America and West Indies
February 1719


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'America and West Indies: February 1719', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 31: 1719-1720 (1933), pp. 21-45. URL: Date accessed: 26 November 2014.


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February 1719

Feb. 2.37. Governor Rogers to [? Mr. Secretary Craggs.] Here arrived a sloop this morning from Barbadoes that in her passage got intelligence of the two pirates aforesaid it's one Moody in a ship of 22 guns and one England in a brigantine, and not Congon (v. 30th Jan.) etc. I hope I shall be able to resist them and not be obliged to receive such villains that I should be glad could I have the assistance of the men of war to bring them to justice if they come. Signed, Woodes Rogers. Endorsed, Recd. London, 24 June, 1719. 1 p. [C.O. 23, 13. ff. 30, 30v.; and (duplicate) 35v., 36.]
Feb. 2.
38. John Riggs to Charles Delafaye. Applies for H.M. Commission to command the Independent Company of Col. Mathew, decd. and for "your dr. Lieut. Dick" to be his lieutenant (v. 11th May, 1717) etc., etc. Private affairs. Signed, John Riggs. Addressed. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1092. No. 6.]
Feb. 3.
39. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Craggs. Reply to Memorial of Danish Envoy (v. 31st Dec., 1718.) We have reason to apprehend H.M. Leeward Islands are so far from being in a condition to afford the assistance to the Danish Colony at St. Thomas, desir'd by the Memorial, that they will need all their strength for their own defence in case the Spaniards should design to make an attempt on some one of those Islands, which it is probable they may, if it be true, as is set forth in the Memorial, that the Spanish Governour of Porto Rico has already under his command there three ships of war and three sloops of 12 guns each, and expects a reinforcement of troops from Spain. Besides we believe H.M. subjects of the Leeward Islands would be very unwilling at any time to bear any extraordinary charge, or be expos'd to any hazard in defence of that Danish Colony (which they have so frequently complain'd of as being very prejudicial to them in many respects) and would think the hardship so much the greater now the Danes seem to want this assistance, chiefly by reason of their having remov'd part of their force from St. Thomas to support the settlement they have lately made on the Island of St. Johns, one of the Virgin Islands belonging to H.M. For these reasons therefore we are of opinion that the prayer of the said Memorial is not proper to be complyed with. We think ourselves obliged on this occasion to acquaint you that the Govr. of the Leeward Islands seems by a letter, we lately receiv'd from him, to be very impatient to have orders from H.M. concerning the settlement the Danes have made on the Island of St. Johns, a particular accompt of which we transmitted to you by our letter of the 1st of July last, and having in our Representation of the 18th of the said month fully express'd our opinion on that subject, we shall now only repeat that we believe it absolutely necessary the Danes should be dispos'd by such means. as H.M. may judge most proper to remove the settlement they have made at St. Johns, and that neither they nor any foreign Nation should ever be allow'd to settle on any of the Virgin Islands. [C.O. 153, 13. pp. 388–390.]
[Feb. 3.]40. Copy of Act of Pennsylvania concerning feme sole traders (v 17th Jan.). Endorsed, Recd. Read (from Mr. Drafgate) 3rd Feb., 1718/19. 3½ pp. [C.O. 5, 1265. No. 113.]
[Feb. 3.]41. Petition of Samuel Buck to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses following, received since petition of 2nd Jan. q. v., and presses for immediate succour for the Bahama Islands. Signed, Sam. Buck. Endorsed, Recd. Read 3rd Feb., 1718/19. ¾ p. Enclosed,
41. i. Extract of letter from George Dawes of Jamaica to Saml. Buck, 7th Nov. 1718. We have advice from all parts that the Spaniards are fitting out everywhere to destroy Providence; they have for above 12 months taken everything they met with that they cou'd in these parts. About 14 days ago a sloop from Vera Crux brought advice of two men of war and 5 or 6 sail of other vessels fitting there, which were to sail soon after them to join others at the Havannah for their expedition against Providence, and by a small scooner from thence lately, we hear that the men of war were gone to Barbados etc. Repeats news from the Bahamas v. Oct. 31st, 1718. 1 p. [C.O. 23, 1. Nos. 13, 13. i.]
Feb. 4.
42. Council of Trade and Plantations to Mr. Secretary Craggs. Reply to 29th Jan. Refer to preceding. Conclude: We need not repeat what we have frequently represented, vizt. the consequence of securing the Bahama Islands to the Crown, but we must desire, you would please to lay before H.M. our opinion that it is absolutely necessary another independent company or the like number of men, one small ship of war and some large artillery and stores should be sent for their security and protection, and that this should be done without loss of time, least this settlement, which is of the greatest consequence to the whole trade of the West Indies should be lost to the Crown of Great Britain. Autograph signatures. 2 pp. [C.O. 23, 12. No. 78; and 24, 1. pp. 24–26.]
Feb. 4.43. Mr. Dummer to [?Mr. Popple.] Proposes to bring to the Board several merchants who can inform them about the curing fish at Marblehead. etc. Signed, Jer. Dummer. Endorsed, Recd. 3rd, Read 4th Feb., 1718/19. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 867. No. 26.]
Feb. 4.
Custom House. London.
44. Mr. Carkesse to Mr. Popple. Encloses account of timber imported, as requested 8th Jan. [C.O. 389, 27. p. 108.]
Feb. 5.
45. Mr. Popple to Jacob Ackworth, Surveyor of the Navy. There being a petition depending for a grant of lands in Nova Scotia. the Council of Trade and Plantations desire to know whether the Commissrs. of the Navy do not think it proper there should be a clause in the grant. reserving such trees to the Crown as are proper for masts and of such oak or other trees as may be fit for the Royal Navy, in which case they desire you would send them a draught of a clause for that purpose etc. [C.O. 217, 2. p. 377.]
Feb. 5.
