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Letter from Arthur Dobbs to the Board of Trade of Great Britain
Dobbs, Arthur, 1689-1765
December 26, 1755
Volume 05, Pages 462-479

[B. P. R. O. North Carolina. B. T. Vol. 12. C. 101.]

Letter from Governor Dobbs to the Board of Trade, dated at Newbern the 26th of December 1755.

My Lords,

Pursuant to your Orders of the 16th of July of which I received a Duplicate only the 17th instant the Original having never come to hand I underneath give your Lordships my humble Opinion in the best manner I can digest my thoughts in so short a time that as little time might be lost as possible since your Orders were so late in coming in answering the several Articles you have ordered me to send to you, that your Lordships might not be delayed by me and that you may compare the plan I send with those of the other Governors of the several Colonies to whom undoubtedly you have sent that you may be enabled by knowing the Sentiments of the several Governors of the Colonies to digest and form a general scheme to be laid before his Majesty, althō I could wish for the good of Britain that the French were totally expelled from Canada and Luisiana.

-------------------- page 463 --------------------

In order to answer your Lordships Expectations and Orders in the best manner I can to every Article I must beg leave to observe that the sums to be levied upon the several Colonies can't be fixed until the Number of Forts to be erected and the largeness of each is determined and known which are necessary to defend the frontier and to protect our Indian Allies and secure the Trade and until the Number of Soldiers necesary to be maintained to defend them can be determined and the number of cannon swivels or musquetoons and other Military Stores necessary for the several Forts and what may be necessary to keep the Forts and Barracks afterwards in repair by which the Expence may be calculated and the sum known which is necessary to be raised by the several Colonies Nor can the number of Forts and their largeness be determined until the Bounds of our claim is fixed and the French are forced to give us our Right But since the Treaty of Utrecht confirmed by the Treaty of Aix hath confirmed to us a Boundary thō it be not the foundation of our Right and claim I shall therefore fix the British Right and Boundaries of the Colonies upon the Right we have by the Faith and Sanction of these Treaties without insisting upon our prior Right.

The Treaty of Utrecht has yielded up and restored to Britain Arcadia or Nova Scotia according to its most antient Limits which were originally fixed by King James the firsts grant from the Entrance of St Croix on St Johns River to its fountain and so the shortest way to St Lawrence River over against Tadousac and down that River to Gaspee Bay the French claiming then no part of the Countries South of that River having Settled their Colony at Canada to Northward of it and from Gaspee along the Coast to Cape Breton which was included in it but given up to the French by that Treaty and from thence along the Sea Coast to Cape Mary over against St Johns River.

I can't tell whether his Majesty will insist upon his whole Right and have a Fort erected on St Lawrence River over against Tadusac nearest the Springs of St Johns River since the South Bank of that River to the Lakes ought to be our Boundary as it is our undoubted Right and would effectually secure the friendship of these Indians and to have another built at Gaspee at the entrance of the River which would add greatly to the Expence and would be strongly litigated by France as it would give us the command of that River and therefore for the sake of peace his Majesty may probably abate of his Right in this instance but it should be upon such Terms that the French should acknowledge the British Right to all the Lands South of the River and withdraw their Missionaries from the Indians and let the Lands remain unsettled in the hands of the Indians. In that case we may only keep Fort Cumberland at

-------------------- page 464 --------------------
Chignecto and that at Bay verte and one upon St John's River which should be built as high upon that River as would answer to protect our Settlers and keep the Indians our Friends.

The Limits of New Hampshire Massachusets and Main ought also to extend to the Banks of St. Lawrence River from St Johns to the River Iroquois and Lake St Pierre but probably for the sake of Peace they may not insist to settle the whole upon the acknowledgment of our Claim but they ought to make good their Claim as high as the Springs of Kennebec River and have a Fort as high upon it as may protect their Planters which I believe they have already done last Summer our Claim from New England on the River Iroquois is fixed by the Treaty of Utrecht to all the Lands possessed or conquered by the five Nations now called the six Nations upon their conjunction with the Tuskeroras to which they always claimed a Right which extends from the River Iroquois to Niagara along the South side of St Lawrence River and Lake Ontario so that Crown Point fort is undoubtedly our Right as well as all South of St Lawrence in Right of our Allies, who put themselves under our Protection whether his Majesty will support his claim to the south side of that River so as to settle it is a matter of Prudence but the French ought to give all the Indians South of that River to be under our Protection and also any Claim or Right to settle those Lands.

