America and West Indies: July 1679

Pages 384-403

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 10, 1677-1680. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1896.

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July 1679

July 1. 1041. Mr. Robert Mason's agreement with the King about New Hampshire. Reciting that the King has thought fit to free the province of New Hampshire from the jurisdiction of Massachusetts; and has required Robert Mason to remit unto the inhabitants all rents and demands to the 24th June last past, and to make them a legal grant and title to the lands improved by them, on condition that the said inhabitants become tenants and for the future pay to the said Robert Mason a quit rent of sixpence in the pound upon the full and yearly value of all houses and pounds thereto belonging, and upon all improved lands, excepting woodlands only which are to remain at the said Robert Mason's disposal; and that the said Robert Mason accepts the above terms. Signed and sealed. 1 p. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXVII., p. 2, and Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 80.]
July 1.
New Plymouth.
1042. The Governor and Council of New Plymouth to the King. Have received the King's letter of 12th February 167 8/9 concerning claims and claimers of lands in the Narragansett and Niantick countries, and have made it known to those in the Colony that pretend to any interest there by virtue of a purchase made by Major Atherton, who desire their humble submission, still hoping to obtain settlement in their rights. By the same letter are informed that Mr. John Crown has petitioned for a grant of Mounthope, and are directed to inform His Majesty of their title to that country and of its true extent and value. The lands of Mounthope belonged to the Sachem Philip, and are unquestionably within the patent grant made to New Plymouth, within which none might purchase or in any way obtain lands but they and those whom they allowed, and were conquered by the joint forces of Massachusetts, Connecticut, and New Plymouth by the expense of more than 100,000l. besides inestimable damage sustained by particular persons and plantations, and the loss of the lives of many hundred of their brethren, children, and choice friends. The profits of the war (except a few prisoners taken in the latter end thereof) were only land. New Plymouth being the seat of the war suffered more in proportion than any, and therefore had Mounthope, with a small ragged tract of land adjoining to it, for their part, by agreement of the confederate colonies, who were allowed 1,000l. because the New Plymouth lands were judged more valuable than theirs, and Mounthope with its appurtenances by far the better part of the conquest lands. Have put it to sale for 3,000l. but have not yet found chapmen. The area is reckoned to be 7,000 acres at the most, part of it a good soil and much of it rocky, mountainous, and barren, which commends it and causeth them highly to esteem it and earnestly to beg that they may not be deprived of it, not only because they have fought and paid and bled for it, but because this Colony for want of good harbours could never get considerable improvement of the sea, whereas these places are well accommodated for the settlement of a sea-port town or two. Humbly offer an answer to His Majesty's blame for that they had not given an account of the war; perceive that they have been greatly abused by miscarriage of letters, both from the Colony and particularly from the Governor, bearing date 12th June 1677, copies whereof they transmit. Hope to find the originals, and also a small present of their Governor's therein mentioned. Know that letters and present came safe to London and hope to. have them presented, though very untimely. Pray that this poor Colony that made the first settlement in this wilderness to spread the Gospel and enlarge the King's dominions may not by misinformation of any evilminded persons, their neighbours, be deprived of what they have to live upon. Their whole patent is but a very narrow strip of land and generally mean, and the people here by God's goodness are greatly increased. Should they be eaten out by their neighbours of Rhode Island, to whom they have in a certain sense given being, it would argue high ingratitude in them, and New Plymouth would account it the worst of deaths. Having written about two years since and doubted not till now that the letters were received, did believe the King was satisfied and thereupon disposed of some of the conquered lands in order to a settlement, which, if reversed, would reduce them to great straits and plunges, they having the above-mentioned 1,000l. to pay, and many lame soldiers, widows, and orphans to provide for. Beg for a speedy answer. Their Governor was careful last year to give an account of the trial of the controversies between Mr. Harris of Patuxet and his neighbours, but sent the letters to Secretary Williamson, who was dismissed from that trust before the letters arrived, so that they were sent back and are herewith presented. Signed by order of the General Court, Nath. Morton, Secy. Endorsed, Presented in Council by Mr. S. Coventry 26 Sept. '79. Read the 2nd of March 16 79/80. 1 p. Original damaged at the edges, signature gone. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 81.]
Copy of the above. 6 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXI., p. 17.]
July 2.
Council Chamber.
1043. Memorandum and Report of Lords of Trade and Plantations on the Treaty of Neutrality to be concluded with the French. Mr. Secretary Coventry having informed their Lordships that the French Ambassador declares himself ready to treat, the Lord President is desired to move His Majesty in Council that a Commission may be passed under the Great Seal empowering such of the Lords of the Council as are named to treat with him, as also that orders may be given for negotiating a Treaty of Commerce with the French.
Here follow the heads of the proposed treaty to provide for neutrality of the British and French West Indies, even in case of a rupture between the mother countries. The English possessions enumerated by name are Barbadoes, Jamaica, St. Christopher, Nevis, Montserrat, Antigua, Anguilla, St. Eustatius, Barbuda, Saba, Tortola; the French, St. Christopher, Martinique, Guadaloupe, Tordudos (sic), Hispaniola or St. Domingo, Grenada, Santa Cruz, Cayenne, St. Martin, St. Bartholomew, Mariegalante. Any differences in the Caribbee Islands shall be settled by the English and French Generals of the respective Governments; differences between Hispaniola and Jamaica by the Governors of those two islands. The Treaty of Breda is respected. Nine Articles in all. 4½ pp. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XLVI., pp. 367–372.]
July 2. 1044. Order in Council on a Report of the Committee for Plantations concerning William Harris. The Committee, in answer to the reference of 23rd May concerning the pretensions of William Harris, enumerate the proceedings previously taken and the order of 2nd January; are of opinion that by reason of the distance it will be a matter of great difficulty for His Majesty to give such judgment as may equally decide the pretensions of Harris and of Randall Holden and John Greene; advise that commands be sent to the Governor and Council of New Plymouth to hear the dispute and to report thereupon to His Majesty, and to the Governor and magistrates of Rhode Island, requiring the latter to put Harris and his partners in possession of Patuxet, and to take care that execution be given for the damages and costs allowed by the verdicts within three months. 19th June 1679. Shaftesbury, Pr., Bridgwater, Fauconberg, Thomas Dolman. Ordered, that a letter be prepared accordingly. 4½ pp. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LX., pp. 346–351.]
