America and West Indies: August 1698, 16-20

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 16, 1697-1698. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1905.

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'America and West Indies: August 1698, 16-20', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 16, 1697-1698, (London, 1905), pp. 377-399. British History Online [accessed 13 June 2024].

. "America and West Indies: August 1698, 16-20", in Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 16, 1697-1698, (London, 1905) 377-399. British History Online, accessed June 13, 2024,

. "America and West Indies: August 1698, 16-20", Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 16, 1697-1698, (London, 1905). 377-399. British History Online. Web. 13 June 2024,

August 1698

Aug. 16. Order for appointment of an overseer for the works in the fort. The Mayor and constables of New York were called in and sharply reprimanded for their mismanagement of a press of seamen for H.M.S. Fowey. Order for payment for firewood at Albany, and for a new contract to be made for the same. William Shaw continued as excise-searcher at Albany, being an old man and an object of charity. A difference between the late farmers of the excise settled. Ordered that the rum used by officers at Albany be freed from excise.
Aug. 17. The Governor reported to the Council that an express had come from Albany, with news that Count de Frontenac refused to give up the Indian prisoners unless the Four Nations treated with him for peace, and threatened the Nations with war if they refused to make a separate peace with him. The Indian messengers were then called in, and the Governor told them that he had ordered the Lieutenant-Governor and his company to Albany to succour the Indians, and desired them to send out scouts towards Cadaraqui for intelligence. The messengers said that it was hard that there should be peace and the Indians get no benefit from it; whereupon the Governor answered that he was sending the troops, not to make war, but to enforce for the Indians the protection of the peace. The messenger then said that the different nations were separated from each other by large rivers, and that if they were not protected they must make peace. The Governor answered that if the French came upon them in force they must send their women and children to Albany, and that he would then march to Canada and avenge them. He also assured them of the constant protection of the King of England, and urged them not to be cozened by the French, for their words were only threats to frighten the Five Nations into breaking with the English. It was then ordered that the Indian messengers be provided with clothing, that Major Wessels proceed at once with an interpreter to meet the Indians at Onandaga, and that a messenger be sent immediately with a letter to the Governor of Canada. [Board of Trade. New York, 72. pp. 127–132.]
Aug. 15. 750. Deposition of Edward Walrond. Setting forth at length the facts already brought forward as to the trial of Captain Robert Arthur, and as to the summoning of himself before Council at the instance of Laurence Crabb. Signed, Edward Walrond. 3 pp. Endorsed, Recd. Read 15 Aug., 1698. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 5. No. 112.]
Aug. 15. 751. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Mr. Walrond's deposition of this day read (preceding abstract), and orders given as to further proceedings.
Draft instructions to Colonel Blakiston considered, and orders given to Sir Thomas Laurence to attend thereupon.
Aug. 16. Captain Warren announcing that there was a pirate in London, who was prepared to serve under him in the expedition if pardoned, was directed to lay the matter before a Secretary of State.
Sir Thomas Laurence attending gave an account of Maryland. There are eleven counties, in each of which for the most part a Councillor resides, but the county being cut by Chesapeak Bay it is often difficult to get a quorum on any occasional summons. The salaries of Assembly-men are 140lbs. of tobacco a day during session, and of Councillors 150lbs. of tobacco, but the Assemblymen who live near Annapolis have nothing. Lord Baltimore lets out land at the rate of eight shillings per hundred acres, payable in tobacco at twopence the pound, which, not being worth the money, reduces the nominal eight shillings to about three shillings and sixpence. The King's revenue consists of one shilling per hogshead duty on tobacco exported, worth about £1,500 a year, of which three-fourths is allowed for the Governor's salary, and one-fourth for arms and ammunition. Fines and forfeitures are worth from £100 to £150 a year. The Assembly had made two presents to Governor Copley and one to Governor Nicholson, but they allowed them both something to make up their salary, though by a temporary Act only. Colonel Blakiston's instructions were then further considered.
Aug. 17. Colonel Blakiston's instructions considered. Public papers of the Leeward Islands received.
Aug. 18. The same instructions considered. The instructions for Virginia completed, and a representation ordered to be drawn thereupon.
Aug. 19. Mr. Cary gave information as to the trials of Mr. Lucas and Captain Bugdon, and was directed to put the same into writing.
Colonel Blakiston's instructions further considered. [Board of Trade. Journal, 11. pp. 181–187.]
Aug. 16. 752. Minutes of Council of Barbados. George Lillington sworn of the Council. Several petitions for payments granted. Addresses from the Assembly for payment of £200 to supply the Governor's cellar and for payment of the store-keeper's salary. Act to allow the Governor £500 in lieu of a house read thrice and passed; Act for printing the laws ordered a second reading in three weeks; Act concerning General Sessions read once and ordered a second reading. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 65. pp. 366–367.]
Aug. 16. 753. Journal of Assembly of Barbados. Leave given to bring in a private bill for docking the entail of John mead's estate. Bill concerning Grand Sessions sent up to Council. [Board of Trade. Barbados, 65. p. 307.]
Aug. 16. 754. Minutes of Council and Assembly of Nevis. The Council answered a question of the Assembly as to its authority, which it believed to be sufficient to enable the Assembly to proceed with the public business. [Board of Trade. Leeward Islands, 64. pp. 474–475.]
Aug. 17. 755. Memorandum of receipt of a list of vessels cleared at New York Custom-house for Curaçoa from 25 March to 17 August, 1698. Recd. 31 Oct., 1698. ¼ p. [Board of Trade. New York, 7. No. 91.]
Aug. 17. 756. Report of Sir Thomas Laurence on the proposed new Councillors for Maryland. Robert Quarry is an honest gentleman, but engaged in the service of Pennsylvania. Henry Lowe is a gentleman of good sense and fortune; he married a relation of Lord Baltimore, who is a strict papist. John Hammond is an elderly man, grave and serious, of a good estate, has been one of the Provincial Justices and lives within three miles of Annapolis. Thomas Tasker is a planter and merchant of good substance and esteem; he lives twenty miles from Annapolis on this side the Patuxent. Francis Jenkins is a man of the best sense and estate, in Somerset County, who has borne all offices there. Dr. Bray has taken great care in the choice of near twenty ministers sent out within the last three years and in procuring sixteen parochial libraries, for which he is out of purse between two and three hundred pounds. Richard Hill is very sensible and of good estate; he lives at Annapolis. Robert Smith has been Speaker of the House of Burgesses and for the last two years has been Chief Justice of the Provincial Court; he lives in Talbottown. William Hatton lives in Charles County, is reputed an honest man and of good substance. William Frisby lives in Kent County, a person of good repute, and brother to James Frisby of the Council. Edward Dorsey lives near Annapolis and builds houses there. Those who have had dealings with him say his honesty oftener fails him than his wit. In the handwriting of Sir Thomas Laurence. 1 p. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 3. No. 51; and 9. pp. 204–205.]