The six Nations also claim a Right to all the Countries North of Ontario and St Lawrence from the River Ontaonas near Monreal to the Huron Lake which they had conquered and was always their hunting ground so that we have a just Claim to Caterakin Fort on the North side of Lake Ontareo where it enters St Lawrence River However for the sake of Peace his Majesty may probably give up his Right and wont Claim anything North of Ontario Lake but it ought to be stipulated in that case that Catanakin fort should be demolished or any other built upon Ontario Lake, the whole Lake belonging to the six Nations.

The Lands South of Ontareo and Niagara Fort and River are undoubtedly our Right, as are all the Lands South of Lake Erie the six Nations having conquered all these Lands Southward and Westward of it as far as Michigan Lake and the River Illinois and so down to the Ohio and Mississippi and Northward beyond the Miamis River which falls into Lake Erie and St Joseph River which falls into Michigan Lake and the Twightwees and Thawans as well as the Delawars possess these Lands by the Express leave of the six Nations from the falls on the Ohio to the Mississippi on the South side of the Ohio our allies the Cherokees claim a Right and dispute it much higher of the South side with the six Nations so that in their Right we have a claim to these

-------------------- page 465 --------------------
Countries and the Chickesaws our faithful allies claim a Right from thence down the east side of the Mississippi to the River Mobile and to Southward of them we claim a Right by our allies the Lower Creeks to Albama Fort, and might claim a right to Mississippi by Caas discovery of it before the French.

Upon this Presumption that we shall exert our undoubted Right to these Lands founded upon the Right of our Indian allies and the Treaties of Utrecht and Aix la Chapelle from the River Iroquois including Crown Point by the South side of Ontario and Erie Lakes and so by the West End of Erie to Michigan Lake and down the Occaback to the Ohio and thence to the Mississippi and down that River of Mobile to include the Chickesaws and so to Albama a Fort and River to secure our Creek allies I shall humbly propose what number of Forts and what size and strength they ought to be to secure our Colonies and Indian Allies.

Since Nova Scotia has got Possession of Fort Cumberland at Chignecto and a small Fort at Bay verte which secures the Isthmus and upon retaking the Fort at St Johns (which when taken ought not to have been neglected) and since that Colony is now under the Direction and care of the Government in England I do not bring that Colony into the Estimate, and there being a small Fort already built by the Massachuset Colony upon Kennebec River I shall pass that over althō I bring the Pay of the Garrison into the charge I therefore shall proceed to crown Point Fort which when retaken we must garrison strongly to secure the Massachuset and Connecticut Colonies as well as New York from the French and their Indians as also our claim to the Country west of Iroquois to the Lake Ontario a small Fort at Oswego to secure our Trade as it may not be prudent to insist upon Catanakin fort and the Lands North of Ontario—A strong Fort [at] Niagara to secure the six Nations from the French Power and Intrigues—a Redoubt at the Head of French Creek above Verango where the French have a small Fort to communicate with Ohio—Another Redout upon Caya-hoya a River running into Lake Erie where there is a carrying place to Mushingum or White Woman's River which falls into the Ohio above the upper Thawans Town near little Kanhawa River—A strong Fort upon Sanduski River at or near Yumimdat, where the French have lately built a small Fort, where vessels may be built to command the Trade upon Lake Erie and so through the streights to Huron Lake, from this River is a carrying Place to Sioto River which falls into the Ohio near the lower Thawan's Town—A Fort on or near the River Miamis to secure and protect the Twightwees our allies—A strong Fort at the Conflux of the Occabach with the

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Ohio—A strong Fort near the Chickesaws, at the head of the Mobile to secure and protect that Warlike Nation our faithful Allies the Envy of the French and their inveterate Enemies—And a Fort either on Flint River which falls into the Bay of Mexico or upon the Head of Albama River to preserve a communication between the Chickesaws and Creeks and to protect the Creeks from Albama Fort. If this plan be followed there will be no occasion for a Fort to protect the Cherokees as they will be at a great distance within the Line These are the number of the Forts and Places which I think the best to secure our Frontier and Indian Allies and to protect the Trade being 9 in number including the Fort on Kennebec River and 2 Redouts which wont be more expensive than one small Fort, so these included they make 11 Garrisons which in my Judgment are as many as may be necessary to be garrisoned to secure our Colonies and the Countries belonging to our Indian Allies and to make them our perpetual friends and to carry on our Trade as far as the Mississippi and through the Lakes by which many more nations would be induced to come and trade with us when it should be put under proper regulations when we should be able to undersell the French upon account of their Monopoly, Distance and difficulty of Navigation as well up on the Rivers as the Seas leading to the Rivers of St Lawrence and Mississippi. This would secure to us the best part of the Indian Trade and their Friendship effectually and would soon oblige the French to give up or desert Fort Pontchartrain as not worth the Expence since by the Treaty of Utrecht we have a Right to Trade with all Indian Nations even with the French allies as they have with ours and then the Lakes would be open to us for large vessels to Trade in them.

