America and West Indies: May 1721, 16-31

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 32, 1720-1721. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1933.

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, 'America and West Indies: May 1721, 16-31', in Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 32, 1720-1721, (London, 1933) pp. 306-329. British History Online [accessed 30 May 2024].

. "America and West Indies: May 1721, 16-31", in Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 32, 1720-1721, (London, 1933) 306-329. British History Online, accessed May 30, 2024,

. "America and West Indies: May 1721, 16-31", Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 32, 1720-1721, (London, 1933). 306-329. British History Online. Web. 30 May 2024,

May 1721, 16-31

May 16. 491. J. Bridger to Mr. Popple. Encloses following, in reply to command of the Board to lay before them information as to H.M. woods in New England etc. Learns that the Deputy Surveyor of the woods has suffered many good trees to be cut to the value of £1000 etc. Signed, J. Bridger. Endorsed, Recd. 18th May, 1721, Read 5th July, 1722. Addressed. 1 p. Enclosed,
491. i. Certificate that Mr. Bridger, late Surveyor General of H.M. woods, was voted thanks by the General Assembly of New Hampshire for promoting two Acts for the encouragement of Naval Stores. Testify to his integrity and vigour in prosecuting offenders etc. Dec. 26, 1720. Signed, Saml. Penhallow, Mark Hunking, Geo. Gaffrey, Ric. Wibird, Tho. Packer, Members of Council. Copy. 1 p.
491. ii. Certificate by Governor Shute of Mr. Bridger's diligent and faithful performance of his duty etc. Boston, 5th Dec., 1720. Signed, Saml. Shute. Copy. ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 868. ff. 264, 265, 266, 267v.]
May 16.
492. Lord Carteret to Governor Burnet. It is H.M. pleasure, that the money raised for the support of the Civil Government in the Province of which you are Governor, shall pass thro' the hands of H.M. proper Officers, according to the ancient custom; to the end that the accounts of the management and disposition of the sd. money may be regularly laid before H.M. and the Lds. Commrs. of the Treasury here. And you are hereby required to oppose and remove all innovations that have already been made, or shall be attempted to be made upon this head, in relation to the management of H.M. Revenue raised, or to be raised in those Provinces, according to H.M. intention already signified by the Lds. Commrs. of the Treasury, Aug. 17th, 1720, to which you will conform yourself; and you are to take all legal methods for bringing about so necessary a compliance from the Assembly and country. You are to take care, that the ancient and usual fees be allowed to the Auditor of H.M. Revenue, or to his Deputy for auditing the sd. accounts. Whereas H.M. has been informed, that the sd. Deputy is a diligent person in his duty, and against whom there has never been any complaint transmitted, it is H.M. pleasure, that you do give him all the assistance and encouragemt. that you can in the execution of his trust, and that you take care that his office be not dismembered by taking from it any of it's branches or perquisites. As the dependency of the Colony upon Gt. Britain depends in great measure upon your exerting H.M. legal authority upon this occasion, pursuant to the above letter of the Lds. Commrs. of the Treasury, you will use your utmost application and address in seeing this matter set right to H.M. satisfaction.
After having thus signified to you H.M. commands, I shall only add, that I shall look upon it as a favour done to me, if you will restore Mr. Clerke, the Deputy Auditor, to the Office of Clerk of the Circuits, or make him some recompense, as opportunity may offer, being persuaded that a good understanding between you and that Gentleman may be for H.M. service in that Government. H.M. has been pleased to appoint Lewis Morris jr. Esqr. to be of the Council as you desired. Signed, Carteret. [C.O. 324, 34. pp. 56, 57; andp., omitting last paragraph) 5, 1085. No. 37].
May 17.
493. Mr. Popple to Mr. Burchett. Enquires if the Lords of the Admiralty have any information as to searching of ships at Jamaica as complained of by Merchants' memorial. (v. 4th May). [C.O. 138, 16. p. 284.]
May 18.
494. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Lords Commissioners of the Treasury. Enclose incidental charges of the office from Midsummer, 1720 to Lady day, 1721 "for the payment whereof we pray your Lordships' favourable orders. By reason that the person who has advanced part of this money has been forced to take it up upon interest. There was at Lady day six months salary due to our Secretary and other officers, and an arrear of 12 months to this Commission" etc. Accounts annexed. [C.O. 389, 37. pp. 206–208.]
May 18.
495. Mr. Popple to David Humphreys, Secretary to Society for Propagation of the Gospel. Refers to correspondence of 2nd and 21st Jan., 1718, and asks for the objections of the Society, in writing, to Act of Barbados granting free liberty to load and unload in the bays etc. about this Island. [C.O. 29, 14. pp. 112, 113.]
May 18.
Admiralty Office.
496. Mr. Burchett to Mr. Popple. In reply to 17th May, encloses following. Signed, J. Burchett. Endorsed, Recd. 18th, Read 24th May, 1721. Addressed. 1 p. Enclosed,
496. i. Commodore Vernon to Mr. Burchett. Describes incident of searching ships at Jamaica as 4th May, q.v. Signed, E. Vernon. Copy. 3 pp.
496. ii. Petition of merchants, freighters and masters of ships at Port Royal to Commodore Vernon. An officer and 50 or 60 soldiers are now on board said ships, robbing them, and have hoisted out several casks for which the masters have signed bills of lading. In regard that the masters have received sailing orders from Capt. Charles Chamberlayne, H.M. sloop Happy, petitioners believe said ships are actually under protection of said convoy, having cleared at all the Port Offices ashoar and received the Governor's lett pass. Pray for his protection etc. Copy. 1 p.
496. iii. (a) Copy of warrant from Governor Sir N. Lawes to Capt. Thomas Brooke, to aid Robert Hall or any other port officers to search all ships now bound to London or Bristol and seize any French indigo found on board upon which the duty has not been paid etc. St. Jago, 1st Nov., 1720. Signed, Nicholas Lawes.
(b) Copy of warrant from Richard Mill, Receiver General, Jamaica, appointing Robert Hall, Assistant Waiter for 3 Months, to seize contraband goods etc. 25th Aug., 1720. Signed, Richard Mill, Receiver General. The whole, 1 p. [C.O. 137, 13. Nos. 49, 49. i–iii.]
May 19. 497. Mr. Gordon to Mr. Popple. Mr. Gibbons has returned to Barbados etc. Offers his services etc. Signed, W. Gordon. Endorsed, Recd. 19th, Read 24th May, 1721. 1 p. [C.O. 28, 17. ff. 118, 119v.]
