BHO

Journal, May 1781: Volume 88

Pages 415-423

Journals of the Board of Trade and Plantations: Volume 14, January 1776 - May 1782. Originally published by His Majesty's Stationery Office, London, 1938.

This free content was digitised by double rekeying and sponsored by the Arts and Humanities Research Council. All rights reserved.

Citation:

Journal, May 1781

fo. 203.

Friday, May 4th. Present:—Lord Grantham, Mr. Gibbon, Mr. Sloane.

The minutes of the last Board were read, approved and signed.

Quebec.

fo. 204.

Read an order of the Lords of the Committee of Council for Plantation Affairs, dated April 28th, 1781, stating, that they have had under their consideration a representation of this Board upon two ordinances passed in the Province of Quebec on the 19th of March, 1780, submitting to his Majesty's consideration, whether one of the said ordinances, intituled, An ordinance describing the persons who shall be deemed forestallers, regrators and ingrossers in this Province, and inflicting punishments upon those who shall be found guilty of such offences, is proper to continue in force; and directing, that this Board do reconsider so much of their said representation as relates to the ordinance in question, and do report to the committee how far the general principle adopted by the said ordinance is applicable to the Province of Quebec in its present circumstances.

fo. 205.

Quebec.

The Board then proceeded to the reconsideration of the principle of the said ordinance, and determined, that the opinion contained in their representations to his Majesty thereupon, being founded upon reasons which they thought and still think sufficiently convincing, they see no reason to depart therefrom; at the same time, wishing to state them more at large to the Lords of the Committee than had been done in the said representa tion, Mr. Elliott was directed to prepare a report accordingly to their Lordships.

Mr. Elliott was also directed to write to Mr. Jackson, desiring his opinion upon the following question,—"Can a person who shall forestall or engross for improper or illegall purposes in the Province of Quebec be punished by law for the same, supposing no ordinance for the punishment of offences of that nature to be in force in that Province; and by what mode, the present constitution of the said Province considered, the punishment can be inflicted?"

fo. 206.

Trade.

Military Stores.

Read an order of the Lords of the Privy Council, dated 28th of April, 1781, referring the petition of Messieurs Simpson and Birkley, praying leave to export to Archangel, on board the ship Polly, sundry ordnance and stores therein specified, for the use of a ship building there for British merchants.

Their Lordships being of opinion, the exportation should be allowed; the draught of a report to the Lords of the Privy Council thereupon was prepared, approved, transcribed and signed.

Mr. Elliott acquainted the Board, that on the 26th of April he had written to Sir Andrew Snape Hamond, pursuant to order of that day, on his requisition for certain maps and charts.

fo. 207.

Tuesday, May 8th. Present:—Lord Grantham, Mr. de Grey, Mr. Stuart, Mr. Gibbon, Mr. Sloane.

The minutes of the last Board were read, approved and signed.

Quebec.

Mr. Elliott acquainted the Board, that pursuant to order of the 4th instant, he had, on that day, written to Mr. Jackson, desiring his opinion upon the question relating to forestalling etc., in the Province of Quebec, and that he had received the following paper in answer thereto, vizt.,

fo. 208.

Report of Mr. Jackson, dated 8th May, 1781, upon the question referred to him by Mr. Elliott's letter beforementioned, stating, that he is of opinion, that a person forestalling, and ingrossing, as described by the question, may be punished by a sentence of the Supreme Court, upon prosecution by information on indictment, such forestalling and ingrossing being, as he conceives, an offence against the common law of this Kingdom.

fo. 209.

The draught of a report to the Lords of the Committee of Council for Plantation Affairs, stating at large the reasons which induced the Board to continue in the opinion submitted to his Majesty, on an ordinance passed in Quebec, relating to forestallers, etc., having been prepared pursuant to order of the 4th instant, was approved, transcribed and signed.

West Florida.

fo. 210.

