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subjects met together, to consult and advise the most
effectual measures to promote the peace and good
order of his Majesty s subjects at this very difficult
and distressing time.

We herewith inclose to you an humble, dutiful and
loyal petition to our most gracious Sovereign, which
we beg the favour of you to present to his Majesty
in person, as speedily as possible.
We rest, in strict truth,

and with great Respect, &c.




[MS., collections of the Earl of Dartmouth; a draft is in the Samuel Adams
Papers, Lenox Library.]

BOSTON OctoT 3 d 1768

The Troops which you mention d in your Letter
to the late Speaker, arrivd last week. Barraks are
provided for them at the Castle, which is within the
Limits of the Town sufficient to contain more than
their Number. Governor Barnard [sic] in opposition
to the unanimus advice of his Council insists upon
their being Quartered in the Body of the Town they
remain this day unprovided with any other Quarters.

The People in general as you may naturally sup
pose are utterly averse to their continuing among
them, yet such was their humanity towards them that
they were content to shelter them from the open air
for a Night or two even in their City Hall what will
be the event of, I had almost said the obstinacy of
the Governor against the sense of a provoked people,
God only knows ! The Revenue be it just or not is
not at all affected in this struggle. It has been paid
without interruption during the Retirement of the
Commissioners, to the Castle which was of their own
Accord and some suspect was to make an appearance
and a plausible pretence to the Nation.

The Troops are hitherto orderly, the Inhabitants
preserve their Peace and patience. The late Con
vention has no doubt contributed much towards it,
they however look upon their situation, being sur
rounded with Men of War hostile at least in ap
pearance, and the determination of the Governor to

1768] SAMUEL ADAMS. 249

quarter Soldiers upon them when there are Barraks
provided according to Act of Parliament which was
made undoubtedly to prevent such a Calamity to
be a new & intolerable Grievance. They are re
solved not to pay their Money without their own
consent and are more than ever determin d to relin
quish every article however dear that comes from
Britain, till the Acts are repeal d and the Troops re-
mov d. May God preserve the Nation from being
greatly injured if not finally ruin d by the Vile in- N
sinuations of wicked men in America. __j

I am in haste &c.

[Boston Gazette, October 10, 1768.]

Messieurs EDES & GILL,

Please to insert the following.

Cedant Arma Togcz.

By the act of Parliament providing for the quar
tering and billeting his Majesty s troops, the civil
officers and NO OTHERS are empower d " and required
to quarter and billet the officers and soldiers in his
Majesty s service IN THE BARRACKS PROVIDED in the
Colonies, and if there shall not be sufficient room in
the said Barracks for the Officers and Soldiers, THEN
AND IN SUCH CASE ONLY, to quarter and billet the
residue " of them in the inns, livery stables and other
houses mentioned in said act.

If then this act of Parliament is to be the rule,


which it is presum d the gentlemen of the army will
not deny, it evidently follows, first, That the military
officers have no concern at all in quartering them
selves and the soldiers, this being done by the civil
officers and no others : And secondly, that as many of
the officers and soldiers as the Barracks will contain,
MUST BE quarter d in them, and the residue if any in
the inns, &c. The Barracks at the Castle are suffi
cient to contain MORE THAN THE WHOLE NUMBER of
troops now in town, and ARE EMPTY ; it therefore ap
pears to a common understanding^ to be CONTRARY
to the act of parliament, for any of them to be either
encamp d or quarter d in the body of the town Is it
not then astonishing that the City Hall and even the
SENATE HOUSE should be for more than a week past
put to an use, so ABHORRENT from the original and
true intent of them, when the Barracks at the Castle,
the original and true and legal intent of which is to
receive and lodge the officers and troops, are READY
FOR THE PURPOSE ! To say that the officers have a
right to hire quarters for the troops among the in
habitants, and that Mr. M y and others have

been officious enough to rent them, will not be suffi
cient to reconcile this matter for the act further
says, "that if any military officer shall take UPON
HIMSELF to quarter soldiers in any of his Majesty s
dominions in America, OTHERWISE than is limitted
and allow d in this act, &c. he shall be ipso facto
cashier d, and be utterly disabled to have or hold any
military employment in his Majesty s service." Will
any one say that when a military officer hires Mr.
Murray s or any other man s house to quarter his