Aug. 17. 757. Minutes of Council of Bermuda. Samuel Day took the oaths as Governor and signed the Association; after which the Council was sworn.
Aug. 18. Thomas Harford and Michael Burrowes were sworn of the Council. Order for the Sheriff to bring up Mr. Samuel Trott and show cause why he is detained in custody.
Aug. 19. Nicholas Trott sworn Attorney-General.
Aug. 20. Order for Isaac Richier to be set at liberty on his giving security to prosecute his appeal and abide by the decision of the King in Council. [Board of Trade. Bermuda, 39. pp. 1–2.]
Aug. 18. 758. Minutes of Council of Virginia. Draft Act for Ports presented, and consideration postponed to a fuller Council. The Committee for revision of the laws were ordered to report in writing why they had made no progress therein. The question of an Agent was again deferred till a fuller Council. The letter from the Council of Trade recommending the passing of an Act against pirates was read; and it was agreed to summon an Assembly for 28 September next. A letter from Governor Nicholson of 2 June was read, respecting John Coode, on which it was resolved that nothing further was to be done.
Aug. 19. Order for the Court of Northumberland County to furnish a report respecting the ship Johanna. The book of claims was referred to Mr. Auditor Byrd. Order for restitution of a seized ship. [Board of Trade. Virginia, 53. pp. 130–133.]
Aug. 19.
759. Mr. Yard to William Popple. Forwarding an address of vindication from the General Assembly of Pennsylvania to be laid before the Council of Trade. Signed, R. Yard. ¼ p. Enclosed,
759. I. Address of the General Assembly of Pennsylvania to the King. We congratulate your Majesty on the conclusion of peace. We desire to vindicate ourselves against certain accusations. First as to Scotch and Dutch trade, we have not been privy thereto, and we find that our Magistrates and Justices have always been zealous to enforce the strict laws which we have made against illegal trade. It is alleged that ships have laden tobacco here and not delivered it in England. We cannot answer this so satisfactorily as we could wish, because our opponent Randolph has command of the bonds and takes them from one province to another; but we find on enquiry that the ship Trial sailed direct to London under two different masters, and was bound thither on a third voyage when she was taken by the French. Benjamin Roberts went directly to London; Thomas Manley was bound for Plymouth when taken by the French; William Righton unloaded his tobacco in Scotland by permission; Matthew Estis unloaded in Liverpool; Peter Trelawny was lost in the French territory of Newfoundland and carried to France. Matthew Dehart gave a security named Henricus Vandenburgh for the ship Unity, which bond being delivered to Randolph to be sued, Randolph took (as we understand) twenty pieces of eight from Vandenburgh to prosecute Dehart, but being charged with that and other misdemeanours in Maryland he fled from justice, as a copy of his letter enclosed will shew. As for the rest, we cannot understand but that they gave bonds here or in England. As to a ship alleged to have come here direct from Denmark with European goods, we find that she was taken by a Frenchman, restored by order of the King of Sweden, and sent back to this river under the command of the same master, who being a West Jersey man made for that side, where we suspect that he sought an opportunity of putting his goods ashore, for the Collector returned from on board her drunk, and the Governor was obliged to send the sheriff to seize her. She was afterwards condemned; see the copy of the record annexed.
As to pirates we knew of none that have been entertained here except Clinton, Lassells and some others supposed to be of Every's crew, who happening to sojourn here, as they did in some of the neighbouring Colonies, were apprehended on suspicion of being pirates, and bound over to the sessions; but, as soon as the Lords Justices' order against pirates was received, they were apprehended and confined in Philadelphia County Gaol from which they made their escape to New York, where they were at first arrested and then released without trial. See the document annexed. As for pirates or pirates' ships we know of none that ever came or were harboured here, much less were encouraged by the Government and people, who are sober and industrious and have never advanced their fortunes by piracy or illegal trade. As for the persons who came here as travellers about seven years ago and were supposed to be pirates, though they settled and claimed the liberties of English subjects among us, they were encouraged thereto by Edward Randolph, who gave expectation of pardon to some of them, as his enclosed letters show. This, with the countenance that they received from Colonel Fletcher, gave them further encouragement to continue among us, though we can sincerely say that their settling here was a great grief to many However, some of them are gone, others are dead, and the rest shall be arrested as soon as facts appear to require such procedure or the King shall order it. Randolph continues to inveigh and seek occasion against this Government, and therefore puts himself and the rest of the King's officers here upon methods which will render most of the people here incapable to trade, by debarring Quakers from the privilege which they enjoy in England of registering their vessels without oath. See his letter annexed. He also carries himself abusive to the Governor and endeavours to render him and his Acts contemptible here and elsewhere. See his further letters, annexed. He commenced an action against one Duplouys [? Deplovy] upon a Plantation bond, and another against one of his late deputies. Requiring the Attorney-General's assistance herein he objected to David Lloyd, as unqualified for want of being sworn, and pitched upon John Moore, who, being sent for before the Governor and Council to be qualified as Attorney-General, refused, because Randolph required him to prosecute in cases where he conceived that he had no power to act. But before the action came to trial Randolph made it up with Duplouys, and promised him to get his bond discharged. See his letter annexed. We beg your Majesty to take all this into your favourable consideration. We do not design to extenuate our own faults by incriminating others; but if in anything we have erred, we throw ourselves on your clemency. Signed by eleven of the Council and nineteen of the members of Assembly. At the foot, A few lines addressed by Governor Markham to the King, stating that the foregoing is the result of a Grand Committee appointed to enquire into the matters in question, and that the enclosures are true copies. Signed, John Markham. The whole, 4 pp.
