America and West Indies: December 1-15, 1675

Pages 306-316

Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies: Volume 9, 1675-1676 and Addenda 1574-1674. Originally published by Her Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1893.

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December 1–15, 1675

Dec. 1.
720. Minutes of the Privy Council Petition of Capt. Cooke read, and the Lord Chamberlain commanded by his Majesty to prepare for him a gold chain and medal. Ordered, on reading the Report of the Lords Committee of Plantations, that, if Capt. Cooke will pursue the remedy there proposed, which is the only thing his Majesty can according to the rule of justice insist upon, then Mr. Sec. Coventry to write to Sir Wm. Godolphin to obtain the warrant to the King of Spain's Proctor to prosecute. Ordered, that the expedient offered in Sir Leoline Jenkins's Report of 1st Nov. for accommodation of future complaints be referred to same Committee to examine and report. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. 35, No. 49.]
(Dec. 1.) 721. Minutes of the Committee for Trade and Plantations respecting the case of Mason and Gorges, when the following report was read: "A narrative of the settlement of the Corporation of Massachusetts Bay and Capt. Wyborne's account of things in 1673," with the present posture of that country. The proceedings of the Council of New England, the history of the Massachusetts Corporation, its encroachments and resistance to the King's Commissioners, &c. described. In 1673, Captain Wyborne, Commander of H.M.S. Garland, who came to Boston to victual and refit, and stayed there about three months made this relation. The trade of New England is very great, to all parts of the West Indies and to most parts of Europe, so that it is become a magazine both of American and European commodities. Of this irregular and unlawful manner of trade Capt. Wyborne complained, and required the seizure of an Ostend ship riding in the port of Boston, but the magistrates gave for answer that they were the King's Vice-Admirals in those seas and would do what seemed good to them; by which means the King loses an immense sum of money yearly and the navigation of England is unspeakably prejudiced, and, as soon as any English money is brought there, it is melted down into their coin, making of each shilling fifteen-pence to keep it from being carried out again. During the late war with the Dutch, New York being taken by Evertson, Captain Wyborne proposed to the Boston magistrates the reducing of that colony, offering his service with the King's frigate, only requiring some few soldiers and seamen and provisions and stores; but he received for answer that they would contribute their endeavours thereunto, provided it might be annexed to their Government, and, if this were refused, they had rather the possession of New York remain with the Dutch than to come under such a person as Col. Lovelace, who might prove a worse neighbour. By their discourse they look upon themselves as a free State, not at all to be interested in the King's differences with other nations, but that they might remain neuters. Capt. Wyborne, being informed that during the wars with Holland about 4,000 seamen had retired out of England and other colonies to New England out of design to quit the King's service, moved the Boston magistrates to send home some of these, as a testimony of their duty to the King, but he could not prevail, and for insisting on the matter some of the magistrates had exasperated several of the common sort of people and seamen against him (as he believed), so that at his leaving Boston he had much difficulty to escape with his life, having been wounded in many places, but was rescued by some of his seamen who being well armed came to his relief; on his complaint to the government no other punishment was inflicted on that rabble than one night's imprisonment of some 20 persons. The disposition of the people he found generally for a submission to the King's government, it being much admired at by them that the settlement of that great country should be so long deferred. Some of the magistrates and principal merchants and inhabitants told him that if the King would send over some person of honour to be their Viceroy or Lord Lieutenant, they would readily submit to his government, and as a demonstration of their duty and affection would build him a noble palace and allow him an honourable support, so that the King should be at no charge, but by no means they would not (sic) have any mean person to be sent over as Governor-in-Chief. The persuasions of the people as to Church government are very different, many, and those of the better sort being for the Church of England, and have the Common Prayer books in their houses, and will not have their