[May 19.] 498. Co-partners for settling Bahama Islands to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Replies to queries by the Board (cf. April 21st). In April, 1716, Sam. Buck sent out 2 ships for Providence and other the Bahama Islands to view the state of that place etc., vizt. the Samuel Capt. Edwd. Hampton, and Sarah, Capt. Wm. Taylor, ships and cargoes cost £5398 15s. 4d. Upon the return of one of the ships, the other being taken by the Pirates Buck and others entered into co-partnership for settling the Islands, and applied to the Crown for a Governor, and H.M. appointed Capt. Woodes Rogers etc. In Oct. 1717 the said Copartners bought and fitted out four ships with cargoes, at a cost of £11,000. vizt. the Delitia 460 tuns, 30 guns and 90 men; the Willing Mind 300 tuns, 20 guns, and 22 men; Samuel, 135 tuns, 6 guns and 26 men; Buck sloop, 75 tuns, 6 guns, and 12 men. They entertained and sent artificers passengers and soldiers upon this expedition in April 1718, with provisions for 14 months and material for building forts etc., under convoy of three of H.M. shipps of warr etc. They found in the harbour of Nassau about 40 sail that had been carried in by the pirates either burnt or sunk. The Governor found about 700 pirates in Providence, most part of which he forced to submitt, the others made their escape with Vane etc. (v. C.S.P. Oct. 31, 1718) who continued cruizing amongst those Islands for about 8 months, destroying all vessells bound to or from Providence, in number about 38 sail, by which means and the mortallity amongst the cattle, all ye Coparners' victualls and stores were consumed for maintaining the garrison, old inhabitants, and those passengers they sent over. At the Copartners' expence of above £900, three armed sloops were fitted out who took and destroy'd above 100 of the said pirates etc. They have been obliged ever since to keep the said sloops for advice boats and defence of the outsettlemts. against pirates and Spaniards. After the fort was put into a condition of defence, the Governor permitted the two smallest ships to depart, one of which was taken by the pirates. The Willing Mind was lost in the Bahamas and the Delitia the Governor has kept ever since for a guardship at the expence of the Copartners both for victualls and wages, wch. will amount to a great many thousand pounds etc. The Copartners have also paid great part of the bounty money to the men employed in that Expedition due to them according to H.M. Proclamation for taking of pirates, an account whereof lyes before the Treasury, and for which they have yet received no manner of satisfaction, nor for maintaining above 80 Spaniards prisoners of war that they were compelled by ye Governor to keep until he could receive orders from the Secretary of State what to do with them etc. In Jan., 1719 and July 1720 they sent out the ship Samuel with provision and recruits and the ship Providence with a necessary cargo of English manufactory, and 46 recruits for the garrison raised at the expence of the Copartners, and provided with beds and cloths, and in Dec. following the ship Bahama Gally with a proper cargo etc. The ship Althea burthen 400 tuns, 30 guns and 60 men is now at Gravesend ready to depart with a very rich cargo of woollen goods etc. As most of the present Copartners have for many years past been considerable traders to the West Indies, Virginia etc., they willingly came in to give their labour, and advance their money without any stock-jobbing advantage, well knowing of what great importance ye Bahama Islands were to ye Brittish Nation as well in peace as in warr, for defence and offence if well settled, and that if they were again deserted would become a sanctuary for pirates etc. The number of people they have sent out amount to 580, besides those now going in the Althea. In March, 1720 when the Spaniards came to attack Providence, the Copartners' Agent delivered out of their stores musketts, swords etc., to above 700 men, and found their provisions most part of the time. By the last accounts, Fort William at Nassau had 66 guns mounted, and at Walkers Point and another battery on the said Island 16 guns more, and on Harbour Island a fort of 12 guns, all which have been rebuilt and provided at the charge of the said partners etc., and the inhabitants had built above 100 houses in the town of Nassau, besides many outsettlements. There had been expended upon building Fort William only between 25th July, 1718 and 25th May, 1719, as pr. accot. signed pr. Governor Rogers and Councell £11344, besides the assistance of the inhabitants who were furnished with provisions. The money already actually paid for carrying on this settlement amots. to £90,000. Wages due to seamen and servants cannot be certainly known till the arrival of the next ships from thence but is computed at £10,108. The charges of 86 men on board the Delitia at £4 10s. pr. month pr. man is £387 pr. month for two years to 27th May, 1721.
In respect of their factors and agents, the Copartners conceive themselves under insuperable difficultys, since any of them who are accountable to ye Copartnership may take collusive discharges from some of the partners, wch. they apprehend will be a good and suffitient barr against any claim from the rest of the partners, or at least involve them in unspeakable trouble to come at their right. And in regard their dealings are proposed to be very extensive, they apprehend it very precarious to trust to the bare vertue of their agents, factors and partners, when they have such a temptation before them, well knowing the Copartners can't call'em to an accot. unless incorporated by Charter etc. They conceive they cannot in their present capacity call in any money from their partners, or accept or transferr shares without subjecting themselves to the penaltys in the late Act of Parliament. Without endless expence, and uncertainty, they cannot now either implead, or be impleaded, but each acting member in his private capacity is lyable to many vexatious law suits, etc. Merchants will enter more freely into engagements with a Corporation etc. In regard to the settlement of new country, it's impossible to be done in any other manner then by giving large creditt to newcomers for tools, stores, negroes and other necessarys to carry on their plantations, wch. it will be many years before the inhabitants can repay out of the produce of the land, as the Copartners have found by experience, they having lent at least three pounds sterling pr. head for 7 years to each person at their first going on board in England, and have been obliged to supply them ever since with provision, tools, cloaths, etc., all which charge can no otherwise be supported but by a Corporation, wth. a large joint stock etc. Offer to advance a sufficient sum for the settlement of the Island in five years after they shall be incorporated, and to carry out 50 or 100 tons of stores for the Government annually gratis etc., and to forfeit their Charter when they cease to send out annually for 3 years 1000 tuns of shipping. Their object being to trade and clear the Islands of pirates, and not stock jobbing (they hope the bill depending in Parliament will destroy that wicked practice), they are willing that none of their Adventurers may be permitted to transferr any shares unless they have been six months in his own name in the Companys books etc., etc. Propose that all privileges and advantages formerly granted by King Charles II may be confirmed in this present Charter and all wrecks lying within latitudes of 22 to 27 degrees North. As the Governor is appointed by the Crown, we can not doubt but H.M. will supply all things needfull for the support and defence of a place of such consequence to the trade of Great Britain, for when the Spaniards lately attack't them, about 20 sail of shipps of severall nations took sanctuary in the Harbour of Providence etc. The said Islands extending from the Gulf of Florida to the Windward Passage, through one of which all shipps bound to Europe from Carthagena, Portabello, Campeachy, La Vera Crux, Jamaica, Hispaniola or Havanna must pass, if Turks Islands and the Caucasses at this time uninhabited, and under no English Government were putt into their Charter, it would be impossible for any pirates to harbour there in time of peace, or shipps to pass in time of warr without their knowledge, and enable the Company effectually to supply New England, Newfoundland, and all the Northern Collonies with salt, and might open a trade for Brittish woollen and other manufactures etc. Endorsed, Recd. Read 19th May, 1721. 7½ pp. [C.O. 23, 1. No. 31.]
