America and West Indies
December 1708, 1-15


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'America and West Indies: December 1708, 1-15', Calendar of State Papers Colonial, America and West Indies, Volume 24: 1708-1709 (1922), pp. 164-182. URL: Date accessed: 23 November 2014.


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December 1708, 1-15

Dec 1.
221. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Earl of Sunderland. Having during your Lordship's absence received H.M. directions from Mr. Secretary Boyle to report our opinion upon Capt. Vetch's Memorial, we inclose following:—
221. i. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Report upon Capt. Vetch's Scheme. The great advantages of the Plantation Trade to this Kingdom, and to your Majesty's Revenue, are so well known that we will not presume to trouble your Majesty with particular instances thereof, yet must humbly begg leave to say that your Islands in the West Indies will not be able to carry on their trade, or even to subsist (especially in time of war) without the necessary supplies from those northern Plantations of bread, drink, fish and flesh, of cattle and horses for cultivating their plantations, of lumber and staves for casks for their sugar, rum and molosses, and of timber for building their houses and sugar works. As an inducement to your Majesty's engaging in a vigourous attempt upon the French in those parts, we shall now lay before your Majesty a short view of the dammages the said Plantations have sustained by the neighbourhood of the French on that Continent. Quote Capt. Vetch July 27, Nov. 17 and 29, q.v. We humbly begg leave to offer that it will highly tend to the ease and security of your Majesty's subjects in America, and to the increase of that trade so beneficial to Great Britain, if the French be driven from their settlements on the Northern Continent. But whether the manner of doing it (proposed by Capt. Vetch) may be proper and effectual to that end, as it consists of matters purely military, we shall not presume to judge; and therefore most humbly submit the same to your Majesty. [C.O. 324, 9. pp. 268–289; and (covering letter and part of enclosure only) 5, 1084. Nos. 39, 39.i.]
[Dec. 1.]222. Alexander Walker to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Reply to the complaint of the Assembly of Barbados against him. Cf. Dec. 3, and Journal of Council, Nov. 30, Dec. 1. Endorsed, Recd, from Mr. Gillibrand, Read Dec. 1, 1708. Enclosed,
222. i. Petition of Alexander and William Walker to Governor Crowe for a public examination into the reasons for the commitments of George Lillington and Richard Downs, etc. No such order could be obtained. Aug. 31, 1708. 1½ pp.
222. ii. Minutes of Assembly of Barbados, Aug. 31, 1708. 2 pp.
222. iii. Petition of Wm. Sharpe, Alexander Walker, and Samuel Beresford to Governor Crowe, for a Council to be held this day. Sept. 1, 1708. H.E. refused. Signed, William Sharpe, Alexander Walker, Samuel Beresford. 1 p.
222. iv. Address of the Assembly of Barbados to Governor Crowe. Duplicate. 3 pp.
222. v. Address of the Assembly of Barbados to Governor Crowe for the dismissal of Alexander Walker from the Council for having been bribed by Mr. Holder to promote the Paper Act. Aug. 31, 1708. Copy. 2 pp. [C.O. 28, 11. Nos. 24–29.]
Dec. 2.
Falmouth, H.M.S. Warwick.
223. Commodore Mitchell to Mr. Popple. I arrived safe with all my fleet at Newfoundland May 13, and sail'd from Newfoundland Oct. 23 following, and parted with the Advice, Looe, and Nightingall the 24th, they being bound for the Streights and the Winchelsea for Oporto. The store-ships arrived a day or two before I sailed, and is arrived safe at Falmouth, Nov. 25, and I have here sent an[d] account of all my proceedings in Newfoundland, etc. When I received my commission from H.M., I immediately summoned all ye inhabitants, masters of ships, soldiers and all others in St. Johns to appear in Fort William, and to give me an acct. of what alligations they had against the Major, which will be laid before their Honors in a short time. Signed, Jno. Mitchell. Endorsed, Recd. 6th, Read 9th Dec., 1708. Addressed. Sealed. Postmark. 1 p. Enclosed,
223. i. Answers to Heads of Enquiry relating to Newfoundland, (See March 12, 1708). (1). There being no penalties in the Act, 'tis amongst ye inhabitants invalued. (3). 35. (4). None. (5) and (6). No complaint was made to me as to this. (7). The by-boat keepers and fishing ships do carry over such number of green men as they are capable to get, and acquaint me that, att the entry of them on board, do according to the Act, but never can produce me any certificate of the same. (8) and (9). These articles are observed. (10). I did not know any case. (11). The rules are observed as far as do consist by their way of trade. (12). The Admiralls are carefull to see yt. the Rules of the Act be discoursed on, provided it does not touch a Customer, and they gave me Journalls and an acct. of the fishery. (13). If any difference doth arise where each Admirall's customer is concerned, there will be a difference between them all, but without appealing to me, they do agree among themselves. (14). They are very carefull in carrying their press stones and ballace ashoar, and not filling the harbour up. (15). They do not go a-fishing on ye Sabbath day till 4 of ye clock in the afternoon, nor att Church, tho' I allways sent musqueteers att ye Lords of ye harbour to compell them, but it being the only victualling day, and all ye houses in St. Johns, both inhabitants and boat-keepers, sell all sorts liquour, they are forced by a file of musqueteers to pay ye Minister. (16). New England people, French Prodestants and Dutch privateers this year did resort thither. (18). All the inhabitants, boat-keepers and fishing ships do cure their fish wth. the best salt they can get, and make the most fish they can. (19). The inhabitants in curing their fish in St. John's harbour, with their offells, does not annoy ye said harbour, nor does it annoy them. (20). The planters and inhabitants have no other sustenance than what they get out of their own gardens. They have nothing from any of ye neighbouring islands. They that belongs to ye fishery att ye northward, after they have done, goes a-furring, but what quantity they get I know not, but what they have or bought by the New Englandmen. (21). The inhabitants have their salt provissions from England and Ireland, and their necessaries for fishing likewise, and their fresh provisions from New England. (22). The New Englandmen bring from New England sugar, rum and Molossus, and ye same from Barbados. by which means the fishermen never want liquor. (23). I do not know of any Europian commodities brought from anywhere else but England and Ireland. (24). These are disposed off among the inhabitants, seamen, fishermen and ye New England sloops and brigganteens. (25). No Plantation commodity during my time was brought, except tobacco, sugar, molosses and rumm, wch. was disposed off there. (28). The value of fish 14s. per quintal, ye train oyl £14 per tunn, the fish went for Portugal and Spain, the train oyl for England. (30). Men carried from Brittain to stay or come home as their masters pleases. (31). The number of the French inhabitants att Placentia, which I have understood by my flag of truce I sent thither, are about 500, besides what belongs to ye garrisons, wch. is about 100 men.
