Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 25, 1710-1711. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1924.
This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. All rights reserved.
§ 1. GENERAL.
Capture of Port Royal. Murder of Governor Parke.
The most striking events in the Colonies during the years 1710 and the first half of the year 1711 were the preparations for an Expedition against Quebec and Montreal; the successful Expedition to Nova Scotia and the capture of Port Royal, and the murder of Daniel Parke, Governor of the Leeward Islands.
Major Livingston's journey to Quebec.
But perhaps the most remarkable of the documents included in these pages is the "Journal of the Travails of Major John Livingston from Annapolis Royal to Quebec and from thence to Albany and soe to Boston" (673). Col. Vetch, in introducing the hero of this extraordinary adventure to Lord Dartmouth, says that Livingston endured "not only the greatest fatigue but danger ever mortal perhaps undertood and escaped" (741). He can hardly be accused of exaggeration. For the tale of Livingston's experiences includes almost every conceivable form of hardship and disaster into which the liveliest imagination of a romancer could plunge his hero, if his hero were, like Livingston, a pioneer amongst the shows and half-frozen lakes of Canada.
The occasion of this amazing journey, which was begun on Oct. 15th, 1710, was the carrying of a letter from General Nicholson and the Council of War to the Governor of Canada, announcing the capture of Port Royal, demanding the surrender of English prisoners, and threatening reprisals if the Marquis de Vaudreuil perisisted in raiding the frontiers of the British Colonies (427, 427 i.). Landing in the neighbourhood of Penobscot, at a harbour which he named after the Baron de St. Castien, who was detailed by the late Governor of Port Royal to accompany him, Livingston set forth with a party of Indians, well supplied with provisions and canoes. They worked their way along the Penobscot River and presently laid in a stock of snowshoes. A party of Indians from Penobscot, infuriated by the escape of an English prisoner whom they had captured at Winter Harbour, would have killed Livingston in revenge, but the intervention of M. de St. Castien saved his life. So threatening was their aspect, however, that he was obliged to empty his kegs of rum, for fear of its effect upon the exasperated Indians, should they get hold of it. "We suffered much after in our journey for want of it" he observed. The snow was already knee-deep upon the mountains, and the rivers were full of ice. The waters of Penobscot River were running very fiercely at "the Riplings" (rapids). The very day after they had begun their journey in earnest a canoe was capsized in which Livingston lost all his clothes and provisions and his gun. One Indian was drowned. Through snow, rain, mud and ice, over rough carrying-places and across beaver dams which compelled them to unload their canoes; occasionally shooting some geese or ducks, or finding a beaver in a trap; sometimes carrying their canoes for lack of water, sometimes breaking the ice for miles at a stretch to make a way for them, they pushed indomitably on. Ere long they were obliged to abandon their canoes, which were cut and torn by the ice. After going for ten days, provisions began to run short. They reached a chain of lakes, but were obliged to skirt it, the ice being too weak to bear them. But more than one lake they did in desperation cross, creeping on their stomachs with a long pole in their hands, for the ice was so thin that it bent in waves beneath them. It seemed little better than madness, the narrator admits, "but Death was before us … and the Indians were resolved to go over being sharp set with hunger" (pp. 376, 377). They were compelled to delay their progress whilst they hunted for beaver, the Indians feasting all night when they killed, and making no provision for the morrow. Presently they were weather-bound and forced to pass some days in wigwams. Wet to the skin with alternate snow and rain, sometimes wading rivers waist high, they came at last to the Great Lake. But it was not frozen. They were obliged to circumvent it by "extraordinary bad way, through most prodigious doleful woods" (377). After one day of desperately bad going and having been "forced to haul very short" for lack of food, when their lives depended upon every league they made towards their goal, they suffered the most depressing experience which can befall a traveller. "About two in the afternoon we came across our own tracks." They had been travelling in a circle.
Vaudreuil and English prisoners.; Account of French in Canada.
Through such hazards they worked along a branch of Penobscot River, apparently in the direction of the Chesuncook and Moosehead Lakes and St. John River, and over spurs of the Green Mountain Chain. On Nov. 25th their breakfast was a walk over a mountain "which was prodigious high and steep." Their shoes were torn from their feet, but having the good fortune to kill a beaver, they were able to repair them. They were now reduced to eating the bark of trees and roots. At length, by the 5th of December, after travelling 10 or 12 leagues a day with nothing to eat since they killed a couple of porcupine on Nov. 30th, they were utterly spent. When they were reduced to the last extremity they came upon a house. "I cannot express the joy I felt at so comfortable a sight." They had reached Quebec River. A few days later Livingston was being nobly entertained by the Governor of Canada "with musick and dancing," and sharing in the Christmas festivities of Quebec. Vaudreuil, however, said he could not undertake to exchange prisoners who were in the hands of the Indians. (p. 380). By the 10th of January Livingston had set out again for Albany and Boston with Vaudreuil's reply to Nicholson's letter, Later, he sent in a detailed account of French forces and fortifications in Canada (569).
Expedition against Canada abandoned.
The abandonment of the Expedition against Canada in 1709, due to the diversion of the Fleet upon more urgent coccasions, had caused uneasiness among the Five Nations. Governor Dudley expressed the fear lest the Mohawks would now be more easily detached from their allegiance by the French Missionaries among them (81). In February a mission of Sachems accompanied by Col. Schuyler sailed from Boston in order to wait upon the Queen and Ministers, and to urge the renewal of the enterprise against the French (103, 194). The dispatch of this mission had been decided upon by the Congress of Governors, etc., in October, 1709, as is shewn by the document printed C.S.P., 1709, No. 794 i. Doyle is therefore wrong in supposing that it was undertaken by Schuyler on his own responsibility (English in America, Middle Colonies, p. 346). The visit of the Indians, which has been described by Smith and immortalished by a paper in Addison's Spectator, created a considerable sensation in London (See also p. xv.).
Disappointment at the abandonment of the Expedition was keenly felt also by the New Englanders. The cost of preparations in the previous year had been great. Not only was Massachusetts not relieved from the heavy burden of defending the frontiers, but seaborne trade suffered severely from the privateers for whom Port Royal still provided a secure base. Nine vessels in five days were taken by them outside Boston in May (237). Petitions, as we have seen, were sent praying for a renewal of the Expedition. But those who had been most eager to help were discouraged at the absence of any instructions for a further attempt (81, 81 xvi., 237).
Expedition sails for Boston.
General Nicholson, however, was sent over by Sunderland in the spring to make preparations. On July 15th he arrived at Boston, where he had long been impatiently expected (240, 241, 246, 288, 357, 380, 396). The Naval and Military forces which accompanied him are shown (241, 241 i., ii., iv.).
The Governors of the Northern Provinces were summonded to Boston; a Council of War was held, and the several Governments were warned to contribute their quotas of men, provisions and transports. This proved to be a matter involving some difficulty and delay owing to the lateness of the season and the discouragement of last year's postponement. Deficiencies had also to be made good of stores of war "pretended to have been sent over from the Tower" (396). Still, Governor Dudley had his contingent ready by Aug. 22. The quotes from the other Colonies arrived at Bostion in the Second week of September (p. 267).
The Expedition welcomed.
Addresses of thanks for the promised Expedition and assurances of co-operation were sent to the Queen by Massachusetts Bay, New Hampshire, Connecticut and Rohode Island, with a request from Massachusetts that Port Royal, if captured, should be garrisoned by regular troops, and a suggestion, from Rhode Island, that the quotas might more justly be based upon the numbers of the Militia in each Colony (337 i., 356, 357 i., 358).
Fall of Whig Ministry.
Meanwhile, at home, the Whig Ministry had fallern Emboldened by the manifestations of Tory enthusiasm which followed upon the ill-advised impeachment of Dr. Sacheverell by the Whigs, Queen Anne hastened to change her Ministers. Sunderland was dismissed. Dartmouth succeeded him as "Secretary of State for the Southern Province with the West Indies" (327, 497).
Sunderland and State Papers.
It was Characteristic of the way in which State Papers were still regarded as private correspondence of a particular Minister, that Sunderland took with him the papers of his Office, and in the following February had not yet delivered them over to his successor (699). Some light may be thrown upon this proceeding by Burnet's story that Nottingham and the extreme Tories wished to impeach Sunderland, but Dartmouth refused to help them with material from his Office.
General Nicholson and Col. Vetch wrote anxiously from America to the Secretary of the Board of Trade asking for Court news (392). Mr. Popple's reply was sent after the General Election and indicated the formation of an entirely Tory Ministry under Robert Harley. St. John had succeeded Boyle (497). It was with this Ministry that Louis XIV. attempted to renew the negotiations for Peace which had fallen through in 1709. The change of Ministry did not, however, immediately affect the fortune of the Expedition.
Baron Dartmouth and the Expedition.; Lord Shannon appointed to command.
Baron Dartmouth approached his duties and Colonial problems with the energy and careful investigation of a good man of business. On the 6th of July, in response to his exquiries, Mr. Jeremy Dummer reported that it was not too late for the Fleet to saild. He based his reply upon the experience of ships in 1690 and recent navigation. The time for going up the St. Lawrence was September, and it the Fleet sailed from England by the last day of July, it would still be early enough, though it would have been better had it been earlier (290). Preparations were then pushed forward (297). Lord Shannon was appointed Commander in Chief of the troops to be employed in the reduction of Canada and other places in America (301, 302). He was directed to proceed with all haste to Boston. There he was to hold a Council of War with Cols. Nicholson, Vetch, some senior sea-officers, and the provincial Governors, before advancing on Quebec. (302).
Expedition against Canada postponed.
But on the last day of August Dartmouth, in a dispatch to the Governors concerned, announced that though, like last year, all necessary preparations had been made to provide a force of sufficient strength to beat the French in North America, it had been found necessary to lay them aside for the present "by reason of the contrary winds which happened when the season was proper for the Fleet to sayle, and in regard of other important services which intervened." They were ordered to proceed with the Expedition against Port Royal under Col. Nicholson (380, 381).
Expedition against Port Royal.; Syrrender of port Royal and Nova Scotia
Nicholson sailed from Boston for Port Royal when September was a fortnight old (392, 395, 396). Only four hundred out of five hundred Marines ordered had arrived from England. Some fear was felt lest this weakness combined with the strengthening of Port Royal "upon last year's alarm and this year's expectation" might render the undertaking more difficult than it would have been in the spring. But these gloomy forebodings were happily falsified. Port Royal had received no supplies from France for three years. The place was in no condition to resist a siege, and fell almost at the first blast of the trump (241, 241 i., ii., iv., 396, 613, 879). After "a week's service on the shoar" the Governor, M. de Subercase, surrendered the fort and country on Oct. 2nd (411, 412, 491). A Journal of the Expedition was printed in the Boston New Letter, Nov. 6th (491 xiii.).
