Nathaniel Bradstreet Shurtleff.

Records of the governor and company of the Massachusetts bay in New England : Printed by order of the legislature online

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Online LibraryNathaniel Bradstreet ShurtleffRecords of the governor and company of the Massachusetts bay in New England : Printed by order of the legislature → online text (page 24 of 77)
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authority & in ...

his name, not ^eet to inquire into.

nm/iUmgto They further pleaded that it would be an vnsufferable burden in case

glue an ac* m

any matter particular persons, judicially prosecuted & sentenced for criminall offences,

ohjected ag* y' i i .

goiJm'. should haue liberty to make their appeales, (not only from inferio'' to the high-

Appaies in est authority heere established by our constitution, according to his majestjes

criminalls ju-
dicially sen- royall charter, which is allowed to all persons whatsoeuer, but also from the

burdenTome highest, as aboue is exprest,) & thereby cause the Court that passed sentence

Where y" against them, or the whole colony, to stand ssquall w"' them at the barr of

EjoQiTi' is m.<id.e

asquallwih another tribunall, diuers from that established heere according to our charter,

"^t™" b °" 7 ^^*^ '^"^ particcular instanced the case mentioned in their proposall, i. e., of John

anoth' tribu- Porter, Jun, vnto whem the comissioners had granted a protection, (against the

nail, then w' y»

charter men- sentence of the Court,) who, amongst the vilest of malefactors, & deserving a

p ^ more severe sentence then that which the Court passed, presumed to plead

P'son insf, that he had susteyned great wrong by the proceedings of the Court against him ;

justly rancked „. , iiiti ■, • ■,

amongst y •^ 1^ Case such, breach should be made in the wall of our gouernment, it would

TiiDst malefac- jjg ^^ -j^jett of much trouble to vs, & all sorts of persons formerly punished

Desenied a seS (though neuer so justly) now would hope for some reparation to be made to

Such'a breach *'^^'^' ^^®^ ^^'^^ ^^ suffered twenty, yea, thirty yeares & more since, now

an inlet to resolving to trample vpon the authority that sentenced them, when those gen-
much trouble,

aneucourag' tlemen that had the cognisance of their causes were remooued by death, &

fLtorrt o"'' ^' consequently the grounds of their proceedings in many cases (in a great

trample on measui-e, at least) more difficult to be made appeare ; and if such malefactors

goQmt. , ri- J

Had not such ^^d binn suffered to passe vnpunished, it had binn impossible for his majesty

cXn^Tafnea *° ^^^^ ^^^ ^ colony of people here, at least such as now, thorough the good-

attaind to w' it ness of God, is encreased vnto.


ForysgoQm' ^''^^ ^^ ^^^^ ^^ whole colony, Gouerno'^ & Company, be bound to

to respond, &c, respond, as is the case now in hand, & as now they were requii-ed by the

a burden in- . J ~i. J

suportable. Comissioners, the burthen would be so vnsupportable that those who are


able to remooue tliemselues must be necessitated to returne & Hue vnder his 166 5.

majestjes wing, as nere him as they could, & vnder the security of the lawes ■"■ — ^ '

& priviledges of their native country, rather then to be vnder the arbitrary bIuL tote"'
determination of comissioners, whose rule is their discretion, as themselues t^i™ * l^^^

-1 n vnder his maj*

V-^^^- wing then be

And on the quaestion propounded by the sajd gent" to the comissioners, dettw-'"^
whither they would haue a jury to passe on such cases as they heard, they an- ''•'°'-

J ^y , . . . _ Ony'qus'

swered, JNo, — theu- comission was a comission of oyer & terminer, & they whither a jury
would haue no iury. '^°"^'' P"'"'®'

•' •' &c.

By what lawe they would proceed in judgment ? i- A jury de-

They answered. By the law of England. 2.' 'on y qust.

Whither, on theii" hearing of appeales from the sentence of those Courts, ^l ^^^^ l?"^

' they -would

they would admitt any new evidences other then the former Comt had pre- proceed, by y
sented to them at the first hearing thereof ? st^nd new

They answered. Yea. euidences to be

_^^ admitted.

