Nathaniel Bradstreet Shurtleff.

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

. (page 59 of 77)
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criminall,) & wee hope a sincere & sober zeale for the glory of God & the
honor of the gospell, doe imbolden & move vs to appeare as ready at least to
offer our just apologie & defence f«>r for the remooval of that black cloud of
calumnie w* is thereby drawne ouer the churches & the ministry ; much
rather & gladly would wee haue borne & buried in silence the whole, had wee


31 May.

binn only privately & personally concerned therein, or had it issued only as 16 71.
an abortive motion, -w^'out any abiding effect or influence vpon the spirltts of
men, or the present state of affaires in these churches ; but seeing it is farr
otherwise, wee thought it our duty humbly to offer our present sence thereof,
& to craue an expedient for the clearing of our churches & elders, & all con-
cerned, from the high & heavy imputations therein. As to sence of it wee so-
berly say, —

1. That it peremptorily & possitlvely presumes the whole charge, w^'out
proofe by any one instance, of those hethrodox & corrupt principles & prac-
tises, & w"^out putting any differenc betweene churches & churches, & elders
& elders, but insinuating the charge indef&nitely vpon all.

*2. Vpon this presumption it concludeth woefuU declension from primi- [* 680.1
tive foundation workes, innovation, seeming to inferr thereby the dissolution
of the very constitution of these churches ; for if foundation worke be dis-
terbed, & an innovation lajd by the x^i'ofession & practise of those loose &
corrupt principles, mentioned as inconsistent w'^ the being of such churches,
then woe vnto vs indeed ; but wee belelve that God doth yet oune these
churches as to their primitive constitution, according to the true principles of
the congregational way.

3. It scandalizeth the professed & declared doctrine of baptlsme, insinuat-
ing that no children ought to be baptized but such whose parents haue given
such evidence of the grace of faith to the church, as therevpon they are ad-
mitted to full coinunion in instituted chru'ches.

4. It ouerthrowes the constitution of our congregationall churches, by
denying the membership of church children, when adult, as not hauing
either the materiall nor formall cause of church membershipp.

5. The whole charge savoreth of a spirit vnder an extraordinary trans-
portation, from a present, personal, & passionate concerne in the interest of a
party, as appeares by the instance of the business of the third church, & so
of a designe to scandelize that pretious church of Christ, at least to hinder
the consumation & confirmation of that worke of God, by the peaceable
setlement of that church In actuall & full comunion w"" all other churches.

6. By a misrepresentation of that weighty & worthy transaction vnder-
taken & managed in a regular way, to an orderly issue, it doth deepely charge
& calumniate magistrates & churches, & consequently elders & church mes-
sengers, w'" dangerous designe, yea, w"^ a crime of infringing gospell & church
libertjes, w^^ breach of lawe, & that in a factious way, by abetting & incoura-
ging that which is illegall, vnto the begetting & nourishing of confusion,
breaches, disunion, & divission, & the manifest violation of rules, both of


religion & order ; all w* is illustrated (in that paper) by the premised ex-
amples of Davids noumbering the people, of Gideons ephod, & of Eljes indul-
gence, thereby loading so great a part of the magistrates, churches, & elders
"w"" the guilt & scandall of that ■which they suppose to be the great & criminall
sinn of the tjmes, that they may (as they say) free both themselues & the
country from guilt, & all this before they haue orderly inquired into the case,
or could haue a regular cognizance of the true state thereof, nor acknowledg-
ing the many signall manifestations of Gods presence & asistance in his
acceptance of & blessing vpon that worke.

Thus farr, much honoured, wee haue declared our greivances, from a
deepe sence of the sad & aflictive consequences of this vnhaj)py essay, to a
discouery of the evills of the tjmes, whilst wee consider how much God hath
been dishonoured, how much the Spirit of God in the hearts of many of his
faithful! servants hath been greived, how much an anti ministeriall spirit hath
been strengthened & imboldened, how much the hearts & hands of many that
labor in the worke of the ministry hath beene weakened, how much the
spiritts of many haue binn preju.diced against their instructions, & filled w"'
groundlesse jealousies & suspitions by the misrepresenting & scandalesing of
elders to their churches. These things wee lament, yet haue not now pre-
sumed to remonstrate in our oune defence ; but wee doe first coiiiend ourselues
& our cause to Him that judgeth righteously, & then submitt ourselues & our
whole matter to this honoured Court, humbly wayting vpon you for redresse,
either by calling vs to vindicate ourselues publickely from any thing that
may be publickely managed against us of this nature, or by mooving & in-
couradging the churches to a generall convention by their elders & messeng''s
for the debate & decission of such questions, & an accomodation of such dif-
ferences which hath begotten these misunderstandings, or othenvise, as in yo'^
wisdome you shall see meet. In the meane time wee shall pray, as in duty
bound, that yow may be directed in all yo"^ consultations & conclusions by
Him that standeth in the congregation of the mighty & judgeth amongst the




