America and West Indies
November 1708, 22-30

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Institute of Historical Research

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Cecil Headlam (editor)

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1922

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151-164

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'America and West Indies: November 1708, 22-30', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 24: 1708-1709 (1922), pp. 151-164. URL: http://british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=73791 Date accessed: 25 October 2014.


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November 1708, 22-30

Nov. 22.
Whitehall.
200. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Recommend Francis Phips for the Council of St. Kitts in place of Col. Crisp, decd.; and Wm. Byam for the Council of Antigua, in place of Barry Tankard, recommended to be dismissed for neglecting to attend. [C.O. 153, 10. pp. 219, 220.]
[Nov. 22.]201. Sir John Bennet to Mr. Popple. Desires copies of papers, in order to the vindication of Lt. Governor Bennet from Mr. Jones' complaints, etc. Endorsed, Recd., Read Nov, 22, 1708. 1½ pp. [C.O. 37, 8. No. 72.]
Nov. 23.
Jamaica.
202. Governor Handasyd to the Council of Trade and Plantations. The packett boat returning into port after she had been at sea near a month in her way home, I take this opportunity to give you an account of what has happen'd since mine by the same boat. I acquainted your Lops. of the seizure of a brigantine by the Navall Officer, for which there is a suit now commenced against him at Common Law by one of the Councill, Col. Thompson: I desire to know what methods I shall take in this and the like cases, where prizes are brought in by our vessells without commission or letter of marque, and where any vessells from another port or place, that have sold their prizes bring in the hostages, that I may prevent such practices, which if continued, will be great encouragements to piracy: I am told it is likewise a custom among our privateers, after they have plunder'd the prizes they take, to put the prisoners ashore and sink the vessells without bringing in any of the prisoners to condemn them, by which means the Lord High Admirall is deprived of his tenths. Two or three days ago came in a privateer ship and sloop that took off the Havanna a barco longo, with betwixt £30,000 and 40,000 in coined and uncoined gold and silver, as I am informed: at the same time they very narrowly missed of a brigantine, that had on board near two millions of mony, which was occasioned by the brigantine's having our privateer's signall from a long boat she had taken a little before. All other matters are the same as in my last. We had an earthquake two nights ago but has done no damage that I hear of. Signed, Tho. Handasyd. Endorsed, Recd. Jan. 19, Read Feb. 23, 1708/9. 2 pp. [C.O. 137, 8. No. 28; and 138, 12. pp. 361, 362.]
Nov. 23.
Whitehall.
203. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Repeat arguments against the Act of Maryland (1707) empowering the farmers of Lord Baltimore's rents to recover arrears etc., and recommend its repeal. [Cf. Feb. 20, 1708.] [C.O. 5, 727. pp. 96–98.]
Nov. 24.204. Loque yo tengo que proponer Alxa. Es nego cio de gran considerazioni mucho utilpa. estereino isin Acergastos. Es enla America en los dominios de Portugal. Pa. este efecto yo declarare Lafor ma por escrito con las circustancias necesarias. Mas es menes terque lxa (?) ia que Ami nome permita la honra de ablar le sesirua de ablar Ahora. A Mer. Jones puis nosiendoasi no po dre io Açer los papeles Alxa. cuia pa. g. dsm. a. Endorsed, Mattamoro, etc. Portuguese. ¾ p. [C.O. 318, 3. No. 36.]
Nov. 25.
St. James's
205. Order of Queen in Council. The Board of Ordnance are to make an estimate of the charge of the ordnance stores proposed for New Hampshire, Nov. 8. Endorsed, Recd., Read Dec 20, 1708. 1¼ pp. [C.O. 5, 865. No. 7; and 5, 913. p. 36.]
Nov. 25.
St. James's.
206. Order of Queen in Council. Francis Phips is appointed to the Council of St. Kitts. Of. Nov. 22. Signed, William Blathwayt. Endorsed, Recd. 15th, Read 17th Jan., 1708/9. 1½ pp. [C.O. 152, 8. No. 4; and 153, 10. pp. 263, 264.]
Nov. 25.
St. James's.