children baptized after any other form. The present laws of the Massachusetts are so different from the laws of England, and the government so arbitrary, that it occasions murmuring among all sorts of people, the government remaining in the hands of a few, who, though yearly chosen, yet it is so done that the people have not any voice, and withal the Massachusetts having usurbed the government of other provinces by force and fraud, makes the whole country to centre in an unanimous desire of a general settlement under the King's government. The country populous, towns well built, no place in the King's dominions in America can contribute so much to the overcoming of an enemy in those parts, owing to the great number of ships and seamen; it is well stored with all sorts of naval materials, the timber growing very commodious for transportation, and might be brought from thence to England as cheap as from Norway. The chief if not only cause of the Indians making war upon the English is the tyrannical government of the Massachusetts, who make a law that every Indian coming into their towns (which they daily did in great numbers to trade) who was drunk should pay 10s., or be tied to a gun and whipped. The Indians are great lovers of all sorts of strong liquors, and would not leave that pleasure not withstanding the lash. The Boston magistrates, building a fort on a small Island that commands the harbour, and wages being very great, ordered that for drunkenness the Indians should not be whipped but should be transported to this island to work for 10 days, which the poor natives greatly complained of, still offering the whip rather than to be transported, but nothing would prevail with their taskmasters, and which was yet more barbarous, when the Indians had wrought at this hard labour nine days, some persons were sent over to the island with runlets of rum and brandy to entice them to drink to excess, and then they must stay 10 days longer, which wicked practice was so long continued that at the time of the said Captain being at Boston there were some hundreds of Indians there at work, many whereof had been by the practices aforesaid kept about 3 months; which barbarous usage made not only those poor sufferers, but the other Indians, to vow revenge. Endorsed, "Recd from Mr. Mason 1 Dec. 1675. Read at the Committee 2 Dec. 1675." 5 pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. 35, No. 50.]
Dec. 2. 722. Minute of the Committee of Plantations. Having met to determine something in the case of Mason and Gorges touching their pretensions in New England, the above narrative of Mr. Mason was read. [Col. Entry Bk, No. 60, pp. 48–61.]
Dec. 2. 723. Minutes of the Committee of Plantations. Understanding Mason's desire to be the sending over Commissioners or a new Governor to New England, consider that such sending, besides the charge, uncertainty of success and danger of affront, would look like awarding execution on those people before they were heard; much more advisable that his Majesty should send them the state of complaints and require their sending Commissioners to agree the difference. This was a fit season, their neighbours being busy, who at another time may be ready and industrious enough to incite them; and then the Secretaries informed how that Mr. Cranfield was to take a turn in those parts and to bring information how things stand. It was thought fit to encourage Mason to attend this issue, and being called in he was told something of the particulars aforesaid and advised to prepare a petition comprehensive of all he had urged, and that they would present it to his Majesty in Council with their advice to send it over, and to require the Bostoners to send agents in answer (see No. 755). [Col. Entry Bk., No. 60, pp. 61–63.
Dec. 2. 724. Copy of the preceding. 2 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., No. 104, pp. 44, 45.]
[Dec. 2.] 725. Petition of Lieut. Daniel Greatbach to the Council of Plantations, on behalf of himself and the rest of his Majesty's officers and soldiers in St. Christopher's. That the pay of the two Companies is 2,778l. 10s. 8d. per annum, which has not been paid since June 1671, whereby they are reduced to great necessity, and their Lordships having reported that the due paying of Col. Stapleton and the said officers and soldiers highly concerned his Majesty's service, his Majesty in Council ordered payment of the same, yet Petitioner, who was sent express from thence, has not received one penny. Prays therefore that he may be dispatched to his colours, and not further fall under the displeasure of his Colonel and fellow soldiers as a negligent servant in their concerns. In margin, "Read at Committee Dec. 2, 75." 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. 35, No. 51; also Col. Entry Bk. XLVI., 27–28.]
Dec. 2.
