America and West Indies
January 1733, 1-15

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Institute of Historical Research

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Cecil Headlam and Arthur Percival Newton (editors)

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1939

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'America and West Indies: January 1733, 1-15', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 40: 1733 (1939), pp. 1-15. URL: http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=79262 Date accessed: 21 April 2014. Add to my bookshelf


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January 1733, 1-15

Jan. 1.
No. Carolina.
1. Governor Burrington to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Abstract. North Carolina continues in perfect quietness ; peace and good order subsist throughout the whole Province. This is owing to his industry in visiting the several districts and encouraging the Magistrates to discharge their duties, and countenancing them by his presence in the precinct courts. "This method, to me very troublesome and expensive, has proved effectual, in resetling the authoritys of the Judicature, and restraining profligate, lawless men from unruly actions. There is not one clergyman of the Church of England regularly settled in this Government. The former missionarys were so little approved of ; that the inhabitants seem very indifferent, whither any more come to them. Some Presbyterian, or rather Independent Ministers from New England have got congregations, more may follow ; many of them being unprovided with liveings in that country ; where a preacher is seldom pay'd more, then the value of £20 sterling a year by his parishioners. The Quakers in this Government are considerable, for their numbers, and substance ; the regularity of their lives, hospitality to strangers, and kind offices to new settlers induceing many to be of their persuasion. Plantations continue to sell very cheap, those with houses, barns, orchards, gardens, pasture, and tillage grounds fenced yield about thirty or forty pistoles ; notwithstanding the work done upon them, oft'times has cost four times as much, the reason they yield no more is, that several people chuse to remove into fresh places, for the benefit of their cattle, and hogs, which is a great convenience to new commers, who may allways buy convenient settlements for less money then the buildings, and other improvements could be made." Instances case of a planter from Virginia who bought 11 such plantations and works them with his wife and ten negroes, whilst the 100 former white inhabitants have moved on. Trade is on so bad a footing that people who traffic with New England and Virginia lose half the value of their goods. The remedy is to open a port on Ocacock Island. Most traders in London believe the coast is very dangerous, but this is not so. There are no more than three shoals in 400 miles. Cape Fear River, Beaufort and Ocacock are very good harbours and will admit the largest merchant ships, as may be seen by the drafts he had made and sent to the Lords of Trade. "Great is the loss this country has sustained, in not being supply'd by vessells from Guinea with negros ; in any part of the Province the people are able to pay for a ship's load ; but as none come directly from Affrica, we are under a necessity to buy the refuse, refractory and distemper'd negros, brought from other Governments ; It is hoped some merchants in England will speedily furnish this Colony with negros, to increase the produce and it's trade to England. I had been allmost a year in the Government, before people began to enter land. Edward Moseley, Surveyor General of the late Lords Proprietors, and his Deputys, more especially Mr. John Ashe etc. had been guilty of many vile frauds, and abuses in surveying ; one of their practices was, to survey without warrants for gratifications ; to men that inquired into the validity of those surveys the Deputys answered, they were right and good. Near upon a year since, Mr. Rice the Secretary entered some lands held in that manner, and keeps them ; this put several men, who had no other titles then the Deputy Surveyors could give them, upon makeing proper entrys ; many others have them still to make, of lands they have been in possession of seven or eight years, without paying quitt-rents. The method I take in signing warrants (related in a former paper) has effectually put an end to unfair practices in takeing up of land etc. ; as the old land jobbers are now restrained from getting mony by selling warrants and entrys, they complain, but all honest men approve etc. Upon application from some men who imploy their slaves chiefly in making tar and pitch that less quantitys would be made, and their business cramp'd, if they were not permitted to take up more then fivety acres, for each person in their familys, I was prevailed upon to sign warrants, for a small quantity beyond that complement ; the land was barren and unfitt for cultivation. In this country is a law called the Lapse Act, which seems to allow every man the liberty to take up 640 acres, and it was never refused anyone, in the time of the Proprietors etc. Will be careful to observe his Instructions on this head. Continues : A gentleman liveing in Virginia, reputed rich, and owner of above 100 slaves, desired to enter 5000 acres of land, part of a Savanna, between Pamticough and Nuse River ; I went to view this place, and think I never did ride over worse land, I granted the