I did endeavour to prevent all the irregularities which was mentioned in ye Additionall Instructions, and do not know of any other Europian commodities that came to Newfoundland than what came from England, except one ship from Spain and ye Queen's pass not to be molested. Ye old boome being broken, I stretched a cable across to find ye breadth, 110 fathoms. Signed, Jno. Mitchell. Endorsed, Recd. 6th, Read 9th Dec., 1708. 3½ pp.
223. ii. List of harbours in Newfoundland, inhabitants, (names given) boats, and fishing returns, 1708. Totals:—Boatkeepers, 240; wives, 114; children, 251; servants, 1554: boats, 291; skiffs, 76; train-fats, 240; quintalls of fish, 95574; tuns of train-oil, 533. 9 pp.
223. iii. (a). List of the Masters of fishing ships (names given) and the state of their fishery in Newfoundland, 1708. Totals:—Commanders, 49; ships, 49; burthen in tuns, 5135; men, 838; guns, 148; boats, 170; train-fats, 52; quintals of fish, 40,450; tuns of trainoil, 242. (b). List of running galleys (26), sack ships (7), American vessels (15), men of war's prizes (5), merchantmen's prizes (9), Dutch privateers (3), Dutch privateers' prizes (9), with their tunnage and equipment. 6 pp.
223. iv. Abstract of the Fishery (as above). Total quintals of fish:—135, 934. Decrease in 1708; 9 ships, 107 men; Increase in 1708:—73 boats, 15, 252 quintals of fish; 1124 hhds. train oyl; 556 inhabitants. 1 p.
223. v., vi. Duplicates of ii. and iii., with slight variations. The whole endorsed, Recd. 6th, Read 9th Dec., 1708.
223. vii. Capt. Vane to Commodore Mitchell. St. Johns, Oct. 28, 1708. Describes requirements for the Boom etc. Signed, E. Vane. 1¼ pp. Enclosed,
223. viii. List of necessaries required for the Boom. Endorsed, Recd. 6th, Read 9th Dec., 1708. ½ p.
223. ix. Major Lloyd's Account of Provisions for Fort William and South Castle in St. John's. Sept. 30, 1708. Endorsed as preceding. 2 pp.
223. x. A state of the provisions remaining in Newfoundland, as surveyed by order of Commodore Mitchell, June 29 and Oct. 15, 1708. Signed, Jno. Mitchell. Endorsed, Recd. Dec. 6, 1708. 7 pp.
223. xi. List of provisions allowed to men (names given) sent out upon sundry occasions, etc. Endorsed, Recd. 6th, Read 9th Dec., 1708. 11 pp.
223. xii. Number of days for which the men have been victualled. Sept. 30, 1708. Same endorsement. 5 pp.
223. xiii. Account of Ordnance Stores in Fort William and South Castle. Oct. 4, 1708. Same endorsement. Printed. 3 pp.
223. xiv. Account of Stores wanting for Newfoundland garrison, 1709. Same endorsement. 1 p.
223. xv. Muster-roll of the Company at Newfoundland, July 25, 1707—Aug. 2, 1708. The major, 2 lieutenants, 3 sergeants, 2 drummers and 80 privates. Signed, Jno. Mitchell, Tho. Lloyd, Tim. Gully. Same endorsement. 1 p. [C.O. 194, 4. Nos. 76, 76 i.–xv.; and (with enclosure i. only) 195, 5. pp. 60–67.]
Dec. 3.
224. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Earl of Sunderland. Enclose following to be laid before H.M. Autograph signatures. 1 p. Enclosed,
224. i. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Representation upon the complaints of Messrs. Sharpe, Walker and Beresford. Recommend that Governor Crowe be required to give an immediate answer thereto etc. Set out, Acts of Privy Council, II. pp. 574, 575.. [C.O. 29, 11. pp. 337–340; and (without enclosure) 28, 38. No. 74.]
Dec. 3.
225. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Earl of Sunderland. Enclose following to be laid before H.M.
225. i. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Recommend Timothy Salter to be of the Council of Barbados, in the room of Patrick Mein, who does not intend to return thither. [C.O. 29, 11. pp. 341, 342.]
Dec. 3.
226. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Earl of Sunderland. Enclose following to be laid before H.M. in Council.
