America and West Indies: October 1702, 16-20

Pages 669-687

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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October 1702

Oct. 16.
1047. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Enclosing draught of Instructions for Governors of Plantations, as following. Signed, Rob. Cecill, Ph. Meadowes, Wm. Blathwayt, John Pollexfen, Mat. Prior. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1335. p. 35; and 5, 1360. pp. 239, 240.]
Oct. 16.
St. James's.
1048. Copy of Instructions relating to the Acts of Trade for Lord Cornbury, Governor of New Jersey. [C.O. 5, 994A. pp. 94–123.]
Oct. 16.
Sept. 16.
pp. 90–115.]
1049. Copy of Col. Codrington's Instructions relating to the Acts of Trade. [C.O. 153, 8. pp. 88–115.]
Oct. 16. 1050. Copy of Capt. Bennet's Instructions to be Governor of Bermuda. [C.O. 38, 5. pp. 259–294.]
Oct. 16. 1051. Copy of Governor Sir Bevill Granville's Instructions relating to the Acts of Trade and Navigation [C.O. 29, 8. pp. 232–257.]
Oct. 16. 1052. Copy of Instructions for Col. Nicholson, Governor of Virginia. [C.O. 5, 1360. pp. 241–290.]
[Oct. 16.] 1053. Copy of Instructions to Governor Nicholson relating to the Acts of Trade and Navigation. [C.O. 5, 1360. pp. 291–317.]
Oct. 16.
1054. William Popple to Everard Cater. The Council of Trade and Plantations have appointed Wednesday next to hear Petitioners for an alteration in the usual Instruction to Governors of Barbados relating to Appeals. [C.O. 29, 8. pp. 230, 231.]
Oct. 16.
1055. William Popple to the Agents of Barbados. To same effect as preceding. The Council of Trade and Plantations also desire you to lay before them in writing your answer to their letter etc. of Aug. 25. [C.O. 29, 8. pp. 231, 232.]
Oct. 16.
1056. Lt.-Gov. Beckford to the Earl of Nottingham. These ships have been detained longer than was expected, the Admiral not being willing to spare any ships to convoy them through the Capes till he had brought on the trials of those gentlemen mentioned Sept. 4, nor indeed could any Captains be missed before that businesse was effected. Kirkby and Wade are condemned to be shot, but the sentence respited till H.M. pleasure be known, and Constable judged incapable of ever serving : Hudson died since their coming in, with a due regret, I hope, of his misbehaviour. One of our privateers has taken a French one, the St. Dennis, and a merchant ship, the St. Jean of Nantes. In the latter came the enclosed instructions from the Directors of the Company of St. Louis to their Captains (whom they supposed at Leogane, tho' some of them happened to fall into Port Royal) and are to direct them what course to steer upon their return home. I suppose it will be generally observed by the Company's ships, and hope they may prove of service to our cruising frigotts. Nine privateer sloops from hence are now I suppose on the Spanish Terra Firma. We understand by a Dutch privateer who comes from the coast, having taken a French ship that came from Ducass, now at Porto Bello, that our people landed upon the Isthmus, and are march'd overland by way of the stocado's: they will, I suppose, take the mines of St. Maries in their way and march from thence to Panama, which I believe will not be able to hold out against them. I am onely apprehensive that Ducass will send out a man of war from Porto Bello, and endeavour to take their sloops, to cut off their retreat, but hope he is so shattered that he will not be able to stir out from thence before the Admiral visits him. I discoursed the Admiral at large last Thursday, who then resolved to go out, and second our blades; and notwithstanding the 3 castles of Porto Bello, I think it very practicable to venture in, for with an ordinary sea-breeze one may lay it in at a stretch, two men of war will beat the Forts, and surely we shall have ships enough to take or burn that little squadron. I wonder Ducasse should venture to remain there. I'm sure 'tis no policy, and were I in his case and my ships able to swim, I should endeavour for Carthagena, or bear away for the Havana. I have endeavoured to prevail with the Admiral to take in Chiagra Castle, which I believe may easily be effected: that would secure the retreat of our Privateers, and give such a startle to the Spaniards as would perhaps break the whole measures of the French. Chiagra Castle, my Lord, is the only defence of the River of that name, and stands near the mouth of it, is not strong, nor has it, or is it indeed capable at present of entertaining a number of men; it is about 6 leagues to the westward of Porto Bello, but by land 'tis more, there lying a great tract of drowned mangrove ground (a swamp) between the town and that Castle, which renders it difficult of access, so that whoever is Master at sea may easily take and maintain this post. Up this River (which is navigable for canoas almost to the head, at least till within 15 or 16 miles of Panama), are carried or brought from thence all manner of goods: 'tis the key into the South Seas, and a level wain way (att Savanas) from the landing place, which is almost at the head of this River, to Panama. Your Lordship may, I suppose, have been informed of the scituation of Panama, which is washed by the South Sea, and is the store-house of all the riches of Mexico and Peru, a healthy place, not strong, but may easily be made so, and within sight of it are several small but fruitful Islands, and very commodious for shipping. When our people from hence took Panama, we first of all made ourselves masters of this Castle of Chiagra, went up the River in our Canoas and Penagros, and marched from the landing-place over the Savanas for Panama, which made no great defence; and though our men were fatigued, yet it was reckoned from the landing-place to Panama not above 20 English miles, tho' I believe it's not above what I have said, 15 or 16 at most. From Panama upon urgent occasions they send their money by land over the mountains which nothing but those mules can possibly pass, it being narrow, steep and rocky, but a small party of men would soon render that way impassable. Your Lordship is sensible of the advantageousness of these two posts, which might be taken and maintained, and besides the prejudice to the Spaniard in cutting of their communication between the North and South Seas, we might draw great advantages from these two posts. If this matter meets with acceptance at home, 'twill be very easy to reduce it to practice, I shall be very ready to undertake it, or to communicate my sentiments to any person