America and West Indies
February 1665

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Institute of Historical Research

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W. Noel Sainsbury (editor)

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1880

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273-284

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'America and West Indies: February 1665', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 5: 1661-1668 (1880), pp. 273-284. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=76484 Date accessed: 19 April 2014. Add to my bookshelf


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February 1665

Feb. 1.
Hartford.
924. The Governor and Council of Connecticut to Col. Nicolls. John Scott, according to his wonted course, is again making disturbance amongst the people of Setawkett, by labouring to deprive the people of that place of the land expedient for their subsistence, seeing Col. Nicolls was pleased to determine (when our Governor was last at New York) that what had been formerly settled and determined by Connecticut upon Long Island was so to continue. The land claimed by Scott (as Setawkett men informed Allyn and Willys) by purchase of the Indians, if he should enjoy, would be destructive to that plantation. By the established order of the colony no land was to be purchased to the particular use of any person without the consent of our General Court, and all such purchases to be well in law. If such engrossing of land (to private uses) from Indians be tolerated it would be found destructive to whole townships. Doubts not of his favour that the people of Setawkett be not molested or disturbed in the enjoyment of their just rights. Signed by order, John Allyn, Secretary. Printed in New York Documents, III., 86. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 14.]
Feb. 2.
From Mr. Willet's house.
925. Sir Robt. Carr to Col. Nicolls. His letter sent ashore to Milford by Capt. Bollen, who ordered the magistrates to send it away with all expedition. Went to the Governor's house at Rhode Island, who made him very welcome, Mr. Brenton, the Deputy Governor, at his country house. Communicated his directions and delivered their letters, "after perusal they did declare themselves so much satisfied that their lives and fortunes was too little to give satisfaction for that Royal favour they had received from his Majesty and likewise from the Chancellor." The rich coats sent by the King to some of the Sachems declared to be most unfitting and improper ; Mr. Clarke of a contrary opinion. His voyage from Rhode Island delayed by contrary winds. Discourse with Capt. Willett about his going to New York ; his scruples, his wife not being well, but is now resolved to go. Great murder committed by Indians of Nantucket Island on English seamen driven ashore there, not thought to have been the first committed ; is informed it is a place under his Government. Mr. Willett will give a more particular account, and his judgment of the best way to be revenged. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 15.]
Feb. 2. 926. Commission to the Duke of York, High Admiral of England, &c. His Majesty having taken into consideration the injuries, affronts, and spoils done by the East and West India Companies and other subjects of the United Provinces upon his subjects, and that notwithstanding frequent demands made by his Majesty to the States General for redress and reparation, none could be obtained from them, has thought fit that general reprisals be granted against the ships, goods, and subjects of said States. These are therefore to authorise him to grant commissions to the Governors, Vice-admirals, or others of his Majesty's islands and foreign dominions, to empower them to grant commissions to such as they shall think fit, for taking the ships and goods of said States, their subjects or inhabitants, and to bring the same to condemnation, and afterwards dispose thereof, as by the course of Admiralty and usage in such cases has been accustomed. Indorsed, Charles R. Our will and pleasure is that this pass by immediate warrant. Entered at the Signet Office 4° February 1664(-5). John Nicholas. Entered at the Privy Seal Office the sixth of February 1664(-5). J. Mathew. [Privy Seals, 16 Chas. II., No. 364, T. 26.]
1665? Feb. 2? 927. The King to the Governor of Barbadoes. That De Ruyter has gone to Guinea with 12 men-of-war and it is apprehended will endeavour to destroy the shipping at Barbadoes, there being also a design in Holland to send men-of-war there ; Lord Willoughby is directed to use all possible means to secure the islands under his government from those dangers. Draft with corrections by Sec. Sir Henry Bennet. Undated but probably the letter referred to by the Deputy Governor of Barbadoes, see No. 983. 3 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 16.]
1665. 928. Heads of the preceding letter which it was "proposed to write to Lord Willoughby." In Sec. Bennet's hand. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 17.]
Feb. 3.
Newport.
