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PROV. OF MASSA. BAY, July 15th, 1760
THE foregoing Accounts contain the Charge of the Province of the Massachusetts Bay for the Forces raised under the General and Commander in chief of his Majesty's Forces in North America, and the full sum of 155,615.19.1 has either been paid by me as Province Treasurer, or by the Commissary General as appears by his Accounts and for the sum paid by the Commissary General. Money has also been advanced to him out of the Province Treasury, and said sum of 155,615.19.1 is exclusive of the Wages of 236 Seamen raised by and in the pay of said Province for his Majesty's Ships in the River St. Lawrence.
HARRISON GRAY, Treas'r.
The sum of 12,682. 4.1 computed for Col. Fry's Regiment to be excepted out of said sum of 155,615.19.11.
I do hereby Certifie that the six preceding pages contain the true Copy of the Account of the Charge of this Province for His Majestys General Service in the Year 1759 as Attested by Harrison Gray, Treasurer of the said Province, and upon file in the Secretary's Office.
A. OLIVER, Sec'y.
Note there is an Error of 2/9d. in transferring the Sum to the last page.1
1 April 29, 1761, the apportionment of the grant for 1759 was made, and in spite of Bollan's plea for larger allowances to Massachusetts, that province received £60,634. All the agents of the other participating colonies contended for a distribution per capita. "This morning I went into the city to make provision for remitting the money as soon after receiving it as possible; there I found that for the late expedition the Government had taken from the Bank all the foreign silver they had, and bought up what they could meet with in the hands of others. The gentleman to whom I applied for intelligence sold them all that he had at 55. 9d. per oz., and sterling standard silver, which is 1‡d. an ounce better than Spanish standard, being now at 55. 11d. at market, which you are sensible is 9d. an ounce above the proper standard of the Government for coin, Spanish silver
WILLIAM BOLLAN TO THE SPEAKER.1
LEICESTER SQUARE, [London], May 8th, 1761
SIR, The Lords Commissioners for Trade and plantations having under their Consideration an Act passed by the General Court in February, 1760,2 for regulating fees, on the 24th of last month, pursuant to their direction, 1 attended their Lordships, when Lord Sandys told me they had these two objections to the Act. (1) that altho' a
is now worth 55. 91d.per oz. to the manufacturer, to be wrought into plate, and there is very little to be had at any price. Gold is at present £4. os. 4d. per oz., but as there is very little in town, and the Jews are picking it up as fast as they can, its future price is very uncertain, especially as it will be affected by the rise or fall of exchange with Holland. At my desire a gentleman will write into the country this evening to secure what may be had there, and I am in hopes that I shall be able to secure some that is expected in the next packet from Lisbon." Bollan to Oliver, April 29, 1761. Mass. Arch., XXII. 188. Difficulties were raised on the payment of the grant, as the aids on which it depended had not come into the Treasury, and in June the agents were informed that they would receive half of the sums in money, and half in exchequer tallies, which would carry interest and probably be paid in the following March. Even this method, accepted from necessity by the agents, did not settle the question, for the Earl of Kinnoull, late paymaster general, brought up an advance of £44,592 illegally made in 1756 to the Colonies, as he claimed, on an order of General Shirley, which had never been repaid, and for which he (Kinnoull) could be held responsible. This difficulty the agents overcame, and Bollan prepared to ship gold, silver not offering in sufficient quantity; but the price of gold was such that with freight and insurance, the province would lose seven per cent. Hearing that the province intended to sell bills against the grant, payable in London, Bollan determined not to ship, but to await further instructions. The Boston Evening Post for June 22 contained the following advertisement: "Whereas by an Act of the General Court, the Province Treasurer is enabled and directed to draw Bills of Exchange on Mr. Agent Bollan, to the Amount of Sixty Thousand Pounds Sterling: He therefore gives Publick Notice to all Merchants and others, Inhabitants of the Province, who are inclined to purchase any of said Bills, that a Subscription Roll open at the office, where they may subscribe, no Person above One Thousand Pounds, nor under One Hundred Pounds Sterling, until the first Day of July next."
1 This letter in the Washburn collection does not show to whom it was written. A copy in Mass. Arch., xxII. 190, gives the proper address.
