Letter from the Lords Proprietors of Carolina
Carolina. Lords Proprietors.
Volume 01, Pages 220-222
[B. P. R. O. Colonial Entry Book. Vol. 20. P. 93.]
Whitehall 18th May 1674.
Wee have herewith sent a Patent to Mr West to be Landgrave and a Com̄ission to be Governor who hath all along by his care, fidellity and prudence in the management of our affaires, to our generall satisfaction recommended himself to us as the fittest man there for this trust. This we cannot forbare plainely to say though wee have a great Regard to Sir John Yeamans as a considerable man that hath come and setled amongst us when Mr West had formerly the management of afaires, things were then puting into such a posture (as appears by the Act of Parliament made att the latter end of his Government which we herewith send you confirmed) That wee had some encouragement to send suplies to men who took into their consideration how wee might be reimbursed as well as they could which was all wee expected but immediately with Sir Johns asumeing the Government the face of things alltered the first newes was of severall proposalls for the increaseing our charge, the same still hath ever since continued on, and in your verry last Dispatches a Scheme
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sent to us of wayes of suplying youe which would presently require the disbursement of severall thousand pounds and all this without the least mention of any thought how wee might be repaid either our past debts which allready amounts to severall thousand pounds or be better answered for the future. But instead thereof complaints made and reproaches insinuated as if wee had dealt ill and unjustly with you, because wee would not continue to feed and cloath you on without expectation or demand of any Returns this wee must let you know put a stop to your supplys more than the Dutch Warr, for wee thought it time to give of a charge which was like to have no end and the Country was not worth the haveing at that rate, for itt must be a bad soyle that would not mainetaine industrious people or we must be verry silly that would mainetaine the idle but wee have no suspition att all of the barrennesse or any other ill qualities of the Country which some of us are soe well assured of that at theire own private charge they are going to setle a plantation at Edistow without expecting a farthing assistance from us. That Sir John Yeamans management hath brought things to this pass wee are well Satisfied which yett wee cannot charge upon his mistake, the Caracter which wee have received of him and his long acquaintance with Barbados and the world gives us our thoughts of him and perhaps it would very well have Secured his purpose if wee had Supplyed you and he reaped the profits of your labour att his own Rates and our own plantation Soe ordered that in Reputation people and Improvement itt might arive att noe other pitch then to be Subservient in provisions and Timbr
to the Interest of Barbados. Consider at which Rates Sir John bought our poore planters provitions in theire necessity and how industrious and usefull to you the generallity of the people that came from Barbados have been and then tell us whether wee have not reason to be of this minde For wee would not have those who went from hence (whom wee are Still willing to encourage bee any longer mislead and the people that have come to you from New York and the Northward have by their planting and way of living amongst you fully Satisfied us that they are Friends to and doe in earnest meane and desire the Settlement and prosperity of our Province, being therefore willing to give all reasonable incouragement to honest and industrious men we have sent another supply of Cloathes for cloathes and tooles and have entered into engagement one to another to Send yearly to youe whereby our stores shall never want necessaries for the use of the industrious planters to be had att moderate Rates, by those that will pay for them, yett wee doe not intend any more carelessly to throw away our stock and charges upon the Idle for though wee the Lords Proprietors have tyed one another by covenant that none Shall bee
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behinde others in the Charge of carrying on this plantation yett wee are all greed not to make any more desperate Debts amongst you though wee intend to be at charge in procureing vines olives or any other usefull plants or commodities fit for the Climate out of any part of the world and men Skilled in the management of them and therefore if you intend to have Suplyes for the future you will doe well to consider how you will pay us, in what comodities you can best do it and how the Trade of those Comodities you can best procure may bee soe managed as to turn to account for in our trade with you we ayme not att the profit of merchant but the incouragement of landlords In your letters you have been frequent in the mention of a Stock of Cattle, you say it will enable you to pay your Debts but do you not think if wee bring cattle thither wee who doe not want ground cannot keep them & make the profitt of our charge and Venture as well as others especially it being our designe to have Planters there and not Graziers for if our Intentions were to stock Carolina att that Rate wee could doe better by Baylife and Servants of our own, who would be more observant of our orders than you have been, plant in Townes where we direct Take up noe more lands than what they had use for nor by a scattered Settlement and large Tracts of ground taken up and not like to bee planted these many years exclude other from coming neare them and yet complaine for want of Neighbours, we rest,
your very affectionate friends