America and West Indies
February 1701, 21-28

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Institute of Historical Research

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Cecil Headlam (editor)

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1910

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95-101

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'America and West Indies: February 1701, 21-28', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 19: 1701 (1910), pp. 95-101. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=71536 Date accessed: 25 July 2014.


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Contents

February 1701

Feb. 21.Bill about Town officers read a second time, passed and sent down.
Bill about forceable entry etc. read and passed to be enacted.
Bill against making or passing counterfeit money was read a first time, amended, read a second time, passed and sent down.
Petition of Tisbury read and ordered to be sent down.
Bills for tolling horses to be shipt off and for making of malt, sent up, were read twice and committed.
The Representatives concurred with the Orders upon the petitions supra, Feb. 20. [C.O. 5, 788. pp. 226–229.]
Feb. 21.187. Mr. Basse to the Council of Trade and Plantations. In behalf of the inhabitants of East New Jersey. The negligence, procrastination and delays of the Proprietors ocations me with all humility to intreat your Lordships to procead to a consideration of the petition of the inhabitants of the said Province, reffered to you by H.M., and appoint some time when the proofs of the said petition, as far as it relates to matters of fact, may be laid before you. This I am emboldened to request, not only from the pressing necessitys of that distracted P[rovince], amongst whom the currant of the laws are stopt, and not the shadow of Government remains as by late advices I am credibly informed, and the King's interest in this state of anarchy by the total neglect of the Plantation Laws considerably suffers. Signed, J. Basse. Endorsed, Recd. Read Feb. 21, 1700/1. ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 1260. No. 95; and 5, 1288. pp. 443, 444.]
Feb. 21.
New York.
188. Governor the Earl of Bellomont to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I send this by a ship bound for Holland, but it is to touch at some port in England. I am not satisfied how far aliens made denisens in England are qualified to be admitted owners and masters of ships by the Register here, but having the advice and consent of the Council therein, I do at present permit them, until I have your Lordships' pleasure, and therefore I desire your direction in these queres; 1st, whether Denisens made in England are so qualified, and, 2nd, if so, what proof of denisation shall be accounted sufficient to us here, whether a certificate thereof from a publique Notary in London, or what? 3rd, whether Scotchmen are qualified to be owners and masters of ships. I desire your Lordships will be speedy in your answer, because it is of great consequence to the trade of this place.
Here hath been a villanous design to imbezell the bookes, accounts and papers of H.M. Revenue. Col. Cortlandt, late Commissioner of the Revenue, dyed Nov. 25 last, having them in his custody, at his decease. On the arrival of Mr. Weaver, Dec. 30, with the King's Letters Patents, he, being admitted and sworn Collector and Receiver of the Revenue, could not find any of the books, accounts and papers in the publique office. He often demanded them of the Executrix and son of Col. Cortlandt, but could not procure them, so that he applyed to myselfe and the Council on Jan. 27 last, and produced a warrant from the Commissioners for stateing the publick accounts of the Province, appointed by Act of General Assembly, directed to him and commanding him to lay the publique accounts of the Revenue before them, whereupon we made an order, as by the Minute herewith sent. On Jan. 30, the Cortlands delaying to get their accounts ready, excused themselves as by the said minute appears. On Feb. 11 they produced to myselfe and the Councill some extracts of the publick accounts, very imperfect, and not originals, but did not produce any of the Books of the Revenue. Thereupon myselfe and Councill finding that they purposely delayed the time, that they might continue on to receive the publique Revenue as they had done from the death of Col. Cortland, and fearing that, if we were not very cautious in managing them, that they would wholly suppress and imbezell the King's Books, we on Feb 15 made an order that the Members of the Council should auditt the said accounts on the 18th. On which day severall memorialls from the Commissioners for stateing the publick accounts and from Mr. Weaver the Collector being given in, we have proceeded according to the Minute of Councill of Feb. 18, and seized most of the Books of the Revenue, which they positively refused to deliver to the Gentlemen of the Council, who demanded them, and have likewise seized many recognizances given for the payment of excise, by vertue of which the widdow of Cortland demanded and received severall sums of that part of the revenue since her husband's death, and it will cost us some difficulty to discover exactly how much, but we have a deposition of one sum, which is transmitted in the said Minute.
