America and West Indies
August 1728, 1-15

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Institute of Historical Research

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Cecil Headlam (editor) Arthur Percival Newton (introduction)

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1937

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166-184

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'America and West Indies: August 1728, 1-15', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 36: 1728-1729 (1937), pp. 166-184. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=72453 Date accessed: 01 November 2014.


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August 1728, 1-15

Aug. 3.
Lincoln's
Inn.
341. Attorney General to the Duke of Newcastle. I had the honour of your Lordship's commands by your letter of ye 30th past to hasten the dispatch of the conveyance of the Province of Carolina to his Majesty. Explains that though Mr. Solicitor General and himself received instructions from the Treasury on 13th July to prepare the necessary instruments, and thereupon immediately acquainted the Agent of the Proprietors that their respective titles ought forthwith to be laid before them, it was not till this evening that abstracts only of the titles of James and Henry Bertie and Mr. Hutcheson were left with him etc. "It is impossible for H.M. Councill to advise the acceptance of the conveyance etc. without being truely informed of the state of the title, which in some of the Proprietorships may require particular consideration, there having been severall subsequent conveyances since the first grant, and some thereof litigated " etc. Signed, P. Yorke. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 306. No. 9.]
Aug. 3.
Jamaica.
342. Governor Hunter to the Duke of Newcastle. I am frequently in straits for want of a quorum of Councelers by reason of the distant residence of many, and the absence of others. One of that number, Pusey by name, has been absent sevll. years and so forfeited all claim to a seat at that Board etc. Asks for appointment of Alexander Forbes, Provost Marshall, but acting by Deputy, who is very well qualified. Continues : I can not look without concern upon what may happen here in case of my death or sudden removal. The generality here have either such an aversion to or contempt of Mr. Ayscough, and he a man of such passions and resentment, that I can not in duty or conscience advise the intrusting him againe wh. the administration. The next Councellor to him is Coll. Gommersell, a man of substance long experience and probity, how far his capacity may reach in that ticklish trust I know not. So if a dormant Commission is not adviseable a new model of the Council may prevent the confusion I apprehend and can have no bad consequence. Recommends for filling a vacancy in the Council Edward Charlton, one of the Judges etc. Has no grudge or spite against Mr. Ayscough etc. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Endorsed, R. Oct. 7th. Holograph. 2 ½ pp. [C.O. 137, 53. ff.74—75v.]
Aug. 3.343. Same to Mr. Stanyan. Encloses copy of following letter etc. and asks for instructions as to Mr. Coleman's office. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Holograph. 2 pp. [C.O. 137, 53. ff. 76, 76v.]
Aug. 3.
Jamaica.
344. Governor Hunter to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Refers to enclosed Speech to Assembly and their reply, when they met on 2nd July etc. Continues :—I cannot but say they began with a good aspect having entred into many resolves for the publick credit and the security of the country but the same was soon changed by a bill's being brought into the Assembly for making the goods of the produce of the country a law full tender for the payment of debts ; This bill having passed the Assembly and Council I found they had it so much at heart that it was apparent they declined doing any other bussiness till they knew the fate of that bill (copy enclosed). Many arguments were used in the Council pro and con, but the majority having passed the bill in their legislative capacity, Mr. Mill entred his dissent against it (encl. iv), and in a day or two after the merchants and traders petitioned me against my passing it, markt No. 5. Upon which I call'd a Council and laid the whole before them and askt their advice whether it was not a bill of extraordinary nature and consequently such as I was forbid by my Instructions to assent to without a clause inserted therein suspending the execution thereof until H.M. pleasure should be further known, and the Council were of opinion that it was a bill of that nature and not fit to be passed into a law without H.M. further direction. Upon which Mr. Lawes delivered his reasons against the bill which he desir'd might be enter'd in the Council books and is markt No. 6. The chief arguments for the bill that I have heard of are contained in No. 7. Upon the whole I shall entirely submit it to your Lordpps., whether such a bill may be necessary for the good of the country either with respect to the planter or merchant and I must pray your Lordpps.' directions in case the house should pass another bill to the same effect next sessions, what proviso or salvo may be requisit to be inserted in the bill in order to it's being pass'd. The Assembly sent up to the Council another bill, entitled, an Act for establishing the publick credit with regard to particular orders of Council, which though intended for the credit of the Government, yet the Council perceived there was no provision made for the payment of the intrest, which the orders of Council were to bear mention'd in the bill, so they lookt upon it as a diminution of H.M. Revenue and therefore declin'd passing it. The Assembly having the first mention'd bill so much at heart and they percieving little hopes of my passing it contrary to the advice of the Council, they sent me a message on the first instant desiring a recess, which I communicated to His Majesty's Council who were of opinion to prorogue them to the 24th of October next, to which day they now stand prorogued, when I hope both the season and the persons will be cooler. The Minutes of the Council and Assembly are so voluminous that it was imposible to have them transcribed at length to transmit by this conveyance, but they shal be sent by the next opportunity and since the most material transactions are inserted in the enclosed papers, I hope it may for the present answer your Lordpps.' expectations from me. The settlements at Port Antonio are going on with a good prospect, many orders are already issued to the inhabitants, newcomers etc. for the taking up land there agreeable to the last Act passed here (tho' not yet at home) for the settling that part of the country ; I recommend it to your Lordships to obtain H.M. assent to that law if not already done, and nothing could contribute more to the security and strength of the settlements there and indeed of the whole Island than an Engineer, whom I have long expected and who is absolutely necessary for erecting new and repairing our old fortifications, which is all that at present occurrs from, etc. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Endorsed, Recd. 3rd Oct., Read 13th Nov., 1728. 3 ½ pp. Enclosed,
344. i. Governor Hunter's Speech to the Council and Assembly. Recommends effectual measures to reduce rebel slaves, the appointment of an Agent to solicite their affaires at home, a bill to prevent litigious suits, the reduction of the present high interest of money and the high value of current coin, and repair of public buildings, prison, barracks etc. Copy. 3 pp.
