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Records of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, in New England. Printed by order of the General Assembly (Volume 5) online

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to be destroyed by fire ; on consideration whereof, —

Be it enacted by this Assembly, and by the authority of the
same it is enacted, that Obadiah Brown and James Angel,
Esqs., be, and they are hereby empowered to rate the housing
and all other things within the compact part of the said town
of Providence, which are liable to be destroyed by fire, a sum
of money sufficient to purchase an engine as is above describ-
ed ; and that the said rate be levied so soon as may be, and
the money thereby raised, immediately put into the hands of
the said Obadiah Brown and James Angel, for the speedy pur-
chasing said engine.

And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that
every house keeper, within the space of three months, be pro-
vided with two good leathern buckets, under the penalty of
forfeiting the sum of £20 ; one half to the informer, and the
other half, to and for the use of the poor of the said town of

And be it further enacted by the authority aforesaid, that
the money so raised, be, by said Brown and Angel, subject to,
and put under the direction of the major part of the voters
among the inhabitants of the compact part of the said town of
Providence, and appropriated to purchase said engine, in and
after such manner as they shall think fit.

This Assembly do vote and resolve, and it is voted and re-
solved, that James Sheffield, Esq., and Mr. William Read, be,

VOL, V. 51


and they are hereby constituted a committee, to repair Fort
Geoige, and purchase the materials therefor.

The gentlemen that were appointed to audit the accounts of
the committee for building the new jail-house and jail, in
Providence, presented this Assembly with the following re-
port, to M-it :

Report of the Committee on the Providence Jail, &c.

" We, the subscribers, being a committee to audit the com-
mittee's accounts, who were appointed to build the new jail in
Providence, do report as followeth :

£ s. d.
There is due to Stephen Hopkins, Esq., for the
bills charged against him, for the work done

about said jail, and stuff, &c 916 2 4

To the balance due to Mr. Elisha Brown, on set-
tlement of his account 451 5 4

£1,367 7 8
All which, is humbly submitted by your humble servants,

Providence, November 3d, 1754."

. And now, this Assembly, having taken the premises into
consideration, —

Do vote and resolve, and it is voted and resolved, that the
said report be, and the same is hereby accepted.

This Assembly do vote and resolve, and it is voted and re-
solved, that Josiah Arnold, Esq., be requested to attend this
Assembly, at their next session, to render a reason, if any he
hath, why two acres of land, adjoining to the light house, on
Beaver Tail, is not set off for the use of the colony ; and that
the secretary send a copy of this vote unto him.

God save the Kino;.



[The following Public Laws, passed during the year 1754, are printed at
length in the volume of public laws, published in the year 1767, unless repealed
previous to that time.]

An Act for naturalizing Ami Decotay, of Newport, merchant, late a subject of the
Kepublic of Genoa. (February.)

An Act for naturalizing Jacob Lund, of Newport, a native of Norway.

An Act in addition to an act entitled " An act against adultery, polygamy and un-
lawfully marrying persons, and for the relief of such persons as are injured by the
breaking of marriage contracts." (June.)

An Act empowering the sheriSs to sell and give deeds of land mortgaged and for-
feited to the colony. (June.)

An additional Act for preventing the counterfeiting ©f bills of public credit
emitted, or that shall be hereafter emitted by any of the governments in New
England, and to prevent defacing the same. (June.)

An Act to incorporate the Fellowship Club, in Newport. (June.)

Governor Sharpe of Maryland, to Governor Greene.

Annapolis, Maryland, November 8th, 1754.

Sir : — I take the liberty to acquaint you that His Majesty, hoping his good and
loyal American subjects will unanimously exert themselves to repel the encroach-
ments that the French are and have been making on his dominions, in this part of
the continent, has been pleased to honor me with a commission to command all the
forces that the several colonies may raise for that purpose, and to entreat you to
endeavor to procure us such supplies either of men or money, from the Assembly
of your Province as the exigency of affairs does at this time demand.