207. Order of Queen in Council. Barry Tankard is removed from the Council of Antegoa, and William Byam appointed in his place. Cf. Nov. 22. Signed and endorsed as preceding. 1½ pp. [C.O. 152, 8. No. 4.A.; and 153, 10. pp. 264, 265.]
Nov. 25.
Whitehall.
208. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Handasyd. Since our letter of Aug. 25, a duplicate whereof is here enclosed, we have received yours of July 20, 1708. You have not yet fully answer'd the question we asked you, March 26th last, relating to 6 ships of war you had proposed for Jamaica. What we desire to know is whether you mean 6 ships over and above the squadron which is annually appointed to attend your Government. This therefore we expect you will clear, before we can proceed any further thereupon. Your answer to what we writ you about Counsellors claiming a priviledge of not being sued for debts is satisfactory. But if any complaint be made in that matter, we shall then more fully consider what you have writ thereupon. We expect that by the next packet we shall receive from you the account of Negroes we had desired, and which you promised. But in case it be not dispatched by that time, we desire you to get it done as soon as possible, it being for H.M. service. We are very glad to perceive the magazine at Port Royal is in such forwardness as you mention, and that your Regiment is so near being compleated. We shall take notice of the good character you give Commodore Wager as opportunity offers. But on this occasion we must take notice that you have neglected to give us an account of the value of the prizes taken by him. H.M. has been pleased to appoint Mr. Valentine Mumby a Member of ye Councill of Jamaica in the room of Mr. John Ascough, and Mr. Francis Oldfield standing now the first upon our list we shall be mindfull of him upon the first vacancy. We have only to add that you have not returned us any answer to the third paragraph of our letter of Jan. 29 relating to the transmitting us the Journals of the Assembly, which therefore we do expect. [C.O. 138, 12. pp. 338, 339.]
Nov. 25.
Whitehall.
209. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Parke. Acknowledge letters of June 21, July 1 and 7th. We have laid before H.M. what you write concerning the absence of officers; and we doubt not but effectual care will be taken to prevent their leaving their posts for the future. When the Minutes of Antigoa and Mountserrat arrive, we will consider the same. In the meantime we must take notice that you have done well in not passing the Bill proposed by the Assembly of Antigoa, and in pursuing your Instructions in that matter, as well as in supporting the rights of the Crown. As to what you write in relation to the augmenting your salary, we do not think it proper for us to propose any alteration therein. We cannot doubt but your services will so recommend you to the respective Assemblys of each Island, that as their circumstances will admit, they will comply with H.M. directions in relation to house rent. You may be assured upon all occasions of our doing you right, and particularly in case any complaints against you do come. We shall not represent you to H.M. as guilty till you have had an opportunity of clearing yourself. We have represented to H.M. what you write in relation to Mr. Barry Tankard, and have offered that Col. Byam be appointed of the Council in his stead. But we must take notice that you have exceeded your Instructions in swearing Col. Byam into the Councill of Antigoa, and Mr. Phips into the Councill of St. Christophers, it appearing to us that there were 7 upon each Island: for tho' some of the Members be sick and not in a condition to come to the Councill, yet they are to be reputed Counsellors till H.M. pleasure be known to the contrary. Besides we must further take notice that though you have named to us persons fit to supply vacancies that may happen in those Councills, yet you have put in two Gentlemen not mention'd in those lists, which is not right, and we hope you will avoid it for the future. Mr. Perry the Provost Marshall has yet made no complaint of your having put Mr. Ayon into his place, if he do, we shall then consider what you write thereupon. We have laid before H.M. what you write in relation to the trade carryed on between Ireland and the French Islands in America, and we doubt not but effectual care will be taken therein. We have also laid before H.M. the Address from yourself, the Councill, and Assembly of St. Christophers. We expect the account of negroes we had desired from you, which being for H.M. service, we doubt not but you will dispatch the same in the most speedy and best manner you can. The difficulty you find in obtaining duplicates of publick papers from the respective offices is such, that we shall be obliged to lay it before H.M. But it is necessary that you should first send us a better account of the Patent Offices in the Leeward Islands, that is, a list of each respective office, held by Patent, with an