THE Deplorable State OF New-England, By Reason of a Covetous and Treacherous GOVERNOUR, AND Pusillanimous COUNSELLORS WITH A VINDICATION of the Honourable Mr. HIGGINSON, Mr. MASON, and several other Gentlemen, from the Scanda|lous and Wicked Accusation of the VOTES ordered by Them to be Published in their BOTSON New Letter.
To which is added, An ACCOUNT of the Shameful Miscarriage of the Late EXPEDITION against PORT-ROYAL.
LONDON: Printed in the Year 1708. Reprinted 1721.
TO THE READER.
IF the New-England Councellors (as well as their Governour) are publickly expo|sed in a Land a Thousand Leagues distant from them, they have no reason to com|plain of bard Dealing, Lex Talionis re|quires that it should be so; for it is nothing but what they themselves have done, by Gentlemen who are on several Accounts superior to them. We wish they may be sensible of the great Hurt their Co• is like to suffer by their Means. They have 〈◊〉uraged their Friends from 〈◊〉 appearing aga• in their Behalf, when if they should, they, to please their Governour, will in Print, brand them for Scand•lous and Wicked Ac|cusers.
Their Fault is the more aggravated, in that after they saw an Invoice which mentions an Hundred Thousand Nails, sent to the Queen's Enemies at Port-Royal, allowed by the Gover|nour under his own Hand, they caused their abu|sive Vote to be printed. Only we Hear that their Secretary, who is a Prudent Man, and one of their Counsellours, was against the Publica|tion of their Scandalous Vote.
Page [unnumbered] But we likewise hear, that some of them moved that several Affidavits, which had been laid before Her Majesty in Council, and were after 〈◊〉 Printed here in London, might be burnt, because they Complained of their Governour's Notorious Briberies, and other Male Administrations. Pro|bably the same Persons will make the like Propo|sal again, if a New Governour does not Nega|tive them out of his Council, which we suppose he will, unless the Representatives of the Pro|vince (as in Duty they are Bound) shall save him the Trouble.
The Reader may depend upon it, that as to Matter of Fact, there is nothing in this Narra|tive but Exact Truth; what is therein Related, is not only affirmed by Gentlemen worthy of Credit lately come from Boston, but by Letters from as Eminent Persons as any in New-England.Page 1
The Deplorable STATE OF New-England.
SOME Late Votes passed in the General Assem|bly at Boston, and Printed in the Boston News-Letter, Cause us to Reflect with some Wonder on the Deplorable State of the Plantations.
They that are sent over as Governours thither, appear as Persons of Suitable Abilities, and approved Loyalty. They are in Favour with some Ministers of State, who Recommend them to the King or Queen for the Time be|ing; and are in Fee with their Clarks, by whose Means their Business is done the more Effectually. When they arrive with their Commissions, they Express themselves in Obliging Terms; and the Ravish'd People, who are quite Giddy with Joy, if they have Governours, which they may hope, will not Cut their Throats, make them Noble Presents, and send home an Address of Thanks for such Admirable Governours.
Their Next Work is, by all possible Artifices, to get into all Offices about the Country, such as are, or they know, will be, meer Creatures to them; or at least, su• as are not f•rnished either with Courage or Conduct. to make any Complaints Home against them, in Case of any Male-Administration.
After this, let the Governour do what he will, either Page 2there will be no Body Strong enough to Repair unto the Cro• with due Remonstrances; or if any Body do, the Governour has many Ways to molest him and his, and to Defeat all his Undertakings. Yea, 'tis Ten Thousand to One, but at the very Time, when an oppressed Person is Solliciting his own, and an oppressed People's Cause, the Governour may have so modell'd the General Assem|bly, that they shall pass wretched Votes to his Advantage, and Kiss the Hand, which all the open Eyes in the Coun|try see Stabbing of them.
One would have thought, the People of N. England should have been Sensible of their Good Fortune in it; that when they are betrayed in Miserable Circumstances by an Hungry Governour, who has been willing to Enrich himself and his Family, on the Ruines of his Country, some Gentlemen of Note, have interposed with Humble Addresses to her Majesty on their Behalf. They have no Agent here, but what is entirely in the Interest of their Governour. When the whole House of Representatives sent over hither, an Address to the Queen, relating to matter of the greatest Importance, the Agent whom they had I•oy'd and Rewarded with some Hundreds of Pounds •fused to Present the Address, because it would not suit with the Governour's Interest, and wrote them word, That no Address. must be presented, except Signed by the Governour. And yet after this, the same Gentle|man could present Adresses for the continuance of the Governour which were signed by Private Hands, and pro|cured by Ways and Means little to the Honour of those Concerned. Some Gentlemen here, knowing the Opress'd and Betray'd Condition of that poor People, have Ad|dress'd on their Behalf; and have said nothing in their Address, but what they had the Oaths of several Good Men, to support the Truth of what was Asserted: But, lo! to their Surprize, they find themselves in the Boston News Letter Exposed, as having been the Authors of Seandalous and wicked Accusations! The Counsellors of N. England, have done as much as lies in them for ever to discourage all Gentlemen here from appearing for the Page 3Country, let never such Difficult Circumstances be 〈…〉 upon it; but we will pity them, as Trapann'd into they know not what themselves! However, if they will allow no body here to speak for their Country, they can't forbid us to Speak for Ourselves, which they have now made but too Necessary for us.
Letters from New-England Inform us, That the Great and only Reason, why some of the Council there will strmly Believe more Charitably of their Governour Dud|ley, than many others do, is, Because his Family and In|terest is there, and therefore 'tis unreasonable to Believe, that he would do any thing that should hurt the Country.
But, Was not his Family and Interest there in Sir Ed|mund Andross's time? And yet a Book Published here, by the Agents of New-England, after the Revolution, Intituled, The Revolution in New-England Justified, has given the World a sad Story of what a Colonel Dudley may do towards the Ruining a Country which has his Family and Interests in it. Read that History and you will find, that after Col. Dudley had been an Agent for the Country, he tack'd about, and join'd with the Instru|ments that overthrew their Charter, and accepted an Ille|gal and Arbitrary Commission from King James, by which he held the Government, until the Arrival of Sir Edmund Andross, and then was, as President of the Council, and Chief Judge of the Territory, a Chief Tool of all the ensuing barbarous and infamous Administration. They governed without an Assembly, when the Laws were proposed in the Council, tho' the major Part of the Coun|cil should happen to dissent, yet if the Governour was positive, there was a President at the Board, by whose Allowance the Laws were immediately Engrossed, Pub|lished, and Executed: And Judge Dudley did not contra|dict it when some of the Principal Gentlemen in the Country were told at the Council Board, You have no more Privileges left you but this, that you are not Bought and Sold for Slaves. By the Sequel we shall see not this neither. A Juncto, (wherein how often this Chief Judge, was of the Quorum, is now forgotten) made a Page 4World of Laws, which Pillaged that poor People Despe|rately. They Levied a Tax on the whole People with|out any Assembly; and when the Principal Persons, and some others in Ips• on that Occasion, with all possible Modesty moved, that the King should be Humbly Petiti|on'd for the Liberty of an Assembly, they were Commit|ted to Prison for an High Misdemeanour, and were Denied an Habeas Corpus, & Drag'd many Miles out of their own County to Answer it at a Court in Boston, where Jurors were pickt for the Turn, that were neither Free-holders, nor so much as Inhabitants. They were all Fined severe|ly, and laid under great Bonds for their Good Behaviour; besides which, the Hungry Officers Extorted Fees of near Two Hundred Pounds, where they would not have risen to Ten Pounds, had any Law of England, or Justice been Observed. The Townsmen of many other Places were served in the like Fashion; and our Judge Dudley was a Principal Actor in all this Wickedness. It was now denyed that any Man was owner of a Foot of Land in all the Colony. Judge Dudley gave it as his Judgment un|der his Hand. Writs of Intrusion were presently served upon the Chief Gentlemen in the Country, to Compel them, and others by the Terror of their Example, to take Patents for the Lands which they had quietly possessed for Fifty or Sixty Years together. For these Patents there were such Exorbitant Prices demanded, that Fifty Pounds would not purchase for its owner, an Estate not worth Two Hundred; nor could all the Money and Moveables in the Territory, have defrayed the Charges of Pattenting the Lands.