46. Lt. Governor Spotswood to Mr. Popple. I very lately had ye happyness of receiving your letter dated ye 14th of Octr. last, and with much pleasure accept the commission you give me, for serving you with the plants and seeds you write for etc. None of your letters has come to my hands since yours dated this day two years; since which time I have wrote very largely to you. I have good reason to apprehend that they have been intercepted by some undue practices [erasure], and that some of those persons, whom he employs to dispatch the Virginia pacquets, may be in league with a certain Agent, who is waiting at home to serve a party of men which I am contending with here etc. It is not very long ago that I have had demonstration of their opening my letters: wherefore I wish yt. you would for ye future commit, not only your own letters, but even those from the Board, to the care of Mr. Robt. Cary, of Virginia, Mercht. etc If the hint you give me of somewhat to come, that will be to my satisfaction proves to be a dismission of four or five of our turbulent Councellors (such as Blair, Ludwell, Smith and Byrd) we may then expect to have peace and quiet in this Colony, and Assemblys meet to make laws for the publick weal etc. If not, their indulgence will entail upon the Board perpetual complaints from this quarter; or else ye Governor must fall entirely into these peoples schemes of Government, and becoming a thorough Creolian, must never dare to render to the Ministry at home so faithfull an account of his administration as I have all along done etc. The complaints against him are merely the work of the eight subscribing Councillors and Mr. Byrd, who is determined to turn him out. The tottering Governor is the appellation given him in papers dispersed through the Government. Repeats part of gist of Dec. 22, 1718. Concludes: I fear my adversarys have been long before me with their representations, for they surprisingly produced their Address just upon the sailing of the last ship for that year, and since her departure I have not till now met with an opportunity of sending a letter; and this offering by a chance ship, I am too suddenly called upon, neither dare I venture, but by some good ship and trusty master, my full answer to their Articles etc. Signed, A. Spotswood. Endorsed, Recd. 13th, Read 29th April, 1719. 2¾ pp. Enclosed,
46. i. Some remarkable proceedings in the Assembly of Virginia Anno 1718. Printed copy of Dec. 22. Nos. ii, iii, v. 4 pp. [C.O. 5, 1318. Nos. 62, 62 i.]
Feb. 6.
St. James's
47. Order of King in Council. Referring following to the Council of Trade and Plantations for their report. See A.P.C. II. No. 1309. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. Read 12th Feb. 1718/19. 1 p. Enclosed,
47. i. Petition of Francis Lord Guildford to the King. Guardian to the Lord Baltimore, petitions for leave of absence of Lt. Governor John Hart, of Maryland, for the recovery of his health for 12 months. In his absence, his place to be taken by the first member of the Councill there etc. Copy. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 717. Nos. 74, 74. i.]
Feb. 6.
48. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Lords Commissioners of H.M. Treasury. Enclose extract of letter from Mr. Bridger Oct. 24th, 1718, and recommend his application for salary etc. Continue: As to the other part of his letter, wherein he says, that the person now appointed to succeed him intends to officiate by a Deputy; we hope he has been misinformed, because we have reason to believe, that it will be impracticable for a Deputy to act with any success in that station, since Mr. Bridger who is allowed to have all the necessary qualifications, and appears to have been very active and diligent in the discharge of his duty, has not hitherto been able to hinder the inhabitants in those parts from committing great waste in the woods. [C.O. 5, 915. pp. 251, 252.]
Feb. 6.
49. Mr. Popple to Mr. West. Encloses for his opinion thereon Act of Pennsylvania for the advancement of Justice and more certain administration thereof etc. [C.O. 5, 1293. p. 163.]
[Feb. 6.]50. Petition of Ambrose Philips, Agent for New York, to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Prays for a favourable report upon an Act of New York, passed in the late Queen's reign, repealing an Act to oblige Robert Livingston to account etc. Encloses printed copy etc. Endorsed, Recd. 6th, Read 10th Feb., 1718/19. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1051. No. 80; and 5, 1124. p. 62].
Feb. 6.
Speaker's Chambers, &c.
51. Order of House of Commons. The Committee to whom the petition of the sufferers of Nevis and St. Christophers is referred, order a return of papers relating to the grant in aid etc. Signed, Peter Godfrey. Endorsed, Recd. 7th, Read 10th Feb., 1718/19. 1 p. [C.O. 152, 12. No. 127; and (duplicate) 127 i.]
Feb. 6.
St. James's.
52. Order of King in Council. Referring following to the Council of Trade and Plantations for their opinion thereon. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. 13th, Read 25th Feb., 1718/19. 1 p. Enclosed,
52. i. Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty to the King in Council. Admlty. Office. 3rd Jan. 1718. Propose that the 54th Article of the Governor's Instructions, directing them in the case of the captured pirates' goods to secure the same till H.M. pleasure be known, or, if perishable, to sell them publicly and secure the proceeds etc, be annulled, several irregularityes derogatory to the Admiralty jurisdiction having happened by virtue of that clause, and the Governors being sufficiently instructed by their Commissions as Vice-Admirals etc. Signed, J. Jennings. Jo. Cockburne, W. Chetwynd, Jno. Norris, Cha. Wager.
52. ii. Same to Same. Mr. James Smith, Advocate for the Court of Admiralty, in New England, having represented to us, that the provinciall Judges make frequent and intollerable encroachmts not only on H.M. authority, but on the jurisdiction of the Admiralty in those parts, insomuch as to sett at liberty persons imprisoned by decree of the Admiralty Court for debts and penaltys due to H.M., and to sett aside by pretended prohibitions, all appeales to the High Court of Admiralty, and to issue out writts, for large sums of money against masters of ships and others who sue in the Vice-Admiralty Courts, whereby the British navigation is exceedingly discouraged; and that he having applyed to the Govr. for redress hath found it altogether in vain, for that the said Governor believes by his Commission as Vice Admirall, he himself makes up the whole Court, and upon this supposition directs his warrant to the Marshall to seize ships and goods and overturn the decrees of the Court etc., And wee having received complaints of the like nature from the Courts of Admlty. of other H.M. Plantations insomuch that it appears there is little or no regard had to the authority and jurisdiction of the Admiralty abroad: Wee do therefore most humbly pray H.M. will be pleased to command the severall Govrs. of his foreign Colonys and Plantations that they do not only forbear giving interruptions to the proceedings of the Courts of Admlty. within their Governmt. and restrain the provinciall judges from doing the same, but that they give all possible countenance, and assistance to ye judges and other officers of the said Courts, in all cases that properly come under their cognizance etc. Signed and dated as preceding. Copy. 2 pp.
52. iii. James Smith to Governor Shute (v. preceding). John Oulton and Cornelius Waldol, merchants, Sept. last, pending an action between them and others in the Court of Admiralty, did by publick placards and otherwise defy and insult the jurisdiction and authority of the said Court, and endeavoured to excite others to join in the like practices in open contempt of H.M. Royal Commissions and Acts of Parliament, whereby Courts of Admiralty are established here etc. They owned the facts charged on them and were fined £25 each by the Court. But upon application made by them to the Superiour Court of judicature for this Province then sitting at Bristol, a prohibition was issued out for stopping execution of the sentence till the proceedings in Admiralty should be heard by them. And notwithstanding the Court of Admiralty did comply with the said prohibition tho' contrary to law, and H.M. Commission, which require, that parties aggrieved by a sentence of Admiralty in these parts, should appeal to the High Court of Admiralty in England; nevertheless Oulton and Waldol have in further contempt of H.M. Prerogative and Laws, and likewise in disobedience to the order granted at their request by the judges of the Superiour Court, raised a prosecution against the Advocate [James Smith] before the judges of the Inferiour Court, and have caused him to be arrested by the Sherriff of this County in the sum of £400 for executing his office according to the tenour and express words of his Commission, and the Judge of Admty's direction, etc. Prays H.E. to interpose his authority for vindicating the undoubted rights of the Crown, since such proceedings can be carried on with no other view, than to suppress the exercise of any power immediately derived from the Crown etc. Signed, James Smith. Boston, Feb. 12, 1716 [sic]. Copy. 3¼ pp.
