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great Dutch ship lie bad brought here, and probably that was part of his» design; but lie put in the stoop about a thousand two hundred pounds worth of indigo, and sent it privately, contrary to the act of navigation. And, about this time, he was killed alone by .the French, who had landed a party at Cocoa-Bay, to plunder thereabouts, as he was riding up to PortMorant to dispatch this floop. Soon after the sloop sailed, and these two in her, who, in requittal to him for his kindness, ranaway with the floop and all the indigo to the French; and there these men, as I have been since informed, told monsieur Ducafs, the governor, that this island was easily taken; the fortissications at Port-Royal were out of order, and sew men there, so that two hundred men would take that place, and two hundred more would march in any part of the country, the people were so thin -and so little used to arms; and Stapleton wrote to his wife, who he had lodged near the sea, in St. Thomas's parish, to that end, that he woisld come aud setch her and some company, meaning negroes, with her; and other dilcoveries he made therein, but by chance the letter came to my hand, and I secured his wise, for she was their majesties liege subject.
Some time in April, one captain Elliot, whom I shall have occasion to mention, was sent in the Pembroke floop, with a cargo of eight or ten thousand pounds, to trade upon the coasts of Carthagena and Porto-Bello; and there, in a bay, was taken by two French privateers, and carried to Petit Goave.
About the same time, with much ado, 1 had got the Falcon manned, and, to keep oft' the small privateers that landed often in several places of the out-ports, where the settlements were thin, and did much mischief to the people, I gave orders to captain Bryan, the commander, to cruise about seven or eight leagues to the windward of this island, to prevent them what he could from coming down upon us; which he performed with great diligence, and made two or three cruises there; but, about the middle of April, met with six privateere, who had aboard them sive hundred men, who were designed to land at St. Thomas's and St. David's, and to rob those parishes: Towards these the Falcon made sail; on which, as we heard after major Beauregaurd, who commanded, called a council of war, and would have fought the Falcon, but the captains of the privateere resused, and said at best they should get only broken bones, and spoil their men for any other design; on which they all ran and out-sailed the£<dcon; but these was with them a ihip that they had taken the day before, that was bound hither from New England with provisions, she the Falcon out-sailed, and took and brought her presently in with the men; but I, searing those privateers might get together again, and prosecute their design, got the Falcon wood, water, provisions, and some more men, and sent her out again in forty-eight hours, to cruise in the same pass; whither she went accordingly. 'At this very juncture, arrived at Petit Goave from France some merchant ships, and three large men of war of sifty and sifty-four guns. The governor being told by the privateers where the Falcon lay, these ships were presently sent out, and with them another smaller of twelve guns to take her; and, as it afterwards appeared, soon met her, fought her, and were too many for her. But all our men of war sloops belonging to. the island had been on the coast of Hispaniola, and there on the shore accidentally met with Grubbin's wise, a Frenchwoman he had married there: they would have left her there where they found her, but the earnestly desired to go with them, and be quit of her husband, because, as lhe said, he used her very ill; therefore, by her desire, they brought her hither, from whence, being a Frenchwoman, I would have sent her again, but she earnestly desired to stay and to have protection; and as it was a stated agreement between Ducats and myself, that what of their nation were with us, and desired to continue so, should not be obliged to be sent away against their wills, and the like with ours that were with them; therefore when they had a flag of truce here, I would have had her gone with monsieur Lepass, wdio came here to exchange the French prisoners, but the resused, and by the agreement betwixt us I would not force her away; nevertheless, Grubbins, in revenge, took the opportunity to tell the people, when he landed and plundered, and to write me, that, if I did not send off his wise, he would carry away every woman he could meet with till he had his wise again} and, accordingly, one night, landed at a lone house at St. Elizabeth's, one Mrs. Barrow, a minister's widow, plundered aH her negroes, household goods, and all the. had; tortured her to consess if she had any money, and then took away with him her maiden daughter, Miss Rachael Barrow, of about fourteen years old, and carried her to Petit Goave. This pallVJ a hundred miles from me, so that I heard not of it presently. Mucfo about the same time, other privateers had been at the northside of this island; there they took major Terry and his wise, carried them aboud their vessel, stripped her to her fhist, and beat her; at length, for ransom, made him give bond to pay a certain sum to whom they should send lor it. Also, there they, took a sloop belonging to one captain Robinson, ami
another belonging to Richard Nicholas; these two cam? over land to me, and desired leave to go to Petit Goave, to buy their vessels and lading, which I accordingly gave them, and writ by them both, in two several stoops, to the French officers, and desired sase conduct in theii going and coming, and they went away accordingly.
Soon aster Mrs. Barrow had travelled hither, and came to me full of prayers and tears in behalf of her maiden daughter, and earnestly begged me to help her. I then considered these were inhumanities beyond the common custom of war amongst Christians, and therefore sent major Low, one of the council, and with him, for the better port, lieutenant-colonel Clarke, with a flag of truce, and, a letter to monsieur Ducass, to complain of these insolencies, and many others committed by their privateers, and" to require punWhment on the offenders, or else to tell him that I would make satissaction to ourselves on any of their people that we met with; but the two sloops mentioned before, and this, with major Low also, as soon as they came' on the coasts, they seized and plundered of what they had, and detained them all as prisoners.
