America and West Indies: July 1702, 13-15

Pages 463-472

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

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July 1702

[July 13.] 746. Capt. Haskett to the Council of Trade and Plantations. An account of the irregularities of the people and Government of New Providence, with their remedies. (1) Of their piracies: A short time before my arrival, Elding and some others fired on a New England vessel from Jamaica: the master and men betook themselves to their boat, upon which Elding and his followers seized the vessel and her lading and shared the same among them. Soon afterwards some of the same people with Saml. Thrift for their leader set on a brigantine of New York and by chasing and firing on her, ran her aground at the Isle Ethara, and drove the seamen out of her upon the land, plundered the vessel and carried the goods to Providence, calling them wreck-goods. About the same time one Curtis set out upon a voyage in a sloop with ten men all well armed, and about two months before my arrival brought in English and West India goods to the value of 1,200l. I finding that such goods went under the denomination of wreck-goods, made a strict enquiry. Some of the crew told me they found the wreck at Maregoana of the Bahama Islands, and some at another. To discover the truth, I sent out a sloop, which reported that at the said Island Maregoana they found a vessel burnt down to the water and near 20 men dead on the shore. There is no one, I think, but from such circumstances would have concluded that they had committed a barbarous robbery; of which Curtis was so conscious that he kept out at sea all the time of my Government. But not being able to get any positive evidence, I could not convict them. About a month before I was seized, a sloop of Elding's, Symms, a negro, commander, came into port after about 4 months' voyage among the Islands, who in her return found an English vessel that had lost her way, and whose men were ready to starve, upon which they plundered her, murthered the surgeon, and set the rest of the men adrift in a small boat and then fire to the vessel. All which appeared to me upon the oath of William Gibbons, one of the said sloop's crew, as also that Simms was the person that murdered the surgeon. Simms told me that the surgeon told him that he had undergone a great many hardships and was very ill, and desired that he would put an end to his life, and that thereupon out of charity he took a broad axe and cut off his head. I committed him to prison for the murder, and he was to have been tried three days after the time I was seized on. (2) Of their aiding pirates: Quotes affidavit of John Hotham of Elding's furnishing Capt. Hyne, the pirate, with provisions, etc. I have often, in the time of my Government, intercepted letters from known pirates, particularly Kelly, an Irishman, who shelters himself at St. Thomas and the Isle of Ash [Ile de Vache?], the last of which islands is only inhabited by pirates, to several of the inhabitants, to come off the place and furnish them with necessaries; and other letters were to know the strength and riches of the Island, that they might at a proper opportunity plunder it, and other letters were to be informed when they might privately come on shore for shelter and protection. Of their breach of Trade, etc: By shipping to Curesoa, St. Thomas's, etc., without entering or clearing. There are yearly twice as many commodities of the growth of the Islands privately shipped off and sold at foreign places by the connivance of the Governors and Collectors of Providence, without paying Customs, than do pay Customs. The Customs of braziletta, fustick and cotton wood only, if duly collected, will be near sufficient to maintain a force to defend the same. Of their seizing their Governors: Ever since the settlement they have seized and imprisoned their Governors, except Mr. Trott, who connived with them, etc. The first Governor, Jones, was three several times put in irons and as often released by the people, that he might each time more and more amend his behaviour towards them in permitting their illegal practices, which he accordingly promised to do. Governor Webb, for his kindness to one party, was so threatened by their contrary party, that he, for fear of their ill usage, made his escape privately from the place. Of their debauchery: They sometimes by consent and sometimes by force openly use the wives of each other, and several of them their sisters and daughters; and indeed, every man seems to have a property in every woman. And to these vices they constantly add swearing and drunkenness. The Minister often neglects all manner of Church duty, sometimes for two months together, and joins with them in their immoralities.
The only remedy is that H.M. should take possession of the Islands and send a Governor thither, with a convenient force to put the Law in execution, and prevent the Islands from falling into the hands of the enemy. The Ringleaders of these crimes ever since the last settlement were and are Read Elding, John Warren, Ellis Lightwood, and John Graves. Endorsed, Recd. 13th, Read July 14, 1702. 4½pp. Enclosed,
746. i. A particular account of money due to H.M. for forfeitures, bonds, etc., from the inhabitants of New Providence. Cf. July 8. Endorsed as preceding. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 1261. Nos. 135, 135. i.; and 5, 1290. pp. 114–127.]
July 13.
747. Council of Trade and Plantations to Lt. Gov. Bennet. Enclosing Order in Council, June 11, concerning Saml. Day (q.v.), and directing accordingly. Signed, Dartmouth, Robt. Cecill, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt. [C.O. 38, 5. pp. 240, 241.]