July 2. 1045. Report of Lords of Trade and Plantations to the King. The claims of Robert Mason to New Hampshire. Recapitulation of the history of the case, with reference to petitions, opinions, orders, &c., from the days of James I. Upon the whole matter the Lords advise an express Order in Council declaring that the Corporation of Massachusetts have no right either to soil or government beyond three miles to the north of the Merrimac river, nor to the soil or propriety of any land lying between the rivers Naumkeck and Merrimac, and that all alienations of the said lands made by them are null and void. Also to command the inhabitants of the tract of land between Naumkeck and Piscatawa to receive Robert Mason as their lawful proprietor, pursuant to the Letters Patent of King James I., unless they can show sufficient reason to the contrary, when their pretensions shall be judged before the Privy Council. Draft. 8 pp. Endorsed, 2 July 1679. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 82.]
July 3. 1046. Petition of Thomas Oxford to the King. While the Lords of Trade and Plantations are considering the settlement of Government in Newfoundland, petitioner, for want of such settlement, is daily discouraged and wronged, robbed of several goods and a negro servant. Prays restoration of the negro and compensation for other damage. 1 p. Endorsed, Recd. 3 July. Read in Council 4 July 1679. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 83.]
July ? 1047. Questions proposed to the Lord President to be asked the gentlemen of Barbadoes; who were called before the Lords of Trade and Plantatations by name, and answered each question as recorded in their Lordships' Journal abstracted in the following entry. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 84.]
July 4.
1048. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. The Commissioners of Customs directed to give a particular specification of Imports from and Exports to the West Indies. Sir Peter Colleton, Col. Drax, Mr. Lucy, Colonel Thornburgh, Mr. Chaplin, Mr. Bawden, Mr. Gorges and others called in and asked as to the laws of Barbadoes. They conceive that laws made by Commission from the Earl of Carlisle remain still in force unless repealed, whether approved by the King or otherwise; also that the laws made by Lords Francis and William Willoughby, though their Commissions expressly required the Royal confirmation thereof, remain perpetually in force, since His Majesty has not for so long time excepted against them. They say that all laws made since that time remain in force for two years and no longer, unless confirmed by the King; it is the Governor's duty to send them home for the purpose; they are surprised to hear of any difficulty herein, for the Council would send them home without fail; since His Majesty has chosen the Council, the Councillors very jealous for the royal prerogative and the royal interest. They declare themselves surprised at the Governor's failure to send home the Act for a second free entry for goods lost at sea; defend the Act itself as sanctioned by custom under the Lords Willoughby in imitation of an English Act of Parliament; hence the Governor re-enacted it in good faith. When the present Act was made retrospective for three years it was supposed that the present farmers were concerned in the first farm. Since their Lordships take such offence at it, the Assembly will doubtless repeal it, being far from desiring to do or continue anything to the King's prejudice. Their Lordships taking exception to the short time for which certain laws are enacted, causing frequent meetings of the Assembly and hence interruption of trade and business, Sir Peter Colleton replies that the Assembly is always bound to meet frequently for the amendment of the laws concerning their negroes and plantations; the members pay their own share of the expense, and enjoy no privilege for selves nor servants; even Councillors have no particular immunity. The custom is to pass no law without three adjournments, which means frequent sitting. Their Lordships think hereupon, that the Governor and Council, who make two parts of the Legislature, being nominated by the King, no prejudice can happen to His Majesty while they do their duty; that for greater security the Governor, on receiving from the Assembly any Bill of more than ordinary importance, or relating to the King's revenue, should send it to the Council with the reasons why the law should pass, that the same being examined in England may be returned with such reasons as should here occur concerning it.
Sir Peter Colleton and Colonel Drax state that they are empowered to offer that the Island shall take the 4½ per cent. duty so far as concerns itself, with its own hands, and pay to the King in England the same sum as the farm is now let for, without any defalcation. Captain Crispe makes the same offer on behalf of the Leeward Islands.
The gentlemen being withdrawn, their Lordships consider the Book of Laws sent by Sir Jonathan Atkins, and are of opinion that they may be confirmed by the King, after examination by Serjeant Baldwin to make sure that they contain nothing derogatory to the royal authority. Sir Jonathan Atkins, having neglected several parts of his instructions, and failed to answer letters and enquiries, it is agreed that a particular account be sent him of his past omissions, and of what is expected from him in future; and whereas he says that on the death and absence of divers Councillors the King's business is forced to lie idle, their Lordships will report that five instead of seven members may make a quorum in future. 6 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CVI., pp. 46–51.]
July 4. 1049. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. The Bermuda Company attend and say in reply to questions that they have not failed to answer their Lordships' letters from want of respect, but because their magazine ship is not yet come in. Ordered, that they be furnished with copies of the Petition and Complaint, and that both parties attend on Wednesday sennight at nine in the afternoon. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CVI., p. 52.]
July 4.
Council Chamber.
1050. Report of Lords of Trade and Plantations to the King in relation to Barbadoes. As to the laws which are to be in force two years and no longer unless confirmed by your Majesty within that time: The Governor has upon various and frivolous excuses delayed to send them and at length has sent them so imperfect and so late after the time of their enacting, as they could not admit of our examination and your Majesty's allowance within the time limited. We were finally assured that Governor Atkins had transmitted all the laws in force, when at the same time a complaint was presented by the farmers of the 4½ per cent. duty against an Act of which we had not received any notice, "whereby we are convinced that instead of complying with your Majesty's instructions, endeavours are used by him to conceal matters of that nature from us." Notwithstanding our repeated instances he has failed to be accountable unto us of divers particulars relating to his government. Though directed to make laws for two years, many are limited to a few months without any reason given, which occasions great inconvenience and danger to that island, and which, as Governor Atkins himself has observed, tends to the great confusion of the people and prejudice of the country. For remedy of all which inconveniences propose that His Majesty by letter declare his pleasure to Sir Jonathan Atkins upon the above-mentioned particulars according to the draft annexed (see No. 1,074). Have received from him a book of laws made in Barbadoes from 1660 to 1672 which we propose should be sent to Mr. Serjeant Baldwin, one of His Majesty's Council, to examine and report upon. And whereas Governor Atkins complains that by the death and absence of many Councillors he cannot without great difficulty get a quorum to attend, we humbly advise that the quorum be reduced from seven to five councillors. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 85, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. VI., pp. 269–273.]
