America and West Indies: February 1725

Pages 320-335

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 34, 1724-1725. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1936.

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February 1725

Feb. 1.
490. Lt. Governor Hope to the Duke of Newcastle. This will be delivered to your Grace by Mr. Aytoune, (Collector of the Customs here), whom I have sent express etc. cf. 27th Jan. Signed, John Hope. Endorsed, Rd. June 7th. 2 pp. [C.O. 37, 28. No. 26.]
Feb. 2.
491. Same to Same. I send your Grace inclos'd a copy of this days Minutes of Council; in order for your Grace's more distinct information, of the barbarous and inhuman treatment I have receiv'd from a knott of pyrates; who I find have endeavour'd my destruction, because that I have put the laws and H.M. Instructions in execution upon them. The vessel is now under sail, and I do with the greater assurance allow her to depart, because that Her most sacred Majesty's Orders, directing me to make answer to the complaint of Samuel Eveleigh, is now in my custody: which my complaint, my Lord, I have already answer'd in all respects, and particulars, (I hope) to H.M. Royal satisfaction, and in justice to myself. There are two things in the complaint which I have not answer'd; because I saw it not till this morning: But both the charges laid to my door, I do own and acknowledge to be true, (i) That Ebenezer Wyatt was prisoner in the guard; and (ii) that the condemn'd sloop did one half of her belong to me, when she went to the Bay of Honduras etc. Defers further reply to these frivolous charges till he send formal reply to every article etc. Continues: I have order'd the Council to meet me to-morrow, in order to read the rest of the papers inclos'd in that pacquett (now under seal) that I may thereby, send your Grace copys of them etc. This Jones has now push'd his revenge and sedition to that height, that it's absolutly necessary for me to put the severity of the laws, and the power H.M. has been pleas'd to intrust me with, in execution against him. Which if it happens, I beg your Grace will be pleas'd to support me in, etc. P.S. Twelve a clock at night. Since I sign'd the above letter, the sloop Hannover Capt. James Seymour Commander arriv'd here from St. Christophers, having on board Adam Wood, Cabin boy of the sloop George and Elizabeth; who it seems has been trusted with the original of H.M. Order in Council abovemention'd; and I shall only beg leave to refer your Grace to his own voluntary declaration upon oath (here inclos'd) upon my asking him to deliver it to me. I wish to God the honour that this cabinboy is now dignified with, had been thought proper to be intrusted to my fidelity; But it is my duty to obey etc. Signed, John Hope. Endorsed, Rd. pr. Mr. Aytoune, Mar. 29th, 1725. 3 1/2 pp. Enclosed,
491. i, ii. Minutes of Council of Bermuda, Feb. 2, 1725, relating to Adam Wood and Edward Jones referred to in preceding. [C.O. 87, 28. No. 27 (covering letter only); and (enclosures only); 37, 26. Nos. 31, 32.]
Feb. 2.
492. Mr. Popple to Mr. Scrope, Secretary to the Treasury. Encloses copies of papers from Sir W. Keith, relating to the seizure of the Fame, to be laid before the Lords Commissioners of H.M. Treasury. [C.O. 5, 1293. pp. 341, 342.]
[Feb. 4.]
St. James's.
493. Petition of Henry Rosst of Bermudas Island in America to the King. Born in Saxony, petitioner lived for many years in the islands (sic) of S. Carolina and Pennsylvania, where he suffered great losses by the war with the Indians. Having married into an English family in Bermudas, is now settled there. Near his place of residence are some small islands uninhabited and for the most part uncultivated, known by the names of Turkett Dorrell islands, which if cultivated would produce wines and other manufactures etc. Prays for a grant of one or two of said islands. 1 p. Overleaf,
493. i. Reference of preceding to the Council of Trade and Plantations for their report. St. James's, 4th Feb., 1725. Signed, Holies Newcastle. 1/3 p. The whole, Endorsed, Recd. 8th, Read 18th Feb., 1724/5. [C.O. 37, 11. ff 107, 107?., 108?.]
Feb. 4.
