America and West Indies
January 1715, 17-30

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Institute of Historical Research

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Cecil Headlam (editor)

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1928

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71-90

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'America and West Indies: January 1715, 17-30', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 28: 1714-1715 (1928), pp. 71-90. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=73956 Date accessed: 01 November 2014.


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January 1715, 17-30

Jan. 17.167. Petition of Jeremiah Dummer to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The Government of New Hampshire have by a late Act of Assembly laid a duty on all timber cut and loaded in the Province of Main that is brought down the River of Piscataqua to be landed in the Massachusetts, and another duty on all West India goods that pass up the sd. River, tho' they have paid before in the Massachusetts and are to be landed in the Province of Main. Petitioner is commanded by the Assembly of the Massachusetts Bay humbly to represent to your Lordps. that the sd. Act is highly unjust, for the reason that one halfe of the River of Piscataqua does belong to the Massachusetts by their Charter, and is accordingly settled in townships under their jurisdiction; and that the Act is besides of very evil consequence as it tends to destroy the harmony and good agreement that has hitherto bin between H.M. two Provinces. Prays their Lordships to direct the Government of New Hampshire to transmit the sd. Act to the Board (which is not yet done) for their consideration, etc. Signed, Jer. Dummer. Endorsed, Recd. 17th, Read 26th Jan., 17 14/15. 1¼ pp. [C.O. 5, 866. No. 28; and 5, 913. p. 503.]
[Jan. 17.]168. Copy of Mr. Skene's patent as Secretary of Barbados, 1702. Endorsed, Recd. Read 17th Jan., 17 14/15. 5½ pp. [C.O. 28, 14. No. 32; and 29, 13. pp. 160–166.]
[Jan. 17.]169. Copy of the bill prepared to pass into a patent appointing Charles Hedges Secretary of the Leeward Islands [? 1708]. Signed, Edw. Northey. Endorsed, Recd. Read 17th Jan., 17 14/15. 2¼ pp. [C.O. 152, 10. No. 36; and 153, 12. pp. 149–151.]
Jan. 17.170. Sir John Colleton to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Prays that John Colleton may not be appointed to the Council of Barbados, he having a suit depending against him, etc. Endorsed, Recd. from the Lord Berkeley, Read 17th Jan., 17 14/15. ¾ p. [C.O. 28, 14. No. 31.]
[Jan. 17.]171. Copy of the bill prepared to pass into a Patent appointing John Baber, Secretary Commissary Genl. and Clerk of the Enrollments at Jamaica, etc. Signed, Edw. Northey, 6th Aug., 1702. Endorsed, Recd. Read 17th Jan., 17 14/15. 4 pp. [C.O. 137, 10. No. 56; and 138, 14. pp. 166–170.]
[Jan. 17.
Petty France, Westmr.
172. John Chamberlayne to Mr. Popple. Testifies to the character and ability of Col. Vetch. Continues: All the hardships he has undergon of late years are wholly owing to his devotion to the present Government. He won Port Royal from the French, and has kept it in spite of both French and English. He appears as bright to me in his private and civil caracter, as in his public and military capacity known to all, a man of virtue and sobriety, of learning especially mathematical, of great discretion and a thorough knowledge of all the Plantations in N. America, insomuch that I think him fit to govern any of 'em, and lastly a man of candor, ingenuity, and of a very friendly and agreeable temper; etc. Signed, John Chamberlayne. Endorsed, Recd. Read 17th Jan., 17 14/15. 2 pp. [C.O. 217, 1. No. 46.]
Jan. 18.
Whitehall.
173. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Stanhope. We have considered the case of Col. Vetch (v. 20th Dec., 1714); Whereupon we desire you will be pleas'd to represent to H.M., That it appears by Her late Majesty's Instructions to Col. Vetch, 28th Feb., 1708–9, that he had fram'd a scheme for the reduction of Canada and Placentia; which being approved of by H.M., he was at that time in such esteem with the then Ministry, that he was intrusted with a considerable share in the management of that matter and particularly in perswading the several Governments in North America to raise troops to join those to be sent from hence on that intended expedition; which troops were rais'd accordingly; But the Gertrudenburgh Treaty intervening, that design was then laid aside. It further appears to us, that after this, Col. Vetch coming to this Kingdom, he drew up some proposals for reducing Port Royal, wch. were also approved of; the expedition undertaken and executed with success; and he by H.M. Instructions left Govr. of the place, with a garrison of about 500 men, which suffer'd very much from the French and Indians; but more from the want of pay, provisions and cloathing; Constant accounts whereof he gave by letters, during the three years he remain'd there, to the then Lord Treasurer, Secretaries of State and War etc. earnestly desiring directions what to do, that so considerable a place might not be abandon'd, and the country again fall into the hands of the French, many of wch. letters are yet remaining in the Secry's. Office; and notwithstanding he sent over a Capt. of the Garrison on purpose to sollicit for pay and cloathing, as well as for H.M. particular directions in relation to the said garrison and country, he affirms that during the said years, he never receiv'd any Instructions, directions or orders upon his said letters, which we are inclin'd to believe, for that in the books in the Secry's. Office none such are to be found. It further appears to us, that had not Mr. Boreland (the Agent at New England) advanced great sums for the support of the Garrison, it must have been dissolv'd. That about 26 months after that country was in the possession of the Crown, some parts of the bills drawn by Col. Vetch for the money aforesaid, was paid; Col. Vetch and Mr. Boreland inform us, that the garrison rec'd no cloathing, during the said three years: that in Nov., 1713, they recd. one by Col. Nicholson, tho the worst that ever was seen in those parts, and by no means fit for so cold a climate. Upon the whole we are humbly of opinion, that Col. Vetch and the Garrison by being thus neglected, both have suffer'd great hardships. That it may be for H.M. service, that Col. Vetch be restored to the Government of that Country, not having done anything that we can learn, to deserve to be removed. On the contrary, we have received from sevl. persons of credit a good character of him; wch. is also strengthened by Her late Majesty's Instructions; we further humbly offer that he be paid the salary due to him while he was Govr. and his arrears of pay as Captn.; and that Mr. Boreland be reimburs'd the money advanc'd by him for the necessary support of that Garrison, as shall appear to be due. We have lately receiv'd from Col. Vetch a Meml. of the nature, soil and product of that Country; with a scheme for setling and improving the same to the advantage of this Kingdom, by the fishery and the production of Naval Stores there; and for securing it from any attempts of an enemy; which we hope in a little time to be able to lay before H.M. We have also considered the Petn. of Sr. Charles Hobby (v. 7th Jan.), but as we don't find he has equal pretensions with Col. Vetch to that post, so we presume that what we have already represented, will be a sufficient answer to his petition. [C.O. 218, 1. pp. 142–147.]
