A Collection of the State Papers of John Thurloe, Volume 4, Sept 1655 - May 1656. Originally published by Fletcher Gyles, London, 1742.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying. All rights reserved.
January (5 of 9)
The commissioners for the county of Suffolk to the protector.
May it please your highness,
We the commissioners authorized by your highness and council for the securing the peace of the commonwealth within this county of Suffolk, have in all humble obedience to those commands, and in conscience of our duty and trust, improved our endeavours for the effectual putting in execution the orders and instructions communicated to us in this behalf; wherein, as we must first bless the Lord, who moved your highness's heart to a work so righteous, so prudential, so we must likewise acknowledge his goodness, who hath strengthned our hands, and made us, we hope, in some measure faithful in this service. What our proceed hath been, and the accompt thereof, is now our duties to tender to your highness, and is humbly represented in the certificate inclosed: what is still remaining and incumbent on us, or shall further be commanded, we shall continue to attend upon with all care suitable to the importance of so great an affair; never ceasing to pour out our souls at the throne of grace, that the precious influences of the spirit may ever be upon your highness's heart. Even so prayeth
Suffolk. The humble certificate of the commissioners appointed by his highness and council for securing the peace of the commonwealth within the said county of Suffolk, of the names of all such persons within this county yet come to our knowledge, which are comprized in the third head of his highness's orders, and the tax assessed and set upon every one of them according to the said orders and instructions.
Copy of a letter from the lord marquis of Montealegre, written unto the earl of Villaumbrosa, governor in Puerto Velo.
On the 25th instant I set sail from Cartagena, and came hither on the 21st about five of the clock in the afternoon, very sea sick, but now, thanks be to God, well. Here I found letters from D. Pedro Carillo, with others from the vice-king the earl of Salvatiera, and the president of Quito, who advised me, that the docks of the Capitanna being broken up, to which they have set fire, that with facility the plate may be gotten out: and this news the ship of gold that came from thence the 18th, and arrived here the 20th, brings, as also the enclosed register.
D. Pedro Carillo adviseth me, that a frigat sailed after this boat, who faith, that he saw the decks broken up and thrown into the sea, and that suddenly he expects, that the plate will be here, where I am doing all possible diligence by courtesy to persuade the interested to make their registers. Their aviso I have dispatch'd with better news than the last: and I conceive it convenient to send a copy of my last; both which God send safely to your lordship.
Copy of a letter written by don Pedro Vasques Velasco, president of the Audiencia of Quito, from the passage of Chanduy on the 14th of December 1654, and was received the 28th ditto.
I Should be glad, that the first time I write you might be with more content offering me occasion to serve your lordship: Now I must give account of the loss of the Capitana, which hath been, and will be very sad for the monarchy.
My lord Salvatiera, vice-king of those kingdoms, with the consent of all those tribunals gave me a commission for the setting forth the plate, and royal treasure, and al things else concerning that matter: and I came to these parts two days after the packet boat of his majesty came, in which your lordship sent the dyners with a letter for the general of the armada, and the governour of Guyaguil, in which I see your lordship's care, and the assistance to take out the plate, which is of so much importance, that it hath pleased God by the labour of those dyners, and those that were here, that about two millions is gotten out: and hopes that the rest will be also gotten out, in regard that the Capitana sunk in a part clear of rocks, although in a deep water; but I hope through care there will not be so much loss as was seared, of which I thought sit to give your lordship notice; as also, how that the ship of gold which came from Guyaguil will go from thence within five days, with the plate which is saved.
I shall procure that there go two millions for his majesty and private interests, the which dispatch I send now least the general of the armada should not stay: and this boat goeth to give him advice, it being requisite with speed to send to meet the galleons in Puerto Velo, that they may stay to receive the plate; which diligence hath seemed to me necessary, in regard of the great care your lordship hath, and I also, that the plate may not be left behind; and on the other side the comfort I have is, that your lordship wrote to the general of the armada of the south and governour of Guyaguil, that the galleons were in Cartagena; I judging that through this detention it will be force for them to winter there, and that for a month more or less the general would not go without the plate, that of his majesty's which was in Almiranta being so little.
