Page images

ment to the trade. And it being represented unto us, tlmt the said king Spain hath granted power to Balthasar Caymans of trade under a pa- • tent, formerly granted to Nicholas Portio, for importing negroes to the Spanish West-Indies, and to take possession of the estate of Portio, for the benesit of his creditors, and that the said Caymans hath impowired 1 iego Maget'to settle in our island of Jamaica, in order to continue the negro trade with our subjects in that island, you are therefore to permit the said Maget to have the free benesit of the law, and to countenance him and ali others concerned in the said grant irom the king of Spain irj their proceedings there, so sar forth as may consist with the encouragement of the negro trade in that island. And we do hertlby command and enjoin you caresully to observe ali the articles contained in the late treaty for the composing of disserences, restraining of depredations and establishing of peace, in America, concluded at vladrid, the 18th July, I6'7'\ with the crown of Spain, an authentic copy whereof you shall herewith receive. And, in case any private injury or damage shall be olfered or done to any of our subjects in those parts by any of the subjects of the lung of Spain, you (hall take care to give us an account, with all convenient speed, by one of our principal secretary's of state or'the lords ot ,our committee for trade and foreign plantations, and not t> pe mit or encourage reparations thereof to besought in any oth r way than what IS directed and agreed on in the said articles of Madrid.

And whereas we think sit, for the better administration of justice, that a law be pasled in the assembly, wherein shall be set the vajue of men's estates either in goods or lands, under which they 'shall not be capable of serving as jurors; our pleasure is, that at the sirst opportunity you en.deavour the passing such a law. And our will and pleasure is, that appeals .be permitted in cases ot error from the courts in Jamaica unto the governor and council in civil causes, at the hearing of which appeals any three or more of the judges of the supreme court are to be present, to inform and assist the court, provided the sum- or value appealed for do exceed three hundred pounds sterling, and that security be sirst duly gwen by the appellant to answer such charges as shall be awarded in case the sirst sentence be afsirmed; and if either party shall not rest satissied with the judgment of the governor and council, that then they may appeal unto us in .council, provided the sum or value so appealed for unto us exceed live hundred pounds, and such appeal be made within one fortnight after sen|eucc,.and good security be given by the appellant that-he eftectuallv pro

&b 2 iecuiesecutc the fame, and answer the condemnation, as also pav such coflts antf damages as shall be awarded by us, in case the sentence os our governmefl# and council be afsirmed, so as execution be not suspended by reason of any such appeal unto us.

You shall endeavour to get alaw pasted for the restraining of any inhuman severity, which, by reason of ill masters or overseers, may be used towards their christian servants or other staves; and you are also, with the assistance of the council and astembly, lo sind out the best means to sacilitate and encourage the converiion of negroes to the christian religion.

And whereas, amongst other laws pasted in Jamaica the 5th September, 1683, an act for regulating Haves was transmitted unto his late majesty, who did not think tit to consirm the same, by reason of a clause therein contained, whereby such as wantonly and wilsully kill a negro are only liable to a sine and three months imprisonment; which penalties, not being equal to the guilt, might eneourage the wilsul shedding of blood, for which it is nccellary some better provision be made, to deter all persons from such acts ot cruelty, you are therefore to signify the same unto the next astembly, and surther to propose to them the enacting a stricter clause in that behalf, which may be lit for our royal conssirmation.

You are to recommend unto the council and assembly the raising of -stocks, and building public workhouses, in convenient places for the poor and indigent people.

And whereas we are informed that a donation formerly made in St. Andrew's parish, in that our island, has been dive rted from the intended use, our will and pleasure is, that you make enquiry concerning the same, and to take care the said donation be rightly applied.

In case of any distress of any of our plantations, you shall, upon application of the respective governors thereof to you, assist them with what aid the condition and sasety of the island under your government can spare.

And yatj are to cause a survey to be taken os all the considerable landing places and harbours in the said island, and, with the advice of our, &i4 cputteU, erect in any of tUeii> such forti-ucations as JlulJ oe neceilary for the security and advantage of the said island, which mall be done at the public charge, not doubting ol the chearsul concurrence of the inhabitants thereunto, from the common security and benesit they will receive thereby.

And whereas we are given to understand there are several offices within Our said island, granted under the great seal of England, and that our service is very much prejudiced, by reason of the absence of the patentees, and by their appointing deputies not sit to officiate in their stead, you are therefore, upon your arrival in Jamaica, to inspect the said ofsices, and to enquire into the capacity and behaviour of the persons exercising them, and to report unto us, and to our committee of trade and planta'tions, what you think sit to be done or altered in relation thereunto; and you shall, upon misbehaviour of any of the said patentees, or their deputies, suspend them from the execution of their places till you shall have represented the whole matter unto us, and received our direction therein, appointing in the mean time sit persons to execute the said places; and you are to consider of a law like unto that in Ireland for absentees, that the inconveniencies arising thereby may be avoided.