However this ought not to be our full Scheme, for I forsee that whenever we shall be able to accomplish this Plan and the French find themselves confined to the North of St Lawrence River and the Lakes and we shall have gained the Bulk of the Indian Trade that the French will endeavour to make Reprisals upon our Trade in Hudsons Bay which the Hudson Bay company and Monopoly will encourage them to do since they now undersell the company after so long a Land carriage and difficult River Navigation as far as from Monreal to the West of the Bay for they will then push on their Trade Northwestward and secure all the richest furs. I therefore think it of great consequence that no time should be lost in declaring the Hudson's Bay exclusive Trade by charter (without an act of Parliament to confirm it) an illegal Monopoly and to allow all the British Merchants to Trade, and British and Foreign Protestants to settle on all or any of the Lands within their Grant and that the Legislature should determine their Property and where they

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were Proprietors in case they should not give up their charter if the Monopoly be declared illegal for if those Lands were settled as in other Colonies they would push them and the Trade on to the Southern milder Latitudes and secure all the Trade North of the Huron and Superior Lakes as they could undersell the French and so cut them out of the Trade West of the Bay and joyn our Colony Trade thrō the Lakes this would reduce the power and wealth of Canada so much as to make them quit their Schemes and Canada would become of little value to the French.

Having premised these things I shall now humbly give my Opinion of the seize and Strength of the several proposed forts and Redouts which are proposed to be eleven in number as already mentioned having left out Nova Scotia as being entirely under the Direction of the Government in Britain and then the Forts to be erected where not already built will appear thus

Number of Men.
The first at Kennebec River if not already built, to be a triangular Fort with 3 Bastions 12 Cannon 4 pounders 30 Swivels or Musquetoons
100
2d Crown Point Fort already built with cannon &c
500
3d Oswego Fort a Triangular with 4 Bastions 12 Cannon 6 pounders and 18 Swivels
200
4th Niagara a Square with 4 Bastions 16 Cannon 6 pounders and 48 Swivels
400
5th A Redoubt at French Creek triangular with 3½ Bastions 18th Swivels
50
6th Ditto at Caya-hoga
50
7th A Fort at Sunduski or Yuncundat a Square with 4 Bastions 16 Cannon 4 pounders 48 Swivels
400
8th A small Fort at Miamis triangular with 3 Bastions 12 Cannon 4 pounders and 30 Swivels
100
9th A Fort on the Occaback and Ohio a square with 4 Bastions 16 cannon 6 pounders 48 Swivels
300
10th A Fort at the Mobile near the Chickesaws the same in all respects
300
11th A Fort at Albama near the Creek Indians the like
400
Total exclusive of Commission and non-Commission Officers
2800

The Fort at Kennebec River will soon have Planters settled near it under its Protection and may be soon reduced in time of Peace to 50 men

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since the Planters upon any attack would shelter there and add to the Garrison—Crown Point Fort being an exposed Frontier near Canada must be always kept compleat—Oswego if the Town and Trade increases may be reduced to a 100 Men as they may have assistance from the Traders and Inhabitants in case of an Attack—Niagara Fort must be always kept compleat as also the Redoubts on Lake Erie and the Fort at Yunicundat to prevent any Communication from the lake to Ohio by the short Land carriages and to secure the navigation of Lake Erie. The Fort also at the Twightwees must be kept compleat to protect that Nation who upon any attack would assist the Garrison and those on the Occaback Mobile and Alibamas must be always compleat However in my computation I will suppose them all compleat—There are to be in the whole 28 Companies at 100 Men per Company one of which is to be divided between the 2 Redouts near Lake Erie, they must all be allowed British pay and the Non-Commission Officers and private Men Provisions until they are well settled and when they have cleared the Lands near their Forts they should be allowed Mares Cows Sheep and Swine for Breed and afterwards be Only allowed salt and Bread, as they may soon have Malt fruits and vines to make good Beverage since they wont be more northerly than 41o and may have everything Gardens can afford Sallads Roots &c: at the same time Lands should be laid out in Lots for them 500 Acres to a Captain 300 to Subaltern 100 to a Sergeant or Corporal and 50 to a private Soldier, so that when they are off guard in time of peace they may improve their plantations These Garrisons which are placed near the Twightwees Chickesaws and Creeks should endeavour to have some usefull Tradesmen in Garrison to instruct the Indians and be usefull to them, as Smiths Carpenters Masons &c: and also Gardeners and Farmers to encourage our Allies to become industrious and only go to hunt for their Diversion and when furs are in season to exchange to more advantage to buy Apparel and Household furniture and their youth might be instructed and civilized and enured to moderate Labour which would prepare them to be converted and to incorporate with us And the Soldiers should be encouraged to take Indian Wives whose daughters would again intermarry with the Indian Youth.

