America and West Indies: May 1667

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 5, 1661-1668. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1880.

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'America and West Indies: May 1667', in Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 5, 1661-1668, ed. W Noel Sainsbury( London, 1880), British History Online [accessed 19 July 2024].

'America and West Indies: May 1667', in Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 5, 1661-1668. Edited by W Noel Sainsbury( London, 1880), British History Online, accessed July 19, 2024,

"America and West Indies: May 1667". Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 5, 1661-1668. Ed. W Noel Sainsbury(London, 1880), , British History Online. Web. 19 July 2024.

May 1667

May 3. 1470. Warrant to permit the ship Katherine, of 100 tons, manned with foreign seamen, to make a voyage to his Majesty's Plantations in America, giving security at the Custom House to return. p. [Dom. Entry Bk., Chas. II., Vol. XXV., p. 8.]
May 4. 1471. John Fitzherbert to Williamson. The Ruby is arrived at Bristol from Barbadoes laden with sugar and cotton wool, and gives account that all those parts are in good condition, but ships have no orders to take in goods as yet, so they presume that the ships and men will be employed to reduce the places taken by the enemy in those parts. Two ships were lost going thither, the Dolphin and the Susanna ; the first, hard chased, ran ashore, and the men only were saved, who are at the Canaries. [Dom., Chas. II., Vol. CXCIX., No. 61, Cal., p. 76.]
May 4.
1472. Declaration of four French prisoners surprised by Capt. Morris and Capt. Eldrington above the salt ponds at St. Christopher's how the French forces are encamped. Taken before Col. James Russell, Governor. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 40.]
(May) 6.
Rhode Island.
1473. William Brenton, on behalf of the Council of Rhode Island to [Col. Nicolls and Commissioners]. Perceive by his letter of 20th Nov. last that several complaints have been made to him against their Government concerning the cattle seized at Misquammacock ; it was done by the Commissioners' order and not by them, and as they are since informed Roger Plaisted has been put in possession of the lands he claimed at Misquammacock by Sir R. Carr, at which some are aggrieved, because they were not only there first planted, but ordered to abide by an order made at Warwick, April 1665, by his Majesty's Commissioners, which act they cannot perceive has been repealed. Request further directions. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 41.]
May 7.
Boston, New England.
1474. John Winthrop, Governor of Connecticut, to Sec. Lord Arlington. According to his Majesty's commands of 22nd Feb. 1666, has had consultation with the Governor of Massachusetts and Sir Thos. Temple, of which he gave account by Capt. Christopher Clark, whose ship he hears is safely arrived in England. Has also received his Majesty's and his Lordship's letters of the 28th August, with narrative of the great and signal success of a part of his Majesty's fleet, which did not arrive at Boston till March last, when he repaired to Boston with Mr. Willis, one of the Council, and had conference with the Governor and Council of Massachusetts. Unanimously willing to relieve their dear countrymen of the Caribbee Islands, if they had the means, but their best strength is wanted for the security of these colonies, as they must always be on their guard. Informed by Col. Nicolls that the French are on the Lakes behind them and have a considerable number of veteran soldiers in Canada ; that they have built forts all along the Lake for garrisons and magazines, have 2,500 or 3,000 men in Quebec and other garrisons, besides French and Dutch ships. The pretence of the French is against the Mohawk Indians, but have good cause to be jealous of greater designs. Labour to prevent the Mohawks confederating with the French against them. Had they any forces to spare, they know not of shipping for transportation. There has been for several years a general blast on the corn, which is also in use for money. Wishes they had ammunition to spare, or knew how to supply themselves with more. Beseeches his Lordship to represent to his Majesty the incapacity of his people here to send forces to the Caribbees. Printed in New York Documents, III., 154-156. 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 42.]
May 7. 1475. Warrant for John Bowles, merchant of London, to transport 50 barrels of gunpowder to New Plymouth in New England for the use of some plantations in which he is interested on giving security not to transport them elsewhere. p. [Dom. Entry Bk., Chas. II., Vol. XXV., p. 9 .]
May 7.