344. ii. Address of Assembly in reply to preceding. Copy. 1 p.
344. iii. Act passed by Assembly 18th July, 1728, to oblige creditors to accept of the produce of the Island in payment of their debts. Copy. 4 ½ pp.
344. iv. Reasons advanced by Richard Mill in Council against preceding bill. Copy. 3 ½ pp.
344. v. Petition of merchants and traders of Kingston to Governor Hunter. Object to above bill (No. iii), showing that it will injure the credit of the Island and ruin many of the inhabitants etc. 35 signatures. Copy. 7 ¼ pp.
344. vi. Reasons advanced in Council by James Lawes against said bill. Copy. 2 pp.
344. vii. Arguments used for passing said bill. 3 ¼ pp. Nos. i—vii endorsed, Recd. 3rd Oct., 1728. [C.O. 137, 17. ff. 110—111v., 113—125, 126v.]
Aug. 3.
Jamaica.
345. Governor Hunter to Mr. Popple. I referr you to mine to their Losps. (preceding) for information of what has been done or rather that nothing has been done in this session of Assembly and the causes or pretences for that conduct tho' no buss'nesse but their own lay before them. They requested a recesse and I granted it to cool them. I had one overture in my head which I did not care to offer to their Losps. in order to make that sugar bill tolerably just. If you think fitt to offer to any of yr. board particularly you may. It is this. That the debtor ship the sugars at his own cost and risque and draw upon them at a certainty pr. cent by wch. means the creditor will be in a better state then by ye bill and I believe none will decline such payt. We are indeed distress'd for want of currency and if ye evil continues the bill will be reviv'd again etc. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Endorsed, Recd. 8th Oct., Read 13th Nov., 1728. Holograph. l ¼ pp. [C.O. 137, 17. ff. 108, 108v., 109v.]
Aug. 3.
Jamaica.
346. Same to the Duke of Newcastle. To same effect as preceding, enclosing copy of his letter of 3rd Aug., and adding :— By a sloop from Porto Bello I am inform'd that they are loading the silver of the galleons on board the fourteen ships of warr they have there, the galleons being unserviceable. Their privateers continue their depredations. Mr. St. Lo had sent to demand restitution but I know not what return he has had, etc. Signed, Ro. Hunter. Endorsed, R. Oct. 7th. Holograph. 1 ¾ pp. Enclosed,
346. i. Duplicate of No. 344. [C.O. 137, 53. ff. 70, 70v., 71v. —73v.]
Aug. 5.
Jamaica.
347. James Wimble to the Duke of Newcastle. Bound for Jamaica with produce of N. Carolina, his sloop and cargo valued at £877. 145. sterl., were taken by a Spanish privateer from Cuba, off Hispaniola on 7th May. Has made his complaint to the Governor and Commodore here, who have sent a man of war to demand reparation from the Spaniards for the damage they have done, which is 15 sail taken from the English. The Spanish Governor refused to make satisfaction etc. Petitioner who was born in Sussex and lives at Boston is thus entirely ruined, the sloop and cargo having been his whole substance. Asks his Grace to "fevour me with a line to setesfy me wether i can recover anything from ye Spand." or, if not, to provide him with some small post in New England etc. Signed, James Wimble. Endorsed, R. Oct. Addressed. Postmark. 1 p. [C.O. 137,53. ff. 78, 79v.]
Aug. 5.
Victualling
Office.
348. Commissioners for Victualling the Navy to Mr. Popple. Reply to 30th July. We have not heard that duties have been paid or demanded till now etc. Altho' it is taken for granted in generall that where the Islands afford a sufficiency of rum or other species, the ships are supplyed out of the produce of each place, yet in cases of absolute necessity from bad crops, unforeseen large demands, or other accidents, by which there shall not be sufficient to answer H.M. service, as was the case in 1726, when we were obliged to send both rum and wine for the Squadron in the West Indies without paying any duty etc. We conceive that on such emergencys H.M. ships should in like manner be permitted to have supplys from other places etc. 4 signatures. Endorsed, Recd. Read 6th Aug., 1728. 2 pp. [C.O. 137, 17. ff. 70, 70v., 71v.]
Aug. 6.
Whitehall.
349. Mr. Popple to Mr. Attorney General. Asks for opinion whether H.M. may legally grant Mr. Donovan a noli prosequi etc. Encloses papers relating to the case (v. 30th July etc.). [C.O. 138,17. p. 250.]
Aug. 7.
Whitehall.
350. Mr. Popple to the Commissioners for Victualling H.M. Navy. Enquires whether the wine and rum, mentioned 5th Aug., were sent directly to the Squadron or first landed in the West Indies, and where the Squadron then was. [C.O. 138, 17. p. 250.]
Aug. 9.
Virginia.