gentleman's request, am not able to judge what use he designs to put it to, in my opinion the whole is not worth one shilling. There are millions of acres of Savanna land in this country, if they were taken up the King's rents would be much increased. The Instruction for takeing up land (if not altered) will greatly obstruct the peopleing of this Province. Not an hundredth part of the grounds are plantable ; the barren pine-lands will never be cultivated ; the several sorts of wet lands, called in these parts Dismals, Pocosans, Swamps, Marishes, and Savannas, cannot be cleared and drained, without great charge, and labour, therefore not hitherto attempted. The sure way to increase the quitt-rents, will be to allow all men liberty to take up what quantitys, of these barren and well lands they are willing to pay the rent off, without being tyed down, to obligations of cultivateing soils, that cannot recompence the charge of any labour. It is obvious how prejudicial it must prove to this Colony should the quitt-rents be higher here, then in all other Governments etc. Were only the good lands to be taken up, the quittrents will increase but slowly ; but if all the poor lands were patented, the revenue will amount to a considerable sum etc. North and South Carolina contain above one hundred millions of acres ; not five millions are patented in both countrys etc. Land is not wanting for men in Carolina, but men for land. Several sawmills have lately been erected in the south parts of that Government, and others are now building. Two petitions were delivered to me in Council, 3rd Nov. last, on behalf of Proprietors of sawmills etc., praying grants of lands lyeing near their respective mills ; which is deferred, to such time as I can receive orders about it. The granting of 5000 acres or more, to each owner of a mill, cannot be a prejudice to any person, and may increase the quitt rents, one, or two hundred pounds pr. annum. The petitions and resolve of Council in answer are incerted in the Journals. The reputation this Government has lately acquired, appears by the number of people that have come from other places to live in it : many of them possessed of good American estates. I do not exceed in saying 1000 white men have already settled in North Carolina, since my arrival, and more are expected. This increase of inhabitants, made it necessary to erect new precincts. On receiveing petitions from those that lived remote from Court Houses, setting forth the hardships they laboured under, at great expences and loss of time in attending Courts from great distances, to ease these people, three new ones have been made ; the bounds are incerted in the Council Journals. I have taken great care, and gone thro' much fatigue in settling the Militia ; which had been totally neglected, dureing Sr. Richard Everard's Administration ; two Colonels dyeing last summer prevented my receiveing list of their regiments etc. Was prevented by a frost in November last when setting out to finish that affair. Is certain that the Militia consists of 5000 men, and at least another 1000 are not enrolled. Computes the white men, women and children to be full 30,000, and the negroes about 6000, the Indians less than 800. Continues : The last spring and summer proved excessive hot and dry, which rendered this and neighbouring Provinces very sickly, feavers and bloody fluxes made great havock among the people ; violent heats, and want of rain, damaged the crops so much that there is scarce sufficient grain made this year to suffice the inhabitants, who usually exported great quantitys. Mr. Palin succeeded Mr. Smith as Chief Justice, upon the departure of the last for England ; being incapacitated by sickness, resigned etc. ; with the approbation, and consent of the Council, I appointed Mr. Little Chief Justice, because there was no other person in this Government capable of duly executeing that imployment. This Gentleman was Attorney General, and Receiver, of the Quittrents, to the Lords Proprietors ; is heavily charged by Sr. Richard Everard, and Mr. Smith, with accusations of concealments, and embezzlements, amounting to a great sum ; but it is well known, he never received by the sale of lands, and for quitt rents £1000 sterl. etc. I think the accounts he has delivered are fair and just, Refers to his answer to Mr. Smith. "I think he is an honest man, and am sure he is a very good lawyer and in all respects well qualifyed" etc. Continues :—After the decease of Colo. Joseph Jenoure, Surveyor General of H.M. lands, Mr. Lovick was appointed to succeed him ; This gentleman is also virolently attacked by the Knight and Squire before named etc. because they refused to join in the designs formed against me etc. Mr. Lovick can be of singular use and service, in the next Assembly, by helping me to draw bills, being on the conferences between the Council and Assembly, and many other ways. It is impossible for one man to do everything requisite dureing the sitting of an Assembly etc. If Mr. Lovick do's not assist, it will fall to my lot to have all that to do, the other Members of the Council are not inclined or not capable etc. Hopes Mr. Lovick will be continued in his present employment or some other etc. The Act for resurveying land is framed artfully, and fraudulently, if the law is repealed, and everyman has liberty to resurvey, at his own expence, any plantation, where he knows more land is held, then specifyed in the patent and have liberty to take up the overpluss, a multitude of frauds and concealments will be