If the Harpies were at any Time a little out of Money, they Invented Pretences to Imprison the Best Men in the Country, and tho' there Appeared not the least Informa|tion of any Crime against them, yet they were put unto intollerable Expences, and the Benefit of the Habeas Corpus was denied unto them. Judge Dudley knows this, and we suppose he has not forgotten either Colo|nell Saltonstal, or Major Appleton. Pickt Juries were commonly used, for the Trouble of Honest and Worthy Page 5Men, and they were hurried out of their own Counties to be tryed, where Juries for their Turn were not likely to be found there. Judge Dudley knows this; and we suppose he remembers the famous Mr. Morton.
In short, all things were going to Wreck, but yet Col. Dudley was like to enrich himself and his Family in the general Ship-wreck. There lies the Mystery!
These things, and many more such things, are asserted in the Book aforesaid, not only by the Oaths of many honest Gentlemen, but also by a Declaratian Signed by the Honourable Hands of Judge Stoughton, and Major General Winthrop, and Collonel Shrimpton, and other Members of the Council.
The World has heard how narrowly Col. Dudley escaped a De-Witting for these his Follies, from the inraged Peo|ple in the Revolution. Being then sent over a Prisouer to England, he with the rest, were here set at Liberty. He returned, with a Commission for the Place of Chief Judge in the Province of New-York, where his first Work, after his Arrival was, to Condemn to Death, the Lieu|tenant Governour of the Province, and another Gentle|man, for not surrendring the Government before Governour Slaughter arriv'd with his Commission. The Condemnation and Execution of these two Gentlemen, was a Bloody Business: It was afterwards Examined in Parliament, where Colonel Dudley underwent a Confusion which will never be worn off; and Mr. Constantine Phips, Pro|secuted the Matter with so much Demonstration, that Eminent Persons in both Houses, declared it, A Barbarous Murder; King, Lords, and Commons, did as good as de|clare it so, and by an Act of Parliament Revoked the Attainder of the Murdered Gentlemen. On this Occa|sion, Judge Stoughton, (who was yet always known to be as Partial to Col. Dudley and his Interest, as any Man in New England) said to some of his Friends, what he had formerly been heard to say unto others, Alas, to get a little Money, he would make his own Father hold •p his hand at the Bar. There, Gentlemen, you have again the Key to explain the Matter; which because you Page 6cant see thro', you Firmly Believe as you do!
After many Years Absence from his Family, my Lord Bellamont, the Governour of New England Dies. Col. Dudley by many fair Promises, both to Gentlemen here, and at his own Home, obtains Recommendations for a Succession in the Government. He had not been long in the Government, before the following MEMORIAL was sent over to London.
A MEMORIAL On the Behalf of the Province of the Massachu|sett's Bay, in NEW-ENGLAND; Relating to the Administration of their pre|sent Governour, Collonel Dudley.
I. ONE Principal Grievance, which Comprehends many under it, is, The Course of Bribery, which runs thro' the Governours Administration, whereby the Queen's Government is greatly Exposed in a Country where Bribery has rarely, if ever before this, been known to be Practised. The Governour having brought in his Son to be Attorney General, this Corruption is the more effectually carried on between them, unto the great Oppression of the People.
Only two Instances, among many, shall be reported in this Memorial.
1. Certain People having purchased Land at a New Plantation called Nashoba, and wanting a Confirmation of their Title, by an Act of the General Assembly, as is Usual in such Cases) they could not have the Go|vernour's Assent unto the Act, without a Bribe of a Thousand Acres of the best Land, and in the Center of the Plantation, and to the Ruin of the rest.
2. Also, a Tract of Land at Nipmuck, belonging to Page 7Nine or Ten Partners, when both Houses in the General Assembly had passed the Bill, to Allow their Title, (as was Requisite by an Old Law of the Country) the Go|vernour would not Sign the Act, until he had a Bribe of Twenty Pounds, and one whole Share of the Land, which was valued at One Hundred and Fifty Pounds more.
But, if a Commission of Enquiry could be Obtained, there would be such Practices of this Nature Discovered as are hardly to be P•rrallel'd.
II. The Governour, meerly to gratify his own Arbi|trary Will and Pleasure did for some while Refuse to fill up the necessary Number of Judges; by which Means, the Courts dropt, and the Course of Justice was Obstructed; and the oppressed People were Defeated in their Suits, to the Damage of many Hundreds of Pounds.
III. There have been odd Collusions with the Pirates of Quelch's Company, of which one Instance is, That there was extorted the Sum of about Thirty Pounds from some of the Crue, for Liberty to walk at certain times in the Prison Yard; and this Liberty having been allow'd for Two or Three Days unto them, they were again confined to their former wretched Circumstances.
IV. An Army of Volunteers went out, and did Good Service upon the French and Indian Enemy at Acady. They were encouraged by an Act of the Governour and General Assembly, which promised the Soldiers a cer|tain Share of the Plunder. When the Soldiers returned, some Officers, without their Consent or Knowledge, and before the Division of the Plunder, made the Governour a considerable Present out of it; whereupon he so managed the Matter with the said Officers, as to cheat and cut on the Soldiers of near one Half that the Act 〈◊〉 the Assem|bly had promised them! When the House of Repre|sentatives applied themselves to the Governour on this Occasion, they could get nothing from him. By this means, no more Volunteers are like to appear in her Majesty's Service.
Page 8 The Governour's manner is, to trample on the Assembly with gross Indignities; and such as they have never received from former Governours. Nor can they have any Redress of Grievances, tho' many have been from time to time represented.
And when Bills for the Payment of the just Debts of the Province, are presented to him to be signed, he has declared, he would not sign them, except he were himself gratified with Sums demanded of them.
On these, and many more such Accounts, it is humbly conceived that it would be much for her Majesty's In terest, if a more acceptable Governour were placed over that Province.
This was the Memorial, but because there was no Body to prosecute it, it fell to the Ground.
Much about the same time, there came to Light a little more of Col. Dudley's Designs upon the New Charter of the Province. It seems, he was as willing to do the same Kindness for this, that he did for the Old One; and that he was at this very time doing for the Colony of Connecticut; which, if it were accomplished, would lay the Country open to an Innundation of Ca|lamities. His Son Paul, (the great Instrument of his Oppressions) writes over to his Friend in London, a Letter, wherein are these following Words.
Boston, 12th Jan. 1703, 4.
I Confess, I am ashamed almost to think, I should be at Home so long, and not let you know of it till now. Tho' after all, a New-England Correspondence is scarce worth your having.— I reser you to*Mr.— for an Account of every thing, especially about the Government, Page 9and the Colledge, both which are discoursed of here, in Chimney Corners, and Private Meetings, as confidently as can be. If there should be any Occasion, you must be sure to stir your self and Friends, and show your Affection and Respect to my Father who Loves you well, and bid me Tell you so.— This Country will never be worth living in for Lawyers and Gentlemen, till the CHARTER IS TAKEN AWAY. My Father and I sometimes talk of the Queen's establishing a COURT OF CHANCERY in this Country; I have writ about it to Mr. Blathwayt: If the Matter should succeed, you might get some Place worth your Return, of which I should be very glad. If I can any ways serve you or your Friend:, pra• signify it to (Dear SIR,)
Your Affectionate Friend, And Humble Servant, Paul Dudley.
This Apocryphal Epistle of Paul, [not a Saint Paul, we can assure ye!] needs no Commentary! — But,
These are Old Stories, we must now come to some New Ones.