The Gentlemen of the Councill at first view of the extracts found one article of 95l. for which the King had no credit given him, and without question there are severall others; which was so great an alarm to the Cortlands that, had we not luckily seized the Books that night, we have reason to believe they would never have been found or produced. Now the books, etc. are in our custody, they shall forthwith be delivered to the Commissioners of the publique accounts, who, as they express in their memoriall, without them were at a full stop and could not proceed in the trust reposed in them by the Act of General Assembly, and likewise the Collector may repair to them and peruse them, without which he would be altogether in the dark where to demand any arrears of taxes, quit-rents or other branches of the Revenue. And indeed I am apt to believe it was what the faction reckoned a Masterpiece, and depended upon it to put all the Government here into confusion, by advising the widdow Cortland to detain the publick books, Col. Bayard being her brother-in-law and Mr. Nicholls her nephew, her cheif Councillours, both which were removed from the Councill by me at my first coming to the Government, for reasons which your Lordships have thought sufficient to confirm their removall, and both which have extravagant grants of lands, which they, with severall others fear I shall for his Majesty's service get broke by the next Assembly, if the former Act for vacating extravagant Grants of Lands pass the King's approbation, which I hope to have an account of in your Lordships' next packets to me. I shall only observe further that I am of the same opinion with the Collector, who in his memoriall doth believe that the Cortlands were incouraged to these practices by reason there is no Court of Exchequer in this Province to call them to an account, nor until your Lordships are pleased to send us an able Chief Justice and Attorney Generall can we prosecute or proceed against them, which consideration will I hope dispose your Lordships to hasten them over to us. On Jan. 27 I swore Mr. Weaver one of H.M. Council, in the place of Mr. Graham, who dyed some days before, and I desire your Lordships' approbation of him that he may be confirmed by his Majesty. Signed, Bellomont. Endorsed, Recd. Read May 2, 1701. 3 pp., including list of enclosures. Enclosed,
188. i. Governor the Earl of Bellomont to the Lords of the Admiralty. New York, Feb. 20, 1700/1. I was directed by the Council of Trade to try how conveniently the King might be furnished with masts for his ships of war from this Province. I hope my contract for masts is with your Lordships by this time. I cannot but think the cheap bargain I made will be pleasing to your Lordships. Details, with estimate of cost of freight. I have taken the boldness to draw a Bill of Exchange on your Lordships for 240l. sterling, 300l. New York money, which is the sum I have advanced to the undertakers for the masts. I hope you will comply with my Bill, since 'tis for the King's service. I am ordered by the Lords of the Council of Trade to provide masts, but am not instructed how they are to be paid for. Desires directions for future contract for masts. Signed, Bellomont. Endorsed, Recd. May 2, 1701. Copy. 1¾ pp.
188. ii. Minute of Council of New York, Jan. 27, 1700 (1701). 1 p.
188. iii. Minute of Council of New York, Jan. 30, 1700 (1701). ¾ p.
188. iv. Minute of Council of New York, Feb. 11, 1700 (1701). ¾ p.
188. v. Minute of Council of New York, Feb. 15, 1700 (1701). ¾ p.
188. vi. Minute of Council of New York, Feb. 18, 19, 1700 (1701). 18¼ pp
188. vii. Copy of Proclamation forbidding payment of the Revenue to the Cortlands. Signed, Bellomont. New York, Feb. 19, 1700 (1701). Sealed. 1 p.
188. viii. Minute of Council of New York, Feb. 20, 1700 (1701). 1½ pp.
188. ix. Copy of warrant to the Sheriff of New York to search for books etc. of the Public Accounts. Feb. 18, 1700 (1701). 1 p.
188. x. Inventory of Books, etc. of the Public Accounts seized by the Sherriff of New York in the house of Mr. Chappell. Signed, Peter D. Mill, Sherriff. In the presence of, J.D. Riemer, Mayor, Abrah. Gouverneur, Recorder, D. Provoost, Justice. Endorsed, Recd. May 2, 1701. 1 p.
188. xi. Minute of Council of New York, Jan 27, 1700 (1701). 1 p. Same endorsement.
188. xii. Minute of Council of New York, Feb. 3, 1700 (1701). ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 1046. Nos. 4, 4. i.–xii.; and (duplicates of letter, Nos. i.–ix. and xi., xii.) 5, 1044. Nos. 42, 42. i.–xi.; and (letter and enclosure i. only) 5, 1118. pp. 270–278; and (abstract) 5, 1133. p. 151.]
