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In November, the Bedford, of 600 tons, sailed for Carthagena, upon account of the South Sea Company. There the Spanish officers measured her cargo and made it 21174 tons, exclusive of 65 tons of iron, which were not landed. The over-measurement of 1517 tons more than the tonnage granted, of the most valuable part of the cargo, was confiscated, and condemned to be sold, and the remaining 600 tons reserved for his Catholic Majesty's decision. The Company's factors, by paying a large sum, prevented the goods being sold; and, by the interposition of the court of Great Britain, obtained an order from the court of Spain for the vessel to be re-measured ; and then they made out but 525 tons, including the 65 tons of iron.
The Lords of Trade and Plantations reported, in 1717, that Great Britain imported this year 5863 tons of logwood.
The number of men enrolled for the militia in Jamaica was 2679, being forty-five less than in 1712.
All the plantations of cacao-trees in St. Domingo were suddenly destroyed: they had been first planted in that island by M. Ogeron, at Port Margot, in 1666, and their produce was now a very considerable article of exportation. There were several conjectures as to the cause of their sudden destruction, but the majority of persons suspected that the inhabitants of Martinico had employed persons to effect it, because, as their island produced little else than cacao, the quantity produced at St. Domingo injured their sale.
Coffee was first introduced into St. Domingo this year.
The Spaniards took Campeachy, and sixty-two sail of English vessels which were there for logwood: the loss was estimated at £170,000 sterling.
The Lords of Trade and Plantations reported, in 1717, that Great Britain imported 2032 tons of logwood this year.
M. de Blenac was succeeded by the Marquis de Chateau Morand, as governor-general of the Leeward Islands.
Boyer's Political State of Great Britain, vol. xxxvi. p. 238.
Harris's Voyages, vol. ii. p. 269. Report of the Lords of the Committee, 1789, Supplement, No. 15. Charlevoix, tom. iv. pp. 217, 218. Baron de Wimpfon's St. Domingo, p. 167.
Gentleman's Magazine, Nov. 1742, p. 589.
One hundred of the prisoners taken at Preston in Lancashire, who had been confined in the Savoy, were shipped off for the West Indies.
Peter Heywood, Esq. succeeded Lord Archibald Hamilton as governor of Barbadoes.
The population of the Spanish part of Española was reckoned at 18,410 souls, among whom were 3705 carrying arms, exclusive of about 400 French, who were employed in their coasting vessels, and scattered in the different villages.
The Danish government at St. Thomas sent a colony to Crab Island.
The English Board of Trade and Plantations solemnly reported, that English subjects had an undoubted right to cut logwood in the bay of Campeachy, in which trade they said “the subjects of the crown of England had been maintained and supported by former kings, his Majesty's royal predecessors.” They gave it as their opinion, that some time before, and long after the year 1670, the subjects of England were possessed of, and quietly enjoyed, part of the country of Yucatan, uninhabited by the Spaniards; and, consequently, the right of British subjects to cut logwood, and even to settle in that country, was not only certain and apparent, but was also settled and confirmed by treaty.
Proclamation for the Suppression of Pirates. 6 George Rex.—Having been informed that several subjects of Great Britain have committed, since the 24th of June of the year 1705, divers piracies and robberies in the seas of the West Indies, in the neighbourhood of our plantations, which have caused very great losses to the merchants of Great Britain, and others merchants in those parts, notwithstanding the orders which we have given to place on foot forces sufficient to reduce these pirates. Nevertheless, to accomplish this more efficaciously, we have found it fitting, by and with the advice of our Privy Council, to publish this our royal proclamation, promising and declaring by this present, that all and each of the pirates who shall submit before the 5th of September, 1718, before one of our secretaries for Great Britain or Ireland, or before any governor or sub-governor of any of our colonies beyond the seas,
Tindal's History of England, vol. iv. book 27. p. 504. Atkins's Voyage to the West Indies, p. 249.
Charlevoix, tom. iv. p. 336. Coke's West Indies, vol. iii p. 159. Harris's Voyages, vol. ii. p. 268.
Histoire des Pirates, tom. iv. p. 35.
for ay, for each commars shall receive astice, to be
shall have our gracious pardon for the piracies which they may have committed before the 5th of January next ensuing. We enjoin and most expressly command all our admirals, captains, and other sea officers, as well as all our governors and commandants of our forts, castles, or other places in our colonies, and all other officers, civil and military, to seize all pirates who shall refuse or neglect to submit themselves conformably to this present. We declare further, that all persons who may discover or arrest, or cause to be discovered and arrested, one or more of these pirates, after the 6th of September, 1718, in such a manner that they shall fall into the hands of justice, to be punished according to their crimes, shall receive for recompence, that is to say, for each commander of a ship, the sum of $100 sterling; for each lieutenant, master, quarter-master, carpenter, and gunner, €40 sterling; for each sub-officer, £30; and for each private, £20. And if any soldier or sailor belonging to their troops or ships, during the time above mentioned, shall seize, or cause to be seized, any one of these commanders, he shall have. for each £200 sterling. Which sums shall be paid by the lord treasurer, or by the commissioners of our treasury for the time being, upon being required by this present. Given at Hampton Court, the 5th of September, 1717, in the 4th year of our reign.”