226. i. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Report upon petition of Thomas Pindar for passes for Spanish ships (See Sept. 17, Oct. 26). The Assiento trade having been found of very great advantage to this Kingdome, and to your Majesty's American Plantations (while the same was carryed on in those parts), it were to be wished that it might be resettled there, whereby your Majesty's subjects wou'd sell their negroes to the Spaniards for bullion, and have the benefit of that navigation by exporting the said negroes in ships belonging to your Majesty's subjects. Such a settlement of that trade may be impracticable during the present war; however, the promoting and settling the Assiento trade in Barbadoes as proposed by the petitioner may be of such advantage to this Kingdom and to your Majesty's Plantations, (tho thereby the trade will not be so profitable as formerly) that under the present state of affairs, we shou'd not object to your Majesty's granting the passes desired, were it not that we find the same cannot be granted without dispensing with part of the Act of Navigation 12 Car II. cap. 18, whereby 'tis provided "that no goods or commodities whatsoever shall be imported into, or exported out of any lands, islands, plantations or territories belonging to your Majesty in Asia, Africa or America in any other ship or vessell, but in such as does belong to your Majesty's subjects of this Kingdom, or Irland, or are of the built of and belonging to any of the said lands, islands, plantations or territories, as the Proprietors or right owners thereof, and whereof the Master and ¾th of the mariners at least are subjects of this Kingdom" (which number of ¾ths is by a late law reduced to one half during the present war) under the penalty and forfeiture both of ship and goods, and by the said Act it is further provided that no alien etc. not naturalised shall exercise the trade of a merchant or factor in any of the said places upon pain of forfeiture of all his goods, etc.
In 1689 a proposal for encouraging and settling the Assiento trade in the Plantations was presented to their late Majesty's by the Royall Affrican Company, wherein were contained some propositions in substance the same with what is now offered by the petitioner, which having been referred to the Judges, Nov. 17, 1689, they certifyed their opinion to be that negroes are merchandize, that it is against the Act of Navigation to give liberty to any alien not made a denizon to trade in any of the said Plantations, or for any shipping belonging to aliens to trade or export negroes from thence, or for aliens to trade there. Wherefore since that trade cannot be carryed on in the manner proposed by the petitioner without dispensing with the Act of Navigation made for the general good, and increase of the shipping and trade of this Kingdom, we are humbly of opinion that it is not adviseable for your Majesty to grant the passes desired by him. [C.O. 29, 11. pp. 332–336.]
Dec. 4.
227. Governor Handasyd to the Council of Trade and Plantations. I am favoured with your Lops. of July 13, Aug. 4 and 13, April 15, and June 25. As to the stores of war, amunition etc., which your Lops. are pleased to require accounts of, I shall take care as soon as I can possibly get them from the remote parts of the Island to send them to you, as well as the Board of Ordnance. I acquainted your Lops. in my last of a vessell's being seized by the Navall Officer, according to my orders and the advice of the Attorney Genll., the person that took her not having a commission, which practice is a great encouragement to other roguerys. Since that the Navall Officer has been sued by Col. Thompson, one of the owners of the periago. I have writt to H.R.H. of the same to desire his Instructions, as I do your Lops., how I shall behave myself in this and the like cases for the future. I likewise gave an account of a boat that was taken by two of our privateers, and that she had on board her between £30,000 and £40,000, but I understand since that there was in coined and uncoin'd gold and silver 200,000 pieces of eight. Nov. 28 came in here a fflagg of truce from St. Iago upon Cuba, which I must confess I was not very well pleased with, she brought 12 English prisoners and carried away 28 Spanish prisoners. I understand by a letter to Admirall Wager, that the French are fitting out a squadron to make an attempt against this Island. I hope it will only prove a report, as we have had severall such within these 7 years, but if their design is in earnest, you shall hear they shall buy it inch by inch with the best of their blood; let their numbers be what they will, I hope that will never daunt our resolutions. Our sloops are now almost all returned from the Spanish coast, and trade has of late been very dead, the Spaniards pretending they have not mony. I have received by this packett boat 43 recruits. The Island has been for this month very sickly, and severall people have died, but now I thank God it grows pretty healthy again. I am now to desire the favour of your Lops. interest towards the relief of me and H.M. Regiment under my command. It is the humble request of the officers and private men as well as myselfe, and since H.M. was 4 years ago graciously pleased by a proclamation to promise the relief of her Regiments in these parts every 3 years, which time we have exceeded 4 years, I hope we may expect not to be deny'd. And as to my own particular, I have in my long service to his late Majesty' King William, and her present Majesty received so many wounds and had the fatigue of severall cold campaigns, that the whole frame of my nature is decay'd, which makes me the more pressing. Here having been two French privateers upon our coast, one of which has taken off a man, as we suppose, for intelligence upon some design the French have to invade us, I have by the advice of the Councill, been obliged to lay an imbargo on all ships and vessells for 10 days, till we inform ourselvs what preparations the enemy is making. Admirall Wager on my giving him notice of these privateers sent out two men of war after them, one of which he has likewise ordered to cruize off the French and Spanish coast, and endeavour to get off a man from thence to learn what they are doing, and whether they have any design this way. I hope the imbargo will be of no prejudice to the trade, since it is for so short a time. Signed, Tho. Handasyd. Endorsed, Recd. 19th Jan., Read 23rd Feb., 1708. 3¾ pp. [C.O 137, 8. No. 29; and 138, 12. pp. 363–366.]
Dec. 5.
Newport on Rhoad Island.