1768] SAMUEL ADAMS. 251

soldiers in, he does not TAKE UPON HIMSELF to quar
ter them OTHERWISE than is limited in the act of par
liament ? In short, the act of parliament as all other
good laws are, was made for the general advantage,
and appears to be as much design d for the preserva
tion of the peace and good order of the Citizens, as for
the comfort of the soldiery there seems to be a
contract fully imply d in it, that if the government
would provide Barracks for the King s troops, then
they should not suffer the inconvenience of their be
ing quarter d in their towns : Such Barracks are
provided by this government at a very considerable
expence, & are now empty ; therefore the inhabitants
of this town are in JUSTICE as well as BY LAW secured
from the inconvenience of having troops quarter d
among them in any case whatever, at least TILL THOSE
BARRACKS ARE FULL Magna est Lex et Prcevalebit.


[Boston Gazette, October 17, 1768.]


Messieurs EDES & GILL,
Please to insert the following.

" WHERE Law ends, (says Mr. Locke) TYRANNY
begins, if the Law be transgress d to anothers harm " :
No one I believe will deny the truth of the observa
tion, and therefore I again appeal to common sense,
whether the act which provides for the quartering
and billeting the King s troops, was not TRANSGRESS D,


when the barracks at the Castle WHICH ARE SUFFI
CIENT TO CONTAIN MORE than the whole number of
soldiers now in this town, were ABSOLUTELY REFUS D :
This I presume cannot be contested. Should any one
say that the law is not transgres d " to anothers harm"
the assertion I dare say would contradict the feelings
of every sober householder in the town., No man
can pretend to say that the peace and good order of
the community is so secure with soldiers quartered in
thejwdy of a city as without them. Besides, where
military power is introduced, military maxims are
propagated and adopted, which are inconsistent with
and must soon eradicate every idea of civil govern-
ment Do we not already find some persons weak
enough to believe, that an officer is obliged to obey
the orders of his superior, tho it be even AGAINST
the law ! And let any one consider whether this doc
trine does not directly lead even to the setting up
that superior officer, whoever he may be, as a tyrant.
It is morever to be observ d that military government
and civil, are so different from each other, if not op
posite, that they cannot long subsist together. Sol
diers are not govern d properly by the laws of their
country, but by a law madey^r them only : This may
in time make them look upon themselves as a body
of men different from the rest of the people ; and as
they and they only have the sword in their hands,
they may sooner or later begin to look upon them
selves as the LORDS and not the SERVANTS of the
people : Instead of enforcing the execution of law,
which by the way is far from being the original
intent of soldiers, they may refuse to obey it them-

1768] SAMUEL ADAMS. 253

selves :\ Nay, they may even make laws for thern-
setves/and enforce them by the power of the sword ! -^
Such instances are not uncommon in history, and
they always will happen when troops are put under
the direction of an ambitious or a covetous governor !
And if there is any reason for fear that this may be
the consequence of a transgression of the act of par
liament, it is a transgression not "to the harm" of
individuals only, but of THE PUBLICK. It behoves
the publick then to be aware of the danger, and like
sober men to avail themselves of the remedy of the
law, while it is in their power. / It is always safe to
ADHERE TO THE LAW, and to keep every man of every
denomination and character WITHIN ITS BOUNDS Not
to do this would be in the highest degree IMPRUDENT :
^/Whenever it becomes a question in prudence, whether
we shall make use of legal and constitutional methods
to prevent the incroachments of ANY KIND OF POWER,
what will it be but to depart from the straight line, to
give up the LAW and the CONSTITUTION, which is fixed
and stable, and is the collected and long digested senti
ment OF THE WHOLE, and to substitute in its room the
opinion of individuals, than which nothing can be more
uncertain : The sentiments of men in such a case
would in all likelihood be as various as their senti
ments in religion or anything else ; and as there
would then be no settled ride for the publick to ad
vert to, ^he safety of the people would probably be at
an end.



[Boston Evening Post* December 5, 1768. ]

Messrs. FLEETS.