account of each respective salary or yearly income, taking notice what deductions are made either by allowances to their Deputies, or otherwise. In your letter, St. Kitts, July 7, you say that you had endeavoured in vain to get a law passed for holding of Courts, and you wonder how their law came to be passed at the Leeward Islands and allowed by the Royall authority here; but you ought to have given us the title of that law, and to have acquainted us in what year it was made. Having considered the copy of a Bill you transmitted to us from Nevis, to oblige the inhabitants who shall refuse to adjust and settle their accounts with their creditors for debts contracted before the invasion of 1705/6, and having discoursed with the merchants trading to that Island, we must observe that there is no destinction in the said bill between such as are able and such as are not able to pay their debts contracted before the invasion; whereas those that are not able ought to have time allowed them, but those that are able and not willing should be proceeded against at law; and we further observe that since the hurricane in that Island, there may have been severall debts contracted, which ought not to be upon the same foot with those contracted before. Besides the said objections, we find that the Bill does in effect shut up the Courts, and stop the course of Justice for the space of three years, and in some cases much longer, which is not to be allowed of, and therefore you have done well in rejecting the same. But in case it shall be thought necessary, you may propose to the Assembly the passing of another Bill, that may not be liable to such objections, and that may lead to the good as well of the inhabitants and planters in the said Island, as of the merchants here. P.S. Refer to Orders in Council July 11th. [C.O. 153, 10. pp. 223–227.]
Nov. 25.
Whitehall.
210. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Crowe. Acknowledge letters of June 27 and July 3. We will not doubt of your care to prevent for the future such omissions in the Minutes of Council, concerning which we writ to you. It was great neglect in the Clerk of the Councill, and rendred those Minutes of very little use. As to what you write about the Spaniards coming to fetch negroes from Barbadoes, we have only this to say, that you will do well to give all the incouragement possible to the negroe trade with the Spaniards, having due regard to the Acts of Trade and Navigation, and to the particular laws of Barbadoes. Enclose correspondence relating to Mr. Pindar's petition for passes for Spanish ships. The account you have given us of the Patent Officers does not come up fully to what we had desired, and therefore wee expect that you give us a perfect list of all patent places, with an account of the yearly value, or income, of each place. We observe what the Grand Jury says in their Address to you relating to the 4½ p.c., upon which we think you ought to make application at the proper place in that matter, by the Agents of the Island, whose business it is, and then upon your giving us an account of their success, we shall doe what will be fitting for us therein. You have made us no answer to what we writ, March 25, in relation to the powder duty. Nor have you taken notice of the receipt of H.M. Order in Councill for repealing an Act allowing you £500 for House Rent, which you ought to have done, and therefore we expect it from you. H.M. has been pleased to appoint Mr. John Hallet to be a Member of the Councill of Barbadoes in the room of Mr. Frere decd., and the Order will have been sent you by Mr. Hallet's friends accordingly. An affidavit of William Bushel and Roger Richardson having been laid before us, relating to the said Bushel's being obliged by you to enter into bond of £500 that his ship the Laurel in her voyage from Barbadoes to this Kingdom should touch at some of the Leeward Islands, we enclose a copy, and expect that you will give us your reasons for obliging him to touch there, he not having any business there, nor none recommended to him by you for those Islands, and why the said bond should not be discharged, if not already done. Acknowledge letters of Aug. 17 and Sept. 6, touching complaints against you, which are of so very high a nature that we wonder you did not think yourself concern'd to give us an immediate answer to it, since you had notice of the complaint 5 days before the date of your last letter and the departure of the fleet, and had time (as we are informed) to lay several matters contained in that complaint before the Assembly. Tho' we shall not conclude you guilty of what is laid to your charge till you have had an opportunity of making good your defence, yet that we might not in the meantime be wanting to the safety and good government of that Island, we think it incumbent to lay those articles before H.M. for her directions therein. The Address you mention to be inclosed, Sept. 6, we have not received. [C.O. 29, 11. pp. 324–328.]
Nov. 25.
St. James's.