I beseech your lordship, that presently when the boat shall come to you, you would return her back again to me with speed, in regard of the want which I have of boats, to bring provisions: for this country is so dispeopled that we must have all brought by sea, and to free me of the care lest the galleons should be gone.
The bearer of these is don Diego Messea, to whom I refer myself to advise you more
at large, in regard that through the shortness of my time I cannot inlarge. Don Vincente
Justiniano, of whom your lordship writes is to bring the rest of the dyners, as yet is not
come: which is all at present: I rest
Your lordship's humble servant,
D. Pedro Vasques Velasco.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
The college of the admiralty of Amsterdam hath writ, how as well the vice admiral Ruyter, as the commander de Wildt, and other captains of this state, have taken almost all the pirate Turks, and by that means clear'd the Mediterranean sea, proposing, whether they ought to make others (naming the Hans towns) to bear a share of the charges and expences, which have been made for the effecting the same: since they do injoy the same liberties and privileges with those of this state, that they have been at the charges. This is the pretence of an inn-keeper or a cook, that pretended money of the passengers, who had been filled with the smell of his meat; I would advise to have them paid with the found of money.
There being published an order by the council of state in the country of the generality to pay so many collateral successions, those of Zealand have urged to have that order suspended. And the states general have resolved to have it suspended, but the council will not obey it.
They thought to have continued to day the treaty of loan for 200 thousand rix dollars with those of Brandenburgh; but the lord Beverning and others being together, they found that those of Brandenburgh were absent from the Hague.
The inclosed came by the last post from Stetin: by this present post arrived this morning at Amsterdam, we do hear that there was yet nothing concluded between the Swede and the Brandenburgher at Koningsburgh, that the chancellor Oxenstierne was still there; that the Swedes were gone towards Pautke; that the elector of Brandenburgh was likewise upon some design.
Yesterday there was only an assembly for the reading of the letters from Prussia. It is clearly seen, that the Swedes lose no time, and yield nothing to the winter; having taken Welauw a passage upon the Prague, to spoil the winter quarters of the elector as well beyond as on this side the said river: and they write that the earl of Wittenbergh was also ready to come with his body of forces into Prussia, if need be, to ruin the elector before the spring; so that the elector doth find himself beset on all sides. The agreement with him hath no great difficulty, but he would willingly save Dantzick; but because that the Pillauw and the Memel are not so well to be defended, in case that Dantzick should belong to the Swedes, the conditions proposed to Dantzick are intolerable.
The business of the loan of 200 thousand rix dollars hath been again debated, and since there hath been a conference. But Holland doth still persist and continue to have security likewise upon the country of Cleve; and those of Brandenburgh declare to have no other order than to engage the toll of the Pillauw, which is only a bird in the air. In short this business is referred till some further order. In the mean time four or six weeks will be spent. It is very strongly presumed, that the agreement in Prussia will be made.
Yesterday the lord Beverning and others made report of the conference held with those of Brandenburgh; upon which nothing was resolved; and save that to day there is advice come that the 4/14th of January the agreement was made and concluded at Koningsburgh, I fear that all further treaty will remain suspended. Those of Brandenburgh having been in Amsterdam to receive there the subsidy, are not returned from thence well satisfied, saying to have received but 20 thousand guilders instead of 70 thousand. But all the proportion of Zealand (50 thousand guilders) they have received. But this little, which is paid them, is already too much, for properly they have not been assaulted; having only treated continually; and (si vera est fama) they have renounced the treaty made here, and abandoned Dantzick.
Upon the reading of the news of the agreement in Prussia those of Holland shew'd themselves very cold. Amongst the rest there were some, that did very much abhor and exclaim against the injustice of the arms of the Swede in Poland.
But of the fleet nor of the embassy there was not a word spoken; yet however the lord Isselmuyden with all his train is already arrived and ready; as also the 24 ships equipping by those of Amsterdam for their share, are almost ready.
The ministers of Brandenburgh have been to see the lord president, declaring that they know nothing of the treaty but in general; that the elector was constrained by necessity; that the Swedes were far stronger than Brandenburgh. That in Coningsmarcke there already began to be some want, that the emperor would not engage, that this state was slow and could not send their fleet till the spring, that the treaty of alliance made with this state was not contrary to that which he had made with Sweden, &c.