I must desire you ll not publish my Piece sent you
for last Monday, till you hear further from me ; tho
I am determined to finish my first plan, in such man
ner, and at such times as I may see convenient I
will only add at this juncture, a striking anecdote of
Shan ap Morgan, Shentleman of Wales ; who was
tried for a RAPE, in Glamorganshire, as a prepara
tory for one of the Gentlemen I shall speak of next
(tho I would not have Mr. [Froth] imagine that
I have half done with him. )

Shan ap Morgan, Shentleman of Wales, was bro t
to the Bar the Cryer calls Shan ap Morgan
Shan ap Morgan Shan ap Morgan, did not answer,
but mutter d odds poddikins hur won t answer to
that. The Cryer called Shan ap Morgan ( a second
time ) still Shan ap Morgan mutter d, odds poddikins
hur won t answer to that. The Cryer then call d,
Shan ap Morgan, Shentleman of Wales. Upon
which Shan ap Morgan briskly answer d here hur
is. Well Shan ap Morgan, Shentleman of Wales,
how will you be tried. Shan ap Morgan answer d,
by the twelve Apostles. Upon which the Judge
said, then Shan ap Morgan, Shentleman of Wales,
you would stay till the day of Judgment to which
Shan ap Morgan shrewdly reply d An please your
Worship hur is in no hurry hur is in no hurry.


1 This series by " Candidus" is attributed to Adams by W. V. Wells, Life
of Samuel Adams, vol. i., p. 224. 2 Published by T. and J. Fleet.

1768] SAMUEL ADAMS. 255

\Boston Gazette, December 5, 1768.]

Messieurs EDES & GILL,

Please to insert the following.

I Can very easily believe that the officers of the
regiments posted in this town, have been inform d
by our good friends that the inhabitants are such a
rude unpolish d kind of folks, as that they are in
danger, at least of being affronted during their resi
dence here ; and therefore their placing centinels at
their respective dwellings seems to be a natural pre
caution, and under that apprehension may be a
necessary step to guard their persons from injury.
Or if it be only a piece of respect or homage every
where shown to the superior officers of the army, it
is a matter which concerns no other persons that I
know of, I am sure it is no concern of mine : In this
view it is a military custom, in no way interfering
with, obstructing or infringing the common rights of
the community. But when these gentlemens at
tendants take upon them to call upon every one, who
passes by, to know Who comes there as the phrase is,
I take it to be in the highest degree impertinent,
unless they can shew a legal authority for so doing.
There is something in it, which looks as if the
town was altogether under the government & con-
troul of the military power : And as long as the in
habitants are fully perswaded that this is not the case
at present, and moreover hope and believe that it
never will, it has a natural tendency to irritate the
minds of all who have a just sense of honor, and


think they have the privilege of walking the streets
without being controul d.

I have heard that some of these attendants, when
question d by gentlemen who have tho t themselves
affronted in this manner, have pleaded orders from
their officers : This I am not apt to believe ; but
should I be under a mistake, the question still occurs,
What right have their officers to give them such
orders in this town ? It is a question which appears
to me to be of present importance, and ought to be
decided : For if the gentlemen of the army should
differ in their sentiments respecting this matter, from
the inhabitants and freemen of the town, the posting
a standing army among us, especially as it is without
and against our consent, instead of preventing tu
mults, which it is said was the profess d design of the
troops being sent for, and ordered here, it is to
be feared, will have a tendency quite the reverse
I am informed that not less than nine gentlemen of
character, some of them of the first families in this
province, were stop d and put under guard the other
evening, for refusing to submit to this military nov
elty): And still more alarming, that one of his
Majesty s Council, was stop d in his chariot in the
daytime, when going out of town, under a flimsy pre
tence that possibly he might have conceal d a deserter
in his chariot, and was treated with insolence. The
hon. gentleman I dare say felt his resentment kindle ;
and every one who hears of so high handed an insult
must feel anger glowing in his breast. I forbear to
mention the constant practice of challenging, as it is
called, the country people when passing and repass-

1768] SAMUEL ADAMS. 257

ing, upon their lawful business, thro the gates of the
city, where a guard house is erected, upon land
belonging to the publick, and it is commonly said,
without the leave, or even asking the leave of the
publick !