[May 19.] 499. Petition of Samuel Bernard to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Prays for a copy of complaints laid against Governor Sir N. Lawes, in order to send the same for his answer etc. Signed, Saml. Bernard. Endorsed, Recd. 19th May, Read 27th June, 1721. ¾ p. [C.O. 137, 13. No. 52.]
May 19.
500. Governor Hamilton to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I herewith transmit several Acts passed in Antigua, Nevis and St. Christophers with my reasons for passing them which I hope will meet with your Lordships' approbation. Your Lordships will perceive that one of them vide the Brimstone Hill Act was passed in August last. Its lying so long is not occasioned by any remisness of mine but owing to the delays that unavoidably happen to such Acts as are past in the other Islands of my Government; for every Act so past is transmitted backwards and forwards three times before it can be compleated, and as the Captain of the man of war attending this Station thinks himself at his own disposal as I have wrote your Lordships at large, and the Governmt. will not be at the charge of keeping a vessel to be continually employ'd as a packet in running up and down among the Islands, but chiefly wait for such oppertunitys as offer, your Lordships may easily imagine the difficulties and delays I meet with upon this occasion, besides the Act bears date when passed in the Council and Assembly and not the day when tis assented to by me. Some of the other Acts were past in November following and I assure your Lordships have lain here purely for want of an oppertunity for England for since the beginning of October last we have not been able to load one ship for London occasioned by the severity of the times and the excessive drought. 'Tis true indeed a ship went from St. Christophers by which I then wrote etc., but the notice given me of her sailing was too short etc. (v. April 12th). Refers to death of Azariah Pinney. Continues: Since which John Pinney and James Bevon Esqrs. two of the Members of the Council [of Nevis] are likewise dead, and Robert Elleis and John Choppin Esqrs. have desired leave to resign their places at that board. Upon the Presidents writing me of these Gentlemen's death etc., and that H.M. affairs would greatly suffer for want of a due number of Councillors (there being but four upon the Island of Nevis) I immediately directed the President to cause Roger Pemberton, James Symonds and William Pym Burt Esqrs. to be sworne as members of H.M. Council in which I have punctually complyed with my Instructions, there being now but seven upon the Island. These Gentlemen, I can assure your Lordships, are well affected to H.M. and the Protestant Succession in the Illustrious House of Hanover, are well qualifyed for that trust and men of interest in the Island, so hope your Lordships will approve of them. I shall not trouble your Lordships with the duplicates of the papers sent by Capt. Smith the 22nd August last, because I have an account of his arrival, but shall defer it till I have your Lordships' approbation of them, or that you will please to direct how they should be drawn for the future. Your Lordships have not been pleased to favour me with an answer to what I have wrote some time past concerning the Danes setling on St. John's etc., so am at a loss how to govern myself in that affair. The said danes as I am informed have found out a silver mine in one of the little Virgin Islands, but have not been able rightly to inform my self by reason of the Captain of the man of war attending this Station his pretending to an independent command etc. I wait to know your Lordships' opinion etc. Some time past a letter has been handed about in a clandestine manner in all parts of my Government said to be wrote by Sir Nicholas Laws Governor of Jamaica promising encouragement and land to those persons that will come and settle among them, but notwithstanding my endeavours I could never get a sight of it nor discover the publisher. I cannot pretend to charge Sir Nicholas Laws directly as the author because I could never examine into the fact but if I may judge by the consequence it must be him or some other by his authority, for the Governour of St. Thomas wrote me a letter was published there in his name, and to the same effect, and a sloop that went from hence and several persons down upon that account is again returned, the master of which informs me that those persons have or are to have such encouragement, and that the said Governour is endeavouring to get a Law past to vest certain lands in the Crown, which had been formerly granted away, but never setled and that too for the purpose aforesaid. I think it my duty to represent this clandestine way of proceeding to your Lordships as a thing very prejudicial to these H.M. Colonies, and may prove their ruin in time of war or invasion, those people being our chiefest support at that time, and may be a manifest injury to the trader, to whom some of these people are indebted, who upon this encouragement will be induced to run off with their negroes and effects (as I am informed some have done) and thereby defraud them of their just dues. P.S.—A snow arrived yesterday which has been taken by the pirates. Encloses depositions, etc. Signed, W. Hamilton. Endorsed, Recd. 24th, Read 25th July, 1721. 4 pp. Enclosed,
500. i. List of Acts enclosed etc. (i) Acts of St. Christophers (i) for giving titles to inhabitants building houses upon Brimstone Hill. 30th Aug. 1720. My reasons for passing this Act are to encourage the inhabitants to build houses in time of peace to protect their families and effects in time of war etc. In 1706, for want of such a place of security they were obliged to build thatched houses in Fort. Brimstone Hill with little pains might be made inaccessible etc. (ii) For employing negroes on the fortifications and for explaining an Act for raising a tax by poll on all slaves etc. and for raising £500 on the inland trade, 4th Oct., 1720. Acts of Antigua (i) for laying a duty of one pound of pistol powder, or 3s. per ton on all vessels trading to and from this Island. 3rd Nov., 1720. Refers to enclosed Address, "the purport of which I assure your Lordships is fact, and our being at that time engaged in a war with Spain," as sufficient reason for his assenting to it. Earnestly desires H.M. approbation of it. (ii) Act for reinforcing an Act for repairing the fortifications of Monks Hill and mounting guns thereon etc. 3rd Nov., 1720. (iii) An Act for adding one negro out of every 200 to the present number employed on the fortifications 19th Dec. 1720. (iv) An Act for raising an impost on strong liquors imported. 20th Dec., 1720. Acts of Nevis (i) An Act for raising a poll-tax on negroes, and other slaves belonging to the plantations and inhabitants, and on the freeholders, householders and traders of the towns. 15th April, 1721. The utility of these 3 Acts sufficiently appears. (ii) for encouraging John Slapp in his new projection of making a mill for the more easy and speedy grinding of canes and likewise when the wind does not serve to go with horses. 30th March, 1721. Refers to preamble. Slapp is an industrious man and deserves encouragement. (iii) for selling flower corn and bisquit by weight. 11th April, 1721. The great abuses committed by persons trading from North America to this Island in flower corn and biscuit sold in cask is the reason of passing this Act. A barrel of flower formerly contained 220 lb. By their lessening the cask and light packidge it contains now but 140lb. Flower so packt also soon grows unfit for use etc. (iv) for raising a tax for paying publick debts and charges, and particularly applying the said tax and what shall be raised by the perpetual Liquor Act. 11th April, 1720. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 3 pp.