There is no occasion, I persuade myself, for me to insist on, or even hint at the
fatal consequences that must attend our conniving at the encroachments that the
French have lately made on His Majesty's American dominions, or suflTering them
to remain masters of the forts which they have built on the frontiers of these prov-
inces ; of this, you are extremely sensible, and I will not doubt but your Assembly,
when they meet, will show a just regard to your recommendation of the service to
their consideration ; indeed, without assistance from the several governments on
t the continent, I despair of answering in the least, His Majesty's expectations
and royal intention in honoring me with* such a commission, and cannot think of
entering on action without such succors as His Majesty, by one of his principal sec-
retaries of state, gives me room to expect from his good subjects in that, as well
as those provinces.

Should the gentlemen of your Assembly show a disposition to contribute towards
the support of the common cause, and encouragement of His Majesty's service, you
will be pleased to signify to me in what manner you judge they will be most in-
clined to send us assistance, whether by money or troops.

I must beg the favor of you to inform me as soon as possible, what I must expect.


because the vast progress that the enemy made last summer, makes it absolutely
necessary for us to act offensively * * * very

early in the spring.

I am, sir, your most obedient humble servant,

To the Governor of Rhode Island.

Proceedings of the General Assembli/, held for the Colomj of Rhode
Island and Providence Plantations, at Providence, the 1st day
of January, 1755.

The Hon. William Greene, Governor.

The Hon. John Gardner, Deputy Governor.

This Assembly do vote and resolve, and it is voted and re-
solved, that Jeremiah Lippitt, William Richmond, Daniel
Coggeshall, Jeoflrey Watson, Joshua Babcock, Job Randall,
Daniel Jenckes and Immanuel Northup, Esqs., be, and they are
hereby constituted a committee to draw up a scheme for rais-
ing a fund of such a body of troops as will effectually answer
the King's just expectations from this government, signified in
the letter sent hither by the Right Honorable Sir Thomas
Robinson, one of Ilis Majesty's principal secretaries of

This Assembly do vote and enact, and it is voted and enact-
ed, that a fund, not exceeding £4,000, old tenor, be taken up
on loan, by the general treasurer, at not exceeding ten per
cent, interest, for the uses hereinafter mentioned ; and that a.
company of one hundred meif (officers included, and to be ap-
pointed by this government,) be raised ; and that a commissa-
ry be appointed to receive said money from the treasurer, to
lurnish the King's troops on their arrival, with fresh victuals,
and whatever else can be reasonably expected from this gov-
ernment, agreeably to His Majesty's pleasure, signified by a
letter from Sir Thomas Robinson, of the 26th of October last ;
and that each soldier be paid a bounty of £18, old tenor, on


his enlistment, and be entitled, thenceforward, to the King's

And that a letter be draughted and sent to Governor Shir-
ley, by His Honor, the Governor, or Deputy Governor, contain-
ing the substance of the foregoing resolutions of this Assembly ;
and to acquaint His Excellency, that this government waits
for the arrival of His Majesty's blank commissions, to be filled
up by the Governor of this colony, with the officers' names of
the company above mentioned.

This Assembly having maturely considered the form of a
letter to be sent to His Excellency, Governor Shirley, do ap-
prove thereof

John Gardner, Dejputy Governor, to Governor Shirley.

Providence, January 4th, 1755.

Sir : — Immediately on receipt of tlie Riglit Plonorable Sir Thomas Robinson's
letter of the 26th of October last, to th« Governor and Company of Rhode Island
(beyond doubt of the same tenor with what Your Excellency has received). His
Honor, Governor Greene, summoned the members of both houses, who met
in General Assembly, according to appointment ; and notwithstanding Mr. Greene
hath, by a bad state of health, been rendered unable to attend and assist with his
advice, the Assembly have passed an act to raise a company of one hundred men,
including officers, and made suitable provision for all other necessaries, according
to the directions of the above mentioned letter.

And this Assembly waits only for the arrival of a set of His Majesty's blank com-
missions, to be filled by His Honor, the Governor, for the officers of the company
so to be raised.

I have the pleasure to assure Your Excellency, that the Assembly are animated
with the laudable zeal of doing every thing in the power of the government to answer
effectually and comply with His Majesty's instructions, and have therefore adjourn-
ed to the first Monday of February next.

This letter comes by an express from him, may it please Your Excellency.
I am, sir, your most obedient and very humble servant,

[JOHN GARDNER, Deputy Governor.]