228. Governor Cranston to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Report upon import of negroes, in reply to letter of April 15 last. (1). We have not had any negroes imported from June 24, 1698—Dec. 25, 1707. (2). On May 30, 1696 arrived at this port from Africa the briganteen Seaflower, Thomas Windsor, master, haveing on board 47 negroes, 14 of which he disposed of in this Colony for betwixt £30 and 35 per head, the rest he transported by land for Boston, where his owners lived. (3). Aug. 10, and Oct. 19 and 28, 1700, sailed from this port 3 vessels directly for the coast of Africa, the two former were sloops, the one commanded by Nicholas Hillgrove, the other by Jacob Bill, the last a ship commanded by Edwin Carter, who was part owner of the 3 vessels in company with Thomas Bruster and John Bates, merchts. of Barbados, and separate traders from thence to the coast of Africa. They arrived safe to Barbados from the coast of Africa, where they made the disposition of their negroes. (4). Wee have never had any vessels from the coast of Africa to this Collony, nor any trad there, the briganteen abovementioned excepted. (5). The whole and only suply of negroes is from Barbados, from whence is imported, one year with another, betwixt 20 and 30, and if those arrive well and sound, the generall price is from £30 to £40. We have advised with the chieffest of our Planters, and find but small incouragement for that trade to this Colony, since by the best computation wee can make, there would not be disposed in this Colony above 20 or 30 at the most annually, the reasons of which are chiefly to be attributed to the generall dislike our Planters have for them, by reason of theire turbulent and unruly tempers. And that most of our Planters that are able and willing to purchase any of them, are supplyed by the offspring of those they have already, which increase daly, and that the inclination[s] of our people in generall are to imploy servants before negroes, etc. Signed, Samll. Cran[ston]. Endorsed, Recd. May 23, Read Dec. 12, 1709. Holograph. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1264. No. 90; and 5, 1292. pp. 187–189.]
Dec. 5.
Newport on Rhoad Island.
229. Same to Same. Acknowledges letters, etc. May 14. Upon the reciept of said packett, I forthwith convean'd H.M. Councill, by whose approbation and advice I caused H.M. Instructions with the Acts of Parliament to be published, the which wee will not be wanting to see duly complyed with, etc., notwithstanding that, as we are linkt to the Province of the Massachusetts (perticularly to the Towne of Boston) as to our traffick and dealing together, wee cannot, without great inconveniency and prejudice differ from them in the valuation and rates of foreigne coine. Therefore, if wee should suspend that matter about the coine, till wee can see or understand what meth [ods or steps] they will take in that Province, I hope H.M. and your Lordsh [ips will pardon] us. I do not give your Lordships this intimation by any order from [the Colony], but as my owne sentiments, etc. Signed and endorsed as preceding. Holograph. Edges torn. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1264. No. 91; and 5, 1292. pp. 189–191.]
Dec. 5.
Newport on Rhoad Island.
230. Same to Same. Your Lordships' letter of May 7, 1707 came not to my hands till the latter end of July last, upon the reciept whereof, with the advice of H.M. Councill of this Colony, I caused the Act of Parliment for the Union of the Kingdoms to be published in the towne of Newport, the Metropolis of this H.M. Colony, at the same time causing the Milissia of the Island to be in armes for the greater solemnity thereof, and after the publication concluded the same with three vollies of small armes, and the discharge of what cannon wee had att ye Fort and Towne, which was seconded with loud acclamations of joy, etc. In October last, it being the first meeting of the Generall Assembly after the reciept of your Lordships' letter, I communicated the same to them, who ordered me to give you the best information I could in answer etc. (1). As to the state of this H.M. Colony, since the present war, it has pleased the Almighty thro' his infinite mercy and goodness (upon our indvours) to preserve us from the assaults of the common enemy, tho' not without great charge and expence, in keeping watches and wards upon the sea coast, and scouts upon the land side into the cuntry, our lying so open to the assaults and attempts of the enemy by sea doth also occation often and frequent alarums, which doth also create great charge. This Colony are also at considerable charge and troble in maintaning (during ye summer season) a cota of men at Block Island for the defence thereof. I presume your Lordships is fully informed of our frequent expeditions by sea, in order to secure our coast from being infested with the enemy's privateers, haveing in our last given a full account thereof, as well as our great charge in assisting H.E. Col. Dudly in his expedition to or against Port Royall. Wee had nothing materiall that hapned the last summer, save one expedition on Sept. 8, upon intiligence given me by an express from Martin's vinyard of a privateer that had taken a sloop and chased a briganteen on shoare upon said Island. I dispatched (within 3 howrs) two sloops under the command of Major William Wanton and Capt. John Cranston. The enemy fearing our sudden expedition (they being well acquainted of our dispatch upon such occations) burnt his prize and made the best of his way into the sea, so as our people could not get any sight of him, tho' they made pursuit after him about 24 howres that way, which they was informed he directed his course. (2). As to the strength and defence of this Colony, it chiefly consists (under the Providence of God) in our good look-outs, our expedition [by sea], and in our milissia, the which consists of all mails from [16 to] 60 years of age, who are obliged, at theire owne charge, to be [always provi]ded with a good firelock, musket or fusea, a sword or bagonet, [catouch box] with one pound of good powder, and 4lb. of bullets, who are to [be ready upon] any alarrum, or other expetion or service, to repaire to theire ensign[s at their] respective places of randisvouse, to attend such orders as they shall r[ecieve] from theire superier officers, etc., the which obligations and orders is u[pon all occasions] very chearfully and readily obeyed and complyed with, so that what is [before premised,] in our Milissia consists the strength of [this Colony it being impossible for us to forti]fie ourselves so as to keep an enemy [from entring into our Bay and rivers, or to obstruct] there landing in most places in the Col [ony, tho' we have a small fort upon an Island] that covers the harbour of Newport, whi[ch is mounted with 15 pieces of ordnance from] 6 to 9 pound ball, and is a security [to our navigation and the aforesaid town against] any small