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by all men. He died in this city March 16, 1893, with the
commendation of the community he had so much adorned.



SOME NOTABLE DEPOSITIONS FROM THE HIGH
COURT OF ADMIRALTY.



By J. R. Hutchinson.



(Continued from Vol. XLVII, p. 256, of the Record.)

(i) Andrew Hume of the Precinct of St. Katherine, aged 32,
William Forde of Limehouse, aged 36, William Deeping
of St. Mary Monthawe, aged 27, John Johnson of St.
Botolphs Aldgate, aged 45, respectively master's mate,
gunner, surgeon and cook of the William of London, and
Jacob Jacobson Elkins of Amsterdam, aged 42, factor for
the merchants freighting the said ship, severally depose on
the 5th, 6th and 7th of November, 1633, that William Clo-
berry, David Morehead and John Delabarr, merchants of
London, did in December, 1632, lade the Willani, whereof
William Trevore was master, with divers goods to be
transported to Hutson's river, between Virginia and New
England, there to be traded and trucked away to the
natives for beaver skynns and other skynns and furrs.
Having called at Plymouth in New England to land divers
passengers, the shipp, about the 13th of April last, arrived
at Hutson's river, where was a fort belonging to the Dutch,
called Fort Amsterdam, or Munhaddon's Fort. Here
Deeping, the surgeon of the shipp, was sent on shoare to
entreat the governor, Walter Vertrell, to come aboard; who
refused so to do, insisting that the Englishmen should



1916.] Some Notable Depositions from the High Court of Admiralty. 331

come to him, and bidding Deeping ask them: "Did they
know the Prince of Orange?" The whole ship's company,
led by Elkins the factor, accordingly went ashoare, excepte
one boye, who was left to minde the shippe. The governor
demanded wherefore they had come. " To goe vpp further
into the river," replied Elkins, " there to trade with the
natives, for the lande was the King of England's lande,
and they would trade there; and if the governor would
not suffer them to passe, yet would he goe vpp the river
though it cost him his life." This the governor forbade
him to doe if he valued his necke, at the same time com-
manding his gunners to shoot off three pieces of ordnance
for the Prince of Orange, and to spreade abroad the
Prince's colours vppon the castle; whereupon Elkins, going
on board the William again, spread the English colours,
shot off three pieces for the honour of the King of England,
and weighing anchor proceeded vpp the river some fortye
leagues. Here, to his dismay, he found a second Dutch
fort, called Fort Orania or Orange, Hance Jorison Houton
governor. Fearing to passe it, yet bent on accomplishing
the purpose of his coming thither, he made a landing a
mile below, set up a tente, and began to truck with the
Indians. He had previously lived amongst them for fower
yeares, and knew their customs, wants and language.
Could he stay but one moone, the salvages assured him, a
nation called the Maques would come down and bring with
them fower thousand beaver skynns, and another nation
called the Mahiggins would bring three hundred skynns
more.

At this interesting juncture, just when the factor and
ship's company — each of whom carried some small ad-
venture in his cheste to helpe out his wages, as was
customary — were congratulatimg themselves upon the
fact that everye merchantable beaver skynn was worth
twenty shillings at the leaste in London, up the river came
a pinnance, a carvell and a hoye laden with Dutchmen
armed to the teeth with halfe pikes, swords, musketts and
pistols, while from the vpper forte there dropped downe
vppon the traders a shallop, similarly manned and armed,
whose occupants, after the approved Dutch fashion, did
drincke a bottle of strong waters of three or fower pints to
whet their courage, whilst their trumpeter sounded his
trumpet in a triumphinge manner over the English.
Uniting forces, the two parties landed, threw down the
tent, beat the Indians who had come to trade, drove or
carried the interloping English aboard their shipp, and
there hove up her anchors, so that to keepe her from driv-
inge on shoare her company were faine to putt her under
saile and sayle downe the river, the Dutch remaining with
them untill they reached the open sea and there passed
beyond the governor's jurisdiction. The voyage of the
William was thus wholly overthrowne, and the merchants



332 Some Notable Depositions from the High Court of Admiralty. [Oct.

that sett her forth sustained losse and damage to the value
of fower thousand pounds sterling.