July 5.
1051. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. Ordered that the petition of the inhabitants of Bermuda be sent as the former to the Company to make answer thereunto. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CVI., p. 52.]
(July 5). 1052. Petition to the King from the Merchants and Freeholders of Bermuda. At the general planting of the Bermudas many of the nobility, gentry, and others were incorporated under the name of the Governor, &c., under pretence of a grant of the said islands to them by the Virginia Company, long since dissolved; the said Company were then owners of all the lands in the said islands, and the planters and their tenants or servants sent thither at the Company's charge. The petitioners with great hazard, labour, and industry, long since purchased three quarters of the land and became owners thereof. The Company, besides the alienation of their lands, are now so few that their government is not practicable as it is directed by their charter; nor have they traded as a Company upon a joint stock for more than fifty years. The now pretended Company, however, (contrary to the laws made by the true Company before they had sold any of the land) does now impose so many taxes, payments and intolerable hardships (a schedule whereof is annexed), keeping petitioners under such slavish subjection and tyrannous oppression, that they can no longer endure it. Petitioners by their Assembly made complaint five years since by petition to the King and the pretended Company; but the Company concealed the petition, gave no relief, and ordered that the Assembly should meet no more. Pray the King to grant them a Governor who will give them free trade according to the Navigation Act; will cheerfully pay all duties and customs, fortify their land, and pay their Governor without any expense to His Majesty. Annexed,
1052. i. An abstract of the Planters' Articles against the Bermuda Company. The Articles are sixteen in number expanded from the eleven in the former petition (see ante, No. 990 II.), the additional particulars being that the Port dues charged amount to a shilling a ton; that though the Company prohibits whale fishing, it had previously granted a lease thereof; that ships and goods bringing tobacco from Bermuda are confiscated by the Company; that the Company lays a tax on tobacco which amounts to a third part of the profit on the land; that the Company suffers the planters to have no goods from England except those brought in its own magazine ship, and those at excessive rates; that when the officers make distress for those payments they never return the surplus; that the forts and guns are in so ruinous a condition that the place is incapable of making any defence. Signed by 57 of the inhabitants. Recd. 5th July 1679. The two documents together, 4 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XVII., pp. 69–73.]
July 7.
1053. Sir W. Warren to Sir R. Southwell. Has for many years traded to New England, but was never there in his life, and so knows but few people there; those that he has dealt with in the parts about Piscataqua that are eminent men and fit to serve His Majesty in the quality he mentions are Sampson Sheafe, Richard Waldron, Peter Coffin, John Cutt. From inquiry amongst the New England men there find that the most eminent and best qualified men for that trust are, in Exeter, Gillman, Fulson; in Portsmouth, Sampson Sheafe, Elias Stileman, John Cutt, Thomas Davies [Daniel ?], Richard Martin, Nathaniel Fryer, William Vaughan; in Dover, Richard Waldron, Peter Coffin, John Gerrish, Anthony Nutter; in Hampshire, Sam. Dolton, Captain Hussey, John Samburn, Nathaniel Wyer, 1 page, with seal. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 86.]
July 7. 1054. Names of Councillors for New Hampshire. Identical with those in the foregoing, except that the name of Sampson Sheafe is omitted. Endorsed, From the Agents of New England 7 July 1679. Scrap. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII, No. 87.]
July 8. 1055. Journal of Assembly of Barbadoes. Colonel Richard Guy again chosen Speaker. Orders for allowance of the duty of "decayed liquors" of 24th June last (see ante, No. 1018) confirmed. The Act for the speedy collecting of arrears of levy passed with amendments made by his Excellency and Council. The Assembly, finding their year to expire this night, order that their records be left in the hands of the present Speaker until there be a new election. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XIII., pp. 351–353.]
July 9. 1056. The King to the General Court of New Plymouth. Concerning William Harris (see ante, No. 1044). Requires the Governor and Magistrates to examine the pretensions of Holden and Green and others against Harris. If Rhode Island does not within three months allow Harris peaceable possession of Patuxet, they are to cause the first and three last verdicts of the Commissioners, with costs, to be executed without delay. 4 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXI., pp. 2–5.]
[July 10 ?] 1057. [Lords of Trade and Plantations to the Governor and Council of New Plymouth (?).] Recommend to them Thomas Baxter, who lost his tingers and most part of his left hand in the defence of the Colony against the Indians. 1 p. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXI., p. 1.]
July 10.
1058. Order of the King in Council on Report of Lords of Trade and Plantations. Concerning the Government of New Hampshire. The King having determined to take all the towns and province of New Hampshire into his own care, the Lords propose the following form of Government:—(1) A President and Council constituted under the Great Seal. (2) The Council to be of nine members, six to be nominated by the King, who shall swear in three more of their own selection from the several parts of the country. The President to have power to name a deputy; and the President or his deputy with five others to make a quorum. (3) The Council to open its commission at Portsmouth and be provided with a seal from England. (4) The Council, for the present, to administer justice, civil and criminal, according to the laws of England, so far as circumstances permit; appeals to lie to the King in Council in matters of real property, personalty to value of 50l., and criminal cases except murder. (5) President and Council to issue commissions for defence of the territory. (6) Liberty of conscience to all, and special encouragement to Church of England. (7) The oath of allegiance to be administered to all that hold office; all old commissions to be recalled, and future commissions to run in the King's name; the present directions to be proclaimed. (8) The present taxes to be continued for the expenses of Government. The President and Council, three months after constitution, to issue writs for election of a General Assembly. Details of suffrage, etc., entrusted to them. Acts of Assembly to come into force after approval by President and Council, pending confirmation by the King. The Assembly to nominate three persons, of which the King will choose one to be President of that Council, and 18 more, of whom the King will select nine to be members of the said Council. Vacancies to be filled by election of the Council, the name of the chosen member being sent home, with those of two others, for the King's choice. The Council to be informed that the King "inclines to observe this method of grace and favour towards Assemblies till by inconveniences arising from thence he see fit to alter the same." (9) Titles to land to be settled, if possible, according to a proposal of Mr. Mason's to recognise all existing titles as valid on payment of sixpence in the pound on the value of all houses and improved land, and retain all land unclaimed for his own use; if not, by the President and Council, and in the last resort by the King and Privy Council. (10) All rules and methods of the President and Council to be sent home for confirmation. Report dated 5th July 1679. Signed, Shaftesbury, Anglesey, Arlington, Russell, H. Powle, J. Ernle, Tho. Dolman. Ordered hereupon, that Mr. Solicitor Finch prepare a Bill for the Royal Signature in accordance with foregoing report, to be passed under the Great Seal. Mr. John Cutts of Portsmouth to be the first President; Mr. Richard Martin, Mr. William Vaughan, Captain Thomas Daniel, all of Portsmouth, Mr. John Gillman of Exeter, Captain Christopher Hussey of Hampton, and Major Richard Waldron of Dover, to be of the Council, as recommended by the Lords of Trade and Plantations. 8 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LX., pp. 360–366.]