211. Order of Queen in Council. Repealing Act of Maryland empowering the farmers of Lord Baltemore's quit rents, etc. (Cf. Nov. 23, 1708, etc.) Signed, William Blathwayt. Endorsed. Recd. 15th, Read 17th Jan., 1708/9. 1½ pp. [C.O. 5, 716. No. 60; and 5, 727. pp. 118, 119; and 5, 720. No. 4.]
Nov. 25.212. Mr. Armstrong to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Prays, as Solicitor for Mr. Allen, for a perusal of papers relating to Mr. Mason's title as Proprietor of New Hampshire, "there being an appeale come over in order to try his title before H.M. and Council." Signed, Ro. Armstrong. Endorsed, Recd., Read Nov. 27, 1708. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 865. No. 4.]
Nov. 26.
Whitehall.
213. W. Popple to Josiah Burchet Esq. Encloses extract of letter from Governor Handasyd, Sept. 24, relating to Jamaica merchant fleet. [C.O. 138, 12. p. 347.]
Nov. 27.
Admiralty Office.
214. Josiah Burchett to Mr. Popple. Reply to preceding. Having had the same account from Rear Admiral Wager I send it to my Lord Dursley, who is cruizing in the Soundings and has directions to look out carefully for them. I desire you will acquaint the Lords of the Councill for Trade etc. that there is a squadron preparing to releive Rear Admiral Wager, and that it is hoped they may be ready by Dec. 20. Signed, J. Burchett. Endorsed, Recd., Read Nov. 29, 1708. 1 p. [C.O. 137, 8. No. 25; and 138, 12. p. 348.]
Nov. 27.
Virginia.
215. Col. Jenings to the Council of Trade and Plantations. It was the 11th of last moneth and the Fleet then sailed before I had the honour to receive your Lordships' of April 15 concerning the negro trade. Since which I have endeavoured by the means of the proper officers and the information of the ancient inhabitants to answer your Lordships' commands. Refers to enclosures. The seperate traders have had much the greater share. The medium rates for men and women may be reckoned from £20 to £30 a head for those sold by the Company, and from £20 to £35 a head for the like kinds sold by the seperate traders, who in genll. have sold theirs at a higher rate than the Company. How the Country was supplyed with negros before the Trade to Affrica was laid open in 1698, I have endeavoured to informe myself from some ancient inhabitants conversant in that trade, as well as by recollecting what hath happened in my own knowledge, and find that before 1680 what negros were brought to Virginia were imported generally from Barbados, for it was very rare to have a negro ship come to this country directly from Affrica; since that time, and before 1698 the trade of negros became more frequent, tho not in any proportion to what it hath been of late, dureing which the Affrican Company sent several ships, and others by their licence (as I have been informed) haveing bought their slaves of the Company brought them in hither for sale, among which I remember the late Alderman Jeffrys and Sir Jeffry Jeffrys were principally concerned, but all this time the price of the negros was currant from £18 to £23 per head for men and women, and never exceeded that rate. Whether the opening the trade to Affrica haveing created an emulation between the Company and the seperate traders which' should outbid the other in the purchase of their slaves there, or whether the dexterity of their Factors here in takeing advantage of the prevailing humour of our inhabitants for some years past of buying negros even beyond their ability, or the concurrence of both, hath raised the rates of negros so extravagantly, I shall not pretend to determine, but this I may venture to say, that it will be much harder to lower the price again now 'tis raised, unless there be the same ffreedome of trade continued as formerly, for tho' the inhabitants of this country in genll. will not now be so fond of purchaseing negros as of late, being sensibly convinced of their error, which has in a manner ruined the credit of the country, yet there will still be some that must, and others that will at any rate venture to buy them, and if the Company alone have the management of the trade, they'l find pretences enough to keep up the price, if not to impose what higher rate they please, which the buyer must submitt to, knowing he cannot be supplyed by any other hand. As for vessells tradeing directly from this place to the coast of Affrica, I never knew of any, nor is the same practicable, this country not being provided with commoditys suitable for carrying such a trade, etc. P.S. The Instructions to our late Governor were sealed up at his death, and were not opened till I had the honour of being intrusted with the Government etc., else I should not have failed in sending the account of negroes required therein. Signed, E. Jenings. Endorsed, Recd. 16th April, Read 3rd May, 1709. 2 pp. Enclosed,
215. i. List of negros imported from Barbados to Virginia, 1699—1708. Total, 236 in 3 ships. Endorsed as preceding. ½ p.