discovered, and the quitt-rents increased without puting the King to any charge. I have been informed, Moseley when Surveyor did make surveys in his own house, and plotted out land upon paper, with bounds by waters, trees and other signs, and tokens, that he never saw, nor knew anything off, includeing much more then in the returns sett forth, for which patents went out in course. By all I can hear, his deputys seldom measured, but contented themselves, to mark two trees in front for corners, and then guessed the other bounds, and so returned the pretended surveys into the Secretary's Office. A commission was drawn for the erecting a Court of Exchequer and layd before the Council last November, several objections being made to it, the present Chief Justice, with two of the Council, were appointed to consider thereof, make alterations, if they see cause, and lay them before the next Council to be considered ; in the mean time, the lawyers in Virginia, have been desired to give their opinions, upon several matters we are not clear in. It is thought by every man here, that this country is not without a Court of Exchequer at this time ; The General Court under the Proprietors, had the powers, of the King's Bench, Common Pleas, and Exchequer granted them ; which Court is no ways altered, but invested with as full powers as heretofore. All the time Sir R. Everard governed, the publick roads were in a manner unregarded, one markt by my order when Governor for the Proprietors, from Nuse to Cape Fear River, about 100 miles, remain'd unwrought upon etc. The last summer I prevailed upon the men liveing in that part, to take in hand that necessary work, which was chearfully and effectually performed, bridge lay'd, and causeways made over all the waters, and morasses ; it is the way men travel, that go from this, and the more Northern Governments into South Carolina. Haveing succeeded in that affair, I made a journey to the inland parts, and proposed to those people, makeing a road from the borders of Virginia to Cape Fear River, through the middle of the country, a considerable distance higher than the former, which they readily assented too, proper measures are taken for marking and laying out the said road this winter, I hope to see it perfected, before the next Christmass. The old high ways, that I found very much in decay, are tolerably well repaired ; what remains wanting, will be easily compleated in the spring" etc. Nothing has been done in respect to the boundary with S. Carolina etc. If a line is run, it must prove a great expence to the King, etc. Proposes Pedec River as a natural division etc. Has made up the Council to seven, and proposes fit persons for filling the remaining vacancies. Hopes that Mr. Ashe and Mr. Rice will be removed. The present Attorney General, John Montgomery is without the requisite understanding for H.M. service in that office, which requires capacity and knowledge of the law etc. Continues :—Part of the King's business is delay'd, by the absence of the Deputy Auditor, and Receiver General. No quitt-rents have been pay'd, nor accounts audited in North Carolina, since H.M. purchased this Province. North Carolina was little known or mentioned, before I was Governour for the Proprietors ; when I came first, I found the inhabitants few and poor, I took all methods I thought would induce people to come from other countrys to settle themselves in this, and put myself to very great charges in makeing new settlements etc., succeeding according to my expectation in all ; Perfecting the settlement on Cape Fear River cost me a great sum of money, and infinite trouble. I endured the first winter I went there, all the hardships could happen to a man destitute of a house to live in, that was above 100 miles from a neighbour in a pathless country, and was obliged to have all provisions brought by sea at great charges, to support the number of men I caryed, paid, and maintained at my sole expence. It can hardly be imagined what pains I took in sounding the inletts, barrs, and rivers in this Province ; which I performed no less then four times ; I discovered, and made known, the channels of Cape Fear River, and Port Beaufort, or Topsail Inlett etc., and never obtained any reward but the thanks of two Assemblys etc. Horses and cattle were of very little value in this country before Cape River was inhabited. As very few men came there provided with these creatures, they were obliged to purchase them in the old settlements, which doubled their price etc. Set out, N.C. Col. Rec. III. 429. Signed, Geo Burrington. Endorsed, Recd. 1st June, Read 25th July, 1733. 6¾ pp. [C.O. 5, 294. ff. 72-75 v.].
Jan. 1.
No. Carolina.
2. Same to the Duke of Newcastle. Duplicate of preceding, mutatis mutandis. 7 large pp. [C.O. 5, 308. No. 16.]
Jan. 3.
Whitehall.
3. Duke of Newcastle to the Council of Trade and Plantations. H.M. having been pleased to appoint Richard Fitzwilliam Esqr. to be Governor of the Bahama Islands, I am to desire you will prepare draughts of a Commission and Instructions for him etc. Signed, Holles Newcastle. Endorsed, Recd. 3rd, Read 9th Jan., 1732/3. ¾ p. [C.O. 23, 3. ff. 52, 53 v.]
Jan. 3. 4. Mr. Fane to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Has no objection to the Act of Antigua to repeal part of the Act constituting a Court of Chancery etc., which appears to be perfectly conformable to H.M. Instruction of Dec. 1731 etc. Signed, Fran. Fane. Endorsed, Recd. 4th Jan., Read 6th March, 1732/3 1 p. [C.O. 152, 19. ff. 143, 148 v.]
Jan. 5.
Boston.