(ii) Comfort Starr of Ashford in the county of Kent, chirurgeon,
aged 45, deposes ii February, 1634-5, that about the latter
end of November last John Witherley of Sandwich, mariner,
did buy at Dunkirk a certain Flemish built shipp lately
called the St. Peter, now the Hercules of Sandwich, for the
sum of j[,2i\o the first penny, which shipp now lies at Sand-
wich, and is of the burthen of 200 tonnes. Examinate,
being noe seaman, cannot tell of what length, breadth or
depth she is, but he guesseth her to be about twelve foote
broad above the hatches, fowerscore foote longe, and six-
teene foote deepe. She belongs to this examinate. John
Witherley, Nathaniel Tilden and Mr. Osborne, and William
Hatch is to have a parte in her with this examinate.
The above deposition, taken on the eve of the Hercules' de-
parture for New England, incidentally corrects Pope who dates
the voyage 1634, and confirms Savage, who assigns it to 1635.
Starr, Tilden and Hatch, with their respective families, all crossed
in the ship whose purchase is here described.

(iii) Thomas Harrison of Redriffe in the county of Surrey,
mariner, aged 50, deposes 7 March, 1636-7, that he was
sent to Dunkirk, on the 6th of January last, by Mr. George
Price of London, merchant, to buy a ship for his use. He
bought of the officers of the Admirality of Dunkirk, by
publique outcry, a Holland-bottom shipp then called the
Lambe, burthen two hundred and threescore tonnes, and
paid for her 7,000 guilders the first penny. He arrived
with the shipp in the river Thames, neere Redriflfe church,
on Sunday last, being the fifth of this present month. The
shipp, now called the Successe of London, is to be sett
forth for Danzick in Prussia, there to lade masts. De-
ponent's son, Thomas Harrison, is to goe master of her, if
hee come from Holland before the shipp be ready; but if
hee come not, then deponent's brother in lawe, Daniel
Paule of Ipswich, shipwright and mariner, is to goe master.
Daniel Paul next appears at Boston, N. E., where 24 August,
1640, he formally empowers John Cole of Ipswich, shipwright, to
sell his lands, tenements and personal possessions in Ipswich,
England, and to pay over the proceeds to Elizabeth his wife. In
1643 he is of New Haven, Conn., and later of Kittery, Me.
{Lechford's Note-Book, p. 2gj.) In face of this evidence connect-
ing him with Ipswich, it is remarkable that no trace of him can
be found in the Apprenticeship Indentures or Freemen's Rolls
of that ancient borough, records of which the writer possesses a
complete abstract. He may, however, have been a son of that
John Paul who was baptised at St. Mary Key, Ipswich, in 1584.

His association with Kittery is doubtless explained by the
allusion, in Harrison's deposition, to the Dantzig mast-trade.
The supply of masts and spars for the British navy and the
British mercantile marine had from time immemorial been






1916.] Some Notable Depositions from the High Court of Admiralty. 333

drawn from Norway, Prussia and Muscovy, a precarious source
of supply in time of war. The settlement of New England, and
the subsequent exploiting of the northern forests of that diffuse
territory, introduced white pine as a desirable substitute for the
heavier, less resilient and more easily barred product of the Baltic
provinces. In Paul's time the trade was yet in its infancy. A
generation or two later it had grown to such proportions that it
became necessary, in the interests of the royal navy, to restrict
its ravages upon the forests of Maine and New Hampshire.

The charter of William and Mary accordingly reserved all
white pine of a certain diameter for naval uses, while an Act of
Parliament of later date expressly forbade, under heavy penalties,
the cutting down of King's Woods. The inhibition was the first
seed of the American Revolution. Logically regarding the fell-
ing of timber as a natural right, the colonists resented bitterly
this unwarrantable interference with their liberties. Elisha Cook,
a somewhat truculent member of the Massachusetts Bay Council,
acting as the people's spokesman, in a caustic letter addressed to
the Speaker of the House of Representatives roundly declared
that "the King had no woods there; " a piece of plain speaking
for which the General Assembly publicly thanked him. Bridger,
the first Surveyor General of the King's Forests, escaped public
odium and personal injury only because he "seldom visited the
woods, but often sold 'em ;" whilst David Dunbar, the irascible
Scotsman who succeeded him, incurred both in full measure for
enforcing the law, as he did on frequent occasions, " with a crow-
barr." The people clamoured for his recall, but Dunbar sat tight.
So tenacious was he of the sweets of office, indeed, that Gov.
Belcher, his inveterate enemy, maliciously said he would believe
Dunbar had really gone when some inward-bound skipper re-
ported having sighted him "to the eastard of George's."
{Colonial Office Papers, passim.)