500. ii. Address of the Lt. Governor and Council of Antigua to Governor Hamilton. Urge his assent to the Powder Act, without the clause for suspending its execution until confirmed by H.M. By the expiration of the last Powder Act, there is scarce powder sufficient remaining to protect us against the insults of the Pirates, much less against any sudden invasion etc. Signed, Gilbert Fleming D. Cl. Councill. Same endorsement. 1 large p.
500. iii. Deposition of Christian Mortensen. Antigua, 18th May, 1721. Was taken in April on a Dutch ship by a pirate ship the Royal Fortune (described) commanded by one Roberts etc. A briganteen, the Sea King, accompanied her, and having taken a snow commanded by Nicholas Hendrick, put deponent on board, etc. Same endorsement. 1¼ pp. [C.O. 152, 13. ff. 276–277v., 278 v.–282v., 283v.]
May 19.
501. Governor Hamilton to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Refers to enclosures, relating to the misconduct of Capt. Thomas Whitney, H.M.S. Rose etc. Continues: Which ship and the Shark snow were ordered about three years ago, but did not arrive here till June last, and then the said Whitney acquainted me that both vessels were so much out of repair that it was impossible for them to be refitted here, and thereupon in the beginning of July sailed for New England and did not return till in December altho he had faithfully promised me that he would be back at farthest by the 20th October at which time I told him I did intend to visit the other Islands of my Government but have been wholy disappointed by the disobedience of the said Capt. Whitney in complying with my orders. The pretence for his so doing is grounded upon an opinion, that his own Instructions from the Right Honorable the Lords of the Admiralty are independent of those given me, but how he could entertain this conceit, after I had shown him my Instructions from H.M. is to me unaccountable unless it was out of an extraordinary love of power, however because I am sensible H.M. service has suffered too often by contests about power I was willing for the prevention of any such consequence to use the mildest methods imaginable, and accordingly I told him that if he would shew me any authority from the Lords of the Admiralty either superiour or contradictory to mine I would give up the dispute for the present and make every thing easy, that H.M. service might not suffer, but till then I should continue to give him written orders, and he might obey or disobey them at his peril; notwithstanding this premonition he has continued in his disobedience by departing this Island and sailing for St. Kitts without so much as consulting me, nevertheless I still persevered in my duty, and repeated my orders to him in a letter at St. Kitts which I enclosed in one to the Lieut. General for surer conveyance and Captain Whitney's answer to that letter was "that he should take no notice of it." Refers to enclosures. Continues:—I doubt not but your Lordships will for the service of H.M. and the preservation of these Colonies make such a representation to H.M. as that the transgressor may be taken notice of, for if Captains attending this Station are at their own disposal, and not under the command of the Governour in Chief for the time being it is not in the power of the best Governour to perform his duty, these Islands lying so far asunder that in case they should in time of peace be insulted by pirates, or in time of war be attack'd by the enemy it would be wholy out of the power of any Governour to succour or relieve them, except he has the command of the vessels, at least those that attend the Station, and it would be I humbly presume for H.M. service, that all men of war should be, whilst within the Government, for had that been in the year 1712 when Monsr. Cassar was at Mountserrat, and several of our men of war then actually here it might have prevented ye total destruction of that H.M. Island or at least preserved the sovereignity of it, but the Captains differing (as I am informed, for I was then in Britain) was the reason they did not go down to it's relief. Amongst other things contained in Captain Whitney's letters your Lordships will see much ill manners, and what is worse malitious imputation upon my loyalty, but I hope my character in that point is too well established, both in the opinion of your Lordships as well as all other persons who have the inspection of my conduct to admit the least blast from the breath of such low calumny; If I were deficient in this point the people I have the honour to govern have at least as much sagacity as Capt. Whitney to discern and loyalty to prompt them to a representation of it etc. When I had an account by affidavits of some persons that had been taken and kept for some time on board the pirate Roberts, as also from the General of the French Islands, that the pirates were hovering about these Islands, and had done a great deal of damage as well to several of H.M. subjects, as to the subjects of the French King, and that the French General sent one Monsr. de Malherbe, with proposals and credentials farther to agree upon any method that should be taken to go in quest of the said pirates, I immediately acquainted Capt. Whitney, to witt on Saturday the 19 of february with what I had received, and that I had ordered the Council to meet me on munday, and desired him to be present, in order that we might consult and take such measures as might best tend for the King's honour and service, as well as the protecting the trade of these H.M. Colonies. The said Whitney was so far from complying with this that the Council sate till twelve of the clock in expectation of his coming, and then upon enquiry found that he was on board his ship, whereupon I ordered the Secretary as Clerk of the Council to write him a letter to let him know my self and Council had waited for him all that forenoon in answer to wch. he wrote a short letter, that it was not for want of respect that he did not wait on me, but that his accounts were so intangled, tho' small that he had been forced to sit at his table all the morning, and that I knew better than he could inform me how far he could join the French, and that he would give them signals that they might not mistake each other and was willing to sail in company if I would inform him where the pirates were, at the same time sent me another short letter letting me know that his water was almost expended, and was ready for sea and thought he should water the ship at St. Kitts etc. Refers to Minutes of Council enclosed. Continues:—I leave your Lordships to judge how far that Gentleman has H.M. interest, and the preservation of His subjects at heart, however upon the order I sent upon this occasion he required some of H.M. troops, with which I immediately complyed, and ordered the number he desired, and their charges of victuals to be paid for by the publick of this Island he informing me that he could not answer the victualling any extraordinarys after which he vouchsafed to proceed to Martinique, and wrote the short letter you have herewith, a copy attested by me to the French General, who received it as it deserved, and called it in his letter to me "an impertinent billet"; had Capt. Whitney after this followed the remaining part of the orders then sent him (which was in case he did not get intelligences of the pirates there) to cruise for some days to the windward of this Island, he might in all probability have prevented their taking of a ship after that bound for Jamaica which was taken, within two or three leagues of this Island, which they carried to the Island of Barbouda, and there kept her for several days, plundered her for part of her cargoe, and then let her go after having forced twelve of her men to go with them, which ship was after that taken again by a pirate sloop, that run away some time since (as I have been informed) from Martinique, just to the windward of Spanish Town, one of the Virgin Islands. And about the middle of March last I acquainted Capt. Whitney, that we expected daily some London ships, by whom in all probability I should receive letters from your Lordships and the Right Honble. the Secretary of State with some orders for H.M. service, which might require my immediate going to some of the other Islands of my Government, and desired he would be in a readiness to carry me down, that I should be ready at farthest in five or six days after their arrival, but he thought proper to sail the very day the London ship arrived for St. Christophers, and returned not till the 26 April, and then would not come into the Road or Harbour of Saint Johns as usual, but anchored in a more remote place from thence he sent me a letter by Capt. Pomeroy with an information that he believed the Great Pirate Roberts was cruising off Desseada and that so soon as the Shark joyned him he would cruise in quest of said Roberts in the tract of Barbados where afterwards he would victual and desired to know if I had any commands that way whereupon I sent him a letter by Captain Porneroy with information that several ships were daily expected to these Islands, and therefore I had sent him written orders to cruise to windward of Desseada between that Island and Barbouda that being the most likely place to meet pirates and to protect the trade from their insults. I also ordered him not to go to Barbados unless necessity required but to return to this Island in order to carry me to leeward, but what regard that Gentleman will have to these orders time only can determine. Thus your Lordships may perceive that I am confined by Captain Whitneys capricious temper, and am disabled from visiting the other Islands tho' H.M. affairs and service require my presence never so much there. Signed, W. Hamilton. Endorsed, Recd. 28th July, Read 14th Sept., 1721. 5½ pp. Enclosed,
501. i. Remonstrance of the Lt. Governour and Council of Antigua to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Capt. Whtney (v. preceding.) upon a motion from H.E. for his going in quest of some pirates peremptorily declared to H.E. that he had no power to give him orders altho' he then saw H.M. Instructions to H.E. impowering him so to do etc. During Capt. Whitney's absence in North America (v. preceding), the Islands were insulted by pirates, vessels taken, others cut out of the Roads and trade greatly discouraged by that hazard attending it. Refer to enclosures. It may be of very fatall consequence should succeeding Capts. govern themselves with the like independency etc. There is not the least room for him to suspect H.E.'s loyalty, who hath on all occasions given the most convincing evidences of his zeal for the service of H.M. etc. Signed, Edw. Byam, Jno. Hamilton, Thomas Morris, Will. Byam, John Gamble, Natha. Crump, Jno. Frye, Archd. Cochran. Endorsed as preceding. 1 large p.