Are we a garrison d town or are we not ? If we are,
let us know by whose authority and by whose influence
we are made so : If not, and I take it for granted we
are not, let us then assert & maintain the honor
the dignity of free citizens and place the military,
where all other men are, and where they always
ought & always will be plac d in every free country,
at the foot of the common law of the land. To sub
mit to the civil magistrate in the legal exercise of
power is forever the part of a good subject : and to
answer the watchmen of the town in the night, may
be the part of a good citizen, as well as to afford
them all necessary countenance and support : But,
to be called to account by a common soldier, or any
soldier, is a badge of slavery which none 6ut a slave
will weaA

It was an article of complaint in the memorable
petition of rights, in the reign of King Charles the
first, that certain persons exercis d " a power to pro
ceed within the land according to the justice of mar
tial law" even against soldiers, " by such summary
course and order as is agreeable to martial law, and
as is used in armies in the time of war. ," And by the
bill of rights it is declared that " the raising and
keeping a standing army within the kingdom in a
time of peace is against law. It seems that in the
reign of K. Charles the first it was look d upon to be

VOL. I. 17.


" against the form of the great charter and law of
the land " that any man within the land, tho a soldier
or mariner, should be judg d and executed by the
martial law; "lest by color thereof, any of his Maj
esty s subjects be destroy d or put to death contrary
to the law or franchise of the land " : and therefore
the lords and commons, the guardians of the people,
demanded of the King as their right, and according
to the laws and statutes of the realm, the revoking
and annulling of the commissions which he had
illegally issued for such purpose, and even that
Prince revok d and annull d them.

Is there anyone who dares to say that Americans
have not the rights of subjects ? Is Boston disfran
chised ? When, and for what crime was it done ? If
not, Is it not enough for us to have seen soldiers and
mariners forejudg d of life and executed within the
body of the county by martial law f Are citizens to
be called upon, threatned, ill used at the word of the
soldiery, and put under arrest, by pretext of the law
military, in breach of the fundamental rights of sub
jects, and contrary to the law and franchise of the
land ? And are the inhabitants of this town still to
be affronted in the night as well as the day by sol
diers arm d with muskets and fix d bayonets ? Are
these the blessings of government ? Is this the
method to reconcile the people to the temper of the
present administration of government in this prov
ince ?, Will the spirits of people as yet unsubdued
by fyranny, unaw d by the menaces of arbitrary
power, submit to be govern d by military force ? No,
us rouze our attention to the common law, which

1768] SAMUEL ADAMS. 259

is our birthright our great security against all kinds
of insult & oppression The law, which when rightly
used, is the curb and the terror of the haughtiest
tyrant Let our magistrates execute the good and
wholesome laws of the land with resolution and
an intrepid firmness aided by the posse comitatus,
the body of the county, which is their only natural
and legal strength, they will see their authority re-
vers d : The boldest transgressors will then tremble
before them, and the orderly and peaceable inhabitants
will be restored to the rights, privileges and immuni- i

ties of free subjects


[Boston Evening Post, December 12, 1768.]

Ecce negas jurasque mihi per templa tonantis ;
Non credo : jura, verpe,per Anchialum.
Swear tho thou dost by Jove, thou wilt deceive:
Swear by Anchialus; I 11 then believe.


I Would not have it imagined that Mr. (Froth)

was a person of so much consequence, as to be the

first planner of a B d of C s for the American

department ; by no means, it was talked of long be
fore his last peregrination to England ; but thus far
I will be bold to say, that though it had been thought
of previous to his arrival there ; yet I firmly believe
it would not have been hurry d on in the precipitate
manner it was ; nor would the first plan (which in my
humble opinion was the most feasible) have been


alter d ; had it not been for the fawning, cringing,
perfidious rhetorick of this Basilisk with his patron-
Shew me the man in this province, or on this conti
nent who knows him, that will not allow, he is the
most insincere, plausible, and insinuating of mankind,
and yet such is the art of the man, that let any person
thus well acquainted with him, give him but a few
moments of his company (Froth) is sure to catch
him the poor Gentleman comes away deluded (in
spight of his senses) nay absolutely satisfied that not
only he, but all the world have abused and injured
the poor innocent Mr. - - (Froth) so that upon the
whole Mr. C - T w d 1 (being but mortal) tho
confessedly a very great statesman, was caught by
this Sycophant, as he has and daily catches others.