52. iv. James Smith to Josiah Burchett. Boston in New England, 18th Feb., 1718. Refers to Memorial of Aug. last, laying before the Lords Commrs. of the Admiralty the encroachments upon H.M. prerogative. Continues: The Judges of the Provincial Courts have at last assumed to themselves the power not only of prohibiting all kinds of actions even for seamen's wages in the Court of Admiralty, but likewise suffer the actors or prosecutors, who sue in the said Court, and the officers thereof to be tried before them, and to be mulcted at the discretion of their juries. The Marshal has been arrested several times, and forced to follow their Courts from one county to another, upon no other pretence, than that he executed the decree of the Court, and last week I was arrested etc. ut supra. Refers to the intollerable oppressions we lie under occasioned by an utter aversion the great part of the people in these parts entertain against all powers not derived from themselves. And by their example the neibouring Provinces, some of which have no Charters but hold precariously of the Crown, have thrown off their submission to Admiralty jurisdiction, so that at present it is almost quite suppressed. Signed, James Smith. Copy. 2¼ pp.
52. v. Same to Same. Boston, Nov. 8, 1718. A French vessel belonging to Cape Francois came directly from thence last June unto this harbour. The Master Détcheverry having waited on the Collector ashoar was permitted to unload his cargoe, consisting chiefly of molasses, into a warehouse, and then to sell it for £900. Upon the loud complaints of the merchants residing here, and their earnest applications for having such an open breach of the Treaty of Neutrality for America duly proceeded against. especially since the letter of the Council of Trade 18th May, 1717, I did in pursuance of my duty exhibit a libel against the vessel and goods, and insisted on having both confiscated; not that I believed the Judge of Vice Admiralty, would in opposition to the Governour and Collector proceed so far, but with intent to check in some measure at least those pernicious practices by exposing them to publick view. The Collector appearing in defence of the vessel gave into Court a paper signed by himself and the Comptroller, upon which the libel was dismissed, and soon after Detcheverry purchases here a new sloop and cargoe under the colour of some Frenchmen's names inhabitants of this place, and sails directly to Cape Breton, and from thence to H.M. harbours of Canso, whereby his sloop was seized about 20th Sept. by Capt. Smart and brought hither in order to be adjudged to H.M. By some of Détcheverry's papers, which had fallen into Captain Smart's hands, it evidently appear'd that the great civilities which had been done him, flow'd from another principle than that of humanity, as it was pretended, for in one article, besides wine there is a present of £20 to the Collector, and £15 10s. to his two waiters, of whom Mr. Vincent Marshall of the Vice Admiralty is one etc. In my humble opinion both offices cannot be discharg'd by one person without great prejudice to trade and the execution of justice. Capt. Smart H.M.S. Squirrel, brought in last month from Canso two French vessels which he found trading there contrary to the Treaty of Neutrality etc. We proceeded to trial and the whole was confiscated and delivered by the Marshall into Capt. Smart's possession, in regard the vessels and the fish on board were not only perishable but actually perishing, and no motion had been made on the Governour's part to have them put into the hands of any other person, he having enacted himself to make good to H.M. the full value according to appraisement. H.E. was very much displeased with the decree, especially that part of it, which empower'd Capt. Smith to dispose of the prizes, and being made believe, that the cognizance of this matter was not competent to the jurisdiction of Admiralty, or if it was, that as Vice Admiral he might by his own authority stop proceedings and supersede all decrees of Court, he directed a warrant under his hand and seal to the Marshal, requiring him to seize the vessells and cargoes, and to carry with him a sufficient force in case Capt. Smith inclin'd to make any resistance. Tho' the warrant had not the effect H.E. intended, yet the authority of the Court was thereby render'd so precarious, and contemptible that the Provincial Judges, having privately consulted together, granted prohibitions not only in the cases then depending but also those which had been decided. Instances given. Copy. 6¾ pp.
52. vi. John Menzeis, Judge of Admiralty in Massachusets Bay, to the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty. The judges of the Court of Justice for this province being either offended by memorialist's efforts to reform abuses and regulate proceedings in maritime causes by the laws and forms observed in the High Court of Admiralty in England, or apprehending that the Court of Admiralty might become of greater use, and more considerable than they desired, have thought fit to weaken and almost suppress its authority and jurisdiction by several illegal and unwarrantable acts. Upon pretence that they have the same power to issue out prohibitions as belongs to the Common Law Courts in Westminster Hall, with respect to the proceedings of the High Court of Admiralty in England, they have caused serve prohibitions against the Judge of Admiralty here, in two cases purely maritime etc. Whereas it is presumed no such power is competent to their Courts, the Statutes whereby Admiralty Jurisdiction in England is limited having no relation to the Plantations. Besides the writts of prohibition, which they have issued out, are irregular both in matter and form etc. Quote cases given in No. iv. Further, the General Court of this Province in their late Assembly, notwithstanding the clauses of reservation of the rights of Admiralty in their Charter, upon the bare opinion of one chosen by them, to be their Attorney General for this year, hath assumed the power to pass an Act, which not only forbids under a severe penalty, the Officers of the Court of Admiralty to take or demand any fees, but such as they thought fit to establish. and wherein are omitted, not only more than the third part of the articles which occurr in that Court, for which dues have ever been paid, since the establishment thereof by the King in these Provinces, but likewise differs from an Act of Parliament for the encouragement of trade to America. The Judge and officers of the Court of Admiralty implore their Lordships' protection, and that a stop may be put to the violent proceedings against them etc. Copy. 6½ pp. [C.O. 323, 7. Nos. 148, 148. i–vi; and (without enclosures), 324, 10. pp. 234, 235.]
Feb. 9.53. Reservations of Naval Stores proposed to be made in grants of lands in Nova Scotia, offered by the Naval Board v. Feb. 5. Endorsed, Recd. Read 12th Feb., 1718/19. 2¼ pp. [C.O. 217, 2. Nos. 56; and (duplicate), 57.]
Feb. 10.
