America and West Indies: October 1712, 1-15

Pages 58-70

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 27, 1712-1714. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1926.

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October 1712, 1-15

Oct. 1.
88. Mr. Popple to Mr. Attorney General. Encloses objections (Sept. 25) to the form of oath for Nevis and St. Kitts, for his opinion. [C.O. 153, 12. p. 13.]
Oct. 2.
89. Lt. Governor Bennett to [? the Earl of Dartmouth]. Last night arrived here H.M.S. Dunwich, Capt. Graves Commander, who delivered me your Lordship's letter of Aug. 21st ult., relateing to a cessation of arms, wherein was a proclamation concerning the same, to which all due observance shall be had. As also when thought proper to send any prisoners to Great Britan, shall take care sufficient proofs of their crimes shall goe with them. Repeats part of Sept. 5th and Sept. 13th. Signed, Ben. Bennett. Holograph. 2 pp. Enclosed,
89. i. Duplicate of No. 44 i. [C.O. 37, 28. Nos. 15, 15 i.]
Oct. 5. 90. Mr. Attorney General to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I have considered objections made to the form of oath I prepared for the sufferers of Nevis and St. Christophers. The Act having expressly declared that none shall be entituled to a share of the bounty, but such who appear to be sufferers by the return of the Commission, it will not be sufficient that a man of the same name, as is mentioned in that return, had resettled, but an express oath must be made, that the person sworn to have resettled, is the same person mentioned in that return, for that there may be several of the same name. As to the objection against swearing to the property of a plantation, I have no objection against the altering the form of the oath, as proposed, so that some oath be made, that the person is the same mentioned in the return as a sufferer. As to the form of an oath for all inhabitants resettling, I have no objection against the form proposed by the objectors, if oath be made, that it is the same person, who appears to have been a sufferer by the said return. Signed, Edw. Northey. Endorsed, Recd. 15th, Read 31st Oct. 1712. 1 p. Enclosed,
90. i. Duplicate of No. 83.
90. ii. Duplicate of form of oath proposed Aug. 8. [C.O. 152, 9. Nos. 136, 136 i., ii.; and (without enclosures) 153, 12. pp. 41, 42.]
Oct. 6.
Charles Fort in St. Christophers.
91. Robert Cunynghame to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Complaints against Governor Douglas as Sept. 13th, etc. "I know none of my high crimes and misdemeanours, for which the Council here as well as he refused to admit me to bayle. I presume it is no new thing to your Lordships to hear they always do as the General would have them, witness their address in favour of General Park, upon complaints being exhibited against him and their report of Mrs. Bowdon's affair. I have bin long since told that the least line of submission to the Generall will set me at liberty," etc. Signed, Ro. Cunynghame. Endorsed, Recd. Dec. 13, Read Jan. 20, 1712/13;. 1 p. [C.O. 152, 9. No. 150; and 153, 12. pp. 62, 63.]
Oct. 8.