whom H.M. shall be pleased to send to command this Island, and hope I shall have your Lordship's letter in my favour to him; and I do humbly assure your Lordship that I will make it my utmost study to further ye service in these parts, whether I am judged capable of a private or a publick station. The French have been very industrious ever since the peace in the augmenting and strengthening of their Colonies on Hispaniola, and have taken all the measures possible of peopling of that Island. No private trader of 100 tons, but what is obliged to bring over 6 servants and as many Buccaneer peeces, which the Masters are to deliver at 30 livres, to be distributed to the inhabitants. Every man of war that comes there brings souldiers, each company whereof consists of above 100 men. These companies are kept on foot but 3 years, then broke; the officers return for France, and are obliged to make up new companies, the souldiers turn Planters and are an additional strength to their settlement. Woemen are likewise sent over by every opportunity. We have done whatever has layn in our power for the encouraging of people to come over and settle with us; their passages have been paid for by the country out of the money raised for that purpose, and an encouragement given to the Masters of vessels for every person brought over, yet our endeavours have not met with the wished for success; some method we must contrive, and must either put ourselves in the capacity of ruining of the French, who daily increase on Hispaniola, or else this Island must expect to meet with the same destiny, whenever it's left destitute of a Fleet. 2,000 men with the Fleet we now have would be able to destroy that coast, with all their sugar works and settlements, they lying so distant from one another; for those of the Cape cannot come to the assistance of Port Paix, nor they to the assistance of Petit Riviere, Lester or Leogane, nor those assist Grand or Pettit Guaves, or they the settlements between that place and Port Louis (or the Isle des Vaches on the South side of Hispaniola), which must depend upon itself, for it can neither receive or give aid to any other, and we might easily have effected this when Wilmott and Liliston were sent upon that design, but your Lordship has been fully informed, I suppose, of that miscarriage. Pray God send us better luck and honester men for the future. The Admirall has, and will, I am sure, discharge his duty. Signed,
Oct. 19. Pe. Beckford. P.S.—Oct. 19. I am just now informed that General Codrington has sent down all the French taken on St. Christopher's to Hispaniola: we were served so the last war, and felt the unhappy consequences of it. We have taken care that none taken by us should annoy this Island, or any other of H.M. Colonies, and therefore at our great, cost we have kept them till they could be distributed amongst the ships to be sent for Europe. It will be some time before we shall hear of them again, and the French King may not care to be at the expense of sending of them back. Col. Codrington could have disposed of part himself, and might have sent the rest for Barbados, where they would have been easily disposed of amongst the merchant ships, but I think he has done the most Xtian King a great piece of service in drawing his stragling forces together, but was not pleased to consider that the supplying our neighbours with such an additional strength might prove of fatal consequence to Jamaica. I hope your Lordship will be pleased to make him sensible of it, and prevent such inconveniencyes for the future, and let us not be troubled with any more ill neighbours than what the King of France sends himself, which are but too many, in the opinion of, Signed, Pe. Beckford. Endorsed, R. Jan. 11, 1703. 3¼ pp. [C.O. 137, 45. No. 20.]
[Oct. 16.] 1057. Duplicate of preceding. [C.O. 137, 45. No. 21.]
Oct. 16.
1058. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Letter from Lt-Gov. Bennet, Bermuda, Aug. 14, read.
Representation signed wherewith to lay before H.M. draughts of Instructions for Governor Nicholson.
Oct. 17. Letter to Governor Sir Bevil Granville, signed.
Letter to Mr. Sansom, concerning Capt. Bertie, ordered. [C.O. 391, 15. pp. 235–238; and 391, 96. Nos. 164, 165.]
Oct. 17.
1059. William Popple to John Sansom. The Council of Trade and Plantations command me to give you notice that Capt. Bertie is now arrived here. [C.O. 29, 8. p. 259.]
Oct. 17.
1060. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Sir Bevil Granville. Enclosing Capt. Bertie's Memorial against Mr. Cox. We desire you upon your arrival at Barbados to examine into that matter, and to proceed therein as you shall see cause.
We also send you enclosed an Order of Council, July 9, repealing the Act for the better securing the liberty of H.M. subjects etc. which you are to cause to be published and entered in the Council Books. Signed, Dartmouth, Robt. Cecill, Ph. Meadows, Wm. Blathwayt, Jno. Pollexfen, Mat. Prior. [C.O. 29, 8. pp. 260, 261.]
Oct. 17.
1061. Minutes of Council of the Massachusetts Bay. 5l. paid to Thomas Trefrey of Marble Head for piloting into port H.M.S. Centurion, that brought over H.E.
46s. 11d. paid to James Russell for clothing advanced by direction of H.E. as a present to Wattanuman and other Pennicook Indians that lately waited on H.E. at Charlestown. [C.O. 5, 789. pp. 460, 461.]
Oct. 18.
Port Royal,
1062. Arnold Browne to [? the Earl of Nottingham]. By appointment of Rear Admiral Whetstone, President at a late Court Martial held on H.M.S. Bredah, I being commanded to preside as Judge-Advocate, do hereby transmit an abstract of the proceedings to be laid before H.M. The trials at large cannot be completed by this merchant's ship's sailing, but by the first man of war that is despatched for England they shall be carefully sent. The inhabitants of this Island fitted out several privateering sloops, nine of which joined and sailed down to the Gulf of Darien; they landed 530 men well armed, and were soon joined by 800 natives. They all marched to Sta. Maria, an inland town which lies within 10 leagues of the South Sea. They soon possessed themselves of the same and the Goulden Mountain, in which is a very rich mine, and intended to proceed to Panama, and it is generally believed they will sack the same, in which lies an emence treasure. If the French does not destroy their sloops before their return, the advantage may be as great to the English Nation, as the attempt is bould and brave. Signed, Arnold Browne. Endorsed, R. Jan. 11, 1702/3. 2 pp. [C.O. 137, 45. No. 22.]