1476. Governor William Lord Willoughby to the King. Set sail from the Cowes 11th March and arrived at Barbadoes April 23rd. Found the island in such disorder that had he been an enemy, with the small force he brought is confident he could have made a fair push for it. Notwithstanding the reputation it bears in the world, and whether they speak as they think shall take them at their words because they tell him they are all loyal subjects, nor doubts but in a short time to make them so, for all the metalled lads are on his son's side, and the senators have hitherto done well, not well knowing how to do otherwise, but in a few days he becalmed all factions. Presumes the Lords Chancellor and Arlington will acquaint his Majesty with the particulars he wrote them ; and if Tom Killigrew fails on his part, I shall him of his sugar. Found his two sons here, they are loyal subjects, and had not Harry stuck close to Nevis it had been lost. His old friend Cradock the day after his arrival departed this life [April 24] and will complain no more. His good friend Farmer is one of the Assembly, wishes his Majesty had no worse subjects in his English Parliament. "My brother hath dealt unkindly with me, but I forgive him, he has done so by himself, and made Diego's will by giving large legacies out of little or nothing. His accounts are confused, both as to your Majesty concerns and his own I shall only say he was honest and careless for he hath left little behind him" [see his will, No. 1247]. Of 800 soldiers committed to the writer's care, he has lost but four ; they are received with a general satisfaction, and hopes to give a good account of their actions. "Never was old Jockey so put to it ; but the best of my play is to ride a jade to the best advantage, and though I once run the hazard of your Majesty's censure for a 10l. bet, I shall spur twice in a place but I will now gain it, and some millions to boot, not doubting of your favourable assistance." 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 43.]
May 7.
1477. Governor Wm. Lord Willoughby to his much esteemed friend Williamson. Having given his Lordship a full account of his voyage and of affairs in these parts, will only say that on the 23rd April he arrived and found the people much dissatisfied with their Triumvirate Government, but has quieted their minds. Has called an Assembly for the better settlement of the island and carrying on the design to the Leeward Isles, where his son Henry had sent his Majesty's four ships and six merchantmen with thirty guns and 15,000 (sic) seamen under Capt. Berry, to relieve Nevis and destroy the French ships, which they had accomplished had not the French taken an English sloop and discovered the design, so that they secured most of their ships in Martinico and Guadaloupe harbours. Has advice by the Norwich frigate of two French ships being fired, and that Berry had sent three of the fleet to fetch off 400 of our people from Montserrat, where two Frenchmen were left Governors who were taken prisoners, and four more to Antigua to fetch off our people there ; with whom the Governor of Nevis doubts not to make up 2,000 fighting men to join the force sent hence to attack St. Christopher's, which may be done without much difficulty or danger ; but withall Nevis is in so desperate a condition for want of provisions and arms, that if the fleet be called off before they have further relief they cannot hold out. Has sent them advice of his arrival and assurance of assistance as soon as he hears from them, by which time he hopes Sir John Harman will be arrived. Has advice of 30 ships off Martinico supposed to be French. Report that the Colchester has retaken the Coventry with the French General, and many other Monsieurs going to a christening. Two Dutch capers have taken near 20 ships in these parts : the Colchester chased one and had carried her, but some cartridges blew up and disabled her. Has sent the Jersey and another frigate to cruise. Notwithstanding Barbadoes hath been so magnified for her strength, finds not above 4,000 fighting men. Here are 2,000 Irish, wishes he had so many Scotts for them. Indorsed, Rec. 16 July. 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 44.]
May 8. 1478. Order in Council. Upon memorial of M. Gravier, that he attend Lord Arlington, who is hereby authorised to compliment him with the release of the prisoners who came from Barbadoes. [Dom., Chas. II., Vol. CXCIX., No. 112, Cal., p. 84.]
May 9.
Fort James, New York.
1479. Col. Nicolls to the Governor and Council of Massachusetts. By Mr. Maverick they will receive herewith copy of his Majesty's commands which came lately to his hands, wherein they will read with what prudence and tender care his Majesty reflects on the welfare of his remote colonies. Doubts not of their readiness to comply not only to that good end, but with the means, ways, and persons which his Majesty is pleased to direct in his warrant to his Commissioners. In sending this he has obeyed the orders of Lord Arlington. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 45.]
May 14. 1480. Warrant to the Officers of the Ordnance. Taking into consideration the great charges of the Duke of York in reducing and settling New York, and desiring to give some mark of his particular protection to an acquisition of such importance, his Majesty's pleasure is that they deliver to Col. Francis Lovelace, appointed Governor of New York, 100 firelocks, 100 matchlocks, 50 pikes, 30 barrels of powder, half a proportion of match, one barrel of flint stones, and 150 beds. p. [Dom. Entry Bk., Chas. II., Vol. XX., p. 144.]