Annapolis Royal: name and plan.
The name of the place was changed to Annapolis Royal in honour of the Queen (460). A plan of the Fort is given (434). Col. Nicholson described the extent of the territory acquired (460), and a memorandum of the bounds of the coast was sent by Capt. Southack (429).
Articles of Capitulation.
The Articles of Capitulation were destined to prove the occasion of some trouble in the future (411, 412). It was provided that the inhabitants within gun-shot of the Fort were to be allowed two years in which to decide whether they would leave or take the oath of allegiance to the Crown of England. In the mean time they might remain upon their estates undisturbed, "with their corn, cattle and furniture." Certain arrangements were made for the transport of those who wished to retain their allegiance to the French King. A list of the inhabitants of the banlieu is given (433). The rest of the inhabitants of Nova Scotia, as Nicholson was quick to point out, were "left absolutely prisoners at discretion" (412, 427 i., 460). The Garrison were to march out with the honours of war and return to France (412).
Disposal of inhabitants.; News sent to Quebec.; Col. Vetch Governor of Annapolis Royal.
In announcing their success to the Queen, Nicholson and the rest of the Council of War asked for instructions as to the disposal of the French inhabitants. They recommended that all the French inhabitants of the country who would not adopt the Protestant religion should be transported without delay, and that a settlement of British Protestants should be sent over to develope the lands, Fishery and Naval Stores. A Collector of Customs was required, and a frigate to guard the coast as well as 500 men to garrison the Fort (460, 613, 879). News of the surrender of Port Royal was sent to the Governor of Canada through the agency of Major Livingston, whose journey we have already described (427, 673). Using the French inhabitants as a pawn, the Council of War notified M. de Vaudreuil that reprisals would be made upon the chief of them, if he persisted in permitting the savage raids upon the frontiers which resulted in "inhumanly murthering a great many poor innocent people, and children." They demanded the surrender of British prisoners in the hands of the French or their Indian allies, particularly the daughter of the Minister of Dearfield. In the event of refusal, the like number of the chief inhabitants of Nova Scotia would in the same manner be made slaves amongst our Indians (427 i.). Nicholson returned to Englands, leaving Col. Vetch as Governor of Annapolis Royal with a garrison of 500 troops, partly composed of Colonial volunteers. Annapolis Royal was proclaimed sole port and place of trade for Nova Scotia (419, 420, 425, 460, 491). By way of asserting the Queen's sovereignty, Vetch presently assumed the title of Governor "of all the territories of Accadie and Nova Scotia" (613). Hen was able in the New Year to announce that all the inhabitants remaining within the banlieu had taken the oath of allegiance. But as for the rest, he had granted them no terms, in spite of their requests for protection and offers to take the oath of allegiance, since he was awaiting anxiously instructions from home upon that head. Uncertainly as to their fate was keeping them in a ferment and the Indians hostile. Steps were being taken to repair the ruined Fort (460, 613, 613 i., ii., 879). The problem of supporting the garrison and providing for their pay caused the usual anxiety to a Governor who was not sure whether his bills would be honoured at the Treasury (741 i., ii., 742, 879), and who was himself left without pay or salary. Col. Nicholson himself found difficulty at the Treasury both as to his own pay and the meeting of bills drawn for the cost of the Expedition (681, 701).
Plight of the Garrison.; An Indian Ambush.
The garrison suffered severe losses during the ensuing winter, partly from the cold and partly by the desertion of numerous Irish Papists. They were, moreover, unsettled by lack of any instructions as to the establishment of this mixed force, whilst the French and Indians rendered the task of repairing the fortifications hazardous and difficult. Vetch pressed for reinforcements either from the Five Nations or the Independent Companies at New York. He repeated the request for a frigate to protect the port and coasts. In June a large fraction of the much reduced garrison was ambushed by Indians from Penobscot and destroyed (879, 879 i., 884, 887). Vetch reported that he was hemmed in and threatened by the enemy on the land side, whilst two French ships appeared off the coast with provisions and reinforcements (884, 887).
Resources of Nova Scotia.; Order of Baronets.
One of the inducements offered by the supporters of the project of taking Nova Scotia had been that the country would be able to supply the whole Navy with Naval stores (396, 460, 479, 482). Col. Vetch was soon able to announce that a first shipment was ready (884). The fishery, furs, coal and mineral wealth of the country were also represented in glowing colours (482, 579, 884). Addresses of congratulation upon the success of the venture were sent to the Queen from Massachusetts Bay (482, 579), New Hampshire (435), Connecticut and Rhode Island (503–505). Her Majesty was reminded of the promise that had been made, that the Governments which participated in the Expedition should enjoy a preference both in regard to the settlement of the land and the trade and fishery of the Province. The leaders of the Expedition made a similar request, and asked in addition that the Honourable Order of Baronets of Nova Scotia should be revived in their favour (425, 426). (No Baronets of England, Scotland etc., were created after the Union, the title being changed after 1707 to Baronets of Great Britain, v. Pixley. History of the Baronetage). The retention of the country in the coming Treaty of Peace was particularly urged (482, 579).
Renewal of Expedition against Canada.
At the same time the New Englanders petitioned for the renewal of the attempt upon Quebec and Montreal in the Spring, whilst suggesting that the quotas required from them should be reduced, and that the other Colonies, as far South as Virginia, should be called upon to contribute their share (435, 482, 491, 503–505, 575 i., 579, 769). No settled repose, it was declared, could be expected until Canada, "the American Carthage," was subdued (579). On October 14th, a fortnight after the fall of Port Royal, five regiments were embarked at Portsmouth under Viscount Shannon, but to not purpose (428, 430, 430 i.). In the following February the Expedition was once more put in train. The preparations were to some extent entrusted to the new and able Commissioner for Trade, Arthur Moore (678, 681, 697–701, 893).
The alarm of the attempt in 1709 had occasioned a strengthening of the defences of Quebec (528 vi.). Endeavours were made to keep the new design secret. But Mr. Moore reported on the 4th of March that it was already public property (699–701). General Nicholson was now prepared to sail (681, 701). But, as usual, there was delay in dispatching the ships (701). Nichol son having communicated his instructions to the several Governors, a Council of War was held at New London, June 21, which was attended by the Governors of New York, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Connecticut. Measures were concerted for providing transport and supplies. The Minutes are given (893). Strict embargoes were laid on all the ports in the hopes of maintaining secrecy. The Proclamation issued for a General Fast to intercede for success would hardly seem to be the best means of securing that object. The provincial quotas were ordered to concentrate at Albany on July 2nd. The offer of some of the regular officers sent over with Nicholson to command these contingents was not received with enthusiasm (893).
The arrival of the Fleet and forces under General Hill was then awaited.
On land, apart from preparations for resisting the British attack upon Canada (which included the building of a stone fort at Chamblis), the French made the best use of the reaction caused by the postponement of that enterprise (317, 528 vi., 673). Their intrigues with the Five Nations once more caused anxiety (81, 834 i., 863, 863 i., 864 i. and see below, p. xv.). Encouraged by M. de Vaudreuil, the Canada Indians raided the New England frontiers (v. supra). Governor Dudley's intention of inflicting reprisals for the rewards offered by Vaudreuil for English scalps received the approval of the Board of Trade (34).
French at sea.
At sea, enemy privateers were "thick as bees," and raids were made upon the Leeward Islands (v. § 3. p. xlv. The capture of Port Royal, however, gave great relief in this respect to the New England coast (237, 850).
In the spring of 1710 we hear of a large fleet of merchantmen, with a convoy of five men of war under M. du Clair, sailing unmolested from La Rochelle. Its destination was said to be Brazil, where its attempt miscarried (232 i., 241, 241 iii., 838).
Early in 1711, M. Ducasse arrived in the West Indies with a squadron which was intended to convoy the Spanish galleons from Cartagena and Havana. His presence caused some perturbation in Jamaica (843).
Indians: The Five Nations.
In spite of French intrigues, the Five Nations remained loyal. We have seen that their Sachems visited England in order to urge the renewal of the Expedition against Canada. In the course of their Address to the Queen of this occasion they begged that Missionaries should be sent to instruct them, and on their return asked that a chapel should be erected and a garrison installed in their Fort (194, 310). Minutes of the Society for Propagating the Gospel in Foreign Parts upon these proposals are given (210). Nicholson also urged the importance of complying with their request (232).
Governor Hunter's Conference at Albany.
Shortly after his arrival in New York, Governor Hunter reported that the Senecas had affirmed their loyalty, which had been under suspicion, and that the Waganhas, who had formerly been in the French interest, had entered the Covenant Chain (317). At a Conference held by him with the Five Nations and River Indians at Albany in August, 1710, they reiterated their resolution to "keep the Covenant Chain bright." They renewed their demand for missionaries and garrisons, and asked that forts should be built to protect them from the French (414, 834 i.). They promised that, on their part, they would not receive "those dangerous people, the Jesuits" in their Castles (p. 496). Hunter gave them the presents from England expected from a new Governor, and promised to build a fort at Schaahkook. He commended them for opening a path for the Far Indians. He required them to entertain no more Jesuits or French emissaries, and bade them hold themselves in readiness for their part in the coming Expedition. Amongst the recommendations of the S.P.G. (210), was one in favour of the prohibition of the sale of intoxicating liquor to the Indians. This measure was also urged by the Sachems at the Conference, and Hunter promised compliance (pp. 490, 539). Their desire for sobriety, however, would appear to have been mainly altruistic. For when Col. Schuyler presented them with twenty gallons of rum, the gift proved "very acceptable" (p. 539).
The French and the Senecas.; French build fort at Onnondage.; The Senecas persuaded to destroy it.; The agreement of Neutrality.