759. II. Copy of a letter from Edward Randolph. Accomack, 29 April, 1693. When I received your letter of 14th, I was in custody of the Sheriff of Somerset, but thank God, I fell into the hands of an honest constable, who has kept me at his house, where I shall remain till I hear from Sir Edmund Andros. I think that he will not abandon me to the fury of my enemies, whose accusation is composed of malice and revenge. I throw myself on the Righteous Judge, and shall make my complaint to England by the first safe ship. Please send me the names of the two vessels seized by Mr. Lillington and acquitted by the country, with full particulars. I was told that Donaldson, the Scotchman, was a chief instrument in opposing Lillington's powers, and that the master of one of the vessels was a man whom I had the orders of the Commissioners of Customs to seize and condemn. Let me have full copies of the trials. I was coming to arrest him, had I not been stopped. But it will turn out to my advantage, for I am known in England to be very different from what Colonel Copley has represented me to be, and that is the place to try such high crimes as that of which I am accused, and to which I doubt not that they would have found some idle persons to swear. Another charge against me is of bribery—that I received 20 pieces of eight from Vandenburgh to prosecute Dehart, the principal in a bond of £1,000. I had an attested copy of a paper showing for what purpose I received this money, but cannot find it. Please search for it among the papers in your house, or obtain another copy well attested. I find that Mr. Markham has been a very busy man. If Governor Copley gives out any speeches to disparage me in my office, get proof of it for me to use at Whitehall. Besure that you obtain copies of the trials of the two ships. I have a charge of £1,400 against Mr. Blakiston, which makes him drive so furiously. I forgot to tell you that I am also charged with taking 50 pieces-of-eight to let a ship go to sea. It is absolutely false. George Layfield was a main man in prosecuting me. He will not be collector much longer. 1¼ pp.
Another letter. 4 May. Repeating his injunctions to his correspondent to obtain him copies of the paper respecting his receiving twenty pieces-of-eight; and authorising him to prosecute Vandenburg if he thinks fit. ¼ p.
759. III. Record of the trial and condemnation of the Pennsylvania, merchant ship. 25 February, 1695–6. 1½ pp.
759. IV. Governor Markham's warrant for the arrest of Robert Clinton, Edmund Lassells, and Peter Clausen on suspicion of piracy. 16 June, 1697.
The sheriff's endorsement of the warrant, reporting the escape of the three men aforesaid from gaol, and the failure of his attempt to recapture them. Copies. 1 p.
759. V. Governor Markham's warrant for pursuit of the said escaped prisoners. 17 June, 1697.
John Claypoole's certificate that the said prisoners were apprehended at New York, and released without trial. Copies. 1 p.
759. VI. Further documents as to the committal of Clinton and Lassells to Philadelphia gaol, and their escape there-from. 19 June, 1697. Copies. 1 p.
759. VII. Copy of a letter from Edward Randolph to William Clark. Pocomoke, 5 Nov., 1692. After discourse with Peter Lewis, I find that he is entitled to the King's pardon. He mentioned some others. Discourse them and see if they be serious. The pardon will cost about £200; and the more joiners, the cheaper it will be. I have several pardons of King James's time ready signed, but I shall do nothing till I have new authority from the King. ½ p.
759. VIII. Copy of a further letter from Edward Randolph to William Clark. 7 November, 1696. There is news of great victories in Flanders and at Brest. I have sent from Boston several printed pardons which I had power to grant to privateers in King James's time. I shall send for the like by the first opportunity. ½ p.
759. IX. Copy of a letter from Edward Randolph to Mr. Bewley. Douterbrocks, 21 April, 1698. I have considered the reason why Puckle did not swear for registering his sloop. He thought that you, being a stranger, would accept his attestations as a Quaker instead of the oath enjoined by law. If you admit him or any other Quaker to register his vessel without laying his hand on the Bible and kissing it you are inexcusable, for you have a copy of their law and proviso which directs you to do it. I will certainly suspend your office. Take it as you please. ½ p.
759. X. Copy of letter from John Lawrence to Governor Markham. New York, 29 April, 1698. I have accidentally come to know that depositions have been taken against you here from Mr. Snead, Mr. Webb and Mr. Lewis for not obeying the proclamation for arrest of Every's men. Randolph of course encourages such pickthanks. He has called you rogue and rascal publicly before many here, and will do you all the injury that he can at home. ½ p.
759. XI. Copy of a letter from Daniel Honan to Governor Markham. May, [date lost]. I lately heard Mr. Randolph use railing words against you for conniving at breaches of the Acts of Trade. and at the escape of Every's men from gaol. I told him that I had seen a hue and cry in pursuit of them, but he said that this was only a cloak from villainy. He has a deposition from one Webb as to your discharging a ship guilty of a breach of the Acts of Trade. One Robert Snead, who was a house-carpenter in Jamaica, has also given in depositions against you. 1 p.
759. XII. Copy of a letter from Edward Randolph to John Deplovy. 13 May, 1698. A certificate has been obtained that the George of Boston was driven into Lough Swilly by stress of weather. I am sending an attested copy to the Commissioners of Customs to cause your bond to be discharged. No doubt this will be done; and you are now at liberty. ½ p.
The whole endorsed, Recd. 20, Read 23 Aug., 1698. [Board of Trade. Proprieties, 2. Nos. 26, 26 I.–XII.; and (covering letter and enclosure No. I. only), 25. pp. 214–223.]
Aug. 20.
760. Governor Nicholson to Council of Trade and Plantations. I hope that all the documents sent by Sir Thomas Laurence have reached you. I beg your pardon that the journals and public papers sent herewith are not written on such paper, for it only arrived in time for the last journal of Council. I observe your orders as to letters in future, and have communicated it to the public officers. I have sent to England for ten reams of the selected paper. I should have sent the journals earlier, but that Mr. Henry Denton died before he could form those of the Council and Council in Assembly. I found great difficulty in completing them from his minutes, but I hope they are now as truly done as if he had been living. Another difficulty is the scarcity of good clerks, by which I am almost forced (as the proverb says) to make bricks without straw. I have moved Mr. William Bladen, whom I have found the most capable in all respects, from Clerk of the House of Delegates to Clerk of Council, and that is why he now signs both Journals. I enclose a list of them and of the laws made in March last. I have at last received the duplicate of your letter of 2 September last. The copy on board H.M.S. Swift was, I hear, broken open, read by some people in North Carolina, and afterwards burnt. No doubt you have a full account of the Swift; I enclose a copy of Captain Bostock's letter about her. I beg you to send another ship with all expedition, for besides looking after illegal traders and pirates here and in Pennsylvania, such a force will be an awe to any who design insurrection or disturbance, and will be one way of preventing seamen running away and being mutinous and refractory on board their ships, by changing or punishing them (I have had several complaints of these things; and enclose copy of a petition of masters of ships to me and my proclamation thereon). But so long as runaway seamen are harboured in Pennsylvania, it will be impossible wholly to remedy these two evils, because the seamen can so easily get there both from Virginia and Maryland. A man-of-war would be of value also to assist ships that have sprung a leak, or whose crew may be sick of a seasoning (sic). If any of these accidents happen to a ship she is in danger of losing her voyage or at least of being much retarded. I have observed that if a ship can but get clear of the Capes they will venture with a few hands; and others, though they be sickly of the seasoning, will venture too rather than stay, being apprehensive that they should not recover if they stay in the country. They are in hopes that being at sea and change of air recover them, which I think it doth; for maybe great fears and hopes operate very much upon such sort of people in point of health. Pray send me the King's letter of 22 April, 1697, as to execution of the Acts of Trade, for there was no duplicate of it with your letter.