To Governor Shirley.

This Assembly do vote and resolve, and it is voted and re-
solved, that the secretary procure the act of Parliament, enti-
tled " An act to regulate and restrain paper bills of credit in
His Majesty's colonies or plantations, of Rhode Island and
Providence Plantations. Connecticut, the MassachuseUs Bay


and New Hampshire, in America ; and to prevent the same
being legal tenders in payment of money ;" to be re-printed in
this colony, and send one copy thereof to each town clerk in
the government, for the use of said town.
God save the King.

Secrciarij RoUnson to the Governor and Company of Rhode


Whitehall, 25th October, 1754.
Gentlemen : — His Majesty having been pleased to appoint James Pitcher, Esq.,
to be commissary of the musters of all His Majesty's forces, that are, or shall be
employed in His Majesty's colonies and provinces in North America, I have His
Majesty's orders to direct you, or, in your absence, the Lieutenant Governor, or
such other person that shall have the chief care of your government, to be aiding
and assisting to the said James Pitcher, Esq., in the execution of this duty.
1 am, gentlemen, your most obedient humble servant,

To the Governor and Company of Rhode Island.

Secretary RoUnson to the Governor and Company of Rhode,


Whitehall, October 26, 1754.
Gentlemen : — Having informed you, in my letter of July 5th, that the King Lad
under his royal consideration, the state of affairs in North America, I am now to ac-
quaint you, that, amongst other measures, that are thought proper for the defence
of His Majesty's just rights and dominions in those parts, the King has not only
been pleased to order two regiments of foot, consisting of five hundred men
each, besides commissioned and non-commissioned officers, commanded by Sir
Peter llalket,* and Col. Dunbar,-j- to repair to Virginia, and to be there augmented

* Sir Peter Halket, of Pitfernan, Fifesbire, a baronet of Nova Scotia, was a son i
Sir Peter WcJderburne, of Gosford, who assumed his wife's name. In 1734, he sat in the
House of Commons, for Dumfcrlinc, and was Lt. Colonel of the 41th, at Sir John Cope's
defeat, in 17 15. Being released on liis parole, by Charles Edward, he was ordered by Cum-
liL-rland to rejoin his regiment, and serve against the Jacobites. With great propriety he
refused sueh dishonorable duty, saying, that " His Royal Highness was m.aster of his com.
mission, but not of his honor." The King approved of Sir Peter's course, and he retained
liis ranlc. On the 20th February, 1751, he succeeded to the colonelcy of his regiment. He
was killed at the head of his regiment, in the battle of Monongahela, on the 9th July,
17.m; and his bones lay unburied until 1759, when they were discovered by his son and
decently interred.— Si/ryc/i^'s Erpedition agaliif;t Fort Da Qacsnc,pp. 274, 294.

t Col. Thomas Dunbau, had been Lt. Colonel of the 18th Roy.al Irish; and on the 29th
April, 175-.', was promoted to the ooloneley of the 4th regiment of foot. In November,
1755. he was superceded in the eomnuuid of this regiment, and sent into honorable retir&



to the number of seven hundred each, but likewise to send orders to Gov. Shir-
ley and Sir Wm. Pepperell, to raise two regiments, whereof they are respectively
appointed colonels, of one thousand men each ; and also to sign commissions for a
number of officers to serve in the said two regiments, and who will forthwith repair
to North America, for that purpose.

Whereas, there will be wanting a considerable number of men to make up the
designed complement of the said four regiments, it is His Majesty's pleasure, that
you should be taking the previous steps towards contributing, as far as you can, to
have about three thousand men, in readiness to be enlisted.

And it is His Majesty's intention, that a general officer of rank and capacity to be
appointed to command in chief all the King's forces in North America ; a deputy quar-
ter master general and a commissary of the muster, shall set out as soon as conven-
iently may be, in order to prepare every thing for the arrival of the forces above-
mentioned, from Europe, and for the raising of the others in America.