351. Lt. Governor Gooch to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I have the honour of your Lordships letter of the 7th of May. In answer to it, I begin with giving your Lordships the strongest assurance, that nothing shall slip my observation, and that every occurrence from time to time shal be faithfully transmitted to your Lordships. I return your Lordships my thanks for approving the person I recommended to succeed Col. Harrison. The reprehension I meet with in the next paragraph of your Lordsps. letter for the violation of my Instructions is what I very justly deserve, if the reasons I humbly presume to offer will administer no alleviation. But my Lords before I left England, being there told that perhaps something of this kind might happen, I acquainted the Duke of Newcastle and Sr. R. Walpole of it; and afterwards told Ld. Westmorland that if anything abroad happens to my advantage, I hoped to find favour at your Lordships Board; I can't say his Lordship made me any other reply than wishing my health and a good voyage: but the answer His Grace gave me, was, that I might expect the same indulgence with other Governours; Sr. Robert to the same effect. This, my Lords, was the method I took, and from what I have now the honour to relate to your Lordships I must own that I thought if I did accept of such offers as have been made me, I had a sufficient dispensation till H.M. pleasure was known; and that before your Lordships justice, this action would have received a favourable construction. That other Governours have been thus indulged, the late Mr. Nicholson is an instance of it in this Colony ; he had the same present allow'd to him at a time when £300 would have gone as far as double that sum will do now. My Lords, the charge I was at to bring my self and family hither, was not £20 less than the present from the Council: the money I was out of pocket to equip my self for this publick and expensive station, will hardly be reimburs'd in five years, a long time to live in this country, and get nothing, and I do aver to yr. Lordships that these presents were made to me, without my being by word or deed concern'd. My Lords these are the reasons I presume to offer, and thence humbly hope when your Lordships shal reconsider my circumstances, your Lordships will be prevailed upon to favour my acceptance not only of the £300 from the Councill, but also the £500 cur. the generous offer of the people whom I have the honour to govern. I hope these arguments will mediate some excuse for what I have done, and interceed with your Lordships for forgiveness, which in my future conduct I shall study to deserve. The first oppertunity I shall propose a law to be passed as directed by my 119th Instruction for making the Virginia estates of bankrupts liable to the satisfaction of their English creditors. Your Lordships will find that in the Act passed for building a lighthouse, care was taken to insert the proper clause. By a letter I received from our Agent Mr. Leheup, I am told that your Lordships have been informed that the tobacco law limitting the number of plants to be tended by each tythable is a great hardship laid by the rich on the poor planter. But your Lordships will find by that Act a particular indulgence allowed to people having no slaves, that they may tend 10,000 plants when all others are restrained to 6,000 only. The circumstances of the country make it very evident that the rich are much more cramp't by this law than the poor: since the former having large tracts of lands, have more of that which is good to employ their slaves on than the poorer sort, who are possest of small quantitys, and who cannot without destroying that they have, afford to cultivate more of it than the 6000 plants for each tythable. And it has been found generally true, that the far greater part of the planters never tended so great a quantity as the law allows, tho by a miscomputation they imagined they tended more. My Lords, the only persons aggrieved by the restraint of planting are those who have great tracts of fresh land and many slaves, for they would have indeed the advantage of planting more tobacco on such fresh grounds and tending it more easily than others can on lands that have been cultivated before; and having abundance of hands to employ on these new lands, whenever the price of tobacco gives encouragement they can make much greater crops than now they are allow'd to do; but at the same time it must be said that though they may plant more in quantity yet it frequently proves very mean stuff, different from the tobacco produced from well improved and well tended grounds ; and tho' it may sometimes happen that a rich man by the advantage of his money and the benefit of the prompt payment at ye Custom House gets as good a price and by this means more money than any industrious but poor planter can, yet the rich man's trash will always damp the market and spoil the sale of the poor man's good tobacco which has been carefully managed: a mischief which this law is calculated to remedy and to encourage at the same time good tobacco, by allowing as much to be planted as can be carefully and honestly tended and cured. This my Lords is really the truth of the case whatever pretences may be advanced to your Lordships in favour to the poor; for 'tis the rich complain and they only are the sufferers. I must observe to your Lordships that since the restraint of planting; as much tobacco has been exported hence as ever was before; so that the law dos no injury to H.M. Revenue, nor to the Planters industry. I herewith transmitt to your Lordships duplicates of the Journals of Council, and of the Assembly, and of the Laws. And the list of negroes and Madeira wine imported. I have also sent the copy of a letter I writt to the Board of Ordnance with a list of all the warlike stores in this Colony. Signed, William Gooch. Endorsed, Recd. 21st, Read 26th Nov., 1728. Holograph. 2 ¼ pp. Enclosed,
351. i. List of ships that have imported negroes, Port South Potomack, 29th Sept. 1727—25th March, 1728. None. Signed, Thomas Lee, Naval Officer. Slip.
351. ii. List of ships that have imported negroes, Port of Rappahanock, Sept. 29, 1727—April 25, 1728. None. Signed, Robert Carter jr. N. Off. 1 p.
351. iii. List of ships that have imported negroes, York River, 29th Sept. 1727—25th March, 1728. One, with 211 negroes, by separate traders. Signed, Will. Robertson, Navl. Offr. 1 p.
351. iv. Ditto, James River and Eastern Shore. None. 1 p. Nos. i—iv endorsed, Recd. 21st Nov. 1728.
351. v. Ships importing merchandize from Madeira and the Western Islands, South Potomack. None. Same period and signature as No. i. 1 p.
351. vi. Ditto, Rappahanock. One. Same period and signature as No. ii. 1 p.
351. vii. Ditto. York River. Three. Same period and signature as No. iii. 1 p.
