America and West Indies: January 1702, 16-20

Pages 27-36

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 20, 1702. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1912.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. All rights reserved.


January 1702

Jan. 16. Mr. Mitford Crowe presented a letter from Mr. Secretary Vernon [see preceding]. Directions were given accordingly.
Two Members of the Hudson's Bay Company, with their Secretary, acquainted the Board that, in pursuance of the letter to their Dep. Governor, the Company are preparing a state of their affairs, which they hope will be ready to lay before their Lordships on Tuesday.
Mr. Hodges, applying for a copy of the late Representation upon his complaints, was referred to the Council Office.
Letter to the Board of Ordnance signed and ordered to be sent to Mr. Merrit.
Order of Council, Jan. 1st, upon the petition of Isaac Hawkins, read, and directions given for preparing a Representation thereon. [C.O. 391, 14. pp. 288–295; and 391, 96. Nos. 9, 10.]
Jan. 15. 35. Minutes of Council of New York. Petition of Matthew Clarkson, praying a license to purchase about 1,000 acres of land more or less scituate near Demarez Creek, in Orange County, of the native Indians Proprietors thereof, granted, provided the purchase be returned to this Board within 12 months.
Committee reported that Le Coute's house [see Jan. 8], was damnified to the value of 40s. and two chests of tools broken open and near wholly taken away.
Patent granted to Abraham de la Noy, Sept. 18, signed.
Col. Abraham Depeyster having received an order from the honble. William Blaithwait, Auditor General of the Revenue of this Province, to adjust the account of his salary with the executrix of Col. Stephen Cortlandt, his late Deputy, had applied himself unto her in order thereunto, but that she hath refused to do the same, alleadging the impossibility thereof, the books of accounts of the publick revenue not being in her possession. Mrs. Cortlandt was ordered to appear, and was acquainted that the books of accounts had been always in the hands of the Collector, where she might have the perusal of them, when she thought fit, and that now they should be lodged in the hands of Col. Abra. Depeyster, the now Deputy Auditor, during the time that the said account was adjusting between them. Then Mrs. Cortlandt desired that the Gov. and Council would nominate some persons to be her assistants in the framing the account, and mentioned Col. Nicholas Bayard, her brother-in-law, and Mr. Matthew Ling of this City, merchants, Whereupon the Governor and Council do desire Col. Bayard and Mr. Ling to attend the Deputy Auditor General on her behalf at the adjusting the said account. Mrs. Cortlandt desiring an allowance for money her late husband had paid to Ducie Hungerford over and above the salary due to him for his office, the Governor and Council do also desire Col. Bayard and Mrs. Ling to attend the Deputy Auditor and the Receiver General together with Robert Walters, one of the Council, in relation to the account of moneys received by Ducie Hungerford. If they agree not, then the Auditor to be umpire.
Jan. 16. The Governor acquainted the Council that the reason of his convening them at this juncture was that he hath been informed that several of the Inhabitants of this Province have framed papers reflecting on the administration of this Government, that several of the Inhabitants and others, together with most of the soldiers of the garrison have been prevailed on to sign the same, which they did without knowing what conteined therein, being some of them informed that they should be freemen, some freemen of the City, and some freed by signing the said papers. The Council are of opinion that this matter may be of dangerous consequence to the peace of this Government and therefore ought to be further inquired into. Ordered that the matrosses of the Garrison, together with several of the corporals, serjeants and private centinels should be called into the Council Chamber severally and examined. Which being done it appeared that the papers signed were an Address to the King, an Address to the House of Commons, and an Address to the Lord Cornbury, complaining of the oppression of H.M. subjects of this Province. By some of the said oaths it appeared that Col. Nicholas Bayard and Samuel Bayard, his son, were the chief actors therein; that they in a private room, in the Coffee House of this City, had attended and offered the said papers to such persons who, by others of their accomplices, had been prevailed on to sign the same, which was subscribed chiefly by the most ignorant of the people, and almost generally without knowing the contents thereof. Others of the said Depositors set forth that John Hutchins, an Alderman and one of H.M. Justices of the Peace for the City and County of New York, who, keeping a publick house and retailing of strong liquors therein, had sent and invited the souldiers to his house, where they should have drink free cost, every one a double tankard of March beer, and that thereon, almost all the Garrison went to the said house, had drink free cost, and after drinking were told by Mr. Hutchins that they should be Freemen of the City of New York, if they would sign the said papers, which the[y] did, not knowing or so much as inquiring into the contents, some of the soldiers setting down the name of five or six others, and one of the soldiers declared that Hutchins telling him he should be a Freeman, if he would sign some papers Hutchins produced, he signed five papers, and after signing looked the papers over from bottom to top but could see nothing but a roll (as he called it) of names. Ordered that the Messenger of the Council do summons Hutchins to appear before this Board immediately. He being asked for the said papers or authentick copies of them, sayd that they were brought into his house by he knew not who and that several persons had signed them there, amongst which he himself had signed, and that they were taken from thence, but by whom he knows not. He was ordered to appear to-morrow and produce to this Board the three Addresses, on the penalty that shall ensue thereon; and that Col. Bayard and Samuel Bayard appear to-morrow at 11 o'clock.