Office of Ordnance.
54. Board of Ordnance to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Your Lordships are sensible with what difficulties we have gott, from Parliament, £2500 for securing the harbour of Placentia, by building of a stone redoubt at the entrance of it; And as this cannot be done without the assistance of the trading ships by carrying at easie freight several materials which that place do's not afford, as limestone, culm, freestone etc. we were in hopes they would have readily come into the same, since it might have been a means to induce the Government to do the like for other harbours, but to our great disappointment they demand 20s. a tunn, half of which we are willing to give provided they will carry it to Placentia, altho we were allowed but at the rate of 3s., it being proposed to be carried as ballast to the several ports they fish att. Request them to write to the Chamber of Exeter etc. to exert their endevors therein etc. Signed, T. White, M. Richards, T. Wheate, John Armstrong, T. Frankland. Endorsed, Recd. 10th., Read 12th Feb., 1718/19. 1 p. [C.O. 194, 6. No. 53; and 195, 6. pp. 485, 486.]
Feb. 11.
55. Mr. Secretary Craggs to the Governor of Barbados. You are to give all reasonable countenance and assistance to Mr. Hales and Mr. Hodges as desired in following. Signed, J. Craggs. Annexed,
55. i. Petition of Robert Hales, one of the Clerks of H.M. Privy Council, and Thomas Hodges to the King. Robert Hales being married to the widow of the late Coll. Hallet of Barbados, and Thomas Hodges to Col. Hallet's heiress are engaged in a suit of Chancery, in defence of the respective rights of their wives, against William Cogan, one of the executors, who lays claim to one half of Col. Hallet's personal estate (£20,000). Pray that the Governor be directed to give his favour and assistance to hasten the ending of a vexatious suit, etc. Mr. Cogan by his artful ways and dilatory proceedings having already caused the suit to depend for 1½ years etc. [C.O. 324, 33. pp. 213, 214.]
Feb. 12.
56. Mr. Secretary Craggs to the Governor of Barbados. Upon the complaint of Abel Alleyn etc (v. 17th Nov. 1718), you are to send a letter in the most pressing terms to the Governor of Martinico, to demand their [Runaway] negroes which letter you are to send by a Messenger of your own, and take particular care, that no illegal trade be carried on with the French Settlements under this pretence. Signed, J. Craggs. [C.O. 324, 33. p. 215.]
Feb. 12.
57. Mr. Popple to Mr. Burchett. Encloses extract of letter from Nath. Shannon (v. Dec. 9, 1718), and enquires if there be any further accounts at the Admiralty, etc. [C.O. 5, 915. p. 254.]
Feb. 13.
Admiralty Office.
58. Mr. Burchett to Mr. Popple. In reply to preceding, encloses following "The same is all the accounts their Lordships have received" etc. Signed, J. Burchett. Endorsed, Recd. 14th Feb., Read 4th March, 1718/19. Addressed. 1 p. Enclosed,
58. i. Extract of letter from Capt. Smart, H.M.S. Squirrel, to Mr. Burchett, 22nd Oct. 1718. I carried here from Canso on 5th Oct. and brought with me two French vessels which I seized at that place for fishing and trading there contrary to the 5th and 6th Articles of the Treaty of Peace and Neutrality in America etc. Both have been condemned in the Court of Admiralty and confiscated with their lading to H.M. and I, as captor, being allowed to dispose thereof after apprizement, etc. have taken possession of them, notwithstanding which H.E. Governor Shute hath arbitrarily endeavored to take them from me, having after the judges decree sent the Marshall of the Vice Admiralty on board by virtue of a warrant under his own hand and seal, which I repeal'd to take them out of my possession under pretence my security is not sufficient and that the country must be answerable and by that means to get a grant of it from H.M. under pretexte that what service I have done has been by his and the Counsell's orders. 1¼ pp. [C.O. 5, 867. Nos. 33, 33.i.; and (without enclosure) 5, 915. pp. 259, 260.]
Feb. 14.
59. Mr. Popple to the Mayors of Exeter, Poole, Bideford, Barnstable and Dartmouth. Urges acceptance of proposal by the Board of Ordnance v. Feb. 10th. [C.O. 195, 6. pp. 487, 488.]
Feb. 16.
60. Mayor of Poole to Mr. Popple. Reply to 14th Feb. The master of the only ship bound to Placentia will carry 60 tons at 20s. pr. ton and not under. No other master will contract at any rate, being bound to distant harbours etc. Signed, Ben Skutt. Endorsed, Recd. 18th., Read 19th Feb., 1718/19. Addressed. Postmark. 1 p. [C.O. 194, 6. No. 54.]
Feb. 16.
61. Deputy-Governor Keith to Mr. Popple. When the inclosed report comes to be laid before the Board, I conceive it will be proper to make some enquiry (i.) Whether the Crown of England has not always claim'd a right to the Lakes westward of these Colonies, etc. (ii.) If Hudson's Bay, as I conceive it is, be unquestionably ours, whether we must not also have as good a right to the great Lake or Lac Superieur with which that Bay has a communication by water. (iii.) Whether Dr. Cox had not some grant of the River Mechasippi before it was discovered by the French, and what sort of a grant it was. Also that you will please to inform their Lordships that a gentleman of worth and credit here assures me that he has seen a French commission from the Governor of Canada dated about 3 years ago, wherein the person to whom it was granted is particularly required to obstruct the English settlements. Signed, W. Keith. Endorsed, Recd. 1st., Read 2nd July, 1719. Addressed. 1½ pp. Enclosed,
61. i. Same to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Report, in reply to 19th March, 1718, upon the progress of the French in finding out and securing a passage from their settlements on St. Lawrence River to that on Mechasippi. I have my information chiefly from the Indian traders and shall not pretend to vouch anything from my own knowledge etc. Yet first I would intreat your Lordships to observe, that from an article in the Treaty of Reswick, by which all lands on any rivers in America, the mouths whereof were then in the possession of either Nation, are conceded to that Nation as high as the first sources of those Rivers, the French by virtue of the Sieur de la Salle's expeditions and discoveries do now claim all the lands to the northward and westward of the British Colonies from Canada along the Lakes unto the mouth of the River Mechasippi; But as it is hard to imagine that such a concession was ever intended by the foresaid article, because it is not only inconsistent with the ancient grant from the Crown to the Proprietors of Carolina, but also with the security of all H.M. Colonies on this Continent of America, I only submit it to your Lordships view etc. From the time that the French first discovered the River Mechasippi they have with great care endeavoured and at length have actually settled a communication between Canada and the Southern countries on the said river. First they sail in cannoes from Mount Real about three leagues to the fall of St. Lewis, where they have a portage or carrying place by land about half a league; then they reimbark and row up the stream about sixty leagues to Fort Frontenac on the North side and at the beginning of Lake Ontario. In this fort is a small garrison, consisting of one or two companies in the King's pay. From thence