uly 10.
St. Jago la Vega.
1059. Governor Lord Carlisle to Secretary Coventry. A week ago a vessel arrived from Nevis. She was in harbour, when two French men-of-war, passing by the fort where the King's flag was flying, refused to strike. The fort fired seven guns, two of which are believed to have struck the French hull, whereupon the Frenchman, luffing, edged into the harbour, fired seven shotted guns through the harbour into the town, and so stood out to sea. On the 7th instant, at 11 p.m., the Point was alarmed by the appearance of eight French men-of-war in the offing. The Point fired guns to give the alarm to leeward. I received it myself at Guanaboa, 22 miles from the Point, took horse, and was in with the forces at their arms before day. Being got early to the Point in a good condition of defending itself, I met there Count d'Erveaux, a Knight of Malta, with some other French officers, who pretended to come from Count d'Estrees to ask leave to wood and water at Blewfield's Bay, or Point Negril, one of the most leewardly ports of this Island. The reason given was that they were bound first for Carthagena to demand thence all French prisoners, but, being driven to this coast by violent breezes, were now bound to Havanna to make the like demand; that they were unwilling to trust to Spanish courtesy for wood and water, which they intended to demand, but believed that the denial thereof by the Spaniards would lead to quarrel, they expecting the same privilege in the West Indies as in the Mediterranean. They told us they came from France 14 sail, but had left seven at Lisbon to attend Count Schomberg. To what end these French are come here we cannot possibly learn; they say, against the Spaniards, but the people distrust their speech. They admired the island, but said they should have a better in Cuba. They were respectfully treated from morning till evening, when a small frigate came into the harbour-mouth, took them aboard, and, after saluting the port, stood off to the fleet, which was cruising all day about two leagues to windward of our port. The Point was so alarmed that the inhabitants removed their goods and families for fear of a French descent; and several sloops coming in with advice that the French fleet was standing off to windward, this so increased their jealousies that I called a Council to the Point. It was agreed that a council of war should be held and martial law proclaimed for 30 days, which was done accordingly. The whole of the inhabitants, soldiers and slaves, were set to work to increase the fortifications, I being very glad of the opportunity of carrying on work which would otherwise have gone forward very slowly. Still, in my opinion, the French aim rather at Havanna than Jamaica, and if they get possession of this, the key of the West Indies, as they certainly may unless obstructed by England, they will command the treasure of this part of the world more to the prejudice of England than the Spaniards. Pray consider this. H.M.S. Hunter and two sloops are watching the French fleet. On 12th July, at 7 p.m., news came from Blewfield's Bay, to leeward, of eight French war-ships within the bay. This has quieted the people, who feared they were to windward. The occurrence has done us more good than harm, but the generality of people will not give up their opinion that the French fleet when reinforced is designed against this Island. The common law will take place again nine days before the meeting of the Assembly; a busy Session expected. Pray move the Master of the Ordnance to hasten to us guncarriages, powder, and small arms; the alarm has occasioned the using of all we had in store; and also the King to order recruits for the two companies under pay here. I shall continue or shorten the duration of martial law according to the progress of our defences. "Read at the Committee 9 Oct. 1679." 4 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XXIX., p. 329.]
July 14.
1060. Lord Baltimore to William Blathwayt. Thanks for your letter of 1st January. I enclose "for your divertisment" copy of an Act of the Assembly of Virginia, just passed for their security against the incursions of the Northern Indians, who daily infest them, and cause me to apprehend some mischief; but as yet Maryland has received no prejudice from them. You may remember that I left with you some papers relating to a peace made by Maryland with the Northern Indians, and made for Virginia as well as Maryland. It is with these Indians that they now have all this trouble, that peace having been violated last summer by some indiscreet, or rather mad, men of the Colony. It would be a long story to write, so I must wait till I see you. By those Acts that I send, you may be perceived how they precipitate their business, taking very great care in the penning of laws. Many things mentioned in this great law for their defence of the Colony in my opinion nowise becomes the grandeur of an Act. But I must not trouble you further.
Postscript.—My humble service to Sir R. Southwell and his lady; I should have writ to him but that I apprehended to have given him too great a trouble. Signed. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 88.]