[Jan. 18.]174. Copy of Col. Vetch's Instructions to Sr. Charles Hobby, Deputy Governor of Annapolis Royal, July 5, 1711. Signed, Sam. Vetch. Endorsed, Recd. Read 18th Jan., 17 14/15. 1 p. [C.O. 217, 1. No. 49; and 218, 1. pp. 148, 149.]
[Jan. 19.]175. Officers concerned for the settlement of 1,000 disbanded soldiers in North America to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Desire the Board to interview persons mentioned in following, "who will give a perfect account of that country," etc. Signed, Dnl. Hall, Wm. Armstrong, John Evans, John Norborn. Endorsed, Recd. Read 19th Jan., 17 14/15. ¾ p. Enclosed,
175. i. Same to same. Names of persons referred to in preceding:—Col. Nathaniel Byfield, Jeremiah Dummer, Josiah Willard, William Willard, — Wally, — Bannister, Thomas Coram. ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 866. Nos. 25, 25 i.; and 5, 913. pp. 498–500.]
Jan. 19.
Savage Garden neare Crotchett Fryers.
176. Solomon Merrett to Mr. Popple. Recommends "bearer of enclosed, who is well acquainted with the affairs of Nova Scotia. I should be extreamly pleased to heare somewhat was doeing for the fortifying of Placentia and the supply of the Garrison," etc. Signed, Solomon Merrett. Endorsed, Recd. Read 19th Jan., 17 14/15. Addressed. ¾ p. Enclosed,
176. i. Capt. Nathan Blackmore to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Proposes that a brigantine be built on purpose to survey the coast of Nova Scotia in order to settle inhabitants, and that he design and command her, etc. Signed, N. Blackmore. 1 p. [C.O. 217, 1. Nos. 50, 50 i.; and (without enclosure) 218, 1. pp. 150, 151.]
Jan. 20.
Boston.
177. Lt. Governor Usher to the Council of Trade and Plantations. In October last gave accott. of my proceedings in Govermtt. New Hampshire, relating to funirall of late Queen of ever blessed memory, and proclaimeing his Most Gratious Majesty King George, etc. Since wch. H.E. dissolved Assembly, soe litle accott. of affaires there; When in province, offering, if anything for H.M. service, or good province, should act therein redily Councill always declareing nothing to offer: refuseing to allow barely expences I was att. and not raiseing mony for my suportt as Lt. Governour: yett always gave attendance as occation required, therefore of late nott bin in province. Genll. Nicholson, judge when in province observations made, being gon for great Brittain, judge render true accott. matters, he is much out of respect and esteem here, judge same for his fidelity in serveing Crown, must say his actions always bin for discovering truth. Recommends Sampson Sheaf, now going for England, " a person of true loyall principles, and able to render accott. of all things relateing Crown. Formerly an Instruction to make lawes, for preserveing trees and a nursery for H.M. service, persons now acting as pleas: mast trees and nursery destroyed wthin. pretended town bounds. This winter Exiter and Dover cutt some thousand logs, wthoutt. precincks of townships, wch. the Crown are great sufferours," etc. Am of opinion Crown perchaseing Mr. Allen's claime may be of greatt service, etc. Massachusetts have granted a loane of 50,000, on land security, to pay same wth. 5 per cent.: in province bills, or mony 17d. ½ wt., know persons have, takeing mony att 15 dwt.: offered said bills of 17½d. refused to accept unless allow fiften pr. ct.: by itt may se whatt Crown and Country suffers, for want due regulations and setlemtt., etc. Signed, John Usher. Endorsed, Recd. 26th April, Read 5th May, 1715. Addressed. Holograph. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 866. No. 31.]
Jan. 20.
St. James's.
178. H.M. Commission to Samuel Vetch to be Governor of Nova Scotia and the town and garrison of Annapolis Royal, etc. Countersigned, James Stanhope. Endorsed, Recd. Read 20th May, 1715. Copy. 1½ pp. [C.O. 217, 1. No. 117; and 218, 1. pp. 222–224; and 5, 190. p. 45.]
Jan. 24.
Whitehall.