May 14. 1481. John Allen to Sec. Lord Arlington. About three years past Domingo Grillo and Ambrosio Lamolini, residents in Madrid, contracted with the Royal Company for blacks to be delivered at the Plantations, Barbadoes, or Jamaica, and Alex. Bence and John Reid hired them two ships in England, at whose request the writer entered with them into the engagement ; but in respect it was dangerous for the Grillos that the Court of Spain should know the ships' contracts were made with English, the freight was to be paid to a Spaniard, who instantly assigns it to Geo. Wallis, of Cadiz, for the use of the contractors in England. The Grillos are bound to pay the freight money every four months ; the ships have been now in their service full 2 years, and nothing paid since their departure from Cadiz, though there is much due from them ; they pretend it is paid in the Indies, but has sent them several late letters from their own agents in Barbadoes and Jamaica that they have paid nothing. Is much prejudiced in credit thereby, and begs a letter to the Ambassador at Madrid to countenance his agents in fair demanding of the money from the Grillos, and, if they refuse then to pay it, that by a letter from his Majesty the matter may be presented by his Excellency to the Queen Regent of Spain. [Dom. Chas. II., Vol. CC., No. 93, Cal., p. 98.]
May 14-21. 1482. Five several warrants from the King to permit the Anne, Bridget, Amity, James, and Robert, to make voyages, the two first vessels to Jamaica, the three last to Barbadoes. [Dom. Entry Bk., Vol. XXV., pp. 11, 12.]
May 15.
Fort James, New York.
1483. Col. Nicolls (to Thos. Prince, Governor, and the Assistants of New Plymouth). Has received their letter of the 9th March by Capt. Willett, who made such haste to Fort Albany, that Nicolls had no opportunity to confer with him. Believes he gave Capt. Willett the complaint of Wm. Nicarson, otherwise it is mislaid. Truly he hopes the man is rather weak in judgment than refractory ; is the more confirmed therein by his desire for an appeal to his Majesty's Commissioners. Supposes the poor man may be ill advised, therefore it will be an act of mercy in the Court to pardon his indiscretions, which he will esteem as a favour done to himself. Assures them that such informations make not the least impression in him to their prejudice, as is sufficiently evidenced by his remitting the last complaint to their judgment. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 46.]
May 17.
1484. Abstract of letters from Nevis and Barbadoes. Intention of the French to attack Nevis with 4,000 men out of Martinico, Guadaloupe, and St. Christopher's, and 1,500 Indians ; but having taken a sloop sent by Lieut.-Gen. Willoughby to assure the Governor of Nevis that within 10 days they should have 10 sail of stout ships, the French mistaking the style apprehended they would be down the next day and desisted from their design ; that our commander sent six ships to Guadaloupe, where they took eight merchantmen ; that the French having six men-of-war arrived from France, and four Dutch ships that took Surinam fitted out 32 sail to attack Nevis, but the English fleet engaged them 10th May and chased them into Backstarr ; that Lieut.-Gen. Willoughby having arrived with 600 men they took a new resolution to engage the enemy in their own harbours, but they went all away and our ships after them.
June 24.
That Lord Willoughby sent 4th June, Capts. Morris and Godolphin with more provisions and men to the Leeward Isles. On the 9th Sir John Harman arrived with seven stout men-of-war, two ketches, and two fire-ships, which on the 11th were despatched to the Leeward Isles. Two ships of the Royal Company had arrived, and two licensed ships from Guinea with 1,000 "negars." 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 47.]
May 20.