Ypon consideration of the petition of sundry of the reuerend elders, de- 4 June,
clai-ing the deepe & afflictive sence of some voates past in May, 1670, in the ^^^^^^ ^^_
House of Deputjes, (vpon the returne of parte of a comittee, chosen by the ^'■''^^^''■
honord Court to inquire into the causes of Gods displeasure,) which they
conceive to reflect great reproach & scandall on the ministry in generall, &
that demonstrated by an act referring to the third church in Boston, wherein
some in particular are charrecterizcd as abetto''s in the constituting that church,
& thereby rendered as the troublcrs in our Israeli, & as the Achans, &^, being
an act infringing of church & gospell libertjes, & the free excercise of all ordi-
nances by churches w"^in themselues, &5, although it must be asserted, that
the acts of this honoured Court, being the supreme authority, are not Ijable to
qucestion by any, & that free debates are the indubitable right of the sajd
Court, yet, forasmuch as in an hower of temptation such acts may passe in our
Court as may, according to principles of religion, prudence, & state interest,
be revejwed, & vpon mature deliberation, rectified, — in this case the Court
conceives it duty to declare, that forasmuch as seuerall expressions in the sajd
transactions haue an appearance of the justnes of the complaints in the sajd
petition, and that they may not leaue any just ground of grelvance in the
hearts of their reuerend elders, nor their ministry be made inneffectuall by
that antiministeriall spirit that too much runs thro the country, the Court
orders & declares, that the sajd papers referring to that case are to be account-
ed vselesse, & not to be improoved against the reuerend elders, as the causes
of Gods displeasure against the country, *or to be made publicke. And [*681.]
whereas many haue taken liberty in an irregular way to publish the secretts of 7:4: (71.)
the Coui-t in that case, and doe declare such are to be accountable according to
the nature of the fact.

The Court doeth further declare, that they know no just cause of those
scandalizing reflections contejned in the sajd papers indefEnitely against magis-
trates, elders, & churches, either in refference to the new church of Boston
or otherwise, and therefore, till they be further informed, must judge them
innocent, and vnduly calumniated and misrepresented, and doe hereby pro-

8 June.


fesse & declare w"' the reuerend elders in their addresse, that wee doe adhere
to the primitive ends of our eoming hither, reteyning the sober principles of
the congregationall way, & the practise of our churches in their present &
8:4:71. most athlcttick constitutions.

Ans' to Johan- ^^ ^-'^^"^ to the petition of Johannah Garfjeld, the Court, by their coiiiit-

nah jjiarfields ^gg^ hauing pervsed many writtings presented, & heard all persons concerned,

doe judge that the petitioner, having sold hir housing & land to hir son, that

sale stands good, «& that the purchaser is to make good & performe to hir that

ycarely payment ingaged, about tenn pound p anum.

M" HoUawavs Laycl out to M'^'^ HoUoway, in ans' to the Courts graunt to W™, hir sonne,

favme lajd out. ^igggaged, the 7"> May, 1662, one hundred & fiuety acres of land beyond Wading

April 19, 71.

Riuer, neere to Pljniouth Ijne, and is measured & marked out, as by the plott
may more fully appeare, w"^ is on file : begining at the letter A, where is a tall
white oake, marked, & a streight Ijne marked from A to B seventy two rod, vpon
the course southwest five degrees westerly ; & from B to C the line runns north,
nine degrees westerly, two hundred & eighteen rod in length ; and from C to D
the Ijne runs west & by south, fower degrees southerly, one hundred forty two
rods in length ,• & from D to A south south east, fiue degrees easterly, two hun-
dred & fiuety rod in length. At A is a tall white oake, at B a maple stake, at C
a heape of stones & a stake, at D a smale blacke oake. This lajd out & plotted
by the assignment of Leiftennant Joshua Fisher,


The Court approoves of this returne, so as it intrench not on 'any former


Francis Hud- "^ platt of a lott of land lajd out to Francis Hudson, conteyning three

sons farme. hundred acres, was presented to this Court, & is on file, runing & lying vpon
•Wading Riuer, northward of W™ Hudsons farme, & measured from a red
oake to a white oake tree, fower hundred rods on the east ; from the red oak
to a pine stake eighty fower rods on the south ; from the pine stake to a white
oak stake three hundred eighty six rods on the west ; from the white oake
stake to a pine tree, & so to a little brook, & so to y'= white oake, all on the
north, as in the plott.