(iv) John Tarleton, of the parish of St. Olaves in the Borough of
Southwark, brewer, aged 46, deposes 30 December, 1631,
that in July last he, at the entreaty of Susan Hooker, wife
of Thomas Hooker of Waltham in the county of Es?ex,
preacher of God's word, now resident at Delph in Holland,
did lade abord ihe Jacob of London, Robert Jacob master,
one small truncke of apparrell contayninge, as he hath
bene informed by the sayd Mr. Hooker's wife, one stuffe
gowne, one stuffe cloake, one cloth cloake, three shirts,
twelle handkerchiefs, seaven white capps, three ruffe bands,
two falling bands, three payre of ruffes, one payre stockins,
one payre of garters, one payre of shooes and one or two
sutes of apparrell, and two letters, w"" truncke of apparrell
this deponent, by the direction of the sayd Mr. Hooker's
wife, did consigne to be delivered to one Mr. Peters, a
minister dwelling at Rotterdam for the accompte of the
sayd Thomas Hooker. And he also sayeth that the said
Hooker went into Holland in or about the month of June
last, and his wife and family still dwell within the parish
of Waltham in Essex.



334 Some Notable Depositions from the High Court of Admiralty. [Oct.

Apart from the allusion to Hugh Peters, Tarleton's deposition
is noteworthy as fixing the date of Hooker's flight into Holland.
They who fled from the wrath of Laud stood not upon the order
of their going. He therefore travelled light, and the trunk, with
its delightfully simple contents, was sent after him. It never
reached its destination. Some accident of the sea claimed it,
and Mistress Hooker sued the owners of the Jacob for its value.
Of Tarleton we know nothing more than is told in the caption
of his deposition; but the name is found in Leicester.shire,
Hooker's native county.

(v) 12 Martij, 1643 — (4), Heugh Peters of London, minister, aged
41, yeares or thereabouts, sworne before the Judge of his
Ma"" Highe Courte of the Admirality, sayeth & deposeth
vppon his oath That about fourteene dayes since this
exam'% beeing at the Brill in Holland, saw the shipp called
the Signett ffriggott, comanded by Capt: Whetstone, ride-
ing at an anchor below the Pitts, about fower miles from
Brill, and about a Cables length from her there lay a Scar-
boroughe shipp of the burthen of about 70''' tonns, newly
runn a grounde vppon the shoare, & hearing that the M^ of
that vessell had complained to the Burgimaster of the
Brill against Capt: Whetstone, this exam'° went to that
Burgimaster, who is alsoe Comissaryof the shipps, and ad-
vised him to doe nothing in that matter without very good
order, and that since they would doe the Parliam' noe good,
that they should doe them noe hurt, & theruppon that
Burgimaster tooke a boate and wentdowne to Capt: Whet-
stone, towrds the Cignett ffriggott, 8c by the way mett
Capt: Whetstone & spake with him, & this exam'= alsoe
tooke another boate & went aboard Capt: Wetstone &
lookt vppon his Comission & Instruccons to see how farr
hee might thereby bee borne out in that action, w"^*" Capt:
Whetstone then related to this exam'* to bee thus, vizt.
That hee, seeing the Scarboroughe vessell at sea, & not
beeing able, as the winde then was, to goe out with his
shipp to her, sent out his boate, who haling her, & expect-
ing a roape from her to haue gon aboard her, shee per-
ceiving them to bee in the Parlim' service, tackt about &
rann herselfe a shoare in the place weere this exam" saw
her w'^'' was not farr from the first tonn, w""" was about five
English miles from the Brill, where shipps doe not Vse to
harbour or ride except yt bee for a tide or soe, to goe forth
or vppon extreamity; and thervppon the next tide the said
said Whetstone sent his menn aboard the said Scarboroughe
vessell, as shee lay agrounde in the place aforesaid, &
fetcht her off & moored her neere his owne vessell, there
beeing then aboard her (as yt was said) fower thousand
pounds in money, wooll, cloth & ledd to the value as yt was
said of fower thousand pounds more, consigned to S'
Heughe Cholmly, to S' William Davenett at Rotterdam, &
the proceed thereof to bee returned in armes to the North