501. ii. Remonstrance of the Assembly of Antigua to the Council of Trade and Plantations. St. John's, May 4th, 1721. 'Tis absolutely necessary the Chief Governour should have the direction of H.M. ships upon this Station, as well to transport himself to the several parts of his Government, as to order them to such a part of it as most requires their protection etc. Upon these considerations H.M. has granted the Commission of Vice-Admiral to the Governour; notwithstanding which authority, Capt. Whitney has absolutely refused obedience to his orders etc. as preceding. Concludes: Our Chief Governour's great zeal for H.M. etc. is as conspicuous in all his actions, as his endeavours are assiduous to promote the happyness of these Colonys. Capt. Whitney's misconduct further appears by impressing men from on board merchant ships in contempt of a statute of Great Brittain and to the great injury of trade, without any authority from the Commander-in-Chief of these Islands, etc. Signed, Ashton Warner, Speaker, and 17 others. Same endorsement. 1 large p.
501. iii.(a) Deposition of James Halliday. St. Christophers, 18th March, 1721. Owner of the sloop Endeavour he was yesterday, in his way from Spanish Town, seized by a pirate under Spanish colours from St. Augustine etc. The Captain spoke to him through a negro interpreter, but the voice that first hailed him seemed not to be the voice of a negroe but of an English man. Signed, James Halliday. iii. (b) Deposition of Robert Clark, mariner. St. Christopher, 18th March, 1721. This morning he signted a ship N. of St. Eustatia etc. Signed, Robert Clark. The whole endorsed as covering letter. 3 pp.
501. iv. List of following 25 papers. Same endorsement. 1 p.
501. iv. (a). Deposition of Richard Simes, Master of the Sloop Fisher of Barbados. Antigua, 21st Jan., 1721. On Jan. 13th lying at an anchor in Sta. Lucia near Pidgeon Island, deponent's sloop and Capt. Norton's brigantine belonging to Rhode Island, were seized by the Pirate Roberts etc., who afterwards sailed for the windward of Barbados, to cruise for provisions of which they seemed to be in great want. They took 4 French sloops, three of which they sunk, and the other they gave to deponent. They forced Capt. Norton and all his men to remain with them, using his mate very barbarously. John Smith, an Irishman, went voluntarily. Described. Signed, Richard Simes. Same endorsement. 1½ pp.
501. v. Deposition of Thomas Bennett. Antigua, 24th Jan., 1721. Owner of the brigantine Thomas, on 31st Oct. last, he was seized by the Priate Roberts 30 leagues E. of Bermudas. They went from Surinam to Tobago to water and thence stood for Sta. Lucia. Corroborates preceding. Names and description of 8 sailors still detained by the pirates against their will. Signed, Thomas Bennett. Same endorsement. 2½ pp.
501. vi. Governor of the French Leeward Islands to Governor Hamilton. Fort Royal, Martinique. 8th Feb., 1721 (N.S.) Alludes to depredations of the pirate Roberts off Sta. Lucia 25th and 26th Oct. etc, who gave to the master of a Barbados brigantine the vessel of a poor inhabitant of Martinique the bearer of this letter, M. Pomier, which he had seized. This vessel has been brought into Antigua. Asks that it may be restored. Between 28th and 31st of Oct. these pirates seized, burned or sank 15 French and English vessels and one Dutch interloper of 42 guns at Dominica. The pirate has the latter vessel with him, besides his own, taken at Tortola, a brigantine of 22 guns and two boats. This squadron of pirates has sailed for St. Eustatia in order to seize another interloper there. Having no man of war now at his disposal, M. de Feuquieres wrote to Mr. Cox begging him to send Mr. Whitney who had recently passed Martinique, to return thither, when he would help him with two good vessels and all his forces to seek out the pirates etc. Signed, De Pas Feuquières. Bénard. Same endorsement. French. 2 pp.
501. vii. Same to Same. Fort Royal, Martinique. 21st Feb., 1721. N.S. Sends French Artillery officer, M. le Malherbe, to concert measures against the pirates. Signed and endorsed as preceding. French. 1¼ pp.
501. viii. General Feuqui`res' Credentials to M. le Malherbe (preceding). Signed, dated and endorsed as preceding. French. 1 p.
501. ix, x. Proposals sent by M. de Pas de Feuquieres (No. vii) for an Agreement made between the Governor of the French Leeward Islands and Governor Hamilton concerning forces to be sent by the two Nations against the pirates cruising off their coasts etc. 15 Articles. French and English versions. Same endorsement. 8½ pp.
501. xi. Minutes of Council of Antigua, 20th Feb., 1721. Correspondence between H.E. and Council and Capt. Whitney, referred to supra. Same endorsement. 3 pp.
501. xii. Capt. Whitney to Governor Hamilton. H.M.S. Rose. St. John's Road, Antegoa, Feb. 20, 1720/1. It is equal to me whether I water at St. Christophers or Guardeloupe, all that I expect is that you'l please to let me know where the pirates are, that I may make a demand from you of assistance from the Regiment etc. I'm willing to make any honourable return to the French Settlements for their generous offer etc. Signed, Thomas Whitney. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 p.
501. xiii. M. de Malherbe to Governor Hamilton. 2nd March, 1721. Encloses translation of agreement supra. Signed, De Malherbe. Same endorsement. French. Copy. 1 p.