929. Benedict Arnold and William Brenton on behalf of the colony [of Rhode Island] to Col. Nicolls and the rest of the Commissioners. Have received by the hands of Sir Robert Carr the King's letter of 23 April 1664 [see ante, No. 724], in which is expressed "such great and wonderful favour as we believe can hardly be equalled or paralleled from any other Prince unto the best of subjects, much less to such unworthy and otherwise despised and oppressed ones as we are." Beseech the Great God to pour down his blessings upon the King and his affairs, and in particular to bless, guide, and defend the Commissioners in their weighty concernments. That they may be defended from oppressing one another in civil or religious matters, in which most of the members of this colony have suffered very much under strange pretences from the neighbouring colonies and particularly from Massachusetts. They forbore to insist on these either to Sir Robt. Carr, who lately was with them, to Col. Cartwright, or to Maverick, and will forbear now saving only to represent that they suffer with a patient expectation of a full hearing between them that wrong them and themselves. Complain of the petition presented at Boston against this colony, setting forth strange outrages and violence, and praying they may be prohibited from building, &c. Inclose copy of petition from "persons who by violence intrude into the middle of this colony and there procure and acquire lands contrary to the law in such cases here established." It came to their hands the day after Sir Robt. Carr left. Will endeavour to preserve the peace until their cause may have an equal hearing before the Commissioners, which they hopefully expect will be in these few weeks, for which they request some 15 days notice. Thankfully acknowledge the high favour of the Earl of Clarendon in his letter to them of 28th April 1664. For further information refer them to the report of the bearer Capt. Bollen. Inclose,
929. I. Petition of Capt. Wm. Hudson, John Paine, and others concerned in the Narragansett and Nayantick countries to Col. Cartwright and Sam. Maverick, two of his Majesty's Commissioners. Complain of the disturbance they have met with in the pulling down of a house and such like by the inhabitants of Rhode Island and such as pretend to belong to the colony, and pray the Commissioners to require that their proceedings be not further interrupted in planting said country according to the King's letter and their just rights. Together 3 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., Nos. 18, 18 I.]
Feb. 3.
Virginia.
930. John Darcy to George Cartwright and Company. Has consigned the ship William Nicholas to them by order of Governor Nicolls, who will be a sufferer, as she carries 100 hogsheads of tobacco less than he thought. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 19.]
Feb. 4.
Capt. Breedon's [house at Boston.]
931. Col. George Cartwright to Col. Nicolls. Thanks for his letter delivered by Sir Robt. Carre. They find a great probability of obstruction. It is reported here that they have already cost the country 300l. Is told that Maj.-Gen. Leveret has received 34l. for entertaining Nicolls. It is also reported that they are to demand 12d. for each acre of ground improved, and 3,000l. a year besides ; that they are to infringe the discipline of the church by compelling children to be baptised, and to interrupt their form of government by admitting appeals. Wagers are laid that they will never sit here [at Boston] as Commissioners, and it is certain these people have twice sent letters to my Lord Chancellor since August last. Thinks, therefore, it will be better to begin at Connecticut and dispatch the other three colonies before this, "for if we have good success there, it will be a strong inducement to these to submit also to his Majesty's Commission, and if these should any ways oppose us, it would be an ill-precedent to the other." Hopes to have letters and orders to refer the difference about Gorges to them before May. This colony being both the richest, greatest, most populous, and inclinable to a commonwealth, they ought to have the greatest circumspection about it. Cannot conceive how it is possible for them to get a good election for the next General Assembly, seeing none can elect or be elected but church members. Hopes he shall prevail with Sir Robt. Carre and Mavericke that they may be at Rhode Island before the first of March at farthest. Has not yet perused the papers he sent, but does not understand how they can be both judges and solicitors in Duke Hamilton and Mason's cases, but hopes when he has considered them that difficulty may be resolved. A court now sitting at Boston and Winder has had a great trial gone against him ; he had many substantial men and merchants who gave evidence against him ; the other party had but one witness, yet being a church member carried the cause hard born. Is very glad that Willet intends to go immediately to him ; believes him both a very honest and able gentleman who will serve both for a mayor and a councillor. The fort not to be kept two hours longer ; in his opinion a battery upon the Point would be of greater advantage than the fort itself, if ever the town be fortified. Maj.-Gen. Leveret is making such a work under the fort hill, and removes great stones of 10 tons weight. The Dutch expect the English laws at their six months end ; they will probably think themselves oppressed if they are not allowed a while longer, "but your own convenience in this is the greatest consideration." Wishes to receive the remainder of the 250l. Has not yet been to dinner with any townsman, suspecting them all. "The saving of a little expense shall not be an occasion in me of hindering his Majesty's service, so much have I considered these people's temper, with his Majesty's caution. That all designs of profit for the present seem unreasonable and may possibly obstruct the more necessary design upon their obedience and loyalty." They have altered the law for freemen, which he sends enclosed ; likes it not, the reason is so visible, will not trouble him with it. With note attached signed by Samuel Maverick and Sir Robert Carr. They know all the above to be truth, and earnestly desire his presence here if possible by 20 April, the day of election being 3 May ; in the meantime they will do what they can by way of preparation. Printed in New York Documents, III., 87, 88. 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 20.]