they proceed on the Lake Ontario, generally reputed to be about eighty leagues in length, to those dreadful Falls of Niagara, which oblige them to land; the portage is about three leagues, after which they reimbark and go up the Strait about six leagues into the Lake Erie, reputed to be 130 leagues in length. And from this Lake they have three different routs to the River Mechasippi. The first and shortest passage by water is to go up the River Miamis or Ouamis that enters Lake Erie on the South West, about 150 leagues, then they come to a carrying place of about three leagues, where is the highest land, and from hence the waters divide their descent between Mechasippi and that Lake; Here they embark on a small shallow river called la Riviere de Portage, down which they row forty leagues to the River Wabash or Ouabache, and on that river, as the traders reckon, 120 leagues to the River Ohio, into which the other falls, then 80 leagues down Ohio to Mechasippi, and thence 350 leagues to the Bay of Mexico. Some call both these rivers by the same name, and generally Wabash, but they ought to be distinguished, because the head of Ohio comes more easterly towards Virginia or Carolina, and among divers other large streams it receives the River Peresipi on the South side not far from the mouth of Wabash, which river, Peresipi, is said to rise from the mountains of Virginia or Carolina. The other two passages are both prick'd down in Hennepin's Map, and according to the accounts given are thus, From the North East of Lake Erie they sail eight leagues to a fort on the Lake St. Claire, called Pont Chartrain, where there is a settlement of the French, and often 400 traders meet here; then along the Lake seven leagues, thence to the great Lake Huron about ten leagues; On this Lake they proceed to the Straits Missilimakina 120 leagues. Here is a garrison of about 30 French, and a vast concourse of traders, sometimes not less than a thousand, besides Indians, being a common place of rendezvous. At and near this place are the Outawas settled. From the Lake Huron they pass by the Strait Missilimakina four leagues, being two in breadth and of a great depth, to the Lake Illinois, thence 150 leagues on the Lake to Fort Miami situate on the mouth of the River Chigagou; This Fort is not regularly garrisoned. From hence came those Indians of the same name viz Miamis, who are settled on the forementioned River that runs into Erie. Up the River Chigagou they sail but three leagues to a portage of a quarter of a league, then they enter a small lake of about a mile, and have another very small portage, and again another of two miles to the River Illinois, thence down the same 130 leagues to Mechasippi. The third is from Missilimakina on the Lake Illinois to the Lake des Puans ninety leagues, thence to the River Puans eighty leagues, thence up the same to a portage about four miles over to the River Ouisconsing, thence forty leagues to the Mechasippi. From the mouth of Ouisconsing to the mouth of the River Illinois is reputed 150 leagues on Mechasippi, and from thence to the mouth of this seventy leagues: so that from the mouth of Ouisconsing to the Bay is about 500 leagues. These distances are as the traders reckon them, but they appear generally to be much overdone, which may be owing to those people's coasting along the shoars of the Lakes and taking in all the windings of the Rivers. They have another much shorter passage from Mount Real to Lake Huron by the French River on the North of St. Lawrence, which answers the two latter routs, but it abounds with falls, and not answering trade so well is not so much used. They have also by this river a much shorter passage to the upper Lake or Lac Superieur. But of all the passages, that by Ouabache is the shortest and easiest etc.
A State of the Indian Nations: It has ever been the policy of the French, in time of war as well as peace, to use their utmost endeavours by all manner of means to bring over any sort or all kinds of Indians into their interest; But as it is in vain to perswade an Indian to think otherwayes than that those are his best friends who can help him to the best bargain, the Iroquese or five Nations have hitherto been preserved by the Dutch and English at New York, chiefly on account of finding better markets there than with the French. Nevertheless by the artifices of their Jesuit Missionaries they daily continue to debauch them from the English interest in so much that of the whole number of Iroquese now remaining, which does not exceed 2000 fighting men, the French have drawn over 700 to inhabit amongst them, viz. 400 seated at the Fall of St. Lewis on the South side of St. Lawrence, and 300 on the North side. The rest of them are planted chiefly along the Lake Ontario, at some distance from it. I am told there are no Indians in the French interest on this side of St. Lawrence nearer than the Miamis or Twoittois, as the Iroquese call them. They are in numbers about 2000, seated chiefly on the forementioned River Miamis flowing into Lake Erie, and on or near the branches of the River Ouabache. The gaining of this one Nation would be of great importance to the English interest, and might be easily done at this time, if any offer was made of trading with them, and of building a Fort upon Lake Erie, where the French as yet have no settlement, tho' probably they will soon go about to have one, upon the account of these people, as well as to render their passage through that Lake more easie and safe. The Illinois are about 3000 men, on or near the River of that name. The Missilimakinaes or Outtawas were formerly 3000, but now are scarce 500. The Nokes 100. The Fellesavoins 200. The Sakes 200. The Puans 600. All these joined the French against the Iroquese in the last war, and all of them, except the Miamis, are seated about or near to the Lake Illinois, which is now commonly call'd by them Mechegan, and on the rivers that run into it, and on the Lake Puans and the River Illinois. There are also divers other Nations between Mechegan and Mechasippi, as the Renards or Foxes, Massekotins, Kikapous; But these being farther off did not join the French against the Iroquese. On Mechasippi and the branches of it there are many great Nations, especially to the West, as the Missouris, Ozages, Acansias, who are different from those of Acansa on the East, with many more, not less, as is affirmed, than 60,000 men: with all whom it is said, the French have peace or some small alliance. On the other hand, all the English to the northward of Carolina have not 1500 men in their interest, except the Iroquese. In New England and Connecticut they have very few: In New York only the River Indians besides the Iroquese: In Jersey or Pensilvania their own or home Indians, call'd Delawares are exceedingly decreased, and being in subjection to the Iroquese take their rules from them: In Maryland and Virginia there are very few, excepting those towards the South West whom Collo. Spotswood with great industry has lately gain'd by treaties and hostages. Those of Carolina and the Nations lately in friendship with them have been very numerous; but the Iroquese, whether prompted by the French or by what other motive is not known, have of late years made great inroads upon them, and cannot as yet by any endeavours of the English, be diverted from it etc.