July 13. 748. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Papers referred to in Col. Codrington's Letter of May 10, relating to Col. Elrington's death, read. Copies ordered to be sent to Mr. Burchet.
Letter from Col. Codrington, May 14, read.
Letter to Capt. Bennet, with Order of Council of June 11, signed.
Letter from Col. Bayard, April 24, read.
Letter to Lord Cornbury, in answer to his of May 18, ordered to be prepared.
Capt. Hasket laid some papers before the Board.
Sir John Cook, H.M. Advocate General, attending, further queries were agreed upon and ordered to be sent to him with the desire of the Board that he advise with Mr. Attorney General thereupon, in order to the return of their joint opinion upon them. [See July 14 and 23.]
July 14. Order of Council, July 9, for draught of an Instruction to Lord Cornbury read.
Order of Council, July 9, directing Mr. Broughton to be restored to his office, read. Ordered that it be sent to Lord Cornbury in the letter ordered yesterday.
Order of Council, July 2, concerning Col. Bayard's Appeal, read and ordered that a copy be likewise sent to Lord Cornbury.
Mr. Lodwick acquainting their Lordships that the Assembly of New York had passed an Act to pay Leisler's debts, and praying that it might not be confirmed, a clause relating there-unto was added to the letter of Lord Cornbury. This letter was signed.
Letter, proposing Mr. Morton for the Council of Jamaica, signed.
Order of Council, July 2, approving an Act of Barbados, read.
The Memorial and the Account of Money due to H.M. from the Inhabitants of New Providence, received from Capt. Hasket, read. Copies ordered to be sent to Mr. Lowndes.
July 15. Letter from Lord Cornbury, May 3, read.
Mr. Blathwayt acquainted the Board about some Bills of Exchange drawn by Capt. Nanfan [as July 16]. Letter to Lord Cornbury ordered accordingly.
Mr. Birch attending with William Sussex and Thomas Carey, who offered to be his sureties in 2,000l. as Deputy Governor of the Bahama Islands, he was told that he should have notice when their Lordships should be ready to receive his security. Meantime he was desired to lay before the Board his Commission and Instructions.
Capt. Hasket presented to the Board a draught of the Island of Providence, and desired their Lordships to suspend their report to H.M. relating to Mr. Birche's having H.M. approbation as Governor of the Bahama Islands, for he was going down to all the Proprietors in the Country, to endeavour to persuade them to withdraw their Commission to Birch, and to make a surrender of their right of Government to H.M., which he said all of them, except Mr. Granville, were inclinable to do. [C.O. 391, 15. pp. 130–139; and 391, 96. Nos. 124–126.]
July 13.
749. Minutes of Council of New Hampshire. Present, H.E. Joseph Dudley, Wm. Partridge, Lt. Gov., etc. H.M. Letters Patents constituting Joseph Dudley Governor and Commander in Chief was read and published. His Commission to be Vice-Admiral was produced in Council. H.E. took and administered to the Lt. Gov. and Council the oaths, etc., appointed. He declared all officers continued in their stations.
July 14. H.E. by the advice of H.M. Council thought fit that the Assembly continue in their stations, and notwithstanding they were adjourned by Lt. Gov. Partridge till the first Tuesday in August, Ordered that the Sheriff give notice to each Member of the Assembly to appear in General Assembly at Portsmouth on Friday morning by 10 of the clock, and that writs be issued forth for the new election of three Members of the Assembly in loco Samuel Penhallow and John Plaisted of Portsmouth, and Henry Dow of Hampton, who are now Members of Council. [C.O. 5, 789. pp. 97–101.]