Feb. 22.
London.
189. Copy of receipt of a box for Governor the Earl of Bellomont. Signed, David Robertson. Endorsed, Recd. Feb. 22, 1700/1. ¾ p. [C.O. 5, 1045, No. 17.]
Feb. 24.
Whitehall.
190. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. Letter from Lord Bellomont, Nov. 28, with enclosures, laid before the Board. Some entrance made into the consideration thereof; also of extracts of letters, with enclosures, to the Secretary. Acts of Assembly enclosed ordered to be sent to Mr. Solicitor General, and Muster Rolls to the Agent for the four Companies.
Further progress made in the consideration of the Acts of the Massachusetts Bay, May 29, 1700.
Feb. 25.Some members of the Old and New East India Companies and of the African Company, as likewise the Agents for some of H.M. Plantations and other merchants concerned there, attending as they had been desired in reference to the draught of a Proclamation for encouraging the apprehending and convicting of pirates, the African Company agreed as to the places and persons to which any pirates might be directed to surrender themselves on the Coast of Africa (enumerated). Several proposals were also made by them and others in relation to the limitation of the time for granting of pardons. But the two East India Companies both of 'em desired time to bring in memorials in writing, after which their Lordships made some further progress in the consideration of that matter. [Board of Trade. Journal, 13. pp. 370–381; and 98. Nos. 36, 37.]
Feb. 24.191. Minutes of Council in Assembly of the Massachusetts Bay. Bill for tolling horses to be exported rejected, and a new Bill ordered to be brought in embodying the amendments of the Committee.
Bill for making of malt rejected, and a new Bill ordered to be drawn embodying the amendments of the Committee. These Bills were read twice, passed and sent down.
Bill for the relief of Thomas Coram, according to his prayer, read twice and committed.
Petition of the Tavern-Keepers in and about Boston praying relief against the severity of the Act relating to Excise, read and referred to Committee.
Petitions of gunners etc. for their allowances referred to the Representatives.
Feb. 25.Bills for the convenient and speedy assignment of dower, and directing the admission of inhabitants into towns, read twice and committed. Bill relating to the prosecution of appeals was read twice and committed.
The Lieut.-Governor summoned the Representatives and further pressed upon them the consideration of making necessary provision for the fortifications on Castle Island, Trade with the Indians and stores of war.
Upon the report of the Committee, disapproving of the method proposed by Thomas Coram's Bill, ordered that Peter and Eleazar Walker be first summoned to appear, if they see cause. This order sent down to the Representatives. [C.O. 5, 788. pp. 229–232.]
Feb. 25.
Whitehall.
192. Mr. Secretary Hedges to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Referring enclosed petition for their consideration and report. Signed, C. Hedges. Endorsed, Recd. Feb. 26. Read March 6, 1700/1. 1 p. Enclosed,
192. i. Petition of Agents of Barbados and others to H.M. the King in Council, Jan. 31, 1700/1. Signed, J. Kendall, Edw. Littleton, Richd. Bate, Wm. Cleland, Tho. Maxwell, Samll. Barwick, Wm. Allamby, Mel. Holder, Nath. Rous, Jo. Harwood, M. Crowe, Will. Wheeler, John Gray, Wm. Bridges, Fran. Eyles, Rob. Heysham, Rich. Guy. Copy. 4 pp. A Repetition of petition abstracted Cal. A. and W I., Dec. 6, 1700. No. 981. q.v. [C.O. 28, 4. Nos. 84, 84. i. ; and 29, 7. pp. 263–269.]
Feb. 25.
Whitehall.
193. William Popple to Sir John Hawles. The Lords Commissioners for Trade and Plantations command me to send you the Acts past at a General Assembly at New Yorke, Oct. 26 last, and desire your opinion upon them in point of law, as likewise upon those which I sent you, Dec. 13, with what speed you can. [C.O. 5, 1118. p. 210.]
Feb. 26.
London.
194. Mr. Cary to [? Mr. Popple]. Giving an account of ye conveyance of letters etc. to Governor Codrington. 1 p. Signed, Rd. Cary. Endorsed, Recd. Feb. 26, 1700/1. [C.O. 152, 4. No 20.]
Feb. 26.
Whitehall.
195. Journal of Council of Trade and Plantations. The New and Old East India Companies represented their dislike that any pirates shou'd be encouraged by promise of pardon to surrender themselves to any of their Factories in India, lest such pardoning of pirates shou'd be ill interpreted by the Mogul, under whose protection they live there.
Lord Bellomont's letter, Nov. 28, further considered. Extracts ordered to be made, relating to his contract for masts, in order to laying the same before H.M.
Feb. 27.Further progress made in preparing the draught of a proclamation for encouraging the apprehending and conviction of pirates.
Feb. 28.Above draught emended and ordered to be transcribed.