The Court approoves of this returne of the three* hundred acres lajd out.


Lajd out & measured a tract of land conteyning five hundred acres to 1671.
M"^ Thomas Kellond, & at his request, at Wading Riuer, nere Cap? Hudsons ^^ ^i '
farme, as in the plot, on file, is demonstrated, runing from a white oake to a j^, ^ho. Kef
black oake, three hundred & eighty rod ; from the black oake to a heape of '""^^ ^'^^^^

lajd out.

stones, and a stake at Seacunck Path, nigh "Woodcocks "Well, eighty rods;
from that heape of stones to a birch tree one hundred rods ; from the birch ■
tree to a pine stake one hundred & sixty rods ; from the pine stake to another
stake five hundred & fourteen rod ; & from that stake to the white oake one
hundred & twenty rod.


The Court allowes of the land lajd out & returnd, so it intrench not on
any other former graunt.

Moses Pajne, ensigne to the fibote company at Braintry, being thence Robert
remooved, this Court doeth appoint Robert Twelue to be ensigne to that com- ^g Braintry °
pany in his steed. company.

In ans' to the petition of Richard Way, the Court, hauing read the pe- Ans' to LeP

._. 1 1 ^ ^ ■ 11 o 1. Richard Way

ticon, &, by theu- comittee, heard what the peticoner hath to say, & scene his peticon.
accounts in his booke, & finding that to exact the whole suiiie of him he will
haue nothing at all, as to them appeared, for his paynes & service for the
countiy, and that also, according to his affirmation, when they found him ready
to make oath, he, to gaine a peaceable settlement of that afiaire, gaue & abated
about one hundred & fiuety pounds of his due, the premisses considered, the
Court judge it meete to abate or allow the peticoner one hundred p anum ; &
so he is to pay in the whole fiveteene hundred pounds in money into the
countiy Tresurer, & so be dischardged of his contract w'^ the country, prouided
he give a particcular & faithfull account vnto Richard Russell, Es^, Tresurer,
& Capt Lawrence Hamond, of his receipts for the yeare past, & the names of
the persons from whom he received the custome & excise.

*In ans'' to the petition of Timothy Pratt, the Court judgeth it meete to de- [*682. ]
clare, that the iudgment of the County Court stands good, notw^standing the Ans' to Time.

> J o ■/ " ^ Pratts peticon.

reuersing of it by the jury at the Court of Asistants, seeing the Magis*' there
did not concurr to alter the sentence of the former Court, and doe referr the
peticoner to the County Court, that, if they see reason yet to give him his
oath, or to abate his fine, in whole or in part, that they may doe therein as to
them shall seeme best. C^p. ^^^^i^ ^^

It is ordered, that Cap? Daniel Gookin shall & hereby is appointed to ''^^p^ Courts

at Doner &

keepe the County Courts at Douer & Yorke, w'"* the associates there, for this Yorke, &o.




Y ~^

8 June.

T.I' Bradstrcet
to kccpe
Courts, &c.

M' Sultonstall,
Pike, Dalton

Relating to

yearc, and that the County Coui-t there give order for the raysing of a troope

of horse & officers pro tempore, if they see cause to encourage that motion,

making their report to the Generall Court.

Itt is ordered, that Symon ^ , Escp, shall & hereby is appointed to

keepe the County Courts at Hampton & Salisbury, w'^ the associates there,

for this ycare.

Itt is also ordered, that Capt Nathaniel Saltonstall, Majo"^ Eobert Pike, &

M"' Samuel Dalton be invested w"^ magistratticall power for the yeare ensuing,

in the county of ISTorfolke.
Maj' Dennison Vpon the desire of Symon Bradstreet, Es^, to be released from keeping

& Hampton"^"^ ^^'^^ County Courts at Hampton & Salisbury, alleadging some reason for it, the
Courts. Court, hauing considered his motion, doe appoint Daniel Denison, Es^, to

keepe the sajd Courts for this yeare, & M'' Bradstreet is released.
Relating to 1 Quest. Whither the revenew arising by rate or custome of goods im-

edltPi'^cataq". ported, as also pouder, pajd by shipping, belonging to strangers, & brought

into the River of Pascataque, is to be returned to the publick treasury of this

country. This question is resolved by the whole Court on the affirmative.