This day there was finally agreed and concluded to desire those of Overyssel to send hither their commissioners, to be reconciled by the states general. The day is precisely set upon the 2d of February, and prince William is required to defer his departure, which otherwise would have been on the 31st of January.
The resident of Poland communicated letters this morning from Vienna of the 5th of January, containing the great invasion of the Tartars into Poland; but that is confuted by letters of the ministers of Brandenburgh of the 12th of January.
The admiralty of Horn doth also desire some money for the equipping of their share in the 48 ships. Prince Frederick of Nassau complains of the levies, which are made for the Swede upon the Rhine. The council of the prince demand the charges of waggons for the journey, which his highness made in the year 1650. Holland will not hearken to it.
A letter of intelligence from the Hague.
I see that there will be an alliance between S. general and Brandenburg as the psalm 129 mentioneth, sicut fænum tectorum, quod priusquam avellatur exaruit, de quo non implebit manum suam; &c. for already they begin to charge and accuse one another, and to lay the fault upon one another. But the truth is, as I have writ you word long since, that the states general had chosen a bad side, that Brandenburg was weak, and Amsterdam and the states of Holland ought to have considered, that by joining themselves thus with Brandenburg, they did apply themselves to such a one, that was head of the friends of the princess of Orange. Now they begin to see their error, how ill they have employed as well their flattery towards Brandenburg, as their money for fleet; for besides the equipage, which they made the last year, first of eight ships, and afterwards of 16, (which went no further then the Vlie) they equip, or have already equipt (for those of Holland have almost finished their 24) the 48 ships, and the embassy to Denmark doth also fall chargeable; and all these are unnecessary expences, and serve only to give the greater offence, and to render the future negotiation of their embassy into Prussia the more difficult; but this next assembly of Holland may apparently change their note, and speak no more, as I believe, of cudgeling them into a treaty; and in regard that Cromwell hath offered and declared to the embassadors of the states general, that he would co-operate with the states general to have an equal and reasonable usage in commerce, here it will be judg'd very useful and necessary for states general, that Cromwell do imploy himself about it, for the intercession and interposition of the protector may do very much in the business.
The harmony is no more mentioned at present; but it will be revived, in regard that I still see a continuance of a good correspondency between grave William and the raet pensionary, although there be some as well on the side of the friends of the pr. of Or., as on that of the well-affected in Holl., that do very much doubt and suspect it; verily I can say no other, only that the raet pensionary is a very honest man. In the mean time care is left to them, ipforum res agitur. The ardent affection of Amst. to the princ. dow. is very much lessened, and yet more to Brandenburg. But as well the conditions as the weakness of Brandenburg hath been sufficiently foretold them, as also that they did not proceed with so much prudence against the Swede as they ought; but that they acted against the Swede, was as in the year 1652 against England. I am
Nieupoort, the Dutch embassador in England, to Ruysch.
Last night I received their high and mighty lordships letter, with their resolution of the 19th current, concerning the points proceeding out of the letters of the lord of Omeren, their high and mighty lordships commissioner extraordinary to the evangelical cantons of Switzerland and the duke of Savoy. At the beginning of this week I writ to the lord secretary of state, that I desired a private audience of his highness, as soon as his indisposition and occasions would permit; and he signified unto me, that his highness took physick that day, and that he would take care, that I should be admitted to the said audience as soon as his highness were something better. And yesterday having understood, that his highness besides a great cold had gotten some little swelling upon his breast, I thought fit to give a visit to the lord secretary of state this afternoon, who told me, that the indisposition of his highness was such, that he was heart-whole, but that he could not endure his doublet to be buttoned; but that he thought he would be well in a few days, and that I might be assured, that he would take care for my said audience. His lordship told me, that his highness having further considered of the reasons, which I had proposed to him in my last audience, had taken a further resolution to send an able minister to Prussia and Poland; and that he would not go from that resolution, which he had formerly declared unto me; that he would not hearken to any offers without that the same be also granted to the states of the United Netherlands; and that it shall be found in effect, that his aim and design is just, and doth tend for the common good. I told his lordship, that I had received another resolution of their high and mighty lordships concerning the affairs in Switzerland, and the poor people of Piedmont, concerning which I had a desire to speak with his highness. Whereupon he said, that it would be acceptable to him; and that I should find his highness more earnest for that business than formerly. That it was a design, which ought to be apprehended. That their last letters, which they received yesterday, did inform them, that all hope of an accommodation being taken away, those of Zurich and Berne had caused their armies to march, and had mastered some small places under Schweitz. That the lord protector, when I should speak with him, would make no difficulty to communicate unto me further his intention concerning the said evangelical cantons and Vaudois. My lord,