179. Mr. Secretary Stanhope to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The season of the year for transmitting such dispatches as H.M. service may require for Newfoundland, advancing, you are to take the state of that country forthwith into your consideration, and for your information you have herewith such letters and memorials as have been transmitted from thence, that having all in your view, you may report your opinion of what you shall judge proper for H.M. service in these parts, etc. Signed, James Stanhope. Endorsed, Recd. 25th, Read 26th Jan., 17 14/15. 1 p. Enclosed,
179. i. James Smith to Lord Townshend. A memorial upon the most remarkable difficulties and disorders which attend the present management of our Fishery at Newfoundland, and their remedies. (1) Most of the rules that have been enacted for regulating the trade to Newfoundland, are either ineffectual, or imperfect. The penalties imposed by the Act 15 Car. cap. 16 being only to be sued for in any of H.M. Courts in that countrey, where no courts of judicature were established, this law never had effect. Some years agoe upon application by the Commissioners of Customs to His late Royal Highness, for a Court of Admiralty there, a warrant was issued and I was named to be Judge, but refused to undertake the imployment without a competent and fixed salary. But the late Earl of Godolphin, Lord High Treasurer replied to the application of the Commissioners for reasonable salaries to be granted to me and other officers, that there being but few inhabitants in Newfoundland, and the trade very precarious, their request could not be granted till the Peace, then in view, was concluded. Upon the conclusion of the late Peace, I made my application to the late Lord High Treasurer, who dismissed it with saying that he knew nothing of any Court in Newfoundland, nor of any revenue ariseing to the Crown from thence. And as matters were at that time ordered with respect to that miserable place, it was perhaps not convenient to give any countenance to an establishment of that kind, yet after all these delayes and disappointments, which have brought me under many hardships, I went abroad at my own charge, and executed my commission, and for the relief of the poor inhabitants and at their earnest desire, left deputations to such as I believed to be persons of the greatest probity and knowledge among them. I freely confess that, however necessary this or indeed any Court must needs be where Justice is neither practised nor known, yet as to the purpose for which it was chiefly designed, it could be of very litle importance, unless some other regulations had been setled at the same time. For according to law the Acts of Trade and Navigation cannot be put in execution without a Governour or a person by him appointed, commonly called the Naval Officer, whose business it is to take bonds, and clear all ships inwards and outwards laden with enumerated goods, etc. And consequently the appointment of a preventive officer in Newfoundland, where there was neither a Court of Admiralty nor a Naval Officer, hath been all along an unnecessary charge to the Government. The Act 10 and 11 W. cap. 25, which is the only law whereby the Fishery is now governed, is also very imperfect and defective. For besides that the several heads of it are only directions and prohibitions without any penalties to inforce the same, the Fishing Admirals are thereby authorised to decide the differences that may arise among themselves for precedency in the respective harbours, where they first arrive, and such controversies as concern fishing stages and other conveniences for cureing and drying fish, an appeal being reserved to Commanders of H.M. ships appointed convoys to the Trade, but are not allowed to take cognisance of any other cases, nor even in these have they the least power to compel persons to submit to their determinations. The Legislature no doubt was unwilling to grant compleat jurisdiction to such as might very probably be misguided by ignorance or interest in their way of administring justice. Nevertheless both the Fishing Admirals and Commanders of H.M. ships exercise a most absolute and tyrannical power over the inhabitants by inflicting corporal punishments, seising their plantations, carrying away their fish by force and violence, and leaveing them to starve. And as these acts of cruelty yearly committed in Newfoundland without any redress, added to the extream poverty of the planters, have rendred it the most dismal scene of misery in the world, so I may confidently affirm, that till they are effectually restrained, all attempts for incourageing this trade will prove vain. (2) The meaning of several very material clauses in the Acts relateing to Newfoundland is mistaken or perverted. Thus a considerable trade is carried on there by Factors from Ireland, New England and other Colonies belonging to H.M., contrary to the design and intention of the Act of 10 and 11 William. The Act declares that it shall be lawfull for all H.M. subjects resideing in England and the dominions thereto belonging to trade to Newfoundland, but the inhabitants of Ireland and of H.M. Plantations, tho' they be H.M. subjects and belong to the Dominions of the Crown, yet cannot be said to belong to the Dominions of England, and therefore have no right to any share of this trade, etc. The Irish and Plantation trade lessens the consumption of our manufactures, and deprives the fishing ships of the advantage of wholly supplying the planters with provisions etc. from hence, and conveighs what money can be found in the hands of the planters into Ireland and the Plantations. Another abuse is, that the inhabitants of Newfoundland claim a property in all such beeches, rocks and lands as have been once possessed by them or their predecessors, tho' they make no use nor improvement of the same, which is a great discouragement to those who would make settlements among them, and also repugnant to the sense of the law, which allows no more ground to each planter, than what he cuts out and improves, and in case he suffers his plantation to run to decay etc., the ground belongs of right to the first possessor. The directions of the law are so litle regarded in the important matter of increasing the number of seamen, that they are rather diminished by it, for when once the fishing season is over not only servants to byboat keepers, and others imployed in the Fishery, but likewise many saillours are discharged and transport themselves into New England and other Plantations. (3) The third obstruction to the advancement of this trade proceeds from want of due incouragement to the Planters, whose industry is the foundation of all the advantages ariseing from it. There are at present about 500 families in Newfoundland, but their condition is more to be pitied than that of slaves and negroes. During the late wars, they were continually harassed by the French, their setlements burnt and destroyed, and their effects carried of, that when the peace was concluded they had nothing to depend on but the success of their future labour, and tho' since that time the fishing seasons have proved so bad, especially last summer, that the whole produce of the fish they caught, was not sufficient to give them subsistance, yet to compleat their ruin, a dividend was made by order of the Commodore of every planter's fish for payment of their former debts, and some, who indeavoured to conceall small quantities for purchaseing bread for their families in the winter were punished with whiping and such like severities, and had the fish taken from them. The usual way of tradeing with the planters is thus, they are supplied with all materials for fishing, provisions, wearing apparell and other necessaries from the ships, which arrive in the spring, and when the fishing season is ended, they deliver fish to the value of the debt contracted, but their debts at present are become so heavy, that their labour and likewise their plantations are most gaged for some years to the creditours, and in the mean time they themselves are left in a starveing condition. Proposes that some method be taken for the relief of their debts, and that registers be kept of debts hereafter contracted, or discharged, that they may not be imposed on by false accounts, as commonly they are through their extream ignorance, nor be obliged to buy at an exorbitant price. (4) The partial views and designs of several persons interested in this trade have occasioned many abuses and disorders in it, and prevented all the attempts that have been made for its inlargement and security. The inhabitants of the western counties have many advantages in carrying on the Newfoundland trade which those of the other parts of England can hardly ever attain to, they understand perfectly the management of the Fishery, being trained up to it from their childhood, they can saill earliest in the spring to Newfoundland, and keep the planters, who are their relations and belong to the same counties, in a continual dependance on them. On the other hand, most of the ships from London and other ports arrive late, and sometimes are disappointed of their ladeing, which they commonly purchase with bills or ready money. To remove this inequality between the West Countrey traders and the Londoners, and to bring the trade more upon a ballance it was thought expedient to have a Governor appointed, by whose means it would probably be forced to run in another channel. The people of the West Countrey vigorously opposed that design, and have ever since opposed all other designs for regulating the affairs of Newfoundland, being still apprehensive that new regulations however necessary would introduce a Governour. This scheme being found impracticable, some particular persons to ingross a considerable share of the trade, or, if I am rightly informed, the whole to themselves, had interest to get several lesser offices created in Newfoundland, not that they were useful to that countrey or serviceable to the interest of the trade, but that they might be filled with such officers as were fit to be toolls and subservient to their designs. I mean particularly one, who was lately sent from hence, under the title of H.M. Surveyor General of Newfoundland, tho' his business was only to pilot the transport, which was ordered to attend him on this important service, into some harbours, which had been possessed by the French before the peace, the affair of surveying and makeing draughts being devolved on another. As to his proceedings with regard to his imployment, the master of the transport now returned can best inform your Lordship. I shall only take notice of one. He seized three French ships, and dismist them when they had compounded with him for 200 quintals of fish, etc. All officers residing there ought to be restrained from medling in any part of the trade, for the more free and uncontroul'd it is, the more it increases, etc. Signed, Ja. Smith. Endorsed as preceding. 7½ pp.