BY Letters from New-England, we are informed how Matters past in the last Sessions of their General Assembly, which was in October and November 1707. One would have imagined, that the Mast-Fleet, which brings us our Letters of Intelligence, had been the Gousolidager, coming back with Intelligence from the World in the Moon: For such things could never have happen'd but among a People very Lunatick — And. Page 10First let us begin, as in good Manners bound, with the Upper House.
Their Governour Dudley, produced to the Council, the Copy of an Address to the Queen's Majesty, signed by above Twenty Gentlemen in London, in which, out of the Respect to a Country for which they were more generously concerned, than some that were under greater Obligations, they Petitioned for Dudley's Removal from his Government; alledging, among other weighty Reasons, That he had Countenanc'd a private Trade & Correspondence with Her Majesty's Enemies, the French, and the Indians which are in their Interests. He required his Counsellors immediately to clear him from these Imputations. He came upon them with his Demand, on the Saturday next, when they were, (as they usually then are) in the Hurry of breaking up. 'Tis the time when the Governour commonly makes any thing to pass, that either House must be either Trick'd or Tir'd into. Three or Four of the Council, particularly Brown, Sewall, and Pain, pray'd, That since the thing was both New and Weighty, it might be put off till Monday. The Governour, with a boisterous Fury required them to do it immediately; and they did it immediately: At once they rushed into a Vote, wherein they say,
Upon reading the Address offer'd Her Majesty, against his Excellency our present Governour, Signed, Nath. Higgin|son, &c. We firmly Believe, and are of Opinion, the Alle|gations therein, of the Governours Trading, or allowing a Trade with Her Majesty's Enemies, the French, and Indians in their Interests, is a Scandalous and Wicked Accusation. Passed Unanimously.
Isaac Addington, Secr.
The Council being Brow-beaten into such a Vote, one of that Board, namely, Mr. Samuel Sewall, who is also a Judge of the Superiour Court; but a Person of unspotted Integrity, thought himself bound in Conscience to exhi|bit a Remonstrance against this Rash Vote: His Relation Page 11as a Brother in Law to the Governour, did not get the Upper-hand of his Conscience; but he Presented his Remonstrance to the Board, and had it enter'd on File; from whence one of our Correspondents has obiained a Copy. 'Tis as follows.
Tuesday, November 25. 1707.
THE Reasons of my withdrawing my Vote, from what was Passed in Council upon Saturday, Nov. the first, relating to an Address offer'd to her Majesty, Sign'd, Nath. Higginson, &c.
I. Because my Motion, for leaving the Consideration of it till the Monday following, was not admitted; and it was enter'd upon, and pass'd about Noon, in a very short time; being a Matter of great Concernment to our Liege Lady, Queen ANNE, to the Province, to his Excellency our Governour, and to the Council and Representatives.
II. The Governour's Personal Interest was much in it, and therefore I humbly conceive, the Vote ought to have been Debated and Framed by the Members of the Council apart by themselves, in the Absence of the Governour.
III. The Words [firmly Believe,] and [always Ap|parent,] were never pleasing to me. And now, I do not firmly Believe, that the Governour did no way allow Mr. Borland, and Capt. Vetch, their Trading Voyage to Her Majesty's Enemies the French.
Qui•non vetat Peccare, cum possit, Jubet.
Not that I suspect, the Governour design'd to hurt the Province; but to Gratify Grateful Merchants. And I readily and thankfully acknowledge the Gover|nours Orders for the Defence of the Frontiers, to be Page 12truly Excellent; * both respecting the suitableness of the Orders themselves, & the Quickness of their Dispatch: And Ibless God for the Success that has attended them.
IV. I have been Acquainted with Mr. Nathanael Higginson these Fourty Years; and I cannot judge, the offering this Address to Her Majesty, to be in him a Scandalous and Wicked Accusation, unless I know his Inducements. And I fear, this Censure may be of ill Consequence to the Province in time to come, by discouraging Persons of Worth and Interest, to venture in appearing for them, tho' the Necessity should be never so great.
Tho' this Gentleman has thus recalled his Vote, (and another Gentleman present in the Council, never had a Vote put to him) and he insisted on it, as we are informed, that it would be a Direct Falsehood in Matter of Fact. Now to call this an Unanimous Vote, yet we find it was after this ordered to be printed in the Boston News Letter, with a PASSED UNANIMOUSLY. We cannot conceive how the Council could order a Direct Falsehood to be Printed, if their Souls were their own. Or, if they would so misrepresent Judge Sewall and Col. Higginson, (Brother to Mr. Nathanael Higgin|son) it may be they did also misrepresent themselves, in saying, they firmly Believe, when it is strange if they do really Believe it.
Page 13 Notwithstanding their News-Letter says, their Vote was passed Unanimously, Worthy Gentlemen in New Eng|land have given us such a Character of their Winthrop, their Hutchinson, their Foster, and some others of them, as that we cannot Firmly Believe, that they ever consented to have the Hon Mr. Higginson so stigmatized in the Boston Infamous News Letter. Nor is it to be imagined that they are all so Parado•ical, as we hear some of them are; for you cannot with a Beetle beat it into some of them, but that if a Vote obtain a Majority, it is to be called an Unanimous Vote. We have been told, and we thought so by hearing those talk who came from thence) that they Speak as good English at Boston, as they do in London: But we perceive, in the Council Chamber there, they begin to forget the English Tongue, and they have lost the Sense of the Word Unanimous.
One may guess at the Politick Reason, which drew too many of them into that undeliberate, inconfiderate Vote aforesaid; by what one of them (a principal Stick|ler for Majority being Unanimity) utter'd in a Barber's Shop, with so much Openness, that the Noise of it has reach'd over hither to London, That it was best for us, to keep this Governour, (tho' he had done very Bad things) for he had sufficiently spunged upon the People, and had now got Money enough; he was now satisfyed. [No, Sir, by your Leave, 'tis the Thirst of a Dropsy!] And had pri|•ately promis'd the Council, he would do so no more. Where|as, if another Governour come, he will come hungry, and we must be squeezed over again.
Had the Gentlemen of the Council caused their Vote to run in some softer Terms; as, That they were sorry such Eminent Persons, as Mr. Higginson; and Mr. Ma|son, &c. had been imposed upon by such Informations, as produced their Address to Her Majesty. This had been somewhat like Gentlemen, tho' not like Councellers: For some of them own, they had never seen any of the Affidavits made before the Queen and Council, nor any of those other things a•on to be produced, when they passed their Hasty Vote. But for them now to run upon these Page 14Eminent Persons, with a Clamour of Scandalous and Wicked Accusations; yea, Publickly to Stigmatize them in their Infamous News Letter, as being Scandalous and Wicked Accusers! Truly therein they have not Honoured themselves. The Higginson they vilify, is a Person every way much Superior to the Best of them: The Ho|nour and Figure he has obtained by his good Conduct in the East-Indies, will not be impaired by any Affronts from the West-Indies. The Mason whom they throw Dirt upon, was a Member of their Council, before a great part of them were so; and served their Agents with no small Assistances.
'Tis unintelligible! Why will the Massachuset Coun|sellors permit themselves to be made the Tools of their Governour's particular Desigus? Why will Councellors that are chosen by the People, be less concerned for, less faithful to the People, than the Counsellors in the other Plantations, who are not by the Choice of the People brought unto the Board; where yet we see, they often prove Thorns in the Sides of Evil Governours? Will you give your Friends at a Thousand Leagues distance from you, leave to advise you? We make no doubt, there are wise and good Men at your Board. We make no doubt, you are often over-voted by some of your Brethren, coming from your Country Towns, who are not over|stockt with more than One of those Qualities. But where is your Courage? In Truth, 'tis ths least of your Talents; you must get a little more of it. You should be ready to say before the Governour's Face, what you talk so freely behind his Back, that the Report of it reaches over the Atlantick.