" My dear Sir (quoth the Squire) believe me, Bos
ton Boston is the spot for the B d of C s. I

pawn my honor, that there there is the nest of cor
ruption ; I have known it to be so for some years."

But Mr. (Froth) took particular care not to

mention that he was as great a smuggler as any in
that province (if knowing such acts to be done, and
taking hush money makes an officer an accessory).

The first plan of a B d of C s for the Ameri
can department was in order to ease the old B d
of C s of part of its burden (the business from this
vast continent daily increasing, so as to retard the
general business of the revenue) and was intended to
be placed in London, in order to be near the
Tr s y, which every one knows is the ultimatum

1 Charles Townshend.

1768] SAMUEL ADAMS. 261

of revenue matters : And thus far it must be allowed
to be highly necessary but how to account for Mr.
C s T w d s mistake (except as already ac
counted for) is amazing nor can there be a greater
proof of Mr. - - (Froth s) influence with his Patron,

than the B d s being ordered to Boston

(Charles) had a House there ; he had a large Field
of revenge to satisfy he had some conveniences in
the country (I won t say unnatural ones) he had his
old friend the Great Officer to support him and
above all, he had the pleasure of being now equal
with his quondam commanding officer ; for whom he
has a very great regard indeed : besides many other
weighty reasons needless to mention at present.
I say, how Mr. C s T w d, who was thought
to have (and undoubtedly had) a universal knowledge
of the continent of America, could be so grossly mis
taken as to fix a B d of C s almost at one end
of it, is amazing : Nothing but his being fascinated
by Mr. - - (Froth) can account for it for it is very
well known, that any grievances arising in revenue
matters, in most of the southern colonies, can get to

England, be there determined by the B d of

C s (or T s y if necessary) and an answer re
turned to them, before it can more than arrive at
Boston at least for seven months in the year this
is one grand, I may say insurmountable difficulty,
that renders the plan futile, and to add to its futility,
I will make bold to mention one or two more of this
B d s constructing.

This American B d of C s, in order to ape
the B d in London (not having judgment suf-


ficient to discriminate between the difference of coun
tries) has laid the officers of the revenue under the
inhuman necessity of employing an agent or agents
to receive their salaries in Boston (instead of being
paid at their respective ports) I say inhuman, be
cause many of them have very small stipends and
little or no fees ; and by their great distance from
Boston, the want of a currency exchange, and the in
tolerable delay of this B d, are many months before
they can get a farthing, and when they do, it is at such
a loss that what remains will not half maintain them
and their families.

The next is the multiplicity of officers this B d
creates, by way of serving the crown I dare say it
will appear, upon sending their accompts home, that
many officers have been added to the revenue, since
the commencement of their power ; many charges
have arisen in consequence thereof, and no additional
revenue has been received in proportion to counter
balance those extra expences: So far from it that, I
am told, when the officers on the establishments and
incidental lists are paid up (without mentioning at
large the incidental charges accruing from this
B d s late campaign to Castle William, which I
am certain in the end will be known at the other
side the water to be an entire scheme of Mr. -
(Froth) &c. in order to draw troops to this quarter to
support them in their unwarrantable proceedings)
little or nothing will remain; I am assured, not
enough to pay the six hundred per annum, talked of
for four judges of admiralty on this continent Thus
far then Mr. (Froth) and his adherents have

1768] SAMUEL ADAMS. 263

been of infinite service to the crown ; and will, I dare
say, do more, are they but allowed to proceed.

Before I quit this Gentleman, I must mention one
very striking instance of his great regard for the ser
vice of the crown ; especially upon the first institution
of this American B d of C s ; which, consid
ering the unpopularity and novelty, certainly required
a great deal of discretion and good management in
the members of it, in order to its first establishment.

This Gentleman, through his interest with Mr.

C s T w d ( which must now appear to have

been very great ) procured a ship at the expence of
government to bring him, two other members of
the B d and their families, with many others be
longing to their department, to Boston It is notori

Online LibrarySamuel AdamsThe writings of Samuel Adams (Volume 1) → online text (page 18 of 31)