The Interpreter, Lawrence Claes, who had been sent to the Senecas' country "to watch the motions of the French," reported that he had found French emissaries at Onnondage, endeavouring to persuade them not to join in the Expedition against Canada. The Senecas refused to inform him what their answer was, but communicated it to Hunter (pp. 490, 491, 497, 498). They suggested that the English should build them a fort (p. 491). In the following spring, however, it was reported that the French mission had returned to the charge, with a large present from the Governor of Canada, and that they were busy building a fort at Onnondage. Upon receipt of this news, Governor Hunter dispatched Col. Peter Schuyler to restore the wavering allegiance of the Senecas. By the exercise of his great influence with them, and the persuasive power of a goodly present out of the stores sent from England, Schuyler achieved this object. He secured the immediate destruction of the blockhouse the French had begun to erect (863 i., ii., 864 i.). It was evident that there was a considerable section of the Indians whose loyalty was wavering (834 i., 859, 863 i., ii., 864 i.). But in spite of such indications of the use to which the Agreement of Neutrality was being put by the French, and the dissatisfaction of the neighbouring Colonies therewith, New York remained wedded to that policy. "Rather than be at the expense of supplying them with ammunition, and defending their frontiers …, they choose to sit contented under this precarious security." So wrote the Secretary of New York (859). The Assembly adhered to its refusal to raise funds either for the presents which were necessary to counteract French largesse, or to provide for spies sent out to Canada etc. (859, 863 i., ii.).
Cruel treatment of prisoners.
Some instances of the terrible cruelty practised by Indians upon their prisoners, and not discouraged by the Governor of Canada, are given (190 ii., iii.). The lot of prisoners who fell into the hands of Spain was little better (780 ii.).
Acts of Parliament affecting the Plantations.
Several Acts of Parliament affecting the Colonies were contemplated. Apart from those concerned with the encouragement of Naval Stores and the preservation of mast trees referred to below (p. xxi.), the most important of these was the proposed Act for settling the revenue of New York (see p. xxxi.).
At the request of British exporters of manufactured iron and steel, clauses were prepared to be submitted to Parliament enacting that no drawback of customs should be allowed upon unwrought steel and iron re-exported to the Plantations (621 i., 637, 641). For the effect of the existing system, it was complained, was to penalise the British manufacturer and to encourag the production of iron and steel ware in New England, contrary to the recognised trade policy of Great Britain. New England, it was asserted, already had the advantage that labour was cheaper there than in England, and they had coal in their neighbourhood cheaper than the smiths in London (578, 578 i., 621 i.).
The question was still raised as to how far Acts of Parliament applied to the Plantations, unless they were specifically mentioned (710). They were sometimes ignored, even when particularly directed to them, as in the case of the Act for ascertaining the value of foreign coins (31, 113, 491). The enforcement of this Act was again pressed by the Council of Trade (34, 35, 39).
The African Trade.
In the Act for settling the trade to Africa, which had been shelved in both sessions of the last Parliament, (p. 307), the Plantations were vitally concerned. For upon the issue of renewing the monopoly of the Royal African Company or throwing open the trade in negroes to the Separate Traders, depended the supply of slaves for the tobacco and sugar planters and the prices at which they were to be obtained. There was also the Assiento trade. Jamaica, which was most concerned, was in favour of free trade (582 i., 866 i., ii.). Barbados, on the other hand, preferred the Company's monopoly, declaring that competition had raised prices (541 iii.). The Separate Traders replied with the more probable explanation, that the rise in price was due to the issue of paper money in Barbados (632 i.). They state their case (544, 581). The Company renewed their application for a monopoly, explaining their position and financial difficulties in a petition to the Queen (541 i.), upon which the Council of Trade reported, after obtaining returns of imports and prices, and hearing both sides (461, 462 i., 632 i.).
An alteration in the duties upon prizes and prize goods was found necessary (v. § 3. p. xxxviii.).
Illegal trade and flags of truce.
Information was laid before the Board of Trade as to the trade which continued to be transacted with Curacoa, St. Thomas, Martinique etc., in defiance of the Acts of Trade and Navigation. A circular letter was therefore addressed to the Governors of Plantations calling their attention to this traffic and directing them to find out and prosecute delinquents (42, 47, 47 i., 83, 114). The arrangement of cartles and the sending of flags of truce for the exchange of prisoners, easily lent itself to the carrying on of illegal trade. An Additional Instruction was sent to the various Governors calling upon them to take care to put a stop to such abuses (47, 47 i., 147, 213).
The Council of Trade; Arthur Moore.
It was not only the Governors in New York, Massachusetts Bay or Jamaica who were involved in financial difficulties by the policy of Assemblies or "stops" at the Treasury. The Lords Commissioners of Trade had to represent to the Lord High Treasurer that their salaries were five quarters in arrears at Christmas, 1709 (27, 494, 495). In spite of this discouraging experience, and the indifference with which Ministers treated many of their suggestions, they continued to do their work in business-like fashion. They repeatedly ask for information and statistics from the Governors, and insist that Acts, accounts of revenues and stores of was should be sent in regularly. An important appointment to the Board was that of Arthur Moore, who was afterwards so closely connected with Bolingbroke's commercial treaty with France, and now took a leading part in the preparations for the Expedition against Canada (578 etc.).
Naval Occasions.; Spanish galleons arrive at cadiz.; watch kept upon Cartagena.; M. Ducasse in the West Indies.; Protection of the Leeward Islands.; Loss of H. M.S. Garland.
The Naval Squadron stationed at Jamaica achieved little beyond the capture of some privateers. The ships were in poor condition and the personnel was so enfeebled by desertion and disease that they could only put to sea if manned by soldiers from the Jamaica Regiment (170, 253, 277, 415). The Spanish flotilla of richly laden gallenons slipped away from Havana on Jan. 7, 1710, and though very weakly convoyed by French and Spanish ships, reached Cadiz in safety. It was not till many weeks later that the Governor of Jamaica learned that the birds had flown (170, 313). The Council of Trade expressed disappointment that no warning had been sent of their movements in time for the Home Fleet to intercept them (182, 277). Watch was then kept by the Jamaica Squadron and privateers for the next flotilla of galleons which was reported in June to be preparing to sail from Cartagena. (253). They were still in port in October, and Governor Handasyd was confident that, if they sailed, the British ships would "dust their doublets" (415). But they returned without success. In December a French and Spanish merchant fleet reached Havana unmolested. The men of war which accompanied them were said to be intended to convoy home the flotilla from Cartagena (530). Still in hopes of intercepting these galleons, British warships cruised off Havana and Cartagena in the following spring (738). In May, however, whilst the Squadron was engaged in protecting Jamaican traders on the Spanish coast, Ducasse was reported to have arrived with eight men of war intended to convoy the Spanish galleons (843, 843 i., 857, 866). This force was too strong for the Squadron, but Governor Handasyd sent timely news of it (857, 866). At the same time Governor Lowther going out to take up his Government at Barbados, also heard of Ducasse at Madeira, and on arriving at Barbados was informed of the preparations being made at Martinique and Guadeloupe for an invasion of the Leeward Islands. The convoy which had escorted him at once proceeded to Antigua, as had previously been arranged (750. v. §3). The presence of this force, combined with the activity of the guardships sent from Barbados and a successful engagement by H.M.S. Newcastle, effectually frustrated the threatened attack upon the Leeward Islands (877, 877 ii.-iv., 891, 891 i., 897, ii., 899, 902, 904). H.M.S. Garland was lost off the Capes of Virginia (21).
Nomenclature of ships.
The continuity of nomenclature observed in the Navy
is illustrated by the names of men of war which occur in
these pages. No less striking is the continuity of names
in the merchant service. The Lusitania appears (466,
877) in the West Indies; and of all those that figure in
Lloyd's list to-day or are mentioned in Mr. Kipling's
"Sweepers, Unity, Claribel, Assyrian,
Stormcock, and Golden Gain,"
a large proportion will be found sooner or later in the pages of this Calendar.
Guardships and Victualling Stations.
Harassed by privateers and threatened with raids upon their coasts, the need of more guardships was generally urged by the several Governors. Nor did Virginia and the Leeward Islands appreciate the arrangement by which the ships upon their stations were obliged to leave them unprotected and go to New York and Barbados to refit and re-victual. New victualling stations were therefore requested. These demands, and demands for convoys for the Trade Fleets, were backed by the merchants of the City and the Out-ports. They were satisfied to the full extent of the Admiralty's resources and perhaps in excess of the requirements of the strategical position.
Privateers and Pirates.
The activity of privateers upon both sides was great. Numerous captures are reported. The taking of Port Royal had closed that port as a starting point for French privateers which had harassed the coasts of NewEngland. But from Martinique and Havana they continued to infest Jamaica and the Leeward Islands. Several instances of very gallant fights with enemy privateers by English merchantmen are recorded. In one, the crew of a Liverpool galley, after strewing the deck with broken glass bottles in order to cramp the style of bare-footed boarders, retired to close quarters and repelled a fierce attack from a French sloop. In another, after two engagements in which he was boarded by greatly superior numbers, the master of a London galley reached Jamaica "with more prisoners than he had crew" (177, 287 i., 415). Nor was the evil confined to enemy vessels. Complaint was made that British privateers, hailing from Jamaica and Carolina, were ruining the trade with the Spanish main, and producing a shortage of sailors for merchantmen. They were not always easily distinguishable from pirates in their behaviour, and, it was plainly foreseen, were "breeding a nest of pirates" for the future, when Peace was made (84).
A few pirates surrendered themselves upon the Proclamation of Pardon, and others were absorbed by privateers. But having come in and wiped their slate clean, they were not infrequently tempted to sail again under the Black Flag (84, 253, 313, 313 i.). Piracy, indeed, was so tempting a profession that soldiers from the Independent Company at Bermuda conspired to run away with the sloop Flying Fame and goe a pirateing (266, 266 i.-iii.).
An alteration in the duties on prize goods was found to be necessary (v. §3. p. xxxviii.).