1485. Nicholas Shapleigh to [Robt.] Mason. Has received from Col. Nicolls his patent and power to take care of his whole estate, and has made claim in his behalf to all the towns in New Hampshire, whereof part of the inhabitants are willing to comply, and part are encouraged by Capt. Richard Walderne, Peter Cuffin, and others to stick to the Government of Massachusetts, themselves having gotten great tracts of land, and fearing to be called to account. Advises him to obtain a confirmation of said patent, or the Massachusetts will assuredly continue their power, and no profit will accrue to him, but if this be attained from the King in a few years it will bring it to a very valuable estate. Masts cut from Mason's propriety laden on the Great Duke of York, and also "testimonies" from Justices of the Peace of Maine to enable Mason by arresting said masts to bring said Walderne and Cuffin to trial in England for cutting them. Has sent to the General Court of Boston to inform them of his powers, but as yet received no answer. If he attain confirmation of his patent, advises him to commissionate some persons here for carrying on the Government. A list of names given to his kinsman Joseph Mason bound for England in the Great Duke of York, viz., Henry Jocelyne, Esq., Nicholas Shapleigh, merchant, Capt. Francis Champernowne, Edward Hilton, Abraham Corbett, and Thomas Footeman. If he think fit to join his Government to the Province of Maine, which will strengthen his authority against all opposition, he will do well to empower some one here to take care of his interest in Maine, which if timely looked after, may prove very profitable. Incloses,
A note of remembrance to Joseph Mason. To speak to Robert Mason to send an order under his Majesty's hand for taking the government of his patent out of the Government of the Massachusetts Bay. To send commissions to the persons undernamed to carry on the Government. That the Government be joined to the Province of Maine, "which will the sooner give a repulse to the Bay, who do oppose all his Majesty's commands." Subscribed by Major Nich. Shapleigh, Edward Hilton, Abraham Corbett, Thomas Footeman, Nathaniel Fryer, Henry Joslin, Capt. Francis Champernowne. Indorsed, a memorial sent to Mr. Mason, subscribed by divers of the chief in the Province of Hampshire concerning the means of establishing the Government there. Sent in Mr. Shapleigh's letter. May, 1667. Together 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., Nos. 48, 48 I.]
May 24.
1486. Sir Thos. Temple to Sec. Lord Arlington. Has received his Majesty's letters of 22 February and 28 August 1666, and acquainted the Governor and magistrates with his Majesty's commands, who said they were in no capacity to serve his Majesty either as to Canada or the Caribbees, and promised to write their reasons to his Majesty. As soon as he heard of the necessity of Barbadoes, and of Nevis and St. Christopher's being lost, he sent a ship of his own of 70 tons laden with provisions to Barbadoes belonging to a Quaker, a merchant here. Has hitherto not lost a foot of Nova Scotia, though often attempted by the French. Unless his Majesty take compassion on him he is utterly ruined, for he has not received one penny all the war. Has sent an account of the place to the Lord Chancellor, which though uninhabited is the largest of his Majesty's Plantations, and incredibly fruitful in mines, especially fine copper, and in fish, and the climate and land more proper to make salt than France itself, and has sent some to Lord Anglesea to show to his Majesty, by Capt. John Scarlett. Signed, and seal. Indorsed by Capt. Martin, Commander of the Great Duke of York. 3 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 49.]
May 25. 1487. Sir Thos. Langton, Mayor of Bristol, to Williamson. Reminds him of the order which he hinted would be sent down for the discharge of the Frenchmen which came from the Plantations ; desires it may be sent speedily, in regard they are in a very low condition. [Dom., Chas. II., Vol. CCII., No. 15, Cal., p. 122.]
May 25.
1488. Gov. Wm. Lord Willoughby to Sec. Lord Arlington. Had advice on 23rd inst. of a fight at sea, in Nevis Road on the 10th, which continued four or six hours ; on our side 10 able ships and a fire-ship, and on the enemy's 20 men-of-war and 10 or 12 lesser vessels. During the fight a ship of Bristol in firing a gun was blown up by her own powder, and most of her seamen and 30 soldiers slain. Our fleet behaved like Englishmen, and having got the weather gauge, beat the enemy before them to the very shore of St. Christopher's, where they sheltered under Basse-terre town. It is supposed they have sustained considerable loss, but on our side only 24 are slain and 28 wounded, and our ships have come off well. Another fire-ship fitting and under consideration to offer battle or force them in Basse-terre Road, but the want of munition in the merchant ships the difficulty, and is one of their greatest wants. Hopes his son on his arrival will give a good account of them, but the danger is that the French likewise will be reinforced meantime. Resolved to go down in person with five or six ships, but finds so many things wanting to their fitting, that he will send Capt. Morris forthwith, and