Jan. 17. The latter appearing were desired to produce the papers mentioned above, which refusing to do, the same (as they alledged) being out of their power, and persisting that they had done nothing that was illegal, ordered that they give in security in 1,000l. each, with one security in 500l. to appear at next Supreme Court and answer to an indictment or information to be exhibited against them at the King's suit by the Attorney General, which they did before the Chief Justice in Council, and withdrew.
Alderman Hutchins appearing and not bringing the said papers or copies with him, but alledging his wife knew more of them than himself, she was sent for and on oath declared that she received them from Col. Bayard, and gave them about two days after to a negro, but whose negro it was, or who sent the negro, she knew not. Ordered that Capt. Hutchins appear on Munday and bring the said papers or copies with him at his peril. [C.O. 5, 1184. pp. 601–606.]
Jan. 16.
36. William Popple to William Penn. I have communicated your letter relating to the laws of Pennsylvania to the Lords Commissioners for Trade and Plantations; and their Lordships understanding thereby that you desire they should suspend their resolution upon those Acts, which are at present in the Attorney Generall's hands, untill the arrival of the same and some others which have been lately enacted at Philadelphia, they have ordered me to let you know that they are willing to suspend their resolutions upon the first mentioned Acts for some reasonable time and doe thereupon further direct that (in case it be not already done) you fail not to give effectual orders that the last mentioned Acts be transmitted to them with all possible expedition. [C.O. 5, 1289. p. 333.]
Jan. 16.
37. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Principal Officers of H.M. Ordnance. We have understood from Capt. Richards, the Engineer at Newfoundland, that the carrying on the work, intended for the security of that country and trade, is obstructed for want of materials and stores necessary for that service, and that he had endeavoured to engage the Masters of ships then there, by a writing, whereof the copy is here enclosed, to bring such quantities at their next return as each of them could conveniently, and sent home an Officer to represent the same; which Officer we doubt not will accordingly have applied himself to your Board, and laid that matter before you. Upon our endeavours to facilitate this design, Mr. Solomon Merrit has offerred that two ships lying in the River of Thames, bound for Newfoundland this season, shall take in about 150 tons, and that he will speak to other merchants trading thither, that they may assist in that work, and that he will write to Pool and Weymouth to know what tunnage may be depended upon there for Portland stone. We have therefore directed him to attend you with this letter that you may have the opportunity of conferring or treating with him as you shall find necessary for the advancement of so necessary a service in this important conjuncture. Signed, Stamford, Ph. Meadows, John Pollexfen, Mat. Prior. [C.O. 195, 3. pp. 26–28.]
[? Jan. 16.] 38. Attorney General to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I have perused two Acts of Antigoa referred to me Dec. 4:—
(1.) An Act to enable John Fry, junr., and George Thomas to sell 240 acres in the division of New North Sound for payment of taxes and settling the maintenance of Samuel Winthropp, a Minor, April 12, 1701. This, I conceive, is agreeable to Law and Justice and doth not contain anything prejudicial to H.M. Royal Prerogative.