Read a letter from Peter Chester, esquire, Governor of the Province of West Florida, to the Board, dated Pensacola, 21st February, 1781, acquainting their Lordships, that in obedience to their commands, he has inclosed his answer to the petition of complaints preferred against him to his Majesty, by Adam Christie and others, together with his proofs in his vindication; and that on the 17th November last, he made a tender of the copies of his proofs to Mr. Christie, and demanded, in exchange those that had been, or were to be sent home, in support of the complaints; but that Mr. Christie had not thought fit to tender him any proofs whatever.
The answer of Peter Chester, esquire, Governor of the Province of West Florida, to the petition of complaint of Adam Christie and others, styling themselves "the gentlemen, freeholders and principal inhabitants" of the said Province.
Affidavits and depositions of Edward Rush Wegg, Elihu Hall Bay and others, taken before William Clifton, esquire, Chief Justice of the Province of West Florida, relative to the complaints preferred by Adam Chrystie and others.
fo. 211.
Affidavits of Edward Rush Wegg and Elihu Hall Bay, esquires, stating, that the several papers thereunto annexed are true copies of an original address of the inhabitants of the district of Natches to Governor Chester; and of an original address to the said Governor of the gentlemen, freeholders and inhabitants of Pensacola, authenticated by several affidavits.

fo. 212.

Ordered, that the agent to the parties complaining be acquainted, that Governor Chester, having sent over his answer to the complaints in their petition to his Majesty, which had been referred by his Majesty's commands to the consideration of this Board, their Lordships will be ready to hear them in support of the said complaints; and upon proper application, a day will be appointed for that purpose.

Leeward Islands, Antigua.

Their Lordships read and considered two Acts passed in the Island of Antigua in April, 1780, mentioned in the minutes of the 26th of January last, together with Mr. Jackson's report thereupon.

fo. 213.

Ordered, that Governor Shirley, before his departure for his Government, be acquainted with several inconveniences which, it appears to the Board, may be likely to attend the operation of the Act for regulating the militia, and that he be desired to recommend to the Assembly a revisal and alteration in such particulars of the said Act, as seem liable to objection.

Read a letter from Mr. Knox to Mr. Elliott, dated May the 8th, 1781, transmitting, in addition to Lord George Germain's letter of the 12th October last, the following papers for the information of the Lords of Trade.
Extract of President Johnson's letter to Lord George Germain, dated Nevis, March 14th, 1781.
Extract of President Johnson's letter to Lord George Germain, dated St. Christopher, 23rd March, 1780.

Grenada, Tobago.

fo. 214.

Their Lordships read and considered four Acts passed in the Island of Tobago, in December, 1780, and January, 1781, men tioned in the minutes of the 26th of April last, together with Mr. Jackson's report thereupon.

Africa.

Read a letter from Mr. Rutherford to Mr. Cumberland, dated African Office, May 3rd, 1781, transmitting, by direction of the African Committee,
Copy of a letter from the Governor and Council at Cape Coast Castle to the Committee, dated December 24th, 1780.

St. John's.

Read a letter from Walter Patterson, esquire, Governor of the Island of St. John's, to the Board, dated November 27th, 1780, transmitting the following papers with his observations thereupon, vizt.,
fo. 215.
Return of the number of town and pasture lotts granted in the town of Charlotte since laying out the same, and in whose administration they were granted—dated November 16th, 1780.
Minutes of Council of the Island of St. John's from 7th of August, 1779, to 26th of November, 1780.

Ordered, that the letter from Governor Patterson, together with the return of lands granted in the town of Charlotte, be sent to Mr. Thompson for the information of Lord George Germain.

