§ 1. GENERAL.
Death of Queen Anne.; Accession of George I.
On the 5th of August Lord Bolingbroke wrote to the
Governors of Plantations announcing the death of Queen
Anne and the appointment of Lords Justices, and
enclosing a Proclamation of the accession of King George
I. (Nos.5–7 i., 14, 16, 17, 20). At the suggestion of
the Board of Trade, two naval sloops were appointed to
convey these papers to the Colonies (8, 14–16, 18, 22).
But it was not till the 12th of November that H.M.S.
Hazard, which had left Deal three months before, reached
the coast of the Continent, and then only to be dashed to
pieces on the rocks of Massachusetts Bay. Not a soul
escaped. But among the wreckage driven ashore and
recovered from the sand and snow, were the letters and
proclamations intended for the several Governors.
Intelligence had, however, already been brought to
Governor Dudley by merchantmen nearly two months
before, and he had proclaimed the King and communicated the news to the Governors along the coast (86, 95,
188). General Nicholson stated that the contents of the
Hazard were "embezzled by the people of those parts,"
(568 iii. (a)), and Thomas Bannister adds that she was
lost for lack of that lighthouse which the Massachusetts
Assembly stubbornly refused to build (508).
Welcomed in the Colonies.
The accession of King George was welcomed in the
Colonies as a guarantee of their religion, rights, and
liberties, and they expressed in addresses to the King
their loyalty and sense of relief (Nos. 55, 61, 62, 67, 67
i.–iii., 68, 70, 83, 83 i., 88, 107, 107 i.–iii., 109, 112 i.,
141, 350, 476 i., ii., 629 vii.). The preparations made
in the interest of the Pretender came to nothing. In the
presence of the fait accompli, and in lands where every
political and religious instinct was opposed to Papistry,
the Jacobites were silent, or, as in New York, dared only
to raise "a few awkward huzzas" (68, 476 ii., 645, 645
Proclamation continuing officers.
A Proclamation was issued for continuing officers in
their posts after the expiration of the six months following
upon the demise of the Crown provided by the Act for
securing the Protestant Succession (20, 99—106). But
this proclamation arrived too late to prevent some trouble
in the cases of Massachusetts and Jamaica (v. 2 and 3).
General Nicholson's return.
Immediately upon hearing of the death of Queen Anne,
General Nicholson hastened home, without further
regard to the large roving commission of supervision
and enquiry upon which he had been sent by Bolingbroke
(122 ii., 312, 601, 645 ii.). Both Colonel Hunter and Col.
Vetch, who suffered from him, represent this "Governor
of Governors" as a Jacobite schemer, acting and talking
like a madman (122 ii., 312). Governor Dudley, too,
had reason to resent the imperious tone of his letters.
Hunter says he intrigued with the Jacobite clergy
against him, and expected to succeed to his Government
(312, 645 ii., 663). Vetch exhibits his actions with
regard to Nova Scotia in a very curious light. Making
no concealment of his intention to serve the cause of the
Pretender and the French, he informed Vetch, whom he
had superseded, that his greatest crime in the eyes of the
Tory Government was his endeavour to preserve the
garrison of Annapolis Royal. He ought, he said, to have
understood that the silence of Ministers in answer to
his appeals for its support meant that they intended
to abandon it (122 ii.). Nicholson's own treatment
of the garrison and of the French inhabitants of Nova
Scotia was interpreted as being designed to carry out
that policy (601, 602, 659; cf. Journal of Board of Trade,
Jan. 4, 1715).
Nicholson had been entrusted with the distribution
of the surplus clothing and stores which had been accumulated for the abortive expedition against Canada. One
general cause of complaint against him was that he
forced this clothing upon the garrisons of New York,
Nova Scotia, and Placentia. For the clothing in question
was of very inferior quality, and quite unsuited to the
rigours of a northern winter. Soldiers were ready to
mutiny or desert rather than accept it (397–401, 411–413, 423, 427, 645, 645 ii.).
Warrants for new Commissions.
The beginning of a new reign involved the appointment
or re-appointment of a large number of officers, including
Governors and holders of patent offices in the Plantations.
For the most part the Commissions of the existing
Governors and Lt. Governors were renewed. But where
Whigs had recently been supplanted by Tories suspected
of Jacobite sympathies, the former were restored, as in
Barbados and Bermuda.
Absentee Patent Officers.; Forms of Patents and Commissions; how described in this Calendar.
One new appointment of literary interest is that of
William Congreve to the Secretaryship of Jamaica (90).
The reversion of patent-places now began to be granted.
A notable instance is that of Horatio Walpole, who was
appointed Auditor General of the Plantations on the
death, surrender or forfeiture of William Blathwayt
(638, 640). His Commission empowered him to execute
this office by Deputy. In the case of the Attorney General
of New York, the Board of Trade once more call attention
to the Order in Council of Feb. 16, 1698, obliging patentees
to actual residence. A clause to that effect was in
fact usually introduced into patents. But its object
was defeated by the licences to be absent and act by
deputy which could generally be obtained, no doubt
at some cost (292, 640 etc.). Many such patents and
licences occur in this volume. The procedure by which
patents and commissions were granted and issued was
exceedingly intricate and cumbersome. Each step in
the complicated and varied processes was marked by a
document of a particular form. They are described
in this Calendar, indiscriminately and unscientifically,
as "H.M. Warrants appointing etc.," as though they were
all of one species. But it should be understood that this
is merely a device to save the large amount of space
which would be required to indicate to what particular
stage in the procedure each of these documents happens
to belong. It may, however, be of service to state very
briefly here the several stages which marked the issue of
Letters Patent for places in the Colonies. They were,
normally, as follows: —(i) A warrant under the signmanual was issued from the Signet Office and addressed
to the Attorney General and/or Solicitor General,
directing him to prepare a bill for granting some office or
commission. (ii) This bill, when signed by the King
became a "King's bill," and was substantially in its
final form, except for the date. It was addressed to
the grantee thus:—" George I., to Our trusty and wellbeloved . . . . . . We hereby appoint etc." (iii) The
King's bill, after being signed, was sent back to the
Signet Office, where it remained. But its contents
were now transmitted in the form of a writ under the
Signet addressed to the Keeper of the Privy Seal in this
form:— "Trusty and well-beloved We greet you well
and will and command that under Our Privy Seal
(remaining in your custody) ye cause these Our Letters
Patent to be directed to Our Chancellor … commanding
him that under Our Great Seal … he cause these Our
Letters Patent to be made forth patent in the form
following ":— The King's bill (ii) is then quoted. The
document concludes "Given under Our Signet." (iv)
This document under the Signet was sent to the Privy
Seal Office, and was retained by the Privy Seal, who on
its authority sent a writ of Privy Seal addressed to the
Chancellor, and bidding him issue Letters Patent in
that form. (v) The system of dating was determined
by an Act of Parliament of 1439. By this statute the
date on which the writ of Privy Seal arrived in the
Chancery had to be noted on the face of the document.
Towards the close of the XVIth century it became
customary for the Chancellor to add to this memorandum
his signature, together with the word Recepi and the date.
The date of the recepi is the date borne by the final
instrument, namely the Letters Patent issued by the
Lord Chancellor, in accordance with the instructions of
the writ of Privy Seal. (fn. 1)
French Aggression.; French Fort in Onondage Country.
Colonel Vetch on being consulted as to the boundaries
of Hudson's Bay and Nova Scotia, took the opportunity
to call attention to the "imaginary settlement or
pretended line" behind the British Colonies, which the
French had run "by some small forts at several hundred
miles distance one from another as farr as the mouth of
the River Misasipy" (No. 12). Jamaica merchants a
few months later explained the importance of these
settlements and of New Orleans as well as of the French
occupation of Hispaniola and Cayenne. They regarded
them as parts of the "great schemes formed by France
for founding a universall power in America as well as in
Europe." The French method of encouraging intermarriage with the natives led them to look forward with
apprehension to the time when there would be ten Papists
to one Protestant on the Continent, and the French in
a position "to drive us down to the sea coast againe and
thence back to Old England, our native hive" (271,
271 viii.). In the meantime Cape Breton was being
strongly fortified and garrisoned, the fishery developed
and the inhabitants increased by the removal of French
families from Nova Scotia and Placentia (293 i.). The
French also put in a claim that Port St. Peter—now
called Port Toulouse—being a part of the French coast,
the British ships were not entitled to fish off its banks.
To this the Council of Trade replied that they did not
find by the Treaty that "the subjects of Great Britain
were restrained from fishing in any part of the sea
whatsoever" (442 i., 446). Although Cape Breton was
not likely to prove very profitable as a place of trade, its
importance was recognised as a port of call for ships
bound to Quebec, and also, in times of war, as a rendezvous for privateers which would paralyse the coast trade
and traffic between the West Indies and the Continent
(201, 202, 341 viii., 356, 636 i., 685). All these developments were, of course, legitimate forms of expansion,
although they rendered inevitable a future struggle for
supremacy, westwards and at sea. But more serious,
as being direct infringements of the Treaty of Utrecht,
were the endeavours made by the French to seduce the
Five Nations of Indians from their allegiance to the
British, and their intrigues with the Eastern Indians.
They were suspected, too, of instigating the rising of the
Yamassees in South Carolina (497, 537, 537 i., 538, 568
i.–x.). Governor Hunter wrote from New York to
remonstrate with the Governor of Canada against the
attempts to "debauch our Five Nations" (497). But,
taking advantage of the rising of the '15, the French
presently obtained leave to erect a trading house in the
Onondage Country (578), and then marched a considerable
force thither to erect the fort for which it was the cloak
(599 i.–iii.). To counteract the advances of the French,
Governor Hunter repeatedly urged the necessity of
making the present to the Indians, which was usual on
an accession to the Throne, and which they now regarded
almost as a tribute, but which the Assembly of New
York refused to provide (34). In this he was seconded
by representations from the Board of Trade (538, 572,
574, 629, 662 i., 664, 673, 681).
Fears of a General Rising of Indians.; A Fort on Hudson River proposed.
