be erected else where. Prays, on behalf of the Assembly, that they may be discharg'd from the said Ordinance. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 23, 1704. Holograph. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 715. No. 80; and 5, 726. pp. 287, 288.]
[Aug. 24.]520. Mr. Lodwick to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Prays for a speedy representation for confirming the Act of New York reversing the proceedings against Col. Bayard and Mr. Hutchins. Signed, Charles Lodwick. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 24, 1704. ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 1048. No. 91; and 5, 1120. pp. 203, 204.]
Aug. 24.
Whitehall.
521. W. Popple, jr., to Mr. Lodwick. Encloses following, which the Council of Trade and Plantations send you, that you may get Mr. Attorney's report, so as that they may have it time enough to lay the same before H.M. at next Councill. [C.O. 5, 1120. p. 208.]
Aug. 24.
Whitehall.
522. W. Popple, jr., to Mr. Attorney General. The Council of Trade and Plantations desire your opinion in point of Law upon the [above Act of New York] as soon as conveniently you can. [C.O. 5, 1120. p. 209.]
Aug. 24.
Whitehall.
523. Council of Trade and Plantations to Gov. Dudley. Since ours of July 11, we have received none from you. We enclose H.M. letter directing your proceedings in relation to H.M. and the Lord High Admiral's shares of prizes, which directions you are punctually to observe. We likewise herewith enclose H.M. additional Instruction relating to the Acts for Trade and Navigation [July 17], which you are to observe, and to give notice accordingly to all Masters and owners of vessells, and to all other persons concerned in the collecting of H.M. Customes or any ways inspecting the Navigation and Trade into, or out of the Provinces under your Government, that they may regulate themselves accordingly during the present war and no longer. We desire you to forward the enclosed letter to the Governor and Company of H.M. Colony of Rhode Island. The Lord Cornbury having complained to us, that severall of his letters which were sent by the way of Boston had been opened before they came to his hands, we desire you to give strict orders to the Post Officers or others imployed in the carrying of those letters, that no such thing may happen for the future. [C.O. 5, 911. pp. 386–388.]
Aug. 24.
Whitehall.
524. W. Popple, jr., to J. Burchet. Encloses duplicate of Heads of Enquiry etc. for Newfoundland. [C.O. 195, 3. pp. 338, 339.]
Aug. 24.
Whitehall.
525. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Seymour. We have received yours of May 23 and are very glad thereby to understand your safe arrival in Maryland, after the fatigues of so tedious and dangerous a voyage. We have received also the papers therewith transmitted, which we shal in due time peruse, and return you such answers thereupon as may be necessary. In the mean time we take notice of what you write about the ill state of the Militia, and that the principles of some of the inhabitants (particularly the Quakers) and the poverty of others (unable to provide themselves arms and ammunition) do obstruct the reformation you wou'd endeavour to introduce. You will take care that the Quakers, who will not bear arms themselves, do by mony or otherwise substitute other persons to perform that duty in their stead. And as to the poverty of the inhabitants, we conceive that arms are to be provided out of the fund of 3d. per hhd., and we do not doubt but you will find a competent sum in that stock, ready for that purpose, by which arms may be provided here by the Agent of the Colony and sent over to be distributed to the inhabitants that may want them, upon their giving security to answer the value. As to Mr. Tench's pretentions of having one half of the 12d. per hogshd. of such tobacco as was cleared after your arrival, we can by no means think it reasonable, and we doubt not but you will take care accordingly. We inclose H.M. letter directing your proceedings in relation to prizes etc. [Feb. 16]. We inclose H.M. additional Instructions relating to seamen, etc. (July 17), which you are to observe, and to give notice accordingly to masters and owners of vessels and to all other persons concerned in the collecting of H.M. Customs, or any ways inspecting the Navigation and Trade into or out of your Government, that they may regulate themselves accordingly, during the present war, and no longer. [C.O. 5, 726. pp. 297–299.]