501. xiv. [? Governor Hamilton] to Capt. Whitney. Antigua, 21st Feb. 1720(1721). Encloses orders to him to proceed with H.M.S. Rose and a letter to the French Governor, M. de Pas de Feuqui`res, to consult with him as to going in quest of the pirates etc. No signature. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 p.
501. xv. Governor Hamilton's Order to Capt. Whitney to go to Martinique as preceding. 21st Feb. 1720/1. Signed, W. Hamilton. Same endorsement. Copy. 2 pp.
501. xvi. Capt. Whitney to the Governor of Martinique. March 1st, 1720/1. The inclosed is a letter from General Hamilton which I have taken care of. There is an information of pirates on this coast which I must desire your information where they are. Signed, Thomas Whitney. Same endorsement. Copy. ½ p.
501. xvii. Governor of Martinique to Capt. Whitney. Fort Royal, Martinique, 13th March, 1721. Reply to preceding. The pirates have left the coast of St. Domingo. I have explained to the gentlemen you sent, why I have stopped the preparation of the force I had begun to raise. Offers aid in case pirates return to the windward of Martinique etc. Signed, De Pas Feuquiéres. Same endorsement. French. Copy. 1 p.
501. xviii. Same to Governor Hamilton. Dated as preceding. One of our ships, formerly captured by the pirates, has arrived from St. Domingo, and I do not think they are any longer likely to injure you or us. Two frigates have been sent from France to cruise off St. Domingo. I have therefore discharged the forces I was preparing etc. Acknowledges his zealous cooperation and encloses copies of Capt. Whitney's impertinent letter and his reply. Nos. xvi, xvii. "Now that these Islands begin to be supplied with necessaries, I shall have great pleasure in sending you anything you may desire," etc. Sends him 2 barrels of red wine. Thanks for releasing the two French ships of Pomier and Domaine as requested. Invites him to send information as to pirates, so that he may instruct the French frigates etc. Signed and endorsed as preceding. French. Copy. 3 pp.
501. xix. Capt. Whitney to Governor Hamilton. H.M.S. Rose in St. John's Road, Antegoa, March 1st, 1720/1. Encloses preceding. I was very much surprised after so much noise of pirates and armaments to join their forces with ours (as they called it) their Governor knew nothing of the matter nor had not heard of any pirates these two months, but that they were gone to Rattan of which I acquainted the Lords of the Admiralty some time ago; so conclude this last expedition was contrived by the smugglers on each side, and don't doubt there will be information of pirates in two days, there being now at Martinico five sloops fitting to come over among these Islands to buy provisions which consequently will destroy the poor of these Colonies. Enquires as to payment for soldiers' provisions etc. The smugglers who are most of them my country Jacobites being very angry my seizing the sloops, but hope to be up with some of them etc. Signed, Thomas Whitney. Same endorsement. Copy. 1¾ pp.
501. xx. Same to Same. H.M.S. Rose, St. John's Road, Antegoa. March 22, 1720/1. I'am going to St. Christophers to water etc. I have made the signal for the trade if any here, that want convoy, but sorry I am I have so little opportunities of making such signals from this Island. Signed and endorsed as preceding. Copy. 1 p.
501. xxi. Governor Hamilton to Captain Whitney. By a deposition (enclosed) taken before Lt. General Mathew a certain ship has invaded our vessells and intends further mischief. You are to proceed to St. Christophers and consult with the Lt. General and take such measures as shall be judged for H.M. service etc. You are not to exceed the limits of my Government, but to return with all dispatch as I expect orders from home by ships now reported etc. Antigua, 22nd March, 1720/1. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 p.
501. xxii. Capt. Whitney to Governor Hamilton. H.M.S. Rose. St. John's Road, Antegoa. March 23rd, 1720/1. I am sorry the French affidavits should have so much influence; you know, Sir, you have no power to give me orders, but I will concert any affairs that shall be for my King's service, and am sorry I am forc't to say I wish you'de do the same. Signed, Thomas Whitney. Same endorsement. Copy. ½ p.
501. xxiii. Governor Hamilton to Capt. Whitney. Antigua, March 23rd, 1720/1. Encloses copies of letter and list of stores sent for H.M. ships from the Navy Office. In reply to preceding says we cannot afford to slight any information about pirates, and communicates H.M. Instructions which impower him to suspend Commanders of H.M. Ships who neglect their duties etc. I presume you will think I am sufficiently impowered to give orders. I shall continue to give you written orders, and you may disobey at your perill" etc. Same endorsement. Copy. 2¼ pp.
501. xxiv. Capt. Whitney to Governor Hamilton. St. Xphers. Rose. March 31st. I shall take no notice of preceding. Capt. Pomeroy has seized two French sloops of some valew. We believe there's proof enough to make them prizes, if thears fear play done us etc. If they be condemned, you shall find (notwithstanding what sicophants may say to you) we shall behave in that case very justly in what shall relate to you. I sho'd gone to Windward ere this but expected advice of that Spaniard which I judge by enquiry from Holladay to be a Guard d'Costa. Signed, Thomas Whitney. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 p.
501. xxv. Same to Same. H.M.S. Rose in Old Road, St. Xphers. April 6, 1721. I design to sail this night on an information deposed by John Lamb before Lt. Genll. Mathew that there are pirates at the Rocas. I have requested 15 men of the King's troops to assist me (which he has agreed to) I have ordered the Shark to proceed to Antigua to consult with you what shall be necessary etc. Signed and endorsed as preceding. Copy. 1 p.
501. xxvi. Copy of H.M. Instructions to Governor Hamilton, article 66, empowering him to suspend Naval Captains etc. Same endorsement. 1 p.
501. xxvii. Capt. Whitney to Governor Hamilton. H.M.S. Rose. Five Islands April 26, 1721. I have been cruising among the Virgin Islands in quest of a French pirate that had taken a ship bound to Jamaica, who was so unlucky to be taken just before by Roberts in sight of this Island, and carried to Barbuda where he staid five days. I put the master on shoar at St. Xphers and by his information believe Roberts to be cruising off Desiado. I design when the Shark joins me to go in quest of him, and cruise in the tract of Barbados where I design to victual. I should be glad to know if your Excellency has any commands that way. Signed, Thomas Whitney. Same endorsement. Copy. ¾ p.
501. xxviii. Governor Hamilton to Capt. Whitney. Antigua, April 26th, 1721. Reply to preceding. If you had followed my orders at your return from Martinique to cruize for some days to windward of these Islands, you might in all probability have come up with the pirate Roberts and prevented the misfortune to the ship bound to Jamaica. Encloses following order and requests him to return after his cruise to carry him to Leeward to visit the other Islands of his Government etc. Signed, W. Hamilton. Same endorsement. 1¼ pp.