As to Governor Copley's debt to the country, I have ordered the Attorney-General to take proceedings to recover it from his administrators. I send an abstract, taken from the Journals of Council, concerning the arms and ammunition which I found here and those which I have sent for. The Collectors, Naval Officers and Receivers were all sworn to their accounts before me, that the full sum might be ascertained and expended in the purchase of arms and ammunition according to the Royal instructions. The first account was sent by Captain Peter Paggan, merchant, and the last by one Isaac Milner, by Paggan's order. They are to send in ammunition by the next shipping, and for fear there should be any want of them I sent my own bills for £250, though I had not received above half that sum on account of the duty of the three-pence per hogshead. I send copies of Orders in Council concerning the militia, which I think does not deserve the name, for I find it impossible to have any tolerable one as the Act now is, but I intend to try the Assembly once more for a new Act. The reason why I have not given particular commissions is that I cannot find men enough qualified by loyalty, courage and diligence to be officers. Those who are obliged by law to be either horse, foot or dragoons, and to have arms and ammunition of their own, cannot amongst them all equip a twentieth part. Four hundred men were ordered to be drawn out of the militia last fall, on account of Indians, and to be in readiness upon all extraordinary occasions, but I have not yet heard that they are completed in all respects. I do not think it will be for the King's service at present to alter my method concerning the militia, lest, if they have particular commissions from me, they should use that power to the King's prejudice; for I think some have endeavoured to raise a rebellion, or at least have made very great disturbances. The account of this will be seen in several depositions in the last journal of the Council. Some think Lord Baltimore will have his government again and others hope so. These things have happened here from the first announcement of peace. For some were very willing that the King should deliver them from popery and slavery and protect them in time of war, but now that by the King's valour and conduct all these troubles and fears are ceased, they are not satisfied with his government because it curbs in their former atheistical, loose and vicious way of living and debars them of their darling illegal trade. The papists join with them, as do also all the Jacks, both jurors and non-jurors, but think themselves may be esteemed such sort of Jemmys, and I suppose some of the Quakers too. If Lord Baltimore should be restored, they hope that as formerly these things would be suffered. For I suppose that Lord Baltimore must comply with the Jesuits in point of religion, who no doubt will take more vigorous resolutions and put them in action for the promotion of their damnable tenets. I believe that Lord Baltimore will consider that the best, if not the only way to promote his temporal interest here will be not to disturb them in their illegal trade or other ill practices lest, if they cannot enjoy them under his Government, they may assume it to themselves, which will be no difficult thing for them to do unless the King protect his Lordship. But whether it be advisable for the King to do so or not you can best judge; and I imagine that Lord Baltimore will not be against their being easy (as they call it) so long as the several branches of his revenue increase and are well paid. I fancy the dissatisfied people here mean to try whether by their own and their accomplices' ways they cannot get Lord Baltimore his Government again, and I think they might either be Governor themselves or have such a one as they might rule. I have observed that people in these parts are very much for having a native for Governor, and a great many of them are pretenders to the office. You can judge whether this will be for the interest of the King and of English trade. But I think there are odds on nature's side that they will much rather act to the contrary. I am almost morally assured that when the King announces that he will keep the Government, there will be an end of these disturbances. Meanwhile I hope that, as in the past, I shall be able to preserve the King's Government against all enemies public and private. Without vanity and with a good deal of truth I affirm that I have had a very troublesome and chargeable Government in every respect. I look upon nothing that I have done as other than my duty; I am sorry that I have been unable to do more, but it is not from want of a willing heart.
By Sir Thomas Laurence I sent you as exact an account as I could then of the receipts and expenditure of public money. Pray pardon me that you had them not, nor so complete, before, for I have few proper and useful tools to work with. I have not only to give orders to sundry officers but to see them execute them, and it may be give them directions therein; and I hope that no other Governor is in the like unhappy circumstances. I enclose fuller accounts from George Plater and George Muschamp than those previously transmitted. The several sums in the accounts which were paid to me are repayments in several small sums for a few bills of exchange; and though I was out of my money some time, I received no interest for it—rather some trouble and expense. Since I have been here I have received no present of tobacco or money from the country, and they have only allowed me £96 10s. 0d. for house-rent. Moreover, during the three years and a half that I have been here, the country has saved the charge of a Council Chamber, the Council always meeting at my house. The Governor of Virginia has £150 for house-rent, and the country pays £25 a year rent for a Council Chamber. I hope that the peace has made an end of assisting New York; but if Lord Bellomont calls upon me, your orders therein shall be obeyed. I have not yet been able to fulfil your orders as to laying down the boundary between Maryland and Pennsylvania, for King James's Order in Council was not with your duplicate nor in Mr. Penn's letter to Colonel Markham. I suppose they underwent the fiery trial in North Carolina [that is, were burned with the packets carried by H.M.S. Swift]. I have heard that Lord Baltimore was tricked by Mr. Penn about the Order in Council, for according to Lord Baltimore's patent the bounds of Maryland are beyond that line. Whether you will examine further into the affair is not for me to dispute. I enclose copies of several papers received from Colonel Robert Quarry, also of one from Mr. Moore and of my own commission for appointing Judge, Advocate, Marshal and Registrar in Maryland, Pennsylvania and West Jersey. But I think that the Court of Admiralty, which the King has ordered to be established in Pennsylvania, will be of no use, if the Act which was lately passed there is to be of any force. I send a copy of it, with some queries attached to it, also the report of the law-officers upon the last querry, and the opinions of some of the Council and Justices thereupon. The form of the said law (if it deserve the name) seems to me somewhat extraordinary, for I do not find that it is enacted by anybody, nor words to that effect; but there is great pretence of securing the King's interest, especially in the matter of tobacco, which I am glad to see they own, as also that there may be such a thing as illegal trade in the province. By the wording of the instrument, too, it seems to me that no law made in England should be of force in Pennsylvania, even though the Plantations are named in such law, unless they gave a function to it by way of caution to their spiritualistic brethren. Perhaps they are of opinion that because they have pretended to add new penalties to the Acts of Trade their doing so may be as the grass to hide their snake; "but I think it is one with rattles, by which he is "easily discovered and then as easily destroyed." I have observed that a great many people in these Colonies, especially in those under proprietors and in Connecticut and Rhode Island, think that no law of England ought to bind them without their own consent; for they foolishly say that they have no representative sent from themselves to the Parliament in England, and they look upon all laws made in England, that put any restraint upon them, as great hardships. I shall endeavour to get all the laws, ordinances and proclamations of Pennsylvania and West Jersey to send to you, but I fear it will be difficult to obtain them if they know they are for strangers; for Mr. Penn writes that Mr. Moore's and Captain Snead's corresponding with me is villainous in them and not well in me. All my public correspondence with them has been concerning illegal trade, pirates, etc., and I think it my duty to continue it until I have your commands to the contrary. And I mean to keep copies of them, because I think I ought to have them, since the King has empowered me, upon vacancies, to appoint a judge, and to see whether any of these things concern the King's interest in general and this province in particular. If this Pennsylvanian law be in force, it would be an example for the other Proprietary Governments to follow; and upon the like occasions they may enact others, repugnant to the laws of England. And I humbly beg leave to make this proposition—that all Governors in this part of the world, whether commissioned by the King or by proprietors, or elected, as in Connecticut and Rhode Island, be obliged to give security for due performance of the trust reposed in them, and in particular for due observance of the oaths required of them by the late Act for preventing frauds; that they take no rewards directly or indirectly from pirates and privateers and that they neither encourage, harbour, nor protect them, but will, by all lawful means, do their utmost to apprehend and secure them, and that they be obliged to take an oath to this effect under the same penalties as the Acts of Trade have provided, in case the Governor refuse to take the oath or break it afterwards. For it may so happen that some Governors get more by illegal trade, pirates and privateers than their Governments are worth, or, as the saying is, make their fortunes at once when they see such ways and means. When the Assembly meets I shall lay before them your letter of 21 March last, also the Act for restraining pirates, and shall do my utmost to pass such an Act here.