Read a letter from Mr. Thompson to Mr. Elliott, dated 8th May, 1781, transmitting by direction of Lord George Germain, the following Acts and papers to be laid before the Board, vizt.,
fo. 216.
An Act for continuing sundry laws that are near expiring—passed 10th October, 1779.
An Act intituled, An Act for regulating weights and measures and for regulating the conduct of store keepers. Passed 20th October, 1779.
An Act intituled, An Act imposing a duty of four pence per gallon on all rum and other spirituous liquors; for altering and amending an Act made and passed in the 13th year of his present Majesty's reign imposing a duty on retailers of spirituous liquors and for regulating the conduct of tavern keepers. Passed 20th October, 1779.
An Act to prevent the running at large of stallions or stone horses, and the killing of partridges at improper seasons. Passed 22nd March, 1780.
An Act for ascertaining the priviledges of the members of the General Assembly and their servants, and for establishing the mode of general and partial elections. Passed 22nd March, 1780.
fo. 217.
An Act to explain and amend an Act of the thirteenth year of his present Majesty's reign, intituled, An Act laying an imposition on retailers of rum and all other spirituous liquors. Passed 22nd March, 1780.
An Act for prevention of trespasses by unruly horses, cattle, hogs and sheep, and for preventing the running of hogs at large through the town of Charlotte Town. Passed 22nd March, 1780.
An Act impowering the Justices of the Peace for this Island to enquire into and regulate the prices of all sorts of provisions and the rates of entertainment in public houses or inns. Passed 22nd March, 1780.
An Act to prevent forestalling the market. Passed 24th March, 1780.
Journal of the Council in Assembly from the 8th of October to the 20th of October, 1779.
Journal of Council in Assembly from the 13th March to the 25th of March, 1780.
fo. 218.
Journal of the House of Representatives from the 20th of July to the 20th of October, 1779.
Journal of the House of Representatives from the 13th to the 25th of March, 1780.

Ordered, that the foregoing nine Acts be sent to Mr. Jackson, for his opinion thereupon in point of law.

Resolved, that the several papers relating to the Island of St. John be taken into consideration, when the said Acts are received back from Mr. Jackson.

fo. 219.

Tuesday, May 15th. Present:—Lord Grantham, Mr. Stuart, Mr. Gibbon, Mr. Sloane.

The minutes of the last Board were read, approved and signed.

Trade.

Rice.

Read a letter from Mr. Robinson to Mr. Elliott, dated 9th May, 1781, transmitting, by direction of the Lords of the Treasury, for the information of the Board of Trade,
Copy of the report of the Commissioners of the Customs to the Lords of the Treasury, upon the memorial of the merchants of London, praying that the Act for the free importation of rice may be revived.
fo. 220.
Copy of the report of the Commissioners of the Customs to the Lords of the Treasury, in consequence of Mr. Elliott's letter to Mr. Robinson on the subject of a memorial of the merchants trading to America, praying that the Act of the 13th of his present Majesty, for the free importation of rice from thence, be revived.

Trade. Military Stores.

Read an order from the Lords of the Privy Council, dated 9th May, 1781, referring the petition of George Mackereth, praying leave to export to New York, on board the ship Commerce, sundry ordnance and military stores therein mentioned, for sale.

fo. 221.

Their Lordships being of opinion, that the exportation should be allowed; the draught of a report to the Lords of the Privy Council thereupon was prepared, approved, transcribed and signed.

Grenada, Tobago.

Read an order of the Lords of the Committee of Council for Plantation Affairs, dated 28th April, 1781, referring the petition of "Anthony Bacon and Anthony Richardson, esquires, to his Majesty, on behalf of Gilbert and Peter Francklyn, esquires, members of the Council of Tobago, praying, that a communication may be made to them of such reasons as have been assigned by Lieutenant Governor Ferguson for their suspension," etc., and directing this Board to consider the same, and report to the Committee what they conceive adviseable to be done therein.

fo. 222.

Their Lordships having taken the said order and petition into consideration, it was ordered, that the draught of a report to the Lords of the Committee of Council for Plantation Affairs, thereupon should be prepared; and that copies of such papers as have been received on the subject, should be made, in order to be sent to the Committee with the report.

Africa.

Read a letter from Mr. Rutherford to Mr. Cumberland, dated African Office, May 14th, 1781, transmitting, by direction of the Committee to be laid before the Board,
Copy of a letter from the African Committee to the Governor and Council at Cape Coast Castle, dated May 14th, 1781.

fo. 223.

St. John's.

West Florida.

Mr. Elliott acquainted the Board, that pursuant to order of the 8th instant, he had this day written to Mr. Thompson, transmitting, for the information of Lord George Germain, the papers directed by that order, respecting the Island of Saint John; and that he had, by letter of the same date to Mr. Wallis, acquainted him that the Board will be ready to hear counsel in support of the charges preferred against Peter Chester, esquire, Governor of West Florida, whenever the parties shall be ready for that purpose.