501. xxix. Same to Same. Same date. Orders to cruise between Desciada and Barbuda for 10 or 12 days in search of pirates and then return to Antigua, etc., as preceding. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 1 large p. [C.O. 152, 14. ff. 23–25v, 26v.–31v., 32v.–33v., 34v.–37v., 38v.–41, 42v.–45v., 46v.–48v., 50–51, 52v., 53, 54v., 55, 56v.–57v., 58–60v., 61v.–64v., 65v.–68, 69v., 70, 71v.–74, 75v., 76, 77v., 78, 79v.–80v., 81v., 82, 83v.–84v., 85v., 86–87v.]
May 20.
502. Mr. Popple to Joshua Gee. The Council of Trade and Plantations have appointed Friday morning for hearing Capt. Gookin's Council on his petition (v. 8th Jan. 1719/20). I am to acquaint you therewith, that you may also come with your Council, if you have anything to object etc. Mem. A like letter was writ to Mr. Richier, N. Jersey. [C.O. 5, 1293. pp. 236, 237.]
May 20.
503. Mr. Popple to Mr. Carkesse. The new impression of the Barbados Lawes being lately finished; I can now inform you, that the new law mentioned in your letter 16th May, 1720, for regulating the guage of sugar casks 1675, is a perpetual law, and in full force, the Act of 1682, making some alterations therein is expired etc. [C.O. 29, 14. pp. 115, 116.]
May 26.
504. Mr. Popple to Mr. West. Encloses, for his opinion, Act of Barbados to render more effectual certain legacies by Capt. John Williams to the Parish of Christ Church. [C.O. 29, 14. pp. 116, 117.]
May 26.
505. Council of Trade and Plantations to Lord Carteret. Representation upon Lord A. Hamilton's Memorial as to his share in sloop Bennett, prize of a privateer of which he was part owner etc. His Lordship deposited his share in the hands of the Provost Marshal upon the application of a Spanish Agent who pretended that he would appeal, but has not done so etc. Continue:—His Lordship, attending the Board, informed us that there has been an attempt made in the Assembly to take this deposit money out of the Provost Marshal's hands by an Act. We have no objection to the Prayer of his Lordship's Memorial, provided security be given for making good the said deposit to any person that may hereafter appear to be legally intitul'd thereto in such manner as shall be advised by H.M. Council learned in the Law. We are likewise of opinion that all the other owners concerned with his Lordship in the ship Bennet should give the same security in Jamaica to be answerable for their respective shares as shall be given by his Lordship here. [C.O. 138, 16. pp. 285–289.]
[May 26]. 506. Copartners for settling the Bahama Islands to Council of Trade and Plantations. Proposals supplementary to those of 19th May. H.M. to appoint and pay Governor and Council. To form a Government according to that of Jamaica. To send another Independant Company at the charge of the Crown. The Capital Stock to be £500,000, or 20 pr. ct. upon the originall subscription, and no more to be raised but by leave of the Crown. Endorsed, Recd. (from Mr. Saml. Buck) 26th May, Read 22nd June, 1721. ½ p. [C.O. 23, 1. No. 33.]
May 28.
South Carolina.
507. Richard Waddon to [? Lord Carteret]. Thro' your favour, I am now Lieut. of H.M.S. Enterprize. We sail to Virginia the first fair wind etc. Compliments. Signed, Rd. Waddon. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 387. No. 24].
May 28.
St. James's.
508. Order of King in Council. Approving report of the Lords of the Committee for hearing appeales, complaints etc. from the Plantations, upon several petitions etc. from Barbados, relating to Mr. Cox and the suspension of Councillors etc., that several of the matters therein contained cannot from the nature of them, be so properly examined into or determined here as in the said Island, etc., and ordering that the said petitions and addresses (petitions of Sir Robert Davers, Alexander Walker, Robert Heysham, Sir Charles Cox, representation of Council of Trade on an Address from the Assembly, and an address of the Assembly against Mr. Cox for removing officers etc) be delivered to the Rt. Honble. the Lord Belhaven, Governor, to examine into the same, and to give such orders as he shall think proper for the present peace and good Government of the said Island, and to return an account to this Board of his proceedings herein, together with what his Lordship shall conceive further necessary to be done for H.M. service, and the good of the said Island. Signed, Edward Southwell. Endorsed, Recd. 4th, Read 8th Aug., 1721. 3⅓ pp. [C.O. 28, 17. ff. 168–169v.]
May 28.
St. James's.
509. Order of King in Council. Upon the several petitions etc. relating to Mr. Cox having suspended Thos. Maycock, Thos. Maxwell, Guy Ball, John Lucy Blackman, William Carter and Francis Bond, ordered, that they be restored to their places in the Council of Barbados, Mr. Cox having acted contrary to the ixth Article of his Instructions etc. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 1½ pp. [C.O. 28, 17. ff. 170, 170v., 171v.; and (Signed, Robert Hales, Endorsed, Recd. 5th, Read 8th June, 1721.) 28, 17. ff. 128, 128v., 129v.]
May 28.
St. James's.
510. Order of King in Council. Approving report of Committee for hearing appeals etc., upon petitions touching Mr. Cox having removed severall persons from their places in Barbados, that it appears by an Address of the General Assembly that Mr. Cox hath turned out seven of the eight Collonells of the Regiments in that Island, the masters in Chancery and all the Judges of the Courts of Common Pleas, and likewise changed the Commission of the Peace, whereby the said Island is in great disorder, and the said Mr. Cox not having transmitted his reasons for so doing and ordering that all officers both civil and military (except John Frere Esq.) be forthwith restored to their respective commissions offices and employments, etc. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 2pp. [C.O. 28, 17. ff. 172, 172v., 173v.; and(signed, Robert Hales, endorsedRecd. 5th, Read 8th June, 1721)ff. 130, 131v.]
May 28.
St. James's.
511. Order of King in Council. Approving report of Committee for hearing appeals etc., that, in the course of their examination into the matters between Mr. Cox and the suspended Councillors, there did appear to have been passed in Barbados, in 1720, an Act for the better preserving the peace and tranquility of the Island, which they conceive to be highly injurious to H.M. Prerogative in several particulars, and repealing said Act. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 1½ pp. [C.O. 28, 17.ff. 174, 174v., 175v.; and (Signed, Robert Hales, Endorsed, Recd. 5th, Read 8th June, 1721) ff. 132, 133v.]
May 30.
512. Governor Hamilton to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I herewith transmit an Act past in Nevis for establishing, regulating and disciplining the Militia forces, which has been preparing for these four years past, and 'twas with some difficulty that I got them to set about this Act so necessary for their preservation, but their remisness was so great that I believe they would have still put it off by delays had not the pirates awakened 'em by attacking Basse Terre in St.Christophers. I made some amendments to the said Act but was unwilling to venture too far, least it should give a handle to them to make objections thereto, and by that means not pass it, and indeed I was not mistaken in my conjectures, for the President upon return of the Act with amendmts. writes me 'twas done again with no small reluctancy of some, who would rather have it postponed for further alteration, and perhaps would never after have consented to it. Upon this consideration I have consented to the Bill as it is being truely sensible of the necessity of such an Act etc. Refers to Preamble. Signed, W. Hamilton. Endorsed, Recd. 26th, Read 27th July, 1721. 1p. [C.O. 152, 13. ff. 284, 285v.]