July 14. 750. William Atwood to the Council of Trade and Plantations. 'Tis my great misfortune that the grateful acknowledgment of your Lordships' favourable opinion of my zealous endeavours for the service of the Crown, and of the benefit of that protection of which your Lordsps. were pleased to assure me by Mr. Popple's of Jan. 29, should be accompanyed with a melancholy representation that this, tho' communicated to our Governor, was not enough to prevent my suspension ye 9th inst., in great measure for those judicial proceedings, which had the approbation of your Lordships. Yet I am not the only reputed criminal concerned in ye late administration, since 5 of us, being all who took care of the Government under King William, were suspended in one day. After my suspension my Lord delivered me 33 articles, which I had no time given to answer, a short view of which I presume to enclose and hope to be able soon to follow and lay before your Lordships a full answer to every particular. Tho' recrimination would by no means extenuate my offences, if I were guilty in any one of the particulars with which the enemies to the late administration and to the Laws of England, chiefly those against illegal trade, would blacken me, if I may be permitted to show how I vindicated the honour of the Laws while I could execute my office, and what Law has obtained by the not attending to the authorities which I have cited, and since my being deprived of all opportunities of that kind, I may hope 'twill induce your Lordships, whatever becomes of me, effectually to interpose for the restoreing the Laws to their due force and credit, the attempting which has occasioned much trouble to your Lordships most unfortunate and dutiful humble servant. Signed, W. Atwood. Endorsed, Recd. Read Sept. 24, 1702. Holograph. 1½ pp. Enclosed,
750. i. A Reply to the 33 Articles presented by the Merchants to the Lord Cornbury against Mr. Atwood, Chief Justice of New York. Signed, Wm. Atwood. Endorsed, Recd. Sept. 24, 1702. Holograph. 8 pp. [C.O. 5, 1047. Nos. 61, 61. i.; and (without enclosure) 5, 1119. pp. 207–209.]
July 14.
751. Wm. Popple, to Sir Edward Northy, H.M. Attorney General. The Council of Trade and Plantations desire your opinion upon the enclosed queries. Annexed,
751. i. Queries sent to Mr. Attorney and Mr. Advocate General relating to Admiralty Courts in the Plantations. (1) Whether the Courts of Admiralty in the Plantations have any further jurisdiction there than is allowed of, or usually exercised in England, and what that jurisdiction is. (2) Whether they can or ought to take cognizance or hold plea of causes or questions which arise concerning the importation of any goods into or out of the said Plantations or of frauds in matters of trade and navigation committed in any part of such Plantations, (3) and particularly, in case any ship shall sail up a River in the Plantations with prohibited goods consigned to or intended for the use of the inhabitants of that place, or in case they shall export goods illegally from thence, Query, where the trial of such offences shall be had, whether in the Courts of Admiralty, or in the Common Law Courts; and whether the Informer or Seizer may choose the Court where he shall sue for the condemnation of the ship and goods, and the penalties and forfeitures arising thereby. [C.O. 5, 1290. pp. 128–130.]
July 14.
752. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Lord Cornbury. We have received your Lordship's letter of May 18, which mentions one of the 3rd sent by way of Philadelphia, which being not come to our hands, we desire your Lordship to send constantly duplicates of whatsoever you may write or transmit. We are very glad to understand your Lordship's safe arrival, which as it will have put a stop to those violent proceedings which were then on foot, so we doubt not but your prudent conduct will greatly tend to the composing of all heats and animosities that have so unhappily disturbed the peace of that Province. We cannot but advise your Lordship to have that principally in your endeavours, and shall expect the account which you promise us of what may relate to the condemnation of Col. Bayard and Mr. Hutchins, and the occasion thereof, so soon as you are able to perfect it, that the whole matter may be laid before H.M. In the meanwhile we are to acquaint your Lordship that H.M. having been informed in Council that Sampson Shelton Broughton, H.M. Attorney General, having fallen under the censure of the Lt.-Governor and Council of New Yorke, for delivering his opinion relating to the crimes objected to Col. Bayard and Mr. Hutchins, we send your Lordship here enclosed H.M. Order in Council for restoring him to his office, H.M. judging it not fit that any person should be punished for giving his opinion in matters refer'd to him. And that your Lordship may be fully informed of H.M. pleasure relating to Col. Bayard and Mr. Hutchins, we send the enclosed transcripts of originals transmitted by their correspondents. Lastly, we hope your Lordship will receive herewith cloathing and accoutrements for the Four Companies under your command, the same being sent over by Mr. Champante, which will be more necessary since your Lordship acquaints us with the ill condition thereof. Signed, Dartmouth, Rob. Cecill, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt.
P.S.—And whereas we are given to understand that the Assembly of New York have passed an Act or Acts for reparation of damages pretended to have been sustained by Leisler, we send you enclosed a former Instruction to the Earl of Bellomont from this Board to the contrary, which Instruction was to be the guide of Capt. Nanfan. We take these proceedings to be very irregular and not fit to be allowed of. Signed as above. [C.O. 5, 1119. pp. 183–186.]
July 14.
753. William Popple to Josiah Burchet. The Council of Trade and Plantations having understood from Coll. Codrington that Captain Elrington, Lieutenant-Governor of Nevis, has been lately killed by Captain David Chambers, belonging to one of her Majesty's ships of warr, they have commanded me to send you the enclosed copies of papers which he has transmitted to them relating thereunto for the information of his Royall Highnesses Councill. [C.O. 153. 7. pp. 493, 494.]
July 14.