The outbreak of the Southern Indians on the borders
of Carolina provoked fears of a general rising of Indians
intended to drive the British into the sea. Hunter,
however, held two successful conferences with the Five
Nations at Albany in Sept., 1714, and Aug., 1715, and
was able to report that he had succeeded in his scheme
of persuading them to intervene against the Carolina
Indians, and that very few had yielded to the blandish
ments of the French (34, 83, 83 ii., 629 i.–vi., 664, 673).
As a reply he proposed that the garrison of New York
should be increased by two companies, and that a fort
should be built "up Hudson's River upon the entry to
the Lakes . . . . for £500, which in a little time would be
many thousands in value for H.M. service." His proposals
were strongly recommended by the Board of Trade (662 i.,
Trade with French West Indies.
Complaints having been made from the Court of France
that trade was carried on between the British and French
West Indies, instructions were sent to Governors to
put a stop to it, in accordance with the Treaty of Peace
and Neutrality, particular reference being made to the
case of Captain Vanbrugh of H.M.S. Sorlings. Areminder
was added that H.M. ships were not allowed to carry
merchandise (24, 25, 31, 32). Over a year later, however,
the Governor of Martinique complained to the Governor
of Barbados that "our coasts and roads are filled every
day with your ships coming to trade," whilst Governor
Lowther professed ignorance of any law or instructions
to prevent it (439 vi., 440, 654, 654 iii.). To check the
development of the French sugar trade, he proposed that
the export of horses from the Continent to their islands
should be forbidden. For whilst in the British sugar
islands the canes were ground by windmills, the French
and Dutch mills were worked by horses and cattle (654).
The French and the Trade with the Spanish Colonies.
The French were now endeavouring to monopolise the
trade with the Spanish Colonies. Diverting the old
channel of trade from the North to the South, they
supplied the wants of the Spaniards by way of Panama
and the South Sea, behaving, as Governor Lowther
says, "like Lords paramount in this part of the world
and treating the Spaniards just as they think fit" (654,
691 i.; cf. B.T. Journal, Aug. 12, 1714). Jamaica was
the emporium from which British goods were re-shipped
to the Spanish West Indies and the Spanish main (76 i.).
A complaint was laid by the French Court as to this trade.
It was alleged that the negligence of foreign Governments
in not putting into force the terms of the 6th Article
of the Treaty would render futile the intention of the
King of France to issue a declaration prohibiting under
the severest penalties French merchants sailing to or
trading with the Spanish West Indies. The French
Ambassador was directed to press the British Government
for a similar prohibition (76 i.). This communication
was examined by British merchants concerned. They
stated that if such trade were prevented, the result
would be that British merchants would transfer their
vessels and merchandize to the Dutch part of Curacoa
or the Danish port of St. Thomas. The French could
well afford to make such a proposal, because they were
now sending their goods to Spain, and had begun a
constant regular trade from Spain itself direct to all the
ports in the Spanish West Indies under licences granted
in Spanish names to the subjects of France only. Their
proposal relating to clandestine trade was partly directed
against the cutting of logwood, which was essential to
the prosperity of the woollen trade. If that right
were parted with, the control of the three essential
dyes, logwood, cochineal and indigo, would be in the
hands of France. It was absolutely necessary, the
merchants declared, "to support this pretended clandestine trade and our logwood cutters" (129 i.–iii.). Working together, the French and Spaniards did their utmost
to stop it. The Spanish coasts were patrolled by "guarda
costas."These were, in many cases, French ships holding
Spanish commissions. British West Indian vessels were
seized on any and every pretext (271 i., 508). Jamaica
suffered severely (362), and New York, which had been
wont to rely upon the Spanish market for the disposal
of its overplus of provisions raised there, soon felt the
loss of trade (673).
The whole question of trade with Old Spain and the
Spanish West Indies by France and Great Britain
in the light of the new Treaty was carefully considered by
the Board of Trade in conference with the Spanish
merchants and with particular reference to the preparation
of Instructions for Mr. Methuen, the newly appointed
Ambassador to Spain (v. B.T. Journal, Dec. 24, 1714,
Jan. 10 and 14, 1715.)
Loss of the Spanish Plate Fleet.
In the autumn of 1715 the Spanish Plate Fleet was
wrecked in the Gulf of Florida. Ten out of eleven richly
laden vessels were lost off St. Augustine, and a barcolongo
sent from Havana to save the passengers and salve the
plate was likewise cast away (651).
Changes of Government and of Council of Trade.
James Stanhope succeeded Bolingbroke as Secretary of
State for the Southern Department. Lord Townshend,
who acted for him during his absence abroad, announced
in November, 1714, that a complete change had been made
in the Council of Trade and Plantations (99—106). The
new commission was dated Dec. 13 (219). William Popple
retained the post of Secretary, whilst Bryan Wheelock
succeeded Adrian Drift as Deputy-Secretary (121, 219).
Details of the new Commission and orders by the
Board as to hours of attendance etc. are printed in the
Board of Trade Journal, Dec. 20, 1714, May 23, 1715.
Essays and suggestions on the administration and trade in the Colonies.; George Vaughan proposes a general scheme of taxation and defence.
The occasion of all these changes seems to have
prompted several of those who were interested in the
administration and development of the Colonies to submit
their proposals to the Secretary of State. One anonymous writer, amongst other suggestions, urged that the
Board of Trade should be strengthened by Commissioners
with a personal knowledge of the Plantations, and
proposed the inclusion of two merchants and two exGovernors (236 i.). George Vaughan, of New Hampshire,
similarly hinted at the Board's lack of understanding of
the "constitutions, circumstances and abillities" of the
Plantations, and suggested that Commissioners should
be appointed to inspect and report upon each Colony
with a view to the development of its trade. He also
proposed that a general scheme of taxation should be
imposed upon the Colonies, in order to form a fund for
their defence and the support of the civil Governments.
Both Governors Spotswood and Hunter recognised the
desirability of uniting the divided strength of the several
Provinces for the defence of the whole (p. 273). But
Vaughan was led to make his suggestion by the unequal
way in which some large and rich colonies, like New
York, had been assigned substantial grants of stores of
war from the Crown, whilst a poor, small and frontier
plantation like New Hampshire was neglected. He
proposed that a general name should be given to the
British settlements in America, and that a Congress of
Governors should be held every three years, with a
Commissioner appointed to preside and report upon their
proceedings to the Board of Trade (389 i.). The idea of
a Congress of Governors also figured among the several
schemes put forward by Caleb Heathcote from New
York, and the encouragement of the production of naval
stores was urged by them both, as by Governor Hunter
of New York (599 iii., 673), and Thomas Bannister of
New England (508). Amongst Vaughan's other suggestions was a proposal that, in view of the shortage of
currency, limited issues of paper bills should be permitted
Thomas Bannister.; Bannister on Colonial Separatism.; Number of New Englanders.
Thomas Bannister in his Essay on the Trade of New
England (508), makes some very interesting observations.
That essay was the outcome of his attendance upon the
Board of Trade at their request (B.T. Journal, 6th
July, 1715). Bannister finds fault with the Treaty of
Utrecht for not having secured the logwood trade and
the right to rake salt at Saltertudos for the New England
fishery. He defends the New England trade with
Surinam and the foreign sugar islands against the
"Gentlemen of Barbados" who had already "desired
an Act of Parliament to prevent it," and shows the
importance of that trade to New England in terms that
remained equally true in 1733 and 1764. To make good
the adverse balance of trade and to prevent other manufactures being set up, he insists on the necessity of
encouraging the industry of Naval Stores, and of a paper
currency. But he concludes that the "notion is wild
and unfounded of the Plantations ever setting up for
themselves. Different schemes, interests, notions,
religions, customes, and manners, will forever divide
them from one another and unite them to the Crown.
He that will be at the trouble of reviewing only the
Religions of the Continent, and consider how tenacious
each sect is, will never form any idea of a combination
to the prejudice of the Land of our Forefathers" (508).
Later he has some bitter things to say of the treatment of
the Indians both by the early and the present Colonists
(521). He reckoned the numbers of New Englanders at
160,000, of whom 14,000 resided in Boston.
Activity of the new Board of Trade.; Governors and Naval Captains.
Whilst receiving all this advice, the new Board took
steps to acquire further information by circulating a list
of queries to Governors (477, 548, 549). They requested
the Secretary of State to inform them as soon as possible
of any appointments that were made and of any Orders
of Council issued (352, 478). They protested against the
evil of granting licences for leave of absence to Councillors
(292), and proposed that Captains of guardships on
Colonial stations should be placed, as formerly, under the
orders of the respective Governors, in view of the frequent
differences that arose between them, as at Barbados, the
Leeward Islands and Jamaica (283). This suggestion
met with flat opposition from the Admiralty (315 i.).
Inspection of Accounts by Councils and Assemblies.; Naval Stores.
Whilst calling for a return upon the finances of each
Colony, the Council of Trade issued an instruction to
Governors that the public accounts should not only be
inspected by a Committee of the Council and Assembly,
but also laid before both Houses etc. (548, 549). In
pursuance of suggestions from the Colonies, they also
recommended that the encouragement of the importation
of Naval Stores should be extended. It was suggested
that, in addition to the bounty upon exports of pitch
and tar, the Plantations should be exempted from the
duty on boards, plank, and timber (389 i., 422, 424).
The grounds for recommending this scheme were that
it would "increase our navigation, occasion a great
exportation of our woollen manufactures to pay for the
said timber and other naval stores, instead of exporting
bullion to the Northern Crowns . . . . . . and free this
Kingdom from a dependance on the said Northern
Crowns for Naval Stores, which has often proved
expensive and precarious, especially in time of war"
(505 i., 546).
Temporary Laws and Charter Governments.; Change of policy by the new Regime.; Maryland and the new Governor.