Oct. 20.
Port Royal,
1063. Rear-Admiral Whetstone to the Principal Secretaries of State. Having received a Commission from Admiral Benbow, Oct. 6th, to hold a Court Martial for the trial of Capt. Kerkby, Commander of H.M.S. Defyance, Capt. Constable in the Windsor, Capt. Wade in the Greenwich, and Capt. Hudson in the Pendennis, all accused of cowardize, breach of orders and neglect of duty in the fight that Admiral Benbow had of six days continuance off the coast of Carthagen with Mounsr. Ducass, who commanded four ships of war from 66 to 70 guns. Admiral Benbow's squadron consisted of seven ships of warr, but the forenamed four Captains so wonderfully misbehaved themselves, that Mounsr. Ducass gott from them. The 8th of this month I began the Court Martial, which held four days. Capt. Hudson died some days before. The Court Martial began with a Gunner for concealing and hiding 43 barrels of powder and utterly denying the same to be aboard upon a survey. The fact was proved; the Court sentenced him uncapable of H.M. service, and all his gunner's pay forfeited to the use of the chest at Chatham. The same day Capt. Kerkby's trial came on, accused of cowardize, breach of orders and neglect of duty, sworn against by the Admiral, 10 Commission Officers, 11 Warrant and inferiour Officers. Many more would have done the same if required; his sentence to be shott to death, but respited from execution till H.M. pleasure is known. The next was Capt Constable for breach of orders, neglect of duty, but cleared by his own officers and men of cowardize. His sentence, cashiered from H.M. Service and imprisonment during her pleasure. Next Capt. Cooper Wade for the same as Capt. Kerkby. Sworn against by 16 Commission and Warrant Officers of his own ship and others. Sentence the same as Capt. Kerkby's. Next Capt. Vincent and Capt. Fogg for signing a paper with Capt. Kerkby and others not to engage the French, when they had so fair an opportunity, but the reasons they gave for so doing was that, seeing the cowardly behaviour of those Captains, they did believe that if they engaged again, they would wholly desert, and leave the Admiral and Falmouth a prey to the French, and the Admiral's and others great caracter given of their courage and behaviour in battle, the Court suspendeth them from their employs in H.M. service, but this suspention not to commence till H.R. Highness's pleasure is known. Refers to enclosures. Signed, Will. Whetstone. Endorsed, R. Jan. 11, 1702/3. Addressed, To the Rt. Hon. the Principal Secretary's of State, Whitehall. Sealed. Holograph. 2¼ pp. Enclosed,
1063. i. Copy of Proceedings at a Court Martial held on board H.M.S. Bredah in Port Royal Harbour in Jamaica, Oct. 8, 9, 10, 12, 1702. Present: Rear-Admiral William Whetstone, President; Samuel Vincent, John Hartnell, Christopher Fogg, John Smith, John Redman, George Walton, William Russell, Barrow Harris, Hercules Mitchell, Phillip Boyse, Charles Smith, Captains; Arnold Browne, Judge Advocate. Oct. 8. Trial of John Arthur, Gunner of the Defiance, as above. Oct. 8, 9. Trial of Richard Kerkby, Commander of the Defiance, as above. Witnesses sworn on behalf of the Queen, the Hon. John Benbow, Admiral etc. 2 captains, 8 lieutenants, 5 masters, 5 inferior officers, who deposed that Capt. Kerkby having the van in the line of battle, Aug. 19, about 3 p.m., the signal of battle being out, the Admiral was forced to send his boat on board of Kerkby and command his making more sail, and get abreast of the enemy's van, for that he was resolved to fight them about 4. The fight began, but Kerkby did not fire above 3 broadsides, and then luffed up out of the line and out of gun shot, leaving the Admiral engaged with two French ships till dark, Kerkby having received no damage, and this his behaviour caused great fear of his desertion. At night he fell astern, leaving the Admiral to pursue the enemy. The 20th, at daylight, the Admiral and Ruby were within shot of all the enemy's ships, but Col. Kerkby was 3 or 4 miles astern. The Admiral then made a new line of battle and took the van himself, and sent to each ship one with a command to Kerkby to keep his line and station, which he promised to do, but he did not, keeping two or three miles astern, though the signal for battle was out all night, the French making a running fight, the Admiral and Ruby plyed the enemy with their chase guns till night. The 21st, at daylight, the Admiral was on the Quarter of the second ship of the enemy's rear, and the Ruby on the broad side very near, who plyed him warmly, and met the same return, by which he was so much disabled, tho' the Admiral came into his assistance, that he was forced to be towed off, and this prevented the Admiral's designe in cutting of the enemy's sternmost ship. This action lasted two hours, during which time Kerkby lay a broadside of the sternmost ship, as did also the Windsor. The Admiral then commanded Kerkby to play his broadsides on him, but this having no effect, he a second tyme commanded the same, but he fired not one gun, nay his own boatswain and seamen repeating the Admiral's commands to him, were severely reproved, and threatened he would run his sword through the boatswain. Had Kerkby done his duty, and Capt. Constable his, they must have taken or destroyed the said French ships. The Admiral, tho' he received much damage in his sails, rigging, yards etc. yet continued the chase all night. The 22nd, at daylight, the Greenwich was 3 leagues astern, and the Defiance, Col. Kerkby, with the rest, 3 or 4 miles, the Falmouth excepted, whose station was in the rear. Capt. Sam. Vincent. seeing the behaviour of Kerkby and the rest, came up with the Admiral, sent his Lieut. on board, desiring leave to assist him, which was accepted, Kerkby never coming up, and by his example the rest did the same, as if they had a design to sacrifice the Admiral and Falmouth to the enemy, or desert. The enemy was now about a mile and half ahead, standing into the shore with a small breeze at west, and fetched within Sambay, the Admiral firing at the sternmost till night, and continued the pursuit, and a Flemish ship that was then in M. Ducass' company, on board of which was all the French and Spanish now [? new] Governours and other Officers, made her escape. The 