Wherevnto the gentlemen sent by the Court replyed to this efiect : That The charter
his majestjes charter doeth grant vnto his subjects here the enjoyment of of frl^i^if^Xi
all the priuiledges of any the naturall subjects w'l'in any of his dominions, a 'i='t"'^il ^ub-

. . jects.

cheife one whereof is, that no judgment shall passe on any mans person or a cheife one is
estate but by the lawfuU trjall of his peeres, & that the rule of trjall shall be l°2^ ^^^^^
the lawes of the land, on the assurance whereof, together w"^ other the priui- The lawes of

1 • T • nn ^ T /• 1 • y° land the rule

ledges granted m his royall charter, they left theire deare relations, & parted of triaii.
w"^ their inheritances in their native country, venturing the lines of them- *^" assiirance

■' ° whereof all re-

selues & familjes into this wildernesse, & here, w"'out any expence to his [*502.1
majestje, haue raised vp a colony of people to his majestje, proceeding out of is-tip^s & in-
theire *their oune lojnes ; & now this would be a great addition to their parted from &

- . , . , , T , hazards runn a

lormer sorrows for their so great bereauements to be at once reduced colony raised
to such an exigence, that either they must be charged w"" deniall of his '""'''"* expenc

° ' ■' ° to his maj'J.

majestjes authority ouer them, or else must yeild to the prostrating of his A gr' streigh
majestjes authority, orderly established heere according to the grant of his ^d to deny his
royall charter, vnder the broad scale of England, & submit themselues, their "^■''^ authonty

•' o ' or prostrat his

lines, & estates, & their liberties, farr dearer then them both, to another authority here
authority, whose rule is their oune discretion ; but all this notw^'^standing, another au-
the comissioners still insisted vpon it that they were coinissionated to act as t'^ority, w"> hb-

■^ •' erties, estate,

they had proposed in all his majestjes dominions heere, & req^uired that we & lives, &c.

All y notwitli-

should submit thereto. stand., y"

"Wee shall now proceed to sive an account of the Courts answer to the ''°°"^^- "^^'f

J- ij on vrge their

seuerall instructions, in the same words as they were deliuered in writting to coisiss., & re-

_ . , quire a submit-

the comissioners, which are as folio weth : — tic yrto.


166 5. To the 5 instruction.

' Y ' Gentlemen : —

ay session. j^, -^ ^^ strange thing to vs that haue beene so long acc[uainted w*

Courts ans' to

5th instrucon. the falshood & barbarous practises of the Indians, Narragansets & others,
n ans vse o ^^ heare them make complaints, when themselues haue donne the ■iniurv.

complaine r 3 j j j

when yy doe Wee haus beene conscientiously careful! euer since our coming hither

y injury.

All differences ^° *° demeane ourselves towards them, as to prevent & cut of all just cause
m relation to gf complaints ; wee know not of any wrong donne them by this gouernmentj,

y« Indians haue

been issued by or any particcular person therein ; all differences relating to the Indians for

Vnited Colo- ™oi'6 then twenty yeares haue beene transacted & issued by the joint consent

njes aboue 20 & agreement of the Vnited Colonjes, and to be seene amongst the acts of the

commissioners, together w*'' the grounds & reasons of their proceedings, the

pervsaU whereof may give the best information that wee cann suggest.

Directed to tbe

Hon" Col. By the Court. EDWARD RAWSON, Secrety.

Rich. NicoUs,
& the rest of

^^J^''':' To the 6'^ instruction.

comissionerg. y-. -,

Gentlemen : —

Courts ans' to

y 6 instrucon In ans' to his majestjes instructions. No. 6, & your proposition there-

it coniissifs i . i i .

proposaii. vpon, yow may please to take notice, that there is a smale coUedge in this
M' Harvard, jurisdiction, at the tonne of Cambridge, called Harvard Colledo;e, the first

founder of y« . .

coUeg at Cam- & principall benefactor & founder thereof being of that name. There hath

beene, & is, seuerall summes disbursed by the treasurer of this jurisdiction,

both for the building & maintenance thereof; some smale additions likewise

haue beene cast in from the benefficence of some well disposed persons.