You know, That when the Governour will have any thing pass among you, all your humble Intreaties to have a few Hours Time to think upon it, signify nothing; he will have it go Just Now, and you let it go. So you are ever now and then push'd into you know not what your selves, and you durst not Lisp your Dissatis|faction. You know, that when Officers are to be Elected, the Governour must issue out a Notification for a Gen•|ral Council, to come together at the Day; but on the Page 15Day the thing is rarely done; 'tis put off two or three Days till you are dispersed, and a Nick of Time is taken, in which Elections are carried on, which we hear, much disoblige the Publick; and Justices are created which have brought the Queen's Commissions under such Dis|paragement, that we hear many of the best Gentlemen among you, scorn to accept of them.
You know that things are managed with Tricks. Frauds and Juggles, without Numbers; and yet, you durst not Open your Mouths. You cannot but know, That your Governour ever now and then, will violently assert a thing, and you assent to it: Anon, in the very same Sessions of the Court, he will as violently assert a thing Diametrically Opposite unto it, (as the Service of some ill Cause may drive him to) and you durst not say, that you don't Assent to that also.
We understand that your former Governour, the Ear• of Bellamont, did not use to Treat you so; and was it for this, that you offered such an Indignity unto that Noble Person, as to vote, The Taking off his Speech from the File, as soon as Colon••udley (being one of Tory Principles, which my Lord was not) at his first coming moved you to it, and made you the Tools of his Malice against the Earl of Bellamont, for sticking so close to him in the Parliament, upon the BARBAROUS MURDER (as he would always call it) of Leister and Milburn? Your Governour with a Torrent of Language, and Mix|ture of Coaksing and Bouncing, and Coundent Assertions of Things (True or False, 'tis all one, yon can't Disprove them) has been too many for you. We advise you to Unite more together, a sufficient Number of you, and present strong Remonstrances on such Occasions, if the Successor (which we are satisfied he will not,) should go on in the late Methods. And we advise you, That you would not be so monstrously afraid of the Governour's putting his Negative upon you, the last Wednesday of May. Should you be Negativ'd out of the Council, for your Fidelity to your Country, it would be a much greater Honour to you than to be there, and no great Page 16Honour to them that are left behind: But you are already chosen, and sworn to serve till others are chosen; if the Representatives are not satisfyed in the Reasons of the Governour's Negative, they will declare, That they will not proceed unto another Choice. We would beg their Pardon, that they presume to give them this Advice. Then do you pluck up your Spirits: Nothing but an Act of the Assembly can remove a chosen Counsellor. You may appear, and assert your Seat at the Council Board. And you may do it with such apparent Eviden|ces of being acted by nothing but a Zeal for the Publick, that you may do it without any Dishonourable Charge of being Immodest, or Intruders. Without consulting the Stars, we can foretell to ye, That if you resolve to keep always in the obsequious Strain, you'll at last rowse the Representatives both to remove several of you, and to dispute several Powers which you pretend unto; and especially 〈◊〉 that of being able to Sit by your selves in the Time of the General Assembly; and by your Vote (with|out the Governour's) to hamper the People with a Third Negative, (besides the Queen's and the Gover|nour's) which your Agent here says, Your Charter never intended for you.
WE have seen how the Blanching Business went on in the Council; Shall we now see how it Pro|ceeded among the Representatives? We have been told a very odd thing, That the Counsellors will sometimes Outwardly Comply with a V•e, which they Inwardly approve not, in hopes that it will never be Carried in the Lower House. But, if this were an Honest, yet it is no Prudent Experiment: There is more than a little Danger in it. The Story of the Upper House, has the Truth of it enough confirm'd by Judge Sewall's Instru|ment of Revocation, if we had 〈◊〉 had the more Ample Page 17Relation, both from Packets and Passengers newly arrived here. For the Story of the Lower House, we have it with a Confirmation (if it be possible) more Authen|tick. For here are come over Letters from a great Part of the House, unto that Honourable Friend of New-England, and of all Good Men, Sir Henry Asbhurst; one signed by Seven, and afterwards another signed by about Thrice that Number; both to the same Effect. By these we understand how Notoriously the World is imposed upon.
On the Fifth of November the Plot begun to operate. A Message was brought by sundry Counsellors, from their Board, to incite the House, that they would con|cur with Their Vote for the Governour's Vindication. But the House for diverse Days declined to meddle with it; and then the like Message was brought again to the House, by a greater Number of Counsellors. The House being thus at length drawn in, to consider this Dirty Matter, there appeared Mr. John Nelson, who having sent unto Port-Royal, one Hogshe•d of Dry Goods, a Parcel of Iron Pots and Scythes, &c. by a Flag of Truce, whereof Capt. Rouse was Commander, now declared. That he had the Governour's Allowance for it, and Capt. Rouse being examined, made the same Declara|tion.
But this was a Trifle to the next: The Gentlemen aforesaid, we believe had no Traiterous Design of sup|plying the Queen's Enemies. But, when the Fort at Port-Royal had no dry Lodgings for the Soldiers; nothing but few Thatch'd things, that also rendered it more combustible to the Fire of the Besiegers; Now, to sup|ply the Fort with Nails to Shingle and Board their Barecks! There appeared Mr Samuel Baker, who pro|duced unto the House the Original Invoice, of things which he Ship'd for the Governour and the Commissary at Port-Royal; with an Allowance for them, under Governour •dley's own Hand. There is no need of Transcribing all the Articles, these are enough.
- Eighty Thousand of Shingle 〈◊〉
- Twenty Thousand, Ditto, Board.
- One Dozen of Black-Hafted Table Knives.
- One Hundred Weight of good Butter.
- Two Barrels of Mackerel.
- One Piece of good Searge.
- One Cask of Passado-Wine.
- Some Rice, &c.
I Know no Inconvenience in the Particulars above, and therefore Allow it.
These things were Ship'd on Board a French Vessel, called, A Flag of Truce (Anglice, of Trade) Capt. D• Chafeau Commander. It was done at the very time, when the Governour and Assembly, were Fining Vetck and Company, for a Trade as little Criminal; and when an Act of the Massachuset Province had made it Capital. Some of the Council would feign have perswaded the House, that there was a Cypher (their own Name-sake In the Council,) added unto the 8, and th• 2, of the Nails. But Baker's Confession had spoilt that idle Whim. The Governour's Friends, his Majors, Captains, Justices, and Feather-Caps in the House, and the meaner Slaves of the Trencher, used all imaginable Artifices to Vindicate him: And yet, when it came to a Vote on November the Ninteenth, Whether, after strict Enquiry, the House could clear his Excellency of Managing, or Countenancing a Private Trade with the French and In|dian Enemies, The Vote passed in the Negative, with a very great Majority. About Forty Five Members, more than Two to One, Voted, That they could not clear him. He had, according to the New Massachuset Sense of the Word, An Unanimous Condemnation.
On the Day following, there was a long Conference of Two Hours, held between the Two House, and chiests manag'd by the Governour. At this Conference there occur'd several pretty little Things, which might be Page 19〈…〉 at the Coffee-House, but se••e worthy to be 〈◊〉 in a more a more serious Narrative. We'll menti|on only two of them,
A Counsellor who had been a mighty decrier of the Governour while he was under his Negative, upon his Re-admission, becomes an Espouser of his Interest. This Gentleman greatly Exposed himself, by saying to the Assembly, There is no Trade but there is some Returns: I pray, What Return were there? How can you say, this was a Trade carried on? This became a By-word in the Town. They say, the Merchants of Boston often to their Sorrow, Trade without Returns: And we could wi•h, that every body here in London, who has Traded for Boston, could say, There had always been Returns.