Aug. 24.526. W. Popple, jr., to Josiash Burchett. Encloses extracts of letters from Governor Handasyd and Governor Sir B. Granville to be laid before H.R.H. Council. [C.O. 138, 11. p. 313.]
Aug. 24.
Whitehall.
527. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Nicholson. Acknowledge letters of May 31 and June 6, which we shall answer by the first opportunity. Enclose Instructions relating to shares of Prizes [see Feb. 16], and to seamen [see July 17]. [C.O. 5, 1361. pp. 21–23.]
Aug. 24.
Cockpitt.
528. Sir C. Hedges to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses Laws and Journals lately received from Virginia and Maryland. I am to desire that you will let me know, if you can, what prisoners the French have of ours in the West Indies. Signed, C. Hedges. Endorsed, Recd. Read Aug. 25, 1704. Holograph. 1 p. [C.O. 137, 6. No. 62; and 138, 11. pp. 318, 319.]
Aug. 24.
Whitehall.
529. Council of Trade and Plantations to Lt. Governor Bennett. We are now to answer your letters of Oct. 19, Jan. 11, Aprill 20, May 31 and June 10. By the letters writ you by the Earle of Nottingham, relating to Trade with the Spaniards, you will see how you are to govern yourself in this conjuncture, unto which we have nothing to add. As to Daniel Smith, who you say is under confinement on account of piracy, you are to proceed against him according to Law. You have here inclosed the duplicates of our letters relating to intelligence had in France by letters taken on board Plantation ships, and of our letter inclosing H.M. Proclamation for settling the rates of foreign coines in the Plantations, the contents of both which we doubt not but you will carefully observe. Whereas formerly a magazine ship used annually to be sent from Bermuda laden with tobacco to England, but no such ship having come of late, we desire you to give us a particular account of the tobacco annually planted, and what quantity is exported, and to what places, and how it comes to pass that no such magazine ship has been sent of late years, which will be most properly done by a certificate under the hand of the Collector of the Plantation dutys. Upon the reason you give for not sending over the accounts of the Revenue, because the Auditor was sick, we must observe that you ought to appoint some other fit person to officiate in his stead during his indisposition, to examine the said accounts before your self in Councill, in order to their being regularly transmitted according to your Instructions, and desire you to send us the accounts of the Revenue since your Government, as also transcripts of the Journals of the Assembly and Minutes of the Councill for the same time, as likewise the Naval Officers' lists of ships entred and cleared at Bermuda, and of all other papers of publick Proceedings which you are directed by your Instructions to send. We have laid before H.M. the several Laws past at Bermuda from 1690 to 1694, and shall goe on with the rest. We send you H.M. orders thereupon, that you may take notice thereof accordingly, and take care that they be duly registered. Quote Representation of July 18 etc. There are other Acts past in the foresaid years, which we have not laid before H.M., vizt. An Act for establishing and regulating Courts of Judicature, tho' we have no particular objection thereunto, yet we consider that whilst it is left in this manner unconfirmed (tho' in force) you may, as you see occasion, get such alterations and additions made thereunto, as may render it more full and perfect. An Act for vessells paying powder money, upon which we must observe that the powder duty ought to be paid in specie and not in money, and therefore you will do well to get that rectifyed by a subsequent Act. There are four other Acts vizt. An Act for trying any debts or difference not exceeding 20s. by the Justices of Peace. An Act for recovery of debts from persons insolvent. An Act quieting men's estates and preventing law suits. And an Act for the alteration and amendment of several Acts of Assembly, unto which Mr. Sollicitor General having made some objections [Dec. 6] we send you the same here inclosed, that you may also endeavour to get these Acts rectifyed in the first Assembly. In the collection of the Laws of Bermuda which you sent us, Oct. 19, we find the Act against bastardy and incontinency, which was past in 1690 or 1691 to be wanting, the reason whereof we desire you to inform us. But in the said Collection, we find severall Acts said to be past in 1694, 1698 and 1701, which have not been formerly transmitted hither. We send you therefore a list of the said Acts that you may examine the same, and then inform us of the reasons why they were not sent with the other Acts past in the foresaid years. Enclose H.M. Instructions relating to shares of prizes [Feb. 16], and to seamen [July 17]. Annexed,
529. i. List of Bermuda Acts contained in the body of Laws, 1703, which have not been formerly sent to this office. [C.O. 38, 6. pp. 72–84.]