92. Mr. Mackenzie to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I hope the singularity of the occasion may in some measure plead my excuse for the presumption of this address: for, understanding lately by a very intelligent and creditable person, as well as by several pregnant and concurring circumstances formerly consistent with my own particular knowledge, that abundance of art and industry is used in contriving such voluminous and specious advices as (I am told) are now transmitted to your Lordships and others by H.E. the Governor of this Island, with an air of mighty zeal for the service of H.M. and the preservation and interest of this Island in particular; I think myself in duty bound to give your Lordships an humble precaution against your giving an intire creditt to these advices, or coming to any determined resolutions touching the same, before the arival of H.M.S. the Defyance, which is appointed to sail on the 14th inst. as convoy to the London merchant ships which have been detained here, about two months past, by reason of an embargo, and a subsequent dreadful hurrican which happen'd here the 28th of August last. I have no servile mercenary end in view, etc. I undertake under the severest of penalties, to make it evident, after my arrival at London; I having at the same time the Government's protection; that chiefly by the influence of Richard Rigby and John Stewart, two of the Council, and William Brodrick, Attorney General, partiality, oppression and manifest injustice have been countenanced and committed in the Council, the Court of Chancery, the Grand Court and the Court of Admiralty of this Island. That several resolutions voted in Council have some time thereafter been quite razed out of the Minutes and Journals of Council. That several things have been ordered to be entred in the Council Books that were not consistent with real point of fact, and other material matters of fact pass'd in Council, and yet ordered not to be entered. That in relation to some matters of the greatest consequence transacted in Council in May 1711, when Richard Rigby was neither a member nor Clark of the Council, he has privately in about twelve months time thereafter quite altered the Minutes, and had them entered in the books so as to contradict flatly the plain sense and meaning of the Council, merely to make them subservient to his own private ends. That he having in his possession the Council Books is now privately altering and transcribing them many years backward. That in manifest contempt of H.M. authority the present Governor has by the advice of the said Rigby, Brodrick and Stewart, or some or other of them, knowingly and as fully neglected some, and broken others of H.M. Instructions. That to the manifest lessening of H.M. Revenue, the Governour took bribes of money and other presents in breach of the said Instructions. That he seem'd to slight and conived at several considerable embezlements of stores and ammunition out of H.M. chief forts in this Island, after I had apprized him thereof. That the late embargo and martial law here, was only to serve a turn of state, as being projected and moved in Council, before any news arrived here of the French's having been at Mountserrat, tho' the same happen'd to be opposed by such Councellours as were not upon the secret, and the generality of the people complained that the unseasonableness of both the embargo and martial law has proved more injurious to them than the hurrican; all which several articles I can plainly prove by undeniable vouchers; but am just now advised that the Governor intends to detain me prisoner in this Island, by refuseing to sign my tickett, which he has done several times before; tho' I gave security into the Secretary's Office long agoe, etc., in relation to which I must rely on your Lordships' orders to the Governor, such practice being a violent encroachment on the liberty of the subject, etc. Signed, Rod. Mackenzie. Endorsed, Recd. 16th, Read 19th Dec. 1712. 2¾ pp. [C.O. 137, 9. No. 75; and 138, 13. pp. 413–418.]
Oct. 9.
Inner Temple.
93. William Borrett to Mr.Lewis (v.July 10). Samuel Watkins and Daniel Mackinen (v.Sept.23) are making application to be bayled. Mr.Attorney General thinks it reasonable, but cannot consent without the Earl of Dartmouth's warrt. wherein H.M.may be signified to that purpose. Signed, Wm.Borrett. Endorsed, R.Oct. 9,1712. ¾ p. [C.O. 152, 42. No. 91.]
Oct. 10.
94. Governor Lord A.Hamilton to the Council of Tradfe and Plantations. It is now almost ten weeks since we have had any ship from Great Britain nor have I received any from your Lops. since my last. The Defyance by which I have now ye honour to write to your Lops. was first intended to saile the beginning of August, but ye accidents wch.have detain'd her. have likewise prevented my writing sooner. The news of Mountserrat's being taken, and of ye enemy's appearing off of Antegoa some time afterwards with a more considerable force, the number of their ships being then augmented from 23 to 36 sayl and wch.seem'd to favour a report there had been for some time of Mons. Du Guey's being expected in ye West Indies, was, as I thought sufficiant alarm for us to be upon our guard: and accordingly by ye