5. Governor Belcher to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses Journals of Assembly, whom he dismissed yesterday at their own request. The Board will easily observe from them "that the House of Representatives are continually running wild, nor are their attempts for assuming (in a manner) the whole Legislative, as well as the executive part of the Government into their own hands to be endur'd with honour to His Majesty. Your Lordships will find upon the King's Council's not agreeing to their vote of taking the publick affairs of the Government into their own hands, in the recess of the Court, they made a vote yesterday fully impowring a Committee of their own House to write the Agent from time to time on the Address and Memorial of both Houses. This most certainly is assuming a power they have no right to, unless the Address, and Memorial had been only from themselves ; Had they sat a few days longer, I should have expected they wou'd have voted H.M. Council an useless part of the Legislature. I have, My Lords, according to my duty, to the King, been representing to your Lordships for eighteen months past, the great difficulty under which this Province labours, thro' the perverseness and obstinacy of the House of Representation, (or rather of a few designing men of influence among them) and really, My Lords, matters seem now to be hastening to a crisis,—that I can't apprehend the King's Government here can subsist any longer, without His Majesty's immediate care. The Officers and soldiers will certainly desert all the forts and garrisons, being naked, and unable to do their duty for want of their just pay" etc. Refers to enclosed petitions, which he has laid before the Assembly to no purpose, and to the survey of the forts he sent some two years ago. Since then he has surveyed the forts on the Eastern frontier and Castle William, the principle fortification and key of the country. The forts on the frontier are all dropping down, and Castle William wants a large repair. To these things he has had no answer from the Board, for which he now begs. Continues :—For really, My Lords, if things continue, or still grow worse, this Government and Province is in a fair way to fall into all confusion, and to be lost ; I humbly beg your Lordships seriously to consider all I have and do write, and that you wou'd lay the state of this Government before His Majesty according to your wonted justice and wisdom." Their Address and Memorial are mostly filled with the old history of the country, calculated more to move the passions of mankind than anything else. The dispute as to the supply of the Treasury he thinks must entirely turn upon the words of the Charter, and hopes His Majesty will steadily abide by His royal orders, for the safety and honour of His Government, and for the best good of His subjects here. Will continue, as he has always done, to support H.M. right and authority, and to protect the liberties of the people etc. Set out, Mass. Hist. Soc. Coll. 6th Ser. VI. 240. Signed, J. Belcher. Endorsed, Recd. 20th Feb., Read 30th Aug., 1733. 7 pp. Enclosed,
5. i. Petition of Officers and Soldiers of H.M. Castle William to Governor Belcher. 10th Nov., 1732. It is now about twenty months since they received any pay from this Government for their service at the Castle. For want thereof, many of their families have been put to distressing difficulties, and petitioners are unable to undergo the hardships of watching in the night time and doing their necessary duty for want of necessary clothing etc. They cant' subsist much longer without their wages, which they think they are well and justly entitled to receive etc. Pray for relief etc. 36 signatures. Endorsed, Recd. 20th Feb., 1732/3. Copy. 1⅓ pp.
5. ii. Petition of Officers and Soldiers of H.M. Fort Mary to Governor Belcher. 15th June, 1732. Petitioners are reduced to very low and desperate circumstances, having received no pay since Sept. 25, 1730 etc. Some of them have scarcely clothes to cover their nakedness. The fort is in a ruinous condition, the storeroom so rotten that they are afraid of its tumbling down every day. The lodging rooms are more like a barn than a King's Fort, being so open that the rain and snow have a free passage. They have had no powder for ten months, but only one barrel purchased by Capt. Woodside, the last of which was expended on H.M. Coronation last October. Pray for relief. Twelve signatures. Endorsed as preceding. 1 p.
5. iii. Memorial of John Larrabee, Lt. and Victualler of H.M. Castle William, to the Governor, Council and Representatives. For want of the ordinary annual supply for the provisions of the Garrison, he is now upwards of £1400 in advance etc. Prays for due encouragemt. to bring forward his victualling accounts for payment etc. Signed, John Larrabee. Subscribed,
(a) In the Council Dec. 1st, 1732, Read and sent down and recommended.
(b) In the House of Representatives, Dec. 1st, 1732, Read.
Copy. Examined for J. Williard Secry. Same endorsement. 1½ pp.
5. iv. Petition of Officers and Soldiers of H.M. Fort George at St. George's River to Governor Belcher. July 17, 1732. Petitioners have not received any pay since May 18, 1731, and are reduced to very low and distressing circumstances, being unable to secure clothing to keep them from the injuries of the weather etc. Pray for relief. 16 signatures. Same endorsement. 1 p.
5. v. Petition of Officers and Soldiers of H.M. Fort George at Brunswick to Governor Belcher. Petitioners have not received any pay since Sept. 28, 1730 etc. as preceding. 13 signatures. Same endorsement. Copy. ¾ p.
5. vi. Memorandum on the dispute as to the supply of the Treasury, referred to in covering letter. Answers objection that, if the Governor and Council by the Charter have the sole power of disposing of the public money, then the General Assembly have no authority to allow any particular sum whatsoever, including the salaries of the Governor and other public officers etc. Same endorsement. Without date or signature. [C.O. 5, 875. ff. 132-137, 138, 138 v., 139 v., 140 v., 141 v.-142, 143, 144, 144 v., 149 v., 150 v., 151 v.]