May 31.
513. Lt. Governor Spotswood to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Abstract. Last September the coast was greatly infested by Spanish privateers from St. Augustin. One came within the capes and made several prizes, one of which was retaken by the Lieutenant of the guardship. On board there were ten Spaniards, who had with them the copy of a commission granted in August by the Governor of St. Augustin to the Captain of that privateer, although upon examination of these prisoners it appeared that the cessation of arms had been notified to the Governor by the Governor of S. Carolina before that privateer sailed: but that the Spaniards resolved not to regard it upon pretence that it had not been notified to them from their Court. Spotswood thereupon sent a flag of truce demanding restitution of the vessels etc. taken during the cessation, and at the same time sent the Spanish prisoners. The flag of truce found the said privateer and several of her prizes at St. Augustin. Others had been sent to Havana and others lost. The Governor disowned having given commissions for cruising on the coast of Virginia, and made a show of trying and condemning the Captain of the privateer and directed a London ship, Recovery, and Philadelphia sloop, Mary, to be delivered up. But he would not part with a London sloop with negroes on board, which had been taken on her voyage to Virginia, which was more valuable than both the others, alleging that she was lawful prize for having red wood on board, which he said was the growth of the Spanish Plantations, though it was evident it was brought from Africa. The loading of the Philadelphia sloop he pretended to purchase for the use of his garrison, and accordingly took out the bread and flour, "but tendered no other payment than a note under his hand for 2098 pieces of eight which is of no value to the owners, seeing they dare not send to demand it at a place where their vessells are liable to be seized upon the most trifling pretences." No reparation could be obtained for the prizes sent to other ports or lost. None of the Spanish privateers has since molested their trade, but it is necessary that more effectual care be taken to preserve the freedom of navigation to and from the West Indies, "and especially from the insults of those of St. Augustin, which seems to be rather a resort of banditts than deserving the name of a Government" etc. Quotes cases of captain of Prince of Orange, sent from Philadelphia with a flag of truce to exchange some prisoners, whom the Governor arrested on a false charge of landing European goods without his permission; and of a Boston brigantine coming from Jamaica, captured, Feb. last, in the Gulf of Florida by a Spanish frigat, and carried into St. Augustin. Though his cocquets showed that his whole lading was taken in at Jamaica, yet because he had braziletto on board which the Spaniards pretended was the product of their Plantations, they condemned both vessel and cargo, "and the poor man (who had a great part of his substance in that brigantine) is come hither a fatal instance of the effects of violence and oppression having together with his goods entirely lost his senses" etc. These instances will show how traders in these parts lie at the mercy of the Spaniards, "for if the having on board their vessells any commoditys of the like species with those are produced in the Spanish Plantations, nay even a pistoll or ps. of 8/8 which is the common currency of these Colonys be (as the Spaniards pretend) sufficient ground for making prize etc., each ship and vessell trading in America may be seized, and considering the charge and difficulty of private persons solliciting redress at the Court of Madrid, the remedy seems as intolerable as the disease" etc. Hopes, whilst a new Treaty is on foot, the Board will so represent this growing evil as that it may be restrained etc. The depredations committed by the Spaniards on this coast has cost the Government nearly £1000etc. A ship, lately arrived here from the Isle of May, was taken in her passage by Roberts a pirate (50 guns, 240men) who said he expected to be joined by another ship and would then visit Virginia, and avenge the pirates who have been executed here. "Considering the boldness of this fellow, who last year with no more than a sloop of 10 guns and 60 men, ventured into Trepassy in Newfoundland where there were a great number of merchant ships, upwards of 1200 men and 40 ps. of cannon, and yet for want of courage in this headless multitude, plundered and burnt divers ships there, and made such as he pleased prisoners, I thought it prudence to make use of this opportunity to put the countrey in a better posture of defence and have got the Council unanimously to consent to the erecting of batterys at the mouth of James River, York and Rappahanock where I shall in a few days have 54 pieces of canon mounted and hope when these batterys are finished according to the plan I have laid, the country will have no occasion to be under any alarm at what the pyrates may be able to do, and the ships in our rivers may ly in safety, but in order to prevent the danger to the trade of these Plantations, I am humbly of opinion that ships of greater force than those now stationed here, are necessary to be sent to guard the coasts; for there is not one of the guardships on this coast fitt to encounter such a one as this Roberts has now under his command, and tis no easy matter for two or more of the men of war to joine of a sudden so remote as their stations are from one another for suppressing any great force of the pyrates appearing on these coasts. Certainly a 40 or 50 gun ship is absolutely necessary to convoy our merchant ships out to sea, and a smaller vessell such as a sloop or brigantine to pursue little pickeroons in shoal water, where a great ship cannot come at them, would be very serviceable towards the security of our trade, and driving the pyrates from this coast, where they frequently resort to furnish themselves with provisions, as well as to wait for good ships when their own are grown out of repair, and if last year there had been two men of war here, the one to have cruised while the other cleaned, the great loss this Colony and the trade of Great Britain in generall suffered here from the Spanish privateers had been prevented." Encloses accounts of Revenue and Journals of Council etc. Continues:—Your Lordships will observe by the many petitions for leave to take up land how much the frontiers of this country are likely to be extended, and principally upon the hopes of H.M. gracious approbation of the Act pass'd this last Session, and the Address of the Assembly for encouraging the possessing the passes of the Great Mountains, both which I hope by your Lordsps. favourable interposition are by this time obtained. Set out, Va. Hist. Soc. Coll., Spotswood Papers, II. 346. Signed, A. Spotswood. Endorsed, Recd. 16th Oct. 1721, Read 12th June, 1722. 6pp. Enclosed,
513. i. Account of H.M. Revenue of Quit-Rents in Virginia, 25th April, 1720–1721. Totals: Receipts (including £7971 5s. 6½d. brought forward) £10,021 5s. 3½d.) Expenditure, £2724 6s. 3¼d. Signed, Wm. Cole, D.Rr. Genl. Audited by John Grymes, Depty. Audr. Endorsed as preceding. 4pp.
513. ii. Account of H.M. Revenue of 2s. pr. hogshead etc. in Virginia, 25th Oct., 1720–25th April, 1721. Total, Receipts, (including £2991 0s. 2d. brought forward) £3889 6s. 6½d. Expenditure, £2038 8s. 6½d. Signed, audited and endorsed as preceding. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 1319. Nos. 15, 15. i., ii.]