America and West Indies: October 1689

Pages 153-171

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 13, 1689-1692. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1901.

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October 1689

Oct. 2. 468. Commissioners of Customs to Lords of the Treasury. We have received a further letter from Mr. Randolph, who is still a prisoner at Boston, with fresh complaints of the violation of the Navigation Acts. We enclose an extract from his letter. Signed. Robt. Clayton, G. Boothe, Rich. Temple, Jo. Werden, P. Warde. Copy. ½ p. Annexed,
468. I. Extract from a letter of Edward Randolph, 22 July, 1689. The ketch which bears this letter has loaded enumerated commodities without giving bond. My officer cannot seize her unless he would be knocked on the head. There is no law, no justice and no government. Vessels arrive from Holland and Newfoundland laden with wine, oil and brandy. I cannot trust my gaol with any of my letters for I am liable to be searched at any hour, and that would add to the charge against me of treason to the Government, as my acting here and commission and deputation is already judged to be. Copy. ½ p. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. Nos. 37, 37 I.]
Oct. 4.
469. Deposition of Jehan Forat. In August, 1689, there were at Newcastle, Pennsylvania, two papist gentlemen from Maryland. I, as a Justice of the peace, said that they ought to be seized, but the other Justices said they were very honest persons, and after drinking King James's health with them allowed them to go. On the 20th of September the Governor and all the Justices searched for me because I had said that I would not sit in court until King William were proclaimed. I was put out of the Commission; and when I represented that King William had been proclaimed all over America I was answered that, if one man had killed another, that was no reason why we should do the like. Copy. ½ p. Endorsed. Recd. with a letter from Captain Leisler to the Bishop of Sarum, 20 February, 1690. [America and West Indies. 578. No. 65.]
Oct. 6. 470. Commission of Nathaniel Blackiston to be Lieutenant-Governor of Montserrat. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 43. p. 66.]
Oct. 7. 471. Council of Bermuda to Lords of Trade and Plantations. The Governor has positively refused to admit the Council to join him from time to time in sending you an account of the Islands, so that we do not know what you may have received from him. For some years past we have been oppressed by arbitrary government; wherefore we beg you to intercede with the King that we may enjoy the laws of England relating to liberty and property, and that the municipal laws of the Island may be executed. We beg also that the Governor shall henceforth be accountable to his successor before his departure for waste committed on the Crown-lands and for diminishing the number of slaves annexed to the Government, as also for all public money which reaches his hands or is disposed of by his order without the Council's approbation; and that he be forced by process of law to give satisfaction for damages incurred by any subject through his illegal and arbitrary orders. Signed. William Greene, William Peniston, Perient Trott, Thomas Outerbridge, Lawrence Dill, Richard Jennings, Joseph Stow, William Pitt, Arthur Jones. Copy. ¾ p. Endorsed. Recd. 11 September 1690. [America and West Indies. 477. No. 18, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XVIII., pp. 283, 284.]
Oct. 8.
472. Governor Sir Robert Robinson to Lords of Trade and Plantations. I have received a packet from their Majesties as well as a particular letter from you. The vessel that brought it was discharged next day according to your orders, that she might the more speedily convey her packets to other parts. You inform me of the King's intention to recall me and send some other person in my place, which I hope may soon be done. I have done my utmost to put the Islands in a state of defence against any hostile attempts, by digging trenches, blocking the harbours with chains, furnishing the companies with what arms and ammunition we have, and appointing a Colonel in Chief over them under myself. I really believe that this Island will shortly be in a better position of defence than ever before; but as you know this Island is not Barbados or Jamaica. Barbados has sent some relief to her distressed neighbours, but we are too weak to provide even for our own security, so hope for relief from England. We conceive the French to be enemies. They have invaded and taken St. Christophers and continue to do mischief in the Leeward Islands, as we hear by certain intelligence. We have a fifty-gun ship here called the Lion, Captain Thomas Hewetson, lately came from the shores of Spain, but weakly manned. He has made generous offers to the people for their own security, but they are so addicted to their own humours that they will not spare him men and have causelessly detained many deserters from his ship. He supplied us with powder, shot and chains, and now generously offers to go to the help of our distressed neighbours. I have given him a commission for the purpose to seize what French he can. We are in great need of stores. I enclose the accounts of money received and disbursed by Mr. Richard Ashworth, whom I appointed collector in succession to Mr. Trott. I have not got Trott's accounts, and cannot get them, but shall send them as soon as I can. I am ashamed to trouble you so often about so insignificant a treasury. I am told they have not £350 in hand. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XVIII., pp. 268–270. America and West Indies. 477. No. 19.]
Oct. 8. 473. Journal of Assembly of Barbados. Joint address to the Lieutenant-Governor praying him to forward an address to the King against the impost on sugar. Address to the King praying for relief from all additional duty on sugar, as under this heavy burden the planters can neither supply their plantations nor support their families, and pointing to their loyal assistance to the Leeward Islands. Additional observation on the cost of making sugar, for submission to the King, showing that at present prices there is little margin for a profit on sugar-growing, and that the new duty takes that little away. The planters can no longer obtain credit on security of their land, as plantations are no longer as well cultivated as before, cannot employ so many hands, and have therefore not so many white servants for the ranks of the militia. Many estates have fallen out of cultivation, and their owners have been forced to take to other trades or languish in gaol. There is hardly money to maintain the fortifications and the militia. Parliament intended the burden to fall on the consumer, but it falls on the planter. The King promised that in this case he would omit to collect it, but he was ill advised and never gave such relief. Draft letters to Sir Peter Colleton and others read and passed, asking them to further the presentation of the address and do such like services, and giving them authority to draw for funds for the purpose. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XIV., pp. 194–206.]
Oct. 9. 474. Commission of Sir Robert Robinson to Thomas Hewetson to sail to the assistance of St. Christophers. Copy. 2½ pp. [America and West Indies. 550. No. 44.]
Another copy of the above. [America and West Indies. 477. No. 20.]
Oct. 10.