351. viii. Account of Stores of War in Virginia, 1728. Endorsed as No. iv. 2 pp.
351. ix. Lt. Govr. Gooch to the Board of Ordnance with request for stores of war. Without date or signature. Endorsed, Recd. 21st Nov., 1728. Copy. l ½ pp. [C.O. 5, 1321. ff. (with abstract) 74—76, 77, 78—79, 80, 81— 82v.]
Aug. 10.
Parsons
Green.
352. Sir C. Wager to Mr. Delafaye. Capt. Rogers who brings you this letter tells me that nothing is yet refer'd to the Board of Trade relating to the Bahama Islands. I think some determination should be come to in that affair; and therefore if there be anything to be refer'd, I desire you will do it, that poor Rogers may be out of his pain etc. Signed, Cha. Wager. 1 p. Enclosed,
352. i. Capt. Rogers to Mr. Delafaye. London, 12th Aug. 1728. Entreats him to get the enquiry into the state of the Bahama Islands referred to the Board of Trade etc. The Duke of Newcastle and Lord Townshend promised it should be done these three weeks past. Continues :— As I had no opertunity to explain myselfe to you when I saw you last at Court, I hope you'l pardon this freedom, since I am forced to move for my former employment in a manner that I don't chuse, and have avoided it as long as I cou'd, tho' I tryed to have my own conduct examin'd, and never was able to get it done; yet I am sorry I must be a meanes to examine his, or I can't be restored to the employment, that I hope in justice I may ask for. I wish Mr. Pheney's friends had not desir'd to justifie his actiones, since I am pretty sure if they are known, they cannot turn to his advantage, the place being now in a much worse condition as to people than it was seven years agoe, when I came thence. Besides he sold a company of Dragoons he comanded before he left England, and had mine given him with the Govermt., yt. I preserved to my ruin, and he may have my halfe pay if he returns, he can't think it a hardship on him, since I was so odly removed by surprize, when there never was nor I beleive ever will be a good reason given for it, nor would I aske for the same imployment again, did I not depend I could do ye publick great service, in improving what I began, and make it a place of consequence" etc. Refers to his recommendations etc. Signed, Woodes Rogers. Holograph. 2 pp.
352. ii. Petition of Capt. Rogers to the King. Prays to be restored to his Governorship of the Bahama Islands, or compensated for his losses and sufferings in that service etc. Copy. 2 pp.
352. iii. Testimonial to Capt. Rogers, recommending above petition to Sir Robert Walpole. Capt. Rogers behaved with the utmost resolution and fidelity, tho' to the ruin of his own fortune etc. London, Feb. 29, 1727/8. Signed, John Eyles, Montagu Barnard, Gilbt. Heathcote, Micajah Perry, E. Vernon, Fran. Fane, Geo. Gregory, Hum. Morrice, Jno. Lambert, Ed. Harrison, Matt. Decker, Hans Sloane, Edwd. Southwell, G. Earle, John Gould, Hen. Herring, H. Raymond, Matt. Martin, Jos. Eyles, Saml. Winder, Wm. Sloper, Edmnd. Halsey, John Hart, Alexr. Spotswood, Benj. Bennet, Chas. Boone, Saml. Shute, Peter Walter. A copy delivered to the Duke of Newcastle. Copy. 1 1/3pp. [C.O. 23,14. ff. 45, 49—49v., 51–52v.]
Aug. 12.
Victualling
Office.
353. Commissioners for Victualling the Navy to Mr. Popple. Give details of rum and wine sent to the Squadron in the West Indies in 1726 etc. Conclude :—In both cases the Secretary of State was desired by the Lords of the Admiralty to obtain H.M. orders to the Government of Jamaica to permit the delivery thereof duty free etc. Four signatures. Endorsed, Recd. 13th, Read 18th Aug., 1728. 2 pp. Enclosed,
353. i. Lords Commissioners of the Admiralty to the Commissioners for Victualling the Navy, 13th Oct. 1726, with Mr. Burchett's letter enclosing same. Endorsed, Recd. 13th Aug., 1728. 2 pp. [C.O. 137, 17. ff. 76, 76v., 77v.—78v.]
Aug. 13.354. Mr. Popple to the Board of Works. There being several small repairs necessary to be made in this Office, not observ'd in the late estimate, my Lords Commissioners etc. desire you will give directions that the same be made before the workmen leave the office. [C.O. 389, 37. p. 293.]
Aug. 13.
New York
355. Governor Montgomerie to the Duke of Newcastle. The Assembly met on 22nd July. Encloses his Speech to them etc. and their resolve to grant a revenue for the support of H.M. Government. He insisted warmly in his Speech upon supporting H.M. prerogative, because the Members now returned being mostly the same as before, he feared they would persist in their extravagant resolutions relating to the Court of Chancery. He hopes it will prove of good effect, but suggests that some alterations in that Court would be for the King's service and the good of the Province etc. Set out, N.Y. Col. Docs. V, pp. 857, 858. Signed, J. Montgomerie. Endorsed, R. Oct. 10th. Holograph. 3 pp. Enclosed,
355. i. Duplicate of No. 356.
355. ii. Governor Montgomerie's Speech to the Assembly of New York, with their reply, 23rd July, and their resolution of 31st July, that "there shall be given to H.M. etc. an ample and honourable support for His Government of this Colony from 1st Sept. 1728 to 1st Sept. 1733." v. Sessional Papers. Copy. 3 ¾ pp. [C.O. 5, 1092. Nos. 70, 70. i, ii.]