The Expence of the several Garrisons and the whole sum necessary to be raised in the Colonies Thus—The Expence of the pay of one Company.

To one Captains Pay per day
£“
10
To 2 Lieutenants @ 4s 8d per Diem
9
4
To one Ensign
3
8
-------------------- page 469 --------------------
To three Serjeants @ 4s 6s
4
6
To three Corporals @ 1s
3
To 2 Drummers
2
To 100 private Men @ 8d per day
3
6
8
4
19
2
Total Pay of one Company per ann
£1818
6
5
Total charge of the Pay of 28 Companies
£50708
12
4
To each Fort one Captain per diem
£
6
8
To one Surgeon
4
To Surgeon's Mate
2
6
13
2
Total per year
£237
7
2.
Which for 8 Forts amounts to
1897
17
4.
Total pay
52602
3
8
Provisions for 2800 Soldiers at 2d per day
£
23
68
Total per ann
8522
14
Non Commission Officers 214 at 4s per diem
£3
14
8
Which amounts to per ann
1374
17
6
Total with Provisions
62503
17
2
Which with allowance to Gunners and Mattrosses
will amount to at least
£63000

In order to raise this Sum from the United Colonies they ought to be had proportionally to their Wealth and Numbers. The Numbers are generally computed from the Taxables White Males from 16 and upwards and the Number of Souls computed from those as the Number of females are computed equal to the males and the Number under 16 equal to those above 16. So that the Taxable whites should be about ¼th of the whole. The Wealth is not so easily computed but where there are Negros the Taxable Negros should be always added to the Number of Taxable Whites.

Having seen a late computation of the number of Souls in our Colonies on the Continent of America communicated by a Gentleman who has considered American Affairs to the Author of a late well wrote Pamphlet entituled a State of the English and French Colonies, althō it be not exact as I shall shew I shall make that at present the foundation of the Proportion of the Texas each Colony should pay and after shewing

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where several of the Computations are incorrect shall form another calculation from a more correct computation although I can't affirm its being correct—

The Number of Souls of the Whites in the several British Colonies of North America as computed by him stands thus—

In Nova Scotia
5000 —
New Hampshire
30000 —
Massachuset and Province of Main
220000 —
Rhode Island and Providence
35000 —
Connecticut
100000 —
New York
100000 —
New Jerseys
60000 —
Pensylvania
250000 —
Maryland
85000 —
Virginia
85000 —
North Carolina
45000 —
South Carolina
30000 —
Georgia
6000 —
Total
1051000 —

Althō these numbers are not exact as I shall shew and the Negros are not brought into the Number nor the Wealth I shall at present form a Calculation of the Proportional charge from these numbers of each Colony and shew how it appears upon this calculation and then I shall shew where these numbers are deficient where exact numbers have been taken and give reasons where I apprehend they are deficient from the numbers in the adjacent Colonies where numbers have been taken and shall take in the Taxable Blacks into the calculation and so form an estimate what each Colony should be charged.

But first I must deduct the number in Nova Scotia since that Colony is not included in this calculation the Crown at present being at the whole expence of the Garrisons and Government in that Province. This reduction will reduce the number of Souls of the Whites to 1046000 and as the charge of the Troops to be raised to garrison the Forts is computed to be about £63000—then the proportional share that would fall upon each according to this computation would stand thus—

New Hampshire to pay
£1728 —
Massachuset and Main
13250 —
Rhode Island and Providence
2203 —
Conneticut
6023 —
-------------------- page 471 --------------------
New York
6023 —
New Jerseys
3616 —
Pensylvania
15057 —
Maryland
5081 —
Virginia
5081 —
North Carolina
2766 —
South Carolina
1778 —
Georgia
361 —
Total
£62964 —

In this Proportion according to the above calculation of the Numbers would the sums be levyed from the several Colonies in Case the numbers returned had been exact and the Wealth of the several Colonies had been also calculated But as the computation is very deficient in several of the Colonies and the Wealth not considered at all, this calculation can never be thought a proper plan to go upon and as I shall shew that the computation is vastly too low in several of the Colonies to Southward I have reason also to believe that they may be short in the number of several of the Northern Colonies; However as the Lands are less valuable to the Northward and labour more severe, and consequently the Colonies not so rich in proportion to their number I shall not add to the number of any of the Northern Colonies as above returned but shall shew how far short the numbers are given in the Southern Colonies.