Attention continued to be paid to the encouragement of the production of Naval Stores. Both from an economical and a political point of view, the scheme of granting a premium upon naval stores imported from the Plantations appeared to be justified. If the Empire could supply English shipping with timber, masts, pitch, tar, flax and hemp, it would be freed from the danger of a shortage of supplies and an enhancement of prices in war-time. The Navy would no longer be at the mercy of a Swedish Company which preferred to supply the French (61 i.). From the point of view of the English manufacturer, the attention of the Colonist would be turned advantageously from spinning flax and wool, whilst the Colonist himself would reap the harvest of a more profitable industry by exporting raw material in exchange for English manufactured goods. "I have experienced" writes Mr. Bridger, the Surveyor General of H.M. Woods in America, "that a man shall earne as much by makeing of tar, that will buy two coats in the same time that he's spinning and weaving wool enough to make one" (86, 491). In the development of this industry the premium granted to the Colonies by the Act of Parliament for the encouragement of the importation of Naval Stores from America was already beginning to have effect. It had had the immediate result of bringing down the prices of pitch and tar from Sweden (61 i., 127 i.). A return shows that in 1709 imports of pitch, tar and rozin from Carolina, New England and New York were already beginning to be of importance. In New York, the colony of German Protestant Refugees, which was being settled upon the Hundson River, was under contract to devote itself to the manufacture of naval stores. At the close of this period Col. Vetch reports that he has prepared a shipload of masts from Nova Scotia (884). But for masts and hemp British shipping remained dependent upon precarious supplies from the Baltic (597 i.). There were still vested interests in the Naval Yards as well as ignorance and carelessness in the producers to be combated. Some readjustment of the method of paying the premiums was proposed by the merchants of Boston. This, amongst other suggestions, was recommended by the Board of Trade, in a representation to which the Admiralty gave their reply (81 i., 127 i., 172 i.). Enquiries into the subject were made by Lord Dartmouth (585). Later in 1711 the Board of Trade gave a full report upon the working of the Act to the House of Lords (734, 745). Further premiums on spars and boards were proposed by Governor Dudley (491, 585). From Virginia came a proposal for the payment of quit-rents in naval stores instead of tobacco (427 v.).
Bill for preservation of white pines.; The claim of Massachusetts Bay.
The great waste of pine-trees fit for masts for the Navy was continued in New England (81, 86 i., 113, 117, 205, 283, 846, 847). In view of the refusal of the Assemblies of Massachusetts Bay, New York and New Jersey to pass an act for their preservation similar to that of New Hampshire, a bill for the preservation of white pines in New England was prepared, based upon the draft submitted by Mr. Bridger. At the instance of the Board of Trade, it was brought into the House of Commons at the close of one session, and re-introduced the next (34, 36, 215, 319, 481, 626, 832). It has taken two hundred years of use and waste by fire and clearings to bring the question of timber supplies once more to the front. But it must be remembered that the resources in sight in those days were limited by transport and other difficulties. The absence of roads and the presence of enemy Indians lurking in the woods rendered only those trees of any account which were near settlements and close to river-banks (44, 846). This consideration may account for the importance attached to the claim of Massachusetts Bay that the mast-trees reserved to the Crown by their Charter did not include those which stood upon any lands granted to towns or bodies politic (205, 846). The Solicitor General was consulted upon this point, and his opinion is given (234).
The evil of placemen and their deputies in Patent Offices continued to grow. A list of 27 licences of absence for Patent Officers is given (852). It is scarcely surprising that there was a tendency throughout the Plantations for Assemblies to endeavour to encroach upon the Prerogative of the Crown in the appointment of such officers. The Act of Barbados directing how Clerks and Marshals shall be appointed was repealed on this account (131, 134). It is to be observed, however, that merchants and others of Barbados themselves petitioned for the repeal of this Act. After experiencing the effects of giving the Judges power to nominate their own Marshals, they were led to request that persons of credit should be nominated by the Crown (66 ii., 72 i., 100, 101, cf. 283, 508). A special order for the maintenance of the Royal Prerogative in this matter was added to the Instructions of the new Governor of Barbados (354 i.). In Jamaica, the Act for regulating fees was represented by the Patent Officers concerned as prejudicing their offices and "intended to make them rather dependent upon the planters than upon Her Majesty" (2).
New Seals were dispatched to the Plantations (17 etc.). The care with which the Treasury under Godolphin watched over the public money is well known. When Goldolphin signed a warrant for a new silver trumpet for a troop of the Guards, he minuted it with an enquiry what had become of the old one. So, too, orders were given for the return of the old Seals from the Colonies, after they had been broken in Council. When the old Seal of the Leeward Islands was not returned, enquiries were made. It turned out that the ill-facted Governor had had it converted into a thankard for his own use (782).
Epidemics are registered in Jamaica, Bermuda and Virginia (31, 170, 266, 555, 566, 843 etc.).
There are some further references to the institution of a postal system on the Continent. Lt. Governor Spotswood welcomed its establishment in Virginia. But he pointed out that some difficulty would be experienced in paying the small sums for postage (required no doubt upon delivery), because tobacco was the common currency and only specie of the country (437, 835 xiv., 911). The effect of the Post Office Act of 1710 upon the American Postal System has been dealt with recently by Mr. William Smith, History of the Post Office in British North America.
§ 2; THE AMERICAN COLONIES.
Carolina. Governor.; Lands.
At the end of 1710, Charles Craven was appointed to fill the vacancy caused by the death of Major Edward Tynte, Governor of Carolina (536). By his instructions he was directed to cultivate the friendship of the Indians and to inspect accounts etc. (871). Orders had already been given for the transmission of revenue "every quarter in rice or money" (98), and that no grants of lands should be made except by the Lords Proprietors themselves on terms named (9, 10, 98). Grants of land were made to German Protestant Refugees (96, 167).
A Charter was granted for erecting a port upon Port Royal River, to be called Beaufort Town, with a view to the export of Naval Stores, for which a contract had been proposed (120, 597 i., 605, 871).
Political disturbances in North Carolina had led to the neglect of the defences of the country. Left at the mercy of the Indians, many settlers were preparing to migrate to Virginia (638). Edward Hyde was appointed Deputy Governor (883 i.). The questions of the settlement of the boundaries and Indian trade with Virginia are referred to below (p. xxxv.).
Although harassed by the French and Indians on the frontier, Connecticut contributed its quota to the Port Royal Expedition "with unanimous and chearfull obedience" (337 i.). But the expence lay heavily upon a Colony "living wholly upon husbandry," and the address of Massachusetts Bay upon the subject was fervently echoed (503).
The Colony proceeded with the printing of its laws (338). The dispute over the boundary with Massachusetts Bay dragged on (81).
Maryland. Council assume administration of Government. Acts repealed.
Upon the death of Col. Seymour, the Council of Maryland assumed the powers of the Governor, enacting laws which were disallowed upon account of that irregularity (93 i., 441, 442, 468). In reply to the Council of Trade, it was explained that the Instruction, directing that the President of the Council should undertake the administration of the Government in such cases, had never been communicated to the Council. (836).
Census.; Protest against Acts for relief of debtors etc.; New Governor's Instruction as to Acts concerning Trade and Navigation.; Agent ordered to be appointed.
A census of the country for 1710 was transmitted (474 i.). Attention was called to the increase of negroes, and also to the difficulties in which many planters were involved owing to the low price of tobacco. An Act intended for the relief of such debtors was passed (474). Protests were entered by merchants and creditors in England against the tendency to make such laws at their expence and injurious to commerce. They proposed that the Governor should be instructed not to pass any Act relating to Trade or Navigation, unless a sufficient term was allowed for H.M. pleasure to be known upon it before it came into operation (342). In the new Governor's Instructions, a clause was added relating to the passing of laws affecting the property of H.M. subjects in Great Britain (472). The appointment of an Agent to look after the business of the Colony in England was also ordered (903, 906, 910). Col. Corbet had been appointed by the Crown to succeed Col. Seymour. But after he had been urged in vain to proceed to his Government, his Commission was revoked (292, 309, 472, 610, 622).
Ld. Proprietor's Petition.
Lord Baltimore had once more petitioned that the right of appointing a Governor should be restored to the Lord Proprietor. Mr. Blathwayt explained that the reason why it had been taken away was that "it appeared noways fit to continue that Government under the direction of Papists" (636 i., 718 i.). Examples of Jesuit correspondence in the usual jargon of shopkeeping are given (527 i.-vi.).
Act for qualification of Surveyors.
Confusion caused by unnotified alterations in the terms of grants of land and abuses by the Lord Proprietor's Surveyors were the reasons advanced by the Assembly for their Act for the qualification of Surveyors. Lord Baltimore replied to their grievances in this connection (293 i.).
Itinerant Judges.; Secretary's fees.
Not approving of the institutions of itinerant Justices, the Assembly refused to grant any salaries for them (31, 474). Their duel with the Secretary as to the fees of his office continued (93 i., 155, 156, etc.). The new Governor was instructed to see to it that that Patent Officer, Sir Thomas Laurence, was allowed the fees upon ordinary licences and that he should receive compensation for the fees that had been withheld from him by the Assembly (173).
Act for punishing Blasphemy.
An instance of the operation of the Act for punishing. blasphemy occurs in the case of Charles Arrabella. In an unguarded moment, this unfortunate mariner had uttered some blasphemous words "in a great passion occasioned by the spilling of some scalding pitch upon one of his feet." He was recommended to H.M. mercy, after three holes had been bored in his tongue, a fine of £20 had been imposed upon him, and he had lain over six months in prison (489, 561).
Massachusetts Bay. Cost of Defence.
Whilst Governor Dudley could take credit for his successful defence of the frontiers of New England against the French and Indians, much dissatisfaction was felt at the heavy charge which it involved, and the Neutrality of the Five Nations, whilst New York and the neighbouring Colonies "sat quiet from losses or charges" (81, 575 i., 769). Accounts of expenditure upon the abandoned Expedition against Canada were rendered. Renewal of it was urged, but it was suggested that the Southern Colonies should bear their part of the burden, and so lighten that of New England (81, 81 iii., 579, 769). The share taken by Massachusetts Bay in the Port Royal Expedition is shown (356, 482, 491, 491 ix., and see § 1).
Mr. Dummer appointed Agent.
Jeremiah Dummer, jr., was appointed Agent for the Colony in succession to Sir Wm. Ashhurst (226, 488, 615 i.).
Drought. Fast and Thanksgiving.
Military efforts delayed the production of Naval Stores, and a scorching drought occasioned fears for the harvest. But that evil was averted, and a General Fast was followed by a Thanksgiving (81, 81 xii., xiv., 86, 491 xii.).
Bill for preservation of woods.
The question of the preservation of the woods and Crown rights is referred to above (§ 1. p. xxi.).
Lists of causes. Paper money.
Lists of causes in the Courts are preserved (491 i.-vi.).
The action of an economic law is illustrated by the complete disappearance of silver coinage following upon an issue of paper money (pp. 267, 271).
New Hampshire had occasion to send an Address of thanks to the Queen for a supply of military stores, and the decision in the case of Allen v. Waldron, and to urge the renewal of the designed expedition against Canada and Nova Scotia (81 xvi., xvii.). The Province welcomed the expedition to Port Royal, and contributed its quota cheerfully (358).
A new Assembly. Lt. Gov. Usher.; Suspends Waldron.