Jan. 5.
Boston.
6. Governor Belcher to the Duke of Newcastle. Duplicate of preceding, mutatis mutandis. 8 pp. Enclosed,
6. i. Petition of Officers and Soldiers posted at H.M. Fort Mary to Governor Belcher.
6. ii-v. Duplicates of preceding enclosure.
6. vi. Capt. Phipps to Governor Belcher. Nov. 29th, 1732. As Commander of Castle William, represents the ruinous and defenceless state of the fortifications and refers him to following account. Signed, Spencer Phipps. Copy. ¾ p.
6. vii. Accompt of repairs necessary at Castle William. Signed, Spencer Phipps. Copy. 1 p.
6. viii. Petition of Officers and Soldiers of H.M. Fort Richmond to Governor Belcher. Petitioners have not received any pay since May 31, and cannot therefore provide themselves with the necessary clothing etc. 17 signatures. Copy. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 899. ff. 1-12, 14, 16, 18, 18 v., 20, 20 v., 22, 23, 24.]
Jan. 8.
Boston.
7. Governor Belcher to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I have lately done myself the honour of writing your Lordships pretty fully upon the publick affairs of this Province, and it had been a great pleasure to me to have been able to have given your Lordships a better account of the dutifullness of the House of Representatives to His Majesty. But as it is my inclination as well as my duty to represent things as they really are, with your Lordships' favour, you must take them from me as you find them. What I have now to add is with respect to my own support, in which I have a hard, severe case. By my last letters from London, I find H.M. had not sign'd the leave for taking the money voted me by the Assembly in June last nor can it be now expected till April, so that I am oblig'd (in support of the King's honour) to spend what I hope for for my support twelve months before I receive it, and in case of my death to run the hazard of my family's losing the whole money (as is the case of the family of my late predecessor). My Lords, the publick prints of Europe and America are my witnesses, and so are all my private friends, that nothing has been omitted in my power for H.M. honour and interest, and for the good of his subjects. Why then must I be under so severe a punishment, or can it be consonant to reason and justice, or the rules of honour, that I must be starv'd because of my strict conformity to my duty and obedience to the King? And must not such a situation as I am in cut the sinews of the King's Government, and dishearten a faithfull servant : I beg your Lordships to feel a little with me, and whether you wou'd not think it hard to spend your lives in a faithfull attendance on H.M. service, and to support his honour, in your stations, and all at the expence of your own fortunes? Certainly the labourer is worthy of his hire, or a faithfull servant of his just reward. And as Instructions of the nature of mine were given to my predecessors for more than thirty years past, and what the people never comply'd with ; But a liberty was always given to prevent the Governor's starving, and since His present Majesty has already done it to me, with great submission to your Lordships, I don't see that it will be derogatory to H.M. honour to give me a general leave for taking my support of the Assembly till he shall according to His royall wisdom, inforce His own Instructions. Every possible thing has been done on my part towards it, certainly then I ought to be paid out of the Royal Exchequer at home, or by a leave to take it here ; and if the latter shou'd not reach me by the month of April next, there must be a dissolution of the present Assembly, and I shou'd then expect the £3000 voted me in June last to be intirely lost—the Assemblies here are so humersome and capricious. Let me then once more intreat your Lordships that I may not go on to be so severe a sufferer etc. Signed, J. Belcher. Endorsed, Recd. 20th Feb., Read 30th Aug., 1733. 6 pp. [C.O. 5, 875. ff. 145-147 v., 148 v.]
Jan. 8.
Boston.
8. Same to the Duke of Newcastle. Duplicate of preceding, mutatis mutandis. Signed, J. Belcher. 6 pp. [C.O. 5, 899. ff. 26-28 v.]
Jan. 9.
Boston.
9. Same to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Abstract. The Address of the two Houses to the King and their Memorial to the House of Commons quote an Act of 1693 in support of the Assembly's claim to examine and order payments of particular accounts. But in fact that act directed the sum granted by it to be issued according to the orders of the Governor and Council etc. Admits that some small deviations from the rule have been passed over, in order to avoid controversy. Concludes :—But now that they set up a claim to examine all accounts and intirely to divest the Governour and Council of the power of disposing of the public money and thereby to make an essential alteration in the form of the Government establish'd by Charter, it is highly necessary that His Majesty should assert his own right, which has been so manifestly invaded by this new practice. Set out, Mass. Hist. Soc. Coll. 6th Ser. VI. 246. Without signature. Endorsed, Recd. 20th Feb., Read 30th. Aug., 1733. 6 pp. [C.O. 5, 875. ff. 152-154 v., 155 v.]