An exact account was taken in Virginia last year of all the taxable white males in each County from 16 years and upwards and they amounted to 44214 And the Taxable Negros Male and female above 12 years old were 58292 so that if the taxable Whites are about ¼th of the number of souls in Virginia the Whites would amount to 176856 which are above computed at 85000 not half the number and if we add to these the Taxable Negros 58292 the number to pay the Tax would be 235148 so that Virginia as it is an increasing Colony the number may be fixed at 230000. North Carolina is above computed at 45000 souls whites; but as the taxable Whites males from 16 upwards were returned last year at about 20000 and 5000 negros and I am sensible the returns are less than the Truth as all the Laws had been neglected and not put in execution, for this year in Craven County where I reside having got a good County Clerk and some persons to inform against Defalters the Taxables this year are 300 more than last year so that the number may be computed at 80000 instead of 45000.

In South Carolina the Computation made was only 30000 Whites but since for some years several thousands have taken up Lands there from

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the Northward and the back Lands on Santee Savanna and Congeree Rivers are well settled the number of Whites in that Colony if rightly taken can't be less than 60000 besides 50000 taxable Negros so that by their late Improvement of Indigo their Wealth is increased and they are daily importing Numbers of Negros, so that including Negros they may be computed at 110000—By the numbers in Virginia we may be convinced that the Whites in Maryland are short computed at 85000, and may be augmented to 107000, since all their Lands are taken up and from their proportional quantity of Tobacco to Virginia exported their Negros can't be less than 10000 when Virginia has 58000 so that the numbers to pay the Pole tax in Maryland may be computed at 140000 at least—Pensylvania is as much under computed at 250000 when Virginia has 176000 and as they have always concealed their numbers carefully by allowing no Pole Tax nor list of Taxables to be taken, as they carry on so great a Trade and are crowded with Planters by the Numbers which land there from Holland Britain and Ireland of which I have seen returns of about 10000 landed in one season that they are obliged to remove to the Southward for want of Lands to take up and as that Colony has of late extended far to the Westward of Susquehana I have reason to believe that what Governor Thomas informed me as to their numbers was not above the Truth that they had in that Colony including the lower Counties 100000 fighting Men capable of bearing arms—Therefore their number of Souls can't be less than 400000 and they will have no injustice done them if they are stated here at 360000 besides there are several negros who are not computed. I have also reason to believe that the Jerseys are short computed as they have got many of the Germans among them but shall make no further observations Northward as the Colonies there are not so wealthy as to the Southward.

I therefore shall add these Numbers so adjusted to the Computation and whatever Sum is raised over and above £63000 to pay the Troops may answer the payment of the Officers and other Gentlemen who shall be employed by his Majesty in managing the Military Affairs of the Colonies and the Trustees for the Management of Indian Affairs and Regulation of their Trade; and if there is any overplus it may go toward the building of the Forts and Barracks and afterwards in Keeping them in repair and in purchasing arms and Ammunition for I suppose his Majesty will give the Cannon necessary for the Forts.

The number of Whites and taxable Negros in the Colonies according to this alteration of the numbers in the 5 Southern Provinces will appear thus.

-------------------- page 473 --------------------
In New Hampshire
30000
Massachuset and Main
220000
Rhode Island and Providence
35000
Connecticut
100000
New York
100000
New Jersys
60000
Pensylvania and lower Counties
360000
Maryland with Negros 40000
140000
Virginia with Negros 58000
230000
North Carolina with Negros 5000
80000
South Carolina with Negros 50000
110000
Georgia
6000
Carried over
Total
1471000
Brought over
Total
1471000
Negros deducted
153000
Total of Whites
1318000

I shall now upon these Numbers of Whites and taxable Negros amounting in the whole to 1471000 form a calculation of what proportional sum each Colony ought to pay upon a Pole Tax of 12d 13d 13½d and 14d per Poll in order to shew the amount of the Poll Tax upon each of these sums charged per Poll from 12d to 14d per head that upon finding the exceeding upon each above the £63000 the charge of the Garrisons we may consider what surplus may be necessary to add until the Forts are compleated and what may be proper afterwards to keep the Buildings in repair and for the charge of Management and securing and regulating the Indian Trade so as to preserve their friendship—

at 12d
at 13d
at 13½d
at 14d
New Hampshire to Pay
1500
1625
1687
1750
Massachuset with Main
11000
11916
12374
12832
Rhode Island with Providence
1750
1895
1967
2040
Connecticut
5000
5416
5624
5832
New York
5000
5416
5624
5832
New Jersys
3000
3250
3375
3500
Pensylvania
18000
19500
20250
21000
Maryland
7000
7583
7874
8166
Virginia
11500
12458
12937
32416
North Carolina
4000
4333
4499
4666
South Carolina
5500
5958
6187
6416
Georgia
300
325
337
350
73550
79675
82735
85800
-------------------- page 474 --------------------