From on board the ship Express
494. Lt. Governor Hope to the Duke of Newcastle. I send your Grace by this coppys (drawn in haste) of yesterday's minute of Council and of all the papers then read at that board. The ship I writt in is now under sail so I beg your Grace to pardon the brevity of this. By what is here inclos'd your Grace may imagine the miserable situation I am reduced to, through the intrigues of a parcel of abandon'd men who have conspir'd my ruin etc. There is nothing which I have either order'd or done, in any one thing mention'd, or infer'd, in those infamous papers; but, what I do own, and glory in: and if any of these intended complaints does appear against me, I shal look upon it as a greater happyness to be call'd home to answer for them, than, to continue here at the mercy of the calumnys and inventions of such abandon'd mortals; who, to be reveng'd of me have indeavour'd the confusion of this happy little Colloney. The Counsellors are men of sence and substance and unanimous, which is the greatest comfort I enjoy. P.S. I have sent your grace the coppy of H.M. Order serv'd on me by Adam Wood Cabbin boy of the Geo. and Eliza, who has the original but refuses to give it up: I wou'd not take it from him, because I have the authentick duplicate seiz'd in Jones's pocket: which the event shows he was order'd likewise to have kept up as he did that order of H.M. which has given us so much trouble. Signed, John Hope. Endorsed, Rd. June 7th. Holograph. 3 1/2 pp. Enclosed,
494. i. Copy of Minutes of Council of Bermuda, Feb. 3, 1725, and of papers relating to the George and Elizabeth. ?. Feb. 2 and preceding. 26 pp. [C.O. 37, 28. No. 28 (covering letter only); and (enclosure only) 37, 26. No. 33.]
[Feb. 5.] 495 s Mr. Burniston to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Hopes that Mr. Armstrong may be dispatched to his post etc. Signed, C. Burniston. Endorsed, Recd. 5th, Read 19th Feb., 1724/5. Addressed. Without date. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 869. ff. 74?., 75?.]
Feb. 7.
496. Lt. Governor Hope to the Duke of Newcastle. This comes to acquaint your Grace that Edward Jones that firebrand of sedition, (who has almost thrown this Colony into confusion, by keeping up of H.M. Orders of Council) finding that all his plots and contrivances are now happily discover'd; did last night run away with a sloop, in a pyratical manner. He and the master (David Burch) are part owners of the vessel, which is call'd the Olive-branch. He is certainly bound for England etc. If I had believ'd that the small power trusted to me, by H.M., had been sufficient to have punished him, for his presumption in daring to conceal, and keep up H.M. Orders in Council; I wou'd have done it etc. Your Grace is a judge whether or not it may be necessary for the good Government not only of this little place, but likewise of the Plantations that this affair may be enquir'd into. P.S. The sloop was cleard here for St. Christophers in ballast only, but I am certain she has other goods on board and disigns to put Jones on shore at Biddiford. Signed, John Hope. Endorsed, Rd. April 23. 2 pp. [C. O. 37, 28. No. 29.]
Feb. 8
Jamaica, Spanish
497. Governor the Duke of Portland to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I was unwilling to let any opportunity slip, without giving your Lordships an account of what passes here, tho' for the present, it will be but a very imperfect one, since the ship by which this goes, was to have sail'd from hence to me, and being acquainted with her intentions of sailing for London, but within this day or two, I have stop'd her going till I co'd get ready what I thought most necessary for the present; If I had had time, I would have sent duplicates of everything sent Dec. 30th etc. Continues: It is with pleasure I can acquaint your Lordps. that those, who for private views of their own, do what they can to obstruct all publick affairs, have fail'd in everything they aimd at, and don't at all question, but that for the future with the countenance I hope from home, they will never meet with any better success. Refers to behaviour of the Depty. Provost Marshall. ? 30th Dec, 1724. Continues: This matter deserves your Lordships' attention; When I did attempt to suspend him, it was look'd upon as a violation of the liberty and preveledge of the Patentee, but when he found I persisted to have an alteration, he then insisted that the nomination of another Depty. was absolutely in him, and look'd upon any attempt, to interfere wth. his nomination to be an infringement of his right, and taking away his freehold and his property: This I must represent as a difficulty the Government here labours under, who wants all possible assistance from those entrusted with any power from H.M., and in my opinion it co'd never be intended at home, that any power or favour granted by the King, sho'd be made use of to obstruct and oppose H.M. Government here; This Patentee nominated sevll. Deputys, and begun by one I had more reasons to except against, then against him whom I intended to remove, finding I did not approve of that nomination, he chose a second, less agreeable than the first; When I acquainted him wth. my objections, and thought that I had explain'd my self sufficiently, so as to have none nam'd, that had been notoriously engag'd against the Governmt. here, he declar'd, he wo'd persist in the same sort of nomination, and appointed a third more remarkably so, than those he had nam'd before. Upon wch. I requir'd the Patentee's personal attendance. He look'd upon that also as a violation of his right, since in the patent wch. gives him the Office for life, it is inserted, that he may execute it himself, or by sufficient Deputy, and that I had no power to oblige him to officiate himself, nor co'd interfere in the nomination of his Deputy; I thought, My Lords, that the judgement of the sufficiency of the Deputys, was in the Government here, and not in the Patentees, and that even the Patentees, were under the inspection of the Governmt., and to be suspended in case of any failure of; but being desirous to shew a just regard for H.M. patents, I was unwilling to push things to any extremity, and found means tho' not without some pains and the assistance of some friends, to compose matters in an honble. manner, without lessening my own authority, wch. was, upon promises of a future amendment, and an entire submission, to overlook what was past, but as this can't always be compass'd I must desire to be inform'd by your Lordps. how I am to proceed, when anything of the like nature happens