Aug. 24.
Whitehall.
530. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Lord Cornbury. We are to acknowledge the receipt of your letters of June 17, 22, 24, 26 and 30, with the Papers therein referred to, which we shall take into consideration and return our answers by the first opportunity. In the mean time we shall only observe that the Acts transmitted with the foresaid letters have not any dates nor so much as the year of the sitting of the Assembly in which they were past, and therefore we desire your Lordship to inform us thereof by your first letter, and that for the future your Lordship would take care that the time of your Lordship's passing any Acts be always certified by you at the end of the said Acts. Enclose H.M. Instructions relating to shares of prizes [see Feb. 16], and seamen [see July 17]. And whereas your Lordship does by your letter of June 30 represent unto us that the Colony is in want of all sorts of stores, having received none from England since those your Lordship took with you, so that you pray a supply, we are to observe to your Lordship that we dispair of success in our application to the Queen for such supply of stores untill your Lordship do give us an account of the disposal of such stores as have been of late yeares sent to New Yorke, and more particularly of those your Lordship took with you; and further we desire that upon occasion of such demand you do enumerate the particulars and quantities, and to what use they are to be applyed. P.S.—We desire your Lordship to forward the inclosed packet to the Govt. and Company of Connecticut. [C.O. 5, 1120. pp. 204–207.]
Aug. 24.
Whitehall.
531. William Popple, jr., to Mr. Lowndes. The Council of Trade and Plantations desire you to move the Lord High Treasurer to direct Mr. Baker to take care of expediting the new Commissions for trying pirates in the Plantations [Aug. 3]. [C.O. 324, 9. pp. 31, 32.]
Aug. 25.
Whitehall.
532. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Hedges. We do not know of any English prisoners taken by the French in the West Indies, except those we have already mentioned, and believe there are not any such from Jamaica, for that Col. Handasyd has lately sent over several French prisoners, which he would not have done, had there been any English in their hands. Autographs. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 751. No. 53; and 138, 11. pp. 319, 320.]
Aug. 25.
Whitehall.
533. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Your Majesty having given directions to your several Governors in America to revise the Laws of their respective Governments and transmit unto us a compleat collection thereof so revised, with such alterations and amendments as might be most for your Majesty's service and advantage of the Colony, Gov. Nicholson has accordingly sent to us a collection of such Bills compiled by a Committee of the Council and Assembly, by which the many laws of Virginia are brought into a more methodical and compendious form, which Bills we have taken into consideration and have been attended therein by Mr. Jennings, Secretary of your Majesty's said Coloney, and have consulted the Commissioners of your Majesty's Customes upon such of those Bills as relate to Trade as also your Majesty's Attorney Generall in point of law, and having received their opinions and made such alterations as we judge proper for your Majesty's service and the benefit of that Colony, we humbly offer that the said Bills be remitted back to your Majesty's Governor of Virginia, that the same may be laid before the Councill and Assembly for their further consideration, in order to their being passed into Acts in the usual manner. [C.O. 5, 1361. pp. 24, 25.]
Aug. 25.
Whitehall.
534. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Handasyd. Enclose duplicates. We have received yours of May 4 and 19 and June 19. We have sent to Mr. Secretary Hedges what you write in relation to the French prisoners sent home. We have laid before H.R.H. the Lord High Admiral what you write about the late Captain of the Sea Horse, about the Mermaid man of war, and the want of spare masts to refit H.M. ships, as there may be occasion, and we wish you had sent us the particulars relating to the Sea Horse (as you promised to do in your next) that we might have also laid the same before the Lord High Admiral; but however in all cases relating to H.M. ships of war you are likewise to make immediate application to the Lord High Admiral's Council, giving us at the same time notice thereof. We have received the Acts and other papers transmitted with your foresaid letter, but we must remind you of transmitting to us quarterly, or as often as conveniently may be, the Naval Officers' lists of ships entred and cleared at Jamaica, according to your Instructions relating to the Acts of Trade and Navigation, that we may have a perfect account of the state of the trade of Jamaica. We have laid before H.M. the Act passed in November, 1703, for raising a publick revenue etc. which H.M. has been graciously pleased to approve, the confirmation thereof you will receive with our next. We send you here inclosed some observations made by the Lord High Treasurer upon the said Act, that you may endeavour to get such of the defects mentioned therein explained and remedyed by a subsequent Act. In the meantime we desire you to return us your distinct answer to the several particulars in the said observations. And whereas in the Act for ascertaining and establishing and more speedy collecting H.M. quit-rents there is a clause whereby all quit-rents due before Michaelmas 1692 are discharged, we desire you to explain that matter to us, because the loss of the Receiver General's books of accounts and of all papers relating to quit rents by the earthquake does not seem unto us a sufficient reason for such a discharge. We inclose H.M. Instructions relating to shares of prizes [Feb. 16] and seamen [July 17]. [C.O. 138, 11. pp. 314–317.]
Aug. 25.
Whitehall.
535. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Recommend that Col. Johnson be confirmed in his post, his Commission and salary to date from July 1, 1703 [see July 12]. [C.O. 153, 9. p. 32.]
Aug. 25.
Whitehall.
536. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Sir Wm. Matthew, Knt. We have received no letter from you since ours of June 29, but we are in daily expectation to hear of your safe arrival. We send you the extract of a letter from Capt. Lloyd, Commander of the Company at Newfoundland, relating to the piratical proceedings of George Bald, Commander of the Adventure, a New England sloop commissioned by Col. Codrington, that you may make enquiry into that matter, and if the complaint be found true, that you do your best endeavours that the offenders be brought to condign punishment, this may serve as a caution to you not to grant Commissions to privateers without sufficient security. Having had under consideration several laws of the Plantations, we find it absolutely necessary to remind you of that Instruction which directs you to send over a compleat collection of all the Laws in force in each respective Island under your Government, with the years when the said Acts were passed. Which therefore we desire you to do with all possible dispatch. Our letter to Col. Codrington of Feb. 16, having by mistake been carryed by the packet boat to Jamaica and from thence returned hither, we send you the same here inclosed, lest the duplicate should also have miscarryed. Enclose H.M. Instructions relating to shares of prizes [Feb. 16] and seamen [July 17]. [C.O. 153, 9. pp. 33–36.]
Aug. 25.
Whitehall.
537. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Hedges. H.M. having thought fit to appoint a Day of Public Thanksgiving throughout England for the great successes of H.M. arms near the Danube, and there being shipping ready for the Plantations, we put you in mind of those parts, in order to H.M. direction for the like Thanksgiving in her several Colonies in America. We should be glad to know H.M. pleasure before to-morrow night, in order to the dispatch of our letters by the first post to Plymouth, where the ships are ready to saile to the Continent. Autographs. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 3. No. 18; and 324, 9. p. 33.]
Aug. 25.
Whitehall.
538. Circular letter from the Council of Trade and Plantations to the several Governors and Proprietors in America. It having pleased Almighty God to give H.M. a compleat and glorious victory over her enemies near the Danube under the conduct of his Grace the Duke of Marlborough, and H.M. having thought fitt in acknowledgement of so great a blessing to appoint a Day of Thanksgiving here in England, which as it cannot be so soon complyed with by you, we herewith enclose to you the said Proclamation with directions that upon receipt thereof you appoint a proper and speedy day to be kept by all H.M. good subjects under your Government in like manner as is prescribed by the said Proclamation. [C.O. 324, 9. p. 34; and 5, 1291. p. 45.]