unanimuss adivice of ye Council and of a Council of War, I laid an embargo and caus'd marchal law to be proclaimed. I communicated my intelligence with my designs to ye Admiral, who seconded our endeavours by sending a ship to look into ye enemys ports to windward, and calling in ye squadron. But whilst wee were preparing to resist a human force we were shattered almost to pieces by one irresistable; on ye 28th of August at night there arose a hurican of wind and rain in so violent a manner that it has been made a question whether ye great earthquake did more damage to ye Island. It's fury lasted from about 1/2 an hour past 9 to almost12, and raged most from ye windward part of ye Island for about 80 miles to leward on ye south side; in wch. tract of country many houses and works were thrown down, few escap-t without being uncovered or receiving some damage, and ye whole face of nature in ye morning seem'd chang'd from a beautifull appearance of spring to ye depths of a winter, there being nothing that was green to be seen, and ye mountains as it were opened by ye fall of trees. The particulars of ye loss in ye shipping I have here inclose'd, and wch. I think has been confin'd to ye harbour; the Monmouth only met with ye storme at sea wch. carried away her masts at once; the trading vessels upon ye coast of Portobel and Carthagena, had at ye same time unusual calmes, nor has ye hurrican as I can learn reacht any of ye other Isalnds; But ye great damage with us is computed to be in ye canes and provision in ye guound; It was but in my last lettesr yt. I gave you an accot,. of ye prosperous condition of the planting interest of this Island. The planters now say they are half undone; such is the fluctuating state of interests here. However, my Lords, it pleas'd God to send a little dry wether after ye storm, and people had thereby an opportunity to get ymselves cover'd again, or els in all probability another misfortune had followed by a general sickness, whereas ye country is notwithstanding pretty healthy. This did not hinder neither but such measures were pursued as were thought necessary to secure us agt. ye enemy we expected (who in ye condition we were in was still more to be feared) untill wee recd. certain intelligence of their having left ye Indies, upon wch. also by ye unanimuss advice of ye Council I immediatly took off ye embargo and revived ye common law. My Lords, tho' I can't accuse myself of being short in ye accot. I have now given yr. Lopps., yet having sent you by this opportunity ye Minuts of ye Council and of ye Council of War, I take ye liberty to referr yr. Lopps. thither for a fuller detail of ye motives upon wch. I have acted, and of what I proposed to be done whilst it was thought by both Councils absolutely necessary to put ye country into ye best posture of defence it was capable of. If your Lops. please to give yourselves the trouble to inspect ye Minutes of ye Council, you will likewise observe there at length (and wch. it is impossible for me to abridge in a letter) some examinations concerning several disorders and crueltys said to have been comitted by ye privateers of this Island upon ye Spaniards both on the coast of Carthagena and Cuba wth. what has been resolved thereupon, but has not yet been brought to any perfection; and indeed our principal informations in those cases (tho' I believe ym. too true) being from ye Spaniards themselves and ye facts alleadged against the privateers by ym. controverted or deny'd, I find there is a good deal of difficulty in ye prosecutions; But I assure your Lops. nothing shall be wanting in me to give all the discountenance possible to such practises and all ye satisfaction I justifiably can to ye Spaniards. This has been attended with a further inconveniency and wch. your Lops. will also see more at large upon ye Minutes of ye Council; some of ye privateers suspected of those facts have been met with at sea by ye men of war and by them have been taken on board and there detained wth. some of their effects, and not discharg'd or proceeded against as seizure, when brought into harbour. The owners have hereupon comenct suites against ye Capt. of ye man of war for their goods and detention of their men contrary to ye American Act of Parliament, at wch. ye Admiral has been offended, and complaints have been made to me from both sides for reparation, yr. Lops. will find this matter clearly stated in ye resolutions of ye Council, to whom I thought it was best to referr ye examination, because I plainly perceived the Capt. of ye man of war had gone farther than he could well justifye; tho' ye privateers might be guilty they were to be tryed according to law, and this they insisted on, and there haveing been some instances already of men being taken off ye shoar, the whole Island took part wth. ym. in this; so that I found myself obliged to insist yt. ye men should be deliver'd on shoar into ye custody of ye proper officer till their examination and tryall if sufficient evidence could be had against ym. and ye goods taken to be put into ye hands of ye Register of ye Admiralty to wait ye same issue. I confess ye difficulty I have lain under to give satisfaction to all sides; the Comanders at sea have likewise