again etc. questions put. Continues:—It is an easy matter for any Patentee, to keep within a hair's breadth of his duty, and yet to do the Governmt. all possible disservice, and must say, it is of bad consequence, that they shall be at liberty to dispute powers wth. those whom H.M. has thought proper to entrust in a superiour degree; To suspend a Patentee, except some lawfull reason plainly appears, might be thought a hardp. and be disapprov'd of at home, and yet some remedy ought to be found to prevent these Patentees thinking themselves independant, and setting themselves up as petty Governours, in opposition to him, whom H.M. has been pleas'd to appoint for his Representative. I must earnestly entreat your Lordps. to take this into your serious consideration, since the tempers of people here, require all what the art of man can invent, to keep them within the bounds of their duty to H.M. and that the Governmt. wants all the support that possibly can be given to it. I also want your Lordps. opinion, about another affair grounded upon what has happend here lately, concerning writs of error being brought before the Governour and Council; vizt. When the Council consists of five wch. makes a quorum, that three of the Council, are of one opinion, and two wth. the Governour of a different opinion, how one is to proceed? Whether the Governour's opinion ought to be deem'd in this particular no more than the vote of a Counsellour; Not knowing whether this might not be a lessening of H.M. Prerogative, and being unwilling to assume any thing that might not be thought justifiable, I have delay'd coming to any determination upon this head, untill I receive some Instructions concerning the same, and will avoid, as well as I can, in the mean time to have any thing of that kind come to be determin'd before the Council, but when the number shall be such, as to remove this difficulty, wch. will be hard, considering how few Counsellours there are in this Island, and so many of them unable to attend, wch. has oblig'd me to nominate the Receiver Genl. (?.30th Dec), from whom I expect a great deal of assistance, and hope his nomination will be approv'd of; If those who are abroad don't suddenly return, the necessity of the publick affairs will require to have their places fill'd up, but am sorry to say, I am at a loss where to find those who are properly qualified, and who I can recommend, there is no depending upon what one hears from those who speak out of affection, or with resentment, therefore I desire yor. Lordps. to have some patience, till I can personally be better acquainted wth. the people, and intend then, to transmitt the names of such as I can be satisfied, will deserve to be recommended. The Assembly has met lately, and tho' their Session has been very short, yet to the disappointment of some who I hope will find themselves every day, more and more deceiv'd has to my great satisfaction, been very unanimous in the dispatch of such affairs as will prove to be of greater advantage to this Island, than any thing they have done this great while past; They have pass'd three bills wch. I transmitt at present to your Lordships. The first is the Additional Duty Bill wch. formerly provided for the support of the guard sloop. As that bill fail'd passing the last Sessions, I prevaild wth. the Commadore to order one of H.M. sloops to supply the want of the guard sloop etc. (?. supra). The Assembly have desir'd me to use my endeavours with the Commadore to continue that sloop, upon that service, for some time longer, and that the money arising by virtue of that Act, might be employ'd towards the suppressing of the rebellious negroes. And as the Commadore upon my application has readily comply'd with what the countrey desird of him, I am busy at present making the necessary dispositions to deliver this Island from these intestine enemys, who have so much annoy'd and destroyd the distant plantations. If I can compass this, in the manner I propose, it will be of great service to all the settlements here. The second is, a bill which will be of the greatest use, they co'd think of, towards encouraging the settlements in this Island, wch. is to oblige the publick to make good the losses of those who in their remote plantations are expos'd to any dangers. The third is what I have often desired, for the more effectual collecting the publick outstanding debts, wch. I hope will effectually help me in what I have ever since I came, been earnestly labouring at, whereby the Treasury will be enabled, to satisfy all those who have any demands upon the Government; I look upon this to be a great step towards the support of the publick credit, and don't design to stop here but will neglect no opportunity to forward and improve this disposition. The South Sea Agents endeavour'd in the Assembly and in the Council to obstruct the Additional Duty Bill, pretending they had not so great a latitude allow'd them by this new bill, to do whatever they had a mind to, as they hitherto have had; I must own that the welfare of this Island answers their objection, and absolutely requires the diminution or restriction of that latitude for they us'd to land all their negroes brought in here for refreshment, which infected the inhabitants, wth. all their malignant fevers, small-pox, and other dangerous distempers, besides other inconveniences and dangers it exposd the towns to: common prudence requird that effectuall care sho'd be taken to prevent this, and to preserve those who already are sufficiently expos'd (too many of them daily drop off) by the nature of the climate; This Act allows them all the refreshment they can wish for, and only restrains the negro's from landing, wch. is so necessary for the preservation of so many lives here; I did attempt (tho' not apply'd to in any manner by the South Sea Agents concernd in this bill) to have had a place at a distance appropriated where they might land for their refreshment, but that did not answer their purpose (to avoid saying their private ends) and besides it was thought unadviseable and unsafe, to trust a number of negro's to themselves in any remote part etc. I expect letters from England wth. the utmost impatience, having been some time without receiving any etc. Signed, Portland, Endorsed, Recd. 29th April, Read 6th May, 1725. 6 large pp. Enclosed,
497. i. H.E.'s Speech to the Council and Assembly of Jamaica. Recommends provision for a guard sloop, and provision for parties sent against the rebellious negroes and an Act for improving the collection of private debts etc. (? 20th Jan., 1725). Copy. 1 1/2 pp.