In August, 1710, a new Assembly was elected, more to the mind of Lt. Governor Usher (335). That egregious person visited the Province and saw to the defence of the frontiers. He drew attention to some irregularities in the Council, and was mortified by the Governor's contemptuous remark that he put everything in a flame when he went there. He retorted with querulous complaints against Dudley (335, 382). Usher pursued his quarrel with Waldron, and finally suspended him for acting as Councillor without warrant (283, 335, 348, 508 ii., iii., 510, 510 i., iii.). The opinion of Usher held by the Council and Dudley is shown (509, 509 i.). and as for Waldron, he calls him outright "an envious malicious liar" (492 i.), made poor and angry by the long-delayed settlement of Allen's claim (492). The difficulty in finding persons suitable to act as Members of Council is mentioned by Dudley (860).
New York: Grants of land and quit rents.
The question of the old grants of land upon which no quit-rents were being paid, was raised again by the Attorney General of New York (95 i.). The Council of Trade, however, did not recommend his proposal for prosecuting the patentees, "in regard it may discourage the seating and cultivating of lands" (144). Upon the suggestion of Governor Hunter, the period within which a patentee was required to cultivate three acres in every fifty of a grant of lands, was extended to three years after the conclusion of the war. For it was recognised that the danger of the French and Indian enemy on the frontier rendered it impossible in many cases to proceed with the clearing of lands (317, 447).
The new Governor.
Lt. Col. Robert Hunter, like Col. Parke and Col. Spotswood and the Earl of Orkney, had fought at Blenheim. A protégé of the latter, he was also the friend of Addison and Swift. His first year in the Government of New York and New Jersey was an anxious and trying experience. His management of affairs proved that he possessed in a very high degree the qualities of a good administrator. He showed himself patient and conciliatory in dealing with difficult groups of men. Fertile in expedients for solving a crisis, he was too wise to provoke one upon minor issues. When conciliation failed and firmness was needed, he did not hesitate to use the sternest measures. Before making up his mind, he was at pains to render himself familiar with every aspect of a problem. Once he had arrived at a decision, he was ready to impose his will without shirking the consequences. He knew when to act and when to hold his hand. In dealing with several critical situations which arose in these first years, he exhibited sound judgment, prudence and tact, and was evidently inspired by an honest determination to conduct his Government in the best interests of the Colony and mother-country alike.
Arrival in New York.; Settlement of German Protestant Refugees on Hudson River.
Like his predecessor, Lord Lovelace, Hunter had a long and stormy voyage to New York, where he arrived 14th June, 1710. The band of some 3000 destitute Protestant Refugees from the Palatinate of the Rhine, who accompanied him, suffered much from sickness on the voyage, and the loss of stores by wreck (271, 317, 362). In view of his subsequent treatment by the Treasury and the Refugees, it is important to observe the instructions he received from Sunderland as to carrying out his scheme for their settlement. That scheme had been revised and approved by Godolphin, the Lord High Treasurer (12, 13, 32, 71, 414).
No time was lost in surveying the Schoharie lands which had formed part of Col. Bayard's grant. These lands, however, had been restored to the Indians when Bayard's grant was resumed. They afterwards made a present of their title to the Crown (317, 414). But though said to be good agricultural land, this tract, being destitute of pitch-pine, was not suitable for the production of the Naval Stores which the Refugees were under contract to manufacture (317). Hunter therefore purchased some land from Mr. Livingston and Mr. Fullerton, on both banks of the Hudson River, and was soon able to report that the Refugees were comfortably established in villages and in train to produce Naval Stores (413, 414, 487, 832). For here was pitch-pine enough to supply all Europe with tar (223, 261). Hunter's troubles, however, had only begun. The £8000 which had been allowed him was soon exhausted, and he drew bills on the Treasury for £4,700 more. Two year's subsistence at £15000 a year was still required before the land could be cleared and the trees tapped. After that, the settlement of Refugees would be selfsupporting and begin to repay the capital which had been expended upon this enterprise. But although Hunter submitted his accounts to the Treasury and was a careful steward of the funds entrusted to him, the bills he drew were left unpaid. He was obliged to support the Refugees upon his own credit, or leave them to starve (414, 487, 640 i., 832, 833). Sunderland and Godolphin, it must be remembered, fell a few weeks after Hunter's arrival in New York (327, 497). Harley, St. John and Dartmouth ruled in their stead. Hunter's accounts, with the names and details of the recipients, are preserved (574).
Revolt of the Refugees.; Quelled by Hunter.; Natural isation.
Before long, the minds of the settlers were disturbed by agitators, who from various motives (862, 863), persuaded them to abandon their undertaking to manufacture Naval Stores and demand to be transferred to the fat lands of Schoharie. Hunter endeavoured to reason with them. But so mutinous was their attitude, that he was compelled to march against them with a detachment of soldiers from the garrison at Albany, and to disarm them (862–864). The Refugees then settled down to work under the direction of Mr. Sacket, whom Hunter had appointed to instruct them in the process of manufacturing tar in place of Bridger, the Surveyor General, who refused to act unless his salary was increased (5, 640 i., 832, 863, 864). An Act for naturalising the Palatines without fee was refused by the Assembly "for no reason but that it was recommended to them" (pp. 288, 289, 486).
Assembly votes inadequate supplies.; Their motives.
Such, indeed, was the general demeanour of the Assembly. Upon their first meeting, Hunter found them in "a very indifferent humour," but by his conciliatory attitude he endeavoured to bring them into a better state of mind. Amongst other Acts, they brought in an Excise Act whereby they insisted upon appointing their own Treasurer, instead of the Receiver General, to receive the money voted (414. cf. Barbados). They proceeded to vote a quite inadequate sum for the carrying on of the Government, appropriating their grants after cutting down the estimates severely, and they would only allow the Governor half the salary directed by the Queen's instructions (414, 487). When Col. Morris urged a reconsideration of that point, they expelled him from their House (487). Hunter gives an interesting analysis of their real and pretended reasons for this course of action. The misapplication of former Revenues was one of these. But they refused to accept Hunter's straightforward offer to insure against a repetition of this legitimate grievance (p. 258). One of the real reasons he gives is that since the payment of Members, politics had become a profitable trade and Assemblymen were anxious to secure re-election by "the popular argument of having saved the Country's money." He suggests a scheme for abolishing payment of Members, which was costing the country, for one session only, nearly half as much as they would vote for the support of Government for one year. "Then we shall have men of substance, sense and moderation for Representatives who come with a true intent to serve their country and not themselves" (p. 259). One of the chief motives for their conduct was a desire to be put upon the same footing as the neighbouring Charter Governments, which appeared to be exempt from the expences for which they were invited to raise a Revenue. Hunter pointed out that whilst Massachusetts Bay was at a charge of £20,000 a year at least for the defence of the frontiers, New York was defended by forces which cost the Queen at least an equal sum.
Retrenchment of Governor's Salary.; Amendments to Money bills.; The Council.; Assembly dissolved.; Act for enacting a standing Revenue drafted.; Conference with Five Nations.
The Assembly was determined to stretch its claim to privileges to the uttermost, whether against the Council or the Crown. One of their chief reasons for retrenching the Governor's salary was that they maintained that the Queen had no power to appoint salaries (p. 259). As for the Council, the issue which was being raised elsewhere in the West Indies, was joined here also. For the Assembly insisted upon making the Treasurer accountable to themselves alone, and once more refused to admit the right of the Council to make amendments to money bills. They took no notice of the Queen's letter in favour of Lady Lovelace's claim, and sent up a bill for reducing the fees of officers "so low that no officer could live." Hunter prorogued the Assembly, and was left, as before, to carry on the Government at his own expense (487, 517, 517 i.–v., 832). After making one or two suggestions for a way out of the impasse, he was forced to acknowledge that only strong measures from home would have any good effect. The Council were almost unanimous in their support of Hunter and the Queen's right (517). The Assembly met again in no better mood. The old hare was started again that they were dissolved by the Governor's proroguing them whilst he was in the Jerseys. They practically forced a dissolution, and Hunter was left to carry on with officers starving, the forts on the frontiers in ruin, no public money and all the expence of the Government and Garrison thrown upon his private credit. A new Assembly would be but a repetition of the last. Relief must come from home (832–834). The Council of Trade reported upon the whole situation (654 i.), and in accordance with an Order in Council thereupon, the draft of an Act of Parliament enacting a standing Revenue for New York. was prepared (693, 725, 725 ii.).
Hunter had better success in dealing with the Five Nations in a Conference held at Albany (317, v. § 1).
New Jersey.; Place of Assembly.; Removal of extremists in Council proposed.; Place of Assembly.; Removal of extremists in Council proposed.
In New Jersey the new Governor's Speech in Council had an excellent effect. His tact and moderation soon won over Col. Quary and the Chief Justice, Mompesson, who were weary of the extremists in the Council. For here the position was the opposite of that in New York, the Assembly supporting the Governor, and the Council proving irreconcileable (288, 473, 832). By a sensible compromise, Hunter solved the first difficulty raised, which concerned the place of meeting of the General Assembly (223, 414). He had been instructed to reconcile the differences between the Council and Assembly, or, failing that, to report the true cause and cure. Reconciliation he found to be impossible. In his report, after describing the action of the extremists in the Council, who set themselves to hinder all business and pursue their quarrel with the Assembly, he gave his considered opinion that there would be no peace or quiet in the Province until the leaders of the party in the Council—the old supporters of Lord Cornbury—were removed (768 i., 823, 832). The case of the Assembly against them and the Secretary, Basse, is given (835 i. –xlii.), and Hunter's report upon the work of the session (832).
Lord Lovelace's salary.
Amongst the Acts sent up by the Assembly, but rejected through the tactics of the Council, was one for making good to Lady Lovelace the money which had been voted to the late Governor and then assigned to Lt. Governor Ingoldesby (119, 323, 644, 832).
Acts passed under Lt. Governor Ingoldesby.
In obedience to his Instructions Hunter reviewed the Acts passed under the administration of Ingoldesby (832).
Originals of Acts lost.
A curious situation arose through the loss of the originals of some Acts passed just before Lord Lovelace died. An Act was introduced for making the printed copies valid (644, 832).
Pennsylvania; Penn's surrender.
In the summer of 1710, William Penn approached the new Ministers upon the question of compensation for the surrender of his Government. He took occasion to intercede for liberty of conscience for the Friends and some hereditary mark of distinction for his own family. Correspondence then ensued in which the Council of Trade endeavoured to arrive at what might be regarded as a reasonable consideration for his services and sacrifices. They made their report in Feb. 1711 (473, 537, 633, 649 i.).