Aug. 13.
New York.
356. Governor Montgomerie to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses Acts of New Jersey, passed in the last Assembly, Minutes of Council and a letter from Governor Burnet relating to them, and list of vessels entered inwards or cleared outwards at New York, 29th Sept., 1727—25th March, 1728. Neither the Acts nor Minutes are abstracted in the margin, but this is not his fault, as he never saw them till the night before Governor Burnet left etc. Continues : I hope Governor Burnet's letter will fully satisfy your Lordships that there is no danger in applying the 5 per cent interest of the Jersey bills, for the support of H.M. Government; the certificates he sends are proofs that the bills are annually and duely sunk, and that the credit of and value of those that remain rises, while this is the case the art of man will not induce the Assembly to apply the interest in any other way, and it will be a dangerous thing to let such a sum remain in the Treasurer's hands etc. Concludes, ut supra. Set out, N.Y. Col. Docs. V. pp. 858, 859. Signed, J. Montgomerie. Endorsed, Recd., Read 9th Oct., 1728. Holograph. 4 2/3 pp. Enclosed,
356. i. Duplicate of No. ii encl. preceding. Same endorsement. 3 1/3 pp. [C.O. 5, 1054. ff. 298—302v.]
Aug. 13.357. Mr. Attorney and Mr. Solicitor General to the Council of Trade and Plantations. We have considered the Act of New York for preventing prosecutions by informations, and the annexed Memorial etc., and are of opinion that the said Act is a high encroachment upon H.M. undoubted prerogative of proceeding by way of information, and of dangerous consequence, and therefore not fit to be approved. Signed, P. Yorke, C. Talbot. Endorsed, Recd. 14th Aug., Read 3rd Sept., 1728. 1 ½ pp. Enclosed,
357. i. Copy of No. 4.
357. ii. Copy of No. 313. [C.O. 5, 1054. ff 283, 283v., 284v.— 288, 289.]
Aug. 13.
Hampton
Court.
358. Lord Townshend to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses following for their report and desires "an account of the present state of the Bahama Islands. . . . .and in what manner it appears to you that Governor Phenney behaves in the discharge of his office." Signed, Townshend. Endorsed, Recd. Read 14th Aug., 1728. 1 p. Enclosed,
358. i. Remarks on the Island of Providence. 3 sloops only and 20 seafaring men, some absent. About 100 men that can bear arms in all the island, many always absent; difficult to make a jury of 12 men. If Mrs. Phenney were gone, and an Assembly settled, many inhabitants would come. The Governor ingrosses all the trade. Mrs. Phenny sells rum by the pint, and biscuit by the half ryal. The present Lessees have a lease of 21 years, of which half is now expired; but have power to grant land for 99, but former inhabitants pretend titles to the land near the sea etc. that it requires an Act of Assembly to settle titles. They have expended £35,000 in that undertaking, building forts etc., but some of their Agents have dyed, some been taken by the Spaniards, and others applyed their goods to their own use. The pirates have been dislodged, and the island defended against the Spanish attack, but if some care be not taken, the pirates will plunder and take possession of Providence again, or the Spaniards seize on it. Bahama Proprietors the same as Carolina, and Lord Berkeley added etc. Notes of Governor Phenny's account of the islands. Endorsed as preceding. 1 ¾ pp.
358. ii. Mr. Curphy to Sir Chas. Wager. When your Honour was pleased to enquire of me after the state of the Bahama Islands, and the administration of Captn. Phenny, I both truly and particularly gave you an account of its present unhappy circumstances. Refers for further particulars to one Boswell formerly Commander of the Company's trading sloop at Providence, who has already given an account to Capt. Hide etc. "He will confirm every article I have offered in regard to the male proceedings of that Governor, whose conduct only has caused it to be forsaken by all that were in any capacity of going off from that island." Signed, Tho. Curphy. Same endorsement. Copy. 1 p.
358. iii. Mr. Curphy to Mr. Hughes. June 28, 1728. Gives an account of the circumstances of the execution of John Wadsworth. Enclosed in following. Signed, Tho. Curphy. Same endorsement. Copy. 3 pp.
358. iv. Edward Hughes, Judge Advocate General, to the Duke of Newcastle. Horse Guards, July 28, 1728. I think it my duty to lay before your Grace the cruel and unlawful proceedings of Capt. George Phenney of an Independant Company at Providence. In 1722 a court-martial was held there, when John Wadsworth was tried for desertion. The Court was composed of Capt. Phenney, Lt. John Howell, contrary to the Act of Parliament which appoints the President not to be under the degree of a field officer and not less than 12 other commission officers. Wadsworth was condemned and the proceedings confirmed by the Lords Justices, but I refused to grant a warrant for his execution on finding the illegality of the proceedings. In less than a month after my refusal, a letter came from Governor Phenney recommending him for mercy, and the first Clerk of the War Office informed me H.M. had pardoned Wads worth, who had been 18 months in a dungeon underground. Lately at the War Office a Chaplain informed me that the Governor had born the poor man a very ill well, and as he found he could not try him by martial law, he appointed his Lieut., John Ho well Attorney General and another officer Judge of the Admiralty and a Court and a Jury of old pyrats and mulattoes (for there is few others on the Island, driven away by the unheard of cruelty's of the Govr.) and they proceeded to try Wadsworth for a pyracy, in that he took a small canoe with 2 paddles and went to some part of the island in company with one Hart. Both were condemned and Wadsworth hanged etc. Asks for "an enquiry into the conduct of this cruel man, and for the murther of a poor unfortunate gentleman who was kept in the island on such a slavery which caused him to desert" etc. Signed, E. Hughes. Same endorsement. 3 pp. [C.O. 23, 2. ff. 148, 149v.—150v., I51v., 152, 153v.—157v.]