I am sorry that you should have so just cause to write of the confusion of the laws in this province. I assure you that I have several times proposed to the Delegates to appoint proper persons to revise them, but this they would not do. I suppose they had the change of Government in their heads, and thought that this would cost money of which they would get none. They once appointed a committee to do something towards revision in the interval of Assembly, but it never met, and if it had, it would not have done much, for we have no men qualified for such an undertaking. Still, in obedience to your orders, I have employed three of the best clerks I could get, who are now copying out (on the paper sent by you) all the laws passed in Governor Copley's time and my own, and I hope to have the body of laws finished in a month, for I attend them daily. I have also for the last two years refused to revive these temporary laws which were enacted before; but at first I found it absolutely necessary for the King's service to revive some of them, so I hope you will pardon me if what I have done herein should not at present be agreeable to your orders. All your commands in future shall be punctually obeyed. I sent to you by Sir Thomas Laurence the original list of taxables, divided into freemen, servants and negroes, with their religions; but finding them to be very imperfect I have given orders for new returns of these, of men employed in places of public trust, and of the number of ships and seafaring men. But they have never been used to such returns, and the officers are mostly very negligent or incapable; and this is why I have not yet been able to send them to you. I hope the Commissioners of Customs will do something in the Assembly's address for remission of forfeits in Navigation Bonds, and then no doubt, as you write, you will take all care of it when it comes before you. I am sending the Commissioners copies of the Pennsylvanian Act and of Colonel Quarry's letters, for he told me that they had ordered him to give an account about the Admiralty, etc. I shall do my best to redress the evil of people taking up larger tracts of land than they can cultivate; but, the soil in this province being Lord Baltimore's, I have no power from the King concerning it. I shall, however, lay the matter before the Assembly and endeavour to redress the grievance by some Act or ordinance. In "Virginy" I think it may easily be done for the future. When I was Lieutenant-Governor there I found among Lord Effingham's instructions a clause dealing with the subject and directing certain grants, in certain circumstances, to be voided. This instruction I caused to be recorded in the Provincial Court (where all petitions for land must be made) and refused patents to those whom I found not qualified to take up land according to it. If any have taken up land contrary to the tenor of this instruction (as is undoubtedly the case of most of the great tracts in Virginia) might not the Attorney-General prosecute them? But I would suggest that the Attorney and Solicitor-General in England should give their opinion hereon, for, alas! few or none of those that practice as lawyers in these parts know anything of the matter. When I was in Virginia I heard that it was a common practice for persons who would take up land according to the conditions of plantations (viz., fifty acres for every person imported) to buy rights, as they called them, from the Clerk of the Secretary's office. Sometimes the Clerk purchased them of those who were really imported, other times he would set down persons' names of his own inventing, and sometimes those. who brought names to register on account of the fifty acres, would do so too. I think a person was once found out through pretending to register the names of the chief gentlemen in Kent, the Clerk being either of that county or remembering their names. No doubt several such cheats have passed undiscovered, and the names of those who have been really imported have been used several times. Another way to make those who hold great tracts of land quit hold of them will be to oblige the Auditor, with or without help, to find out the exact number of acres that every person holds and make those who have paid for less than they have, pay up their arrears. This they ought to do by law, and then no doubt some of them would be forced to quit some of their lands and the King's revenue from quit-rents would be augmented. The Auditor has 7½ per cent. for taking an account for the sheriffs, and the sheriffs have 10 per cent. for receiving the quit-rents in tobacco; and the Auditor sells the tobacco afterwards for ready money or good bills of exchange. When I was in Virginia I found that the quit-rents were sold privately and most of them bought by the Councillors, but in my last year I gave notice at the Provincial Court that whoever gave most for them might have them. They sold that year for more in the hundred than they did before, and I suppose will always do so when so exposed to sale, for I found that this method gave great satisfaction, even as the other did the contrary.