By this Computation it will appear that 12d per Poll would only raise a surplus of £10500 that at 13d per head it would raise a surplus of about £16600 by 13½d about £19700 and 14d per head until the Forts were erected and the Barracks for the Troops and then when the charge of Management and transacting Indian Affairs were known if there was any surplus it should go towards repairs and Contingencies and if there should be any saving and an overplus remain it should be kept in Bank to answer any Emergencies if the Poll Tax should not make up the Sum each Colony to make up their Quota by other Taxes and if they should not approve of continuing a Poll Tax then the several assemblies may raise the Sum upon Taxables by Excise or Duties upon Imports from all places but Great Britain or upon any foreign Luxuries and as this plan would effectually secure their place by Land and increase and improve the several Colonies it would become more easy so that upon due consideration if the proportional sums be found right as might be known by the Poll Tax if there was no fraud in the Collection but each Colony took Care to have all their Numbers pay by laying a heavy fine upon all families who gave a false Return of their Numbers or upon single persons who did not pay then a just proportion might be struck the following year and raised in a manner the most agreable to each Colony so as to have the Sum ascertained to be remitted by each Colony to the Managers; and I can't but think each Colony would be pleased for so small a sum upon each to pay it chearfully to secure their religion liberty and property with a happy peace that they might improve their Colonies and enjoy the Indian Trade and their perpetual friendship.

It would be impertinent in me to propose anything relative to the Rank number or appointments of those his Majesty sends to preside over and conduct the whole Military affairs of the Colonies, for the Military affairs must always be under the power and conduct of his Majesty and his successors; so that his Majesty must determine the appointments but it will be prudent out of the surplus to have a considerable sum to go towards Repairs Buildings and to Managers of Indian Affairs and to answer contingencies; and the Colonies will expect some of their number to be joined in the Commission or Trust for Indian affairs, and to enquire into the Repairs necessary for the Barracks and Forts and to see that the Garrisons are kept compleat and in case the fund should increase by the Improvement of the Colonies or by forming new Provinces beyond the mountains as the Colonies extend their settlements then a Barrack Board or Office should be erected to take care of the Forts Barracks and Bedding of the Soldiers for they may have fire and candles at their own Expence when the Forts are finished and they have got into their farms.

-------------------- page 475 --------------------

If care be not taken there will be a great Expence attending the building of the Forts and Barracks labour being at so excessive a price in the Colonies and therefore all prudent steps should be taken to get proper Artificers necessary in carrying on Buildings to inlist in the Troops from England, or if no Troops come from thence then draughts should be made of such and so many Artificers as may be judged necessary out of those already enlisted in the marching Regiments in England who should be allowed British Wages while employed, besides their pay, and such Soldiers of the several Garrisons who would be Labourers should be allowed Frocks Shoes and double pay. But in order further to lessen the Expence I should think it a Right Measure to send all the convicted Felons and Vagabonds transported to the Colonies (where they are now become a nuisance) to these Garrisons to work at the Fortifications for their Meat and Cloathing and the women may become servants to the Garrison in their several Farms or Barracks and the Men could be confined at Night until the Forts were finished there being Guards and Sentinels over them so they could not make their escape and they would become thus enured to labour and when their time of punishment expired if they became tractable and industrious they might become servants at Wages until they had something saved to take up Lands and turn Planters.

I think it would be advisable to pass a Law in England and Ireland that all persons guilty of Larceny or small Thefts & Pickpockets should all be transported instead of being burnt in the hand or being allowed the benefit of the Clergy or being publickly whipped which hardens them and makes them greater Rogues and that all Idle Vagrants and Boys in Towns who have no Parents or masters nor apply themselves to labour for their Maintenance should also be transported as none will trust them to be servants These might be usefully employed in the Colonies in the Fortifications and Repairs and making Publick Roads Bridges &c: and those who are flagrant Offenders upon settling the Countries about Hudson's Bay should be transported thither to be servants to the Planters from whence they could not easily return and if they misbehaved send them to the most Northerly parts or give them as servants to the northern Indians, who then must work or starve.