Jan. 8.
South Carolina.
10. Governor Johnson to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The fate of the Quit rent rate Law, will probably be resolved by the time your Lordships receive this letter, it contains a part, which may much conduce to H.M. service, or if it be not disannull'd, I must beg leave to recommend to your Lordships that the repeal be retarded of a twelve month longer. It enacts a clause for the registring all deeds and titles in the office of H.M. Auditor, or his deputy, within the space of 18 months after the passing the Act, or that such titles be forfeited, if not registred within eighteen months after the said office is erected in Charles Town, and publick notice thereof given. On the 27th of November, 1731, a printed advertisement was published by Mr. St. John's deputy, declareing that James St. John, Esqr., was Auditor General for this Province ; and had open'd in Charlestown his said office of Auditor etc. Mr. Walpole was known to be Auditor General of America, and Mr. St. John being askt if he was Mr. Walpole's Deputy, he insisted Mr. Walpole could have no right to be Auditor of S. Carolina, because his patent was prior to H.M. purchase, and St. John assumed the place of Auditor General under colour of being Inspector and Comptroller ; the reality of his office was then impeach'd and the Secretary of this Province claimed the right of registring ; in order to forward somewhere the expedition of a rent roll, my Council and I took it under examination on the 10th of June last. Mr. St. John thought proper then to acknowledge Mr. Walpole's right, and produced a deputation from him ; we then resolv'd the right of registring to be vested in Mr. St. John as Deputy Auditor which was accordingly publish'd. Should your Lordships be therefore of opinion to retard the repeal of the law for the sake of obtaining H.M. a rent roll, the commencement of the eighteen months will be most indisputable from the 10th of June, 1732. We have some cavilling lawyers here, to improve such opportunities, for defeating the effects of the law, and creating contention ; I doubt Mr. St. John's adviser, one Whitaker, industriously set him astray in the former particular, on purpose to raise disputes about it ; and it had very great effects ; for the recording of deeds was much retarded, but that right is now unquestioned. The Assembly here attempted a bill to prolong the time of registring, but I refus'd my concurrence. I have had some applications to me for the signing of grants at the old reserv'd quitt rents, upon produceing purchase receipts under colour of the quitt rent roll act. But while H.M. pleasure is unknown upon it, I have all along avoided acting in such conformity, or to pass any grants to give strength to patents. I think myself happy that by such cautions, if H.M. does not think proper to affirm it, his interest will be no way prejudiced, but like to receive a considerable benefit by getting a rent roll after the proposed method. Your Lordships will probably recommend the new plan of a law to be here enacted upon repeal of the former, which I shall carefully endeavour to procure being pass'd into a law, with my best interest and industry. P.S. Jan. 22. Mr. Oglethorp arrived ye 13th inst. with the Georgians and is proceeded to Port Royal. I have recommended to the Assembly now sitting the giving him all the assistance the country is able to afford, and they voted him boats to carry his people to the design'd settlement, 105 head of black cattle, 25 hoggs, and a quantity of rice for provisions : and 20 of our rangers are ordered to cover them from any insults that may be offered by [? strag]ling Indians or others etc. Signed, Robt. Johnson. Endorsed, Recd. 26th April, 1733, Read 27th Aug., 1735. 1½ pp. Enclosed,
10. i. Account of stores delivered by the Armourer and Gunner at Charles Town 1721-1732. Signed, Thomas Lloyd. Endorsed, Recd. 26th April, 1733. 3 pp. [C.O. 5, 364. ff. 182, 182 v., 183 v.-184 v.]
Jan. 9.
Whitehall.
11. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury. Request payment of petty expences of the Office, Michaelmas to Christmas, 1732, amounting to £350 12s. 3d. and of Officers' salaries, £287 10s. [C.O. 389, 37. pp. 341, 342.]
Jan. 10.
Whitehall.
12. Council of Trade and Plantations to the King. Enclose following, and are preparing the necessary Instructions. Annexed,
12. i. Draught of H.M. Commission for Governor Fitzwilliam. In the same form as those for Governor Rogers, 13th May, 1729. [C.O. 24, 1. p. 214 ; and (covering letter only, autograph signatures), 5, 195. f. 299.]
Jan. 11.
Whitehall.
13. Council of Trade and Plantations to the King. Propose Philip Lightfoot and Thomas Lee for the Council of Virginia in the room of Robert Carter and Henry Harrison decd. [C.O. 5, 1366. p. 95.]
Jan. 12.
Boston.