Aug. 14.359. Col. Dunbar to Mr. Popple. Mr. Armstrong, deputy to his predecessor, Mr. Burniston, lately marked out 770 trees for H.M. use, from 24 to 35 in. diameter, and made a seizure of 2000 logs of the same diameter etc., each of which the inhabitants having cut within their townships, alledged were not within the jurisdiction of the Admiralty, and that being felled they remained the property of the fellers etc. Is informed they have been condemned. Is sailing for N.E. in 14 days and desires the Board's directions, any acts or papers for his instruction; and the limits of Nova Scotia, since there is a large country lying waste between it and New England, upon which grows the best timber. Unless this is esteemed part of Nova Scotia, as it was when the French had it, he will want power to mark out there any of the 200,000 trees to be reserved for H.M. use. Signed, David Dunbar. Enclosed, Recd. 13th (sic), Read 28th Aug., 1728. Holograph. 2 pp. [C.O. 5, 870. ff. 119, 119v., 120v.].
Aug. 14.
Whitehall.
360. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Duke of Newcastle. Enclose following.
360. i. Same to the King. Enclose following.
360. ii. Draught of Instruction for Governor Philipps relating to the observance of the Acts of Trade and Navigation. In the usual form. [C.O. 218, 2. pp. 120, 121.]
Aug. 14.
Whitehall.
361. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Duke of Newcastle. Enclose following to be laid before the King. Autograph Signatures. 1 p. Enclosed,
361. i. Draughts of H.M. Warrants to the Governors of the Massachusets Bay, New Hampshire, New Jersey and Bermuda, empowering them to use the new Seals (described), and requiring them to return the old Seals to be defaced etc. [C.O. 5, 4. Nos. 34, 34. i–iv; and 5, 916. pp. 170–174.]
Aug. 14.
Barbados.
362. Governor Worsley to the Duke of Newcastle. Encloses following Address. Continues :—After it was read in Council, I ordered an Address to be read of the General Assembly, 16th Feb. 1720; in which there are these words, "We cannot express the discontents occasioned by those charges, which tend apparently to revive, and support an expiring faction among us, who are known enemies to the peace of their countrey, and have been always suspected of disaffection to your Majesty, and your Royal House." I must also beg leave to observe to your Grace a particular passage in the Address of the present Assembly, "Or redressing any grievances the people labour under." Upon this head I had the honour to observe to your Grace, 4th Aug. 1727, that the Assembly thought themselves upon the same foot as the Parliament of Great Britain, and they have for these many years aimed at it; on 9th Aug. 1698, an Act was passed here, to declare and ascertain the rights and powers of the General Assembly. But the 18th of May following King William repealed that Act, so that I can't be enough surprised to find them attempt it again. In the last paragraph of their Address to me they say, "We shall loose no time in passing the Excise bill recommended to us, nor shall we be wanting to propose all such other bills as in our humble apprehensions shall tend to the publick peace, welfare, and good Government of the Island, with dutiful regard to the honour and dignity of the Crown." And at the same time, as your Grace will observe by a copy of their Excise bill, which I have sent your Grace inclosed, tho' not yet passed the Council, they have shewn very little regard to the Crown, and would encroach upon the King's prerogative, as is evident from the several provisions they have now put in this Excise bill: "That a particular account of all such necessaries and utensils be first laid before the Assembly to be by them inspected, regulated, and approved of, and they thereon address the Governor etc., and Council for the payment thereof; and the Treasurer for the time being is hereby strictly enjoyned and required not to pay or allow of any order or orders that shall be granted or obtained for the payment of such necessarys and utensils, unless such order or orders be obtained in manner aforesaid, and the Committee of publick accounts for the time being is hereby strictly required and enjoyned, not to allow of any order or orders that shall be granted or obtained for the payment of such necessarys or utensils, unless the same be obtained in manner aforesaid, to the credit of the Treasurer for the time being, upon his accounting with them, any law, usage, or custome to the contrary notwithstanding." For keeping the Magazine buildings in repair, "for which no summ or summs of money shall be paid to any person or persons whatsoever by the Treasurer for the time being, on any order or orders that shall be hereafter past, but such only as shall be addressed for by the General Assembly, and obtained in the same manner as is herein before appointed in this clause, nor shall they, or any of them, be allowed of by the Committee of publick accounts to the credit of the Treasurer, on his accounting with them"etc. An attempt of this nature was never yet made before in this Island, and contrary to H.M. 34th Instruction to me, and having notice thereof, before the bill was read the second time for passing, I sent, by the Provost Marshall, an authentick copy of the said Instruction to be laid before the Assembly, yet they had no regard to it, and passed the bill the second time, and sent it to the Council, and upon perusing the bill, finding that it was not drawn so carefully but that it clashed with some other of H.M. Instructions; before the bill was read in Council, fearing least they might likewise pass it, I told them that they were H.M. Council in this Island, and that they might not be ignorant of H.M. commands, I had ordered the Clerke to lay before them H.M. 15th, 16th, 21st and 34th Instruction to me. Upon which the Council made amendments to the bill nemine contradicente, which, with the bill, were sent down to the Assembly etc. Refers to enclosed Minutes of Council. Continues :—To which the Assembly disagreed, and desired a conference with the Council, which the Council agreed to the next day, and a Committee was appointed to confer with a Committee of the Assembly, and after