Out of w* a Wee haue appointed the praesident, fellowes, & treasurer of the sajd col-

preachCTs, ledge to give yow a particular account thereof, if yow desire it, and through

phisitions, & tjig blessing of God, wee may say, (& that w'l'out boasting,") that at least one

chirnrgeons ^ .i \ o'j

haue issued & hundi'ed able preachers, phisittians, chirnrgeons, & other vsefuU persons, that

binn servicea- , . .,,.,. . . ,

bie in his majT haue been serviceable m his majestjes dominions, haue issued thence touching
dominions. ^(.j^gj. gchooles ,• there is by law enjoyned a schoole to be kept & maintejned in
euery toune, & for such tounes as are of one hundred familjes, they are re-
quired to haue a grainar schoole ; the country is generally well prouided of
A brick fabrick schooles ; Concerning the civillizing & instructing the Indians in the knowledge
Indians. "^° °^ G°<i & humajne learning, there is a smale coUedge or fabricke of bricke
erected in Cambridge, peculiarly appropriated to the Indians, which was built
8 at Cambridg, on the accompt & by the order of the corporation ; there are eight Indian

ciie whereof

murderd; an- youths. One whereof IS in the coUedg, & ready to comence batchiler of art,
cosencetfch- ^^^"^^^^ another, in the like capacity, a few months since, w* seuerall English,
iler. was murdered by the Indians at Nantucket ; & at other schools some ready to


come into *tlie coUedge, all which haue been & are mainteyned on the states 16 6 5.

account & charge. There are sixe tounes of Indians within this jurisdiction, ' ' '

who professe the Christian religion, who haue lands & touneships set forth & ■'^p^JJlT?'
appropriated to them by this Court; there are also persons appointed to eTndiantounea
gouerne & instruct them in civillity & religion, & to decide rfjontrouersies * '""^^ ''^^'°'

priated to

amongst them ; the Saboath is constantly kept by them, & they all attend to them, &c.
the public]? worship of God ; they haue schooles to teach their youth to reade ^°^'™

•' schooles, many

& write in seuerall of their tounes, & many of their youth & elder persons ■=""" '^"'^^ &
cann reade & write. ^^ ^'

If yow please to be eye & eare witnesses of the truth of these things, wee
haue appointed the persons that attend that worke to wajte vpon you, & shew
their tounes & manners. ?'"■'" '° ^^^

HonOble Col.

By the Court. EDW: RAWSON, Secrety. ^^- Ni<=ooiis &

, ^ y« rest of his

Boston, 11"^ of May, 1665. ' maj'J'comis-


To the 7 & 8 instructions. Courts ans' to

Gentlemen : — , y comission's

-|- . . - . proposal! on 7,

in answer to your proposition vpon his majestjes instructions. No. s instruction,
7, 8, wherein you offer vs the choice of the place for you to heare & ex- "^^'is assert-

■^ jT J ed y> y« charter

amine complaints made to you ag' vs, wee conceive our charter vnder the enables y^ au-
great seale of England giveth full power vnto the authority here established gou"inhab^ &
according thereto, to gouerne all the people of this place, whither inhabitants ^"^"■"g^'^s, &c.
or straingers ; & for all legall acts & administrations of gouermnt it giues vs a
sufficjent royall warrant & discharge.

This charter is confirmed by the kings most excellent majestje, now W^i' charter y
reigning, & appointed to be inviolably obserued, as your instructions doe againe to"b?inv^ola-
& againe assure vs ; the inviolable observation heereof seemes inconsistent ^^'^ otserued.

n,i-Di- 1 • o T • ^ cannot con-

w™ your hearing & determmg complaints & appeales against vs. sist w'h otiiers

Neuerthelesse, wee haue desired to be doers of truth & righteousnes, & pi^^""fatr™™"

therefore not to shunne or decljne the light ; so if you shall please to jmpart Yet not Tuwiii-

the complaints that are brought in against vs, wee hope to give such an an- account as

swer & account as shallbe consonant to reason & aequitje, whereby you may ^^^'^ '"' conso-
nant to reason
satisfy his majesty that our actions haue not beene such as euill minded men & sequity, &c.

would willingly represent them. ^ '^^°' ^"J"

By the Court. EDWARD RAWSON, Secrefy. Rict- NiccoUs!