475. Governor Sir Robert Robinson to [Lord?] Practically a duplicate of the letter of 8th October (No. 472). [America and West Indies. 477. No. 21.]
Oct. 14. 476. Minutes of Council of Jamaica. Order for removing the embargo on the ships, provided that they do not sail otherwise than in fleets. Colonel Verney's proposal for fitting out an armed sloop accepted. Order that Colonel Whitgift Aylemore and Major Andrew Langley may call regimental Courts Martial. Mr William Smith granted permission to fortify his house on the north side of St. Elizabeth's parish. Order for sundry payments for fortifications and fire-ships. Order for discharge of Lucretia Hall, accused of witchcraft. Mr. Barrow moved for an Habcas Corpus for Roger Elletson and that he might be admitted to bail, which was refused, Sir Francis Watson and Colonel Thomas Ballard dissenting. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 77. pp. 1–3.]
Oct. 14.
477. Commissioners of Customs to Lords of the Treasury. On the memorial of St. Jago del Castillo (see No. 369). If the prohibition of alien ships, crews and factors to trade in British countries be dispensed with by law, we see no objection to the establishment of a Spanish factor in Jamaica as requested. As to the careening of ships, we would allow it only on condition that the goods unladen shall remain in the Revenue Officer's custody at the proprietor's expense as long as they are ashore. We annex a copy of objections to St. Jago del Castillo's proposal, which we have received from Mr. Arthur Moore. Signed. G. Boothe, Jo. Werden, Robt. Southwell, P. Ward, T. Pelham. 2 pp. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 42, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XXXII., pp. 282–284.]
Oct. 14. 478. Sir Thomas Montgomerie to Lieutenant-Governor Stede. What I have to offer is for their Majesties' interest, the safety of this Island and your Honour's glory. If you will let Colonel Walrond, Colonel Hallett and Mr. Bond come privately to the marshal's house and send for me, I shall freely communicate it to them. Or if you will summons me to Fontabelle secretly I will impart it to them there. But I think no others should know of it. Signed. Tho. Montgomerie. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 4. No. 14.]
Oct. 14. 479. Sir Thomas Montgomerie to Lieutenant-Governor Stede. The kindness of yours gives me hope of retrieving myself and of doing service to you and to Barbados. I must tell you my design for I cannot rest till I have done so. The question is whether I can be trusted or not, so my desire is not to be communicated on paper. I hope to persuade you and your Council that I shall be able to prevent the malice of those who are so active at present, till you will be able to make them repent their attempt. Let any third person that you choose be present in place of Mr. Bond. But nothing can be done without meeting and consultation, and the sooner the better. If nothing comes of it you remain but where you were. Signed. Tho. Montgomerie. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 4. No. 15.]
Oct. 14. 480. Sir Thomas Montgomerie to Lieutenant-Governor Stede. I am told that I have not given sufficient particulars to merit your notice, so I suppose that I am distrusted before any particulars are heard. The particulars are the gaining of security for this Island, but the means I said were not communicable on paper, though I said that I was willing to communicate them to such persons as were thought proper. My first design is the removal of those outlying ships and to avert the ruin of the Leeward Islands until you are ready to meet the French in force. Secrecy and privacy are of the essence of the scheme. I can only call God to witness that I will lay down my life to preserve this or any other English place against the French. I cannot communicate further to you in wirting. My whole ambition is to be restored to your favour. Signed. Tho. Montgomerie. 1 p. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 4. No. 16.]
Oct. 15.
481. Commissioners of the Admiralty to Lords of Trade and Plantations. As we have received no answer to our letter of 7 September (see No. 409), we send a copy of it and beg your instructions as to taking up shipping and transport. Signed. Carbery, J. Lowther, Th. Chicheley. 1 p. Endorsed. [America and West Indies. 601. No. 19, and Col. Entry Bks., Vol. C., p. 84, and Vol. XLVII., pp. 446, 447.]
Oct. 15.
Gaol, Boston.
482. Edward Randolph to Lords of Trade and Plantations. The people here have with great impatience expected the arrival of their Agent, Mr. Mather, with a charter; but six months are lapsed without news of it (though the ministers promised it within three months of the subversion of the Government) and now they discover the fraud and finding themselves deluded openly disown the power of the Government, and refuse to pay rates and taxes, though the Government have issued warrants in their Majesties' names for collecting them. Being disappointed in their hopes of a charter they are distracted by fear of a force arriving from England to punish them, and are taking care to secure themselves. Some of the chiefs desire to liberate Sir Edmund Andros and others and to restore the subverted Government until the King's orders arrive. They also abominate the continued hardships put upon them, when the most factious men among them cannot show cause why any one of us should be imprisoned for one minute; but their will is law. The plain truth is that, whatever their spokesman at Court may say, they hold fast the antimonarchical principles spread among them by Sir Henry Vane and Hugh Peters. Venner, who made the insurrection soon after the Restoration, was also educated here. The other Colonies, finding all but a storm, are too late sensible of their haste in reassuming their former Governments, and forbear to act. They keep merely the name of authority to quiet the people till orders from England. The Government here, tired out with the continual cries of slaughter and destruction, have at last by threats and promises got together seven or eight hundred men, English and Indians, and sent them to secure the eastern parts of the Colony; but they have neither discipline nor officers who know how to command. On the 13th September a fort on Oyster river, New Hampshire, was taken by the enemy, and nineteen English killed or taken, though two hundred of the Boston forces were not far off. On the 20th the Indians intended to attack Casco, but Captain Church accidentally arriving there with some forces drove them off, but with loss of twelve men, no surgeon being allowed them. The men are daily expected home, as no care is taken to provide them with bread and other necessaries.