215. ii. List of negroes imported to Virginia direct from Africa, June 24, 1699—Oct. 12, 1708. 36 ships. Total negroes imported by the African Company, 679; by the separate traders, 5692. Same endorsement. 1 large p. [C.O. 5, 1316. Nos. 15, 15.i., ii.; and (without enclosures) 5, 1362. pp. 365–367.]
Nov. 27.
Virginia.
216. Same to Same. Reply to May 7, 1707, hoping my late receipt thereof (wch. was not till the begining of last June) with what I writt by the Fleet of the sickness of several of the Council (whose advice I thought necessary) will plead my excuse for making so late a return. I hope I have already complyed with your Lordships' direction in sending the Journals of Council (which contain all the material transactions of the Government) as often as there has been a safe conveyance, and shal continue the like care for the future, tho the casualtys of the war will necessarily make that transmission less frequent than I could wish. I have by former occasions, and now again by this, sent the names of Councillors, etc. As to the number of inhabitants, according to the list of tithables taken this year (wch. is the best way to judge of their number) I have computed the labouring tithable persons to be about 30,000, whereof about 12,000 negros, the rest being almost all free men; for the number of white servants is so inconsiderable that they scarce deserve notice, so few having been imported since the begining of this war. So that by comparing list with those of former years, the number of tithable persons (among which are included all masters of familys and their male children above the age of 16) have increased within these three years about 3000, partly by the natives coming of age, but chiefly by the importation of negros. It is possible that when yr. Lordps. shal compare this estimate with the list of negros imported of late (supra), yr. Lordps. may be induced to expect a far greater encrease of our numbers; but besides the distempers usual among new negros, wch. carry off not a few of them, many of our poorer sort of inhabitants daily remove into our neighbouring Colonys, especially to North Carolina, which is the reason that the number of our inhabitants doth not increase proportionably to what might be expected. Refers to enclosures i.–iv. Since the late Act for setling the Militia, they begin to be better arm'd than formerly, and I hope the continuing the due execution of that Law will oblige all to provide themselves, tho I cannot help observing to your Lordps. that the low price of their tobacco is a great hindrance to what I believe they are well enough inclined to do in this particular. The number of ships etc. belonging to the inhabitants of this Colony, it is so inconsiderable that I think it unnecessary to trouble yr. Lordps. with a particular list of them, there being only 6 ships (the largest not exceeding 150 tunns), eight brigantines and two sloops now belonging to the countrey, besides those open shallops wch. carry tobacco for the ships and sometimes trade from one River to another (wch. I believe yr. Lordps. do not mean should be listed with the others). All which ships, vessells and coasting shallops imploy about 200 seafaring men, and of those but few able sailors, such going generally to Pensilvania and the Northern Proprietary Governments, where they receive greater encouragement than the small trade of this country will afford them. Besides the ships and vessells abovementioned there are not at this time any ship or vessell tradeing hither of this country built, diverse which have been built here of late haveing in their first voyages had the misfortune of falling into the hands of the enemy. Refers to enclosure ii. It contains a complaint of some new and unusual proceedings of the Governor of South Carolina in seizing the effects of our Indian traders and interrupting that trade from which a great part of the revenue of the College [of William and Mary] doth arise, and indeed is a very profitable trade to many of the inhabitants of this country. Tho' the interruption complained of be upon the matter owned by the Governor of S. Carolina, yet because I would not trouble yr. Lordps. with any complaints against our neighbour governments without such authentick proofs as may make the matter undeniable, I have with the advice of the Council appointed the affidavits of the traders to be taken, which I shall send by the first conveyance for your Lordps.' further satisfaction. Humbly submitting how far (on the reasons laid down in the said Memorial) H.M. service and the interest of Great Brittain may be concerned to protect the trade of this H.M. Colony from the new raised pretensions of a Proprietary Government. Signed, E. Jenings. Endorsed, Recd. April 16th, Read May 3rd, 1709. 2 pp. Enclosed,