Feb. 4.
Boston.
932. Samuel Maverick to Col. Nicolls. Thanks for his good advice. Perceives he has heard some false report. All concur in what Col. Cartwright has written, and that he has been too retired. Hopes he himself has not been over sociable. Has spent three weeks in visiting his friends in several of the chiefest towns in this Government, and is deceived if, in that journey, he did not undeceive both magistrates, ministers, and other considerable persons. It cost him unavoidably 10l. They intend to be at Rhode Island about 1st of March, and much desire his presence. Printed in New York Documents, III., 88, 89. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 21.]
Feb. 7.
Capt. Breedon's house in Boston.
933. Col. George Cartwright to Sec. Sir Henry Bennet. By the same justice he complained of Sir Robt. Carr's absence, he is bound to give account of his being here. He came on the 4th, and two days after they sent to Plymouth to desire a General Assembly to be convened on the 20th, whither they intend presently to go. Has not had conveniences yet to deliver the King's letters to them and Rhode Island, wherefore we choose to visit them first, the rather because we hope for a better compliance from them than Boston, who by petitioning to beg hands of all sorts to maintain the Government as now established, and reporting that they are to demand 12d. for every acre of improved ground, and 5,000l. a year besides for the King, and that they are to be straitened in the exercise of their discipline and civil privileges, have given ground for fear that the fancy of a commonwealth is yet in some of their brains. Hopes to have finished all by Midsummer. Printed in New York Documents, III., 89. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 22.]
Feb. 12.
Jamaica.
934. Lieut.-Col. Thos. Lynch to Sec. Sir Henry Bennet. Is grateful for his letter of Dec. 12, with recommendation from his Majesty to the Governor, who, on his arrival, found all people industrious, well satisfied, and ready to give him and all who came with him what assistance they could. A new Assembly being chosen, they met in October, but were much inferior to the other in parts and estates, who had imposed upon them for Speaker a malicious, beggarly, debauched fellow, and instead of correcting what was amiss in the old laws, fell into question of Lord Windsor and Sir Charles' power to call the late Assembly, and attempted by violent discourses and contrivances to render the past Government oppressive and illegal. Amidst these disputes the Governor discharged him from his Council and office of Chief Justice, without giving any public reason. Was it because the Governor would betimes punish that uncourtly humour of speaking plain and true, or else that he came prejudiced against Lynch by Col. D'Oyley, or that he would have none to shine in this hemisphere but himself and his son, especially such as had any influence over the old army. It only constrains Lynch's return, and prevents the resolution he had to marry, send for his relations, and make this his England. The bearer, Capt. Fenne, will discourse on the Royal Company's affairs. The island is healthy. Describes the regulations for administering justice. Many of the people that came with the Governor are dead and not one but himself has yet made any plantation—nor is it to be wondered at. They came down very poor, and went into the woods without provisions, and there fall sick before they have houses or victuals, and then the country must be blamed for their want and improvidence, people not remembering that air could not have maintained Adam in Paradise if God had not planted for him a garden. But whatever any say, this is an excellent island, and will certainly become a considerable addition to his Majesty's dominions. There has been little improvement this eight or ten months. The want of negroes the grand obstruction ; without them the Plantations will decline and the people be discouraged. If his Majesty would make a great plantation here, it must be by more apt and liberal disbursements than those with interests here have yet made. Starts