July 15. 1061. Answers of the Somers Islands Company to Inquiries from the Lords of Trade and Plantations. [This paper is given in form of successive questions and answers in Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XVII., pp. 51—62.] (1.) The Bermuda Islands were discovered by the English in 1609, being then unclaimed and uninhabited; and the said Company having purchased the soil thereof was incorporated in the 13th year of King James by the name of the Governor and Company of the City of London for plantation of the Somers Islands, and thereby had the sole government committed to them, with power to make laws and ceremonies of government. The said Islands are governed subordinately by a deputy governor and his council. The deputy governor has his commission from the Company in London, and his council are eight persons of note in the Island; the sheriff and secretary of the Islands are also of the council. Deputy governor, sheriff, and secretary are all chosen by the Company in one of their four quarter courts. By law of the Company there is constituted a general assembly, consisting of governor, council, and forty persons chosen by the respective tribes, who have power to present laws to the Company for approval, such laws being valid only on confirmation by the Company. General sessions and assizes are held every year by the governor and council, to decide all causes criminal or civil. (2.) There is no court of admiralty; governor and council determine maritime causes on occasion. (3.) The legislative power is in the Company, and the executive in the Island. (4.) The Company have made several laws and statutes, which are contained in their books. They conceive these to he pursuant to their power, and in no way prejudicial, and are ready to produce them if desired. (5.) There are six companies of foot in trained bands—about a thousand men armed with musket and sword. The deputy governor is captain general, the six foot-commanders are appointed by the Company. Troops are mustered at least four times a year. (6.) There is one castle, called King's castle, and one fort, Southampton fort, at the entrance to the castle harbour; two more forts, Padgett's and Smith's, at the entrance to the town harbour, all victualled annually at the Company's charge, and attended and served by the public tenants; the Island is naturally fortified and very difficult to take. (7.) No privateers or pirates frequent the Island. (8.) Virginia, Carolina, and Bahama Islands are the nearest neighbours, planted with English; their trade, tobacco, furs, and wood. (9.) Bermuda trades with them in all sorts of provisions. (10.) Description,—Bermuda is a ridge of land lying nearly N.E. and E. and S.W. and W., but rounding; its broadest point is two miles, its narrowest half-a-mile wide; length, twenty miles; longitude, 58° 20" West of the Lizard; latitude, 38° 20". The eight tribes are sub-divided into 50 shares, each share 25 acres, besides the public lands appropriated for maintenance of the government, all settled and inhabited. (11.) St. George's is the only town; the places of trade are the storehouses of the inhabitants; houses generally built of cedar, none exceeding two storeys and garrets. (12.) Each tribe is a distinct parish. (13.) No rivers; two harbours; no soundings out of sight of land; very good anchorage in 8 fathoms in Castle Harbour, 5 fathoms in Town Harbour; 18 feet and 13 feet water at the entrance at low water. (14.) Staple produce,—tobacco, exported and consumed on the spot, to value of about 5,000l. annually. There is timber growing, but nothing else that may be produced for shipping. Imports,—wearing apparel, household goods, and some liquors. Exports to neighbouring islands,—beef, pork, fish, wax, honey, Palmeto hats, baskets, wooden ware; value about 6,000l. annually. (15.) No salt or saltpetre in the Island. (16.) Population,—four merchants, English, no strangers, about 400 planters, total 8,000 men, women, children, and slaves; about 1,000 men fit to bear arms. (17.) No white immigrants from any quarter whatever for seven years past the Island being fully peopled; about 50 blacks brought in during past seven years, and sold at about 15l. a head. (18.) About 120 blacks, whites, and mulattos born in one year, and half of them christened. (19.) About 30 marriages a year in the whole Island besides those of blacks. (20.) About twenty deaths per annum on average of past seven years. (21.) The estates of the merchants may be about 100l. each in value, total wealth of the Island about 20,000l. (22.) Shipping,—ten or twelve sail of small vessels come in annually from New England, New York, Barbadoes, &c., for the provision trade; eight or ten more may call on their passage to and from other places; thirteen or fourteen vessels belonging to the Island varying from twenty to eighty tons. (23.) There is no obstruction to trade or navigation, nor (24.) is there any improvement that can be wrought thereto. (25.) Rates and duties,—No duties payable on any goods exported or imported, whether produced in the Island or not, except a duty of fourpence a gallon on rum, which has never yet been levied, except for public uses in the country, and a duty of about one penny per pound upon tobacco brought into England, which is paid by the merchants that import it in England, and is applied to the public use of the Company and country. (26.) Religion,—the Presbyterian persuasion is most prevalent, being reckoned to include two-thirds of the population, the remainder being Independents, Anabaptists, and Quakers. (27.) There are nine churches and five ministers, who are sufficient to supply all churches; each of them receives 40l. a year from the Company, a house, and two shares of land; there are some poor indigent persons in the Island, but no beggars. Signed by order of the Court 15th July 1679, Gilb. Gerard, Dep. 4½ pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 89, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XVII., pp. 51–62.]
July 15. 1062. Answer of the Somers Islands Company to the grievances and complaints of the signatories of the Bermuda petition (ante, Nos. 990 I., II.), "who call themselves freeholders, merchants, and inhabitants of Bermuda," and to the abstract of Planters' Articles (ante, No. 1,052 I.). (1) No freeholders have ever been dispossessed without due proceedings. (2) No ships are prohibited from touching at the Island; port dues are charged everywhere, and those at Bermuda are reasonable. (3) The duty of 4d. a gallon on rum is levied by law of the Company and is conceived to be reasonable. (4) The Company never omitted to send a magazine ship, but in one year, viz., that of the Dutch war. (5) There is a law for the holding of Assemblies, which, if neglected by the Governor without occasion, will be enforced by the Company. Petitions to the King are not stopped; only private petitions under five pounds between party and party require the Company's approbation. The Company know of no occasion to examine the proceedings of the Governor and Council, and therefore have not sent a Commission for the purpose. (6) If the Governor and Council impose illegal taxes, it is without the Company's order, and upon complaint will be redressed. But the public lands are not sufficient to pay the expenses of the Government. (7) The Company's magazine ship is sufficient to carry all dry goods, and no others ought to go without the Company's leave. The matter has already been brought before the King in Council by Mr. Trot and others, and decided in the Company's favour. (8) The building of ships of over five tons burden is prohibited, to preserve the timber supply of the Island. (9) The Company's ship is generally sufficient to carry away all the tobacco, and in case of an extraordinary crop, a second ship is sent. The bringing it to the Port of London secures His Majesty's customs which might otherwise be lost. (10) The whale fishery is a Royalty of the Company. There is a lease thereof existing, but the fishery has lately been prohibited at the request of several of the lessees (owing to differences among themselves), the Company deriving no benefit from the same. (11) No tobacco should be brought from Bermuda, but in the Company's ship; any brought otherwise the Company has power, by its charter, to confiscate. (12) There is a duty on tobacco, and has been for fifty years, to pay the expenses of Government; it cannot be very prejudicial to the planters for it does not amount to more than 20l. a year. If the Government could be supported otherwise, the traders living in England would not lay this burden on themselves. (13) The Company's magazine ship is sufficient for the Island; the rates are reasonable and the Island well supplied. (14) If there had been any unlawful distress, the Company would, on complaint, have redressed it. (15) The forts were never in a better state then at present, and the Company takes care to keep up the supply of arms. (16) The Company has endeavoured to obtain its just tax on tobacco, according to its laws and constitutions, the same being necessary for support of Government. Signed by order of the Council on the 15th July 1679, Gilb. Gerard, Dep. "Recd. 16 July." 3½ pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XL., No. 90, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XVII., pp. 73–77.]