Some time passed away, and I heard nothing of the Faulcon, whose limited time was out, nor of any of those sloops; and not knowing the French bad any recruits of ships from France, and therefore but only one of, forty-four guns with them, at Petit Goave, I could not think the Faulcon was taken, but doubted lhe must spring a but-head and so be foundered or accidentally sired in the sea, and all lost that way: but time going away, I was very uneasy, and began to doubt they had some design against us, and the rather because, about a month before, I had a letter from Curracoa, from a gentleman I know not, which told me that the French were nieparing a great strength to take Jamaica, but when or from whence he named not; so that I concluded it only a rumour, and the rather because I thought the French at Hispaniola with one man of war only, of their king's, of forty-four guns, could not, with all their privateers, attempt any such thing as the carrying the whole island.
Whilst I was under some doubts and concernments, which daily in'creaied upon me as the time passed away, on 1 hursday, the last day of May, in the evening, as I was sitting with some gentlemen, comes into my house captain Elliot, whom 1 have before mentioned to have been taken by the French, in a very mean habit, and wiUi a meagre weather* beaten countenance, and told me, that, for the sasety of the island, he and two more had ventured their lives to the will of the sea in a small canoe, that would carry no more than them three that were in her, and had the Saturday night before stolen away lrom the enemy, to let me know that the French had recruits of men and men of war from France and Martinique; that they had taken the Faulcon, the manner how; that they had drawn up all their ships and force together, had twenty sail of ships and vessels, and three thousand men, and were designed to take this island; and in order to it, monsieur Ducass the governor was coming with them: that Stapleton, Lynch, and others of the rogues that had deserted from us, had told him he would meet with but little difficulty in the enterprise, for the fortisications at Port-Royal were down since the earthquake, and two thousand men would take that place; that they were very weak; that upon the island there were at least sive hundred men, some Roman Catholics, and others affected to king James, that would come in to them, and that a small number of men might march through the country; that they were ready to fail when he came away, and might be expected in two or three days; that they hoped to be with us before we had any intelligence of their coming, which would make their conquest of the place more easy.
This was surprising news, but the council and assembly being then together here, I presently sent for the council, and soon after for the speaker, and concluded he mould call the assembly together and adjourn for one month, which was accordingly done; and a council of war of the officers immediately called together, and martial law proclaimed, and •every officer ordered to his post. At this time one of the bastions of Fort-Charles at Port-Royal was built but up to the sills of the port; but colonel Beckford, who commanded that fortress and Port-Royal, did so industriously apply himself to the securing of the place, that he got the bastion built, the platform laid, the guns mounted, and all the lort into excellent order; then laid aline of nineteen calverin to the east of the fort and sive to the west, and in the mean time we bought a ship and fitted her very well, though at a great charge, for a sire ship; laid the Advice to second the fort, drew all the merchant ships into a line, and barricaded all the streets leading to the fort, and lined them with great guns, and put every thing there into as good a posture as could be done in the time; and, to strengthen him, I senthim sifty white men and sifty blacks 4fom St. Catherine'b, and as many from St. Andrew's and Kingston, and
put put si tv blacks on board the Advice. In the mean time, colonel Lawe, at St. Andrew's and Kingston, drew lines where there was occasion, secured a narrow pass whe re they might be afraid to break in at the eastermost part of Kingston; and sir James Carlisle having garrisoned and provided his house, which was well walled and gunned lor a desence; also they built a regular fort in the parade at Kingston, and put themselves in very good order. At St. Catherine's side we likewise made very good breast works, and planted guns where there might be danger of their landing, and the like was done at Old-Harbour and Carlisie-Bay, and put ourselves into the best posture we could to receive them; and, because the island is very large, and impossible to be desended in all parts, without very much more strength than we have, I was willing, if possible, to desend what was strongest, and therefore I sent for all the forces from the out-parts and drew them near together into St. Dorothy's, St. Catherine's, St. Andrew's, and Port-R oyal; from which places, wheneverwc wereattacked, we could assist one another; and some sew I left to desend the breastwork at Carlille-Uay, but that was above thirty miles off. The people of St. Thomas's and St. David's, the eastermost parts of the island, and most obnoxious to the enenjy, I ordered all in, and to bring to St. Andrew's and Kingston their wives, children, negroes, and all they had, because that in sive and twenty or thirty miles space there were not aboveahundred and thirty men. of all sorts, and therefore not possible in anywise to desend themselves, but would all have been a prey, with all they had, to the enemy. Accordingly the.greatest part came away, and brought all they could, but some trusted to the good nature of the French, as I doubted they would by some letters they met with, and lost what they left behind. At Fort-William and Port-Morant I ordered the guns to be spiked up, the shot to be buried, and the powder brought away, as being in no capacity of strength or men to desend itself against such a force.— 'We also drew from all parts of the island as many able men negroes as could be trusted, and put them in arms, where many did good service, as well as in the laborious part of building breast-works, SCc. and we' stored ourselves as well (as we could with salt provisions, of which and stour we had the good fortune to be pretty well stocked.