The notorious Edward Tench, commonly called Blackbeard the Pirate, in “ La Revanche de la Reine Anne," a French vessel of forty-six guns, captured the “ Great Allen,” Captain Taylor, and, after stripping her, and landing her crew upon the island of St. Vincent's, burnt her. A few days afterwards, Blackbeard fell in with his Majesty's ship Scarborough, and, after an action of several hours, beat her off. The Scarborough was very short of hands, and very sickly. Tench quitted the station, and went off Jamaica, where he plundered and destroyed several vessels : from thence he made sail for Charlestown.
The government of the Bahamas was resumed by the crown. The inhabitants were represented as very few and very poor, and as having decreased from 400 men to fewer than 200.
The first precise account of the Virgin Islands was returned this year, 1717.
Spanish-town - 317
Histoire des Pirates, tom. iv. pp. 36. 40.
the island, untitwenty-two guns. continued to clain the channel
Captain Hume, of his Majesty's ship Scarborough, sailed from Barbadoes, after a gang of pirates, under the command of — Martel, who, after taking several vessels off Jamaica and Cuba, and also to windward, repaired to Santa Cruz to refit. They had hauled their vessels into shoal water behind a small island off the north-east end of the island, made two batteries, one of four guns and the other of two, to command the entrance, and placed one of their vessels of eight guns across it.
The 27th of January, 1717, Captain Hume got correct information of the situation of the pirates, and made sail for their harbour; he anchored sufficiently near the vessel in the channel to sink her about four P.M., and continued to cannonade their largest vessel of twenty-two guns, which was on the other side of the island, until dark, when Captain Hume weighed from his insecure anchorage to keep under weigh off the entrance. Upon the 20th, the Scarborough had drifted so far off, that the pirates determined to attempt passing her. They got aground in the attempt; and finding that the Scarborough was coming up, nineteen of them escaped in a small boat: the rest got on shore, after setting fire to the vessel, in which twenty Negroes were burnt to death. Martel, with those that escaped on shore, are supposed to have perished in the woods.
This year the legislature of Barbadoes enacted, that if any slave who had been one year upon the island ran away, and was absent for thirty days, he was to have one of his feet cut off!. .
The Assembly at Jamaica established € 150 per annum, as a perpetual fund for keeping the wall on the south side of Port Royal in repair; and by Act 64. sect. 12. no Mulatto or Negro (free Mulattoes, Negroes and Indians having settlements, and ten slaves therein, always excepted) shall keep any horses, mares, mules, asses, or neat cattle whatsoever, on commons, on penalty of forfeiting the same.
Sect. 13. allows two justices in every precinct to licence any free Mulatto or Negro to keep such stock during good behaviour.
Sect. 14. enacts, that every free person of colour, not having a settlement with ten Negroes, shall furnish himself with a certificate of his freedom, and wear a public badge of a blue cross upon his right shoulder; otherwise to be used as a slave passing without a ticket.
Histoire des Pirates, tom. iv. p. 36, Long's Jamaica, vol. ii. p. 145.
Stephen on West Indian Slavery, p. 287. Report of the Lords of the Committee, 1789.
The Marquis de Chateau Morand, governor of St. Domingo, declared war against the Spaniards in that island, by marching to the middle of the river of Massacre, which was considered as the boundary line between the two nations, and firing a pistol. - The immediate consequence of this was, that the Spaniards received the runaway slaves from the French plantations; and the President of the Royal Audience declared that they were all confiscated to the Spanish government, by the declaration of war made by the French governor.
Peace being soon afterwards declared, the Spanish president, in pursuance of orders received from his court, collected all the French slaves he could find, and was going to send them by sea to the French part of the island ; but the populace rose upon their conductors and gave the slaves their liberty : these settled themselves in the Spanish part of the island, and became a point of refuge for all the runaways from the French. Hostilities between England and Spain were commenced in the Mediterranean by the fleet under Admiral Byng, and the Spanish fleet under Admiral Don Antonio de Castaneta, upon the 11th of August.
By the King of Spain's order, all the effects of the South Sex Company in the West Indies were seized; their prime cost was £850,000 sterling. Many of the Spaniards, who had bought goods and Negroes of the Company's factors would not pay their debts; the loss of the Company was much increased by the Negroes dying in their settlements. Their factories at La Vera Cruz, Panama, Portobello, Carthagena, and Buenos Ayres, and two agents at Madrid, put them to a great expence, the loss the Company suffered by this seizure was estimated at a million sterling
The English governor of the Leeward Islands sent Mr. Howell, with several settlers from the different islands, to form a colony upon Crab Island. Eighteen months afterwards (see 1719) the Spaniards landed with an overwhelming force, and carried off all the settlers to Puerto Rico. .
Fifteen hundred persons died about Cape François of the Mal de Siam,
Charlevoix, tom, iv. pp. 218, 219. . Tindal, vol. iv. book 27. p. 569.
Gentleman's Magazine, March, 1739, p. 133.
Coke's West Indies, vol. ii. p. 295.