complained of their men being entic't away and entertain'd by ye inhabitants of ye Island, yr. Lops. will remarke by ye proclamation I publisht wch. you will see entered in ye Minutes how much I have been enclined to prevent any prejudice to H.M. service at sea, and indeed my Lords I have endeavour'd by all other ways to give those commanders all just and reasonable satisfaction; at ye same time not to sacrifize ye rights of ye people, of whom H.M. had intrusted me wth. ye Goverment. There is my Lords ye greater occasion at this time to give ye Island all just supports, because of ye present misfortunes they labour under, and ye entire decay of trade wch. ye merchants live in hopes will revive again because of ye present misfortunes they labore under, and ye entire decay of trade wch. ye merchats live in hopes will revive again upon ye establishment of a peace so honble. and so advantagious as that wee daily expect to hear off. The disorders wee have been in from ye hurrican and ye apprehension of an enemy have made it impracticable for ye Assembly to meet at ye time they were appointed. They stand now prorogued to ye 14th inst., at wch. time I design ym. to meet and do bussiness. In my letter to your Lops. of ye 8th of March, I took ye liberty to recommend to you Mr. Brodrick's being restored to his place in ye Council here. I find myself obliged in order to have ye assistance of a full Council, whereas now I have often difficulty to get a quorum together, to add two gentlemen, Coll. James Archbould and Lt. Coll. John Sadler to that recommandation, in ye room of Coll. Long, Edlyn and Mumbee, the first haveing been off ye Island near 6 ye others above two years without any of them having signify'd to me their intentions to returne. The characters of ye gentlemen now propos'd to that trust are as agreeable to H.M. Instructions upon yt. head, and in my humble opinion in all respects more proper for ye good of H.M. service then any others yt. I can at this time name. I herewith send ye Receiver Genll.'s accts. made up to March last. Mr. Chaplin is now makeing up ye last half year to Sept. 29th before ye Auditor, and Mr. Knights is then to take possession of that office by virtue of a deputation from Mr. Compere ye patentee. I likewise send ye lists of ye regiments I promis't you in my last, and haveing viewed some of them on this occasion, I am sorry to tell yr. Lops. wee musterd in ye field much short of what appears upon ye lists, sickness I am afraid will generally require allowances of a sixth part of our numbers. But yr. Lops. will undoubtedly observe how very smal a force at best (Coll. Handasyd's Regiment apart concerning wch. I have in my former given yr. Lops. some accot.) and how scatter'd a body of men wee are for ye defence of so large and plentifull an Island, nay without a forreign enemy ye planters could not conceal their apprehentions from their negroes when I ordered but a regiment at a time together to view them, and it was thought expedient to send a body of horse into those parishes from whence ye foot were drawn; indeed ye insolence of ye negroes has been very great, insomuch that two white persons have lately been cutt in pieces by ym. in ye Plantations in open day; and I cannot but from this consideration propose to yr. Lops. thoughts ye necessity of continuing some regular forces here at least for some time after a peace or untill wee can reap ye benefit of it by an addition of white people amongst us, or otherwise this Island may be lyable to some very unlucky disaster by an insurrection; and I mention this matter thus early to yr. Lops. yt. it may be considered of before a resolution be taken to recall this regiment. Besides my Lords were all ye circumstances of this Island clearly before yr. Lops. 'view, I am almost perswaded you would be of opinion so many inconveniencys are apt to arise from ye heat of this climate yt. we were not fit to be trusted altogether wth. ourselves, and yt. at lest 300 men wch. might be independent companys and in that manner of much less charge to H. M., would be necessary in time of Peace to guarrison ye forts and keep other guards to wch. I attribute much of ye quiet this Island has hitherto enjoyed, etc. P.S. Oct. 18. Since I ended my letter, there are aryved here four ships from Bristoll. I have had sent me by private hands ye Queen's proclamation for a cessation of arms wth. France for 4 months. but have not had ye honour of any commands from yr. Lops., nor ye Secretary of State upon that occasion. However I have countermanded some commissions to privateers wch. I had before granted, and shall call in those that are out as soon as possible. Ye Assembly met ye 14th inst. and ye Council having prepared ye inclosed address wth. my approbation, ye Assembly have concurred wth. ym., and both have desired me to have it presented in ye properest manner, wch. I conceive to be by ye hands of ye Earl of Dartmouth, to whom I have recommended it to whom yr. Lops. will please to transmitt it, etc. Signed, A. Hamilton. Endorsed, Recd. March 28th, Read July 17th, 1713. 9¾ pp. Enclosed,
94. i. Accounts of H.M. fortifications in Jamaica, March 25,—Sept. 29, 1711. Signed, Char. Chaplin, Rec. Gen. Same endorsement. 1¼ pp.