The Mayor and principal men of Albany, being apprehensive of an attack on them by the French, voted to address New York for arms and ammunition to defend their frontiers against the French and Indians, who had already killed three people near Senectady. Jacob Leisler, the head of the rabble at New York, on receiving the address sent to Mr. Bradstreet for the like amount of powder and shot, as on survey of the stores here it was found that there were only twenty-eight barrels of powder. Albany's trade with the Indians is worth £40,000 a year; and there are brought thence annually to New York 100,000 bushels of grain. Their only hope of safety is in the arrival of a force from England. Here the Acts of Trade and the laws against pirates are alike disregarded. Abraham Fisher, a Scotchman, lately came into Salem with a prize piratically taken, and sold her. He has also liberty to trade in Boston and has raised his crew from forty to seventy men. The French have lately taken six Salem ketches off Cape Sable while H.M.S. Rose is detained in Boston harbour. Nothing will induce them to return Captain George his sails, that he may be able to protect the coasts. Thus the authority of the Crown and the peace of the country are contemned by a few turbulent and ungovernable spirits, and so openly that they have shown that force is the only argument that can convince them. Signed. Ed. Randolph. Holograph. 2 pp. Endorsed. Recd. 23 Feb., 1689. Read 25 Feb., 1689. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. No. 38, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXII., pp. 164–167.]
483. Abstracts of Edward Randolph's letters of 5 September and 15 October (Nos. 407, 482.) 2½ pp. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. No 39.]
[Oct. 15.] 484. Abstract of a letter from Elizabeth Usher to John Usher. Boston, 16 October, 1689. It is now eighteen weeks since your departure. The Indian war is as hot as ever, and the people flock here from Eastward. There is little trade, and the ferment is as great as ever. Sir Edmund Andros lately escaped to Rhode Island, but was made prisoner by Mr. Sanford and sent back. Mr. Graves, Deacon Cuttler, his two sons, and Captain Sprauge are all imprisoned for disowning authority, setting up courts and levying rates. There is a considerable army to Eastward, which does as little good as formerly. ½ p.
Extract from a letter from Edward Randolph to the same. "Common gaol in New Algiers" 16 October, 1689. Details as to the Indian War. The Government have sent out their warrants by Philipps of Charlestown to summon the people. Charlestown has some good men left. Mr. Greaves, Captain Sprauge, Captain Hammond and two Cuttlers opposed Mr. Russell's reopening Court at Cambridge and were summoned before the Council, where they denied its power to hold Courts or raise money. They were ordered to Cambridge gaol, but they of Charlestown threaten to fetch them out, so Sprauge is voted out of the House of Deputies and he and Hammond put out from being Captains. Few or none will pay any money in Boston even for a poor rate, denying the Government's power; Salem will not pay a penny. To-day Mr. Dudley had his estate at Roxbury attached at the suit of Wise for £1,000 for denying him a habeus corpus. The laws of England are turned to account when they are to their advantage. Copies. The whole, 1 p. Endorsed. Recd. 25 February, 1689–90. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. No. 40.]
[Oct. 16.] 485. Enclosures in the foregoing letter.—
I. Warrant of John Philipps, Treasurer to the Freemen of Newbury to levy a rate after estimating the estates of the town. September, 1689. Copy. 1 p. Endorsed by Edward Randolph.
II. Protest of Thomas Greaves against the holding of a Court at Cambridge, as illegal. 21 September, 1689. Copy. 1 p.
III. Extract from minutes of Council at Boston. 24 September, 1689. Thomas Greaves admitted his protest against the holding of a Court at Cambridge and maintained that he had done right. He was committed to the custody of the keeper of Cambridge prison. Copy. 1 p. Endorsed. Recd. with a letter from Mr. Randolph. 23 February, 1689–90. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. Nos. 40, 40, I–III.]
Oct. 16. 486. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. Letter from the Admiralty of 15th inst. read (see No. 481). The Lords agreed as to their reply. The case between Ralph Knight and the African Company heard. The Lords agreed on their report (see No. 493). The controversy between Colonel Ludwell and Lord Howard of Effingham heard. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CII., pp. 280–282.]
Oct. 16. 487. Minutes of Lords of Trade and Plantations. That the business of Jamaica will be despatched on the 18th, whereof all parties will take notice. Draft. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 43.]
Oct. 16. 488. Memorandum of Lords of Trade and Plantations. The Lord President is desired to move the King to order £500 to be paid to Lord Inchiquin for his accommodation and the freight of his goods to Jamaica. Draft. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 44.]
Oct. 16.
489. Minute of Lords of Trade and Plantations. On the letter of 15 inst. (No. 481) from the Admiralty, the Lords desire the Admiralty to provide shipping to take the extra three months' provisions to the Leeward Islands, but not to carry a Governor thither, since the King has appointed Colonel Codrington. The King will be moved next Council to decide as to the freight for the Earl of Inchiquin, Governor of Jamaica. [Col. Entry Bks., Vol. C., pp. 85, 86, and Vol. XLVII., p. 448.]