The old Board, on the strength of the report of the
Law Officers of the Crown relating to temporary Acts,
calendared in the previous volume (June 5), recommended
the passing of an Act of Parliament to oblige the Proprietary governments of Carolina, Connecticut, and
Rhode Island to submit their laws for confirmation by
the Crown (42). A bill for the better regulating the Charter
and Proprietary Governments was introduced and committed (573). But the new regime inaugurated a new
policy of non-interference and laissez-faire in Colonial
affairs. The insecurity of the new dynasty and the
need for avoiding any action which might provoke
political resentment or disturbance was emphasised by
the rising of the '15. The first indication of this new
orientation is supplied by the case of Maryland. A new
Governor was appointed by the Crown in Jan., 1715
(190). But this appointment was revoked upon the
petition of Benedict Leonard Calvert, the Protestant
son and heir of the Roman Catholic Proprietor, Lord
Baltimore. The latter had reduced his son's allowance
when he was received into the Church of England. But
when, in circumstances that have been recorded, the
Crown took the appointment of a Governor out of the
hands of the Roman Catholic Proprietor, and the choice
fell upon Captain Hart, a compact had been made by
which the Governor assigned £500 a year out of his
salary and perquisites to Benedict Calvert. Lord Baltimore died a few days after Benedict Calvert's petition
for the renewal of Captain Hart's Commission had been
granted. On his succession to the title and Proprietorship of Maryland, he promptly petitioned for the King's
approbation of Hart, "nominated by him Governor
of Maryland." In other words he resumed the right of
the Proprietor to nominate a Governor, and, as this
nomination was accepted, his resumption of the full
rights of Proprietorship was sanctioned. This was a
definite reversal of the policy of abolishing Chartered and
Proprietary governments and establishing a universal
and homogeneous form of colonial administration under
the direct control of the Crown, for which the Council
of Trade and Plantations had so long been working (200,
200 i., 238 i., 322).
New Seals and Maps of the Colonies required.
New seals for the Colonies were ordered at the suggestion of the Board of Trade (445, 466), who also requested
Governors to furnish them with maps and surveys.
They also proposed that the Ambassador at the Court
of France should be instructed to collect for them the
best maps obtainable there of European settlements in
America (518, 574, 575).
Surveyor General of H.M. Woods.; Need for a new Act.
On the conclusion of the Peace, the Commissioners of
the Navy dismissed the Surveyor General of H.M. Woods
in North America (336 i.). In applying to be reinstated,
Mr. Bridger insisted upon the necessity for such an officer.
He was supported by the Board of Trade who, after
enquiry, dismissed the charges brought against him by
Governors Hunter and Burges, Mr. Vaughan and Thomas
Coram, and he was re-appointed (451, 451 i., ii., 460,
470, 474, 475, 481 i., 503, 503 i.–v., 546, 561). In making
his application Mr. Bridger drew attention to the need
for a new Act for preserving the woods, and in this he
was supported by Captain Coram (450, 546, 584).
Objection to Lt. Gov. Vaughan.
George Vaughan having been appointed Lt. Governor
of New Hampshire without the knowledge of the Board
of Trade, who complained that they only knew of his
appointment from the Gazette, they drew the attention
of the Secretary of State to his connection with several
saw-mills in that province. As the log trade was the
cause of the great destruction of the woods, they protested
that the owner of saw-mills was not a proper person to
be entrusted with the care of them and the duty of
preventing the cutting down of trees fitted for the use of
the Royal Navy. They quoted the aphorism of Lord
Bellomont in relation to Lt. Governor Partridge, that
"to set a carpenter to preserve woods, is like setting a
wolf to keep sheep" (547).
Proposed Settlement on the St. Croix River.
Backed by Thomas Coram, the disbanded officers and
soldiers "now begging in the streets of London" renewed
their petition for a grant of lands for settling between
the rivers Kenebec and St. Croix, and also for the right
to coin a thousand tons of halfpence and farthings,
alleging that the late Lord Treasurer had slighted their
former scheme and designed to appropriate the profits
to himself (65, 110 i., 212, 212 i., 224).
Col. Vetch, on being consulted, suggested Nova Scotia
as a more suitable and advantageous country for settlers.
After a conference with Nicholson, Coram, Sir C. Hobby
and the representatives of New England at the Board of
Trade, new proposals were made on their behalf, but a
preference for Kenebec River was still maintained.
(B.T. Journal, Dec. 30, 1714, Feb. 8 and 15, 1715).
Shipbuilding in the Colonies.
The growth of shipbuilding in the Colonies is indicated
by the survey of Thomas Bannister (508), and Heathcote's
plans for building guardships and packet-boats at New
York (165 i., iv.–xxv.).
Plants and Seeds for the Royal Gardens.
The Governors of Jamaica, New York, and Massachusetts and Virginia make mention of plants and seeds
which they are sending Mr. Popple, the Secretary of the
Council of Trade "for the Garden" (29, 96, 98, 312).
The Secretary of State forwarded on behalf of the
Royal Gardener a list of trees and plants "to be sent
to England from the Colonies and Islands in America,"
together with instructions how they should be collected
and preserved (419, 419 i., ii.).
§ 2. THE AMERICAN COLONIES.
Carolina. The rising of the Yamassee Indians.; Causes of rising.
Just before Easter, 1715, it was rumoured in South
Carolina that the Yamassee Indians, who had recently
settled near Port Royal, were showing signs of discontent,
and were about to rise. The Governor, who was at
Charleston, was informed. Through the mediation of
several Indian traders, satisfaction was offered to them
"for the wrong which had been done to them." They
were apparently pacified, and the embassy of traders
retired for the night. "But next morning at dawn their
horrible war-whoop was heard, and a great multitude
was seen . . . . . painted with red and black streaks . . . .
. . .," the red indicating war, and the black death without
mercy to their enemies. The traders were shot down and
tortured to death. One, though severely wounded,
succeeded in escaping by swimming the river. He gave
the alarm to the inhabitants of Port Royal and the
neighbouring planters. They took refuge on board a
vessel which had been seized for illegal trading. The
Indians advanced plundering and ravaging the houses
and plantations, firing on the ship, and burning and
torturing every man and woman on whom they could
lay hands (384, 509 ii., 520). Governor Craven appears
to have acted with bravery and promptitude (511).
After repulsing an attack upon his entrenchments, he
took the offensive, and advancing by land and river
defeated a second attempt upon his camp. From
North and South, news was brought that everywhere the
Indians, Cherokees, Apalatchees, and Yamassees, had
risen and massacred the white traders who happened to
be with them (384). The plot had long been maturing. The Indians, encouraged by the Spaniards at St.
Augustine, and the French at Mobile, had formed a
federation and were determined to drive the English
out of the Continent (384, 509 ii., 511, 520, 523, 537).
Ill treatment by the traders was evidently the chief
cause of their discontent (384, 520, 521, 524, 540; cf.
B.T. Journal, July 15 and 16, 1715). The first successes
gained by Governor Craven gave the Colonists a breathing
space, during which fortifications were thrown up and
measures taken to organise some sort of defence. The
number of enemy Indians was variously estimated at
8, 10, 12, and 15,000. As the number of white men in
the Province was at this time no more than 1,500 or
2,000, Craven armed and enlisted 200 negroes, and the
Assembly presently took steps towards raising a
"standing army" of 600 white men and 400 negroes
(509 ii., 511, 523, 540, 642 ii., iii., 691 i.). Panic had
spread at the horrible massacres by the barbarous enemy,
and many of the inhabitants were anxious to quit the
Province. Strong measures were taken to prevent
this. It was made a capital offence to quit the country
without permission (384, 509 ii., 642, 642 iii., 652 i. (d)).
The success which had at first attended the arms of
the Carolinians was short-lived. Exhausted by the
warfare in the woods, they were presently defeated in
two engagements. Charleston was hemmed in by the
enemy, who ravaged the country, "burning, murdering
and torturing all before them" (523). Further disasters
ensued, but the Carolinians were presently able to
take the offensive. Reverses were inflicted upon the
marauding Indians, and Governor Craven marched to
join hands with Col. Moore, who was advancing with a
relief force from North Carolina. It was hoped to
engage the Cherokees to fall on the other Southern
Indians. By October the situation was in hand (642,
642 i., ii., iii., 651).
Appeals for aid to Northern Colonies.; Intervention of the Five Nations.
The Colony had been in urgent need of arms and
ammunition. On the first outbreak, Governor Craven
had appealed to Virginia for assistance. Lt. Governor
Spotswood, recognising the possibility of a general rising
of the Indians, and the danger that threatened all the
Southern Colonies, made haste to comply, dispatching
H.M.S. Valeur with stores of war. He also wrote to
the Governors of the Northern Provinces urging them to
contribute out of H.M. stores to the need of Carolina,
and to send guardships to Charleston (449, 509 i., 520,
642 i.). But although it might have been expected that
the fear of a general rising of the Indians would stir the
Colonists to take some general and united action, the
Northern Governments showed no inclination to help
the Carolinians. Massachusetts only very grudgingly
allowed their Commissioners to purchase some arms
(642 iii.). The Assembly of New York would do nothing
to help them, but Governor Hunter sent them some arms
and ammunition from H.M. stores and at once began to
persuade the Five Nations to attack the rebellious
Indians (497, 569, 642 i.). He held conferences with
them, supplied them with arms for that purpose, and
was confident that this was the only means possible
of putting an end to the Carolina war (629, 629 i.–vi.,
673, 673 iv., v.).
Men sent from Virginia.; Badly by the Carolinians.
Spotswood was not content with contributing arms.
In response to a further appeal from Carolina, he hastily
raised and dispatched by sea, with the consent of the
Council, several bodies of men from Virginia, "in hopes
to extinguish the flames before it reached hither"
(520, 642 i., iii.). The Virginians rendered good service
by defeating a large body of Indians who had attacked
the southern parts of Carolina, and were already close to
Charleston, whilst the Governor was on his expedition
to the north-west (651, 652). Unfortunately the
Carolinians did not fulfil the conditions upon which they
had obtained this timely succour. Not only were
the men not paid and clothed, as had been promised,
or kept in one unit, but not one slave was sent to work on
their plantations, whereas the loan of a number equal to
the relief force had been stipulated. The result was that,
when Commissioners arrived in Virginia to ask for further
assistance, Spotswood declared that not a man in the
Dominion would enlist, and concluded, "as this is the
first assistance of that kind . . . . given by any of H.M.