94. ii. Accounts of H.M. fortifications in Jamaica, Sept. 29, 1711— March 25, 1712. Same signature and endorsement. 2 pp.
94. iii. Account of H.M. Revenue in Jamaica, March 25—Sept. 29, 1711. Receipts and balance, £8370 11s. 10¼d. Expenditure, £5453 12s. 7½d. Same signature and endorsement. 2 pp.
94. iv. List of outstanding debts on H.M. account, Sept. 29, 1711. £4725 15s. 6½d. 1¾ pp.
94. v. Account of H.M. Revenue, Sept. 29, 1711—March 25, 1712. Receipts and balance, £5423 1s. 9d. Expenditure, £2401 18s. Signed, Char. Chaplin. Same endorsement. 4 pp.
94. vi. List of outstanding debts on H.M. account, March 25, 1712. £3786 3s. 11¼d. Same endorsement. 1 p.
94. vii. Account of H.M. Imposts, Jamaica, 1711, £3152 19s. 3¾d. Signed, Char. Chaplin. Sept. 29, 1711. 2 pp.
94. viii. Account of H.M. imposts, Sept. 29, 1711—March 25, 1712. £361 3s. 1¾d. Signed, Char. Chaplin. Endorsed, Recd. March 28, Read July 17, 1713. 2 pp.
94. ix. Account of H.M. quit-rents, fines, forfeitures and escheats in Jamaica, March 25—Sept. 29, 1711. Quitrents, £177 2s. 11½d. Fines etc., £265. Same signature and endorsement. 2 pp.
94. x. Account of H.M. fines, forfeitures and excheats, Sept. 29, 1711—March 25, 1712. £336. Same signature and endorsement. 2 pp.
94. xi. Account of H.M. quit-rents, £46 18s. 6d., and wine licences, 63 at £5, Sept. 29, 1711—March 25, 1712. Same signature and endorsement. 2 pp.
94. xii. Address of the Governor, Council and Assembly of Jamaica to the Queen, Oct. 18, 1712. Congratulate H.M. on terms of peace, and return thanks for H.M. protection during the war. Signed, A. Hamilton, William Brodrick, Speaker. Same endorsement. 2½ pp.
94. xiii. Copy of Minutes of a Council of Warr held at St. Jago Dela Vega, Sept. 1, 2, 1712. Measures of defence against invasion resolved upon. Same endorsement. 9½ pp.
94. xiv. List of the 7 Militia Regiments (Colonels Henry Lowe, Odoardo Lewis, James Archbould, Francis Rose, John Wyllys, John Clarke, William Brodrick) in Jamaica Oct. 11, 1712. Total, 2451, and 7 troops of horse (Captains John Peeke, Lewis Archbould, Richd. Aldeburgh, Antony Swymer, James Guthrys, Thomas Rose, John Cossly)=271. Same endorsement. 1 p.
94. xv. (a) List of ships lost and damaged by the hurricane (attended with an earthquake) in Port Royal Harbour, Aug. 8, 1712. Driven ashore or sunk but afterwards weighed up, with loss of masts etc:—Weymouth man of war; Salisbury prize; Tryal sloop of war; Jamaica sloop of war; Medway's prize; the Galleoon hulk, Baltimore gally; Foy frigate; King William; Tryal's prize, August's prize; Elizabeth's Good Luck; Bennet of Bermudas; Tryall sloop; Rose-tree sloop; Anne sloop; Elizabeth and Sarah sloop of Jamaica; Eunice sloop of Jamaica; Supply sloop of Jamaica; Ann sloop of Jamaica; Isabella sloop of Jamaica; Elizabeth brigantine; Leopard brigantine; Hawk-gally snow. Lost:—Tyger gally, beat in pieces; Diamond gally sank in mud; August's prize lost; Union of Jamaica, sloop; Society of Jamaica, sloop; Diamond of Jamaica, sloop; Endeavour sloop of Jamaica; Content sloop of Jamaica; Beginning sloop of Jamaica; Mesopotamia sloop of Jamaica; Kingston sloop of Jamaica; Francis and Sarah sloop of Jamaica; Charles sloop of Jamaica; Black Moll sloop of Jamaica; Adventure brigantine; Mary Rose.