Again, The Governour in his Flourishes, tells the Assembly, To support the Queens Enemies with an Unlaw|ful Trade, is to fond them your Beef and your Pork, and not such things as are in this Invoyce. An Unlucky Old Man in the 〈◊〉 (they say from a Town call'd Woburn• Reply'd, 'Tis very True, an't like your Excellency, and your Butter, and your May-krill!—Which gave such a Sting, That the Assembly saw, that if he be an Happy Man who catches a Mackrel, yet an Unhappy Man may be catched with a Mackrel.
The next Day after this Conference, and after 〈◊〉 Go|vernour's Violent Protestations of his own Innocence, (as the Letters of the Representatives assure us) the following Vote was again Press'd upon the House, That we firmly Believe, and are of Opinion, that the Allegations in the Address (to which the Council referr'd) of the Governour's Trading, or allowing a Trade with Her Majesty's Enemies the French, and the Indians in their Interests, it a Scandalous and Wicked Accusation. Still the Vore passed as formerly, in the Negative. The Squeamish Represen|tatives, it seems, had not such Stomachs of Ostriches, as to Digest an Hundred Thousand Iron Nails at once; not would they Believe (no, tho' Counsellors told them so•) that Nails were not Iron, The Governour's Friends were 〈◊〉 at their Wit's Ends;—And in Humble wi•e Page 20besought the House, That they would confine their Vo•• unto the Particular Trade of Vetch, Borland and Law|son. And it was urged, that Borland and Lawson had cleared the Governour; (the Sham of the Grateful Merchants you shall hear anon.) Hereupon the Flexible Honest Men, perfectly Worried, and Wearied our of their Lives, by Three Weeks Alterations, did so many go over, as to make a sort of a Vote of it. But the Conclusion of their Letters to Sir Henry Ashburst, (a Gentleman whom New England can never sufficiently Requite) is, Your self, and all Persons may Judge; how far the Vote of this House doth extend to the Vindicating his Excellency from being a Countenancer of Trade with the Queen's Enemies.
We have already intimated, how the Governour comes to have so many Friends in the House; that are so set upon doing him Justice, right or wrong. Besides the Caresses of the Table, which are enough to dazzle an Honest Countryman, who thinks every Body Means what he Speaks; the Influence which Preferments and Commissions have upon little Men, is innexpressible. It must needs be a Mortal Sin, to disoblidge a Governour, that has enabled a Man to command a whole Country Town, and to strut among his Neighbours, with the Illustrious Titles of, Our Major, and The Captain, or His Worship. Such magnificent Grandeurs make many to stagger Egre|giously! If it be but proposed in the Assembly, that any Mismanagements of the Governour be Enquired into, we are informed, that some of those Officers have been so insolent, as to move, That he who made the Proposal should be set in the Pillory. We perceive, the well-affected part of the Assembly take much Notice of this. And it seems, there was in this Assembly, one Occasion Odder than the rest, to take Notice of it.
There was a Pepresentative of Ipswich, who formerly failing in with the Interests of the Country, so provoked Col. Dudley, that in a Printed Pamphlet, published by him, (or the Person who wrote for him, so as to make it He) he reproached the Country, That such a Figure Page 21should be made in the Assembly, by one who was then a practising Sow-Gelder. This practising Sow-Gelder, (as Mr. Dudley calls him) was a Member of this Assembly, and unto the Surprize of the whole House, tack'd about, and went over to Col. Dudley's Interests; tho' 'tis not many Months ago, that we have (now in London) his Hand with others, unto an Honest Letter to that Ho|nourable Person, Sir Henry Ashburst, to sollicit his Endea|vours to deliver the Country from a Plot against the Charter, and all the Courts of Justice in it, with a Sham Court of Chancery, (or rather of Bribery) which Gov. Dudley was then pursuing. We are told, he has (for we know not what Reasons) a Number in the House▪ who resign themselves up to him, for him to do almost what he will with them; they follow his Dictates. The main things that have been carried in the late Assembly at Boston, otherwise than they should have been, are owing to his Dexterous Operations. Every Body said, This Man has in his Eye a Bribe, as the Re|ward of his Apostacy. He'll certainly be made a Justice, as soon as his Drudgery in gaining the Vote aforesaid, is over! It came to pass;—As soon as the Sham Vote, which has abused the World in your Foolish News Letter yonder, was Gained, the Governour draws the Council in, to Consent, unto their own Immortal Honour, that this Gentleman Sow-Gelder should be made a Justice of the Peace! Fy Gentlemen, What d'ye do? — And so the Worshipful of the County of Essex, have the practising Sow-Gelder aforesaid, (it was Mr. Dudley who taught us to call him so!) sit on the Bench with them. Whether the Cattel are in less Danger, or the People in more, since this Promotion, we who are Strangers to the Man, except by hearsay, know not; we suppose there never was a Sow-Gelder made a Justice, except in New-England, and that not till Dudley was their Governour.
But, it were good Advice for the People of Ne• Eng|land, in chusing Representatives, to beware of chusing any, who have their Obligations to their Governours, Page 22for their Preferments and Employments. The fewer you have in your Assemblies under such Temptations, the more Faithfully are your Affairs like to be carried on. You will Pardon Strangers, if their Good Will to you, make them so far Medlers, as to offer you their Opinion.
THE House of Representatives then Firmly Believe, and are of Opinion, That their Governour was not Concerned in Trading with Vetch, Borland, and Lawson. Others do Firmly Believe the contrary. Because, divers Traders have own'd, and said before many Witnesses, that their Governour did know, and allow of what they did; Vetch doth himself Confess it, in his Petition to the Queen. And when one of them swears in the Governour's Vindication, he only means, that the Gov. was not concern'd as a Merchant or Partner with them. He Ship'd nothing; there was nothing Ship'd on his Account. All this is nothing to the Purpose. And tho' Col. Dudley should be Clear of having any thing to do with these Three Grateful Merchants, yet there is another who is able to make discoveries.
In the same Condemnation with the Three aforesaid, there was at this Time, under Imprisonment, by Vertue of the Sentence which the General Assembly had illegally, (and it now appears Oppressively) passed upon him, for a part in an unlawful Trade, one Captain Rouse. The last General Assembly growing sensible of his Con|dition, Voted his being let out upon Bail, that he might enjoy his Liberty. But for a Reason, which he will tell in due Time, the Vote was in a great Measure Eluded.
It is Reported by some now in London. That the Assembly's Vote to set Rouse at Liberty, was made very Insignificant, by the means of one said •o be a Tory Judge, one Leveret. And they say that Dudley has made that Page 23Tory Lawyer to be President of their Colledge. No Que|stion but the Lawyer will bring up Hopeful Young Divines, to be sent hither for my Lord of London to Ordain them. We hear that they have sung the Gloria Patri in their Colledge-Hall already, and that several of their Clergy stood up at it. An Auspicious beginning under their Lawyer President, who, we also hear, was Chosen a Lieutenant of their Artillery Company at Boston, the last Summer. Such Reports as these, make their Friends here, think that the People in New-England are running Mad.