force. (3). As to the administration of Justice, wee have two generall courts of tryalls, which is on the last Tuesday in March and the first Tuesday in September annually, att which Courts are tryed all actionall and crimonall causes hapning within said Collony, where the Laws of England are approved of, and pleaded, to all intents and purposes, without it be in some perticuler acts for the prudentiall affaires of the Colony, and not repugnant to the Laws of England. (4). As to the number of inhabitants, etc., I enclose a list in as true and exact a manner as I could procure it from the severall townes. (5). As to trade and ships etc., I enclose a list. (6). As to what commodeties exported from this Colony to England, and 'how said Colony is now supplyed with any manufacturies that it was wont to be supplyed with from England, this Colony niver had any direct trade to or from England, nor any supply directly from thence, but what commodeties any of the inhabitants have had to export for England, hath bin exported by way of Boston, where there returns are also made, and from whence wee have and are cheifly supplyed with the manufactury of England, and it is computed that not less then £20,000 in cash hath bin annually (for some years past) remitted from this Colony to Boston upon that account. (7). As to the methods taken to prevent illegall trade, wee have a Collector and Controler of H.M. Customes setled by the Hon. the Commissrs. in this Colony, and a navell officer by the Governer, who take all due methods and care they can by serching and inspecting the severall cargoes imported, and putting the severall masters upon theire oaths, etc. Wee have had no trade to any place but Corrico that could give us any suspicion of illegall trade, but that trade is at present wholy laid aside by our traders, so that I know of no other place that they have any trade to or from that can give us grounds to suspect any fraud. Your Lordships may assure yourselves that all due methods will be taken, as there may be occation, to prevent and suppress any illegall trade, that may hereafter be managed by any of our traders, and that what orders wee shall at any time recieve from your Lordships will be punctually and duly observed etc. (8). As to the number of vessels built in this Colony, wee are not capable to informe your Lordships, by reason there hath bin no list ever kept till since the Act for registring hath' bin in force, from which time you have an exact account in the inclosed list. (9). As to the increase or decay of the trade of this Colony of late years, [it d]oth appeare that about 20 years past wee had not above 4 or 5 vessels that did belong to this Colony, wch. hath since gradually increased to 29. The reason of which increase (as I apprehend) is chiefly to be attributed to the inclination the youth on Rhoad Island have to the sea; the land on said Island being all taken up and improved in small farmes, so that the farmers, as theire families increase are compel'd to put their children to trades, but their inclinations being mostly to navigation, the greater part betake themselves to that imployment, so that such as are industrious and thrifty, as they get a small [stock beforehand, improve it in getting part of a vessel, as] many of the tradesmen [in the town of Newport also doth for the benefit of their children that are bred to navigation, in which town consists the chiefest of our navigation, not above 2 or 3 vessels belonging to all the Colony besides.] One other cause of the increase of our trade is, that it has pleased God to protect them from the hands of the enemy, so that they have not lost above two or three vessels taken this war, they being light and sharp for runners, so that very few of the enemy privateers in a gaile of wind will rong or outsaile one of our laded vessells. The Colony is putting the severall acts of Assembly in a method for the press, as soone as it can be accomplished will not faill in sending your Lordships a copy of the whole, and will according to your Lordships' command transmit yearely accotts. of there administration, and additionall Acts of Assembly as opertunity will present. Thus may it please your Lordships you have the most exact and imperciall account I am capable of giveing you at this time, tho' my plaine and homely method of wrighting may not be so acceptable and intiligable to your Lordships as it ought to bee; yet I will depend so far upon your Lordships' goodness, that you will pardon my rudeness therein, and accept my good will and inclination to serve H.M. and your Lordships with all faithfullness and integrity, to the best of my capasity and abillity, and that you will believe me to be H.M. loyall and dutifull subject. Signed, Saml. Cranston. Endorsed, Recd. 23rd May, Read Dec. 12, 1709. Holograph. 2½ pp. Edges torn. Enclosed,
230. i. List of Inhabitants of Rhode Island, Dec. 5, 1708. Totals: Freemen, 1015; Militia, 1362; White servants, 56; black servants, 426. Total inhabitants, 7181. There was no list of inhabitants ever taken before. The Milissia hath increased since Feb. 14, 1704/5, the number of 237. Signed, Saml. Cranston. 1 p.
230. ii. Number of vessels built in Rhode Island 1698—1708; Ships, 8, briganteens, 11, sloops 84. Belonging to Rhode Island, 1708;—briganteens, 2, sloops, 27. Exports to Jamaica, Barbados, Nevis, Antigua, St. Kitts, Montserrat—lumber, beef, pork, butter, cheese, onions, horses, candles, cider. Imports thence, shuger, molasses, cotten, ginger, indico, piemento, rum, English goods, both wollens and linnins, sweeds, and Spanish iron. Exports to Bermuda, Bahama Islands, and the Salt Islands (Salt Tertudoes and Turks Islands)—rum and provisions. Imports thence,— salt, and, from Bahamas, braziletto. Exports to Carolina,—Rum, sugar, molasses, butter, cheese. Imports thence,—Rice, pitch, pork, peltry, walnut wood, bearskins and deerskins. Exports to Virginia and Maryland,—Rum, molasses, butter and cheese. Imports thence,—pork, wheat and English goods. Exports to Pensilvane, Jarseys, and New Yorke,—Rum, butter, cheese and money. Imports thence,—flower, wheat, bisquet, drest leather and bacon, and (from New York) rigging. Exports to Connecticut,—rum, shuger, molasses, New England iron. Imports thence,—grain, flax, pork, boards, tar, pitch, turpentine, rosin. Exports to Massachusetts Bay,—butter, cheese and money. Imports thence,—all sorts of European commodities. Exports to Madera and Fyall,—shoes, wheat, Indian corn, wax and money. Imports thence,—wine. Exports to Surinam,—provisions, butter, cheese, onions and horses. Imports thence, Molasses. Exports to Curacoa,—provisions, boards, butter, cheese and onions. Imports thence,—pieces of eight, salt, and caccao. Number of seafaring-men belonging to Rhode Island,—140. Signed, Saml. Cranston. Endorsed as letter. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1264. Nos. 92, 92.i.,ii.; and (without enclosures) 5, 1292. pp. 192–199.]