(b) List of ships lost and damaged at Kingston. Amygally and Joseph-gally, ships of London, lost with all hands, except their Captains ashoar. Mary and Catherine, Unity, Nicholson frigate, ships of London, run ashore; Aleppo Factor, of London, lost masts; Beaufort gally of Bristol, Lancaster pink of London, Jamaica gally of Boston, sunk and lost. Most of the wherrys and canoas lost. All the wharfs at Kingston destroyed. Same endorsement. 3 pp. [C.O. 137, 10. Nos. 9, 9 i.-xv.; and (without enclosures) 138, 13. pp. 468–483.]
Oct. 10.
95. Governor, Lt. Governor, Council and Speaker of Antigua to the Council of Trade and Plantations, We have this day wrote to the Lords of the Admiralty to give them an accot. of Capt. Hamilton's and Capt. Constable's behaviour at a time when Mr. Cassar with a squadron of 6 men of warr and severall merchants shipps and sloopes under his command landed at and plundered Mountseratt and afterwards threatned the reduction of the rest of the Leeward Islands, the coppy of which wee have sent herewith, that in case the Lords of the Admiralty do not take due notice thereof your Lordps. may make such a representation to H.M. as you shall think proper. Our coast is very much infested with the enemyes privateers and our merchants vessells dayly taken in our sight for want of a man of warr constantly cruiseing to windward which is not to be expected while there is but one ordered to attend this government for while she is cleaning or goeing with our Generall on the visitation of the other Islands our windward parts are naked and the trade bound in exposed. We therefore pray your Lordps. will make such application in our favour as may procure two men of warr more to attend this government dureing the warr. Signed, Walter Douglas, John Yeamans, Jno. Hamilton. Edw. Byam, W. Codrington, Richard Oliver, Geo. Lucas, Speaker. Endorsed, Recd. 11th Feb. Read 14th July, 1713. 2 pp. Enclosed,
95. i. Governor Douglas, Lt.-Governor, Council, and Speaker of the Assembly of Antigua to the Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty. It is with regret we trouble your Lordships with a complaint, but when we see the Commanders of the Queen's ships neglect their duty, and by their ill conduct expose H.M. Collonys to ruine, we think ourselves obliged to lay the same before you, etc. On July 5th appeared off this Island a French Fleet consisting of 32 sayle of shipps and sloopes commanded by Monsr. Cassart, who attempted to land July 6th about 2 of the clock in the morning, but were happly prevented by the violence of the weather, which occasioned the loss of several of their boats, and some of their men, whereupon they weighed and stood away for the leewardmost part of this island, but made no more attempts to land; the same evening they bore away to Mountserat, and next morning before day landed on that island; which they plundered and destroyed, but did not intirely subdue it. As soon as the enemy left us, our General dispatched an expresse to Barbadoes to give the General of that Island an accot. of our danger and to ask such assistance as he was capable of affording us, who wee are informed immediately issued his orders to the Commanders of H.M. shipps forthwith to come down to our releife, but some scruples and debates ariseing amongst them, delayed their sayleing some days after the arrival of our expresse, in the interim we used our utmost endeavours to draw the enemy from Mountserat; our General imbarked with about 600 land men on board the 4 men of warr then here, and several sloops; but the weather proveing stormy, H.E. did not think it practicable to land; however their appearance off the harbour alarmed the French Fleet, and caused them to withdraw their forces from Mountserat. A few days after the return of our shipps, they were joyned by the six men of warr from Barbadoes, and after their staying here two days went out to releive Mountserat, but in their passage met a boat from that Island which acquainted them that the enemy had left it two days before and were gone with their plunder to Guardaloope which occasioned the returne of our men of war and sloops. Five or six days after we were informed by our spie boats yt. six shipps and several sloops of the French Fleet were rideing in an open road at Guardaloope called Bastar, and some English prisoners that were landed at Mountserat from the French Fleet informed us yt. ye enemy's designes were to take on board more forces to attack us, whereupon the General, Council and Assembly of this Island made application to Capt. Hamilton and Capt. Constable setting