726. Minutes of the Committee of Trade and Plantations. St. Christopher's. On the Petition of Lieut. Daniel Greatbach, agent from Col. Stapleton, praying the Lords to promote his dispatch, and move the Lord Treasurer for some supply of money as was ordered in Council, their Lordships pressed the Lord Treasurer, mentioning the danger of those parts in case of any rupture with the French, upon which his Lordship promised some supply, and directed Sir R. Southwell to give the Petition to Mr. Bertie and mind him thereof, as also to call the Farmers of the Revenue of the Leeward Isles to account with all speed. Mem.—This letter to Mr. Bertie was put into Mr. Fleetwood's hands the 3rd instant. 2 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., No. CIV., 44, 45.]
Dec. 2. 727. Copy of above Minutes referring to St. Christopher's, also petition of Lieut. Greatbach, and Sir R. Southwell's letter to Mr. Bertie, as follows:—The enclosed Petition was this day read before a very large Committee for Foreign Plantations, and by command of the Lord Treasurer (who was very sensible of the necessity of a speedy supply) is sent to him, that he may put his Lordship in mind thereof with all speed; an Order of Council passed some months age, which sets forth the full state of this concern. The last letter from Mr. Parry tells of 3 stout French men-of-war that touched at Lisbon on their way to Martinico; and the French so daily encourage their interest in those Islands, that we shall be much at their mercy in case of a rupture. Had also in command to put him in mind of calling the Farmers of the Duty of those islands to a speedy account. Ferdinando Gorges has been often with him as agent and qualified to receive what shall be paid for the use of Col. Stapleton and the forces there. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XLVI., 27–29.]
Dec. 728. Sir Robt. Southwell to John Cooke and Wm. Bridgeman. Is to inquire by command of the Committee for Foreign Plantations at the Secretary's offices for any Acts transmitted from the plantations for his Majesty's ratification, that they may prepare them for his Majesty's view. And also how the foreign Governors have complied with their obligation of taking the Oaths of Allegiance and Supremacy, and for due execution of the Act of Navigation, by which they are obliged twice a year to return true copies of the bonds taken by them to the Officers of the Custom House, London; and by a later Act for Regulating the Plantation trade once a year at least to return List of all ships lading the commodities there innumerated, and of the bonds taken by them. The Lords finding at the Custom House a very imperfect return of these bonds, desire to know which of the Governors have taken there these oaths, that they may be written to for the better execution of the said Acts. Draft, with corrections. 1½ pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. 35, No. 52.]
Dec. 3. 729. Petition of Capt. Edmond Cooke, on behalf of himself and the merchants and owners of the ship Virgin to the King and Council. That Petitioners having made many complaints of the Spanish murders and depredations, and particularly of their taking the ships Virgin and Thomas and Mary, His Majesty declared that unless they received plenary satisfaction from the Court of Spain, his Majesty could not deny them letters of reprisal. That Petitioners, at the expense of above 1,000l., besides damages, have strictly pursued all His Majesty's orders, yet, cannot, after two years' solicitation in this Court and that of Spain, reap any benefit, the despatches given to Petitioners being so insignificant and evasory that they show not the least prospect towards Petitioners' satisfaction; for the charges of going to the Havana, besides the danger of being murdered will undoubtedly exceed whatever can be received there by virtue of the Queen's decree, if there were an absolute assurance to receive it without trouble, being not a twentieth part of Petitioners' losses and damages. That if Petitioners should accept the Queen's decree, they would be "concluded" from damanding reparation for the logwood, and it would be brought hereafter for a precedent against his Majesty's subjects. That Petitioners assure themselves of his Majesty's clemency and justice according to his Majesty's orders of 3 July (74) and 14th July and 4th August last, and that his Majesty will not compel them to go in vain to seek satisfaction with hazard of their lives amongst such barbarous enemies. Pray letters of reprisal in pursuance of said orders, without sending Petitioners to the Havana, where they will be denied, wearied out, or murdered. Endorsed, "Read in Council Dec. 3rd 1675." 1 p. [Col. Papers. Vol. 35, No. 53.]
Dec. 3.