H. Cromwell to secretary Thurloe.
I have received yours of the 8th instant, which gives me ane account, that mine of the second, together with the inclosed paper of Vernon's, came safe to your handes; as allsoe your sence thereuppon. I must needs confess my exercises of that kinde have not bin a few, and those frome that person, whome I judge to bee of a very furious unquiete spirritt; which I doubt receives noe alay by the company of adjut. gen. Allen, who carryes it verry closely, and cunningly. Surely it is true what once you saide to me concerninge him, viz. he lookes uppon himeself as to have received harde measure frome his highness, and he is not apt to forgive, and forgett injuryes. I could wishe the towe brothers were well disposed of, and then wee might have some hopes of quiettness.
Wee have had a meetinge with coll. Hewson and coll. Lawrence, and some others, wheer coll. Cooper and Sankey might heare frome their owne mouthes, what grounds they have had to raise all the clamours that have gone into Englande, and bin spreade heer concerninge my actiones; and truly what they hade to object amounts to, I should rather you should receive it frome their hands then myselfe. I ame sure of it, they had as much freedome as they pleased to use, to charge uppon me whatever they could, wherein I hade acted irregularly, either as a publique person or as a private Christian, wherein there was much plainess used one all handes; but I bless the Lord, whoe hath soe directed my wayes, that what they endeavored to father uppon me did rather reflect uppon themselves than uppon me. After I had answered those perticuler thinges they objected, I told them plainly, that they might all of them of that judgement expect equally liberty both in their spirituall and civill concernments with any others; and though I could not close with their principles in my judgment, that I held myself obliged in duty (judgeing them to be persons fearinge God) to protect them from being imposed uppon by any; as allsoe to keep them frome doeinge the like to others. Liberty and countenance they might expect frome me, but to rule me, or to rule with me, I should not approve of; and soe wee parted verry farely with a great deale of seemeing friendshipp; and truely I ame not without hopes, but that their may some good come by this meetinge. I ame verry sensible of the necessitie their is of union; and if my principles did not enforce it as a duty uppon me, yet consideringe howe thinges are, and are like to be in relation to the common enimy, common prudence would make me bewarre of increasing the number of our enimyes: Lookeing uppon the godliness of these men, I should be loathe to loose them, if they be to bee kept; but indeed consideringe their late practises, as well as former, I doe not thinke that God has given them a spirritt of government; neither is it safe they should have much power in their handes.
I am sensible of what you writ us to the north, and therefore have my ey uppon it. Coll. Cooper will be goeinge ther next weeke to his charge their. Their is a full supply of men their, bothe horse and foote, soe that I have not any present apprehentiones of danger frome thence. Their shall be care taken, that they doe not take advantage by the fisher boates to convey men into Scotland, when that person comes, and in the meane time we shall looke to the passage-boate: those few that their are, are confined to perticuler places, so that I thinke noe use cane be made of them to any such purpose.
As for our publique affaires heer, I need say nothinge, this comeinge by soe good a hande, whoe is able to give you a full prospect of business of all kindes, who wante councellors, judges, and money. I shall not further trouble you at present, but rest
Major general Whalley to secretary Thurloe.