23rd, at daylight, the enemy bore north-west dist. 4 or 5 miles, the Admiral and Falmouth pressing all they could to get up with them, which at 10 they did, and fired several broadsides at them, upon which they made all the sail and shifts they could to get clear, the Admiral and Falmouth pursuing, but Col. Kerkby with the rest being 3 or 4 miles astern, tho' there was not a ship but before and after the battle sailed better than the Admiral. About 7 this evening, it having been some time calm, a gale of wind sprung up, the Admiral and Falmouth were about two miles from the enemy, and at 8 Kerkby with his separate squadron was fair up with the Admiral, who this day sent away the disabled Ruby, George Walton. Commander, to Port Royal, and under his conduct the Anne galley retaken from the French. The 24th, in the morning, about 2, the Admiral came up with the sternmost of the enemy within call and the Falmouth pretty near, but Kerkby with the rest according to custom were 3 or 4 miles astern, the Admiral and Falmouth engaged the said ship, and at 3 the Admiral was wounded, his right legg being broake, but commanded the fight to be vigorously maintained, and at daylight the enemy's ship appeared to be a wreck, her mizen-mast shott by the board, her maine-yard in 3 or 4 pieces, her foretopsail yard the same, her stays and rigging all shot to pieces. Soon after day Kerkby with the rest being to windward of the disabled ship, Kerkby bore down with the rest of his separate squadron, and fired about 12 guns at her, and fearing a smart return from her, he lowered his main yard, his topsails on the capp, set his spritsaile and spritsaile topsail and foretopsail, stay sail, and having waired his ships, set his sails and run away before the wind from the poor disabled ship, the rest following his sad example, tho' they had but 8 men killed on board them all, except the Admiral; the other 3 French men of war were at this tyme of action about 4 miles distance from their maimed ship, whereupon the enemy, seeing the cowardize of Col. Kerkby and the rest of the 3 English ships in a squall bore down upon the Admiral, who lay close by the disabled ship, and having got in their spritsail yards, gave him all their fire, and running between him and the disabled ship, remann'd her and took her in a tow. The Admiral's rigging being very much shattered, was obliged to lie and refit till 10 o'clock, and then continued the pursuit, the rest of the Fleet following in the greatest disorder imaginable. The Admiral commanded Capt. Fogg to stand abreast of the enemy's van, and then to attaque them, having then a fine steady gale, the like not hapening during the whole engagement, and further ordered that he should send to all the Captains to keep the line of battle and behave themselves like Englishmen, and this message was sent by Capt. Wade then on board the Bredah. Col. Kerkby on the receipt of this message, and seeing the Admiral's resolution to engage, came on board him, who then lay in a cradle on the orelope, and without common respect of enquiring after his health said that he wondered he should offer to engage the French again, it not being necessary, safe or convenient, having had six days' trial of their strength, and then magnified that of the French and lessened that of the English. The Admiral, being surprized at this speech, said it was but one man's opinion, and he would have the rest of the Captains', and ordered the signal to be made for all the rest of the Captains to come on board. At this time the Admiral and the rest of the ships were to windward and within shot of the enemy, and had the fairest opportunity that in six days presented, to chase, engage and destroy the enemy. Col. Kerkby had endeavoured to poyson the rest of the Captains, forming a writing under his own hand which was cowardly and erroneous, the substance of which was not to engage the enemy any more. He brought it to the Admiral, who reproved him for it, saying it would be the ruin of all, upon which he went away but writ another [quoted Sept. 4, q.v.]. During the said six days' engagement, he never encouraged his men to fight, but by his own example of dodging behind the mizen-mast, and falling down on the deck on the noise of a shot, and denying them the provisions of the ship, the said men were under great discouragement. He amended the Master of the ship's Journal of the Transactions of the fight according to his own Instructions.
Col. Kerkby denied the whole, except the written consultation. He brought several of his men to give an account of his behaviour during the fight, but their testimony ware very insignificant, and his behaviour to the Court and Witnesses most unbecoming a gentleman, and being perticularly asked by the Court why he did not fire at the enemy's sternmost ship, which he lay point-blank with, Aug. 21, he replyed it was because they did not fire at him, for that they had a respect for him, wch., upon several occasions during the triall, the same words he repeated three severall tymes.
Sentence as above.
Oct. 9 and 10. Evidence of 17 witnesses that Capt. John Constable of the Windsor never kept his first nor second line of battle, but acted in all things as Capt. Kerkby had done. The Admiral fired two guns to command him into the second line of battle. He did set more sail in order to come into the line, but upon Kerkby's calling to him to keep his line, he accordingly did. The Admiral sent his Lieutenant to command his keeping his line of battle within half a cable's length of the ship before him, which was twice verbally delivered. Capt. Constable denied his breach of orders or neglect of duty, but owned signing the paper at Col. Kerkby's request, and for that he had received damage in his masts and rigging, and owned no other article to be true that he signed to. He called several witnesses who all declared he kept the Quarter-deck during the engagement, and encouraged his men to fight and sometimes gave them drams of rum, and that the verbal message delivered by Lieut. Langridge was delivered in some heat and passion, and was understood to be, to keep the line within half a cable's length and to follow Kerkby, which he did. He so understood it himself. He prayed the mercy of the Court. Sentence as above.