730. Order of the King in Council. On reading Petition of Capt. Cooke and others (see preceding No.), ordered, that Mr. Sec. Coventry let Don Pedro de Ronquillo, Envoy Extraordinary from the Court of Spain, know that his Majesty much resents a case of so much hardship used to his subjects, and cannot defer any longer to gratify them after so tedious and ineffectual solicitations with letters of reprisal, to recover their losses and damages. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. 35, No. 54.]
Dec. 4.
731. Minutes of the Committee of Trade and Plantations. Mr. Cranfield's letter of 22nd Sept. last from Jamaica touching the arrival of his Majesty's subjects from Surinam reported, but not read; also his unfortunate killed of Thomas Yonge, chief mate of the America, and how he had been tried and cleared. Debate concerning the letter of Sir John Berry from Newfoundland of 12th September touching the misinformation of the Western men on which several of the Lords' resolutions were founded, which was read, and the complaint of Sir John Vowell and Messrs. Parrot and Ryder, &c., that the inhabitants of Newfoundland who were intended to be removed had taken such encouragement from what Sir John Berry had intimated to them, that they send to their friends to come over, and talk as if a colony and plantation were to be encouraged, on which the By-boat keepers throng over, getting 100 or 150 men into a ship of 100 tons, where 50 are sufficient, and so the Adventurers get no men; and they pressed that the order passed might be enforced, and all masters obliged to give bond for the return of their seamen, so that at least no encouragement be given for increasing the inhabitants; and that an order might be strict for confining a ship of 100 tons to 50 men, which would destroy the By-boat men, who unless they could fit out more boats at their coming to Newfoundland could not live by it; whereas the Adventurer rides his own horse or takes up money at much less per cent. Objection of Mr. Sec. Williamson that this design was to exclude the poor from being sharers in anything, and these gentlemen of the West Country were shown to be very faulty, who having for five years had his Majesty's allowance for additional rules had neglected to pass them; they acknowledged that the fault was their own, but that now they would close all. 2 pp. [Col., Entry Book. No. CIV., 46, 47.]
Dec. 6.
732. Minutes of the Committee of Trade and Plantations. Mr. Cranfield's letter of 22nd Sept last from Jamaica, read and approved, and the exemplification of his trial about the casual death of one Young, and other papers, given in by Mr. Secretary. [Col. Entry Book, No. CIV., 48.]
Dec. 6.
733. Sec. Sir Joseph Williamson to Lord Vaughan, Governor of Jamaica. Has received his of 20th Sept., and is very glad of the accession of Planters from the transplanted Colony of Surinam. It is well done to give them all encouragement, and is afraid from accounts of the late ravages at Barbadoes by hurricanes, he must provide ere long for good numbers of families even from those islands. Is sorry for the misunderstandings between his Excellency and Sir H. Morgan: it will be prudent to make them up the best that can be, wishes he had interest enough to recommend the same council to him. Hopes his Lordship will honour him with his commands on any occasion. 1 p. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XCIII., 143.]
Dec. 6.
734. Sec. Sir Joseph Williamson to Mr. Beckford (Secretary of Jamaica). This is only to thank him for former letters, and to mind him of his prayer of giving him constantly an account of all that passes. "With Collections of Gazettes and News from July 18 to Dec. 6." ½ p. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XCIII., 143.]
Dec. 6.