to-morrow towards New England, and on his way will inquire at Havannah after the Griffin, whose loss is one of their great misfortunes and disappointments, and makes him fear they shall have no more people from Barbadoes but Lady Modyford, who is expected. Intends for Spain and at Madrid to obtain permission to purchase 1,000 or 2,000 head of cattle in Hispaniola and Cuba. Begs the assistance of the Ambassador in the matter, and offers one-third share in the adventure with himself and Governor Modyford. It will be a vast advantage to this country, and a particular profit to those concerned. Doubts they have not now 800 on the island, though they are all English beefeaters, and the cattle will not cost above 4s. each, and every 100 head of cows will be more than 300l. per annum, better rents than any in England. Fears it's against the Spanish interest to permit a thing so profitable, and which will make this island so absolutely English ; however will endeavour his utmost, because of his duty to his Majesty and his affection to the island. Though 10 years of sufferings and hazards have endeared it to him, yet resolves never to return, though the Governor is sufficiently obliging and kind to him. Hopes the Dutch war will reduce and employ the privateers, who otherwise will be dangerous rogues, of which they have already given too many wicked instances. Wishes his Majesty had leisure to consider how numerous and insolent the French are in the Indies. Doubts they may take Dutch commissions, so that the taking of Curaçao would be a good service. 3 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 23.]
1665? 935. — to Sec. Sir H. Bennet. Hears by letters of Jan. 8th that Sir Thomas Modyford sent his son Major-Gen. John Modiford in a small frigate called the Griffin, of 14 or 16 guns, to fetch his lady from Barbadoes, and any planters that would embark for Jamaica. About the Leeward Islands the Griffin was attacked by a Dutch man-of-war, and was so disabled as to be obliged to put into the French island of Martinico for repairs. The fight is conjectured to have been in November last, and the Griffin was daily expected at Barbadoes. Draws his Lordship's attention to Sir Abraham Shipman's letter and some Jamaica business. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 24.]
1665. Feb. 15. 936. Order in Council referring to the Committee for the Admiralty and Navy, the petition of gentlemen and merchants of Devon trading to Newfoundland, praying for license to proceed in the fishing there as the chief means of support for many poor. Annexed,
Order in Council granting license for one ship of Dartmouth only to go to Newfoundland, and no more. Feb. 22. [Dom., Chas. II., Vol. CXII., No. 110, Cal., p. 203.]
1665? 937. Description of the Island of Curaçao and convenience for trade with the Spaniard. The commodities of the island by which the Dutch West Indian Company maintains that garrison, viz., salt, with which 50 good ships a year may be laden from thence, with Brazil wood, horses, and negroes. Also proposals of Abrah. Langford for the surprisal of it from the Hollander. Indorsed by Williamson. Island of Curaçao. 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 25.]
1665. Feb. 16.
Whitehall.
938. The King to Sir Thos. Modyford, Governor of Jamaica. The bearer, Capt. Langford, has made several propositions to his Majesty for taking and reducing certain parts of Hispaniola and other neighbouring islands of great importance, especially Curaçao, but not thinking fit to take any positive resolution in a matter of that consequence without first receiving Sir Thos. Modyford's reflections upon it, his Majesty recommends to his consideration any proposals of Capt. Langford that relate to his Majesty's service and interest in those parts, and to encourage said Capt. Langford as a good, smart, active person well affected to his Majesty's interests, and one who his Majesty believes may be of good use to Modyford by his long experience and knowledge of those parts of the world. Draft with corrections by Williamson. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 26.]