& y rest of his
Boston, ll"* of May, 1665. majTcoinis-


To the 9''' instruction. Courts ans' to

Gentlemen : — the g"" instruc-

In answer to yo' paper. No. 9, touching his majestjes letter, dated



16 6 5. 28* June, 1662, this Court hath endeavo''ed formerly to satisfy his maj'^'
^1 ' expectations therein, as may appeare by our applecations to him, & the

Jlay session. i ■ n • lonf-i

makmg & executing some lawes & orders reiernng thereto, but yet that our
readines may further be manifested to satisfy his majestje, whose favo'^ &
grace wee higJbly prize, & whom to oifend wee hope shall neuer justly be
imputed to vs ; wee shall further say to the particulars mentioned in that
letter, as followeth : —

Courts lesolu- Touching the oath of allegiance.

tion to beare

faith & true ai- The declaration of this Court, published in August last, in these words,

maj", & to ad- '^iz* '• This Court doeth expresse & declare, that it is their resolution, God
here to their asisting, to beare faith & true alleagiance to his maiestie, & to adhere to their

patent, &i;. °' ° j j '

And order )'« patent : the dutjes & priuiledges thereof, &(5, will be a witnes against us, should
the oath be ^^® ^^ found to act Contrary therevnto ; & as for many of those persons now
adrainistred to Jn publick trust, as also a great part of the people here, they haue tooke the

all admitted to

freedom, or im- Same at their coming from our deare native country, & as al the first constitu-
lick trust & ^^°^ °^ ^^^^ gouernment, according to his majestjes charter ; it was then observed
other hous- ^ adminis^red, by one of the then masters of the chancery, to M' Mathew

holders y' haue

not already Cradocke, the first Gouernor of this plantation ; so wee haue ordered that for
the future the same practise be observed in the administration of oathes to
[*504.] such as are *admitted to the freedome of this country, or iniployed in publick
Justice in y» trust, & to all Other house holders who haue not taken it already.

kings name - , ,.. . ^.. .,,. -iii. /»

constantly ^ '^^ adnimistration oi justice m the kings name, it hath bmn ior some

practised, &c. times past constantly practised.

For coinon Concerning the vse of the Comon Prayer Booke.

prajer, Courts

mind & desire Our humble addresses to his maj'^ haue fully declared our majne ends in

in /'ir a'ddres- °^^ being Voluntary exiles from our deare native country, which wee had not

ses, &c. chosen at so deare a rate, could wee haue scene the word of God, warranting

us to performe our devotions in that way, & to haue the same set vp here :

wee conceive it is apparent that it will disturbe our peace in our present


Touching civil Touching civil libertjes.

libertjes, our

lawe fully pro- To elect or be elected vnto civil offices, the qualliffications mentioned in

his majestjes letter, being orderly euidenced to us, ai-e accepted, as may appeare
Concer. eccle- by OUT late lawe & practise therevpon.

siasticall prifl-
ledges, y>

Court coiTiends Concerning ecleasiasticall priuiledges.

y« word of God

for r rule, &c. Wee hauc comended to the ministry & people here the word of the Lord


May session.

for their rule therein, as yow may find by your pervsall of our lawe in the 1665.
Eccleasiasticall, page 25.

By the Court. EDW: RAWSOIST, Secrefy.

Boston, 16 of May, 1665.

Direc to the Hono'^ble Colonel Richard NichoUs, & the rest of his ma-
jesties coinissiouers.