Rhode Island's share in the Expedition is referred to above (pp. ix.–xiv., and see 357, 357 i., 504).
Virginia. Lt. Governor Spotswood.; Relational with Council and Assembly.; Proposal for mutual defence.
The Earl of Orkney continued his absentee Governorship of Virginia, occasionally intervening or being consulted in the business of the Dominion (702). In Feb., 1710, Col. Alexander Spotswood, an officer who had been wounded at Blenheim, was appointed Lt. Governor. Capable and energetic, he devoted all his powers to the development as well as to the administration of Virginia, Arriving in June, he at once proceeded to business with the Council upon matters touched upon by his Instructions (349). He won their praises and those of the Burgesses without, as he says, any undue compliance with their humour to the prejudice of H.M. service (350, 555, 710, 710 i., ii., 711). With the first Assembly, however, he could make but little way. Like Hunter in New York, he found that their chief aim was to recommend themselves to the electors by opposing every measure that involved expense. They would neither provide for the defence of the country nor make good the treaty with the Tuscoruros which had been concluded at the instance of their own House. Spotswood was obliged to avail himself of the assistance of some of the Councillors for the latter purpose (638). The threatening attitude of the Senecas rendered this precaution doubly necessary. Spotswood asked that Virginia. Maryland and Carolina should be instructed to assist each other in the event of an attack upon any of them (638).
Method of granting lands.
Widespread confusion and discontent had been caused by the Instruction as to the new terms upon which lands were to be granted. These new terms were reasonable enough in themselves, and were, indeed, well calculated to prevent land lying waste on large grants with a view to unearned increment, but they perturbed those who had already received grants on terms less rigorous (53, 437, pp. 5, 6). One of the objections urged was that settlers would be tempted to migrate to other Governments where lands could be obtained on much easier conditions (p. 5). Spotswood demonstrated to the Burgesses that their grievance was much exaggerated. An Act of 1666 for the granting of lands, which was then in force and was open to the objection that it tended to bring all the ungranted lands into the possession of a few rich men, was repealed. The new Instruction was then the only rule for granting lands, and it was ordered to be passed into an Act (555, 670, 709, 755, 756, 812). In discussing this question, Spotswood showed practical foresight. He suggested that planters should be enticed to settle one side of James River by retaining the terms of the old grants for that district. A line of settlements would thus soon be carried up to the source of that River and would threaten to cut the communications which the French were endeavouring to establish by way of the Lakes between Canada and their new Mississippi settlements (pp. 316, 317).
Exploration of Appallachian Mountains.
In this connection he refers to a Company of Adventurers whom he had encouraged to explore the Alleghany Mountains. Their reconnaissance seemed to open up good prospects of trade with the Indians beyond (p. 317).
Rivers and parishes.
In course of dealing with the problem of re-arranging parishes to meet the requirements of the growing Dominion, Spotswood directs our attention to a principle of early colonization, describing the influence of rivers in drawing the flow of settlers along their banks (437, 555).
Tobacco.; Naval Stores.
From the very first he was keenly interested in the development of the country's resources. The heavy fall in the price of tobacco had been severely felt in Virginia. Whilst the war had closed or contracted many European markets, an excessive importation of negroes had led to the production of an excessive supply. For this reason it was hoped that the proposed tax on imported negroes would check their numbers (710). Many of the planters were in difficulties, and turned to growing flax and cotton and manufacturing their own cloathing, to the detriment of English trade. Tobacco, however, remained practically the only form of currency, so much so, that Spotswood feared it would prove a serious obstacle to the establishment of the General Post now contemplated (394, 437, 744). To turn the minds of the planters from the cultivation and manufacture of flax and cotton, and to reduce the surplus of tobacco, Spotswood proposed that the production of Naval Stores should be encouraged by accepting them as payment for the duties levied upon tobacco in England (744).
Iron Mines; Proposed working by State.
He took an eager personal interest in the development of another industry. Iron mines, reported to be very rich, had been discovered at the Falls of James River. It was proposed that they should be worked by the State and the profits applied to defraying the expenses of Gov ernment. The Assembly, however, rejected the scheme (pp. 235, 317). Nor was the Council of Trade of opinion "that it would be óf any advantage to this Kingdom that such an undertaking should be encouraǵed in the Plantations" (624, 911).
In the election of the new Assembly, Spotswood reports "a new and unaccountable humour of excluding Gentlemen from being Burgesses" (p. 234). He reports on various laws (710), and especially that he had obtained a new Revenue Act free from the objections taken to the old one (p. 414).
Upon the whole the condition of the country was quiet, but a dangerous conspiracy for an insurrection of negroes was discovered and nipped in the bud. The ringleaders were executed, and a bill was brought in to prevent similar combinations. But the measures proposed were thought too severe, and the bill was thrown out (206, 263. p. 318).
Epidemic Privateers.; Guardships.
The country suffered a good deal from an epidemic (206), and more from the visitations of privateers, which defied the heavier and slower sailing guardship among the shoal waters of the Capes. Guardships, too, were obliged to refit and re-victual at New York, thus leaving the coast unprotected. Spotswood therefore proposed the establishment of a victualling station at Point Comfort, whilst a sloop was hired for defence of the Province. Want of sufficient guardships also opened the way for illegal trade which was carried on from all quarters with Curaçoa and St. Thomas. Upon these considerations, a new sixth-rate was appointed to Virginia (21, 154, 208, 263, 349, 363).
Boundary Commissioners; delay by Carolina.
Commissioners were appointed to settle the disputed boundaries with Carolina, as had been ordered (206, 263). Frivolous objections were made by the representatives of Carolina in order to avoid arriving at a decision (437, 437 iii., iv., 709, 709 ii.). The Council of Trade therefore proposed the appointment of new Commissioners with orders to report within six months (671). Fresh interruptions occurred in Carolina to Virginian trade with the Indians (p. 318).
Opinion upon Act for naturalisation.
The Solicitor General delivered an important opinion upon the Virginian Act for naturalisation (514).
§3. THE WEST INDIES.
(See also Section 1).
The Bahama Islands.
The Bahama Islands were visited by H. M.S. Enterprize in the summer of 1710. Captain Smith reported them to be semi-derelict and almost defenceless against the plundering raids of the enemy. But no French settlement had been effected. On Harbour Island Capt. Thomas Walker kept the flag flying, and was confident that he would be able to resist the enemy. On Eleuthera and Providence Islands the few remaining inhabitants had sought refuge in the woods. The rest of the islands were deserted, owing to the frequent raids (421 i.).
Order for appointment of Governor.; Estimates for defence.
Following upon the report of the Council of Trade printed in the previous volume, orders were at length given for the appointment of a Military Governor and the defence of the Bahama Islands (69). That was in January, 1710. Nothing apparently was done. Seven months later a report of the Committee of the Privy Council was approved, and referred back to the Council of Trade to devise the best way of putting it into speedy execution (361). They repeated their proposals of former years, whilst pointing out that the situation had deteriorated with the lapse of time, and that a larger garrison and ampler stores and means of defence were now required. At their suggestion, a Royal Engineer was dispatched from Jamaica to make an estimate of what was needed for the fortification of Providence Island (394, 400, 405, 465, 507 i.).
Barbados. Crowe delays his return.; Lillington President of Council.
In Barbados, the Governor, Mitford Crowe, continued to disregard instructions from home, and pursued his vendetta against the Secretary, Skene, and the three Councillors. The value of the address in his favour, obtained from the illiterate mob and militia is described in terms which remind one of Dr. Johnson's analysis of the signatories of a petition in his "False Alarm" (175 i., 235, 274 i.). It was only after considerable delay that he obeyed the summons to return and account for his conduct. He left the Government in the hands of George Lillington, President of the Council (149, 150, 221, 222, 276).
Quarrel between Council and Assembly. Revenue not voted.; Committee of Correspon-dence.; Decision in favour of the Assembly.
He reported that the country was in "a very divided and turbulent condition." The quarrel between the Council and Assembly immediately broke out afresh. Issue was joined upon the right of the Assembly to appoint a Treasurer, who, it was felt after the experience of the Paper Act, must be above suspicion. In spite of the conciliatory efforts of the President, and some concessions on the part of the Assembly, the Council refused to give way. The Excise bill was therefore thrown out, and the country remained without a revenue for many months. To counteract the effect of a representation by the majority of members of Council, the Assembly appointed a Committee of Correspondence to present their side of the case in the dispute (201, 264, 264 i.–v., 296, 332, 379, 384, 459, 623, 655). The question was carefully weighed at home. Both the Council of Trade and the Law Officers of the Crown reported in favour of the Assembly (377, 386, 402 i., 403, 406, 407). The President of the Council was accordingly instructed to pass the Excise Bill with a Treasurer appointed by the Assembly, and this was done (679). The decision arrived at was largely based upon a consideration of the established usage (402 i.).
Accounts and returns.
Lillington sent home various accounts, and returns of christenings, burials and causes depending for 1710 (332 iff., 379 i.).
Robert Lowther, Governor.; Instruction as to Patent Officers.
Robert Lowther was appointed Governor in place of Crowe in July, 1710 (316). But nearly a year elapsed before he reached Barbados (901). His Instructions included a particular direction to take care that no encroachment was permitted upon the rights and perquisites of Patent Officers. This instruction arose out of the repeal of the Act concerning the appointment of marshals and the complaints of Skene and Gordon. A new Act fixing the salaries of Judges and restoring the fees of patent officers was ordered to be passed (99, 131, 134, 354 i., 577, and see §1).
There is an echo of the project of settling Tobago which "fell by the death of" King William, in a petition by Capt. Edward Cowley for compensation for his losses in connection with that undertaking. (193 i., 223, 248, 269).
Bermuda; Mutiny and Epidemic.
Little of importance is reported from Bermuda except a plot amongst the soldiers to kill the Governor, run away with a sloop and "goe a pirateing." Rumours of a raid caused Bennett to ask for an increase of the garrison (897). His replies in the case of the St. James sloop and to enquiries as to illegal trade indicate the course of trade from Bermuda (567, 568 i.–iv. etc.). An epidemic which raged there is described (266–268, 521, 566, 567, 897).
Jamaica, too, was troubled by outbreaks of smallpox and other sickness (170, 182, 530, 843).
Privateers and duties on prize goods.