If this scheme [be] found reasonable and £10,000 were allowed annually out of the surplus Fund to pay the Labourers &c: and surplus Pay and to provide Materials with such further sums as I shall here mention, the Forts might be erected in a short time. The small Fort at Kennebec I suppose is already built, Crown Point Fort when taken will require little addition or repair Oswego Fort now building will be finished before this plan can take place.—It is not necessary that all the others

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should be undertaken at once but only 3 of those which are immediately necessary vizt Niagara and the Fort near the Chickesaws to prevent their being cut off by the French and the Fort among the Creek Indians lest they should be forced into allyance with the French for want of being protected—I would not then advise the raising the 28 companies at once but only those Garrisons where the Forts are already built and those here proposed to be immediately built and the 3 companies for Occabach one at the Twightwees 4 at Yuncundat and 2 Redouts in all 9 companies may not be raised which being 900 Men would be a saving of about £19000—and that sum with the saving on the Surplus of £10000 would soon finish these 3 forts after which the 4 companies for Sanduski or Yuncundat and the Company for the Twightwees may be raised and these 2 forts be erected and the 4 Companies for the Occabach and the 2 Redouts not being raised there would still be a saving of about £8000 which added to the Surplus £10000 would soon finish these 2 forts after which the other 4 companies should be raised and the surplus fund £10000 would soon finish the Fort at Occaback and the 2 Redouts near Erie; so that with the Labour of the Convicts and Vagabonds transported and the Labour of the Soldiers in Garrison they might soon be compleated and at a moderate Expence.

I shall a little explain the kind of Forts which I think would be proper to be erected The 2 small Redouts for 50 Men each may be Triangular with half Bastions a Fosse and pallisades on the Counterscarp with a Glacis with only 12 Swivel Guns on the Parapet or Musquetoons with a strong Barrack and Magazine in the fort. The small forts to be garrisoned by a 100 or 200 Soldiers to be large Triangles with full Bastions with a large Fosse and Counterscarp pallisaded and large Glacis, and ought to have 12 cannon 4 pounders 2 in each flank of the 3 Bastions and 30 Swivels at the Curtains—The Forts whose Garrisons consist of 3. 4. or 500 Men ought to be large square Forts with 4 Bastions 16 cannon 6 pounders 2 on each Flank 48 Swivel Guns with a large Fosse and covered way upon the Counterscarp with places of Arms and a Glacis well pallisaded—These I think will be strong enough to resist any force can be brought against them—The first thing to be done is to make Log Houses for the Soldiers and to trase out and clear the Ground about the fort, and then to throw up some of the Fosse to form the Glacis and to fix the Pallisades; and then after making a proper Barrack for the Officers to fall about raising the Body of the Fort.

I must beg leave to observe that if this expence be taken off the Government it will still be the Interest of Britain to keep several Independant companies in America and to erect Forts at the Entrance of all the

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Great Rivers as well to defend the Harbours and shipping from hostile attacks or Invasions by sea as to be a check upon the illicite Trade of the Colonies and to assist and countenance the Revenue Officers and also to be a check upon the Colonies whilst Britain has the Harbours and Rivers to prevent their Trade: if they hereafter should attempt an Independency or openly carry on a Trade with Foreigners as Rhode Island and Connecticut do, I should think if some Soldiers were sent to these Colonies to prevent an open illicite Trade it would be of benefit to the British Trade as they are almost all supplied with Goods and Manufactures from Holland which are dispersed among the neighbouring Colonies But exclusive of these 2 Provinces it would take 14 companies the Expence of which would be about £25000 at 100 private men each 2 companies in a fort to command the Entrance of Hudsons River below New York 2 in Delawar River whereso they can command the Channel in a Fort there 2 to command the entrance into Chesapeak Bay by a Fort at Cape Henry where large cannon could command the channel one at Core Banks to command Ocacock Bar and the shipping to Neuse, Pampticoe and Roanoak Rivers one at Cape Fear in the new Fort 2 at Charles Town or Portroyal in South Carolina and 2 in Georgia at Savanna and Frederica, and above all 2 at Cape Look out Harbour the best and most convenient from Boston to Cape Florida with a strong Fort under the Protection of which in time of War our Navigation would be safe and our Ships from Privateers who would water and clean there where the station ships to Southward of new York would be of more service in time of war than in any River on the continent as they could be at sea in 2 hours and could from thence sail to the Capes of Virginia or to Charles Town or Georgia in 48 hours, when they may be some weeks in getting out of the Rivers where they have all the convenience to wood, water or clean and careen and be as safe as in a Mill pond or dock and the Bay without the Harbour all clean ground which could contain the whole British Navy.