Methods to prevent the inconveniences of ye French settlements. Tho' it may be justly said that we exceed the French in the improved value of our settlements upon this Continent, yet from the above account it is plain, that we come far short of the industry which they use in cultivating a necessary correspondence and friendship with the natives, without which our further progress to the westward will soon be circumscribed, and we shall likewayes be under daily apprehensions of loseing what we already possess. But since this friendship and correspondence is by experience no otherwayes to be acquired than by trade, it will necessarily follow, that this trade ought by all means to be encouraged and extended with our utmost care and diligence; And that this may be done to the publick advantage as well as to that of particulars, it will be proper to consider the nature of this trade, with respect to Great Britain: to the Colonies where it must be carried on: and to the French who are our rivals in it. The trade itself consists in the exchange of a very few simple commodities, viz., They take from us the woollen manufacture of Britain, gunpowder, shot, fire-arms and trinkets, for which we receive in barter furs and skins; And this being almost a total exchange of British produce or manufacture, through the hands and by the navigation and labour of British subjects in these Colonies, suppose it only for an equal quantity in value of goods which are either wanted at home, or may be justly placed to Great Britain's credit upon the ballance of trade in the forreign countries, it will inavoidably follow that Britain must gain in proportion to the magnitude or extent of the trade in general, and therefore we may conclude that it ought not only to be encouraged, but established upon an equal foot throughout all these Colonies, as they are inhabited by British subjects carrying on one British interest without any distinction made or regard had to their particular settlements or Societys as separate Governments. With respect to the Colonies: This Trade will enrich particulars in proportion to the quantity they deal in and the profit it brings, which of late years has been so considerable that it has tempted the trading interest of some Colonies to pursue that gain with an unreasonable desire of crushing their neighbours; But this practice is by all means to be discouraged from Great Britain as highly destructive of the publick interest, both with respect to trade and the advancement as well as security of the British Dominion on this Continent. Lastly, if this trade could be carried on with such a publick spirit and just regard to a national interest as appears to be absolutely necessary for maintaining what we have already got, the French, who cannot furnish those commodities compared with us either in quantity or value, could have no more hopes of diverting the Indians from trading with us, and consequently depending firmly upon us; We should not then have the traders of New York jealous of and uneasie at the proffits gained by the traders of Virginia, nor those again of the improvements which may possibly be made in Carolina: but every Colony would find a solid and certain advantage by an Union amongst them, according to their situation, power and ability to advance their trading settlements westward upon the Lakes and adjacent rivers, where these vast Nations of Indians would soon perceive by our united interest, power and traffick, that we were far preferable to our rivals the French, and every way much fitter to be chosen for their friends and allies. And in order to carry on this great design I humbly conceive it will be proper that a compleat body of Instructions be carefully composed to be sent to all the Governours on this Continent, where amongst other things it may be directed, vizt. (i) That in order to prevent the Indians being imposed upon and abused by loose and over-covetous persons trading promiscuously amongst them, which was the chief unhappy cause of the late destructive war in South Carolina, the Governour shall use his utmost endeavour, with the advice of the Council and Assembly, to put the Indian trade carried on by the inhabitants under such wholesome and just regulations as that the traders may not have it in their power to cheat or impose upon the Indians in any sort, without being made accountable for it under high penalties; Provided alwayes that no restriction shall be made to prohibit or interrupt any of H.M. subjects in other of his Colonies from trading as freely with any forreign Indians as the inhabitants of that Colony can or may do themselves, and in case they shall discover any abuses to have been committed upon any Indians whatsoever by any person or persons inhabitants in or belonging unto any other of H.M. Colonies, complaint shall forthwith be made to the Governour of that Colony whereunto the offender belongs, and he shall cause restitution to be made and justice to be done according to the nature of the offence. (ii) That all possible encouragement be given towards carrying on a fair trade with the Indian Nations, so that it may be extended as far westward upon the Lakes and Rivers behind the great Mountains as the situation and ability of the Colony will permit; And when any proper place shall be discovered for the building of a Fort and settling a Garrison in order to protect the trade, a report thereof shall be made to your Lordships, with the circumstances and reasons that can be given for so doing. (iii) That the Governour shall with all his industry and might endeavour to make treaties and alliances of strict friendship with as many Indian Nations as possibly he can: always taking special care to stipulate and secure Peace not only between them and the Colonies under his direction, but also between them and all the English Colonies, and likewayes with all the Indians under any league of friendship with any of the said Colonies. And that this may be the more effectually done H.M. may be pleased to direct and order in a more especial manner, by a publick Proclamation or otherwayes as shall seem meet, that all persons whatsoever travelling from the settlements of any of H.M. Colonies into the woods, in order to discover and trade with any Indian Nation or Nations whatsoever, if such persons shall happen accidentally to meet or encounter with any others H.M. subjects travelling from any other of his Colonies or settlements upon the same design of trade or discovery, then and in that case, such persons shall be obliged and are strictly commanded, under the highest pain of his Royal displeasure, to entreat one another with civil humanity and kindly assistance, without giving the one the other upon either part the least interruption or hindrance in their said respective designs of friendly intercourse and traffick with the Indians, but on the contrary, by their open and free behaviour as well as discourse, to convince the Indians as much as in them lies, that all the Indian subjects upon this Continent howsoever distinguished into Governments, yet are but one people under one great King, who has commanded them his subjects to take all opportunitys of shewing his love and affection to all the Indian Nations, and that whichsoever of them will make any League of Friendship with any one of his Governments in these parts, are thereby entitled to H.M. protection. and the friendship as well as assistance of all the other Governments and the Indian Nations in alliance with any of them. (iv) That if any Indian Nation in League of Friendship with any of H.M. Colonies shall in breach thereof presume to make war upon, plunder, or in any sort molest any other Indian Nation who at the time shall be in friendship with, and under the protection of any other of H.M. Colonies: Then that Colony unto which such offensive Indians are bound by treaty shall use their utmost endeavours, by threatnings as well as promises, to oblige the said Indians to make reasonable satisfaction for their breach of faith, to the contentment of the party aggrieved; And in case of meeting with any difficulty in bringing such Indians to reason, the Governour shall represent the same unto H.M. forthwith, in order to receive further direction therein. (v) To the end that all the Governours of H.M. Plantations on the Continent be each of them for their better direction particularly acquainted with the State of every other Government relating to the Indians, let every Governour be ordered, upon his making any alliance or treaty with any Indian Nation whatsoever, immediately to communicate the nature, import and date of such a treaty unto all his fellow Governours upon the Continent.