14. Governor Belcher to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Abstract. Though the Council joined the Representatives in the Address and Memorial, the affair is properly of that the Representatives alone, who are contending for a power the Charter has reserved to the Governor and Council. The Council only intended to make themselves acceptable to the Representatives against the next election. The trade of the Province has grown large, and a medium to support and increase it is doubtless absolutely necessary. Yet better to have none, than such bills of credit as have been issued here for a long time past. But if he might have to sign a bill of the nature of the enclosed (i), it would greatly contribute to the ease of the people in commerce and everything else, and the bills would come out on the best foundation of any that has yet been laid in this Government. This is the second bill of the kind to which he has refused assent, as it interferes with H.M. 16th Instruction. The Assembly make a heavy complaint against his 15th Instruction, forbidding his passing any law which has a repealing clause of any other law. They say it is directly contrary to the Charter etc. They think to make a great handle of it in their favour etc. Desires the Board to consider whether it may not be prudent and reasonable that it should be abated by a new Instruction. Doubtless Parliament, that wise and august Assembly, makes laws and again revokes them etc. Set out, Mass. Hist. Soc. Coll. 6th Ser. VI. 248. Signed, J. Belcher. Endorsed, Recd. 20th Feb., Read 30th Aug., 1733. 5 pp. Enclosed,
14. i. Bill for emitting £50,000 bills of credit, to be redeemed by silver and gold, to which the Governor has suspended his assent. Passed by Assembly and Council, July 5, 1732. Endorsed, Recd. 20th Feb., 1733. Copy. 2¾ pp.
14. ii. Copy of Governor Belcher's 15th Instruction (v. covering letter). 1 p. [C.O. 5, 875. ff. 156-158, 159 v.-162, 167 v.]
Jan. 13.
Boston.
15. Same to same. Abstract. The ship being detained, he has time to add to his letters of 5th, 8th and 12th. In spite of all his efforts he can see no prospect of the adjustment of the boundaries of New Hampshire and the Massachusetts. The poor borderers live like toads under a harrow, being run into gaols on the one side or the other. They pull down one another's houses, and he fears it will end in bloodshed, unless H.M. gives effectual orders for the boundaries to be fixed. Though a Massachusetts man, he thinks this Province to blame, New Hampshire having been all along frank and ready to pay exact obedience to the King's order, and have manifested a great inclination to peace and good neighbourhood. But in return the Massachusetts Province have thrown unreasonable obstacles in the way of any settlement, which seems to show that the leading men of the Assembly are conscious of their continual encroachments. The matter will never be settled, but by a peremptory order from H.M. appointing Commissioners. Those agreed to by both Assemblies in Feb. 1731 are gentlemen of good ability and integrity. Fears the Massachusetts would still decline joining in the affair, but thinks that New Hampshire, from their desire to peace and good order, would rejoice at such a direction from the King, and be glad to be at the whole charge, rather than have the dispute continue etc. If he may have leave for passing the Act for emitting bills of credit (v. Jan. 12th), prays for leave to do the same for N. Hampshire, where they are in great distress for something to pass in lieu of money, and without speedy help it will be almost impossible for that little Province to support any trade. Set out. Hist. M.C. Reports XI., 4, 275 ; Mass. Hist. Soc. Coll. 6th Ser. VI. 251. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 6 pp. [C.O. 5, 875. ff. 163-165 v., 166 v.]
Jan. 13.
Whitehall.
16. Order of Committee of Privy Council ("By the Right Honourable the Lords of the Committee for Plantation affairs"). Referring to the Council of Trade and Plantations for their report five acts the Massachusets Bay delivered by the Agent to the Clerk of the Council on 2nd inst. Signed, W. Cary. Endorsed, Recd. 29th Jan., Read 1st Feb. 173 2/3. 1 p. Enclosed,
16. i. Copies of Acts of the Massachusetts Bay, 1732, (certified by J. Willard Secry. Signed, J. Belcher. (i) for apportioning and assessing a tax of £8007 16s., and for assessing a tax of £80 laid on the towns of Needham, Hatfield, Sutton and Tiverton, for not sending their representatives etc. ; (ii) granting H.M. an excise upon wines, liquors etc. sold by retail ; (iii) providing pay for keeping petty jurys ; (iv) erecting a new town within the county of Middlesex etc., by the name of Townshend ; (v) erecting a new town within the county of Worcester by the name of Harvard. Endorsed, Recd. from Mr. Wilks 2nd Jan., Read and refd. to a Committee, 11th do., 1732. Printed. 14 pp. [C.O. 5, 875. ff. 24, 25, 26-29, 30-33 v., 34 v.]
Jan. 13.
Jamaica.