735. Peter Beckford (Secretary of Jamaica) to Sec. Sir Joseph Williamson, at Whitehall. His of the 16th July came to hand the 1st December. Little news. My Lord (Vaughan's) great trouble is to carry himself even with the Spaniards, for they are daily taking all ships they can master, and are very high, for when his Lordship sent to demand satisfaction they answered they would look upon us as enemies, and take all they came up with; and truly, were not the French from Tortudas daily galling them with their privateers, should conclude ourselves in some danger, though if they had war would not question by carrying it to their doors, we should sufficiently defend our own. The French would prove very ill neighbours in war, and much more dangerous than the Spaniards. As to the present state of the Island, no place the King has is more like to thrive, for they increase in planting to a miracle; guesses the number of planters to be about 3,000, but will endeavour to send a true account of them and of the militia. Our revenue at present is very inconsiderable, and not able to support the contingent charges of the Government, our fortifications being all out of repair. The Spaniards have shown such tricks in seizing our vessels that we dare not adventure amongst them for trade; the chief advantage the Spaniards make is by trading from port to port, but their shipping and freight are at so high a rate that they do not make more than half the benefit the Dutch or English could. Our commodities are cocoa, sugar, indigo, cotton, pimento, ginger, fustick, granadilla, and China roots, as good as any from the East Indies; have the bark of a tree as strong and the same scent and taste as cinnamon, some of which he will send to his uncle by the next; and for fruits, provisions, cattle, horses, and all necessaries for man and beast, no place is beyond them. The Spaniard's strength in the Indies, if united in one island only, would prove dangerous to all his neighbours, but as he is he has more to look after than he can keep from but a weak enemy, much less do any injury to his potent neighbours. Our privateers have mostly employed themselves in the Bay of Campeachy to fetch logwood. The Governor has dissolved the Assembly, and sent home the Acts under the seal of the Island to be confirmed by his Majesty. Endorsed, "Per the Henry and Sarah, of London. Q. D. G." 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. 35, No. 55.]
Dec. 8.
736. Governor Lord Vaughan to Sec. Sir Joseph Williamson. Received two letters from him by Capt. Swan, about three weeks since, with the Marine Treaty with the States-General, and recommendation of Capt. Beckford, whose interest shall be very tender to him. Encloses an exemplification of Cranfield's charge against one Davis, that came from Surinam. Formerly gave some hints of it, but, on perusal of his Majesty's letter, thought it necessary to give this account, especially Cranfield appearing so much dissatisfied, and almost publicly complaining of his Lordship's justice. In divers other things he has appeared very indiscreet, caballing with discontented people, proclaiming his commissions, speaking imprudently of Ministers at Court, and scarcely ever coming near the Governor; but not with standing his rudeness, having seen his Majesty's passport, gave the Master special order to give him his vessel's best accommodation, but since he has not vouchsafed to thank him, or as yet to take leave. Sends the Master's receipt, lest he should be so impudent as to tell any lies in England. He goes fully instructed, and promises much on his interest at Whitehall, which some weak people here are as forward to believe as he is to boast of. Hopes for an answer to what he wrote by Sir Thos. Lynch, and depends much on his friendship and prudence in that particular. Enclosed, "R., 8 Mar. 75/6" Encloses,
736. i. Account of the trial of James Davis, lately arrived from Surinam, at St. Jago de la Vega, before the Governor Lord Vaughan, upon three Articles exhibited against him by Edward Cranfield, one of his Majesty's Commissioners for the removal of his subjects from Surinam. (1.) That Davis brought off one Samuel Earl, contrary to the orders of his Majesty and the Stales-General. (2.) That he brought away one William Fowler, a seaman of Capt. Dickinson's, and instigated him to withdraw from his Majesty's service. (3.) That he brought away three free Indians, countrary to his Majesty's orders. 1675, Sept. 23. Together, 4 ½ pp. [Col. Papers, Vol. 35, Nos. 56, 56 i.]
Dec. 9.
737. Minutes of the Council of Trade and Plantations. The Minutes of Oct. 2 read, in order to prepare a memorial for Lord Berkeley, Ambassador at Paris, to press reparation of the injuries suffered in St. Christopher's. Several points discussed, as whether the English that would stay on the Island were not obliged by the capitulation of M. ST. Laurence to swear allegiance to the French King; whether by the Articles of Breda the French and English have any pretence to ameliorations and reparations; and whether the French may not claim the expenses of keeping the English prisoners. The capitulation of M. St. Laurence, and Mr. Slingsby's memorial, read. Freeman's case alleged, as to force on particular persons to sell at under rates. The points set down in Mr. Slingsby's paper to be insisted on, after debate well approved, and he and Sir R. Southwell to meet to see the vouchers of the facts there expressed. Mem.— Lord Willoughby's Narrative of 21/31 July 1667 lent by Mr. Slingsby to be entered in one of the old books of St. Christopher's. 1 p. [Col. Entry Bk., No. CIV., 49.]