179. ii., iii. Duplicates of letter from Lt. Governor Moody to Lord Bolingbroke. Placentia, Aug. 25, 1714. v. C.P.S. under date.
179. iv. Copy of Lt. Governor Moody's proclamation, June 30, 1714 (q.v.), forbidding French ships to break bulk, etc.
179. v. Copy of Lt. Governor Moody's Instructions to Capt. Taverner, July 5, 1714.
179. vi. Copy of Lt. Governor Moody's Proclamation to the French Inhabitants of Placentia. July 12, 1714. Those who take the oath of allegiance to Her Majesty and the Crown of Great Britain, may remain in entire possession and enjoyment of their goods and the privileges of H.M. subjects. Those who have a mind to quit and leave their goods and houses, H.M. permits to sell them, as likewise whatsoever they possessed moveable and immoveable. Therefore we order that all the said French inhabtants, without distinction, declare their sentiments without delay. Those who shall not be disposed to take the oath of fidelity, we order to prepare to depart from Newfoundland betwixt this and the month of November next, according to the Treaty of Peace, etc. Signed, J. Moody. Endorsed as covering letter. 1½ pp.
179. vii. Petition of merchants and factors in Placentia to Lt. Governor Moody. Placentia, July 5, 1714. The French continue to land goods. Pray that this be stopped and the French prohibited from lading fish or train oil, and that they be allowed to continue to fish (little or no fish having been taken in the English settlements as yet) provided they sell the fish and train oil to H.M. subjects, etc. Signed, Richd. Sturzaker (mark), Will Taverner and 7 others. Endorsed as covering letter. Copy. 3 pp.
179. viii. Le Sieur de Costabelle, Governor at L'Isle Royale, to Lt. Gov. Moody. In reply to your objection that the term for the French evacuation of the French inhabtants has expired, and that they should forthwith be constrained to declare their choice of allegiance and residence, I think I am right in representing that they cannot be compelled to leave Placentia till a year after the day of the evacuation of the Forts of Placentia, etc. According to the terms of the Treaty, the said evacuation was not to be made till seven months after the exchange of the ratifications, which goes up to the end of Nov., 1713, in which term no ships appeared, whether French or English, to signify to me the orders for the evacuation. But adhering to the letter of the Treaty, the French inhabtants have a year from the end of Nov., 1713, to retire and transport their moveables, etc., etc. There has not been one English inhabtant appeared in this port to fish for cod in this port. The speedy departure of all the French fishers would therefore only deprive all the English ships come hither for truck to trade with the French and oblige them to return home with their merchandize, to the disadvantage of both nations, etc. Signed, De Costabelle. Same endorsement. A bad translation. 3 pp.
179. ix. Commanders of English ships in Placentia Harbour to Lt. Governor Moody. Aug. 9, 1714. We are entirely well satisfyed with your zeal and indefatigable care in managing all affairs relating to the Fishery and publick trade, etc. 11 signatures. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 p.
179. x. List of above enclosures. [C.O. 194, 5. Nos. 57, 57 i.–x.; and (covering letter and enclosure x. only) 195, 5. pp. 419–423.]
Jan. 24.
Annapolis Royal.
180. Extract of letter from Mr. Adams to Capt. Steele, at Boston. We were in hopes here upon the General's arrival, he wou'd pay off the Garrison and settle the place on a good footing, but on the contrary put us in the greatest confusion, pull'd down the forts, drove away the French, and carry'd away all the English he cou'd, that the place is now almost desolate. In short if his Commission had been to destroy the country, he could not have discharg'd his trust to better purpose, he employ'd all his time here, in pursuing his implacable malice against Gvr. Vetch, when in truth he did the English interest in this country more damage in the two months he was here, than Govr. Vetch cou'd have done in all his life, etc. There is not one soul in this place French or English (save 2) but hate and abhor his name. Endorsed, Recd. (from Col. Vetch), Read 20th May, 1715. 1½ pp. [C.O. 217, 1. No. 118.]
Jan. 25.
Somerset-house.
181. Caveat by the Earl of Clarendon against an Act of New York for the payment of the debts of the Government, etc., and an Act of New Jersey, to enable Thomas Gordon Esq., Treasurer of this Province to pay £999 13s. 3d. towards the support of the Government, etc.
I desire these Acts of Assembly may not be confirmed till I am heard they being to my particular preiudice. Signed, Clarendon. Endorsed, Recd. 27th Jan., Read 4th Feb., 1714 (1715). Holograph. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1050. No. 76.]
Jan. 25.182. Extract of a letter from Samll. Penhallow and John Wentworth, of H.M. Council at New Hampshire. We wish a continuance of our present Governour, but as there is a vacancy in the Council by the death of John Gerrish and two more that are superannuated vizt. Peter Coffin and Nathaniel Weare, who are each of them between 80 and 90 years of age and live remote, we recommend three gentlemen of the Assembly, Theodore Atkinson, Rich'd. Gerrish and George Jaffrey, the former recommended by Lord Bellamont; the two latter had the honour of having their fathers to live and dye in that post who are well respected by the Governour and esteem'd of by the people for their integrity and loyalty. Capt. Richard Gerrish is Speaker of the Assembly to the satisfaction of all. Endorsed, Recd. (from Mr. Newman) Read 7th Sept., 1715. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 866. No. 68.]
Jan. 25.
Whitehall.
183. Mr. Secretary Stanhope to the Council of Trade and Plantations. H.M. having been pleased to appoint Col. Hunter to be Governor of New York, you are to prepare the draught of a Commission and Instructions for him, for H.M. approbation, etc. Signed, James Stanhope. Endorsed, Recd. 28th Jan., Read 1st Feb., 17 14/15. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1050. No. 75; and 5, 1123. p. 140.]