But to proceed with Capt. Rouse. Several of his Let|ters are come to London, by which we Understand,
These being the main Strokes of what Captain Rouse has thought sit as yet to Declare of his Case; we don't Wonder that the Practising Sow-Gelder thought fit to Page 25Castrate the Vindicating Vote of Rouse's Name: But we may well Wonder, that the House would be drawn into a Vote, that was design'd for a Blind, and a Sham, to Impose on People at a Distance; and yet, at such a Distance as we are, we can see through it! At the same time, the Counsellors and Representavies, even the most Ancient Blanchers among them, would (as we are assured) freely say to the Expostulators of their Conduct, which they every where met withal, That if the Governour had put them upon clearing him from gross Briberies and Cor|ruptions, they could not have cleared him. Well, but why dont they search into those things? For they have a Tendency to Debauch and Ruine the Country, and make it a vile, and a Forlorn Country. We are told, their An|swer is, 'Tis too Big a Thing for them to Manage: They Wish the Queen would grant a Commission of Enquiry. And People have been afraid to tell what they know; for the Governour and his Son, between them, have (thought they) Numberless Ways to come up with 'em, and, it may be, they will Press their Sons to the Castle, or elsewhere; from whence they shall be sold unto Merchant Ships, and sent out of the Country. Or, they may short|ly have some Cause in Court, where the Queen's Attor|ney (the Governour's Son) Reigns Lord and King; and will take Effectual Care that the Cause go against them. Others go on, That these are little things; they do so in England; such things must be born with! Which is in|deed, a Cruel Reproach to the Queens Government. And lastly, the Sharpest of all will tell ye, Oh! the Governour is our Father; we must not be such Sons of Cham, as to uncover the nakedness of our Father. And thus until the New Governour arrive, who being a Man of Integrity, will Honour himself by a Strict Enquiry into such things, there is like to be no Distinct Account brought in to Infor• the World.
What wicked Bribes, by a Juggling Management be|tween the Governour and his Son, [for, as we Told you before, You must go to my Son!] are Extorted on all the Occasions in the World!
Page 26〈…〉 have been let out of Prison for a 〈…〉.
〈…〉 Men in the Officers Hands, upon a Judgment for〈…〉 have by the Governour's Arbitrary Command been 〈…〉 Liberty!
〈◊〉 Criminals in the Hands of Justice, being frighted 〈…〉 Prospect of their Punishment, into a Willingness 〈…〉 Sea, the Governour sends an Order to the Keep|〈…〉 sell them for Tea Pounds; and so they are sent 〈…〉 to Sea!
What a wicked Trade is earried on of Selling Men from 〈◊〉 Castle, &c. to Merchant-Men; by which, poor Men 〈◊〉 their Sons Kidnapp'd into the Indies, where the 〈◊〉 catch them, and they perish in their Prisons! And what intollerable Pensions are paid by Officers for their Places; (by which, and the like means, the War, which Impoverishes the whole Country, has Inriched the Governour) which introduces a World of Misma|nager 〈◊〉! And, Whether a Lieutenant, whose Salary is but Sixty Pounds a Year, must not pay Thirty Pounds a Year Pension to Son Paul, or be turn'd out! Cummul|tes atlis.
What would have been the Punishment of such Things in old King Alfred's Days? These things make a 〈◊〉 Cry, than can be stifled by the Noise of all your silly 〈◊〉.
We don't wonder to see the Addresses for such a Gover|nour's Continuance, come over hither, sign'd by his Commission Officers. They are but Addresses for their own Continuance. The Royal Wisdom is not so to be Im|pos'd on. But we can't but smile to see the Cl•gy of New England so easily drawn in to Sign Addresses of this 〈◊〉. We are glad, that we can't see the Hands of the most eminent Ministers to these Addresses. By which we gather, that the Governour has sent his Emissaries 〈◊〉 and there into Country Towns, and surprizes their 〈◊〉 Ministers alone, and so many Arts of Insinuation 〈◊〉, that they have not Presence of Mind enough, to refuse a Subscription unto any thing that is offered Page 27them. W• do 〈◊〉 see the Ministers of Boston, nor th• Judicious Minist of Ronbury, your Governours's Past• to any of those 〈◊〉 which you have been wheedled into, not at all to your Credit here.
Certainly, when •ese Honest Gentlemen come to see the Practices of their Governour discovered, they will with Grief and Sh•ne reflect upon the Addresses, by which they have too far made themselves Parties to such a Governour. Some of them will consider, Whether they had not best follow the Noble Pattern which their Judge Sewall has given them Gentlemen, Such things as by common Fame, you know to be in the Conduct of your Governour, are not things which must needs render a Man acceptable to 〈◊〉, and to all Good Men.—That Expression were fitter for Pens of Roman Catholicks, than of New-England Ministers. You ought, with some Re|morse to make a Retractation of such a Passage as that, which we hear (by Letters, fo• we have not seen it) is in one of your Addresses. We hope you Teach your People better things!
You are generally, so fa• as we hear, Good, Pious, Faithful Men, and Blessings to your People. But if we may be worthy to advise you, we think, you would do well to resolve, that you will never Sign Addresses of this Nature, till you have had Opportunity in some Conven|tion (if you have such Things, for we are Strangers to your Methods) to Discourse with one another, how far it may be Convenient.
We have heard, that of old Time, there were some Oxen, who had the Wisdom to Resolve, that they would no, one of them, have any Talk with Monsieur the Lyon, apart: Allow us to tell you, if you go on Signing such Addresses, you will strangely undermine your own Au|thority among your People, and Sacrifice your own Reputation to your Governours. You'll tempt them to say, That you'll set your Hands to any thing. Your Pre|decessors would not have done as you have done. And, what a Sword do such Addresses put into your Resolute Governours Hands? He may now Oppress you, or any Page 28of yours, to the last Degree, and you have Tied your yourselves up from ever Complaining of him. Were not GOD merciful to you in removing such a Governour, you had Inslaved your Country before you are aware of it. If you'll permit such as are no Clergy-men to address you with Stories out of old Councils, we could tell you, That the First Council of Orleans, A. C. 52. made a strange Decree, That if a Bishop Ordain a Slave, to be a Priest, knowing him to be a Slave, he shall pay double the Price of him to his Master. We know not well, what sort of a World it was when this Decree was made. All that we move you to, Gentlemen, is, That at your next General Council, you would make a Decree, That none of you shall be Slaves, or do any thing that shall fasten the Fetters of Slavery upon your People. We believe, that if you had known your Addresses would ha• come too late, (as some of them have) and exposed you to be Laughed at, you would have had more Wit, than to have done as you have. We suppose you have heard what befell the Lord Verulam, for permitting his Servant to take a Bribe, and what was lately done to Sir J. T. because he did like your Governour, take a Bribe to promote the passing a Bill. Certainly, if you had known your Governour had been guilty of such Briberies, and other Male-Administrations, as not only Christian, but Heathen Princes have punish'd with the greatest Severity, you would not have signed your Ignorant Addresses.
Before we we proceed to give an Account of the late Shameful Expedition of the New-Englanders against Port Royal, we shall take some farther Notice of what Gen|tlemen worthy of Credit do assure us. One writes, that a Gentleman in New-England, when he first heard, that Col. Dudley had obtained a Commission to be Governour there, said, That he could not believe, that a Man who had been a Traytor to his Country; and an Apostate from the Religion in which he had been Educated, and had Murder'd two Men at New-York, better, and more Righteous than himself, would prove a good Governour.
Another Letter says, That the Misery of that People Page 29of late, has been in their Councellors, as well (tho' not so much) as in their Governour. The Priviledges which they enjoy by their present Charter, are Great and Singu|lar: For, no Man, but such as the People shall nominate by their Representatives, can be of the Governour's Coun|cil. Nor, may there be any Judge, or Justice of the Peace, but what the Council thus chosen by the Representatives of the People shall Consent unto. So that they may, and ought to be Shields unto the People, by keeping ill Men from being in Places of Power. Yet we hear, that their Governour has made a Number of very unfit Men to be their Justices; and this with the Consent of his Council, without which he could make none. So that it seems, these Great Priviledges signify but very little, thro' the Busillanimity, and Unfaithfulness of their Go|vernour's Counsellors, who will, too many of them, consent to almost any thing that he would have them. Witness, besides the things already mentioned, among other innu|merable Instances, so many of them consenting to have a Fort built at Pemaquid, and a stated Salary settled upon the Governour, and other Officers, by which they had like to have enslaved their Country at once.