Plantations here to the other, so I am afraid the great
discouragements this hath met with will make it the
last" (651, 652). But in the meantime the sky had
cleared. Two of the northern nations of Indians applied
to Spotswood for terms of peace (558). With characteristic jealousy, the Assembly of Carolina sent messengers
to Virginia, begging the Lt. Governor not to make a
treaty with these Indians, until they had submitted
themselves to the Government of Carolina. They
explained their reason for doing so in a letter to their
agents in England. They were afraid that the Virginians
would take the opportunity of securing to themselves
all the trade with the Indians concerned (642 iii., 651,
Appeals for aid to England.; The Board of Trade and the Lords Proprietors.; "Cabinet Council"; Board of Trade report.; Case laid before Parliament.
The first news of the Yamassee rising received at home
concluded with an urgent appeal for the dispatch of men,
ships and munitions of war, and for an Order of Council
to all the Plantations on the Continent to render aid,
together with a Proclamation forbidding the sale of
arms and ammunition to the Indians (384). This was
followed by similar appeals from the Governors, the
Lords Proprietors, the agents, Abel Ketelbey, Joseph
Boone and Richard Beresford, and other merchants and
planters (509 ii., 511, 523, 622). Presently came an
Address from the Assembly to the King, praying him to
take the Colony under his immediate Government and
protection, since the Lords Proprietors were unable to
support them in such a war (595, 642 iii.). On the
receipt of the news, the Board of Trade was at once
directed to report upon the state of the Province and the
most proper and speedy method of rendering it assistance
(509). They immediately summoned the Lords Proprietors
to a Conference (510, 514). On the same day the
Lords Proprietors wrote to the Board, informing them of
the outbreak. Declaring themselves unable to afford
suitable assistance, they applied to the Crown to send
men, arms and ammunition (511). Lord Carteret had
succeeded the late Duke of Beaufort as Palatine (13).
Both the young duke and Lord Craven were minors, and
it was therefore represented that the Lords Proprietors
could not bind themselves to repay to the Government
the cost of such assistance (511). The situation was
discussed by the "Lords of H.M. Cabinet Council"—the Privy Council —, attended by the Commissioners
of Trade (v. Journal of Council of Trade, July 14,
1715). The latter were instructed to enquire of the Lords
Proprietors what steps were being taken for the defence
of the Colony, what they intended to do, how they
proposed to repay the Government for any money
advanced to them, and whether those who were not
minors would consent to surrender their Government
to the Crown etc. (516, 516 i.). Their reply is given (517;
cf. B.T. Journal, July 15, 1715). The Board of Trade
reported upon it and the other information they had
received, that speedy and effectual relief was necessary;
that the Lords Proprietors were not able, or at least
not inclined, to furnish it at their own expense, or to
surrender their Government unless it were purchased;
and that therefore it was expedient for the Crown to
assume the protection of this valuable province, which
bade fair to be lost, like the Bahamas, through the
neglect of the Proprietors. They concluded with a statement of the amount of succour needed (524). The case
was then laid before Parliament (553, 554, 576). The
House of Commons addressed the Crown to send such
supplies as were deemed necessary. The Jacobite rising
of 1715, however, prevented the dispatch of any men
from England. Only some arms and ammunition were
sent (622; cf. C.O. 5, 1265. No. 30).
Bank Act and Issue of Paper Currency.
In the autumn of 1714, the Lord Proprietors had warned
the Governor and Council that exception was being
taken by the London merchants to the Bank Act which
had recently been passed (47). The heavy expenses of
the Yamassee war were met by an issue of paper bills
Governor Craven and the robbery of a Spanish Governor.; French and Spanish trade
Towards the end of the year information was received
that the Marquis de Navarres, a Spanish Governor on
his way home, had been robbed by the master of an
English brigantine, and that Governor Craven had not
only connived at the escape of the master, but also
himself detained some of the Marquis' possessions. The
Secretary of State commanded the Lords Proprietors
to call Craven to account and to remedy this barbarous
injustice (665—667). It was noted that the French at
Mobile were cutting into the trade of Carolina with the
Spaniards (691 i.).
The Hudson's Bay Company announced that they
had sent a ship in June, 1714, with a Governor and
Deputy Governor, to take possession of the Bay and
Straits etc., in accordance with the 10th Article of the
Treaty. This ship, by the request of the Canada
Company, was to transport the French who were settled
there, together with their effects. The Company once
more submitted their claim for damages inflicted by the
French (3, 4).
Capt. John Hart, who had been re-appointed Governor
of Maryland in the important circumstances described
above (§ 1), submitted a transcript of the laws in force
in the Colony, revised, amended, or re-enacted (541).
Amongst them may be noted those for increasing the
penalties for swearing and drunkenness, and restricting
the number of lashes that a master could lay upon his
white servants without orders by a magistrate.
Massachusetts Bay. The Eastern Indians.; Council assumes administration.; Project for a Land Bank.; Reception in London.; Governor Burges succeeds Dudley.
From Boston, Governor Dudley reported that, in
order to counteract French intrigues with the Eastern
Indians, he had held a conference with their Sachems at
Portsmouth and there obtained the ratification of the
pacification by those who had not signed it in the preceding year (28, 28 i., ii.). A year later, on the rumour of
an outbreak of war with France, Indians of Cape Sable
seized some New England vessels. Dudley promptly
dispatched H.M.S. Rose and two armed sloops to recover
them, and bring the Indians to account. The incident
closed with the surrender of the vessels and prisoners by
the Indians, who offered to pay damages (568, 568 i.
ff., 601, 642). Reference has been made (§ 1) to his
proclamation of King. George. At the expiration of the
six months after the demise of the Crown, no further
instructions had been received from England for the
extension of the period decreed by the statute of 6th
Anne for continuing officers in the Government. The
Council, therefore, felt themselves "obliged to undertake
the administration," and on the 2nd of March wrote to
the Council of Trade informing them of their action
(248, 248 i.).A little over a fortnight later, however,
Dudley received the proclamation continuing officers
until the King's pleasure was further known. The cost
of the defence of the frontiers during the war, which
Dudley had so ably conducted, had been very heavy.
It was said to amount to £30,000 a year. To meet it
and the shortage of currency, issues and re-issues of bills
of credit continued to be made by the Government. The
project of a Land Bank, conducted by private individuals,
who should be empowered to issue bills on the security
of land, was now revived. It had been mooted in the
XVIIth century and also in 1701. (fn. 2) The projectors
published their scheme, which immediately provoked
a protest from the Attorney General, Paul Dudley, the
Governor's son. He presented a memorial to the
Council. Acting upon his advice they forbade the issuing
of the scheme to the public until it had obtained the
sanction of the General Assembly with a view to obtaining
the assent of the Crown (61, 61 i., ii.). The promoters
next presented their petition to the Crown to be incorporated by Royal Charter as a Joint Stock Company
(458, 458 i., ii.). The scheme was supported by Thomas
Bannister (508, 521). But the agent, Mr. Dummer, was
instructed by the Governor, Council, and Assembly,
to oppose any such project, and to desire that it might
be referred to them (543, 579 i.). The Board of Trade
reported in this sense. Whilst agreeing that it was
absolutely necessary for the encouragement of trade that
bills of credit should be issued, they represented that it
was difficult to determine whether it would be better
for them to be issued by Acts of Assembly or by a private
bank, and that the Government of the Massachusetts
Bay ought to be consulted upon the proposal. They
remarked that the want of a sufficient medium for
carrying on trade was" a great obstruction to navigation
and the improvement of naval stores," and that the
promoters of the private bank had agreed to assign one
half of the profits arising from it to the public service
for raising naval stores in New England (582). This
attitude is contrary to the account given by Prof. Osgood,
who states that" there was not the slightest chance that
the Board of Trade would give it an approval." (American
Colonies in the XVIIIth century, II. pp. 137, 158).
With the accession of the Whigs to office, Dudley had lost
his friends at Court. Prof. Osgood (ib.) states that it was
in consequence of his opposition to the Land Bank
schemes that he was removed from office, and that the
Bank party induced Elezeus Burges, who had served with
Stanhope in Spain, to accept office, and promise not to
interfere with their plan (162, 163). But, in fact, Burges
very strongly opposed it, on the same grounds as the
late Governor, the General Assembly, and Dummer (550
i., 579 i.).
George Vaughan and New Hampshire.
The suggestions of George Vaughan with relation to
New England and especially New Hampshire (of which
province he was presently appointed Lt. Governor), are
referred to in § 1 (389 i.). The settlement of the long
disputed Proprietors' title to the soil, now passed from
Thomas Allen to Sir Mathew Dudley, was again urged
New York and New Jersey. Opposition of Clarendon and the Anglican party to Governor Hunter.; Hunter's reply to Clarendon.; Act to Discharge public debts of New York confirmed.; Hunter re-appointed.
The necessity for issuing new commissions at the
beginning of a new reign gave Governor Hunter's enemies
an opportunity of renewing their opposition. Dr. Daniel
Coxe and his son Samuel, father and brother of the leader
of the opposition in New Jersey, petitioned directly for
his removal (164, 229). They were called upon by the
Board to substantiate and define the general charges
they brought against him (435, 437, 569; Journal of
B. of T., Feb. 21, 1715). The Earl of Clarendon endeavoured to prevent the confirmation of the Act of New
York for the payment of the public debts, and the Act of
New Jersey for the support of the Government. With
consummate impudence he claimed that these Acts
deprived him of monies still due to him for his disbursements on behalf of those Governments (181, 207). This
action called forth from Hunter a bitter revelation of
the meanness and maladministration of his opponent.
He stated that the opposition to himself was largely
stimulated by Clarendon's agents, and that the people
were frightened by rumours of his being restored (311).
It was to his misapplication of the public funds that these
debts and the refusal of the Assembly to settle a revenue
were largely due. He himself had hitherto endeavoured
to spare Clarendon's reputation, whilst the noble Earl
had borrowed money from him at his departure. He had
hitherto suppressed a representation by the Assembly of
New Jersey, relating to the late Governor's maladministration. This he now forwarded, together with a copy
of part of a paper presented by the late Chief Justice
Mompesson to Governor Lord Lovelace, "a small part
of a very long representation of misgovernment" (435,
435 ii.–iv., 436, 437). The Council and Assembly of
New York declared that they knew of no money due to
Lord Clarendon. To remove any doubts, they passed
an explanatory Act of the Act of 1714 (435 i.). It is
not surprising that Clarendon's caveat failed, and that
the Board of Trade reported that they had no objection
to the Act for discharging the public debts of New York
(382; cf. Journal of B. of T. Feb. 8, 1715). It was
accordingly confirmed (471). Hunter was re-appointed
(183, 184), and Lord Townshend lost no time in assuring
him of the sympathy and support of the Whig Ministry
Coxe and the opposition in New Jersey.
