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Affidavit of Henry Hudson concerning the cases of Thomas Miller and John Culpeper
Hudson, Henry, ca. 1626-1682
January 31, 1680
Volume 01, Pages 272-274

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[B. P. R. O. Colonial Papers.]

The affidavitt of Henry Hudson aged 54 yeares or therabouts saith

That in July 1677 Mr Thomas Miller arived in Albemarle in Carolina wth sundry Com̄issions and Instructions relateing to his Majesty and the Lds Proprietrs affaires whereof one was to be Collectr of ye Customes their and after haveing by ye advice and assistance of ye then Counsell there reduced ye Indians and ye Governmt wch ye yeare before and then alsoe lay in a tumultuous confusion, he setled his Majestyes affaires relateing to ye Customes appointing officers for each River and amongst the rest did depute this Deponent his Deputy Collectr for collecting his Majtys dutyes in the Lower Pts in pursuance of wch this deponent acted sometime in yt affaire and had receaved in good bonds to ye quantity of 410 hhds of Tobacco for his Majestyes use and about £300 sterg of Contrabanded Goods seazed as illegally imported and soe for ye space of five months things went on in quiet and peaceable manner as to the Generll (though some were factiously inclined untill Xber following upon ye arivall of one Capt. Zach. Gillam of Londn that yeare the inhabitants then riseing up in Armes their broke out a more violent resurrection then heretofore Even to an absolute subverting the whole authority derived both from ye King and ye Lds. Proprietrs seazing and imprisoning ye said Miller and the Lds. Proprs Deputyes and all others in authority and office Yea and all such of the Inhabitants alsoe as would not joyne wth them they then writt a seditious letter to the Lower Pts. to one Mr Rich. Foster to give him an accot what they had donn above wth all requireing him to sum̄ons ye Inhabitants below to chuse Burgesses for a new Assembly (as they cald it) and to seaze this deponant prissonr all wch was donn and they mett accordingly; att whose meeting this depont being then thier prissonr was forced to be prsent wth them though yt very day he was to receave upon ye Kings accot 100 hhhds of Tobacco for Customes of one Jon Williams a New England Traider whome they suffered to depart without paying any duty at all, notwithstanding this depont required assistance from them and gave caution thereof to ye sd Foster and ye rest of ye Gang thier mett who instead of choseing Burgesses, they by a shout of one and all cryed out wee will have noe Lods noe Landgraves noe Cassiques we renounce them all and fly to the King's protection soe downe went ye Lords Proprietrs for about halfe an owre untill ye said Foster tould them that way would not doe, whereupon they cryed up ye Lods againe and went to chusing thier Burgesses as they cald them wch Burgesses being

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thus chosen had instructions from ye Rable how they should prceed att thier assembly wch was, first absoelutely to insist upon a free traid to transport their tobacco where they pleased and how they pleased without paying any duty to ye King; Upon wch some of them cryed out God dam̄e ye Collector and this Depont verily thought they would have murthered him: the next thing was that they should bring ye said Miller to a tryall for severall odious crymes they then contrived to tax him wthall one espeacially for cheating the Country of 135,000 lbs of Tobacco wch was secured upon ye Kings accott by ye said Miller wch as they said belonged to them and the wch if he had not done they nevr would have troubled him about thier prtended imputation of treason or any thing else they had framed against him as Will: Crafford one of ye Cheefe Ringleadrs often told this Depont while he was a prissonr in his house then they were to seaze all his Majtys Customes into yer hands: these Instructions being given the sd Foster wth his Burgesses carryed this Dept a prissonr along wth them to one George Durant's house wch was ye appointed place for yer meeting and where ye aforesd Mr Miller and ye Lods Deputyes and other Officers were prissoners and where they kept this deponant undr a guard of thre files of soldiers takeing violently from this Depont all the Kings bonds accots and consarnes whatsoever from him and after delivered them to Jon Culpeper thier Collectr where ye aforesd Gillam was and countenancing them with his presence & furnishing them wth drink nor would he open store untill he see what would be done about ye Governmt and was alsoe prsent when they created a Prlement consisting of Tho. Collen, Speaker, James Blunt, Anthony Slocum, Jon Vernham, Henry Bonner, Jon Jenkins, Sam. Pricklove, Willm Therrill, Caleb Calloway, Alexander Lillington Willm Craford Vallantine Bird since dead Willm Jenings, Tho. Jarvies Enoch Billings Rich Sanders Patrick White & Willm Sears who was ther Drummr in all about 18 of them this prlement seperated five of yer Membrs vizt Jon Jenkins Willm Craford, James Blunt, Patrick White and Valantine Bird to joyne wth one Mr Richard Foster thier cheefe Judge to make a Court of, and then this Court impanelled a Grand Jury out of ye souldiers and confused Rable, the foreman whereof was one Mordecay Bowdon a New England Traider and one much indebted to ye King wch foreman consulting wth one Jon Culpeper (thier Collector aforesd and cheefe scribe & counsellor) how he should bring in ye Inditemt against ye sd Miller the sd Culpeper told him he must Indosse Billa vera whereupon this Jury went out and quickly returned againe but ye sd foreman instead of indossing Billa vera put downe Bill of Error
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whereupon the Court looking wishtly upon it as much amazed, the sd Culpeper snatcht it from them and told them it was only a mistake in ye foreman, whereupon ye foreman prsently replyed he had donn as ye sd Culpeper had bid him; but however wthout a second goeing out or more adoe it was mended and soe passed for good the wch manner of prceedings was not denyed but owned by Foster and others of ye Court when questioned by this Depont about it Upon this the Sheriffe was to Impanell a petty Jury upon ye sd Miller ye foreman whereof was one Joseph Winslow another New England Traidr and one much indebted to ye King for Custome wch was donn and would certainly then have proceeded to have taken away ye said Miller's life as this Depont had great cause to beleave (for besides the many irreverent speeches against all authority uttered by the rable) those that were upon this deponts guard and of ye said Miller's jury, this depont often heard them vowe and sweare that they would never depart thence untill they sawe ye said Miller dead or alive undr ground but ye comeing in of ye Governrs Proclamation prevented it soe that they proceeded noe further in it att that time only consulted how to dispose of his Majtys consarnes wch they had soe violently taken from us to ye payeing their soldiers and agents wth all and to com̄itt ye sd Miller prissonr in Irons as he was And this Deponant and ye rest of ye King's officers and ye Lods Proprs Deputyes and some other of ye Inhabitants Close prisonrs apart wthout the prvilege of pen inck or paper or accesse of frendes or humane converse wch continued soe wth some of us almost ye space of two years and to send a strong guard to oppose ye Govr wch they did untill he dyed in Virginia wch was not long after Soe things continued in this posture carryed on by those already named especially there Court Members as principal Actors togeather with one Jon Willoughby and George Durant who weare their Agents sent home that yeare to cover all their actions over in England that truth might not come to light and furthr at present your Depont saith not.

HEN: HUDSONE
Jurat 31 die Januar: 1679
coram.
W Mountagu