Lord Bellomont's letter, Nov. 28, further considered. [Board of Trade. Journal, 13. pp. 381–385; and 98. Nos. 38–40.]
Feb. 26.196. Minutes of Council of the Massachusetts Bay. General Council appointed for March 6 to elect Sheriffs for the Counties of Suffolk and Plymouth. [C.O. 5, 788. pp. 35, 36.]
Feb. 26.197. Minutes of Council in Assembly of the Massachusetts Bay. Bill relating to the prosecution of appeals amended, passed and sent down.
Bills about Tolling Horses and Town Officers sent up, and passed, were assented to by H.E.
The Representatives agreed that Peter and Eleazar Walker should be summoned to appear in the matter of Coram's Bill, and further ordered that the Justices of the Inferior Court of Common Pleas in the County of Bristol should also be notified to appear, which this Board concurred with.
The Lieut.-Governor read a letter from Mr. Increase Mather, President of the College, Cambridge, Oct. 17, 1700, giving an account of his inspection of the Colledge, whilst he resided there, and containing the reasons of his removal from Cambridge, as his not having his health there, etc., and desiring that another President might be thought of. Advised, that so much of the letter as relates to the Colledge be copied and sent down to the Representatives.
Feb. 27.Committee appointed to consider of the scarcity of money and to report upon proposals for supplying it.
The following resolve was sent down to the Representatives for their concurrance: That proper Committees be appointed to overlook, sort and take a particular accompt of the several records, books, grants, files, papers and writings of concernment belonging to the late Colonies of the Massachusetts and New Plymouth, Province of Main and the County of Devon, now united into one Province, and to make report and return thereof unto the next General Assembly to the intent that the said several Records etc. may be preserved, intrusted and put into the hands of fit persons to be safe kept, and they sufficiently impowered to give out attested copys to any concerned therein or that shall desire the same.
Resolve, appointing a Committee to examine claims of Proprietors of Lands eastward of the Town of Wells, passed and sent down to the Representatives for their concurrance.
Amendments of Committee to the Bill for the speedy assignment of Dower agreed to. New Bill ordered to be drawn accordingly.
Bill for rendering an accompt of fines etc., sent up from the Representatives, was read twice and committed.
Feb. 28.The weather preventing the Lieut-Governor's coming to town, he adjourned the Council till March 3. [C.O. 5, 788. pp. 232–234.]
Feb. 28.198. Thomas Hodges to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The remedy proposed in your report to H.M., Feb. 6, is so far from contributing to the relief of petitioner or to a general amendment of the administration of justice in Barbados, that a contrary use will be made thereof, when they find that the only remedy to be had in England on complaints of the greatest oppressions fully proved is that the persons who complain shall be delivered up into the hands of those they have so justly complained of. Petitioner prays for reconsideration and an additional report, emphasising points made in former memorials (replied to and indicated by the MS. notes March 5, No. 209, q.v.), and "wholly omitted in the Report." Since his last memorial, petitioner hath received credible information of the following articles of male administration in Barbados, and desires your Lordships would summons such witnesses as he shall name and examine them on oath, while they are in London; (1) The Court of Errors did not sit in above two years' time of this Governour's being there, by which all judgments at law are stayed, on which such writts were brought. (2) Besides neer 400 causes depending in Chancery, there were lately about 800 causes depending at one time in two of the Courts of Common Pleas. There are five such Courts in all. (3) The Court of Chancery, when any debate does arise about making an order or decree, dos turn out all the suitors and other persons whatsoever, and then privately debate and poll for the same, and pronounce the decree thereon in such private manner. (4) The number of persons put into the Commission of Peace are above 100, with several ill consequences, particularly, one of them, arrested for felony sworn against him, commanded the Assistants to arrest the Constable, and so made his escape, and is still continued in that Commission. Your Lordships may be pleased to consider whether it be for the King's service or from some other motives that such numbers are put into that Commission. With several other Articles of mis-government, which will shew it to be little better then a solemn ridicule of Civil Government. Signed, Tho. Hodges. Endorsed, Read March 5, 1700/1;. 5¾ closely written pp. [C.O. 28, 4. No. 83; and 29, 7. pp. 271–285.]