Jan. 25.
Whitehall.
184. Same to Same. H.M. having been pleased to appoint Col. Hunter Governour of New Jersey, you are to prepare a draught of a Commission and Instructions for him, etc. Signed, James Stanhope. Endorsed, Recd. 28th Jan., Read 1st Feb., 17 14/15. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 970. No. 167; and 5, 995. pp. 175, 176.]
Jan. 26.
Whitehall.
185. Mr. Secretary Stanhope to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses following for their report. Signed, James Stanhope. Endorsed, Recd. 1st, Read 4th Feb., 17 14/15. 1 p. Enclosed,
185. i. Petition of Sir Charles Hobby to Mr. Secretary Stanhope. Prays to be reinstated as Deputy Governor of Annapolis Royal. Signed, Charles Hobby. Endorsed as preceding. 1 p.
185. ii. O. Sedgwick to Mr. Secretary Stanhope. Encloses following. Signed, O. Sedgwick for Sir C. Hobby. ¾ p. Enclosed,
185. iii. Copy of certificates by Lt. Genl. Francis Nicholson, Governor Vetch and the inhabitants of Nova Scotia as to the good services of Sir Charles Hobby, Oct. 10, 1710–28th Nov., 1711. Signed, F. Nicholson, Sam. Vetch, and 26 French inhabitants. 3 pp.
185. iv. Duplicate of No. 152.
185. v. Certificate by inhabitants of Jamaica that Col. Hobby, by his bravery and efforts saved the Magazine and Fort of Port Royal from catching fire and blowing up. London, July 10, 1706. Signed, Nich. Lawes and 11 others. 1 p.
185. vi. Certificate by officers of H.M. garrison at Annapolis Royal, that Sr. Charles Hobby by his wise conduct reduced the French inhabitants to obedience, and by his unwearied diligence with a very small sickly garrison repaired the Fort etc. Boston, 3rd April, 1712. Signed, Angus Nicholson, and 10 others. ¾ p.
185. vii. Certificate that Sr. Charles Hobby has been the chief promoter of this Colony, having bought lands of the French, and built houses in Annapolis Royal, to encourage tradesmen to settle, etc. 31st May, 1714. Signed, J. Williams, Capt., and 4 others. ½ p.
185. viii. Certificate confirming No. vi., and that Sir C. Hobby was a great encourager of religion and good morality. Annapolis Royal, 10th Oct., 1711. Signed, Jno. Harrison, Chaplain. ¾ p. [C.O. 217, 1. Nos. 52, 52 i.–viii.; and (without enclosures) 218, 1. pp. 152, 153.]
Jan. 26.
St. James's.
186. Memorandum of H.M. Commission to William Mathew to be Lt. Governor of St. Christophers. [C.O. 5, 190. p. 45.]
Jan. 26.
Whitehall.
187. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Dudley. Having received information that an Act is lately pass'd in New Hampshire whereby a duty is laid on all timber cut and loaden in the Province of Main, etc. (v. 17th Jan.), we are surprized this Act has not been yet transmitted hither, and therefore we are obliged to require the same be sent us by the first ships that come from your Government and a duplicate thereof by the next conveyance. [C.O. 5, 913. p. 504.]
Jan. 27.
Virginia.
188. Lt. Governor Spotswood to the Council of Trade and Plantations. It was the 26th of last month e're I had the honour to recieve your Lordps. letter of 11th Aug., with the Orders for proclaiming the King etc.; if there were any other commands by your Lordps. sent by that conveyance, they are certainly lost, the vessell in which they were dispatch'd being cast away on the coast of New England, and every man perished, but so many of the papers as floated ashore being taken up by the country people and carryed to Col. Dudley, that one pacquett was dispatch'd hither overland; however this misfortune has not retarded the proclaiming H.M. etc. (v. Oct. 25 and Dec. 1st). The General Assembly ended their Session on the 24th of last month; and as the mutual confidence between me and them will fully appear to your Lordps. by the Addresses in the Burgesses' Journal of 24th Nov. and 16th Dec., so I hope the generall proceedings of that session will prove to your Lordps.' satisfaction. They are now prorogued to the 24th of April, the law of this country for continuing Assemblys in case of the demise of the Sovereign giving them power to act for six months and no longer, from the time of their first meeting after such demise. Encloses Journals and laws passed the last Session, etc., upon which as I am directed by the Royal Instructions, I shall proceed to give you my observations. The manner of carrying on the trade heretofore with the Indians, has not only been the occasion of frequent quarrells between them and the English, but at last proved the entire loss of that commerce. Abundance of loose people imploying themselves in that trade, and having no stock of their own were obliged to purchase goods at a dear rate, and thereby either become losers by the bargain, or to use such frauds in their dealings with the Indians, as have too frequently incited them to revenge the injustice by private murders: No orders of the Government could be effectual to restrain those people from trading: even when upon an open breach with the Indians, it has been found necessary to prohibite trade; By which means the Indians have been encouraged to continue their hostilitys: but for remedying these inconveniencys an Act is now pass'd for the better regulation of the Indian trade, by which all trading with Indians within this Governmt. is limited to one place and that too in open markett. This will pervent all fraudulent practices with the Indians, and being to be carryed on at the new settlement which I have lately made on the frontiers will engage all our Tributarys to fix there for the greater conveniency of their trading; whereby that place will become a sufficient barrier against the incursions of any forreign enemy: but because the trade with forreign Indians (which in times past was very beneficial to the country, and is now by the ill management of private persons totally lost) cannot be retrieved, nor effectually managed without a greater stock than any private person concern'd in that trade could adventure, provision is made in this law for erecting a company who are to have the sole priviledge of the Indian Trade for 20 years, unless H.M. shall think fitt to dissolve them sooner. This Company are to contribute towards erecting a magazine for H.M. stores of war, and to take from thence all the powder used in that trade, delivering in at the same time a like quantity of fresh powder, whereby the powder belonging to H.M. will be still preserv'd from decaying; they are also to erect at their own charge a schoolhouse for the Indian children, and after two years time to take upon them the whole charge of maintaining the fortifications of that place, and a guard of twelve men and an officer, which at present is maintained at a considerable charge to the country. Sundry other regulations are made for the better government of the Indians and making them usefull, instead of being (as heretofore) a burden to the country. And as a foundation is hereby laid for a just way of dealing with them, I doubt not that will also prove an encouragement to bring them over to Christianity. In fine, as there are abundance of benefites like to accrue to the country by this Act, so I am not sensible of any inconveniency it may occasion either to H.M. service or the interest of the Colony. The Trade will now be more extensive than ever it was before: People who through the remoteness of their living had formerly no thoughts of applying themselves to any dealings with the Indians, are now willing to venture their money under the management of