forth the apprehensions we were under, and praying they would stay with the ships under their command a fortnight amongst us, in which time we might reasonably expect to have a certain accot. of the enemy's designes; and our General told them if they thought fit to attack the enemy as they lay at anchor at Guardaloope [? he] together with Col. John Hamilton with what forces they could rayse, would go on board the sd. Capt. Hamilton as volunteers, and Col. Hamilton acquainted Capt. Hamilton yt. he would secure his quarter deck wth. small shot under his command, but all the reasons they could use could not prevaile. Whereupon we sent a second letter to Capt. Constable to tell him our opinions were that when your Lordps. were acquainted with the cause of his trespassing your orders you would pardon the same in consideration of the smal proportion the detayneing the trade at Barbados 15 days would bear to the loss of the Leeward Islands, and withall told him if all we could say had no influence upon him, and that the Islands miscarryed by his not granting this request, wee should lay his conduct before the Queen and parliament, to which we had no other answer than a verbal one by the bearer of our letter telling us, that if he had resolved to stay such a letter as wee sent, would hasten him away, and tho' he did intend to use his utmost endeavours to perswade Capt. Hamilton to stay (with the shipps under his command) amongst us after his departure, yet since wee had writ him such a letter, he would prevaile with him to leave us. Wee have taken a deposition hereof, and send it herewith, as also coppies of our letters and Capt. Constable's answers etc. (Aug. 25), whereby your Lordps. will perceive how little regard he has to the Queen's honour, or the preservation of her Collonys. Some time after the returne of the men of war to Barbadoes, the French Fleet consisting of 9 shipps and about 15 sloops appeared a second time off this Island; and remained in sight four days to windward. On their first appeareance our General dispatched another expresse to the Governor of Barbadoes to acquaint him that the enemy was off, and in all probability would attempt to land in few hours, and desired he would send downe the men of warr to our assistance. But no application had any effect upon Capt. Constable until some gent. of Barbadoes presented him with £400 and gave him assureance he should have £2000 in case your Lordps. disapproved of his comeing down and broke him for the same. We shall desire Governor Lowther to have the gentlemen who transacted that affair interrogated upon oath and shall send the same home to be laid before your Lps. After ye men of war left Barbadoes and were on their passage hither Capt. Hamilton by his Lieut. commanded our expresse boat on board and tooke from the master thereof all such letters as he found directed to anyone of this Island, and made particular enquiry for the General's packet, the cause of wch. we conceive was that he apprehended the Governor and other gent. of Barbadoes had given us full accot. of their conduct, wch. he might beleive we should remit to you. After they came in sight of this Island, they sent our expresse boat in to know whether ye enemy were landed and at the same time continued about 5 leagues off the shoar until the sloop returned and gave them an accot. there was no danger. Upon which they came in, from which we may reasonably infer that if we had been actually attacked they never intended to do us any service or would have afforded us any releife and consequently their stay at Barbadoes would have caused a greater apprehension in the enemy then their comeing downe. We must acknowledge our inadvertency in telling Capt. Constable we should trouble ye Queen and parliament with a complaint of his conduct, when your Ldps. are ye proper judges on such occasions, and we have no roome to doubt but you wil passe such a due censure on the aforesd. Capts. as your Ldps. shall think they deserve. We shan't presume to tell your Ldps. how much the Leeward Islands were like to suffer and how exposed we were to the insults of the enemy by the Captns. of H.M. ships gratifyeing their private resentments and interests and preferring the same to the honour of H.M. and ye preservation of her Islands, when in all probability our ten men of war might have destroyed the enemy, who had but six men of war in their Fleet and had 130 odd peeces of cannon less than ours, etc. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 2 pp. [C.O. 152, 10. Nos. 2, 2 i.; and (without enclosure) 153, 12. pp. 94–96.]