2 Que. Whither the mony already collected in Pascataqua River, viz', p
custome or or rate on goods imported, &3, and for pouder, pajd by shipping,
that is, what hath binn received from straingers & such as are not inhabitants
of the id riuer, is to be ret tuned to the publick tresury of this country.
This question also was resolved on the affirmative by the Court.

3 Quest. Whither the revenew arising by the rate or custome lajd on
goods imported, belonging to the inhabitants of Piscataqua River, which is
brought into the sajd riuer, is to be pajd into the country Treasurer. This
question is resolued on the negative by y"* whole Court.

In ans"^ to the motions of the seuerall deputjes of the county of York-
shire : As to the first, relating to comissioners for triall of cases at the Isle of
Shoales, & one of them to give oathes to wittnesses or jurjes on inquest, the
Court judgeth it meete to leaue it wholly to the Court of that county to issue
& doe as they shall see meete. To the second, relating to ffreeholders voating
in election of county officers, the Court refierrs them to the lawe i"n that case
prouided. To the third, a magistrate is appointed to keepe their Courts as
desired. & to the ffourth, Capt Waldern is impowred to sitt in all associate
Courts there, as at Doner & Portsmouth. Also, at their request, M"^ Eljas
Stilemans comission is continued amongst them, & invested w"' magistratticall

This Court, being informed by some of the magis'' of Midlesex that the
inhabitants of Mendam doe labour vnder some disquiet in the managing of the

Eesolucon y"

Yorks motions

Coniittec ab'


prudentialls of the place, whereby their welfare is greately impeded, & many 16 71.

other inconvenjences doe occurr, inevitably threatning the ruine of that planta- ^ ^' '

8 June.
tion, doe therefore order & impower Majo"-' Eliazer Lusher, M'^ W™ Staughton,

& M' "VVilljam Parks a coinittee for that place, to take cognizance of the state
of the affaires as to them shall seeme meete, & what they shall doe herein to
make returne thereof to the County Court of Suffolke, from tjme to time,
Majo"^ Lusher to appoint, from time to time, the tjme & place of meeting ; and
all persons concernd are required, vpon notice given, to attend the sajd
coinittee accordingly, and to submitt to their conclusions orderly made & de-
clared ; and henceforth Mendham to be & belong to the county of Suffolke, ^^^^^ t™Suf-
any former order or custome otherwise notw^'standing. folte.

*In pursuance of the honoured Generall Courts order of the 11"* of Oc- [*683.]
tober, 1670, for the runing of the south Ijne further west from Nipmucke P'of Massa-

chxisets south

Riuer, I went from Boston the seccond of May, 1671, at euening, to Dedham, une mnne, &5.,

for to call Leiftennant Joshua Fisher & the company for the worke. Himselfe ^^

not being well, he had prouided an artist for the worke, Francis Tajlor.

Vpon the third day, wee went from Dedham, & before night fell w''^ the

ryuer, and from the ryuers side w''' a great white oake vpon the ground, which

was blanched, & had the surveyors marke vpon it, 0, marked with a marking

iron ; from that steared west by a meridjan compass, allowing nine degrees

variation, we came to a marked tree blanched, that had the letters EL & IF

therein cut w*"" a marking iron, ouer which I had it blanched, & set IL w"' a

marking iron ; went to the riuer, & so doune streame, to passe the river,

1671, aboiit a mile & halfe ; wee came to a place where the riuer parted, so

that there was a smale island, at the lower end of which wee past ouer to

the point of the island, & so past that into the majne riuer, where, though

the streame was quicke, yet not very deepe, wee past ouer, & so went vp the

ryver vntill wee came into the Ijne against the raarkt tree on the east side ; &

vpon a hill set a stake, our first station, & sett against the stake diuers flatt