I receaved yours of the 15th instant, wherein I received his highnes and the councill's theyr additionall instructions. I feare it will not come to much, personall estates being so hard to discover; wee shall make the most of it we can. The tax in Lyncolnesheire amounts to 4000 l. per ann. Nottinghamsheire will come near to 1500 l. except Leicestersheire, the other counties upon the particulers now returned will not pay the militia. The councill have ordered us not to meddle with the earle of Devonshire his estate, further then to returne them a particuler. Wee have obeyed theyr commands; but as I writ to them, I humbly conceive they will much prejudice themselves by it, and gave them severall reasons, which would be to long for me to recite. I hoped upon what I writ, wee should have bin returned to our former liberty of proceeding agaynst him; it makes the countrey thinke, that great men have most freinds, as formerly. Indeed, sir, it is of ill consequence. I desire you to read my letter I writ to them, to mynde the councill of it, and let me know something in a word or two of theyr resolution. I shall for my owne particuler acquiesce in theyr resolve. I shall labour in what lyes in me to suppresse all base bookes, as also to fynde out the receavers; for that Hazard, whom you suspect to be Naylor, which is very probable, you shall have an account by the next. Having made our tax upon the particulers, that the delinquents themselves brought in, wee are very buysy in sending out our messengers to enquire into the truth of them, and making further discoveryes, and gathering up idle and dangerous persons according to our instructions, whom I hope you will not suffer to lye upon our handes, after wee have made our returne to you of them. Wee are likewise very buysy in casting out scandalous and ignorant ministers, suppressing alehouses, taking order that the poore in all places under our charge may be set a worke, and beggers suppressed. Truly, sir, the worke his highnesse and the councill have have put upon us is very great. I wish there had bin more major generalls. Our presence I fynde is desired in all places, and gives lyse to all proceedings; besides they looke upon it as a favour to them, to have us in theyre county. So that you may judge what our condition is like to bee, even to devide our selves amongst them, and to have no very long residence in any place. If the Lord give abilities to your major generalls, myselfe most wanting, it's the best way that ere as yet was devised for the peace and safetye of the nation. You cannot imagine what an awe it hath strucke into the spirits of wicked men, what incouragement it is to the godly, yea, and I may say, through God's mercy, how it reconciles them amongst themselves, through our weake endeavours. That the Lord would further inable us, is the prayre of, sir,
Part of Wm. Freer's examination, taken Jan. 18, 1655, before mr. Lu. Robinson.
That the plotters on Hessay-moor had perfect intelligence from London, what was done at court, and that from some very nigh unto the lord protector. And that a letter being delivered from the lord Fairfax unto his highness, intimating their design in Yorkshire, a person standing by, and hearing or reading the said letter, writ unto them, signifying the contents thereof; and withal advising them not to trust the said lord Fairfax, for that he would betray them.
Commissioners for Essex to H. Laurence, president of the council.
May it please your lordshippe,
Accordinge to your instruction given us, for our proceedinge upon the third head of the orders of his highnesse and the councill, wee have used our utmost endeavors to informe our selves of the estates, both reall and personall, with the persons comprized within the said third head, or any other persons in trust for them, or to their use or benefitt, have or had, within this county, on the first day of November 1653, and have proportionably taxed and assessed such persons for their estates, a particular whereof your lorshippe shall here enclosed receive, which in obedience to the instructions wee have transmitted to your lordshippe. Some other persons, wee beleeve there are, which will fall un der the same third head in this county; the value of whose estates wee are labouringe to informe our selves of, in order to the taxinge and assessing them alsoe; which done, an accompt thereof shal be transmitted to your lordshippe, by
Chelmsford, January 18, 1655.
Essex ss. A particular of the names of such persons within the said county, as are adjudged to fall under the third head of the order of his highness and the council, for securing the peace of the commonwealth, together with the several sums assessed and charged upon their respective estates half yearly.
An intercepted letter of Thomas Hungerford to mr. John White.
The goods, your orders to me mentioned, you had received long ago, if could have met with conveniency of sending them. The masters you mentioned to receave them, could not have them sent, for fear they should have been spoiled or lost. I know you may have lost a good opportunity of putting them off, but trust you will still meet with as good an advantage, in that those goods are all men's money, seeing there is no quantity of them in any other merchant's hands but yours besides one in the city. And I think most will buy of you before him, in that you can undersell him, all of which goods you might have had long ago, if you would but have followed my directions, that was to have spoken with my cozen to have sent to mr. Jones to have took them in, and till which you cannot expect any packs, but shall send you a small parcel by John Speedwell master, by which you see the goods are not only good but vendible with you.
Bordeaux to mr. de la Bastide.
I have nothing to tell you upon the subject of the duke of York, till such time that your first letters have acquainted me with the intentions of the lord protector upon his removal out of France, which cannot be but prejudicial to England, as well as to France: if they not happen to be of this opinion, do not you fail to speak about Barriere.