1665? 939. Petition of Abraham Langford to the King. Was appointed by the King's Order in Council to proceed for Jamaica, concerning the King's affairs in America ; for this purpose had provided two ships of considerable value, one to stay there for the service of the country, the other to return to give the King account ; coming to embark at Plymouth was imprisoned for a pretended debt on purpose to hinder his proceeding in the King's design ; prays that the plaintiff's pretensions may be referred to the Deputy Governor and Mayor of Plymouth, and that petitioner may be released to proceed in the King's service, if they are not made good in four days. Annexed,
939. I. Sir Wm. Clarke to [Williamson?]. The King's pleasure is that reference be made to Sir John Skelton, Deputy Governor of Plymouth, the Mayor, and two others, as prayed by the petitioner under the conditions named by him. [Dom., Chas. II., Vol. CXLII., No. 140, Cal., p. 154.]
1665. Feb. 17. 940. Sir John Colleton to Sec. Bennet. Entreats the immediate signing of the warrant for the 12 guns for Barbadoes, for the ship that they are to be sent in stays for them to the great loss of the owners. [Dom., Chas. II., Vol. CXII., No. 123, Cal., p. 205.]
Feb. 18. 941. Warrant to the Commissioners of Ordnance to deliver forthwith, for the use of Barbadoes, 12 cannon, the greater part to be whole culverin or upwards, and the rest demi-culverin at least, with all necessaries and a convenient quantity of shot. ½ p. [Dom. Entry Bk., Chas. II., Vol. XXII., p. 18.]
Feb. 20.
Jamaica.
942. Gov. Sir Thos. Modyford to [Sec. Sir H. Bennet]. The Spanish prizes have been inventoried and sold, but it is suspected that those of Morrice and Bernard Nichols have been miserably plundered, and the interested parties will find but a slender account in the Admiralty. The Swallow was beaten down into Campeachy Bay by a storm on August 18 last, in which it is feared that the Griffin and Westergate have suffered, for they have not been heard of since. Dispatched on 31st Jan. the Swallow under Capt. Ensome to Cape Tuberon in Hispaniola, to capture the French pirate Moroe, whose commission from Lord Windsor having expired, he has turned pirate. The French Governor of Tortugas has given commissions to English privateers, but will deal with him after we have tried our success against the Dutch. On 6th inst. about fourteen pirates were tried and condemned to death, under the statute of Henry 8. Acknowledges his letter of July 11, intimating his Majesty's satisfaction with his endeavours ; also that of Nov. 12, which gave him much contentment. May say that the care of the noble lords has laid the foundation of their flourishing condition, and finding so moderate a sense touching privateers and the great occasions his Majesty might have for them, and having shown the law and force, he began to change his copy, pardoned all the pirates but three who he reprieved, and declared publicly that he would grant commissions against the Dutch. Before night two commissions were taken out, and all the rovers are plodding how to take Curaçao, and are applying for commissions. Thinks all the privateers will come in and take commissions against the Dutch. This direction comes in a most fortunate hour. Sir Jas. Modyford or the writer's brother Kendall will present him with a record out of the Admiralty, showing Giles Lydcott's pretences to Don Ximenes de Bohorque's estate, and what care has been taken that the effects may go to the right owner. Has sent an account of the settlement of the Government to the Lord Chancellor ; perhaps has been too tender in lessening the profits of some patents, which he "thought not fit to be too saucy with." Has set the naval office to inquire into free trade, and desires some persons appointed to administer to him the oath as the Act appoints. Thanks him for procuring allowance of the passages he was engaged for. Hopes the good success of those that came with him will invite such as can pay, but there are abundance that cannot, who are freemen newly out of their times and would prosper here very well ; many sugar works going on where they might be hired, which was not the case in Sir Charles' time, whereby they perished through want. Will do Capt. Langford all good offices, but does not think well of his designs, and holds it much more prudential to bring all the English down to Jamaica, and wholly supplant the French, who have plundered a sloop, a Hamptonman, and a New England ketch, and killed a man in cold blood, the rest being forced to beg their lives on their knees. The proposal of the noble lords, for freedom from customs of goods exported to Jamaica from England and Ireland, is the one most especially for the good of the island. The ill-governed soldiers have made sad havoc of the cattle, killing them for their hides alone, which they sell for a bottle of brandy, so that there are but 2,000 head on this island, upon most excellent pastures which would feed a million. Is attempting a trade for cattle at the South Keys of Cuba, and Col. Lynch, "in a youthful bravery," intends to apply for a licence at Madrid, to purchase 2,000 or 3,000 ; this is a main point which he hopes Sec. Bennet will set his heart upon. Thanks him for the resolutions of the Jamaica Committee of 10 August, but wishes some way might be found, seeing that coining is not thought reasonable, for a true measure of things amongst them. Incloses papers from St. Jago, concerning a prize ship condemned before the orders of restitution, claimed by Sebastian Crespo, a mulatto. Incloses what he thinks the best design in these parts for Sec. Bennet's consideration. Incloses,
942. I. Record of the Admiralty of St. Jago de Vega (above referred to) in reference to Lydcott's pretences to certain goods, which are ordered to be detained by Sir Jas. Modyford and Kendall until the King's pleasure be signified. 1666 (? 1664), Dec. 23. Together 6 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., Nos. 27, 27 I.]