Trade.

Military Stores.

fo. 224.

Read an order of the Lords of the Privy Council, dated May 14th, 1781, referring the petition of Messieurs Cope and Smith, praying leave to export from London to Copenhagen, on board the ship Indian Trader, sundry military stores therein specified, for the use of Messieurs DeConinck and Rejersen, to send to their settlements in the East Indies.

Their Lordships being of opinion the exportation should be allowed; the draught of a report to the Lords of the Privy Council thereupon was prepared, approved, transcribed and signed.

fo. 225.

Tuesday, May 22nd. Present:—Lord Grantham, Mr. Stuart, Mr. Gibbon, Mr. Sloane.

The minutes of the last Board were read, approved and signed.

Trade.

Hemp.

fo. 226.

Read a letter from Lord Viscount Stormont, one of his Majesty's Principal Secretaries of State, to the Board, dated St. James's, May 18th, 1781, transmitting the following memorial relative to a discovery in the manufacture of hemp, and signifying his Majesty's pleasure, that the Board do take the same into consideration, and report their opinion for his Majesty's information, whether and how far, the discovery in the manufacture of hemp, to which the said memorial relates, can be beneficial to the linnen manufacture of his Majesty's kingdoms; and if they should be of opinion, that any advantage can be derived from it, to the trade of his Majesty's subjects, that they will report their opinion, in what manner the benefit arising from such discovery, could be obtained for, and secured to, his Majesty's subjects.
Memorial relative to a discovery in the manufacture of hemp, accompanied by several specimens of hemp manufactured according to that discovery, the different properties of which are fully explained.

fo. 227.

Ordered, that the said memorial be considered on Tuesday next, and that Mr. Elliott do write to Mr. McAlpine and Mr. Sterling, manufacturers of Glasgow, desiring their attendance on the Board on that day at two o'clock.

Trade.

Military Stores.

Read the following orders of the Lords of the Privy Council, dated May 18th, 1781, vizt.,
Order referring the petition of Messieurs Lane, Son and Fraser, praying leave to export to Charles Town in South Carolina, on board the ship Renown, sundry military stores therein mentioned, for the defence of his Majesty's subjects residing in that Province.
fo. 228.
Order referring the petition of Messieurs Ketland and Walker, praying leave to export from Liverpool to Ireland, sundry arms therein specified, for the use of their correspondents in that kingdom.

Their Lordships being of opinion, the exportation prayed for in the two foregoing petitions should be allowed; the draughts of two reports to the Lords of the Privy Council thereupon was prepared, approved, transcribed and signed.

Grenada, Tobago.

fo. 229.

The draught of a report to the Lords of the Committee of Council for Plantation Affairs upon the petition of Anthony Bacon and Anthony Richardson, esquires, on behalf of Gilbert and Peter Francklyn, esquires, praying that a communication be made to them of the reasons which induced Lieutenant Governor Ferguson to suspend them from their seats in the Council of Tobago, having been prepared pursuant to order of the 15th instant, was approved, transcribed and signed; and the copies of the several papers relative thereto, prepared pursuant to the said order were annexed to the said report.

fo. 230.

Tuesday, May 29th. Present:—Lord Grantham, Mr. Stuart, Mr. Gibbon, Mr. Sloane.

The minutes of the last Board were read, approved and signed.

Trade.

Hemp.

fo. 231.

Mr. Elliott acquainted the Board, that, pursuant to order of the 22nd instant, he had on that day written to Messieurs McAlpine, Mac Vicar and Biggar, desiring their attendance on the Board, upon the consideration of the memorial relative to an improvement in the manufacture of hemp; that Mr. McAlpine's business obliging him to leave town, he had informed Mr. Elliott it was not in his power to attend their Lordships, but he would be willing to give a fair tryal to the hemp manufactured according to the improvement set forth in the memorial, which Mr. Elliott informed their Lordships he had communicated to Mr. McAlpine, provided he could be supplied upon purchase with a quantity of hemp and yarn, sufficient to make the tryal in a satisfactory manner, and that he had left with him, full directions for that purpose.

fo. 232.

fo. 233.

