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such uneasiness and distraction among the good people of this province." I shall not dispute my share in those measures; I hope they are such as will in time do honour to all that were concerned in them. But you seem mistaken in the order of time: it was the uneasiness and distraction among the good people of the province that occasioned the measures; the province was in confusion before they were taken, and they were pursued in order to prevent such uneasiness and distraction for the future. Make one step farther back, and you will find proprietary injustice supported by proprietary minions and creatures, the original cause of all our uneasiness and distractions.
Another of your reasons is," that I am, as you are informed, very unfavourably thought of by several of his majesty's ministers." I apprehend, gentlemen, that your informer is mistaken. He indeed has taken great pains to give unfavourable impressions of me, and perhaps may flatter himself, that it is impossible so much true industry should be totally without effect. His long success in maiming or murdering all the reputations that stand in his way (which has been the dear delight and constant employment of his life) may likewise have given him some just ground for confidence, that he has, as they call it, done for me, among the rest. But, as I said before, I believe he is mistaken. For what have I done, that they should think unfavourably of me? It cannot be my constantly and uniformly promoting the measures of the crown, ever since I had any influence in the province. It cannot, surely, be my promoting the change from a proprietary to a royal government. If indeed I had, by speeches and write ings, endeavoured to make his majesty's government universally
universally odious in the province: if I had harangued by the week to all comers and goers, on the pretended injustice and oppressions of royal government, and the slavery of the people under it: if I had written traitorous papers to this purpose, and got them translated into other languages, to give his majesty's foreign subjects here those horrible ideas of it: if I had declared, written, and printed, that "the king's little finger we should find heavier than the proprietor's whole loins," with regard to our liberties; then indeed might the ministers be supposed to think unfavourably of me. But these are not exploits for a man, who holds a profitable office under the crown, and can expect to hold it no longer than he behaves with the fidelity and duty that becomes every good subject. They are only for officers of proprietary appointment, who hold their commissions during his, and not the king's pleasure; and who, by dividing among themselves and their relations, offices of many thousands a year enjoyed by proprietary favour, feel where to place their loyalty. I wish they were as good subjects to his majesty; and perhaps they may be so, when the proprietary interferes no longer.
Another of your reasons is, "that the proposal of me for an agent is extremely disagreeable to a very great · number of the most serious and reputable inhabitants of the province; and the proof is, my having been rejected at the last election, though I had represented the city in assembly for fourteen years.”
And do those of you, gentlemen, reproach me with this, who, among near four thousand voters, had scarcely a score more than I had? It seems then, that your elections were very near being rejections, and thereby furnishing the same proof in your case that you produce
produce in mine, of your being likewise extremely disagreeable to a very great number of the most serious and reputable people. Do you, honourable sir, reproach me with this, who, for almost twice fourteen years have been rejected (if not being chosen is to be rejected) by the same people? and (unable, with all your wealth and connections, and the influence they give you, to obtain an election in the county where you reside, and the city where you were born, and are best known) have been obliged to accept a seat from one of the outcounties, the remotest of the province!-It is known, sir, to the persons who proposed me, that I was first chosen against my inclination, and against my entreaties that I might be suffered to remain a private man. In none of the fourteen elections you mention, did I ever appear as a candidate. I never did, directly or indirectly, solicit any man's vote. For six of the years in which I was annually chosen, I was absent, residing in England; during all which time, your secret and open attacks upon my character and reputation were incessant; and yet you gained no ground. And can you really, gentlemen, find matter of triumph in this rejection as you call it? A moment's reflection on the means by which it was obtained must make you ashamed of it.
Not only my duty to the crown, in carrying the postoffice act more duly into execution, was made use of to exasperate the ignorant, as if I was encreasing my own profits, by picking their pockets; but my very zeal in opposing the murderers, and supporting the authority of government; and even my humanity, with regard to the innocent Indians under our protection, were mustered among my offences, to stir up against me those
religious bigots, who are of all savages the most brutish. Add to this, the numberless falshoods propagated as truths, and the many perjuries procured among the wretched rabble, brought to swear themselves intitled to a vote: And yet so poor a superiority obtained at all this expence of honour and conscience! can this, gentlemen, be matter of triumph? Enjoy it then. Your exultation, however, was short. Your artifices did not prevail every where; nor your double tickets and whole boxes of forged votes. A great majority of the newchosen assembly were of the old members, and remain uncorrupted. They still stood firm for the people, and will obtain justice from the proprietaries. But what does that avail to you, who are in the proprietary interest? And what comfort can it afford you, when, by the assembly's choice of an agent, it appears that the same, to you obnoxious, man (notwithstanding all your venomous invectives against him) still retains so great a share of the public confidence?
But this step, you say, gives you the more lively affliction, as it is taken at the very moment when you were informed by a member of the house, that the governor had assured him of his having received instructions from the proprietaries, to give his assent to the taxation of their estates; in the same manner that the estates of other persons are to be taxed; and also to confirm, for the public use, the several squares formerly claimed by the city." O the force of friendship! the power of interest! What politeness they infuse into a writer, and what delicate expressions they produce !--The dispute between the proprietaries and us was about the quantum, the rate of their taxation, and not about the manner; but now, when all the world condemns
them for requiring a partial exemption of their estates, and they are forced to submit to an honest equality, it is called “assenting to be taxed in the same manner with the people." Their restitution of five public squares in the plan of the city, which they had near forty years unjustly and dishonourably seized and detained from us, (directing their surveyor to map streets over them, in order to turn them into lots, and their officers to sell a part of them ;) this their disgorging is softly called confirming them for the public use; and instead of the plain words "formerly given to the city, by the first proprietary, their father," we have the cautious pretty expression of " formerly claimed by the city:" Yes; not only formerly, but always claimed, ever since they were promised and given to encourage the settlers; and ever will be claimed, till we are put in actual possession of them. It is pleasant, however, to see how lightly and tenderly you trip over these matters, as if you trod upon eggs. But that " very moment," that precious moment! Why was it so long delayed? Why were those healing instructions so long withheld and concealed from the people? They were, it seems, brought over by Mr. Allen:* intelligence was received by various hands from London, that orders
*Extract of a Letter, dated London, August 6, 1764, from David Barclay and Sons, to Messieurs James and Drinker.
"We very much wish for William Allen's happy arrival on your side; when we hope his influence, added to the power and commissions the proprietaries have invested him with, may prove effectual, in restoring harmony and tranquillity among you, so much to be desired by every well-wisher to your province. Pray be assured of our sincerest and bes wishes for the success of this salutary work, and that nothing in our power, to contribute thereto, will ever be wanting."