17. Governor Hunter to the Council of Trade and Plantations. With this your Lordships will receive copys of the Journals and Minutes of Council, and Assembly of the last session, in which there was not one act pass'd. I had the honor to acquaint your Lordships with the dissolution of that Assembly, and calling a new one to meet the 13th of March next, which was as soon as it was possible for them to meet ; hitherto we have strong hopes of a better choice both for the King's and Country's service, at least, the number of such as get thither merely for protection and seem to place their hopes in interest and confusion will be lessen'd. I have receiv'd two duplicates of the privy seals repealing the Additional Duty Act and confirming H.M. late Instructions in blank unseal'd covers, which I immediately communicated to the Receiver General that he might conform himself thereto for the future. The rains and floods have been so violent and continu'd so long that our partys in pursuit of the slaves in rebellion have had little success worth mentioning. I have however kept them out as often as the weather would permitt and by the best information and all accounts the rebels seem to be dispers'd into small gangs, and if we are enabl'd to keep our partys on foot and possession of their towns and fastnesses they cannot probably unite of some time. I have found credit, at least, for the provisions for the partys 'till the Assembly meets, and have by the advice of the Council given orders for the lessening their numbers, in order to lessen the expence, our Treasury being quite exhausted. I have wrote to his Grace the Duke of Newcastle a full account of the tryal and conviction of one Wright, a merchant at Kingston, and Wyat, the master of his sloop call'd the Postilion, for forceably taking away and bringing from the coast of Hispaniola a French sloop called the St. William which had been sent to put some goods on board him according to the practice of that hidden trade, but having lost one of his vessels in a storm there, took that sloop to carry his own goods ; They were convicted and sentenc'd for pyracy in a high Court of Admiralty here, but by the bench unanimously recommended to H.M. most gracious pardon upon some compassionate circumstances in that case, which I issued accordingly, as to their lives only. The French sloop St. William was deliver'd over to the owner Taillet who has carry'd her home. The sloop Postilion is at present in the possession of Sr. Chaloner Ogle ; and Mr. Fisher, Deputy to Mr. Byng, is inquiring into any other effects of the convicts. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Endorsed, Recd. 19th March, Read 28th Nov., 1733. 3 pp. [C.O. 137, 20. ff 116-117 v.]
Jan. 13.
Jamaica.
18. Governor Hunter to the Duke of Newcastle. Repeats part of preceding. Encloses proceedings against Wright and Wyat (v. preceding), and of Mr. Rees's case from the Attorney General, "as I am commanded by a letter receiv'd in Oct. last ; the recognisances money was pay'd over to the Provost Marshal by his sureties in July, 1731, and by him to the Receiver General in August following, the case was a very foul one as it appear'd upon tryal, and the gentleman whose skull was fractur'd behind his back lay languishing a long time with little hopes of life, and is to this day not thoroughly recover'd, neither has he recovered one farthing of the damages awarded him by the Court, neither can he till your Grace is pleas'd to intimate H.M. pleasure that he may recover it, I having order'd the Attorney General to surcrease all further proceedings in that affair till further orders" etc. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Endorsed, R. March 19th. 2½ pp. Enclosed,
18. i. Copy of Governor Hunter to Council of Trade. Jan. 13.
18. ii. Thomas Howe, Attorney General of Jamaica, to Governor Hunter. Span. Town, 11th Jan., 1732. Report upon case of William Rees. The money forfeited by those who went bail for Mr. Rees, by his not appearing, has been paid. They are not ruined really, as stated in their petition, being persons of substance, and Mr. Rees asserted that he left behind sufficient effects in their hands to guard them against suffereing. The state of the case is too favourably represented by Mr. Rees. The assault [upon Mr. Sinclair] was fully proved, and appeared done with premeditation and by surprise etc. Signed, Tho. Towe. 1 p.
18. iii. Petition of Thomas Wright, merchant, and Ebenezer Wyat, mariner, to Commodore Sir Chaloner Ogle and the Commissioners for trying piracies etc. Dec. 21, 1732. Petitioners having been this day found guilty of piracy in taking a sloop belonging to Stephen Busquett, beg for H.M. pardon on the grounds of "many favourable circumstances" in their case. Signed, Thos. Wright, Ebenezer Wyat. The Commissioners recommend them to Governor Hunter for pardon. Signed, C. Ogle and nine others. 1½ pp.
18. iv. Proceedings in the High Court of Admiralty at St. Jago de la Vega, 21st Dec., 1732, in above case. Prisoners, in the pirate sloop Postillion, at Hispaniola, decoyed Busquett, a French subject, on board, and seized his sloop, the St. William. Evidence by Stephen Busquett and Robert Nicholson, one of the pirate crew, etc. Mr. Taillet, cross examined, admitted that he wrote to Wright and offered him his sloop. Other evidence of Wright's having entered into negotiations with Busquet, and that his character was good. Found guilty and sentenced to be hanged. Nicholson discharged. Copy. 5½ pp. [C.O. 137, 54. ff. 134-138, 140, 140 v., 142-144 v.]