(2.) An Act to enable Crawford, guardian of Elizabeth Rolt, sole daughter and heir of James Rolt, to sell 130 acres for payment of debts due thereon and for the maintenance of the said Elizabeth, Aug. 11, 1701. This, I conceive, as it is penned, will destroy the title of those that claim by conveyances made by James Rolt, even for valuable considerations, if any such were made, the sale to be made by virtue of this Act being thereby made good against all claiming under Elizabeth's father. But Mr. Richard Cary, having since the making of this Act purchased the lands to be sold by virtue thereof, and the same having been conveyed to him, he hath declared himself willing to disclaim all benefit by the said Act to prejudice any right that may be claimed under the said James Rolt other than by his heirs, and hath executed a deed for that purpose, to be registered in the Registry of the Island, which I send herewith, which if sent together with H.M. approbation of this Law, I am humbly of opinion H.M. approving thereof will not be prejudicial to any person. Signed, Edw. Northey. Endorsed, Recd. Jan. 16, Read June 2, 1702. 1½ pp. [C.O. 152, 4. No. 80; and 153, 7. pp. 442–444.]
Jan. 19. 39. Order of House of Commons. That the Council of Trade and Plantations do lay before this House an account of their proceedings for the improvement of Trade since their last account laid before this House. [C.O. 389, 14. p. 231; and 389, 37. p. 238.]
Bay House.
40. The Governor and Company of Adventurers of England trading into Hudson's Bay to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The French with all their sophistry and equivocation have not been able to disprove the Company's undoubted right to all Hudson's Bay, etc. Proceed to state the present melancholy prospect of their Trade and Settlement in Hudson's Bay. None of H.M. Plantations are left in such a deplorable state as those of this Company, for by their great losses from the French, both in times of Peace as well as during the late war, as well as the hardships they lie under by the Treaty of Ryswick, they may be truly said to be the only Mourners by the Peace. The only settlement they have now left in Hudson's Bay, of seven they formerly possessed, is Albany Fort, vulgarly called Chechecewan, in the Bottom of the Bay, where they are surrounded by the French on every side, viz. by their settlements on the Lakes and Rivers from Canada to the northward towards Hudson's Bay, as also from Port Nelson, alias York Fort, to the Southward. Besides this, the Company have by the return of their ship this year received certain intelligences that the French have made another settlement at a place called New Severn, twixt Port Nelson and Albany Fort, whereby they have hindered the Indians from coming to trade at the Company's Factory at the Bottom of the Bay, so that the Company have not received above one fifth part of the returns they usually had from thence, insomuch that the same doth not answer the charge of their expedition. The Company being by these, and other their former misfortunes reduced to such a low and miserable condition that without H.M. gracious favour and assistance they are no ways able to keep that little remainder they are yet possessed of in Hudson's Bay, but may justly fear in a short time to be deprived of all their trade in those parts, which is solely negotiated by the manufacturers of this Kingdom, humbly conceive they can no ways be safe from the insults and encroachments of the French, so long as they are suffered to remain possessed of any place in Hudson's Bay, and that, in order to dislodge them, which the Company are no ways able to do, a force of three men of war, one boome (bomb) vessel and 250 soldiers besides the shipp company will be necessary, whereby that vast tract of land, which is so great concern, not only to this Company in particular, but likewise to the whole Nation in general, may not be utterly lost to this Kingdom. Signed, Wm. Potter, Secy. Endorsed, Recd. Read Jan. 20, 170½. 1¾ pp. [C.O. 134, 2. No. 30; and 135, 3. pp. 103–107.]
Jan. 19. 41. Minutes of Council of New York. Several other persons being this day summoned to give evidence with relation to the said papers [see Jan. 15–17], it appeared that several Frenchmen, Aliens and several strangers, persons who had lately come from England and the adjacent Provinces, and were only passing thro' this Province to other Governments had signed the same, and several boys of 15, 16, and 17 years had also subscribed to them, not knowing what the contents thereof was, as they themselves on oath acknowledged, but were merely deluded thereto.