In New Jersey, Coxe and Basse had revived the
opposition to Hunter. Acting with the Attorney General
as agents of Clarendon, they were supported by the
S.P.G. Missionary, Talbot, and the Jacobite and High
Church Party, especially in the Western Division. At
the election of a new Assembly a majority adverse to
Hunter was returned, a result partly secured by the
rumour that he was to be superseded (311, 337, 435, 530,
531, 532, 574, 645). Hunter suspended the Attorney
General (311, 337), and owing to the prolonged session
of the Assembly at New York adjourned that of the
Jerseys till September (p. 243).
New Jersey Acts.
Of the Acts passed in 1714 the most important was
the one for permitting the solemn affirmation of Quakers,
whom Hunter describes as being "by far the most
numerous and wealthy in the Western Division … and
the most dutyfull" (35). Another Act, laying a duty on
slaves, was intended to encourage the importation of
white servants, a similar law in Pennsylvania having
had that effect (35).
New York. Settlement of Revenue.; Change of attitude brough about by change of Ministry.
In New York, these were the critical years in the struggle
for a settlement of a revenue. At the beginning of this
period Hunter was only able to announce that the
Assembly had renewed the Act for the support of the
Government for the ensuing year and that support was
intentionally deceptive. For though the duty on wine
devoted to that object was continued, the country was
already overstocked with wine. As on the other hand,
the duty on rum was dropped by the new Act, it was
regarded as certain that adequate funds would not be
realised. In the next year, Hunter foresaw, the duties
would be reversed, when stores of rum had been laid in,
and those of wine had run low. Thus with an appearance
of providing a revenue, the Assembly were making sure
that the Government would once more have to provide
for itself, and to apply for relief at the end of the year.
Hunter was already admittedly owed £5,000. The
process of starving or bribing the officers of State into
submission to the will and control of the Assembly
seemed well on the way to accomplishment (34, 435).
"Some men," the sorely tried Governor remarked, "in
my station, would have made concessions of any kind
how prejudicial soever to the interest of the Crown,
rather than be reduced to that misery I have groaned
under these past five years" (311, 530). But the death
of Queen Anne wrought a swift and welcome change.
The patience, the uprightness, the diplomacy of Hunter
had already prepared the way for some compromise on
the part of the Assembly. The threat that a fixed
revenue would be imposed by Parliament had long
been held over their heads. A bill had indeed been
introduced for that purpose. They probably knew as
well as Hunter, that the Tory Ministry had not been at
all anxious to proceed with it (82, 645 ii.). But they
did not know what line might be taken by the Whigs,
and they did know that Hunter's friends and supporters
were once more in office. Within a fortnight of writing
the report first mentioned, he added a postscript to it,
stating that the Assembly had accepted all the Council's
amendments to the Act for discharging the public debts
including the money owed to him,—in other words an
Act for the past support of Government. The money
arising from the duties laid by this Act was, indeed,
to be lodged in the hands of the country's Treasurer
instead of those of the Receiver General. But this point
Hunter was now inclined to concede, as having been
permitted in other Provinces, and he pressed for the
confirmation of this Act. If the Royal assent were
withheld, his own position would be more deplorable
than his worst enemies could wish (34, 82, 83, 95). In
spite of their opposition however, the Act, as we have
seen, was ratified (181, 207, 471).
Revenue, Agency and Naturalization Acts passed.; Lewis Morris.
In the spring Hunter reported that the Assembly was
postponing all business to the passing of an Act for general
naturalization and an Agency Act. The latter, which
excluded the Governor and Council from having anything
to do with the Agent or from making representations
through him, could never pass; and its rejection would
be taken as an excuse for letting the support of the
Government lapse for another year (435). Shortly
afterwards, however, a bargain was struck. In return
for passing the Naturalization Act, Hunter obtained from
the Assembly an Act for settling the Revenue for the
support of H.M. revenue for five years. After "struggling
hard for bread itself for five years," Hunter was now able
to declare, with a sigh of relief, that he had at last "laid
a foundation for a lasting settlement in this hitherto
unsettled and ungovernable Province" (530). Exception
might be taken to the provisions by which the Assemblymen's allowances were to be paid out of the revenue, and
by which the money raised was to be lodged in the hands
of the country's Treasurer instead of those of the Receiver
General. But it was necessary that the former should
receive the money allotted as a sinking fund against
bills for £6,000 ordered to be issued. An Agency Act
was also passed, by which John Champante, who had
long been agent for the four Independent Companies,
was appointed by the joint action of the Governor,
Council and Assembly to act as Agent for the country in
London. The Naturalization Act, which was ardently
desired by the French and Dutch of the province, declared
that all who were resident in 1683 and had since died
seized of lands should be deemed to have been naturalized, and further naturalized all Protestants of foreign
birth resident in 1715. It was largely through the
mediation of Lewis Morris that this compromise was
finally achieved and the long dispute over the Revenue
set at rest for a generation. Hunter rewarded him by
appointing him Chief Justice, an appointment upheld
by the Council of Trade (311, 530, 592).
At the beginning of this period Hunter reported that
the Palatines were scattered, but that the trees which
they had been brought to prepare were now ready for
the manufacture of tar. If money was forthcoming,
he could set them to work (34, 673, 673 i.). He submitted
his accounts for their subsistence, and again begged for
a settlement of the large sum due to him (34). Later,
when his position was assured, he wrote to Mr. Popple
and Lord Stair accounts of all that he had had to endure
from the hostility of the late Lord Treasurer, Nicholson,
Clarendon and the rest (311, 530, 645, 645 i.–iii.). But
in the matter of the Palatines he received no redress,
whilst Jean Conrad Weizer went to England to act as
spokesman for those who had settled in the Mohawks'
country, contrary to Hunter's instructions (530).
Vesey and Talbot and the Jacobite party.
Another source of irritation and anxiety had been the
behaviour of the Rev. Mr. Vesey, the Rector of Trinity
Church, New York, and the Rev. Mr. Talbot, the S.P.G.
Missionary in New Jersey. Encouraged by the patronage
of Nicholson and the Bishop of London, these two
clergymen, professed Jacobites, Hunter declares, had
begun to raise the cry of the Church in danger, and to
organise the opposition to the Whig Governor. Vesey
went to England on this quest, and returned as the
Bishop's Commissary with the news that Hunter had
neither friends nor interest. Events proved otherwise,
and the Jacobite faction "though few in number yet
strong in malice" was doomed to bitter disappointment.
In view of Hunter's representations, the Council of Trade
called the attention of the Bishop to the "necessity of
missionaries being men of unspotted characters," and gave
a plain hint that Talbot was unfitted to be appointed as
his Commissary (479, 569, 629 vii., 645, 645 ii., 663, 674,
677; B.T. Journal, Aug. 24, 1715).
Hunter's replies to queries upon the state of New York.; Cruelty of Negro Act.; Supernumerary Councillors.
In pursuit of their quest for information and statistics,
the Board of Trade put a series of queries to Hunter
(477), to which he replied in full (673). Although it
was impossible to obtain a satisfactory census, owing to
the "insurmountable superstition " of the people, the
number of inhabitants was clearly increasing. But want
of lands, owing to the large grants of undeveloped estates,
acted as a check upon the population and caused many
to emigrate into neighbouring Colonies. Trade, since
the Peace, had decreased owing to the attitude of the
Spaniards. Provisions were the chief staple of trade:
manufactures were of little account, for only those who
could not afford English cloth wore homespun. The
encouragement of the export of Naval Stores was
essential to the prosperity of the country, for which
Hunter submitted a proposal (673, 673 vi.). Caleb
Heathcote's similar proposals also indicate an increasing
activity in shipbuilding (165 i.–xxvi., 673, 673 vii.).
A copper mine was being worked, from which the
Governor suggested that copper farthings should be
minted, the lack of small coins being a serious handicap
(673). Hunter again drew attention to the cruelty of
some of the provisions of the Act for preventing negro
conspiracies etc. (673). His proposal for the appointment of supernumerary Councillors was rejected by the
Council of Trade (629).
Nova Scotia. Col. Vetch re-appointed.; The Garrison starving.
Col. Vetch applied for re-appointment as Governor of
Annapolis Royal. His references to the attitude of
General Nicholson have already been mentioned (122 i.,
ii.; and see § 1). He urged the speedy settling of Nova
Scotia, and extolled the richness of its natural resources
and the Fishery (124). In response to enquiries from the
Board of Trade, Lt. Governor Caulfield also sent in an
interesting account of the condition and resources of the
country (527, 658, 659). The Council of Trade reported
in favour of Vetch's petition, emphasising his services
and the hardships and harsh treatment he had suffered
(173). The complaints against him were countered by
strong testimonials to his character, ability and knowledge of North America, and to the violence of Nicholson's
proceedings against him. (Cf. B.T. Journal, Jan. 17 and
18, 1715). He was accordingly appointed "Governor of
Nova Scotia and of the town and garrison of Annapolis
Royal" (178). The question of reducing this garrison and
that of Placentia was considered, but the Council of Trade
reported that this was hardly a suitable moment (498,
506). In the mean time the plight of the soldiers was
deplorable. Their pay was in arrears; they were
wretchedly clad in the shoddy clothing provided for the
Canada expedition,— "Mr. Moore's clothing,"—and the
despatch of provisions was so long delayed and inadequate
that they were on the verge of starvation (142, 142 i.,
397, 399, 411, 411 i., 412, 412 i., 413, 423, 491, 601, 602).
Report by the Council of Trade.; The French inhabitants.
In March, 1715, the Council of Trade made a report
upon the condition and prospects of Nova Scotia, drawn
from information supplied from various sources (286,
293 i., 294, etc.). The question of the French inhabitants
was the subject of much discussion. It was represented
that they had at first been willing to remain, but that,
moved by the threats of two French officers and the
pressure put upon them by Nicholson, they were now
preparing to remove to Cape Breton, and were demanding
the term of a year in which to transport themselves,
their corn and cattle and other moveables. The result
of this exodus would be to denude the whole country of
inhabitants, Indian as well as French, and much needed
cattle, and to strengthen Cape Breton proportionately.