July 15.
1063. Governor Stapleton to Lords of Trade and Plantations. Acknowledges receipt of His Majesty's decision as to the Tobago negroes (see ante, No. 972). It will be impossible to take the whole number or their proceeds in possession, Captain Haddock having disposed of some by sale and gift, to what parties is not yet discovered, and sent one or two home; others again were free negroes. Nevertheless, will endeavour to comply with his orders. Comte d'Estrées is in the vicinity with nine men-of-war besides "curvetts" and other tenders; he passed Nevis on 25th June, bound, it was supposed, to take St. Thomas from the Dane, an easy matter; but, as has since been ascertained, he did not touch there, but sailed for French Tortugas and Hispaniola, where the inhabitants are something refractory over an impost of 4 livres per cent. on sugar and tobacco. Thence he may go home, having victuals only to last to the end of October. This is all the intelligence that can be gathered, but their design may be quite different—more probably to fetch up men, as they did 1,500 buccaneers last year, for they expect six more men-of-war and two great fly-boats with provisions and soldiers, and plague the planters of the Leeward Islands with watching and trenching. These precautions are necessary from fear of a French attack after the hurricane season, for the French Admiral and General both (according to report) have power to make war at pleasure. If D'Estrées goes home, another squadron may be expected to relieve the present, for since the last 12 years the French King has sent out a fleet once or twice a year, to the great encouragement of his own Colonies and the discouragement of the English. Has received the King's commands respecting the enforcement of the Acts of Trade, but protests before God that he knows of no violator thereof in late years who has not been prosecuted. Bonds are taken according to law from all that have not certificates from the ports of England, and the certificates are compared with the seals sent out. All Deputy Governors, Marshals, Secretaries, and Customers, are sworn to respect the Acts of Trade, as also Stapleton himself. Their Lordships kind admonishment of the penalties he might incur by wilful neglect of the Act are too fresh in his mind to allow him to fail in his duty in respect of the Acts; 5,000l. fine and incapacity to serve his sovereign would make a great hole in his estate, and he would rather resign than have the least complaint of him made with any colour of justice. Repeats that there is pressing need of a frigate in the Leeward Islands, in time of peace and of a squadron in time of war, otherwise cannot well answer for any island, except where he may happen to be in person, if attacked or invaded; though the whole blame will be laid on him by those who do not consider the distances, nine or ten miles greater than that between England and France, which divide the different parts of the Government. Were it as compact as Jamaica and Barbadoes would not care how soon he were attacked by the French if they decline the Articles of peace. 3½ pp. Recd. 20 Sept. 1679. Read 1 Oct. 1679. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 91, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XLVI., p. 364.]
July 16. 1064. Mem.—That a duplicate to the King's letter of 31st May (ante No. 1011) was signed at Hampton Court, July 10th, with the postscript that the King had received Lord Carlisle's letter by Sir Francis Watson on the 9th July, but had had no time to discourse yet with him. The duplicate was despatched to Jamaica on the 16th July by Captain Tyte, of H.M.S. Success. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XCV., p. 299.]
July 16.
1065. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. Read, the project of a Treaty of Neutrality with the French in the West Indies. Ordered, certain alterations in the 5th, 6th, 7th, and 8th Articles.
The business of the Bermuda Company. The Patent first read, and then both Company and complainants called in. The answer of the Company to the Articles of Complaint was read; but the complainants stating that they were not ready to come to a final hearing, and the Company desiring that the occasion of their particular complaints might be specified, and that the names subscribed to the petition might be given them, it was ordered that a copy of the Company's answer be furnished to complainants, and of the particular complaints to the Company, and both parties be ready on Wednesday next. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CVI., pp. 63, 64.]
July 18. 1066. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. Read, the project of the treaty with the French in the West Indies. Ordered, that Mr. Secretary Coventry move the French Ambassador to appoint a time for treating the same with the Commissioners nominated by His Majesty. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CVI., p. 66.]
July 19. 1067. Copy of Warrant issued by Governor John Cranston for the arrest of Richard Smith, merchant, inhabitant of the Narragansett. Certified by John Easton, Constable of the town of Newport, to whom the warrant is addressed. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 92.]
July 21. 1068. Certificate of John Greene, of the Narragansett country, a Conservator of the Peace. Declares on oath that 40 years and more ago Mr. Richard Smith, whom he then lived with, did first begin and make a settlement in the Narragansett country by the consent of the Indians, and did improve land, now meadows, several years before Warwick was settled by any Englishman, and that he saw and heard all the Narragansett princes assembled together give by "livrey and sesing" some hundreds of acres, about a mile in length and so down to the sea, about 30 years ago; and that in all the time of their late troubles the inhabitants of the King's Province had no relief from Rhode Island, although they often complained of the injuries done by the heathen, which made them apply to the Massachusetts; nor had they any relief in the time of the late war to keep any one place or house in the King's Province. Signed. Endorsed, Recd. from Mr. Sawyer 3 March 16 79/80;. 1p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 93.]
July 21. 1069. Deposition of Roger Williams touching the Narragansett countries.
"Providence, 21 July 1679 (ut vulgo).