Feb. 20.
[Jamaica.]
943. Governor Sir Thos. Modyford to Sec. Sir H. Bennet. Extract of the above letter. Concerning the alteration in his conduct towards privateers in consideration of the receipt of Sec. Bennet's letter of 12th Nov. and the great occasion his Majesty might have for them. ½ p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 28.]
Feb.? 944. [Sir Thos. Modyford's] Proposition of a design for rooting the Dutch out of the West Indies and increasing the settlements at Jamaica. Places possessed by the Dutch in the West Indies, viz., Berbice, near Surinam, Barowma, near the river Orinoco, and the island of Tobago, where there is good booty of cattle and negroes, may be attained by Surinam and Barbadoes, or if as it is feared that those places are too partial to them, easily by two small frigates with 200 men. Next are the ships at Backstar trading with the French Curaçao and the Goat Islands of Oruba and Banari ; on the former are many small fortifications and many negroes and Indian slaves, and but 150 whites, in all about 500 men. From thence they should visit Alta Vela, Cape Tiberon, and Tortuga, where are many English settled amongst the Dutch and French buccaneers, who ought to be questioned for depredations on the English, and as many as can be taken supplanted, and brought to Jamaica ; especially the Governor of Tortuga and Monte Christo, who having received a commission from Gen. D'Oyley, has now turned rebel and grants commissions against the English. A small charge, which the booty would pay for with interest, would do all this, and make a clear board, leaving none but the English and Spaniards ; for the Dutch at Curaçao join with the buccaneers, and in a short time will make the passage to and from Jamaica very difficult. Jamaica is contributing what she can to this work, but it is difficult and tedious beating so far to windward, and not a ship of countenance to go through with it. Advises that it be speedily done from England, for the sake of good correspondence with the Spaniards and safe trade ; lest all the indebted and discontented English run away in sloops to these places, increase their numbers, and perhaps in time, if not seasonably checked, overpower us. With marginal notes by Sec. Bennet, who has also indorsed it, Sir Thos. Modyford's proposition. The best design in those parts. 1½ pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 29.]
Feb. 25.
Whitehall.
945. Sec. Sir Wm. Morrice's answer to the New England petition [see ante, No. 832]. The King has heard this petition read to him, and has well weighed the expressions therein and the temper and spirit of those who framed it : he is not pleased with it, and looks upon it as the contrivance of a few persons who have had too long authority there. His Majesty's assurances to his good subjects there are herein set forth, and that his Commissioners, so far from having the least authority to infringe any clause in their charter, are instructed to see that it be fully and punctually observed, for which the King did expect thanks and acknowledgment. Arguments against the unreasonable and groundless complaint contained in their petition. "If all they allege be true, I say his Majesty cannot comprehend how he could apply proper remedies to these evils if they are real, or how he could satisfy himself whether they are real or no by any other way or means than by sending Commissioners thither to examine the truth," which when done his Majesty will give his own final judgment. These Commissioners have already removed their late inconvenient neighbours the Dutch, "which would have been a more spreading and growing mischief in a short time." Is commanded again to assure them of their full and peaceable enjoyment of all their privileges and liberties granted by charter, and that they may further promise themselves all the protection, countenance, and encouragement that the best subjects ever received from the most gracious Prince, in return for which the King doth only expect that duty and cheerful obedience which is due to him. Since his Majesty hath too much reason to suspect that Mr. Endecott, who hath during all the late revolutions continued the government there, is not a person well affected to his Majesty's person or his Government, his Majesty will take it very well if at the next election any other person of good reputation be chosen in the place, and that he may no longer exercise that charge. Printed in New York Documents, III., 90, 91. 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 30.]