216 i. Reply of the Council of Virginia to the enquiries of the Council of Trade and Plantations, May 7, 1707. At the Capitol, Oct. 19, 1708. (1). The chief cause of the removal of the inhabitants of this Colony into the neighbouring Plantations is the want of land, the most convenient land yet unpatented being on Pamunky Neck and on the south side Blackwater Swamp, and that shutt up by the orders of the Government; this has occasioned many familys of old inhabitants, whose former plantations are worne out, as well as a great number of young people and servants just free to seek for settlements in the Province of North Carolina, where land is to be had on much easier termes than here, not a few have obtained grants from that Government of the very same land which they would have taken up from this, if liberty had been given for it. For preventing whereof, it is humbly proposed that the bounds between Virginia and Carolina be settled as soon as may be, and that free liberty be given to all persons to take up lands anywhere within the bounds of Virginia in the termes mentioned in the Charter granted by H.M. King Charles II., and according to the constant custome of granting land in the country from the first settlement thereof. Another cause is the exemption granted in most of the Proprietary Governments from being sued for debts contracted in other places; this encourages a great many people of uneasy circumstances or dishonest inclinations to run thither to avoid their creditors and secure themselves a safe retreat. And even in N. Carolina, where Virginia debts are pleadable, there are such difficultys in the prosecution thereof, partly by the distractions of that country, which has no settled Government, and partly by the protection those debtors find among persons of like circumstances and principles, that it is but lost labour to sue them. (2). The staple commodity of this country being tobacco is only exported to Great Brittain, and returnes made in the manufactures thereof and other commoditys brought directly from thence. This country hath no manner of supplys of any European manufactures (except a very little to the plantations) but only from Great Brittain. There's very little trade carryed on by the inhabitants of this Colony to any of H.M. Plantations, what trade they have is to the Island of Barbados, to which they export Indian corne, pork, pitch, tarr, lumber and sometimes a little tobacco, in exchange of which they import rum, sugar, molasses, a little cocoa and ginger, but a great part of the commoditys of that Island are purchased by bills of Exchange; from New England are imported rum, sugar, molasses, Madera and Fiall wine, fish and wooden ware; exported thither corne, pork, and some tobacco and money. From New York and Pensilvania imported rum, sugar, wine, bread, flower and beer; exported thither European goods, money and wheat. From S. Carolina and Bermudas, rum, sugar, Madera wine, salt, cocoa, and rice; exported thither flower, cyder, and European goods. All the trade with the above Plantations (except some part of the Barbados trade) is carryed on entirely in vessells belonging to the said Plantations. (3). There can't be an exact estimate made how much tobacco is exported hence, that being best known to the Commissioners of the Customes, but it is very plain the production of that manufacture has been encreasing for several years, as on the other hand the value thereof has proportionably decreased, which we conceive is occasioned by the great number of negros imported and the encrease of the inhabitants, who being only employed in that manufacture, there is much more made than can possibly be vended to any advantage. (4). Another branch of the trade of the country is the Indian trade for skins and ffurrs, in which great quantitys of course cloaths from England, powder, shott, guns, hatchets etc. have been vended annually, but this trade is now like to be totally wrested out of our hands by the Government of South Carolina, who under pretence that the Indian Nations with whom we trade live within their Government, take upon them to seize the effects of our traders and to impose high duties equal to a prohibition on all commoditys carryed thither from hence, and the like on the skins brought back; this is a new and strange pretence that Virginia, who traded with these Indians before the name of Carolina was known, should be now abridged, especially since most of the Indians with whom we trade live some hundreds of miles from any of the inhabitants of Carolina. (5). We know of no illegal trade carryed on in this Country, but for the more effectual suppressing of illegal trade, it is humbly proposed that proper officers be appointed to reside at the ports established here by Act of Assembly pursuant to H.M. Instructions, or at such of them as Commissioners of the Customes shall think fitt, and that the shiping may be directed to ride, lade and unlade there; this with a strict charge to the officers to be diligent in the execution of their duty would effectually put an end to all endeavours for illegal tradeing. (6). The manufactures of linnen, woolen and cotton have of late been sett up for supplying the pressing necessitys of the people, the price of tobacco being so low that for some years it hath not been sufficient to purchase cloaths for the makers thereof. Pitch and tar are also made in this Country enough to supply the occasions thereof and to export a little to the West Indies and much greater quantitys might be produced, if there were an encouraging market for it. (7). The Council offer their opinion that it is for H.M. service that the present restraint and prohibition on the takeing up of land be removed, and that H.M. would