defer his own voyage. If he could see the seven frigates promised him in England, few hours should pass before he was under sail to the Leeward, and would not doubt to make all places English between Barbadoes and Porto Rico. But they cannot long even defend themselves without considerable supplies from England, for if France and Holland be on one side, and on the other only Barbadoes and Nevis, who can expect but that in the end they will prove too weighty ; beseeches, therefore, that the promised supplies may speedily come. In the fight were six men-of-war newly come from France, and five Dutch ships ; the Dutch had been at Surinam which was pitifully surrendered without resistance. The conditions, 'tis true, were not amiss, but it is small comfort to think that his Majesty's dominions are lost upon good terms, and if our fleet had been beaten at Nevis, that poor island had not met with so gentle usage, for De La Barre declared he would give no quarter. He had taken in 1,500 men from Guadaloupe and Martinico, intending to transport 2,000 more from St. Christopher's ; and the Cannibal Indians plied off during the fight to windward in their boats, as it were hovering over their prey. On Nevis are 2,100 men in three regiments, and on St. Christopher's full 3,000 French, also great numbers of negroes in arms, and the Indians they have stirred up against us are very numerous, enough altogether to devour many such places as Nevis, but the courage of our men is good. Capt. Berry seems to still hope well of the Colchester, but Col. Russell understands by a prisoner escaped from the enemy, that she was sunk in too hasty boarding the Coventry. Has delayed this letter (till June 3) in hopes to hear from the Leeward. This is his fourth express, and his Lordship may suddenly expect a fifth. Indorsed, Rec. 12 Aug., answered Sept. 3. 3 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 50.]
May 25. 1489. News letter, being a summary of Governor Lord Willoughby's preceding letter. Also, that above 40 Virginia ships had arrived at Kinsale. Extracts. Indorsed, "Advices recd. Augt. 12th, 1667." [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 51. See also, Dom., Chas. II., Vol. CCXIII., No. 60, Cal., p. 381.]
1667? 1490. News letter for Sec. Williamson. Arrival of the Submission. Jo. Smith, master, from Barbadoes with news that [Wm.] Lord Willoughby had arrived there and sent fresh supplies to his son Henry at the Leeward Islands, who had relieved Nevis, retaken Montserrat, and Antigua, and destroyed several of the French ships. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 52.]
May 28. New York.
1491. Col. Nicolls to M. de Tracy, at Quebec. M. [Arendt Van] Curler being anxious to visit Quebec and to kiss De Tracy's hands, Nicolls has given him a pass as well as Mons. Fountaine, a young gentleman who fell into the barbarous hands of his enemies, and by means of Curler obtained his liberty and is impatient to return to Canada. Was much offended that any peasants of that village to which M. de Courzelle was misguided should have exacted pay for provisions given to his officers and soldiers in distress. His report of the enterprise is well known, and that Father Beschefer was designed to have concluded a peace, "but in truth I am still of the opinion that the words of the Captains and Commissaries' letter will not bear such a large exposition in Europe, however those unfortunate gentlemen might be transported by their contempt of danger to hazard their lives for the pleasure of hunting." Nicolls' voyage to meet the Sieur de Cousture was of no great consequence, but intended to give him a quick dispatch. Owes a grateful acknowledgment for his forbidding the Algonquins to make war on them, though their evil intentions were never known before. Presumes the time is not far remote when "you shall find all that profession of my respects towards your son converted to your service and satisfaction, in which I shall not doubt of my master's approbation." Was wholly ignorant that any barque of his had been seized, but will make inquiry, being commanded by his Majesty not to let his allies suffer any prejudice. Divers of Tracy's soldiers, in despair of returning to Canada from Boston, and indeed lying under some suspicion, were transported to England, with certificates to return into France. Doubts not he will give Curler a passport for his safe return. Printed in New York Documents, III., 156, 157. 2 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. XXI., No. 53.]
May 31. 1492. Case of Alex. Bence, John Reid, and John Allen, merchants, of London. Details the ill conduct of Don Domingo Grillo and Don Ambrosio Lomoline, who contracted with the Royal Company to deliver them negroes at the Plantations, were supplied with ships and mariners under agreement by Bence and Reid, and afterwards by Allen [as detailed in Allen's letter to Sec. Lord Arlington, ante, No. 1481], yet have not paid the moneys agreed for the freight, so that the sum of 80,000 pieces of eight is now due on this account, which they refuse to pay ; the plaintiffs cannot recover it, though they have to satisfy the owners in London, to the great injury of their property and credit. [Dom., Chas. II., Vol. CCII., No. 92, Cal., p. 133.]