When I send you the book of laws now preparing, I shall endeavour to send also the draft of one for a general pardon, and shall follow your instructions as to the two women guilty of murder, but I hear that one of the two is escaped from custody. Since you are unwilling to propose the establishment of any new place, such as that of Solicitor-General here, I shall endeavour to make Mr. William Dent some other satisfaction for his great services in that station. For he has had a very troublesome time of it, and no doubt has lost very considerably by his practice; and I dare affirm that, had he not been employed for the King, the King's affairs would have suffered much not only for want of him but from his being on the other side. Before next month be out I expect to have from every county an account of the persons who have died of this last distemper. I compute the number roughly at from eight hundred to a thousand; but now, thank God, the distemper is quite over. There have been imported this summer 396 negroes from Guinea, 50 from Virginia, and 20 from Pennsylvania which came thither from Barbados. By the middle of next month I hope to know certainly the number of servants imported, which may be six or seven hundred, chiefly Irish. If next year, or within two or three years, the like number of inhabitants should die and as many Irish and negroes be imported (especially the first, who are most if not all papists) it may be of dangerous consequence to Maryland, and also to Virginia, which, I hear, is in the same circumstances. They might make great disturbances if not a rebellion, because these are very open countries and they may have easy communication with one another near the falls of Potomac. And in each province they might do it the easier since it is the common practice for them on Saturday nights and Sundays, and on two or three days at Christmas, Easter and Whitsuntide, to go and see one another even at thirty or forty miles distance. I have several times, both here and in Virginia, met negroes both single or six and seven together in the night time. Most of the negroes speak English and most people have them for domestic servants; the better sort may have six or seven in these circumstances, and there may be not above one English. They send the negro men and boys about the country where they have business, and negroes commonly wait on them to all public places, so that the negroes then learn all the public and private roads of the country and circumstances. The Irish servants have more privileges, and I don't know but they may confederate with the negroes; and in the summer they may keep out in the woods about the frontiers, which are very thinly inhabited, but are overrun by a great many people's stocks of cattle and hogs, which would supply them with victuals. There are also many swamps in those parts which they might fortify; and it would be very difficult and dangerous to force them out. If such things should happen, even the subduing of them would be a great charge and loss to the country in general and to their masters in particular. I have put the Delegates in mind of these things and shall do so again, in order to obtain a law to prevent negroes and servants from rambling abroad.
It is supposed that there will be left both in Virginia and Maryland goods enough to purchase and ships to carry away half the next crop of tobacco. There have been very great rains of late which will probably drown some quantity of the tobacco, particularly in the low lands (which form half of the eastern shore), as also spoil some of the ripe and forward; but the greater part of it is latter tobacco, so that unless there be favourable weather for above a month the crops here will be indifferent. By all accounts all the provinces on this continent have also been overstocked with ships and goods from England, so that in some places goods are sold for less than they cost them in England. Both here and in Virginia English goods are very cheap and tobacco pretty dear, and ships go at very low freight; so I need not urge my former request for a quantity of ships and goods. Pardon me for observing that Mr. Penn's chief insinuating reason "that the 10 per cent. laid on goods here "hindered the importation of English goods into Penn-"sylvania," now appears (like some of his others) to be none at all. As to his saying that it is a partial law, I hope that the enclosed copy of an Act and of a minute thereon will satisfy you to the contrary. The Act for the ten per cent. expires next May. On enquiry I find that the English West Indies are also over-stocked with ships and goods, and indeed that the English are supposed to have over-stocked their markets wherever they trade. If this be so, my countrymen may not have played the politic part, yet they have showed how rich they are; and I hope that it will be publicly noticed, especially in France, that after so long, bloody and expensive a war and the loss of so many ships, they have been able to furnish all parts with more ships and goods than enough. In some sort I think the trade of this year in respect of the war may be compared to the great fire of London, and with the sudden building of it much finer than before. In reading one of the monthly Mercuries I was very sorry to find that both from east and west France they were designing to send great settlements to the Mississippi [Maschasipi]. Having lately read Hennepin's travels into those parts I find that if they settle that river, that and the river of Canada will encompass all the English dominions here. If they should get all the Indians on their side or have force enough to beat or overawe those that will not join them, they may be very troublesome to all our frontier plantations. I had an account from some Chaovenon Indians (whose country lies to south-west of South Carolina) and from a Frenchman who came with them and was with M. Lasalle the journey when he was killed, that the French had some settlements west-southerly, not above two hundred miles from the falls of Potomac. I got one of the chief Indians to chalk out the way to those settlements, to the Mississippi, and down to the Bay of Mexico. I had one who with the help of the Frenchman made a small rude draught with the pen, which I find in some sort agrees with Hennepin's maps; and I found on page 250 of his book that he had a description of a hundred leagues of country from an Indian, which he had found to be very exact. I fear that, now that there is peace, the French will be able to damage these countries more than in war. If they cannot be prevented from settling in the Mississippi, I suggest that encouragement may be given to the inhabitants of these countries or to any in England, so that they may be able to furnish the inland Indians with goods in such quantity and so cheap that they may take the trade from the French or prevent their increasing it, and may make settlements among the Indians, as the French do, and build vessels upon their lakes.
By the latter end of next month I suppose that all the ships which load this year's tobacco will be sailed, and the various officers will be able to make up their accounts for transmission to you by one of the last ships. In the Journal of the Council (the place is marked F) are copies of letters sent by myself and Council to Sir E. Andros about Coode, Slye, Mason and Clark, and other documents. If such persons as these be suffered to live in a neighbouring province, especially one under the King's immediate government, even when desired to be sent back to another province for trial, it will be a great encouragement to mutinous and rebellious fellows. The Proprietors and elective Governments will doubtless use this as a precedent upon the like occasions, for it will be an extraordinary thing when these provinces are without such sort of persons as Coode, who, I think, is a diminutive Ferguson in point of government, and a Hobbist or worse in point of religion, Slye is a mimic Goodman for amours, but cannot get himself out of debt. Mason is a great pretender to honesty, but has cheated and oppressed most that he has had opportunity to treat so. Clark is a mighty pretender to law, especially to Magna Charta, for he was one of the great incendiaries in the House of Delegates, especially about the last Act for Religion, for he drew it and would insert that clause about the liberties and properties of the subject, though he knew the former Act had been disallowed for containing such a clause. From working at the hoe he presumed to take upon him the noble profession of the law, and in his pleading he is very confident, impudent and "balling." I have an account that he is not honest to his clients. I beg that, if these or other such persons should accuse me to you, they may be obliged to sign their charges and give security, for Coode and Slye owe more than they are worth, especially Slye, who with much shirking keeps out of jail. Mason and Clark have very inconsiderable estates. Thus, when I have cleared myself, which I hope to do, I may have my remedy at law against them. It is one of Coode's principles "Fling a great deal of dirt and some will stick," and no doubt they agree with him herein. I do not pretend to be infallible nor to be wise at all times. for all men err and have faults, yet I dare affirm to you that my faults are of the understanding, not of the will. Several times I have not been able to get three of the Council together, so finding it to be absolutely necessary, I have called up Major John Hammond who lives within three miles of this place, Captain Richard Hill who lives just by the town, and sometimes Mr. Thomas Tasker who lives about thirty miles away. Without appointing these gentlemen I must either have left the King's business undone for want of three Councillors or must have done it with the assistance of one or two Councillors only. I ask your pardon for it. Signed, Fr. Nicholson. P.S.—Pray send me a good number of printed proclamations for forbidding the King's subjects to take service with foreign princes. 20 large pp. Endorsed, Recd. 10 Nov. Read 18 Nov., 1698. Entered in Board of Trade. Maryland, 9. pp. 318–361.