And such a correspondence and harmony being once established, the Trade might be easily secured and protected by erecting four small forts, viz. the first upon Lake Erie, near to the abovenamed Indians the Miamis. The second on Lake Ontario, near to the Iroquese. The third on the head or highest fountain of Potowmack River, which divides the Colonies of Virginia and Maryland. And the fourth towards the head of Susquehannah River which runs through Pensilvania unto the Bay of Cheaseapeak. The two first of these forts would not only secure all the Indians on this side Carolina to Cannada, which are settled to the eastward of the Lakes, but also open a trade with the above-mentioned great and numerous Nations to the westward, whose communication by water would render the traffick easie. And because the distance between the English settlements in these Colonies and the Lakes is too great, without the refreshment as well as security of a middle stage or resting place, the other two forts would effectually answer that end unto all the traders belonging to any of the Colonies northward of Carolina. I humbly conceive that each fort will require a company or garrison of fifty men in the King's pay, to be under the direction and command of the Governours H.M. Commanders in Chief in the respective Colonies, viz. that upon Lake Erie to be under Virginia. That upon Lake Ontario under New York. That upon Potowmack under Maryland, and that upon Susquehannah under Pensilvania. To conclude, I cannot foresee anything which would interrupt the execution of this scheme, but the emulation in trade that is kept up amongst the English Colonies; for which reason it seems necessary that some method be projected whereby each Colony will be obliged to bear it's proportionable share of the expense which the Crown of Great Britain will be at in building forts westward amongst the Indians, and subsisting garrisons: for if this was done at the publick charge, equally for the protection of all, none would have any pretence to be particularly distinguished in their claim to this trade; and if Great Britain do not imitate the French in making their correspondence with the Indians a national concern, whereby the Government and maintenance of all forts and garrisons shall remain in the hands of the Crown, the success is very much to be doubted, from the variety of interruptions which we may continually expect to meet with amongst ourselves as well as from the French, who have but one interest principally in view, and steadily pursue it with great application. But from the little knowledge and experience which I have of the English American Colonies, I do not expect that this project, howsoever just in itself, will generally please, etc. Pensylvania, 16th Feb.. 1718/19.
P.S.—Lest it should at any time be represented to your Lordships, that in imitation of the French a Society may be incorporated, and a Company erected for carrying on the trade upon this Continent wt. the Indians, I must beg leave to observe that such a privilege or immunity would certainly become a very heavy burthen upon, and a great discouragement unto the planting as well as trading interest of every one and all of these Colonies, who from the taste they have of English liberty, are naturally averse to all monopolies, and ever will hardly be restrained by the maxims or example of a French Government. Besides, any such restriction upon the inhabitants of these Colonies, would altogether destroy the intent and design of the above scheme, which is founded upon reasoning after this manner, vizt., That under a good regulation of government, the relative advantages which subsist between any State and its Colonies abroad are reciprocal. For as the State has unquestionably a right, and most certainly ought to regulate the trade of its Colonies for publick advantage: so the Colonies have at least an equal if not preferable claim to the subsistence and smaller profits which arise from that trade, unto those who must be employed in carrying it on. That where any publick interest will be most effectually carried on by the united strength of many adjacent Colonies, such an Union ought carefully to be established with equality amongst them, and every thing tending to weaken or obstruct this Union is to be considered as prejudicial to the publick. That the Indian Nations upon this Continent are not to be gained otherways than by trade, and this trade cannot be managed to any purpose without the mutual assistance and concurrence of all the English Colonies: But from the different constitutions and particular interests of these Colonies such a regulation is not to be obtained without the authority of Great Britain etc. Signed, W. Keith. 28 pp. [C.O. 5, 1265. Nos. 124, 124 i.; and 5, 1293. pp. 181–203.]
Feb. 18.
62. Council of Trade and Plantations to Lord Guilford. In pursuance of Feb. 6th, desire to know whether the Government of Maryland upon Mr. Hart's absence will not devolve upon the President of the Council there as is usual in all other Plantations, "in which case before we can advise H.M. to grant Mr. Hart a licence of absence it will be necessary that a security should be given here in behalf of the Presidt. for his observing and causing the several Acts of Trade and Navigation to be duly put in execution in Maryland" etc. [C.O. 5, 727. p. 488.]
Feb. 18.63. Col. Codrington to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Returns thanks for deferring the hearing of his petition (29th Aug., 1717.) Concludes:—Considering that in strictness of law I may not appear to have so good a title to the said lands [in St. Christophers] as I may presume to have from H.M. equitable and favourable consideration of the services and sufferings of those under whom I claime, and the irregularity of the proceedings in dispossessing the late Collo. Codrington of those lands; I shall not give your Lordships any further trouble herein, but pray you will please to represent the conduct and merrit of the late Collo. Codrington's the father and son and recommend me to H.M. favour in the purchase of the lands abovementioned in case H.M. shall not think fit to confirm the former grant. Signed, W. Codrington. Endorsed, Recd. 18th., Read 20th Feb., 1718/19. 1 p. [C.O. 152, 12. No. 128].
Feb. 19.
64. Mr. Popple to the Secretary of the Board of Ordnance. Encloses copy of only answer (Feb. 16) yet received to No. 59. "The Council of Trade and Plantations are apprehensive that freight will hardly be got cheaper" etc. [C.O. 195, 6. p. 489.]
[Feb. 19.]65. Dr. Wickham to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Prays that a day may be appointed for hearing the case of Col. Thomas Morris, the original papers of the proceedings against him in Antigua having now been laid before the Board, and Col. Codrington, who is "capable to acquaint the Board of his carecter" being now come to town. Endorsed, Recd. 19th., Read 20th Feb., 1718/19. ¾ p. [C.O. 152, 12. No. 129.]
Feb. 20.
66. Mr. Popple to Mr. Bridger. Acknowledges letters and refers to Representation of 6th Feb. Continues: The Board desire you will continue to give them the best informations you can, particularly with regard to H.M. woods, etc., and concerning any essays that may be made for raising hemp, making bar and rough iron or producing potashes; Their Lordships desire further that you will send them as soon as possible some account concerning the lands of Nova Scotia, whether there are any such as you may judge proper to be let apart for the service of the Crown, to supply the Navy with masts, whether that country is capable of producing any sort of Naval Stores, and that you will give your opinion upon the whole in what manner the country may be best laid out for the advantage of this Kingdom. [C.O. 5, 915. pp. 254, 255.]
Feb. 20.
67. Same to Mr. Armstrong. Acknowledges letters etc. of 27th Dec. The Board thank you for the same, and desire you will continue to give them the best informations you can from time to time of what may occur to you, relating to the production of Naval Stores in America, or any other matter that may tend to the interest and advantage of this Kingdom. [C.O. 5, 915. p. 256.]
Feb. 20.