this Company; And if it be considered that this commerce is solely to be carryed on by the manufactures of Great Britain and the produce returned thither for sale, that H.M. powder which used heretofore to ly spoiling in the country will now be kept in a condition fitt for service; and that whenever the safety of the Government requires the shutting up the Indian trade, a Governor has it in his power to stop all supplys of ammunition to the Indians, which is the surest way of bringing them to reason, I doubt not your Lordps. will not only approve this Act, but use your interest with H.M. for giving leave to pass a Charter in favour of this Company. The Act for exempting certain German Protestants from the payment of levys etc., is made in favour of severall familys of that nation, who upon the encouragement of the Baron de Graffenried came over hither in hopes to find out mines; but the Baron's misfortunes obliging him to leave this country before their arrival they have been settled on the frontiers of Rappahannock, and subsisted chiefly at my own charge, and the contributions of some gentlemen that have a prospect of being reimburs'd by their labour whenever H.M. shall be pleased by ascertaining his share, to give encouragement for working these mines; And I hope the kind reception they have found here will incite more of the same Nation to transport themselves to this Colony, which wants only industrious people to make it a flourishing country. The unseasonableness of the weather last summer having very much lessned the crops both of corn and tobacco, I could not but in compassion to abundance of poor people recommend to the Assembly to give them some ease as well in the payment of their private debts as of their publick dues, And accordingly the Act for relief of such persons as by reason of the drought of last summer have made small quantitys of corn and tobacco etc. has made such provision therein as the people are well satisfyed with. And at the same time that an indulgence is granted for shipping off what old tobacco could not be exported before the tobacco law took place, without making it liable to the strictness which is required for stamp'd tobacco, care is also taken to prevent the fraudulent exportation of any bad tobacco out of the Colony. The Act for preventing the malicious burning or destroying the publick storehouses of tobacco agents, may seem to intimate a more general aversion to the late measures for improving the staple of tobacco than there really is among the people; 'Tis only the meaner unthinking sort that reflecting only upon the present trouble it gives them, without looking so far as the future advantage they will reap thereby, give themselves more than ordinary libertys in talking, while all the better sort of people are sensible of the benefites of such a regulation; And tho by the laws of England, burning of houses is felony, yet it was thought not improper to make known to the people what punishment persons guilty of such a crime, are to expect by a law of their own. The Act for preventing frauds in tobacco payments is by an Act made this Session continued for one year longer; And as the preamble of that Bill sets forth part of the reasons for prolonging, so I beg leave to add one other cause of my endeavouring to lengthen the time: which is, that since so great an allowance is granted by the late Act of Parliament upon dammaged tobacco, neither the merchant nor planter might have it in their power to turn this indulgence to the prejudice of the Crown by shipping off from hence unsound tobacco, which costs nothing, and getting the allowance thereon at the Custom house; for by such a practice, a very considerable part of the dutys of all the good tobacco would be drawn back by the allowance on that which is bad. And tho the Assembly could not be prevail'd on to make their law of equal duration with the Act of Parliament, yet I'm in hopes when they have a little experienc'd the advantages arising by the present measures, they'll be desirous to continue it even for a longer time. The Act made in 1710 for prevention of abuses in tobacco shipp'd on freight, being found beneficial to the country, and such as has not been complained of by any of the masters of ships during the time it has heretofore been in force, is now by an Act pass'd this session made perpetual. The Act to supply the defects in the Act for laying a duty on liquors and slaves, being only intended for a further provision to pay off the debts of the country already contracted, and to keep up their publick credit, with a suitable care to prevent frauds in the payment of that duty, I hope neither of these Acts have in them any thing which will be disagreeable to your Lordships. It is a great satisfaction that I can now acquaint your Lordps., that an Act is pass'd for erecting a magazine, whereby not only a place is provided for lodging the powder which her late Majesty was graciously pleased to send over for the publick service of this Government, but sallarys are established both for a storekeeper and an armourer. The want of such a provision heretofore has been the occasion that most of the arms sent in for the service of this country are become almost utterly unservicable, and the ammunition for the most part spoil'd or embezzelled, but now I doubt not to keep what arms there are in the country in good condition; And by means of this Act and the provision made in the Indian bill to have constantly a supply of good powder ready for all occasions that may happen. Your Lordps. will observe by this Bill that the money appropriated for building the magazine is entrusted solely to my management, a confidence which I have gain'd from them by offering to advance my own money without interest towards that building, since their present funds are so much anticipated, that they could not possibly raise even that sum in a considerable time. I have in my former letters mentioned to your Lordps. the disadvantage arising to the trade of this Colony by the unequal rates at which gold coins have pass'd here, and all much inferiour to the currency in the other Plantations. This having lessned very much the current cash of the country by draining from hence all the gold and British silver coin. Upon the general direction I recieved from your Lordps., 23rd April, 1713, I have consented to the passing an Act for regulating and settling the current rates of gold coins and British silver coins in this Dominion, which now bears a nearer proportion to the rates formerly settled for forreign silver coin, tho' both much lower than what is practised in ye neighbouring Colonys, yet 'tis hop'd this regulation will hinder the export of a good part of our running cash; and since there is an exception of all H.M. Revenues and of debts contracted in England, it will be no detriment to the interest of the Crown nor injury to the trade of Great Britain. The Act to oblige owners and occupiers of mills to which publick roads shall lead to make the damms of such mills ten foot wide at the top is no otherwise remarkable, than as it will be a testimony to your Lordps. of a commendable disposition in the people of this country, to make their publick roads convenient. The Act to repeal part of the Act giving a reward for the killing of wolves and for lessning such reward, was made upon the complaint of the inhabts. of the frontier countys, where wolves are most numerous, that the whole charge