And whereas Matthew Maveril and Abraham Gill have, by their petitions, made complaint of certain proceedings of sir Thomas Lynch, you are, upon your arrival in Jamaica, to examine the said petitions, and to transmit unto us a true state of the matters complained of, with your ©pinion thereof ior determination.


And whereas complaint hath been made unto us, by the creditors of James Littleton oi' London, merchant, that they, having sued out a statute of bankrupt here in England, against the estate of the said Littleton, they are nevertheless without any remedy, although there be a considerable plantation and other effects now in Jamaica, purchased with the petitioner's money and credit by the said Littleton, you are therefore to examine the petitioner's case, and if the same, with other cases of like- nature, be not sufsiciently provided for by law in that island,-you are to propose an act to be passed in the assembly there, whereby the petitioners, and others the creditors of persons becoming bankrupts in England, and having estates in Jamaica, may be relieved and satisiied for the debts *wing to them.

. And whereas Sarah Harrison hath likewise complained unto us, that a.

parcel parcel of,lard with houses belonging unto her, atCagoway in Jamaica* are under seizure tor the arrears of rent, reserved upon the said lands unto us, humbly praying that they may be restored unto her, upon paying the fame arrears, you are therefore, upon your arrival at Jamaica, to examine tho petitioner's cafe* and transmit a true state thereof unto us for our determination..

We do hereby authorize you to forbear, if you shall think sit, the taking advantage of any penalty or forseiture against any of the present planters or inhabitants of the said island, for not manuring or planting of their lands according to their time heretotbre limited and appointed them for the same, until you mall have represented the true state of the affair unto us, by one of our principal secretary's of slate, or to the lords of our committee for trade and foreign plantations; which you are accordingly to do with all speed, in order to receive our surther aommands and directions tkerein.

Our will and pleasure is, that all servants that shall come or be transported to our said island shall serve their respective masters for the term of four years, from the time of their landing; and every person that shall transport or carry servants there, shall, for every servant so carried and transported, have set out to him, upon the landing and employment of the said servant, thirty acres of land, to have and to hold unto him the Olid master, his heirs and assigns, for ever; and the said servant shall, at the end of the said term, have thirty acres of land set out and assigned to every of them respectively, to have and to hold to them and every of them, their heirs, and assigns, tor ever*.

Our will and pleasure is, that you take unto yourself, as governor, two thousand pounds sterling per annum out of the revenue, arising within that our island, and that you cause to. be paid out of the said revenue, to the chief-justice, one hundred and twenty pounds per annum, and to the Other judges, as also to the marshal and clerks of the assembly and other officers, their several, allowances belonging to them; to the captain, that commands the fort there, six shillings per diem, and to the gunners and .jnatrosses what hath been formerly paid..

And whereas we are willing in the best manner to provide-for the supfx>ct os our government of Jamaica, by letting apart sufficient allowances ibr ftich as shall be our governor or commander-in-chief, residing Tor she t me being within the same. Our will and pleasure k, that, when it*ishaft happen that you shall be absent from that our island, one sull moiety 6s the salary, and all perquisites and emoluments whatsoever, which would otherwise become due unto you, shall, during your absence, ~bc pai3 and satissied unto such governor or commandcr-in-chief who shall be resident upon the place for the time being; we do hereby order and allot unto him, for the better maintenance or for the support of the dignity of hat go vernment.

And we do hereby empower you to consent to a law For raising money, in order to the better carrying on the solicitation of the public affairs in England, provided such law do not exceed three hundred pounds sterling yearly; but, in case you shall not think sit to agree to such a law, our pleasure is, that then the persons desiring the same may be permitted to make voluntary contributions for discharging the expence of their solicitations, provided such contributions do not exceed in one year three hundred pounds Iterling.

And that, when any complaint shall be intended against you, notice be immediately given you thereof by the complainants, with the charge against you in writing, to the end you may make timely preparation for your desence.

Lastly, if any thing should happen that may be of advantage and security to thesuid island, and other the territories depending thereon, which is not herein or by our commission provided for, we do hereby allow unto you, with the advice and consent of the council, to take order for the present therein, giving us, by one of our principal secretary's of state,- and our committee for trade and foreign plantations, speedy notice, that so you may receive our conssirmation, if we shall approve the same: Provided always, that you do not, by colour of any power 01 authority hereby -given you, commence or declare war, without our knowledge and parti■Cular care therein

By his majesty's command,



« PreviousContinue »