stones, one hundred & tenn rod from the ryuer ; the next morning past past

on the Ijne one hundred & forty rod from the stake, blancht east & west, a

black oake, and markt it 0, the running Ijne ; blancht the north side M, for

Massachusetts, & IL 1671 ; past on sixty rods, markt a great white oake east

«fe west O, north side M, 30 ; past on, & marked seuerall trees in the lyne,

east & west, till we came to a high hill, IL 1671, which is a rockey hill, &

called Prospect Hill ; marked a smale pine east & west O, which is three

miles thirty two rods from the riuer ; sixe rods forward, raised a heape of

stones in the Ijne, & blancht a smale shrub pine by them ; past on, blancht


8 June.


1671. other trees at the miles end, marked a large pyne, & on the north side Tnder
the M iiii, stroakes for fower miles ; past on, & marked seuerall trees, & came
to a great pine marked w"" IIIII stroakes ; forty rods forward wee came to a
cross marked Ijne, which ran south west & north east. In this first five miles
wee headed a miry meadow & two small miiy swamps ; past on about sixty
rods, & came to a brooke, going doune to it a steepe hill, and as soone as wee
were ouer, vpon a sand bottome, there was a great white oake ; wee marked
it, past on, and crost that brooke in two branches, and white oake, and pres-
ently came to a riuer, deepe & miry ; by the riuer side marked a great tree ;
past on forty rods, & mett w"" the same riuer, not passable ; so wee set of
north sixty rod, & rann the Ijne west three hundred rod, & there past the
same riuer. Had wee kept on w*''out setting of, wee must haue past it in
the three hundred rod twice more. Wee hauing past the riuer, a good
bottom, swift, not very deepe, wee tooke of our sett of, and in the right Ijne
marked a white oake ; ran the Ijne west one hundred & sixty rods ; fell w'''
the same river ; past it, and vpon the hill, which is steepe going vp, there is
a great white oake, which wee marked ; it had old markes vpon it ; then past
thicketts, blancht & marked seuerall trees, marked a black oake, marked as the
runing Ijne, so on the north side, M vij ; passed on, came came through the
thicketts, & ouer a smale plajne hill ; came to a great black oake, eight miles
& forty rods, marked, as the runing Ijne, so on the north side, M viij ; a
litle to the northward of this tree there is a pond faire open to vejw ; past on
to a white oake by a myry swampe, & blancht seuerall trees in the way ; so
on to a crotchet maple, marked it w"" the Ijne marke, & on the north side,
being ten miles, M & X. The houses erected by Inman & his sonns are a mile
& a halfe or two miles w'^'out our south Ijne. Vpon May IT"", one that sajd
his name was Thomas Allin, and Hues at Prouidence, came to me at Boston,
& told me that he & Inman had purchased land of the Indians, part of which
tract lay in our bounds, as the Ijne was runn. He sajth he purchased it of
Phillip, the saggamore ; desired to know if they might enjoy it, submitting
to the government, w* he desired. I told him he must haue his answer from
the Generall Court ; but he must know it was against lawe for any to pur-
chase land in our coUony of the Indians, vntill they obteyned leaue of the
Generall Court. He asked if it would be a trespasse to fall trees. I told
him it would. I asked him if he knew of a Ijne that ran south west & north
east, that was marked about five miles from the riuer. He sajd it was the
Ijne of the Indian purchase, as he supposed. This returne made the S"" of
June, 1671, by yo"^ servant,



The Court, liauing pervsed this returns, accept thereof, & order it to be 16 71.
recorded & kept on file, & that the constable or any concerned bring in their ' ' '
chai-ge to the Tresurer of the country, who is to dischardge it.

In ans"^ to the petlcon of Edward Clarke, the Court judgeth it meet to Ans' to Edw.
referr the examination of the case mentioned therein to the County Court of s„^ ^^ ^^ ''
Norfolke, who are to inquire & finde out the true state thereof, & make re-
turne to the next sessions of this Court, who may thereby be enabled to give
order for the right setling of it, & sale of land for the maintenance of the
child or widdow, if there be a necessity thereof.

*M' Richard Wharton and M"^ John' Saifyn, merchants & company, hauing [*684.]
by their petition to this Court, proposed for the advantage of trade in generall, "*■"'' *" ^'°'^"

° o •> 'Whartons

& raysing of vsefuU coiiioditjes, not only for the occasions of the country, petioon, &c.
but for transportation, by way of returnes & supply to other countrjes, par-
tlculai-ly declaring they haue procured artists for raysing & producing great
quantitjes of pitch, rozin, turpentine, ojle of turpentine, & masticke, for ef-
fecting whereof, as their is suiiicjent matter (as they conceive) in the pyne &

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 59 of 77)