It was urged that they were no longer entitled to exercise
that option (85 i., 94, 142, 142 i.–x., 159, 159 i.–xiv, 293
i., 439 iii., 440, 442 ii., 491, 571, 601, 602, 685; cf.
B.T. Journal, Aug. 13, Nov. 23, Dec. 22, 1714, and March
Bounds of Nova Scotia.
The Council of Trade state that the ancient boundaries
of Accadie included Cape Breton, and a document is
given showing that the French Government of Nova
Scotia claimed to extend from Cape Rozieres to the
western bank of Kenebec River (293 i.). On the other
hand, a memorial was lodged with the Secretary of State
representing that Nova Scotia was included in the charter
of Massachusetts Bay, and urging the advantage of its
being placed under that government (416 i.).
Before coming to a decision upon the method of settling
and defending the country, the Board of Trade represented the need of a survey being made, both of the coast
and of the woods and inland country (293 i., 491).
Virginia Request for grant of arms.; Revenue and quit-rents.
The aid rendered to Carolina by the Virginians is
referred to in § 1. Lt. Governor Spotswood took the
opportunity to urge the necessity of a grant of arms from
home, especially as the Assembly could not be induced
to improve the Militia (520). He suggested that a
sufficient supply should be sent by the Crown for Virginia
to serve as a store-house from which other Colonies could
draw in case of need (449, 520). The Council of Trade
supported the first part of his request (625). Spotswood
drew from the present emergency an additional argument
in favour of making good by a grant from the quit-rents
the deficiency of the revenue of 2s. per hhd. upon
exported tobacco, which was appropriated to the support
of the Government, and which had fallen short owing to
depression in the tobacco trade. He was able to point
out that the quit-rent fund had been largely increased
under his stewardship. So far he supported a petition
of the Council and Assembly; but he dissociated himself
from their request that none of the quit-rents should
be remitted to the Treasury, and that the whole sum should
be devoted to the expences of the administration (188,
188 i.–iv., 449, 529 i., 651). The Council of Trade reported
in favour of leaving the quit-rents in bank in Virginia,
making good the deficiency of the revenue out of that
fund, and empowering the Governor and Council to draw
upon it in case of a great and sudden emergency, such as
invasion by Indians or other enemies (600).
Settlement on the frontier.; Regulation of the Indian Trade.
In the autumn of 1714 Spotswood returned from a
six weeks expedition to the frontier where he developed
his policy of expansion. Some of the German Protestants
who had been brought over by Baron de Graffenried were
settled on the Rappahannock frontier. The Assembly
expressed its approval in an address and granted the
German settlers immunity from taxation for seven
years (70, 107 iii., 188). A more controversial side of
Spotswood's frontier policy was embodied in an Act
for the better regulation of the Indian trade. A monopoly
of this trade was henceforth to be in the hands of a
company. By this means it was hoped to eliminate the
abuses practised by independent traders with such
disastrous consequences in the past. The trade was to
be carried on at Christanna, the new settlement made by
Spotswood on the frontier. He expected thereby to
concentrate the Tributary Indians in that vicinity, and
that they would form a barrier against the enemy, and
at the same time be kept from too close an intimacy with
the Virginian settlers, and from tempting knowledge of
the weakness and isolation of the frontier plantations.
Control of the trade and of the supply of arms and
ammunition to the Indians would now be in the power of
the Government. The Indians were to be educated and
taught Christianity. The scheme naturally met with a
good deal of opposition. Spotswood remarked that the
Virginians in general were " supine favourers of all new
attempts," and made a second journey to the frontier
to push forward his plans. He finished the fortifications
at Christanna, settled a body of 300 "Saponies " there,
and himself paid the salary of a schoolmaster to teach the
Indian boys and girls he selected. At the same time he
fixed the boundaries of the hunting grounds of the
Tuscarora and other Indians (188, 320, 449).
The new Assembly.; Dissolved.; Payment of members.
Spotswood summoned a new Assembly to meet on 3rd
Aug., 1715, and deal with the menace of a general rising
of the Indians and the question of aid for South Carolina.
He describes the representatives chosen in this crisis
as persons "of the meanest capacitys and most indifferent
circumstances," pledged to raise no taxes whatsoever.
Their sole object was the repeal of the recent Acts for
preventing fraudulent practices in the tobacco trade,
although that Act had already exercised a strikingly
good effect upon public credit (188, 320, 558, 652).
Spotswood summed up the result of their five weeks'
session in a Speech of the most outspoken and withering
contempt, and then dissolved them. He was able to
report, however, that the country was for the most part
disgusted with them and that the frontiers "however
left unguarded by their perverse humour" were still
undisturbed. The bills sent up by them involved such
obvious encroachments upon the prerogative of the
Crown and injustice to their fellow subjects that they
were promptly rejected by the Council. Spotswood
commented upon the evil effect of payment of members,
as encouraging a class of "mobbish candidates who
always outbid the gentlemen of sense and principles,"
and he devised a scheme for lessening the temptation of
such "mean necessitous fellows" to serve as Burgesses
Several Acts, chiefly of a purely domestic character,
passed by the former Assembly, are described (188).
The Act declaring who shall not bear office etc. was
repealed for reasons given (504), but permission was granted
to the Assembly to pass a new Act of similar intent, if it
avoided the objections now made to it (591).
Births and Deaths.
A list of births and burials for six months was returned
Spotswood drew attention to the undesirability of too
many members of one family being appointed to the
§ 3. THE WEST INDIES.
Pirates in the Bahamas.; Petition of John Graves.; Governor appointed by the Lords Proprietors.
From the Bahamas, left derelict by the Lords Proprietors, came news of piratical onslaughts committed
upon the Spaniards off the coast of Cuba by pirates like
Daniel Stillwell and Benjamin Hornigold, who made
their headquarters at Islathera and Harbour Island.
Captain Thomas Walker gallantly endeavoured to
maintain law and order from New Providence in the
absence of a Governor, and on the strength of an old
commission as Judge of the Vice-Admiralty. He arrested
some of the pirates and sent Stillwell for trial to Jamaica.
Hearing that the Spaniards had sent some ships to take
vengeance on the inhabitants of New Providence, Walker
hurried off to Havana and succeeded in pacifying the
Governor by explaining the action he had taken. Stillwell,
however, escaped on the voyage to Jamaica and it was
feared that the Spaniards would make reprisals (276,
276 i.–v., 459, 459 i.). In these circumstances John
Graves renewed his campaign for the establishment of a
garrison and government under the Crown (459, 459 ii.,
502). The Lords Proprietors, whose right to retain their
Charter was being challenged by events in Carolina, now
made a move to revive the responsibilities they had
abandoned in the Bahamas. They appointed a Governor,
Roger Mostyn, and asked for the approbation of the
Crown (594 i.). The Council of Trade, on the contrary,
recommended the resumption of the Government by the
Barbados. Re-appointment of Governor Lowther. He restores the officers displaced by William sharpe.; Cattle disease and drought.; Number of white servants.; Inspection of accounts.
The turn of the political wheel brought about the
dismissal of William Sharpe, Alexander Walker, and
Samuel Beresford from the Council of Barbados (231),
and the re-appointment of Governor Lowther (84, 231
i.). Sharpe, whilst President of the Council, had been
busy making changes in the Commissions of the Peace,
the Militia, and the judiciary, and had suspended Col.
Frere from the Council (97, 654; B.T. Journal, Sept.,
7, 1714). Lowther represents that Sharpe's Jacobite
and Francophil policy— for he had fraternised with the
French on Martinique, allowing them to view the
fortifications and sound the roads and bays— had caused
great dissatisfaction and uneasiness. He discreetly left
the Island on the day of Lowther's arrival (434). The
latter, of course, at once replaced the officers who had been
removed, and reported that the spirit of contention and
faction which had raged for so many years was now
entirely assuaged (654). But the island was suffering
from a severe outbreak of disease amongst sheep, cattle,
and horses, and from the effects of a drought (434).
Lowther prevailed upon the Assembly to provide money
for the repair of the fortifications and artillery, and the
payment of the gunners and of the public debts. He also
obtained an Act for the appointment of six Commissioners
to supervise the work on the fortifications and the
expenditure thereon. He explains the old system by
which the money voted for that purpose had been wasted
or embezzled (654). He had been instructed by the
Council of Trade to enquire into this matter, and also
to see that the law obliging planters to keep a number of
white servants for the militia in proportion to the acreage
of their lands, was properly executed or amended if
necessary (534, 654). As to their instruction with
regard to the inspection of the public accounts (534),
he replied that a recent Act empowered a Committee
of the Council and Assembly to audit and settle such
accounts, and that the Governor was thereby excluded
from any share in that matter (654).
Demand for a Treasurer appointed by the Crown.
A noteworthy petition of some Barbados merchants
was presented in July, 1715. It alleged that the custom
by which the Assembly chose one of their number to
be Treasurer was open to grave objection. That office
being of great trust and profit was the cause of keen
contention between the parties, both at the time of the
elections and the choice of a Treasurer. The merchants
therefore proposed that the Treasurer should, in future,
be appointed by the Crown, and obliged to pass his
accounts before the Assembly and transmit them to the
Board of Trade. The Governor was not to be empowered
to suspend him, except by order of the Board. This
unsolicited testimonial in favour of the system of Patent
Offices is interesting (533).
Sta. Lucia and Tobago.
In reply to a complaint by the Governor of Martinique
that French wood cutters had been interfered with by
H.M. ships of war at Sta. Lucia, and to his assertion
of the French claim to Tobago (244, 244 i.), the British
title to those islands was asserted by the acting Governor
of Barbados, and reiterated by the Board of Trade's
report, quoting their representation of 1709 (244 ii., 378).
Benjamin Bennett was re-appointed to the Governorship of Bermuda (235). Before the news of his appointment arrived, Henry Pulleine, who had superseded him,
died of an epidemic which had broken out, and the
Council petitioned for the return of Bennett.