754. William Popple, junr., to Mr. Lownds. Enclosing, for the information of the Lord High Treasurer, account of money due to H.M. from the inhabitants of the Bahama Islands upon forfeitures, bonds, etc., received from Capt. Hasket. [C.O. 5, 1290. p. 128.]
[July 14.] 755. Petition of Henry Adderly and Charles Lodwick, on behalf of Col. Bayard, to the Queen. By a malicious prosecution in New York, Feb. 170½, Nicholas Bayard was imprisoned, indicted and convicted, and had sentence of death and forfeiture passed upon him as in cases of High Treason, for offences pretended to be committed against an Act of Assembly there made (clause quoted. See July 9). The only facts attempted to be proved against him were the signing and encouraging others to sign a petition to H.M. and another to Parliament and an Address to H.E. the Lord Cornbury before his arrival, none of which writings were produced at the trial, but t'was alleadged that they contained complaints of grievances and misdemeanours against some persons there acting under H.M. authority. There was no evidence sufficient either for the Grand Jury or Petty Jury to find Nicholas Bayard guilty, and yet by extraordinary methods and contrivances they were prevailed upon to give their verdict. Your Petitioners are advised that the said offences, if true, are not so much as misdemeanours, or at most but misdemeanours and not capital offences, and also that the same are not within the intention of the said Act, or if within the said Act, yet that no sentence of death or forfeiture for High Treason can be inflicted by virtue of the said Act as the same is penned, or if the same Act will bear such construction, your Petitioners are advised that the same Act is contrary to the Fundamental Laws of England and therefore voyd. Your Petitioners, fearing the violence of the prosecution, have obtained your Majesty's Order for reprieve, which is lately sent away and 'tis hoped will prevent the execution of Bayard, but the Attainder and Forfeitures still remain. Your Petitioners therefore most humbly beseech your Majesty on the behalf of the said Nicholas Bayard, that he may be admitted to bring a writ of Error to reverse the said Judgment and Attainder, and for that purpose that the Record and all proceedings may be transmitted relating to the premises, together with the Minutes of all the evidence at the trial, etc. Signed, Henry Adderly, Charles Lodwick. Copy. 3 pp. Annexed,
755. i. Order of Queen in Council. St. James's, June 18, 1702. Referring above petition to Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor General for their opinion what is fit for Her Majesty to do therein. Signed, John Povey. 1 p.
755. ii. Order of Queen in Council, St. James's, July 2, 1702. Upon reading a Report from Mr. Attorney General and Mr. Solicitor General upon the above petition, that "it appears that the proceedings against Col. Bayard are very extraordinary and may be proper for your Majesty's consideration, and we are therefore humbly of opinion that it is reasonable for your Majesty to give leave to Col. Bayard to be heard before your Majesty in Council touching the Treason objected against him, and to that end to give leave for him to appeal from the proceedings in New York, and that the Minutes of the Evidence taken by the Officer of the Court there, if any such be, may be transmitted with the Record, that thereby your Majesty may be informed of the evidence that was given against him, which will be of use to incline your Royal Mercy. Signed, Edw. Northey, Sim. Harcourt. June 20, 1702." Her Majesty with the advice of her Privy Council approves the said Report, and Col. Bayard is admitted to Appeal accordingly, and to bail, upon sufficient security. Copies of evidence and proceedings to be transmitted from New York. 2¼ pp. The whole endorsed, Recd. Read July 14, 1702. [C.O. 5, 1047. No. 62; and 5, 1119. pp. 177–183.]
July 14.
756. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Proposing Emanuel Morton for the Council of Jamaica, in place of Josiah Heathcote who does not propose to return thither. Signed, Dartmouth, Robt. Cecil, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, Mat. Prior. [C.O. 138, 10. pp. 344, 345.]
July 14. 757. Minutes of Council of Barbados. Letter from the Council of Trade and Plantations, May 8, with directions to observe the enclosed Declaration of War read. Ordered that other packetts for the several Plantations, brought at the same time, be forwarded with all speed at the public cost. Ordered that the great inconvenience of sending packetts to be forwarded from hence to other Plantations be represented to their Lordships, it being very difficult to meet with vessels bound for those parts, and the great and excessive charge and expense that attends the hire of vessels on purpose, besides uncertainty of procuring them.
John Cotterell undertook to take care of the House and Plantation taken of Thomas Pilgrim, and everything sent in there, for the use of the Governor, who is daily expected, at the rate of 4l. per month.
Alexander Walker took the oaths etc. as Chief Judge for St. James'.