The Island was pestered by French privateers (170, 258 etc.), though the country fitted out sloops to act as guardships in addition to the Naval squadron, and the Governor reports that "when ours meats with them, they commonly dust their dublitts" (170, 253). The English privateers, however, were much discouraged by the duties on prizes and prize goods, which, under the Act intended to encourage the trade to America, did in effect exceed the intrinsic value of the captures themselves (170, 170 i.–iii., 219). The result was an exodus of seamen from Jamaica. Indignation was felt with the Collector, Peter Beckford, jr., who exacted payment of these duties, but the Commissioners of Customs upheld his action. It was found necessary to amend the Act (220, 239, 543, 543 iii., 588, 625), and whilst the authority of Parliament was being obtained, the new Governor was empowered to give a promise to the Assembly to that effect (341 i., 369, 570).
The report that a French squadron had sailed for the West Indies caused some apprehension for the safety of Jamaica where the Naval Squadron was now very weak (133, 182, 218, 277, 843, 857). The desirability of reinforcing it was considered (239, 284, 289, 291). It was still incapable of putting to sea without the aid of soldiers from Brigadier Handasyd's Regiment (170, 172, 253, 313, 514, 772). Besides watching in vain for the Spanish flotilla (v. § 1), it was sent to cruize off the Spanish main, with the object of preventing French ships from trading there and French privateers from interfering with Jamaican traders (313, 415). But the competition of French goods in the South Seas (253, 738) caused that trade to languish (253, 738, 866).
The Assembly and Council.
The meetings of the Assembly were accompanied by a good deal of heat owing, first, to the discontent caused by the duties on prize goods, and, secondly, to the influence of the "firebrand" Totterdale, and a dispute with the Council as to their right to amend a money-bill (137, 866).
Partiality of Juries.
Handasyd echoed the complaint of other Governors as to the partiality of Juries, which were as loath to convict a fellow-planter of a murder of felony as to bring in a verdict in favour of the Crown (262).
Handasyd succeeded by Lord A. Hamilton.
In compliance with his oft-repeated request, Handasyd was at length relieved, and Lord Archibald Hamilton appointed in his stead. Sailing nine months later with the convoy for the West India trade fleet, he was instructed to hold an enquiry on his way at Antigua into the murder of Governor Parke and the condition of the Island (303, 305, 409, 750, 807).
For the long standing and bitter feud between the Planters and the Governor of the Leeward Islands had ended in the savage and deliberate murder of the latter by the Antiguans in arms. Space cannot be spared for analysing in detail the numerous accounts of that culminating event which are included in this volume. But attention may be drawn to certain facts which emerge. The murder of Lt. Governor Johnson, and the acquittal of his murderer and several others by their fellowplanters, as well as repeated attempts at assassinating Parke himself, point to the lawless and violent atmosphere which prevailed (391, 483). The murder was, indeed, anticipated upon the London Exchange (677). Nor was it the result of a sudden outbreak of individual violence. It was the deliberate act of the Assembly and people rising in arms, after prolonged altercations and repeated warnings (821). Assassination of a representative of the Crown, even by people justly provoked by a sense of personal wrongs and real or imaginary political grievances, is not to be condoned or excused. But that Parke's temper and behaviour were calculated to madden a rough and lawless body of men is beyond gainsaying.
Parke and the L.I. Regiment.
The intense hatred which the man inspired is revealed not only by his relations with Col. Codrington and his party, and the planters in general, but also in his quarrel with Col. Jones, the Commanding Officer of the Regiment stationed at the Leeward Islands. The discipline of the Regiment was undermined by their feud. Whilst on behalf of the soldiers Parke had forwarded petitions for their arrears of pay and clothing (204, 204 i., 228–230), complaints were received that he encouraged them to commit outrages upon those who had brought charges against him. Sunderland sternly ordered an enquiry (169). Col. Jones proposed to punish some of the delinquents. But Parke interfered to protect them (324 ff., 329, 516).
Parke recalled.; His delayed.
In Feb., 1710, Parke was recalled, to answer before the Queen in Council the charges laid against him. He was ordered to return home on the first man of war sailing after depositions had been taken and exchanged (106, 125). He affected to welcome the opportunity of exposing his enemies. But he protested against the Court of Inquisition, as he termed it, for taking depositions (260, 344). Lack of support from home, he declared, was the cause of all his troubles. His opponents, who had made three attempts to assassinate him, were a pack of Round-heads, a "Calves Head Club," who were determined to encroach upon the Prerogative of the Crown. His insistence upon maintaining that Prerogative and suppressing illegal trade was, he averred, his real sin in their eyes (161, 228–230, 391). When the Trade Fleet sailed, Parke did not sail with the man of war which convoyed it. His enemies, he explained, had, by a trick, given him no time to answer their faked depositions (324, 330, 344, 783 iii. ff.).
His reply to charges.
The Governor's reply to the Articles of Complaint lodged against him was drawn up by Andrew Boult (391, 809). In it the Articles are answered point by point. To many of them, his reply is good. He demonstrates that in some of the proceedings urged against him, he was merely following his Instructions. When he found juries would not convict their fellowplanters for brutal murders, he had done his best to secure Justice. As for the Assembly, "they squeak for their privileges," and pretend that their constitution is invaded, when their real object is to engross the whole Prerogative of the Crown. He was, indeed, upon firm ground in refusing to admit their claim to the "negative voice" in legislation. For the Council of Trade upheld the Governor in that controversy. "Their pretending to assume the right of their Speaker's signing last will never be allowed here" they asserted; it was an undutifull attempt upon H.M. Prerogative (62, p. 192).
The complaint as to his fortifying St. Johns touched Parke as a soldier. He writes with acid contempt of the planters' military arguments and of their behaviour under arms (pp. 194, 195). As to his arbitrary actions in the Court of Chancery, that accusation, he retorts, arose from his impartial decisions without regard to the status of the litigants. If his judgments were faulty, why did they not appeal?
The fact was, that they held it "abominable and without precedent that a stranger that came out of England should recover his money from an inhabitant" (pp. 196, 197. cf. Jamaica, supra). As to the charge of turning out the Chief Justice, Mr. Watkins was not turned out, but resigned. In any case, he was not a very fit person to try criminals, since his hands were stained with the blood of an unarmed man (pp. 199, 200). Parke returned to his favourite thesis of the evil of latifundia, pointing, with his eye no doubt upon Codrington, to the rich men who, by means of the Act of 1698, combined to engross the land and forced small landowners off the Island (pp. 196, 197). Chester's stories he dismissed as the outcome of malice due to his continually checking him in illegal trading (483, p. 200), (omitting, of course, to mention his own relationship with Mrs. Chester, which was made sufficiently evident by his will). The charge of assuming the power to dispense with the powder Act was brought by the very men who petitioned him to do so in accordance with an Address by the whole Council and Assembly (p. 201). Parke concluded by reciting evident signs of the increased prosperity of the Islands under his administration (p. 205), and remarking that the accusations of his "leading a lewd life and conversation" were brought by those very Codringtons and Perries who themselves starved the Clergy, lived in open adultery and owned a mongrel, sooty race of bastards (p. 206).
The Tory Ministry.
Such was his defence. But before this document had left the Leeward Islands an event occurred at home which probably signed his death-warrant. Sunderland fell. The success of the Tories was complete.
Parke changes his tone.; Suspends Col. Jones.; Antiguans grow desperate.
The reactions of the English political situation upon temper and events in the Colonies were swift and sure. Parke himself reported that the attitude of the Assembly was attuned to the latest news from England. It was rumoured that he was put out and, says he, the Assembly was truculent; that he was confirmed, and they were ready to come to terms. So now, when Dartmouth succeeded Sunderland (327), his own confidence suddenly revived. It was his turn to be truculent. He writes bitterly of the fallen Minister who had rapped his knuckles so severely, and stopped his promotion in the army. Now he looked to Dartmouth for protection and favour. He applied to him for the Lord Lieutenancy of Middlesex and Hampshire, and proposed to stand for Parliament on his return home. He rejoiced that the Episcopal Church "was like to be trumps." His enemies were Scotch Cameronians and Presbyterians, whilst he himself was no Republican. That was why they had found favour in Sunderland's eyes (230, 390, 484). (Sunderland had been a theoretical enthusiast for Republicanism, but with Halifax disclaimed it in this year. (fn. 1) ) His enemy, Codrington, too, was dead, and had had the mortification of leaving a "Volpone" will (228). In this new humour one of Parke's first steps was to suspend Col. Jones (347). Surrounding himself with a chosen bodyguard from the Regiment, whom he encouraged to bully and outrage the inhabitants, he faced the enraged and disappointed planters of Antigua (674 i.–iv., 783 iv. etc.). As the impression grew that Parke would not now leave his Government, the Antiguans grew desperate. A wild and most improbable rumour spread that the Governor was proposing to turn traitor and to hand over the Island to the French. In the heated atmosphere prevailing anything would be believed. Parke was invited by the Assembly and advised by the Council to quit the Island (623, 623 ii., 674 ii.–iv., 677 i.).
Whatever his faults, cowardice was not one of them. He refused to surrender the Queen's Commission, but surrounded himself with his guard, fortified his residence, received the Sacrament and prepared himself for the end which was now seen to be inevitable (589, 674 etc.).
Murder of Governor Parke.; His papers seized.
Details of the final tragedy on Dec. 7, 1710, and the steps which led up to it are given in the several conflicting accounts which reached London from March onwards (589, 623, 674, 674 i.–vi., 677, 677 i., 683, 783 ii,–iv., 809, 827, 838). Parke was savagely killed and barbarously mutilated, after he had killed Capt. Piggott in an interchange of pistol-shots (683, 809). Some of the soldiers of his guard were murdered in cold blood, after quarter given (683 etc.). Parke's papers were seized. Some of them were destroyed. Others were published, revealing his intrigues with wives and daughters of the planters (674, 677 i., 683), which may account for the brutality of the murderers.
Enquiry shirked.; Place of burial.
The Lieutenant General, Walter Hamilton, was immediately summoned from St. Kitts. He called a General Assembly of the Leeward Islands to enquire into the circumstances of the murder (674 ff., 809). Some refused to attend on the ground that they were liable to be murdered, if their verdict should be unpopular. There followed a general conspiracy of silence and an endeavour to hush up and gloss over the atrocity of the crime (783 ii. ff., 809). Hardly any witnesses appeared in response to a Proclamation inviting evidence. The General and Council therefore contented themselves with declaring that "the generality of the inhabitants were concerned therein." This, indeed, was evidently the case (783 ii.). Hamilton concurred with the general attitude, which was to suggest an act of oblivion and indemnity (782, 809). The course of events in Antigua after the murder is illuminating. Apart from the suppression or perversion of evidence, Parke's supporters were bullied and intimidated (677, 821 i., 837, 899). Threats were uttered that, if any of the guilty were punished, the country would rebel and go over to the French (623, 683, 899). The references to Parke's burial-place are of particular interest. No trace of it has hitherto been found, and it has been suggested indeed that it was purposely concealed. (v. Aspinall, West Indian Tales of Old. p. 49). But we now learn that he was handsomely buried by the Lt. Governor in the Church, after the consent of the Assembly had been with difficulty obtained. The Church of St. Johns was destroyed by an earthquake in 1843, and replaced by the present Cathedral (623 ii., 683).