497. ii. Address of the Council of Jamaica to H.E. 22nd Jan., 1724(5). Reply to preceding. Promise support in view of his wise and prudent measures etc. H.E.'s reply. Copy. 2 pp.
497. iii. Address of the Assembly to H.E. Reply to No. 1. Jan. 22, 1724(5). Return thanks for his care of the coast and success of the party sent by H.E. against the rebels. They will dispatch the bills proposed etc. H.E.'s reply. Copy. 2 3/4 pp.
497. iv. H.E.'s Speech to the Council and Assembly, upon proroguing them till 27th April. Acknowledges the cheerfulness and unanimity with which they have dispatched the necessary business etc. Copy. 1 p. [C. O. 137, 16. ff. 61–68? ., 70? ]
Feb. 8. 498. Governor the Duke of Portland to the Duke of Newcastle. Repeats preceding letter, concluding by commending to his care an Address of the Council and Assembly to the King. Signed, Portland. Endorsed, Rd. 29th April, 1724/5. 6 pp. Enclosed,
498. i–iv. Duplicates of Nos. 497, i–iv. [C. O. 137, 52. ff. 113–115?., 116? –120?., and abstract, 123–124.]
Feb. 8.
St. James's.
499. H.M. Commission to Col. Lawrence Armstrong to be Lt. Governor of Nova Scotia. Countersigned, Holies Newcastle. Endorsed, Recd., Read 25th Feb., 1724/5. l 1/4 pp. [C. O. 217, 4. ff. 268–269?; and 324, 35. p. 108.]
Feb. 8, Whitehall 500. Duke of Newcastle to Governor Hart. Having had some particular applications made to me in behalf of Mrs. Susan Thomas, who has some affairs depending in the Leeward Islands, I take leave to recommend her to your protection, that justice may be done etc. She is an orphan, who has fallen under great hardships, and is struggling with many difficultys to recover just debts which were due to her father, formerly Treasurer of Barbados, etc. Signed, Holies Newcastle. [C. O. 324, 35. p. 107.]
Custom ho.
501. Mr. Oxenford to Mr. Popple. Encloses, in reply to 22nd Jan., accounts of imports and exports to and from New England, Christmas, 1720–1723. Signed, John Oxenford. Endorsed, Recd. 8th Feb., Read 23rd June, 1725. Addressed. 1/2 p. [C. O. 5, 869. ff. 82, 83?.]
Feb. 8.
Custom ho., London.
502. Mr. Carkesse to Mr. Popple : Requests copy of Sir W. Keith's complaint against Mr. Moore (Nov. 25, 1724). Signed, Cha. Carkesse. Endorsed, Recd. 8th, Read 9th Feb., 1724/5. Addressed. 1 p. [C. O. 5, 1266. ff 176, 177?.]
Feb. 9.
503. Mr. Popple to Mr. Carkesse. Encloses copy as requested in preceding. [C. O. 5, 1293. p. 342.]
Feb. 15. 504. Duke of Newcastle to Lt. Governor Dummer. Having laid before the King your Address to H.M. as President of the Court of Admiralty, held at Boston, 12th May for the tryal of pyrates, H.M. hath been pleased to consider what you have therein represented in favour of William Taylor and William Phillips, who were condemned by the said Court for pyracy and in regard they were in the judgment of the Commissioners before whom they were tried thought proper objects of H.M. mercy, H.M. hath been pleased to grant them a pardon, and to order them to be inserted in the first and next general pardon that shall come out for the poor convicts of Newgate, etc. Warrant enclosed. Signed, Holies Newcastle. [C. O. 324, 35. p. 109.]