Jamaica.; The Governor and the Assembly.; Adequate revenue refused.; Opposition to Royal Governors.
A decrease in the number of white inhabitants fit to
bear arms was noted in Jamaica as in Barbados and the
Leeward Islands. This was due partly to the increase
of large estates and the number of negroes employed on
them, partly to the war and the loss of trade on the
Spanish coast (358 i., 588). The Governor of Jamaica,
Lord Archibald Hamilton, attributed it in great measure
to the Assembly having allowed the "Deficiency" Act
to lapse (358 i., 362, 675 v.). The renewal of that Act,
which obliged planters to keep a certain number of white
men in proportion to their negroes, and the passing of
some measure for encouraging settlers had been urged
both by the Governor and by responsible planters and
merchants (303, 588). But there was at this time an
irreconcileable party in Jamaica represented both in the
Council and the Assembly, whose principle of action was
factious opposition to everything proposed by a royal
Governor (112, 302 ii., iii., 362, 588). In this connection
Lord Archibald mentions a tendency which did undoubtedly prove a failing in West Indian colonization. The
political and social sense of the community was weakened
by the "general inclination of the inhabitants, natives
as well as others, sooner or later to go home, as their
fraise is. . . .Their present interest is cheefly considered
the better to enable the prosecution of that design"
(p. 275). The new Assembly met in the back end of the
year, and after it had sat for three days, Lord Archibald
prorogued it till Jan. 18. The dissatisfied or Country
party, as it was called, having by hook or crook obtained
a small majority, encouraged and fomented by a party
in the Council and by the report of the Governor's
removal, refused to vote an adequate revenue (112, 302
ii., iii., 362). The close resemblance of affairs to those
of New York continues to be remarkable. Lord Archibald
represents their whole procedure as being part of a scheme
for securing the abolition of a royal Governor, on the
grounds that the country could not afford his salary, and
as a device for obtaining a Lieutenant Governor appointed
from one of themselves, according to the desire expressed
in the year 1692 (112, 302 iii.). In the meantime he was
left to provide the subsistence of the two Independent
Companies of regular troops out of his own pocket. He
prorogued the Assembly because they refused to allow
him to join in their address of congratulation to the new
King (112, 302 ii.). Members of the opposing faction,
when questioned by the Council of Trade, admitted that
the actions of the Assembly did not arise from any
personal feeling against Lord Archibald, and that, whilst
they asked for the removal of the troops, the island
would not be safe without them. (B. T. Journal, March
An awkward situation arose at the end of January,
1715. The Attorney General of the Island gave it as
his opinion that the six months mentioned in the Statute
for continuing officers after the demise of the Crown were
to be computed as lunar months. The Proclamation
extending that period not having yet reached Jamaica,
it was decided that all public bussiness must come to a
standstill. Proclamations were issued dissolving the
Assembly, but at the same time calling upon all persons
in office, civil or military, to continue the preservation
of public peace. No disorder ensued (191, 191 i.).
Lord Archibald re-appointed Governor. Attitude of the new Board of Trade.; New Instructions.; Conciliatory policy. Acts for quicting possessions and regulating fees confirmed.; Royal Letter to Governor.
Lord Archibald was re-appointed Governor. The
new Council of Trade concurred with the old Board in
approving his conduct towards the Assembly, and in
their strong pronouncement upon its claims to adjourn
itself and its denial of the right of the Council to amend
money bills (v. C. S. P. 1714, No. 701). They expressed
their disapproval of the Assembly's refusal to allow the
Governor to join in their address, but, in view of "the
good dispositions which are shown here for the support
of Jamaica," they hoped it would mend its ways in the
future (359). In submitting a draft of Lord Archibald's
new instructions, the Board called attention to the "weak
and dangerous condition of the island, being in a manner
environed by the French and Spaniards, especially the
French at Hispaniola" (358). They recounted the
claims of the Assembly and the obstruction the Governor
had met with from the Assembly and part of the Council,
and in accordance with his request made certain changes
in the Councillors (302 iii., 358 i.). At the same time they
introduced a clause restraining the Governor from
suspending Councillors without the consent of the majority
of the Council. The Governor was instructed to promote
legislation for dealing with the abuse of large undeveloped
estates, and an alteration was made in the manner of
dealing with escheats, which was to be henceforward in
accordance with the law of the island for preventing
of lawsuits. The dangerous disproportion of white to
black inhabitants was to be countered by putting the
laws for encouraging the importation of white servants
and the settlement of the island into execution. The
necessity of retaining the two Independent Companies
of soldiers was strongly insisted upon, and it was proposed
that the Governor should be instructed to press the
Assembly to provide for their subsistence as formerly,
with a promise that if they would pass effectual laws for
peopling the island, the soldiers would be recalled when
it was in a reasonable state of defence. The Board
concluded with the suggestion that the weak condition
of the island rendered some help from home advisable
(358 i., ii.). They were ordered to report further upon
this latter point (467). At the same time the Board
wrote to Lord Archibald explaining what they "had
done for the advantage of Jamaica and the making your
Lordship easy in your Government" (359). Whilst
criticising the Acts for encouraging the importation of
white servants and the settlement of the island, they very
wisely suggested that a fine of £6 per annum for every
deficiency in the number of white servants required to
be kept, should be used, not as revenue, but to form a
fund for paying the passages and providing lands for
new settlers. Negroes were to be prohibited from being
trained to handicrafts (359). These suggestions were
prompted by a memorial signed by Nicholas Lawes,
Richard Rigby, and other planters in answer to queries put
to them at an interview with the Council of Trade (303;
B. T. Journal, March 18, 1715). The Council concluded by assuring the Governor that they were both
inclined and willing to do all they could for the advantage
of the island. He might assure the Council and Assembly
that nothing would be wanting on their parts, that could
be desired in reason and justice, to make the people easy.
Their proposals were only meant as suggestions for their
own good, which the Assembly might embody in a law.
As a practical demonstration of this policy of reconciliation and good will, they referred back to the Attorney
General his adverse report upon the Act for quieting
possessions (C.S.P. 1713. No, 394), on the grounds that
its not being confirmed was one of the chief sources of
discontent, and that it was absolutely necessary that
some favours should be granted from the Crown for
quieting the minds of the people (351, 359, 588). In
reply, Sir Edward Northey waived some of his objections,
but added sourly that it would be a bad precedent to
"doe unreasonable things for the satisfaction of persons,
who, contrary to their duty to the Crown, would endeavour
to put difficultyes upon the Government if their unreasonable demands be not granted." The matter, he hinted,
could have been set at rest more reasonably, if the country
had acted on the proposals of 1713 (355). This Act,
and the Act for regulating fees were, for the above reasons,
now confirmed (366, 371). In accordance with the
above representation by the Board of Trade, a royal
letter was written to the Governor, announcing the
confirmation of these Acts " so long and so earnestly
desired," and promising assistance and protection to the
inhabitants in very gracious terms. Regret was expressed
that in these times of trouble and danger there had been
dissensions in the Assemblies. In return for the passing
of these laws, it was expected that provision should be
made for an adequate revenue and the payment of the
public debts, and subsistence for the soldiers, "till
by the good laws which shall be made for encouraging
the increase of inhabitants there may be no further
occasion for them." A cheerful compliance in such
proceedings for the public good, the Assembly was to be
assured, would always prove the most effectual recommendation for the continuance of the King's favour
and protection (402). Lord Archibald acknowledged
these "extraordinary marks of H.M. most gracious
condescension" (588, 675 v.). Certainly, in these early
stages in the battle for a permanent revenue the Home
Government was acting, in accordance with the recommendations of the Council of Trade, with great prudence
and moderation. Accounts of the revenue are given
(Nos. 362 i., 675 ii.).
Hostility of the Assembly.
The new Assembly, however, showed not the slightest
sign of accepting the olive branch which had been held
out to it. Their first move was to declare that no Councillor or Colonel of militia had a right to take part in the
election of Assemblymen. They refused to pay the
money due to the Governor for the subsistence of the
two Companies, and complained that it was due to his
representations that the whole regiment had not been
disbanded. Subsistence for the soldiers was voted, but
only for a year, and that only in case, before its expiration,
200 white men had not been brought over by the Act for
encouraging white settlers. Upon this revelation of
their determination to continue their encroachments
upon the powers of the Council and the prerogatives of
the Crown, Lord Archibald frankly despaired of inducing
them to act in accordance with his instructions. He
suggested that he should be empowered to draw the money
advanced by him out of the Revenue, and proposed, if
the Assembly refused to vote supplies, to carry on the
administration by calling in outstanding debts (690).
Leeward Islands. Governor appointed.; St. Kitts' militia act.; Sugar Act.
Colonel William Codrington was appointed Governor
of the Leeward Islands in the beginning of 1715 (148).
But upon representations made to the King, this appointment was revoked, and Colonel Walter Hamilton was
commissioned in his stead (192). Both were closely
connected with the Leeward Islands. The charges
which had been brought against Hamilton by the
relatives of Governor Parke were dismissed as frivolous,
and he was ordered to repair to his government (661).
During his absence the administration of the islands
was carried on by the Lt. Governor, William Mathew
(500, 653). In St. Kitts he secured the passing of an
Act for regulating the Militia, which he represented as
an improvement upon its "very lame and insufficient"
predecessors (653). Another Act prohibited the importation of sugar from Nevis. Hitherto Nevis had served
as a port for St. Christopher's. Goods were unloaded
there and transshipped to the neighbouring island.
Now that St. Kitts was wholly English shipping could
come to Basseterre, where Mathew had raised a battery
for their protection, and by the direct trade encouraged
by this Act, the inhabitants would be saved the 6 or 8
p.c. extra cost on the transported goods (653).
Disposal of the French lands.; Large estates versus small.