[Oct. 16.] 490. Lord Howard of Effingham to Lords of Trade and Plantations. In reply to Mr. Ludwell's petition (see Nos. 447 I, 462) I need not repeat his antecedents. As to the article about my claiming two negative voices, the case is this. A bill sent up by the burgesses was amended in the Council; there were amendments agreed to by the burgesses, and the bill was marked by the Clerk as assented to. But when it had been fairly engrossed I found that one clause had been materially altered in the copying. I caused this to be put right and sent the bill down to the burgesses again. They maintained that the bill had been passed according to the garbled copy, and that I had assented to it, nor, though I offered to submit the case for the King's decision, would they pass any bill unless this garbled Act were passed too. I prorogued them and reported the matter to the King, by whose order I dissolved the Assembly as a mark of the royal displeasure, and dismissed the clerk who had garbled the bill. As to the power to suspend councillors I understand that it has been altered since the issue of my last commission, but I told Ludwell what was charged against him, reported the matter to the King and received the King's order to displace him. Then, as to members having been driven from employment without examination or trial, I did displace some few officers and put in others more knowing, while settling the militia. Mr. Anderson, the person who is mentioned as having been imprisoned, incited the people not to receive those officers, alleging that the Governor had no power to dismiss officers of militia; and had not Colonel Custis of the Council been present there would have been a mutiny. Knowing Anderson to be restless and mutinous I required security for good behaviour from him, and as he refused to find it he was imprisoned until he consented to do, when he was at once released. As to the article relating to the grievances of Accomack, reference to the journals will shew that when the burgesses complained, I told them that the paper seized was not the paper of grievances, but that Colonel Custis should be cautioned against such hasty action in future. As to the three pirates, I have already given an explanation (see No. 231). They have been released by the Council since my departure and permitted to come to England for their pardon on giving security for good behaviour. As to the condition of the fortifications I found Virginia considerably in debt at my first coming, and no money at hand for the fortifications, but in these two last years I have caused them to be repaired. As to the arms, there has been no account since my arrival. Several of them were burned when the guard house was burned, as the petitioner well knows, the rest I repaired and distributed in different places. As to the revenue, it is entirely at the King's disposal; and as to the complaint of abuse of my power of erecting forts and fixing fees I submit the matter to the King. Now as to the further paper of particulars. When I first came to Virginia the Assembly drew up an address to the King which I and the Council thought unfit to be presented, as reflecting on the royal prerogative, but none the less offered to join them in drawing up a suitable address: never the less they sent their address without our concurrence. What followed has already been reported to you; and the King approved my action. Messrs. Smith and Allen were not displaced on account of their proceedings in the Assembly, but because, being justices of the peace, they openly opposed the appointment of sheriffs by the Governor and wished the matter to be settled according to a law which had been long repealed. Mr. Allen refused a commission as captain of horse from me, so I offered him no other. As to admitting papists and dispensing with oaths of allegiance and supremacy, this was in accordance with my orders, pursuant to the King's declaration of indulgence. As to Mr. Fitzhugh, I refer you to the Minutes of Council for my justification. Other matters I have already answered. Signed. Effingham. 12 pp. Endorsed. Recd. 16 Oct., 89. [America and West Indies. 636. No. 19, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXXIII., pp. 283–295.]
[Oct. 16.] 491. State of the case between Lord Howard and Philip Ludwell. An abstract of the charges and the answer arranged in parallel columns. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXXXIII., pp. 296–299.]
Oct. 16.
492. Lord Inchiquin to Lords of Trade and Plantations. Owing to the proximity of the French at Petit Guavos and Hispaniola at least three frigates will be necessary to secure the safety of Jamaica and the convoys. Signed. Inchiquin. 1 p. Endorsed. 16 Oct. 1689. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 45.]
Oct. 16.
493. Lords of Trade and Plantations to the King. On the petition of the Royal African Company (see No. 259 I.) we recommend that the Act increasing the value of pieces-of-eight be repealed, and the passing of such acts forbidden for the future. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XXXII., p. 277.]
Oct. 17. 494. Order of the King in Council. Disallowing the Jamaica Act of 1688, for fixing the value of pieces-of-eight. Lord Inchiquin's instructions to contain a clause on the subject. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XXXII., p. 278.]
Oct. 17. 495. Order of the King in Council. For the Lords of the Admiralty to provide a hundred tons of shipping for transport of Lord Inchiquin's goods and servants to Jamaica. Rough draft. Undated. See No. 461. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 48.]
496. Instructions to William Earl of Inchiquin as Governor of Jamaica. The Council to consist of Sir Francis Watson, Thomas Freeman, Thomas Ballard, William Ivy, John White, James Walker, John Bourden, George Needham, Peter Beckford, Peter Heywood, Thomas Ryves. No act or order altering the value of current money is to be permitted without the royal leave or order. No fines over £10 to be remitted without reporting the same as in England for approval. Forfeited estates of pirates to be held pending signification of the royal pleasure. No court of judicature to be established without special royal permission. Report of arms and ammunition to be furnished. Appeals to the King in Council to be allowed in cases of fines exceeding £500. A law to be passed if possible to restrain inhumanity to white servants or slaves. Authority to fortify landing places if necessary. Account of the appeal of the ship St. Jago de la Victoria to be transmitted. Transported servants to serve for four years. Sir Francis Watson to be paid at the rate of £500 a year from the day of the Duke of Albemarle's death, and his conduct to be reported on for decision whether £500 more shall be paid to him. Countersigned. Shrewsbury. Annexed. List of Council of Jamaica. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XXXII., pp. 247–273.]
Oct. 17. 497. William Blathwayt to Secretary to the Admiralty. Asking what tonnage is allowed to Colonel Kendall for transport of his household goods to Barbados. Draft. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 46.]
Oct. 17. 498. Phineas Bowles to William Blathwayt. Tonnage for Colonel Kendall was asked for twenty-six servants, ten horses, two coaches and forty tons household goods. Orders have since been received for ten tons more. 1 p. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 47.]
499. Petition of Merchants and Planters of Jamaica now in London. The French at Petit Guavos, which is almost in sight of our Island, are strong, and the place is a nest of pickeroons. A valuable fleet with ammunition and necessaries to the value of £200,000 needs a convoy. We beg for the appointment of at least two good sailing frigates for the purpose. Copy. 1¼ pp. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 50.]
Oct. 18. 500. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. The Commissioners of Customs present their report as to Santiago de Castillo's claims for the Assiento (see No. 477). [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CIX. p. 283.]
Oct. 18. 501. Secretary to the Treasury to William Blathwayt. Forwarding report of Commissioners of Customs on the petition of St. Jago del Castillo (see No. 477). Signed. Will. Jephson. ½ p. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 49.]
Oct. 18. 502. William Blathwayt to Mr. Bowles. Forwarding the minute of Lords of Trade and Plantations of 16th inst. (see No. 495). [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XLVII., p. 449.]