Oct. 10 and 12. Capt. Cooper Wade, of the Greenwich; 16 witnesses deposed that during the six days engagement he never kept the line of battle; fired all his shot in vain and not reaching half way to the enemy, that he was often told the same by his Lieuts. and other officers, but commanded them to fire, saying they must so do, or the Admiral would not believe they fought. During the whole fight he received but one shot from the enemy: he was in drink the greatest part of the time and signed the paper. Capt. Wade acknowledged the honour, courage and conduct of the Admiral during the whole engagement, declaring his bravery and good management during the action. He called some persons to justify his conduct, who said but little in his favour. He begged the mercy of the Court. Sentence as above.
Oct. 12. Capt. Saml. Vincent, of the Falmouth, and Capt. Christopher Fogg of the Bredah, declared their reason for signing Capt. Kerkby's paper was that being deserted during each day's engagement by the Defiance, Windsor, Greenwich and Pendennis, and left as a prey to M. Ducass, they had great reason to believe they should be captives to their enemies.
The Honble. John Benbow, Admiral, coming into Court declared that during the said six days' fight Capt. Fogg behaved himself with great courage, bravery and conduct, like a true Englishman and lover of his Queen and country, and that Capt. Vincent valiantly and courageously behaved himself during the said action, and desired leave to come in to his assistance then engaged with the enemy and deserted by all the rest of the ships, which he did to the relief of the said Admiral, who otherwise had fallen into the hands of M. Ducass. Sentence as above. Signed, Will. Whetstone, Arnold Browne. 7½ pp.
1063. ii. Copy of proceedings of the above Court Martial, Oct. 8. 1 p.
1063. iii. Copy of proceedings of the above Court Martial, Oct. 8, 9. 2¼ pp.
1063. iv. Copy of proceedings of the above Court Martial, Oct. 9, 10. 2 pp.
1063. v. Copy of proceedings of the above Court Martial, Oct. 10 and 12. 2 pp.
1063. vi. Copy of proceedings of the above Court Martial, Oct. 12. 2 pp. [C.O. 137, 45. Nos. 23, 23.i.–vi.]
Oct. 20. 1064. Duplicate of above letter. [C.O. 137, 45. No. 24.]
Oct. 20. 1065. Mr. Hutcheson to [? Mr. Popple]. The Address from the Leeward Islands to H.M. happening to be lost by the gentleman to whom it was intrusted, I have sent the copy which I received, that their Lordships may see that 'tis the misfortune, and not the fault of that Government, that they have not appeared as early as any of the Plantations in the expression of their duty. Refers to enclosures. Signed, Arch. Hutcheson. Endorsed, Recd. 21st, Read Oct. 22, 1702. Holograph. 1 p. Enclosed.
1065. i. Copy of Loyal Address to the Queen from the Governor, Councils and Assemblies of the Leeward Islands. Endorsed as preceding. 1 p.
1065. ii. Copy of proceedings of Council of St. Christopher's against Capt. Norton, May 9, 1702, with several Depositions about his getting a patent for the Manor of Godwyn in that Island. Endorsed, Recd. Oct. 21, 1702. 3¼ pp.
1065. iii. Copy of a letter from Wm. Freeman to Capt. Norton, London, April 18, 1699, relating to the Manor of Godwyn. Same endorsement. 2 pp.
1065. iv. Copy of a writ of division of the Manor of Godwyn (Godding's Plantation) between Lt.-Gov. Norton and William Freeman. Feb. 2, 1699 (1700). Same endorsement. 1 p.
1065. v. Copy of an Order for an appraisement of the Improvements made by Capt. John Pogson, attorney to Wm. Freeman on the Manor of Godwyn, together with Pogson's petition to be restored thereto, and Col. Codrington's Order thereupon, May 10, 1701. Same endorsement. 2¼ pp.
1065. vi. Copy of Capt. Norton's surrender of the Manor of Godwin to John Perrie, for the use of H.E. Christopher Codrington. St. Christopher's, April 29, 1701. Signed, James Norton. Same endorsement. 1 p.
1065. vii. Copy of a Certificate by the Depty.-Secretary of St. Christopher's, Ja. Taylor and Geo. Larkin, Notary Publick, that there is upon record in the Secretary's Office a power of attorney from Dame Genevieve Benoist, Widow to one De Chambré, to Louis Caqueray de St. Saintonin de la Valminière empowering him to take possession of the manor of Godding, formerly purchased by De Chambré from William Freeman, and likewise a power of substitution from Valminière to Robert Cunyngham to take possession of said Plantation. Aug. 25, 1701. Same endorsement. 1 p.
1065. viii. Certificate of the Council of Nevis. June 5, 1702. Col. James Norton, late Lt.-Governor of St. Christopher's, one day came into the Council Chamber at Charles Town and requested us to give him a patent for a plantation upon St. Christopher's (Manor of Godwin). He was answered that it was discoursed the late General had granted a patent for the said Plantation, and that the said General had some pretentions to it, and until the truth of that matter was known, no patent should be granted. Some time after, Norton produced that patent the General granted, saying that it was surrendered to him. Believing what he said was truth, being the King's Lt.-Governor, a patent was granted. Signed, Wm. Burt, Dan. Smith, Richd. Abbott, Wm. Buttler. Same endorsement. 11/8 pp.