Another law made was for ascertaining the bounds of
settlements already made in the former French part of
the island. This was only intended to be a temporary
Act until a decision was arrived at as to the final disposal
of the French lands (653). For the settlement of the
former French part of St. Kitts and the restoration of
French Protestant Refugees to the lands which they had
been forced to abandon were questions still under
discussion (73, 74, 74, i.–vii., 161, 500). It was represented
by Governor Hamilton, as by others before him, that the
decrease of the inhabitants of the Leeward Islands
was mainly due to the freezing out of poor planters of
small estates by the rich owners of large plantations (348 i.,
500). He therefore proposed that 2,500 acres near the
sea should be granted to poor settlers in lots of six acres
gratis, with a proviso that they were not to be sold to
any other holder of lands in St. Kitts. Each holding
was to furnish a white man for the militia, and the 4½ p.c.
duty was to be extended to the French part of the island
etc. (348 i.).
Commissioners for sale of French lands appointed.
In a memorial of uncertain date, William Penn's
family applied for a grant of the French lands (140).
In pursuance of the recommendation of the Board of
Trade (C.S.P. 1714. No. 662), Commissioners were
appointed for the sale of the French lands (373). A
subsequent representation by the Board amplified and
modified their recommendations of May 5, 1714, largely
in the directions suggested by Hamilton (377 i.).
Returns of the Militia rolls of St. Kitts and Antigua
were sent in (653, 653, ii.).
The raid on Montserrat.; The Hostages from Nevis.; Opinion of the Advocate General.; Analogy of the "Manila" ransom.
Apart from the adjustment of damages for the raid on
Montserrat, for which Commissioners were to be appointed
under the Treaty (1, 1 i.–v., 653), the coming of Peace
gave occasion for raising once more the old-standing
grievance of the hostages carried off by M. d'Iberville
from Nevis and kept at Martinique ever since 1706.
It was urged that the French had committed breaches of
the capitulation and that these, together with the methods
used to force the inhabitants to sign the second agreement,
acquitted them from all obligation to fulfill it; also,
that the so-called hostages had been taken by force and
were neither more nor less than prisoners of war, who
under the XXIIIrd article of the Treaty were due to
be discharged (1, 10, 455, 456, 507, 539). On these
grounds petitions were submitted for their release (10,
455, 456, 507, 539). The reply of the French Governor
of Martinique, approved by the Court of France, was
that their release must await the decision of the Commissioners to be appointed under Article XI. of the Treaty
(86 i.). In a pathetic appeal the remaining hostages
described their miserable condition, and taxed the people
of Nevis with failing to fulfill their promise to relieve
them by other hostages and to pay for their maintenance.
It was, however, stated in reply that what was due on
the latter account had been paid (10, 357 i., 455). Queries
upon the points raised in the petitions were put by the
Board of Trade to the Advocate General (539). The
answer of Sir Nathaniel Lloyd must have been a bombshell for the petitioners. He found on all points in
favour of the actions of the French (545). It may be
noted that an analogous situation arose half a century
later over the famous "Manila ransom."
The Virgin Islands.
The Virgin Islands were included in the Commissions
of Governors of the Leeward Islands. Captain Walton,
who had received a Commission as Lt. Governor of these
islands in 1707 (668), renewed his request for their
settlement under his separate government (464 i., 586).
With the exaggeration of an enthusiast he described
them as "much superior to the Leeward Islands," but
gave expression to a general truth as to the jealousy of
planters of the development of other sugar islands,
when he said that the inhabitants of the Leeward Islands
had always been against their settlement, fearing for
their private interest (586, 587, 613; cf. C.S.P. 1710,
1711). His proposals presently crystallised into a request
for a patent to settle Spanish Town (606). In reply to
the enquiries of the Board of Trade, he undertook to
settle fifty families there within seven years, but demanded
a salary as Lt. Governor (606, 613). The Board reported
that nothing had been done upon the representation of
the former Commissioners, and proposed that a Captain
of a man of war should be directed to visit the Virgin
Islands and report upon them (614). This proposal was
accepted by an Order in Council, and Captain Walton's
petition to accompany the ship and to receive some
emolument for his services was referred to the
Board of Trade (648, 648 i.). At the same time they
instructed Hamilton to transmit an account of the condition and resources of the Islands and his opinion upon
the advisability of making a settlement there (620).
Newfoundland. Evacuation of Placentia.; Disposal of French estates.; Jurisdiction of the Fishery there.; Taverner's survey and maps.; French inhabitants.
The evacuation of Placentia by the French was
completed in the beginning of September (49). Lt.
Governor Moody, however, permitted them to continue
fishing there, and to trade in salt, in the absence of
English fishing vessels, under certain restrictions (49,
179 vii., 646 ii.). This gave rise to complaints (288 i.,
323, etc.). Moody had raised the question of the disposal
of the estates and fishing stages of the French inhabitants
who refused to take the oath of allegiance and quitted
Placentia in order to settle at Cape Breton. He also
enquired how far Placentia and its fishing grounds, of
which he had been appointed military Governor, was
to be subject to the jurisdiction of the Commodore of
the Fishing Convoy and the Fishing Admirals. Bolingbroke, writing in the name of the Lords Justices, called
for a report upon these points, and also upon Moody's
request for an Admiralty sloop to attend his government
(21). In the meantime, Capt. Taverner was instructed
to continue his survey of the Fishery (22, 23). This
instruction was repeated and confirmed after considerable
investigation, and his charts ordered to be printed. He
was also directed to survey Placentia with a view to a
decision as to its fortifications (39—41, 267, 404—406).
French encroachments on the fishery were ordered to
be prevented by force if necessary (22), as had been done
(69 i., iv., 288 i., 323). The retaining of any French
inhabitants at Placentia was reported by the Board
of Trade as undesirable. They instanced the experience
of Nova Scotia, where those who had taken the oath were
absolved by a priest and had risen in arms against the
British garrison (26). Colonel Moody's suggestion of
allotting lands to the garrison was not acceptable.
Jurisdiction remained with the Commodore or Captain
of the men of war and fishing admirals, in accordance
with the Act to encourage the trade to Newfoundland,
whilst it was undesirable that officers of the garrison
should have anything to do with the Fishery or the
distribution of beaches and stages left by the French.
A sloop was not so good as men of war (26).
Consideration of Newfoundland problems.; The garrison at Placentia.
Much time and consideration were devoted to the
problems of the settlement of Newfoundland and the
organisation of the fishery. Reports were called for by
the Ministry, House of Commons, and the Council of
Trade, and were returned by the latter, by the fishing
ports concerned, and men closely connected with the
fishery, such as Archibald Cumings, Solomon Merrett,
and the Commodores of the Convoy. But in the meantime the garrison at Placentia was on the verge of
starvation. The hardships to which they were exposed
provoked a mutiny, which was quelled by Moody. At
length steps were taken to dispatch food, stores, and
pay (194 vii.–ix., xiii., 245, 267, 404, 489, 646 ii.).
The Fishing Admirals inadequate.; Establishment of a civil Government proposed.; Opposition by West Country ports.
From the reports received, it was evident that the
system by which justice was administered by Fishing
Admirals had broken down. Their authority was too
often either abused or ignored. Captain Kempthorn
bluntly declared that they had become a nuisance to
the country (64 i., 146, 179 i., 636 i., 646 ii.). Only the
presence of the Commodore preserved the Fishery and
inhabitants from anarchy. In the winter—indeed for
six months of the year—there was no government at
all, and the inhabitants lived like barbarians (202, 646
ii.). The establishment of some permanent civil authority
began, therefore, to be urged (202, 546 ii.). The settlement of the Placentia district by disbanded soldiers was
proposed by Merrett (201). Both schemes were opposed
by the West Country merchants, who declared that the
more Governors, the more their fishermen would be
oppressed, and that the inhabitants were increasing too
fast already. For this reason they did not wish to see
them encouraged by the building of forts. "Floating
castles" were the only suitable protection for their
vessels which fished in scattered harbours (146, 323).
Capt. Wade was also opposed to settlement (B. T.
Journal, March 8, 1715).
Decrease of the fishery.
The decrease of the fishery during the last three years
caused concern (64 i., 146, 193, 202, 334, 441, 441 i.,
636 ii., 646 ii.). A return was called for by the House of
Commons (326, 340). But since the coming of Peace
sailings from the Western ports were being resumed (193).
Sharing schemes recommended.; Abuses in the Fishery.
As a means of reviving the fishery the re-introduction
of the old co-operative system of sharing a third of the
catch with the men was recommended from several
quarters (289 i., ii., 441 i., 636 i., 646 ii.). Many abuses
in the trade were pointed out in the reports, and the need
of amending the Act for the encouragement of the trade
to Newfoundland by providing penalties for infringements
of its regulations was again insisted upon (179 i., 650).
Lt. Gov. Moody's Instructions.; Board of Trade report.; The New Englanders.
Lt. Governor Moody's new instructions on his reappointment as military Governor of Placentia embodied
several of the suggestions made, besides directing him
not to encourage any of the French to remain or to permit
them to trade with France or the French settlements
(395, 403, 404). A further report on the abuses connected
with the Fishery was required from the Board of
Trade, who awaited fresh information from Commodore
Kempthorn and the out-ports (646, 650). Complaints
continued to be made against the New Englanders who
debauched the English fishermen with rum, involved
them in debt, and carried them off to America. Commodore Kempthorn endeavoured to stop this practice
by obliging masters of New England vessels to enter
into bonds not to take men out of the country beyond their
complement (146, 441, 646 ii.), and he was instructed to
warn masters of British vessels that they would be
prosecuted unless they returned with their full complement of men. For apart from the profits of the trade,
the Newfoundland fishery was valued as a nursery of
British sailors (390, 391).
Spanish claim to fish at Newfoundland.
Information was laid that the Spaniards were fitting
out vessels to fish at Newfoundland on the pretext of
the XVth article of the Treaty. If permitted, there
was little doubt that they would enable the French
to fish under their flag (277). Orders were therefore
given to the Commodore of the Convoy and to Lt.
Governor Moody not to allow it (404). Two Spanish
vessels were accordingly refused permission to fish and
turned out of Placentia (636 i.).
Trade with France.
Considerable direct trade with France continued to be
carried on (179 vii., 441). Captain Mayne submitted a
report upon the Isle of May etc. (697).
"This being the needfull."
A touch of humour was supplied by the Lord Provost
of Edinburgh who, when his opinion was invited upon
the desirability of making a survey of Newfoundland,
cannily took the opportunity to recommend a survey of
the Scottish coast, and concluded "this being the
needfull" (39, 44, 60).