of destroying those noxious creatures fell upon them. And therefore the Assembly have with a great deal of justice, thought fitt both to lessen that reward, and to levy the charge upon the whole country in general. Upon a representation from the inhabitants of the countys of Princess Anne and Essex, that the times appointed by the County Court law for holding their Courts were inconvenient, as interfering very often with the Courts of the adjacent countys, An Act is pass'd for altering the Court days of those countys; but as I have always look'd upon it to be the prerogative of the Crown to fix both the times and places for holding H.M. Courts, I have got a clause added to this Act for saving H.M. prerogative in both those points; and cannot forbear offering to your Lordps. my humble opinion that the grievances of the people would be more speedily redressed, if H.M. shall be pleased by an Instruction to the Governor, to grant a general power (upon the application of the principal inhabitants) to alter both the time and place of holding any Court, since notwithstanding severall countys by new settlements are of late increas'd to a very large extent of ground, the Courthouses will continue as they were when those countys were first erected; nor can the people ever agree among themselves for remedying this inconveniency, or obtain redress in the Assembly unless it happen that the Burgesses of the County be chosen out of that remote precinct; besides it has been the practice in some remote parts for the Justices, of their own authority to alter the place of their sitting, but with so little consideration for the ease of the people, that whenever their designation has taken place they have only consulted their own conveniency or private advantage. Neither is there any law of this country to warrant their proceedings, and much less are they, in my opinion justifyable by any precedent from the practice of England. It has not been usual to give your Lordps. the trouble of any particular observation on the Act for raising a publick levy; But the present Act being of a nature different from any other that ever pass'd here, so far as I can find, I beg leave to explain the occasion upon which it is grounded. The last Assembly, pass'd an Act for continuing the Rangers, with power to me to disband as many of them as I thought fitt, and to apply the pay which would have been due to them had they continued, to such other uses as I should judge necessary for the security of the frontiers: In pursuance of this trust, I took a progress last September, cross the frontiers of the Colony, and having form'd a settlement of the Tributary Indians on Maherine River, erected a Fort, and appointed a guard of twelve men and an officer to reside there, and to accompany the Indians in their ranging, for securing that frontier against any forreign enemy, and also erected another Fort on the South branch of Rappahannock River for the German Protestants whom I have mentioned before to serve as a barrier against the Northern Indians. I thought it necessary for the ease of the country to disband all the Rangers except 24, and by that means having saved so much of their pay as will support these 24 Rangers for two years to come. The Assembly were so well satisfyed with the frugality of that management that they very readily agreed to my proposal (v. Journal, Dec. 17) and have accordingly made provision in this Act for levying the pay of these Rangers in the two respective succeeding years, without laying me under the necessity of calling an Assembly to defray that charge, as has been usual on former occasions. Your Lordps. will observe that the several summs of tobacco raised in those years for the Rangers is appointed to be paid solely to me; And if H.M. shall be pleased to continue me here till the determination of that time, I hope to give them so good an account of the just disposition of what they have raised, that the mutual confidence between us will be thereby more and more improved to H.M. service; And that it will not thereafter be so difficult to prevail with an Assembly to trust a Governor on extraordinary emergencys to raise a tax, upon the people, which is a matter that hath been often recommended by Instructions and communicated to the Assembly but as often rejected by them. Besides these publick Acts, there are three others of a less general concernment relating to the ringing of hoggs, which however triffling in themselves may serve to shew how great an alteration there is in the tempers of the people, since even in my time it was enough to lose a man's election as a Burgess, that he had show'd the least inclination to the ringing of hogs. There was one other Act prepared this Session, entituled an Act to continue an Act for security and defence of the country in times of danger, which your Lordps. will percieve by the Assembly Journal I refused to pass, because it having been once re-enacted before, and now again made temporary, it would have been contrary to one of the Royal Instructions, quoted. And tho' the Council, notwithstanding I communicated to them that Instruction concurr'd with the Burgesses in passing this Act; yet it is evident they were not very unanimous in it, since your Lordps. will observe by comparing the Assembly Journal at the time of its passing on 22nd Dec. with the Council Journal on 24th Dec., that the absence of one Member of that Board altered their opinion so much that the major part advised me not to pass it. And indeed had their opinion been otherwise, I should have thought myself obliged to reject it, not only in conformity to the Royal Instructions, but in regard I have found it by experience, notwithstanding its specious title, to be a very useless Act. I cannot forbear taking notice to your Lordps. on this head of a strange distinction made by some of the Council, that their acting in the General Assembly, and at the Council Board, are two different capacitys. That as an Upper house of Assembly they may concurr in making laws which afterwards when their opinion is asked as Councillors, they may nevertheless think unfitt to be pass'd: This distinction was first begun in the time of Col. Nott's Government, and was now made use of in the case of the Act just mentioned, but with what reason, I must submitt to your Lordps.' better judgment; only taking notice that if as an Upper house of Assembly they can seperate themselves from the duty of Councillors, they are then under no oath at all: And if such a distinction be allowed, it may be hereafter extended to other occasions of the Government. And then your Lodps. will be pleased to consider how little assistance a Governor can hope for from such Councillors. Having thus dispatch'd my observations on the laws herewith sent, I am now to acquaint your Lordps. of another transaction in the Assembly somewhat out of the common road. It is an Address of the Council and Burgesses to H.M. concerning the Quitt Rents, mentioned in the Journal 16 and 17th Dec., wherein they remonstrate against the late practice of remitting the Quitt Rents of this Colony into the Exchequer in England, and pray that they may be directed back into their old channell (as they term it) and that not only the deficiency of the publick Revenue, but all other extraordinary expences of the Government may be defrayed out of the same. At the same time that they prepared this Address they presented another to me to bespeak