Feb. 25.
Whitehall.
946. Entry of the preceding. [Dom. Entry Bk., Chas. II., Vol. XIV., p. 83.]
[Feb. 28.] 947. Report of the Farmers of his Majesty's Customs to the Committee of Council for Foreign Plantations. Have considered their order of 25th inst. and the petitions therein mentioned, and conceive that the best expedient for carrying on the trade of this kingdom during the war, in relation to the Act of Navigation, is as follows, vizt., as to the trade of the English Plantations, several of the chief traders concur with them, 1. That for Virginia there is no urgent necessity as yet to bring it into this strict consideration, for there will not be any occasion to send ships for next year's crop till October, and for this year's there are ships already there ; 2. And as for the other Plantations, the trade thereof may be reduced to an advantageous certainty of times, as well as that of Virginia, wherein if anything be proposed by his Majesty's authority, they perceive a great readiness in the merchants to comply with the overture. However, they are of opinion that the Act of Navigation ought not to be dispensed withall to any of those plantation trades, for the reasons that it will give the French and other foreigners too much inspection into the English trade, who have already begun to inquire very busily, and have lately imitated the English in planting tobacco in France, besides the prosecution of their own Plantations in the West Indies. 2. The Plantations being weak, it may be unsafe to give the French and other nations freedom thither, for upon any occasion of advantage they may join with the Dutch (our declared enemy) to overpower the English. 3. If it be supposed that this toleration of strangers to trade to the Plantations will drive the trade with foreign hands, and so leave his Majesty the use of his own mariners, they are of opinion that it will rather tempt our mariners to shift themselves into France, where they will be sooner entertained than others, and receive greater encouragement. 4. It will be a dishonour to the English that their own ships should lie by the walls and foreigners employed. 5. That giving such liberty to foreigners will not reach the end aimed at, namely, the security of English goods ; for experience teaches us that the commodities being so universally known, the Dutch have made seizure of them in any ships whatsoever. As to the trade with Spain, Portugal, the Straits, Asia, and Africa, they conceive that neither the French nor any other nation are in any capacity to accommodate the English with ships, but it must be secured by the merchants themselves. But as to the petition of the merchants into France, Holland, Flanders, &c. for a dispensation of the Act of Navigation during this war, who allege that they cannot with security trade in English ships or in Englishmen's names, but may very aptly be served with the vessels and correspondents of neighbour nations, the Farmers of his Majesty's Customs think that a dispensation may be given them and others trading to Germany and the Baltic as to all parts of the Navigation Act, except that of aliens' duties, wherein his Majesty ought not to be a loser. As to the petition of Peter Barr, subscribed by several felt-makers and silk dyers, for liberty to import a parcel of gum seneca ; are satisfied of its usefulness in the manufacture of hats and dyeing, that it is the produce of the French Plantations on the river Seneca, in Africa, and that it is advanced to three times the former price, and conceive there may be much equity in granting a dispensation common to others as well as the petitioner. Touching the petition of Nic. Wilde, merchant, desiring liberty to import certain Persia goats' hair, red wool, and hemp ; conceive that hemp is so useful that it may well be dispensed with to be brought from any parts, but for the hair and wool (being com modities of America and the Straits) are not satisfied of any cause to dispense with the Act. Signed, Sir Jo. Wolstenholme, Sir Jo. Jacob, Sir Ni. Crisp, Sir J. Harrison, and Sir John Shaw. Indorsed Presented to the Committee of Council at Somerset House, 28 Feby., 1664-5." 3 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XIX., No. 31.]