You will receive from that general, and the other officers just mentioned, a full
and exact account of the arms, clothing and other necessaries, to be sent upon this
important occasion ; as likewise of the ordnance stores, and of the officers, and at-
tendants, belonging thereto ; all which, being ordered for this service, are such
proofs of His Majesty's regard for the security and welfare of his subjects in those
parts, as cannot fail to excite you to exert yourself and those under your care, to
take the most vigorous steps to repel your common danger ; and to show that the
King's orders, which were sent you last year, by the Earl of Holdernesse, and were
renewed to you in my letter of the 5th of July, have at last roused that emulation
and spirit, which every man owes, at this time, to His Majesty, the public and

The King will not therefore imagine, that either you, or the rest of his govern-
ors, will suffer the least neglect or delay, in the performance of the present service,
now strongly recommended to you, particularly with regard to the following points,

That you should carefully provide a sufficient quantity of fresh victuals, at the
expense of your government, to be ready for the use of the troops, at their

That you should likewise furnish the officers, who may have occasion to go from
place to place, with all necessaries for travelling by land, in case there are no
means of going by sea.

And that you should use your utmost diligence and authority, in procuring an
exact observance of such orders as shall be issued from time to time, by the com-
mander in chief, for quartering the troops, impressing carriages and providing all
necessaries for such forces as shall arrive, or be raised within your government.

As the articles abovementioned, are of a local and peculiar nature, and arising
entirely within your government, it is almost needless for me to acquaint you, that

ment, as lieutenant governor of Gibraltar, in consequence of his injudicious retreat after
Braddock's defeat. He became major general on the 18th of January, 1758, and a lieuten-
ant general, on December 18th, 1760, but was never again employed in active ser-
vice. He died previous to 1778. — Note of Dr. O'Callaghan, in New York Colonial Docif
merits. Vol. VI. p. 915.


His Majesty will expect that the charge thereof be defrayed by his subjects be-
longing to the same.

But with regard to such other articles, which are of a more general concern, it
is the King's pleasure, that the same should be supplied by a common fund, to be
established for the benefit of all the colonies collectively, in North America ; for
which purpose, you will use your utmost endeavors to induce the Assembly of your
province, to raise forthwith as large a sum as can be afforded, as their contribution
to this common fund, to be employed provisionally, for the general service of North
America (particularly for paying the charge of levying the troops), to make up the
complement of the regiments above mentioned, until such time as a plan of general
union of His Majesty's northern colonies, for their common defence, can be per-

You will carefully confer, or correspond, as you shall have opportunity, upon
every thing relative to the present service, with the said General Sir William Pep-
peroll, and Governor Shirley, or either of them.

And as it is the King's intention to give all proper encouragement to such per-
sons, who shall engage to serve upon this occasion, you will acquaint all such per-
sons, in the King's name, that they will receive arms and clothing from hence ; and
that they shall be sent back (if desired) to their respective habitations, when the
service in America is over.

As the several governors, in all the King's provinces and colonies, m North
America, will receive, by this conveyance, a letter to the same effect with this,
which I now send you, they will be prepared at the same time, to obey His Majes-
ty's command ; and I am to direct you to correspond with all, or either of them,
occasionally, as you shall find it expedient for the general service.

I am, gentlemen, your most obedient humble servant,


To the Governor and Company of Rhode Island.

Sccreianj Eohinson to the Governor and Compamj of Rhode

, Island.

"Whitehall, November 4th, 1 754.
Gontli^mon ; — This letter will be put into your hands, by Sir John St. Clair,
whom the King has been pleased to appoint deputy quarter master general of his
forces in North America ; and has ordered him to repair forthwith to Virginia, to
make the necessary preparations for the reception of the troops.

It is therefore the King's pleasure, that you shall be aiding and assisting to Sir
John St. Clair, in the execution of this duty, and shall give him the best advice you
can, upon all occasions, relating to the King's service ; particularly with regard to
those points mentioned to you in my letter of the 2Gth [October last] past, whereof
I have given a copy to Sir John St. Clair, and from whom you will receive a du-
plicate of the same.

I am, gentleman, your most obedient humble servant,

To the Governor and Company of Rhode Island.


Proceedings of the General Assembly, held for the Colony of Rhode
Island and Providence Plantations, at Providence, the first Mon-
day in Felniary^ 1755.

The Hon. William Greene, Governor.

The Hon. John Gardner, Deputy Governor.