Oct. 19. 503. Sir Thomas Montgomerie to Lieutenant-Governor Stede. I should have preferred to have attended you, but at your orders I commit what I have to say to writing. The capture of the two ships near our roadstead has set me thinking first as to the present strength of the French, secondly, as to their designs, and thirdly as to measures for their disappointment. As to their power, I suppose we may accept on information that they have eight or ten well found vessels as well as smaller fry for transport, but at any rate they have undoubtedly command of the sea. As to their men, the Government is so absolute that all must embark if ordered, without respect of persons; and they have enough to give us a hotter engagement here than we expect or can wish to realise. They are encouraged by the reputation of their General, the experience of their officers and the discipline of their men. As to their design I am sure it is against Barbados, for their operations to Leeward have come for some time to a stop, since half of the Islands are willing to side with them against the other. They are moreover flushed with their late victory and are not likely to sit still; and I am confirmed in this opinion by the presence and boldness of the ships round this Island. We may be sure that there are more of these than we have seen, and it is plain that they are bent upon collecting shipping, which they will need in great quantity before they can transport troops to this Island. Again the reports of deserters encourage them by accounts of our weakness. How soon they will be ready for the attempt is not hard to guess, for at the present rate they are helping themselves rapidly to our ships and stores.
Now as to the means of foiling them, which in my melancholy imprisonment occupies all my thoughts. I should not propound this project were not I the instrument for its execution. All their confidence is built on the intelligence of discontented men from hence. To counteract that you must let me escape to Martinique, where the French, knowing that I have come from long imprisonment will give the more credence to my reports of the strength of the Island, and of your design to attack Martinique. The French being divided will then be obliged to concentrate. Here follows a very long table of reasons why this project should be adopted and its author trusted. The whole, 3 closely written pages. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 4. No. 17.]
Oct. 20.
New York.
504. Declaration of Nicholas Bayard to the officers of the train-bands of New York. Ordering them not to abet or aid Jacob Leisler, he having no authority from King William and Queen Mary for his actions. Copy. 1 p.
Duplicate of foregoing. Endorsed. Recd. 10 April, 1690. Printed in New York Documents, III., 658. [America and West Indies. 578. No. 66.]
Oct. 22.
James City.
505. The Council of Virginia to Lords of Trade and Plantations. We regret to report the death on 23 September of Nicholas Spencer, the Secretary. William Cole has been appointed in his place till the King's pleasure be known. As this place has always been held by a Councillor we beg the King's favour that Mr. Cole may be continued in it. On 26th August while H.M.S. Deptford was at anchor in the Potomac, Captain Berry being ill in the cabin, she was upset by a sudden violent gust of wind and eight men drowned. We sent at once for Captain Rowe of H.M.S. Dumbarton, but his ship was on the careen. He has since informed the President that he will proceed to the wreck and try to weigh her. If she cannot be raised he has orders to save her guns, etc. On the 9th September the President received notice of the declaration of war with France. We shall do our best to put the country in a state of defence. Our chief apprehension is from the Northern Indians, who may give us great trouble on the frontiers. Ammunition of all kinds is very scarce, and it would be a great encouragement if the King would order a supply to be sent to us. The country, God be praised, is in peace and quietness at present. Signed. Nathaniel Bacon, Ralph Wormeley, Rich. Lee, Jno. Custis, John Page, Wm. Byrd, Christopher Wormeley, Isaac Allerton, Jno. Armistead. 4 pp. Endorsed. Recd. 13 Dec., 1689. Read 29 Dec., 1689. [America and West Indies. 636. No. 20, and Board of Trade. Virginia, 36. pp. 9–11.]
Oct. 23. 506. Journal of Assembly of Barbados. The Lieutenant-Governor brought to notice of the House the danger to the Island from the presence of two French men-of-war. Joint Committee appointed to consider the question, who agreed that two great ships and a sloop should be hired and fitted out. Resolutions carried for a levy on negroes, and an act for the purpose read a first time. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XIV., pp. 207–209.]
Oct. 22.
507. Lords of Trade and Plantations to Governor Kendall. Directing him to give every facility for the appeal of Richard Knight, and to transmit authentic copies of all documents. Signed. Carmarthen, Shrewsbury, Nottingham. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. VIII., pp. 157–159.]
Oct. 23.
508. Phineas Bowles to William Blathwayt. The ships formerly designed for the West Indies were all hired ships and have since been discharged by the King's order. The Admiralty have since appointed ships of the Royal Navy instead, of which I enclose a list. Signed. P. Bowles. ½ p. Annexed,
508. I. List of the West Indian squadron. Third Rate. Mary, 54 guns. Four Rates. Bristol, Foresight, Assistance, Jersey, Tiger, all of 42 guns, St. David, 46 guns, Hampshire, 40 guns. Fifth Rate. Swan, 28 guns. Fireships. St. Paul, 10, Richard and John, 10. [America and West Indies. 550. Nos. 45, 45 I., and Col. Entry Bks., Vol. XLVII., pp. 449, 450, and Vol. C., pp. 87, 88.]
Oct. 24.
509. Copy of a letter from Boston. I have received no injury since my release, but Sir Edmund Andros and others are still imprisoned. All parties earnestly long for orders from England to settle us, and indeed they are wanted, for the people grow very disorderly under the present constitution, and this terrible Indian war is an almost insupportable expense. Our enemies are Eastern Indians living near the French at Port Royal and Penobscot, and by them supplied with ammunition. Their country is full of wide rivers which they cross in birch-bark canoes which they carry on their backs, so it is hard for us to follow them. Sir Edmund Andros by his personal presence with the soldiers and long tiresome marches had driven them last winter to great distress, but since he has been seized, his officers imprisoned and his garrisons dismantled, the barbarians have taken heart and done us much mischief. Unless the Crown send a Governor-General and a good standing force and unite these petty Governments, this country will be in danger of being overrun by the French and Indians; and then farewell to the West Indian plantations, which cannot subsist without our provisions and lumber. Efforts have been made to turn the Mohawks against our enemies, but they cannot, because of their war with the French, on whom the barbarians have made bloody spoil this summer, having killed five hundred of them, some with horrible torments. We are dispossessed of the whole county of Cornwall, part of East York and the whole of Maine. Our new Government have sent about six hundred men after the Indians, but they are an intelligent enemy, understand our condition, and are much helped by the French, so they will prove troublesome enemies. Among other irregularities and licentiousness here not a few people have turned pirates, beginning at first with small boats and so rising to sloops and ships, which have much impaired our traffic, so much that the merchants by common consent have equipped a small war-sloop, H.M.S. Rose being dismantled by the Government. The sloop met one of the corsairs on the 4th, and after two hours' sharp action took him. Many were killed and wounded on both ships, and thus we cut each other's throats, neither side having any commission to fight. Nine Mohawks from Albany have been given new coats and new laced hats, and seem to promise not to help our enemies against us. They wanted to see Sir Edmund Andros in the castle, and on their way were treated and saluted by a merchant ship, but were not taken on board H.M.S. Rose, as though she were less considerable than a merchant ship. The poor barbarians are made to think Boston the greatest power on earth. Sir Edmund Andros would not see the Indians, asking if his keeper meant to make a show of him. The castle also saluted these bloody barbarians at their going off. Albany much dreads a French attack and has asked for reinforcement. If that be lost New York follows, and we are only four days' sail from New York. One of our privateers on the coast off Pemaquid was told by Indians ashore that not an Englishman was left in these parts. The ship was under French colours, and the man spoke French to the Indians, but one of them chancing to speak English was at once attacked. Copy. 2¼ pp. Endorsed. Recd. 25 Feb. 1689–90. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. No. 41.]