Aug. 25.
Whitehall.
539. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Having received information from Governor Sir B. Granville of an indirect practice very long made use of in that Island, of allowing of messages to be brought thither by flags of truce from Martinico, whereby a correspondence was entertained with the French, and illegal trade carried on, we did thereupon write to him, that he should forbid the said practice for the future, except upon very extraordinary occasions, which as we are informed he has accordingly done. And whereas Samuel Cox, one of the Councill of that Island, having been represented to us as having favoured the practice, was thereupon suspended from his place in your Majesty's said Council, but upon full examination has been cleared from that imputation, and is represented to us by the Council there as a person well affected to your Majesty's service, we humbly offer that your Majesty be pleased to direct Sir B. Granville to take off the said suspension. [C.O. 29, 8. pp. 461, 462.]
Aug. 25.
Whitehall.
540. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Sir B. Granville. Enclose duplicates and acknowledge letter of May 24. We have laid before H.R.H. the Lord High Admiral what you write concerning guard ships. We desire you to transmit unto us quarterly, or as often as conveniently may be, the Naval Officers' lists of ships entred and cleared at Barbados, according to your Instructions, relating to the Acts of Trade and Navigation, that we may have a perfect account of the state of the Trade of Barbados. Upon our considering the laws of Barbados and other Plantations, we find it absolutely necessary for H.M. service that we have compleat collections of all the laws in force in each respective Government, with the years when the said Acts were past, and therefore, we desire you to send us such a collection with all possible dispatch. Enclose H.M. letter relating to Prizes [Feb. 16] and Seamen [July 17], etc. [C.O. 29, 8. pp. 463–465.]
Aug. 26.
Whitehall.
541. W. Popple, jr., to Mr. Attorney General. The Council of Trade and Plantations enclose you Lord Cornbury's letter of June 26 relating to the seizure of the Eagle galley, and the proceedings relating to it etc. They desire, upon hearing the parties concerned, your opinion thereupon, whether the same be a legal seizure, or what may be fit to be done therein. You will be attended by Sir Jeffry Jeffreys on the one side and Mr. Barker in behalf of Mr. Byerly, Collector at New York, on the other. [C.O. 5, 1120. pp. 216, 217.]
Aug. 26.
Whitehall.
542. W. Popple, jr., to Wm. Lowndes. Encloses letters from Lord Cornbury, June 17 and 22, and other papers relating to the accounts of Lord Bellomont and Capt. Nanfan, to be laid before the Lord Treasurer for examination, and also Mr. Champante's Memorial, Aug. 24. [q.v.]. [C.O. 5, 1120. pp. 217, 218.]
Aug. 30.
Whitehall.
543. Sir R. Harley to the Lord High Treasurer. I am commanded by H.M. to refer enclosed petition for your consideration. Signed, Ro. Harley. 1 p. Enclosed,
543. i. John Taylor to the Queen. Petitioner has contracted with the Commissioners of the Navy to supply two ships' loadings of masts yearly from Piscataqua. The Government of that place demands a duty of petitioner's mast shipps, because the ships are [? not] owned by one that lives there, though they were built in that country, which is making Englishmen aliens. The duty is exacted from none but such as come for masts, because none other trade thither but inhabitants' ships, which are exempted from ye duty. Prays for an Order that [? no] other dutys may be exacted from his said mast shipps, than what is payable for vessels built there and owned by the inhabitants. Subscribed, Whitehall, Treasury Chambers, Sept. 12. The Lord High Treasurer refers this petition to the Commissioners of Customs for their report. Signed, Wm. Lowndes. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 863. Nos. 116, 116.i.]
Aug. 31.
Nevis.