760. I. List of Acts and Journals transmitted by Governor Nicholson with the foregoing letter. 1 p. Endorsed, Recd. 10 Nov., 1698.
760. II. List of other papers also sent with the foregoing letter. 1 p. Endorsed as No. I.
760. III. Copy of a letter from Captain Bostock, R.N., to Governor Nicholson. Jamestown, Virginia, 28 June, 1698. I am sorry to hear that my letters of January and February last have not reached you acquainting you of my arrival here, and of the accident that happened to my ship, together with the circumstances which induced me to stop at Point Comfort. As soon as I had ascertained where she was driven on shore in North Carolina, the damage she had suffered and the burning of your papers by those barbarous people, I desired your assistance for getting her off. I hope that you will not impute this miscarriage to my neglect, for at all times I have informed you of my proceedings and I have used every effort to get the ship off, but without the success that I hoped for. I had not the assistance that might have been procured, and the Government of Carolina protested their inability, though not so good as their promise at first. I have therefore been unable to get the ship off, but, her hull being whole, I have saved whatever I could of her furniture and stores and brought them to Virginia, where I shall place them in the Governor's hand as a proof of the service that I have done. I wish I could have done more, but have given all over and discharged my men, and am preparing to sail to England in a few days. I wish Providence had ordered things other ways. I thought myself happy in the proceedings of my voyage and had hoped to be of service to you, but this being ended I retire home. I should be glad to have waited on you, but my misfortunes hinder; the season for shipping will be over shortly, and it is of importance to me to get home. 1¼ pp. Endorsed, Recd. 10 Nov. Read 22 Nov., 1698.
760. IV. Address of several masters of vessels to Governor Nicholson. In answer to your enquiry how the desertion of seamen may be prevented, we suggest a law imposing a severe penalty on all that entertain runaways and that a reward of fifty shillings be offered to any persons that will secure them, the reward being stopped out of the seamen's wages; and that meanwhile you issue a proclamation offering such a reward, which we will undertake to pay. The runaway sailors generally resort to Pennsylvania, where they are not only winked at but encouraged; while the privateers that resort to that Government are a temptation to them to go thither. Twenty-seven signatures.
Proclamation of Governor Nicholson forbidding the entertainment of deserted seamen, laying down regulations to prevent it, and enjoining strict execution thereof on the magistrates. The whole, 2 large pp. Endorsed as No. III.
760. V. Extracts from several letters from Robert Quarry to Governor Nicholson.
Philadelphia, 9 July, 1698. Now as to Admiralty matters. You recommended to me the execution of the powers of my commission. As soon as I came here I found that Mr. Randolph had brought a commission for one Mr. Radney to be Registrar of Admiralty. He lives in Kent County, a hundred miles from hence. He also brought a commission for Mr. Robert Webb to be Marshal, who is not at present in the province, so that at this rate it is impossible for the King's business to be done. But the Advocate, the most essential officer of the Court, is in England, and, as I am informed, never designs to come to these parts of the world. I have spoken to Mr. John Moore, who is the only fit person to serve the King's interest here, and I find him very willing, notwithstanding all the difficulties of fees, provided the Commissioners of Customs will find some way to answer the charge and trouble of it. See his letter enclosed. I am sure that you will find some means of removing these difficulties, so that the current of justice may go on. There are four businesses depending which cannot be determined until the Court of Admiralty is settled, but how or when that can be done I know not. For besides all these obstructions there is one far greater, which nothing but the King's authority can remove. I mean their late Act of Assembly, which has removed the obligation of an oath in all matters relating to the Acts of Trade, etc., though in a former law they had made a proviso for it which is by this law repealed. They have further enacted that when any bill, plaint or information shall be exhibited or commenced against any person in any Court to be held in this province for breach or non-observance of the Acts of Trade and Navigation in any case whatsoever, the manuer of trial shall be according to course of Common Law and known practice of the Courts of Record in Pennsylvania, by twelve jurymen summoned by the Sheriff of the County where the offence is committed. By this Act my Commission of Admiralty is quite destroyed, for I cannot allow trial by jury, nor by this law can they suffer the Court to try without a jury; so that my hands are tied until the Government at home gives me power and instructions. I will give you no particulars, but if you peruse the Act you will find that all this and more is done under the specious pretence of serving the King's interest. No doubt, if you will state the case fully to the Council of Trade and the Commissioners of Customs, effectual measures will be taken to preserve the King's right and prevent all illegal trade in this place. If they give me power and instructions to act, I am sure that I have power enough to assert the King's authority in opposition to their pernicious Act and all others that they shall make. The King's affairs here require a speedy decision. I must remind you that no man is so well qualified to act as Advocate as Mr. John Moore, and it would be good service to recommend him to the Commissioners of Customs. 2 pp. Encloses,
John Moore to Governor Nicholson. Philadelphia, 1 July, 1698. My best thanks for offering to me the commission of Advocate in Pennsylvania and territories and West Jersey, but it is my duty to lay before you the difficulties that will beset the assertion of such a power. First, there is the general averseness of the people to any officer who is not of their own stamp and set. The whole Government (so far as it is in their disposal) is made up of men who have no better qualification than that; and to secure it to themselves they have by a law of their own dispensed with the security of an oath; and from the judges to the jury and so to the meanest officer, even in capital crimes, a solemn promise to perform their trust is sufficient. Should they answer that they made a proviso for taking an an oath where the Acts of Trade were concerned, it is answered that they did so, but as soon as they found themselves involved therein and pinched by it they for a valuable consideration (as their Act shows) procure a revocation of that clause and set themselves free again. Against such people so guarded, what service can I or any other do the King here? Secondly, as to the state of the Admiralty Court. Foreseeing that they would not be able to mould things there to their own humours (the trust being lodged in Colonel Quarry), they have with much assurance (the boldest stroke they have yet made) passed an Act entitled an Act to prevent frauds, etc. (a specious preamble), containing a clause that all trials upon the Acts of Trade shall be tried by a jury summoned by the Sheriff. This flies in the face of the Admiralty jurisdiction and, in terms, is repugnant to the recent Act for preventing frauds as well as to others. The Act of Parliament aforesaid expressly provides that seizures or forfeitures may be tried and recovered in the Court of Admiralty, and the care taken by the Commissioners of Customs to get officers established for that Court in America inclines me to believe that the King's interest will be safer and more impartially decided there than in the other Courts. By this time any man would believe that these people are resolved to do what is good in their own eyes, notwithstanding Acts of Parliament, Great Seals, etc. I could also point out to you that the Advocate's office has neither salary, fees nor perquisites attached to it (and little likelihood to get any here); but he that engages in such difficulties needs the countenance and protection of Government and wherewithal to support such a post. Indeed (though the argument ill becomes me) if some person, who can be trusted, be not appointed and encouraged, all the expense which the King has been at will be ineffectual, and his officers worn down and browbeaten. Pray state the matter to the Commissioners of Customs that a competency may be settled to support the burden and charge—for who goes to war (and such it is) at his own expense?—or that some office, such as the collectorship of this port, be annexed to the post. I need not add to you how the Advocate's business will interfere with my practice, since upon all seizures the defendants are lavish in fees, their all being not seldom at stake. If a salary can be obtained I will cheerfully accept the post, and study to promote the trust committed to me. 2 pp.