Oct. 25.
"From the
common gaol
in Algiers."
510. Edward Randolph to the Bishop of London. I here give you an account of the insurrection here and of the imprisonment of Sir Edmund Andros, myself and others for being members of the Church of England. Mr. Mather's book against the Common Prayer, managed by the Ministers, has persuaded the people that we were idolaters and therefore not fit to be entrusted longer with the Government. You will see by my letters to the Lords of Trade that the people here, finding nothing but losses in their trade, confusion, and disorder are to follow, are impatient for orders from England to enable them to defend themselves against the French and Indians. I have certain intelligence that the French mean to attack Albany in January, when the lakes and rivers are all frozen. I doubt not that they will take it unless orders arrive from England to prevent them. I enclose some papers which are well liked by the moderate party here. Copies of the paper called the Present State of New England have been sent to several of the ministers, but make no impression on them, nor has one of them offered to answer any part of it. You will do an act of great justice and favour to us and to all sufferers by this revolt if you would cause this to be printed by authority in England, with their libellous declaration prefixed, and send several copies over here for distribution. I must not omit also to enclose you a sermon preached by young Mr. Mather, who is discovered to be the abettor, if not the author, of a scandalous libel dispersed three months before the revolt, which prevented proceedings against him for that and for his book against the Common Prayer at the following Court. This man with Mr. Morton and others of the gang is very active in promoting anti-monarchical principles and will oppose all commands from their Majesties which will not serve their interest (by them called the interest of Jesus Christ). It is now nearly eighteen months since Mr. Morton preached at Charles-town, encouraging his hearers to wait with patience, for it would not be long before God restored their ancient Magistrates. These ministers have persuaded them that their charter could not be violated, that therefore the vacating of it by process at law was illegal, that the charter continues as valid as ever, that all laws made in pursuance of that charter are binding, that by their charter they had an absolute power to elect all their officers once a year and were authorized to resist any who withstood it, that King James's despatch of Sir Edmund Andros as Governor with a hundred men to garrison the forts was a hostile invasion on them and their liberties, and that they wanted only an opportunity to assert their charter-right by force to destroy all that oppose them. When they seized us they told us we were prisoners of war and keep a guard of foot-soldiers on us still. Every night they review the guard and beat tattoo as if Boston were a garrison-town; sometimes they are for trying us by court-martial, but would be glad to see Mr. Mather return first with their charter. Their resolutions and proceedings shew that they can bring no charge against us, but the breach of their capital law. This people have quite unmasked themselves and discovered the whole intrigue of their Christian policy—that they are a hypocritical, wicked and bigoted people, following their ministers with a most zealous and implicit faith. Force is the only remedy. No man of the Church of England or of any other principles but their own in religion can be safe, nor can their colony thrive or be of advantage to England unless some of the principal promoters and actors in this rebellion receive their merits. Sir Edmund Andros is in danger to be starved this winter, being kept in a very damp low room in the Castle without a fire-hearth. Signed. Ed. Randolph. Holograph. 1¾ pp. Endorsed. Recd. 25 Feb. 89–90. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. No. 42.]
Oct. 25. 511. Abstracts of letters from Edward Randolph to William Blathwayt. 25 October. The Indians have captured the fort at Oyster River. The people are resisting the collection of rates imposed by the Government. Connecticut is coming round to Sir E. Andros. Agents have been sent to the Maquas; and the French have ordered their Indians to attack us. At Salem a pirate continues to take in men. Several ships are trading contrary to the Acts of Navigation. Bradstreet's officers seized a barrel of brandy from Newfoundland. The owner told him that if he did not return it he would land a hundred men and put him out of his Government. Unless the charter come soon, they will not be able to keep the people quiet.
To Mr. Povey. 8 October. The Governor, Mr. Palmer and Mr. Graham are kept in a room smaller than the room next the park in Mr. Blathwayt's house. The Governor is not allowed ink, nor to speak with anyone unless a keeper be present.
To Captain Nicholson. 25 October. The Bostoners say that their daily expense is £110, and that they know not how to raise it. They made a poor cess in Boston; some of the faction pay, most refuse; and there is no remedy. The Governor is treated worse than any of us. There is sometimes six inches of water in his room. It is reported that Mather has obtained the charter. They now talk of nothing but trying and executing the Governor, myself, etc. Copy. 3 pp. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. No. 43.]