the Conference was over, the Committee of the Council made their report to the Council, and sent it down to the Assembly, and at the same time desired to know if what they had therein reported to the Council, were their reasons for not concurring with the Council in their said amendments, and if there was anything added, or diminished, that they would set it right, and return it in writing, and then the Council would return an answer thereto etc. (v. Minutes of Council and Assembly). I must now beg leave to make some observations from the Minutes of the present Assembly; On the 13th of July, the first day they met, they sent two Members to me to know to what time they should adjourn, but have since that adjourned of their own accord ; In their Minutes of the 25th past they agreed to a petition to H.M. of grievances, and tho' it passed the House, yet it was not ordered to be entered in their Minutes, so that I can't have a sight of it, but I am told it is much the same they sent last year, when thirteen of them met together tho' they were then prorogued; In the Minutes of the 5th instant, they chose a new Speaker, and Collo. Peers was chose nemine contradicente, indeed I had approved of him before at the beginning of the Sessions, but yet I think they ought to have known if I would approve of him, their custome is to choose a new Speaker after every four sittings; In the Minutes of the same day they have passed a bill to exclude the Members of the General Assembly from certain offices civil and military, which was rejected last year. In the Minutes of the 8th of August, there is somthing very particular in Mr. McMahon's Speech, "that they could not with any regard to the rights, properties, or libertys of the people they represent, recede from what they had proposed and agreed to in the said bill." The same Gentleman makes an observation upon me, which indeed proceeded from a mistake in the Clerk of the Council, in minuting, that the report was made to me and the Council, tho' I did no ways vote with them, and only appointed the Committee, which the Council told me I ought to do, and it has always been the practice upon the passing of all bills, for the Governor to be present, and whenever the prerogative of the Crown interferes with the interest of these people, it may not be thought unnecessary, especially since the Assembly say upon this head, that their interest, and that of the Council, is all one ; (v. Report of Committee of Council). I am at a loss to know what they mean by the rights, properties, and liberties of the people; in this very strain they talk't last year, and how far they may carry it I can't tell. I think they have none but what appears in H.M. Commission and Instructions to his Governour, and I am induced to believe it, not only from the repeal of an Act to ascertain the rights and powers of the General Assembly, as abovementioned, but also from the repeal of an Act passed 1697, for the better securing the liberties of H.M. subjects etc., which is the very same as the Habeas Corpus Act in England, and was repealed the 9th of July, 1702, tho' they do enjoy the benefit of it by H.M. Instructions to the Governour. The 12th instant the Assembly sat, and taking into consideration the Council's message in relation to the Committee of Council's report etc. (supra) they ordered that a copy of their Minutes relating to the Excise bill, should be forthwith delivered to the Clerk of the Council, and the Council sitting the next day, it was laid before them, by which your Grace will see, that the Assembly insist upon having given full and weighty reasons to the Committee of the Council, for their disagreeing to their amendments to the Excise bill, and that the Committee of Council had not reported their reasons to the Council, as they were urged, and that they were ready to confer with the Council on the Excise bill, and their amendments which they had disagreed to; After the said Minutes were read, the Council sent a message to the Assembly in the words following :—"The Council having observed by the Minutes of the Assembly, that the Gentlemen of that House had suggested, that the Committee of the Council appointed to confer with them about the amendments made to the Excise bill, had misrepresented their meaning in several particulars, have resolved, in order to prevent any misunderstanding for the future, and to shew their readiness to joyn with them in everything that is consistent with their duty, and the publick good, that they will draw up their reasons in writing for making such amendments (for which purpose they have appointed a Committee) and that a copy of such their reasons should be sent to them etc. But as I believe the Assembly will not agree to the amendments of the Council, I am afraid they will not pass another Excise bill, tho' I should prorogue them (as I guess I shall be obliged to do) after such a manner as the Council can pass, or I give my assent to, until H.M. commands in relation to these amendments shall be signified; and what makes me the more apprehensive of it is, that the same notions of the rights, libertys and properties of the people are almost universally imbib'd by the inhabitants of this Island. P.S. The Amendments of the Council to the Excise bill are in the Minutes of the 6th inst. etc. Signed, Henry Worsley. Endorsed, Rd. Oct. 8th. 13 pp. Enclosed,
362. i. Excise bill as passed by the Assembly, 25th July, 1728. Copy. 27 ¼ pp [C.O. 28, 44. No. 122 (covering letter only); and (enclosure only) 28, 39. No. 49.]
Aug. 14.
Barbados.
363. Governor Worsley to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Duplicate of preceding covering letter, mutatis mutandis. Signed, Henry Worsley. Endorsed, Recd. 7th, Read 15th Oct., 1728. 13 pp. Enclosed,
363. i. Governor Worsley's Speech to the Assembly. Proposes loyal address and recommends passing of the Excise Bill and repair of fortifications etc. "We cannot be too zealous in demonstrating our loyalty and duty to H.M., and in inculcating the same principles amongst the people of this island etc. Those only who have such principles can expect my countenance and favour." Copy. Certified by Wm. Webster, D. Secry. 1 p.