The Representatives are also to be blamed, in that they do not Change their Counsellors. We know that they want Men fit for Government. Nevertheless, we doubt not but in the large Province of Massachusett's, there may be found an Hundred Men, as fit for Counsellors, as S. S. or J. C. or P. T. [we deal more tenderly with them, in giving but the First Letters of their Names, than they have dealt with the Honourable Nathanael Higginson, whom they have, by Name at large vilified, as a Scanda|lous and Wicked Accuser.] And others, who by their Obsequiousness to Dudley have justly forfeited the Love of the People.
Had their Representative the Wisdom frequently to Change their Counsellors, it would make them more Careful to study the Interest of their People, and not that so they may please their Governour, and Stigmatize better Men than themselves, in their Boston News Letter, only because they Slandered Dudley in a Matter of Truth.
Page 30 We are also advised from New England, That Dudley has Exposed himself to the whole Colony of Connecticut. They Dislike him there more Universally than in the Massachuset's. For he is not in a Capacity to Bribe Men there with his Commissions, Civil or Military. But he has joined a Hellish Malice with the worst of Men, and greatest Enemies of the Charter belonging to that Colony, in seeking to disturb them in the quiet Possession of their Lands. A Commission was obtained, in which Dudley was Chief, but others, who pretended to have a Right to great Tracts of Land, were put into the Commission, with Power to be Judges of their own Pretensions; the like to this has been seldom known. But when that Honourable Gentleman, who has Condescended to be their Agent, discovered the Fraud of this Affair before the Queen in Council, Praying that Her Majesty would pu• some Re|markable Discountenance on said Dudley, that Commission was soon Vacated, to his no little Confusion.
THAT Honourable Person before-mentioned, who is here Appearing on the Behalf of one of the New-English Colonies, which Col. Dudley has been seeking to Enslave, saw cause to Conclude his Petition, with a Com|plaint against him in these Terms; Your Majesty's Name and Authority is abused to serve some Dark Designs of his own. It seems he has been used to Dark Designs; but if ever Dark Designs were to be suspected, it has been in the Business of that Late Expedition to Port-Royal; an Expedition, that besides the everlasting Disgrace of it, has entirely Ruined the Country, and made it highly Necessary for another Governour to be sent thither, to rescue that poor People, if it be possible, from Extirpa|tion. We have pretty Broad Hints of an Unlawful Trade carried on with the Fort at Port-Royal. And besides the things already mentioned, it is well known, that Page 31Flags of Truce passed between Port-Royal and Boston, the Officers of the Custom-House at Boston, were Obstructed from going aboard those Flags of Truce, that so the Trade carried on with the Enemy, might be Concealed. And when Goods have been Siezed on Board the Flags of Truce, they have been again taken out of the Hands of the Officers. But we must now proceed to a Sadder Story. The Short of the Story is this. But the Dark Designs must be left for another Judgment.
When the War first broke out, the People of New-England, especially the Trading part of the Country, and those that were more immediately concern'd in the Fishery, were very Uneasy to see Port Royal, which was then of no considerable Strength, advancing into a Capacity of Distressing, if not ruining the Province. It is so near, and so seated, as to have all immaginable Advantage to Anni|mate, and Supply the Indians, by Land; and by Sea, with Privateers, to Destroy their Fishery, and Ruin all their other Trade, by intercepting, and taking their Vessels, both Outward and Inward Bound. Their Fort was but an Embryo, and it was thought they might have been easily Suppressed.
The New-Englanders understood by a Port-Royaller fal|ing into their Hands, that at Port-Royal they had not yet Heard of the War broken out. Whereupon Gover|nour Dudley was earnestly Sollicited, and his Leave In|treated by some, to go and Destroy that Nest of Hornets, which was like to be so grievous a growing Plague to the Country; with Offers to raise Volunteers sufficient for that Purpose; But the Proposal was rejected; which made People suspect some Dark Designs, and that Port-Royal was reserved for some special Advantages not Obvious to the Vulgar.
Afterwards, when the Governour could no longer with|stand the Cry of the Country, Col. Church was allow'd to go. The Assembly procured a Mortar Piece, and pro|vided Bombs, and other things convenient, and had some Eye upon the Fort, which was then finish'd. Yet the said Church not only had the Taking of the Fort left out Page 32of his Orders, but was positively Forbidden to Meddle|with it. And he hath since affirm'd to many Gentlemen, that he could with all the Ease imaginable have Taken the Fort, but that he had been so strictly and menacingly Forbidden to meddle with it, that he durst not; but only ravaged the Naked Country. Church's Soldiers were all Volunteers, and an Ast of the Assembly had promised them a certain Share of the Plunder: But the Chief Commanders first made a large Present out of it to the Governour; and then Hs, joyning with them, cut off the Army of Half that the Publick Faith had Engaged them; which it was feared, would have proved a lasting Discouragement to all Volunteers for the Service of the Crown and the Country: And the House of Representatives Remonstrated unto the Governour, this among other Grievances; but were rejected with Obstinate Contempt.
The Reason pretended by the Governour, for prohibiting Church's meddling with the Fort, was, That he had laid the Matter before the Queen, and had yet received no Orders about it. Tho' the same Objection still continued, yet the People being extreamly desirous that a Period might be put to their Miseries from Port-Royal, and a way open'd for the Deliverance of so many Scores of poor English Captives, likely to Languish for ever in the Indian Wigwams, moved for another Expedition above a Year ago. The Governour now gives a Commission for Taking the Fort; but whether with any Dark Designs, we are yet in the Dark. After the Instructions were drawn up, there was a Clause Tack'd at the End of them, which gave the Army leave to come off when they would, if they should imagine, they could not presently Finish their Business to their Minds. It was the Tacking this unobserved Clause at last, that confounded all, and brought on a Story, which all the Letters from New-England we have yet seen, say, They Blush to Write it. And that is the Reason why we can give but a Short Account of it. In short, there was an Army of as likely Men as can be imagined, the best part of Two Thousand of them; and as well provided with Ammunition, Provision, and all things Page 33Necessary, as a Willing Country could afford. But, when it comes to Execution, quite Contrary to the best Advice of them who knew the Place, the landed several Mil•• off the Fort, when they might have Landed close by, and probably at once have taken it. However, Land they did; and Drove the Enemy before them, and Chased them into the Fort with much Courage, and all the Encouragement that could be. The Men, to 〈◊〉 them Justice, Fought like Men, and would have d• any thing in the World. — But, lo, the Issue! The Deptford-Man of War, which was Commodore of the Fleet, had Express Orders from the Governour, That he should not Expose the Queen's Ship. Which Orders he afterwards Exposed in the Coffee-Houses. An Engineer was fetch'd from New-York, where the People from the beginning foretold what would be the Conclusion.