544. Governor Sir Wm. Mathew to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I have two letters from your Lordships of June 29, the one signifying H.M. pleasure, relating to foreign coyn, etc. By the other I find H.M. has bin informed that accounts have bin sent by private persons of the state of these H.M. Collonies. I shall forthwith so make known H.M. pleasure as that the same may be prevented for the future and the ill consequences may attend such practices avoided. Your Lordships may be assured of my due obedience as to every particular conteined in them both. I have given directions for the transcribing of all the Acts in force, which shall be remitted to your Lordships so soon as they can possibly be compleated. The state of the Islands so far as I can yet observe is as follows. Antigua being very large, having many landing places, no fort, or battery, of any consequence, verry few people fit to bear armes, and those at great distance from each other, occasioned by the vast tracts of land in the possession of a small number of persons, renders it verry weake. I have earnestly recommended the consideration thereoff to the Councill and Assembly and offered my thoughts what is fit to be don, and shall as speedily as possible return in order to encourage the effect thereoff. Mountserrat being the second Island I have vissited, is but indifferently peopled, at great distances and most Irish Roman Chatholicks, but I'me of opinion while they are not roughly handled great benefit may be expected from them, and the rather because not one deserted at the enterprize of Guardaloupe. The Island is difficult of accesse, tho' the French have threatened to attack it with their privateers which have bin verry numerous in these parts. Nevis, the Island from whence I send your Lordshipps this account, is in much the best posture for service and defence of any Island I have seen in this Government. I must do Lt. Governor Johnson that justice to tell your Lordps. it is cheifly owing to his great care and dilligence, and that his zeal for H.M. service truly deserves your Lordshipps' favour. My next motion will be for St. Christophers, the state of which I shall send by the next packet, fearing I cannot get it ready by the time the Fleet will sail, when I shall send a list of the strength of the severall Islands in better form. Our great want is gunns from 12 to 24 pounders; if H.M. would be graciously pleased to order 40 of that size for these her Islands, wee should be as it is our duty allwayse ready to employ them for her service; carriages and all things else propper for them shall be provided here. The Fleet amounting to about 50 odd sail from the Leeward Islands will sail about Sep. 18. The Island of St. Thomas supplying the French constantly with provisions and what else they want, proves much to our prejudice, 'tis the enemy's privateers' harbour, 'tis thence they gett intelligence and in a manner have their subsistance, provisions being carryed thither from New England and that North part of America. The Islands are in perfect health, the soldiers so well seasoned and known that the number at present heere may be truly be vallued at double the number can be sent. There being so many Islands to protect and the Trade belonging to them makes it absolutely necessary I should apply to your Lordships for another frigott, one of those here being but an indifferent saylor, and neither of any considerable force. I should be glad to know how far my power reaches as to the exchange of prisoners, by what I can learn the French are desirous of a cartell. I beg your Lordships' favour in what relates to my advancement in the Army, being at present one of the eldest, if not the oldest Collonel, my brother Shrimpton being but few dayes older then myself made a Brigadeer, I humbly hope thro' your Lordships' favour the distance I serve at may not be a means of loosing my preferment. Signed, Will. Mathew. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 13, 1704. Holograph. 7 pp. [C.O. 152, 5. No. 79; and 153, 9. pp. 42–46.]
Aug. 31.545. Attorney General to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I find nothing in the Act of New York (reversing the proceedings against Bayard and Hutchins,) contrary to Law or Justice or prejudiciall to H.M. Royall prerogative, but in regard that the record of the Attainders are to be destroyed, persons who have acted innocently under the orders of those who had power to command them may thereby be subjected to actions for what they have so done without any possibility of defending themselves. I wish there had been in the Act a clause for their indemnification, and I submit it to your Lordships' consideration whether Col. Bayard and Mr. Hutchins should not be required under their hands and seales to declare that they will not bring any such actions. Signed, Edw. Northey. Endorsed, Recd. Read Sept. 12, 1704. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1048. No. 92; and 5, 1120. pp. 218, 219.]