This Assembly do vote and resolve, and it is voted and re-
solved, that the captain of Fort George, enlist, as soon as he
shall think it necessary, to the number of fifty men, for a com-
pany, to meet at said fort, as often as the captain shall think
proper, to practice exercising the cannon ; and to repair to
said fort on all occasions to defend the same, without any ex-
pense to the government, and be excused from all other milita-
ry duties.

The gentlemen that were appointed to make the draught of
an answer to His Excellency, Governor Shirley's letter, and to
take into consideration what further is necessary to be done by
this Assembly, in respect to raising a number of troops for His
Majesty's service, made report, which was read and accepted.

Deputy Governor Gardner to Governor Shirley.

Providence, February 8th, 1755.

Sir :— Your Excellency's letter to Governor Greene, came to my hands, and was
immediately laid before our General Assembly then sitting, who taking it under
consideration, Lave directed me to assure Your Excellency, —

That they are determined, with the utmost alacrity to perform every thing His
Majesty hath been pleased to command, and caused to be signified to them by Sir
Thomas Robinson, his secretary of state, in his letter to this colony.

That in order thereto, at their former meeting, they ordered one hundred men
to be raised, of which, they then gave Your Excellency notice ; and they have now
done all that can be necessary to render their former resolution effectual, so as to
have their men ready at any time His Majesty shall direct, and inform them by any
channel whatsoever his pleasure, concerning their destination.

That the colony, in obedience to His Majesty's commands, have ordered those
men to be raised, and every thing else to be done in conformity thereto, as far as

VOL. V. 52


tlipy are able to unJerstand them; and as it is only for want of the knowledge ia
■what manner His Majesty intended the men raised by this colony shall be used,
the General Assembly's fully acceding at this time, to Your Excellency's offer, con-
tained in your letter.

That therefore they have only ordered all things to be in readiness, and only
wait for such orders or instructions as may justify them in the disposition of the
men they raise ; and Your Excellency may rest fully assured, that if the men raised
by this colony are destined by His Majesty to make part of Your Excellency's, Sir
William Pepperell's or the Irish regiments, and that blank commissions will not be
sent to the Governor of this colony, to be filled up here, for their oflicers, the Gen-
eral Assembly will thankfully accept of Your Excellency's offer ; and will have
their men ready by such time and in such manner, as you shall direct ; esteeming
it a great favor, that the men by them raised may not only be under Your Excel-
lency's care and protection as their colonel, but more immediately as their captain,

The General Assembly hope for Your Excellency's favorable interpretation of
their doing herein ; and that nothing may be looked upon as dilatory or evasive in
them ; and that you will excuse them for waiting His Majesty's directions before
they give you a direct answer.

They also return you thanks for your kind offer, and will always think them-
selves happy in being favored with your friendly influence.
I am, with great esteem and respect.

Your Excellency's most obedient and most humble servant,

JOHN GARDNER, Deputy Governor.

P. S. The certificates and beating orders are retained for the present.

Whereupon, Lc it enacted by this Assembly, and by the au-
thority thereof it is enacted, that a committee of five or more
suitable persons, be appointed, to be called a committee of war,
Avith full power and authority during the recess of the General
Assembly, to give out orders to such officers as may be ap-
jtointed by the Assembly, for that purpose, to enlist and raise
the hundred men already ordered, at any time as soon as orders
are received from the crown, through any channel, for our so
doing ; and how they are to be destined.

And 1)0 it further enacted, that for those purposes, the said
committee of war shall have, and hereby is granted them power
to draw out of the general treasury from time to time, such
.sums of money as may be necessary for paying the bounty
given by the Assembly, to those who shall enlist, and the
charges of enlisting, billeting and transporting such soldiers,
and all otlier expenses necessarily attending the afitiir.

And be it further enacted, that the said committee of war


have power to order and direct in what manner, and what
place or places the men shall be subsisted when raised, and to
give orders for transporting and sending away the company
when raised, to the place, and in such manner as His Majesty
may direct the same to be done ; and that they have full

Online LibraryRhode Island. cnRecords of the Colony of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations, in New England. Printed by order of the General Assembly (Volume 5) → online text (page 38 of 56)