Alderman Hutchins attending [see Jan. 17], but not producing the papers, it was resolved that he hath, to the manifest disturbance of the peace of this Government, used diverse indirect practices to procure mutiny and sedition amongst the soldiers, and by false pretences and giving them quantities of strong liquors has drawn in numbers of them, prevailing with some to sign libels against the administration of the Government here under H.M., and with others to enter their names in rolls to be applied to such purposes as he should think fitting, in manifest contempt and violation of an Act of General Assembly of this Province, 1691, for the quieting and settling the disorders that have lately happened within this Province, and for establishing and securing H.M. present Government against the like disorders for the future, and ordered (nemine contradicente) that the High Sherif of New York do take into his custody the body of the said John Hutchins and him in the Common goale of this city in close custody to keep and secure until he shall be from thence delivered by due course of Law, and then a warrant issued accordingly.
Ordered that William Barns and Henry Fowler, two J.P.s of the County of Westchester, together with Isaac Denham, High Sherrif of the said County, appear before this Board on Thursday seavennight.
On examination of Edward Marshall on oath relating to the papers signed at Alderman Hutchins' house, it appeared that Hutchins offerred them to him to sign, and on perusal thereof he found his name subscribed thereto; that it was not his handwriting, nor he knows not nor hath heard of any man of the same name in the whole province.
Jan. 20. The Address of Col. Nicholas Bayard, Rip Van Dam, Phillip French and Thomas Wenham read and ordered to be entered in the Council Book [see April 16, ii.]. Then it was ordered that the said persons, who were attending without, should be called into the Council Chamber, where they being present, it was declared to them that they had in effect disowned the authority of the present Governor by denying that he had succeeded the Earl of Bellomont in this Government, and were severally required to produce to this Board the copies of the said papers they owned by the said Address to be in their possession, which they severally refusing to do, the Governor told them that they were ill-advised, and with the consent of the Council gave them time to produce to this Board the said papers till to-morrow morning, 10 of the clock.
Jan. 21. After several persons had been examined relating to their knowledge of or subscribing to the said papers, it appeared that some of the said papers conteined these heads, vizt. (1) That Abraham Gouverneur, the Speaker, was an alien; (2) that the Assembly had passed several Acts to the prejudice of the country; (3) that the Governor had assented to the said Acts by reason the Assembly had given him a present for so doing; (4) that the Assembly had given the Chief Justice a bribe to find Law and form for their illegal proceedings; (5) that the late Earl of Bellomont had putt out of offices the most ingenious and sensible men, and had putt in the scum of the people; (6) that the present Governor hath kept the most ingenious out of offices and the scumme of the people continue in the said offices, to the making the Government vile and cheap in the eyes of the people.
Then the Governor acquainted the Council that after they had rose yesterday he had thought proper to send the Address of Col. Bayard, etc., delivered to him yesterday, to the Attorney General, who had been present during the examination of the witnesses concerning the said papers, except only what was taken this day, for his opinion in Law therein, and had directed him to attend with the same. Whereupon the Attorney General was called into the Council Chamber and there delivered to the Governor his opinion under his hand, which was read and ordered to be entered :—Upon the whole my opinion in Law is (1) that neither the Address or Petition itself or any matter therein conteined is criminal or illegal; (2) that the refusal of the Petitioners at the Council Board to produce the copies of certain original Addresses mentioned in their petition, owned by them to be in their custody by their petition, also is not such a contempt to the Council or other offence against the Law for which the Petitioners may legally be committed. Signed, Sa. Sh. Broughton.
The Attorney General having been asked his reason and grounds for the said opinion, and offering no authority or reason in Law to justify the same, it is the opinion of this Board that he hath not discharged his duty as Attorney General.