1065. ix. Certificate of Geo. Larkin, Notary Publick, June 5, 1702, that he was present in the Council of St. Christopher's, May 22, 1702, when all the Gentlemen of the Council declared that General Codrington offered Col. Norton 100 guineas if he wished to justify his actions as Lt.-Governor in England. They likewise declared that the General sent Col. Elrington to St. Christopher's some time after the passing of some Acts of Assembly to desire that they might be engrossed, in order to his transmitting the same home to be confirmed, but never as yet could obtain the same, which is now near upon 12 months since. Some short time after the General's first coming to St. Christopher's, Mr. Mead came to Col. Lambert, one of the Members of Council, and told him that he had laid open Col. Crispe in his true colours to the General, and that he believed he had done Crisp's business with the General. Signed, Geo. Larkin. Same endorsement. 1 p.
1065. x. Copy of petition of William Mead to Col. Codrington. [Cf. Cal. A. & W. I., 1701, Nos. 1089.i., 1090.i. etc.] Whereas there is a judgment by default past against the Casual Ejector for two certain Plantations [of] which petitioner is but a tenant to Thomas Harvey, of Bristol, a Minor, and pays an annual rent for the same, and he not having any guardian to appear for him, whereby your Petitioner might have been defended in his lease, and petitioner. having also divers utensils on the premisses, besides the labour and improvement of his own slaves to a very considerable value, Petitioner prays that the Lessee be forced to accept of the rent, as also Petitioner not to be dispossessed of his lease till a final determination be. Subscribed,
This Petition is wholly irregular and desires of me what I cannot grant without acting both arbitrarily and unjustly. There is an appeal already prayed in this cause, and when it comes regularly before me, I shall decree according to my conscience. Signed, Christopher Codrington. Subscribed,
This is a true copy of the petition presented by Mr. Mead immediately after the tryall and the day before the execution. Signed, Jno. Smargin, Clerk, Council. 1 p.
1065. xi. Copy of Petition of William Mead to Governor Codrington. Repeats first part of first petition, above. For want of a guardian to defend the same, tho' often pressed by Petitioner's Council to the Court to appoint one, but was by the said Court refused, judgment was entered against the Casual Ejector, upon which Petitioner craved an Appeal to your Excellency, which was granted him. Prays H.E. to signify in what Island and when he may attend with his Appeal. Subscribed,
H.E. takes this to be a libel and not a petition, nor can he apprehend what is the drift or design of it, for not to mention the false Inglish in every line of it, he desires to know what is meant by "judgment obtained against two Plantations" ; or what was meant by asking Letters of Guardianship from the Court, since they might have had them, and may still have them from the Ordinary, whose business 'tis to grant them; if the Petitioner be in earnest for an Appeale, it shall be h(e)ard as soone as he pleases. Signed, Chr. Codrington. May 26, 1701. Endorsed, Recd. Oct. 21, 1702. 1 p.
1065. xii. Certificate of the Council of Nevis, in reply to a query from Governor Codrington, that there is no time limited for execution after judgment. Signed, Wm. Burt, Richd. Abbott, Wm. Linge, Tho. Belman. Same endorsement. 1 p.
1065. xiii. Certificate by George Larkin, Nevis, June 5, 1702, that he was present in Council, June 3, when General Codrington desired to be informed whether it was customary to allow four days or any other certain number of days after the signing of judgment before execution issued, and the Gentlemen of the Council declared as above.
Certificate of James Bevon, Chief Justice of Nevis. There neither is nor ever was since my memory any custom or rule of Court that four days should be allowed after judgment for granting execution. Signed, Jas. Bevon. Same endorsement. 1 p.
1065. xiv. Copy of Letter from Governor Codrington to the Council and Assembly of Nevis. May 21, 1702. You are acquainted with the scandalous allegations against me, which is founded upon a general report in this Island that I had entered into treaty with Mr. Herbert for the two Plantations he recovered of Mr. Mead. I desire you will please to certify whether you have ever heard the least report or suspicion of such a thing I add this because I think I have behaved myselfe, soe that I believed noe man in the Leeward Islands would offer me a bribe. Signed, Chr. Codrington. Subscribed,
Reply of the Council of Nevis to above. The scandalous allegations made against you in England is wholly without cause, or any colour of reason to us known, for that we never heard that ever your Excellency either entered into or caused any other person to enter into any treaty with Mr. Herbert or any other for him, for both or either of his Plantations lately recovered from Capt. William Mead, and we never heard of any the least surmise or suspicion concerning such a thing, but your Excellency's justice hath been such here, that we conceive noe person could have soe much impudence as to pretend to offer your Excellency any bribe openly or privately. May 21, 1701. Signed, Wm. Burtt, Jno. Smargin, Richd. Abbott, Wm. Butler, Ja. Bevon, Aza. Pinney, Wm. Ling. Same endorsement. 1 p.
1065. xv. Copy of reply of Assembly of Nevis, to same effect as preceding. May 21, 1702. Signed, John Ward, Speaker. Subscribed,
I was present when the Assembly declared that they had directed Mr. Ward to sign this paper etc.; and that it was by direction of the Assembly that one of their Members moved H.E. in March, 1701, for a Commission for trial of all causes then depending, amongst which was this. The Commission was the same it had been for 20 years past. Signed, Geo. Larkin. Same endorsement. 1 p.
1065. xvi. Duplicate of No. viii. supra.