You are to go and make a compliment to the embassador of Sweden upon the birth of the young prince, whereof he hath given us notice; and also to assure him, that I will not fail to give an account of the demonstrations of amity, which he shews unto us.
You must have heard without doubt what hath pass'd in the parliament concerning the edict of monies. True it is, that the king did forbid them to meet, and not obeying, five of them had order to remove out of Paris, if they continued in their disobedience.
Monsieur Augier to secretary Thurloe.
The letter, wherewith you were pleased to honour me of the 3d instant, was only delivered me on the 27/17 of the same. I have according unto your honour's direction sent the inclosed unto mr. Marvin at Saumur, and have also written unto him the place of my abode here, that he may make use of me for his letters and otherwise.
Yesterday the king danced his new ballet repeating it incessantly, and thinking upon nothing else: he intends to give the pastime thereof unto the princess of Orange, who is here expected on tuesday next.
The count of Brienne has not yet presented me unto his majesty, whereof he has again excused himself towards me this morning, laying still the fault upon the ballets and balls, balls and ballets, promising me however, that he would acquaint thereof this afternoon.
Count of Brienne hath given us notice two or three days since, that two decrees have newly been given in this council in behalf of mr. de Cezi's business, and that we should soon receive satisfaction. I have notwithstanding sent a note unto the cardinal with copy of the embassador de Bordeaux's promise, intreating him to hasten our payment: his eminency has sent me word this morning, that he had already given orders for the ending of that business, and that he did send the said note and promise unto the count of Brienne to make a speedy conclusion thereof. The said count finds no difficulty to cause the parliament of Aix decree to be executed in the behalf of the heirs of late Robert Langton, creditors to mr. de Marcheville; I have to that purpose given order to have the original bonds sent me, with an authentical copy of the said decree concerning that debate, it being impossible to do any thing without them. The sheet my son will deliver unto your honour will inform you with the overplus of our occurrences, remaining always,
An intercepted letter of Hungerford/Robert Bennet to mrs. Mary Riecraft.
The goods sent by the last post came safe, but am very much troubled at my cousin's sickness; I shall send him very suddenly a glass or bottle of the best waters this country affords, which it's my hopes will do him some good. Its my judgment he change the air, it being the only way to rid one of an ague.
A letter of intelligence from mr. Petit.
His majesty has given an edict for the reformation of coining, under pretence that this sort of coin being too thick, the false coiners could more easily mix it with bad alloy, and give it the colour of good, which they cannot so easily do by that, which shall be made hereafter, by reason they shall be thinner and composed with a finer sort of metal, and will therefore be far more worth than the other; so that this party will bring above eight millions unto the king. You have doubtless heard, what strong oppositions this parliament has made against it, as a business most ruinous both at home and abroad. The provost of merchants having put the petition made thereupon by the body of merchants into the hands of a member of the parliament, was sent for by the chancellor, who commanded him to withdraw his petition; and demanding of him with threatnings, why they made their addresses to the parliament, and not to the council, the said provost answered, that they did usually receive justice from the parliament, instead that at the council they were misused like rebels. But notwithstanding the oppositions of the parliament the king doth maintain his edict. And whereas five or six of the said parliament offered to assemble themselves thereupon, after they had been forbidden, each of them received last night a letter de cachet from his majesty, importing their exile into several places of this kingdom, where they are gone. Whereupon the parliament having assembled themselves, 60 of them have given their voices to shut the palace gate, and forsake the duty of their office; but 80 of them have concluded, that most humble remonstrances should be made unto his majesty for the recalling of the said exiled, which are by name the councellors, Camus, Pontcarré, Ville Montée, Godart, Machauld, and le Coq. We shall see what will be the sequel of this considerable business.
As for that of Jansenius, it remains undecided in the Sorbonne, where the plurality of voices having caused the sentence of the late pope to be confirmed against the 5 points, you have heard of, as being of Jansenius, and not of St. Augustin, the said assembly doth at present deliberate upon the right of these points, to know whether they be conformable unto the holy scripture.