Feb. 16.
505. Duke of Newcastle to the Lord Bishop of London. The King having been moved upon a petition of Dr. George Berkeley etc. (?. following) etc., is very well inclined to give all due encouragement to so good and usefull an undertaking, and hath been pleased to refer the same to the Council of Trade and Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor General etc. Encloses copy, "that you may inform H.M. how far such a design may answer the ends proposed" etc. Signed, Holies Newcastle. [C.O. 324, 35. p. 110.]
[Feb. 16.] 506. Petition of George Berkeley, Dean of Derry, and William Thompson, Jonathan Rogers and James King, Fellows of Trinity College, Dublin, to the King. It is the earnest desire of all those who have the interest of religion at heart that something more should be done in order to the propagating of the Gospel among the savage Americans and the better supplying of Churches in your Majesty's Foreign Plantations etc. In order thereto a College or Seminary in a propper place where students may be safe from the contagion of vice and luxury is very much wanted. The islands of Bermuda by their situation, temperament of the air, plenty of provisions, intercourse with the British Plantations etc., as well as by the plainness and frugality of manners observable in the inhabitants appear a propper place etc. Pray for a Charter for erecting such College, to be named St. Paul's College, with Dr. Berkeley as President and the other petitioners for the three first Fellows, who shall co-opt six others etc. Scheme for the College. Subscribed,
506. i. Reference of preceding to the Council of Trade and Plantations, for their report thereon. St. James's. 16th Feb., 1724/5. Signed, Holies Newcastle. The whole endorsed, Recd. Read 24th Feb., 1724/5. 2 pp. [C. O. 37, 11. ff. 109, 110, 110?.]
[Feb. 18.] 507. Earl of Lincoln to the Duke of Newcastle. Requests a letter of recommendation to the Governor of Barbadoes, for Henry Irvine, one of the Clerks in his office, to employ him in any place that may fall vacant, he having been bred to accounts etc. Endorsed, Rd. 18th Feb., 1724/5. Mem. A letter wrote to Govr. Worsley. 1/2 p. [C. O. 28, 44. No. 92].
Feb. 18.
508. Mr. Popple to Governor Philips. Asks for information relating to Mr. Toshach's case. [C. O. 195, 7. p. 132.]
[Feb. 19.] 509. Petition of Wavell Smith and Savile Cust to the King. By H.M. letters patent of 18th Oct., 1722 petitioners were granted the places of Secretary and Clerk of the Crown of the Leeward Islands. Governor Hart has debarred Smith from the enjoyment of several branches of his office of Secretary and compelled him to accept Commissions from him for the same, and having conceived a groundless displeasure against him has contrived and assented to a law of St. Christophers by which a great many fees by right belonging to petitioners are taken away from their office etc. Pray that directions may be given for their relief etc. 2 1/2 closely written pp. Subscribed,
509. i. St. James, Feb. 19, 1724/5. H.M. is graciously pleased to referr this petition to the Council of Trade and Plantations for their report. Signed, Holies Newcastle. 1/4 p. The whole endorsed, Recd. 24th, Read 26th Feb., 1724/5. [C. O. 152, 15. ff. 3–4?.]
Feb. 19.
510. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Duke of Newcastle. Enclose for his information copy of Representation sent to the Council Office to be laid before H.M. Autograph signatures. 1 p. Enclosed,
510. i. Same to the King. Quote Duke of Portland's Instructions and Order in Council, 6th Aug. 1723, relating to Revenue Bill of Jamaica, and the Act continuing the present Act for one year etc. Continue: We have thereby had an opportunity of considering more maturely the draught of a Revenue Act [transmitted by the Governor], and beg leave to inform your Majesty, that the same is liable to the following objections; The Assembly of Jamaica have estimated their Establishment at £8000 pr. ann. which they conceiv'd to be adequate to all the constant annual expences of that Government, but the independent Companies which have been in Jamaica many years, and are necessary for the safety of that Island to be continued there, are not included in this Establishment, tho' they are provided for at present for one year by a separate Act; There is no provision made by this Bill for the debts of the Government already contracted ; The funds given by this Bill are design'd to raise the sum of £8000 p. ann. ; but being laid by way of increase upon certain commodities already rated, it is very doubtfull whether they will be sufficient for that purpose. And tho' the Assembly have engaged themselves to make good any sum that may fall short of £8000 pr. ann. yet this is only a promise on their part, which future Assemblies may dispute, but their laws would by this Bill in all events be made perpetual, and they are under no sort of engagement to provide for any accidental emergency of the Government, not included in this establishment; If the funds given by this Bill fall short, the deficiency is to be provided for as abovementioned ; but if they exceed, the surplus is liable to the appropriation of future Assemblies, whereas the surplus ought to have been left to your Majesty's disposition, because the Assembly do by this Bill take upon them to make the patrimonial revenues of the Crown, a part of the funds for the support of the Government. The extraordinary increase of duties upon such liquors as are usually imported into Jamaica from Great Britain which make a part of these funds, are contrary to the intention of that Instruction, whereby your Majesty's Governors are prohibited from giving their assent to any Acts immediately affecting the trade or shipping of Great Britain. The Receivor General of the Revenues, by this Bill is to account only with the Governor, Council and Assembly, or a Committee thereof, but the said Receivor ought to account to your Majesty in this Kingdom, and to the Lords Commissioners of your Majesty's Treasury, or Lord High Treasurer for the time being pursuant to the Instructions to all your Majesty's Governors in that behalf. Wherefore considering that this may be the best opportunity your Majesty may have to engage the people of Jamaica to make such a firm and lasting provision as may be sufficient for your Matys. service and for their own security, and that it is of the utmost importance, that the law for that purpose should be conceived in proper and effectual terms, we would humbly propose that your Majesty may be pleased to direct your Attorney and Sollicitor General to form the draught of a bill for this purpose as near the plan of that sent from Jamaica as may be free from the several objections to which the present bill is liable, and that the said draught so prepared, may be afterwards transmitted to his Grace the Duke of Portland, with orders to recommend the same to the Council and Assembly of Jamaica, as the terms upon which your Majesty will be graciously pleas'd to renew their laws. The people of Jamaica having inserted in the draught of this bill, a clause whereby they demand the general confirmation of all the laws of the said Island now in force, except some few particularly excepted, it became necessary for us to inspect all the laws of Jamaica now lying in our Office, which have not already been laid before your Majesty, and to offer our humble opinion concerning them, that no laws either detrimental to Great Britain or to the particular welfare of Jamaica might acquire a perpetual confirmation by any general clause to be inserted in such Revenue Act, as may hereafter be found worthy of your Majesty's Royal approbation; and accordingly we humbly crave leave to lay our opinion upon the said Acts before your Majesty, under the following heads vizt.: 1st Laws of Jamaica numbly proposed to your Majesty, to be confirm'd or continued in force, together with the laws depending upon the old Revenue Act for a term equal to the duration of the provision to be made by a new Revenue Act for the future support of your Majesty's Government. 2ndly Such Acts as we humbly offer for your Majesty's disallowance. 3rdly We have likewise examin'd several other laws, but as we find they are expired, we shall not trouble your Majesty with a list of them. (i) Laws proposed to be confirmed. An Act appointing sca?ingers and regulating wharfage at Port Royal, 1699. An Act for ascertaining and establishing and more speedily collecting H.M. quit rents, 1703. This is a law wherein the property of the Planters is highly concerned, there are some clauses in it of an extraordinary nature, as well with respect to the settling of your Majesty's quit rents and the arrears thereof, as to the manner of transferring estates in that Island; But this law was passed in 1703, and as it has been in force so many years without complaint against it, we submit it to your Majesty whether it may not be reasonable to confirm the same, considering how many titles may depend upon the validity thereof. An Act for dividing the common or Salt Savanna in the parish of Vere, 1709. An Act to encourage white men to come to continue and settle in this Island, 1712. An Act for the more effectual punishing of crimes committed by slaves, 1717. An Act for the encouragement of voluntary parties to suppress rebellious and runaway negroes, 1718. An Act to prevent the enticing of slaves from the possessors etc., 1720. An Act for the relief of such persons as have suffered by piracies etc., 1721. An Act to suspend a clause in an Act for ascertaining H.M. quit rents etc., 1721. An Act for establishing a perpetual anniversary Fast on 28th August, 1722. An Act for settling the N.E. part of the Island, 1722. We humbly conceive this Act would be for the advantage of Jamaica, and for the benefit of the