1065. xvii. Council of Antigua to Governor Codrington. June 22, 1702. Your Excellency having desired to know of us what we think of Mr. Freeman's 10th article, tho' we cannot assert anything as a negative, yet we may safely say your Excellency must have acted very inconsistently with yourself in that particular, if you are guilty of what is there alledged against you, and therefore verily believe it is as false as 'tis malicious. Signed, by command of the Council, Walter Quarme, Cl. Council. Same endorsement. 1 p.
1065. xviii. Assembly of Antigua to Governor Codrington. We believe it [Mr. Freeman's 10th article] to be a malitious and scandalous aspersion, and doe admire that any person whatsoever should assert or invent so notorious an untruth. Signed, Peter Lee, Speaker. John Gamble, Nathaniel Crump, John Lyons, Richard Oliver, Rob. Thornton, Sa. Watkins, Edw. Perrie, Ja. Reade, James Wathevill, Tho. Turner, Stephn. Duer, Isaac Horsford, James Barter, John Paynter, John Ker Francis Rogers. Same. endorsement. 1 p.
1065. xix. Council of Antigua to Governor Codrington. June 6, 1702. In reply to your queries, we have found your conduct agreeable to your promise to govern according to Law. You have often prest us to the making good and wholesome Laws etc. Your Excellency has been the only General who has put the Militia under an exact discipline and hath with an unwearied diligence shown a very good example both in your person and orders. You did assure us that you came to rule as the King's Governor and not as Col. Codrington's son, neither do we believe that you have sided with any parties. We do not know nor have ever heard that your Excellency did endeavour the choice of a Speaker, or any the Representatives, nor can we in the least say you have used any means to procure publick presents, but on the contrary have said you would not deny us anything tending to the public good without money, nor for the sake of money grant what you thought not proper. Signed, Edward Byam, Hen. Pearne, James Thynne, William Thomas, William Codrington, Row. Williams, Jno. Hamilton. Copy. Same endorsement. 2 pp.
1065. xx. Assembly of Antigua to Governor Codrington. Reply to same queries, to the same effect as preceding. Signed, as No. xviii. Same endorsement. 2 pp. [C.O. 152, 5. Nos. 12, 12.i.–XX.]
Oct. 20.
1066. Vice-Admiral Benbow to the Earl of Nottingham. Capt. Richard Kirkby and Capt. Cooper Wade are under the sentence of death, but the execution defer'd till H.M. pleasure be further known therein. I humbly desire you'l please to lay the matter (which also comes by this conveniency) before H.M., and that you'l please to let me know her pleasure therein ; the people in these parts are extreamly incensed against them, haveing never heard or met with anything so base. Her Majesty is wise, merciful and just, will doe the thing that is right, and oblige her loyal subjects to be faithfull to her interests as in duty bound. Signed, J. Benbow. Endorsed, R. Jan. 6, 1702/3. 1 p. [C.O. 137, 45. No. 25.]
[Oct. 20.] 1067. Duplicate of preceding. Endorsed, R. Jan. 11, 1702/3. [C.O. 137, 45. No. 26.]
[Oct. 20.] 1068. Memorial of John Thraile, Merchant, proposing Mr. Hallet, son of Capt. John Hallet, late of the Council in Barbados, for one of the vacancies therein. Endorsed, Recd. Read Oct. 20, 1702. ¾ p. [C.O. 28, 6. No. 84.]
Oct. 20.
1069. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Letter from Mr. Jenings, Aug. 20, read.
Memorial from John Thrail [Oct. 20] read.
Oct. 21. Mr. Hodges with some other Gentlemen, in the name of the Petitioners for an alteration to be made in the Instruction to the Governors of Barbadoes relating to Appeals, attending on the one side, and Sir Bevil Granville, Governor, the Agents and several other Gentlemen, the Agents in that Island, on the other ; the Petitioners complained of a great inconvenience in that Instruction as well with relation to Appeals from the Inferior Courts to the Governor and Council as from the Governor and Council to H.M. in Council here. The sums limited for Appeals in both cases (they said) were much too high, and the time limited for Appeals to England much too short; they offered that to prevent the bringing of vexatious suits from the Inferior Courts to the Superior, the Appellants should be subjected to a penalty in case their Appeal was judged not to be well grounded ; and as to the security to be taken from the Appellants, in cases of Appeal to England, they said that it ought to be only for costs and damages, and that there was no reason to require security to answer the condemnation, because by the same Instruction those Appeals are not to suspend the execution of the sentence given there. They acknowledged, nevertheless, that as far as Appeals from the Inferior Courts to the Superior, tho' the Instruction did limit them to the value of 300l., yet the practice was to allow such Appeals for small sums. After they had opened what they thought fit upon these heads, it being observed that the Gentlemen who had spoke were of the long robe, which had not been ordered, and that they had occasionally touched upon points of Law here in England, Mr. Bridges desired in behalf of the Agents and others most considerably interested in the Island, that they might have liberty also to bring some Gentlemen capable to answer them in point of Law, which was allowed, and this day seven-night appointed.
Oct. 22. Letter from Mr. Hutchinson, Oct. 20, with enclosures, read.
Letter from Col. Codrington, July 6, read. Ordered that Mr. Hutcheson be desired to attend the Board to-morrow, and that he be then acquainted with what the Board have lately writ Col. Codrington, relating to their satisfaction with his proceedings.
Mr. Bateman, the Solicitor, brought to the Board the Act for settling H.M. part of St. Christopher's, with a copy of Mr. Attorney-General's opinion thereupon, which, he said, were found amongst Mr. Mead's papers since his death, and desiring their Lordships' report thereupon, he was told the said Act should be considered the first opportunity. [C.O. 391, 15. pp. 240–249; and 391, 96. Nos. 167–169.]