Then Col. Bayard being called in and asked for the copies of the papers he was yesterday ordered to bring to this Board, he answered that he had not brought them with him, neither did he design to bring them, and Rip van Dam, Phillip French and Thomas Wenham likewise. Mr. French told the Council that they should see them one time or other, and that this method of forcing the papers from them looked not like liberty. Then the said persons being ordered to withdraw, it is the opinion of the Governor and whole Council that it has appeared by the oaths of several persons examined in Council that Col. Bayard by combination and conspiracy with John Hutchins, lately committed by this Board, together with several other disaffected persons to this H.M. Government, to the manifest disturbance of the peace of the same, by diverse indirect practices hath drawn in souldiers and others to sign scandalous libells, whereby they have endeavoured to render the past and present Administration vile and cheap in the eyes of the people, and he, Nicholas Bayard, hath incited the people to disown the present authority, and to cast off H.M. Government as it is now established. The Council have unanimously thought fit and do resolve that the said Nicholas Bayard be committed for High Treason, and ordered that the Clerk of the Council do prepare a warrant for that purpose immediately. It is also the opinion of this Board that Rip van Dam, Phillip French and Thomas Wenham have further time, till Monday morning next at 10 of the clock, to produce the said papers, who were called in and acquainted therewith.
The warrant for committing of Col. Bayard was signed and sealed by the Governor and the whole Council present. Col. Bayard and the High Sherif were called in, and the warrant read, and delivered to the High Sherif to execute. Then Col. Bayard desired liberty of appealing to H.M., and was answered that he might do as he thought fit in that matter. [C.O. 5, 1184. pp. 606–612.]
Jan. 20.
42. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Order of Council, Jan. 8, upon the administration of Justice in Barbados read. Directions given for inserting an Article in Governor Crowe's Instructions.
Order of Council, Jan. 8, as to two Acts of Barbados, read.
Order of Council, Jan. 8, relating to some firelocks for Nevis, read.
Order of Council, Jan. 1, appointing Mr. Jennings Secretary of Virginia, read.
Sir Stephen Evans, Mr. Samuel Clark, Mr. Young, Mr. Perry and other Members of the Hudson's Bay Company presented their Representation, which was read. Being asked what proportion they would bear of the charge of sending the ships and men wch. they desired for the recovery of the places that have been taken from them by the French in Hudson's Bay, and the support of their Trade there, they answered that the losses which they have sustained by the French in those parts, not only in time of war, but also in peace, have been so very great that they are scarce able to carry on any trade thither, and much less to bear any part of the charge of such an expedition. However, in further explanation of their proposal, they said that one 4th-rate and two 5th-rate men-of-war, with a bomb vessel and 250 land-men would in their opinion be sufficient to beat out the French from those parts; and that those ships (if sent) ought to part from hence about the middle of May, and, staying there till about Sept. 20 at farthest, they might be expected back here in October.
Letter from Lt. Gov. Bennet, Oct. 31, read. Letters etc. enclosed laid before the Board.
Progress made with Representation relating to the defence of the Plantations.
Order of the House of Commons, Jan. 19, requiring this Board to lay before them an account of their proceedings for the improvement of Trade since their last account, read. Directions given for collecting the heads of matters accordingly.
Jan. 21. Mr. Cater ordered to attend to-morrow upon Mr. Hawkin's petition.
Further progress made with Representation upon the state of defence of the Plantations.
Jan. 22. It being intimated to the Board that the Lord Grey arrived in town last night, ordered that the Secretary write to him. [See Jan. 22.]
Letter from Col. Codrington, Antego, Nov. 10, read. Directions given for preparing an answer. Ordered that the Secretary write to Mr. Sansom [see Jan. 22]. Papers transmitted by Col. Codrington laid before the Board.
Upon the petition of Thomas Elliot etc., a copy of the Solicitor General's Report, upon an Act of Antego relating to Blubber Valley Plantation, was ordered to be given to them.
Letter from Mr. Atwood, New York, Oct. 20, read. Directions given for an answer. Ordered also that notice be given to Mr. Sansom of what he writes relating to the Custom House Officers. Papers enclosed laid before the Board.