Dec. 8.
231. Earl of Sunderland to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Encloses petition of Bermuda for the removal of Mr. Jones from the employment of Secretary and Provost Marshall. You are to hear their Agents upon those complaints which they alledge have not been fully heard, and report thereon. I am also commanded to refer to your consideration a petition of the Island for leave to load and unload their vessels in the country, etc. Signed, Sunderland. Endorsed, Recd. 9th, Read 13th Dec., 1708. 1 p. Enclosed,
231. i. Deposition of Justices of Bermuda that Governor Bennett never did insinuate and direct us to propose to our Tribes or Parishes any particular person to be a Member of Assembly. Signed, George Darrell, Danl. Jonson, Robert Burchhall, Saml. Sherlock, Willm. Tucker, Wm. Outerbridge, Richd. Gilbert, Francis Jones, Tho. Burton, John Dickinson, Henry Tucker. ¾ p.
231. ii. Deposition of Charles Minors that Lt. Governor Bennett has not received or demanded any of the fees or perquisites of the Secretary's Office. Nov. 20, 1707. Signed, Cha. Minors. Sealed. 1 p.
231. iii. Petition of Council, Assembly, Judges, Justices, Officers and Inhabitants to the Queen, praying that Mr. Jones may not be restored to his Offices in the Island. 460 signatures. Endorsed, Recd. 9th, Read 13th Dec., 1708. Seal. 3 large pp. sewn together.
231. iv. Same to Same. Pray that they may not be restricted to loading and unloading their ships and vessels at the Town or Castle Harbour at St. Georges. This Instruction was intended in the time of the Proprietors to secure them the duty of 1d. per lb. on Tobacco, which was then made in great quantitys. Lately, the land is so extreamly impoverished that it will not produce tobacco as formerly, and the inhabitants do not plant it, it being much cheaper to buy from Virginia. But they still labour under the same Instruction, "which hath in a great measure already and if continued will be the utter ruin of the unhappy Petitioners, whose subsistance is chiefly by navigation." The chief product of the Island is provisions, but not more than 2/5ths. of what is required, their small vessels supplying the rest, which for want of commodities here, generally go from hence empty to the Salt Ponds, and bring salt here to be landed in their store-houses, till they have an opportunity of transporting it again (it being at such a time of year that they cannot carry it to the Northern Plantations) and then return to the Salt Ponds for another load, which they carry to Carolina, Roanoak, Virginia, Maryland, Pensilvania, New York, and New England, and bring back Indian corn, bread, flower, pork, etc. They must be ruined if they cannot land at their own store-houses (which are a great distance generally from the harbours), and having no conveniency of land-carriage, are obliged to transport everything in small open boats. The inhabitants not dwelling in towns as in England, but everyone on his little Plantation most persons haveing a convenient harbour for boats near their own dwellings. In the beginning of the winter, before the salt season comes on, our vessels do transport hence great quantitys of cabbages, and at other times onions (which the poorer sort of people do plant) to several parts of the West Indies, and return from thence with English goods, sugar, rum, mellasses, and cotten, of which last a great part of our apparel is made; all which must also be unloaded in one of the aforemention'd harbours. Such perishable exports as cabbages and onions must be loaded near where they grow etc. 462 signatures. Endorsed as preceding. Seal. 3 large pp. sewn together. [C.O. 37, 8. Nos. 73, 73.i.–iv.; and (without enclosures) 38, 6. p. 432.]
Dec 8.
232. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Earl of Sunderland. Enclose loyal Address from the Governor and Council of Antigua to H.M. [C.O. 153, 10. p. 246.]
Dec. 9.233. Lords Proprietors of Carolina to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Reply to Nov. 10. This was not done by any order from us: But the Secretary and Attorney General of Our Province are coming over by this Virginia Fleet, which is now daily expected, and immediatly after their arrival, we shall lay the whole grounds of the premisses before your Lordships. Signed, Craven, Palatine; Beaufort, M. Ashley, J. Colleton, John Danson. Endorsed, Recd. Read Dec. 10, 1708. Addressed. Sealed. 1 p. [C.O. 5, 1264. No. 52; and 5, 1292. p. 70.]
Dec. 9.
Craven House.
234. The Lords Proprietors' Commission to Edward Tynte, Governor of N. and S. Carolina. Set out, N.C. Col. Rec. I. 694. [C.O. 5, 289. pp. 158–160.]
Dec. 9.
235. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Earl of Sunderland. Since our Representation (Dec. 1), we have received a letter from the Lord Cornbury (Aug. 20) wherein many things are contained, showing the advantage and facility of expelling the French out of Canada; which being of the like nature with what has been proposed by Capt. Vetch, we inclose an extract, which your Lordp. will please to lay before H.M. with our aforesaid Representation. [C.O. 5, 1121. p. 355.]
Dec. 11.
St. James's.
236. H.M. Warrant for Francis Phipps to be of the Council at St. Christophers. [C.O. 5, 210. p. 123.]
Dec. 11.
Craven House.
237. The Lords Proprietors' Commission and Instructions for Edward Hyrne, Naval Officer of S. Carolina. Signed, Craven, Palatine, Beaufort, M. Ashley, J. Colleton, J. Danson. [C.O. 5, 289. pp. 156, 157, 193.]
Dec. 11.
Craven House.
238. The Lords Proprietors' Commission and Instructions to William Saunders to be Attorney and Advocate General for South Carolina. Signed, Craven, Palatine, Beaufort, M. Ashley, J. Colleton, J. Danson. [C.O. 5, 289. pp. 161, 185–187.]