The gazette will informe you, how the king had given unto the duke of Modena before his departure two rich suits of hangings. I hear his majesty and the cardinal have besides given him above thirty thousand crowns in jewels. An agent of the duke of Mantua complaining, that his master had not received the like honors, was answered with this compliment, that amongst got friends there needs not so many ceremonies and such circumspection as with others.
The duke of Amville is to go very suddenly to Blois with prince Francis of Lorraine; in consequence whereof it's hoped, that the duke of Orleans will return hither, unless the exile of the abovesaid members of this parliament doth bring some new hindrance unto the execution of his peace.
The information of Marke Billingham, late servant to sir William Ingram, and now of Haram, taken upon oath the 19th of January, 1655.
Who saith, that in the begining or latter end of February his said master sent this information to Usburne to major Waters, and bid this informant observe the directions of and do what business the said major Waters had with him, and also bid him see major Gibson of Alue; that this said informant in pursuance of his said master's commands went upon a sabbath day before this meeting at Hessey moore to the said major Waters, and the said major Waters did then deliver a letter directed to one mr. Cuthbert Carr of St. Hellen Aukland in Bishoprick, and gave this informant fifty shillings, and told him he must immediately take post and go with the said letter in all hast; that this informant did not then go to see mr. Ibson, but forthwith took post and rid to the said St. Hellen Aukland, and delivered the said letter to a gentleman, who said his name was Carr; and the said mr. Carr called this informant in and made him drink; and this informant saith, that as he was going through Alerton, he was examined what his occasions was, and whither he was going, and this examinant pretended he was to see a friend in Bishoprick near Durham, which was the directions of the said major Waters to him, by which means this informant went current with his said letter to the said Carr, and when he returned to Usburne, and had told the said major Waters, that he had delivered the said letter to the said mr. Carr, the said major Waters said it was well, and further he remembers not as to this particular.
Major general Worsley to secretary Thurloe.
Upon tuesday, wednesday, and thursday last I was att Stafford; where the most of the commissioners met mee, at which time wee added some thinge to the summ by the extraordinary tax, and have received articles against diverse persons, which wee shall proceed upon att our next meetinge. Wee have likewise sent out orders into all parts of the county, for the findeing out of all persons guilty accordinge to the severall orders and instructions wee act by, that thereby wee may proceed against every one accordinge to our respective instructions. The commissioners are likewise goeing on upon the ordinance for ejectinge of scandelous ministers and schoole masters; but they wante your order concerninge the additionall list I sent you for ministers; they cannot give five specified in the ordinance. I desire to know your minde and receive your order concerninge sir Robert Sherley his estate, now a prisoner at Jameses, that wee may know how to proceede against him. I received from mr. Scobell the additionall order, which wee shall put in effectuall execution speedily, still hopinge wee shall receive another order for fiftie pounds per annum or under, and five hundred pounds personall estate. I hope by my next to give you an account of our proceedings at Preston in Lancashire. Wee have diverse persons now in the goale, which wee conceive very fitt to bee transported. I desire to receive some order therein: that is all from
Major general Disbrowe to secretary Thurloe.
I had yours with the additionall instructions, as alsoe the petitions of mr. Bray and mr. Berkeley of Gloucestershire; and in obedience to his highness commands have seriously considered of them, but cannot find them to import more then hundreds of cavilleirs shall in these parts freely declare, provided they may be exempted from this additionall tax; and yet if oppertunity were, should be as free to sett up that corrupt interest as ever. Therefore without a demonstration of a reall worke of grace, or some eminent manifestation of their integrity, I cannot adjudge itt safe to espouse them, and that upon sundry accompts; yet whatsoever his highness pleasure is, if signified unto me, it shall be observed. Since my last unto you I have been at Taunton, and began the worke there, and am at present in my worke heare. I have dispatcht letters to the commissioners in Cornwall, and do purpose (if the Lord please) to goe hence upon munday next. I shall spend a fortnight's tyme there, and must request you to hasten downe the order I mentioned unto his highness in my last, or any further commands, that I may returne unto my poore wife. I must alsoe desyre you to cause the gentlemen in the inclosed list to be inserted into the commission of the peace for Devon. Your next letters you may direct them for Cornwall; and what news you have worth communicatinge, pray favour him with itt, who is
January 19, 1655.