Here also foUoweth a copie of y^ Courts order concerning the oath of Order for y

n . . . , oath of allegi-

allegianc, in y^ wordes : — ano

It is ordered by this Comt, & the authority thereof, that the following
oath be annexed vnto the oathes of euery freeman & oath of fidellity, & to
the Gouerno"^, Dept Gouerno', & Asistants, & to all other publicke officers, as
foUoweth : —

The oath of a freeman & fidelity to runne thus : —

"Whereas I, A B, am an inhabitant "w'4n this jurisdiction, considering Oath of aliegi-
ho-w I stand obliged to the kings majestje, his heires & successors, by our men & inhab-
charter & the gouernraent established thereby, doe sweare accordingly, by ^*™'^' *"■
the great & dreadfiiU name of the euer living God, that I will beare faith &
true allegiance to our soueraigne lord the king, his heires & successors ; & so
proceed as in the printed oathes of freedom & fidelity.

The oath of the GoQno'^, Dep' GoGno"^, & other publicke officers, to runne Y» oath for y

, Goflnor &

thus : j,^]jg^. oigggjs^

Wliereas I, A B, am chosen Gouerno"^, &6, considering how I stand *"•
obliged to the kings majesty, his heires & successors, by our charter, & the
gouerment here established thereby, doe sweare, &6, as aboue.

By the Court. EDW: KAWSON, Secrecy.

Boston, 16"^ of May, 1665.

To the honor ble Colonel Richard Nicolls & the rest of his majestjes

To the tenth instruction.

Gentlemen : Courts ans' to

Since his maiesties returne into England, wee are ignorant of any per- *^ *'^°^'^ '""

■> •> ^ ' a J L struction.

sons attainted of high treason to haue arriued heere, except M"^ Whalley & on first notice
Goffe, who, coming hither in the summer, sixteen hundred & sixty, &, as wee ^^^j.^ attXder
suppose, before the act of Parljament, departed this jurisdiction the February °f treason.

\i fiiTciiit issiisd

following ; & soone after their departure, intellegence coming from Barbadoes ^^j f^j. ^^^i^
of a proclamation for the apprehending the said persons, a i^'arrant was issued •^P*^"""" 'f

^ '■ '^ o J J. ' found in our

out by order of the councill to search for & ap^hend them if found in our jurisdiction.


but conceiue wee haue been misrepresented to his majesty, being not con-


1665. jurisdiction. About two mouths after a warrant from his majestje was brought
^~ '^ ' to the late Gouerno"", who dispatched the same by M'' Kellond & M' Kirke to
Conecticott & New Hauen, whereabouts they were reported to be ; an account
whereof hath already beene giuen to his majestye.

By y« Court. EDW: RAWSON, Secrely.

Boston, 16th May, 1665.

To the honofble Colonel Richard NicoUs & y^ rest of his maj'y= comis-

[*505.] *To the ll'i^ instruction.

„ . ^ Gentlemen : —

Courts ans' to

11 instruction Jn ans"^ to your paper, N" 1 1, about the act of nauigation, &6, the act for

y* y act of

trade hath trade hath for some yeares beene observed heere, as our orders will declare ;

henc obs'ved.

No law of ours

ag' it, such as scious to ourselues that wee haue greatly violated the same, neither know wee
seemd to be i r> • • i t i t ^

repealed. ^^7 '-^^'^^ 01 ou-'-'s against it ; such as appeared so to be are repealed, as yow

Y° secret to may finde in our lawe booke, sent vnto yow. For the instance given, wherein
give acc^ of the ''

Courts pro- wee are charged w"" injustice towards M"^ Thomas Deane & others, when the
cee ing ^j^-p Q}j^a,rles of Oueroone came (as is sajd) into the port of Boston, wee can-

doe M' Deane not but belieue that yow will finde it otherwise when you haue an account of

justice, &c.

Court ignorant °^^ proceedings in that case, which wee haue ordered the secretary to present
of any re- viito yow ; neither doe wee know that justice (according to a due forme of law)

preaching him,

&c. was denjed him or any other, or that any in authority heere discountenance or

reproached him or any of his partakers for their proceedings in y* case.

By y^ Court. EDW: RAWSON", Secrety.