Dec. 13.
738. Mem by Sir Robert Southwell, Secretary to the Committee of Council for Plantations. To acquaint Mr. Sec. Williamson that he has with Mr. Slingsby read over the state of the complaints touching St. Christopher's, and finds the proofs which vouch them scattered up and down under the following heads:—1. Partly allowed by many papers from the King of France to his Governors. 2. In Sir Chas. Wheler's agreement with M. de Baas. 3. From the Articles of Breda. 4. From the Proceedings of the Commissioners on St. Christopher's. 5. From the Narrative of Lord Willoughby. 6. From several letters from Sir C. Wheler and Col. Stapleton. 7. From several letters and complaints of the planters. 8. From the depositions of some persons present who are concerned in these complaints. So that it would be very difficult to send the vouchers and proofs to the Ambassador at Paris, and rather advisable to send him the state of the difference as now drawn up, with his Majesty's order to present it to that Court, with declaration that the proof of all particulars will be made out here, and that therefore the King of France empower his Minister here to treat therein as to the reparations to be made, and to determine those points referred by Sir C. Wheler and M. de Baas to the two Kings. 1 p. [Col. Papers, Vol. 35, No. 57.]
Dec. 14.
739. Minutes of the Committee of Trade and Plantations, Discourse touching the business of St. Christopher's, and the Report of Sir R. Southwell from Lord Arlington (see ante, No. 608), read. The heads of the Address there mentioned and of Mr. Slingsby's memorial compared. Inquiries made as to what power Sir Chas. Wheler had by his Instructions as to the time allowed the planters to claim and tender their money, and how the same was executed; and for a Journal of the Proceedings of the National Court. Agreed that the best method to put an issue to this entangled affair was to get the French King to grant powers to his Minister in this Court to treat and determine on all differences; and that the general state of the business be drawn up; after which they would proceed to what concerns the standing defence of the Island. 1 p. [Col. Entry Bk., No. CIV., 53.]
Dec. 14. 740. Observations on the present state of Jamacia by M. Cranfield, being answers to 21 queries, drawn out of his Majesty's Instructions of 7th March 1675. (1.) There cannot be any true value as yet set on the plantations, which are in their infancy; there are 20 sugar works that make 150,000 lbs. to 200,000 lbs. of sugar per annum, about 50 that make 100,000 lbs., and 40 more in great forwardness. The sugar sells on the place for 18s. to 20s. per cent., and a sugar work with 60 negroes will make more profit than one with 100 in any of the Caribbees, the soil being new, and well shaded with goodly woods. There are large pastures with pleasant streams, and incredible numbers of horses, kine, sheep, hogs, goats, &c., and generally no other feeding is given to beef than running with the herds in the Savannahs, and if an ox stand 6 or 7 years he will commonly have 150 lbs. of tallow, and his fore-quarter weigh 1,000 lbs. to 1,200 lbs. (2.) Description of the Council, Assembly, and Courts of Judicature; also (3.) Courts of Admiralty. (4.) One regiment of horse 400 or 500 strong, and 7 of foot, being about 5,000, being planters, merchants, and servants and no others. (5.) Description of castles and forts with copy of a report made upon them to Lord Vaughan whilst the writer was on the island. (6.) The strength of their neighbours, the Spaniards, French, and Dutch. (7.) Commodities and manufactures; cocoa, sugar, cotton, indigo, ginger, dyeing wood, &c., the great returns from New England make cotton very profitable to the middle class of planters, that cannot compass a sugar work; no manufactures, except some few shoes and hamacaes. (8.) Rivers, harbours, and roads. (9.) The numbers of planters, servants, and slaves, about 9,000 of the latter, 12 years old and upward. (10.) Fifteen parishes, 6 churches, and 4 ministers. By Act St. Jago is obliged to give 130l. per annum to support the minister; Port Royal, 200l.; and every other parish 100l. (11) No people ever came from Scotland; some 500 servants have come from Ireland by Bristol ships these 3 or 4 years; and from England there may come 1,200 or 1,400 men and women free, and to serve a year, threequarters of whom may settle in the country. (12.) Number of ships. 