Oct. 26. 512. Edward Randolph to the Bishop of London. Not long since, Major Howard, a man of good estate, declared in his will that he was of the Church of England and made Colonel Lydgott and Mr. Foxcroft his executors, both like him Churchmen and of good estate. He died soon after and they made a grave in the burying place by our church, intending to bury him there and to have the office for burial read, as he had appointed in his will. But his wife by the advice of Mr. Moody had a grave made for him at the North Church burying place, and Mr. Moody sent word to the executors that he would have men enough in the street to shew them his burial place, and he was buried as Moody had directed. Thus imperious are the godly people of New England grown already, who will take upon them to dispose of the dead as of the living. I enclose a copy of the warrant to our keeper, made six months after our imprisonment, so that he has executed his office without order or commission for the same. You will see that they adhere to the form used in their declaration, that they detain us to await the justice of the King, Queen and Parliament, thereby intending that they will not admit nor acquiesce in the royal orders without the concurrence of Parliament. This is not to be imputed to ignorance; it is intended for purposes of evasion unless the royal orders favour their late proceedings. Signed. Ed. Randolph. Holograph. 1½ pp. Endorsed. Recd. 25 Feb., 1689–90. Annexed,
512. I. Warrant of the Representatives of Massachusetts for the detention of the prisoners imprisoned during the Revolution. 10 October, 1689. Signed. Ebenezer Prout. Scrap. Inscribed by Edward Randolph. "The continuance of this admirable order cost the country about £50. T'was made in a full meeting of Governor, Council and Representatives, and is the whole produce after seven or eight days' sitting. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. Nos. 44, 44I.]
Oct. 26.
513. Simon Bradstreet to Lords of Trade and Plantations. Divers months past we sent home an account of our proceedings and still daily await orders for settlement of the Government. After waiting some weeks from the time of the dissolution of the late Government, and no intelligence arriving from England, we yielded to the importunity of the people and the necessity of the occasion and accepted the Government under the rules of our old charter. But since the alteration of our ancient settlement many strangers are come in among us under the late Government, who depended on the same for employment and had expectations of building fortune on the ruin of the inhabitants; whereof being disappointed by the present change they are malcontent and disaffected towards the Government. These people, as no orders have arrived from England, are busy to weaken the hands of the Government and to cause disturbances and confusion by insinuation of false reports. The Indian war we have endeavoured to check, but ineffectually, by seeking out the provoking causes, but our efforts have been of no avail. The Indians, doubtless incited by the French, continued their hostility, increasing their numbers until we were obliged to levy soldiers to repel them. They have made great depredations in New Hampshire and Maine and some in Massachusetts, but Maine is the chief seat of war. A considerable force is already abroad against them in two bodies to the eastward by the joint concurrence of ourselves, Connecticut and New Plymouth, but the woods and rivers make it difficult to come up with the enemy, it being their manner to skulk or move in small parties. It is for God to give us success, though our efforts for defence have not been wholly unsuccessful. The whole expense has been borne by a few private persons, there being no public Treasury to be found upon the Revolution and the stores of ammunition being very low. We hope that what we have done may not be judged offensive. We cannot think ourselves secure from the French, who are said to be in great force in the West Indies. Pray assure their Majesties of our loyalty and obedience. Signed. S. Bradstreet. 2 pp. Endorsed. Read 25 Feb. 1689–90. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. No. 45, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXII, pp. 153–156.]
Oct. 27.
514. Sir Francis Watson to [Earl of Shrewsbury ?]. Yours of the 15th and 19th April are received, and your orders have been obeyed. My patience and the good humour of the greatest part of the inhabitants contributed not a little to allay the grievous animosities now raging in the Island owing to the violent proceedings of the restored officers. Roger Elleston, made Chief Justice by the late Duke of Albemarle, was accused by the Attorney General of treasonable matter and taken into custody, and on moving for his habeas corpus was denied, contrary to my opinion and Colonel Thomas Ballard's, a Councillor ever since the Restoration. I hope that you will bestow your patronage on this Island, which languishes for want of care. Signed. F. Watson. 1 p. Endorsed. Recd. 4 Jan., 1689–90. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 51. Copies in America and West Indies. Vol. 540. No. 13, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XXXII., pp. 329, 330.]
Oct. 27. 515. Sir Francis Watson to Lords of Trade and Plantations. I forgot to acquaint you that though I have often required the Attorney General and Councillors to administer the oaths to me, they still refuse it. All persons continue in their offices, but Chief Justice Bernard will not hold a supreme Court till further powers arrive from the King. Mr. Elletson is accused by the Attorney General of treasonable matters and was committed by the Council. He moved for a habeas corpus but was denied, contrary to my own opinion and Colonel Ballard's, though he offered £100,000 security. Much dissatisfaction has been caused, for Mr. Elletson is generally beloved, and the planters all think they may be treated likewise. Laurens with a ship and two hundred men touched at Montego Bay the other day and did no harm, but said that he would obtain a commission at Petit Guavos and return to plunder the whole of the North side of the Island. The people are so affrighted that they have sent their wives and children to Port Royal. There is a report of seventeen French sail at Cuba. We have done what we can for our defence by erecting fortifications. I have several times urged to the Council the necessity for proclaiming martial law, but they refuse, though it has formerly been kept up for nine months or more on the rebellion of forty slaves. The Biscayans continue their violence, but two of our sloops lately beat off one of the ablest of their ships. Signed. F. Watson. 1½ pp. Endorsed. Recd. from the Earl of Shrewsbury, 4 Jan., 1689–90. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 52, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XXXII., pp. 327–329.]
[Oct.] 516. The Council of Jamaica to [Earl of Shrewsbury ?]. Since your letter of the 15th April we have done our best to put ourselves in a state of defence. The sending away of H.M.S. Assistance was a great misfortune, which has compelled us to keep H.M.S. Drake, although she was ordered home. We are grateful for the King's protection and pray for his welfare. Signed. F. Watson, Tho. Ballard, John White, John Bourden, J. Fuller. 1 p. Endorsed. Recd. from My Lord the 4th January, 1689–90. The King's commands signified by letter of 15 April. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 53. Copies in America and West Indies. Vol. 540. No. 14, and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XXXII., pp. 315, 316.]
Oct. 28. 517. Journal of Lords of Trade and Plantations. Colonel Sloughter's proposals read (see No. 521). Agreed to recommend part of them to the King. Colonel Sloughter's commission read and approved. The Attorney General's report on the petition of Richard Lloyd read. Petition of John Stede (see No. 426) read and to be recommended to the King. Draft instructions to Captain Wright read and consideration postponed for the attendance of Naval Officers. Order for the great guns for Barbados to be shipped in the squadron. Order for transport to be provided for Captain Fowke. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. CIX., pp. 284–286, and (as to Barbados) Vol. VIII., pp. 150, 151.]