Col. John Mills was appointed and sworn Chief Justice of the Pleas of the Crown and Chief Baron of the Court of Exchequer, in place of Richard Forstall, who desired to be excused.
Whereas there is an absolute necessity for calling a General Assembly, who, having been lately called, have expressed some doubts concerning the legality of the directions of the writs, and thereupon have refused to choose a Speaker, and to act as an Assembly, to the great endangering (as we apprehend) the safety of this Island, and so are become dissolved. This Board therefore, in tender regard of their common safety, thinks it necessary and doe order that writs issue out forthwith for the choice of another Assembly, directed according to the Act of this Island, the said writs to be publisht the three next following Sundays according to the usual custom.
The Secretary prayed to be excused from buying supplies for the Governor, as ordered July 1, because no money can be ordered out of the Treasury for private uses without a Committee of Assembly.
Petition of several Masters' of vessels in the roads, bound for the northward and ready to sail, praying the benefit of the convoy of H.M.S. Kinsale to latitude 18°, granted.
Address of the Grand Jury of the last Grand Sessions to H.M. was read and ordered to be sent home. [C.O. 31, 6. pp. 243–245.]
July 15.
St. Swithin's
758. Gilbert Heathcote to Wm. Popple. Recommending Edmund Edlyn in place of Josiah Heathcote to be a Councillor of Jamaica. Signed, Gilbert Heathcote. Endorsed, Recd. Read July 16, 1702. 1 p. [C.O. 137, 5. No. 73.]
July 15.
At the House
of Grandsire
at the Flatts.
759. Minutes of Council of Bermuda. On a motion about the great number of men going out unto the Bahama Islands at this juncture, it is the opinion of this Board that only 120 white men may be spared to go in that voyage, and that any vessel under 30ft. take 7, of 30ft. or upwards, 10, a brigantine or vessel, 20.
On a motion about Capt. Edward Jones, late Provost Marshall and Secretary, that he would not deliver the bonds and papers of his office, to be put on record, especially one bond entered into by Col. Day to Mr. Mears, which is to be returned to England, Ordered that unless upon the demand of the present Secretary he delivers them up to be recorded and the originals to be returned to him, then that John Rawlings, Provost Marshall, take him into custody. [C.O. 40, 2. p. 47.]
July 15. 760. Minutes of Council of Virginia. Major William Buckner, Collector of York District, and Lt.-Col. Willoughby Allerton, Naval Officer of the Upper District of Potomack, came before H.E. in Council, and made oath to their respective accounts of the penny per lb.
21l. paid to William Robertson for a sute of sails to H.M.S. Betty.
Upon representation that several ships had not completed their lading, etc., the Collectors and Naval Officers were empowered to clear such as shall give bond to sail with the Fleet. No ship to be cleared after the departure of the Fleet till farther order. Capt. Moodie, H.M.S. Southampton, to stop all ships bound to Europe, who shall attempt to sail out of this Colony after the departure of the Fleet, until further order.
The Council were of opinion that it is for H.M. service that the Eagle advice boat, shortly expected from Maryland, attend this Colony, and that she be ordered to cruize in the Bay, either jointly with the Southampton, or separately; and that H.E. issue orders accordingly to Capt. Nathaniel Bostock upon his arrival. Upon reading a petition of the French Refugees at Manikin Town, praying a present supply out of the money arising by the sale of the cargo sent in for their use, and also praying that Charles de Sailly may be ordered to account for such sums as he hath been entrusted with on their account, these matters were referred to Mr. Auditor Byrd, and the Refugees were ordered to apply themselves to him.
H.E. was pleased to recommend to Mr. Commissary Blair to take care that the French Ministers at Manacan Town conform themselves to the Liturgy of the Church of England, being he had been informed they did not. And in regard the French Refugees in their petitions do frequently call themselves the French Colony, and it appearing that the many differences that have arisen among them do chiefly proceed from an opinion that their settlement is to be under a distinct Government from the rest of this Colony, which has occasioned great dissensions amongst some persons pretending to rule over the others, to the manifest prejudice of that settlement, H.E. was pleased to order that the Refugees shall not hereafter use the title of a Colony, and for the future all their petitions to him shall be in the English tongue.
H.E. laid before the Council a Representation made to him by some of the Justices of James City County Court, July 6, setting forth that they having met that day to try causes, all the other Justices withdrew; and praying that H.E. would add some new Justices to the Commission. As the matter was now coming before the General Court, the Council did not think fit to add to the Commission.
5l. per annum ordered to be allowed for looking after the careening place made by Capt. Moodie at Point Comfort.
The Council adjourned. [C.O. 5, 1409. pp. 241–243.]