As to our Treatment of the Indians so as to secure their friendship and Trade it must take up some time and consultation with Merchants and Traders of Character to fix proper regulations for the Trade in the mean time I shall give your Lordships some hints and sketches of the out lines of what ought to be settled and prosecuted with care, and then be punctually observed.

The friendship of the Indians can never be effectually secured without protecting them and preventing their being imposed upon by frauds of the Traders doing them exact Justice and shewing them by actions of Benevolence that we desire to have them for our friends and to settle an

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equitable Standard of Trade with them according to the distance Hazard and Expence of carriage that they may have a reasonable price for their Furs Skins and other goods they have to dispose of fit for our Market and that they may have at a reasonable value good and well made Manufactures or other goods that they shall choose to take in Exchange without being cheated or overreached I should therefore think it advisable that his Majesty should appoint a Number of Commissioners or Trustees to look into Indian affairs in order to regulate the Indian Trade and to gain and secure their Friendship, that they should be chosen out of Gentlemen who understand Trade or Merchants who have left off Business or who by Misfortune have been prevented from following Trade some to be sent from England to be joined to others here who are well recommended and understand the Colonies and Indian Trade.

That there should be at least six or eight appointed with proper Salaries to be paid out of the Surplus raised by the Colonies for the pay of the Garrasons Building of Forts &c: who should reside and hold their Office in one of the most central Provinces nearest to the principal Indian Trading Nations—That the Trade should be put under proper Regulations but be made as general as possible from every province according as they ly convenient to the Trade and should be clog'd with no charges except the taking out Licenses for which they should pay a small Fee to the Board and to give Security to follow the Instructions and Regulations given to them by the Trustees of the Board: That there should be a fine or penalty laid upon every other person, by a Law passed in England, or in each of the Colonies who should go beyond the Settlements of his Province to Trade with any Indian Nation without such License and giving Bond as already mentioned but should not be prevented from trading with any Indian within the Province or who should come into the Province to Trade.

That those licensed should be laid under strict Regulations and should be obliged to use the Indians well and with particular friendship and to shew them a proper regard. That no Rum or other Spirits should be sold to any particular Indian but if any were allowed to be carry'd in casks it should be brought into the Indian Town and be lodged in a store not to be sold but by permission or token from the Headman King or the Council of the Nation at the regulated price It would be also proper for the Board to fix a Gentleman who had been conversant in Trade in every trading Indian Nation, in friendship with us at a reasonable Salary; who should be obliged not to Trade and should swear to observe the Regulations given to him by the Board to the best of his power and knowledge and to do their utmost to secure such persons who Trade without

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License which the Traders should be allowed to shew to him; and to oblige those who have Licenses to follow the Regulations and keep to the Standard of Trade and to give marketable Goods in Exchange for the furs, skins &c: got from the Indians; in case any Indian Trader had no License, or refused to produce it, he should have a power given to him to seize the Goods, and dispose of them to the Indians and the value should be given to some licensed Trader to carry to the Trustees who were to pay him for the carriage and his Trouble and to be sold by the Trustees to be added to their Contingencies.

That no Guns should be sold to our Indian Friends or other Indians that were not proved it being a great loss to the Indians in their hunting and maiming many of them, and alienates their affections from the English—If the Traders do not follow the Regulations these Inspectors are to acquaint the Board in order to have them prosecuted upon their Return upon their Bonds and Securities. These Inspectors fixed in the Indian Towns should be chosen for their humanity and Integrity as well as capacity in Trade that they may by good Offices gain the Indians friendship and promote their being industrious by their good advice and Example, in gardening, husbandry and rearing of Cattle Keeping Dairies &c; These are some hints out of many more which may be thought of to oblige our Traders to be just in their dealings and to sell at a reasonable profit to the Indians, for unless we deal without fraud and can undersell the French the cheating and monopolising Indian Traders will ruin our Credit with the Natives and they never will be sincerely our friends.

These my Lords are my present thoughts which I have long wished to see put in practice for the good of Britain and the Colonies. It is a Justice due to the Natives whose Lands we possess, and those Regulations with prudence and proper Management would spread our Interest and Trade over the greatest part of this Continent, and we at the same time should add to the Happiness of the Indians by civilizing and giving them a Constitution founded on Liberty and Truth which would still more endear us to them.

I hope you will pardon my laying my Thoughts so incorrectly before your Lordships, But as it is Obedience to your orders of so old a Date as 16th which never came to my hands but the Duplicate which I got the 17th instant I thought any delay might be construed a Neglect and therefore better to send them in a rude Dress and not loose this opportunity than to delay to revise them

I am with the greatest regard, &c.

Newbern 26th Decbr 1755.