11 privateers carrying 150 guns, and in all of 1,000 tons burden, and 20 sloops of 10 or 15 tons the Spaniards have taken 30 sail. (13.) No trade with any place out of America, but Maderira. (14.) No foreign ships trade there; of English 3 years ago there were 173 from England, New England, New York, Virginia, and the Caribbees, but not so many since by reason of the war; and from New England this year little provisions have come, the Indians having disturbed their husbandry, but between September and 17 December, 17 New England vessels touched at Port Royal, bound to the Bay of Campeachy for logwood. (15.) Customs and duties on goods exported or imported. (16.) Entries made on them. (17.) Other taxes or payments. (18.) Collection and disposition of the public revenues. (19.) His Majesty's revenue, and how collected and accounted for. (20.) Offices held by patent under his Majesty's Broad Seal. (21.) Fisheries. The harbours and bays infinitely stored with extraordinarily good fish, and plenty of turtle daily caught in nets in all parts. 12 pp. [Col. Entry Bk., No. XXVIII., 108–121.]
Dec. 15.
St. Jago de la Vega.
741. Minutes of the Council of Jamaica. Instruction read for the admission of Sir Henry Morgan into the Council, and the usual oaths administered; also instruction from the King, dated at Windsor the 23rd August, ordered to be recorded. His Majesty having received account from the Queen Regent of Spain, that several of his subjects belonging to Jamaica, notwithstanding the strict alliance betwixt his Majesty and the Catholic King, presume to take Commissions from foreign princes on States, enemies to the Catholic King, against his Majesty's authority, his Majesty being resolved to preserve his friendship with said King, and likewise to let his subjects know how much his Majesty is offended at their proceedings, requires Lord Vaughan immediately to issue a Proclamation to recall all such as have already taken such Commissions, and to prohibit any others from taking such for the future, or anyways attempting or assisting in any hostilities against said King or his subjects; and that he proceed with the utmost severity against any that shall dare to offend against this order, taking care that his Majesty's pleasure be made known to all officers, civil and military, under his Government. Whereupon a proclamation was ordered to be published, dated 15th December, to the above effect, and almost in the same words as the King's Instruction. The King's Warrant, dated at Windsor, 9th August 1675 (see ante, No. 646). Proclamation of the Governor and Council: Whereas there have lately been several insurrections and rebellions of negroes to the great disturbance of the peace and planting this island, the sole cause whereof has arisen from the remissness of all persons in not putting the laws for the right ordering and government of the negroes in due execution, therefore his Excellency has thought fit to publish and proclaim that all clauses of said Act be duly put in execution, and that every custos rotulorum and other justice give in charge at their sessions to the Grand Jury, to inquire and present all such as shall be remiss therein, that they may be proceeded against with the utmost severity; and that said Justices likewise consider of such other regulations as may be necessary to prevent the correspondence, and conduce to the better government of said slaves. And that all planters take care to provide themselves with one white servant for every ten negroes on their plantations; and all Justices of the Peace are required to take care that presentments be made of such as do not so supply themselves within the time mentioned in said Act. [Col, Entry Bk., No. XXXV., 441–449.]
Dec. 15.
742. Two copies of the Proclamation referred to in preceding abstract prohibiting hostilities against the Spaniards. [Col. Papers. Vol. 35, Nos. 58, 59.]