The Governour's Youngest Son, William Dudley, was there too, in the Quality of a Secretary of War; and tho' he were little more than a Boy, yet he was a Son, and the Army soon Cry'd out of being Boy-ridden. The General, a Man of no Con|duct, having Signaliz'd something of a Belluine Courage in some Indian Encounters, the Mob ('tis said) was set upon having him to be a Commander. They landed as we said; but then they ne|ver made a Formal Demand of the Fort; they never carried a|shore a Mortar or a Field Piece; they never threw up a Shovel|ful of Earth. The Business was so managed, between certain Persons, that altho' at a Council of War, one Day it was Voted. That the Fort should be attack'd, it was by'nd by, Unvoted again. The Engineer had wrought upon sundry Captains, to make 'em Believe, That the taking of the Fort was Impracticable. They most of them gave it under their Hands to their Wise General, That it was their Opinion, it was best for them to Draw off. The Soldiers began also to be Dispirited, for some had Blabb'd among them a Secret, which, when it came to be known, made them out of their Witts. Tho' it was known and Pub|lished here in London, before the Fleet was Returned from Port-Royal. The General Assembly had Agreed and Engaged, That if the Fort were taken, it should immediately be Demo|lished; and without this Assurance the Army would never have proceeded. But some Body now, Indiscreetly let'em Under|stand, that the Governour had some Dark Designs, to put a Trick upon them, and had given him Orders not to demolish the Fort: Whereupon the Inraged Army said, They had now nothing to do, but Fight themselves into a Prison! They were mostly Good Livers at Home, and could not bear the Thoughts on't, that half the Page 34Army, (no Man knowing whether it might not be his own share) should be Confined there one long Winter i• remote Garrison, and perhaps, Two Winters after that; or until they should Buy themselves a Release upon as hard Terms, as the poor Country Soldiers have, to get out of the Castle at Boston. Well: A Packet is Dispatch'd unto the Governour of Boston, to Signify their Opinion, and to Pray his Excellency's further Pleasure. But in three or Four Days after the sailing of the Packet, and before it was Possible for them to hear from Boston, they drew off in great Confusion, and Weigh'd Anchor, and came away. But as they were in the midst of their Dispersion, there came Or|ders to stop as many of them, as were together at Casco-Bay. From thence they sent three Persons to acquaint the Governour with the Miserable Affair; whereof one was the Engineer afore|said. They had a very melancholly, and almost a tumultuous Reception by the People; and when they were, at their first Land|ing upbraided with Cowardice, their Answer still was, That the Fault was at Home; and they had gone as far as their Orders would bear them out; with sundry such Reflections, which bore hard upon the Government. The Council were informed of this Discourse; But there was no Notice taken of it. And tho' they were Chidden by the Governour, in the Council Chamber, yet we understand, they were Hugg'd and Caress'd by him below Stairs, to the great Scandal of the People. The People were now in a mighty Ferment. It was the Universal Opinion, that if the Army had only staid, and Play'd at Coits in their Camp (far enough from the Fort) at Port-Royal, the Fort would have been within a few Days surrendred to them. The Soldiers with|in were Mutinous to the last Degree; Deserters daily came over. Provisions would have grown Scanty in a little Time. [Tho' the Lodgings of their Men were not now thatch'd; (the Reason why we told you before) yet a red-hot Bullet or two slung into the Fort, might have set them all on Fire.] Ten thousand things might have happened. But, like Men afraid of having the Fort fall into their Hands, they ran back to New-England as fast as their Canyas Sails could carry them.
The Good Women in Boston, could not forbear their Out-cries, when they met in the Streets, on this Occasion. Says one of them, Why, our Cowards imagined the Fort at Port-Royal would fall before them, like the Walls of Jericho. Another Answers, Why did not the Block heads then stay out Seven Days to see? What a•l'd the Traitors to come away in Five Days Time after they got there? The Cry of the People must be Satisfved. Another Ship of War was fitted our, and Recruits of Soldiers were sent unto the Fleer, which now lay at Casco Bay. Which after Tedious and Ex|pensive Delays of many Weeks, set Sail from thence again to P•t-Royal, but with the greatest Aversion that ever was in the Page 35Hearts of Men; and not until they had been further weaken• by many and numerous Desertions. While they were on the• Voyage to Port-Royal, a Man of War arrived from Portugal; the brave Commander (a New Englander) was ready to venture his Ship and Life too on this Occasion; and chearfully com|plied with Orders which were with some ado obtained, for him to go to Port-Royal after them. Our Fleet arriving there a Second Time, found that in the time of their withdraw to Casco, the Port-Royallers had much Recruited themselves; and had Taken and carried in some English Vessels, laden with Provisi|on; and had also Dispatch'd away their Galley for France.
Therefore, after a little Skirmish on the opposite Shore, and some Follies not to be mention'd, away they come for Boston, without Orders, and before Capt. Paddon could have Opportu|nity to come up with them. So that the Second Expedition was as Bad, or Worse than the First. After the Expedition was thus Shamefully Finish'd, there was another Difficult Card to Play; that was, to Satisfy the General Assembly, which was then quickly to sit. The Way pitch'd upon was, to make a Pretended Court-Martial, to Enquire into the Cause of the Mismanage|ments at Port-Royal. This Court was the Ridicule of Town and Country. No Body was Try'd at it, or so much as Accused. All was carried on in Hugger-Mugger. We can Hear of Nothing done; but the Presenting of the Secretary of War, Will. Dudley, with all the Plunder that was taken, and amounted to between One and Two Hundred Pounds, and then leave to go Home! It is plain, the General was not to be Impeached there; 'tis well, if it has not Ruined the Governour, as well as the Distressed Country, yet we hear the Governour, before the Sitting of the said Court, gave him an Order for an Advantagious Post at the East|ward, to Build a Fort at Saco, because he would not Take one at Port-Royal; as High and rich a Post, as he was ever capable of.
And so much for Port-Royal, until the Dark Designs come into further Light. And then it will be known whether Governour Dudley when he saw the Country was Violently set upon going, and so Interrupting his Trade with the French, had not a Secret De|sign, that the Fort at Port-Royal should have been made (as the Fort at Pemaquid would have been) a Convenient Place for the Fur-Trade with the Indians, whereby himself, and some Friends of his here, in Britain, would have got no little Riches. In the mean time, under his Admirable Conduct, an Impoverish'd Country has, (as we are credibly informed) been put to above Two and Twenty Thousand Pounds Charge, only to be Laughed at by their Enemies, and Pitied by their Friends.
Page 36 To the QUEEN's most Excellent Majesty.
The Humble Petitition of Your Majesty's most Loyal Sub• Inhabitants in your Majesty's Dominions in America, or T• ding thither. Sheweth,
THAT Collonel Joseph Dudley, whose Arbitrary and Ty• nical Proceedings had Exposed him to the just Resentments of his Country-men, before the Happy Revolution, hath been never|theless so Fortunate, as to obtain the Government of the Massa|chusett's Colony in New-England.
That your Petitioners are certainly Informed• of diverse Grie|vous Corruptions and Oppressions, and unjust and ••rtial Practices of the said. Dudley, on which they might Ground many Complaints against him, but they are so sensible of the imminent Danger which Threatens Your Majesty's Subjects in that and the Neighbouring Colonies, thro' his Male Administrations, that they at this time Beg Leave Humbly and Singly to represent to your Majesty,
That the said Dudley hath Countenanced a private Trade and Correspondence with Your Majesty's Enemies, the French at Cana|da, and the Indians which are in their Interest, Furnishing them with Ammunition and Provision.
That the Persons managing the said Correspondence, pretended a Voyage to Newfoundland, and being accused of High-Treason by the General Assembly of New-England, the said Governour by his Interest and Power, delayed their Prosecution, till the Ammu|tion with which he had furnished the Enemy was used by them, to the Destruction of Your Majesty's good Subjects, and that Colony, thereby put to Three and Thirty Thousand Pounds Charge.
That many of the best, and most prudent Members of the Lower House of Representatives, being tired with his Delays, and necessi|tated to go home and defend their Plantations from the Enemy, he prevailed with those that remained, who were scarce a House, that the Accusations against his Agents, should be changed from Treason to Misdemeanour; and they being Convicted, he laboured to Mitigate their Fines. All which was so Apparent to the People of New-England, that they threatned to pull down his House.
That he had the Confidence nevertheless to apply to the General Assembly for an Address to Your Majesty in his Favour, but his Application was received with a General Murmur and Con|tempt, and nothing done therein.
And altho' he hath since Endeavoured to obtain Your Majesty's Good Opinion by Collecting a Number of Names of Persons under his command and Influence to give him a Character,
Your Majesty's Petitioners, who Apprehend their Wives, Fa•i|ltes and Estates to be in Imminent danger under such a Governour, do therefore Humbly Pray, that this matter may be speedily En|quired into, and that Your Majesty would please to give such Directions thereupon, as to Your Majesty's Great Wisdom shall seem meet. And your Petitioners shall ever Pray, &c.
Wm. Parridge. Thomas New on. Nath. Higginson. Tho. Allen. Alex Holmes. John Calley. &c. &c. &c.