" I Roger Williams of Providence, in the Nahigonsett [Narragansett] Bay in New England, being (by God's mercy) the first beginner of the mother town of Providence and of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, being now near to fourscore years of age yet (by God's mercy) of sound understanding and memory, do humbly and faithfully declare that Mr. Richard Smith, senr., deceased, who for his conscience towards God, left a fair possession in Gloucestershire and adventured with his relations and estate to New England and was a most acceptable and prime leading man in Taunton in Plymouth Colony—for his conscience sake (many differences arising) he left Taunton and came to the Nahigonsik country, where (by the mercy of God and) the favour of the Nahigonsik Sachems he broke the ice (at his great charges and hazards) and put up in the thickest of the barbarians the first English house among them. (2) I humbly testify that about forty-two years from this date he kept possession (coming and going) himself, children, and servants, and he had quiet possession of his housing, land, and meadow, and there in his own house, with much screnity of soul and comfort, he ejected up his spirit to God (the father of spirits) in peace. (3) I do humbly and faithfully testify (as aforesaid) that since his departure his honoured son, Capt. Richard Smith, has kept possession (with much acceptation with English and pagans) of his father's housing, lands, and meadows, with great improvement also by his great cost and industry, and in the late bloody pagan war I knowingly testify that it pleased the Most High to make use of himself in person, his housing, goods, corn, provision, and cattle for a garrison and supply to the whole army of New England under the command of the ever to be honoured General Winslow, for the service of His Majesty's honour and country in New England. (4) I do also humbly declare that the aforesaid Capt. Richard Smith, junr., ought by all the rules of justice, equity, and gratitude (to his honoured father and himself) to be fairly treated with, considered, recruited, honoured, and by His Majesty's authority confirmed and established in a peaceful possession of his father's and his own possessions in the pagan wilderness and Nahigonsik country.
"The premises I humbly testify as leaving this country and this world.
"Roger Williams."
Holograph by the said Roger Williams in a perfectly firm, legible hand, attested as follows:—"Taken upon oath this 21 day of July 1679 before me, John Whipple, of this His Maj. Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations in New England in America." The wholepp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 94.]
July 21.
1070. Warrant of Governor Stapleton, Captain General and Chief Governor in and over His Majesty's Caribbee Islands in America and Vice-Admiral to the Duke of York. Complaint having been made by Henry Carpenter, Agent to the Royal African Company, that several negroes have lately been imported into this Island, contrary to His Majesty's charter to that Company, in the sloop Richard Thomas, George Standley master, belonging to Richard Cary and Thomas Belchamber, merchants of St. Christopher's; this warrant authorises Cæsar Rodeney, Marshal of the Island, to seize the said sloop and secure her under the guns of one of His Majesty's forts until legal trial be held. Copy. Certified by Cæsar Rodeney. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 95.]
July 22.
New York.
1071. Certificate by Abraham Corbett, Clerk of the Court of Record, of the grant of an appeal to John Palmer in the case of John Ward against John Palmer. Endorsed, Read 4 March 1679–80. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 96.]
July 23.
1072. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. The complainants against the Bermuda Company excused themselves for not being ready to make good their accusations, as their Counsel had disappointed them. Their Lordships, believing this to be a bare pretence, tell them they are not to expect further hearing unless they pay 5l. to the Company for the expenses of their Counsel. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CVI., p. 67.]
July 24. 1073. Abstract of the King's letter to the Governor and Company of Massachusetts. (See ante, No. 1028.) 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 97.]
July 24.
Hampton Court.
1074. Order of the King in Council approving Report of Lords of Trade and Plantations of the 4th instant (see ante, No. 1,050), and draft of letter to Sir Jonathan Atkins which Secretary Coventry is directed to present to His Majesty for his signature.
Trusty and Well beloved We greet you well. We little imagined after our letter to you of 9th December 1676 (see No. 1179 in previous Volume of Calendar) (wherein with great tenderness towards you and with so much sense of the inducements leading us to employ you in that trust We gave you rather caution than reprehension for some proceedings of yours derogatory to our service) that we should yet receive fresh information from our Committee of Trade and Plantations that you have still continued under the neglect of transmitting the laws of that our Colony by the first opportunity after the enacting of them, according to your instructions and the reiterated letters of our said Committee, which hath been of very great prejudice to our service. Nor have the excuses and evasions by which you endeavour to justify yourself (as will more particularly appear by a letter from said Committee) had any other effect with us than to increase the offence We have justly taken thereat. And to the end you may now receive all our resentments together We cannot but further take notice of your non-observance of several parts of our Commission and Instructions, whereby you are directed to give yearly accounts of divers matters to the Committee, and your evading the answering the inquiries at several times directed by them concerning the state of that Government. And the inconveniences that have arisen to our service thereby will sufficiently appear unto you by another despatch from us in the single instance of the laws passed by you concerning our duty of the 4½ per cent., to which we refer you and for the future charge and require you not to intermeddle with our revenue so that any part of it may be thereby lessened or interrupted, without first receiving our special commands.
And that the intention of the power we have entrusted in you may be rightly pursued and many mischiefs prevented which may otherwise happen, Our will and pleasure is that for the future all laws may be made indefinite and without limitation of time so that the continuance of them may be for two years pursuant to our Commission, except the same be for a temporary end which before that time shall expire and have its full effect And therefore you shall not re-enact any law which shall henceforth be enacted by you, except upon very urgent occasions, but in no case more than once without our express consent, for which purpose We expect that you transmit all laws unto us within three months after they are enacted or sooner if occasion offer. In all which abovementioned particulars if you give not due compliance for the future We shall not only interpret it a supine neglect or weariness of the trust reposed in you but an avowed disobedience to our commands, and shall thereupon find ourselves obliged to provide in such other manner for our Government as may better answer all the parts of our service and the tender care We will ever take of the welfare of our good subjects. But hoping you will hereafter redeem yourself in our good opinion We further you to our said Committee for further information and direction in all the said particulars and any other that shall at any time occur.
And whercas We are given to understand by your letters that by the death and absence of many of our Councillors in that our Island you cannot without great difficulty get a sufficient number of them to attend our service We are therefore well pleased that the number of five of our Councillors be henceforth sufficient to make a quorum until further order. And so We bid you farewell. From our Court at Hampton Court this 24th day of July in the 31st year of our reign.
By His Majesty's command,
H[entry] C[oventry].
[Col. Entry Bk., Vol. VI., pp. 274–277.]
July 24.
Hampton Court.
1075. Order of the King in Council. Referring a book of laws of Barbadoes from 1660 to 1672 to Mr. Serjeant Baldwin, one of His Majesty's Council, to examine and report whether they be agreeable to His Majesty's authority in that island and the good of His Majesty's subjects there. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. VI., p. 286.]
July 25.
1076. Memorandum of the Committee of Trade and Plantations. The French Ambassador met the Commissioners for the Treaty of Neutrality in the West Indies in the Council Chamber, and, on receiving a copy of the project of the treaty, declared that he had no power to proceed thereon, but would send it to the French Court by first opportunity. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CVI., p. 67.]