Their Lordships, in pursuance of their resolution of the 22nd instant, then took into their consideration the memorial relative to a proposed improvement in the manufacture of hemp, etc., and being informed, that Mr. MacVicar and Mr. Biggar attended pursuant to order, they were called in, and the said memorial having been read, they were asked, how far they thought, from the samples produced, the improvement proposed in the manufacture of hemp, appeared to them likely to become a proper substitute for flax in the linnen manufacture. To which they replied, that the quantity of each specimen was too small to allow them to form any accurate opinion of its quality, compared with flax; that so far as they could judge from these specimens, it wanted that length and substance in the fibres, which are essential to well wrought flax; that fineness, without length and substance, is of little consequence; and that, although it is set forth in the memorial, that on account of the price it could be sold at, it would be the means of a saving to this kingdom of half the money annually paid for flax used in the linnen manufactures, it must be observed, that this assertion could not be proved, until it was known what certain quality of dressed or prepared hemp, would be produced by any given quantity of hemp in the rough.

fo. 234.

Mr. MacVicar and Mr. Biggar having answered such other questions relative to the improvement proposed, as their Lordships thought fit to put to them, they withdrew, and after some deliberation, it was ordered, that the draught of a representation to his Majesty upon the proposal contained in the memorial beforementioned, should be prepared. It was likewise ordered, that the draught of a letter to Lord Viscount Stormont should be prepared, transmitting the said representation, and acquainting his Lordship with the intention of Mr. McAlpine to make tryal of the hemp and yarn produced therefrom, agreeable to the improvement proposed, provided he can be supplied with a sufficient quantity to make the experiments, necessary to ascertain how far the discovery might be useful in the linnen manufacture.

Bermuda.

fo. 235.

Read a letter from Mr. Thompson to Mr. Elliott, dated 28th May, 1781, acquainting him, by direction of Lord George Germain, for the information of the Lords of Trade, that an arrangement having taken place for the payment of the salary to the Governor of the Bermuda or Somers Islands, by which the 87th and 89th articles of the usual instructions are no longer necessary, it would doubtless appear expedient to the Board that the said articles should be omitted in the instructions to be given to Governor Browne.

fo. 236.

Their Lordships, upon reading the said letter, having taken into consideration the draughts of general instructions, and of those relating to the observance of the laws of trade and navigation for William Browne, esquire, Governor of the Bermuda or Somers Islands, and having made several alterations therein, a representation to his Majesty was signed.

West Florida.

Read a memorial of Albany Wallis, esquire, solicitor, on the part of the complainants against Peter Chester, esquire, Governor of the Province of West Florida, praying, that a copy of Governor Chester's answer to the complaints exhibited by Adam Christie and others, may be given to him, in order that he may prepare for the hearing on the said complaints.

Ordered, that a copy of Governor Chester's answer be given to Mr. Wallis, agreeable to the prayer of his memorial.

fo. 237.

Trade.

Military Stores.

Read an order of the Lords of the Privy Council, dated May 25th, 1781, referring the petition of George Bague, praying leave to export to Charles Town, on board the ship Carolina packett, sundry military stores therein mentioned, for the defence of the inhabitants of South Carolina.

Their Lordships being of opinion, the exportation should be allowed; the draught of a report to the Lords of the Privy Council thereupon was prepared, approved, transcribed and signed.

fo. 238.

Thursday, May 31st. Present:—Lord Grantham, Mr. Stuart, Mr. Gibbon.

Trade.

Military Stores.

The minutes of the last Board were read, approved and signed.

Read an order of the Lords of the Privy Council, dated May 30th, 1781, referring the petition of Messieurs Davis and Company, praying leave to export to East Florida, on board the ship Peggy, sundry military stores to therein mentioned, for the use of the inhabitants.

Their Lordships being of opinion, the exportation should be allowed; the draught of a report to the Lords of the Privy Council was prepared, approved, transcribed and signed.