Effect in London.
The Council refused to hire a vessel to dispatch the news of the murder. It was not, therefore, until the following March that the news reached London. It came first from Montserrat and Barbados (589, 623, 674, 730).
Major Douglas appointed Governor.
Thereupon the Committee of the Privy Council conferred with the Council of Trade (735). Ministers had to decide between practically condoning the murder of an officer with whom little sympathy could be felt, but who represented the authority of the Crown, and risking disorder and perhaps rebellion by punishing the offenders. Hamilton, who had been appointed Lieutenant General during Parke's absence, was directed to keep order and await instructions (146, 743, 782). Major Walter Douglas was appointed to the Government and ordered to proceed to the Leeward Islands without delay with the convoy which was about to sail (758, 802, 823).
Commission for trial and pardon of rioters.
After consulting with merchants and planters in town, the Council of Trade formulated some proposals for dealing with the situation. They suggested that Lord Archibald Hamilton, who was then about to sail with the West India Trade fleet for his government at Jamaica, should first proceed to Antigua and there, in conjunction with the Commodore of the convoy and Lt. General Hamilton, hold an enquiry on board the flag-ship. If necessary, forces were to be landed to restore order. As for punishing the chief offenders, no good result could be expected from a trial in Antigua. The ringleaders, with evidence and witnesses, should therefore be sent over for trial in England under the Act of 35th Hen. VIII. for the trial of treasons committed out of the King's Dominions (750). In accordance with these proposals, an additional Instruction was given to Governor Douglas to grant a general pardon to all offenders on account of the late rebellion, with the exception of a number not exceeding six and not less than three of the most notoriously guilty, whom he was to bring to trial at Antigua, or, if he found good reason to believe that Justice was not like to be had there, to send them over into Britain with witnesses. This Instruction was afterwards converted into the form of a Commission (764, 764 i., 767, 774–776, 792, 794, 795, 800, 806).
The details now published correct in several important particulars the article on Parke in the Dictionary of National Biography.
Instructions to Douglas.
Whilst warning Governor Douglas to maintain the Prerogative of the Crown in the matter of the "negative voice," the Council of Trade invited him to report upon the usage of signing Acts. He was also recommended to advise the appointment of an Agent and the passing of a new Act for establishing Courts in place of that repealed in 1708 (791).
General Assembly at St. Kitts.
Parke had called a meeting of the General Assembly at St. Kitts for Feb., 1710. Representatives from Nevis and Antigua failed to appear. The Assembly was soon involved in a quarrel with the Governor over the right to appoint their own officers, and no business was done (152, 161, 171, 204, 228, 520).
Threatened attack from Martinique.
The riot or rebellion in Antigua and the defenceless condition of the Leeward Islands owing to lack of measures for defence and munitions of war, invited an attack by the enemy. Preparations were indeed made for a raid from Martinique and Guadeloupe. The steps which were successfully taken to frustrate it are referred to above, §1. (750, 868, 877, 877 ii.–iv., 891, 891 i., 897, 897 ii., 899, 901, 904).
Raids on Montserrat.
In January, 1710, Montserrat successfully repelled a raid by a large squadron of privateers (105), as also a minor attack in the following spring (782). An attack by a large force was reported to be imminent in April. The Lt. General with only one man of war at his disposal, and no public funds, was in a quandary as to how to relieve them, the Antiguans not being disposed to help neighbours who neglected to adjust their accounts (p. 448). The enemy, headed off from their design upon Antigua by the engagement with Newcastle, landed a force of 1200 men upon Montserrat at midnight on June 14th. They were held up by a party of planters at the entrance of a pass and retreated with loss. Their retirement was hastened by the dread of the activity of the men of war (904).
Privateers and Guardships.
Privateers were, indeed, "as thick as bees" about the Leeward Islands and Hamilton, like his predecessors, pressed for an increase of guardships (782, 868).
Capt. Bermingham raids Barbuda.
One of the most sinister and active of the enemy privateers was Capt. John Bermingham. This renegade Irishman, after serving as Commander of several flags of truce from Antigua to Martinique, entered into the service of the French, and besides inspiring them to attack the Leeward Islands, himself raided the Codringtons' property on Barbuda (782, 824).
St. Kitts: Dispute over Money Bill.; Act repealed.
The Council and Assembly of St. Kitts came to loggerheads over a Revenue Bill. To raise money for repair of the fortifications and support of Government, the Assembly laid a duty upon sugar. Claiming for their House the sole right of granting money, "contrary to the ancient usage of the Leeward Islands," they refused to admit any amendments by the Council to a money bill. By insisting that the Treasurer should be accountable either to the Governor, Council and Assembly, or either of them, they challenged the Queen's express Instructions (690). The Governor was thereupon ordered to recommend to them the passing of a Revenue Act not liable to the objections which had caused the former bill to be dropped, or derogating "from the just and undoubted rights of the Imperial Crown." An Act of 1704, for the Treasurer's receiving and paying the publick stock, was repealed for similar reasons (520, 520 ii., 690–692).
St. Kitts: Retention of French part urged.
In the course of the negotitations for Peace opened in 1709, it had been proposed that the status quo ante should be restored in the West Indies. But the necessity of retaining the French part of St. Kitts was now urged (336, 810 i.).
The Virgin Islands.; Capt. Walton's proposal.
The Instructions of the Governor of the Leeward Islands required him to assert the British sovereignty over the Virgin Islands. It had been customary for him to appoint a Lieutenant Governor there. In the spring of 1711 Capt. Walton submitted a description of the Islands in this group, emphasising their possibilities and pointing out that the administration of them had hitherto been very lax. He proposed that they should now be formed into a separate Government. This step would encourage their development, besides putting an end both to clandestine trade and the pretensions of the French, Dutch and Danes. He asked to be appointed Governor or Proprietor thereof, in return for his services and expenses as Lt. Governor. In support of his claim he produced his Commission signed by Governor Parke in 1707. Objections were raised, to which he replied. But the Council of Trade, in view of those objections, which concerned the Leeward Islands, and because any such settlement would necessitate the establishment of a naval and military force, suggested that the respective Councils of the Leeward Islands should be consulted as to the desirability of it. In the meanwhile, they proposed that the new Governor of the Leeward Islands should be directed to take care to observe his Instructions for asserting the King's sovereignty and preventing the subjects of any foreign Prince from settling in any of those Islands except St. Thomas. They also proposed that he should report upon the soil, products and conveniences for trade there, and upon the number and condition of the present settlers (601, 705, 731, 740, 801, 813 i.).
Newfoundland: Capture of St. Johns.; Major Lloyd.
From Newfoundland came several accounts of the recent capture of St. Johns. They constitute a sorry tale of treachery, negligence and cowardice (180, 190 i., 528 iii., vi.). Complaints were also lodged against Major Lloyd for trading, embezzling H.M. stores, and hiring out soldiers of the garrison (620, 628). Lloyd was now dead. But orders were given for stopping any pay that might be due to him (689).
The importance of the Newfoundland Trade and Fishery was pressed upon Ministers by the merchants of Bristol and Bideford, and by the Council of Trade. In view of peace negotiations, they urged the desirability of annexing the whole country and the adjacent islands and banks (227, 244, 250, 250 i., 252).
Recovery in the Fishery.
Upon enquiry from the Admiralty as to the force of convoy needed for 1710, opinions were invited from the various out-ports concerned. Their answers, and the returns by the Commodore show a considerable revival in the Fishery after the recent disaster (56, 63, 74–80, 109, 511 i., ii., 558 iv.).
Convoys and Defence.; Proposal to fortify Ferryland instead of St. Johns.; Board of Trade Reports.
James Campbell, however, insisted that defence at land, by a regular force, summer and winter, was needed as well as a strong convoy. He emphasized the advantage to be derived from a settlement both by the Fishery and British manufacturers (85). He, in common with others, also proposed that the fortification of St. Johns should be abandoned and that Ferryland, as a more suitable position, should be fortified in its stead. The pros. and cons. of this suggestion were carefully weighed (85, 87, 88, 524, 528 i., 529 i., 549, 553). The Council of Trade finally reported in favour of it, in a representation upon the whole state of affairs at Newfoundland, a report which was repeated in greater detail at Lord Dartmouth's request towards the end of the year 1710 (139, 528, 558 i.). The matter was then referred to the Board of Ordnance (560 i.-iii.).
Critical condition of the Inhabitants.
In the mean time the inhabitants of St. Johns had held the place for one anxious winter, and had been persuaded to attempt to do so for another by their Governor, Collins. But they gave a plain warning that, unless forces were sent to their aid from home, they would be obliged to quit the country (511 iii.). Their circumstances were indeed critical (85).
Commodore's Instructions.; Powers of Punishment.
When the time came for despatching the convoy of the Fishing Fleet in 1711. it was not known what the condition of affairs might be at Newfoundland. But it was decided to give the usual Heads of Enquiry to the Commodore (720). It had been found that the Act to encourage the trade to Newfoundland remained in some respects a dead letter, owing to there being no penalty provided in it for infringement of its provisions. The Commodore was therefore now empowered, by an additional Instruction, to punish offences against the Act at Newfoundland according to the custom of the place, and, in cases which could not be redressed there, to forward the names and offences of delinquents for trial at home (558 i., 815).
Representations by the Council of Trade.
The most important of the Representations of the Council of Trade in these pages are, on the African Trade 632 i.; on Naval Stores, 127 i., 745; on Newfoundland, 139, 558 i.; duties on prize goods, 239; duties on iron and steel, 621 i.; on the dispute in Barbados, 377; on the Bahama Islands, 405; on New York, 640 i., 654 i.; on Pennsylvania, 649 i.; on the Leeward Islands, 690, 750, 813 i.
A peculiar form of the expression "to knock under" (=knuckle under), occurs on p. 157, "knock under the table."
January 25, 1924.