July 25.
1077. Order in Council, on a complaint made to this Board from Virginia that several arrears are due to His Majesty's forces in that Colony, and particularly to Major Mutlow's company, directing that Lemuel Kingdon give an account of this matter to the Lords of Trade and Plantations. 1 p. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXX., p. 358, and Col. Papers, Vol XLIII., No. 98.]
July 25.
1078. Order of the Privy Council referring to the Committee of Plantations a letter from Sir Henry Chicheley and the Speaker of the Assembly of Virginia to the King, together with a letter from Sir Henry Chicheley to Secretary Coventry (see ante, Nos. 994, 995). [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXX., p. 362.]
July 26.
1079. Lords of Trade and Plantations to Sir Jonathan Atkins. Have received His Majesty's especial directions to take notice unto you of the several omissions which upon view of his letters have occurred to their Lordships in relation to his Government (of Barbadoes). In the first place must observe the prejudice arising to His Majesty's service for want of a regular and speedy transmission of all laws in force within his Government. "But that which we cannot pass in silence is that although these difficulties arise from yourself yet you cease not to impute the blame and evil consequences unto us; and even without respect to the power given you in your Commission you forbear not to intimate that, if by more necessary occasions we should think fit to lay those laws aside (which were never yet regularly before us), or that you have no advice of His Majesty's resolutions, you are in danger of being without laws, to the disturbance of the Government and provocation of a most stubborn people that have the arms in their own hands, although with all obedience unto His Majesty. These indeed are inducements, if you reflect upon your own omissions, which alone might have moved you to a punctual observance of your duty." Their Lordships point out how contrary his assertion is to the fact, that never any laws had been sent home by preceding Governors; yet because they are equally sensible with himself of the great prejudice to the country by the wanting of lasting and conclusive laws, have advised His Majesty to give him such powers as cannot fail to cure the evil so justly apprehended by him. This is the more necessary, as their Lordships show by the Act for settling the Militia, which "is left so loose as to have been three times re-enacted since 13th December 1677," and by other laws in like manner limited to very short terms without any just reason. As to his answer that he had no precedent for sending the laws under the seal of the Island, remind him that he sent two in the private cases of Plumley and Middleton authenticated with that seal. "But we are most surprised, after you have assured us in your letter of 17th April last that you had sent all the laws in force," that His Majesty was presented with copy of a law touching the 4½ per cent. which contains very great irregularities. [Their Lordships' observations and consultations with the chief merchants of Barbadoes and censure of Governor Atkins' conduct in reference to this Act, and other Acts not transmitted by him, are calendared in the Abstract of their Journal of 26th and 27th June and 4th July (see ante, Nos. 1034, 1036, 1048)]. Will now proceed to mark out the other parts of his duty wherein his compliance is wanting, notwithstanding their most pressing and continual desires in that behalf; and first will show other particulars of his instructions upon which they have not yet received any satisfaction, viz. the establishment of jurisdictions, courts, and officers, a yearly inventory of arms and ammunition, of the number of inhabitants, planters, masters, servants, and slaves, and how many are able to bear arms, account of entry of goods throughout the Island, of the duties payable upon imports and exports, and of the public revenue, of the number of negroes supplied to the Island, and at what rates. Add what their Lordships have already demanded without effect, viz. description and map of the country which he promised to send in 1675, the stores and provisions of war, the yearly value of exports and imports, accounts of christenings, burials, and marriages, number of ships trading to the Island, and what rates and duties are payable on goods exported and how same are applied. Their Lordships command he should acquaint them with all material things and Acts of Council to guide their knowledge and direct themselves in the performance of the trust reposed in them. Have already explained what they mean by a Journal, so doubt not he will observe their directions, "although you seem to suggest (we cannot tell with what reason) that there are many things incident to the Island which ought to be kept secret by you because you are accountable to His Majesty for your duty with the utmost peril of your life, as if those privacies you mention could receive any prejudice from us, to whom His Majesty has been pleased to commit the care and inspection of all things relating to his foreign plantations. But not doubting for the future of your ready compliance in all the above-mentioned particulars, we bid you heartily farewell." Signed by Shaftesbury Pr., Anglesey C. P. S., J. Bridgewater, Bathe, and J. Ernle. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol, VI., pp. 277–286.]
July 29. 1080. Petition of 42 inhabitants of the Narragansett country to the King. Describes the settlement of Richard Smith, the father of one of the petitioners in the Narragansett country 42 years back; the foundation of Rhode Island from Massachusetts under Mr. W. Codinton; the settlement at Warwick of Mr. Gorton and Holden, and of Mr. Roger Williams at Providence; the further settlement of the Narragansett country, at Richard Smith's invitation, from Massachusetts, Connecticut, and Plymouth; the purchase of the island of Quononaquat by a company of Rhode Island and Boston joined together, and of another tract of land to the south for the digging of black lead; the disputes as to government of the Narragansett country, which was granted both to Connecticut and to Rhode Island; the submission of some of the colonists to Connecticut by articles made in England by Lord Brewerton, Captain Deane, Major Thompson, Doctor Worsley, and Captain Brookhaven; the settlement of the country as the King's Province by the Commissioners in 1664, who granted orders for settling a part of it to Mr. Brown, Captain Willit and others; the aggression of Rhode Island in violation of the Commissioners' orders; the abandonment of the country by Rhode Island and its desolation during the Indian war; the distress of the inhabitants; their flight to Rhode Island and return. Prays the King to put an end to the differences about the government which have been so fatal to the prosperity of the place. Endorsed, "Reed, from Mr. Sawyer, 3 March 16 79/80" 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XLIII., No. 99.]
July 30.
1081. Journal of the Lords of Trade and Plantations. The complainants against the Bermuda Company attended, having paid the Company five pounds as they were bid. On the first article of complaint, after hearing both sides, their Lordships agreed that the Company has no right to sit as a Court of First Instance, and that the practice is illegal.
Four letters to the governors of the New England Colonies signed, requiring them to give account of their governments under certain enclosed heads of enquiry. New Plymouth to send a copy of its patent. Mr. Randolph being ready to leave for New England is directed to observe his former instructions so far as they suit with the present constitution of affairs there. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CVI., pp. 68–70.]