Oct. 28. 518. Lords of Trade and Plantations to the King. We find on examination that Mr. Richard Lloyd is fit to hold the post of Clerk of the Crown and Peace of Jamaica (see No. 452). [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. XXXII., p. 323.]
Oct. 28. 519. William Blathwayt to Phineas Bowles. Requiring the attendance of Sir John Berry and Captain Wright at the Committee on the 30th inst. when the instructions for the Admiral of the West Indian squadron will be considered. Draft. ½ p. Endorsed. The like letter for them to attend on the 1st and 6th of November. [America and West Indies. 550. No. 47.]
[Oct. 28.] 520. Petition of the Planters trading to the Leeward Islands to the King. We have already petitioned for assistance to these Islands, for want of which St. Christophers and Anguilla are already lost. The rest will be lost also unless a sufficient force be sent immediately. 36 signatures. Large sheet. Endorsed. Read 28 October, 1689. [America and West Indies. 550. No. 46.]
[Oct. 28.] 521. Reasons humbly offered to the Lords of Trade and Plantations for the preservation of New York. The Government is at present held by a rabble; and the province is invaded by the French and their Indian allies. The situation of the city is such that if it fell into the hands of the French the whole trade of America would be ruined. It is therefore necessary (1) that a Council should be nominated. (2) That a naval and military force should be sent over. (3) That the fortifications of Albany should be enlarged and that Senectady should be fortified. (4) That two forts and platforms should be erected on Sandy Hook and the Narrows, and (5) a smaller platform at Hell Gate (6) That ammunition, arms and equipment should be sent over (7) That the alliance with the Five Nations should be renewed. 1. It will be necessary for defrayment of the expenses of Government to unite Connecticut, the Jerseys and Pennsylvania with New York. 2. That New York should be the only port of entry for ships. 3. That no private proprietors be allowed to make alliances with the Indians, but that all treaties be in the name of the King and Queen. 4. That the Susquehannah river be annexed to New York. N.B. If the French took New York the first thing they would do would be to erect a mole to protect privateers and men of war, so that it would be impossible for any ships from those parts to pass free. 2 pp. Endorsed. Presented by Col. Slater. Recd. 28 October, 1689. [America and West Indies. 578. No. 67.]
Oct. 28.
522. Edward Randolph to Robert Chaplin. It is with grief and astonishment that I inform you of the ill-treatment that Sir E. Andros meets with at the Castle. According to an account received from a gentleman yesterday he is kept in a low room seventeen feet long and nine feet broad, in which stand two bedsteads, two close stools, a table and other necessaries; and this is all the accommodation allowed to him and to Mr. Graham to reside in day and night. There is no chimney in it, nor can be unless they would set their beds on fire. When they can they open the door and set the table partly out of the room, as not above two can get at it. The room stands so low that the rain sometimes stands five or six inches on the floor or higher. The room is so built that the castle-walls make two sides of it and what rain falls upon them soaks down, so that it is always very damp. They are locked up at six at night and the door is not opened till eight in the morning, and they have not five feet to walk in all that time. His servant is not allowed to assist him in case of any accident, and, now that winter approaches, the passage between Boston and the Castle is very hazardous and uncertain, so that in bad weather he may want bread and beer for five or six days together, and unless he be speedily removed the cold will kill him. This has been represented to the Governor and Council, who pretend that they are very sorry for it, but I have as yet heard of no redress. His keeper is Captain Fairweather, a very strict zealot and Church monitor, and his villainy not to be forgotten. The Governor has preserved a great stock of rabbits on the Island, which this Fairweather kills and treats his friends with, but has not presented one to the Governor, nor will he suffer the Governor's own cook to dress his diet for him. The Governor had also a good milch-cow on the Island; Fairweather has taken her to Boston for the use of his family so that the Governor can get no milk but only water. I, thank God, have got me a little place in the common gaol, but am in danger to be stunk up by the filling of the gaol with poor prisoners, especially wounded men, who rot and perish for want of men to dress their wounds. From the mercies of such cruel men Good Lord deliver us. Pray let my wife know that I am well. Signed. Ed. Randolph. 2 pp. Endorsed. Recd. from Mr. Chaplin, 28 Feb., 1689. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. No. 46.]
Oct. 30.
523. Simon Bradstreet to the Earl of Shrewsbury. Repeating the account of the preparations against the Indians reported in his letter of 26 October (see No. 513). Signed. S. Bradstreet, Govr. 1 p. Endorsed. Read at the Committee, 25 Feb., 1689–90. [Board of Trade. New England, 5. No. 47; and Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXII., pp. 157, 158.]
Oct. 30.
524. Governor and Council of Massachusetts to the Earl of Shrewsbury. The gentlemen at Albany have written to us for aid to reinforce the garrison against apprehended attack by the French. They say that they have applied to New York, but cannot be supported from thence, and such is the sickness in the Colonies and the number of men already drawn from Massachusetts and Plymouth against the Indians that at present we can send no more men. But the three Colonies have agreed to raise a Company in Connecticut, and to send men to Albany from the upper towns of this Colony; for we all hold ourselves bound to uphold the King's interest in the whole country. Private gentlemen have come forward to pay the whole expense of the war against the Indians, which indeed has been so borne ever since the revolution of the Government. Signed. Simon Bradstreet, in the name of the Council. 1 p. [America and West Indies. Massachusetts, 561. No. 4.]
Oct. 30. 525. Exemplification of the judgment given against the charter of New England. A long recital of the proceedings against the charter under Kings Charles II. and James II., and the final decision, under King William, that the charter is cancelled. Signed. Pengry. [Col. Entry Bk., Vol. LXII., pp. 42–75.]
[Oct.] 526. List of the Council of Jamaica, and of Councillors proposed by Lord Inchiquin. The new Councillors suggested are apparently Peter Beckford and Thomas Ryves. 1 p. Endorsed. [Board of Trade. Jamaica, 6. No. 55.]