Upon consideration of the letter to be writ to the Governors of Plantations relating to appeals from the Admiralty Courts, ordered that the Secretary write to Mr. Burchet to desire a list of the Vice Admiralty Commissions for the Plantations which are now in force. [C.O. 391, 14. pp. 295–305; and 391, 96. Nos. 11–13.]
Jan. 20. 43. Minutes of Council of Barbados. 25l. paid to Edward Jordan, senr., and Abell Alleyne for a negro executed for robbing the latter.
25l. paid to Dr. William Springham, Wm. Hunt and Mrs. Sarah Martin for a negro executed.
Petitions of Nicholas Baker, Thos. Stewart, William Leak, William Chearmley, for drawbacks on wine turned sour, recommended to the Assembly.
There being very great scarcity of provisions at this time in this Island, Proclamation ordered to be published by beat of drum in the several Towns prohibiting the exportation of any provisions more than what is necessary for the ships' use.
Members of Council and Assembly ordered to be summoned to meet on Friday next upon some business of extraordinary moment tending to the safety of this Island, which requires expedition.
The Ministers and Churchwardens having returned their Collections, pursuant to the late Brief for the relief of poor Houses keepers and other indigent persons in the parishes of St. Phillip and St. Lucy, amounting to 915l. 3s. 9d., and 10l. 10s. promised and 70 bushels of Guinney corn etc., ordered that they pay their collections into the hands of James Chaband, there to remain till further orders from the Commissioners appointed to distribute the said Charity.
Petition of Joseph Charnock, Commander of the Patrol, setting forth that he had been very ill treated by Mrs. Agnew and her son Stewart when he was upon duty, read and referred to a Committee to enquire into. [C.O. 31, 6. pp. 121–125.]
Jan. 20.
New York.
44. Lt. Gov. and Council of New York to the Council of Trade and Plantations. We take the liberty to acquaint your Lordships with so much as we are yet able to discover of a conspiracy to raise sedition and mutiny here, and to defame the administration of the Government of this Province under H.M., which appears to have been carried on by a factious party, the head of which is one Col. Bayard, of foreign birth, a man never easy under an English Government, and others are very angry that they cannot break the Laws of Trade with impunity. That they might intimidate those who are intrusted with the administration they have used vile arts to seem formidable, though few of the English inhabitants of this Province, in comparison with the true English subjects who inhabit it, joyn with them, and the most are souldiers inveagled by false pretences, common seamen, sojourners, boys and such as have been only passengers, together with Dutch and Frenchmen, of which many are Aliens, some names are twice over. and very few of them understood what they signed to; they seek to impose upon H.M. and the House of Commons, as if they transmitted to them the complaints of the English of this Province. But wee assure your Lordships they have not applyed to us for redresse of any pretended greivances, nor do we know of any reall, and while we execute the authority entrusted with us to the best of our understandings, we doubt not of H.M. approbation and the protection of your Lordships. Signed, John Nanfan, A. D. Peyster, S. Staats, R. Walters, T. Weaver, W. Atwood. Endorsed, Recd. 14th, Read April 27, 1702. 2 pp. Annexed,
44. i. Abstract of preceding. 1 p.
44. ii. Copy of Minutes of Council of New York, Jan. 16, 170½. Endorsed, Recd. April 14, 1702. 2¾ pp.
44. iii. Copy of Minutes of Council of New York, Jan. 17, 170½. Same endorsement. 1¼ pp.
44. iv. Copy of Minutes of Council of New York, Jan. 19, 170½. Same endorsement. 1½ pp.
44. v. Copy of Minutes of Council of New York, Jan. 19, 170½. Same endorsement. ¾ p.
44. vi. Copy of a Warrant for the commitment of John Hutchins, Alderman of New York, concerned in the three Addresses against the present Administration in New York, Jan. 19, 170½. Signed, John Nanfan, A.D. Peyster, Saml. Staats, Robt. Walters, T. Weaver, Wm. Atwood. Same endorsement. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 1047. Nos. 33, 33.i.–vi.; and (without enclosures) 5, 1119. pp. 122–125.]