British trade, inasmuch as it would increase the inhabitants of the Island which would tend to their security, and would likewise occasion the cultivating large tracts of land, which at present lye unimployed, and would consequently increase their importations. But His Grace the Duke of Bolton lays claim to 1000 acres in this part of the Island, and has produced evidence to prove not only his title thereunto, but likewise to prove his payment of the quit rents to within a year and a half of this present time; His Council likewise alledge that the price fixed upon the land by the Act, is not equal to the value thereof; However we must submit to your Majesty's consideration, how far the Duke of Bolton's particular interest should interfere with the benefit that might accrue to the publick from this Act, in case your Majesty should be graciously pleased to confirm the same, and so much the rather, because it does not appear to us, that any part of this land has ever been cultivated. 2ndly. Such Acts as we humbly offer for your Majesty's disallowance, are, An Act to confirm the Acts of the last Assembly, 1702. It appears by our books, that there were but four Acts passed in the Assembly before the passing of this Act, three whereof were publick Acts, and are expired, and the fourth being a private Act, we don't conceive there is any occasion for the Act in question etc. An Act for the repairing, preserving and maintaining the wall of Port Royal etc., 1717. This Act applies £150 per ann. out of the sum of £250 appropriated by a former Act to the use of the fortifications, towards the maintaining preserving and keeping in repair the wall mentioned; We find by a Minute of the Council and Assembly, 17th Aug., 1717, that almost all the fortifications at Jamaica were in a very ruinous condition; We therefore desired Sir N. Lawes, when he went to Jamaica, to send us a perfect account of the state of the fortifications of that Island, that we might be the better able to judge whether the sum of £150 a year could be conveniently spared from the sum of £1250 already appropriated for the repair of the fortifications: Yet altho' in several of his letters he complains of the bad state of the fortifications, he never answered that point, so we can't advise your Majesty to confirm the said Act. An Act for the more easy obtaining of partitions of lands etc. and other hereditaments in joint tenancy etc., 1721. This Act seems to have been framed in imitation of the Statute passed in England, 8th and 9th K. William III. for the same purpose. But as there appears to be a very material difference betwixt them, we humbly propose the said Act may be repealed. By the Jamaica Act it is enacted that after the summons or other process in partition is returned, and affidavit of due notice to the tenant to the action or to his Attorney, or the tenant in possession, or left on the premises, in case no appearance is regularly entered in the Court where the writ is returnable, the Court shall proceed to examine the demandant's title and give judgement by default, and avoid the writ of partition, and that such judgmt. shall conclude all persons whatsoever; so far this Jamaica Act agrees with the statute of King William; By the following clause it is enacted that if any tenant or person concerned, against whom judgment by default is given, shall within a year from the pronouncing the first judgmt. apply to the Court, by wm. it was pronounced, and shew good matter in bar of such partition, that then the first judgement shall be suspended, and the cause shall go on as if no such judgement had ever been given; Upon this occasion we must observe to your Majesty, that the time of one year after judgement given, is the same with that of the English statute; But then by this Jamaica Act there is no saving for infants, feme coverts, etc. as there is in the English, in which it is provided that if any person concerned, against whose right such judgement by default is given, shall within one year after, or in case of infancy, coverture, non sanæ memoriæ, or absence beyond the seas, within one year after such inability removed, move the Court, etc., and we think, a provision for this purpose ought to be inserted in every bill of the kind. The English Act was made only for the term of seven years, but that of Jamaica perpetual, which we think, ought not to have been. The Jamaica Act subjects the tenant or person concerned, who shall, in pursuance of this Act, move the Court against any former judgement, to treble costs, in case he fails in his suit, whereas the English statute gives but single costs, nor indeed is it just that any party upon the first and only opportunity he has of contending for his right (which must be the case upon this Act) should be under any more disadvantageous circumstances than his adversary; for the recovery of treble costs is not made mutual between both parties. An Act for preventing the frauds and regulating the abuses in trade, 1722. This Act has a clause in it, which subjects all liquors imported in bottles, to be forfeited, in case the bottles do not hold full quarts or pints; This clause seems unreasonable because as bottles cannot be made to an exact measure: and, as many English, who know nothing of this law, may transport such bottles to Jamaica, it may prove prejudicial to the British merchants. Thus we have laid before your Majesty all the laws of Jamaica in our Office, whereon your Majesty or your Royal Predecessors have not signifyed your pleasure, to Feb. 1722/3, which is the date of the last Revenue Bill, sent home by the Duke of Portland. But as it is possible there may be some laws still subsisting in Jamaica, of which we have no copies; whenever the draught of the Revenue Act shall be prepared by your Majesty's Attorney and Solicitor General, some proper caution should be taken upon this head, either by particularly specifying the sevl. laws to be confirmed, or by such other method as may be thought proper for that purpose. And we would humbly propose to your Majesty that all temporary laws and private Acts should continue probationary; And be confirmed or repealed as your Majesty upon proper application shall be pleased to direct etc, Autograph signatures. Copy. 22 pp. Seal of the Council of Trade and Plantations:Britannia seated in foreground on a box and bale of merchandize, with shield, and holding in left hand a spear with pennon in left hand and olive branch in right. Two ships in full sail on sea, L and R background, [C.O. 137, 46. Nos. 45, 45. i.; and 138, 17. pp. 1–23.]