Dec.11.239. The Lords Proprietors' Commission and Instructions to Nathaniel Sale to be Receiver General of South Carolina. Signed as preceding. [C.O. 5, 289. pp. 161, 188–190.]
Dec. 11.
Craven House.
240. The Lords Proprietors' Commission to the Honble. Robert Gibbs, Esq. to be Chief Justice of South Carolina. Signed as preceding. [C.O. 5, 289. pp. 208, 209.]
Dec. 11.
Craven House.
241. Sir John Colleton's Patent for 4423 acres in Carolina, Mulberry Plantation, upon the Western branch of Cooper River. Signed, Craven, Palatine; Beaufort, M. Ashley, J. Colleton, J. Danson. Dec. 11, 1708/9 (sic). [C.O. 5, 289. p. 204.]
Dec 13.242. Col. John Frere to the Council of Trade and Plantations. Son of the late Tobias Frere, petitioner is a J.P. of Barbados, Col. of the best regiment of horse and was bred and born there. etc. Prays to be appointed Councillor in place of Col. Richard Scot, who has been 5¾ years absent from his post. Endorsed, Recd. Read Dec. 13, 1708. ¾ p. Enclosed,
242. i. Certificate in favour of Col. J. Frere. Signed, Rob. Lowther, Rob. Heysham, Richard Diamond, Richd. Tilden, Edw. Lascelles, Jos. Mayne, Matt. Matson, Manasses Gilligan. 1 p. [C.O. 28, 11. Nos. 41, 41.i.; and 29, 11. pp. 347–349.]
Dec. 13.
243. Tho. Mitchell and Richd. Basnet to Mr. Milner and Mr. Morris. Opinion of the Planters and Merchants of Jamaica on the African Trade. The attempts of the African Company to get the wholesale trade to Guinea into their own hands exclusive of all ye rest of ye Queen's subjects, has put us under ye apprehensions of being thereby intirely ruined in this Island for want of negroes to supply and improve our Plantations. We have now many persons in ye Island that sell negroes on accott. of separate traders, and give considerable credit for them to the great benifit and improvement of our Plantations, and if we cannot purchase at a reasonable rate of one person, we can goe to another, but if ever this trade be put into ye hands of an exclusive Company, we shall then have but one person to purchase of, and must give his price, be what it will, or elce let our settlements goe to ruin for want of negroes to cultivate our land, which will not admit of the plow or anything elce, but a number of hands to improve it. When a Company or single person have ingrost any perticular trade intirely into their own hands, they will certainly endeavour to manage it soe as to yeild ye greatest proffit with ye least risque to themselves, whatever ye publick or any perticular place suffer by it. If the Affrican Company obtain an exclusive Act for ye Guinea Trade, ye fewer negroes they import into ye Colonies, the dearer they will be sold, and noe doubt they may raise them to £50 a peice, by not importing into all ye Plantations above 5000 head per annum, wch. if sold but at £40 per head, it's plain the Company will get as much profit as by importing 25,000. at £20. etc., etc., elaborated. Also, an exclusive company will deprive us of a great part of ye benifit we hope to reap by ye union, for that part of ye Kingdom formerly called Scotland will be intirely excluded from ye trade, and soe will all other parts of H.M. Dominions except London, and therefore it cannot be supposed that ever ye Parliament will give up ye right which all ye people of Great Brittain and ye Plantations have to this trade into ye hands of a monopolizeing Company to ye destruction of ye Colonies and general damage of ye whole Kingdom, etc. Endorsed, Recd. 8th, Read 9th Feb. 1708/9. 2 pp. [C.O. 388, 11. No. 111.]
Dec. 14.
244. Council of Trade and Plantations to the Queen. Col. Richard Scot, one of the Council of Barbadoes, having been near six years in this Kingdom, and having from time to time promised your Majesty's late Commissioners for Trade to return to his post, and having lately declined attending us in order to our being informed of his final resolution, we are humbly of opinion that it is not for your Majesty's service that the Counsellors should be permitted to be so long absent from their duty, and therefore offer that your Majesty dismiss him and appoint John Frere (Dec. 13) in his stead. [C.O. 29, 11. pp. 350, 351.]
Dec. 14.
245. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Parke. Acknowledge letters of Aug. 23, 24. We shall take into consideration the list of negroes imported, which you have sent us, but you have not fully observed the directions we gave you, Aprill 15, to consult some of the principal planters and inhabitants within your Government touching the negro trade, and particularly what number of negroes they might think necessary for the annual supply of the Leeward Islands; this therefore we expect you will do by the first oppertunity. As to your refusing to swear Mr. Perry, who was chose one of the Assembly, for not being a freeholder, we can only say, that where there is no law to direct in any particular case, then we think it safest for you to follow the antient custome of the Island, and we think that the Assembly is the proper Judge of the qualification of their own Members. None of the complaints which you mention have yet been laid before us. When they shall be, we shall then consider the answers you make thereunto. In the meantime, we can only assure you that no impressions to your prejudice will be made upon us, till you have been heard. We have considered the Bill past by the Assembly of Antegoa, for ascertaining and declaring the elections of Representatives, etc., as also the Bill drawn up by the Councill. The Lt. Governor and Councill were much in the right in not passing the Assembly's Bill, which is of such a nature as wou'd not have been approved by H.M. As to the Bill prepared by the Councill, we have this observation to make, that in the clause which appoints the method and time for chusing Assembly men, there ought to be a direction that due and reasonable notice of the respective days of election be affixed in the most publick places of the Island. We must further take notice that the last clause, relating to the Assembly's right to hear greivances, ought to be omitted, for we find that an Act that was past at Barbadoes, relating to the Election of Representatives, having the very same clause in it, was for that and other reasons repealed. What we writ you, June 25, concerning seizures, did arise from what you had writ Oct. 22, 1707, quoted, so you may see that what wee writ was not without ground. We shall expect your answer to the third and fourth paragraphs of [y]our letter of June 25 relating to the Acts for quartering of soldiers etc., and to getting of a law past for the better regulating of Courts. When you transmit to us the list of Patent places which we have writ to you for, we desire you to inform us whether there be an oath of office annexed to any of the said places, and if so, whether the Patentees have taken that oath or no. [C.O. 153, 10. pp. 247–250.]