1916.] Some Notable Depositions from the High Court of Admiralty. 335

of England, as partly appeared by letters in that vessell
w'*' this exam''" saw & pervsed; & forthwith this exam",
returning to the Brill, founde two of the States shipps of
30 or 40 peeces of Ordnaunce each making ready, & the
next day they went off from the Brill & rodd by the
Cignett ffriggott, & vppon the Lords day followeing
Admirall Trumpe came to this exam"' lodging in the Brill
& brought with him Capt: Whetstone, whom hee had
brought ashoare, & told this exam" that he was carrying
him to the Hage; but with much importunity the said
Trumpe gaue Whetstone leaue to goe to church at the
Brill with this exam", yet in the middle of the Sermon
sent for him out of the Church; but Whetstone staying out
the Sermon, this exam'', after the Sermon was done, went
with him to Van Trumpe, then standing in the Streets at
the Brill with multitudes of people about him, & Trumpe
then expressed much anger for the long stay of Whetstone;
and then this exam" demaunding of Trumpe his Com-
ission for the stay of Capt: Whetstone & his shipp, soe
much to the preiudice of the Parliam', they hauing but one
shipp then in the Maze, the s'' Trumpe gaue him thereto
noe aunswere, but asked him yf hee did not know what hee
was, to w''' this exam"' replied that hee knew him well
when hee was Deacon of the Church at Roterdam, but was
afraide that his preferment had much changed him; vppon
W^'' the said Trumpe grew much in passion, & this exam"
then in the name of the Parliam' requiring to know of him
whether hee came by the order of the Prince of Orange,
the States, or the Admiralty at Roterdam, or of himselfe,
the said Trumpe gaue noe other aunswere thereto, but
said You know what I am; I am vppon Holland grounde,
& yf Whetstone will not goe, I will presently goe fight with
his shipp, for that is my order; & soe carryed Capt. Whet-
stone away with him to the Hage, & the Skarboroughe
vessell was fetcht into the haven of the Brill by the Dutch,
& the Thursday following in this exam"" sight they car-
ried the Cignett ffriggott into the Brill haven alsoe, & hee
hath since bin advertised from thence that her sailes were
taken from the yard & Capt: Whetstone detained at Roter-
dam, soe that there is now noe shipp in the Maze to hinder
any body goeing in or out there, notwithstanding to his
knowledge there is great store of amunition lyes ready at
Roterdam to bee shipt for the North of England. And
this exam" further sayeth That at this departure from
Holland hee was informed by very good hands that thus
they intend to deale with Capt: Zachary, who lyes at the
Texell wayting vppon Brocome Bushell, who was then
comeing from thence with tenn thousand armes, 26 brasse
feild peeces and other amunition for the Earl of Newcastle.
And this hee affirmeth vppon his oath to bee true.
For a man of precision, as he imdoubtedly was, Hugh Peters
here states his age with singular looseness. As a matter of fact



336 Revolutionary War Records. [Oct.

he was in his 46th year when he deposed, having been baptized
on the nth of June, 1598, in the parish church of Fowey, Corn-
wall, where he is registered as the son of Thomas Dickwood, an
opulent merchant of that borrough, who most commonly passed
under the alias of Peter or Peters. His mother, Martha Treffry,
was a daughter of John Treffry of Fowey, Esq.; and at Place, the
ancestral home of the Treffrys, a contemporary portrait in oils of
the famous divine is still to be seen.

The deposition now first given to the world is eminently
characteristic of the man. It is egotistic, theatrical, meddlesome,
the quintessence, in short, of Hugh Peters, the evil genius of the
Commonwealth. In it we see him playing with a high hand the
game that later on made him the most cordially hated, the most
vilely execrated man in all England — the game of audacious
intermeddling in matters that did not concern him. The scene
between the choleric Dutch admiral, livid with passion and out-
raged dignity, and the cool, hectoring little busybody of a parson,
is worthy to live in history. Peters was not slow to perceive
the possibilities of the encounter. He no sooner reached Eng-
land, which he did with all speed, than he proceeded to use it as
a means of currying favour with the Parliamentarians, thus
laying the foundation of that sinister influence which ultimately
brought both his king and himself to the scaffold. He began his
disastrous political career by plucking Van Tromp's beard. He
finished by plucking straws, fatuously, from the hurdle whereon
he rode to judgment.



REVOLUTIONARY WAR RECORDS.



By George Austin Morrison.



The following list was discovered among a mass of miscel-
laneous documents of the Quarter Master General's Department
of the Army of the Continent and is of unusual interest because
of the indication of the work performed by those employed on
the roll. It will be noted that many names are given without
indication of their actual military rank. The list numbers 139
names, of whom twelve appear to be of commissioned rank and
there are nine Overseers, Directors or Superintendents of Artificers
mentioned. The fact that all these men worked at stations
located on or near the Hudson River and in all probability were
born and bred in the adjacent counties of Westchester, Putnam,
Dutchess, Columbia, Albany, Orange and Ulster, makes this pay
roll of peculiar interest to possible descendants. A brief exam-
ination of Nezv York in the Revolution discloses that a majority of
these men did military service in either Continental or State
Regiments and in the then militia.



!9i6.]



Revolutionary War Records.



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Online LibraryNew York Genealogical and Biographical SocietyThe New York genealogical and biographical record (Volume 98) → online text (page 40 of 57)