11 May, 1665.

To the honor'^''' Colonell Richard NicoUs & y^ rest of his majestjes

Courts ans' to

12 instruction. To the 12 instruction.
Our constitu- Gentlemen : —

pat"nt,\o! '^'^^ frame of our constitution is contejned in our patents, wherevnto wee

GoSn', Dept haue endeavored to conforme ourselues, consisting of Gouerno"", Dep' GoQ,

& gen. officers' Assistants, & freemen, by whom all our civil policy is admiiistered, the free-

"h^^^'^b • "^^^' ^^°^ ^^'° ^"^^ °^ election appointed by patents, constantly choosing the

freemen, &c. ; Gouerno'', Dep' Gouerno"^, Asistants, & generall officers, & by their deputjes

agreed by y» (themselves being too numerous) agreeing to all orders & constitutions for the

GoO, Asist- .^gij ordering of our affaire^ heere, as may appeare by our printed orders,

tjes. For the carrying on of the sajd gouernment & other accidentall charges,


together w* the maintenance of a garrison in the Castle, & an anuity of one 16 65.
hundred pounds p annu to the prassident of the coUedge, some charge for "" '' '

■L c-T • n T 1 ■cii May session.

the encouragement of mihtary excercises & the destruction of woolues, there „. , .

o J 3 Charge ab'

is levied by way of tax vpon the inhabitants, & by other impositions, vijs et 1200« pounds.
modis, about twelve hundred pounds p annu.

For our ecclesiasticall constitutions, wee haue not imposed by ciuill Ecoiesiasticall
authority but attendanc vpon publick worship vpon the Lords day or dajes ^^^^ imposed,
occasionally appointed. The people here, from whom the maintenance of the *''■

•• D11 /• • 1 1 n t T 1 1 ■ oil Maintenance

minister & the charge of erecting the places of publick worship must & doeth of ministers at
arise, haue libertje of calling & chusing their oune ministers, whose adminis- y* P'^"? ^^
tracons ai'e pubhckly knoune, & wee hope generally consonant to the word of haue liberty to

... . . . choose ym, &S,

God & primitiue practise, and if any deviate from the same, wee acknowledg, in case of male
and haue made vse of, the help of a synodi& y* ciuil authority to regulate in ^ ™!f X ''^ °ii'

such cases. authority in-

terposeth &

Our militia is ordered into three regiments of foote, besides some super- reguiats.
numaiy companjes, vnder three majo'^ & one majo'^ generall, together with our ?."'^^''.''j
troopes, consisting of about fower thousand ffoote & ffower hundred horse, regim«offFoote

, . 1 ,. 1 . . T, , & 4 troopes,

though possibly more may be in the lists, our orders requiring all men to be &5_

armed & listed; yet allowance must be made for aged & infirme persons. Vnder 3 majors

' - ° ^ & a m' ge., &c.

Wee haue vpon the channell entring the harbo'' at Boston a fort, or keepe, w"" one fort &
a battery of fiue or six gunns, & in the sajd harbo"^ two batterjes at Boston for *oa^„^5 y?''^^
the defence of the harbo', & one at Charls Toune, comanding the inner part i^arbo', &c.
of the road.

The number of our shipps & vessells, according to our best information. Number of our

/, ships, &c.

may be about eighty from twenty tunnes to forty, & from forty tunnes to
one hundred about forty sajle, & of ships aboue one hundred tunnes about a

By the Court. EDWAED KAWSON, Secrecy.

Boston, 16"> of May, 1665.

To the honofble Colonell Richard Mcolls & the rest of his majestjes

[No pages *506 and *507.]

*The IS"' of May, his majestjes comissioners sent their reply to the [*508.]
Court in these words, namely : - I^LTZ

Courts ans' to
„ . N». 7, 8.

Gentlemen : —

In reply to your answer to his majestjes instruction, N° 7, 8, wee are
heartily sony to finde, that, by some euill perswasions, yow haue put a greater


16 6 5, value vpon your oune conceptions then vpon tlie wisdome of his majesty &

Online LibraryNathaniel Bradstreet ShurtleffRecords of the governor and company of the Massachusetts bay in New England : Printed by order of the legislature → online text (page 24 of 77)