Oct. 13.
Windsor Castle.
96. H.M. Warrant to Mr. Attorney or Solicitor General to prepare a bill for H.M. signature granting the place of Provost Marshall Generall of Barbados to Erasmus Lewis (etc. as Sept. 25th), in place of George Gordon, decd. Countersigned, Dartmouth. [C.O. 324, 32. pp. 176, 177.]
Oct. 14.
97. Copy of H.M. Commission to Col. Francis Nicholson "for enquire what monies, provisions, arms, ammunition, stores, or other things did come to the hands or power of any our present or late Governors, Lt. Govrs., Commanders in chief, officers, ecclesiastical civil or military or other persons whatsoever in North America upon account of the late expedition to Canada, presents to the Indians, fitting of ships, propagation of the established religion, or any other services since March 8, 1701," etc. To examine into the rates of exchange of bills, to state accounts of what remains, to dispose of such stores as will not be necessary to serve the uses for which they were at first provided; to enquire into the state of H.M. Revenue and Woods and the state and accounts of the College of Wm. and Mary in Virginia; the numbers and qualities and accounts of H.M. forces in New York, Annapolis Royal, etc., and of the Palatines; to enquire into clandestine trade and all frauds and abuses relating to the premises; and to treat with any H.M. subjects or Indians relating to settlements, fisheries, trade or otherwise tending to H.M. general advantage etc., with power to administer oaths to persons able to give account of the premises. Governors etc. to give Col. Nicholson access to and copies of papers required for these purposes, and to assist him in the execution of his trust, etc. Countersigned, Wrighte. Endorsed, Recd. 22nd, Read 31st Oct. 1712. 5 pp. [C.O. 323, 7. No. 19; and 324, 10. pp. 4–9.]
Oct. 15.
Windsor Castle.
98. The Earl of Dartmouth to Governor Lowther. H.M. having been pleased to constitute Mr. Lewis (Oct. 13) Provost Marshall of Barbados, it is my request to you that you will countenance and protect his deputys in the due execution of the office and that you will assist him as much as lies in your power to make all the just advantages belonging to it. Signed, Dartmouth. [C.O. 324, 32. p. 177.]
Oct. 15.
99. Lt. Governor Spotswood to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The arrival of the Dunwich frigat with H.M. Proclamation for a cessation of arms, gives me the opportunity of a few minutes to informe your Lordps. of the present scituation of affairs in these parts. The Indians continue their incursions in North Carolina, and the death of Coll. Hyde the Governor, wch. happened the begining of last moneth, encreases the misery of that Province, so much weakened already by their own divisions, that no measures projected by those in the Government for curbing the heathen can be prosecuted. This unhappy state of H.M. subjects in my neighbourhood, is the more afflicting to me, because I have very little hopes of being enabled to relieve them by our Assembly, which I have called to meet next week; for the mobb of this countrey having tryed their strength in the late election, and finding themselves able to carry whom they please, have generally chosen representatives of their own class; who as their principal recommendation have declared their resolution to raise no tax on the people let the occasion be what it will. This is owing to a defect in the Constitution, which allows to everyone tho but just out of the condition of a servant that can but purchase half an acre of land, an equal vote with the men of the best estates in the countrey. The Militia of this Colony is perfectly useless, without arms or ammunition, and by an unaccountable infatuation no arguments I have used can prevail on these people to make their Militia more serviceable. The fear of enemys by sea (except pirates) are now happily removed by the Peace, which if on no other account than that alone, ought to be received here as the greatest and most valuable blessing; but the insurrections of our own negros, and the invasions of the Indians, are no less to be dreaded, while the people are so stupidly averse to the only means they have left to protect themselves against either of these events. I shal for my own part take all the care I am capable of (under these disadvantages) for the safety of H.M. subjects, etc. Signed, A. Spotswood. Endorsed, Recd. Dec. 29, 1712. Read Feb. 26, 1712/13. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 1316. No. 91; and 5, 1363. pp. 475–477.]