Dec 15.
[N.S.] Middelburgh.
246. Hans Hantenaar to the Directors of the Dutch West India Company. Signed, Hans. Hantenaar. With enclosures. Dutch. 2 pp. [C.O. 116, 20. Nos. 16, 16.i. ff.]
Dec. 15.
247. The Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Handasyd. Acknowledge letter of Sept. 24. As to Mr. Whitchurch's petition, H.M. having declared her pleasure in that matter, we shall add nothing more thereupon. Your care in getting private intelligences is very commendable, and tho your reasons for not laying before the Assembly your disbursments upon that account be good, yet we doubt not but you know where and how to make the proper application here. It was not for any disregard to your recommendation that Mr. Francis Oldfield was not put into the Councill, but upon account of others standing before him upon our lists, who were equally well qualifyed, but as we writ you, Nov. 25, Mr. Oldfield being now the first person upon our list, we shall be mindfull of him upon the first vacancy. We have considered what you write about Mr. Totterdale's behaviour towards the Attorney Generall, and do think the Court ought to have asserted its own authority in punishing any contempt in Court, which power is incident to every Court of Justice. We shall expect an account of the tryal of the ship which you say was seized for the Queen for having been taken without a legal Commission. The reason for restoring Mr. Barrow to the practice of the Law in Jamaica was, that Mr. Barrow having been once admitted by the Courts, he has an undoubted right, and ought to enjoy the liberty of practicing as a lawyer till convicted of such misbehaviour in his said practice as shall amount to a forfeiture of such right. Upon the receipt of your forementioned letter, we immediately gave notice to the Admiralty of what you writ in relation to the Jamaica fleet coming home; and we received an answer from thence that care was taken therein and some ships of war gone out to meet them. In your letter transmitting the account of Negroes you have ommitted to acquaint us whether you had consulted the principal Planters and inhabitants in your Government, relating to the Negroe trade, and particularly what number might be annually necessary for the supply of Jamaica. We therefore desire that you will consult the said inhabitants and Planters upon this matter, and that you do acquaint us therewith by the first opportunity. We desire you to inform us whether there be an oath of office annexed to any of the patent places, and if so, whether the patentees have taken that oath or no. [C.O. 138, 12. pp. 350352.]
Dec 15.
248. Council of Trade and Plantations to Governor Crowe. Acknowledge letter of Aug. 18. What we writ in relation to the dissolution of the Assembly, was occasioned by what you had said, March 1, which not being so clearly expressed as it ought to have been, we were thereby misinformed. If they did sit out their full time as limited by their Act, you are no ways blamable in that matter. We are in hopes that the Assembly will raise the necessary funds for compleating of Fort St. Anne, which, if they do, will be of good service. You acquaint us that most of the publick accounts are stated; we shall expect that you transmit to us copies thereof as soon as possible. As to what you write about two convoys a year for the trade of Barbadoes, that matter being before H.M. by an Address from the Assembly, if H.M. be pleased to refer the same to us, we shall then report our opinion thereupon. In the meantime we shall only say, that if the circumstances of the war would permitt, it seems a thing desireable, but at present we fear it will be difficult to obtain. In answer to what you write that the Act for incouraging the trade to America has taken from the Governors the power of pressing seamen for H.M. service, [which] will occasion several inconveniences, we can only say that there are such provisions in the Act for this matter, that we hope the same will answer the end. In the list of Patent Offices which you have sent us, you have not mentioned the Secretary's Office, nor told us the value thereof, which we expect therefore you will do by your next, as also that you inform us whether there is an oath of office annexed to any of the said offices, and if so, whether the Patentees have taken that oath or no. We have received, (Aug. 18) the Address from the Assembly to yourself, and observe that they complain that the deposit money, and other grievious extortions in the Register's Office of the Court of Chancery are not yet refunded: nor the symoniacal dispositions of the Church livings in Sir B. Granville's time inquired into. These are things which you ought to have done, and which therefore we shall expect from you. In your letter transmitting the account of negroes, you have omitted to acquaint us whether you had consulted the principal Planters and inhabitants in your Government relating to the negroe trade, and particularly what number might be annually necessary for the supply of Barbadoes, we therefore desire that you will consult the said inhabitants and planters upon this matter, and that you do acquaint us therewith by the first opportunity. We observe that one of the matters contained in the charge against you is, that you gave way to the Assembly's ordering the Treasurer to dispose of publick monies to be laid out in presents; which we look upon to be contrary to your Instructions, and a practice which you ought by no means to have allowed. P.S. Since our writing the above letter, we have receved one from Col. Sharp, Mr. Walker, and Mr. Beresford, dated Oct. 11, transmitting to as their remarks upon the Assembly's Address to you against them, which reminds us what you writ, Sept. 6, that you will transmit your answer to their complaints by the first oppotunity, and we cannot but take notice that the packet-boat which sailed from Barbadoes Sept. 25, and the ship which, brought us the abovementioned letter of Oct. 11, are two opportunities you have omitted. By the first you had 17 days from the date of the said letter, and by the last 35 days to make your answer. The charge against you being of so high a nature, and which, you knew was sent over to us in order to it's being laid before H.M., it is very extraordinary you did not think yourself enough concern'd to make your answer in that time. [C.O. 29, 11. pp. 352–356.]