Oct. 20. 1070. Minutes of Council in Assembly of Barbados. H.M.S. Kinsale not being in readiness to sail yet, and it being generally suspected that the French are working some designs at Martineque, by reason that some of their vessels have appeared for a considerable time upon this coast, the Board accepted Samuel Cox's generous offer that his sloop the Seaflower, George Chowne, Commander, go down to view Martineque and return in 14 days. Ordered that he have liberty to sail with 40 men protected from any press warrant, and that in case he can make no discovery there, that he go on to Antegoa to wait on the General there, to know what news those parts afford, and then to make the best of his way to this Island. [C.O. 31, 6. pp. 291, 292.]
Oct. 20.
1071. Minutes of Council of the Massachusetts Bay. A Representation being made that by reason of the changes of Government that have happened, the Books, writings, records and manuscripts belonging to the late Colony of New Plymouth are at present out of the custody of any person under obligation to keep them safely, or to transcribe and attest copies thereof, the same being of great concern to the inhabitants of that Colony, containing the grants and evidences of all their lands and other publick transactions, whilst they were a distinct Government, a Committee was appointed to examine the said Records, make a list of them, and to report to H.E. and Council. Ordered that Mr. Sprague and others in whose custody they at present are, attend the said Committee therewith. [C.O. 5, 789. p. 461.]
Oct. 20. 1072. Journal of House of Representatives of New York. Several Members took the Oaths and subscribed the Declaration appointed. William Nicoll chosen Speaker, was approved by H.E. H.E. addressed them : "It was an extreme surprise to me to find this Province, at my landing, in such a convulsion as must unavoidably have occasioned its ruin, if it had been suffered to go on a little longer. The many complaints that were brought to me, against the persons I found here in power, sufficiently proved against them, and the miserable accounts I had of the condition of our frontiers, made me think it convenient to delay my meeting of you in General Assembly till I could inform myself of the condition of this Province, that I might be able to offer to your considerations some few of those things which will be necessary to be done forthwith for the defence of the country. The first thing which I earnestly recommend to your care is, the providing for the defence of the City and Port of New York, which seem to me to be much exposed, and likewise for the defence of our frontiers, which I have found in a much worse condition than I could have imagined, the soldiers being naked and almost unarmed, and the Forts, in reality, defenceless, so that it will be absolutely necessary in the first place to provide such sums of money as may be necessary for the making some works that will be proper for the defence of the country, and for the raising of 200 men, which I think absolutely necessary to be placed at Albany and Schenectady for the defence of the frontiers this winter. I hope the Representations I have sent home will have that good effect, that H.M. will give such directions that the burden here may be made lighter ; however, in this time of exigency, I earnestly recommend unto you a dispatch of these things ; and you may assure yourselves, that whatever sums shall be granted by you, shall be applied to those uses only for which they were given, of which you shall have an account at your next meeting. I think it my duty to recommend to you a bill for better regulating the Militia; for erecting of public schools in proper places; appointing fit persons to examine and state the public accounts and debts of this Province, that when the debts are known, such proper methods may be taken for the payment of them in due time as will best suit the condition of the Province. I assure you in the Queen's name of H.M. protection and the full enjoyment of the liberty and Laws of England. I heartily rejoice to see that the free choice of the people has fallen upon Gentlemen whose constant fidelity to the Crown and unwearied application to the good of their country is so universally known."
Ordered that an Address be drawn up, thanking H.E. for his speech.
Joseph Purdy took the oaths etc. appointed.
Message sent down from H.E. and Council that it was the custom of the Parliament of England to appoint a chaplain to read prayers to them every morning before they proceed on business that day, and desiring them to do the same.
Oct. 12,
[sic 21 ?]
The House met and adjourned till to-morrow.
Oct. 22. Several Members took the oaths.
Resolved that that part of H.E.'s Speech relating to the defence of the Country be taken first into consideration.
The House attending, presented H.E. with an Address of thanks for his Speech. "They are heartily sensible of the misery and calamity this Country lay under... and are not sufficiently able to express the satisfaction they have both in their relief and their Deliverer. They entirely believe they cannot be happier than under the reign of so good and so great a Princess as H.M., especially since the care of H.M. in these parts is committed to a person of your Lordship's generous and noble character" etc. H.E. received the Address with great satisfaction. Printed. [C.O. 5, 1185. pp. 1–3.]
Oct. 20. 1073. Governor Dudley to the Earl of Nottingham. I wrote largely an account of the present state of the Government of Road Island, and their refusal in everything to obey H.M. commands in the affair of the Militia, since which they have as absolutely refused the jurisdiction of the Admiralty, and will not submit to take commission for a privateer they have set out, though freely offered them, and Mr. Atwood, the Judge of the Admiralty that my Lord Bellomont left here, is gone and left a Deputy, Mr. Newton, who was no more than an ordinary Attorney in England and has no estate here. I formerly wrote praying that Col. Nathaniel Byfield, a man of the best character and a fair estate, who was turned out before Mr. Atwood came in, might be restored, and as I was commanded to nominate an Attorney General, I humbly offer Mr. Paul Dudley, the only Barrister at Law here who had his education in the Temple, and at present manages the business to acceptance of everybody that loves the Government of England. There is no salary nor fees depending, nor like to be obtained till I can settle the support of the Government, but if he may obtain your Lordship's favour for a warrant, he is my son and I shall freely answer his management here for the Queen's service. Without a good Judge of the Admiralty and Attorney General, I cannot hope for any good in the Courts of this Province. The Council have so great a share in the appointment of the other Judges, I can have less dependence upon those Courts. Signed J. Dudley. Copy. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 863. No. 2.]