supersede the Instruction to Governor Nott concerning a new method of takeing up land, because the tenures of land in this country being founded on the Charters to the Virginia Company, and afterwards confirmed by the Charter of Charles II., are now so interwoven with our laws that it is not possible without the greatest confusion to make the alteration proposed in that Instruction. All the valuable and convenient land in the country is already taken up and patented according to the ancient constitutions of the country, and what remains now being remote from the conveniencys of trade is of little value, and only desirable because there is none else to be had. According to the method proposed in the said Instruction, there can be no such thing as a succession of inheritance in any lands, for supposeing by death or any other casualty a man should come to lose his servants or slaves for which his land was granted him, he must at the same time lose his land too, since such a casualty would disable him to pay the quitt-rent proposed, and so one misfortune would so unavoidably introduce another till at last perhaps after all his toil his land will be taken away by a stranger, etc. It is very apparent no land will ever be taken up here on the termes proposed, so long as there is any land to be had in our neighbouring Colonys on easier termes, for since the Propriety Governments, so long as their Charters are in being, cannot be abridged in granting their lands as they please, the introduceing of this kind of tenure in the Colonys under H.M. Government will only tend to the depopulateing of them, at least it can never be expected they should encrease in inhabitants for the future, since people will always go to those places where they may have land cheapest, and have a certainty of preserving it to their posterity. The restraining the takeing up land only to small tracts will be very prejudicial to H.M. interest, for if only small parcels, such as 100, 200 or 500 acres in a tract to be taken up, it will follow that the good land only will be patented, and the bad (which may be reckoned ¾th. of all that is yet to be taken up) will forever remain wast. Another thing of great concernment to H.M. service and the advantage of this Colony would be to confine the trade of this country (especially dureing the war) to regulate Fleets once a year, which may proceed from England in the moneth of September and return from hence in April, that no ship be permitted to sail to or from Virginia but in those Fleets, and that a sufficient convoy be appointed for them. By this means the market for tobacco would become certain and regular, and would not be damped by the reputation of interveneing ships, the planters would be supplyed with goods and cloathing before winter, and their industry encouraged by haveing something for their labour, and the sickness of the seamen, and the danger of the worme so frequent and fatal to the ships and seamen in the summer prevented. Lastly, that there be a sufficient guard appointed for our coast, which we humbly conceive cant be less than one ship of good force and another small vessell of 10 or 12 guns fitt to pursue the enemy's small privateers among the fflatts and shoal water; the want of such a guard has been an extraordinary loss to the trade of this country for these two years past, the enemy's privateers intercepting almost all the small vessells both outward and inward bound, and sometimes even within our Capes and in sight of H.M. ships of war, who were too bulky to follow such small light vessells, and without such a guard we have reason to beleive not only our trade will be destroyed, but even the country plundered. Endorsed as preceding. 4¾ pp.
216. (ii.) (a). The Visitors and Governors of the College of William and Mary to Edmund Jennings, President, and the Council of State. Whereas the General Assembly thought fitt to grant to the sd. College an imposition on all skins and furrs exported, which is one of the most considerable branches of the Revenue of the College, and arises by a trade for many years carryed on with the Southern and Western Indians etc. Complain of the action of the Government of Carolina as supra. The Indians concerned are not under that Government. The laying dutys on European commoditys exported through any plantation to another hath never been encouraged. The goods vended being imported by this Colony directly from England, whereas Carolina has constant clandestine trade with St. Thomas' and Currasoa, and import European goods from thence, if Carolina is allowed to engross this trade, English trade will suffer. Besides they have not such conveniencys of shiping from England as the inhabitants of this Colony have to furnish them with supplys, so that they neither export from England such quantitys, nor can afford to sell them so cheap. And since it is the interest of England to encourage that trade which exports most of the British manufactures, the Trustees humbly hope that by your Honours' favourable representation of this case to the Council of Trade the unwarrantable encroachments of the Government of Carolina will receive a check etc. (b). Minute of Council of Virginia, Oct. 28, 1708. Resolulution ut supra. Endorsed as preceding. 2½ pp.