2 Passed February 13. Province Laws, IV. 291.
* Samuel Sandys (1695?-1770), who had become first lord of trade and plantations March 21, 1761. What his contemporaries thought of him is indicated in the Dictionary of National Biography, L. 294.
temporary Act, it repeald a perpetual Act of the 4th of William and Mary, Chapt. 17. (2) that the perpetual Act having had the royal approbation, an Act for repealing it ought to have contain'd a Clause suspending its force and execution, until the king's determination thereupon was declared.1 A few things were then said, wherein some of the Lords seem'd to suppose these objections unanswerable. After observing that a New establishment of Money, with the changing circumstances of a New country, required a New table of fees, I desired the matter might be deferr'd til I could consider the present Act, and all the former laws relating to fees, together with their Lordships' objections, as this Act had never been transmitted to me, and I was wholly a stranger to it when I received their directions to attend; and after some time spent hereupon the matter was put off accordingly. Their Lordships then passed to another affair, and Lord Sandys having in his hand four Acts for lotteries he inveigh'd against them, as mischievous in their nature, destructive to labour, and industry, and introductive of the spirit of gaming, ever attended with many ill consequences. In excuse for these Acts, I observed that the distresses, occasiond by the heavy expence of the War, of which the Province had taken so large a part, had probably brought these lotteries into
1 In November, 1761, a letter to Bollan was prepared by a committee, of which Bowdoin was the reporter. On these objections he said that the perpetual act for regulating fees had been frequently suspended by temporary acts appointing different fees, and these temporary acts had never been disallowed by the king. As to the suspending clause, the charter provided that laws made should continue in force, in case his majesty should not signify his disallowance within the time limited, until their expiration or their repeal by the General Assembly. Bollan was to defend to the utmost the General Court's power of legislation in its full extent according to the aforesaid charter.”
2 In spite of the growing opposition to lotteries the British government continued annually to raise considerable sums in lotteries authorized by act of parliament until 1824. The hint in Bollan's letter caused Bernard to refuse to authorize a lottery for Harvard College without express submission to the Lords of Trade. 6 Collections, IX, 10.
use; and the whole board having concurrd with his lordship in declaring their evil nature, I told their lordships I wou'd take the first opportunity of acquainting the General Court with their sentiments thereupon. It is needless to say that many of the most able statesmen, as well as divines, have always declared against the use of lotteries, and being fully persuaded that the continuance of them, wou'd prejudice the province's desirable character, in the minds of some of their best friends, as well as be disagreeable to others, I think it my duty to recomend a total disuse of them. The day before yesterday being appointed for hearing any thing that I might have to offer respecting the Act for regulating fees, upon my being called in, Lord Sandys told me, that in favor to me, who, they understood, had been indisposed, they wou'd require me to speak only to the two points of the Acts being temporary, and wanting a suspending clause. In Case I had thought it a proper time for entring into the consideration of the matter at large, I should very gladly have declined this favor to myself, and after briefly taking notice that forms were introduced for the sake of substance, and that if the Act, as it appeared to me, was founded on the principles of equality and justice, and was render'd necessary by the present Circumstances of the Province, I conceived its merit in these particulars was a reason for its approbation. I then proceeded to observe, that if their lordships were inclined to introduce the use of suspending clauses, in Certain cases, and to declare, that the present act, without considering its Merits, ought to be disallowed, for the want of such clause, this was a matter which so nearly affected the Province's power of Legislation, that I must earnestly pray their lordships to postpone the consideration of the affair, so that I might have time, to give proper notice to the
General Court, and receive their instructions hereupon. In support of this motion, I observed to their lordships, that, as I understood, the Province now, and at all times since their constitution, was formed by their present Charter, conceived the General Court was well entitled to the free exercise of their Authority, in making such proper laws as the welfare of the province from time to time, in their judgment required, which laws were to take immediate effect, that the power of repealing their own laws, was like wise unrestrained, and that there had never yet been an instance of a suspending clause being inserted in any Act. Upon my mentioning this last point Mr. Pownall, who had before observed to their lordships that there was an alternative, which was, to send over the draught of the Act, before passing it, to whom one of the lords replied, that was the same thing with the Suspending clause, now said, that the draught of one Act had been sent over here, which related to the proceedings of the Commissioners in Cases of Bankrupts.1 After observing, that altho' I had never heard of this draught being sent over before, yet I supposed this was a Special case, and probably owing to the extraordinary difficulties that attended the King's repeal of the Act, that had before passed against bankrupts; and this being immediately agreed to be the Case, I then observed that precedents in these cases being always readily cited, it was proper, before making another for me to acquaint the General Court with this matter, especially as I had never received any instruction from them hereupon, nor ever been in any manner concerned in this question. After withdrawing, and waiting a Considerable time, Mr. Pownall came to me, and told me that their lordships would not
1 Possibly the act in Province Laws, Iv. 29, which the Lords of trade recommended should be disallowed. Ib., 44.