511. Council of Antigua to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Refer to their addresses (?. 1st March) in reply to the Governor's speeches for their reasons for not consenting to settle £1500 per annum upon him, after having given him above £4300 in the specie of money. Pray that, if H.E. has anything to alledge against them, he may be obliged to reduce his charges to particular heads and that they be given to them in writing etc. "All our pretended crimes amount to this single point, that we think our duty to our country will not allow us to see the people drawn in, to settle £1500 per annum on H.E., while debts of near 20 years standing (at 10 p.c. interest) remain unpaid. A paper of accusations against us by H.E., dated 15th Jan. last, was not delivered to us till the 18th instant," etc. Pray that judgment may be suspended until they have time to enter their defence etc. Signed, Natha. Crump, Archd. Cochran, John Yeamans, Vail. Morris, Jno. Frye, Thomas Morris, Will. Byam. Endorsed, Recd., Read 13th May, 1725. 2 pp. [C.O. 152, 15. ff. 9, 9?., 10?.]
Feb. 27.
Charles Town.
512. Governor Nicholson to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I hope in God your Lordps. have and will receive all my letters etc. We have the good fortune of the weather continuing extraordinary good which gives the people an opportunity of making pitch and getting their rice ready and bringing both commodities down here etc., for which reason the ships and vessells have been loaded and its supposed that every week there will be some cleared so that all that are here now will (God willing) be ready to sail by the later end of next month and we are in daily hopes of ships and vessells arriving from Great Brittain, the Continent and the West Indies, and we have expected some for about these two months, but when please God they arrive we are in hopes they will carry away all the rice and pitch that is made. Refers to enclosures. Continues:––I hope in God as we begun this Session so it will be ended in three weeks or a month at the farthest, and that those two inseparables H.M. interest and service and that of this his Province will be promoted etc. Signed, Fr. Nicholson. Endorsed, Recd. 21st May, Read 18th Nov., 1725. 1 p. Enclosed,
512. i. List of papers sent to Mr. Youge. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 1 p.
512. ii. Governor Nicholson's Speech to the Commons House of Assembly, 24th Feb., 1725, and their reply, 25th Feb. Same endorsement. Copy. 2 pp.
512. iii. Address of the Speaker of the Assembly to Governor Nicholson and his reply etc. Feb. 25th, 1725. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 1/2 pp.
512. iv. Speech of Governor Nicholson to the Assembly, 25th Feb. Same endorsement. 2 pp.
512. v. Speech of Governor Nicholson to the Assembly, 27th Feb. with list of papers sent to the House. Same endorsement. 2 pp.
512. vi. Speech of Governor Nicholson to the Assembly, 27th Feb. Same endorsement. 3/4 p. [C.O. 5, 359. ff. 284, 284?., 285?.–287?., 288?.–289?., 290?.–291?., 292?.–293?., 294?.–295?.; and (abstract of covering letter) 5, 406. p. 23.]
Feb. 27. 513. Mr. Shelton to Mr. Popple. Encloses following to be laid before the King. Signed, R. Shelton. Endorsed, Recd. 27th Feb., Read 2nd March, 1724/5. 1 p. Enclosed,
513. i. Lords Proprietors of Carolina to the King. Feb. 27, 1725. We have appointed Sir Richard Everard Bart., to be Governor of North Carolina, in the room of George Burrington Esq. against whom we have receiv'd many complaints etc. Pray for H.M. approbation of Sir Richard. Signed, Carteret, P., Beaufort, Craven, M. Ashley, Ja. Bertie. 1 3/4 pp. [C.O. 5, 1266. ff 178, 179, 179?., 181?.]
St. James's.
514. H.M. licence of absence for three years longer to Charles Huggins, Clerk and Remembrancer of the Court of Exchequer in Barbados. Countersigned, Holies Newcastle. [C.O. 324, 35. pp. 111 112.]
St. Christophers.
515. Governor Hart to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The Council and Assembly of St. Christophers have thought fit to appoint Mr. Thomas Beake in the room of Mr. Nevine their former Agent etc. Recommends for their Lordships' approbation the two bills passed for that purpose. Signed, Jo. Hart. Endorsed, Recd. 16th, Read 17th June, 1725. 2 pp. [C.O. 152, 15. ff. 32, 32?., 33?.]