216. iii. (a). List of the Council of Virginia.
(b). List of persons fit to supply vacancies in the Council:—Wm. Byrd, Wm. Randolph, John Page, Miles Cary, Wm. Wilson, Gawen Corbin, Wm. Armistead, of Gloucester, Arthur Allen, Wm. Taylor, Wm. Fitzhugh, Edwd. Hill, David Bray. Same endorsement. 2 pp.
216. iv. List of Militia of Virginia, 1708. Totals:—Captains and subalterns, 1060; horse, 2211, dragoons, 1221, foot, 6140. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1316. Nos. 16, 16.i.–iv.; and (letter and enclosure 1 only) 5, 1362. pp. 369–382.]
Nov. 29.217. Capt. Vetch to the Council of Trade and Plantations. As to what your Lops. seem desierous to be further informed of, with relation to the numbers of the inhabitants of Canada; As to the French, I am almost moraly sure their number does not exceed 5000, for, besides the accounts I have had from their Missonarys, their merchants, their Indian traders, non of which ever aledged them to be above that number, the present Intendant of that place, M. Rodot, when talking with me of them, and who, I found, designed rather to magnify than lessen their numbers, sayd that by the accounts he had gott from the Curates of the severall parishes, he found them to be full 5,000, of which we may allow near one half to be men, there being but few French women there, the men having a reward of 60 crowns each for marying ane Indian women. As to the number of the Indians who joyn with them in warr, I cannott be so particular, for they have a great many nations who trade with them, who doe not att all joyn in warr, may, that never come within 3 or 400 miles of Quibeck or Montreal, such as the Ottouauas, the Onagongoes, the Ilianoes, nay, quite to Missasippi, but for such as are constantly along with them in warr, I know only of five litle forts (as they call them), which is only a piece of ground palisadoed round, in which are perhaps 40 or 50 Indian familys, living in wigwams, or litle hutts, and with them generaly about 20 French and ane Officer, as well to keep them firme to their intrest, as to manage their furr trade, and prevent the Indians carrying them to Albany, as they used offten formerly to doe. The names of those five forts I find (in the lists, where our prisoners were, whom I got exchanged), to be (1) Fort Covetto, within 12 miles of Quibeck; St. Francis fort, near Trois Riviers, Chnacknawago, betwixt that and Montreal; Conosadago, about 12 miles above Montreal, and Fort Louis, att the fals above that, about 20 miles. All the judgement I can make of their numbers is only according to the opinion of the people of Albany, and our Five Nations, who judge the French fighting Indians to be near double ours, yet not able to encounter them, because not so warlike; from whence I believe they may be 800 or 900, but so dispersed, that it would take them above a month's time to bring them all in a body to one place. Endorsed, Recd. Read Nov. 29, 1708. 1 p. [C.O. 323, 6. No. 72; and 324, 9. pp. 266–268.]
Nov. 30.
St. James's.
218. The Queen to the Attorney or Solicitor General. Instructions to prepare a warrant for the appointment of William Norris to be Naval Officer in Jamaica in place of Barnaby Jenkins, decd., with a clause for obliging him to reside there, etc. Countersigned, Sunderland. [C.O. 5, 210. pp. 174, 175.]
[Nov. 30.]219. Addresses, Minutes, and Papers relating to Barbados, presented to the Council of Trade and Plantations by Messrs. William Heysham and Mr. Royle, as described Journal of Council, Nov. 30, 1708. Endorsed, Recd. Nov. 30, Read Dec. 1, 1708. 28 pp. [C.O. 28, 11. Nos. 30–39.]
Nov. 30.
Whitehall.
220. Wm. Popple to the Merchants trading to Jamaica. Gives notice of correspondence concerning the Jamaica merchant fleet, Sept. 4, Nov. 26, 27. q.v. [C.O. 138, 12. p. 349.]