my recommendation; but as I had no part in the fraiming this design, so your Lordps. will observe by my answer (v. Journal), how little I approved of their proceedings: I must own with them that the deficiencys of the Revenue of 2s. per hhd. have more than once been supplyed by an exhibition out of the Quitt Rents; And I am an humble suitor to your Lordps. for your good offices with H.M., that the present deficiency may be supplyed in the same manner, it having been occasioned chiefly by the discouragements under which the tobacco trade hath layn for some time past. But nevertheless I am far from thinking it reasonable that H.M. shou'd be petition'd in the beginning of his reign to divest himself of his whole Revenue of Quitt Rents, and thereby be disabled from promoting such other services as H.M. may think proper to undertake for the advantage of this Colony; however I have transmitted this Address to the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury, as a matter proper for their cognizance, and so shall dismiss it, after taking notice of one remarkable circumstance, that this Address had it's rise from the Council, and that none were so forward in it as those persons, whose duty, I should think, obliged them rather to oppose all measures that tended to the diminution of H.M. interest, but were nevertheless the most active to engage the Burgesses to concurr with them therein. The many undue practices heretofore used in the payment of H.M. Quitt Rents, was one chief motive of my forming the plan of the late law for preventing frauds in tobacco payments: And as by obtaining that Act I have advanced the value of the Quitt Rent tobacco, I thought it was also necessary to obviate the many abuses in the manner of collecting thereof; to which purpose I formed the regulations and scheme which your Lordps. will find in the Council Journal of 8th Dec.; and notwithstanding some opposition I mett with therein (where I least expected it) every article after a full debate was agreed to by a majority of the Council. And tho I am well satisfyed that the methods proposed therein will be advantageous to H.M., yet that I might remove all prejudices against a scheme, which I must acknowledge is very different from the former practice; I desired the opponents to put their objections in writing, and that I would return my answer in the same manner, and leave the whole matter to the determination of our superiours; None of the Council have yet offered any objection except the Receiver Generall, who tho' he was against the whole scheme, has thought fitt to turn all his arguments upon one article. I herewith transmit his objections and my answer, etc. And as that gentleman is now going home, I pray your Lordps. will do me the justice to admitt of no representations from him, but what shall be as fairly stated and answered as this is. Refers to enclosures etc. Signed, A. Spotswood. Endorsed, Recd. 6th April, 1715, Read 16th May, 1716. 12 pp. Enclosed,
188. i. Account of H.M. Revenue of 2s. per hhd. in Virginia, 25th April—25th Oct., 1714. Totals, Receipts, £2,279 1s. 9d. Expenditure, £3,349 11s. 8d. Endorsed as preceding. 1 p.
188. ii. Copy of the objections of the Receiver General of Virginia to the 6th Article of Lt. Governor Spotswood's new scheme for the better collecting the quitt-rents. Signed, W. Byrd. 2 pp.
188. iii. Lt. Governor Spotswood's reply to preceding. Endorsed as letter. 1 p.
188. iv. Account of the publick tobacco of Virginia, 10th Dec., 1713—24th Dec., 1714. Totals. Receipts and Expenditure including payments to be made to the Governor in 1715, and 1716. 803, 527 1b. Signed, Miles Cary. Endorsed as preceding. 2 pp.
188. v. Account of the births and burials in the several parishes in Virginia, 20th April–20th Oct., 1714. Totals:—Births: Free, males, 379; females 320. Slaves, males, 121; females, 132. Burials: Free, males, 116; females, 123. Slaves, males, 28; females, 34. Endorsed as preceding. 2 pp.
188. vi. List of those holding office in Virginia, including Officers of the Courts and Customs, Council and Assembly, Justices of the Peace, Coroners, Patent Officers, etc. Endorsed as preceding. 2 large pp. gummed together. Torn.
188. vii. Proclamation of a General Thanksgiving to be held on Nov. 25th for the peaceable accession of King George. Williamsburgh, Nov. 1st, 1714. Same endorsement. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1317. Nos. 27, 27 i.–vii.; and (without enclosures) 5, 1364. pp. 312–338.]
Jan. 28.
St. James's.
189. Memorandum of H.M. Commission to Edwd. Byam to be Lt. Governor of Antegoa. [C.O. 5, 190. p. 45.]
Jan. 29.
Whitehall.
190. Mr. Secretary Stanhope to the Council of Trade and Plantations. H.M. having been pleased to appoint Brigadier Richard Franks to be Governour of Maryland in the room of Captain Hart, you are to prepare a Commission and Instructions for H.M. approbation, etc. James Stanhope. Endorsed, Recd. Read Feb. 1, 17 14/15. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 717. No. 60; and 5, 727. p. 439.]
Jan. 31.
Jamaica.
191. Governor Lord A. Hamilton to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I herewith transmitt the Minutts of Council of the 13th inst. by which your Lopps. will see the circumstances wee are under at present, not haveing hitherto recd. any powers nor directions from H.M.; and tho the opinion of the present Attorney Generall mentioned in the Minutts is contraverted by other lawers here, I thought it most advisable to conform my self to His as least lyable to inconveniencys. But this day putting an end to that nicety, there is a recess from all publick bussiness here, not takeing my self to be sufficiently impower'd to act further then the keeping up the form of Government, in so far as is necessary for the preservation of the publick peace and tranquillity of the Island and the prevention of any interruption to the trade and commerce thereof. It is with satisfaction that I acquaint your Lopps. that there has not the least disorder hitherto hapened, and I doubt not of the same tranquillity's continuing dureing this intervall. Signed, A. Hamilton. Endorsed, Recd. 12th May, Read 27th June, 1715. 2 pp. Enclosed,
191. i. Copy of Minutes of Council of Jamaica, 13th Jan., 17 14/15. The Attorney General gave his opinion that the six months mentioned in the Statute for continuing persons in office at the time of the demise of Her late Majesty are to be computed as lunar months. The Council advised H.E. to dissolve the Assembly to-morrow, and two Proclamations were issued, one dissolving the Assembly, and the other requiring all persons in office civil or military to act notwithstanding the expiration of the time mentioned in the statute so far as to continue the preservation of the public peace and quiet of the Island. Same endorsement. 5 pp. [C.O. 137, 10. Nos. 78, 78 i.; and (without enclosure) 138, 14. pp. 137, 338.]
Jan. 31.
Whitehall.
192. Mr. Secretary Stanhope to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Upon the representations that have been made to the King for recalling the orders sent to you for preparing a Commission, etc. (v. 5th Jan.) for Col. Coddrington, you are to pursue these directions no further, and forthwith prepare a draught of a Commission and Instructions for Walter Hamilton Esq., to be Governor of the Leeward Islands, etc. Signed, James Stanhope. Endorsed, Recd. Read 1st Feb., 17 14/15. 1 p. [C.O. 152, 10. No. 38; and 153, 12. p. 152.]