363. ii. Address of the Assembly of Barbados to Governor Worsley. July 25, 1728. 'Tis with hearts filled with zeal and humble affection to H.M. most sacred person, and Government, that wee the Representatives of H.M. most dutifull, and loyal subjects etc. do acknowledge your Excy's. favour, in giving us this oppertunity of appearing their choice in the first Assembly, under our most gracious Sovereign. Wee most unfeignedly acknowledge the inestimable goodness of the divine Providence in securing to us the succession of so heroic, so glorious and so deservedly beloved a Prince, to the Throne of his royal Father, our late dear Sovereign Lord, etc., from whose royal influence only wee, in common with his other subjects can hope for the security of our libertys and the enjoyment of our religious and civil rights. These, may it please your Excellency, are the well known sentiments, not only of ourselves, but of all the inhabitants of this Island whom wee represent, who have never omitted laying hold of any occasion to demonstrate to the world their loyalty, and duty to H.M., and the sincere warm affection, long since kindled in their bosoms, in favour of a Protestant King, in preference to a popish Pretender; and therefore 'tis matter of surpriz and affliction to us to observe in your Excellency's Speech, an insinuation, as if some among us, or the people wee represent were wanting in principles founded in loyalty, or duty to so excellent a monarch. Sure wee are, a charge of this nature, as it has no foundation, will find credit nowhere; nor shall such a misrepresentation have any other effect on our conduct than to incite us by a constant persevering in the same principles, wee have hitherto profest, and acted by, ever full of loyalty duty and affection to his present Majesty, to satisfy the world that wee have no ways deserved it, and that however wanting wee may be in other respects wee are not behind any of H.M. subjects in loyalty duty and affection to him. Wee now beg leave to assure your Excellency that if wee are not obstructed by long adjournments and prorogations, wee shall chearfully enter on the publick business, and dispatch it with the utmost application. 'Tis with concern wee are forced to appeal to the Minutes of ye last Assembly for a proof of the many unhappy consequences frequent prorogations may be attended with in respect to the prosperity and welfare of this poor island, by preventing the representative body from even proposing any advantages to trade or redressing any grievances the people labour under. And as the ruinous condition of the forts, batterys and fortifications must give the inhabitants dismal apprehensions of greater calamities than they have yet felt, at a time especially when our enemies the Spaniards have taken our ships in the latitude, wee cannot may it please your Excellency, but humbly represent to you that unless effectual methods may speedily be pointed out and provision made for repairing them, wee shall of all H.M. subjects in the Collonys be most exposed to ruin and desolation. And as it becomes us from the trust reposed in us by the People, not to conceal from your Excellency the true state of their condition, wee humbly take leave further to represent to your Excellcy. that the large tax which the inhabitants have been obliged for several years past to pay for your Excy's use (the payment whereof brings almost the whole currt. cash of this Island yearly into your Excy.'s coffers, and thereby in great measure stagnates trade, and at the same time lowers the value of all our countrey produce) hath so reduced them, and drained the island that they cannot support the load of any new impositions (the annual excise excepted) and therefore if that heavy tax be continued, unless your Excellency will for the dignity of the Government, apply a reasonable proportion thereof towards the repair of the forts, batterys and fortifications they must, for some time at least, remain in the wretched condition they are now in etc. Wee shall lose no time in passing the Excise bill, nor shall we be wanting to propose all such other bills as in our humble apprehensions shall tend to the publick peace, welfare and good Government of the Island, with dutyfull regard to the honour and dignity of the Crown. Signed, Robt. Warren, Cl. of the Assembly. Endorsed, Read 7th Oct., 1728. Copy. 3 ¾ pp.
363. iii. Address of the Assembly of Barbados to the (late) King. 16th Feb., 1720. Complain of the measures taken by President Sharpe to encourage the enemies of H.M. House and permission of trade with the French, and of his continual adjournments of the House etc. Signed, Edmund Sutton, Speaker and 19 others. Endorsed as preceding. Copy. 3 pp.
363. iv. Duplicate of No. 362 i. Same endorsement. [C.O. 28, 20. ff. 2–8, 9v., 10, 11–12v., 13v.–16, 17–30v.]
Aug. 15.
Hampton
Court.
364. Order of King in Council. Approving representation of Board of Trade, and ordering that the Governor of Barbados recommend the Assembly to make immediate payment of what is found due to Mr. Whitworth for his fees as Secretary, and for the future etc. Set out, A.P.C. III, No. 154. q.v. Signed, Ja. Vernon. 1 2/3rd pp. Endorsed, Recd. 19th Oct., Read 20th Nov., 1728. 1 ¾ pp. Enclosed,
364. i. Account of fees due to Mr. Whitworth as Secretary of Barbados. Total, £1333 12s. 6d. Signed, Frans. Whitworth. 2 ½ pp. [C.O. 28, 39. Nos. 45, 45 i ; and (without enclosure) 28, 20. ff. 70, 70v., 71v.]
[Aug. 15.]365. (1) Order of Council, 28th March, with instructions to Col. Dunbar. Copy. 2 ½ pp.
(2) Order by the Lords Commissioners of H.M. Treasury upon above. Copy. 2 pp.
(3) H.M. Instructions to David Dunbar, Surveyor General of the Woods on the Continent of America. Richmond. 13th June, 1728. Copy. 6 pp.
(4) H.M. Warrant for salaries for Col. Dunbar (for marking the 200,000 acres in Nova Scotia) £200; and his deputies (£100 each) 25th June, 1728. And for two deputies, shipscarpenters, £100 each, and £200 for assistant surveyors etc. Richmond. 25th June, 1728. Copy. 5 pp. The whole endorsed, Copys from the originals reed, from Col. Dunbar, 15th Aug., Read 20th Nov., 1728. [C.O. 323, 8. Nos. 97, 97 I–ii.]