68. Mayor of Bideford to Mr. Popple. Reply to Feb. 14th. These difficult times, it was late before the merchants concluded to send any ships to Newfoundland etc. They offer to carry limestone at 10s. and culme at 20s. pr. tunn to Trapassey and St. Marys etc. The last years misfortunes of our ships in Spaine will lessen our outsetts on ye fishery this spring soe that wee shall not have halfe ye number of ships to the land this year etc. Signed, John Buck. Endorsed, Recd. 23rd., Read 24th Feb., 1718/19. Addressed. Postmark. 1 p. [C.O. 194, 6. No. 55.]
Feb. 20.
69. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury. Enclose Office accounts from Lady day to Christmas. There was then a quarter's salary due to our Secretary and other officers etc. Accounts annexed. [C.O. 389, 37. pp. 157–160.]
Feb. 20.
70. Mr. Popple to Richard West. Encloses for his opinion thereon the Act of New York to repeal an Act to oblige Robt. Livingston to account etc. [C.O. 5, 1124. p. 63.]
Feb. 21.
71. Mayor of Exeter to Mr. Popple. Reply to 14th Feb. The merchants and masters think those materials may be cheapest carried from Poole and Bithyford, etc. There are about 12 sayle bound for fishing voyages on ye bankes and mayne out of this river and Tingmouth but not one of them above 120 tons and every of them either sayles for France for salt or Ireland for provisions, or to fish on ye banks, or carry passingers and provisions etc. for them wch. fully loads the shipps etc. Signed, John Burell, Mayor. Endorsed, Recd. 23rd., Read 24th Feb., 1718/19. Addressed. Postmark. ¾ p. [C.O. 194, 6. No. 56.]
Feb. 24.
Admiralty Office.
72. Mr. Burchett to Mr. Popple. The Lords Commrs. of the Admiralty desire the Attorney General of Jamaica to be instructed to sue the executors of Silvester Stukeley, late Agent for the Victualling Office, for monies due to them etc. Signed, J. Burchett. Endorsed, Recd. 24th., Read 25th Feb., 1718/19. Addressed. 1 p. [C.O. 137, 13. No. 23; and 138, 16. pp. 159, 160.]
Feb. 25.
73. Mr. Popple to the Secretary of the Board of Ordnance. Encloses copies of letters from Mayors of Biddeford and Exeter, 20th and 21st Feb. [C.O. 195, 6. p. 490.]
Feb. 25.
St. James's.
74. H.M. warrant appointing Francis Whitworth to the office of Secretary of Barbados, surrendered by Joseph Micklethwaite. Countersigned, J. Craggs. Copy. [C.O. 324, 33. pp. 217–219.]
Feb. 25.75. W. Nivine to Mr. Popple. Desires that Col. John Frye and William Parrot may attend the Board on Friday etc. Signed, Will. Nivine. Endorsed, Recd. Read 25th Feb. 1718/19. ¾ p. [C.O. 152, 12. No. 130.]
Feb. 26.76. Lord Guilford to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Reply to No. 62. It not being certain which of the members may be living at the time of Mr. Hart's departure, Proposes that the first member of the Council of Maryland for the time being upon entering into the administration of the Government, give security there to observe the Acts of Trade and Navigation, to be transmitted here, in order for a new security to be entered into here on his behalf, if that given in Maryland shall not be thought to answer the end. Signed, Guilford. Endorsed, Recd. 26th Feb., Read 4th March, 1718/19. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 717. No. 75.]
Feb. 27.77. Mr. West to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Reply to 6th Feb. I am of opinion the Act is very proper to be passed into a law etc. Signed, Richd. West. Endorsed, Recd. 26th Feb., Read 6th March, 1718/19. ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 1265. No. 116; and 5, 1293. p. 163.]
Feb. 27.
78. Mayor of Barnstaple to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Reply to 14th Feb. None of this port are bound to Placentia etc. Signed, Edward Fairchild. Endorsed, Recd. 2nd., Read 4th March, 1718/19. Addressed. Postmark. ½ p. [C.O. 194, 6. No. 57.]
Feb. 27.79. Lords Proprietors of Carolina to the Governor, Council and Assembly of South Carolina. We having receiv'd this day at our Board two several Addresses from the London merchants, relating to two Acts of Assembly that have been twelve months since pass'd in your Province of South Carolina (of which to our great surprize we have as yet receiv'd no account from you) and after we had heard the merchts. on both sides, we came to these resolutions vizt., That as H.M. has been pleas'd to issue out his orders to all his Governors in America not to pass any Act of Assembly concerning the trade or shipping of this Kingdom till his royal pleasure on that account be first known; so we think it proper and we do hereby strictly command and require you our Governor and Council of South Carolina, for the future not to pass any Act of Assembly which may any ways affect the trade or shipping of this Kingdom, without a clause declaring the sd. Acts shall not be in force until they shall be first approved and confirm'd by us the Lords Proprietors. We think it highly unreasonable and unjust that in matters relating to trade, any difference or distinction shou'd be made between H.M. subjects residing in Great Britain and those that live in our Province of South Carolina, or that any greater duties should be impos'd on ships built in Great Britain than on ships built in Carolina; Wherefore we the Lord Palatin and the rest of the Lords Proprs. do think it proper to repeal and make void, an Act of Assembly, entituled, An additional Act to an Act, entituled an Act for laying an imposition on liquors goods and merchandizes etc. We have receiv'd very grievous complaints from the merchts. against an Act entituled, a further additional Act, to an Act entituled an Act for the better ordering and governing of negroes and all other slaves etc., and very great and pressing instances have been made to us to repeal that Act; But upon the report of the danger the country might be in from the too great number of negro slaves; we were unwilling to repeal the same; but we do advise you our Govr. Council and Assembly, that if the country at present be in no real danger from the great number of negroes, that you wou'd repeal the said Act, and in lieu thereof you wou'd procure that an Act may be pass'd to oblige every planter etc. to have one white man for every ten negroes. Signed, Carteret, Palatin; Maurice Ashley, J. Colleton, J. Danson. [C.O. 5, 290. pp. 132–135.]
Feb. 27.80. Petition of William Gordon, of Barbados, Clerk, to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The Committee for hearing appeals, complaints etc. from the Plantations have appointed the 6th March for determining a complaint of the Agents of Barbadoes touching the Bp. of London's Ecclesiastical jurisdiction and petitioner's character conduct and principles. Desires copies of some Minutes of Council and Assembly and other papers relating thereto. Signed, W. Gordon. Endorsed, Recd. Read 27th Feb., 1718/19. 1 p. [C.O. 28, 15. No. 44.]
Feb. 28.
St. James's.
81. H.M. licence of leave for a further 12 months to Thomas Talmach, Lt. Govr. of Montserrat, etc. Countersigned, J. Craggs. Copy. [C.O. 324, 33. p. 216.]