Robert Quarry to Governor Nicholson. Philadephia, 9 July, 1698. Since my last a sloop has come in from New York belonging to one Mr. Moorhead, a Scotchman, with about £1,000 worth of East India goods belonging to the pirates from Madagascar. The Collector having advice of it seized her when she came to Newcastle and took out of her five barrels of rich goods. What bargain or composition he made for the rest I know not. Having done so, he admits the sloop to entry and gives the merchant a certificate and cocquet, and after all this wrote to the Collector of Philadephia to seize her, which he did, and then asked my advice. I told him that he should seal the hatches, take the sails ashore, and put an officer on board, which he has done. I never knew such roguery and folly. There is a sad clamour in the town that the last seizure was illegal, since the sloop was admitted to entry and had her certificate. I know not what to do, the matter being none of my business till it comes before me judicially, nor can I hold a court without the officers. I would try the force of their late pernicious Act. I had a few lines from Mr. Randolph at New York, to whom I had written to come here, though he tells me he is just going to Carolina. I hope that he will come on this occasion and then we shall come to some decision. I am the subject of the clamour, which of course I value not. If you have any books of precedents or practice of Courts of Admiralty kindly lend them to me. 1 p.
Copy of Letters Patent to the Governor of Maryland empowering him to appoint officers of the Courts of Admiralty in Maryland, Pennsylvania and West Jersey. 26 June, 1697. 1½ pp.
Robert Quarry to Governor Nicholson. Philadelphia, 21 July, 1698. I daily expect your summons to Annapolis that I may give you an account of things here. The King's interest was never so much abused as now, not only by those in the Government but by the very persons who are salaried and employed by it. The story, put shortly, is this. One Collector of Newcastle takes all the goods which he seized out of the Scotch sloop to be his own, and accordingly, as I am informed, has embezzled and disposed of them. I design to be there next Friday, to obtain certain information for you. The week after the Government had passed their pernicious Act for preventing frauds, etc., some of the chief persons of the Government, who made the Act and all of the Council, shipped a considerable quantity of tobacco without entry, duty paid or security given. It was shipped off in a vessel for Newfoundland, and I learn that Mr. Shippey is the person chiefly concerned; but I hope to gather more particulars before I see you. It is very uneasy to me that I am not in a post which enables me to check these abuses. Mr. Randolph is in New York, and I asked him to come here, but he tells me that he must go to Bermuda. Mr. Jasper Yeats, who has a great honour for you and was the first that gave me a hint of the Newfoundland ship, desired me to inform you that there is a sloop gone round to Annapolis laden with wine, rum and other goods, the greatest part on his own account. She is Maryland built and therefore, by Maryland law pays less duty on rum than a foreign built ship. He begs that the officers may not exact more duty than the law directs. 1 p.
Edward Randolph to the Governor of Pennsylvania. Philadelphia, 30 July, 1698. Some time since I left certain bonds with Colonel Quarry, and have his receipt for them. He is ready to produce them when you appoint an Attorney-General to prosecute them to effect, and will put them into your hands when you are approved as Governor by the King, according to the Act for preventing frauds. When they are prosecuted I desire that the bond of Gustavus Hamilton, who loaded tobacco in Pennsylvania two or three years ago, may be prosecuted likewise. ½ p.
Robert Quarry to Governor Nicholson. Philadelphia, 6 August, 1698. I shall assert the power of my commission in opposition to all their pernicious laws and law-makers as soon as ever I can get the officers of the Court settled, and some advice and instructions from you. I hope to attend you at the end of the month. Mr. Randolph was here last week, but is returned to New York. He was very barbarously treated here by Governor Markham, apprehended by constables and kept in custody, for no other reason that I could find but sending him the letter that precedes this. I had some warm discourse with him on the subject matter of it, after which he discharged him, but not till he had forced Mr. Randolph to give up the King's bonds to him. If the Government at home will suffer the King's officers to be thus treated in Pennsylvania, it is very strange to me. Mr. Penn in my presence promised him that all imaginable respect should be paid him by this Government, but I find all his promises alike performed. I am satisfied that the paragraph you mention to all intent makes the law null and void; and I am sure that the Tenth Article of the instructions sent to Governors of Proprietary Colonies will require Mr. Markham's best skill to excuse himself from the charge of perjury, for passing that Act after he had sworn to the Article. But we may see how powerful a thing eightpence per ton on shipping is. The Governor is pleased to give pirates their liberty when committed for piracy. He could give no reason, except that they would be forthcoming when called for. He paid them a visit when they were in gaol, in his coach, and when they had paid their compliments to him they were let out. I have a whole history to tell you. 1 p. The whole, 9 pp. Endorsed, Recd. 10 Nov., 1698.
760. VI. Copy of the Act of Pennsylvania for preventing frauds and regulating abuses in the plantation trade. The points open to criticism are noted in the margin; and the clause, which enacts that offences against the Acts of Trade and Navigation shall be tried by jury, has written on the page over against it an opinion of certain officers of Maryland that it is unnecessary and illegal. The whole. 11 pp. Endorsed as No. v.
760. VII. Extract from the Journal of the House of Delegates of Maryland, containing two resolutions that the merchants both of New York and Pennsylvania shall pay the 10 per cent. duty. Copy of an Act to explain the Act for the imposition of a duty of 10 per cent. on all European commodities exported from the Province. 2 pp. Endorsed as No. IV. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 3. Nos. 52, 52 I.–VII.]
[Aug. 20.] 761. Memoranda of three sets of Journals and accounts sent with the foregoing letter of 20 August and received 10 Nov., 1698. [Board of Trade. Maryland, 3. Nos. 53 I.–III.]